Friday, June 16, 2017

Discover N.C’s moonshine history in Asheboro library talk

ASHEBORO – Get an overview of the history of illicit distilling in North Carolina in “White Liquor and White Lies” at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, June 29, at the Asheboro Public Library.

The talk, presented  by K. Todd Johnson, executive director of the Johnston County Heritage Center in Smithfield, is free and the public is invited. It is sponsored by the Friends of the Library.

Johnson will explore the social history of the liquor trade from colonial times to the recent past, and share firsthand accounts from North Carolinians on both sides of the law, including legendary personalities such as firearms inventor Carbine Williams, bootlegger Percy Flowers and race car driver Junior Johnson.

He regrets that no samples of the product he is discussing will be provided to the audience.

The library is located at 201 Worth Street. For further information, call 336-318-6803.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Botanist to shed light on flowers in Asheboro library talk

ASHEBORO – Find out everything you always wanted to know about flowers, but were afraid to ask, in “It’s a What?!”, a talk by UNC-Greensboro biology professor Dr. Bruce Kirchoff at 6:30 p.m. Monday, June 19, at the Asheboro Public Library.

Learn about the importance of flowers as plants propagate themselves, with a little help from the bird and the bees (and the bats and the lemurs, and the flies and the wind). Kirchoff, a botanist and winner of UNC Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching, will explore the marvelously varied world of plant reproduction, from a flower that appears once in 50 years to one that cannot reproduce without a specific kind of wasp.

He also will discuss why using native plants in your garden is so important.

His talk is free and the public is invited.

The library is located at 201 Worth Street. For more information, call 336-318-6803.

Teens can 'Build a Better World' at Randolph libraries this summer

ASHEBORO – A roller coaster, a wild scavenger hunt, video games, art classes, a Summer Pottery Slam, the 9th annual LEGO Mania competition and more will empower teens to “Build a Better World” during Summer Reading activities at Randolph County’s public libraries.

All events are free and all teens are invited.

The Asheboro Public Library, 201 Worth Street, will offer teens ages 11-18 the opportunity to play video games on their own schedules. Teens can use their library cards or public school student ID numbers (“lunch numbers”) to check out Xbox or PlayStation game controllers and age-appropriate video games, and play in a conference room has been set aside for gaming when it is not booked for other uses.

Also at Asheboro:
  • Teens can participate in the creation of a paper roller coaster during the week of June 12; drop in anytime to work on it until it goes into action on Friday, June 16.
  • The movie Pete’s Dragon will be screened a 3 p.m. Thursday, June 22.
  • During the week of June 26, the TeenZone Wild Goose Chase Scavenger Hunt will take place, with clues leading to prizes concealed in the library’s book collection.
  • Marvel Comics artist John Czop will help teens hone their drawing skills and learn the ways of the comic book industry in classes at 2 p.m. on Thursdays July 13-August 3. New scribblers as well as accomplished artists are welcome. A final reveal of the works created in the class will be held at 4 p.m. Thursday, August 10.
  • LEGO Mania will challenge teams of teens to build a world or tell a story at 2 p.m. Friday, August 11.

Teens also can report the number of books or minutes they read for a chance at a reading reward.

At the Archdale Public Library, 10433 S. Main St., join area potters for guidance in creating your own piece of pottery, 2-5 p.m. Tuesday, June 20. Then, celebrate “Christmas In July” with crafts, contests and snacks from 3-5 p.m. Tuesday, July 25 (registration for this event is required; call 336-431-3811 to sign up).

The Liberty Public Library, 239 S. Fayetteville Street, will offer “#hangout: Just Teens” at 3:30 p.m. each Friday through the end of July, featuring makers activities such as Duck Tape Creations, Free Style String Art, Metal Washer Jewelry and more. The library also offers weekly Get Creative craft activities for teens and adults at 3:30 p.m. Thursdays.

“Mad Science” will take over the Randleman Public Library, 142 W. Academy St., as teens and tweens explore ecosystems, bubbling potions and radical robots. Sessions take place at 3:30 p.m. Thursdays, June 22, July 6 and July 20. Registration is required; call 336-498-3141 to sign up. Teens at Randleman can keep their check-out receipts and turn them in to be entered in drawings for two Kindle Fire tablets to be given away on August 22.

For more information about library summer activities for teens, visit, or contact your local library.

