92 Days of Summer Giveaways is back! #92daysofsummer is the length of The Kenton County Public Library Summer Reading Club – June 1-August 31 – and we will be giving prizes away every single day on our Facebook page! Summer can be an exciting adventure but many children get bored quickly. Shoot, even the adults do. So the Kenton County Public Library has you covered with our list of suggested activities and books for #92daysofsummer and giveaways for outings and fun stuff to do at home. This is a long list so print it off to hang on the fridge, mark things on your calendar or check the post often. Also be sure to check the Library Calendar of Events for additional activities. We will also be giving away prizes EVERY SINGLE DAY of the 92 Days of Summer on our Facebook page so be sure to check it out every day. A coupon for a kid’s meal from Fazoli’s, donated by 4 The Love of Family, will be included with every prize. #92daysofsummer Book: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern Activity: Clown around by learning to juggle, balance feathers, ride a unicycle and much more Giveaway: One week of summer camp at Circus Mojo Book: Project Kid: 100 Genius Crafts for Family Fun by Amanda Klingoff Activity: Get out the craft supplies and see what type of creation you can make as a family Giveaway: Two free youth art class at Baker Hunt Art & Cultural Center Book: 13 Modern Artists Children Should Know by Brad Finger Activity: Visit the Contemporary Arts Center Giveaway: Two free admission to the Contemporary Arts Center, two CAC T-shirts, four free admission to the June 27 Family Festival Book: Scooby-Doo! and the Weird Water [...]
You may remember a post I wrote last fall called How to Prep for Your Child's Senior Year. Well, my daughter Andi's senior year will come to an end in two months. We definitely weren't as prepared as I would have liked to have been but I am much more prepared for my son Joey, who is only a freshman. After college visits, tons of research and lots of tears, Andi has chosen a college and a major. Over the last two years, we have toured Illinois State University, Georgia State University, Thomas More College and Northern Kentucky University. We didn't really consider cost when choosing which schools to tour, knowing that she would receive some merit money and hopefully receive other scholarships. Thomas More and Northern Kentucky University were obvious choices because of location. ISU and GSU were picked based on her interests. Thomas More College Thomas More offers a beautiful campus and although it is private, it can be very affordable. The school is able to offer a lot of scholarships, which actually brought the tuition down to about the cost of NKU. Andi wasn't sure what her major would be when we toured but TMC does not offer what she ultimately chose. However, she ruled TMC out before even picking a major. Thomas More has about 1300 students, which isn't much bigger than Andi's high school. She wants something larger than that. Andi & Joey visiting ISU Illinois State University ISU was our first college visit. We actually chose ISU because they offer a recreational circus program that Joey is interested in. You can read about this visit here. Andi really didn't consider ISU but it was good to have [...]
The library can be a great resource for planning your next vacation to anywhere in the world. Our staff can help you find travel books to your destination and can direct you to some online vacation resources. You can also checkout items from the library that you might want/need on your vacation. You can check out a Canon DSLR camera to capture your vacation memories and we also have a metal detector that I wish I would have placed on hold because that would have been something fun to do while on the beach. The wifi hot spots we have available for checkout can be great for a long car ride with kids. We also have different lawn games available for check out which would be great additions to a camping trip or a stay at the beach. You can visit our Library of Things for a complete list. Here are some photos from my family’s vacation to South Haven, Michigan. I highly recommend this vacation spot to anyone who enjoys the sand but dislikes salt water. It’s the best of both worlds. You can dig your feet in the sand and avoid the salt water. The kids had a blast running along the beach and kicking sand in the air. Lake Michigan is cold at the beginning of June but that didn’t stop the big kids from jumping in! David (left) & Collin (right); cousins/best buds. Beach Frisbee anyone? A lawn game from the library would also have been a great addition to our vacation. Pier at North Beach Downtown South Haven is a shopper’s paradise. Also, if you are a connoisseur of food [...]
