Morenci library wins Picturing America grant 07.28.10

Written by David Green.

Picture this: a small town library applies for a $2,000 grant to be awarded to 30 libraries from across the country.

Then picture this: the small town library wins the grant.

Finally, picture this: the small town library turns itself into a big city art museum.

That’s only part of the picture as Stair Public Library prepares to launch its winning grant proposal for a Picturing America project.

The library learned last month that it was among only 30 libraries in the country to win a grant for programming related to its collection of Picturing America art posters—the American Library Association and National Endowment for the Humanities project that promotes a deeper knowledge, understanding and appreciation of American art and history.

“Kym Ries [Morenci Area High School art teacher] came up with the idea of highlighting all the Picturing America art that relates to New York City,” said library director Colleen Leddy.

Ries started thinking about possible student art projects that relate to the art depicted in the Picturing America posters. Those works would be put on display at the library.

“I titled the project ‘Picturing New York...in a tiny Midwest town,’ and we began planning activities and events that would tie in with that theme,” Leddy said.

Those events include a repeat performance of the Paul Keller Trio—playing all New York tunes—and a book signing and talk with New York author Ned Vizzini whose book “It’s Kind of a Funny Story” has been made into a movie with a release date of Sept. 24.

Those two events are planned for Saturday, Nov. 13, which also happens to be National Gaming Day, an event the library has participated in for the last three years.

“We don’t want to miss out on that, so we’re planning to add some games played in New York City such as Skullsey,” said Leddy.

The “New York, New York” art show will be on display in November and December and the library will also attempt to stock a small art museum store with items to sell for Christmas gifts.

Refreshments will include lox and bagels, black and white cookies and other New York-inspired foods.

“It will be an action-packed day, starting at 10 a.m., but we’re picturing a good time for everyone,” Leddy said.

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    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
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    SCULPTORS—Morenci third grade students Emersyn Thompson (left) and Marissa Lawrence turn spaghetti sticks into mini sculptures Friday during a class visit to Stair District Library. All Morenci Elementary School classes recently visited the library to experience the creative construction toys purchased through the “Sculptamania!” project, funded by a Disney Curiosity Creates grant. The grant is administered by the Association for Library Services to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
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    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
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  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.

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