#triviatuesday - Today we bid a “Happy Birthday!” to William Shakespeare. In appreciation of the author-like-no-other, we ask several TriviaTuesday questions.
Since it’s tough to find a birthday card for someone’s 403rd birthday, today we’ll just bid a simple “Happy Birthday!” to William Shakespeare (1564-1616), who “contributed thousands of words to the English language…” *
In appreciation of the author-like-no-other, we ask not one, but several, TriviaTuesday questions relating to the Bard of Avon:
What Shakespeare play contains the most lines?
2. In what Shakespeare plays did the following expressions appear?
a. “Conscience does make cowards of us all.”
b. “What the dickens”
c. “Lord, what fools these mortals be?”
d. “A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse!”
e. “Dead as a doornail”
f. “Parting is such sweet sorrow”
3. Which MidPointe Library spokesman (whose name was inspired by the Bard) recently turned down an offer to be the “mane” spokesman for the Library of Congress?
Following are the correct answers to Numbers 1 and 2, found in “The Shakespeare Book of Lists -- the Ultimate Guide to the Bard, His Plays, and how They’ve Been Interpreted (and Misinterpreted) Through the Ages”: **
“Hamlet” boasts a whopping 4,042 lines.
b. “The Merry Wives of Windsor”
c. “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”
d. “Richard III”
e. “Henry VI.” Part 2
f. “Romeo and Juliet”
3. On April 1 MidPointe Library officials proudly announced that “Shakespurr,” their friendly, book-loving mascot with a name recalling the Bard, had been offered the prestigious position of “mane” spokesman at the venerable Library of Congress.
However, immediately afterward MidPointe officials breathed a sigh of relief when Shakespurr reminded them that it was April Fool’s Day and that he had just been “lion” about the job offer.
He then continued to amuse a relieved staff with more bad puns.
*From the 2018 “Chase’s Calendar of Events.” The 2019 version is available for checkout at MidPointe Library.
** “The Shakespeare Book of Lists -- The Ultimate Guide to the Bard, His Plays, and How They’ve Been Interpreted (and Misinterpreted) Through the Ages” by Michael LoMonico. Published in 2001 by the Career Press. Available for checkout at MidPointe Library.
If you’re a Shakespeare fan, look no further than MidPointe Library for hundreds of works by and about The Bard! Go to:
www.midpointelibrary.org > Catalog Search > William Shakespeare
Then continue your search for all-things-Shakespeare on thousands of sites in our eLibrary (books, audiobooks, magazines, movies, TV shows, music and research databases) available at:www.midpointelibrary.org > eLibrary.
No library card? No problem! Get your free card at any MidPointe location (Middletown, West Chester, Trenton, Monroe, Liberty Township (2nd floor of Liberty Center) and onboard our roaming “Library On Wheels,” formerly known as the Bookmobile!
You can find images of MidPointe’s beloved lion mascot, Shakespurr, on MidPointe’s social media, at all MidPointe locations and “in person” at special events in the area.
His friendly image also brightens the exterior of MidPointe’s “Library On Wheels.”
P.S. Sometimes he goes along for the ride.
#tbt - Plaid jackets, a "staff car" and business cards : we remember "The Intruders," local rock band
On today’s ThrowBack Thursday blog, we feature a popular local rock band from the 1960s, one of several featured in author Randy McNutt’s homage to “The Cincinnati Sound.” * Then, in a 1965 newspaper article, we learn the band members’ opinions on the then-controversial topic of hair length for male high school students... **
One of the most popular teen bands in the mid-1960s was composed of “high school boys from Middletown” who “performed at fraternity dances and parties in Cincinnati, Oxford, and Middletown.” *
They had the talent, the hair, the matching outfits and business savvy. Proof of the latter : a manager, their own business cards * as well as their own advertisement in the back of the 1966 Middletown High School Optimist yearbook. ***
They were The Intruders.
Around 1965, the Intruders included Kent Goforth, Pete Weitzenkrone, Paul Goodwin, Dave Johnson, Terry Harrison and John Reagan, according to “The Cincinnati Sound.” *
In one photo, band members appear ready to begin the beat at any moment, donning their matching plaid jackets and light-colored trousers.*
In a 1965 Middletown Journal article, they were “shaggy-haired cutups” expressing their opinions about a recent school rule that dictated the hair length of male students.
Like many of their male counterparts, three members of the school’s “most popular combo, the Intruders,” who were “known for their shaggy hair-dos,” were having none of it. Interviewed by reporter Lynne Withey, three Intruders shared their opinions:
In the days of mop-topped Beatles, fewer crew cuts and flourishing local rock bands, the Middletown High School rule -- “all boys must have a space the width of two fingers between hair and eyebrows” -- became a contentious topic.
