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Marion, Old Fort library branches host in-person Story Time for preschoolers
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Marion, Old Fort library branches host in-person Story Time for preschoolers

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Join Miss Danielle in Old Fort and Miss Megan in Marion as preschool Story Time resumes on Mondays and Tuesdays.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Marion’s Storytime will be held on Mondays at the Historic Tailgate Market. Social distancing and masks will be provided. Please bring your own chair as you and your child enjoy a story with games, song and rhymes.

On Tuesday, Sept. 15, Old Fort’s Storytime will be held under the covered pavilion at the Mountain Gateway Museum and Heritage Center. Social distancing measures and masks will be provided. Bring your own chair so you and your child can enjoy the story with games, songs, crafts and more.

After a successful Summer Reading Program, take-and-make crafts became really popular among our teens and children. Once a month after Story Time, preschoolers will be provided with a take home craft. The craft will be a sponge-painted apple. All of the materials will be provided. Videos explaining the take-and-make crafts will be available on the McDowell County Public Library’s Facebook page.

Please call 652-3858 or 668-7111 for more information, or visit our website at mcdowellpubliclibrary.org for a full list of dates, times and locations.

McDowell County Public Library staff spotlight

*Donna Grant

Donna is a McDowell County native and has worked at the McDowell County Public Library since July 2008. Before joining the library staff, she spent 12 years as a teacher.  Donna has an Associates in Arts degree from McDowell Technical Community College and an Associates in Applied Arts in Library and Information Technology from Central Carolina Community College, as well as the Library Cataloging Certificate, Library Programs Certificate, Library Public Services Certificate, and Library Basics Certificate. She also holds a Bachelors of Arts Degree in Christian Education from Piedmont College of Theology. This spring, she will begin classes to complete her Bachelor’s Degree in Library Informatics from Northern Kentucky University.

            In her job as Cataloger, Donna is responsible for making sure every item in the MCPL collection is added to the catalog. This includes books, magazines, audiobooks, CDs and DVDs. You have also probably seen her working at the Circulation Desk. One of her favorite “assignments” is providing reviews for the Library’s Facebook page. Her favorite thing about her job is that there is always something to do, but she doesn’t have to do the same thing every day.

When she’s not at work, Donna likes to read, cook, and spend time with her family, especially her nephew, Will. She’s a Star Wars fan as well as a TV and movie buff, and loves sports (Yankees, Tarheels, and Cowboys, in case you’re wondering).

It’s Entomology Season: Time to earn a new badge with ecoEXPLORE

Students interested in science can delve into the uncharted worlds of their own backyard while helping real scientists all over the world as part of a new program called ecoEXPLORE.

The Old Fort Library has teamed up the North Carolina Arboretum to bring this program to McDowell County students of all ages. They offer two backpacks for check out that include a trail camera, butterfly net, binoculars, hand lense and a bird call.

 EcoEXPLORE stands for Experiences Promoting Learning Outdoors for Research and Education, and is an incentive-based citizen science program for children in grades K-8. Developed by the North Carolina Arboretum, this innovative pilot program combines science exploration with kid-friendly technology to foster a fun learning environment for children, while encouraging them to explore the outdoors and participate in citizen science.

From August 31 to November 29, its entomology season.

Entomology is the study of insects. Insects are arthropods because they have no backbone but have jointed legs. They are separated from other arthropods because they have six legs and three main body parts.

Scientists believe there may be up to 10 million species of insects worldwide, most of which have not yet been discovered. Insects are a very diverse group of organisms. The main groups, also known as Orders, of insects include Hymenoptera (bees, wasps and ants); Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths); Coleoptera (beetles); Orthoptera (grasshoppers, crickets and katydids); Diptera (true flies such as mosquitoes, fruit flies and houseflies); Hemiptera (true bugs such as stink bugs, cicadas and aphids).

To earn your Entomology Field Badge all ecoEXPLORERS must complete the Core Entomology Challenge and pick 3 out of the 4 Weekly Challenges listed below. The deadline for earning your Entomology Field Badge is Friday, Dec. 4. There are two ecoExplore backpacks available for check out at the Old Fort Library.

