The Kokomo-Howard County Public Library will host a free Film Directors’ Workshop for those interested in learning video production from professionals.


The workshop is with noted directors Dean Yamada and Andrew Reed. Join us at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 5, in Meeting Rooms A&B on the lower level of KHCPL Main, 220 N. Union St. Yamada and Reed will share tips and answer your questions.


Yamada and Reed will be in Kokomo Sept. 4 and 5 for the Heartland Film “Best of the Fest.” Presented by Duke Energy, Heartland Film Best of the Fest brings a piece of the Heartland Film Festival to Kokomo. KHCPL is going to offer the Film Directors’ Workshop as another way to partner with the community and serve patrons.


Yamada’s narrative feature Cicada was a 2014 Heartland Film Festival award-winner, and Reed’s I’m With Paul documentary feature was an official selection of the 2014 Heartland Film Festival.


Yamada is a filmmaker and professor at Biola University, in La Mirada, Calif., where he teaches courses in production and post-production. Cicada marks his fifth collaboration with students and first feature film as director. His previous collaborations with students have screened at Venice, Clermont-Ferrand, and Aspen Shortsfest, and won awards at Heartland, Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival, and Sapporo Short Fest. As a media educator, he has twice received the King Foundation Best of Festival award at the Broadcast Education Association Festival of Media Arts. 


Reed is a filmmaker and assistant professor of Film and Media Arts at the University of Pikeville, Pikeville, Ky. He’s been heavily involved in media production for 10 years with a specialization in documentaries; however, he also has production experience in narratives, music videos, instructional videos, weddings, commercials, concerts, and other live events. 


Every October, the Heartland Film Festival gives attendees access to more than 100 visiting independent filmmakers from all over the world, right in the heart of the Midwest. Heartland showcases more than 130 entertaining movies that do more than just entertain over 10 days of red carpet premieres and events, parties, and hundreds of film screenings from Oct. 16 to 25 across Indianapolis.


The Heartland Film Festival has earned the special designation of being a qualifying festival for the Annual Academy Awards within the Short Films category. This means that the winner of the Grand Prize for Best Narrative Short Film qualifies for consideration in the Short Films category of the Annual Academy Awards without the standard theatrical run, provided the film otherwise complies with the Academy’s rules.


Tickets are $6 per show if ordered online before the screenings. KHCPL is partnering with the Heartland Film Festival (along with Indiana University Kokomo, Kokomo Central Schools, and Greater Kokomo Economic Development Alliance) to promote Heartland Film Best of the Fest to Kokomo, which is made possible by the generosity of Duke Energy. Because KHPCL is a Heartland Film Best of the Fest partner, you can take advantage of a special BOGO offer. Just enter the code HFKOKOMOBOG to buy one ticket, get one free.


The Heartland Film Best of the Fest lineup is as follows, with all films shown in the Central Middle International School Auditorium, 303 E. Superior St.


● 5:30 to 9 p.m., Friday, Sept. 4 - Oscar® Shorts Program 

A selection of four short films from the Heartland Film Festival

As an Academy Award-qualifying festival in the Narrative Shorts category, Heartland Film is always proud to present excellent short films from around the world to Roadshow events, such as Heartland Film Best of the Fest All of these short films were featured at the Heartland Film Festival in years past before they went on to receive Oscar  nominations in their respective categories – some even took home Oscar gold, such as this year’s The Phone Call. The short films God of Love, Head Over Heels, and The Dam Keeper will also be shown.


● 2 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 5 - Transcend

2014 Heartland Film Festival Official Selection, Documentary Feature

Long-distance running allowed Wesley Korir to escape the grinding poverty of Kenya. But after winning multiple American marathons, including taking running’s most cherished prize, the Boston Marathon, he risks it all and returns home to help his fellow Kenyans create better lives for themselves. Transcend is the story of the elusive spiritual energy that is somehow forged in the intense rigor of long-distance running, an energy Wesley Korir uses to transform the nation that has done more than any other to change the face of the marathon.


● 4:30 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 5 - I’m With Phil

2014 Heartland Film Festival Official Selection, Documentary Feature

When a New Yorker named Phil Campbell discovers a rural town in Alabama that shares his name, he invites Phil Campbells from all over the world to join him there for a Phil Campbell Convention. But when a deadly disaster strikes town, his stunt takes on an entirely different tone. The documentary follows the incredible lengths to which people will go for strangers, as individuals from all over the world gather to help rebuild and restore the town that shares their name. 