Between Thanksgiving and the end of the year we spend a lot of time thinking about family, planning get-togethers, cooking and buying gifts – all for the ones we love best. As Americans we tend to focus on the future and not the past. But this is a great time of year to slow down and remember -- and learn from -- those we love. There’s research that shows that children who know their family’s history – both the happy times and the challenging ones – are more resilient, confident and happy than children who don’t (see The Secrets of Happy Families by Bruce Feiler). He calls it a “…strong intergenerational self. They know they belong to something bigger than themselves.” Mr. and Mrs. Gisellie Baker with (left to right) Cindy (2), Priscilla (3), Paul J. (2), Richard (2), Anthony (5). Photograph Courtesy of Faces and Places. “The most healthful narrative … is the oscillating family narrative. ‘Dear, let me tell you we’ve had ups and downs in our family. We built a family business. Your grandfather was the pillar of the community. Your mother was on the board of the hospital. But we also had setbacks. We had a house burn down. Your father lost a job. But no matter what happened we always stuck together as a family.’” --Bruce Feiler Should you decide to take part in a Family Oral History, here’s a few things to consider: Keep others involved Starting a family oral history project takes a bit of preparation and time. There’s a lot of things you need to think about so take some time to put together a plan. But you can do [...]
Holiday gatherings are a great source of family fun. They can also be a great source of family information to help you learn more about your history. Here are five things you should do at your next family gathering so those family memories last forever: Think about what you want to learn. Where did grandma meet grandpa? Where was great-great cousin Lou born? What war did great uncle Joe serve in? Make a list of questions ahead of time and be sure to ask: birthplace, names of parents and siblings, where they lived, churches attended, burial locations, marriages, occupations, military service, public service, schools attended, etc. Not only will you get valuable information, you’re sure to hear some entertaining stories! Create a list of family members. Sit down with some of the older members in your family and ask them to list names of their brothers, sisters, grandparents and so on as far back as they can remember. Make sure to write down all the names and details like place of birth if possible. Even better, use your smartphone or tablet to record members of your family talking about it. Share and share alike. You may find that someone else in your family is working on your genealogy as well. Share what you’ve learned. Genealogy is a great way to connect with others and sharing family data, research tips, and resources can go a long way in making contacts and/or finding those missing pieces. If you have extended and far away family, use social media to let them know what you’re doing and ask if they have anything to add. Create a Facebook group where you post family history and invite your family to join. [...]
Did you know that there are many ways to give to the Kenton County Public Library Foundation? You can support the Library Foundation through Kroger Community Rewards, Amazon Smile, shop for a cause at boonsupply.com and via the general donation page, https://www.kentonlibrary.org/foundation. You can also sponsor a book, brick or wall tile in honor of someone (makes a great gift option for those who love the Library!). General giving: If you would like to make a donation to the Library Foundation, please click here to use a credit card. If you would like to send a check, please make it payable to the Kenton County Public Library Foundation and either drop off at any Library location (Covington, Erlanger or Durr in Independence) or mail to 3095 Hulbert Dr., Erlanger, KY 41018. Please fill out the this document when donating with either cash or check (link to order form online). Say Cheese…Amazon Smile When you shop at smile.amazon.com, Amazon donates to your favorite charitable organization. If you shop at amazon, you can select the Kenton County Public Library Foundation as a recipient to a percentage of your purchase price. Learn more at, smile.amazon.com. Honoring One Through a Book Know a reader? Honor their life, legacy or love of books by putting a book plate in a book of their liking. For a $25 donation, Library staff will work with you to identify the perfect book which will be marked with a special nameplate on the inside cover. Click here to complete online with credit card. If you prefer to pay with cash or check, please download this form and either mail to the library or bring it with you on your next visit. [...]
