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October 26, 1999

Mary Jo Ryan,

Author/Photographer Terry Evans Visits Nebraska Community of the Book

"It was over flat lands like this, stretching out to drink the sun, that the larks sang-and one's heart sang there, too…." The Song of the Lark, by Willa Cather

Nebraska library staff and supporters are invited to the Nebraska Center for the Book Annual Meeting and LIVE! at the Library presentations featuring Author/Photographer Terry Evans' The Inhabited Prairie. These events, scheduled for November 7 and 8, are open to the public.

Evans, a Kansas native, had a one-person show, "In Place of Prairie," exhibited at the Smithsonian Institution and Chicago Art Institute in 1998-1999. She published three books, The Inhabited Prairie, Disarming the Prairie, and Prairie: Images of Ground and Sky. She received a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Midamerica Arts Alliance/National Endowment of the Arts fellowship, as well as grants from The Land Institute, Liberty Prairie Project, and Kansas Committee for the Humanities.

The Nebraska Center for the Book Annual Meeting will be held on November 7, 1999, 1:00 p.m., at the Webster County Historical Museum, 721 West 4th Avenue in Red Cloud. This event is open to the public and will feature Terry Evans, speaking on her book, The Inhabited Prairie. The designation of Willa Cather's Prairie as the first Friends of the Libraries USA (FOLUSA) National Literary Landmark in Nebraska will highlight the day's activities.

The Jane Pope Geske Award for exceptional contribution to literacy, books, reading, libraries, book-selling, or writing in Nebraska will also be presented to the John G. Neihardt Foundation and Neihardt Center. The Foundation and Center was nominated for its Institute of Vision and Learning. The Institute features a literary competition at the Red Cloud Indian School, weeklong writer's workshop at Wayne State College for intertribal students, and art exhibit from the Red Cloud Heritage Center. The award, established in recognition of her contributions to the well-being of the libraries of Nebraska, commemorates Geske's passion for books. Geske was a founding member of the Nebraska Center for the Book and a long-time leader in many Nebraska library and literary activities. This award is presented annually to an organization, business, library, school, association, or other group that exemplifies Jane Geske's spirit and her commitment to the ideas that flow from the printed word.

The Nebraska Center for the Book brings together the state's readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book. We are the people who know and love books, who value the richness they bring to our lives. Our Nebraska Center supports programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center has been an affiliate of the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress since 1990.

Evans will also be featured on Monday, November 8, 1999 at a reception and book signing at 4 p.m. at the Homestead National Monument of America (4 miles west of Beatrice on Highway 4) and at a LIVE! at the Library program at the Beatrice Public Library, 16th and Court Streets in Beatrice at 7:30 p.m. "We are thrilled to have received a grant for this special program. Terry Evans was selected because of her close link with the prairie," explained Library Director Laureen Riedesel. "We wanted to bring an author to the community who would appreciate our history and heritage. The Beatrice Public Library hopes that this is just the first of a series of author visits that can be coordinated with Homestead National Monument of America."

This presentation by Author/Photographer Terry Evans is part of the LIVE! at the Library project sponsored by the American Library Association, with major support from the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund and additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts. Local supporters include the Beatrice Public Library Foundation, Inc. and Nebraska Center for the Book. LIVE! at the Library brings writers, readers, artists, and audiences together at libraries to celebrate the role of libraries as a cultural center in the community.


As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services, bringing together people and information. The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission home page. Point your World Wide Web browser to, search on news release.

For more information, contact Tessa Terry.