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StorySLAM: Celebrating a centennial

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A staple of the Stillwater community turned 100 this year.

The Stillwater Public Library and Iron Monk will host StorySLAM and release "Library CentenniAle" to celebrate the library's centennial at Iron Monk from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday.

The event is a twist on slam poetry, and participants will prepare a five-minute nonfiction story they can tell from memory focused on the theme of "library adventures," according to the library's website. 

StorySLAM is a competition with a prize, and the audience will choose the winner. 

The "CentenniAle" is a keg of brown ale Iron Monk will provide specially for the event. All proceeds from the "CentenniAle" will support the Library Trust. 

When the library first opened in 1923, the library served the basic function of providing the community with books. Now, 100 years later, the role is not so simple, according to a video the Stillwater Public Library made about the centennial. 

Emily States, the library's adult services supervisor, said the library was a safe place for her as a child and the resources available allowed her to expand on her interests. 

"I think that's something people don't realize is how much, especially young families, still use the library a lot," States said.

People in the community who don't have access to a computer or wifi can use a computer and the library's wifi for free, States said. 

"There's a lot we that provide for bridging the digital divide for people," States said. "Even people who sometimes do have their own devices don't know how to use them. Besides having books and resources and information (...), we also help people learn how to use devices so they can access information themselves. We help show them how to find the best resources online so they're finding good information."

States said hundreds of families and children come to the library for the summer reading program, which is back again this summer for the first time since Covid. 

Participants can support the Library Trust, drink ale and listen to or participate in the story slams. Library centennial pint glasses will be available to buy. Participants must be at least 21 years old.

The library staff requests registrations prior to the event, especially from those who plan to participate in the StorySLAM. To register, fill out this form