Monday, October 28, 2019

Grow with Google Workshop – "Reach Customers Online with Google" at Central Library October 29

Google is coming to Birmingham, Alabama! Don’t miss this special digital marketing event featuring Google's top experts. Business owners, marketing professionals, and salespeople should make plans to attend.     

What: Grow with Google "Reach Customers Online with Google" workshop
When: Tuesday, October 29, 5:30–7:00 p.m.
Where: Birmingham Public Library – Central Library/Linn-Henley Research Library/Arrington Auditorium/4th floor
Details: Free but registration is required. Make reservations through the BPL events calendar.

Anyone who wants to learn new marketing skills or reach potential customers online will learn Google’s latest best practices for engine optimization (SEO), search engine marketing (SEM), content marketing, and social media marketing.

The result? You’ll walk away with a strategy, plan, and tools that will get your organization, business, or event in front of your target audience at the right time and with the right message.

Led by Grow with Google speaker and trainer Demming Bass, this is a can’t-miss workshop customized for the businesses, marketers, and nonprofits in the Birmingham, Alabama, region. Best of all—the first 50 registered attendees will get free Google swag and a $100 Google Ads credit!

Reach Customers Online with Google
Learn how customers find your business online and how to promote your online presence with search engine optimization and online advertising. Attendees will be introduced to free tools to help you run your business online, including Google Analytics, Google Trends, and more.

In this session you'll learn how to:

  • Create and verify a free Google My Business listing
  • Optimize your website for search and mobile
  • Use search engine marketing opportunities for your business
  • Benefit from free online tools to grow your business
  • Learn simple but effective tips for social media, content and email marketing

The workshop is free of charge, but registration is required. To register, please go to the Birmingham Public Library’s events calendar. For more information about the workshop, please contact Jim Murray of the Central Library’s Business, Science and Technology Department at or 205-226-3691.

About the Presenter
Before becoming Google’s Grow with Google speaker and trainer for Alabama, the Carolinas, and Georgia, Demming Bass enjoyed an award-winning career as a chamber of commerce executive and led Constant Contact's marketing efforts across six states in the Southeast. To date he's trained more than 10,000 small businesses, nonprofits, and chambers on how to be better marketers. In addition to his role with Google, Demming is a StoryBrand Certified Guide where he works with clients around the world to improve and clarify their brand messaging strategy.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

2019 Local Authors Expo: Meet Joyce Brooks, author of Shift Happens

Joyce E. Brooks will be at the 2019 Local Authors Expo Saturday, November 2 at Five Points West Regional Library. 
What: 2019 Birmingham Public Library Local Authors Expo
When: Saturday, November 2, 10:00 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.
Where: Five Points West Regional Library
About the author: Joyce E. Brooks of Hoover, Ala., is an author, mother, international speaker and two-time cancer survivor. She has written six books:
Mr. Brown, Will You Please Open the Door?
Self-Inflicted Overload
Stress Less and Live More: 52 Tips for Living Fully
The Power of Two Words- A Little Motherly Advice
It Ain’t Over.

Over the past decade, Joyce E. Brooks of Hoover, Ala. has used the power of the pen as a coping mechanism and as a means to give words of encouragement to others. A mother, international speaker and two-time cancer survivor, Brooks has penned six books on topics such as dealing with stress, overcoming the unexpected death of her husband, and battling cancer.

In her latest book, SHIfT HAPPENS, Brooks invites the reader to follow her journey from celebrating 10 years being cancer free to days later being diagnosed with breast cancer – again.

Come meet Brooks and other writers participating in the Birmingham Public Library 2019 Local Authors Expo on Saturday, November 2 at the Five Points West Regional Library The free event, being held between 10:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m., will feature several authors selling and autographing books, and talking about their writing process.

 Authors, publishers, and literary organizations interested in participating will find a registration form and more information here.

 SHIfT Happens is a compilation of Brooks’ thoughts, emotions, highs and lows as well as the scriptures she embraced to strengthen her along the journey.

"Writing offered me an opportunity to find purpose in the midst of the unexplainable and the unexpected,” Brooks said. “I hope my words will encourage and awaken a desire in others to live each day to the fullest, to never give up and find strength and peace in God's word."

