Stoney Creek Current Volume XI issue 9- November 2012 
In This Issue
Enjoy the Season
Annual Fund Drive
Try Before You Buy
T.A.G. You're It
Celebrating Lincoln
Homework Help
Website of the Month

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Holiday Closings

During the Holiday season, please be sure we will be here before heading out.

The County Library in Edinburg will be closed on the following days:

Monday, December 24
Tuesday, December 25
Wednesday, December 26

Monday, December 31
Tuesday, January 1

Please call ahead to community library locations as their schedules may differ.

Basye/Orkney - 856-8084
Ft. Valley - 933-6714
Mt. Jackson - 477-3327
New Market - 740-8650
Strasburg - 465-8464

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Enjoy the Season


For most of us, this time of year is a time of giving, recieving and sharing time with loved ones. I hope you will find time to relax and enjoy the season in the midst of the hustle and bustle. What better way to do that than to curl up with a good book from the library? 

But, as I hope you know by now, there's so much more we can help you with around this time of year. Need to track down an address to mail your cards? Need to figure out what new device you want to buy (or get!) as a gift? Just want to keep up with all the funny holiday memes online? Want to get involved with others  who share your interests? We have you covered! 


We'll be closed a few days this coming month so that we can stay home and celebrate the holidays, but we hope to see you during all those other days that we're open. Take a look below at everything that's going on and we'll see you at the Library!


-Sandy Whitesides, Library Director


Annual Fund Drive

If you've visited any of our six library locations over the past year, you have probably benefited from the work of the Shenandoah County Library Foundation. Whether you checked out a book, used an iPad, or attended a program, the Foundation has probably provided some of the funds.
The SCLF Annual Fund Drive kicked off in November and the theme is "Libraries Touch Lives." If you got a letter, we hope you'll consider giving. If you did not get a letter, you can pick one up at any of our six locations and return your gift in the pre-addressed envelope.

How does our library system touch your life? Here are some examples of how we can use your donation:


Try Before You Buy!





Now is the season of giving and receiving, and if you're interested in learning what's new in the world of gadgets, stop by one of our "Technology Open Houses."  Staff will be on hand to answer any questions you may have about eReaders and tablets, and you'll have a chance to play with the devices themselves.  For times and locations, please download our flyer [PDF], or call the County Library at 984-8200 



T.A.G. - You're it! (Join our Teen Advisory Group)







As any parent or caregiver knows, adolescence is an especially important (and sometimes challenging) time of life.  The years between 12 and 18 bear witness to enormous physical, emotional and intellectual changes.  Given the impact these changes can have on future development and progress, it is crucial to engage teens in activities that encourage independent thinking while providing a sense of structure and guidance.

The Teen Advisory Group (TAG) at the County Library is just such an activity.  At its core, TAG is intended to give teens a means of shaping library services, allowing them to generate program ideas and make suggestions for book purchases.  Over the 13 months of its existence, the group formed at the County Library has become much more.  Of course, our monthly meetings provide opportunities for teens to practice their leadership and decision-making skills, but our group also has become an important social outlet.  We tend to spend as much time sharing pizza and playing video games as we do focusing on library matters, but having fun has lessons to be learned as well-not least, how to interact with others in respectful and appropriate ways.

We are always on the lookout for new members and new perspectives!  Watch our website for the date of the next TAG meeting, there's no registration is required to join us.  For more information, please give David a call at 984-8200. 


Celebrating Lincoln

 As the 2012 commemoration of the Sesquicentennial of the Civil War draws to a close, it seems fitting to pay tribute to the life of Abraham Lincoln, the most notable figure from that time. Steven Spielberg's new film Lincoln, released nationwide on Nov. 9, took its inspiration from the final weeks of the war in Doris Kearns Goodwin's 2005 book Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln.  The book itself focuses on Lincoln's mostly successful attempts to reconcile conflicting personalities and political factions on the path to abolition and victory in the Civil War. 


One of the most poignant photographs of Lincoln was taken by Alexander Gardner during the time period portrayed in the film.  Gardner had been a member of a team of photographers hired to make a visual record of the war.  A poster-size rendering of this photograph, which was taken a mere two months before Lincoln's assassination, hangs in the entrance to our library director's office.  [The poster was provided as part of thePicturing America series of artwork awarded to classrooms and libraries across the United States by the National Endowment for the Humanities in cooperation with the American Library Association, many others of which also grace the walls of the library.]  It reveals a haggard 55-year-old president, weary and worried from his struggle to preserve the Union.  The online library catalog lists more than 270 titles written about this great man.  A few of the more recent ones are fictionalized such as "The Lincoln Conspiracy" by Timothy L. O'Brien, "The Lincoln Letter" by William Martin, and even an alternate history by Stephen Carter "The Impeachment of Abraham Lincoln".

On an ancillary note, you might also consider checking out local author Mary Trindal's book Mary Surratt: An American Tragedy about the boarding house owner who was convicted of the conspiracy to assassinate Lincoln and became the first women executed by the United States Government.  The library also has a copy for checkout of Robert Redford's film The Conspirator on the same topic.

But by all means, if you haven't already read it, put Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin on your "must read" list.  Though Goodwin can't help but cover some familiar territory from many biographers before her, her perspective offers fresh insights into Lincoln's leadership style and his deep understanding of human behavior and motivation, something necessary for any great leader.

Homework Help - Have you used it?



Thanks to a generous grant from the Library of Virginia, we now provide access to free, online homework help with live, Virginia-Certified Teachers. Anyone in grades 3-12 who needs help with Reading, Writing or Math can take advantage of this service from any computer connected to the internet in Shenandoah County. No registration required!


Just visit and look for the black "Homework Help" tab on the right side of the page. Certified teachers are available from 3pm to 9pm Monday through Thursday and 9am to 3pm on Saturdays. 

ebsite of the Month - Songza, a musical concierge service

 Most likely you're getting into the holiday spirit and looking for music to match that mood. And there are plenty of free online services out there to help you out. Like the popular service Pandora, the folks at Songza give you pre-mixed playlists based on your preferences. But Songza wants to match your mood instead of giving your artist-based recommendations. 


Depending on the time and day, Songza asks what it is you're doing and then gives you a set of genre-based playlists to complement your chosen activity or mood. If you'd rather, you can simply browse their extensive collection of curated playlists or view what's popular with other users.

Maybe the best part about Songza (for now, at least) is that it's commercial free. No interruptions whether you're working, relaxing or just looking for something new to listen to. To start listening, just create a free account, or connect through Facebook. Happy listening and happy holidays!