Saturday, November 19, 2011

Giving Thanks

Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Many of us start to prepare for the Thanksgiving dinner, family visits, and the beginning of the shopping chaos. What is Thanksgiving really about?

Simply, it is about "giving thanks" and being grateful for what you have. There are a number of ways you can show your thanks in the community by volunteering at the library, food bank, or shelter. Writing a letter a member or our Military is another way to give thanks. A Million Thanks organization shows year round appreciation to our U. S. Military Men and Women, past and present serving here at home, abroad, or injured in hospitals.

A thank you to show your support goes a long way.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Giving Thanks For the hay and the corn and the wheat that is reaped,
For the labor well done, and the barns that are heaped,
For the sun and the dew and the sweet honeycomb,
For the rose and the song and the harvest brought home -

Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!

For the trade and the skill and the wealth in our land,
For the cunning and strength of the workingman's hand,
For the good that our artists and poets have taught,
For the friendship that hope and affection have brought -

Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!

For the homes that with purest affection are blest,
For the season of plenty and well-deserved rest,
For our country extending from sea unto sea;
The land that is known as the "Land of the Free" -
Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving!

by Author Unknown

Monday, October 3, 2011


Fall is the time of year when the air outside gets cooler, and the leaves change colors. It is also the season for harvesting pumpkins. Pumpkins are used for cooking, baking, animal feed, and decoration. But here are a few fun facts you might not know about this fall favorite.

Pumpkin Fun Facts from the book Farmstand Favorites Pumpkins from Hatherleigh Press 2010.

Ohio is one of America's top pumpkin-producing states. Pumpkins are a fruit that consists of 90% water. They can come in almost any color, including blue and red. Do not store your pumpkin near apples. Apples produce ethylene gas while they ripen. The ethylene gas will cause the pumpkins ripening process to speed up, giving the pumpkins a shorter storage life.

The Ohio Valley of Giant Pumpkin Growers lists Christy Harp as the time record holder (2009) for Ohio's largest giant pumpkin which weighed 1725 lbs.

Want to learn more about pumpkins the University of Illinois Extension Pumpkins and More web site all about pumpkins, facts, growing, and festivals.

To find your perfect pumpkin try the Pumpkin Patches and More web site directory of local, state, and regional pumpkin patches and farms near you.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Adult & Family Programming Suggestions

Have you attended a library program, or perhaps you've attended the book club, or brought your child to a YA/children's program? Are you a patron that would like to attend a library program?
We would like to hear from you.

The Massillon Public Library is looking for insight into what our adult and family patrons need and want for future programs. The library will use this survey to improve our adult and family services and develop a range of ideas for future programming.

Please reply to the survey in the reader comments. Thank you for your help.

Adult & Family Programming Survey

1. What type of adult or family programs would you be interested in attending at the library?

2. What was the last adult or family program you attended at the library?

3. When was the last library program you attended?

4. What did you like or dislike about the program?

5. How can we improve the library programs?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Back to School

It is August, and the kids are heading back to school. Let's get them off to a good start together. The Massillon Public Library has a number of online and print resources available to help with your child's education. Our print collection has books to help with math, language arts, science, social studies, and history. The library's general reference resources include encyclopedias, dictionaries, and biographies. The library also has online databases that patrons can access from home with their library card. Below is a few of the MPL databases.

Need to find a tutor? We have a list of local tutors (K-12th grade) posted in the Reference Department.

Tips To Help Keep Them Organized:

1. Be an active parent in your child's education. Keep in touch with your child's teachers. Know the homework policies.
2. Look at your child's graded papers weekly to help identify lessons that your child needs to review.
3. Check the instructor's web site weekly for notes, homework, and test dates.
4. Make a calendar of assignments and tests.
5. Make a copy of the teacher's handouts such as retake forms, notes, and study guides.

Massillon Public Library Databases: To access the MPL databases from home: Go to and click on the Research tab, and then Databases. Select a database and enter in the barcode on your library card.

Academic search Premier: Access academic and professional journals for articles.

Biography Reference Bank: Biographies from reference books and magazines.

EBSCO Animals: Information on a variety of animals and animal related topics.

Learning Express Library: Online test prep, practice exams, and review for elementary, middle school, high school, and college prep. This database also has Microsoft software tutorials.

Mango Languages: Learn a foreign language such as Arabic, French, German, Spanish, Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese, Greek, Italian, Russian and more. Mango has English courses for Spanish speakers and other foreign languages speakers.

Student Resources Center: A student research tool for grades 6 to 12.

Oxford Reference Online: Subject dictionaries and reference works.

World Book: Encyclopedia and reference articles, photographs, and images.

