The Smithsonian will be @ WPL from October 7 – November 19th.

Voices and Votes Signage

At Voices and Votes, you’ll learn how everyone in every community is part of this ever-evolving story – the story of democracy in America.

Based on a major exhibition currently on display at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History called American Democracy: A Great Leap of Faith, this exhibit and related experiences traces the bold American experiment of government run by and for the people.

  • Stop by the library and explore the exhibit – open all library hours
  • Schedule a guided club, group or classroom tour
  • Attend any or all of our special events to learn and be inspired

Companion Exhibit:

The Winfield Chautauqua: “The Most American Thing in America”

From 1887 – 1924, Winfield’s Island Park was known as a regional destination for an annual summer Chautauqua. Modeled after the original Chautauqua founded in 1874 in New York, up to 10,000 attendees camped on the grounds of Island Park and attended lectures, skills classes, recreation, and social gatherings.

The Chautauqua provided a platform for social issues of the day to be revealed and discussed, for voices to be heard and democracy to flourish.

5 images of Winfield Chautauqua buildings

Special Events:

An Evening with the Smithsonian:
games, music & programs for all ages

Sunday, Oct 15 4:00pm – 7:00pm

To celebrate the arrival of “Voices and Votes: Democracy in America” we’re hosting an evening of storytelling, games, music and programs that introduce and explore the exhibit’s themes.

4:30pm – Smorgaschord Barbershop Quartet

5:00pm – Priscilla Howe, storyteller

6:00pm – League of Women Voters – Wichita Metro

It’s Intense: Voices on Good Tension

Sunday, Nov 12 | 6:30pm at Baden Square

A modern take on the Chautauqua talks! This special event will feature a series of short mini-talks (five minutes each) presented by a variety of Winfield community members. All of the talks will reflect upon “good tension” that leads to change, but each speaker will approach the theme in a unique way. Registration required.

TED Talk Lunch Series

Oct 12 & Nov 9 at noon

Our monthly TED Talk lunch series invites participants to pack a lunch and join in the conversation as we watch and discuss a highly-rated TED Talk.

October 12 – “Why I love a country that once betrayed me” by George Takei

November 9 – “Birds aren’t real? How a conspiracy theory takes flight” by Peter McIndoe

Conversation & Collaboration in a Charged Environment

Joy Murphy, Eisenhower Presidential Library
Thursday, Oct 19 at noon

How do we have open, civil discussions when passions run high? This engaging program will help you learn to navigate potential obstacles and unfavorable reactions to much needed and relevant discussions about civil rights and protections.

Get out the Vote – Historically Speaking
Julie Clover, Dole Institute of Politics
Friday, Nov 3 at noon

This presentation examines how 18-year-olds were given the right to vote during a time in history where they were being asked to fight and die for their country yet were unable to elect the people who were deciding to make them do so.

Victory Kids
For 1st – 6th grades
Mondays 4:15pm – 5:15pm
Oct 16 – Nov 13

Future Community Leaders here!
As the library hosts the Smithsonian traveling exhibit, “Voices and Votes: Democracy in America,” youth have opportunities to explore civics. Victory Kids is an afterschool program where youth meet local elected officials and civic leaders, discover local government, and learn more about our community. 

Voices and Votes: Democracy in America has been made possible in Kansas by Humanities Kansas.
Voices and Votes: Democracy in America is part of Museum on Main Street, a collaboration between the Smithsonian Institution and State Humanities Councils nationwide. It is based on an exhibition by the National Museum of American History. Support for Museum on Main Street has been provided by the United States Congress.

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