Between school, work, a social life, and other responsibilities, sometimes reading can get tossed to the side or postponed indefinitely. Here are some tips and tricks to help you continue reading while living your busy life to the fullest. Don't force yourself to read. For some people, goals such as "number of books per year" or "number of chapters per night" are helpful to organize their reading and make it a priority, but you know yourself best. If those goals will only stress you out or distract you from other responsibilities, then don't worry about them. Reading is supposed to be fun (unless it's an assignment, then it's fun AND mandatory) so don't turn it into a chore. Similarly, if you start a book and you decide you don't find it interesting, don't read it! I generally go through 1/3 or ½ a book before I give up on it. If it hasn't piqued my interest (or shown me why I should read it anyways) by then, it probably never will. Try audiobooks or podcasts. These you can listen to while driving, doing chores, working, etc. I even listen to them as I fall asleep at night. Audiobooks are available on your phone/computer through companies like Audible or iTunes, or for free here at the library. Podcasts can be found online or on your phone as well and are typically free. eBooks. They aren't for everyone, but eBooks are certainly useful. They're easier to carry, and you probably always have your phone on you, so if you happen to have some downtime but didn't prepare by bringing a book? Your handy dandy phone is there with the latest thriller! You don't have to have a specific device for this, smartphones are enough with Apple's Books, Android's [...]
Life is busy as a mother of four boys between the ages of 2 and 10 and stepmom of a teen girl. For the past two school years I allowed my boys to get lunch at school since it is provided for free to all students. I thought this was a great way to save money and assumed they were getting a decent meal but they always came home starving. They would eat a such a large snack that they didn’t want dinner but would be hungry again by bedtime. The school offered free breakfast and lunch over the summer and since my children were attending a summer program, I allowed them to eat there. Again, they would come home hungry. I know my children are bottomless pits, but this was over the top. I discovered the portions were more snack size than meal size. Lunch included a choice of two cheese filled bread sticks, a Trix yogurt or two pieces of sliced cheese, as well as milk, fruit and a vegetable. This just wasn’t enough to get them through the day. This year is full of changes for my family, which includes a new school. Their new school doesn’t offer free meals for everyone, so breakfast is 75 cents and lunch is $2. The menu is very similar to their old school, so I decided they will be packing most days since full bellies, allowing them to focus on learning, is important to me. In the past, we let them pack for themselves, but they would take at least 10 minutes to do so and what they chose wasn’t always the best lunch. This year [...]
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Alice and Maggie Hair have a new hobby thanks to Maker Camp at the Erlanger Branch of the Kenton County Public Library. The twins attended the Maker Camp - Rug Weaving program in June. They learned how to make their own looms and weave. They loved it so much that they had their mom Sarah help them make looms at home. Maker Camp is offered every Thursday in July, August 2 and August 9 for children ages 7 and older from 6-7:30 pm in the STREAM Center at the Erlanger Branch. Each week has a different theme: July 5th - Print Making July 12th - Build a Tiny House July 19th - Playdough Test July 26th - Circuits, Circuits and More Circuits! August 2nd - Balloon Hovercraft August 9th - Paper Roller Coaster Maker Camp is a great way to beat the heat or the rain. The children will learn a new skill while having fun and the rest of the family can pick up a few books and movies. Visit kentonlibrary.org for more information.
Telescopes, binoculars, yard games…not what you typically associate with a library. However, that is not the case at the Kenton County Public Library. The Library is broadening its collection of items they provide to the public and are calling it the Library of Things. You might be wondering “what are these things and how can I get them?” The easiest way to check out all that’s offered is to go to the catalog and type in Library of Things. There are nearly 600 items available however you can narrow down your search. To the left of the screen are some categories to search or you can just scroll through the offerings. While there is something for just about everyone in the Library of Things (DSLR camera, giant Jenga-like game, old school gaming systems) here are the top ten requested items: Top 10 Most Requested Items on Hold Super Nintendo entertainment system : classic game console Sega genesis : classic game console Orion SkyQuest XT4.5 Dobsonian Reflector telescope KCPL Wifi Hotspot Maker kit #03 [kit] : Virtual Reality kit Maker kit #02 [kit] : ozobots STREAM kit : ACE 300 metal detector Atari flashback 7 : classic game console deluxe STREAM kit : Canon DSLR camera and tripod Maker kit #05 [kit] : code & go robot mouse Top 10 Most Checked Out Items Wifi Hotspot Portable DVD Player Brother Sewing Machine GoSports Giant Toppling Tower Toss Boss Larger Ring Toss Game CD Player Rollors Baden Champions Series Bocce Ball set Original Molkky ZINK Zero Ink hAppy Smart App Printer RPG Kit Ukulele Kit To place these items on hold, or check out if they are available, all you need is a [...]
