Monday, November 12, 2012

Twilight Novels Bring Two Libraries Together In Unique Event

Hi All!

On Friday, November 9, 2012, Alexander County Library hosted a Twilight Slumber Party to celebrate the debut of the fifth and final Twilight movie, Breaking Dawn, Part 2.  The movie will be in the theaters this Friday, November 16 at 12 am.  15 ladies attended the event at the library in Taylorsville, NC, ages 12 to 48. 

The Twilight series of four novels and one novella, written by Stephenie Meyer, has subsequently been turned into five movies.  The series has inspired blogs, parties, and book clubs around the world.

As the children’s librarian for Alexander County Library, I knew I wanted a “girls only” lock-in for Twilight.  This type of event usually locks teens in the library after hours, but the love for Twilight extends to adults as well.  Women ages 12 and up were invited.  The ladies played Twilight Trivia and watched all four movies that have been released.

The movies were projected on the wall in the library by a brand new projector.  It was given to Alexander County Library by the Alexander Friends of the Library.  It performed wonderfully on its maiden voyage with over 8 hours of movies.  The library and I thank you, Friends, for your wonderful, and much needed, gift.

I was trying to come up with a neat activity for our Twilight lock-in when I noticed a librarian from Forks, WA had attended the Association for Rural and Small Libraries conference in Raleigh that I went to in September.  Seeing Forks – the setting for the Twilight books – gave me the idea to contact their library and see if we could connect during the lock-in party.
Here I am with Library Director, Laura Crooks, as we pawed through the goody box from Forks!  We discovered we were on opposing teams.

Ellen Matheny, who works for the University of Washington and is a Friend of Forks Public Library, picked up the baton and accepted the challenge of gathering Forks citizens to talk with us at Alexander County Library.  Ms. Matheny also sent a box of goodies to Alexander County Library with items such as T-shirts, bumper stickers, and a Twilight novel stamped with “Compliments of Forks Public Library.”   These were used as prizes for Twilight Trivia.

Ellen Matheny during the video chat via Skype.

The highlight of the evening at the lock-in came when the Forks Public Library connected to the Alexander County Library via Skype at 8 pm EST/5 pm PST.  Marcia Bingham, executive director of the Forks Chamber of Commerce, and several students from Forks High School were among the citizens willing to share their stories of how the Twilight series has affected their town.

According to Bingham, Forks sees over 200,000 tourists each year which swells the local population of 3,500 people tremendously.  They have had visitors from all over the world including Australia, European countries, and Asia.  All of the Forks participants agreed that Twilight has been good for the local economy in the small town located on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington State.

The Twilight series has also brought crazed tourists to Forks.   One teen, whose parents own a restaurant in Forks, told a funny story about waitressing there one day.  One of her tourist customers howled when she ordered her food because she was a fan of the werewolves in the novels.  The Alexander County group laughed for a while over that one.

I really want to thank Alicia Addington and Jennifer Newton for helping me to prepare the evening’s activities.  They also provided Twilight inspired snacks.  
Anaia drinks bloody punch to recreate the scene in Breaking Dawn, Part 1 with Bella!  It was made with frozen grape juice, Cheerwine, and chocolate syrup.  Not bad!  Thanks, Rebecca Ratliffe, for sharing this photo!

I am so thankful that Forks Public Library was willing to join Alexander County Library in this endeavor.  It was a unique cultural event to bring two similar sized towns together.  Forks, WA has an incredible story to share since it is the setting for some of the world’s most popular books.

And guess what!  The Forks High School teens said they would like to lock in together with us for the next installment of The Hunger Games movies, Catching Fire, when it comes out.  Won’t that be awesome to have teens from Twilight’s Forks celebrate a different young adult novel, The Hunger Games, with our teens at Alexander County Library?  I can’t wait!

One more note - The Forks Public Library is accepting donations for a new roof.  If you are interested in helping them, let me know and I will give you the information.

                            Watch our video of the night's activities including
                                             the "Starving Bella" reenactment!

Take care!


It was awesome to meet the people of Forks, WA.  There were students from Forks High School who want to lock-in with us for the next Hunger Games Lock-In next fall!

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