Our latest supplemental page in this blog is an archival feature, From Main to Mulberry, where we're showcasing content from our 2013 quasquicentennial tab supplement to the Mount Vernon News. We were celebrating our 125th anniversary (which is what "quasquicentennial" means, in case you didn't know), and we wanted to do something really special to commemorate the occasion. The tab section was a labor of love. We wrote lots of articles, mostly historical in nature, but some meditative or explanatory, and gathered the best images we could find. When we were done, we found we had more content than would fit in the tab section, so we saved it and plan to include it on this special page. Click on the link in our header. It's pretty rudimentary right now, just an image of the front cover and some pictures of the demolition of the original Main Street structure, but we'll be adding content as we go along.
In the good way, that is. We've been getting into the "Maker Space" idea for a while now, and today was my day to give up bystander status and plunge into it. On our children's floor we have a section of books we call the "maker collection"--kind of a "how-to" collection with ideas and instructions for making all kinds of neat things. To that we added a selection of make-and-take kits that people can borrow for four weeks to enjoy at home. They're mainly for kids, so I checked one out for my grandson Joey (who will be six in October). They come in a nifty transparent backpack with straps adjustable enough that I could (with help) slip it onto my back and strut around like some kind of maker-hiker. (That's our teen services librarian Karen Jensen in the background of the first picture.) It was so comfy I didn't want to take it off right away, so circulation clerk Annette Sells scanned it right from my back to check it out to me. In the last picture I'm proudly displaying my circulation receipt.
I don't know how Joey will like the kit I picked out for him--I'll find that out tonight--but I think it's pretty cool. It's called Tecno, and it consists of a plastic box, the lid of which is perforated like a peg board with holes into which you can screw the accompanying plastic screws and bolts. There are assorted other plastic pieces--nuts, washers, angle brackets and flat pieces--that you use to create flat or 3-D items. My favorite is a cute little helicopter. There are plastic tools to use on the plastic pieces, along with an instruction booklet (actually, more of a suggestion booklet) and two other books: Build Your Own Car, Rocket, and Other Things That Go, by Tammy Enz, and Auto Mechanics, by Cecilia Minden and Mary Minden-Zins.
We're working on plans for a much more ambitious maker space in what is now our teen hang-out space on the main floor. The new environs will include an array of gadgets and devices for public use, among them several desktop computers (loaded with programs like Minecraft, Microsoft Publisher, PowerPoint, Garage Band, etc.), a 3-D pen, a Raspberry Pi, an AccuCut die cutter, an iPad station with Osmos--just lots of neat stuff. Stay tuned. It should be awesome.
September is National Library Card Sign-Up Month! This observance, sponsored by the American Library Association (who else?), runs all month.It was launched in 1987 to meet the challenge of then Secretary of Education William J. Bennett, who said, “Let’s have a national campaign….every child should obtain a library card—and use it.”Since then, thousands of public and school libraries have joined together each September in an effort to make that happen. So if you know someone who doesn't have a library card, why not do the neighborly thing and suggest they drop by their nearest library branch to get one? We're in Mount Vernon, Fredericktown, Danville and Gambier, so you don't have to go very far to find us. Unless, of course, you're websurfing from a location in Outer Mongolia or somewhere else that's substantially outside of Knox County, Ohio. In that case, wait until your next trip to Knox County, then come and find us. It'll be much easier that way. But seriously, a library card is one of the most valuable things you can have in your possession. It gives you access to an entire universe of information, education and entertainment in both tangible and electronic forms, and it's free. So here's my new slogan: Friends don't let friends go without library cards. Have a wonderful Labor Day Weekend. --JC