The holiday season has come again, and it’s a great time of year to remember those in need. Volunteering your time is a wonderful way to help out the community and make a difference in someone’s life. There are several organizations in Louisville that rely on volunteers: The Kentucky Humane Society, Norton Healthcare, The Louisville Zoo, The Kentucky Science Center, The Louisville Nature Center, and The Louisville Free Public Library all offer volunteer opportunities for teens. Make sure to call them ahead of time to see when they are accepting volunteers as some of these organizations only have opportunities seasonally.
Check out this and other titles on Volunteering
Remember that there are many ways to help others everyday too. You can do something for an elderly neighbor such as taking out their garbage or raking the leaves in their yard. Most grocery stores are taking donations of food, clothing, and toys to prepare for the holiday season. The Red Cross is always in need of blood donations, especially of rare blood types. If you see a need that is not being met you can even create your own charity, like 16 year old Maddy Beckman who fashioned Coat-A-Kid to help keep kids warm in the winter.
Spread the spirit of the season by finding your own unique way of giving back!
-Lynn, Children and Teen Services, St. Matthews and Westport Branches
Celebrate your freedom to read by participating in Banned Books Week from September 21-27. Banned Books Week began in 1982 in response to thousands of books being challenged in libraries, schools, and stores. Books are challenged for many reasons including: use of language, unsuited to age group, political viewpoints, and religious viewpoints just to name a few. In order for a book to be banned from a public library it must be put through a formal review process where several librarians read the book to determine if its content reflects the complaints made against the book. Keep in mind that it is rare for a book to be banned from a public library because it is the library’s mission to provide everyone with equal access to information.
These are the top ten most challenged books from 2013:
1. The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence
Teen Summer Reading is in full-swing. Have you gotten your Summer Reading folder? Along with prizes for completing your reading, there are a wide variety of activities and programs at a library branch near you. There is a main event Friday, July 11, 6-9 PM that is sure to draw a crowd: the Teen After Hours Party. Be a part of the very first Teen Choice Book Awards being presented at the party. Tell us which titles you think should win, by voting for your favorites.
One of the categories up for vote is Best Book-to-Movie. Who will get the most votes: The Hunger Games, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Divergent, The Book Thief, or The Spectacular Now? Have you read all the books that are nominees?
Ask anyone I went to school with, and they will tell you that Lynette Ruby was not a girly girl – that is to say if I am even remembered by my name, and not “that angry short girl with the pixie haircut.” I thought giving in and having fun with something girly like a movie, book, or pop song would ultimately undo whatever tough personae I’d worked to cultivate. There were certain things I would not allow myself to enjoy…well, not publicly at least. There were pop bands I’d deny enjoying, movies I’d claim I didn’t want to see, books I wouldn’t read, and more feminine looks I would refuse to wear.
“A friendly desert community where the sun is hot, the moon is beautiful, and mysterious lights pass overhead while we all pretend to sleep. Welcome to Night Vale.”
So begins the first episode of the increasingly popular Welcome to Night Vale, where we get a glimpse into a community where all conspiracy theories are real, librarians are monstrous creatures that “SHOULD NOT UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES BE APPROACHED,” and angels (which are all named Erika and do not exist) communicate through Old Woman Josie. We are listening in to the public radio show of the little town, headed by Cecil Palmer, our constant companion through all the trying times that you can imagine would occur in such a place. Welcome to Night Vale is a podcast by Commonplace Books that updates twice a month.
Some of you might be wondering what a podcast is. (I imagine most of you are wondering about that surrealist nonsense in the previous paragraph, but I’m hoping at least one of you focused on the “podcast” part and not the “Erika” part, because this is my segue anyway).
My bookish friends, how often have you fantasized about wandering through Hogsmeade, slipping into the Three Broomsticks, and ordering yourself an excellent foaming hot tankard of Butterbeer? Or perhaps the tempting sweets of the White Witch from Chronicles of Narnia are more to your liking? Will it be Turkish Delight? Alice’s Looking-Glass Cake? Or Dauntless chocolate cake?
Some books are meant to be savored—some books devoured. Some, moreover, simply whet our appetites for food that we can never taste.
Or can we? Whether you’re culinary, literary, or both, I invite you to test out some of these fun cookbook compilations available in the library’s collection. Cook something right out of the pages of your favorite book! Be sure to check out some of these fun cookbooks.
The Unofficial Harry Potter Cookbook: From Cauldron Cakes to Knickerbocker Glory—More Than 150 Magical Recipes for Wizards and Non-Wizards Alike by Dinah Bucholz
Offers many a tempting treat for wizard or muggle (though those looking for butterbeer will be sorely disappointed). Explore Diagon Alley delights, treats from the train, Great Hall favorites, holiday fare and much more!
FEATURED RECIPE:Hagrid’s Rock Cakes
Hagrid’s rock cakes, which are mentioned no less than three times in the Harry Potter books, are a standard with tea and hard as a rock if made authentically (to make a more palatable version don’t over bake and leave them out for several days like Hagrid probably did).
We know that you probably have lots of homework and projects this time of year, but we’re hoping you’ll have a chance to have some fun now that spring is here. If you’re in a slump, here are some ideas that may help you get your creativity back on track.
PBS’ The Art Assignment (hosted by curator Sarah Green)
Each week a different artist suggests an art project, and you’re invited to play along and complete the assignment. If you submit a video, it could be featured in an upcoming episode.
Did you notice that Sarah is married to one of our favorite YA authors?