The Pointe

MidPointe Library's Official Blog

Ditch the clutter and bask in the joy the Marie Kondo way!

Clutter has never been so popular!

The world-renowned doyen of clutter-busting, Marie Kondo, now advises clutter-free wannabees how to clear the stuff from their lives on her new Netflix television show, “Tidying Up With Marie Kondo.” Therefore for today’s TriviaTuesday question we ask:

What does Marie suggest is the best way to store clothes in a drawer?

According to Marie, one should fold clothes so that they “stand upright on their own” inside a drawer (as depicted in the YouTube video below). And, she advises, “Remember to send love through your palms” as you flatten them for folding.

Let MidPointe Library be your source for all things Marie Kondo! On-shelf and online, MidPointe’s your first step toward a more organized life! Click on:

And don’t forget our voluminous e-Library available to library cardholders via our website:

Mock Newbery and Caldecott Event at MidPointe Library West Chester Previews the Real Thing

Over 65 children's services staff from public libraries located in Southwest Ohio discussed and voted on juvenile and young adult fiction, non-fiction, and picture books, in a Mock Newbery and Mock Caldecott event hosted by the West Chester MidPointe Library System on Thursday, January 17.  The event is coordinated by Sam Bloom, a Tween Librarian with The Public Library Cincinnati and Hamilton County (PLCH) and a team of staff from PLCH, MidPointe Library System, and The Lane Libraries.

This year, Loren Long, a local author/illustrator who lives in Cincinnati, talked to us about his writing and illustrating process, specifically about his illustrations for the picture book Love, written by Matt de la Peña.    

Mocks 2.jpg

The winner of the Mock Newbery was The Night Diary by Vera Hiranandani.

The honors for the Mock Newbery went to Be Prepared by Vera Brosgol, The Journey of Little Charlie by Christopher Paul Curtis, and The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan.

The winner of the Mock Caldecott was Drawn Together, illustrated by Dan Santat, written by Minh Lê.

The honors for the Mock Caldecott went to Dreamers by Yuyi Morales and Julián is a Mermaid by Jessica Love.

The actual ALA Youth Media Awards announcement for the Newbery and Caldecott medals (and other awards) takes place at the American Librarian Association conference in Seattle, Washington, on Monday, January 28th, at 8 a.m. PT.  The event will be live-streamed and here is the link if you're interested in watching the live announcements:

Today we commemorate the life and legacy of America’s civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Today we commemorate the life and legacy of America’s civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

The third Monday of January has been designated as “Martin Luther King Jr. Day.” Fittingly, this federal holiday is observed as closely as possible to Dr. King’s birthday on January 15 [1929].

As we all know, Dr. King suffered a mortal gunshot wound inflicted by James Earl Ray in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 4, 1968. He died that evening.

Only the day before, King, a recipient of many death threats, had delivered his famous “I’ve Been To The Mountaintop” speech. To many it seemed to be a foreshadowing of his death.

Dr. King’s assassination was front page news in papers and televised media around the world. The Middletown (Ohio) Journal was no exception.

However, Journal editors went farther than just reporting the murder of Dr. King. In an editorial titled “All of Us Share Guilt In Slaying of Dr. King,” they wrote:

“The nation must share the guilt for the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. Anyone who harbors race hatred in his heart had a finger on the trigger that sent the fatal bullet into the great Negro leader...The man behind the assassin’s gun is only a symbol of the sickness from which this nation has been slowly, too slowly, recovering…

“It is contrary to the principles of this nation to make second-class citizens of people because of race, color, or creed. It is contrary to the teachings of Christianity and it is contrary to the consciences of men of good will…

“[Dr. King’s] death is a grievous loss to this nation and to the world. He must not have died in vain.”

mlk assassinated.jpg

Information for this article was supplied by online sources.

Past issues of the Middletown Journal and many other newspapers are available to MidPointe Library cardholders via its online research database “Newspaper Archive” available at:

MidPointe has a large collection of material on Dr. King onsite and online via its catalog:

Forget the snow! Think "Blue" for Little Blue Penguins at the Cincinnati Zoo!