● 7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 5 - Cicada

2014 Heartland Film Festival Award Winner, Narrative Feature

Much like a cicada, Jumpei, a mild-mannered schoolteacher, is sheltered. Introverted almost to a fault, Jumpei has discovered that he is infertile, a secret that he is keeping from the woman he is set to marry. In the meantime, Jumpei is enlisted by his sister to help her family, especially Jumpei’s 9-year-old nephew, who is being bullied in school. While Jumpei’s prospects of having a family of his own seem to be non-existent, he is forced into his sister’s dysfunctional family life. What transpires is a series of comical and heartbreaking events.





Kids, did you participate in the Summer Reading Club? Not ready for the excitement to end? Well, the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library has a way to keep the fun going. 


Children of all ages are encouraged to sign up for our Reading Superstar Challenge. Simply select one of our reading challenges and read all school-year long, through May 2016! 


Those who complete the program will receive a superstar certificate, free book, and join our Wall of Superstar Readers.






Community Foundation Grant Makes It Possible






The world is in jeopardy of losing food crops vital to our survival. Why? Crops need to be pollinated. For many crops, the primary pollinators are bees, butterflies, and birds, which feed off native plants. Pesticide use, bee mites, land development, and landscaping to create attractive lawns and gardens have dramatically decreased the number of native plants. For these reasons, pollinators are dying off. 


“The statistics are rather frightening,” said Lisa Fipps, Director of Marketing and Community Engagement at KHCPL. According to the Pollinator Partnership, “Pollinators provide pollination services to over 180,000 different plant species and more than 1,200 crops. That means that one out of every three bites of food you eat is there because of pollinators. If we want to talk dollars and cents, pollinators add $217 billion to the global economy, and honey bees alone are responsible for between $1.2 and $5.4 billion in agricultural productivity in the United States. In addition to the food that we eat, pollinators support healthy ecosystems that clean the air, stabilize soils, protect from severe weather, and support other wildlife.”


The library is the perfect organization to lead the project, Fipps said. “Our staff creates programs all year long to educate people about a variety of topics. Why not use some of our time to make people aware of the pollinator crisis, educate them about pollinators, and show them the steps they can take to help?” Plus, Fipps noted, the library has space to host programs and presentations. “With the grant from the Community Foundation of Howard County, the only taxpayer dollars funding Grow the Solution Together is for KHCPL staff time to host the programs, but, again, our staff presents a variety of programs every year anyway to benefit the community.” 


A key element of Grow the Solution Together is KHCPL’s native plant giveaway and sales. While supplies last, KHCPL will give one native plant to per family, along with a care guide. Those wanting more than one can purchase additional native plants: one for $2 or three for $5.


“You can plant these beside other flowers or set aside one area for native plants,” Fipps said. “There are several local people who have well-established gardens featuring native plants, and they are also members of the Howard County Master Gardeners’ Association. They’ve been a tremendous help. They’ve educated us so we can educate others. They’re also helping at the plant giveaways and sales.”


Programs KHCPL plans to have in the upcoming year include an expert showing people how to take care of native plants, and a honey tasting and talk about beekeeping. “There will be a lot going on to increase awareness, education, and action,” Fipps said. “We’re even putting together a contest to encourage people to show us how their plants are growing and ways they’ve helped pollinators.”


KHCPL will send out press releases, use social media, and have a dedicated Grow the Solution Together web page to keep people updated about the various programs. In addition, details will be in the quarterly newsletter mailed to the homes in the community.


“It’s difficult to say all that will be involved with Grow the Solution because the more we talk about it, the more ideas people have,” Fipps said. “That’s a good problem to have. Whenever we talked to people, we thought we’d have to persuade them to be a part of Grow the Solution Together. Nothing could be further from the truth. As soon as we said, ‘We want to help save pollinators and increase the number of native plants in the community,’ people said, ‘Count us in.’ And, ‘I’m so glad the library’s doing this. This is so needed.’ ” 


So far, community partners include the Howard County Master Gardeners’ Association, Greater Kokomo Economic Development Alliance, The Nature Conservancy, Purdue Extension, Howard County Soil & Water Conservation District, City of Kokomo Parks & Recreation Department, Bon Air Middle School, Carver Center, Kokomo Housing Authority, and The Living Garden. 


“We would be happy to partner with other organizations that want to help save pollinators and increase native plants,” Fipps said, adding all they have to do is call her at 765.626.0807.


