July 19th, 2011

A Little Slice of Americana

ferriswheelCounty fairs may seem corny, but they’re what America is all about—a  big melting pot of talents and home-grown skills showcased in a magical summer setting.

The Cecil County Fair is just about perfect – nine days of heaven in the rolling green of Fair Hill, spanning July 22nd-30th.

Years ago, I took a photo of the Fair on a warm Sunday night.  The sun was setting over the midway and all the carnival rides were lit up and whirling with sounds of children screaming and cavorting in delight, the sky as pink as cotton candy. The scene was perfect with a last-light glow silhouetting the Ferris wheel towering up to the clouds.  Everywhere there was movement, with families strolling among the rides and carnival game barkers challenging passersby to “step right up and win a prize!”; a feast for the senses with pizza and fried food scenting the air, and the warm summer night beckoning with a promise of something special for everyone.  It was a golden moment.

And there is something for everyone at the fair.  Where else can you find entertainment as fantastic and diverse as a lawn mower race, cow chip toss, rodeo, pie-eating contest, greased pole climb, demolition derby, and the 4H Pygmy Goat show? It may seem a throwback to a forgotten era, the fact that a kid can win a blue ribbon for raising a chicken—but what a great way to develop an appreciation for agriculture and what it contributes to America.

Of course, your friendly Cecil County Public Library will be there!  Stop by the library booth located in the building just off the midway.  There’s a craft for the kids to do, a county geography game to play, a guessing game with a prize of a $50 Walmart gift card, and a FREE BOOK for everyone! We’ll be there every evening throughout the fair as well as Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

On Monday, July 25th at 10:30 am, stop in for a special library program for kids at the stage just past the barns. We’ll be celebrating our summer reading theme “One World, Many Stories” with special songs and dances.

So come meet us at the Fair to experience a slice of Americana that will make you proud of your country!  Visit the Fair’s website for more info and directions.

What’s YOUR favorite thing about the Fair?

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May 24th, 2011

Summer Reading, Take Me Away…

CB052871There are so many places in this big wide world I would like to see and things I’d like to do…and almost as many things to limit my opportunities—limited vacation time, money, skills, not to mention the “get up and go” required.  Travel and opportunity has never been so easily accessible to the masses, but for many, it still exists more as a dream than reality.

For me, the beauty of the library is the way it can extend one’s view of the horizon and also allow one to dive into the depths of the human soul.  Check out the right book, magazine, or movie, and you can be magically transported to other places, other times, even to “other lives.”  This year’s summer reading theme, “One World, Many Stories” celebrates the universal while recognizing the uniqueness of the individual.

Albert Einstein said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world.

Now, this is not to instigate a debate over the merits of one over another.  Rather, it is an invitation to embrace the world you imagine.  For many of us, summer promises freedom….from school, work (well, maybe a week or two), heavy clothes, heating bills, shoes and socks, etc.  Let the library’s summer reading program guide you to a place where you are free to dream, learn, explore, and experience new and uncharted territory.  Summer vacationers of all ages can embark on voyages of their dreams and the only ticket required is a library card; the only passport needed—imagination.

Between June 1 and August 1, the library offers reading incentive programs for all, from babies to babushkas.  Adults can explore Novel Destinations; teens—You are Here; and One World, Many Stories for young children.

Don’t fret if you’re missing out on the African safari this summer or won’t be going walkabout in the land down under.  The library staff, with support from The  Friends of the Library, have arranged to bring the sights, sounds, and flavors of the world to you.  From the mountains to the prairies, Didgeridoos to shaker eggs, and French crepes to tacos—widen your world at your library.

Visit your neighborhood branch or look online for a calendar or events, or click here to register for summer reading.

What’s the voyage our your dreams this summer? Leave us a comment and we’ll suggest a few items from our collection that can get you started on your journey!

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