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This Week at the Library

Library OnDemand – Available anytime you like.

Young Adult Literary Council – Tuesday, Aug. 8, 5 – 6 p.m.

Teens are invited to join the Young Adult Literary Council at the Lenexa City Center Library to share favorite books, pick up advanced reader copies of teen books to read and review, and participate in other fun activities such as author visits, game days, event planning and more. Meet new people and receive volunteer credit hours for your time with us.

Tabletop Games – Tuesday, Aug. 8, 6 – 7:45 p.m.

Join us at the Central Resource Library for a fun-filled event with family and friends and become a part of the Johnson County tabletop gaming community. Discover new games from our collection or bring your personal favorite to share – you might get creative with a round of Dixit, collaborate to escape the Forbidden Island or strategize your way to victory as King of Tokyo! Come and go as you please. Refreshments are provided.

One-on-One Help: DNA & Genetic Genealogy – Fridays, 9 a.m. – noon

For one-on-one basic or DNA genealogy help at the Central Resource Library visit the Johnson County Genealogical Society at to schedule an appointment.

And much more happening this week … 


KC Covid Art Recession: Who thrived, who survived, who still needs help?

Join us in a town hall discussion led by a panel of art leaders whose organizations and artists thrived, survived and still need help in recovering from the art recession. 

In 2020, KC Rising reported that of 24 industries, the arts had the greatest downturn and will take the longest to recover. Let’s help the arts recover with our support and ideas. This program is presented in partnership with GUILDit, whose mission is engage, educate, and empower art entrepreneurialism. No registration necessary.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023
6-7:30 p.m.
Central Resource Library

West building of the Methodist Shawnee mission

Color postcard of the exterior of the West building of the Methodist Shawnee mission. Courtesy Johnson County Museum Collection on JoCo History

Johnson County, Kansas: A Brief Historical Sketch

New JoCoHistory Blog

Johnson County’s earliest history is hazy at best. When the first white settlers reached the area, the Kaw were living to the North and Northwest, and the Osage were living to the South. The Native American population of Johnson County was nomadic and small. The white settlers arrived around 1700. They were French traders ascending the Missouri and its smaller tributaries such as “la Riviere de l’Eau Bleu” – the Blue River. The French phase of this region’s history is only now beginning to receive attention. Read the full article on the JoCoHistory blog »


Primary Election Tomorrow

August 1, 2023 Primary Election

Whether you are a seasoned voter or voting for the first time, we have all the latest information for you! Visit our Voting 2023 page for the where's, when's and how's of voting! 

Polls are open 7 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Have questions like, "Where and when do I vote on Election Day?" Or, "What do I bring with me to vote in-person?" "Where can I view a sample ballot?"  We have answers!


This Week at the Library

Library OnDemand – Available anytime you like.

One-on-One Help: Basic Genealogy – Tuesdays, 9 a.m. – noon

For one-on-one basic or DNA genealogy help visit Central Resource Library for the Johnson County Genealogical Society at to schedule an appointment.

The Past is Prologue: Kansas City and the Rise of Gay Rights– Thursday, Aug. 3, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

The Past is Prologue is a bimonthly program that highlights topics often left out, glossed over, or misrepresented in our history books. For our August topic, Stuart Hinds from the Gay and Lesbian Archives of Mid-America will present on pre-Stonewall LGBT activism in Kansas City.

Free Admission Day at Shawnee Town 1929 Museum – Thursday, Aug. 3, 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Your Library Card is your admission! Bring your card to the Shawnee Town 1929 Museum's Visitor Center to gain free admission all day on Thursday, August 3. Don't have a Library card (yet)? Library staff will be on site to create cards and share all of the wonderful things the Library has to offer! The museum is located at 11501 W 57th St, Shawnee 66203

Generative Poetry Workshop – Saturday, Aug. 5, 9 – 11 a.m.

Attend one of three generative workshops at the Lenexa City Center Library with Traci Brimhall, Poet Laureate of Kansas, to develop or polish your poetry writing! During the month of September, Johnson County Library will receive submissions of poetry, micro-stories, and art for a November Poetry Walk. If you're stumped on what to enter, be sure to attend one of these Generative Poetry Workshops. Selected work will be displayed on 18" by 24” boards placed throughout an area park in April 2024 for public enjoyment. Submit »

And much more happening this week … 


Scribbler Society Encourages Young Writers

For many years, Johnson County Library has provided popular programs for teen and adult writers. Now there’s a supportive club to give younger writers a creative outlet as well.

The Scribbler Society is a new program geared for youth ages 10-14, offered once a month at Antioch Library. It is led by Heather Miller, a youth information specialist at Antioch, and Cristy Henggeler, a youth information specialist at the Blue Valley branch. Both are enthusiastic writers in their own right who wanted to encourage young people to find their voices through a variety of fun activities in a collaborative setting.

“I’m a writer myself so I wanted to bring that love of writing to kids,” said Miller, who enjoys writing fiction, including teen novels.

Henggeler has two kids, ages 5 and 8, and started working at Blue Valley last June. She has an English degree and writes novels in her spare time. She loves working with young patrons and was eager to join Miller in this new program, which was offered monthly this past spring and summer. The first few sessions featured mostly home-schooled kids.

The program is taking a break in August before resuming in the fall with events at Antioch, Blue Valley and Central Resource Libraries.

“It’s really fun to hear what the kids are working on,” Henggeler said. “It’s inspiring to be around them.” 

For the first meeting in February just one participant showed up, so Miller gave her one-on-one coaching. That turned out to be really productive.

“I engaged with her,” Miller recalled of the participant, who had bought a yard sale typewriter and used it to start writing a story. “She was stuck on one part. I helped her through that. She seemed to get a lot out of it.”

Eight participants showed up in March and April. Miller and Henggeler provided a workbook, described different writing genres, and talked about incorporating characters into story. A writing exercise gave a prompt for the start of a story. The young writers were bursting with ideas.

At the April meeting, they created “mood boards,” using photos from old magazines.

“We almost lost track of time because everybody was so excited to be working on their mood boards and having fun with that,” Henggeler said.

In May, three participants showed up and spent the session figuring out the backgrounds and personalities of characters for their stories. They encouraged each other and giggled as they brainstormed suggestions. 

One participant, Jack, 11, said he’s been drawing and writing a series of comic book stories about a superhero. Morraine, 9, brought notebooks in which she was working on two different stories. Kennedy, 13, said she does a lot of creative writing and the program has been worthwhile.

“We learn a lot about developing our stories,” she said.

This is educational, but it isn’t academic writing, and the program doesn’t feel like schoolwork. One parent emailed Miller to say her daughter really enjoyed the sessions.

Miller and Henggeler are delighted to offer this new program benefiting older elementary and middle-school patrons. The young people are encouraged to submit work for the Library’s writing contests.

It’s rewarding, Henggeler said, to share this passion with kids, “and see them excited about their ideas and just kind of bringing in something creative to their day that brings them joy.”

Miller agreed. “We want to keep them engaged with the Library and I think this is a great way to do it,” she said. “Giving them an outlet for all those ideas they have really makes me happy.”


JoCoHistory Blog: “All ‘Board: The Farm Homes Special!”

Ever heard of a “special” train? In 1937 a “special” ran across Kansas, including a stop in Olathe, advertising new technologies for the state’s farmers. Read more about the Better Farm Home Demonstration Train and find out if it was successful in a new #JoCoHistory Blog post from the Johnson County Museum!

#JoCoTrains #KansasHistory