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Meet the Presenter: Sheri Hall

Meet Sheri Hall! For Sheri, poetry and purpose go hand in hand. Empowering low-income areas through the power of the written word is close to her heart. Not only is she an esteemed author, she also is a motivational speaker, consultant, radio personality, facilitator and peer support specialist, to name just a few of her titles. Community connections are important to her, and we are so thrilled that she will be connecting with Writers Conference attendees this year.

A lot of Sheri’s work focuses on the healing and regenerative process of writing. She has written four books, ranging from a collection of poetry and essays (Black Girl Shattered), two poetry chapbooks (“Mélange du Femme Noir” and “Chosen for Both”), as well as a workbook for writers (“Writing Wrongs: Writing to Heal”).

In addition to having four published works of poetry, Sheri Hall has a lengthy list of awards and accolades to her name, including receiving the 2019 Charlotte Street Generative Performing Artist Award, as well as being a 2019 Art in the Loop grant recipient and 2019 and 2017 Arts KC Inspiration Grant recipient. She won the Poet and Activist award at the Music and More Foundation Poetry Awards two years in a row and was nominated for best spoken-word artist in the KC People's Choice awards, Pitch Best KC and the National Spoken Word Awards

Founder of the community writing organization Arsyn Spit Fire, East of Red ArtHouse, and PenFire Publishing, she is also the interim CEO for Poetry for Personal Power, which works to fight the stigma of mental health treatment and empower those experiencing mental health issues through art and education. She also works as a consultant for many other non-profit, community-based, and arts organizations.

Sheri will join us for both days of the Writers Conference this year for several sessions. She is offering a creative writing workshop (“Renaming This One Universe”); a class on creating your elevator pitch (“Building Your Author One Sheet”), and a class on writing your author bio. She will also be a panelist on the topic of revision. We are ecstatic that she will be sharing her expertise with us, and we look forward to you meeting her.

If you’d like to keep up with Sheri, you can find her at or under the name spokenpurpose on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

-- written by Jesseca Bear, adult services information specialist


eAudiobooks allow you to multitask!

Are you a multitasker? We have found it's difficult to read a book while also:

  • Jogging
  • Cooking
  • Painting
  • Driving
  • ...and, well, it's a long list!

Our solution? Checkout our eAudiobooks:

eAudiobooks on Libby
Our largest eAudiobook collection! Listen to popular fiction and nonfiction books for kids, teens and adults.

Naxos Spoken Word Library
Classic fiction and nonfiction streaming audiobooks.

eAudiobooks on cloudLibrary
Great listens! Popular fiction and nonfiction collection provided by the State Library of Kansas.

Listen and multitask! You're welcome. 


This Week at the Library

This week at the Library, you can join us at:

Library OnDemand Available anytime you like.

Your doorway into live and archived programs. Arts & Culture, Career & Finance, Community Matters, Writers and more!

Getting Your Financial House in Order Tuesday, Oct. 11, 7 – 8:30 p.m.   

Our financial lives are complex, with numerous choices, accounts, and platforms. Join Nancy Doyle, CFA and author of “Manage Your Financial Life,” to learn about navigating our personal finances amidst this complexity. Doyle will explain how to become more organized, make better financial decisions, and gain peace of mind through a financial “spring cleaning” and preparation of an “In Case of Emergency” plan.

Blood Pressure ClinicWednesday, Oct. 12, 10 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. 

Drop in event each month at Central Resource Library and a nurse from the Johnson County Department of Health and Environment will test your blood pressure

Free Day at the Johnson County MuseumSaturday, Oct. 15, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. 

Your Johnson County Library card is your ticket to a free day at the Johnson County Museum on Saturday, October 15! Show your library card for free entry or sign up for a card on site with Library staff available to assist you. This free day is sponsored by the Library to encourage our patrons to view the temporary exhibit "Redlined: Cities, Suburbs, and Segregation" on display through January 7, 2023.

