2016 Spark! Poetry Writing & Recitation Competition

UntitledClark County high school students in grades 9 – 12 are invited to submit original poems for the Vegas Valley Book Festival 2016 Spark! Poetry Writing & Recitation Competition by Sept. 30. Modeled after the national Poetry Out Loud competition and the Scholastic Writing competition, high school students will have the opportunity to recite their own poetry during the Vegas Valley Book Festival Saturday, Oct. 15. The first-place prize is $300. The second-place winner will receive $200 and the third-place prize is $100.

Students will be asked to present three original poems to be judged by a panel consisting of poets, authors, educators and other community members. Panelists will use scoring guidelines to assign numerical values to the evaluation criteria.

There will be three presentation rounds in a tent at the Historic Fifth Street School, 401 S. Fourth St., from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Oct. 15. Students who registered for Spark! between now and Sept. 30 will be eligible to present one poem in the first round. The top six students will present a second poem in the second round. The top three students will present a third poem in the third round to determine first, second and third place. Scores will be cumulative. Student poets must present the poems they submitted on their registration form.

This program is supported by public funding for the arts through the Nevada Arts Council, a division of the Nevada Department of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Vegas Valley Book Festival, Nevada Humanities and the National Endowment for the Humanities. For competition details, guidelines, and a registration form, go online to http://www.VegasValleyBookFestival.org/spark/. For further information, contact Arts Learning Coordinator Maryjane Dorofachuk, Nevada Arts Council, at 702-486-3738 or mdorofachuk@nevadaculture.org.

About the Vegas Valley Book Festival
This uniquely Las Vegas event is produced through a collaboration of local public sector and nonprofit partners who work each year to enrich and expand the city’s cultural life by hosting great writers, thinkers and imagineers.

Now in its 15th year, the Vegas Valley Book Festival is free and open to the public, thanks to support from its producing partners: city of Las Vegas; Las Vegas-Clark County Library District; Las Vegas-Clark County Library District Foundation, Inc.; the Las Vegas Chapter of AIGA, the professional organization for design; the Las Vegas Review-Journal; Nevada Humanities; the Beverly Rogers, Carol C. Harter Black Mountain Institute at UNLV; and Vegas PBS.

A hotel room reservation block is available for festival goers at the Las Vegas Golden Nugget Hotel now through mid-September. Volunteers also are needed for the festival; an application form is required. For information on hotel reservations, volunteering, author appearances, and much more, please go online to VegasValleyBookFestival.org/. Keep up with festival news on Twitter #VVBF, Facebook, Google+, and Pinterest, or call 702-229-5902 with questions.

Press Release PDF

2016 Vegas Valley Book Festival Celebrates 15th Anniversary

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The largest literary event in Nevada, the Vegas Valley Book Festival, marks its 15th anniversary Saturday, Oct. 15, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., with multiple stages that showcase the brilliance of imagination and the written word.

Celebrity authors across genres, ages, and cultural backgrounds will share their work and creative processes starting at 10 a.m.at the Historic Fifth Street School, located at 401 S. Fourth St. Then at 6 p.m., the Festival’s After-Dark event moves to the Inspire Theater, located on the corner of historic Fremont Street at 107 Las Vegas Blvd. South, for an evening of libations, a mind-opening talk with MacArthur Genius Award recipient Katherine Boo, and lively conversations into the night.

All Vegas Valley Book Festival events are free and open to the public. This year’s festival offers a rare opportunity to meet and mingle with best-selling authors, a Latin GRAMMY Award winner, an acclaimed comic strip creator, children’s book authors and illustrators, anime and historical characters, and other creatives. Attendees will enjoy books signings, readings, workshops, vendor exhibits, and other special programs. Local food trucks also will be on hand to provide fuel for inquisitive minds.

The children’s side of the Vegas Valley Book Festival features live music, crafts, performances, special bilingual entertainment, bookmaking and presentations from renowned authors and illustrators of children’s books. Adult and young-adult fare include a mix of workshops, panels and author presentations on a wide variety of genres, including fiction, non-fiction, romance, LGBTQ, mystery, thriller, crime, suspense, humor, history, comic/graphic novels, banned books, poetry and more.

