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.

AAPS English Language Learners!

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If you are planning to enroll in Ann Arbor Public Schools and use English as a Second Language, you may want to head over to the ESL Fair at Skyline High School this afternoon, August 20, from 1-4. There will be interpreters & many resources for families to learn about. English language proficiency tests will take place, no registration required.

Academy Award-Nominated Documentary About Hurricane Katrina: 'Trouble The Water'

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On the eve of Hurricane Katrina’s fourth anniversary, we will hold a special screening of Trouble The Water at the Downtown Library on Friday, August 28, 7pm. The film seamlessly integrates home movie footage with archival news segments and cinéma vérité footage to document a journey of remarkable people surviving not only failed levees, bungling bureaucrats and armed soldiers, but also their own past. The film was awarded the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival and was nominated for this year’s Oscar for Best Documentary.

Food Gatherers Needs You!

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The pantry at Food Gatherers is running extremely low on canned goods and other non-perishable foods due to record numbers of hungry families, children and seniors in the area. Food Gatherers regularly provides enough food for more than 7,500 meals a day in Washtenaw County. Please consider donating some non-perishable canned and dry goods that are unopened, in good condition and not expired. Any item is appreciated, but there are many requests for high-protein items, cereal, kid-friendly foods, baby formula, soups, stews, and canned meat/fish. You can drop off goods at the Food Gatherers warehouse or at the People's Food Co-op. The Food Gatherers can also help you organize a food drive at your workplace!

Parkour & Freerunning : The Art of Movement

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Parkour is the art of moving through your environment using only your body and the surroundings to propel yourself. On Saturday, August 15, from 3:00 to 4:00 pm, at the Meri Lou Murray Recreation Center located at 2960 Washtenaw Avenue in Ann Arbor, Mike Metze, leader of the UM Parkour Club, will discuss the sport and then offer a live demonstration with Parkour experts at the adjacent County Farm Park! This event is geared to adults and teens (grades 6 and up).

Take a hike@ Furstenberg Nature Area

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Join us for a nature walk with the City of Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation staff. View native plants and trees, and learn about the ecological restoration going on at this site. Meet in the parking lot off Fuller Road, across from Huron High School.

Thursday, August 13 | 7:00-8:30 PM | All Ages

Chesstastic

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We're playing Chess for all ages and all levels this Sunday, August 9, at Traverwood from 1-4pm. Whether it's Chess Tactics for Champions or Chess Fundamentals all are welcome.

Documentary about the making of the Traverwood Branch now online

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826Michigan books for you

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The library owns a few books put out by 826Michigan (the fabulous local non-profit that offers tutoring and workshops, and supports writing endeavors for kids age 6-18.) They have many books that are samples and collections of students’ work, highlighting the best and brightest of writing talent that will knock your socks off. True Stories and Tall Tales culminates a year’s worth of work at Ypsilanti’s Childs Elementary School and features histories, fantasies, and other such silliness written by the students, while lead by 826Michigan volunteers.

Another book written by 826Michigan students, and other 826 chapters across the country, is Thanks and Have Fun Running the Country: Kids' Letters to President Obama. Which is essentially just that: a collection of letters written by kids and addressed to President Obama. Some are funny, some are heartfelt, all are worth reading.

If you’re looking for more works put out by 826, or some McSweeney’s titles, or want to hear more about what they do there, check out the shelves at the Liberty Street Robot Repair and Supply Shop at 115 E. Liberty.

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