Tag Archives: fandoms unite

Harry Potter’s Back (and more)!

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Art by Kazu Kibuishi

For more than a year, muggles, witches, and wizards alike have been asking us when we would bring back our Harry Potter discussion groups for 8-17 year-olds. We are thrilled to announce that Prefects and Junior Prefects are back at Carbon Valley Regional Library in Firestone and Erie Community Library. Both libraries are part of High Plains Library District where they know all about the magic of reading!

All of our discussion groups are conducted according to our Geek Philosophy method that encourages young people to speak and listen to each other in a spirit of wholehearted inquiry. We can’t think of a better way to approach the thought-provoking works of J.K. Rowling. 

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Send us an owl: What are the most important lessons you have learned from Harry Potter?

There is one catch to all this, however. Junior Prefects and Prefects in the High Plains Library District are being run as pilot projects. In order to continue the discussions past February, we need to show that young witches and wizards are excited to gather once a month or more to talk about magic! Please sign up and tell your friends!

Carbon Valley meetings will take place on the first Tuesdays of the month, beginning December 6. Junior Prefects meet 4:30-5:30 p.m. Prefects meet 6:30-7:30 p.m.

8-11 year-olds: Register for Junior Prefects here.

12-17 year-olds: Register for Prefects here.

Erie Community Library meetings will take place on the second Tuesdays of the month, beginning December 13. Junior Prefects meet 4:30-5:30 p.m. Prefects meet 6:30-7:30 p.m.

8-11 year-olds: Register for Junior Prefects here.

12-17 year-olds: Register for Prefects here.

Are you a Jedi as well as a wizard? Register for Fandoms Unite: A Star Wars Story to share your excitement about Rogue One and all things Star Wars with fans your own age! The story begins on December 1 at 4 p.m. Register here. May the Force be with you!

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Be sure to like our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter for event updates. From time to time, events open up for an expanded age group or new spaces are added. Don’t miss out on the magic! 

You can get more information and register for any High Plains Library District programs by calling 1-888-861-7323. 

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Fandoms and Fitness

Here at Grey Havens YA, we’ve perfected our signature Fandoms Unite presentations. What started out as a simple trivia night to recruit book discussion members has turned into a wide range of community-building, confidence-boosting programs. These include a plethora of general trivia, captions, and videos along with more specialized programming like cosplay and theater, always with an emphasis on the fandoms we and our young adults love.

One such program that came out of our desire to provide new and exciting fandom activities is something we named Fitness for Nerds, though Fandom Fitness is also an accurate title. At Fitness for Nerds, we put our Fandom love into high energy movements and get to have a blast playing around with a “work-out” theme. It’s great to get moving, and it’s always hilarious!

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We start off with some stretches, including stretching up and down as we shout out fandom moments that make us happy (a new Harry Potter movie is coming out!) or sad (Doctor Who is on hiatus until 2017!). After stretching, we jump into all sorts of movements as we copy our favorite characters in still, gif, or video form.

One of our favorites is “Dance Like Baby Groot” from the end of the Guardians of the Galaxy movie. We just follow along with the video as Groot dances to “I Want You Back,” and everyone has a fantastic time. I love when I can look completely ridiculous but not feel embarrassed at all about it because everyone else is having fun looking just as ridiculous as I am– that is the power of Fitness for Nerds!

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This summer, we turned our small presentation into a two-hour long program complete with “Moisturize Me” breaks and dance music. And let me tell you, it’s quite a work out! Who Knew you could geek out and exercise all at the same time? This year’s Summer Reading theme is Fitness, and libraries across the nation are working hard on providing programming that fits the theme. We’re excited to get to help out a few local libraries here because Fitness for Nerds is fantastic, and we know all the librarians love it. Keep reading to find out where you can join us next!