Monday, June 5, 2017

Poet Presnell to reflect on impact of war on families in Asheboro library reading

Barbara Presnell
ASHEBORO – The impact of war on families is the theme of a new collection of poems by Asheboro native Barbara Presnell.

Presnell will read from her work, Blue Star, in a Friends of the Library talk at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 22, at the Asheboro Public Library.

Her appearance is free and the public is invited.

In the poems, Presnell weaves military records, census reports, letters, journals and photographs into a tapestry that tells the 100-year story her family’s involvement in war from the Civil War to the present. To complete the collection, Presnell, her brother and her sister retraced their father’s World War II journey from Omaha Beach to the Elbe River in Germany, following his map and journal entries.

The title Blue Star refers to the stars on banners that family members hang in their windows when a son or daughter is in the service.

Presnell is author of five books of poetry, including Piece Work, a collection of poems built around life and work in Asheboro’s textile mills, where Presnell’s father worked until his death in 1969. Piece Work won the Cleveland State University (CSU) Poetry Center’s First Book Prize and was published by CSU in 2007.

One of its poems, “Pauline Loves to Sew,” was included in the April 2014 Our State magazine’s list of 10 poems every North Carolinian should read. In 2009, Piece Work was adapted for the stage by the Touring Theatre Ensemble of North Carolina, and performed in community colleges and other venues around the state.

Presnell, whose poetry also has appeared in many journals and anthologies, now lives in Lexington, and teaches in the writing and honors programs at UNC-Charlotte.

The library is located at 201 Worth Street. For further information, call 336-318-6803.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Best-selling author John Hart to make Asheboro appearance

John Hart
ASHEBORO — New York Times Best-selling author John Hart, winner of two consecutive Edgar Awards for mystery fiction, will make a special appearance in Asheboro at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 15, at the [NOTE CHANGE OF VENUE] Asheboro Public Library, 201 Worth Street.

Hart’s visit, sponsored by the Friends of the Randolph County Public Library, is free and the public is invited. Journalist Chip Womick will talk with Hart in an on-stage interview format.

A North Carolina native, Hart is author of the 2016 best-selling novel Redemption Road and of four New York Times bestsellers: The King of Lies, Down River, The Last Child, and Iron House.

The only author in history to win the best novel Edgar Allan Poe Award for consecutive novels, Hart has also won the Barry Award, the Southern Independent Bookseller's Award for Fiction, the Ian Fleming Steel Dagger Award and the North Carolina Award for Literature. His novels have been translated into 30 languages and can be found in over 70 countries.

Hart’s work has been compared to that of Scott Turow and John Grisham. His books take place in North Carolina, where he was born and lives. Before his appearance in Asheboro, he will make a stop in Charlotte with Grisham.

His newest novel, The Hush, is scheduled for release in early 2018.

A 1988 graduate of Davidson College and a former defense attorney and stockbroker, Hart spends his time in North Carolina and Virginia, where he writes full-time.

Hart will sign copies of his books after his talk. His books will be available for purchase at the Randolph/Asheboro Public Library, 201 Worth Street, from 5-7 p.m. prior to the event.

For further information, contact the Randolph/Asheboro Public Library at 336-318-6803.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

‘Build a Better World’ during Randolph library Summer Reading

Shana Tucker's "ChamberSoul Cello
Stories" will kick off Summer Reading
at all libraries in June.
ASHEBORO – Join in and “Build a Better World” as the Randolph County Public Library’s 2017 Summer Reading Program gets underway with appearances by musician and songwriter Shana Tucker at all seven libraries, and over 200 more storytimes, performances, hands-on activities, movies, author appearances and more for children,
teens and adults.

The reading initiative runs during June and July at the Archdale, Asheboro,  Franklinville, Liberty, Ramseur, Randleman and Seagrove libraries.

During the summer, children can sign up to track minutes or books read in return for reading rewards. Last year, local children ages 0 thru 12th grade and their families checked out over 57,000 books and reported reading for more than 778,000 minutes.

Teens and adults can get in on the act too, and keep track of their summer reading for chances to win prizes such as gift certificates to the Friends of the Library Bookshop.

Schedules and complete details can be found at and at your local library.

