Community Connections

While most of our collections and resources are held inside seven different buildings across the county, we don’t see those buildings as the boundary of our work – we work to reach all in our community.

The library is a key community partner in preparing students for success in dynamic and increasingly competitive work environments. We collaborate with our local educators and schools to help prepare students to compete in the global economy. We provide resources, training, technology, and programming to equip students of all ages with viable skills for continued life success and sustainable careers.

We look for ways to reach all in our community. We have Spanish language materials and bilingual staff to help you at our Newton and St. Stephens locations, and we offer a great variety of Spanish and dual-language programs, including movie nights, gardening, homework help, ESL, and more. Call us at the Main Library in Newton at 828-465-8664 to learn more.

We’ve become a convener of people and facilitator of conversations with the goal of hearing our neighbors’ aspirations for the community, what they see as obstacles to progress, and what they believe could make a difference resulting in positive change. As we gather this public knowledge, we become stewards of that knowledge, looking to share it in a strategic way so that positive change has a better chance of happening.

Be on the lookout for the library outside our walls! With our new mobile library entitled Library to Go, we bring vital and empowering resources, services, programs, training, and internet access to community events and nonprofit organizations across the county. If you'd like to request a visit, please complete our online form.

There are many "Easter Eggs" hidden in the details of Osiris Rain's mural in Yount Park that showcase historical and cultural significances of the City of Newton and the state of North Carolina. How many can you find?

Located at 33 E A St, Newton, NC 28658

Barn Quilts

The history of the American Barn Quilt can be traced back almost 300 years, to the arrival of immigrants from the central regions of Europe; Germany, Austria, and the Netherlands. Paint was very expensive in those days and painting a decorative yet distinctive quilt pattern on their barns was a wonderful way of allowing for decoration. It also became an excellent way for travelers to find particular families or cross roads.

Decorating barns with colorful designs and quilt squares peaked by the beginning of the 20th century and slowly gave way to advertisement. Barn quilts have regained their popularity and offer a nod to folk art. Quilt trails have been developed in many states, including the Western part of North Carolina.


Black bears are an important part of the state’s natural history and are found in the Mountains, Foothills, and Coastal Plain of North Carolina. There are between 4,000 to 6,000 bears in the western part of North Carolina. Black Bears enjoy a variety of foods such as berries, fruits, carrion, insects, nuts, and plants. To learn more about black bears in NC, visit:

Bears are culturally important to the City of Newton thanks to the enchanting chainsaw artistry of Brad Tompkins. Brad is an employee of the city who carves bears (along with owls and eagles) out of tree stumps. Make sure to look for them as you drive through the city.


The Northern Cardinal is the North Carolina State bird, designated in 1943. The medium-sized songbird known for its vibrant crimson red feathers propagates in the state of North Carolina’s woodlands, swamps, urban residential areas, and city parks. The cardinal holds an endearing role in Carolina lore as a representative of a loved one who has passed. When you see one, it means they are visiting you.

Carolina Salamander

You may have heard that Southern Appalachia or the Great Smoky Mountains are the salamander capital of the world but the whole state of North Carolina is a haven for salamanders. North Carolina has an amazing abundance of salamanders because of its diverse geography from mountains to coastal swamps, and that includes the City of Newton!

Even though they’re slimy and move fast enough to make even the bravest adult squeal, salamanders are a really vital part of the ecosystem. They control pests by eating insects like mosquitoes, and sometimes become food themselves. They are exceptional indicators of ecosystem health and serve as an early warning system to scientists studying environmental impacts.To learn more about NC’s state salamander, visit:

Wheat Stalks

Founded in 1935 by G.D. Drum, Renwood Mills quickly became a titan in the US milling industry. Formerly known to many in the Southeast at Midstate Mills, Renwood Mills sources locally grown whole wheat and corn to mill a variety of dry mixes, consistently milling roughly 800 million pounds of flour every week for the past four generations. Renwood Mills has relationships with about 500 farmers in and around North Carolina and has a daily flour milling capacity of more than 750,000 pounds. Renwood Mills’ products, which are all made in Newton, are available in grocery stores and restaurants in all 50 states.

Renwood also sponsors the annual Biscuit Day event, serving freshly made Southern biscuits with sausage, sausage gravy, and Cheerwine soft drinks. The event is free for all members of the community and is one of the ways Renwood Mills enjoys giving back to their friends and neighbors.

Butterflies, Carolina Lilies, and Hummingbirds

North Carolina is home to a variety of flora and fauna, including the state’s wildflower Carolina Lily. The Carolina Lily grows throughout the state and is an important part of the ecosystem, providing nourishment for pollinators that help with plant/food production.

Roughly 177 species call North Carolina home, including the Eastern tiger swallowtail and Monarch butterflies.

While many hummingbirds spend their winters in Mexico or Central America, they return every spring to backyards across North Carolina looking for warm weather, rest, and food. Riverbend Park hosts an annual hummingbird banding demonstration that allows the park to identify each individual bird and to collect data about its migration patterns, biometrics, and environmental health. To learn more about the process (and start your plans to attend in August), visit:


Corn is an important crop in North Carolina covering over 900,000 acres and providing over 120 million bushels of corn for the livestock industry in the state. Average corn yield in North Carolina is 144 bushels per acre but on the more productive soils corn yields of 250 bushels per acre or more are common. Farming was a way of life in early Catawba County and corn played an historical role in crop and livestock production for Newton, Catawba County, and the state. The county’s early farmers grew what they and their livestock consumed. Corn was the main vegetable grown due to the favorable climate and soil conditions, and was also used to make a popular Carolina staple, grits and cornmeal.

Folded American flag in barn quilt style

The U.S. flag honors the memory of a service member or veteran's service to our country. The ceremonial folding and presentation of the flag is a tribute of lasting importance to our service members, veterans and their families. The imagery of the folded American flag pays homage to our veterans.