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On Wheel or On Foot: There’s a Johnson County Trail for You

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on July 7th, 2016

TheresAJohnsonCountyTrailForYouWith miles of trails throughout Johnson County, you’re sure to find one to suit your recreational needs.

Johnson County Conservation Program Manager Brad Freidhof will be in Meeting Room A at the Iowa City Public Library from 7 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, July 13, to talk about the county’s walking, hiking and biking trails. Come and learn more about what’s available now and what will be available in the future, as well as the wide range of recreational activities the trails provide throughout the county.

This event is free and open to the public. It is presented as part of the 2016 Adult Summer Reading Program and will be broadcast LIVE on The Library Channel, Iowa City cable channel 20.

For more information, call the Library at 319-356-5200.

Acrobat/Juggler Laura Ernst to Perform at ICPL

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on July 5th, 2016

LauraErnstLaura Ernst learned to juggle for her role in a middle school play, eventually transitioning her new skill to performances at street festivals. Today, Ernst has made a career out of her passion for entertaining.

The Iowa City Public Library is pleased to welcome the world-renown acrobat, juggler and entertainer to the Library for an all-ages show Tuesday, July 12, in Meeting Room A. The program will be held from 7 to 8 p.m., with doors opening at 6:30 p.m.

Ernst’s performance is free and open to the public, but seating will be on a first come-first served basis. It will be broadcast LIVE on The Library Channel, Iowa City cable channel 20.

An Iowa native, Ernst received first place at the 2008 World Juggling Federation, a designation that places her among some of the best jugglers in the world. She also appeared on the fifth season of America’s Got Talent, during which her performance inside her human-sized hamster ball caused Howie Mandel to exclaim, “I love you! You are my soul mate!”

Ernst’s appearance is part of the Library’s 2016 Summer Reading Program, On Your Mark, Get Set … Read!

For more information about Laura Ernst, visit

For more information about her appearance at ICPL, call the Library at 319-356-5200.


Children’s titles added to ICPL’s digital magazine collection

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 29th, 2016

The Iowa City Public Library recently added children’s titles to its Zinio Digital Magazines collection, bringing the number of magazines patrons can read on digital devices to nearly 200.

With titles that appeal to all ages – from Babybug for babies and toddlers to American Girl and Dig for older elementary through middle school students – parents now have more options to keep their children entertained on the go.

“Our digital magazine collection gives patrons the opportunity to read the magazines they enjoy without having to pay subscription prices,” said Anne Mangano, the Library’s coordinator of collection services.

Zinio is available to Iowa City Public Library cardholders who reside in Iowa City, rural Johnson County, Hills, Lone Tree, and University Heights, as well as North Liberty residents. The service requires an ICPL Library Card and password. North Liberty residents need a valid North Liberty Community Library card and password.

To sign up for Zinio, visit and follow the instructions on the screen. Once a magazine is downloaded onto your smartphone or tablet, it’s yours forever. There’s no limit on the amount of titles you can choose.

For more information, call the Library at 319-356-5200, stop by the Info Desk, or attend one of our drop-in Tech Help sessions, held from 10 a.m. to noon Mondays and Wednesdays, and noon to 4 p.m. Tuesdays in the second floor Computer Lab.

Bob Sessions to Give Photography Presentation at ICPL

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 28th, 2016

Author Gary Snyder is quoted as saying, “Nature is not a place to visit. It is home.” Local photographer and author Bob Sessions makes his living showcasing the many ways nature serves as our home, from flora and fauna to the mountains and rivers.

Sessions will discuss his career as a nature photographer and how he uses Instagram to share his work during Explore Nature Photography with Bob Sessions from 7 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, July 6, in Meeting Room A at the Library.

A native of South Dakota, Sessions earned a B.A. from Drake University and a Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of Michigan. Before focusing on photography, he taught at Kirkwood Community College, Grinnell College, Luther College, and the University of Minnesota in Duluth.

