Rowling and Potter


Wishing a happy birthday to everyone’s favorite wizard, Harry Potter, and his creator, J.K. Rowling.


Here are some fun facts about Rowling and her famous books and characters:


Joanne (“Jo”) Rowling was born in Yate, England on July 31, 1965. She turns 49 this year.


The K in J.K. Rowling comes from Jo’s grandmother, Kathleen. Jo herself does not have a middle name.


The idea for Harry Potter came to Rowling as she was traveling on a train between Manchester and London in 1990.


After several rejections, Rowling sold the first book for about US$4000. Since the series became an international success story, Rowling is now said to be the 13th richest woman in the United Kingdom, richer even than Queen Elizabeth II.


The dementors were inspired by Rowling’s struggle with depression in her 20s.


Are you familiar with Hermione Puckle, Neville Puff, Draco Spinks and Lily Moon? Probably not, since Rowling changed the names of these popular characters before the books were published. (Lily Moon became Luna Lovegood.)


Michael Jackson once approached Rowling about doing a musical based on the books, but she decided against it.


A film is now being made based on FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM, a Hogwart’s “textbook” that Rowling wrote as a companion to the Harry Potter series.


Can’t get enough Harry Potter? Find out more and discover fun extras, including the occasional short story by Rowling herself, at www.pottermore.com


To discover or rediscover Rowling’s epic fantasy series, come visit your library.


Rain Barrels and Rain Gardens


So…how’s your garden doing?

This year our problem in NE Ohio has been too much rain. Except for those with raised beds, many gardeners have seen their plants drowned and stunted by the rains. Other years, the opposite has been true.

Water is a tricky but necessary resource so using it to our best advantage is a no-brainer.

Two practices commonly used to manage it are rain gardens and rain barrels. Capturing rainwater and slowing the runoff, while simultaneously lowering the amount of maintenance your garden requires, work towards a more sustainable use of a finite resource.

This summer, my household experimented with rain barrels.

blue barrel


Here are my rain barrels. There are two, one directly behind the other. We use them to water our raised garden. They collect the water running off the roof of a small shed. This helps us because the garden is far from the hose spigot. The rain barrels were free and the building materials cost around $50. Both barrels were filled (approx. 60 gal. each) within 2 rains- one of which was heavy. The spigots work very well and I watered our entire raised garden with less than 1/2 barrel. It was great not to have to unwind yards and yards of heavy  garden hose!

Books on rain barrels, their construction and uses, can be found at the Green Library. Examples include:



Another way to manage water runoff is a rain garden, the essence of which is to capture and slow rapid runoff. This keeps our waterways cleaner while offering the appeal of a garden


This user-friendly handbook is designed for the backyard gardener. Written by a hydrology scientist and a horticulturist it is filled with simple, low-cost ideas and advice on planning, building, planting and maintaining a rain garden. And it’s available through the Green Branch Library. Come see us!




Brownies, ice cream, cake, cookies, bon-bons…who doesn’t LOVE chocolate? Well, Milk Chocolate lovers, today is a day to celebrate!  Each year on July 28, it is National Milk Chocolate Day.  Can we say, “Mmmm….”

If you have ever wondered how milk chocolate is made different from other chocolate, keep reading and you will learn the answer: Milk chocolate is solid chocolate that is made with milk in the form of milk powder, liquid milk or condensed milk.

Millions of people enjoy milk chocolate in candy, in baking and in hot chocolate.  Today you can enjoy milk chocolate your favorite way! If you need some ideas on how to make this yumminess even yummier, then check out some chocolate cookbooks from your local library!

Crazy about chocolate: More than 200 delicious recipes to enjoy and share, by Krystina Castella.



Bittersweet: recipes and tales from a life in chocolate, by Alice Medrich.


Fine cooking chocolate: 150 delicious and decadent recipes, Taunton’s Fine Cooking


45 Year Anniversary of the Lunar Landing


This history making journey began on July 16, 1969.  For more information, please see the following:


National Air and Space Museum


Newsweek Apollo 11 article




On July 26th the First Energy All-American Soap Box Derby is being held in Akron at Derby Downs,  a mere 7 miles from Green Branch. Events include a 5k run/walk,  parade, DQ rally challenge, super kid’s race, and a celebrity race, followed by the 77th derby race at 8:30 am.  Books and DVD’s are available on the history , facts and  heroes of the derby.