If you have been touched by cancer, a dreaded illness or unexpected tragedy – or have walked through a tunnel of uncertainty – there is always light at the end, in the middle and every step you take. When challenges occur, it’s time to shift because “it still ain’t over,” Brooks said.

"It Ain't Over" is a mantra Brooks lives by, and is the title of her book she wrote in 2014 after her husband, Birmingham Fire Chief Ivor Brooks, died unexpectedly of a heart attack.

 In 2018, Brooks wrote her first children’s book, “Mr. Brown: Can You Open the Door.”

For more information on the 2019 BPL Local Authors Expo, click here 

Monday, October 14, 2019

British TV Talk & Trivia

Avondale Public Library Conference Room
October 29  2:00 p.m.

Please join us to talk about Poldark (Seasons 1-3). Ross Poldark, a redcoat who returns to Cornwall after the Revolutionary War, discovers that his father is dead, his lands are ruined, and his true love is engaged to another. Can Poldark change his destiny, regain his lost fortune, and reclaim his true love?

This is a British historical drama television series filled with romance, drama, beautiful Cornwall countryside and great costumes.

This should be an interesting discussion. Hope to see you there!

Real MENtors Talk to Read to Students at Sun Valley Elementary School on October 17

The Birmingham Public Library's Real MENtors Talk program is partnering with the 100 Black Men of Metro Birmingham to read to students at Sun Valley Elementary School in Birmingham this Thursday, October 17. The event is being held to observe National Literacy Awareness Month, which recognizes the critical role reading plays in educational development.

Real MENtors Talk facilitator Roy L. Williams, BPL's Public Relations Director, will be joined by members of the 100 Black Men of Metro Birmingham as they read to children and talk about their careers between 10:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. at Sun Valley Elementary, 1010 8th Avenue Northwest in Birmingham.

"I am grateful that the 100 Black Men of Metro Birmingham is partnering with BPL to invest in the lives of the next generation," Williams said.

Members of the Real MENtors Talk panel discussion held September 16 at Five Points West Regional Library.

Real MENtors Talk is a mentoring program that BPL began this fall, featuring mentors who participate in panel discussions and share encouraging words for young people in libraries across Birmingham. For more information about Real MENtors Talk, contact Roy Williams at 205-226-3746 or email

Thursday, October 17 is the same day Better Basics, a Birmingham-based literacy organization, is hosting Birmingham Reads, in which several Birmingham area adult volunteers will be reading to students in nearly 30 Birmingham city schools, beginning at 1:00 p.m.

Also in honor of Naional Literacy Awareness Month, Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin has launched the online book club Read With Woodfin, using the hashtag  #ReadwithWoodfin.

Trivia Night: Classic 20th Century Horror at Rojo Birmingham October 22

What: Trivia Night: Classic 20th Century Horror
When: Tuesday, October 22, 6:00–10:00 p.m.
Where: Rojo Birmingham
Details: FREE to participate but registration is required through the BPL events calendar.

In the spirit of Halloween this month, the Avondale Regional Branch Library's trivia theme is dedicated to classic 20th century horror cinema! Join us at Rojo Birmingham and compete for spooky themed prizes as we cover quintessential monsters, '80s evil spirits, and international cult classics.

Seating at 6:00 p.m.; games start at 7:00 p.m.

For more information about this event contact Joan Inman at or 205-226-4000.

Thursday, October 10, 2019

State Senator Linda Coleman-Madison Gives $6,000 to 5 BPL Locations

L-R: BPL Board President James Sullivan, Regional Manager Yolanda Hardy and State Sen. Linda Coleman-Madison.

Alabama State Sen. Linda Coleman-Madison, Senate District 20, has given $6,000 in community service grants to five Birmingham Public Library (BPL) locations in her district.

Coleman-Madison, ADA Compliance Administrator for the City of Birmingham, presented the checks to BPL during its Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2019.

Coleman-Madison's checks were as follows:

 • North Birmingham Regional Branch Library -$2,000

 • Springville Road Regional Branch Library - $1,000

 • Pratt City Branch Library - $1,000

 • Ensley Branch Library - $1,000

 • Inglenook Branch Library - $1,000

Coleman-Madison, a former Birmingham City councilwoman, said she was honored to present checks from her Senate Community Service grant funds to the five public libraries in Birmingham located within Senate District 20.

