The Ocean County Library helped celebrate the 50th birthday of the British science fiction series Doctor Who with two special programs in November.
The first program was coordinated by Berkeley Branch Teen Librarian Natalie Niziolek, who held a teen event for Doctor Who fans that involved crafts, refreshments and a Jeopardy trivia game.
“It was definitely a good time and I’m glad I was able to get so many teens outside the Bayville area and to come from other sections of Southern Ocean County. It was nice to see new faces,’’ Niziolek said.
The 90-minute program drew nearly 20 teens to the library on Nov. 19 that also included watching some Doctor Who clips and an episode of the iconic show. Most of those who turned out were attired in costumes from the show or T-shirts.
On Nov. 20, Public Information Officer Bob Vosseller hosted a program called “Doctor Who: A 50th Anniversary Celebration.’’ He and Toms River Senior Librarian Matt Willbergh put together an event that involved a tribute to all 11 actors who have played the lead character of the science fiction series.
The program also reviewed the history of the show from its first telecast on Nov. 23, 1963 to its ultimate cancellation in the late 1980s, a 1996 television movie on FOX TV and its return as a TV series in England in 2005.
Fifty people were in attendance at the program and like the Berkeley program many wore Doctor Who costumes or T-Shirts. Several attendees brought replica props from the show including the Doctor’s famous sonic screwdriver.
“We were very pleased with the large turnout that came to the program,’’ Willbergh said.
Two prizes were raffled off including a ticket to see the 50th Anniversary Special (that aired on BBC America on Nov. 23 in a global simulcast) on Nov. 25 in 3-D format at the Lowes-AMC Theater at the Seacourt Pavilion in Toms River. The second prize was a Doctor Who toy collectible.
Short videos were shown of each Doctor plus a few trailers of the Doctor Who special and a BBC film about how the series was created. A question and answer period was also held along with an interactive discussion about what audience members wanted to see in the Doctor Who special.
“There were some major Doctor Who fans in the audience from parents who watched the show in 1960s and 1970s to those in their teens who began watching it when it was revived eight years ago,’’ Vosseller said.
Attendees at both programs were reminded about the many Doctor Who books, CDs, DVDs and audio books available at the Ocean County Library.