Between Friends - Blount County Friends of the Library Newsletter - February 2015

Blount County Friends of the Library Newsletter - February 2015
Great Young Thinker's Friday
by Chelsea Tarwater
BCL Children's Department

There’s always something going in the Children’s Department at the library, and STEAMkids (previously named Adventure Club) is one of the best somethings. Every Friday at 4:00, a few of our staff members meet with any interested elementary school aged kids and complete a project or an experiment that falls under the label STEAM, meaning: science, technology, engineering, art and math. Everything we do is interactive and often ends with the kids having something to bring home to show off what they spent their afternoon working on.

Earlier in January, we learned about the process by which snowflakes are formed and made paper snowflakes. On another day, we built boats out of a variety of household items like plastic plates, cups, popsicle sticks and tape. After we talked about sailboats and buoyancy, the kids were let loose to create without restriction.

Watching them stall for the first few minutes and then diligently work for the next hour straight, testing and retesting different versions of their boats until they floated successfully, was inspirational for everyone involved. It’s truly amazing to see these kids, some who have barely started school, really embodying some of the ideals of great thinkers: curiosity, innovation, and hard work.

STEAMkids exists to meet not only the need for diverse and interesting children’s programming but to fill a small but worthwhile gap that too often exists in STEAM education. There are always kids at the library, whether they’re reading books, using the computers for homework or playing with friends. On Fridays, though, kids at the library become engineers. They become artists. They build towers and make instruments and learn about cells. Sure, the towers are made with marshmallows and toothpicks, and the instruments are largely paper towel rolls and rubber bands, and the cells are definitely cookies, but that’s where the creativity comes in. And, of course, the fun!

Happy New Year to the members of the Best Friends Group Ever! Can you believe I am already celebrating the end of my 1st year as the Director of the Blount County Public Library? I am so enjoying serving at the helm of this fabulous library and owe many thanks for the tremendous support provided by the Friends over the past year.   Your contributions enabled the library to provide a super Summer Reading Program for children, teens and adults.  Additionally,  Hot Summer Nights had one of the highest attendance rates ever and the Children’s Department now has wonderful pre-k furniture shapes from Agati. I am very excited about the development of expanded volunteer opportunities between the Friends membership and the Library.  We have implemented the new shelving process, which has been fantastic for the Library staff and are working on other new opportunities including a possible Story Corp Program to capture digital video interviews for the local history collection. 

Now that the library management system has been updated to Book System’s Atriuum Platform, the next order of business is inventory.  We have completed the Children’s Department inventory and are in the planning stage to begin the inventory of the adult collection.  We are seeking volunteers who might be interested in working with the staff to scan materials.  Please let Larry Ackley know if this is a project that interests you.  Other exciting changes to be implemented include the creation of an information commons space off of Reference Desk One, a rearrangement of Genealogy and Reference collections and expanded volunteer opportunities in these service areas.  Our hope is that this new layout will create a more efficient use of both staff and volunteers allowing for the Library to provide expanded Reference services.  You are the heart and soul of this library! Thank you.

K.C. Williams, Blount County Library Director

Pink and green dinosaurs

Leigh's Gleighs....

Submitted by D. Leigh Caldwell

The Wikipedia defines Lexophilia as the love of words and a Lexophile as a lover of words who generally appreciates the nuances surrounding different words. We’ve included some examples guaranteed to put a little smile on your face. (Original author unknown.)

Those who get too big for their britches will be exposed in the end.

When you've seen one shopping center you've seen a mall.

If you jump off a Paris bridge, you are in Seine.

When she saw her first strands of gray hair, she thought she'd dye.

Bakers trade bread recipes on a knead to know basis.

Santa's helpers are subordinate clauses.

Acupuncture: a jab well done.

Marathon runners with bad shoes suffer the agony of de feet.

The roundest knight at King Arthur's round table was Sir Conference. He acquired his size from too much pi.

I thought I saw an eye doctor on an Alaskan island, but it turned out to be an optical Aleutian.

She was only a whisky maker, but he loved her still.

ACA Healthcare Marketplace
Sat, February 7, 1pm – 5pm
Board Room
Sun, February 8, 1pm – 5pm
Dorothy Herron Room A
Sat, February 14, 1pm – 5pm
Board Room
Sun, February 15, 1pm – 5pm
Computer Lab

Living Trust Seminar
Tue, February 17, 3:00pm – 4:30pm
Dorothy Herron Room A

Basic Computer Class
Thu, February 12, 2pm – 4pm
Computer Lab


Celebrate February "Chocolate Month" at the Blount County Library’s own Bookmark Café with the following delicious items:

Chocolate Covered Cherry Latte

Chocolate Coffee Kiss Latte

Chocolate Chunk Muffins


Chocolate Candy Bars


5 Things You Might
Not Know About

It was a “classy” drink. Cacao beans were used by the Aztecs to prepare a hot, frothy beverage with stimulant and restorative properties. Chocolate was reserved for warriors, nobility, and priests.

It makes you happy. We know what you’re thinking: “Of course chocolate makes you happy - it’s so good!” But there’s scientific evidence to back up those light-hearted feelings. Like other palatable sweet foods, consumption of chocolate triggers the release of endorphins, the body's endogenous opiates. Enhanced endorphin-release reduces the chocolate-eater's sensitivity to pain and contributes to the warm inner glow induced in susceptible chocoholics.

It’ll help you live longer. Two of the world’s longest-living people - Jeanne Calment (122 years old) and Sarah Knauss (119 years old) - were considered chocoholics by today’s standards. In fact, Calment habitually ate two pounds of chocolate per week before her doctor instructed her to give up sweets.

Chocolate is complex. More than 300 different constituent compounds in chocolate have been identified. Eating large amounts may give you an energy boost. Chocolate contains caffeine, but the caffeine is present only in modest quantities. It is easily obtained from other sources. Indeed a whole ounce of milk chocolate contains no more caffeine than a typical cup of "decaffeinated" coffee.

It decreases stress. Chocolate also contains tryptophan. Tryptophan is an essential amino acid. It is the rate-limiting step in the production of the mood-modulating neurotransmitter serotonin. Enhanced serotonin function typically diminishes anxiety.

BCFOL Officers:
President: Diane Martin
Vice President: Denise Robertson
Treasurer: Garry Ernsberger
Secretary: Sandy Goodson
Newsletter Editor: Jane Bennett
Newsletter Designers: Claudia Erwin, Lynn McKean
Members at Large:
Judy Ackley, Larry Ackley
Jane Bennett, Ginnae Harley
Patrick Hudson, Larry Moore
Jerry Wagner, Ted Taylor
Associate Editor: Bonnie Holmes