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Monday, June 4, 2018

Exciting second week of library's summer program

For a quick recap of Stillwater Public Library events this week:
·         Tuesday - A Thoroughly Modern Rapunzel (Children’s Operetta) at 10 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.
·         Wednesday – Teen program (Lunar Sooners and their pop-up planetarium) at 2:30 p.m.
·         Thursday – Summer Cinema at 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
·         Thursday evening - Wine and Music Pairings with wine expert Clayton Bahr at 6:30 p.m.
·         Friday – Musical movie at 1 p.m.

And on to next week! Our next week, might be one of the most amazing summer slates of programs we’ve ever had!

On Tuesday, June 12, at 10 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m., all of my life’s hopes, dreams and wishes come true when Denise Gard brings in her dogs, Sienna and Joey, for “Doggie Dance!” This talented trio will tell stories set to classical, rap, country and pop music.

Denise is a professional storyteller from Colorado, who has also started writing stories for Sienna and Joey, filled with strong characters, funny situations and memorable dialog. Their book, “Trash Land: a Sienna and Joey Tale about Recycling,” is currently available as a Kindle edition on

Sienna, a red and white Border Collie, loves performing for audiences.  Her favorite trick is playing dead which she does whenever she needs a "break."  Sienna loves treats, her mom Denise and belly rubs.  From her webpages, it appears Sienna also loves dressing up, so I imagine we are going to see some fancy doggie duds too.

Joey is Sienna’s a blonde Border Collie brother.  He enjoys doing tricks, but as is true for all little brothers, his favorite thing is to annoy his sister by stealing her blanket and toys.  He also loves giving hugs and kisses to audience members.

This will be a popular program, so please arrive early and consider attending the 3:30 p.m. or 6:30 p.m. performances, as they usually are the ones with the most room.

On Wednesday, June 13, at 2:30 p.m., teens should meet at the OSU Colvin Center (near the corner of Hall of Fame & Cleveland) for an afternoon of rock wall climbing. The program is open to students going into 6-12 grades. It’s a free event, but tennis shoe are required, as well as a waiver signed by a parent or legal guardian. You may download one at or pick one up at the Help Desk.

On Thursday, June 14, at 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., enjoy popcorn and a movie at Summer Cinema. The film is rated PG and reveals the story of a koala impresario who stages a grand singing competition for the world's animals in order to save his elegant theater and bring it back to its former glory.

On Friday, June 15 at 1 p.m., Friday Musicals features a PG film about a teenage girl who pursues stardom as a dancer on a local TV show and rallies against racial segregation in her native Baltimore.

That evening at 6:30 p.m., teens can pop in for a PG-13 blockbuster from last year about an Amazonian warrior in training who leaves home to fight a war and discover her full powers and true destiny.

And on Sunday, June 17, from 2-4 p.m., men and the kids in their lives will work together during “DIY Music” to create their own working instruments out of pipe, springs, boxes, wood and lots of other materials. Registration is limited and required at or the Help Desk. Projects include cigar box guitars, music boxes, rain sticks and PVC horns.

For more information on any of the upcoming programs, visit

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Summer starts today @ Your Library!

A very full calendar of fun summer events has started at Stillwater Public Library.

Today, anytime between 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., drop into the story time room for the WONDERtorium's "WONDERjam" and have a musically good time. Come see what can happen with found objects and how they can be transformed into musical instruments. Also enjoy building a musical marble run and play a huge piano with your feet.

Incidentally, on Father's Day, we'll be holding an expanded build-you-own musical instruments event. If you have clean PVC pipe scraps or fittings, we'd love to have them. Just drop them at the Help Desk, and if you are part of a kid/father figure team, then be sure to sign up for the program on our webpage.

On Thursday, join in on "Kindness Rocks" anytime from 10a.m. - 5 p.m. in the story time room. Spread joy and kindness throughout Stillwater by painting a rock or two for others to find. Learn more about the Kindness Rocks Project at

Oktoberfest in June will be celebrated at Saturday's "Polka Party" from 1-2:30 p.m. in the courtyard. Bring chairs or blankets to jam out to some hot Polka tunes, then enjoy root beer floats and bubble run at this all age family event.

