KC Public Library Blog

Heat Wave

Salvation Army Penny Ice truck at 1319 Broadway

August 14, 1936: Kansas City records its highest temperature ever, 113 degrees Fahrenheit, causing a summer heat wave that sends area residents to Swope or Penn Valley parks to sleep at night in order to cool off.

Book Reviews

Book Review: The Long Goodbye by Raymond Chandler

The Long Goodbye by Raymond Chandler

Some say that The Long Goodbye is too loosely constructed, and too sentimental, and they may be right. But Chandler was never much for tight plotting, but could scarcely be beat in setting up a scene and for the crispness of his language.

Burnt End

Interior view of the Exposition Building, also known as the Crystal Palace

August 5, 1901: A suspicious fire destroys Kansas City’s Crystal Palace, once a prime tourist attraction, only five days before its scheduled demolition.

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Program Notes: Gone with the Wind (1939)

Gone with the Wind movie poster

Gone with the Wind is hugely entertaining, with great acting, compelling characters and production values capable of impressing even those of us raised on computer-sweetened cinema.

Water Rights

Swope Park swimming pool

August 2, 1951: Kansas City receives formal notification that the NAACP will bring suit against the municipal segregation policy at the swimming pool in Swope Park.

Building A Community Of Readers

Community Builders: FYI Book Club

The Weight of Blood by Laura McHugh book cover

A masterful first novel challenges readers. Regional author Laura McHugh's debut, The Weight of Blood, has received much acclaim since publication last March, and FYI Book Club readers praised it as a "brilliant first novel."

Meet the Great Explorers!

Hopper and Wilson Fetch a Star by Maria Van Lieshout

Do you like to take trips to unknown place? Do you enjoy exploring a new territory that no one has ever found? People who like to investigate and keep a record of faraway lands are called explorers. Explorers are not afraid of traveling and encountering new, unusual things. Marco Polo, Christopher Columbus, and Lewis and Clark are among the world’s most famous explorers. This month, I found three new picture books about venturing to unique places and discovering new experiences.

Program Notes: The Roaring Twenties (1939)

The Roaring Twenties movie poster

With 1939’s The Roaring Twenties, James Cagney put a cap on his career as a movie tough guy. It would be a full decade after for him to star in another gangster film.

Book Reviews

Book Review: Landline by Rainbow Rowell

Landline by Rainbow Rowell

Reading Landline by Rainbow Rowell made me long for the old-fashioned landline phone – for the days when a phone fit your hand perfectly and your ear with the warmth of the voice at the other end, for the excitement a phone ringing and not knowing who was calling.

Join Us for TEDxYouth@KC

TEDxYouth@KC logo

TEDxYouth@KC invites those 25 and younger to be a part of our annual TEDxYouth event that will take place in November. We are looking for passionate and engaged individuals that are putting their idea worth spreading into action. We are also looking for those youth interested in event planning, set design and construction, and video production for TEDxYouth@KC.

Show Me Missouri!

S is for Show Me

Show Me Missouri!

Just because we live, work, and play here does not mean that we are experts on Missouri. The library is full of resources about your state. Learn more about it, and fall in love with the many interesting facets of this place we call home.

Building A Community Of Readers

Community Builders: Volunteer Spotlight

Volunteer Melanie Griffey

Melanie Griffey is a petite woman with a warm presence and a ready smile. A 43 year veteran teacher of Kindergarteners, and first and second graders, on Tuesdays she offers her considerable skills at the Plaza branch.

Hotel Horror

Hyatt  Regency Hotel

July 17, 1981: One hundred fourteen people die as two skywalks collapse at the Hyatt Regency Hotel during a tea dance.

Program Notes: Confessions of a Nazi Spy (1939)

Confessions of a Nazi Spy movie poster

Whatever its merits as entertainment, 1939's Confessions of a Nazi Spy is a social and historical landmark, the first time a major Hollywood studio pulled out all the stops in attacking the rise of Adolf Hitler and Nazism.