Rock Island, IL: "Communities Matter at Your Library" is the theme of National Library Week, April 14-20, and to celebrate, the Rock Island Public Library is bringing together varying interests, services, and communities of learners and readers.

Starting Monday, April 15, two new cultural and attraction passes will become available for checkout at the Rock Island Main, 30/31 and Southwest Branch Libraries. Patrons can now check out a free family pass for four to the Figge Art Museum in Davenport, or a pass for two adults and up to four children from Niabi Zoo, Coal Valley, in addition to the family passes for four already available for the Quad Cities Botanical Center, Rock Island. Passes check out for seven days, and must be picked up and returned in person at the issuing library branch. There is a $1 per day fee if passes are not returned on time.

Also on Monday, a new awareness service from Prairie State Legal Services starts at the Main Library, 401 19th Street. Trained volunteers from Prairie State Legal Services will be available from 2:00 pm to 4:30 pm on Mondays and Wednesdays on the 2nd floor of the library to offer information and assistance with navigating public benefits for food, cash, medical assistance, disability and township assistance. Prairie State Legal Services volunteers cannot offer legal advice.

Special events and activities offered at the Rock Island Library during National Library Week include :

Monday, April 15:

  • 6:30 pm, Vegetable Gardening: A Feast for the Eyes and Palate, Rock Island Main Library Community Room, 401 19th Street. The free "liven up your landscape" program offers tips from Sandy Russell, of Tastes of the Rainbow, on how choosing organic or heirloom varieties can add color, nutrition and taste to a garden, from the flashes of gold of a Sunshine Cherry Tomato to the bright blue peppers of a Filius Blue pepper plant.
  • 6:30 pm, Family Dinosaur Storytime, for all ages, Rock Island Southwest Branch Community Room: 9010 Ridgewood Road:

Tuesday, April 16:

  • 10:30 am, Dinosaur Storytime for ages birth to five, Rock Island 30/31 Branch, 3059 30th Street.
  • 5:30 to 7:30 pm, Blues and Gospel film and discussion, Main Library Community Room, 401 19th Street. The scholar-led discussion on Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues: Episode 1, Feel Like Going Home and Say Amen, Somebody, is the first of three Rock Island Library programs in the America's Music: A Film History of Our Popular Music from Blues to Bluegrass to Broadway series. America's Music is a grant-funded series of film viewings, discussions and performance events at Rock Island, Moline, Bettendorf and Davenport Public Libraries, River Music Experience and Western Illinois University-Quad Cities. For more events in the series, visit

Wednesday, April 17:

  • 10:30 am, Special "How I Became a Pirate" storytime presented by Circa 21, Southwest Branch, 9010 Ridgewood Road.  Captain Braid Beard (Janos Horvath), from the Circa 21 Dinner Playhouse's new musical adventure, will stop by to help read stories, talk like a pirate and help with pirate crafts for ages birth to five.  The musical is based on the popular children's book of the same name, by Melinda Long.
  • 4:00 pm: Lego Time, Rock Island Southwest Branch, 9010 Ridgewood Road. Make something fun for display at the library with Lego-brand building blocks.
  • 6:00 pm, Downloading eBooks demo, Southwest Branch, 9010 Ridgewood Road. Learn how to check out eBooks and eAudiobooks for free with your library card.

Thursday, April 18:

  • 6:00 pm, Teen Movie Night, Rock Island Main Library, 401 19th Street. Free movie screening, snacks and more fun, just for ages 12 to 18.

Friday, April 19:

  • 10:30 am, Dinosaur Storytime for ages birth to five, Rock Island Main Library Children's Room, 401 19th Street.

Saturday, April 20 - all events at Southwest Branch, 9010 Ridgewood Road:

  • 10:00 am, El Dia Family Storytime, featuring a reading of Book Fiesta, by Pat Mora, who helped start the annual April celebration of children's books.
  • 10:30 am, Saturday Lego Time, followed by an 11:30 am "Stem-tivity" on kite flying. STEM-tivity programs are fun, hands-on activities involving Science, Technology, Engineering or Math.

National Library Week highlights the importance of libraries, librarians, and library workers, and their commitment to the places where their patrons live, work and study. First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the country each April.

All programs are free and open to the public. For more news about Rock Island Public Library events, visit, call 309-732-7323 (READ) or follow the Rock Island Library on Facebook and Twitter. A monthly calendar of library events is available online and at Rock Island Library locations.


