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4-H on Wheels in Lone Tree

by on July 7th, 2014

lone treeWe really enjoyed partnering with 4-H on Wheels in Lone Tree this summer.  Library staff traveled to Lone Tree once a week to check out Library materials to children based on the weekly 4-H on Wheels theme.  All the topics were related to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math).

There were 26 youth signed up for the program, and they check out 48 books over the past 5 weeks.  Fifteen children signed up for Library Cards during the 4-H on Wheels registration process and received their cards in the mail.  Staff issued another 10 library cards at the park in Lone Tree.

It was a lot of fun seeing the children participate in science experiments, create art projects, play games, and eat nutritious snacks, and then come over to the Library table and find books correlating to what they had just learned.  I hope this is a partnership that continues for years to come!

The writing on the wall will be printed neatly in block letters

by on July 7th, 2014

src: Dallas News (click through for related article)

This recent post, “Cursive is an Endangered Species,” along with many other similar articles, discusses the decline of cursive in younger generations, particularly with increased reliance on digital devices to take notes, send messages, etc.

So now I’m curious: how many of you learned how to write in cursive, in or out of school? When have you found it useful to know? (Could you read the text in the image?)

ICPL announces July Classes for Adults

by on July 1st, 2014

The Iowa City Public Library is so much more than books; it’s online music, genealogy resources, and online language learning systems! Register for our July adult classes to learn more about these programs.

Do you want to start a project tracing your family lineage? Join us Friday, July 11, from 10 to 11 a.m. or Saturday, July 19, from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. for our Introduction to Genealogy class. Learn about the Library’s free subscriptions to, HeritageQuest, and Newspaper Archive. A librarian will show you how each of these resources can make finding your ancestors easier.GenealogyTreeB-W_JPG300

Join us on Tuesday, July 15, from 10 to 11 a.m. and learn the difference between online music providers Spotify, Google Play, Soundcloud, and the Iowa City Public Library’s own Online Music Project. The Introduction to Music Online class discusses the difference between streaming and downloading music. Participants will also find out how to make a playlist and share music on a social media site or embed it on a blog.

Learning a language? Tracking stocks? Investigating local Iowa City history? The library has an online resource you can use to do all of these things. Come to the Library Friday, July 25, from 10 to 11 a.m. for a demonstration of the library’s best kept secret – our databases.

All classes for adults are held in the Library’s Computer Lab on the second floor. Classes are free, but space is limited to 10 people per program, so patrons should register early. Visit to register online. You can also register by calling the Library at (319) 356-5200.

ICPL to celebrate Batman Day on July 23

by on July 1st, 2014

Holy celebration, Batman! batman-logo

The Caped Crusader celebrates his 75th anniversary this year, a feat which will be celebrated with special events all year long, including Batman Day on Wednesday, July 23.

DC Entertainment is partnering with thousands of comic book retailers, bookstores, and libraries on Batman Day to commemorate the Dark Knight’s influence in popular culture.

The Iowa City Public Library will celebrate Batman Day with a costume contest and a free screening of “Batman: Mask of the Phantasm.” Don your best Caped Crusader apparel and enjoy an animated film in which we Batman is investigating the murders of several prominent gangsters at the same time his ex-fiancée is back in Gotham City.

Comic book artist Eric Gapstur will draw Batman sketches for anyone who wants one during the movie.

After the film, you’re invited to show us how much you know about Bruce Wayne’s Alter Ego in our Batman Trivia Challenge.

The celebration begins at 2 p.m. in Meeting Room A. It is free and open to all ages.

For more information about the Library’s Batman Day celebration, contact Brian Visser at (319) 356-5200.

For the latest information and exclusive content celebrating Batman’s 75th anniversary, visit

The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel

by on June 30th, 2014
The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel Cover Image

Trains, Sasquatches, and a circus make for an exciting combination in this steampunk adventure story from Kenneth Oppel. During the late 1800′s in Canada, Will Everett grows up witnessing the expansion of the continental railroads as the son of the railway company manager. A shy boy with a talent for drawing, he has always wished for adventure, but never seems to find it. Now on the maiden voyage of The Boundless, the longest train ever built, his adventure finally begins, as he witnesses a murder. In order to stay alive and warn his father about the criminal plot, Will disguises himself as part of a circus with the help of an old acquaintance. He teams up with Maren, the highrope walker from his past, and Mr. Dorian, the circus ringmaster who has an agenda of his own. Together, they try to reach the front of the seven mile train before the criminal gang catches them. The journey, full of perils both magical and real, puts Will’s drawing skills and new friendships to the test. As the train reach the snowy mountains, danger finally catches up to the circus trio, and not everyone will escape uninjured.

The only hitch in this otherwise fantastic story, is the present tense narration takes some getting used to for most readers. Overall this is a page turning story bolstered by mild fantasy elements and plenty of detail from a lesser-known period of history, with some edge of your seat moments that lead to a suspenseful climax.

July Teen Events

by on June 30th, 2014



Here are the upcoming July events for teens at the Iowa City Public Library!

