Jacksonville Public Library Blog

Clear Your Space, Spread Your Wings

Organizing for Spring 2021

Spring has officially sprung! And with all that warmth and sunshine comes a need to transform. So, open those windows, clear the STUFF out those corners, and shed that cramped cold-weather cocoon! While you’re at it, grab a few of these books on organizing. Whether you’re planning a big “Spring Clean-Up” or just need help with those few problem “junk” drawers and catch-all rooms… You can make the inside of your house as fresh and bright as everything does on the outside.

Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

Youth Books to Celebrate Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

Developmental Disability Awareness Month raises awareness about the barriers people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) face in connecting to the communities in which they live and making sure they are included in all areas of community life. The following booklist is one place to start for building that understanding and awareness. Be sure to check out Dr. Tracy Packiam Alloway’s books. Like many of the books in the list, they are about “boosting the confidence and strength-awareness of children” with intellectual and developmental disabilities “while also allowing for better understanding and positivity among their peers.” Bonus: She’s a local author and award-winning psychologist.

Irish-American Films to Enjoy on Kanopy

Irish American Films on Kanopy

Most people know that St. Patrick’s Day is March 17 – thanks in large part to very green parades and other annual events. Originally, a religious celebration to honor the Catholic saint, St. Patrick, the day has evolved into a celebration of all things Irish-American (including our fascination with leprechauns and their lovely pots of gold). The New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade is usually one of the biggest ones in the US. COVID has put a damper on parades and other large celebrations in recent years, of course. But there are many ways to celebrate. In that spirit, we offer you this short list of films – available right now for streaming, free with your library card on Kanopy.

Lit Chat with Frederick Joseph

Frederick Joseph joins us to discuss his book The Black Friend: On Being a Better White Person. This book serves as a conversation starter, tool kit, and invaluable window into the life of a former "token Black kid" who now presents himself as the friend many readers need. Frederick Joseph chats with Jacksonville teen, Taylor Richardson who made The Black Friend available to all 21 library locations in Jacksonville. Learn more about Taylor Richardson here.

St. Patrick's Day Books for Little Leprechauns

Celebrate both Irish American Heritage Month and St. Patrick’s Day with this list of books for kids! Whether it’s a book from an Irish author, a book about the significance of the holiday, or a romping adventure with a leprechaun, there’s something here for every child.  Fortunately, there are plenty of great books to help your child both understand Irish culture and enjoy St. Patrick’s Day. 

The "Just Write" Books for Writing Your Story (Day)

Write Your Story

Everyone has a story to tell. If you’re on social media, you’re most likely already “micro-blogging” in the form of daily updates, posting photos, and sharing milestones and moments with friends and family. Why not grab a pen and paper, open your laptop, or (heck) bring out the old typewriter if you’re so inclined and just write? Your life story may also end up being a family treasure one day, a record of you and of family history that might otherwise get lost or forgotten. If you need some inspiration or direction, these books are a great place to start.

Trailblazers of Women's History and Today

Women's History Month

For the last 34 years, the month of March has been designated “Women’s History Month” by Presidential Proclamation. It is designed to “celebrate the contributions women have made to the United States and recognize the specific achievements women have made over the course of American history in a variety of fields.” This celebration, though, is not just about honoring the past. It is also an opportunity and annual reminder to reflect, to learn, and to grow. Some of the women featured in these booklists might just change the way you see history. Others may help you better understand the current state of women’s rights and the issues facing women and girls here domestically and globally.

They Called Her Harry

Henrietta C. Dozier, a.k.a. "Harry"

Recently, there has been some discussion about and renewed interested in Jacksonville’s first female architect, Henrietta Dozier aka “Harry.” This Women’s History Month, the Library dug into its Special Collections and a few old Florida Times-Union articles as well. Just what was there about this woman’s story that’s so compelling that we come back to it, decade after decade? Was it her determination to succeed in a field dominated by men? Was it her approach to life or the boundaries she pushed? What more can we learn from her?

Challenge Gender Inequity on International Women's Day

Happy Women's Day

International Women's Day is a global celebration of the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The first gathering was held in 1911. It’s not just a look back, though. It’s a day very much focused on the present, with specific calls to action for accelerating gender parity. The booklist below is filled with fearless pioneers of Science, bold women in Black History, and empowered breakers of glass ceilings in every profession and field. Our goal is that you read about them, learn from them, and then go do something inspiring.


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