Public Library Makes Plans for Annual County-wide Read

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New York Times bestselling author Gretchen Rubin coming to Thomasville

THOMASVILLE – The Thomas County Public Library has announced the bestselling memoir “The

Happiness Project” as this year’s One Book selection. One Book, an annual festival devoted to promoting literacy, kicks off with a flash mob during First Friday festivities downtown on Friday, Oct. 2.

Thomasville’s local bookstore, The Bookshelf, will also be open late to sell books and tickets to the main One Book event, an evening with “The Happiness Project” author Gretchen Rubin.

“I know I’m biased, but One Book is my favorite Thomasville festival,” said Annie Jones, owner of The Bookshelf. “A book devoted to happiness is the perfect follow-up to last year’s success, and it’s exciting to be able to welcome such prominent literary talent to our neck of the woods.”

The Thomas County Public Library created the annual One Book program to increase literacy and enhance dialogue in Thomas County. “Thomas County residents have embraced the One Book concept, and we’re so excited this is our third year to provide literacy activities to our community,” said Nancy Tillinghast, Public Library Systems Director.

One Book is made possible by several community partners, including the Thomasville Center for the Arts, Southern Regional Technical College, Thomas University, the Thomasville-Thomas County Chamber of Commerce and the Office of Mainstreet and Tourism.

“I personally love this program because it gets everyone in the community, even those from differing backgrounds and age groups, on the same page,” said Lauren Basford, Executive Director of the Chamber.

“From a chamber perspective, we like to support literacy programs because they inevitably result in a more skilled and learned workforce.”

One Book programming begins with the launch on Oct. 2, followed by a two-week Reading period when community members are encouraged to pick up ‘The Happiness Project’ and read it for themselves.

“We’re having our own ‘Happiness Project’ in Thomas County,” said Tillinghast. “Each activity is designed to help attain that often elusive goal of happiness.” One Book partners have scheduled a night of happiness inspired music and poetry at Grassroots on Oct. 23, followed by a day of free exercise classes and health screenings at Cherokee Lake on Saturday, Oct. 24. The library will host a documentary viewing of ‘Happy,’ on Oct. 25, and Oct. 26, panelists at Thomas University will lead a discussion about happiness and the brain.

Jones, the owner of The Bookshelf, has scheduled a lunch and learn at Studio 209 on Oct. 27.

“Books routinely prove to be excellent conversation starters,” said Jones. “Think of this as a giant book club, one where all of Thomas County can celebrate ‘The Happiness Project’ and the discussions books like it inspire.”

One Book festivities conclude on Tuesday, Oct. 27, with a book talk with author Gretchen Rubin at the Thomasville Center for the Arts. Rubin will share her thoughts on happiness and habit-building and will sign copies of her bestselling books. Tickets to the event are $10 and can be purchased online or at The Bookshelf.

“Bringing Gretchen to Thomasville will be her first time in Georgia,” said Tillinghast. “We’re excited to welcome her to town.”

More information about One Book and this year’s events can be found at the One Book website,


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