Also featured will be “Treasured Lands,” the moving pictorial history of the National Park Service Centennial. Written and photographed by QT Luong, the book takes an in-depth look at 100 years of public lands heritage, which he will expand upon in both a lecture and a breath-taking photo exhibit in the Fifth Street School gallery.

From heritage to hilarity, the line-up for the 2016 Vegas Valley Book Festival is genius. Literally! Highlights of this year’s talent and happenings include:

  • Katherine Boo – Recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service and the MacArthur Fellowship (also known as the “Genius Grant”) for her investigative reporting of people in poverty – will reveal the world of Mumbai’s “undercity,” which was the inspiration for her book, “Behind the Beautiful Forevers.”
  • Craig Johnson – Fans of TV’s popular “Longmire” series will meet this New York Times best-selling author, the creator of the original Walt Longmire mysteries and many other novels, short stories and plays. Johnson will share the inspiration behind the sheriff of Wyoming’s Absaroka County and his travels through the dark underbelly of the “new” wild West.
  • Stacy Schiff – Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “Cleopatra,” a No. 1 best-seller that was translated into 30 languages, unpacks her newly released psychological thriller, “The Witches: Salem, 1692.” David McCullough declared the book – also a best-seller – “brilliant from start to finish.”
  • Frank Shankwitz – The co-founder of the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the co-author of “Once Upon a Wish,” Frank will share the inspiring story of his quest to provide that one shining moment of joy to young patients with life-threatening medical conditions.
  • Mister G – The 2015 Latin GRAMMY Award winner for Best Children’s Album, “Mister G” (Ben Gundersheimer), has an international following in the music world of kids and families. The Washington Post called him a “kid-friendly, bilingual rock star” and People magazine dubbed him “irresistible.”
  • Stephen Savage – Acclaimed author and illustrator of many children’s books, including “Where’s Walrus,” named “Best Book of the Year” by Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews and others.
  • Stephan Pastis – Creator of “Pearls Before Swine,” the acclaimed comic strip, and author of “Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made.”
  • Megan McDonald – Beloved children’s author and creator of several popular series, including the award-winning “Judy Moody” and “Stink” series; and the “Sisters Club.” She also is a contributor to the American Girl stories.

The Festival also supports two special projects that engage local students; stay tuned for more details:

  • Spark! – A teen poetry-writing/performance project with cash prizes (entries accepted through Sept. 30)
  • Author Visits to Schools Oct. 14 – Last year, festival authors made visits to 18 local schools. Times and locations to be announced.

About the Vegas Valley Book Festival
This uniquely Las Vegas event is produced through a collaboration of local public sector and nonprofit partners who work each year to enrich and expand the city’s cultural life by hosting great writers, thinkers and imagineers.

Now in its 15th year, the Vegas Valley Book Festival is free and open to the public, thanks to support from its producing partners: city of Las Vegas; Las Vegas-Clark County Library District; Las Vegas-Clark County Library District Foundation, Inc.; the Las Vegas Chapter of AIGA, the professional organization for design; the Las Vegas Review-Journal; Nevada Humanities; the Beverly Rogers, Carol C. Harter Black Mountain Institute at UNLV; and Vegas PBS.

A hotel room reservation block is available for festival goers at the Las Vegas Golden Nugget Hotel now through mid-September. Volunteers also are needed for the festival; an application form is required. For information on hotel reservations, volunteering, author appearances, and much more, please go online to VegasValleyBookFestival.org/. Keep up with festival news on Twitter #VVBF, Facebook, Google+, and Pinterest, or call 702-229-5902 with questions.

Press Release PDF

Featured August Programs at the Library

PicMonkey Collage.jpgThe Las Vegas-Clark County Library District will offer a variety of programs throughout the month of August. Highlights of the month include:

Club Read
Through Saturday, August 20
It’s not too late to participate in Club Read, a free program that offers teens, toddlers, school-aged children and their families the opportunity to have fun while keeping track of their reading. In the summer months, all children are at risk of losing some of the learning obtained during the school year. More than 80 percent of children from economically disadvantaged communities can lose one to three months of reading skills over the summer because they lack access to books, learning resources and enrichment opportunities such as trips to the library. Just pick up a reading log at any branch and start reading. Special programs are planned for kids of all ages. Visit http://www.lvccld.org for more information or call 702.734.READ. Free.