Tuesday, July 1, 2 p.m. Teen Supernatural Party: Join us in the Teen Center to watch episodes of Supernatural. We’ll also have Supernatural themed crafts and activities! Teen Center
Tuesday, July 8, 2 p.m. Smartphone Projector: Make a cool projector for your smartphone. Teen Center
Thursday, July 10, 2 p.m. Candy Experiments: All candy. All science. All fun. Also, we’ll eat candy. Teen Center
Tuesday, July 15, 2 p.m. Video Game Tournament: Bring your game face, because we’re throwing down with Mario Kart 8. Teen Center
Thursday, July 17, 2 p.m. Movie Club–The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug: Get outta the heat, watch a movie and eat popcorn. Teen Center
Tuesday, July 22, 2 p.m. Anime & Manga Club: We’ll watch anime, talk about our favorite manga, draw and trade tips on cosplay. Teen Center
Wednesday, July 23, 2 p.m. Batmania: Batman Day: We’re having an all ages Batman Day celebration. The Dark Knight turns 75 this year, so join us to watch “Batman: Mask of the Phantasm.” Afterwards, wow us with your knowledge of the Caped Crusader during our Batman Trivia Challenge. Meeting Room A
Thursday, July 24, 2 p.m. Minecraft Meetup: Do you play Minecraft and want to meet other Minecraft players? Then join us for our monthly Minecraft meetups! Computer Lab
Friday, July 25, 2 p.m. Teen Comic Book Club: Join us for our Teen Comic Book Club meeting! We’ll discuss Batman Vol. 1: The Court of Owls by Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo. Teen Center
Wednesday, July 30, 2 p.m. Tales of a Teenage Author: Chideraa Okeoma Talks Writing:  Chideraa B. Okeoma, a local teen author, will be in the Teen Center to discuss writing his recently released book “When Mystery Busters Came to Town.”

Families will learn, play during ICPL’s Messy Science Day

by on June 30th, 2014

Experimenting with science can be fun. It can also be messy. For one day, parents, you won’t be the ones cleaning it up. boy-microscope-post

Join the Iowa City Public Library from 10:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, July 12, for Messy Science Day, a fun-filled family event with all sorts of science experiments.

Librarians will set up the lab on the City Plaza, leading participants through experiments that include the creation of chalk bombs and Mentos soda rockets.

Old clothing is encouraged. Everyone will get messy.

Messy Science Day is free and open to the public. For more information, call the Iowa City Public Library at (319) 356-5200.

True Detective

by on June 28th, 2014
True Detective Cover Image

Anchored by terrific performances and beautifully shot, True Detective is so much more than your typical police procedural.  The story follows Louisiana State Police Detectives Rust Cohle and Martin Hart–played by Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson– as they are asked to recollect a bizarre homicide that they solved in 1995.  As they get deeper into the questioning, it becomes obvious that the investigation wasn’t as open-and-shut as it appeared.

The show has a deliberate pace that may turn off some viewers, but stick with it!  Give it until the fourth episode which has a six-minute tracking shot that will blow your mind.  Personally, I was hooked right away by McConaughey’s perfectly delivered nihilistic musings.  There are very few television shows like this.  I cannot recommend it enough.

Free Screening of the Documentary “The City Dark” on July 16

by on June 28th, 2014

Join us on Wednesday, July 16, for a free screening of the acclaimed documentary “The City Dark” at 7:00 p.m. in Meeting Room A as part of the 2014 Adult Summer Reading Program.

City DarkAfter a move from New York City to rural Maine, filmmaker Ian Cheney was surprised to find streets awash in light and a sky devoid of stars leading him to ask the question “What do we lose, when we lose the night?” The film takes viewers on a quest to understand how light pollution affects people and the planet. Along the way, Cheney visits America’s brightest and darkest corners, asking astronomers, cancer researchers, and ecologists what is lost in the glare of city lights. Among those interviewed is Neil deGrasse Tyson, host of the popular PBS series “Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey.”

A NY Times Critics’ Pick and winner of numerous film festival awards, “The City Dark” blends a humorous, searching narrative with poetic footage of the night sky.

For more information, contact the Iowa City Public Library at (319) 356-5200.

Learn About Iowa’s Most Haunted Places on July 15

by on June 27th, 2014

On Tuesday, July 15, paranormal investigator Terry Fisk, co-author of “The Iowa Road Guide to Haunted Locations,” will join us in Room A at 7:00 p.m. to present Iowa Ghosts and the Afterlife.

Black AngelFrom the Sioux City Airport to Iowa City’s own Black Angel of Oakland Cemetery, Fisk will lead us on a ghostly journey to Iowa’s most haunted places. In the introduction of their book, Fisk’s co-author Chad Lewis says ghost hunting “is as much about adventure as it is about ghosts. This is your cure for the ‘there-is-nothing-to-do’ boredom that haunts us all.”

For adults participating in the Summer Reading Program, you can count attending Iowa Ghosts and the Afterlife as one of your Summer Reading Program events.

For more information, contact the Iowa City Public Library at (319) 356-5200.