2nd Annual Cosplay Con

DBRL-0032-1As I type this, Halloween is only 79 days, 6 hours, 59 minutes, and 40 seconds away, not that I’m counting. However, this didn’t stop us from celebrating the end of summer with our 2nd Annual Cosplay Costume Con on August 8! We packed the Columbia Friends Room with people of all ages dressed as their favorite characters. For one night only, heroes and villains were able to put aside their differences and come together to strut their stuff down the catwalk.

We had a panel of four judges who appraised each participant on their creativity and embodiment of the character. Prizes were provided by the library, Distant Planet Comics & Collectibles and Ragtag Cinema. During the judges’ final deliberations, the audience was surprised when a Sith Lord showed up and challenged our emcee! Thankfully, Dana was able to defeat him and save us from the Dark Side.

Whether you want to relive this great night or you simply want to see the fun, we have lots of pictures for you!

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The Bitter Side of Sweet

"The Bitter Side of Sweet" book coverFor most folks summer reading means fun, lighthearted beach reads. However, as summer winds down, you may find yourself in need of a break from the saccharine. If you are looking for a summer read with some substance and meaningful discussion, then look no further than Tara Sullivan’s “The Bitter Side of Sweet.”

This is Sullivan’s second novel and her first title for middle grade readers, but make no mistake- the subject matter in “The Bitter Side of Sweet” is not for the faint of heart. This novel deals with child slave labor in cacao farms along the Ivory Coast. Brothers Amadou and Seydou go to work one season on the farm in order to help bring in money for their family in a small Malian village. However, two years later they are still on the farm with no idea how much money they have earned or if it will be enough to pay off the debt they’ve incurred for living and working on the farm. Then one day a new girl, Kadisha, is brought to the farm. After several failed escape attempts on her own, she enlists the help of Amadou and Seydou to plot another escape. You’ll have to read to find out what happens next! Continue reading

Beat the Heat

Photo of children playing in waterWow! The summer heat is already in full swing, and August is promising to be even hotter! One way that I like to beat the heat is to face it head on by going outside and splashing around. You can do this too by going to the beach or the pool to catch some waves, or you can even turn to your own yard! Here are some ideas that will help you cool off at home.

  • Freeze toys in ice cubes — Place small toys like plastic cars or bugs into your ice cube tray. Fill the tray with water, and freeze it overnight. Take the ice cubes outside, and see who can melt theirs the quickest.
  • Ice cube painting — Fill an ice cube try with food coloring and water. (This is a great time to talk about color mixing.) Put plastic wrap over the tray and add craft sticks or toothpicks to each cube. (This is optional, but it will make a great handle for painting.) When the cubes are solid, use them to paint on paper or fabric.
  • Target practice — Draw a target on the sidewalk with chalk. Wet down a few sponges, and toss them into the target!

What would summer fun be without a soundtrack? Personally, I stay cool by listening to the Beach Boys, which you can find on Hoopla or on CD at your local branch. Or you can get really creative and make your own summertime playlist on Freegal.
Remember to wear sunscreen and drink lots of water!

Breaking the Rules at the Library!

Kids making paper airplanes When you think “libraries,” you never really associate them with breaking the rules. But on Friday the 24th, after the Columbia DBRL branch was closed, library patrons were
throwing airplanes from the highest reaches of the library and star-gazing all night long (well, actually,
only until about 10 p.m.). Party with Stuck paper airplanethe Stars Plus Paper Airplanes was the name of this event, and a great time was had by children and adults alike.

After the library locked its doors at 6 p.m., patrons began shuffling through the back doors to get started folding their paper airplanes and helicopters. Children and parents watched in amazement as their paper creations soared, hovered and weaved their way down the three stories of the library.

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Summer Reading Book Lists

Summer Reading LogoDid you know that we’ve compiled book lists specifically about our Summer Reading theme, “On Your Mark, Get Set, Read”? These home run reads are all about movement, sports and games. We have print copies of the book lists at our library branches, but you can also access them online!