Math for Moms and Dads—or anyone helping kids with Math!
Monday, August 1 at 4 p.m.
Las Vegas Library | 833 Las Vegas Boulevard No. | 702.507.3512
Bill Hanlon, author, presenter and educational consultant, shows parents easy ways to teach their own children basic arithmetic. Using humor and proven techniques, Hanlon gives parents the tools, knowledge and confidence to help kids succeed at math. Free.

Savvy Seniors Scam Prevention Series: Social Media Scams
Wednesday, August 3 at 11 a.m.
Clark County Library | 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | 702.507.3458
Despite warnings that Facebook and other social network sites are the new frontier for fraud, many people continue to post the kind of information that scammers can piece together for identity theft such as birthdates, photos and city of residence. With such information, scammers don’t need to know all nine digits of your Social Security number. Don’t fall victim to false friends, click-jacking or like-baiting. Attend this important workshop by the Better Business Bureau to keep you updated on all the current social media scams. Free.

Downloading eBooks to Your iPad, Tablet, Kindle Fire, Nook Color
Thursday, August 4 at 11 a.m. | Saturday, August 13 at 10:30 a.m.
Summerlin Library | 1771 Inner Circle Dr. | 702.507.3866
Learn how to download eBooks onto your iPad, Tablet, Kindle Fire/HD or Nook Color/HD. We’ll show you the steps to downloading materials and help answer any questions. You are welcome to bring your device with you to follow along. Free.

Medicare Information Sessions
Thursday, August 4 at 2 p.m.
Enterprise Library | 25 E. Shelbourne Ave. | 702.507.3760
Tuesday, August 9 at 2 p.m.
Rainbow Library | 3150 N. Buffalo Dr. | 702.507.3710
Monday, August 22 at 3 p.m.
Clark County Library | 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | 702.507.3458
Join us as a representative from Nevada State Health Insurance Assistance Program provides unbiased information and answers questions about Medicare, Prescription D and other plans, deductibles and co-pays, how to file a claim and more. Free.

Las Vegas Stories: The History of Burlesque in Las Vegas
Thursday, August 4 at 7 p.m.
Clark County Library | 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | 702.507.3459
As the Burlesque Hall of Fame gets ready to move into its new museum in the Las Vegas arts district, Executive Director Dustin Wax discusses the history of burlesque in Las Vegas from Harold Minsky’s first revues at the Dunes and Lili St. Cyr’s residency at the El Rancho through the glamour years of the 70s. Free.

Those Faching Tenors and Opera Innamorata
Sunday, August 7 at 2 p.m.
Summerlin Library | 1771 Inner Circle Dr. | 702.507.3860
Those Faching Tenors is an exciting new vocal trio led by musical director Maestro Jack Gaughan. Enjoy selections from the Rat Pack, Broadway, Popera and tenor hits from the world of Grand Opera. Opera Innamorata is a newly formed husband and wife duo in Las Vegas with a repertoire ranging from Puccini and Verdi to Wagner, who will delight you with the romantic side of some of the greatest music ever written. Free.

Performing & Visual Arts Summer Camp for Kids 2016: 20th Anniversary Gala
Friday, August 12 at 7 p.m.
West Las Vegas Library | 951 W. Lake Mead Blvd. | 702.507.3989
Share in our youths’ successes displayed through their study of dance, music, theatre and their participation in leadership workshops. Co-sponsored by the city of Las Vegas. This program was made possible, in part, by the Clark County Outside Agency Grant (OAG), the NV Energy Foundation and community support.

Vegas Symphony Art Exhibition
Reception: Friday, August 12 at 7 p.m.
Sahara West Library | 9600 W. Sahara Ave. | 702.507.3631
The public is invited to a reception for internationally-renowned Chinese painter Yajie Cheng, currently residing in Singapore, who turns the focus of his Fantastic Realism style toward Las Vegas for this new exhibition. Free.

