Summer Flicks @ the Michigan Theater


Summer is the time to relax at the Michigan Theater with the cool A/C and some cool movies after a long day of enjoying the sun.

Check out the 2011 Summer Documentary Film Series, which features a hand-picked selection of some of the best from the past few years. Documentaries such as Marwencol, Winnebago Man, Waste Land, Nenette, and more, will be shown on Mondays at 7pm. See here for full list of movies and dates for the Documentary Series.

Not into documentaries? Then check out the 2011 Summer Classic Film Series, showing on Sundays and Tuesdays through mid-September. View films such as The Godfather, Alien, Amelie, Psycho, and a sing-a-long The Sound of Music, all on the big screen. See here for full list of movies and dates for the Classics Series.

Both series start this weekend at the Michigan Theater!

Park & Read Passes Have Arrived!

Grand Haven State ParkGrand Haven State Park

Now's your chance to get a free one-day pass into any Michigan State Park or recreation area with a Park & Read Pass from AADL this summer! How does it work?

  • A limited number of passes are available at each AADL branch. Passes are available on a first come, first serve basis and can not be reserved. Only one pass may be checked out to a single library card holder at one time. Each pass is good for the free entrance and parking of one car (bring the whole family if they'll fit!) at a State Park or recreation area.
  • When checking out a pass, you'll be given a printed admission card and brochure by the Circulation desk. This admission card is your pass and is turned in at the park on arrival. You don't have to return anything to the library! Passes must be used within seven days of checkout, and can only be used once.
  • For a list of parks and areas you can visit, click here!
  • Park & Read Passes are available this year until October 1st, 2011. Get your pass today and enjoy summer in Michigan at the park!

    2011 Nichols Arboretum Peony Festival


    It's almost time to stop and smell the peonies at the Arboretum! The Peony Gardens will be in bloom during this year's Peony festival June 4th to June 12th, and there's lots to see and do. Peonies will be available for sale on June 4th and 5th, with proceeds benefiting the Matthaei Botanical Gardens and Nichols Arboretum. There will be live music Saturday June 4th from 11 to 1pm, and guided lunchtime tours at noon June 4th through June 10th. Click here for the official event listing, where you can learn about the festival's Peony Photo Contest, more about the Peony Garden, hours and directions for the Arboretum, and more! Want to start your own flower garden? Check out the AADL's flower gardening resources!

    Ben Franklin's Amazing Alphabet


    Ever wonder why spelling in English is so difficult? Ben Franklin sure did, and he attempted to do something about it! Did you know that in 1768, Ben Franklin invented a new English alphabet that could make spelling easier? It did so because each letter in Ben’s alphabet represented exactly one sound! Widely known today as “Benjamin Franklin’s Phonetic Alphabet,” Franklin’s proposal did away with the consonants c, j, q, w, x, and y, which he thought were redundant. It also introduced six new letters to differentiate sounds he felt were not well represented by the alphabet we know today, like the difference between the "long o" in “own” and the "short o" in “pond”. Ben’s reasoning was that if letters more closely represented a single sound, spelling would be a lot easier! His alphabet never really caught on, but if it had, we might all find spelling a lot easier today!

    For more information on Franklin’s alphabet and a sample of text written in it, click here! For AADL books on spelling for kids and the history of English spelling, click here!

    Milk Mommas Group

    La Leche LeagueLa Leche League

    Join the La Leche League of Ann Arbor for both kid & breast-feeding friendly social time with other moms. There's now a group that meets at 300 North Huron in Ypsilanti every 4th Saturday of the month from 3:00-5:00 PM. For a list of other local La Leche League group meetings in the area click here. AADL has materials on the topic as well as a wide range of items about parenting.

