Today is a good day to place a hold on a telescope

TelescopeTelescope

Why? Because over the next two weeks Jupiter and Venus - both prominent in the western sky at dusk - will be moving closer and closer together until their conjunction, Tuesday, June 30, when they’ll be only .3 degrees apart and visible together in your field of view. This is the celestial highlight of early summer, folks, so place a hold today!

Michigan Activity Pass - Check Out Free Passes to Michigan Attractions


Looking for adventure this summer? The Michigan Activity Pass (MAP) is newly expanded, offering free or discounted entry to more than 360 attractions across the state. Library card holders can log in to the MAP site to explore opportunities close to home or farther afield. Use the Advanced Search option to narrow your results by area of interest, such as art, historical sites, maritime, children's activities, campgrounds, and many more.

Use MAP to get free or discounted entry to some of the historic lighthouses dotting Michigan's coast, to art museums such as the Detroit Institute of Arts or the Detroit Museum of Contemporary Art and Design, to history museums like the Yankee Air Museum, the Michigan Firehouse Museum, and the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum, as well as to state parks and campgrounds throughout Michigan,

Find MAP on the library's website under Unusual Stuff and explore your options for making this summer a non-stop Michigan adventure!

Check out the program brochure for a complete listing of participating locations.

Meet the Moog Theremini

Even if you have never heard of a Theremin you're probably familiar with the sound it makes. Theremins are unique in that they are the only musical instrument you play by waving your hands through the air. Invented in the 1920s by Lev Sergeyevich Termen the instrument traditionally contains two metal antennae which generate an electromagnetic field. When you place your hands, or your face or your cat or whatever into this field you disrupt the signal. Your disruptions are interpreted by the synthesizer to produce a musical note (using the vertical pitch antenna) and a sound level (using the horizontal volume antenna). The Theremini from the legendary Moog Music company takes the traditional theremin to another level. New player friendly features and an incredible built-in sound engine help you generate all sorts of noise, including the spooky "ooo woooo ooo" sound heard in many classic sci fi films. The handy automatic calibration feature will assist new players, and if you're not a new player well then you probably already have your own theremin. Place a request on one today or find an Up For Grabs copy on the shelf at the Downtown Library! Thereminis currently checkout for 1 week and are requestable but not renewable.

Analog Days: The Invention and Impact of the Moog Synthesizer

If you've listened to a piece of popular music written after 1970 the chances are good that you've heard a synthesizer in action. While the earliest synthesizers were invented in the late 1870s it wasn't until the 1960s that they started to became accessible to a typical musician. Analog Days chronicles the rise of electronic synthesizers and their socioeconomic role in music production. The authors focus heavily on the Moog Synthesizer and its inventor Robert Moog, who popularized synthesizers and standardized their production while pushing the boundaries of the technology behind electronically generated music. We have more books on Robert Moog and synthesizers, as well as some Moog Music instruments that you can try out too!

Electronic Music Production with Mike Huckaby

Wednesday July 29, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Training Center

This event is intended for grade 6 to adult

Learn electronic music production with Mike Huckaby. Tastemaker, Educator, Sound Designer, and Motor City Proponent, Mike has done much for electronic music. The man behind the once legendary Record Time store has gathered an encyclopedic knowledge of dance music. Currently an in demand remixer and performer around the world, Mike also serves as an instructor for Native Instruments and Ableton on their digital music tools.

Electronic Music Production with Mike Huckaby

Wednesday July 22, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Training Center

This event is intended for grade 6 to adult

Learn electronic music production with Mike Huckaby. Tastemaker, Educator, Sound Designer, and Motor City Proponent, Mike has done much for electronic music. The man behind the once legendary Record Time store has gathered an encyclopedic knowledge of dance music. Currently an in demand remixer and performer around the world, Mike also serves as an instructor for Native Instruments and Ableton on their digital music tools.

Electronic Music Production with Mike Huckaby

Wednesday July 15, 2015: 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm -- Downtown Library: Training Center

This event is intended for grade 6 to adult

Learn electronic music production with Mike Huckaby. Tastemaker, Educator, Sound Designer, and Motor City Proponent, Mike has done much for electronic music. The man behind the once legendary Record Time store has gathered an encyclopedic knowledge of dance music. Currently an in demand remixer and performer around the world, Mike also serves as an instructor for Native Instruments and Ableton on their digital music tools.

Drop in for Valentine's Day die-cutting crafts now through February 20 at the Downtown Library!

Visit the Downtown library anytime through February 20 to create your own Valentine's Day papercrafts. This is your chance to get your hands on the same die-cutting machines that you can borrow from our new Art Tools collection while making some cool decorations and cards that you get to take home!

Die-cutting works by placing the material to be cut, like paper, felt or craft metal on top of a die that contains safety foam and a razor sharp blade. You then run it through a roller press which gently presses the material to be cut down through the foam and onto the razor sharp blade, allowing you to produce some very intricate designs. We're supplying construction paper & glue, but If you want to get super fancy or make something in large quantities you are also welcome to bring in your own decorative paper and supplies. Hollander's is just a quick walk down 4th Ave!

Look for the Art Tools craft table near the first floor Information Desk at the Downtown library.

If you can find Orion, you can find Comet Lovejoy!

Comet Lovejoy is proving to be a bit more wonderful than expected. Sure, it’s cold out there, but if you know where to find the constellation Orion (in the southeast), you can locate Lovejoy pretty quickly before heading back inside. Comet Lovejoy is charting a course past Orion over the next couple weeks and getting higher in the sky. It's fairly bright and right now a magnetic storm may be in progress in the tail of the comet causing "plasma blobs" and "disconnection events" visible in amateur telescopes.

We have telescopes you can check out, but to see the comet you really only need a decent pair of binoculars, which we also happen to have on hand.

So run in and grab a telescope or a pair of binoculars so you're ready on the next clear night!

Drop-in For Wintry Art Tools Crafts At The Downtown Library

Visit the Downtown library anytime through early January to create your own winter papercrafts. We're supplying the same die-cutting machines that you can borrow from our new Art Tools collection, along with every winter-themed die we could get our hands on including snowmen, penguins, snowflakes, ornaments, sleighs, greeting cards, paper villages, embossing folders & more.

Die-cutting works by placing the material to be cut or embossed, like paper, cardstock or craft metal on top of a die that contains safety foam and a blade, which you run through a roller press to cut or emboss your design. We're supplying scrap paper for you to try it out, but If you want to get super fancy or make something in large quantities then you're welcome to bring in your own decorative paper and supplies. Hollander's is just a quick walk down 4th Ave!

Look for the Art Tools craft table near the desk on the 1st floor at the Downtown library.

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