Author Robert Parker
Saturday, August 20 at 11 a.m.
Summerlin Library | 1771 Inner Circle Dr. | 702.507.3860
Meet author and stroke survivor Robert Parker, and hear about his remarkable journey of recovery as he shares his inspirational experience of being left speechless and incapacitated by stroke, to successfully writing and publishing books. Free.

See the press release below for more featured programs, or see all Library District programs here.

Press Release PDF

Featured July Programs at the Library

PicMonkey CollageThe Las Vegas-Clark County Library District will offer a variety of programs throughout the month of July. Highlights of the month include:

Club Read
Through Saturday, August 20
It’s not too late to participate in Club Read, a free program that offers teens, toddlers, school-aged children and their families the opportunity to have fun while keeping track of their reading. In the summer months, all children are at risk of losing some of the learning obtained during the school year. More than 80 percent of children from economically disadvantaged communities can lose one to three months of reading skills over the summer because they lack access to books, learning resources and enrichment opportunities such as trips to the library. Just pick up a reading log at any branch and start reading. Special programs are planned for kids of all ages. Visit http://www.lvccld.org for more information or call 702.734.READ. Free.

Dublin Rising
Friday, July 1 at 8 p.m. | Saturday, July 2 at 8 p.m. | Sunday, July 3 at 2 p.m.
Summerlin Library | 1771 Inner Circle Dr. | 702.507.3863
Dublin Rising is a new musical by Krishna Alexandra and Lorien Patton. It is an original story about the everyday women involved in the 1916 Easter Rising in Dublin, Ireland, which paved the way for Irish independence in 1921. Telling the story of three women from vastly different socio-economic backgrounds, this heavily researched piece of historical fiction coincides with the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising. Free.

Savvy Seniors Scam Prevention Series: Work-From-Home Employment Scams
Wednesday, July 6 at 11 a.m.
Clark County Library | 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | 702.507.3458
There are countless ads in the classified section of the newspaper hawking stay-at-home job opportunities, but some of these require a start-up fee or deposit, or ask for your bank account number to set up your new home-based business. Join us as the Better Business Bureau reveals the tell-tale signs of a fake work-from-home scheme and what to do if you’ve become a victim of a false employment ad. Free.

Medicare Information Sessions
Thursday, July 7 at 2 p.m.
Enterprise Library | 25 E. Shelbourne Ave. | 702.507.3760
Tuesday, July 12 at 2 p.m.
Rainbow Library | 3150 N. Buffalo Dr. | 702.507.3710
Monday, July 25 at 3 p.m.
Clark County Library | 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | 702.507.3458
Join us as a representative from Nevada State Health Insurance Assistance Program provides unbiased information and answers questions about Medicare, Prescription D and other plans, deductibles and co-pays, how to file a claim and more. Free.

Las Vegas Stories: The Classic Las Vegas Strip 1930-1955
Thursday, July 7 at 7 p.m.
Clark County Library | 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | 702.507.3459
The El Rancho, the Hotel Last Frontier, the Thunderbird and the Dunes. Just a few of the hotels that are no longer found on the Las Vegas Strip. Learn the history of these long forgotten hotels from preservationist and archivist Lynn Zook. Raised in Las Vegas, a graduate of the USC School of Cinema and Television Masters of Fine Arts program, Zook is an accomplished award-winning producer and author of Las Vegas 1905-1965 and the forthcoming e-book, Gambling on a Dream: The Classic Las Vegas Strip 1930-1955 as well as producer of the documentaries, The Story of Classic Las Vegas and The Women Who Built Las Vegas. Free.

Chronic Pain and Opioids: Where Did We Go Wrong?
Friday, July 8 at 7:30 p.m.
West Charleston Library | 6301 W. Charleston Blvd. | 702.507.3964
Chronic pain occurs as a complicated web of emotions, thoughts and physical symptoms. The most common way to treat it is to use opioid medications, which actually complicate the course of chronic pain. This session will review the interactions of pain, suffering and addiction as they interface in people with chronic pain. Lecture by Dr. Mel Pohl, director of the Las Vegas Recovery Center and author of several books, including The Pain Antidote. Book signing and meet and greet to follow in Art Gallery. Free.