“Kent Goforth says he wears his hair long because it’s ‘different’ and claims ‘the school should do more about teaching and less about haircutting. However, he feels that if long-haired students get into trouble, they deserve to have their hair cut.”
“Paul Goodwin...agrees with Kent and adds that long hair doesn’t interfere with a student’s scholastic ability…”
“John Regensburg offers a practical reason for the long hair: ‘The band gets more jobs.’”
Even today images of the Intruders abound. They’re appear on the group’s Facebook page -- a bit more mature and minus the plaid jackets -- but rockin’ the music like it was 1965.
It’s only rock ‘n’ roll but we like it.
*”The Cincinnati Sound” by Randy McNutt, with foreword by Jim LaBarbara. Published in 2007 by Arcadia Publishing. Available onshelf at MidPointe Library and in e-book format.
** “2-finger ruling’s a jab in the eye, high school’s long-haired boys say,” by Lynne Withey, Middletown Journal, October 17, 1965. Available for viewing on microfilm at MidPointe Library-Middletown and online via www.midpointelibrary.org > eLibrary > Research Databases > Magazines and Newspapers > Newspaper Archive > Middletown Journal.
***1966 Middletown High School “Optimist Yearbook.” That year and many others are available for viewing in the Ohio Room at MidPointe Library-Middletown (cannot be checked out).
We’ve got it all!
The 1966 Middletown High School ‘Optimist Yearbook” and many other years are also available for viewing on MidPointe’s Digital Archives:
www.midpointelibrary.org > eLibrary > Digital Archives > The Optimist Middletown City School District High School Yearbooks > Year
If you’re a rock fan, check out MidPointe’s catalog of thousands of works by artists representing many genres.
www.midpointelibrary.org > Catalog search.
You’ll also find music, TV shows, books and more on our eLibrary. One of the most popular sites is Hoopla with literally “hundreds of thousands of free movies, TV shows, full music albums, audiobooks, eBooks, comics and more…”
Start at www.midpointelibrary.org > eLibrary and you’ll be glad you did!
Please note: a MidPointe Library card is required to access some online sites.
No library card? No problem! Sign up for a free library card at any MidPointe location :
Middletown, West Chester, Trenton, Monroe, Liberty Township (2nd floor, Liberty Center) and onboard the “Library On Wheels” (formerly known as the Bookmobile).
Today’s TriviaTuesday question recalls those pioneers of aviation, Wilbur and Orville Wright of Dayton, Ohio. Since today, April 16, marks the 152nd anniversary of Wilbur’s birth, we ask the following :
What toy ignited the brothers’ curiosity about aeronautics?
A gift from their father -- a small toy helicopter “powered by twisting a rubber band” -- was all it took for the curious and analytical young siblings to eventually build their own version...and future craft that would change the course of history.
The brothers observed that when they let the helicopter go, its “rubber band unwound, causing the propeller to spin quickly and the helicopter to fly in the air. As the propeller slowed down, the helicopter wobbled, then fell to the ground.”
In time the boys “experimented with their own versions of the toy helicopter,” and discovered that “the bigger the helicopter was, the quicker it fell to the ground...”
Think about it.
A father’s thoughtfulness, a rubber band and a child’s toy led to man’s conquering the skies...and a visit to the Moon.
The bulk of information for this blog was derived from “First Flight -- The Story of the Wright Brothers” written by Caryn Jenner, published in 2003 by DK Publishing. Available for check-out in MidPointe’s juvenile biography section.
The date of Wilbur Wright’s birth was noted in the 2018 “Chase’s Calendar of Events.” The 2019 edition is available for checkout at MidPointe Library.
The accompanying photo of the Wright Brothers (Orville at left) and their sister Katherine can be found on MidPointe’s Digital Archives :http://www.midpointedigitalarchives.org/digital/collection/Crout/id/896/rec/6
No library card? No problem! Sign up for your free card at any MidPointe location -- Middletown, West Chester, Trenton, Monroe, Liberty Township (2nd floor, Liberty Center) and onboard MidPointe’s “Library On Wheels” (aka the Bookmobile). Then...
SAVE SOME ‘SPACE’ ON YOUR CALENDAR FOR “SUMMER READING”!
Soon MidPointe Library will again present its long-running and popular “Summer Reading Program.” This year’s theme is “A Universe of Stories”!