“Grow the Solution Together empowers us to act locally while thinking globally,” said KHCPL Director Faith Brautigam. “I am excited about the impact this project will have on our community, in growing understanding and encouraging action. The broad partnerships will play a major role because they will help us to reach a diverse group of residents. Our community will have the privilege of looking at a worldwide issue that could potentially affect our food supply. I am especially grateful to the Community Foundation of Howard County for catching our vision and providing funding for the project.”


“It’s exciting that KHCPL will spearhead the only community collaboration focused on this issue that we know of in the state to date,” Fipps said.







Get YOUR free native plant and have a chance to buy more during one of KHCPL’s giveaway/sale dates:

* 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Friday, May 8, Community Garage Sale, at Kokomo Beach

* 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, May 9, Farmers' Market, corner of Washington and Mulberry streets

* 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, May 16, Farmers' Market, corner of Washington and Mulberry streets

* 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, May 30, Farmers' Market, corner of Washington and Mulberry streets

* 6 to 8 p.m., Monday, June 1, Summer Reading Club kickoff party, KHCPL South

* 6 to 8 p.m., Thursday, June 4, Summer Reading Club kickoff party, KHCPL Main

* 5:30 to 8 p.m., Friday, June 5, First Fridays/Strawberry Festival, KHCPL Main

One FREE native plant per family. All other native plants $2 each or 3 for $5

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We’re proud of our lovely, native plants and we bet you are, too.  Show off any native plant(s) you took home from a library event by taking a simple photo and entering the Grow the Solution Together Photo Contest.

From now through October 15, take photos as you plant or water them, as they bloom, when pollinators (bees, birds, butterflies, etc.) visit them, during a rain, at sunrise and sunset – any time there’s a chance to showcase their natural beauty.

Submit them either on the KHCPL Facebook page or via email, in high-resolution JPEG format, to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. starting June 8. 

KHCPL will feature the top photos in a showing at the Art Gallery at KHCPL Main in November.  The Grand Prize photo will also be featured on a KHCPL postcard.

Additional photos will also be selected as prize-winners.  

Questions? Call Lisa Fipps at 765.626.0807 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


Grow the Solution Together Photo Contest prizes: 


There's nothing quite like a garden aflutter with wild butterflies in the afternoon sun. Attract your neighborhood beauties with this sand-and-water puddler, designed to hold on to natural minerals after water evaporates. Its shallow well of recycled glass holds sand or rock salt along with a teaspoon of water. When the water evaporates (in under a day), butterflies are attracted to the minerals left behind from the hard water and sand/salt. Once butterflies know where they can find these minerals, they return regularly. Place it in a conspicuous nook to transform your outdoor space into an enchanted garden. Handmade of stoneware and recycled glass in Canada.




Fused stained glass butterfly feeder with orange and red hues. A network of copper spirals, vines, and hand-tooled leaves supports the feeder, which is soldered to a 3/16" copper-plated metal stake 36" tall. Three copper leaves complete the design. Dimensions are 5" diameter and 1.75" deep. Fill with very ripe fruit, or just add water and insert some pebbles that rise above the surface, for the butterflies to light on. Fill with seed to attract birds. 




Ceramicist Erik Hertz takes a fresh approach to his handcrafted birdhouses. Instead of the traditional boxy shape, he creates a rounded refuge that is both a work of art and a natural addition to the wooded landscape. Its small opening offers an inviting shelter to many varieties of bug-eating birds, like finches and wrens, while turning away larger, predatory species. Hertz's use of mottled, colorful glazes makes his birdhouses a welcome sight to the human eye as well. Handmade in Ocean Pines, Maryland.




Boost your garden's productivity by providing a happy home for peaceful, non-stinging Mason bees. Slightly smaller than honeybees, mason bees are incredible pollinators. Each one visits as many as 1000 blooms per day — 20 times as many as a honeybee! Hang this natural bamboo house against a tree or wall where it will get morning sun and attract mason bees. Female bees fill the bamboo tubes with their eggs, nectar, and pollen for the young to eat.