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Rock Island, IL/ April 10th, 2013 -  Media Link, Inc. is proud to announce it's newest Account Manager, Laura Van Barg. In her new position she will be working with our customers on Media Link Software and Government affairs.

Van Barg has over a decade of marketing experience and has previously worked for Media Link, Inc., as well as Simon Properties Group, American Bank and Trust, NA, Lujack's Northpark Auto Plaza, and Living Lands & Waters.

"I am happy to be rejoining the Media Link team," said Van Barg. "Natalie Linville-Mass has built her advertising agency to the point where it is a key player in the advertising industry not only in the Quad Cities, but in the region and beyond. Her development of Media Link Software™ is bound to be a game-changer in the media buying industry nationwide."

"We are so excited to have Laura back on our team.  She has incredible talent and tenacity and is truly a welcome addition to our team.  We really need someone with her caliber to help us as we take this agency to a national level," said Natalie Linville-Mass, President of Media Link, Inc.

Media Link, Inc. is a full-service integrated marketing firm specializing in strategic media buying and placement. Media Link works with businesses in the Quad-Cities and around the country to develop and execute customized marketing strategies to help them more effectively reach their customers. Media Link, Inc. recently developed and launched its own media buying software system, Media Link Software™. This company is also one of the only marketing firms in the region to have obtained an 8(a) SDB certification, a designation of significance to clients who contract with the federal government.


MOLINE, IL -- Mary Pruess, former president and general manager of WNIT in South Bend/Elkhart, IN, has been named the director of WQPT-Quad Cities Public Television at Western Illinois University, effective April 22, according to Joe Rives, vice president of the Quad Cities and planning at WIU.

She replaces Rick Best, who retired in June 2012. Jamie Lange, who has been serving as the station's interim general manager, will resume her work as WQPT's chief development officer.

Pruess served as the president and general manager of WNIT from 2002-2012. Previously, she was the chief content officer and general manager from 2001-2002 and as vice president (public television services) and station manager from 1993-2001 for WHRO in Norfolk; deputy director of TRAC Media (1991-1993); CEO of the Public Television Programmers' Association (1991-1993); a consultant (1988-present); program manager of KUHT-TV in Houston, TX (1988-1991); and served in numerous managerial positions at KAET-TV in Phoenix, AZ (1977-1988). Pruess has also held director and manager positions at KICR Radio at the University of Iowa.

"We welcome Mary to Western Illinois University. Her professional experience will serve WQPT and the University well. Mary's expertise in public broadcasting and community outreach will further enhance WQPT's outstanding level of service to the region," Rives said. "Rick Best, Jamie Lange and the rest of the staff have set a high bar for continued increases in local programming, community service and successful fundraising. It will be an exciting time as WQPT further enhances Western's contributions to the residents of western Illinois and eastern Iowa."

Pruess has taken graduate courses in public administration from Old Dominion University. She earned her bachelor's degree in liberal arts from Excelsior College (formerly Regents College of the University of the State of New York). She also holds certificates in executive fund development and non-profit management from the University of Notre Dame.

Davenport, Iowa - April 3, 2013 - Clear Channel Media and Entertainment Eastern Iowa today announced that Scott Bitting has been named Director of Sales for Eastern Iowa, effective immediately.  Bitting will oversee the daily sales operations of the Davenport, Cedar Rapids and Iowa City markets.

As Director of Sales for Eastern Iowa, Bitting is responsible for recruiting and developing sales teams and revenue strategies.  He leverages Eastern Iowa's programming resources throughout the region and company to create solutions for advertisers.

"Scott has a proven track record in radio, and we are grateful to have him on our team." said Jeff Ashcraft, Vice President and Market Manager for Eastern Iowa, Clear Channel Media and Entertainment.  "We are excited to utilize his talents and many years of radio sales experience across these three Eastern Iowa markets."

Bitting comes back to Clear Channel Media and Entertainment after working in the Automotive and Television industry for the last several years.  He successfully developed the sales staff into a cohesive team creating several new revenue generating projects while implementing strategies that resulted in gross sales growth.

