Unique and historic Columbus on display during AASL national conference educational tours

For Immediate Release
Tue, 08/04/2015


Jennifer Habley

Manager, Web Communications

American Association of School Librarians (AASL)



CHICAGO – “Early evolving” attendees of the American Association of School Librarians (AASL) 17th National Conference & Exhibition are invited to participate in tours featuring a Tony Award winner, metal whistles and delicious buckeyes. Three preconference educational tours will offer attendees of “Experience Education Evolution,” taking place Nov. 5-8, 2015, an opportunity to explore Columbus and network with their colleagues prior to the opening of national conference. Tour information and registration rates are available at national.aasl.org/tours.

For attendees of the full-day tour, “Clue 1: This Columbus Native Won a Tony Award” will begin with a visit to the home of one of the foremost humorists of the 20th century, James Thurber. Thurber is the author of “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” and the creator of numerous New Yorker magazine cover cartoons. The Thurber House Museum and Thurber Center is listed on the National Register of Historic places and allows visitors to experience Thurber's life by becoming a guest of the family. From there, the tour will move to German Village, a historic neighborhood south of downtown. Settled by a large number of German immigrants in the mid-1800s, the village hosts a variety of locally owned restaurants and unique stores, including the 32-room Book Loft, a pre-Civil War era style book store.

The half-day “Whistle While You Read” tour will answer the perplexing question, how does the ball get inside the whistle? Tour attendees will first visit the American Whistle Corporation, the only manufacturer of metal whistles in the United States, where they will tour the factory and oversee the whistle making process from raw materials to the final product. After receiving a free whistle, attendees will head to Cover to Cover Books, an independent bookstore focused on books for children and young adults. Here, attendees will be part of a book talk with a local author.

Best known for their buckeyes, the Anthony Thomas Chocolates Factory produces more than 30,000 pounds of chocolate per shift and attendees of the “Buckeyes and Books” half-day tour will experience this candy-making from start to finish. Highlights of the tour include the factory’s huge copper kettles where the centers of some of the candies are created and the unique silver-wrapped pipes that carry liquid chocolate throughout the factory. From there, the tour will move on to the State Library of Ohio and the Ohioana Library. Both libraries feature extensive non-fiction collections and the state library features a rare books collection showcasing a book from 1630. The State Library of Ohio was one of the first state agencies created to serve the information and research needs of the state government while the Ohioana Library is dedicated to collecting, preserving, and promoting the written work of Ohio’s writers, artists, and musicians.

An additional registration fee is required for tour attendance and space is limited. Registration for the AASL 17th National Conference & Exhibition is now open at national.aasl.org.

The AASL National Conference & Exhibition is the only national conference dedicated solely to the needs of school librarians and their roles as educational leaders. The 17th National Conference & Exhibition, “Experience Education Evolution,” taking place Nov. 5-8, 2015, will feature preconference workshops & tours, author events, concurrent sessions and an exhibition featuring companies relevant to the profession. Those wishing to join their colleagues for dedicated learning and networking are encouraged to register before the Aug. 13 early bird deadline to save $100 on registration rates. 

The American Association of School Librarians, www.aasl.org, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), empowers leaders to transform teaching and learning.