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Battle Over Books Hosted at Maxwell Center image

          There is rarely a lack of youthful exuberance on OCU’s campus, especially once warmer temperatures arrive, but this spring the mood heightened even more as OCU hosted Battle Over Books for the first time in the event’s six-year history. Battle Over Books is a fierce, yet friendly, set of competitions among local middle and high school student teams: complete with buzzers and lighting rounds          Nearly 60 high school students participated in the April 10th competition, representing Circleville, Logan, Logan Elm, Teays Valley and Westfall schools. The May 11th middle school rivalry involved more than 80 contestants from Canal Winchester, Everts, Groveport Madison, Hilliard Weaver, Logan-Hocking, New Lexington, and Westfall schools.          Questions for the high school teams were drawn from 12 titles ranging from beloved classics such as The Hobbit, The Princess Bride, and Something Wicked This Way Comes, to Kristin Cashore’s debut fantasy Graceling, Alex Scarrow’s Time Riders science fiction series, and The Warren Commission Report: The Graphic Investigation into the Kennedy Assignation. A live-video conference with author Mindy McGinnis rounded out the day. She graciously spent more than an hour discussing her debut novel, Not a Drop to Drink, which was recently optioned for the big screen. Keenly attuned to her reading audience, McGinnis was hilariously offbeat and genuinely connected with the students. They held their own – gaining insightful and sophisticated queries about her characters, themes, and writing process.          Slightly longer, but equally challenging, the middle school list of sixteen titles included The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion & the Fall of Imperial Russia by Candance Fleming, Prisoner B-3087 by Alex Gratz, and The War Brothers: The Graphic Novel by Sharon McKay and Daniel LaFrance. In an impromptu discussion at the end of the day, one student revealed how the graphic novel’s style influenced their own art-making. Others weighed-in on their reading and library habits, the surprise of loving books they had expected to hate, and the sense of team dedication that comes out of the competition.          While the competition was indeed competitive - Circleville High School took the trophy for a second consecutive year, and Canal Winchester claimed the prize at the middle school level - the emphasis was on teamwork between students who simply love to read. Circleville teacher-librarian Trent Roberts put it well, “This is an awesome way to get kids reading and recognize them for their love of reading”.          Kudos goes to Roberts and the other librarians, teachers, and volunteers whose own love of reading made the event possible. They included, Pickaway County Public Library Outreach Services/Public Relations Coordinator Michelle Callahan, Teays Valley H.S. teacher-librarian Lisa Campbell, Circleville High School Library Clerk Terri Carter, Logan Elm H. S. teacher-librarian Jarod Lloyd, Westfall Middle School librarian Cheryl Lorson, Logan-Hocking H.S. language arts teacher Ben Taulbee, and Friends of the Pickaway County District Public Library Sharyn Blecha, Carol Bowling, Elaine Cook, Sandy Edgar, Martha Erchenbrecher, Lynn Kraus, Jane Poulson, Paula Prindle and Gary Wasmer who served as scorekeepers, judges, and timers.          It was a distinct pleasure to host Battle Over Books, and plans to host next year’s events are already in motion. 

Archived Articles of Interest

Deputy Thomas takes a selfie with the students beside the new D.A.R.E Hummer

Local D.A.R.E. Officer receives new Hummer

Deputy Thomas takes a selfie with the students beside the new D.A.R.E Hummer

Published: May 11, 2016

Ohio Christian University had the honor of standing by the Pickaway County Sheriff's Office today as Deputy Dale Thomas received an award for the D.A.R.E program — a new D.A.R.E Hummer with a slick, patriotic paint job — from local nonprofit Hetty’s Hopes and Dreams. The event was held in the Pickaway County Fairgrounds Colosseum — a warehouse-like space filled with more than 400 students, dozens of local law enforcement, and Deputy Thomas’ family. Seven bus loads brought more than 400 students, filling the Colosseum bleachers. The excited students could barely contain their
Ohio Christian University had the honor of standing by the Pickaway County Sheriff's Office today as Deputy Dale Thomas received an award for the D.A.R.E program — a new D.A.R.E Hummer with a slick, patriotic paint job — from local nonprofit Hetty’s Hopes and Dreams. The event was held in the Pickaway County Fairgrounds Colosseum — a warehouse-like space filled with more than 400 students,
Ohio Christian University had the honor of standing by the Pickaway County Sheriff's Office today as Deputy Dale Thomas received an award for the D.A.R.E program — a new D.A.R.E Hummer with a slick
OCU Students Stand for Freedom image