About Clear Channel Media and Entertainment

With 243 million monthly listeners in the U.S., Clear Channel Media and Entertainment has the largest reach of any radio or television outlet in America. Clear Channel Media and Entertainment serves 150 cities through 850 owned radio stations. The company's radio stations and content can be heard on AM/FM stations, HD digital radio channels, Sirius/XM satellite, on the Internet at and on the company's radio station websites, on the iHeartRadio mobile application on iPads and smartphones, and used via navigation systems from TomTom, Garmin and others.  The company's operations include radio broadcasting, online and mobile services and products, live concerts and events, syndication, music research services and independent media representation.  Clear Channel Media and Entertainment is a division of CC Media Holdings, Inc. (OTCBB: CCMO), a leading global media and entertainment company. More information on the company can be found at, and

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Author Gerald Kramer completes a back-to-back mystery fiction with the release of "The Dean's List" just six months after his debut novel "Vanderbilt Reef"

On the third quarter of 2012, author Gerald Kramer published "Vanderbilt Reef," a mystery novel that commemorates the sunken SS Princess Sophia's maiden voyage. Not one to rest on his laurels, only six months after his successful debut novel, Kramer comes back with yet another mystery fiction that demonstrates that anyone can be put in jeopardy in a supposedly safe environment. Set in 1993, on the campus of a small university in a small town in the Midwest, his newly published book is titled The Dean's List.

"I started this novel more than twenty years ago, because I found the university environment to be underutilized in mystery novels," states Kramer. "All campuses are filled with characters who would easily fit into the genre. The story should appeal to readers who like the major characters to be more complex than cardboard figures who are pawns in keeping the plot moving."

Two campus murders in less than a week shake a small university to its core. The deaths of the Dean of Business and Technology and a student leader have life-changing consequences for Roger Holt, a middle-aged professor who is pressured by top administration into assuming the duties and responsibilities of his late supervisor and to serve as the Interim Dean. Reluctantly, Holt complies because of his loyalty to Great Plains University.

Chet Evans, a detective on the police force, needs Holt's knowledge of the campus and higher education in general to help solve the cases. Unfortunately for Holt, Evans is not alone in realizing that Roger may be an integral part of the solutions. Amid all this intrigue is the promising romantic relationship between Roger and an unexpected partner. Events spiral out of control until Roger is about to become the third victim.

Fast-paced and crime-centered while providing a realistic view of campus life, The Dean's List is a book that sheds light on the attempted dominance of campus operations by external forces. The events and atmosphere described in the novel are an accurate reflection of Kramer's 30 years of experience and the perceptions of many other experienced faculty members.

"A university setting could be threatened by greed and corruption and even violent actions. Optimism is vital for individuals and organizations to survive," adds Kramer.

For more information on this book, interested parties may log on to

About the Author

Gerald Kramer is a retired college professor who also has worked as a human resource administrator, census-taker, clothing salesperson, and factory worker. He is an avid reader of mystery novels and lists Tony Hillerman, Ross MacDonald, and Michael McGarrity as favorite authors. Western and film noir movies from the 1930s and '40s are also popular with him. Vanderbilt Reef: Finding Daniel is his first novel and reflects his admiration of Alaska. He may be reached through his email address,, or through his Facebook page.

The Dean's List * by Gerald Kramer

Publication Date: February 28, 2013

Trade Paperback; $15.99; 154 pages; 978-1-4836-0263-9

Trade Hardback; $22.99; 154 pages; 978-1-4836-0264-6

eBook; $3.99; 978-1-4836-0265-3

Making the Case for Diversity in Our Kids' Literature

Need is the mother of invention, which is why Jeff Rivera decided to create a line of children's books that emphasis diversity.

"I'm the uncle of 12 nieces and nephews who live everywhere from Costa Rica to Australia to all over the United States, which is no longer the only melting pot in the world," says Rivera, author of "Um...Mommy, I Flushed My Brother Down the Toilet" and "My Two Uncles & Me," (, which have been endorsed by comic book icon Stan Lee and legendary best-selling novelist Jackie Collins. "There are just not enough books for little kids that represent families with diverse backgrounds, like mine, so I decided to create them."

There are still segments of society that do not embrace differences of race, culture, religion and sexuality, which is why it's all the more important for children of different backgrounds to feel included, he says.

Rivera reviews a few reasons why major publishers should consider children's books for diverse families:

• Something probably makes you unusual, too: "Some of us had attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, Asperger's syndrome, dyslexia or emotional traumas. Some of us came from blended families, mixed-race families, or were adopted. Some of us had gay and lesbian family members, some of us were on food stamps and welfare growing up, or were homeless, like I was. There are Christians, Jews, Muslims, Buddhists and atheists. Not everyone can be pegged into a nice square box, and our kids shouldn't be," says Rivera, a media personality featured in a variety of outlets.