On Tuesday, June 5, local kids will perform "A Thoroughly Modern Rapunzel" in Rana McCoy's annual children's operetta. Shows take place at 10 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m. in the Auditorium on the second floor of the meeting room building. Please note there will be no evening show.

Since this is the first auditorium performance of the summer, Ms. Elizabeth wants to remind everyone about a few guidelines that will help the event run more smoothly:

1. Performances have limited seating and are available on a first come, first served basis.
2. Please arrive at least 15 minutes early. 
3. The 3:30 p.m. performances usually have the most open seating (or the 6:30 p.m. shows).
4. Children under 5 must be accompanied by an adult in the performance room.
5. Children ages 6-8 must have an adult present in the library building.
6. Doors will close when we reach capacity.
7. We are unable to let people exit and re-enter once the doors have closed.

On Wednesday, June 6, at 2:30 p.m., The Lunar Sooners will show teens how "Astronomy Rocks," with their portable planetarium. Teens will learn about the stars in the planetarium through hands-on astronomy demonstrations.         

Summer Cinema starts on Thursday, June 7, with a 10 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. screening of Coco, which is rated PG.

That evening at 6:30 p.m., the adult program begins with "Music & Wine Pairings" presented by Clayton Bahr, wine expert and host of “Tasting Notes” on The Spy FM. No wine will be served, but you will have a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card, and everyone will go home with the gift of knowing how to pair music with different types of wine to make dinners and get-togethers a success! Before the program, be sure to stop by Emily's very interesting display of book and drink pairings.

And last, Friday Musicals begins on, you guessed it!, Friday (June 8) with a 1 p.m. showing of everyone's favorite musical, Grease, rated PG.

After that, maybe keep your research questions simple and easy for a few days while the librarians recover from this VERY packed start to "Summer @ Your Library!"

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Stillwater Public library will be rocking all summer with programs for all ages

Fun, reading, and prizes abound at the “Libraries Rock!” summer reading programs designed for kids, teens, and adults. The Stillwater Public Library summer programs include prizes, movies and weekly programs for each age group.

The programs also include reading challenges. Readers of all ages will earn small rewards for every five hours read. Reading more hours provides more incentives as well as chances to win in the end of summer grand prize drawings, including:
  • Children’s program - Choice of Lego Set, Wondertorium punch pass, book mail subscription or ukulele.
  • Teen program - Choice of Xbox One, Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch, Laptop, Academy Sports Gift Certificate or Daddy O's Gift Certificate.
  • Adult program – Choice of Ticketmaster gift card, Allied Arts season passes, Daddy-O’s gift card, 6-Month Subscription to Vinyl Me Please, Bose Quiet Comfort 25 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones, or a gift card to a local downtown business of choice.
Registration for the summer reading program is now open online and at the Help Desks.

Families may also register at the all-ages Polka Party kick-off on Saturday, June 2, from 1-2:30 p.m. The event includes Pint-Sized Polka playing kids songs and well-known polka standards, root beer floats, bubble fun and more. Attendees are encouraged to bring chairs or blankets for seating.

The next week, programming begins for children, teens and adults.

The Children’s Summer Reading programs take place on Tuesdays in June and July at 10 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Children who wear their summer reading t-shirts will be eligible for weekly prize drawings. Programs include:
  • June 5: A Thoroughly Modern Rapunzel. Local children perform in the annual operetta. There will be no evening performance of the operetta.
  • June 12: Doggie Dance! Sienna and Joey, Denise Gard’s famous Border Collies, perform groovy tricks. Discover incredible stories set to music, and then learn how to dance like a dog!
  • June 19: Kevin Wade's Rock and Read Magic Show. Kevin returns to the Stillwater stage to mystify and amaze with his bag of magic tricks, while also expressing a love of reading. 
  • June 26: We Will Rock You. Internationally renowned percussionist Lee Ann Harris offers an innovative and unique musical presentation designed to both entertain and enlighten. She demonstrates interesting and often unusual instruments while performing some of the more captivating rhythms of the world.
  • July 3: Hill’s Irish Dancers. Talented student dancers present a spirited and entertaining Irish dance experience. Toes will be tapping and hands clapping with the fast-moving feet of these award-winning step dancers.
  • July 10: Juggle Whatever’s Lights! Music! Circus! Be amazed by a glow circus show set to fun music with a variety of high-tech LED props including hula hoops, juggling, unicycling, and much more.
  • July 17: Jump Rope Master. Peter Nestler captures children’s attention and inspires them with jaw dropping skills during his jump rope and unicycle performance.
  • July 24: Libraries Rock Award Ceremony (10 a.m., 1:30 p.m., and 6:30 p.m.) Monty Harper gives an energetic performance of original songs that will have kids moving and grooving in celebration of books and reading! This invitation-only special celebration is for children who reached their 10 or more hour reading goal.
Teen programs take place on Wednesdays at 2:30-4:30 p.m. All students in grades 6-12 are eligible for the program and will get a chance to win prizes when they attend. Programs include:

