Tuesday, October 6, 2015

I love Billy Stewart...

I love Billy Stewart.  I want you to love Billy Stewart too.  I love him because if his voice were a fabric, it would be velvet.  I love him because if his music were a day, it would be the most mellow of May days.  He hailed from Washington D.C. and enjoyed modest success in the 1960’s.  He wrote and sang jazzy, soulful music, with a distinctive scat-singing style.  Tragically, he died way too young in a car accident in early 1970.  Now, a few decades later, his music can be somewhat difficult to find. 

Not a problem though if you have a MCPL Library Card.  Simply go to our website at, let the Books/Movies/Music tab drop, and click on Music.  Scroll down to the American Song resource:

and you will be prompted to enter your library card number and PIN (if you don't know your PIN is your 4-digit birth year). Billy Stewart can be found by entering his name in the search bar. Listen.

-Carol R

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Coming This Fall: Nature and Environmental Programs

As anyone in our region knows, fall is a wonderful time to play in the garden, watch wildlife, take photos, or simply enjoy the changing palette of the trees. But would you guess it's also a great time to learn about nature at the library?

This Sunday, September 27, at 2:00 pm, we welcome back Master Gardener Susan Bell for Landscaping Tricks of the Trade:  Design and Maintenance Tips for Your Garden. A professional landscape designer, Susan will explain how to create healthy gardens while keeping maintenance safe, simple, and affordable. Her slide show has dozens of garden ideas. Audience members can ask questions and get advice about their own garden and landscape challenges.

Please join us for this free educational program made possible in cooperation with the Montgomery County Master Gardeners.
fall foliage and landscape
A lovely fall landscape in the foreground complements the surrounding terrain. Photo by Susan Bell.
The Master Gardeners of Montgomery County's website is a great place to find answers to questions about everything from planting raised-bed vegetable gardens to making your roses less appealing to hungry deer.

Master Gardeners are trained volunteers of the University of Maryland Extension office who are dedicated to helping the citizens of Montgomery County. You may reach them by phone or email, or visit them at the many plant clinics and other events they host around the county.

The Olney Library would like to thank the volunteers from the Master Gardeners who have helped us bring high-quality programs to the public over the past year, including Susan Bell, George Willingmyre (who presented a trees program last fall) and Judy Termini, who finds all the volunteers for us. 

Stay tuned for a November program on medicinal herbs at the library. Check our online calendar of events for nature and science related programs throughout the year. Or view the list of upcoming events on the Olney Library webpage, just below the featured blog article. Happy autumn!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Record-Breaking Summer for Olney Readers

Congratulations, Olney kids and teens!

More than 1,000 kids and teens registered for the Summer Reading Program at Olney, among the top numbers of all library branches in Montgomery County! This year’s count was almost double from last year. Thanks for reading and logging more than 4,000 books. Several kids reported they had lots of fun at the Frederick Keys and Bowie Baysox games. Eight children won raffles and received tickets to the Maryland Science Center or Orioles game. We can’t wait to see you again for next year’s program! 

For more photos of prize earners, please click here.

Along with the Summer Reading program, Olney hosted some fantastic programs throughout the summer. These included “Reptiles Alive” and our favorite performers, “One Two Three with Andres” and “Super Quack and the Library Dragon” (puppeteer and ventriloquist Tom Crowl). One of the summer’s highlights was the Farm Animal Visit presented by the 4-H Royal Court of the Montgomery County Agricultural Fair.

Check out more photos at this link.

The event with the highest attendance was the interactive science program by Eric Energy. More than 100 children and parents enjoyed his high-energy performance and experiments. There was music, dancing, and non-stop action during this program introducing kids to science. Everyone had a blast! 

For more photos, please click here.

Don't forget to check out our Calendar of Events for upcoming Fall programs at Olney!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Olney Reads: Siblings' Summer Sci-Fi Picks

Readers:  Pratham and Arnav 

Books: Xenocide by Orson Scott Card and
The Serpent's Shadow by Rick Riordan

Brothers Pratham and Arnav holding up their favorite summer books

Looking for some high-octane adventure for the last few days of summer? Rick Riordan and Orson Scott Card never disappoint, and they come highly recommended by brothers Pratham (age 11, at left) and Arnav (age 12).

Xenocide is book 3 in the classic series featuring videogamer "Ender" Wiggins, who ends up battling real aliens instead of animated ones. The series began with Ender's Game.  Pratham likes these books because "they have lots of action -- it's a little bloody!" Pratham explains further: "The stories always have an unexpected twist. They were recommended to me by a friend and they pulled me into reading." Pratham enjoys horror books, too.

Arnav, Pratham's older brother, also enjoys a good thrill ride when reading. He is reading The Serpent's Shadow, book 3 in the popular Kane Chronicles series by Rick Riordan. Says Arnav, "The author is a great writer and he has multiple series, so I can always find something fun to read." Arnav enjoys adventure and Egyptian mythology. He can't get enough of the battles between the book's protagonists (who are also siblings) and the gods and goddesses who wreak havoc on their world.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Take part in the "Great Fines Read Off" Program

Calling all children and teens—
Do you have fines on your library card that you'd like to remove? 

If so, come to Olney Library (or any MCPL library branch) to read them off!

Reading an e-book in the Teen Section

For each half hour that you read, earn $1 “Library Buck” to pay down your fine. You can read any book, magazine, or e-book.

Before you start, stop by the Information Desk to sign in and log your start time. After you’ve finished reading, come to the Info Desk to sign out and pick up your earned “bucks.” Then bring them to the Checkout Desk to pay down your fine. It’s that easy!

Young children can earn “Library Bucks” if they read to a parent or caregiver, or if a parent or caregiver reads to them.

If a teen or child reads to another young person, both earn “Library Bucks” for their time!

Please note:
  • The program is for children or teens 17 years old or younger
  •  All reading must be done in the library
  •  Only fines for overdue books and unclaimed hold fees may be read down
  •  Children or teens must have fines at the time of participation-- bucks cannot be banked for future use. 

Stop by the Info Desk if you have any questions. 

While the "Great Fines Read Off Program" runs year round, you can stay cool this summer by reading at Olney Library… see you soon!  

Enjoying a summer read at the library