David Cherry's blog

Have Book - Will Explode, Amazing Read Challenge Week 5

I hope you picked a savoAmazing Read Logory read for last week’s challenge. Myself, I fairly devoured Daniel Vaughn’s The Prophets of Smoked Meat: A Journey through Texas Barbecue. For hardcore ‘cue geeks like me, the pictures can only be described as salacious.

That brings us to this week's challenge: Have Book - Will Explode. By now you're probably making preparations for your 4th of July festivities (don't forget to swing by your local HCPL branch beforehand to pick up some books, videos and music!), we have great books for kids about this most American of holidays, like Karma Wilson’s How to Bake an American Pie, or What Is the 4th of July by Elaine Landau. For grownups, there is 1776, David McCollough’s highly readable look at the Founding Fathers who, it turns out, were just Above-Average Joes you might hang out with at the icehouse (when they weren’t busy forging the Nation and raising the ire or bewigged (and wiggy) British monarchs, that is).

Teen Summer Writing Contest!

monkey typing

Whether you have worn the letters off your keyboard trying to get all the stories and poems out of your head and on paper, or you just like to write and wouldn’t mind winning a prize for doing it, you are invited to enter the Teen Summer Writing Contest presented by Barbara Bush Branch Library and LSC – Tomball Community Library.

All participants will receive a certificate and are invited to an awards reception hosted by noted YA author Mary Lindsey (Shattered Souls) on August 13 at LSC-Tomball.

If you're a teen, 12 - 18 years-old and a current student in grades 6 - 12, and live...well...anywhere you can enter. Past entries have come from as far away as England. You don't even have to come to the reception to pick up your prize.

Congratulations to the Winner of Our First ASRP Drawing!

ASRP 2013 Kindle Paperwhite Winner, Dawn Woytek

HCPL would like to congratulate Katy Branch Library customer Dawn Woytek. She is the winner of the first random drawing of Adult Summer Reading Fun 2013. Here she is receiving her brand new Kindle Paperwhite from Katy Assistant Branch Librarian Donatta Clarke.

Don't miss out on your chance to win. We will be holding system-wide, random drawings throughout the summer. All you have to do is register for Summer Reading Fun. Additionally, at the conclusion of Summer Reading, all HCPL branches will hold drawings for $30 bookstore gift cards. For complete rules and to register, please visit our Summer Reading Fun page!

Congratulations again to Dawn. Here's wishing you a great summer of reading!

Family Curses: When Writers Beget Writers

I am the luckiest of fathers and have been since the beginning. If any newborn can be said to be calm, it would have been our daughter. Even factoring in a big honkin' dollop of paternal bias, she was pretty much perfect. She didn’t even cry much, and the crying she did seemed almost perfunctory, as if she only wanted to assure us she had a superior set of lungs. Her personality hasn’t changed much since those first moments of life. She has grown up to be a remarkably poised and intelligent young woman. It seems like all my wife and I had to do was remind her of the basics: 1). Treat everyone with respect and kindness, and if, for whatever reason that proves impossible, then at least be polite, 2). Don’t cheat or lie, 3). Boredom is for losers, 4). Be open to new experiences, and 5). Don’t put things up your nose.  That’s about it.

Have Book - Will Travel! Summer Reading Fun @ HCPL

SRP posters
Ah, summer! The kids are out of school, the mosquitoes are out in force, and before you know it, you’ll be out of ideas for things to do that don’t involve long hours sitting on car seats you could fry bacon on, getting sand in your bathing suit, and/or adding more negative numbers to your bank statement.

Harris County Public Library’s Summer Reading Fun is your answer.

This year’s theme is Have Book – Will Travel, and HCPL wants to encourage everyone—from infants to seniors--to explore the worlds that reading open up. Starting Monday, June 3, register online at www.hcpl.net and join your friends and neighbors in traveling the world through the pages of a book.

Kingwood Library Expands Hours of Operation Starting June 1

Exterior: Kingwood Branch LibraryEffective June 1, 2013, Harris County Public Library’s Kingwood Branch will expand its hours of operation from five to six days a week offering you more opportunities to browse the library’s continually refreshed collection of books, movies, music and journals, in addition to making it easier for you to take advantage of a wide range of library services.

The new hours reflect the needs of the community and will give you greater access to free Wi-Fi and internet, as well as to facilities including meeting, conference and study rooms. What’s more, the expanded hours mean the Kingwood Branch’s expert staff will be available seventeen additional hours every week to assist you with research, provide entertaining educational programming for all ages, or to just suggest the perfect book.

LightsOutHouston 2013 @ HCPL

lights out houston 2013In observance of the 6th Annual LightsOutHouston initiative, Harris County Commissioners Court has authorized Facilities and Property Management to lead a countywide effort, in conjunction with the City of Houston, the Greater Houston Partnership and Central Houston Inc. to turn off all non-essential lights at the end of the day.

Turning out unnecessary lights when you leave a room is one of the easiest ways you can help the environment, conserve valuable resources and save money. Remember--unlike humans and other living things, furniture does not need light to survive. Your sofa, ottoman and coffee table, as well as your work station and file cabinets are not afraid of the dark.

Harris County Public Library encourages you to make turning off unnecessary lights a year-round habit. If a light is not needed for safety or some other necessity, turn it off!

Join WITS and HCPL in Celebrating National Poetry Month with A Poem A Day

WITS Poem a Day logoWriters in the Schools (WITS), is a local nonprofit organization that sends professional poets, fiction writers and playwrights into over 350 area schools to help children, K - 12,  discover the "pleasure and power of reading and writing." Each year in April, WITS celebrates National Poetry Month by sharing the poems of some of its many talented students through its A Poem A Day project.

 We at Harris County Public Library are excited to once again participate in this year’s event. Starting this Monday, April 1 and running through the month, fans of HCPL’s Facebook page will get to read these amazing poems.

Don’t miss a single one. ‘Like’ us on Facebook now (and as an added bonus you’ll get library news, information on upcoming library events, new title announcements, and other fun and interesting stuff with a bookish bent.

Relax! You Have Time. Starting April 15, DVD loan periods will be extended.

Woman eating popcorn and enjoying a DVD from HCPLIt has happened to all of us. You check out DVDs planning to catch up on that TV series everyone is talking about. Then life happens: the kids remember their science project is due; your mother shows up unannounced; your secret crush finally calls to ask you out. Harris County Public Library can’t do anything about life’s little surprises, but we can give you more time to watch those videos. Starting April 15, 2013, HCPL will extend the checkout period for all DVDs, including new releases, from one week to two.

With more and more classic and current TV series coming out on video, and with PBS’s Downton Abbey and Showtime’s Homeland among our most requested DVD sets, it makes sense to extend the checkout period so that you can have the time to enjoy them. No one should have to cram a season’s worth of viewing into a single weekend.

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