Senior Law: The Foreclosure Process and Alternatives
Wednesday, July 27 at 12 p.m.
West Charleston Library | 6301 W. Charleston Blvd. | 702.507.3964
In partnership with Nevada Legal Services, join us for a one hour seminar on the foreclosure process and alternatives that can help distressed homeowners keep their homes. Free.

Painted Stories – Duel In The Library
Sunday, July 31 at 2 p.m.
Clark County Library | 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | 702.507.3458
In partnership with the Writers of Southern Nevada, join us for a mixed media showcase of two local authors and two local artists on one stage. In two dueling sessions, as each author reads from his/her work, both artists will turn blank canvas into works of art live in front of the audience, proving the old adage that a picture really is worth a thousand words. After each duel, the author and artist will discuss their creative processes and answer questions from the audience. Free.

See the press release below for more featured programs, or see all Library District programs here.

Press Release PDF

Club Read: Summer Fun for Kids and Teens

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A Free Program Designed For Kids and Teens to Read, Earn Prizes and Have Fun

Las Vegas-Clark County Library District’s Club Read kicks off on Wednesday, June 1 and continues through Saturday, August 20. Entertaining programs throughout the District will help toddlers, children and teens enjoy the summer and prevent what some call the “summer slide.”

Summer reading helps children keep their brains active and enter school in the fall ready to learn and succeed. According to a study funded in 2015 by the U.S. Department of Education’s Innovative Approaches to Literacy, summer is the time that students either leap ahead or fall behind. In the summer months, all children are at risk of losing some of the learning obtained during the school year. More than 80 percent of children from economically disadvantaged communities can lose one to three months of reading skills over the summer because they lack access to books, learning resources and enrichment opportunities such as trips to the library.

Parents can take charge and make reading a priority, as well as fun, by stopping by any library branch to pick up a reading log starting June 1. Each age group has their own log: birth to 5 years of age, 6 to 11 years of age and 12 to 17 years of age. Participating is easy! Read either 20 books or 10 hours and receive a book, and entry into the grand prize drawing for a $50 Target gift card.

Club Read is co-sponsored by Las Vegas-Clark County Library District Foundation.
For a complete list of all Club Read programs, visit the website at http://www.lvccld.org, pick up a copy of the summer issue of Library Highlights at your favorite branch or call 702-734-READ.

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Featured programs include:

Club Read Kick-offs
Pick up your log and have fun reading. Ages 0-11

Sahara West Library, 9600 W. Sahara Ave. | Wednesday, June 1 at 4 p.m.
Windmill Library, 7060 W. Windmill Ln. | Thursday, June 2 at 4 p.m.
Whitney Library, 5175 E. Tropicana Ave. | Saturday, June 4 at 10:30 a.m.
Las Vegas Library, 833 Las Vegas Blvd. No. | Saturday, June 4 at 12 p.m.
Centennial Hills Library, 6711 N. Buffalo Dr. | Saturday, June 4 at 3 p.m.
Rainbow Library, 3150 N. Buffalo Dr. | Tuesday, June 7 at 4 p.m.
West Charleston Library, 6301 W. Charleston Blvd. | Wednesday, June 8 at 6 p.m.
West Las Vegas Library, 951 W. Lake Mead Blvd. | Thursday, June 2 at 6 p.m.,
Friday, June 3 at 4 p.m., Saturday, June 4 at 12:30 p.m., Sunday, June 5 at 3 p.m.
Enterprise Library, 25 E. Shelbourne Ave. | Thursday, June 9 at 4 p.m.
Clark County Library, 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | Saturday, June 4 at 11 a.m.
Spring Valley Library, 4280 S. Jones Blvd. | Sunday, June 5 at 4 p.m.