Additional Web Resources:

The Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL): online writing resources, MLA (2009) and APA (2009) writing and citation guides. Articles for subjects specific writing and online OWL Exercises for grammar, punctuation, spelling, sentence structure, sentence style, and paraphrasing.

AAA Math: A math tutorial and online resource for math for K thru 8th grade.

Harcourt Math: The textbook company's online math resource for grades K thru 6th grade.

That Quiz: Math practice for arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, and trigonometry.

Harcourt Reading: A reading resource for grades K to 6th.

Ohio Kids: A site for Ohio history.

Social Studies for Kids: History, government, and culture.

Internet 4 Classrooms: Grade level help for Pre-K thru 8th and links for Pre-K thru 12th grade.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

TV Inspired by Novels

Today's TV channel selection can reach over 200 channels depending on your cable or satellite provider. Have you ever wondered where some television shows get their inspiration? A quick online search can provide the answer. Some of the current and past television shows were inspired by popular novels. There is nothing like a good book to capture your attention for a while. Television producers have adapted a few popular fiction novels into hit TV shows. The TNT crime drama Rizzoli & Isles spin-off from Tess Gerristen's Jane Rizzoli books equaled success this summer with 8.6 million viewers. On the author's stated the TV series received a renewal for its third season. Deciding if the book or TV show is better...I'll leave that up to you. Listed below is a small sampling of some of the popular novels that have become a television series. Each listing has a link to the author's web page and to the television series if available.

Popular Novels = Television Series

Romance, Horror, and Fantasy
Charlaine Harris combined romance, horror, and fantasy to create the Sookie Stackhouse novels the popular series has real bite. The small town waitress, Sookie Stackhouse has the ability to read minds, but she cannot seem to keep out of trouble. If that wasn't interesting enough, she has an affair with a vampire. Let the fun begin! The Sookie Stackhouse novels are the inspiration for HBO's True Blood series.

Mystery and Drama
Tess Gerritsen's Jane Rizzoli novels features two unlikely friends a police detective, Jane Rizzoli and a medical examiner, Maura Isles. The duo work together to rid crime from the streets of Boston. The novels/show feature crime, mystery, and friendship. TNT struck gold with Rizzoli &Isles TV series adapted from Gerritsen's Jane Rizzoli novels.

Children's Horror
The children's master of horror, R. L. Stine gives young readers a good scare with the Goosebumps novels. The Goosebumps television series (1995-1998) was not on the air long, but fans of the author can now watch the R. L. Stine's Haunting Hour also inspired by his works. The R. L. Stine's Haunting Hour television show is on the HUB channel.

Young Adult Fiction
Cecily von Ziegesar's Gossip Girl novels were the basis for the popular Gossip Girl television series on the CW. The controversial show is all about excess. Set in a New York private school, the wealthy high school teens spend their time partying and having back-biting relationships.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Farmers Markets

Summer is finally here! Summer is a great time to head out and visit the farmer's markets for fresh local produce and products. The United States Department of Agriculture (2011), Farms, Land in Farms, the and Livestock Operations 2010 Summary stated that Ohio has 74,700 farms. Being environmentally friendly is a big issue these days. Many Americans recycle, use public transportation, and shop local to go green. But shopping local can also mean shopping at farmer's markets.

According to Sustainable Table, "a typical carrot has to travel 1,838 miles to reach your dinner table." That is a lot of traveling for a carrot. Maybe convenience isn't so convenient after all... when you factor in the cost of fuel. There is nothing like fresh summer produce. Luckily, we have a number of good farmer's markets right on our area.

To find more information about local farms, farmer's markets, and Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) check out Local Harvest and America's Farmland Trust.

Local Farmer's Markets

Massillon Farmer's Market Saturdays, July 9 to October 8 (8:00 AM - 12:00 PM) located at the Massillon Parks & Recreation Department 505 Erie St North, Massillon, OH 44646

Canton Farmers' Market Saturdays, June 18 to October 15 (8:00 AM - 11:30 AM) located Cleveland Ave. N between 4th & 5th streets in NW Canton, OH 44702

Jackson Township Farmers' Market Thursdays, June 30 to September 29 (3:00 PM - 6:00 PM) located in North Park, 7660 Fulton Drive NW, Jackson, OH 44718

Canal Fulton Lion's Club Farmer's Market Thursdays July 7 to September 8 (4:00 PM - 7:00 PM) located St. Helena Heritage Park

Bumbleberry pie is a delicious way to use fresh berries from the farmer's market.

