Blind Date with a Book at your library!

Looking for a good book to read?

In celebration of Valentine’s Day, why not go on a blind date with a book?! Over the next three weeks, you’ll see displays at all the AADL locations (usually near the NEW teen and adult books) featuring unknown books wrapped in butcher paper, with a short hint description written on each one.

You won’t know the ‘identity’ of your date until you get home: it could be fiction or non-fiction, funny, informative, a mystery… but all of these books were recommended by one or more AADL staff members who personally enjoyed them. We hope we’ll introduce you to a book you’ll love!

Happy Valentine’s Day, and enjoy your “date!”

(And, if a book is too much “commitment” for you, we have blind date movies too!)

We also have “surprise” books and movies for kids, located where you find NEW kids books!

Stop by your nearest AADL location and check out these fun displays!

Let Freedom Ring: Celebrating the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Music

On Monday, January 19, AADL will celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s legacy in music, with two very special performances at the Downtown Library.

All ages are invited at 1 p.m for acclaimed percussion group Biakuye presenting a cross-cultural experience rooted in American innovation and African tradition.

In Akan languages, biakuye means unity, and their style unites percussionists from varied backgrounds, traditional instruments and found objects, and West African musical traditions and American jazz concepts.The group's members come from both Africa and the United States, and have a local connection. Mark Stone and Roger Braun attended the University of Michigan together, studying percussion. Mark spent a year in Ghana while at U of M, where he met master drummer Kofi Ameyaw. The three later formed Biakuye, and have since added and rotated members, but their unique and energetic sound remains, celebrating cultural unity and collaboration. Biakuye will perform in the Downtown Library Multi-Purpose Room.

In the evening, Baritone Emery Stephens and accompanist Alvin Waddles will give an interactive lecture and concert highlighting the musical legacy and achievements of African-American composers and arrangers.

They will discuss such recognizable tunes as “This Little Light of Mine,” “It’s Me, O Lord,” “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot,” and composers such as Harry T. Burleigh, John Work, and Margaret Bonds. Both Emory Stephens and Alvin Waddles have performed, studied, and taught throughout the area and around the country and will join us for an entertaining and informative performance at 7 p.m. in the Multi-Purpose Room.

Can’t make it? Use these lists of books on Dr. King and the Civil Rights Movement for children, teens, adults, graphic novels, and picture books to mark the day.

Free Holiday Classic Film Series at The Michigan Theater!

The Michigan Theater is topping off the holiday season with a series of FREE holiday movies shown on Sundays at 1:30pm. The State Street Area Association Holiday Classic Film Series presented by Sesi Lincoln and Old National Bank. The films start showing this Sunday!

This year’s classic holiday films shown will be: Home Alone on 11/30, Miracle on 34th Street on 12/7, Elf on 12/14, and It’s a Wonderful Life on 12/21. How fun! It’s a great way to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the season and sit down for a free movie in a beautiful theater! Want to just stay home? The library has you covered with the DVDs of the films.

November Holiday Markets

Mark your calendars and plan to take in a holiday market during the month of November. Here are a few to consider:
The Ann Arbor Fiberarts Guild Holiday Sale is Saturday Nov. 8 from 10am - 4 pm., in WCC Morris Lawrence Buillding., 4800 E. Huron River Dr.
The Holiday Art Fair of the Guild of Artists & Artisans is Saturday, November 15, 10am - 6pm and Sunday, November 16, 11am - 5 pm, in the Eastern Michigan University Convocation Center.
The Sunday Artisan Market Holiday Open House is Sunday, November 16, from 11am - 4pm in Kerrytown Shops on Detroit St.

Ghosts of Halloweens Past

Halloween ClownHalloween Clown

Don’t look now, Ann Arbor, but just in time for Halloween, we’ve unearthed a few frightening photos from our Oldnews vault.

Did you know Ann Arbor had a Haunted Tavern? Or that a roving band of Devil Dogs terrorized Tree Town in the late 1930s?

In 1945, a pirate, some clowns and...a singing cornstalk(?) took over the former WPAG radio station at Main and Liberty, and in 1952 Ann Arbor Civic Theatre conjured up this disturbing scene during its production of The Spider.

We've also exhumed ample evidence that witches, goblins and other monster mites haunted the Burns Park neighborhood in 1951 and 1952. Similar creatures appear in a 1957 JCC Halloween Parade. And in 1964, this vampire stalked Art Fair booths.

So click if you dare, Ann Arbor. You can browse all things Halloween or search the past at Oldnews - your gateway to Ann Arbor's hair-raising history.

Tiny Expo: Ann Arbor's biggest little indie arts & craft fair — Downtown, December 13th!

Ann Arbor's biggest little indie arts & craft fair is back! After a few years of hopping around to different locales, Tiny Expo will land at the Downtown AADL this December 13th, 11am—5:30pm!

Just what IS Tiny Expo? It's a fun local, and handmade shopping experience that began with a small group of artists in 2010. As the initial group of creative folks banded together to hold a fun, informal little fair, expo-goers responded, and the show grew just a teeny bit each year. Finding a location that could fit everyone was a perennial challenge, though, and so Tiny Expo jumped around town — from Kerrytown to Felch Street and back again.

This year, the Downtown Library will host Tiny Expo's marvelous collection of local indie artists and crafters, including a few audience favorites from past Tiny Expo editions! We'll be announcing the final artist roster in mid November, but if you or an artist you know might be a good fit, you can apply here to be a part of things!

So, get excited, get ready, and mark your calendar — for the biggest little indie arts and craft fair, this December!

Halloween Events at the AADL!

We love Halloween at the AADL, and we have lots of fun events planned for other Halloween lovers, too! On Tuesday evening, October 28, adults and teens can make decorative Halloween wreaths at the Pittsfield branch of the library. On Wednesday, October 29, we’ll be celebrating Dia de los Muertos by making Day of the Dead Shrinky Dink skull charms at the Mallets Creek location. And, on Halloween itself, we have tons of activities for little ones. In the morning, at both 9:30 and 10:30, there will be a special, first-ever Halloween-themed puppet show at the downtown library! Preschoolers will definitely enjoy the Halloween storytime that morning, also taking place at the downtown library and featuring, music, finger plays, and holiday stories. Kids can come in their costumes for treats here at the library, and then join up with the Treat Parade! The library has partnered with the Main Street Association and we’re a stop on this year’s parade! For more information about any of our Halloween events, you can call or ask at any of the AADL locations. Happy Halloween!

Mardi Gras Masks

Tuesday February 17, 2015: 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm -- Downtown Library: Multi-Purpose Room

This event is intended for grades K-5

Laissez les bon temps rouler!

Decorate masks with sequins, feathers,and other fun stuff and celebrate Mardi Gras!

Paper Pinwheel Bouquets

Saturday May 9, 2015: 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm -- Malletts Creek Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for grades K-5

Celebrate Mother’s Day by making a beautiful bouquet that will never lose its flair!

Mix and match fun paper patterns and pinwheel designs, then take your bouquet home to give to someone special!

Snowman Jewelry

Monday December 15, 2014: 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm -- Malletts Creek Branch: Program Room

This event is intended for adults and teens grade 6 and up.

Celebrate winter and create snowman earrings and necklaces using beads, wire and basic jewelry making techniques.

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