Bring in the Music with 123 Andrés/Venga a ver lo más nuevo de 123 Andrés, Caregiver Workshop Saturday, Oct. 15, 9:15 – 11 a.m. 

Latin Grammy-winning music duo, 123 Andres demonstrates how to enhance your caregiving and teaching with musical moods, movement, rhythm, and bilingual traditions at the Central Resource Library. Attendees will receive KDHE clock hour credits. Participants should register using their first and last name as it should appear on the clock hour credit certificate. Generously supported by the Johnson County Library Foundation.

El dúo 1-2-3 Andrés ganador del premio Grammy estará aquí para enseñarnos cómo mejorar nuestras capacidades en el cuidado y la enseñanza de los niños, con los movimientos, la música ambiental para los diferentes estados de ánimo, los ritmos y algo de las tradiciones, en dos idiomas. Los participantes recibirán: horas de credito, del Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE). Se pueden registrar usando el nombre y apellido de la forma en que quieren que su nombre aparezca en el certificado-clock hours credit, y recuerden que es patrocinado por: La Fundación de Johnson County Library.

Family Concert with 123 Andrés – Saturday, Oct. 15, 2 – 3 p.m.

Lively music gets the whole family dancing and learning, in Spanish and English. Latin Grammy-winning music duo 1-2-3 Andrés combines storytelling, humor and music in an interactive show for all ages. Generously supported by the Johnson County Library Foundation. Patrons are welcome to register, but it is not required for entry. Seating will be available on a first come, first served basis on the day of the event.

Esta música dinámica pone a bailar y aprender a toda la familia en español y en inglés. El dúo 1-2-3 Andrés, ganador del Grammy, combina las historias, el humor y la música en una presentación interactiva para todas las edades. Evento que también es patrocinado por La Fundación de Johnson County Library. No requiere inscripción.
Todos pueden registrarse, pero no es necesario ni requerido. Los espacios estarán disponibles por orden de llegada el día del evento.

And much more happening this week »


SPECIAL EDITION - 2022 Writers Conference

Our eighth annual Writers Conference will be Thursday, Nov. 17 - Sunday, Nov. 20.

In this episode, Readers' Advisory Librarian Helen Hokanson and Adult Services Specialist Lisa Allen talk about our 2022 Writers Conference. How do we choose our faculty? Do we take potential presenter suggestions? How does the in-person experience differ from the virtual version of the past couple of years? We have fun taking a deep dive into these questions and feature readings by authors Anne-Marie Oomen and Polly Alice McCann. 


Meet the Presenter: Susana Bruhn

Susana Bruhn is the founder of GUILDit, an organization that helps artists grow their businesses and work to expand the arts. She is also a visual artist, poet, and owner of FluidUI Web Services.

Susana is firmly rooted in the Kansas City arts scene, having shown in Kansas City galleries and worked at the Kansas City Art Institute as well as Hallmark. In addition, she founded a local design group, held board positions, and curated art shows.

She knows what it takes to be a successful and dynamic creative entrepreneur. She values community and connection when creating, sharing, and making a living from art. We are thrilled she is joining us for the Writers Conference this year, providing two sessions on networking.

Fun fact: Her work was chosen to appear on the show ABC’s Extreme Home Makeover.

View a 2-minute video of GUILDit celebrating 7 years of growing KC Art/Biz.

-- written by Jesseca Bear, adult services information specialist


Library, Arts & Heritage Center Team Up for Hispanic Heritage Celebration

Johnson County Library and the Johnson County Parks and Recreation District (JCPRD) each strive to serve a growing Hispanic population with great outreach and enrichment resources.

Now, the Library and Culture Division of JCPRD are collaborating for the first time on a Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration event, highlighting the Hispanic community’s rich diversity and amazing cultural contributions.

The celebration, free and open to the public, will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Oct. 12 at the Johnson County Arts & Heritage Center, 8788 Metcalf Ave. The Library will present a Walk & Read exhibit on the front lawn and will have a table with Library card applications and other patron information.

