ages 11-18

Behind the scenes at Saturday Night Live

Saturday Night Live is one of the longest-running television programs in the country, and is certainly one of the most beloved. Featuring live comedy sketches and variety performances as well as popular bands and musical guests every week since it first aired in 1975, SNL celebrated its 40th anniversary earlier this year. Fans of SNL will absolutely love Saturday Night Live: The Book, published this year in honor of the show’s 40th year. The large, brightly colored book is filled with facts and never before seen, behind-the-scenes photographs from every season of the show. Also included are interviews with Lorne Michaels, cast members, and other contributors to the show, and fun, goofy details about some of the more famous skits.

As a huge SNL fan myself, I even liked the portion of this book that shows photos of every host the show has had, and lists the air date, host and musical guest for all 784 episodes of the show. It was amazing to see the hundreds of various people that have hosted over the years!

The AADL also has lots of great SNL episodes on video, including the Best of Steve Martin, the Best of Will Ferrell and the Best of Amy Poehler collections, and many complete seasons. If you’re interested in reading more about the show, try Live From New York: the complete, uncensored history of Saturday Night Live as told by its stars, writers and guests.

Live from New York it’s Saturday niiiiiiiight!

Film Screening: "Going Blind"


U of M's Hatcher Graduate Library will be screening the film "Going Blind" on Wednesday, April 15th from 5-7 PM. It's a documentary of personal stories of people coping with vision loss, and bringing awareness to low vision therapy. While you're at the Hatcher Graduate Library, check out the exhibit promoting the Washtenaw Library for the Blind & Physically Disabled. If you have any questions about the service, please give us a call at 734-327-4224 or send us an email: wlbpd@aadl.org.

Teens Using Drugs: Education Series

The Dawn Farms Education Series, "Teens Using Drugs: What To Know and What To Do" is a free, two-part series that will be presented from 7:30-9:00 pm Tuesday, April 7th, 2015 (part one, "What to Know"), and Tuesday, April 14th (part two, "What to Do"). The programs will be held in the "Exhibition Room" on the first floor of St. Joseph Mercy Hospital Education Center at 5305 Elliott Drive, Ypsilanti. The sessions are presented by the Dawn Farm Youth & Family Services team. This program is targeted primarily to parents/caretakers of teens & young adults but is inclusive of other family members, teens, professionals, students, people who sponsor or support teens, and others interested. Please contact 734-485-8725 or info@dawnfarm.org or see the link to Dawn Farm for further information.

Fairy Tales and Journeys Across the Sea

Set in 19th century Norway, West of the Moon tells the story of 13 year old Astri, who has just been sold to a cruel goat farmer by her greedy aunt. Clever and determined, Astri makes a daring escape to reunite with her sister and find a way to America. Remembering the heroes in fairy tales told by her mother gives Astri the strength to persevere in her journey and uncover family secrets.

Margi Preus was inspired to write the novel after reading a mysterious diary passage written by her great-great grandmother, Linka Preus, who immigrated to America in the 19th century. Fascinating images and information about Linka’s world are included in the Author’s Note.

For other retellings of the fairy tale East of the Sun, West of the Moon, try East or Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow. If you’d like to read the Norwegian fairy tales mentioned in the Preus novel, check out East of the Sun and West of the Moon: old tales from the North.

New Nonfiction for Kids: Why'd They Wear That?

We’ve all seen pictures and paintings of people wearing some pretty crazy clothing and fashions over the course of history. Why have clothes changed so much over time? What caused different accessories and styles to come into fashion… and to fade back out again? If questions like this pique your interest, National Geographic’s Why’d They Wear That? is the book for you! Filled with amazing fashion facts and the reasons behind some of the more obscure style trends we’ve seen over time, this awesome book is also packed with great pictures of clothes and the people that wore them.

Did you know that in the 1700s in France, women’s hoop skirts were so wide that they had to turn sideways to get through doorways? After the storming of the Bastille, these cumbersome skirts quickly went back out of fashion—women couldn’t hope to escape with their lives if they couldn’t even get through a door!

And, before the 1860s, shoes weren’t mass produced with left and right feet: they were all just straight! So, wearing shoes was often very painful. You could only custom order right and left-footed shoes if you were very wealthy. Finally, it 1865, this problem was remedied when appropriately designed shoes were made widely available.

Why’d They Wear That has information like these crazy facts you just read, and so much more. And, for another cool book on fashion and style over time, try The Fashion Book.

The World of Ice and Fire: The Untold History of Westeros and the Game of Thrones

The new season of Game of Thrones is almost here and for many fans April 12th cannot come soon enough! If you're as excited as I am about the return of the new season, you may be on the lookout for any small sliver of (non-spoiler!) Game of Thrones news or for more content to devour before the start of the 5th season.