Field Guide to Indiana Wildflowers by Kay Yatskievych (Author)

Forty percent or more of Indiana’s wildflowers will not be found in any of the available field guides. Field Guide to Indiana Wildflowers fills that gap. The book includes all of the herbaceous species―a total of 1,568―recorded in Indiana (except grasses, sedges, and rushes). It contains 640 color photographs, one for every group of visually similar species. Photographs containing more than one species are accompanied by helpful explanations and numerous drawings of the characteristics that separate each of the individual species. Each species entry includes the scientific name, common name, habitats, general distribution in the state, months of blooming, size of the plants and the flowers or inflorescence, and a brief additional description of the plant. Photographs or drawings accompany most entries. 



Go Native!: Gardening with Native Plants and Wildflowers in the Lower Midwest by Carolyn Harstad (Author)

Using a simple Q & A format, this informative and user-friendly book offers advice on planning, site and soil preparation, garden design, plant selection, and propagation. Includes 125 illustrations and 100 color photos. 




101 Trees of Indiana: A Field Guide by Marion T. Jackson  (Author), Katherine Harrington (Author)


101 Trees of Indiana contains all you need to identify a tree in the Hoosier State, whatever the season. Ecologist Marion T. Jackson has selected approximately 101 species of trees, mostly native to the state but also others that are widely naturalized or planted extensively. Jackson’s comments about individual trees alone are worth the price of the book. Illustrations by Katherine Harrington provide clear and accurate botanical details. Ron Rathfon’s vivid color photographs make identification in the field a breeze. Further aiding in identification are text descriptions and species keys for both summer and winter conditions. Distribution maps indicate the counties in which each tree has been found and recorded. These maps have been updated to include more than 2,000 new county records discovered by scientists, foresters, and naturalists since the publication of Deam’s work. 101 Trees of Indiana will fit handily into a pocket or backpack, and the information for each tree, including drawings and photographs, is on facing pages―no flipping back and forth from text to picture. Naturalists, hikers, landscapers, and students will thoroughly enjoy this lovely and authoritative book.




The Natural Heritage of Indiana by Marion T. Jackson (Editor)

The Natural Heritage of Indiana is the first survey of the natural beauty, heritage, and environmental problems of the state. Lavishly illustrated with hundreds of color photographs by some of the state's best nature photographers, as well as maps, drawings, and diagrams, it also contains essays by 38 of Indiana's leading scholar-teachers and environmental practitioners. This book explores the Indiana landscape, past and present, the seven defined natural regions of the state, and the current plant and animal life, while pondering how people have affected the land and how to protect what remains. The Natural Heritage of Indiana is not only a celebration of natural wonders and nature's beauty, it is also a record of misuse and ignorance and a call to arms for those interested in preserving Indiana's environment.


A very family-friendly, fun, and scenic 5k run and walk with all things Rudolph. You start and end at the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library and journey through Foster Park. Christmas music is just one element that livens up your December morning. Once back at the library, enjoy healthy snacks and hot chocolate. You could win one of 10 fabulous door prizes, including a Garmin Forerunner. THEN comes the awarding of the trophies. Trophies, sponsored by Salin Bank, will be awarded to the top overall male and female finishers in the run and in the walk, and to the top male and female runners in each of the following age groups: 0-12; 13-19; 20-29; 30-39; 40-49; 50-59; and 60+. In addition, trophies will be awarded to the overall fastest walker in each of the following age groups: 0-18; 19-35; 36-54; and 55+.

And when it comes to trophies and medals, we do them right. Check out these from last year.



Notice all the smiles? That's because ticket price includes a medal, blinking Rudolph nose, reindeer antlers, snacks, and a long-sleeve T-shirt. So what are you waiting for? Register TODAY and $ave with our Early Bird special!!! (The fees go up on Nov. 16, folks.)

Choose one of three easy ways to register:

1. Online through Eventbrite at

2. In person at KHCPL Main, South, or Russiaville.

3. Download the forms below, slip them into an envelope, along with a check made out to KHCPL and the words FUN RUN on the memo line, and mail to: Lisa Fipps, KHCPL Main, 220 N. Union St., Kokomo, IN 46901.

BY-THE-WAY NOTES: To receive a T-shirt for race day, you must register by Nov. 19. We have youth, adult, and plus sizes to 5XL. There is an additional $2 fee for sizes 2XL-5XL. Dogs on leashes that are well-controlled and up-to-date on their vaccines are welcome. No rain/weather date. No refunds. If you pay online with the third-party vendor not affiliated with KHCPL, Eventbrite, you will sign your waiver to participate on race day. Or you can find it below, sign it, and email it to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. before Dec. 3.

Questions? Call Lisa at 765.626.0807 or email her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .