Super Smash and Mario Kart Tournament Extravaganza!

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The 2007 Super Smash Double Dash Championship season returns to the downtown library this weekend with a Smash & Dash filled couple of days for players of all ages! It all begins with a Super Smash Bros. Melee Regulation Throwdown for ages 13+, this Friday, 9/28, from 6:00 - 8:45 PM. With no items, only neutral stages, and a focus on 1v1, this is your chance to put your skills to a pure test of mettle. See here for our regulation-style ruleset. We'll then continue with Round 2 of the Championship Season for grades 6-12 on Saturday, 9/29, from Noon - 5 PM. Can Clan US continue their smash dominance? Can the Brothers of Maplewood win another mystery clan battle? Come downtown and find out! Then, we'll wrap up the weekend with a Mario Kart Tournament for grades 5 and under, Sunday, 9/30, from 1:00 - 4:00 PM.

Feeling Foolish?


Street Theater Art (START) Project co-creators Shoshana Hurand and Mark Tucker are throwing a big, silly party this Thursday to kick off preparations for Festifools 2008! This year they have a spacious new studio in the UM Campus Security Services Building (room 1309). Festifools 2007 was a huge success—the project combined the efforts of UM students and volunteers from throughout the community to create enormous Mardi Gras-style puppets that were marched through the streets of Ann Arbor on April Fools’ Day. Photos of the event will be on display at the open house, which runs from 5-7pm.

Photo by Myra Klarman, used with permission.

College Cooking Made Simple!

Do you cower in the face of an ingredients list, or groan at the thought of slicing and dicing? When was the last time you cooked a meal for yourself instead of eating at the dining hall?

Be afraid no longer! Sister team Megan and Jill Carle just published the book for you! Check out College cooking : feed yourself and your friends for some great, easy recipes. One example, barbecue chicken pizza, is available online from Megan's appearance on NPR's The Splendid Table this past weekend.

Champagne at the Gandy Dancer

Today is the birthday of world renowned poet Donald Hall, and to celebrate, The Writers Almanac is displaying one of his poems, “The judge was decent, but . . “ about Hall’s 1972 marriage in Ann Arbor to poet Jane Kenyon. As the poem says, it was a basic municipal marriage -- but afterwards they did drink champagne at the Gandy Dancer. Five years later they remarried in New Hampshire, ". . . joyful
in a wooden church,
a Saturday afternoon in April,
only Jack Jensen our
friend and minister with us . . ."

"Aaarrr! Don't mention it! It's been a pleasure," said the Pirate Captain

Wednesday, September 19th, is Talk Like a Pirate Day, with its own website and Wikipedia article. To celebrate read one of Gideon Defoe’s funny, silly ahistorical novels about the Pirate Captain and his crew. I have read The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists: a Novel, a tale in which the pirates board the Beagle in the Galapagos, become friends with Darwin and Mr. Bobo (Darwin’s ape, trained to behave as a proper English gentleman), go to London to try to save Darwin’s brother Erasmus from the evil Bishop of Oxford, who seems to be responsible for the disappearance of numerous young ladies from the P. T. Barnum Circus of Freaks.

Or enjoy some other of the library’s piratical offerings: non-fiction, novels, kid’s books, or DVDs.

2007 Quill Book Awards Announced

The 2007 Quill Book Awards were recently announced. The Quills recognize books in a variety of categories. Titles are first nominated by a panel of editors from Publisher's Weekly and then voted on by the public.
There were three categories for children's books.
Flotsam by David Wiesner won in the Picture Book category. This title also won the 2007 Caldecott Medal. It is the story of a camera that washes up on a beach and reveals many wondrous sights.
In the Children's Chapter Book/Middle Grade category the award went to Brian Selznick's The Invention of Hugo Cabret. This book is half narrative, half graphic novel. It's almost like watching a silent movie.
Sold by Patricia McCormick won the Young Adult/Teen award. Written in free verse, this is the story of a 13-year-old girl who is sold into prostitution in India.

Hispanic Heritage Month

Learn more about Hispanic Heritage Month on this site for kids--enlightening for grown-ups as well! There are some exciting local events beginning this week-end to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Fun for the whole family is Gran Noche Mexicana in Ypsilanti. Also this week-end, performing in Detroit, the talented Ballet Folklorico de Mexico. Feel like staying in and having a private salsa or merengue fiesta? Check out Baila! A Latin Dance Party!

If you like Irish music....

This Friday evening, September 14, Liz Carroll, fiddler extraordinaire will be performing with equally talented guitarist, John Doyle at The Ark. Carroll's and Doyle's joint performances, in concert and on cd have been described by the Irish Echo as "...a magnificent balance of virtuosity, drive, and finesse .... Carroll's bowing and Doyle's picking represent a kind of soloing in sync, each supporting and inspiring the other without a whiff of self-indulgence."

Check them out, if there are still tickets left. And look for a sizeable collection of Irish music at the Library.

Fall Holy Days

Read about Rosh Hashanah! Check out Apples & Pomegranates by Rahel Musleah. Today also marks the first day of Ramadan. For a touching youth story on the subject read Magid fasts for Ramadan by Mary Matthews. More on Jewish holidays during autumn can be found in Celebrating the Jewish Year by Paul Steinberg. And to read about fasting & religion check out Fasting: Spiritual Freedom beyond our Appetite by Lynne Baab.

Greyfriars Bobby on DVD

Here’s a touching tale that’s great for any age. A tale that's well known in Scotland, Greyfriars Bobby: The True Story of a Dog is just that. Bobby is a determined and loyal pint-sized terrier living in Scotland in the 1850s. Under the care of the town’s constable he shows his loyalty and intelligence time and time again. After the constable becomes ill Bobby remains loyal to the grave of his former master and then follows the lead of a young boy named Ewan. When Bobby gets into trouble with the city, all of Edinburgh rallies to save their beloved Bobby. Talk about a feel-good and heartwarming story!

There is also a book called The ghost of Greyfriar's Bobby that tells more of the adventures of little Bobby.

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