OCU Students Stand for Freedom

OCU Students Stand for Freedom image

Published: April 18, 2016

CIRCLEVILLE — For 24 hours straight, Ohio Christian University (OCU) students stood at the corner of Main and Court streets to raise awareness about human trafficking as part of their fourth annual “Stand For Freedom” event. “A lot of people think of it as just a thing that happens in far-off countries but it happens right here in this county, and there have been cases in Circleville,” said OCU student Emily Swedberg. Starting at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, members of the OCU International Justice Missions (IJM) campus chapter displayed signs to raise awareness, held a worship service with
CIRCLEVILLE — For 24 hours straight, Ohio Christian University (OCU) students stood at the corner of Main and Court streets to raise awareness about human trafficking as part of their fourth annual “Stand For Freedom” event. “A lot of people think of it as just a thing that happens in far-off countries but it happens right here in this county, and there have been cases in Circleville,”
CIRCLEVILLE — For 24 hours straight, Ohio Christian University (OCU) students stood at the corner of Main and Court streets to raise awareness about human trafficking as part of their fourth annual
Pitching In: Volunteers Serve on Community Action Day image

Pitching In: Volunteers Serve on Community Action Day

Pitching In: Volunteers Serve on Community Action Day image

Published: April 14, 2016

It was ideal weather last Thursday for the 17th annual Ralph C. Starkey Community Action Day. Nearly 800 volunteers, including students from Ohio Christian University, Circleville High School, Logan Elm High School, Teays Valley High School, Westfall High School and New Hope Christian Academy took on various projects throughout the county. The students, along with adult volunteers, got out the paint brushes, rakes and shovels as they helped residents with some yard work and handy-man jobs and worked in parks, cemeteries and many other sites around the county. The event is coordinated
It was ideal weather last Thursday for the 17th annual Ralph C. Starkey Community Action Day. Nearly 800 volunteers, including students from Ohio Christian University, Circleville High School, Logan Elm High School, Teays Valley High School, Westfall High School and New Hope Christian Academy took on various projects throughout the county. The students, along with adult volunteers, got out
It was ideal weather last Thursday for the 17th annual Ralph C. Starkey Community Action Day. Nearly 800 volunteers, including students from Ohio Christian University, Circleville High School,
OCU Donates 1,000 Pounds of Collected Food from Festival of Carols

OCU Donates 1,000 Pounds of Collected Food from Festival of Carols

OCU Donates 1,000 Pounds of Collected Food from Festival of Carols

Published: December 7, 2015

Thanks to the giving hearts and hands of the Circleville community, Ohio Christian University was able to donate more than 1,000 pounds of collected food to Pickaway County Community Action – Emergency Clearinghouse. Four grocery carts filled to overflowing with canned and dry goods will provide hundreds of local families with much needed food this Christmas season. Across the country, one out of five children live in households without consistent access to adequate food. Twenty-two percent of kids under the ages of 18 live in poverty in America. Currently, there are more than
Thanks to the giving hearts and hands of the Circleville community, Ohio Christian University was able to donate more than 1,000 pounds of collected food to Pickaway County Community Action – Emergency Clearinghouse. Four grocery carts filled to overflowing with canned and dry goods will provide hundreds of local families with much needed food this Christmas season. Across the country
Thanks to the giving hearts and hands of the Circleville community, Ohio Christian University was able to donate more than 1,000 pounds of collected food to Pickaway County Community Action –