Attendees can savor delicious food from local restaurants and enjoy a community arts activity and musical entertainment. The Johnson County Museum will be free to explore that evening. 

This is JCPRD’s fourth annual Hispanic Heritage Month celebration but the first to involve the Library. Representatives of both agencies are thrilled to work together.

“We love working with the Center,” said Elissa Andre, the Library’s external communication manager. “It’s really great to have County partners. We share a mission about education and bringing exciting things to the community.”

Susan Mong is Superintendent of Culture for JCPRD, which includes the Johnson County Museum, Theater in the Park, Fine and Performing Arts and Public Art. She worked for Johnson County Library from 2007 to 2017. She was so impressed with the Library’s intentional relationship-building in the Hispanic community and has that same vision for JCPRD’s Culture Division.

“We had been looking for partnership opportunities with the Library out of this building,” Mong said. “Really trying to make sure we complement and cross-pollinate audiences.”

The event is open to all ethnicities and ages and no reservation is required.

“There’s a desire for us to not only make the Latino community feel welcome here, but also help members of our community that don’t have exposure to that to learn, celebrate and engage,” Mong said.

The Library hosted a well-attended Walk & Read exhibit and informational table at the Arts & Heritage Center’s Juneteenth celebration June 11. Both agencies hope the Oct. 12 collaboration will prove just as successful.

Other key partners for the Oct. 12 event include El Centro, the La Mega Radio Station, the Olathe Leadership Lowrider Bike Club and the Olathe School District.

Edgar Palacios, founder of the Latinx Education Collaborative, will emcee the event. Performers will include Voces Festivas, a new adult Spanish language choir led by Leilani Velasco.

Johnson County’s Hispanic population has grown from about 39,000 in 2010 to about 54,000 in 2020, now comprises nearly 9 percent of the county.

Mong said the Johnson County Museum has established a Latino Collecting Initiative to make sure that segment of the population and its cultural contributions are represented.

“There is a very intentional desire to reflect that story better in the Museum,” she said.

The Library also has a specific team of professionals devoted to serving Hispanic patrons, with robust bilingual services, early literacy programs and a Spanish language collection.

The Library’s Walk & Read will be on display Oct. 12-16 and will feature the books Pepe and the Parade by Tracey Kyle and Imagine by Juan Felipe Herrera. The Library has also compiled suggested reading lists and other resources to celebrate the month.


Bird's-eye Views of Johnson County

It’s another grand Throwback Thursday where we encourage you to time travel through Johnson County's history. JoCoHistory is a collaborative presentation of the history from the Johnson County Museum, Johnson County Library and many JoCoHistory partners. Explore historical photographs and documents about the people, places and organizations of Johnson County, Kansas, from the 19th century to the present.

Collection spotlight: Johnson County Museum Aerial Photographs

About this collection: More than 8,000 color slide transparencies that are aerial views of Johnson County. The collection consists of 45 dated sets. The sets range in quantity from just a few transparencies to several hundred, dating from April 1980 to July 2002, and each set systematically documents the county from west to east. The sets were typically taken twice a year, in the spring and fall, to document agricultural land-use. Each transparency centers on two square miles.


Library Lowdown Quiz Showdown Part II

Our tribute to game shows continues with Library Jeopardy and Wheel of Fiction! Whad'ya know about the Library? Join former Jeopardy auditionee, Austin, as he does such a great job hosting that even Alex Trebek would be proud. Charles and Dave battle in a head-to-head Library trivia tournament of titans! Then, we bring in in Collection Development Librarian Beth and Reader's Advisory Librarians Gregg and Helen. They spin the wheel, but will it be fortune or failure as they are given book descriptions from our catalog and they're asked to identify titles? Spoiler alert, we chose really hard ones! 

It's the Library Lowdown Quiz Showdown Part II! 

BTW, if you missed Part I where we play Bluff the Librarian and Library Password, whad'ya waiting for?!