  • June 6: Astronomy Rocks! The Lunar Sooners, an outreach group of OU astronomy students, will bring a portable planetarium to SPL.  Teens will spend time learning about the stars in the planetarium and participating in hands-on astronomy demonstrations.
  • June 13: Climbing Rocks! Enjoy an afternoon of rock wall climbing at the Colvin Center.
  • June 20: Ukuleles Rock! Stillwater Ukulele Association will get teens up to speed on ukuleles.  The group will perform, and then provide lessons for uke players of any ability.  The culmination of the program will be a collaborative performance by the teens.
  • June 27: Latin Dance Rocks! Heather Burns, a professional dancer and choreographer specializing in Afro-Cuban dance, will introduce and model Latin dance movements and rhythms including cha cha cha, conga, mambo, rumba and more. Teens can show off their new skills in a Latin music performance.
  • July 11: Geology Rocks! Members of the OSU Geology department will bring hands-on geology demonstrations to SPL. Teens will have a chance to interact firsthand with different types of rocks and participate in activities involving the different minerals. 
  • July 18: African Dance, Music and Drum Lessons Rock! Aboubacar Camara and percussionists who specialize in African music will give an African drumming and dance performance.  Teens will then learn different dances and percussion rhythms from various African cultural traditions and the meanings of these dances and rhythms. 
  • July 25: Trampoline Finale. Teens will end the summer with exciting activities at the Ultimate Air Trampoline Park.
Adult readers will enjoy an array of musically themed programs. One $25 Amazon gift card will be given away at each program. Programs include:
  • Thursday, June 07 (6:30 p.m.): Music & Wine Pairings. Clayton Bahr, wine expert and host of “Tasting Notes” on The Spy FM, explains how to pair music with different types of wine to make dinners and get-togethers a success. No wine will be served.
  • Sunday, June 17 (2-4 p.m.): Father's Day. Kids and Dads (or other male figures) work together to make musical instruments out of PVC and other materials, while mom gets a day off to rest. Registration required online or at the Help Desk.
  • Tuesday, June 19 (6:30 p.m.): Hip Hop Music Appreciation. Want to know more about hip-hop and rap? Educator, ambassador of hip hop and artist Gregory Jerome explains history of hip hop, the movements that inspired its inception, and the musical styles that made hip hop and rap music possible.
  • Wednesday, June 27 (10 a.m.): Music for Babies. KinderMusik teacher Judith Mitchell shows parents and babies interactive music and movement activities that enhance age appropriate brain development. Appropriate for babies Birth to 15 months.
  • July 9-15 (Days and times will vary): Music Escape Room. Get a small group together to look for clues and solve puzzles to escape a musically themed room. Reservations required. Sign-up begins June 4.
  • Thursday, July 19 (6:30 p.m.): Classical Music Appreciation. OSU’s Dr. Mark E. Perry, Asst. Professor of Ethnomusicology and Historical Musicology, explains music history and helps participants learn to appreciate the classics everyone should know.
In addition to weekly live programs, the library is hosting two movie days per week, including:

Thursday Summer Cinema at 10a.m. and 1:30 p.m. - Family friendly films will be shown on the big screen in the auditorium. One bag of popcorn per person will be provided.