Core Herpetology Challenge

  • Find and take 6 photos of insects
  • Upload each photo onto your ecoEXPLORE dashboard
  • You may only repeat species one time. For example, you may only submit two photos of a honey bee.

Weekly Challenge One

Citizen Science encourages volunteers of any age to collect and submit scientific information to real life scientists, which will assist in their research and data analysis. Scientists around the world need help collecting data. By becoming a citizen scientist, participants can help professional scientists understand changes in the environment and see how these changes impact plants, animals and other natural resources.

As part of the program, participants go outside in their own backyard or at designated ecoEXPLORE HotSpots like the Old Fort library, to find wildlife species, including plants, reptiles, amphibians, insects and birds. Participants can use their own device – or check out an iPod Touch at the Old Fort library--and photograph their wildlife observation, noting the date, location, time, size and species observed. The Old Fort library will be receiving two kits this spring that can be checked out to use in participation of this program.

Participants then log into their ecoEXPLORE profile online and submit their “share” or observation. Arboretum staff will then review the data and submit all approved submissions to the iNaturalist Network, which is used by real scientists.

ecoEXPLORE is a North Carolina-based program, but you can submit observations from anywhere in the world. The North Carolina Arboretum is both the lead institution of the ecoEXPLORE, and is the hub for the Mountain Region. The Greensboro Science Center is the hub for our Northern Piedmont Region, and the Outer Banks Center for Wildlife Education is the hub for our Northern Coastal Region. Additional regional hubs will be added through 2021 as the program expands across North Carolina.

To sign-up online, visit ecoexplore.net. To learn more, call the Old Fort Library at 668-7111.

September 2020 Children’s/ Teens Programs

Monday, Sept.14

Preschool Story Time at the Historic Tailgate Market, 10:30 a.m.

Books, songs, felt board stories, action rhymes and fun for preschool-aged children.

 Crafts for Little Hands at the Historic Tailgate Market, following Story Time.

Once a month after Story Time, preschool-aged children will receive a take home craft.

 Crafty Thursday Take and Make Craft pick-up at the Marion Branch Curbside Table.

This is an activity for children ages 5 and up.

Teen Take and  Make pick-up at the Marion Branch Curbside Table.

This is an activity for teens ages 11-18. 

Tuesday, Sept.15

Preschool Story Time at the Mountain Gateway Museum, 10:30 a.m.

Books, songs, felt board stories, action rhymes and fun for preschool-aged children.

Crafts for Little Hands at the Mountain Gateway Museum, following Story Time.

Once a month after Story Time, preschool-aged children will receive  a take home craft.

Crafty Thursday Take and Make Craft pick-up at the Old Fort Branch Curbside Table.

This is an activity for children ages 5 and up.

Teen Take and  Make pick-up at the Old Fort Branch Curbside Table.

This is an activity for teens ages 11-18. 

Thursday, Sept.17

Crafty Thursday Take and  Make video uploaded to our Facebook page.

Teen Take and  Make video uploaded to our Facebook page.

Saturday, Sept.19

Ahoy, thar matey! Join us on Facebook for a book reading for International Talk Like a Pirate Day! If you are interested in learning to talk like a pirate you can access Mango Languages through NC Live on our website.

Monday, Sept.21

Preschool Story Time at the Historic Tailgate Market, 10:30 a.m.

Books, songs, felt board stories, action rhymes and fun for preschool-aged children.

Tuesday, Sept. 22

 Preschool Story Time at the Mountain Gateway Museum, Old Fort, 10:30 a.m.

Books, songs, felt board stories, action rhymes and fun for preschool-aged children.

Thursday, Sept. 24

Crafty Thursday- Science Experiment video on Facebook.

This will be a fun experiment that the whole family will enjoy doing together.

Monday, Monday Sept. 28

Preschool Story Time at the Historic Tailgate Market, 10:30 a.m.

Books, songs, felt board stories, action rhymes and fun for preschool-aged children.

Tuesday, Sept. 22

 Preschool Story Time at the Mountain Gateway Museum, 10:30 a.m.

Books, songs, felt board stories, action rhymes and fun for preschool-aged children.

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