• Together, 'minorities' become the majority: In the U.S., one out of five people has a learning difference; one in two children born are a minority ethnicity; and more than 14 million children have gay or lesbian parents. "When you add it all up, that's easily the majority of people in our country," he says. "It just does not make good business sense to ignore so many of us."

• Overlooked entrepreneurs: American history is rife with examples of overlooked business opportunities. Just a few decades ago there was an emerging subculture created by inner-city youth. The most prominent feature? Hip hop, or rap music. For several years record company executives dismissed the budding genre, and all the while an under-the-radar entrepreneur named Russell Simmons helped present the new music to mainstream America and the rest of the world. As of April 2011, he had a $340 million net worth.

About Jeff Rivera

Jeff Rivera is a bestselling author, journalist and inspirational media personality whose work has been mentioned on TMZ, WABC, WNBC, WCBS, NPR and many other outlets. He is a full-time author whose humble beginnings living in poverty on welfare and food stamps as the child of a single mother, to his days living in his car and final success in media have inspired many.

Free e-Book Download
April 12, 13, 14,
A 190 page, eclectic collection of lyrics written over the past 50 years by Toronto & New York songwriter, Andy Halmay, will be available for free downloads on April 12, 13, and 14 on
The lyrics and lead sheets in IT AIN'T FINE IF IT DON'T RHYME include songs recorded by Paul Simon, Carl Perkins, Fred Neil, Lillian Briggs, The Geezinslaw Bros., Eddie Fontaine, Skip Roper, Bob Riley, Betty Ann Shor and many others on Columbia, RCA Victor, Brunswick, London, Baton, Tibor, Sunbeam and Justice record labels.
Some lyrics are from songs yet to be recorded and some from upcoming films.  One of these introduces a new genre, "Comic Country Rap;" another, Halmay originally wrote for an off-Broadway revue, provides a consummate and humorous definition of the word "Baksheesh" (tip or bribe) used throughout the Middle East and Eastern Europe.
Youthful and energetic octogenarian Halmay, a multi-award winning ad man (JWT, Y&R, B&B, Ted Bates) has worked with legendary names such as John Huston, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Jackie Gleason, Lorne Greene, and wrote songs between commercials. Later he switched to feature film development where he is now introducing "Musical Product Placement," a concept that integrates musical talent in the stories of films that leads to musical entities promoting the films before the films are released; subsequently, once in release, the films promote the artists.

Meet the new Davenport Public Library Director, Mr. KennethWayne Thompson, on Thursday, April 11, 2013 from 4 - 6:30 p.m. at the Fairmount Branch Library (3000 N. Fairmount Street).  This reception is open to the general public and gives residents a chance to meet the newest leader in the Quad Cities.  Please join the staff, library board, and FRIENDS of the Davenport Public Library in welcoming Mr. KennethWayne Thompson to our community!  Light refreshments will be served.  KennethWayne starts as library director on Monday, April 8.

For more information contact Steve Hart, PR & Marketing Coordinator at (563) 328-6833.

A BOOK by ME: Holocaust Series

True stories written by children for children


Teaching History, Tolerance, Courage, Compassion, Kindness, Perseverance, Integrity, Cooperation and more.
Announcing a new title in the A BOOK by ME series
#74 The Footstool
The story of a Catholic husband and wife taken from their
happy lives in Poland to serve as forced labor under the Nazis.
Written by Alanna Rumler and illustrated by Jennifer Banks.
Both girls are from Geneseo, Illinois.
Alanna Rumler
Alanna Rumler
The next book to be released in the Holocaust Series is The Footstool by young author Alanna Rumler, illustrated by Jennifer Banks, both of Geneseo, Illinois.
This story was told to Alanna by the granddaughter of the survivor named Jozef Kodyra. Ironically, Jozef was born in the United States and his family moved to Poland when he was a young boy. He grew up there, married Helena and started their family.

Ironically they are not Jewish but nonetheless were taken as prisoners to Dachau Concentration Camp. You can read more about their story below.
It's wonderful the young author was able to meet Jozef's granddaughter named Amanda who passed along his story. Amanda, Alanna and the young artist named Jennifer were able to preserve the story for future generations.

Amanda would like to speak in classrooms in the Quad Cities area to help educate students. If you know a teacher or you are a teacher interested in your class hearing this important story, please contact us today.  She will have copies of this book to sell by April 12.
Sincerely excited about storytelling,
Deb Bowen
Creator, A BOOK by ME