  • June 7: Coco (PG, 1h 45m)
  • June 14: Sing (PG, 1h 48m)
  • June 21: Despicable Me 3 (PG, 1h 29m)
  • June 28: Smurfs (PG, 1h 43m)
  • July 5: Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs (G, 1h 23m)
  • July 12: The BFG (PG, 2h)
  • July 19: The Nut Job (PG, 1h 25m)
Friday Musicals at 1 p.m. – Favorite musicals, both classic and new, will be shown on the big screen, with popcorn provided. Films include:

  • June 8: Grease (PG, 1h 50m)
  • June 15: Hairspray (07’, PG, 1h 57m)
  • June 22: Cabaret (PG, 2h)
  • June 29: Singin’ in the Rain (G, 1h 53m)
  • July 6: No movie
  • July 13: The Wiz (G, 2h 15m)
  • July 20: La La Land (PG-13, 2h 8m)
Summer with the library ends on Friday, July 27 at 7 p.m., when the library holds an all-ages 1980s dance party at the Stillwater Community Center, featuring dance contests, refreshments and prizes.

For more information about the library’s summer reading programs, visit the web site at, call the Help Desk at (405) 372-3633, ext. 8106 or e-mail

Monday, February 26, 2018


Starting Thursday evening, the library will begin handing out free copies of “Killers of the Flower Moon” by David Grann. To get one of the free copies, you need to sign-up for and attend one of our small group discussions. Despite all of the other amazing events we have going on -  David Grann’s visit, a ballet, the former director of the FBI Crime Lab, etc. – it is these small group discussions that are at the heart of each of our community reading series.

We want these discussions to be open and enlightening, and we also want them to be respectful. One topic that often confounds people is what to call people who are Native American. 

We’re at a delicate time in the history of American dialogue. On one hand, we are currently feeling the very real growing pains of transitioning to speaking with each other using more honor and respect. On the other hand, we are sometimes so nervous about saying the wrong thing that we choose to say nothing at all.

As we planned the series, I started research to try to find a definitive answer of what to call Native Americans. I was looking for the golden, easy answer that would make every discussion perfect, with no one feeling awkward or uneasy. What I found both in reading about the topic and in talking to different people from different Nations, was that they are individuals! Every person has their own opinion and preference. 

That each person is an individual is something that I should have known in the first place, but it sure wasn’t the easy answer I was hoping to find. However, my exercise did unearth two things that I think will help guide me.

First, ask! Some people don’t mind the term “Native American,” while others dislike it because it is a government label. Some older people I’ve spoken with are fine with the term “Indian,” because it was what was used when they were growing up. This summer during our “Let’s Talk About It” series, Dr. Russ Tallchief often referred to “Native people,” while still others prefer the term “Indigenous” people.

One piece of advice was especially helpful. During a pre-series book discussion session, I asked one of the OSU students from the Native American Student Association, what term we should use. He asked why not just call them by what they are? Osage, Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw. Each tribe is a separate entity. They may share some similarities, but they are all individual Nations.

The point I want to make here is that you just aren’t going to know what term people prefer unless you talk to them. And funny enough, once you start talking to people, things like this become much less important. You understand their preferences, and they understand your heart.

And speaking of your heart, the second lesson I learned is that if you say “the wrong thing,” but are doing it with a good heart, then it really isn’t a mistake—it is a learning opportunity. My new friend Coleman American Horse, who is helping to plan the Osage Cultural Fair on March 24, told me that he doesn’t mind when people make these good-hearted “mistakes.” He sees it as an opportunity to teach the person about the Osage and himself. 

He’s right. Most of the time, people can tell when someone is using terms innocently and when people are using them to be cruel. And if you make one of these “mistakes,” be open to learning about the person’s preferences and more importantly, the reason and history behind the preference. Don’t let the error keep you from participating. Discussion about topics like this rarely is meant to humiliate you, but to educate you.

Speaking of which, if you do hear someone make what you think is a terminology error, then be gentle. We are all here to learn through these reading series. If we embarrass others, then we run the risk of having them not join us anymore. If they were someone who could have benefitted from learning more, then we have just lost a great opportunity to do so.

So, what are we supposed to call Native Americans? I don’t know the answer to that. I hope that I take this chance to not worry so much about these labels and instead to talk to people as the individuals they are. 

And my best advice? Definitely ALWAYS be P.C.—not “politically correct” but “polite and courteous.” It always goes a long way.