Get Real

When it comes to having difficult conversations, all you need is your Library.

At Pikes Peak Library District, you’ll find programs, spaces, and resources that foster conversation and civic engagement. These spaces and resources allow you and the rest of our community to talk about hard, timely topics together. We invest in creating these spaces because we know that when we talk to each other about controversial things, we can begin to see new perspectives and open our mind to broader possibilities. This fall, we ask you to take these steps to become better neighbors, friends, partners, and community members:

  • Challenge yourself.
  • Leave the safe echo chamber of your social media feed.
  • Have a real conversation about real topics with real people.
  • Make the choice to find your community, to talk about hard things, and to broaden your perspective.
  • Equip yourself to become a better member of the El Paso County community.

Get started at one of the programs below:

  1. WWII Women Air Force Service Pilots
    Description: Sarah Byrn Rickman, author and former reporter, will give a presentation and book signing. Sarah often writes about Women Air Service Pilots (WASPs), who were instrumental in World War II. 1,102 WASPs flew aircraft from the point of production in the US to training and transportation sites between 1942 and 1944. Sarah will show a 16 minute documentary accompanied by a talk about these brave women, whose contribution to the war effort was extraordinary, yet underappreciated.
    WWII women

    surviving the cambodian genocide

  2. Invisible: Surviving the Cambodian Genocide
    Description: Cambodian genocide survivors Mac and Simone Leng will share their story as told in their memoir Invisible: Surviving the Cambodian Genocide by Dr. Frances by Dr. Frances T. Pilch.

  3. Peace Cranes
    Description: September 21st is the U.N. International Day of Peace. Celebrate by making an origami Peace Crane, writing a message of peace on its wing, and sending it across the world!
    peace cranes

  4. APPR Movie: The Power of Forgiveness
    Description: The Power of Forgiveness is a dramatic documentary film that takes an honest look at the intensity of anger and grief inherent to human nature. It's a collection of seven short stories that profile some of the most dramatic transgressions imaginable along with stories that feel more familiar and manageable to the viewer. It explores the role forgiveness holds in various faith traditions and examines how the scientific community is now measuring the physical and mental benefits of letting go of grief and resentment.

  5. Border Crossing Without Ever Leaving Home
    Description: The Greenberg Center for Learning and Tolerance is honored to partner with the Pikes Peak Library District on a community program in conjunction with this year’s APPR selection, Transatlantic.The Greenberg Center will host a lecture and discussion with Rev. Gavin Rogers. This event will intersect with the themes in McCann’s book including friendship, radical empathy, courageous journeys, and risky crossings – from making the first nonstop trans-Atlantic flight to exploring cultural differences in your own community. Rev. Gavin Rogers spent several weeks living on the streets surrounding Travis Park as part of his church’s vision to include some of San Antonio’s most vulnerable populations in the weekly life of their congregation. In November 2018, he joined the migrant caravan in Mexico City for five days on their journey to the U.S. border to help him gain a better understanding of this complex humanitarian crisis. At this event, Rev. Rogers will be exploring the lessons he has learned from these experiences. Numerous local organizations will have info tables at the event for attendees who would be interested in becoming “border crossers” here in Colorado Springs.

  6. Postcrossing
    Description: Have you ever wanted a pen pal, but weren't sure how to get started? Join us to try Postcrossing! Send postcards and receive them from people all over the world.

  7. Make-Your-Own Surrealist Art
    Description: Participants will learn about the surrealist style of painting while creating a multimedia masterpiece of their own using pre-dicut pictures.
    Make-Your-Own Surrealist Art

  8. The Kilted Man
    Description: Join The Kilted Man for traditional Celtic music, humor, and history. Veteran performer Matthew Gurnsey delights audiences with his rousing performances of traditional Irish and Scottish music. His unique talents with traditional Celtic instruments add an air of authenticity to each piece and his rich bass voice provides the foundation for the hauntingly beautiful melodies.
    the kilted man

  9. Billy Kemp: Songs and Stories of Heart and Home
    Billy Kemp
    Description: From Lone Star country to urban shuffles and Appalachian waltzes, musician Billy Kemp remains a songwriter with a love of story. He's released two solo recordings in the past two years, Another Life in 2017 and The Painter's Bucket in 2018

  10. Make Your Own Soccer Ball
    Description: In the 2019 APPR title Nowhere Boy, characters Ahmed and Max bond over their love of Soccer. Stop in to make your own soccer ball!

  11. Family Program of Middle Eastern Music and Dance
    Description: Bring the family and enjoy an exciting evening of Middle Eastern music and dance with Zuruna, a traditional Middle Eastern music ensemble. Experience the mesmerizing sounds and rhythms of Arabic music and learn to dance the Debke with us! 

    culture fest

  12. Culture Fest
    Description: Come and celebrate different cultures of the Pikes Peak region! Activities will include food, music, dancing, fellowship, and more.

All Pikes Peak Reads (APPR) is Pikes Peak Library District's annual program geared towards improving literacy and fostering dialogue across social, cultural, and generational lines. Each year, we select APPR titles that focus on a variety of timely topics and coincide with our planned community-wide programming. This year, our titles explore themes of crossings, peace, multiculturalism, identity, friendship, and memory:

  • Our selected adult title is TransAtlantic by Colum McCann
  • We have also selected a book of poetry, Citizen Illegal by Jose Olivarez.
  • Our young adult and children’s title is Nowhere Boy by Katherine Marsh.

Click here for more information about the titles and for information about author visits!