A local tradition, the reading program blasts off June 1 and touches down for what is sure to be a happy landing on July 31.
During the “spatial” adventure, individuals of all ages can attend free, fun and appropriately-themed programs featuring out-of-this world guests!
They’ll also be encouraged to take part in our read-for-prizes activity in which patrons can check out and enjoy books, books, and more books about Outer Space (or any subject they desire), keep track of their reading (or being read to) and win prizes for their efforts! Audiobooks and eBooks, count, too!
See you at Summer Reading!
Until then, “Live long and prosper.” *
* Dr. Spock, aka the late Leonard Nimoy, on the former TV series “Star Trek.”
#tbt - Something to sing about: Middletown's rich music history, a local who was always "Wright" and the inimitable Dick Clark
Early rock’n’roll showman and famous TV host, the late Dick Clark, was no stranger to the Middletown, Ohio, area.
With the instincts of a detective, the star of the decades-long hit series “American Bandstand” could spot real talent a mile away.
He found it here.
Clark’s musical relationship with Southwest Ohio is recalled in the engaging book, “The Cincinnati Sound,” by Randy McNutt. (*) It’s a veritable music time capsule.
McNutt’s paean to local music features vintage photos of homegrown artists performing at the gone-but-not-forgotten LeSourdsville Lake Amusement Park in Middletown as well as other venues.
According to McNutt, one of the locals with whom Dick Clark had a working relationship was Middletown native Dale Wright. Wright “recorded in Cincinnati and performed there regularly” and “participated in many of Clark’s traveling rock-and-roll shows” during the 1960s…..” (*)
Dick Clark wasn’t the only big name to introduce hometown performers like Dale Wright and the “Wright Guys” to local teen audiences. Popular Cincinnati Disc Jockey Dusty Rhodes of radio station WSAI is also pictured in McNutt’s book presenting the Wright band to a LeSourdsville audience in the park’s “Stardust Gardens” sometime around 1965. (*)
Wright, whose real name was Harlan Riffe, was the subject of a September 1973 interview published in the Middletown Journal in which he looked back on his musical career. (**)
He had returned to Middletown to visit his mother, Mrs. Martha Riffe of Manchester Road, and was interviewed by Journal Staff Writer Dorothy Damele. At the time, she reported, Wright was “emcee of a radio talk show on WNVL-Radio near Lexington, Ky.” (**)
The article recalled some of Wright’s career highlights to date:
Writing the song titled “She’s Neat” “which sold three-quarters of a million discs when he was only 18…” (**) (***)
“...working for Dick Clark as backstage road manager on ‘American Bandstand’...and “emceeing the road shows when [Clark] was absent…” (**)
Regularly appearing on Cincinnati TV entertainment programs (**)
Working in promotions and as ‘special talent’ at Cincinnati TV station WKRC (**)
Wright’s “personal seven-year management contract” with Chuck Conners, then-star of the TV western series, “The Rifleman,” which called for using Wright’s talents “in the show.” Not long after the signing the show was canceled “although Wright did appear in the next-to-last episode...” (**)
Dale Wright passed away in Lexington, Kentucky, on April 15, 2007.**** To his contemporaries and local music historians he’ll be remembered as one of the many who brightened daily life with the sound of music.
With Southwest Ohio home to many entertainers, and Cincinnati’s role in TV and radio history, it’s no wonder books like “The Cincinnati Sound” are a favorite of local music and media lovers!
That’s why for the remainder of April we’ll continue to salute local performers of the past, using “The Cincinnati Sound” as our guide.
In the meantime, may your days be filled with the sounds of music, old and new!
*”The Cincinnati Sound” by Randy McNutt. Published in 2007 by Arcadia Publishing. Available for checkout at MidPointe Library.
**”Wright’s still talking, this time on own show” by Dorothy Damele, Staff Writer for the Middletown Journal. Published September 8, 1973. Available for viewing on microfilm at MidPointe Library’s Middletown location or online at:
www.midpointelibrary.org > eLibrary > Research Databases > Magazines and newspapers > Newspaper archive > Middletown Journal.
Readers can find an image of the record, “She’s Neat” by Dale Wright with the Rock-Its on tps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pFG1l2hs2Ck
An image of the record, “Dale Wright -- She’s Neat : The Fraternity Sides” can be viewed at:
**** Dale Wright’s obituary can be accessed at: https://www.revolvy.com/page/Dale-Wright
About the Photos:
Four photos accompanying this article can be found in “The Cincinnati Sound” :
Cover: Dale Wright and the Wright Guys performing in a Cincinnati-area school auditorium