News and Events


Thomas Nobel

September 9 thru October 31, 2016

Friends of Steely Library & W. Frank Steely Library

Presents an

Art Exhibition and Talk featuring works by Thomas S. Noble (1835-1907)

Northern Kentucky University’s W. Frank Steely Library will present an art exhibition on the work of Thomas S. Noble, a prominent 19th century artist from Lexington, KY. Born on a plantation to a family of slave-owners, Noble was well known for creating Civil War era historical paintings depicting the cruelty of slavery. Classically trained in France and New York, Noble painted many subjects in the realistic style of the day, from portraiture to still life to landscapes. An influential regional artist, he was the first head of the Art Academy of Cincinnati. Curated by local expert, Mary Ran, the exhibit will include a variety of his work as well as some personal effects, including beautifully written love letters to his wife.

    Friday, September 9, 2016 | 6:00-8:00 p.m.
    W. Frank Steely Library, 2nd Floor
    Eva G. Farris Reading Room

    Saturday, September 10, 2016 | 2:00-4:00 p.m.
    W. Frank Steely Library, 2nd Floor
    Eva G. Farris Reading Room

Both receptions will feature a talk by the Artist’s Great-Great-Granddaughter, Sarah Glass

Events are free, and open to the public Light refreshments will be served.

Visit or call 513.871.5604 for more information about the exhibit and talk.

Select artworks on display at the exhibit will be available for purchase, with a portion of the proceeds to benefit the W. Frank Steely Library.

Click here for parking and directions.

Sponsored by the Friends of Steely Library.

For more information, contact Lois Schultz at 859.572.5275 or

July 5, 2016

Friends of Steely Library Scholarship Recipients

Leigh Anna Voigt of Bardstown, Ky., and Elizabeth Gauck of Independence, Ky., are the very first recipients of the recently established Northern Kentucky University Friends of Steely Library Scholarship. FoSL is composed of alumni, faculty, staff, and community members who are dedicated to promoting the interests of the W. Frank Steely Library at NKU. The scholarship was established to assist academically successful students majoring in library informatics to continue and complete their online bachelor’s degree at NKU.


October 22, 2014

Advanced poetry workshop with Richard Hague

Congratulations to Patti Bray, Minadora Macheret, Erin Hertzenberg, Carola Bell, and Mark Payne for being selected for the Advanced Poetry Workshop with award-winning poet Richard Hague! Only five poets were chosen for this competitive workshop sponsored by the Friends of Steely Library and the English Department.


Michael Berry

December 15, 2013

Past Board Members Honored

The Friends of Steely Library Board honored past board members Michael Berry and Rachel Votruba for their service by having their names engraved on two chairs in the library. Funds from the engraving will be used to purchase additional furniture for the room.

October 23, 2013

On Wednesday, October 23rd, the Friends of Steely Library hosted and welcomed author, Lynn Hightower.  Ms. Hightower read from and signed copies of her latest book, The Piper, which has been described as a “bone-chilling tale of terror” where a devoted mother must confront the paranormal forces that have cursed her family.

The reading took place at 7:00 pm in the Otto M. Budig Theatre, followed by a reception and signing outside the theatre.  Over 40 people attended the reading and stayed to chat with Ms. Hightower and other attendees after the event. Books were available for purchase with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Friends of Steely Library. Ms. Hightower is a Kentucky native and attended the University of Kentucky, where she received a degree in Journalism.  She has been nominated for numerous awards including Kentucky Literary Award, the Kentucky Librarians First Choice Award, and the Mary Higgins Clark Award.  In 1994 she won the Shamus Award for her novel Satan’s Lambs.  In addition to writing novels, Ms. Hightower is an instructor in the UCLA Extension Writer’s Program. This event was sponsored by the Friends of Steely Library, the English Department, and the NKU Office of the Vice Provost.

