Wizards of the world, unite: Elkhart celebrates Harry July 14

Administrator : July 6, 2017 9:33 am : Elkhart Public Library


carmenWhere does Harry Potter live when readers first meet him in “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone?” (* – answer below!)

If you know the answer to that question, then Harry Potter Day at Elkhart Public Library is a great way to spend your Friday.

On July 14, beginning at 9 a.m., the downtown children’s room will be transformed into the world of Hogwarts. Fans of the popular seven-book series can come enjoy games and activities all day long. And, yes, it’s open to all ages.

This summer marks the 20th anniversary of the release of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” in the United Kingdom.

“July is the perfect month to celebrate Harry Potter and this activity is a fun way to do that,” says Allison McLean, who leads the library’s Young People’s Services department. “We hope fans will come be immersed in the world of Harry Potter and enjoy bringing the well-loved books to life.”

Activities include wand making, games of trivia, a scavenger hunt and more. There will also be a photo booth, although we can’t promise that the photos will move, as is customary in the wizarding world.

As J.K. Rowling wrote in “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,” the final book in the series, “Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic.”

* The answer is … in a cupboard under the stairs with his aunt and uncle.

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Karting returns in August – rev up with this collection

Administrator : July 6, 2017 9:22 am : Elkhart Public Library

By Jeanne Glanders
Popular Materials
Study up and get ready for the Elkhart Riverwalk Grand Prix, which will bring go-kart racing back to the streets of downtown Elkhart for the first time in 22 years.

Photo of Elkhart Grand Prix, circa early 1990s, from National Kart News

Photo of Elkhart Grand Prix, circa early 1990s, from National Kart News

The Aug. 11-13 event features a 0.6-mile track following the Riverwalk. It crosses the Elkhart River twice every lap, looping around the NIBCO Water and Ice Park and using Waterfall Drive and East Jackson Boulevard.


During the mid-1990s, the Elkhart Grand Prix drew an estimated 40,000 spectators and more than 600 racers from around the world.

Get ready for the races by checking out the collections of Elkhart and Goshen public libraries. With our partnership, you can get these items at any location.

“The Karting Manual: The complete beginner’s guide to competitive kart racing” by Jo~ao Diniz Sanches and “Karting: Everything you need to know” by Jeff Grist and Memo Gidley are the perfect place to start. For more technical aspects of kart building, look at “Go Kart Racing- Chassis Setup: a complete guide to a better handling kart” by Brian Martin.

For the kids, go for “Karts” by Lorraine Jolian Cazin, “Kart Racing” by Jay H. Smith, and “Go-kart Racing” by Tracy Nelson Maurer.

Other recommendations:

* Two novels in the Sports Story series by Jake Maddox: “Kart crash” and “Go-kart Rush”
* “Kart Racer” (rated PG) is a father-and-son bonding movie about karting.

Start your engines!

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Very into Harry? Try the stories of these courageous heroes

Administrator : July 4, 2017 3:59 pm : Elkhart Public Library

By Carmen Ritchie
Young People’s Services
J.K. Rowling has mesmerized millions with her magical story of Harry Potter and his lightning shaped scar. Come celebrate your love of the Wizarding World with several fun activities on Friday, July 14, including wand making!

courageBelow are recommendations for those of you who love J.K. Rowling’s books and want to find others like them. Keep reading! Less than three weeks are left to get entered for prizes like Amazon and Target gift cards in our 2017 summer reading program.

Artemis Fowl
Eoin Colfer
Artemis Fowl is a lot of things: wealthy, highly intelligent and above all, a criminal. But even this twelve-year-old Irish mastermind doesn’t know how deep he’s dug himself when he kidnaps Captain Holly Short of the LEPrecon Unit, causing an all-out war within the fairy world. These aren’t your average story book fairies either—they’re trained and deadly and will do everything they can to defeat Artemis Fowl.

The Book of Three
Lloyd Alexander
Taran wants to be a hero but he’s sure being an assistant pig keeper won’t help him get there, even if Hen Wen is an oracular pig. But when Hen Wen disappears, Taran must summon all of his courage and find her before the Horned King and his Cauldron Born do. With a unique band of followers, Taran will prove just how heroic he really is.