The region is at the eve of the Mid-Summer Classic or to the casual baseball fan the Major League Baseball All-Star Game. Cincinnati and the region are set to take center stage as baseball’s best converge to face off on the diamond. What ties does Northern Kentucky have to the All-Star Game? Since the All-Star Game was first played in 1933 Northern Kentucky has had a handful of native sons break into the majors. A larger portion played before the inception of the All-Star Game. Thus we cannot really discuss them in the terms of being all-stars; many of them had fine careers that may have been all-star worthy. However a small number have stood out since then and were selected to the All-Star Game. We will talk about four individuals in this article. Two were from Northern Kentucky; well one was from Fleming County which is a neighbor of Mason County which is part of Northern Kentucky but it is close enough and we could argue all sorts of technicalities but he counts, the other was from Campbell County. The third player was born and raised in Cincinnati but played baseball in high school and college here in Northern Kentucky. The fourth was an umpire from Kenton County. So who were they? Jim Bunning, Woodie Fryman and David Justice were the players selected more than once in their careers to the All-Star Game. The umpire selected as an All-Star was Randy Marsh also a Northern Kentucky native. Jim Bunning from Southgate, Kentucky played professionally from 1955-1971. He was a 9 time All-Star. While playing for the Detroit Tigers Jim was selected to the American League squad 7 times (1957, 1959 and 1961, [...]
I am not originally from Northern Kentucky but my husband’s family is. And as with most Northern Kentucky families, their roots run deep. As our family runs errands he will often point out where his grandpa lived, his friends’ houses, where he played baseball, where he went to school and such. But on one trip to Covington he drove down Holman Avenue and said his (paternal) grandpa owned a bar there. I didn’t pay too much attention until one day when one of my colleagues gave me an old photo. It was a picture of a city street, probably from the 1950’s. He said he noticed that the name on the bar said Klaene’s. I showed it to my husband and indeed, it was his grandpa’s bar. I’ve had the photo for years and always wanted to make a t-shirt of it as a surprise for my husband. However, I had no clue where to start. Fortunately, in the past few months the Kenton County Public Library has invested in items for their makerspaces. One of those items happened to be a heat press located at the Covington branch library. I made an appointment with a staff member to help me with this project. To make an appointment, call the Covington Reference Desk at (859) 962-4071 and fill out the form below. The project itself was pretty easy. I purchased a few t-shirts from Michael’s Arts & Crafts. I was informed that 100% cotton works best and that polyester does not. I scanned the photo and put it on a flash drive so it was ready to go. Working with Gary and Kathy at the Covington branch library, we pulled up my photo. [...]
You still have time to win awesome prizes just for reading! Summer Reading Club kicked off June 1 and runs until August 31. Children, teens and adults can all win cool prizes. Families -Pick up a family bingo card from any of the three branches and complete it for a chance to win a Cincinnati Family Zoo membership. Adults - One winner will be drawn each week. Prizes include gift cards to local places. - Earn one raffle ticket for every checkout receipt. - Not sure what to read? Check out our suggested reading list. Teens - Visit kentonlibrary.org/92days or the library reference desk to fill out an entry form -One winner per week will be drawn each week for prizes like a Nintendo DS and Beats headphones. Grand prize is an iPad 2! -Looking for reading suggestions? Check our suggested YA reading list. Children (Ages 2-12) -Pick up a book log and start reading or listening to books. -After five books, or 2.5 hours of reading, return the log to receive a free book. -After 10 books, 5 hours of reading, return the log to receive a T-shirt or backpack and enter to win the grand prize - an iPad Mini! -Keep reading for more chances to win the grand prize. -Ask the library staff for book suggestions perfect for your child. Facebook Giveaways -Follow our Facebook page for chances to win daily prizes. Stop by a branch or visit www.kentonlibrary.org for more information. Pick up a calendar or visit our event page to see all of the free programs we offer.
