Star Wars Day: 5 Ways the Library Strikes Back


So, you like Star Wars. Your kids like Star Wars (my kids LOVE Star Wars.)


Your kids' kids like Star Wars (which would make you a grandparent. I am so not a grandparent. And my mom does not like Star Wars, but that's not the point.) Did you know that one of the best places to celebrate Star Wars Day is at your Public Library? SERIOUSLY!! Here are 5 ways the Force Can Be With You:


1. STAR WARS EVENTS:  Lots of libraries celebrate Stars Wars Day with special events. It could be anything from meeting the characters from the movie to making Yoda cookies to building pool noodle sabers! I have done ALL of these things in my library. Check out your library's calendar to see what they have planned. Check out the events we're hosting in local Tampa libraries today and tomorrow as we celebrate May the Fourth and Revenge of the Fifth with Empire-sized parties for all ages. From the youngest Padawan to the wisest Jedi, wear your best Star Wars gear and join us for an epic experience! Click here for more details



2. STAR WARS Movies and Music:  Don't own every DVD in the Star Wars series? No sweat. I bet your library has the whole collection and if it is checked out, you can place it on hold.  (Click here to see the complete list of movies.) And don't forget the music. I bet your library has the movie soundtracks. I've been listening to A New Hope in preparation for today. My library carries it on audio CD and through Hoopla. 


3. STAR WARS BOOKS: The force is strong in Star Wars Books!! There are also a TON of books for all ages! From adults to teens to kids. Even babies can enjoy learning the ABCs with their favorite Star Wars characters. You can read stories which continue the saga, you could learn how to make special arts and crafts like Yoda ears, you could make your own Star Wars costume. If your library has Hoopla or Overdrive (which mine does), you don't even need to step a foot into the library to get the ebooks or audiobooks!   

4. 3D PRINT STAR WARS MODELS If you are lucky to have a library that has a 3D Printer (Not all of them do, but I bet there is a branch close by that does!), then you are in luck! There are so many different ways to use that printer for Star Wars trinkets:  I made this lovely Darth Vader using the 3d printer at my library.


5. Star Wars Guest Speakers and Special Guests. I am such a Star Wars Geek that I have even hosted a Star Wars SCHOLAR. That's right. A SCHOLAR. His presentation, The Music of Star Wars combined everything that I love most about the franchise and broke it down in such a way that now every time I watch one of the films, I am listening to the music for hints about what might be coming next!



So, what are you doing for Star Wars Day? Perhaps visiting your library?

Florida SSYRA Battle of the Books 2018 - 2019

It's time to start putting those Sunshine State Books on hold!

The 2018-2019 Sunshine State Young Readers Award (SSYRA) books have been announced! The list for grades 3-5 has a repeat author, Lisa Graff. I don't see any of the authors on the 6-8 list as being repeat nominees. But I see a new one that has me excited!! DJ Machale!! He writes the hugely popular Pendragon series! Ronin loved that series!!

Parents and teachers, get a jump on everyone else by having your kids read a few of the titles over the summer. I have yet to see a summer reading list that does not include at least ONE SSYRA book. And the book usually includes a project to be submitted the first week of school. And how many of you have kids that wait until that last week to read the book and do the project? Based on the number of families that I see in the library scrambling to get their hands on a copy of ANY SSYRA book for that year, it seems like a lot of kids wait until the last minute. 

 So yo,

Don't procrastinate,

Don't sleep late,

or let stress escalate

SSYRA reading is postulate

In the Sunshine State

Let the words captivate


If you live in Hillsborough County and have a library card (or a student with a HAAL pass) simply click on the links below to find your titles and place your books on hold.



So what do you think about the books this year?? Any that you think your kids will want to read? Any that you want to read??

Easter and Spring Books for Kids 2018

With Spring knocking every so gently on our door, and Easter right around the corner, I've put together a book list for the young readers in your life.

If your family is silly and fun, they'll probably get a big kick out of There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Chick. This is one of my favorite read-aloud books for kids of any age. In fact, I still read it to the #TampaTrio during this holiday season. As in other "old lady who swallowed" stories the hungry old lady manages to swallow some pretty unique items. On this journey, she swallows a chick, some straw, an egg, some candy, a basket, and a bow! And just as she's hopping and skipping along, who should she meet but the Easter Bunny! Watch what happens when she trips, with amazing results!

If your reader enjoys "the fairy books" check out Bella the Bunny Fairy. At an Easter egg hunt, Rachel and Kirsty spot a color-changing rabbit! Could it be the Easter Bunny? Or is it Bella the Bunny Fairy’s missing rabbit, Misty?


Easter Bunnies by Patrick Merrick introduces the holiday of Easter and some of the ways in which it is celebrated, explaining the origin and meaning of such symbols as Easter eggs and the Easter bunny.


And if you enjoy storytelling, I recommend The Birds' Gift, A Ukrainian Easter Story. In this story, villagers take in a flock of golden birds nearly frozen by an early snow and are rewarded with beautifully decorated eggs the next spring. It's a wonderful read-a-loud tale.

Of course, your library offers much more than the four books I featured. Click HERE to view more Easter and Spring themed books available through your Tampa-Hillsborough Public Library.

Do you have a favorite Spring/Easter themed story that you read to your kids?