    Buhr Park Children's Wet Meadow Project

    Buhr Park Wet Meadow ProjectBuhr Park Wet Meadow Project The Buhr Park Children's Wet Meadow Project supports meadow ecosystems in Buhr Park. Meadows are an educational natural habitat and storm water filter. On Sunday, May 15, from 10 am to 4 pm, folks from the community will gather to plant over 1,000 plants. The new meadow will connect via a grass path to the original meadow that was planted in September of 1997. The project invites you to join in on the planting fun. Park in the main lot by the pool and ice rink. If you are interested in planting your own meadow, check out these books available at the Ann Arbor District Library:
    Urban & Suburban Meadows: Bringing Meadowscaping To Big And Small Spaces
    The American Meadow Garden: Creating A Natural Alternative To The Traditional Lawn

    Attention Sookie Stackhouse Fans!

    Bestselling author Charlaine Harris is making the final stop on her book tour here in Ann Arbor! Presented by the Michigan Theater and Nicola's Books, fans can see her on Monday, May 16th, 7:30 pm at the Michigan Theater. Harris will be discussing Dead Reckoning, her latest novel in the wildly popular Sookie Stackhouse/Southern Vampire Mysteries series. (The top-rated HBO television series True Blood is based off of these books.) A question and answer session with the audience will follow.

    For information on tickets and event details , visit the Michigan Theater's website.

    Teen Stuff: It’s time for Breakin’ Curfew!

    Breakin CurfewBreakin Curfew

    The Neutral Zone and UMS present the 8th annual Breakin' Curfew. The event is created, produced, marketed, and performed by local teens. The performances at Breakin' Curfew feature everything from dance, spoken word, jazz, classical music, rock, to hip hop, and much more. The electricity of a teen-centric audience watching a show of teens, produced by teens, is amazing. It is quite the unique showcase of talent. All this fun takes place at the Power Center on Saturday, May 14 at 8pm. See here for ticket info and more. Yes, adults are of course welcome to attend and support these great minds!

    May 14, 8pm | Power Center | See UMS site for ticket info


    Comics and comic book characters have always been popular with many but have more recently broken into the mainstream in a huge way. Because of the recent rise in popularity, many kids (and "kids at heart") are taking up an interest in comic books.

    The Ann Arbor District Library has fantastic Graphic Novel collections in youth, teen, and the adult sections of all 5 library branches and also offer lots of neat programming involving comics, how to create them, and info about those who do.

    Tomorrow, May 7th, 2001, is Free Comic Book Day. Free Comic Book Day - the first Saturday in May each year - when participating comic book shops around the world give away comic books to anyone who comes into their stores. Check out local comic book store, Vault of Midnight, and see what you can find!

    And for those busy tomorrow that can't get out to Free Comic Book Day, check out this event in June: Kids Read Comics hosted at the The Chelsea District Library and throughout the downtown business district in June.

    "Kids Read Comics Convention is a totally free event that unites kids, teens, parents, teachers and librarians with professional artists and writers from the comics and animation fields. Our goal is to introduce kids to worlds of imagination while unlocking their creative impulses, and to serve that goal, the convention features:

    * hands-on workshops
    * panels and presentations for kids, families, and educators
    * a chance for kids to meet and chat with comics and animation professionals
    * the opportunity for kids to have their own art portfolios reviewed"

    Ann Arbor Area Earth Day Festival 2011

    Ann Arbor Area Earth Day TreeAnn Arbor Area Earth Day Tree

    Sponsored by Whole Foods Market, Washtenaw Community College, and the City of Ann Arbor, the Ann Arbor Area Earth Day Festival takes place this Sunday, May 1, at the Washtenaw Community College Community Park. The celebration begins at noon and ends at 4 p.m..

    The Ann Arbor District Library will join exhibitors from local environmental, non-profit and government organizations at the event. Keep an eye on the entertainment stage to see Joe Reilly, and wear a costume to represent your favorite plant or animal and dance in the All Species Dance. Attend a workshop on weatherization, get your face painted, make a craft, and enjoy food by Silvio's, Pilar's and more.

    Did you know that May is Commuter Challenge month in Ann Arbor? Use the Border to Border Trail map and make your way to the event on your bike!

    See you there!

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