Bumbleberry Pie

Ingredients 2 c. Granny Smith Apples peeled, cored, and chopped
1 c. blackberries (fresh or frozen)
1 c. sliced strawberries
1 c. blueberries (fresh or frozen) 1 c. raspberries (fresh or frozen)
1 c. granulated sugar or Splenda Sugar Blend
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/3 c. all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon tapioca
1/2 beaten egg
1 tablespoon milk 1 sprinkle of sugar * for pie crust
1 package refrigerated pie crust * un-roll and bake

* If using frozen berries let them thaw out in the refrigerator before using.


1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In a large bowl, combine apples, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and lemon juice. Mix gently. Add sugar, flour, tapioca to the fruit and mix gently.
3. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside the mixture for 20 minutes to help dissolve tapioca.
4. Press pie crust in a 9 inch pie plate. Then add the fruit mixture. Top fruit mixture with pie crust. Trim and crimp the edges of pie crust together. Cut a few slits into the top of the crust to allow the steam to vent. Brush the top of the pie with a little milk and sprinkle with sugar.
5. Bake pie in pre-heated oven for 50 - 60 minutes, or until pie is bubbly in center and golden brown.

Serves 8

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Underground River in Massillon, Ohio

Let's face it, the world is a unique place. For example, there is an underground river about 200 feet below the Tuscarawas River, in Massillon, Ohio. Yes, there is such a thing. It is the pre-glacial and inter-glacial remnants of the ancient Dover River.

Stout's (1943) Map of the Teays River Stage features the Dover River (p. 50).

An unidentified newspaper article titled, "There's water under Tuscarawas River, but it moves quite slowly" explained that the underground river is a result from "pre-glacial and inter-glacial water movement that eroded a channel into the bedrock (1966). In fact, the Dover River was also responsible for carving out the Cuyahoga Valley (Harris, 2004, 181). The river flowed from Cuyahoga County where it branched out into parts of Summit, Portage, Stark, Carroll, Medina, Tuscarawas, Harrison, Columbiana, and Belmont counties (Stout, 1943, 71).

Over time, the ancient river channel now below the Tuscarawas River became filled with silt, gravel, and sand. These layers of silt, gravel, and sand filling the channel are also known as an "aquifer," which causes the river to move only a "few feet per day" (1966). When the Dover River experiences periods of drought or water pumping from nearby industries the direction of the river could reverse (1966). The river came to an end during the time of the Pleistocene glaciation or Pleistocene Epoch about (2 million - 10,000 years ago) (Stevens, 19991, 15).

To learn more about the Dover River check out these resources.


(1966). "There's water under Tuscarawas River, but it moves quite slowly." Massillon Public Library Vertical File: Massillon Water Supply.

Harris, A. G. Tuttle, E., & Tuttle, S. D. (2004). Geology of national parks. (6th Ed). (Vol. 1). USA: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Co. Retrieved June 21, 2011, from Google Books.

Stevens, W. (1991). Ground water pollution potential of Stark County, Ohio. (Report 6). Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved June 21, 2011, from DNR.

Stout, W., Ver Steeg, K., & Lamb, G. F. (1943). Geological survery of Ohio: Geology of water in Ohio. (Fourth Series, Bulletin 44). Columbus: F. J. Heer Printing Co.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Thank You! Issue 5 Passes

The Massillon Public Library extends its gratitude to the community for passing Issue 5. Did you know that last year the library system had 1,024,472 circulations and the Reference Department answered 10,266 reference questions. Our dedication to great service doesn't stop there; the library also provides programs, computer access, Genealogy, and much more. Impressive!

It is our pleasure to serve this community.

Thank you!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Keep Them Coming!

Questions that is. The Reference Department helped patrons with quite an array of topics during the last month. Surprisingly, only one inquiry was about the earthquake in Japan. School assignments were at the top of the list and kept us very busy. Occupations seemed to be the main theme behind the assignments, though topics ranged from the Mayan culture to nanotechnology. Our available databases and print collection came quite in handy. Many of our patrons have been very happy to use both of our automotive repair databases: Alldata Online and Chilton Online Auto Repair, both of which can be found at Typing a few strokes on the keyboard and almost magically you have instructions and illustrations at your fingertips. Online genealogy resources and our local history files are very popular. We were able to find a detailed map of Massillon using our database Sandborn Fire Insurance Maps, Another question came in regarding the history of East Greenville Methodist Church and we were able to find the answers in the Newspaper Archive database, Finding information on the Massillon Women's Club was as easy as looking in our files, complied over the years by our faithful volunteers. We always look forward to interesting questions and challenges, so keep them coming!

