Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Summer reading is fun, helps kids keep skills

Research indicates that students experience significant learning losses during the summer months, but that children who read during the summer retain reading and learning skills better than those who don't.

To curb learning loss, Fauquier County Public Library is presenting two free eight-week summer reading programs this year — one for children and one for teens — that engage participants in activities that encourage reading and learning over the summer months.

Registration for the programs begins June 1 at all Fauquier libraries. Weekly programs and special events — many of which the whole family can enjoy — begin June 14 and continue through Aug. 9. Learn more about the programs.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Fauquier's railroading history discussed

A free lecture on the history of railroading in Warrenton and Fauquier County will be presented at 3 p.m. Sunday, June 8, at the John Barton Payne Building, Old Town Warrenton.

One of the presenters, Ken Wilson, who describes himself as a life-long railroad fanatic and collector of artifacts and historic railroad facts, will focus on the history of the two 19th century rail lines that cross Fauquier County and how they evolved into the present lines of the Norfolk Southern Railroad. He has been involved with the Warrenton caboose project since 2000. The photo at left was taken by Bill Lee.

Warrenton's caboose was retired from active service in 1994 by the Norfolk Southern Railway and donated to the Town of Warrenton, Va., in 1995. It was moved to the head of the Warrenton Branch Greenway hiking and biking trail, which is located behind the former Southern Railway passenger depot at the end of South 4th Street.

The Piedmont Railroaders club prepared the site for the caboose and completed the restoration of the interior and exterior of the car in 1998. It is opened for public tours on select weekends during the warmer months.

Ron Scullin, the second presenter, has been the project coordinator of the Warrenton caboose project since 1996. He will talk about the history of the Warrenton branch railway and the town's caboose project.

Both speakers will show artifacts that show the progress of railroad technology.

The lecture is part of a year-long series on American history sponsored by the library and the newly formed Fauquier Heritage Institute.
Railroad enthusiasts may be interested in the library's Bernard S. Logan Collection, housed at the Bealeton Library and available to all Fauquier County Public Library patrons. It contains more than 60 books focusing on the history of steam, diesel and electric locomotives. Major lines such as the B&O, the C&O, N&W, and the Southern Railway are included.
The library also subscribe to the magazines Model Railroader and Piedmont Local. Back issues of most magazines may be checked out of the library.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Teen Metamorphosis happening at Fauquier libraries

The schedule for Metamorphosis — the summer reading program for teens entering sixth grade or higher — is available online and at all Fauquier libraries. Features include special events such as pizza taste-offs, car care, t-shirt creations, potions and lotions, anime club, and Red Cross babysitting certification.

Registration begins June 1. Programs begin June 14 and continue through Aug. 9. Get all the details now.

Interested in volunteering to help with the children's Catch the Reading Bug summer reading program? The deadline for applications is May 31. Learn more about volunteering now.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Deadline approaching for teen volunteers

The application deadline for teen volunteers needed to help with the children’s summer reading program and other Fauquier County public library projects this summer is fast approaching. Applications will be accepted through May 31. Print the application, complete and return to the library.

Volunteers must attend a training session prior to the start of the summer reading program, which begins June 14 and continues through Aug. 9. Staff will contact applicants to schedule the volunteer training. Applicants should be prepared to sign up for specific volunteer time slots when they attend the training session.

Some of the tasks teen volunteers will perform include assisting children and parents with summer reading program registration, keeping the registration table stocked and neat and tidy, assisting children and parents with entering the number of books read on the online book log, assisting with crafts and programs, and assisting library staff with clerical tasks.

Teens may call or e-mail for more information: Warrenton Library, Jennifer Schultz, (540) 349-1128; Bealeton Library, Natalie Swart, (540) 439-9728; John Marshall Library, Deborah Cosby, (540) 364-4910.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Florist shares tips at flower arranging workshop

A local florist will share tips and ideas for arranging fresh flowers from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, May 17, at the John Marshall Library. The program is free but registration is required. Call (540) 364-4910.

Check out the library's many books on flower arranging.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

General talks about ancestor and the Orphan Brigade

Brig. Gen. Lewis M. Helm will speak on Brig. Gen. Ben Harden Helm and the Orphan Brigade, also known as the First Kentucky Brigade, at 3 p.m. Sunday, May 18, at the John Barton Payne Building. The lecture is free.

The presenter is a direct descendent of former Chief Justice John Marshall and author of Black Horse Cavalry Defend Our Beloved Country. He is an honorary life member of the Fauquier Historical Society.

Helm's family arrived in Virginia in 1720 from Lanchestershire, England. William Helm, his great, great grandfather was a captain in the First and Third Virginia Continental Lines under Gen. George Washington.

During is military service, Lew Helm rose from private to brigadier general in the U.S. Army Reserve, commanding infantry, civil affairs and transportation units. For 20 years he was the executive director of SARCA, the professional association of Army Reserve generals and colonels.

He served as assistant secretary of Health, Education and Welfare during the Nixon administration and formerly owned an issues management firm. He taught in the Johns Hopkins University MBA program and graduate courses for U.S. Secret Service and police officials. He was a public radio commentator, produced numerous television programs and was co-editor of Informing the People: A Public Affairs Handbook.

The lecture is part of a year-long series on American history sponsored by Fauquier County Public Library and the Fauquier Heritage Institute.