We've got a few really big things to tell you about this month so I thought it would be a good idea to create a little "cheat sheet" for us all.
Travel Expert Arthur Frommer will be here on Sunday, March 22nd at 5 p.m. We are all well-familiar with Frommer's® Travel Guides and at the very least, I would love to thank Arthur Frommer for all of his assistance throughout the years in helping me create some of my best travel memories. Best of all, we've heard him speak and he's wonderful -- so we know that this will be a great program!
Also, on March 22nd, at 2:30 p.m., our Spring Book Discussion Series begins. Jordon is back and the theme is Brothers and Sisters: Families at the Front in Wartime and in Peace. We start with The Book Thief, our One Book, One Community town-wide read.
We will celebrate the Grand Opening of our Art Gallery with an exhibit featuring The Holly Pond Painters. The exhibit opens on Tuesday, March 3rd and will run until April 14th.
(At left, "The Magic Mountain" by Kathleen Millard)
On Wednesday, March 18 from 9:30 to 11 a.m., we'll be hosting a valuable seminar: Recession Proofing Your Family.
Other big news on the horizon: we're asking you to Save the Date (May 16th!) for what is shaping up to be a really fun evening (details to come).
Also, to catch you up on what's been going on and is ongoing, our events for One Book, One Community begin this month and judging from the interest from the community, we've struck a chord.
And have you been to Diane Browne's Café yet? It opened here at the Library on Monday and already we have favorite snacks, coffees, and sandwiches!
Last, but not least...have you heard that our Friday Film Series has become the hottest ticket in town? It's true! Here's March's lineup:
March 6 - Friday Film Vote -- * Winner - Changeling
March 13 - Frozen River
March 20 - Mamma Mia!
March 27 - Brick Lane
There will be more news coming your way. Keep checking back!
The Grand Opening of the New Darien Library Art Gallery Features The Holly Pond Painters!
The Holly Pond Painters include six long-time friends who live in Darien: Donna Collins, Margot Hand, Kathleen Millard, Mary Morant, Lisa Thorén, and Meg Tweedy. They began painting together on a weekly basis, mainly executing local seascapes and landscapes en plein air, seeking to capture the spirit and character of the area. Through the years, the direction of the artists’ work has become more conceptual, thoughtfully abstract, or experimental.
(At left: "Alice in Wonderland "by Meg Tweedy
In choosing a theme for this exhibition, the artists saw an opportunity to celebrate. Margot Hand, one of the Holly Pond Painters said, “We consider it a great honor to have been asked to kick off the new Art Gallery at the New Library. We realized this is ‘A New Chapter’ for everyone – hence, the title of our exhibit.” Each of the Holly Pond Painters has explored this theme through references to favorite books or poems, from Lewis Carroll’s fantasy world to Virginia Woolf’s psychological insights, from Thomas Mann’s world of ideas to “The History of Gardening,” and from Rachael Carson’s “The Sea Around Us” to Pearl S. Buck’s 1936 classic “The Good Earth.” Hand added, “In addition (and to our delight), our painting group has rediscovered the fun of painting together and has added a new chapter to the Holly Pond Painters’ own history.”
Spring begins on March 20th and we're grabbing that first Sunday that follows to begin our Spring Book Discussion Series. Professor Jordon Pecile (photo at right) is back and our first meeting will be on Sunday, March 22 at 2:30 p.m. in the Conference Room on the Mezzanine Level. This spring, we are focusing on four popular novels which explore untraditional family relationships in times of crisis as well as prosperity and peace.
Brothers and Sisters: Families at the Front in Wartime and in Peace
April 5 - The Private Patient by P.D. James
April 26 - The Brass Verdict by Michael Connelly
May 17 - Lark & Termite by Jayne Anne Phillips
All discussions begin at 2:30 p.m. and refreshments will be served.
Arthur Frommer revolutionized the travel industry with his 1957 publication of Europe on $5 a Day. Today, over 50 years later, Frommer’s® travel guides have included more than 340 titles covering every major destination in the world.
A few weeks ago, Barbara T., Janet, and I attended the The New York Times Travel Expo, where we had the pleasure of hearing Arthur Frommer and his daughter Pauline offer up some truly insider advice on how to make the most of vacation time and budget during tough financial times. After the presentation, we came away knowing how to effectively negotiate with top-notch hotels for the lowest room rates, the sites that provide the best travel deals, whether cruises or all-inclusive land resorts offer the most for your money, where to find flights from the New York area to exotic locales for just $99, and so much more - not to mention sore wrists from furiously writing down every bit of information we could!
After the talk, we spoke with Arthur and Pauline for a few minutes and quickly realized that not only are they wonderful authorities on all things travel, they are incredibly entertaining and engaging speakers who love libraries! Pauline regretfully let us know that she cannot make it to our program on March 22nd (she will be travelling for work on upcoming guides, of course!), but Arthur will be here with all of his charm and wit, ready to answer your most puzzling travel questions, and we couldn't be looking more forward to the event!
So whether your ideal vacation is relaxing on the French Riviera or climbing Mount Kilimanjaro...whether you're planning a romantic getaway for two or a road trip for the entire family...whether you want to see the far reaches of the earth or uncover the hidden treasures that lie in our own backyard, you won't want to miss Arthur Frommer's talk as he discusses his award-winning travel guide series and offers expert advice for planning a trip to anywhere in the world.
Join us with paper and pen in hand. You will want to take notes, guaranteed!