Author: Cornelia Funke
Meggie’s father, a book repairer, has the power to speak story book characters into life. When he reads from a book called “Inkheart,” a villain is released into the real world and abducts them both. Meggie must learn to harness enough magic to save them both.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
Ransom Riggs
A family tragedy sends Jacob’s life into turmoil. He journeys to a remote island in Wales, home to the former Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. Now abandoned, Jacob explores the island and discovers these children may not have just been peculiar … they may have been dangerous. Those who love spine-chilling fantasies will enjoy this book!

Ender’s Game
Orson Scott Card
Andrew “Ender” Wiggin thinks he’s just playing a war simulated video game. Little does he know that he’s being tested. The world is at war with a powerful alien race and Ender might just be the military genius they’ve been looking for.



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This butterfly expert connects with audiences of all ages. She’s 14.

Administrator : July 3, 2017 3:19 pm : Elkhart Public Library

Audrey McGuire releases 100 or more monarch butterflies every year. The 14 year old will share her knowledge at Elkhart Public Library on July 10.

Audrey McGuire releases 100 or more monarch butterflies every year. The 14 year old will share her knowledge at Elkhart Public Library on July 10.

Every time Audrey McGuire gives a presentation on butterflies, she hopes people get more interested in monarch butterflies … and stop pulling milkweed plants.

Since she was 3, Audrey has been raising and learning more about butterflies since she was 3. Now 14, she gives presentations to people of all ages on monarch life cycle and habitat.

Her next event will be at 5 p.m. Monday, July 10, in Elkhart Public Library’s downtown location.

Audrey became interested in butterflies when her parents gave her and her siblings a butterfly net, which came with a few painted lady butterflies they raised. They loved it. After some research, they found monarchs were easy to raise from the wild, and she began raising them from caterpillars, through chrysalis and to release.

Last year, Audrey was able to release 200 monarchs, an exceptionally good year. She usually averages about 100 each year.

“When you have flowers around, the butterflies are really pretty,” she says. “It’s really fun to watch them. They’re cool insects.”

For Audrey, the best part of presenting is just getting to share all of the butterflies she has with those in the audience. She’s been a featured speaker at Ox Bow County Park, Wellfield Botanic Gardens, and other places around Elkhart County.

Each presentation depends on the age of the audience, but for a typically younger crowd, Audrey starts with a basic explanation of what she does. Then she might read “Gotta Go! Gotta Go!” a picture book about a caterpillar trying to get to Mexico by Sam Swope, or she might show them a book full of photos she made herself. She might even have a slideshow.

After that, Audrey opens up the time for questions, so those who are curious about what she presented get the chance to ask what’s on their minds. If she has any butterflies, chrysalises or caterpillars, she will bring those along so people get to see them in person.

Monarchs have an important role, and Audrey hopes her education sessions help the butterfly population, which has been on the decline.

“Monarchs help pollinate plants,” Audrey says, “and if they didn’t, we wouldn’t have a lot of the plants that we do have.”

Milkweed plants are one of the main habitats for monarch butterflies, but people tend to remove these weeds from gardens. Audrey says she wishes people would realize the significance of the monarch butterflies to wildlife, and in turn, the importance of the milkweed plant to monarch butterflies.
“I think butterflies are cool,” Audrey says. “It’s really fun to be able to see them turn from a chrysalis to a butterfly.”

The July 10 presentation is a Camp GeoTrekkers event for the summer reading program, eligible for a passport stamp.

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Instant classic: See ‘Beauty and the Beast’ for free

Administrator : July 3, 2017 8:51 am : Elkhart Public Library

beauty“Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” – Free showing 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 19
A tale that’s old as time – re-envisioned as a live-action fantasy. Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Kevin Kline, Ewan McGregor and more star in this 2017 Disney release (rated PG).

Sign up for the 2017 summer reading program while you’re here – you still have time to qualify for great prizes, like Amazon and Target gift cards.

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