Between Friends - Blount County Friends of the Library Newsletter - December 2014

Blount County Friends of the Library - December 2014
Friends Go To Jail!
By Dolores Philpot

Some BCFOL members are doing time at the Blount County Detention Center (BCDC). Following a request from the BCDC Volunteer Coordinator, Chaplain Randy Cruise, to Larry Ackley, the Friends Coordinator, a new volunteer opportunity was created - manage the jail library. Larry even coined a name for this novel group: Jailbirds.

Right now, these jailbirds are Judy and Larry Ackley, Claudia Erwin, Linda Stackpole, Charlie Butera, Dolores Philpot, Sharon Bowers, Kellie Frazier, Janetta Baker, and Steve Williams. The job is for a team of two to spend an hour or so each week sorting and reviewing paperback books and readying them in book carts


Correction officers are responsible for delivering the books to the jail pods, receiving exchanged books, and returning all books to the detention center library. Bibles and dictionaries do not count toward the one book a week prisoners can pick. While a good number of books are already in the library, most are the kinds that appeal to women, who are the minority of the jail population.

Male prisoners outnumber female by a good amount, about 100 women to 450 men. Romance novels, others of that type, and cozy mystery novels are not high on men’s preferred list of reading material. They typically like more action based fiction like westerns, military, sci-fi, and mystery novels, especially by male authors. There is a good supply of Chicken Soup for the Soul, self-help, religious and reflective type books for both genders. Because many of the women are pregnant, relevant books are stocked as well.

Chaplain Randy, aka “Padre,” leaves the choice of books for the detention center library up to the BCFOL volunteers. Church groups continue to donate books and the jailbirds are busy looking at library discards and other resources to improve the jail library collection.

Thank You! For answering the request for candy donations for the Maryville/Alcoa parade.

Large bin of donated candy

This is just a sample of what was received.  And.... After many hours of hard work by volunteers, the books are ready, the candy is ready and now it is time!!  Come join in the fun and watch as so many children receive a book during the parade, which takes place this Saturday, Dec 13th at 11am.

Table stacked with childrens' books

Lorene Oswalt

Lorene Oswalt lives in Morning View Nursing Home, and at 93 years young has been a wonderful BCFOL volunteer for years, and this year she decided to do something new. She became an "elf".  Checking every book, labeling them, and getting them ready to be handed out at the parade was a true labor of love.  Thank you Lorene!

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer


Remembering Columbus, an Existential ExLibris Awakening

By Dolores Philpot

An old African proverb says, “When an old man dies, a library burns to the ground.” Ex Libris is not just a group of Library volunteers who present programs to residents at the various senior living and respite centers in Blount County. Yes, we may read poems and short stories to seniors, but many times, they tell stories back to us.

I recall a time when a resident recited the rest of the poem about Columbus sailing the ocean blue in 1492. It has 14 stanzas! This woman had previously never said anything at Ex Libris programs. The poem perhaps triggered a memory from an earlier time when memorization and recitation were more valued in educational settings. An aphasic person can also recall and sing lyrics of well-known songs, when pump is primed, so to speak. Other instances of shared stories such as “Rosie the Riveter” and other work during World War 2 enliven programs and are delightful to hear. Shared stories of how things used to be as compared to now can be better than visiting a museum.

Ex Libris is looking for more volunteers who want to join us. We give one-hour programs to area senior communities and receive memories back. Call FOL Coordinator, Larry Ackley, 233-3467, or Barbara Zurl, Ex Libris Director at 977-5034.

ebay logo

Need inspiration for a gift? Want something that isn't the "usual" gift card or item that will never be used? Seen? Heard of again?  Why not try giving something that is still always the rage? A book!

Have you been to the Blount County Friend of the Library ebay store? There are so many books to choose from! Over 500 and all types! Cookbooks. Collectibles. History. Childrens..... Click on the ebay logo to see what is happening!

Zinio Library Service - You Shop. Your Charity Gets Money. for Free.

Join iGive and help Blount County Friends of the Library earn money this holiday season and all year long when you shop online.

Right now, iGive is helping even more by donating $5 for every new member who joins before Dec. 15.  No purchase necessary. In other words, for FREE! The only requirement, sign-up and try the iGive Button through 12/15/15.

iGive is a free service where shopping at any of 1578 stores like Amazon, Travelocity, Overstock, and many more, means a donation to your favorite cause.

Click on the logo above to get started.

Books for Soldiers

Some thank you cards from some very thankful men and women serving our country.... This volunteer program has been going for over 10 years....

Thank you card from Army base in Mosul, IraqArmy group photo Thank You cardThank You card

These are just samples of the letters the library has received for their excellent work in supporting our troops overseas. Such a great program that brings true joy to so many.

Thank You cardThank You card
Christmas tree in Library

Thank you to the Friends of the Library who donated the ornaments for the library tree.


Marketplace Health Care Enrollment Assistance in the library computer lab and meeting room
Saturday December 13, Sunday December 14 from 1-5pm

Computer Classes in the Computer Lab

Thursday December 11 from 2-4   Basic Email
Thursday December 18 from 1-4   Facebook

Friends of the Library BOOK SALE:

Mark your calendars for Jan. 15- 17.  Lots of great books, cd's, movies, puzzles and more!
Christmas tree decorated with words 'Merry Christmas' in various sizes and fonts

From the BCFOL Board members to all of the Friends and Volunteers!