"Gifts of Art" is a true gift

Do you know about the "Gifts of Art" program at the University Of Michigan Hospital? If you don't, check it out tomorrow when Tad Weed, recently transplanted Los Angeles jazz pianist performs at 12:10 p.m. in the University Hospital's main lobby. For the last twenty years, Weed has toured with Woody Herman, bandleader, singer Carmen McRae and others.

"Gifts of Art" is an innovative program that brings both art exhibits and music to hospital patients, family, friends and staff in the belief that art promotes healing. The events are open to the public. Concerts are weekly and cover a broad range of musical styles from classical to world music. Exhibits include exemplary work from area sculptors, painters, mixed media artists and photographers. Also, check out the Library's books on art and healing.

Hats off! (and on)

Do you enjoy wearing or trying on hats? Then September is the month for you. It's time for Felt Hat Month. But there's no need to just wear felt hats. Try them all and check out the Library's great collection of books on hats, everything from books on knitting hats to the beloved 500 Hats of Bartholemew Cubbins. Hats have been faithful barometers of cultural norms, status and occupation throughout history from the lavish brims and floral decorations of the Edwardian era to present day baseball cap mania. So hats off to anyone this month who wears a hat just for the fun of it.

Finally! A Defender of Fashion!!

Who has supersonic feet, x-ray eyes, and a brain that can mix and match hundreds of outfits in a second? It's Fashion Kitty!!!!
Regular cat by day (if you consider wearing clothes, walking on two legs, attending school, and speaking regular for a cat), Fashion Kitty by night. Super nice Kiki is always ready to answer a call of despair and use her super powers to save other cats from making fashion faux pas . Don't miss her exciting origin story in Fashion Kitty and watch her take on the evil Fashion Queen in Fashion Kitty Versus the Fashion Queen! It's nonstop sparkly pink action!

10th Annual National Stepfamily Day

Celebrate National Stepfamily Day on Sunday, September 16, with a family picnic. Have a private backyard picnic or join in on a city park picnic. Visit the National Stepfamily Day website for more information on this annual event. A local picnic is being held at Kensington Park in Milford, Michigan. Find out more about this event before checking out some good books and movies at the library. Like Yours, Mine and Ours, Maxx Comedy: the Funniest Kid in America, Stepsister from the Planet Weird, and Boundless Grace.

Take a brief recess with Perry Mason!

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The devastatingly handsome Raymond Burr is available for your viewing pleasure! Watch as Perry Mason humiliates Prosecuting Attorney Hamilton Burger time and again with his courtroom superheroics! AADL now has season one and season two of the original Perry Mason TV series (1957). You can also watch Raymond Burr take on Godzilla in Godzilla: King of the Monsters. He's unstoppable!

He's still "singin' in the rain," on screen, that is

Is modesty the new rage?

According to this article on NPR, the new fashion trend for ladies is modesty. Wendy Shalit has written two books on this subject, exploring the "Modesty movement". Check out A Return to Modesty from 1999, or her latest book Girls Gone Mild.

Washtenaw County Survey on Computer Ownership & Use

The Digital Inclusion Taskforce, part of Wireless Washtenaw, is currently gathering information on computer ownership and use in Washtenaw County via this short survey through Saturday, September 15. Providing your name and contact information is optional. The Digital Inclusion Taskforce will use this information as the work on Wireless Washtenaw progresses to explore and plan for ways in which Washtenaw County residents can best take advantage of free or lower-cost wireless service, and appreciate the feedback you are providing by taking the survey.

Take a Look at These!

As a member of the 2007 Mitten Award committee, I've been going through a lot of new children's books this summer. Choosing the best book of the year is always a hard task. There are so many good titles out there.
Here are a few new ones that I've come across that I've liked. See what you think.

Bryan,Ashley. Let It Shine: Three Favorite Spirituals. The illustrations in this one are amazing. Big, bold flowing colors.
Cook, Sally. Hey, Batta Batta Swing! Illus. by Ross MacDonald. This is a history of baseball that's fun for both fans and non-fans.
Cowell, Cressida. That Rabbit Belongs to Emily Brown. Illus. by Neal Layton. Emily loves her stuffed rabbit Stanley but the Queen wants it and sends the Army, Navy and Air Force to get it. Oh, dear.
Gutman, Dan. Casey Back at Bat. Paintings by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher. We all know that Casey struck out at Mudville. But what happens the next time he's up to bat?
Jenkins, Steve. Dogs and Cats. This is really two books in one. You have to turn the book upside down when you get halfway through it. The dogs and cats meet in the middle of the book . . . "Friends or enemies?"
LaRochelle, David. The End. Illustrated by Richard Egielski. You have to love a story that starts out "And they lived happily ever after." Well, they lived happily because . . .

Stargazers, get ready!

The annual Perseid meteor shower peaks in mid-August with many shooting stars visible each hour. The night of August 12 through dawn of August 13, with a new moon- meaning no moonlight, will be one of the best nights for viewing. Since the shooting stars will seem to be emanating from the constellation Perseus, why not beef up your stargazing skills with a few star maps to make sure you're looking in the right spot. Check these out: Simple stargazing : a first-time skywatcher's guide, Atlas of the night sky, A walk through the heavens : a guide to stars and constellations and their legends, Star maps for beginners, Peterson first guide to astronomy. So grab your blanket and find a good spot to watch the sky!

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