If snow is getting you down, don’t think white…

Think blue!


Blue penguins, that is.

Two “Little Blue penguins” (also known as  “Fairy Penguins”) recently joined the LBP family at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden, the “Journal News” reported on January 5.

The zoo reportedly “has the largest colony of Little Blue penguins in North America…,” the article continued. The newest arrivals hatched on December 28 and on New Years Eve.

According to a Cincinnati Zoo website, the pair have been named “Toast” and “Pierogi.” *

True to their name, Little Blues are the smallest of penguins. While a full-grown Emperor penguin can reach over 3 feet tall and weigh over 90 pounds, the Little Blue reaches about 16 inches tall and weighs less than 2 ½ pounds! **

Happily, the zoo’s Little Blue penguin population is expected to increase, the “Journal News” article reported.

In the meantime fans are invited to the zoo during “Penguin Days” through March 8. ***

If you’re interested in learning more about penguins and the endearing Little Blues, check out MidPointe Library’s collection of  enchanting fictional picture books like Petr Horacek’s “Blue Penguin” as well as many other other non-fiction items.


Journal News, “Cincinnati -- Zoo Welcomes Little Blue Penguins,” January 5, 2019.


**From “Penguins,” created and written by John Bonnett Wexo. Available for check-out at MidPointe Library.


Information about all of Nature’s tuxedo-wearing penguins can be found via MidPointe’s website:

...And through its eLibrary available at:

Accompanying photo of a Little Blue Penguin from Google Photos.

Happy January Birthdays to our favorite "Hamiltons": Alexander and Lin-Manuel Miranda!

Their January birthdays are just five days apart.

They’re classic Capricorns, known for “ever striving to reach the heights” *

These days the mention of one’s name evokes thoughts of the other.

They’ve been seen at different times in New York City wearing similar clothing.

Welcome to the world of Alexander Hamilton and Lin- Manuel Miranda, stars of Miranda’s award-laden Broadway production, “Hamilton -- An American Musical.”

Written by the latter to celebrate the former, “Hamilton...” is Miranda’s paean to the best and the worst in human nature. It features two of the most memorable characters in American history:


Founding Father, first Secretary of the United States Treasury and he whose face adorns the $10 bill, Alexander Hamilton, and then-Vice President of the United States and ultimately Hamilton’s deadly political rival, Aaron Burr.

Theirs is perhaps the most famous gun duel in history. Hamilton suffered what would become a mortal gunshot wound inflicted by Burr in New Jersey on July 11, 1804. He died the next day.

Normally death by duel isn’t the stuff of musical theater. But with strokes of creative genius, Miranda concocted a stew of intriguing characters, political rivalry and death and topped it off with irresistible hip hop and engaging lyrics. The result was a Tony and Grammy award-winning mega-hit that’s still the buzz of Broadway and theaters around the country.

Mom, Dad in NYC 2015. Trinity Church graveyard. Alexander Hamilton.JPG

So brilliantly has Miranda presented the intriguing story of Hamilton’s demise that even those who once declared American history the most boring subject in school are now flocking to New York City’s Trinity Church to see Hamilton’s impressive tombstone and that of his wife, Eliza.

That’s probably the best way to see Hamilton in the Big Apple these days, especially if you didn’t get tickets to the show that bears his name...

Interestingly, Alexander Hamilton and Lin-Manuel Miranda share some things in common:

Musical genius Miranda not only wrote the book, lyrics and music for “Hamilton : The Musical” (reportedly after having been inspired by author Ron Chernow’s biography of Hamilton**). He also portrayed the doomed Founding Father in both Broadway and off-Broadway productions.


Hamilton was born on this date, January 11, 1755 or 1757, on an island in the West Indies and lived much of his life in New York City. Miranda, of mostly Puerto Rican descent, was born in New York City on January 16, 1980. He reportedly still lives in the area.

