Created Equal Documentary Coming Soon

Since the end of June the Dover Public Library has been running the Created Equal: America’s Civil Rights Struggle program, which will have two more meetings in September on the 3rd and the 17th at 2pm. Each meeting has included a showing of a film related to Civil Rights, as well as guest speakers who have helped to share their personal experience and knowledge of the Civil Rights movement. The objective of this program is to help further educate and inform people on what it was like to live and experience the various aspects of the movement first hand, as well as a historical perspective, in an attempt to promote a discussion for all participants to take part of.

A documentary is also being created at this time and will be released at the conclusion of the program, so that people who were unable to attend the live meetings will at least be able take part in some of the experience. Check out some of the photos from the production of the documentary below, and be sure to stop by for one or both of the remaining meetings.

The End of Libraries?

Interior_view_of_Stockholm_Public_LibraryA couple of weeks ago there was an article on Forbes.com by Tim Worstall questioning why libraries are supported by communities today, since they are so costly to run in comparison to subscription based services like Kindle Unlimited. He points out that if the government were to just purchase every citizen an Amazon Kindle Unlimited subscription, there would be a much more vast selection of titles available, since there wouldn’t be inventory limitations while using a digital product, as well as possibly reducing the cost. It’s an interesting idea, but it really truncates what a contemporary library’s main function is.

The main issue with Worstall’s approach is that he believes all a library does is provide books for the public, when in reality, that is only one aspect of what is being provided. A response piece written by S. E. Smith highlights some important aspects of the library that seem to escape Worstall. The first, and arguably most important, function is that of a social gathering place. We’ve all seen how important a library can be at bringing the community together in recent weeks, with the successful Created Equal series, which saw over 350 people on opening night, and our Comic Con which saw over 2,000 people visit the library. Those are just two the most recent activities that the library has helped to provide to the community, each centered around different things. One was to promote learning, understanding, and to help create a discussion surrounding importance of the Civil Rights movement, while the other was a fun, free, family event for all members of the community to take part in. What happens to these programs when libraries stop being funded? Who would step in and replace the countless events, functions, programs, etc. that the libraries offer the community?

Aside from just the programming that is run through the library, Smith also points out the important aspect of having someone who is able to “provide highly unique and specialized services, benefiting from years of training to learn to serve patrons. It’s not just that a library provides access to books, but that it also offers access to brilliant individuals who provide research assistance, guidance, book recommendations, and tools to help people empower themselves when it comes to researching and locating information.” It is this aspect where the library really flourishes in its day to day operation. Having an endless supply of books is great, but not knowing how to use them is a problem, and ultimately is very close to not having access to them at all. What happens to the people who don’t know how to do research properly? How will people know which books fit their needs? Will the only recommendations come from people you know or online forums? There is a lot to be said for actually seeing a person and opening a dialogue with them in order to judge what course of action is best to help them achieve their goal, and that dialogue doesn’t happen if everyone is given a Kindle Unlimited subscription.

As I’m writing this, I can look up at any given time and see roughly 15-20 teenagers engaged in different things. Talking about comic books and movies with their friends, doing summer reading for school, or using the computers that are provided to them by the library. I can’t help but wonder where these young kids would be spending their time if the library wasn’t here for them. We serve as a place that is more than a warehouse or a bookstore, it’s a place where all people have access to the services, assistance, gatherings, programs, etc. that the library provides, and that is what makes them so unique and special.

 

 

Link to the original articles can be found here:
Forbes
The Week

Comic Con Wrap Up

10570380_10202143348137640_6949378796609162654_nThe Dover Public Library’s Comic Con event on Saturday was a huge success with attendance numbers exceeding expectations. With an estimated attendance of over 2,000 people, the library was filled from the moment the doors opened with a diverse group of people who all share a love of anything to do with comic books, cosplay, movies, and the like. Comic Con offered something for everyone.

Immediately upon opening patrons could take part in shopping in the vendor room, which featured Acorn Books, Superior Comics, Pete’s Games, WB Collection, Alicia’s Anime, The Velvet Monocle, and others, or peruse Artist Alley, which included PLB Comics, Pyschotic Parrot Press, and over a dozen local artists. For the kids there was a coloring station, cube crafts, face painting, Pokemon, Magic the Gathering, Yu-Gi-Oh!, and Minecraft games running every half hour. With the Delaware Anime Society running anime showings  every hour there was even a space to sit down, relax, and enjoy a show.

One of the highlights of the day was the costume contest, which saw around a hundred applicants. The contest was broken down into four age groupings and saw costumes that spanned across different themes and eras. Many were spot on depictions of characters, while others put a spin on their outfit. Judges for the contest came from 501st Legion, known around the world for their Star Wars costumes, who also spent the day interacting with patrons and posing for photographs. All winners of the contest received a $15 gift certificate to Superior Comics. The winners of the contest are shown at the bottom of the post.

There was also a graphic novel contest, which saw Kennedi Catron take first place for the entry Useless Villain. A story that reversed the character roles as the reader was meant to empathize with the villains of the story instead of the protagonists. Julian Kain-Kasday, Sophia Seck, and Timothy Patterson each submitted their own graphic novels entitled, F.L.E.A. The Search for Samuel Lee, The Moon’s Mystery, and The Wire. Each participant received an art print from PLB Comics.

Thanks to the availability of food trucks on-site, it allowed for participants to stick around and enjoy the day in its entirety, ensuring that no event would have to be missed or passed over. The Fandom Dance closed out the Comic Con, with 125 participants, which allowed guests of 13 years or older to enjoy a music selection that incorporated music from all of the popular shows, movies, and games that the day catered to.

We would like to thank all of our participants for helping to ensure a safe and fun environment for everyone, as well as a thank you to all of the volunteers and staff who helped the to make this day a memorable one.

0-5 group Fairy Princess

0-5 group Fairy Princess

Kids 6-12 group Lady Deadpool & a TARDIS

Kids 6-12 group
Lady Deadpool & a TARDIS

Teens 13-19  Toothless & Elizabeth from Bioshock

Teens 13-19 Toothless & Elizabeth from Bioshock

Adults 20 & up Marceline & a Ghostbuster

Adults 20 & up
Marceline & a Ghostbuster

Conclusion of Summer Reading

The Dover Public Library’s 8th and final week of the Summer Reading program has passed by, and we are pleased to say that the adult reading program had 119 total participants this year, with 213 total book reviews. While the teen program had 79 participants, and the children’s program had a whopping 447 participants which combined for over 3300 total reading hours!

We would like to thank all of our participants for taking part in these programs and are excited to see even more participants in the future! Also a special thanks to all of our sponsors who donated the prizes for each week.