New Joan Blos Book to be Celebrated

A book release party for the new young adult novel Letters from the Corrugated Castle: A Novel of Gold Rush California, 1850-1852, by Ann Arborite Joan Blos is coming up 7 p.m. Wednesday May 16 at Shaman Drum Bookshop. The book completes a geographical trilogy started with A Gathering of Days, which won a Newbery Medal, and continued with Brothers of the Heart.

New Lodi Township Historical Group Forming

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A new group is working to preserve the history of Lodi Township. An offshoot of the Saline Area Historical Society, the group has two current projects: Preserving the Old Lodi Township Hall and cleaning up the Lodi Township Cemetery. The old hall, located on Pleasant Lake Road, dates back to 1867 and has been closed for 30 years, according to the spring/summer Lodi Connection newsletter. The cemetery, located at Textile and Ann Arbor-Saline roads, dates back to the late 1820s. A spring clean-up of the cemetery is planned for Saturday May 19 with a rain date of Sunday May 20. Anyone interested in helping with this clean-up should meet at the cemetery at 9 a.m. May 19 with rakes and yard clippers. For more information call Margaret O’Connor, 663-1327, or Peg Canham, 944-2922.

Wild Swan Performs Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night

I’m personally wild about Ann Arbor’s Wild Swan Theater so I’m hoping to take my 10-year-old son to their performance of Twelfth Night this Thursday, Friday, Saturday or Sunday (May 3-6) at WCC Towsley Auditorium. You’ll be glad to know AADL has plenty of good Shakespeare books for young people, such as The Riverside Shakespeare, which includes the play Twelfth Night.

9th Annual Garlic Mustard Weed-Out Day!

Garlic Mustard WeedGarlic Mustard Weed

Looking for something to do this beautiful Saturday (May 5th)? Spend your day from 10-1 PM in the sun removing garlic mustard from Ann Arbor’s nature areas: Argo Park, Bird Hills, and Cedar Bend. A BBQ will follow at Island Park Pavilion after all that hard work from 1:30-5 PM, where the person who bags the most garlic mustard will win a prize! Bring a dish to pass or anything to grill. Burgers, buns, condiments and beverage provided.

Call 996-3266 or check the website for more information and where to meet.

Photo taken by Dr. John Meade, Rutgers

May Day at Gallup Park

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No May Poles but plenty of other activities await seniors May 1st, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at Gallup Park. Nature walks, fresh-brewed coffee and sweets, and outdoor fun guaranteed to shake off those winter blues. $5 per person. Meet at the Gallup Park Canoe Livery and get energized!

National Bike Month and Bike to Work Day

Need inspiration to participate in getDowntown's Commuter Challenge beginning May 1? May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Awareness Month. It's also National Bike Month and May 18 is Bike to Work Day. Get ready by reading The Bicycle Commuting Book or any of our many books on bicycle maintenance and repair, such as last year's Bicycle! A Repair and Maintenance Manifesto. For additional inspiration, watch The Bicycle Corps: America's Black Army on Wheels, Breaking Away or Curious George Rides a Bike.

Disturbing Images of Darfur

The urgent humanitarian crisis in Sudan’s western region of Darfur is the subject of a photo exhibit opening Friday at AADL’s Mallet’s Creek branch. Sponsored by a number of church and temple groups, the exhibit showcases the photographs of native Michigander Ryan Spencer Reed and is called Hands of a Displaced Sudan: The Cost of Silence. The grand opening of the exhibit is scheduled for 6-8 p.m. Friday, May 4, when people will be able to meet the photographer and view the photographs he shot and smuggled out of Darfur. At AADL there are a number of good books about the Darfur crisis, including the new book The Devil Came on Horseback: Bearing witness to the genocide in Darfur by Brian Steidle.

The Play Ground

The Play GroundThe Play Ground

"It's an Art Thing": Performance Network Children's Theater Network.The local modern dance company People Dancing performs a trio of original dances for kids in kindergarten through 5th grade. Caps is a modern dance based on Esphyr Slobodkina's classic tale Caps for Sale, an absurd and simple story about a peddler who walks around selling caps from a tall pile on his head.

A Better View is a dance drama exploring an Asian aesthetic that's set to the text of Arthur Lobel's children's book Ming Lo Moves the Mountain about a wise man who tells Ming Lo how to move the mountain away from his house.

Madcap Masks celebrates the relationships between music, dance, and visual art. Performance Network, Saturday, April 28, 11:00 am, 63-0681.

A2 Events: Need a new groove for spring?

Try contact improvisation dance and move where the groove takes you. On Saturday May 5th and Sunday May 6th local contact improv teacher, Stefanie Cohen will host a visit by Kathleen Maltese, a Chicago-based dancer, teacher and co-founder of the Chicago Contact Improvisation Group, for a special series of classes where students will explore the practice of falling and jamming. The event will also include dancers from throughout the Great Lakes region, an open dance for all, food, and live music by Detroit band Immigrant Suns. For more information, check out the Ann Arbor/Detroit Contact Improvisation website. If you want to read more about contact improv, check out:

Dances That Describe Themselves: The Improvised Choreography of Richard Bull
Choreography: A Basic Approach Using Improvisation
The Moment of Movement: Dance Improvisation
Speaking of Dance: Twelve Contemporary Choreographers on Their Craft

Workshop on using Genealogy Software

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The Genealogical Society of Washtenaw County is offering a 2-part workshop on Sunday, April 22 on choosing and utilizing genealogy software to document and create your family history. A number of software packages will be profiled (including 'The Family Tree Maker', 'GenBox', 'Legacy', 'The Master Genealogist' and 'Reunion'). Attendees will be able to try out the programs and obtain assistance from Society members. The workshop is free to anyone interested. It will be held at the Education Center Auditorium, St. Joseph Mercy Hospital Campus, 5305 Elliott Drive, at 1:30 p.m.

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