Friday Night Film Crew - Me, Drew, Stephanie, and Jane
It is very late, but I just wouldn't feel right if I didn't take the time to talk about what a special night we just had at the Library. Just a few short hours ago, we showed The Secret Life of Bees, the fourth film in our Friday Film Series. The house was packed for this wonderfully rich and well-told story. Every drop of coffee and every sweet morsel were consumed, as we have come to expect...what was unexpected, however, was the delightful and generous effort of our good friend, neighbor, and beekeeper(!) Kathy Hammell (shown at right). Earlier in the day, she stopped by the Library to drop off her beekeeping suit and a hive (empty, of course) and Stephanie (always ready to make a fashion statement) couldn't resist wearing it when it came time to draw for the door prize (a jar of Kathy's own honey!). When the film was over, Kathy gave a great talk about bees and beekeeping and she answered lots of questions from a truly engaged audience. (Thank you, Kathy!)
The movie was a hit. The talk was a hit. What a great start to the weekend!
We had an enormous turnout on Sunday afternoon to hear and meet Michael Korda, and with good reason. He was wonderful! He spoke eloquently of the Battle of Britain. Audience members were eager to have their books signed and to speak with him after the presentation.
You can check out Michael Korda's new book, With Wings Like Eagles: The History of the Battle of Britain here at the Library. In case you missed his fabulous talk (or want to experience it again), click on the image below.
We've experienced Mr. Korda's commanding presence before. (Remember when he was here in November 2007 (photo at right) to talk about Ike: An American Hero?) I say "commanding" because he is nothing short of it. His command of the information, the history, the words, his voice, and any room he enters is something to behold. Whether reading from his book or in discussion, he has the unique ability to transport the listener.
We are delighted that Michael Korda wanted to return to Darien Library! With Wings Like Eagles, released just a few weeks ago, is already being considered the only book that describes the political maneuvering and behind-the-scenes strategizing that surrounded the Battle of Britain. This bestselling author has received excellent reviews for this latest book, including the following from Diana Preston of The Washington Post:
"…passionate and eloquent …With Wings Like Eagles is a skillful, absorbing, often moving contribution to the popular understanding of one of the few episodes in history to live on untarnished and undiminished in the collective memory and to deserve the description "heroic."
Personally, I am preparing for another memorable evening at the Library and I am immersing myself in the time period. After reading With Wings Like Eagles, I watched the new dvd, Flying the Secret Sky: The Story of the Royal Air Force Ferry Command and am currently reading Ken Follett's suspense tale set in the early days of WWII, Hornet Flight. Of course, you don't need to prepare for this fabulous author event which is part of our Grand Opening Author Series...just be prepared to be mesmerized.
A reception and book signing will follow the presentation. Books will be available for purchase.
Join us on February 23rd throughout the day as we kick off our first-ever One Book, One Community program!
Here at the Library, we may not always agree on what constitutes the perfect book to curl up with on a snowy winter day, or which selections should be nominated for national awards - but it can be said with certainty that we all agree that books can be an ideal way to open the paths to dialogue on just about anything.
So when the Darien community was put to task by the Human Services Planning Council to create programming that supports its CARE Darien initiative of encouraging the town to collectively make positive changes in the ways that we interact with one another, the Library knew just where to start.
On February 23rd, Darien Library will be launching its very first One Book, One Community program. One Book, One Community encourages everyone in town to read the same book and then come together to explore its themes through discussions, seminars, and workshops. Our selection is The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, a New York Times bestseller and award-winning novel, and we hope you'll find this read as enjoyable, touching, mesmerizing, and meaningful as we have.
Come to our kickoff to check out your copy of The Book Thief and enjoy some homemade confections. Experience the "domino effect," one of the themes of the book, with dominoes and other contemplative games scattered throughout the Library. And experience Reader's Theater on Main Street from 3 to 6 p.m., when passages from the book will be performed by students from Darien High School's Theatre 308.
Also, continue to check our website and your mailbox for more information on the programs we have planned during March and April for this first-ever town-wide reading event!
Play. Reflect. Construct. We’re building a better community!
So, there we were in our new Green building (LEED Gold!) with our second author in our Grand Opening Author Series, Deirdre Imus! Deirdre, the author of the bestselling "Green This!" series, has a new book out -- The Essential Green You! : Easy Ways To Detox Your Diet, Your Body, And Your Life, and she was here last night to talk to us about all things GREEN. From the state of our health (especially that of our children), to the impact of cleaning products, makeup, toiletries, plastics, fabrics, food, soy, dairy, toxic jeans, toxic tee shirts...
There were several audience members taking notes last night and lots more that purchased one (or all) of Deirdre's books. A book signing followed the presentation and the author was so gracious and enthusiastic -- chatting with all that came up to the table.
We had a huge crowd last night for this event. We are pleased and proud to have been able to bring such an important program to Darien -- one that's clearly important to our Members. We extend a huge thank you to Dierdre Imus for bringing such grace and warmth to what is often a scary and cold topic.
P.S. She loved our Library!
The house was packed for this special event. Hamill was superb -- he is the perfect mix of intelligence and street-smarts, eloquence and ordinary, philosophical and realistic, sophistication and homespun, which is probably why everyone seemed to greet him as a friend.
He talked about his life, his work, the state of the world today, and he talked about libraries(!). His stories were full of pride, hope, humor, and history...a lot like him. Wow. We were so fortunate to have heard him speak and to meet him!
He was thoughtful and generous with his time and his remarks throughout the afternoon and evening. After the presentation, there was a long line of people waiting to have books signed -- he thanked them for their patience and was attentive to each individual that approached him (he gave what I'm sure was precious advice to a young journalism student and a kiss to a woman that asked(!))...there were so many memorable encounters.
This event was the perfect high note in our Grand Opening crescendo.
A huge thank you to Pete Hamill. New Yorker. Gentleman. Craftsman. Icon.