“Politically my campaign slogan has always been "putting people before politics',"  Coleman-Madison said "The personal words I live by are My life is God's gift to me; what I do with it is my gift to Him.”

BPL Executive Director Floyd Council said Coleman-Madison’s donation will help BPL continue to provide quality services for the citizens of Birmingham.

"BPL is appreciative for your amazing passion and support of libraries in District 20 and the Birmingham area." Council said.

A year ago, Coleman-Madison presented $13,000 in community service grants to the same five public libraries in her Birmingham district.

Interstellar Ginger Beer Partnering with Bards & Brews Poetry Slam

Interstellar Ginger Beer Co. of Alabaster donated beer for the October 11 Bards & Brews Poetry Slam. 
Bards & Brews, the Birmingham Public Library’s monthly spoken word poetry/craft beer event, will debut a new beer partner during its Poetry Slam Friday.

Interstellar Ginger Beer Co. of Alabaster has donated two kegs of beer that will be available for attendees of BPL's first slam of 2019 being held Friday, October 11, 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Central Library's Linn-Henley Research Building.

A poetry slam is a competition using elimination rounds for the performance of spoken word poetry, judged by a panel chosen from the audience. Nine of Alabama’s top spoken word artists will compete for a combined $600 in cash. The first place poet will win $300; second place gets $200; third place receives $100.

Musical entertainment will begin at 6:30 p.m. featuring G’s Band, led by Garry Thomas, a network administrator for the Jefferson County Library Cooperative, which includes BPL. Poetry will begin to flow at 7:00 p.m.

Voice Porter, who was recently featured in a national spotlight by Starbucks Coffee, will serve as emcee and host.

Hop City Beer & Wine of Birmingham, which carries Interstellar beer, will handle the pouring. You must be 21 or older to drink beer samples.  Bards & Brews is supported by the Friends Foundation of the Birmingham Public Library.

Interstellar Ginger Beer is the product of microbiologist Dr. Shane Kelly and entrepreneur Daniel Sims, two longtime friends with a passion for craft beer. Since opening in September 2017, Interstellar has become Alabaster’s hot spot for craft brews, hosting beer tasting and weekly public events.

Teresa Huggins, events coordinator, said Interstellar is excited to partner with Bards & Brews. She has attended several Bards & Brews spoken word events and is friends with Bards & Brews poet/committee member Lee Green. She said the collaboration with Bards & Brews is perfect because Interstellar hosts an Open Mic night on the first Thursday of the month and specializes in craft beers.

“We are excited to be a part of this,” Huggins said.

Interstellar specializes in ginger beers inspired by famous drinks. Its ginger beer are sold in bars, stores and other venues statewide. According to its website, Interstellar takes an innovative “where no man has gone before” approach to recipe creation with two offerings that glow in the dark and we believe we have created something truly unique.”

Their beers are gluten-free and made with 3-stage filtered water, fresh cold-pressed ginger, fresh squeezed citrus juice, and other real ingredients.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

By Maya Jones, West End Branch Library

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Birmingham Public Library can be your first stop for free information about this type of cancer. I hope these resources will help with early detection and survivorship where needed.

The Black Woman's Breast Cancer Survival Guide: Understanding and Healing in the Face of a Nationwide Crisis by Cheryl D. Holloway
Breast Cancer: Risks, Detection, and Treatment by Michelle Denton
Detecting & Living with Breast Cancer for Dummies by Marshalee George and Kimlin Tam Ashing
The New Generation Breast Cancer Book: How to navigate Your Diagnosis and Treatment Options—and Remain Optimistic—in an Age of Information Overload by Elisa Port
Pretty Sick: The Beauty Guide for Women with Cancer by Caitlin M. Kiernan

AHFS Consumer Medication Information – This database provides drug information in layman’s terms.
Alt HealthWatch – Database of Alternative health medicine.
Health InfoNet of Alabama – Free health information for the residents of Alabama.
Health Source: Consumer Edition – Database of health magazines.
MedlinePlus – Federal database that has health information from the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM) and National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Breast Cancer Support (Organizations)
Alabama Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program
Alabama Department of Health
201 Monroe St., Montgomery, AL 36104
877-252-3324 (Provides free breast and cervical cancer screenings.)

