Centennial Celebrations Continue with 100 Years of Earl Scruggs!

by Technology Librarian, Josh

Image from Earl Scruggs Center

For the library’s centennial we’re hosting a series of music programs that look back at the amazing music and musicians celebrating 100 years! 

Commemorate the godfather of the banjo, Earl Scruggs, for his 100th birthday on July 14th. A Tea at Three performance by the acclaimed bluegrass band, Appalachian Swing, will pay tribute to his brilliant musicianship and legacy. 

Image from Bluegrass Today

Scruggs became a pivotal member of Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys in 1945, which defined the classic bluegrass sound we all know and love today. This band set the foundation for the bluegrass genre with their instrumentation, song selection, and improvisation between members. A large part of the bluegrass sound came from a playing style Scruggs’ pioneered on the banjo, generally called the “three-fingered” technique, which allowed him to play at faster speeds with clarity and a focus on melody. Steve Martin said it best, “Before [Scruggs], no one had ever played the banjo like he did. After him, everyone played the banjo like he did.” 

A couple of other music programs we’re excited about include Todd Stoll and the Uptown Bootleggers playing Music of the Roaring 20s on August 15th. And for the third year in a row, we’re hosting Musicians for Silent Film who are performing live music to Hitchcock’s silent masterpiece, The Lodger. This is the epic finale of our Hitchcock Through the Decades film series taking place on Oct 26th. These music programs promise to be an unforgettable tribute to influential figures and milestones in the world of music and film. We hope you’ll help us celebrate since turning 100 only happens once!

  • The Essential Earl Scruggs | CD
  • Earl Scruggs and the 5-String Banjo | Printed Music
  • The Very Best of Bill Monroe and his Bluegrass Boys | CD
staff favorites

Summertime Vibes at Your Library!

by Juliana, Public Service Associate

It’s going to be a hot one this week folks, and we’re here today to spark up reading and listening inspiration for the season we’ve all been waiting for — summer! If you’re looking for something to make your days dreamy and luminous, you’ve come to the right place.

I asked the following questions to a few of my fellow library staff members and compiled our responses to share with all of you.

What are your favorite summer reads? Beach reads, vacation reads, summer vibes in general. Are you checking things off your TBR list? Are you rereading an old favorite? Do you use vacation to catch up on Stephen King? Are you choosing audiobooks for a road trip? Do you have a favorite cd or movie that seems especially summery? 

I hope you enjoy this list of responses as much as I do.

Josh, Tech Librarian

I love finding a Summer listen. Not a playlist, necessarily. I love finding an album where every song is a Summer song. Headphones, computer speakers, home stereo won’t do this music justice though… no, no, no. This music sounds the best in your car when the windows are down, a light breeze wafting in and the music blasting out. The three albums I’d recommend are:

  • Raze Regal & White Denim Inc. – 70s feeling album with a lot of ear candy! The foundation of every song is a solid groove with catchy melodies.
  • Aaron Frazer – Introducing… – Very grooving and Motown-ish feeling! Aaron drums and sings with Ohio’s own Dan Auerbach producing.
  • Anderson Paak – Malibu – Another drummer/singer on the list! Paak’s breakthrough album in 2016 still feels great in the car! (Note: there are very explicit lyrics on this album, so if that’s a deterrent I would suggest the edited version that’s available on streaming services).

Windows down, volume up!

Hannah, Patron Service Associate & Creative Content Coordinator

I enjoy reading seasonally. While haunting tales suit the moody autumn air and A Christmas Carol at Christmastime enhances the festivity, I find lighthearted novels, fairytales, and exciting adventures pair well with iced tea and hot days. My summer reading pile is stacked with…

Mary, Public Service Lead & Adult Volunteer Coordinator

Westerns have my heart during the hot summer months. I am planning on reading The Virginian by Owen Wister (which is technically a re-read for me!) along with Cities of the Plain, Cormac McCarthy’s final book in his Border Trilogy

Juliana, Public Service Associate

  • I somehow didn’t read Ray Bradbury’s Dandelion Wine until my thirties, and now I love re-reading it every summer. It’s so shimmery, filled with golden light and simple summery joys. When I think of Dandelion Wine I think of one word: Relish! (referring to great enjoyment, not the condiment).
  • Another favorite is The Summer Book by Tove Jansson. If you’ve not read anything by Jansson, I highly recommend her books. They are short and quiet and full of everyday life.

Joseph, Public Service Associate

As far as I’m concerned, summer has just one thing going for it: it makes certain music sound fantastic, such as…

  • Baumstam – On Tour – For several years now, this has been my capital-S, capital-A, Summer Album. Something in the guitar fuzz has a transmutative power, I tell you, to turn the drowning humidity which floods the night aesthetic.
  • Can – “Halleluwah” – This is another German recording from the ’70s, to listen to as or after the sun sets, except this one you’ll actually be able to stream from your service of choice.
  • Wipers – Is This Real? – Daytime listening (that is, the non-depressing tracks are). These songs are like sunglasses for my ears.
Bexley History

The Bexley Literary Trail

by Local History Librarian David

Sixty years ago on April 17, 1964, Jerrie Mock of Bexley, a self-described “housewife,” landed her single engine Cessna, the Spirit of Columbus, at Port Columbus International Airport. In that moment she became the first woman to fly solo around the world. That same year, Bexley High School student Bob Greene was keeping a diary. For him, April 17 was a day to leave school early, make his way to downtown Columbus, and have a doctor “drill a filling.”

What Mock and Greene have in common is they both wrote books about their experiences in 1964. Mock chronicled her famous flight in, Three-Eight Charlie, first published in 1970, and in 1987 Greene published his diary, Be True to Your School: A Diary of 1964. They are Bexley authors and part of The Bexley Literary Trail, celebrating authors who grew up in Bexley, lived in Bexley, or call Bexley home.