Plant Your Lunch
Join staff from Star Nursery as they teach you about gardening, then decorate a biodegradable soil and seed bag that you can take home and plant. Ages 3-11

Summerlin Library, 1771 Inner Circle Dr. | Friday, June 3 at 10:30 a.m.
Las Vegas Library, 833 Las Vegas Blvd. No. | Monday, June 6 at 12 p.m.
Windmill Library, 7060 W. Windmill Ln. | Wednesday, June 15 at 11 a.m.
Sahara West Library, 9600 W. Sahara Ave. | Wednesday, July 6 at 10:30 a.m.
West Charleston Library, 6301 W. Charleston Blvd. | Wednesday, July 27 at 11 a.m.
Enterprise Library, 25 E. Shelbourne Ave. | Friday, July 29 at 11 a.m.
Clark County Library, 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | Friday, August 12 at 10:30 a.m.

Fratello Marionettes: Mother Goose Land
Beloved characters are brought to life in this warm and heartfelt production. All ages

Las Vegas Library, 833 Las Vegas Blvd. No. | Monday, June 20 at 11:30 a.m.
Enterprise Library, 25 E. Shelbourne Ave. | Monday, June 20 at 4:30 p.m.
Windmill Library, 7060 W. Windmill Ln. | Tuesday, June 21 at 11 a.m.
Summerlin Library, 1771 Inner Circle Dr. | Tuesday, June 21 at 4 p.m.
Sunrise Library, 5400 Harris Ave. | Wednesday, June 22 at 10:30 a.m.
West Charleston Library, 6301 W. Charleston Blvd. | Wednesday, June 22 at 1:30 p.m.
Spring Valley Library, 4280 S. Jones Blvd. | Wednesday, June 22 at 4:30 p.m.
Whitney Library, 5175 E. Tropicana Ave. | Thursday, June 23 at 5 p.m.
Centennial Hills Library, 6711 N. Buffalo Dr. | Friday, June 24 at 4 p.m.
Clark County Library, 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | Saturday, June 25 at 11 a.m.
Rainbow Library, 3150 N. Buffalo Dr. | Saturday, June 25 at 4 p.m.

Songwriting with Norman Foote
Help musician Norman Foote write a song and stay for the concert. Ages 6-11

Windmill Library, 7060 W. Windmill Ln. | Tuesday, July 5 at 11 a.m.
Spring Valley Library, 4280 S. Jones Blvd. | Tuesday, July 5 at 4 p.m.
Rainbow Library, 3150 N. Buffalo Dr. | Wednesday, July 6 at 11:30 a.m.
Las Vegas Library, 833 Las Vegas Blvd. No. | Wednesday, July 6 at 4:30 p.m.
Clark County Library, 1401 E. Flamingo Rd. | Thursday, July 7 at 10:30 a.m.(families)
Whitney Library, 5175 E. Tropicana Ave. | Thursday, July 7 at 3:30 p.m.

The Wizard of Oz
Join Dorothy and her friends in this classic adaptation performed by the Hampstead Stage Company. All ages

West Charleston Library, 6301 W. Charleston Blvd. | Saturday, July 16 at 11 a.m.
Centennial Hills Library, 6711 N. Buffalo Dr. | Saturday, July 16 at 4 p.m.
Rainbow Library, 3150 N. Buffalo Dr. | Monday, July 18 at 11:30 a.m.
Las Vegas Library, 833 Las Vegas Blvd. No. | Monday, July 18 at 4:30 p.m.
Windmill Library, 7060 W. Windmill Ln. | Tuesday, July 19 at 11 a.m.
Sahara West Library, 9600 W. Sahara Ave. | Tuesday, July 19 at 4:30 p.m.
Enterprise Library, 25 E. Shelbourne Ave. | Wednesday, July 20 at 4:30 p.m.
West Las Vegas Library, 951 W. Lake Mead Blvd. | Thursday, July 21 at 10:30 a.m.
Whitney Library, 5175 E. Tropicana Ave. | Thursday, July 21 at 4:30 p.m.
Spring Valley Library, 4280 S. Jones Blvd. | Friday, July 22 at 4 p.m.

For a complete list of programs for teens visit http://www.lvccld.org/teens.

Press Release PDF