Friday, June 19, 2015

Rosies Going Strong at 2015 Convention in Richmond, California!

      All of the lovely ladies that you see here are real live Rosie the Riveters! They are women who went to work during World War II - building airplanes, ships, and lots of other jobs that were needed to win the war. They live all across the U. S., from Maryland to Pennsylvania to Alabama to Texas to Iowa to Oregon to Kansas to Arizona to California, but they all traveled to Richmond, California last weekend for the 2015 convention of the American Rosie the Riveter Association - and what a convention it was! GranFran and I wouldn't have missed it for the world. Click here to meet some of these amazing women via the local KTVU  evening news spot during the convention.
One of many WW II scenes in
the Park's fabulous Visitor Center
     Why Richmond? Because during the war, thousands of men and women were working in four Kaiser Shipyards in Richmond, building ships for the war effort. Today, Richmond is the home of the Rosie the Riveter World War II Home Front National Historical Park, and it was our privilege to tour the Park's wonderful Visitor Center and other historical sites throughout the city. The above picture of the Rosies was taken at the Craneway Pavilion, part of the old Ford Assembly Plant that stopped making civilian cars during the war and made tanks, armored personnel carriers, and other military vehicles instead. The historical building is now a venue for weddings, roller derbies, and lots of other events.
Rosies who volunteer as docents
at the Visitor Center, sharing about
their trip to meet with Vice President
Biden in May 2014.
     We met several of the spunky Rosies who volunteer as docents at the Park's Visitor Center each Friday. In May, 2015, they traveled to Washington, D. C. at the invitation of Vice President Biden. Watch this CUTE video of Lara Spencer's (Good Morning, America) coverage of their trip.
 ARRA National President Yvonne Fasold
with Rosie Elinor Otto, age 95 -- who
JUST RETIRED from the job as a riveter
that she started in 1942!
We also met Elinor Otto, age 95, who started working as a riveter in 1942 and JUST RETIRED from riveting at Boeing this year--at age 95! And I don't think she was too happy about retiring when she did - what a dynamo! Here is an NBC video of Elinor on the job when she was a mere 93.
    All of these women are an inspiration - it is not only
  fun to hear their stories, it is also amazing to realize what they accomplished, and what a legacy they have left for us. Thanks, Rosies!
The Rosies also brought their daughters and granddaughters (Rosebuds),
sons and husbands (Rivets), and guests to the Convention.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Super time at two great conferences!

GranFran and I enjoyed two wonderful days with "book people" this week. The Alabama School Library Association's annual workshop was great! When I was a librarian, the conference was always a boost, and now, as an author in the Author Alcove, I found a new kind of fun connecting and reconnecting with fellow authors and librarian friends. And we had even more fun presenting at a breakout session about our books and giving a sample of our school visit presentations.
     Well, after all, you can't help but enjoy being around several hundred people who love books for kids!
                And also . . .


       We had another great day when we participated in the Southern Christian Writers Conference in Tuscaloosa - great speakers and workshops, and we enjoyed meeting fellow authors in the Authors Room. If you are interested in honing your writing skills and managing the business end of writing, you might want to check out this excellent conference that is organized as a ministry of love by three generations of the Sloan family. Next year will be their 25th anniversary!
We shared a table with fellow author  
Lawayne Childrey, and as it turns out, he
remembered Mother because he narrated a 
DVD about Alabama Rosies that 
Jeff State Community College 
produced about 12 years ago.
How cool is that!