True Confessions of an Ann Arbor Historian

History is boring. Local history is even worse. You must be a spectacular geek to be interested in, much less involved with, the local history scene.

Well, that might be true, but here I am anyway. I have loved this town for as long as I can remember and, like the people I love, I want to know Ann Arbor's whole story. That's all historians do. Fall in love with a place, person or era and find out all they can about it.

For example, what did Ann Arbor look like when she was a baby? How about as a teenager? I look at the book Historic buildings, Ann Arbor, Michigan, by Marjorie Reade and Susan Wineberg like an old family album. I study it and try to recognize something of the past in the town I know today. (FYI, if you click here you can look at this book online.)

I also like to hang around people who will tell me stories about when Ann Arbor was young. So imagine my delight when I heard that Kempf House is having a big ol' party in September. I imagine there will be plenty of folks there who would be more than willing to share a tale or two. There will also be food and beer so count me in!

See you there?


Date: Sun 7 Sep 2008
Time: 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Location: Kempf House Museum Garden
Description: Beer and brats! Four flavors of beer from Arbor Brewing, brats on a bun with sauerkraut and mustard, hot pretzels baked specially by the ladies at Bethlehem Church, and ice cream and toppings from the Washtenaw Dairy - all for $40 ($30 for members)!
Contact: 734-994-4898

DuMouchelles Fine Arts Auctioneers and Estate Appraisal Visits the AADL

elgin marbleselgin marbles

If you have the Elgin Marbles, Joan Walker DuMochelle will appraise them as priceless, then tell you that Greece wants them back!

Do you have an old thing lying around that you've always wondered "What the heck is that and how much is it worth?"

What an exciting Wednesday night (August 20th from 7-8:30 p.m at the downtown branch) the AADL has in store for you!

Ms. DuMochelle will give a brief lecture about the appraisal and auction business, fine arts and the DuMochelle Art Galleries Company.

After the brief lecture Ms. DuMochelle will appraise and give a little history about items that patrons bring in.

Who knows what fabulous treasures will be uncovered?

Explore the subject further with Buying and Selling Antiques, Kovels' Know Your Antiques and The Elgin Affair.

Jump Up, Double Dutch!

jump ropejump rope

We've got Chinese, Double-Dutch and standard jump ropes ready to go for all levels of jump roping this Saturday, August 16, 1:00-4:00 pm at the Malletts Creek branch. Look for a section of the parking lot blocked off with orange cones. Come ready for a good time.

Check out the movie Jump In! or the Jump In! soundtrack or, if you're training for a fall sport, try the book Jump Rope Training which covers some great speed and quickness drills to get you ready for any sport. If you're still not inspired to jump, check out any of the Rope Masters videos on YouTube.

LEGO & Graffiti Contest Entries are now online

2008 Graffiti Contest2008 Graffiti Contest

Take a look at some of the best talent Ann Arbor has to offer! All of the entries to the AADL's 2008 LEGO Contest and the 2008 Graffiti Art Contest are now online as a part of our online photo gallery, pictureAnnArbor. The Graffiti Art Contest gallery features over 40 creations by local teen artists made right here in the AADL's backyard. And the LEGO Contest gallery features every one of the 130 entries that came in this year. Come check out your own work, your friends' work, or just get some inspiration for your own artistic creations.

Don't forget that the 2008 Graffiti Art Contest entries are also on display in the Downtown Library until August 28.

Basket 101 - Wed Aug. 13 @ Downtown

Another session of BASKETS 101 will be on
Wednesday, Aug. 13, 10-11:30 am,
in the Youth Department of the Downtown Library.
This program was most rewarding for kids in upper elementary grades.
Younger grade kids can succeed if they come with a dedicated "Helper".
Middle School and High School ages enjoy this activity,
and are welcome to join in.

Chess, an Olympic sport?

Chess OlympicsChess Olympics

At the 2000 Sydney Olympics chess was included as a trial sport for display. However, both speed matches played ended in a draw and little has been said about it until Time magazine’s Meaghan Haire posted “Should Chess Be an Olympic Sport?” on August 5th.

Should the Olympic committee consider adding mental sports like chess, bridge, or Go? What about a combo of mental and physical like chess boxing?

Respond here or even better share your thoughts and play some chess this Sunday, August 17 at Pittsfield Branch. Join us 1-4 p.m. for Chesstastic!

Cuentos en Español con Teresa Satterfield

Join us for stories in Spanish for the whole family. Teresa Satterfield will share lively tales with audience participation on Thursday, August 14 at 7:00 pm at the Downtown Youth Story Corner. Unase a nosotros para disfrutar de historias y canciones en Español con Teresa Satterfield!

The Iguanas Visit The Ark


If you’re looking to see a fun band with Latin flair and bit of Cajun funk then why not check out The Iguanas at The Ark on Saturday August 23. They call their music "Chicano Rock with a greasy New Orleans second-line/mambo flavor." Talk about fun! The show starts at 8pm, see The Ark’s site for ticket information. Cha cha cha!

AADL-GT Tournament Weekend: Brawl, DDR, Guitar Hero and More!

AADL-GT Pad Logo

It's the opening weekend of the 2008 GT season, and it all kicks off with a BONUS Brawl open play this Friday from 11 AM - 6 PM at the Downtown Library! We've got 8 new Wiis and we need to get some serious unlocking done. We won't have any food, but please come on down and help us get as much unlocked as possible for the tournament. Then, Friday night sees our next Revolution Hero tournament for all ages: try to win the Guitar Hero 2 or DDR brackets, or go for the double crown. Saturday features the Smashkart championship series season opener for Grades 6-12 (sorry lain) kicking off at High Noon with Brawl Singles. Full details follow below, but Saturday will also include our first ever gtsystem exhibition match, where the winners of our Smash Singles will face off online against the best players that Detroit Public Library and Columbus Public Library have to offer! Then, opening weekend wraps up with a Rock Band tournament for All Ages Sunday from 1-4pm, and then the last Pokémondays of the summer on Monday from 1-5.

Hope to see you all there, and read on for tourney specifics!

Scrapbooks From Scratch

Bring your collected items (photos, ticket stubs, sports ribbons, etc.) from home and create your own scrapbooks.
Thursday, August 7, from 2:00-4:00 pm at the Pittsfield Branch. Grades 6-12.
Check out Cool Scrapbooks or The Simple Art of Scrapbooking to get inspired. See you there.

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