Arts & Entertainment

Olean Library's First-Ever Anti-Valentine's Day Party Exceeds Expectations

Everett Mix and Ayden Walker, both seventh graders, make black roses out of duct tape. Credits: Taylor Walker
The teens enjoyed heart shaped cookies with black frosting, a jello heart mold and punch. Credits: Taylor Walker
One emoji pillow was designated as a prize for the attendee who wrote the funniest breakup letter. The other was raffled as a door prize. Credits: Taylor Walker

OLEAN, NY – The day of “love” took on a different  tone this year for youths 12 to 16 attending the Olean Public Library's first-ever Anti-Valentine’s Day Party.

As “Love Stinks” by the J. Geils Band played, eighth-grader Katie Geise ran in to the library party room, amazed by the black decorations everywhere: black hearts hung on the walls with black and red tulle, black drinking cups, and black paper for crafts.  Pink was not allowed at this party.

Geise, 14, decked out in black, said, “I think there’s an actual meaning behind Valentine's Day. It’s not just about cards. It’s about who you spend time with mostly.”

Sign Up for E-News

More and more youths between the ages of 12 and 16 kept showing up to eat heart-shaped cookies with black frosting, gelatin hearts, Hershey kisses and Doritos.

The attendees sat down with their snacks and began making anti-love crafts from the black paper and black duct tape provided. They made Anti-Valentine’s Day cards, wrote breakup letters and fashioned duct tape roses. They were promised that the funniest breakup letter would win an emoji pillow. Another pillow was auctioned off as a door prize.

Chris Halsey, a seventh grader, said he would much rather be at the Anti-Valentine's Day party than a regular one.

“Usually Valentine's Day parties are with way more people than this, and usually they’re with people you don’t know,” Halsey said, adding if the library does the Anti-Valentine's Day party again next year, he would definitely come.

Librarian Jen Stickles, who is the head of youth and adult programs, admitted she thought the first-time event would attract a smaller crowd and found herself counting the crowd as it approached the maximum room capacity of 35.

“We’ve been getting more and more teens coming to the library so we’ve been trying to offer a lot of programs for them,” Stickles noted. “I thought this would be something fun to do -- having some snacks and hanging out as friends on Valentine’s Day versus being 14 and going out on dates and feeling that kind of pressure.”  

Stickles added she was pleased by the turnout and hopes that the party becomes a tradition at the library.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Greater Olean

Sights and Sounds: The First Four of the NCAA Tournament

Traffic is a common occurrence, but for fans of the Dayton Flyers, it’s a usual event every gameday. A trip across the Great Miami River leads to the Flyers’ athletic complex. It became the same ritual for Bonnies fans heading to the University of Dayton Arena for the team's first NCAA Tournament appearance since 2012.

Snow, sleet and hail pounded down on the car as we ...

My Experience: What Almost Was Not

DAYTON, OHIO -- I almost didn’t get to shoot the game.

My media credential got all messed up because I neglected to go through one minor process (I’m an idiot lol and didn’t check my email). Luckily, some amazing people and friends helped push my name through, and I was granted media access to Tuesday's match against UCLA. For them, I am truly grateful and beyond ...

Bonnies Fan Finds Retribution in Trip to NCAA Tournament

Sunday, March 13, 2016. 

A day that doesn't sit well with Bonnies fans. The Atlantic 10 Tournament in Brooklyn had already left a sour taste in the mouths of Bona fans with an overtime loss in the quarterfinals to the Davidson Wildcats 90-86. Many students including myself took the chance to take an opportunity the day after to take a day to sightsee in New York City.

Sunday ...

Upcoming Events

Mon, March 19, 10:00 AM

Olean Public Library, Olean

Mother Goose Story Time


Mon, March 19, 12:00 PM

Olean Public Library, Olean

Simply Stories


Mon, March 19, 1:30 PM

Olean Public Library, Olean

Craft Class: Nifty Knitter

Home & Garden

CRCF Community Fund Grant Applications Are Due April 21

March 16, 2018

Grant applications for the next funding cycle of the Community Fund at the Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation are due April 21.

“The Community Fund is an unrestricted fund that allows the foundation’s board to approve grants responsive to the changing needs of the community,” said CRCF Executive Director Karen Niemic Buchheit. “The grants, typically between $100 ...

Archbishop Walsh Academy to Host St. Patrick's Day Party and Raffle

OLEAN, NY -- Archbishop Walsh Academy and the Walsh Sports Boosters Club will host their annual St. Patrick’s Day Party and Raffle on Saturday, March 24, from 7 to 11 p.m. at Archbishop Walsh, 208 N. 24th St. The event welcomes over 700 guests and raises nearly $100,000 each year. It has become one of the school’s largest fundraisers, supporting ...

'A Day in the Life': One Transportation Supervisor Serves Portville and Olean

PORTVILLE, NY – A whiteboard with dozens of destinations and vehicle numbers written in various colors sits inside the Portville bus garage, ready to be changed at any moment. David Youngs, the transportation supervisor of the Portville and Olean School Districts, knows that before 2 almost every afternoon, he is likely to receive an email changing the entire meticulously planned ...

'A Day in the Life' Follows Della Moore of the African American Center for Cultural Development

OLEAN, NY – When Della Moore walks down the street, she greets everyone she passes and makes sure to ask, “How are you doing?” 

From the moment I joined her at the 7-Eleven on a cloudy, cold December morning until we finished making our stops along State and North Union streets, she remained ...

'Day in the Life' Follows Warehouse Selector Justus Elliot

OLEAN, NY -- For Justus Elliot, time and pace are essential. As a warehouse selector for Olean Wholesale Grocery Co-Op, most of the 21-year-old’s job calls for efficiency.

“Everything is time-based," Elliot explained. "One hundred percent is the norm, and it’s what we work for every day. If our score is less, then we are moving too slow, and we kick it into ...

Happy Veterans Day, Mom

What began as an attempt to boost her GPA soon turned into a 22-year career for my mom, Ramona Lee Discavage.

On the first day of her freshman year at St. Bonaventure University in 1989, members of the Army ROTC Seneca Battalion helped incoming freshmen move their stuff into their dorm rooms.  Afterward, they invited all of the freshmen to a lunch.

“When they described the ...

Lynn Kemp: ‘Best Soldier I Could Be’

Lynn Kemp is nearing 95 and knows he has lived a good life.

“The good Lord has been awful good to me,” recalled the lifelong resident of Shinglehouse, Pennsylvania. “I never refused an order. I tried to be the best soldier I could be. I don’t know what your relationship is with God, but mine is pretty close.”

Born Oct. 29, 1920, Lynn grew up in a home on Turkey ...

WW II museum provides role models for young people

When Steve Appleby asks area students if they know Snoop Dog, Eminem, Kanye West, the Kardashians, Parris Hilton or Miley Cyrus, they answer yes. Then Appleby will ask which of them knows Jason Dunham is, and the students will not have a clue.

Appleby will explain that Jason Dunham was a Marine from Scio, in Allegany County, New York, who was killed in Iraq in 2006 after jumping on a grenade ...