Ohio Day Trip



Looking for something fun to this summer to keep yourself and the kiddos occupied without breaking the bank or a long drive? Check out our list of NE Ohio Daytrips! For more info on local attractions and other things to do in the area, stop in to your local library to check out our travel books and DVDs!

Monroe Falls Park Lake

Local Zoo (Akron or Cleveland)

Local Sporting Events (Akron Aeros, Akron Racers)

Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens

Hale Farm and Village

Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad

Clay’s Park

Pro Football Hall of Fame

Rock Hall

Weathervane Community Playhouse

Akron Art Museum/Cleveland Museum of Art

Perkins Mansion & John Brown House

Hower House

Cedar Point

County Fairs

Amish Country (Amish & Mennonite Heritage Center)

Wineries (Wolf Creek, Sarah’s, Gervasi)

Aurora Farms/Lodi Outlets

Cleveland Botanical Gardens

Great Lakes Science Center

State/Metro/National Parks (biking, hiking, swimming, etc)

Seiberling Nature Realm

Water Works

McKinley Museum

First Ladies Library

Canton Classic Car Museum

Cleveland Aquarium

NASA Glenn Museum

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base & Air Museum



The Warther Museum



Marblehead Lighthouse

African Safari Wildlife Park

Canal Fulton

Sluggers & Putters

Hartville Flea Market

Longaberger Factory

Kalahari Indoor Water Park

Great Wolf Lodge

Grandpa’s Cheese Barn

Cleveland Museum of Natural History

Great Lakes Shakespeare Fest

Lock 3

Akron Civic Theatre

Tuscora Park

West Side Market

Edgewater Park

Fannie Mae Chocolate Factory

Smucker’s Company Store & Café

Hudson First & Main

Downtown Wooster

Nautica Queen

Don Drumm Studios



This Saturday, July 12, from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., the Summit County Historical Society is having a 90th Anniversary Celebration!  They will be having free tours of the Perkins Stone Mansion and the John Brown House. There will also be many free activities and much more for the entire family! Learn all about how Summit County started and how it has progressed over the past 90 years .So,if you’re looking for something interesting to do over the weekend that’s free, join in the celebration!  Check out their website at www.summithistory.org. for a map to the houses. Our Main library downtown has a special collections division on the 3rd floor that has more information on the history of our county.







One of the best sport writers has retired


The former Sports Illustrated/ESPN columnist and book author Rick Reilly has written his last article!

You can check out his books at your local library!




Did you miss the Big Butterfly Release at Green Library on June 3rd?

No worries! Here are some pictures of the 10 young Painted Lady butterflies (Vanessa cardu) as they took wing.


NC Painted Lady June 2014 inside BG2







They were first fortified with watermelon and cantaloupe juice so as to be ready for their search for food and habitat.

Painted Lady Butterflies are found almost anywhere, but they prefer brightly lit and open environments like clover fields, flowery meadows and hilly country. Because the eclose, or the emergent, stage of metamorphosis was timed to be in the early summer, there was abundant food available. They could well have stayed in our beautiful flower-filled  Reading Garden!

For more information on butterflies come to the Green Library!






If you or anyone you know happens to be lucky enough to spot a monarch egg on a milkweed stalk, we would be happy to “raise” it in our Butterfly Garden cage here at the Green Library. Bring the stalk with the egg on it in a jar of water. We’ll set it out on our Nature Connect Table and watch the entire life cycle unfold!

Here is a picture of what a monarch egg typically looks like on a milkweed leaf

monarch egg on leaf







Are You Wearing Your Pedometer Today?


A pedometer is a small device that counts a person’s steps, usually by detecting hip motion.  It can be worn on one’s belt or pants pocket, and is a great tool in fitness awareness and motivation.


Knowing the number of steps taken can tell a person how many miles they have walked. The U.S. Surgeon General has recommended 10,000 steps per day, which is the equivalent of 5 miles. This number is only a suggestion, and one that has been criticized for not taking health challenges or workout intensity into account.


The pedometer has had a long history. It was envisioned by Leonardo da Vinci in Renaissance times, and Thomas Jefferson discovered an early version of the tool in France and introduced it to the United States.


Today, you can easily find pedometers for everyday use. YOU CAN EVEN GET A FREE PEDOMETER  by signing up for the Mind Body and Sole summer program at any branch of the Akron-Summit County Public Library. You can then record your steps, along with daily reading, and earn your MBS t-shirt!


Can’t live without your favorite iPod, cell phone or other device? Many of these now have pedometer apps to make your fitness goals even easier to track.


Find out more about walking, physical fitness, and our Mind Body & Sole program at your library.