Among them are a few children’s authors. Lois Lenski, Newbery winning children’s book author and illustrator of Strawberry Girl, who lived with her parents in a house on what is now part of the Capital University campus while she attended The Ohio State University. Bexley’s newest children’s author is poet Maggie Smith, who recently published the picture book, My Thoughts Have Wings. And bestselling children’s book author R L. Stine, famous for the Goosebumps and Fear Street series, graduated from Bexley High School in 1961.

Stine said, “I always picture Bexley when I write.”

The Bexley Literary Trail also includes publisher Larry Flynt, journalist Charlotte Curtis, Pulitzer Prize winning author Gregory Smith, and New York Times bestseller Daniel Pink. The trail was inspired by The Ohio Literary Trail, created by the Ohioana Library Association to highlight statewide literary accomplishments with a book, map and website.

Representatives of the Ohioana Library will discuss The Ohio Literary Trail at 7 PM on Thursday June 13 at Bexley Public Library at which time The Bexley Literary Trail brochure will be available to pick up. A display of the books by authors on Bexley’s trail will also be available to view.

BPL News & Information Programs Youth Services

Get Ready for a Summer Full of Adventure at Your Library!

By Youth Services Manager Julie

With Bexley Public Library’s Summer Community Read theme, “100 Years of Adventure,” we’re marking the library’s centennial birthday and celebrating the endless adventures that await you in the stories you hear, books you read, movies you see, and people you meet at your library.

Get a jump on your summertime adventure by joining us for the Summer Community Read (SCR) Kickoff Party on Thursday, May 30 from 3 to 5 pm. Register for SCR and help us celebrate our beloved Robot’s 10th birthday. We’ll have activity stations, refreshments, and an opportunity to enter to win tickets to King’s Island.

Let your adventures continue all summer long. Get up close and personal with amazing reptiles when Dino Buddies are here, join us for games and activities at our Bluey Party, and explore all the fun of magic with Jim Kleefeld. Of course, we also hope you’ll let your creativity run wild with your bookmark entry in our 7th annual bookmark contest!

We are so excited to fill your family’s summer with fun. Look for more adventures at:

BPL News & Information Recommendations


by Public Service Associate & Creative Content Coordinator Hannah

Did you miss Preservation Week? Don’t worry, it will be here next year!

My bad jokes aside, preservation – an umbrella term for activities that reduce or prevent damage to extend the life of things – can easily slip one’s mind. But a recent trip to the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History and the Library of Congress thoroughly renewed my appreciation for preservationists and collecting institutions. In this BPL blog post, I hope to get you to think about, thank them, and as always share some great books.

Booklists Recommendations

Our Incredible Bodies and the Importance of Homeostasis

By Public Service Associate Autumn

Everyone knows that humans (unlike much cooler reptiles) are warm blooded, or homeothermic.1 Our bodies try very hard to keep us at one consistent temperature, normally about 98 degrees. Even a four degree change in body temperature in either direction can cause us irreparable harm and a spiral into death. Understandably, this means that humanity has a pretty universal “comfortable” living temperature, between about 68- and 77-degrees Fahrenheit,2 where maintaining your core temperature isn’t too metabolically taxing. Despite this, humans live in basically every ecological niche there is, from Siberia and Northern Canada to the Sahara. Some of this adaptability is technological,3 but a fair amount of it is our bodies’ astonishing ability to cool us off and heat us up. What’s most interesting, to me at least, is how the body does this and what happens when those adaptations fail.

BPL News & Information Programs

Celebrate 100 Years of Lifelong Learning at Bexley Public Library!

By Library Director Ben Heckman

Bexley Public Library is excited to be celebrating our 100th birthday this year, and we are honored to share this once-in-a-lifetime birthday with the wonderful community we’ve been honored to serve for more than a century. While April marks the start of our many celebratory festivities, we invite you to join us for the host of engaging authors, talented musicians, inspiring artists, and more that will join us throughout the year.


Find a New Interest at the Library! Featuring Japanese Breakfast

by Public Service Associate Juliana

Photo by Juliana Farrington

Midori’s cooking was far better than I had imagined it would be, an amazing assortment of fried, pickled, boiled, and roasted dishes using eggs, mackerel, fresh greens, eggplant, mushrooms, radishes, and sesame seeds, all done in the delicate Kyoto style.

— from Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami

One of the many, many things that I love about the library is that you can develop an interest in something and absolutely take off with it. By which I mean, you can mine the catalog for any and every resource, and you can follow any connection that happens to come your way. I ended up doing this type of deep dive with Japanese breakfast. An interest was born, I followed one lead to the next and the next. From television to cookware, cookbook to novel, memoir to music. It has been such a fun journey; I have to share it.


 Female Irish Authors to Read this March

by Public Service Associate Juliana

I have been in love with Ireland ever since I was little and believed in fairies. Does that explain why I gravitate toward Irish writers? It seemed like a fairy trick last year when I’d start reading a novel and realize, “Another Irish author! How interesting!”

This month, in the spirit of celebrating Irish history and culture, it feels quite appropriate to highlight a few titles within this trend.


Genre Spotlight: Cozy Fantasy

by Public Service Associate Autumn

Photo by Pavan Trikutam on Unsplash

February makes me want nothing more than to sit and read, wrapped in a blanket, with a mug of tea (or hot chocolate). It’s mucky, wet and still fairly chilly outside, so inside I stay. And, as I learned last year, there is a book subgenre that gives you that same warm, cozy feeling as snuggling inside while the wind rages outside: Cozy Fantasy.