Sign up for the Journey to Freedom tour

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On Sunday, October 18, from 2-5:00 p.m., the African American Cultural & Historical Museum (AACHM) will host a special "Journey to Freedom" bus tour. This popular tour of historical points of interest on the Underground Railroad--an official tour of the National Park Service--is led by Deborah Meadows of the AACHM. The bus departs from the front of the Industrial Technology Building on the campus of Washtenaw Community College, 4800 E. Huron Drive. (map) and tickets are $15. To reserve a seat, call 734-476-3158 or email deborahmeadows2@msn.com. This special tour accompanies the launch of The Signal of Liberty online, Saturday, October 17, from 2-4:00 p.m.

The Signal of Liberty, Ann Arbor's 1840s-era abolitionist newspaper, goes online

Signal of Liberty issueSignal of Liberty issue

Join us at the Traverwood branch on Saturday, October 17, 2-4:00 p.m. to help us launch the online version of Ann Arbor's Signal of Liberty newspaper. The full text of this abolitionist newspaper, published in Ann Arbor in the 1840s, will be available online for the first time. Carol Mull, local historian of the Underground Railroad in Michigan, will be on hand at the launch to talk about some of the unique content in the Signal of Liberty and its role in her research; and Library staff will demonstrate browsing and full text access to over 12,000 articles and 312 issues of the newspaper. This project was done in partnership with the Bentley Historical Library and Digital Library Productions Services.

On Sunday, October 18, from 2-5:00 p.m., the African American Cultural and Historical Museum will host a related "Journey to Freedom" bus tour of local stops on the Underground Railroad. Click here for additional information about the tour.

Discussing the Future of the Book

At this time next week (Saturday, October 10th, 9:30-4:45) a discussion about the future of the book will be in full swing in the Clements Library. Students from the University of Michigan's chapter of the Special Libraries Association will be hosting the 3 panel event, which will include AADL's own Eli Neiburger.

With the future of information creation, storage, and dissemination being such a popular and immense topic, nationally known authors like David Weinberger (Everything is Miscellaneous) and Clay Shirky (Here Comes Everybody) have been able to create full careers. But it is also a topic important to the local community, reflected by the University of Michigan's participation in the Google Books Search, the closing of the Ann Arbor News and the closing of the Shaman Drum bookstore.

Check out the full list of panelists and their bios. If you decide to join in the discussion next week registration is recommended.future of the bookfuture of the book

(Un)Natural History: The Museum Unveiled

Animal LogicAnimal Logic

The exhibition (Un)Natural History: The Museum Unveiled on view now through December 6, 2009 @ UMMA, features Richard Barnes's series of photographs Animal Logic (catalog on order) that examines the role the museum plays in our understanding of ourselves through the acts of collecting, preservation, and display. Images from this large body of work include photographs of the collections from the Smithsonian Institution, the Museum of Comparative Anatomy in Paris, the Canadian Museum of Nature, and the California Academy of Science. (Un)Natural History focuses primarily on the natural history museum and by extension collecting institutions in general, providing a kind of behind-the-scenes look at museum practice and display.

This exhibition coincides with the University of Michigan LSA Theme Semester Meaningful Objects: Museums and the Academy.

Is NOW a Good time for you to Volunteer?

Wash Lit logoWash Lit logo

Interested in making a lasting mark in the life of a non-reader or English Language Learner? Washtenaw Literacy is looking for one-on-one tutors. Volunteer training begins Thursday October 1st and will occur on the following 4 Mondays & Thursdays: 10/5, 10/8, 10/12 & 10/15. Training sessions will be held at 5585 Interface Drive behind Creekside Grill. Or go to Washtenaw Literacy for their training schedule and other information.

Bilal's Stand

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On Thursday, September 24, 2009 from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm, AADL presents the film Bilal's Stand at the Downtown Library Multi-Purpose Room. This film focuses on the life of a Detroit high-school senior, Bilal, and his family's long-owned taxi stand - the source of all activity and income for the family for the last sixty years. Does Bilal take a chance at college or continue with his family business? After secretly submitting a college application and taking up ice carving in order to win a scholarship, he is forced to decide. This film is based on the true story of writer/director Sultan Sharrief, who will lead a discussion of the film with producer & UM Professor Terri Sarris. This event is co-sponsored by the University of Michigan Community Scholars Program.

The HomeGrown Festival is this Saturday!

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Ann Arbor’s Homegrown Festival is headed to the Kerrytown market on Saturday, September 12, from 5-10pm. The festival’s website boasts, “The HomeGrown Festival celebrates local food and community and seeks to focus broad mainstream attention on the community-wide benefits (and pleasure!) of eating from our own foodshed.”

In addition to the wonderful food vendors who will be there, there will also be a number of other activities to partake in, including tomato tasting, a beer garden, chef demos, kids’ activities, non-profit booths, and live music. Sounds like good times! Admission is free, food is available for purchase.

Ann Arbor has such a wonderful community with great support in local food efforts. (Think Slow Food Huron Valley.) Celebrate wonderful food and wonderful Michigan farms at this event!

AADL Productions Podcast: Madcat Ruth

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Peter "Madcat" Ruth, a world-class harmonica player who's lived and played in Ann Arbor for over 30 years, celebrated his 60th birthday last April. We had the privilege of talking with Madcat about his varied career, which included lessons from Chicago blues harmonica legend Big Walter Horton; touring with Dave Brubeck; inventing the Madcat harmonica microphone; and winning a Grammy for his solo performance in Songs of Innocence and Experience. Madcat also reminisces about playing the many lost music venues in Ann Arbor and treats us with his signature harmonica rendition of "Take Five".

Attachment Size
AADL_Productions_Podcast-madcat.mp3 26.3 MB

Ann Arbor's first Mini Maker Faire: This Saturday!

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Have you heard about Maker Faire? It's an amazing set of festivals started by Dale Dougherty, founder of O'Reilly Media and publisher of Make Magazine. Maker Faire started in the Bay Area as a place that geeks, crafters, tinkerers, machinists, laser dorks, artists, diet coke and mentos performance artists, and more could come together and just see each others stuff for a few days. The idea has spread to Austin, the UK, Africa, and now is coming to Ann Arbor. The first ever Ann Arbor 2009 Mini Maker Faire is this Saturday, August 29th, at the Washtenaw Farm Council Fairgrounds in Saline, from 10 to 5 PM, and it's free for all ages. There will be space balloons, rocket telemetry, robots, a vortex cannon, homemade synthesizers, soldering lessons, screen print your own tshirt, and so on; all kinds of great stuff. This is a great beginning to a major movement, and it will certainly be a great time for all involved. Make time for Maker Faire this Saturday; you won't regret it!

Paws in the Park

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Attention dog owners and dog lovers: this Saturday and Sunday (8/22 and 8/23) from 9am to 5pm at Heritage Park, in Canton, bring your pup to Paws in the Park, a new event featuring the Purina Incredible Dog Team from America's Got Talent 4, Ultimate Air Dog, Rock n' Roll K9's, and much more. Be sure to check out the entire weekend schedule for more exciting events. This dog owner is especially looking forward to the Best Trick Contest and the Wiener Race, but maybe a bit unsure about the Best Kisser Contest. Can't make it this weekend? Check out Agility Training and Enjoying Dog Agility from the AADL for more information on training your dog for performing agility events.

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