Monday, March 21, 2011

March Madness

The Reference Department at the Massillon Public Library continues to be a very interesting place! We have even been called miracle workers by some. We often are approached with small clues about books or movies and set to the task of discovering the title. Most of the time we are successful. Let’s play the game: it’s a movie about an underdog team winning the game and it is fairly new. The answer is Miracle. Let’s try another clue for a book: the topic is addiction, the author’s name starts with the letter ”U” and the book and the author were on the Dr. Phil show. The answer was Healing the Addicted Brain by Dr. Harold Urschel. That answer was found by Googling the Dr. Phil Show. How about a children's book about a baker who ran out of ingredients? Alas, we found Mr. Snitzel's Cookies by Jane Flory, found by using Oplinlist.

Often, we help patrons get connected. A gentleman came in and explained that his elderly sister was in a nursing home and had recorded some of her thoughts in a diary or journal. However, she had written it in shorthand. Discovering a shorthand book on our shelves, we found that it was not very helpful due to variations of the text. Another patron sitting at a table nearby had overheard his request and came over and offered the services of her daughter who had excelled in shorthand when she was in school. Two weeks later we found out that the patron's daughter had contacted her old shorthand teacher and she agreed to help translate the journal.

Sometimes, Massillon history is the hottest topic on our agenda. We have had questions on the architect Herman Albrecht, the jazz musician Bob Wilbur, the MIA soldier Ronald Stanton as well as other Massillonians like James Lathrop. Recently, a retired coach of Chris Speilman requested information for a Columbus radio station so that he could send a note of congratulation to his former student.

Another patron looking for the obituaries of Horace Gillom and his children was helped by the use of Newspaper Archive. This database was also able to answer some questions for another patron inquiring about the murder of two baby girls in the Massillon Hospital in 1947. You can find this database on our web site at

Because of the economy, more and more of our patrons are trying to fix their cars themselves rather than incurring the cost of a mechanic. To help them in their endeavors, we have two databases: Alldata is a resource that can only be used inside the library and the recently added Chilton Online Auto Repair which can be accessed from home, using a Massillon Public Library card. Again, you can find these databases on our web site at .

Interesting questions such as the current time in Australia, where would a person find books about growing up poor, or perhaps locations of babysitting classes in Stark County have popped up recently. “Wrong title” searches are very common - we are given a title that is not quite right and it does not show up in our databases. Google is our dear friend in these cases and we set out on the hunt. So, keep your questions coming and we'll keep digging until we can find an answer for you!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Give Your Brain a Boost
In a recent article in The New Yorker, Malcolm Gladwell quotes James Flynn, a renowned scientist, as saying "The mind is much more like a muscle than we've ever realized… It needs to get cognitive exercise". Learning a foreign language is one way to flex those brain muscles. Now you can take your brain to the gym with help from the Massillon Public Library. We have a fun, fast and easy language learning program called Mango Languages. The best part is that it's free for Massillon Public Library patrons and you can access it anywhere there is internet with your library card.

Mango is an easy and effective way to learn to speak a foreign language. Mango is available in two versions:

Mango Basic:
Perfect for a foreign language beginner, Mango Basic teaches everyday greetings, gratitudes, goodbyes and helpful phrases in a short period of time. The courses, which require only two to five hours of time to complete, are currently available in 34 foreign languages and 15 English as a Second Language (ESL) courses.

Mango Complete:
Mango Complete offers a 100-lesson course that digs much deeper and is designed to provide a more complete understanding of the entire language and culture. It is available in 31 foreign language and 14 ESL courses. Foreign language courses include Chinese, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. ESL courses include Polish, Spanish and Portuguese.

To learn more about Mango you can visit us at and get started on boosting your brain!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Honoring our Past

Questions have been pouring in about Martin Luther King. One of the most interesting features we found is on the University of Virgina's Miller Center of Public Affairs web site In honor of Martin Luther King Day, the first installment of the new Presidential Recordings Series, a collaboration of the University of Virginia Press, its e-imprint, Rotunda, and the University's Miller Center of Public Affairs is the Lyndon B. Johnson Digital Edition that includes several conversations with and about King. The title includes hundreds of hours of presidential tapes covering everything from the War on Poverty to the Civil Rights Movement to the Vietnam War.

Each conversation is fully transcribed and annotated and accompanied by its audio file. The edition includes photos and video galleries, a linked timeline, and searching ability. Miller Center scholars are in the process of transcribing and annotating the secret White House tapes recorded by every president from Franklin Roosevelt to Richard Nixon. The press is offering a free trial of the edition through January 27. After that, users can sign up on the site for a free 48-hour trial.

As part of the University of Virginia's week-long commemoration of the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, the Miller Center is hosting a program exploring King's private conversations and public communications tomorrow, Wednesday, at 11 a.m. The program will highlight the relationship between King and President Lyndon B. Johnson that emerges in secret tapes recorded by Johnson. This event takes place at the Miller Center and will be webcast live at

Excerpt from Shelf Awareness, Daily Enlightenment for the Book Trade