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"The Sixties" @ Kansas City's Johnson County Library

Kansas City's (MO) Pitch reports on a new exhibit at the Johnson County (MO) library, "The Sixties."

The project is centered around a six-part film and discussion series "America's Decade of Crisis and Change." Artifacts and books along with "memory cards" are featured in the display cases.

The cards deal with subjects as diverse as the moon landing, the assasination of President Kennedy and rock and roll. Librarian Stuart Hinds, who has largely been in charge of organizing The Sixties says of the cards "They're just so powerful and have such a range of topic -- some discuss moving from girdles to pantyhose; others talk about being a pilot in Vietnam." Article author Annie Fischer adds, "Some recollections are just snippets of lives, but many impart an eloquence that entire novels can't manage."

More about the library and the series at the JoCoLibrary Website.


The exhibit is just an ancillary program that the library is doing in conjunction with a six-part film/discussion program called The Sixties: America's Decade of Crisis and Change. I wrote one of 25 awarded grants for the pilot program of The Sixties for the library where I work. It was an awesome program, as are any of the film/discussion packages put out by National Video Resources, a non-profit organizaiton.

For each of the six weeks of programming, we had anywhere from 50-80 folks come for a two-hour program that involved viewing some great documentaries and participating in a scholar-led discussion. It was a bit labor intensive, but we had a core group of about 45-50 incredibly enthusiastic participants who came every week. It's the sort of thing that really trickles out into the community as people talk about their very positive, enriching experience.

Next week, we start another NVR series, "Post War Years, Cold War Fears." Not grant funded this time, and not the huge interest that we saw with the Sixties, but definitely worth it. I'm a big fan of the work that NVR does, and would be happy to talk to anyone about how to do this sort of programming.

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