I'm Dreaming of a White Yankee Doodle Stagolee!

One of the Ann Arbor District Library's outreach programs is Library Songsters, where a musician teaches K-12 students to how to write songs using information they learn in history or geography class. The students start to understand why the traditional songs they grew up singing are still popular a century or two after they were written.

There are whole books about one song: the seasonal White Christmas, the early American tune, Yankee Doodle, the ballad of a St. Louis barroom brawl, Stagolee, the folk/blues classic John Henry. New York, our most famous city, has more songs written about it than any other metropolis in America. The folk process itself is examined in volumes like American Roots Music and Making People's Music.

Sancho’s Scene: Community Events that Wander off the Path

Early birds (har har!) gear up: the Washtenaw Audubon Society is conducting their 60th annual Christmas Bird Count this Saturday, beginning at 6am. Experts and novices alike are welcome, so grab one of our bird watching books, and join the holiday fun!

Those Tibetan prayer flags on your porch looking worn and faded? For something truly off the beaten path, hit up the Himalayan Bazaar in my Garage, also this Saturday, hosted by Of Global Interest’s Heather O’Neil, who stocks the bazaar with brightly colored items from her travels. Happy trekking!

Age in America

The concept of seniority has changed a lot in recent decades, one result of far fewer Americans belonging to labor unions. In Aged by Culture, Margaret Gullette recounts that in the six years her son worked for a temporary employment agency, after graduating from Harvard, he received 1099 forms from more than one hundred companies, none of which paid Social Security, health or pension benefits. She states that thirty percent of Americans are now doing similar kinds of nonstandard work. Other implications of aging in a global economy, are addressed in several books at the Ann Arbor District Library, such as Gray Dawn, Aging and Old Age, Age Power, and My Life in the Middle Ages.

New Class - iPhoto

On Friday, March 23 at 1:00 pm, another class in the iLife series "iPhoto" will be offered. This is for Mac users that want to edit, store, and organize their photos. The iPhoto class will explain the options of slide show, professionally bound books and custom greetings for special events.

New Class - Digital Camera Drop-In

Digital Camera Drop-In will be offered on Monday, March 12 at 3:00 pm. This is an opportunity for those who have completed Digital Camera 101 to clarify any unanswered questions reguarding their camera or software associated with digital camera development.

Please note, registration is still required for this class.

New Class - Buying a Digital Camera

On Friday, January 12 at 3:00 pm a new class "Buying a Digital Camera" will be offered. The technology of taking pictures has changed drastically in the past few years. This class will take the mystery out of buying a digital camera.

Upcoming Computer Class Registration

On December 15 registration will begin for the January, February, and March 2007 classes. Computer class schedule

Starting December 15 registration will be taken at any branch of the library. Registrants can request a hard copy of their class registration.

Registration by phone will also be taken starting on December 15 at 327-8367. The registration phone line will ask you for your name, your library card number, if you are a cardholder, the classes you are requesting, and the location of the classes.

Phone registrants will receive a phone call confirming their registration.

What is Assisted Living?

With many people considering alternative housing for their loved ones, the catagory of "assisted living" turns out to be less clearly defined than many people would think. Linda Lawther, President and CEO of Michigan Center for Assisted Living, said it's only a marketing term in this state. It could refer to several types of housing, such as adult foster care, independent senior apartments, or homes for the aged. The Michigan Department of Human Services regulates licensed sites. Books like Elder Care and Choose the Right Long Term Care can help better educate consumers about this very important family and financial decision.

Zines for Seniors

Ann Arbor District Library subscribes to 680 periodicals for youth, teen, adult and staff, covering a variety of different interests. Folks 50+ will find many of them fascinating, but let's mention just a few. Cruising by Bust, do! Out and Ode, we come to Trailer Life, revved up for an RV journey. Each monthly issue contains ideas for enhancing your RV camper, along with articles and photos on great places to visit. Next choice is Where to Retire, a bimonthly full of photos and information on retirement housing in great locations.

If you want to learn about making a lighter footprint on the planet in retirement, try E: The Environmental Magazine for lots of intersting examples of places and projects you can get involved with. If you're a nostalgia buff, check out Reminisce, packed with high quality vintage photos and light hearted stories about life in the good old days.

Our two large print subcriptions are a special weekly edition of the New York Times, and the monthly Reader's Digest. Among many health related magazines is Arthritis Today, offering information about the condition, and how to live life to the fullest.

Bahumbugs Beware: Local Holiday Events!

Missed out on this year’s earlier-than-usual Children’s Holiday parade? Not to worry--there are plenty of holiday traditions left to enjoy. Though a certain someone shudders every time I play another Christmas CD, there’s only so much time to enjoy the festive mood before January sets in (blah), so why not enjoy? First up, Kerrytown’s own Tree Lighting Ceremony, Sunday, November 26 at 5p.m. Followed by the 60th Annual Greens Market at the Women’s City Club on Thursday the 30th. Finally, head downtown on December 1st for the biannual tradition, Midnight Madness—stores open late, legendary Le Dog soup at night, and sales galore—what could be better?

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