Brenda's Brown Bosom Buddies
PO Box 310532
Birmingham, AL 35231
205-356-3892 (A nonprofit tailored to speak to Women of Color. BBBB is dedicated to the support, education, and early detection of breast cancer for minority, low income, and underserved women and men.)

Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation North Central Alabama
1909 27th Ave. S.
Homewood, AL 35209

O'Neal Comprehensive Cancer Center at UAB
Supportive Care & Survivorship Clinic
1824 6the Ave. S.
WTI 202
Birmingham, AL 35233

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

How to Stay Healthy While You’re Busy

by Alisha Johnson, Ensley Branch Library

If you are in any way like me, you know how hard it is to lead a healthy lifestyle with all of the demands of juggling a career, school, and parenthood. You make all of the New Year’s resolutions in January to find out after the year has passed, you forgot to lose weight. And eating healthy is a whole other beast in itself. By the time you settle down for the evening, forget to thaw the chicken and help with homework, you’re too exhausted to turn on the oven. Below are some ways you can combat the stressors of life and get your mind and body in shape without spending hours in a gym or over the stove.

  1. Walk whenever possible—it’s free
  2. Take advantage of free workout videos
  3. Prep healthy meals at the start of the week (portion control)
  4. Make good use of a Crock-Pot and Instant Pot
  5. Try some awesome morning yoga poses like Utkatasana (Chair Pose) and Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog)

Now that you know how to stay healthy and fit, go on and do it already!

Check out these resources from your local library:

Fitness after 40: Your Strong Body at 40, 50, 60, and Beyond: Includes a 6-Week Total-Body Workout Program by Vonda Wright, M.D., M.S., with Ruth Winter, M.S.
The 4-Hour Body by Timothy Ferriss
8 Minutes in the Morning: A Simple Way to Start Your Day That Burns Fat and Sheds the Pounds by Jorge Cruise
10 Minute Solution: Fitness Ball Workouts [DVD]

Frazine Taylor Receives Whiting Award

By Jim Baggett, Archives Department, Central Library

Frazine Taylor
At its annual meeting last week in Decatur, the Society of Alabama Archivists presented the Marvin Yeomans Whiting Award to Frazine Taylor, chair of the Black Heritage Council.

Named in memory of Marvin Whiting, the Birmingham Public Library’s first archivist and a pioneer of the archival profession in Alabama, the award has been given each year since 2012 to an individual, institution, or organization that has made a significant contribution to the preservation and dissemination of local history in our state.

Frazine Taylor holds a BS in Business Commerce from Knoxville College in Tennessee and received her Master of Library Science from Atlanta University. Taylor is a former Peace Corps Volunteer who lived in the Fiji Islands for several years, and she has traveled extensively in the South Pacific. She worked in the Peace Corps Headquarters in Washington from 1970–1976, where she was in charge of sending peace corps volunteers to overseas posts. In her library and archives career Taylor worked at the Tuskegee University Library and served as co-head of reference for the Alabama Department of Archives and History. Since her retirement from ADAH, Taylor has worked as a part-time archivist at Alabama State University.

Recognized as the premier expert on African American genealogy in our state, Frazine Taylor is author of the book Researching African American Genealogy in Alabama: A Resource Guide, and is a researcher and consultant for the PBS series Finding Your Roots.

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Grow with Google Workshop – "Spruce Up Your Holiday Marketing Plan"

What: Grow with Google Workshop – "Spruce Up Your Holiday Marketing Plan
When: Wednesday, October 16, 11:00 a.m.–12:15 p.m.
Where: Linn-Henley Research Library/Regional Library Computer Center/4th floor
Details: The Birmingham Public Library will livestream the Grow with Google workshop "Spruce Up Your Holiday Marketing Plan." FREE but space is limited and registration is required through the BPL events calendar.

Business owners know that the holiday season is the busiest time of year. With November and December fast approaching, is your business ready to connect with its customers and make the most of the holiday rush?

Join Google and Constant Contact for their annual holiday livestream event as they demonstrate how to reach customers online using Google My Business listings, online advertising, and email marketing plans.

Prior to this workshop, registrants should visit to create an action plan for themselves.

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