As a freelance photographer, he works frequently with his wife, travel writer Lori Erickson. Together they produce Spiritual Travels, a website describing holy sites around the world, and Holy Rover, a blog hosted by Patheos. He is a member of the Society of American Travel Writers.

This free event is part of the Adult Summer Reading Program and is open to the general public. It will be broadcast LIVE on The Library Channel, cable channel 20.

For more information about Bob Sessions, including a link to his Instagram account, visit

For more information about the program, contact the Library at 319-356-5200.

Iowa Public Television’s Dan Wardell to Visit Iowa City Public Library

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 17th, 2016

Dan Wardell, the popular host of IPTV KIDS Clubhouse, will be at the Iowa City Public Library on Monday, June 27, as part of his 10th annual Iowa Public Television’s Reading Road Trip.DanWardell@ICPL

Wardell will travel to 75 local communities this summer to share an original, interactive story connected to the 2016 Summer Reading Program theme: On Your Mark, Get Set … Read!

“We are excited to welcome Dan Wardell back to ICPL as he travels across the state to promote reading,” Children’s Coordinator Angela Pilkington says. “His enthusiasm for books, reading and using your imagination is what the Summer Reading Program is all about.”

Kids are invited to attend Wardell’s storytimes at 9:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m. in Meeting Room A. During this special event, attendees will compete against cosmic aliens during the Intergalactic Olympic Championships. Every child attendee will receive a commemorative “space orb” for their efforts.

Support for the Reading Road Trip is provided by Blank Children’s Hospital, Casey’s General Stores and The Coons Foundation. For more information, visit

Entries Sought for ICPL’s 2016 Art Purchase Prize

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 16th, 2016

The Iowa City Public Library is seeking entries for the 2016 Art Purchase Prize contest, and this year there is a theme. We’re looking for artists to envision and create new book covers for classic works of literature that are in the public domain.

When titles enter the public domain, anyone can re-publish them, and the book covers are often dull, auto-generated designs. Some of the most influential and well-loved books are now cloaked in uninspired (and uninspiring) covers. Here is your chance to use your imagination and artistic creativity to dream up something different.

The Art Purchase Prize is open to artists over the age 18 who live/work/exhibit in the Iowa City or the Johnson County area. Library employees and their immediate family are ineligible for entry.

The criteria for this year’s contest are the same as other years, except that the subject of your artwork should be a cover for a classic book in the public domain. A complete list of books that qualify can be found at The cover aspect of the work should be vertically oriented, and the book title and author’s name should be clearly visible. Any two-dimensional or low-relief media are acceptable, including: drawing, painting, printmaking, photography, collage, paper/textile and mixed media. Only original art will be accepted.

To enter, artists should submit a digital image representation of their original work(s), and those should be in .jpeg format, with a minimum resolution of 72 dpi and a minimum size of 1024 x 768 pixels. Artists may enter two artworks.

Finished artwork must be at least 12 x 12 and no larger than 34 x 34. Works chosen for final judging should be unframed, and matted and/or mounted as needed to create a finished piece. Archival or museum-quality materials must be used for printing, mounting and matting. Works must be suitable for framing and covering with Plexiglas.

The Library takes responsibility for framing works chosen for purchase.

Entries can be emailed to, or mailed on disc to Candice Smith at the Iowa City Public Library, 123 S. Linn St., Iowa City, IA 52240. Entries must include the artist’s name, address, phone number and email, and the following for each artwork: title, medium, size/matted size (if appropriate), and price. Artwork should be priced under $300.

Entries will be accepted from Aug. 1 through Sept. 2. The first round of judging will be on Sept. 6.

This year’s contest will coincide with a larger exhibit hosted by the Library, Recovering the Classics. Recovering the Classics is a national campaign to give new book covers to classic works of literature that are in the public domain. The exhibit will feature 50 of the covers designed by artists for the national campaign, as well as an exhibit of covers created by members of the community. All works will be exhibited during the Iowa City Book Festival in October. While the community-wide exhibit is open to anyone, the Art Purchase Prize contest will still follow its regular criteria for entry.

