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Check out books on fathers

By Paul Birkhead
Rowan Public Library
Dad, Daddy, Papa, Pop ó no matter what you may have called him or call him still, many of us set aside time in June to honor and remember our fathers.
One thing Iíve come to realize is the relationship between fathers and their children can be as complex as it can be sweet. The shelves at Rowan Public Library hold many items that talk about fathers and our relationships with them.
ěGood Stuffî is a new book written by Jennifer Grant, daughter of the late actor Cary Grant. Through her book, she gives the reader a unique view into the private life of her father ó a true American icon.
It appears that the two shared a special father-daughter relationship, and the book is filled with many fond memories and reminiscences. Iím sure those memories were made a lot clearer since Cary Grant took great care in preserving many stories, notes and tape recordings of their time together.
ěOur Fatherís War: Growing Up in the Shadow of the Greatest Generation,î by Tom Mathews, explores the dynamics between sons and fathers from the era of World War II. Mathewsí relationship with his own father, a WWII vet, inspired his book, where he reports on 10 households that dealt with generation gap issues. While some stories are funny, others are truly sad since they drive home the point that not all wounds were left behind on the battlefield. Many times, the relationships between vets and their children were the last casualty of the war.
ěMy Father at 100î is Ron Reaganís memoir of Ronald Reagan, his father. The 40th presidentís 100th birthday would have been in February of this year. To commemorate this fact, Ron Reagan gives the reader some fascinating background information on the Reagan family ó how they ended up in America from Ireland, and what it was like for Ronald Reagan to grow up in the Midwest during the early part of the 20th-century. My favorite portion of the book was when Ron Reagan writes about visiting sites from his fatherís childhood.
One of Americaís most endearing journalists has to be the late Tim Russert. I heard him interviewed once about his relationship with his father, Big Russ, and the book he wrote in 2004 about it. I finally got around to checking out ěBig Russ & Meî from the library last year and I was so glad I did.
I actually checked out the audio book version and it sure was nice to hear Timís voice again. While both Tim and his father are no longer with us, these stories celebrating their special bond remain.
Another item you can listen to is ěNPR Driveway Moments for Dads.î Part of National Public Radioís ěRadio Stories That Wonít Let You Goî series, this audio CD is dedicated entirely to stories about fathers.
Whether you choose to check out a book or an audio CD, Rowan Public Library offers many items to help celebrate fatherhood.
Computer classes: Classes are free. Sessions are approximately 90 minutes. Class size is limited and on a first-come, first-serve basis. Dates and times at all locations are subject to change without notice.
Headquarters ó Tuesday, 2 p.m., Email Tips and Tricks. Basic computer skills and an email account are required for all three classes above.
June 27, 7 p.m., Absolute Beginners.
Summer Family Movie Night at Headquarters ó Tuesday, 6:30 p.m., ěDiary of a Wimpy Kid.î Part of the centennial celebration. All movies are rated G, PG or PG 13 ó some movies are inappropriate for younger audiences. Children should be accompanied by an adult. Free popcorn and lemonade.
Book Bites Club ó June 28, 6:30 p.m., ěMountain Between Usî by Charles Martin. Book discussion groups for both adults and children are held at South Rowan Regional Library the last Tuesday of each month. The group is open to the public and anyone is free to join at any time. There is a discussion of the book, as well as light refreshments at each meeting. For more information please call 704-216-8229.
RPL and N.C. Humanities present ěStill Cookiní î ó Headquarters, June 28, 7 p.m. Dr. Mary Ellis Gibson will trace the history of Southern foodtalk in cookbooks and in fiction. A reception and a chance to chat with Gibson will follow. This project is made possible by a grant from the North Carolina Humanities Council.
Childrenís Program ó This summer the Rowan Public Library invites kids to join the library for a summer of exciting programs and great reads with One World, Many Stories.
Weekly programs run until July 28. New for this year, limited family programs at Cleveland Town Hall. Prizes are awarded for every five, 10, 15 and 20 hours read, and door prizes are given at the school-aged programs.
Program groups and times:
12-24-month-olds: Mondays, 10:30 a.m., East Branch; Tuesdays, 11 am, Headquarters; Thursdays, 10:30 a.m., South Library (four-week program).
2-year-olds: 10:30 a.m. Tuesdays, East Branch; Wednesdays, South Library; Thursdays, Headquarters (four-week program).
3- to 5-year-olds: 10:30 a.m. Mondays, South Library; Wednesdays, Headquarters; Thursdays, East Branch (seven-week program).
Rising first through fifth graders: Tuesdays, 10:30 a.m., South Library; Wednesdays, 2 p.m., Headquarters; Wednesdays, 10:30 a.m., East Branch; Thursdays, 10:30 a.m., Cleveland Town Hall, select programs only; (seven-week program).
June 20-22: Didgeridoo Down Under, Australian Adventure;
June 27-30 (Cleveland): Marian the Librarian.
Calling all teens: Travel the globe with ěYou Are Hereî ó There are many ways for teens to see the world this summer at the library. Running through July 28, all rising sixth-graders to 12th-graders are invited to participate in events at the library. Teens can earn library dollars to be used at the end of the summer to bid on prizes provided by the Friends of Rowan Public Library.
Programs are:
South America: Learn about South America and make a pinata or necklace óheadquarters, Tuesday, 3:30-5 p.m.; East Branch, Wednesday, 3:30-5 p.m., South Rowan Regional, Thursday, 3:30-5 p.m.
Asia: Learn about countries in Asia and play a Japanese game show ó Headquarters, June 28, 3:30-5 p.m.; East Branch, June 29, 3:30-5 p.m.; South Rowan Regional, June 30, 3:30-5 p.m.
Also this summer, the library is offering a Parent and Family Reading Workshop from 5:30-6:30 p.m. on Monday, June 27, at Headquarters in Salisbury.
For more information please check the library website at www.rowanpubliclibrary.org or call your closest RPL location ó Headquarters, 704-216-8234; South Rowan Regional, 704-216-7728; East Branch, 704-216-7842.
Displays:Headquarters ó photography and pottery by Emily Walls; Lee Street Theatre by Robert Jones; South ń collectible toy soldiers from different wars by Steven Wise; East ó art by Colleen Walton.
Literacy: Call the Rowan County Literacy Council at 704-216-8266 for more information on teaching or receiving literacy tutoring for English speakers or for those for whom English is a second language.

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