In addition to fun dance moves, we’ve also developed a great Fandom Yoga sequence to slow things down a bit. Moves include, but are not limited to, the AT-AT Walker, the Hungarian Horntail, Kylo Ren Face Yoga, and the Superman. Some are based in actual yoga moves and others are just plain silly.  wp-1468200413463.jpg

I don’t want to tell you everything, because part of the fun is the surprise of waiting to see what crazy move we’re going to do next! The next chance to catch Fitness for Nerds is THIS Saturday from 2pm – 4pm at Carbon Valley Regional Library in Firestone, CO. It’s FREE, and open to grades 3-12, though we welcome family members to stick around if they are so inclined (and courageous!). Please be sure to register here so the library knows how many people to expect. Dress comfortably, and most importantly, don’t be afraid to make a fool of yourself and have a great time!

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If you’re interested in bringing Fitness for Nerds to your library or community, please Phone the TARDIS to contact us. It’s always hectic here at Grey Havens, Inc, but we love bringing nerds together and it’d be great to connect with you! (If you’re interested in helping us make things a little less hectic for our volunteer staff, please check out our support page.)

Send us an owl: Have you been to Fitness for Nerds? What’s your favorite move? 

When Trivia Isn’t Trivial: One Reason to Love “Fandoms Unite”

On December 4, Grey Havens YA hosted Star Wars: The Fandom Awakens at Lafayette Public Library, part of our Fandoms Unite outreach program. As we were leaving, I called out, “Live long and prosper.” One of the teens replied, “Namárië.” Fandoms Unite, indeed!

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Eager to answer!

Fandoms Unite, our monthly program of trivia, captions contests, singing, dancing, acting, improv and general fandom craziness is always a ton of fun but it might not seem like a very important thing to offer young adults. What significant good could possibly come from teens getting together once a month to celebrate popular culture? Why would we even encourage such a thing? Isn’t popular culture, well, trivial?

The answer, we strongly believe, is no. Everyone engages in some way with popular culture. It gives many of us a significant part of the language with which we understand and speak about our world. (How many of you would know what I meant if I said that someone can be as logical as a Vulcan but as passionate as Anakin Skywalker?) It is how we engage with it that matters most.

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Star Wars Yoga: Han frozen in carbonite!

Fandoms Unite is not just an experience of popular culture; it is consciously imitative of the internet experience, the home turf of much of the growing fandom subset of popular culture. We sing and shout along to clips and GIFs. Our captions contests are practically exercises in meme-making, and our non-competitive trivia is a lot like one of those “how-much-do you know-about…” quizzes most of us have taken online. The difference between an online community and a Fandoms Unite community (and we believe both can have value) is that Fandoms Unite takes place in a room in which teens are interacting with each other in person. They see first-hand that there are other teens and even adults who take their interests seriously. We reflect the things that make them laugh and the things that spark their imaginations back to them and they, in turn, share the light of their enthusiasm and creativity with us.

Singing, "Let it Flow," a Star Wars parody of the famous Frozen song
Singing, “Let it Flow,” a Star Wars parody of the famous Frozen song

When teens experience other teens and adults celebrating the fandoms they love, they feel seen, heard and valued. When people feel seen, heard and valued, they are more confident and willing to take risks. Learning always involves taking risks. The first time you rode a bike, you had to have the confidence to risk falling. The first time you learned to read, you had to have the confidence to risk failing. Learning to think critically and independently requires the confidence to risk forming and expressing your own thoughts, based in your deep experiences of reason and feeling, even when others are telling you that you are wrong. Learning to say “no” to high-risk behaviors when everyone else is jumping off the bridge, requires the confidence to stand strong against persuasive peers and the need to feel accepted at all costs. Sometimes, that confidence can be nurtured in a meeting room at a library answering what may appear to be trivial questions about Star Wars. The intrinsic worth of confident risk-taking is one reason we say…

May the Force be with you. Live long and prosper. Namárië. Fandoms Unite!received_966898340064948.jpeg    received_966898646731584.jpeg

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Send us an owl: This post describes just one of the many reasons we believe in our Fandoms Unite programming. Have you attended one of our events? What was it like for you? 

