GREENVILLE — The wait is over and this year’s One Book One County selection has been revealed at a banquet held Thursday afternoon at the Stanley & Blanche Ash Technology and Learning Center.
Maureen Burns, who brought the One Book One County program to Greenville nearly a decade ago, spoke to a capacity crowd prior to the unveiling. Burns gave the audience a quick history of the program and explained is goal.
“Our goal is to bring together the people of Montcalm County in a positive unifying way through reading the same book and thus fostering education, literacy, open-mindedness, global and human awareness and county camaraderie,” Burns said.
This year’s book is “The Language of Flowers,” a novel by Vanessa Diffenbaugh. The book tells the tale of a young woman who communicates almost exclusively through flowers and their little-known meanings.
“I think this is going to be one of our best books,” Burns said. “We try to pick selections that accommodate everyone.”
Organizing the program — and all the activities which accompany it throughout the year — is a time consuming process that requires the commitment of several dedicated volunteers.
Work generally begins shortly after the Christmas holidays and, according to Burns, goes on “pretty much all through the year.”
Many of the expenses associated with the program are underwritten by Chemical Bank, The Daily News and Montcalm Community College.
“Rob (Stafford) worked with me on this from the get-go,” Burns said. “He was really excited about it. The college does it because it is such a natural for them and it’s something that reaches everybody.
“I actually resigned a few year ago, but they keep pulling me back in,” she added. “But I do have a great passion for it. It’s something I really care about.”
In addition to book discussions, several additional activities are planned for this year’s program, including a free movie showing of “Where the Heart Is” at 7 p.m. June 11. Other book-inspired events include:
• The Glory of the Gardens Tour on July 30.
• Book Club Soiree, Aug. 20.
• Bunnies and Bouquets, throughout the summer.
• Dining in the ‘Secret Garden,’ through Oct. 17.
• Foster the People program, Sept. 12.
• The Serenity Garden and Lola’s, through Oct. 17.
The program’s closing celebration will be held Oct. 17 at MCC’s Ash Technical Learning Center, where Jeanne Hawkins will speak about the language of flowers.
“The programs this year are fun and fabulous,” Burns said. “We’ve never had such a great array of programs.”
Following are the dates and times of this year’s One Book Discussion groups:
• Monday, July 1, 10 a.m. Home Township Library, Edmore.
• Thursday, July 11, 11 a.m. White Pine Library, Stanton.
• Tuesday, August 6, 6:30 p.m. Flat River Community Library, Greenville.
• Thursday, Sept. 5, Noon Montcalm Community College’s Beatrice E. Doser Building, Room D305, Sidney.
• Monday, Sept. 9, 1:30 p.m. Timothy C. Hauenstein Reynolds Township Library, Howard City.
• Tuesday, Sept. 10, 10 a.m. Richland Township Library, Vestaburg.
• Wednesday, Sept. 18, 6 p.m. Carson City Public Library.
• Tuesday, Sept. 24, 6 p.m. Montcalm Community College’s Ash TLC on MCC’s Greenville campus room 113, Greenville.
• Monday, Sept. 26, 6 p.m. Tamarack District Library, Lakeview.