Zodiac aficionados recognize two key characteristics shared by Capricorns such as Hamilton and Miranda : seriousness and a hard-working nature. Astrology expert, author M.J. Abadie, reports that the “glyph” (symbol) for Capricorns is the “Mountain Goat, who is ever striving to reach the heights…” (*)

Of course, Miranda fans already knew the musical prodigy  reached “the heights” long ago. Prior to his success with “Hamilton,” he wrote the music and lyrics of yet another Tony and Grammy Award-winning musical titled In the Heights.

This month, in honor of Alexander Hamilton and Lin-Manuel Miranda, we wish a very happy birthday to  industrious Capricorns everywhere!

The photograph of Lin-Manuel Miranda as Alexander Hamilton and the image of Alexander Hamilton are from Google Images.

Visitors to New York City can view the tombstones of Alexander Hamilton and his wife in the Trinity Church cemetery in Lower Manhattan.

“Hamilton-The Musical” continues to draw audiences from around the world at the Richard Rodgers Theatre on West 46th Street, New York City. The show is currently on tour throughout the country. Cincinnati, Ohio, is one of the stops.

* The book, “Teen Astrology -- The Ultimate Guide to Making Your Life Your Own” by M.J. Abadie is available for checkout at MidPointe Library.

** The 2004 book, “Alexander Hamilton,” by Ron Chernow, is available for checkout at MidPointe Library.

This blog also includes information from online sources.

MidPointe Library is your source for Lin-Manuel Miranda and “Hamilton”-related materials  :

Material is also available to library cardholders via MidPointe’s e-Library accessible at:

"May You Always" Remember Local Music Icon Christine McGuire

Today Middletonians are mourning the loss of one of their own -- a mellifluous voice that charmed millions around the world from hometown friends to U.S. presidents and British royalty.

mcquire sisters.jpg

Christine McGuire, one-third of the internationally- esteemed singing McGuire Sisters of both Middletown and Miamisburg, died Friday, December 28, at the age of 92, according to news reports. (*) She lived in Las Vegas.

Of the trio, Phyllis McGuire survives at age 87. Singing sibling Dorothy died in 2012 at age 84. (*)

Middletown and Miamisburg were home to the McGuires. Dorothy, Christine and Phyllis McGuire were born and lived in Middletown and attended local schools (Phyllis graduated from Miamisburg High). Their father, Asa, worked at Armco and their mother, Lillie, was an ordained minister/pastor at the First Church of God in Middletown and Miamisburg First Church of God. Music was a big part of the girls’ home, school and church lives.

To most people “Sincerely” is a word used when signing a letter. But to a previous generation, it’s the title of the song that propelled the McGuire Sisters to 20th-century icon status.

That fame arrived in the early 1950s. The trio was a featured act on the popular Arthur Godfrey TV program. Eventually their songs “Sugartime” and “May you Always” as well as “Sincerely” became part of the popular culture. The sisters were inducted into music halls of fame.

Their enchanting harmonies entertained five U.S. presidents from Richard Nixon to George H.W. Bush, Queen Elizabeth II of England, and millions of devoted fans in concerts and on TV.

Despite their fame, the McGuires didn’t forget their roots.

Locals may recall when the McGuires returned to perform at the Middletown High School Prom Jubilee at LeSourdsville Lake on May 30, 1953. Decades later, in 1991, the trio captivated an audience of friends, family and fans at Middletown’s historic Sorg Theater.

Today our community will pause to reflect upon the beauty and talent of Christine McGuire. Some may even find comfort in the poignant lyrics of “May You Always,” especially its timely line:

“...May old acquaintance be remembered and your cup of kindness filled..” (**)

* From “Local Native Christine McGuire of the hit ‘50s music group the McGuire Sisters dies at 92” by Michael D. Pitman, Staff Writer, Dayton Daily News.

** From “May You Always” written by Dick Charles and Larry Markes. Available on

Photo : McGuire Sisters at Middletown High School Prom Jubilee May 30, 1953, at the former LeSourdsville Lake. Available for viewing on the MidPointe Library Digital Archives :

A biography, “The McGuire Sisters -- A Hometown Success Story” by Allen J. Baxter of West Chester, is available for reading in the Ohio Room at MidPointe Library Middletown.