If you love what we do and want to help us bring Fandoms Unite to as many young adults as possible, check out this fun and easy way to support us this December. Hanon le (and many thanks).

Fandom Theater

For the past two years (yes, everyone — it’s birthday season!), Grey Havens YA has been leading regular “outreach” programming referred to as Fandoms Unite. We call this outreach because it’s a chance for the entire young adult community to come together without the limits of our currently closed book group. We love Fandoms Unite because we get to have fun and show everyone just how much we love it.

Each Fandoms Unite has a theme — it could be trivia, sing-a-longs, fitness for nerds, find out more on our Community Programming page. However, Co-Director Robyn’s personal favorite is what we like to call Fandom Theater. Think of it as drama club but full of fandoms.

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First, you’ll need some tongue-twisters to warm up. How about saying “Raxicalicofalipitoris” five times fast? What about Legless Lego Legolas and his Lego Lass? We also need to get in to character, so a few times shouting “KHHHHAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNN” at the top of our lungs should do the trick. We may even throw in some Nerd Yoga to center ourselves.

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Next! We need to start the acting! We hand-pick the best scenes from fandom movies and television shows and give volunteers the opportunity to bring them to life. The best part about this is that it never goes according to plan and it’s always hilarious. Our participants surprise us by playing trees, tv screens, and radios. We even had one volunteer stand perfectly still as Han Solo frozen in carbonite for the first scene of Return of the Jedi!

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Another fun aspect of Fandom Theater is the improv – we alternate between scripted scenes and fandom improv. Participants pick characters, a place, and a problem out of a hat and see where the action takes them! Can you imagine Sherlock, Ron Weasley, and Sauron solving a crime in Narnia? What about Darth Vader, Elsa, and Katnis at Hogwarts fighting off a Dalek invasion? Fanom improv is the best! Sometimes, we’ll even send extra characters in to help the scene a long — “Sam and Dean Winchester, go save them with the Impala!”

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Now, while our improvisors are getting ready with costumes and props, we have to keep the rest of the audience entertained. The “Nerd Circle” is an exercise developed spontaneously because we happened to have a hula hoop and a rubber ball in our props bag. All we needed to add was nerdiness and we have plenty of that! To play, just drop the hoop on the ground and gather in a circle around it. The person with the ball tosses it to someone else who then has to jump inside the circle and do something nerdy. We get lots of quotes, impressions, songs, interesting facts, (polite) hand gestures and more. If you can’t think of something, you can skip your turn by passing the ball to someone else. It is not about being the last nerd standing but about being as nerdy as you can in a circle of people who think being nerd is something to show off!

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Fandom Theater is so much fun! And we here at Grey Havens YA are pleased to announce that we are bringing this fantastic event to the Lafayette Public Library on Saturday, October 24th from 6pm to 8pm! If you are in grades 6-12, sign up today on the library’s website!

Okay, I just can’t resist adding some more photos form our awesome volunteer photographer, Donna Clement!

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Send us an owl: What awesome scene from your favorite Fandom are you just itching to act out?

Fandombombing the Library!

How are you celebrating SuperWhoLockiday this year? What? You don’t observe this geeky, fabulous day paying tribute to all we love about Supernatural, Doctor Who and Sherlock? Well, if you want to start, we at Grey Havens YA can show you how!

First, two of our members, Katie and Jayne, fandombombed the Longmont Library, placing photos of SuperWhoLock characters all over the place, including some places you might not expect and some where our guests had to search to find the photo to win a prize. Next, they hosted a SuperWhoLock Extravaganza, with trivia, caption contests, amazing videos, sing-along songs and more! Here are some photos from the event.

Happy SuperWhoLockiday!

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Send us an owl: Did you attend SuperWhoLockiday? What was your favorite part?