The Asheboro library will kick off its summer events from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, June 3, with “Pop-Up Play Daze” outdoors and a “Balloon Magic” performance by Asheboro native Clark Sides. At the Liberty library, aerialist Amanda Finch will perform breathtaking stunts at a Summer Reading Opening Celebration carnival from 10-11:30 a.m. Saturday, June 10.

Tucker, a cellist based in the Triangle, will bring a unique blend of jazz, acoustic pop and folk music to each library in June with “ChamberSoul Cello Stories,”  accompanied by guitarist Emily Musolino. The duo will appear at the libraries as follows:
·        Archdale, 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, June 14;
·        Asheboro, 2 p.m. Tuesday, June 13;
·        Franklinville, 2 p.m. Thursday, June 15;
·        Liberty, 11 a.m. Tuesday, June 13;
·        Ramseur, 10:30 a.m. Thursday, June 22;
·        Randleman, 10:30 a.m. Thursday, June 15;
·        Seagrove, 2 p.m. Thursday, June 22.

In July, Asheville’s Bright Star Touring Theatre will visit all the libraries with “Happily Ever After,” a laugh-out-loud take on Grimm Brothers’ fairy tales that will invite lots of audience participation.

In between, all the libraries will offer a range of weekly storytimes, performances and other activities. Percussive performer The Spoon Man will visit Archdale, Liberty and Randleman libraries; Balloon magician Clark Sides also will appear at Randleman, and Joy the Clown will entertain kids at Randleman and Seagrove. Randleman will host the ever popular “Snakes Alive” with Ron Cromer.

Teens, meanwhile, can build a roller coaster, go on a scavenger hunt, play videogames and take a comic book art class in Asheboro, while in Archdale they can participate in a Summer Pottery Slam and celebrate Christmas in July. In Liberty, they can hang out at weekly “#hangout” maker events and “Get Creative” in weekly craft activities, and in Randleman, engage in some “Mad Science.”

The 9th annual Lego Mania competition will cap things off on August 11 in Asheboro.

Adults in Asheboro can find out about the exotic ways flowers propagate themselves, hear from poet Barbara Presnell, learn about white lighting in North Carolina and explore the heritage of Cherokee crafts. In Randleman and Liberty, they can enjoy weekly craft events, and in Liberty also attend a computer class series.

The Summer Reading Program is sponsored by Friends of the Randolph County Public Library with support from the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources, with funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. It’s part of a national effort to keep children reading during the break from school; research shows that kids who read during the summer do better in school the next year.

Randolph library Friends, Partnership for Children, launch ‘Books for Babies’ campaign

Shannon McCrary and Frances Jones display the contents
of the Randolph Books for Babies kit.
ASHEBORO – Every one of the 800 children born at Randolph Health (formerly Randolph Hospital) each year will get a jumpstart on reading as “Randolph Books for Babies” swings into action on May 31.

An initiative of the Friends of the Randolph County Public Library and the Randolph Partnership for Children (RPC), the project is aimed at acquainting parents of newborns with the important role they play in their babies’ brain development, and introducing parents to the resources available at their public libraries.

“Reading to babies contributes to the development of their growing brains and gives them a good start towards a lifelong love of reading and good literature,” says Dr. Frances Jones, incoming Friends president.

“When you read to babies it helps speech development as they are taking in information and beginning to learn about speech patterns.”

Jones initiated and developed the project with RPC Literacy Specialist Shannon McCrary and hospital officials.

Trained volunteers will deliver specially designed Randolph Books for Babies kits to newborns’ families at Randolph Health. The kits, packaged in a useful tote bag, will include:
· a board book for the baby;
· a children’s “My First” library card;
· a handmade reading blanket crafted locally by church groups and other volunteers;
· a schedule of storytimes at the seven branches of the Randolph County Public Library and other library information;
· a bibliography of books available at the library that are suitable for each stage of the babies; development from 0 to five months;
· early literacy information from national education associations;
· information about safe sleep from the Randolph County Health Department.

Jones raised almost $10,000 in contributions for the project’s first year. Donors include RPC, the Acme-McCrary and Sapona Foundation, Chris and Stacy Griffin, William and Dr. Frances Jones, Friends of the Library, the Kiwanis Club of Asheboro, and the Sorosis Club of Asheboro.

Fundraising efforts for year two and beyond are underway; for information about making a contribution or further information about the program, call 336-318-6814.