Munch was only a few pounds when he came to the Library. He is now 50. The Kenton County Public Library staff welcomed Munch the tortoise to the Durr Branch in 2014. The then three pound turtle had plenty of room to grow and move around. But as time went on, Munch grew and grew. The staff built a new home for him but he eventually outgrew that as well. Munch has grown so much, 50 pounds, that he is too big to live at the library. After many discussions and tears, it was decided Munch needed a new home where he could continue to grow and have space to move around. Luckily the Ark Encounter agreed to take him. Munch is scheduled to move today, July 9, 2018. Once he gets settled in, people can visit him at the Ark. Many of our patrons are sad Munch is leaving. Please know this was not an easy decision and was done in the best interest of Munch. Staff has had so much fun with him over the years. I personally had the opportunity to work with Munch on several occasions. Munch loves basketball so he made his own bracket the last few years. I had the opportunity to work with him on Munch Madness. You can watch the video here. Other staff members worked with Munch to depict what a day in the life of Munch is like. You can watch that video here. Munch truly has a personality of his own, which is why we started Tortoise Tuesdays on social media. We had to show off his cuteness. [...]
Four years ago, I was asked to start facilitating the Writers Group at the Erlanger Branch. The group had already been in existence for several years, but needed a new staff member to organize the meetings. I jumped at the opportunity and have loved being part of the group ever since. Twice a month, writers join together to share their ideas, thoughts, and writings. We talk about what we are working on, what we should do next, and how to make our ideas better. Over the years, we’ve had many different attendees, but have become a sort of support group for each other. It has even helped me become more confident in my own writing and I hope I have instilled the same feelings in my fellow writers. The group is always open to new members, but is just for adults. Each meeting is set up the same way. Three people sign up and send samples to me ahead of time. During the meeting, those three writers take turns reading their samples out loud and then the group gives them feedback and we all discuss the piece. That’s it! It’s easy, laid-back, and inviting. We have had every kind of writing shared at our group, including chapters from novels, poetry, graphic novels, blog posts, nonfiction, memoir, and more. We’ve also had all different kinds of genres from fantasy to fairy tales to historical to science fiction. Everyone is encouraging and supportive. Along with sharing ideas and discussing writing, attendees give each other advice and share tips and tricks. Each meeting is an opportunity to bounce ideas off an unbiased, welcoming group of people who all share a common passion for writing. If you’ve always wanted [...]
What does your to-do list look like? Maybe it's tangible, a legal notepad filled with Sharpie scribbles or a whiteboard hanging on the wall of your office. Maybe it's something you keep in your head and mentally check off boxes every now and again. Or maybe lists aren't your style and your responsibilities are kept on a calendar or just dealt with as they come. However you keep track of these tasks, the big problem is completing them. Even the most determined people need a jump-start of motivation sometimes! I've heard of lots of ways to find inspiration for projects: from Pinterest to reward systems and everything in between. One of my favorite methods, however, is using entertainment. There are some books, films, television shows, etc. that, either through the story they tell or the techniques used to tell it, give me the momentum needed to get started on that aforementioned to-do list. For example, one of my favorite books is Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell, which tells the fictional story of a young writer starting college. Reading about her experiences in Fiction-Writing Class and her struggles/successes with writing always inspires me to write more myself! I've compiled a list below of some works that have helped me in the past & that are all available right here at the library! Books Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert Origins of a Story by Jake Grogan The Book Thief by Markus Zusak Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan The Marvels by Brian Selznick Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira Afterworlds by Scott Westerfield From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. [...]
My husband Nick and I are walking movie encyclopedias. Between the two of us, we have seen thousands of movies and can quote several of our favorites. I remember going to the theater to see ET, Star Wars, Back to the Future, Ghost Busters, Goonies, Gremlins and so many more classic movies with my family as a kid. We didn't get cable or a VCR until the mid-80's so going to the theater was really the only way to see movies at the time. These inventions made it possible to see old classics like Wizard of Oz, Alice in Wonderland, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, Sound of Music, Mary Poppins and Bambi. I fell in love with all of these movies. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is still one of my all time favorite movies. I think I ruined the VHS tape from watching it so many times with my older brother and our friends. I was ecstatic to see it as a musical at Broadway in Cincinnati earlier this year. I can't wait to see the Mary Poppins Returns when it is released in theaters on December 19th. Until then, I might have to check out the book or music. Just typin the titles of all of these movies takes me back to my childhood. I have shared all of these movies with my kids and hope they will one day share with their children. As a lover of most movie genres, I was shocked last week when I discovered my co-worker, who is within five years of my age, hasn't seen a lot of these movies. She hasn't seen Alice in Wonderland, Willy Wonka, Sound of Music, Mary [...]