May 4, 2013

3rd Annual Chrome Show & Rod Rally

On May 4, 2013, the Friends of Steely Library, in partnership with WNKU, held their 3rd Annual Chrome Show & Rod Rally.  Although the weather was touch-and-go right up to the day of the event, we started with a cloudy, chilly (albeit, dry) morning and ended with a warm, sunny afternoon. 

The rally, conducted by Scenic Road Rallies, LLC, began at 9:30am and combined urban and rural driving through Campbell and Kenton Counties.  This year, in addition to the regular scavenger hunt, we added a Poker Rally aspect – each driver was dealt a playing card at departure, another at each of the three stops and their final card when they completed the route.  The team with the best hand won a prize.  We would like to thank the volunteers from Phi Kappa Epsilon who manned each stop and distributed the cards.

While the rally participants were completing the 40+ mile scavenger hunt, Cincy Custom Street Machines Car Club was busy registering and coordinating the car show portion of the event.  This year we had over 50 cars, including antiques, hot rods and exotics.  Best of Show was awarded a trophy, in addition to many others in various categories.

Music, provided by WNKU, filled the air, along with the tasty aroma of grilled burgers, brats, and hot dogs which volunteers from the Baptist Student Union provided.  Special thanks to Pepsi for donating the soda and water, and to the Black-N-Bluegrass Roller Girls for their help in coordinating the two split-the-pot drawings which benefitted the Kids Café.

We would also like to thank our sponsors, Bruce Kintner/AMSOIL, Chuck’s Auto Body, and American Modern Insurance for their generous support.  In addition, the 1st place prize for the rally winner was provided by Jaguar/Land Rover of Cincinnati and the trophies were provided by Custom Trophy & Apparel.  We appreciate all our sponsors, donors and volunteers who helped make this year’s event a true success (and lots of fun!!).

Rally Results are:

  • 1st Place – Bill, Monica & Sophie Barrett and Shanna Osborne
    2013 BMW X5
  • 2nd Place – Pam, Don, Bob & Chris Ruschman and Joanie LeCoy
    2002 Hyundai Sonata
  • 3rd Place – Greg Curson & Charlie Gibson
    1971 MGB
  • Poker Rally Winner – John Murray & Gordon Griffiths
    2013 Chevrolet Equinox
  • Most Unique – Greg Curson & Charlie Gibson
    1971 MGB
  • Furthest Traveled - Bill Monica & Sophie Barrett
    2013 BMW X5

Photo Sets:

Many thanks to this year's GOLD Sponsors:

Amsoil logo

Bruce Kintner - Independent Dealer for AMSOIL

Chuck's Auto Body

Chuck's Auto Body

April 16, 2013

Matt Kish - Moby-Dick in Pictures: One Drawing for Every Page

NKU Friends of Steely Library and the Department of English and the Honors Program present Matt Kish - Moby-Dick in Pictures: One Drawing for Every Page. April 16, 2013 at 3:30pm, Kish will create, as we watch, a new MOBY-DICK artwork to be donated to the Steely Library in the George and Ellen Rieveschl Digitorium, Griffin Hall. At 7:00pm Kish will give an Illustrated lecture on his book "Moby Dick in Pictures: One Drawing for Every Page" in the George and Ellen Rieveschl Digitorium, Griffin Hall. Reception and book sigining will follow. Both events are free and open to the public. RSVPs are requested for the evening lecture to Sandi Webster at (859) 572-5636 or

Support for this event is provided by the Friends of Steely Library, the NKU Department of English, the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost, and the Honors Program.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Julia Alvarez

SAVE THE DATE!!! Honors Program presents Julia Alvarez, author of "A Wedding in Haiti", "Saving the world", and more. Thursday, April 25, 2013 at the NKU University Center, Budig Theater at 7:00pm. Reserve your Spot now! RSVP with your name and phone number to

This event is co-sponsored by the NKU Department of English, NKU Department of World Literature and Languages, NKU Office of International Education, Latino Student Affairs, and Friends of the Library.


