Library to hold martial arts demonstration, other events

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By Lisa King

Library to hold martial arts demonstration, other events

By Lisa King/Sentinel-News

What would you do if someone grabbed you from behind in the dark?

What is the best way to keep yourself safe?

These and other questions will be answered with a demonstration on self defense techniques that will  be offered free at the Shelby County Library Jan. 22 from 5 to 7 p.m.

The event is one of several programs that the library is offering free in January.

The self-defense demonstration, which will be targeted toward middle and high school students, will be taught by Tom Ward of A-1 Martial Arts downtown and Shelbyville Police Officer Istvan Kovacs.

Kovacs said he plans to discuss how merely being more aware of one's surroundings is one of the best ways to promote personal safety.

“People need to learn not to do things to put themselves in harm's way,” he said. “If you work at a business that closes late at night, you should not out into the parking lot alone if it is not well-lit. Go to your car with a co-worker. There is always safety in numbers.”

Kovacs also said another good thing to do if you are going to your car after dark is to have your key in your hand, ready to unlock your car quickly.

“But check the inside of your car first to make sure nobody is in there waiting to attack you,” he said. “You should check it even if your car is locked, because someone may have been able to break in.”

Kovacs said just using some common sense approaches like this could save one's life when they least expect it.

“Sometimes the need for a confrontation can be eliminated just by being careful and not putting yourself in a situation that could be potentially dangerous,” he said.

In addition to practical advice from Kovacs, Ward will talk about and demonstrate some of the physical things that people can do to protect themselves if they are actually attacked. Ward is the owner of A-1 Martial Arts on Main Street in Shelbyville.

Sherry Bogard, youth services librarian, asks that people who plan to come to the demonstration register to attend so that she can get some idea of how many people to expect.

“We also want them to wear comfortable clothing and bring a friend if they can,” she said.

That way, people can participate in the demonstration if they want to.

To register, call Bogard at the library at 633-3803.

In addition to the self defense demonstration, on Jan. 15 the library is offering a free tax seminar called Tax Preparation Tips and Strategies to be held from 6:15 to 7:15 that evening. The seminar will be conducted by Lee Shannon, CPA.

Also, the library is holding free GED classes the month of January to be taught by JCC adult education instructors. The classes will be held Mondays from 2 to 5 p.m. and Tuesday and Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Linda Mahone, the library's marketing director, said that if people attend the entire GED session from start to finish at the library, the Rotary Club will pay their $40 fee to take the GED test.

Also in January, the library is holding an event called, “Calling All Recipes.”

The staff is asking everybody in Shelbyville to submit two recipes that will be published in a cookbook that will be sold at the library.

“We are really interested in everybody's recipes so we hope we will get a lot of submissions,”Mahone said.

 Contact Mahone at 633-3803 for more information about how to submit recipes.