A recent addition to our collection is The World of Ice and Fire: The Untold History of Westeros and the Game of Thrones, a comprehensive history of the Game of Thrones universe. As many of George R. R. Martin's fans know, one of his many strengths is the complex worldbuilding within the Game of Thrones novels. The World of Fire and Ice does an amazing job of simplifying the plethora of information offered throughout the series into a (relatively) concise history of the Game of Thrones world.

This 326 page mega-book contains detailed maps of the Game of Thrones world, color illustrations, full family trees for each of the major Houses, and an extended history with cultural information spanning the entire Game of Thrones universe. It also includes all-new material that George R. R. Martin wrote specifically for this collection. This incredibly informative companion novel is a must read for fans searching for an in-depth look at the history of Essos, Westeros, and everywhere in between.

Looking for a quicker way to get reacquainted with your favorite Game of Thrones characters and their backgrounds? Give the Game of Thrones graphic novels a try! For more information about the HBO television series specifically, be sure to take a look at Inside HBO's Game of Thrones for a cool sneak peek at what happens behind the scenes of one of the most popular shows on television.

New Music at the AADL!

The AADL has tons of brand new CDs for fans of all musical genres. Top 40 pop, country, indie, Motown, classical… you name it, and we’ve got it! Here are some of the newest additions to the AADL collection:

Sweet Talker is Jessie J’s latest album, featuring collaborations with stars like Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj and 2 Chainz. The hit song Bang Bang, which Jessie J first performed at the MTV VMA awards last year, is on this album, along with “Burnin’ Up,” “Seal Me With a Kiss” and “Loud,” all songs that radio listeners will recognize.

Strangers to Ourselves is the sixth album by alternative rock band Modest Mouse. Modest Mouse had been on somewhat of a hiatus before this album’s release; their last album before this was released back in 2007. Strangers to Ourselves has received mixed reviews from critics but has been touted by some as a great example of the band’s growth and evolution over the years. Fans of the band will certainly want to give it a shot.

The Basement Tapes Raw contains thirty-eight highlights from sessions that Bob Dylan recorded with The Band in 1967. These were all restored from the original tapes.

Country fans won’t want to miss Luke Bryan’s Spring Break… Checkin’ Out album, the seventh and last entry in his Spring Break collection, featuring 5 new tracks. Most of the songs focus on the fun Bryan has had performing at spring break locations over the past years, and the album is lighthearted and fun, despite receiving only average reviews from many critics.

Love The Hunger Games? Don’t miss the soundtrack for Mockingjay: Part 1!

The AADL has also recently purchased new copies of older favorites, including albums by the Staple Singers, Marvin Gaye, and Electric Light Orchestra.

Find all these and more new additions to our music collection by browsing the "New CDs" category under "New Items" on the catalog page of our website.

AADL is an Ann Arbor Film Festival Community Partner

Ann Arbor Film Fest LogoAnn Arbor Film Fest LogoThe Ann Arbor Film Festival is here again, and with it comes another year of films, events, and community partnership. AADL will once again be an official AAFF community partner for Films in Competition 4, on Saturday March 28 at 11 am at the Michigan Theater, which features films especially for viewers and filmmakers age 6 and up.

You can check out the list of films playing and buy tickets on the Ann Arbor Film Fest’s website. Make sure to enter the code AAFF53_AADL for half off your advance ticket – normally $6!

When you come to the screening, you’ll even have a chance to hear the premieres of the film scores participants created in our Making Movie Music workshop, held in conjunction with the AAFF.

The Ann Arbor Film Festival is the longest-running independent and experimental film festival in North America. The 53rd AAFF takes place March 24-29, 2015 and presents over 200 films from across the world with dozens of world premieres. For more information, please visit the Ann Arbor Film Festival’s website.

Leader Dogs for the Blind Summer Experience Camp

Summer Experience Camp is a unique summer camp for boys and girls ages 16 and 17 who are legally blind that combines summer fun with an introduction to guide dogs and the opportunity to spend time with peers who are facing similar challenges. Campers kayak, rock wall climb and tandem bike, learn to use a GPS device with instruction and spend time with dogs and Leader Dog guide dog mobility instructors to learn more about living and working with a guide dog.

The program is completely free including airfare to Michigan, and everyone receives a free HumanWare Trekker audible pedestrian GPS device to keep. Summer Experience Camp is scheduled for June 26 to July 3, 2015. Applications are due by April 1, 2015.

For more information and to download an application, go to www.leaderdog.org/clients/programs/summer-experience-camp or call the Leader Dogs for the Blind client services department at 888-777-5332.

It's All Write: The Countdown Begins!

Short story writers, if you haven't written a story for the 2015 It's All Write Teen Short Story Contest, now's the time to get started! The deadline for submission is March 13, which means you have one week in which to write a totally awesome, amazing, incredible, hilarious, jaw-dropping, heart-wrenching, inspired story! Don't have time to write a brand new one? Dust off and spruce up that draft you've got sitting around on your hard drive!

Go to the It's All Write page to find writing guidelines and the submission form.

Happy writing!

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