Summer learning is a priority at the Kenton County Public Library. I am lucky enough to be the Children's Services Coordinator at the Erlanger Branch, and I am so proud of the work our Library does to support summer learning! Both inside our Library buildings and out in the community, KCPL staff members spent the summer of 2018 working hard to make sure all children had plenty of educational and recreational experiences to continue learning throughout the summer. Let me share a few highlights from this past summer! One of the most important things that children need to do during the summer is to READ! To encourage reading, KCPL’s Summer Reading Club provides incentive prizes. Every child ages 2 through 12 who read, or listened to, 10 books, OR spent 10 hours reading or listening to books, received a free book and a choice of a drawstring bag or our KCPL summer reading tee shirt, designed this year by local artist Becca Stadtlander. These are the incentive prizes that children received for reading during the summer! Library storytimes at all locations kept our youngest patrons engaged and entertained! Preschoolers enjoyed Rise 'n Shine Storytime with Miss Morgan on Monday mornings at Erlanger. Music, Motion and Stories with Mr. Joel the Singing Librarian was a big hit with preschoolers at Durr on Tuesday mornings. Programs for school aged children included arts and crafts, science, and technology. Canvas Art at Erlanger provided an opportunity for tweens to exercise their creativity and artistic skills! School aged children in Covington enjoyed Bubble Art! There was always something fun going on at the Trailblazers program on [...]
Have you been to any good plays lately? What about a musical or ballet? We have a lot of great options for theater in the Greater Cincinnati area. Here are some of my favorites! Broadway in Cincinnati- I have had the opportunity to see many Broadway shows at the Aronoff downtown with friends and my husband. My favorite is probably Wicked. I actually was able to purchase lottery seats for $25 and sat in the front row. It was truly amazing. The show is basically a prequel to the Wizard of Oz and will give you an entirely different perspective of the original movie. I wanted to see it over and over and definitely plan to see it again when it returns to Cincinnati. We have also seen A Christmas Story, School of Rock, The King and I and Aladdin. They were all fantastic! A Christmas Story was really exciting for me since it is my all time favorite Christmas movie (well, tied with Elf). I can quote the most of the movie. The actors portrayed the Parker family perfectly. We are looking forward to seeing the rest of this season's musicals including Ronald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The Play that Goes Wrong, Rent, Fiddler on the Roof, Hamilton, On Your Feet, Miss Saigon, Dear Evan Hanson and Cats. You can find the dates and tickets to all of these shows here. Surprisingly, I have never seen Cats so I am really looking forward to this show. Actually, I'm looking forward to all of them! Charlie and the Chocolate Factory coming to Broadway in Cincinnati. [...]
Ready to get creative? Request an item from our "DigiCart" and forget all those excuses you have been using about not having the right technology. Our DigiCart at the Erlanger Branch has just about everything you will need to get your project started. We've created a list of projects but the possibilities are endless! 1. Create a flyer or brochure for your small business or non-profit group. With Adobe InDesign you can create a professional piece for your business or non-profit that just might win you a new customer or a much needed grant. We have four MacBooks that are loaded with the full Adobe CS suite. 2. Record a podcast. Podcasts can be a great way to get your ideas out to a wider audience. Not sure about podcasts? Try searching iTunes to see all of the options that exist. If you can think of a topic, you can create a podcast. We have a Yeti microphone that will make you sound great! 3. Write and illustrate a children's picture book. Use our Wacom drawing pad and Adobe Illustrator to write and illustrate your very own children's book for a special child in your life. It would be a keepsake for any child. Consider adding pictures of the child in the book and they will be so excited to receive a personalized present. 4. Make a playlist. Bring in your old records and record digital versions of your favorite songs that might not be available in any other format. If you have family members who years ago recorded music give them a digital copy of their album and they will never have to worry about scratching their vinyl. 5. Mix and share [...]