For more information, visit or contact Candice Smith at

ICPL announces July Classes for Adults

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 15th, 2016

Want to learn more about your iPad? The Iowa City Public Library is offering several classes that help beginning and intermediate users get a better handle on their device.ipad

Get an in-depth look at the camera, photo, and video apps for your Apple device at our Apple App Class: Camera, Video, and Photo. Learn how to easily edit, store, and share your photos and videos. This class will be offered twice in July: first at 11 a.m. on Friday, July 8, and again at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 16.

Join us at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, July 16, or 1 p.m. Monday, July 25, for a tutorial on how to use your iPad’s organizational apps. Our Apple App Class: Organizational Tips will discuss how to use the Maps app and other managerial apps like Notes, Calendar, and Reminders.

Classes will be held in the Computer Lab on the second floor of the Library. Classes are free, but space is limited, so patrons should register early.

Visit to register online. You can also register by calling the Library at 319-356-5200.

Back for 2016’s Summer Reading Program: Instareviews!

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 8th, 2016

They say a picture is worth a 1,000 words. We’re looking for less than that.instareview_1

Once again we are asking for your book reviews on the Library’s Instagram account. Here’s how it works:

  • Take a picture of a book you finished reading.
  • Post it to your Instagram account with the #ICPLinstareview hashtag.
  • Write a short review of the book.

We’ll re-gram our favorite images. Then, at the end of June and July, we’ll choose one review from each month and that person will receive a $25 gift card to Prairie Lights!

Start reading, reviewing and discover new great reads!

ICPL to Host U.S. National Library of Medicine Traveling Exhibit

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 3rd, 2016

The Iowa City Public Library is pleased to host a traveling exhibit from the National Library of Medicine: Confronting Violence, Improving Women’s Lives.confronting violence

Activists and reformers in the United States have long recognized the harm of domestic violence and sought to improve the lives of women who were victimized, but there was a time this was not so. Until the late 1970s, medicine as a whole had largely dismissed or failed to acknowledge domestic violence as a significant health issue.

Nurses took up the call for change, standing in the frontline as they pushed the larger medical community to identify victims, adequately respond to their needs, and work towards the prevention of domestic violence. With passion and persistence, they developed best practices for care based on research and their professional experience and took part in activism to put domestic violence on the map as a national public health concern.

Confronting Violence, Improving Women’s Lives tells their story.

The six-banner traveling exhibit will be at the Library June 6 through July 16. It includes images, manuscripts and records that tell the stories of the nurses who witnessed the effects of domestic violence and campaigned for change.

Confronting Violence, Improving Women’s Lives began traveling around the United States in October 2015 and will be on display in all 50 states over the next four years. For more information, visit

Stories in the Park begins June 8

by Meredith Hines-Dochterman on June 1st, 2016

The Iowa City Public Library’s Stories in the Park summertime outdoor reading series begins June 8 and continues through July 29.StoriesInThePark

Stories in the Park will be held at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday mornings at Willow Creek Park, 117 Teg Dr., and 10:30 a.m. Friday mornings at Mercer Park, 2701 Bradford Dr.

In the event of rain, the Wednesday storytimes will be held at the Library and the Friday storytimes will be cancelled.

Stories in the Park is an outdoor storytime geared toward children between the ages of three and six. All children in attendance need to be accompanied by a parent or adult caregiver.

Children should remember to bring their Library Card, as there will be a selection of books available for check out at each storytime. Children who don’t have a Library Card can sign up at Library staff will be available to issue new Library Cards at Stories in the Park.

This event is co-sponsored by the Iowa City Parks and Recreation Department and the Iowa City Public Library. For more information, please call the Library at 319-356-5200.