Library hosts movies, hunt

Susan Withee: At the Library

By A Contributor

Along with our customarily full calendar of stellar activities for kids and youth, Manhattan Public Library and its co-sponsors will offer some unusual opportunities for fall fun to families and individuals of all ages this October. 

The beauty of the season and the crisp, cool weather make it a great time to be out and about, so plan to join us for any or all of our events which, as always, are free and open to the public.

Starting this week, the public will be unleashed on the streets of downtown Manhattan in search of gargoyles, Aesop’s fox, a relic of a historic flood, and the letter W.  A new and updated edition of our popular Architectural Scavenger Hunt, co-sponsored this fall by Downtown Manhattan, Inc., will be held during the entire month of October.

To begin the hunt, pick up a brochure at the library at 629 Poyntz Avenue, or print one from the library’s website at Next, search for the architectural features pictured in the brochure and write down their locations.  Then, bring your results back to the library and enter the drawing for a chance to win prizes donated by Downtown Manhattan businesses including the Pathfinder, Brown’s Shoe Fit, Cary Company, AJ’s Pizzeria, and DMI.  Prize drawings will be at the end of the month, and winners will be from among those who completed the hunt successfully.  This is a fun activity for all ages and a great way for you, your family, or visiting friends or relatives to explore Manhattan. More information can be found by visiting the library at 629 Poyntz Ave., at the website at, or by calling (785) 776-4741, extension 141.

On Oct. 6, KSU Hale Library and Manhattan Public Library team up for a special movie in honor of Banned Books Week, the annual celebration of our right to read all books. The film, based on author Suzanne Collins’ best-selling novel “The Hunger Games,” is set in a not-too-distant future where North America has become the corrupted country of Panem. Every year, two young people from each of the country’s 12 districts are selected by lottery to participate in a brutal reality show game where they are forced to eliminate their competitors. When 16-year-old Katniss’ young sister, Prim, is selected, Katniss volunteers to take her place.  Escape football game day mayhem and come watch with us at 2:00 p.m. in the Manhattan Public Library Auditorium.  This film is rated PG-13.

Attend another blockbuster movie event at Manhattan Public Library on Oct. 13, when we’ll show the original “Star Wars,” now “Star Wars IV: A New Hope,” on the big screen in the library auditorium at 2 p.m. 

The festivities will include refreshments and special Star Wars prizes and activities, and movie-goers are encouraged to come in costume if they wish.  Local sponsors include Varsity Donuts, Wal-Mart, and Hastings.  The celebration is part of Star Wars Reads Day, a national event created by LucasFilm, international publisher Dorling-Kindersley, and other publishing partners.  This film is rated PG.

If you enjoy a brain challenge along with your entertainment, the KSU Math Department, Math Circle Seminar, and Manhattan Public Library will host a birthday celebration for world-renowned mathematician Martin Gardner (1914-2010) on Oct.  20, from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the library’s Groesbeck Room. 

Gardner, a math and science writer who specialized in “recreational mathematics,” wrote a monthly column, “Mathematical Games,” which ran for more than 25 years in Scientific American magazine. His writing introduced a wide popular audience to math puzzles, games, and paradoxes, such as soma cubes, tangrams, the works of M.C. Escher, Penrose tiling, and the Golden Ratio.  Gardner authored books of brainteasers, puzzles, and logic problems for thinkers of all ages, and many of his books are available from Manhattan Public Library.

The program is appropriate for older children, youth, and adults, and will include opportunities for participants to work on a variety of math puzzles and games.

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