September 25, 2012
Maureen Morehead

The featured writer for Fall 2012 in the Friends of Steely Library literary series was Maureen Morehead, Kentucky's Poet-Laureate. Dr. Morehead is the author of the recently published Late August Blues: The Daylily Poems, and four other books: In a Yellow Room, Our Brothers' War, A Sense of Time Left, and A Melancholy Teacher. She read and discussed her Civil War poems which are based on journals kept by women during the war. She also read from her latest collection. She spoke to an attentive and appreciative crowd that filled the Eva G. Farris Reading Room. The reading, which was sponsored by the Friends of Steely Library and NKU's Department of English, was followed by a signing and a reception.

Road Rally
April 22, 2012
Road Rally

This year's road rally was a great event. Partnering for the first time with WNKU, the event benefited Friends of Steely Library, WNKU, and several local non-profits. After weeks of sunny, warm weather, rain was predicted for the day of the event. The weather held for our rain date, April 22nd, but it was cold and very windy. Nevertheless, Rally Master, Satolli Glassmeyer, sent the cars out at 11:00 AM and a fun time was had by all.

WNKU and Cincy Custom Street Machines Car Club conducted a car show with 80 cars, ranging from a 1930 Packard through hot cars from the 50s, 60s, and today. The show brought some exotic cars to the rally, including a 1962 Cadillac convertible and a series of vintage British sports cars. Prizes were given to the teams bearing the highest rally scores. In addition, a trophy was given to the team with the most unique car and to the team which had traveled the farthest to participate in the rally. Enjoy the pictures. Hope that we see you at next year's event!

  • 1st Place - Sam & Tira Rogers and Alex Steinbach - 2006 Porsche Carrera 4S
  • 2nd Place - Mike & Laurie Murray - 2005 Honda Accord
  • 3rd Place - Shanna & Patricia Osborne and Monica & Sophie Barrett - 2009 Cadillac CTS
  • Most Unique: Joe Newton & Jerry Rheinfrank - 1952 MGTD
  • Furthest Traveled: Monica & Sophie Barrett – Maysville, KY
February 21, 2012
Bobbie Ann Mason

The featured author in the Friends of Steely Library Literary Series was Bobbie Ann Mason, an award-winning Kentucky writer. Ms. Mason, read from her recently published The Girl in the Blue Beret. Some of her other works include In Country, which was made into a film starring Bruce Willis; Shiloh and Other Stories; An Atomic Romance; Nancy Culpepper; and a memoir, Clear Springs,. She is the winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award, two Southern Book Awards, and numerous other prizes, including the O. Henry and the Pushcart. She was a finalist for the national Book Critics Circle Award, the American Book Award, the PEN/Faulkner Award, and the Pulitzer Prize.

The reading, which was sponsored by the Friends of Steely Library and NKU's Department of English, took place on Tuesday, February 21st, at 7:00 p.m. in the Otto Budig Theater, followed by a signing and reception. The event was well attended and several of her books were available for purchase, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Friends of Steely Library.


October 22, 2011
Books by the Banks

This was the third year that Steely Library and the Friends of Steely Library sponsored and participated in the annual Books by the Banks event. The crowds grow more and more each year as this very successful event continues to touch the lives of thousands of tri-state attendees. In 2011, there were nearly 100 authors available to sign their books whose genres included fiction, non-fiction, cookbooks, teens, travel, local topics of interest, etc. In addition, the Kids' Corner had activities and costumed storybook characters. We are particularly proud that one of our newest FoSL Board Members, Lorraine Zago Rosenthal, was among the authors. Other featured authors included Judy Collins, Matthew Reinhart, Dennis Lehane and Chris Bohjalian.

Sunday, July 31, 2011
First West Workshop for Women Writers

The First West Workshop was co-sponsored by the NKU English Department and the Friends of Steely Library and held July 29th-31st on NKU's campus. First West offered small workshop sessions (only 10 people admitted per workshop) with award-winning writers, craft talks, and gatherings designed to give each participant individual attention and personal enrichment. A free, public reading was held on Sunday July 31st at 2:00 p.m. in Steely Library's Eva G. Farris Reading Room on the second floor.