Thomas Lynch: “I’d rather it be February”

Now that the month is almost over, brace yourself and read (or re-read)
Thomas Lynch’s wonderful essay “Tract,” in which he wishes that February might turn out to be the month of his funeral. “With the cold behind and the cold before you and the darkness stubborn at the edges of the day. . . And a wind to make the cold more bitter. So that ever after it might be said, 'It was a sad old day we did it after all . . . '" This essay is in The Undertaking: Life Studies from the Dismal Trade for which Lynch – Milford’s famous undertaker and writer - won the American Book Award in 1998.

Rain Gardens, Green Roofs and Organic Lawn Care

Project Grow has linked up with the Michigan Groundwater Stewardship Program for a series of programs. They will be offering classes throughout March on how best to protect our vulnerable local watershed.

The first class on rain gardens and how they can reduce runoff will be on Wednesday March 7 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Leslie Science Center. Dave Russell will discuss plant and soil selection and other ways to improve our local water quality.

Other classes will be on green roofs and organic lawn care.

No fee is required, but donations are encouraged. Check out the class calendar for the "2007 Gardening For Water Quality Series".

You can also call 734-996-3169 for more information .

Buhrrr!

Actually, it seems to be warming up a bit. So there’s no excuse not to check out the Buhrrr Fest this Saturday! According to the Ann Arbor Observer, there will be ice skating, a bonfire complete with s'mores, and special events, including “a figure skating exhibition, an ice cream eating contest, and broomball.” Sound fun? I think so!

Winter Break Gaming: Super Smash, Retro Octathalon ][, DDR, Pokémon and More!

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Midwinter Break is almost upon us, and that means videogames at the library! We've got a great schedule of events lined up for you, starting this Friday night with a Super Smash Bros. Melee Regulation Throwdown for Ages 13+, From 6-8:30 at the Downtown Library. Read on for full rules for this event. Then, on Saturday, 2/24, from 11-5 PM, we'll have our second annual Retro Octathalon for All Ages, an 8-game high score contest featuring great classic (pre-1990) games. Then, on Sunday, 2/25, from 1-4 PM, our DDR tournament series continues with an All-Ages DDR Tournament.

But that's not all! The games continue into the week, with a pair of Pokémon Tournaments from 1-4 and DS Fest / Open Play Events from 4-7, on both Monday 2/26 and Tuesday 2/27. So, if you're stuck in town this break, stay warm with gaming, food, prizes, and some serious competition at the Downtown Library! Read on for full tournament details.

DVD Top sellers on Amazon.com

Here are the latest Amazon.com Top Sellers available in our collection. The cast of The Departed looks pretty impressive, although a role for Robert DeNiro would have been icing on the cake. But I guess he can't be in every Martin Scorsese film. Drat! Speaking of which, maybe Scorsese will finally take the Oscar for Best Director home this year at the 2007 Academy Awards, which are scheduled to air next Sunday, February 25th. Who are you rooting for?

The Departed
Flags of our Fathers
An Inconvenient Truth
Little Miss Sunshine
The Illusionist
Marie Antoinette
Babel
The Guardian
The Prestige

Circus and theater combine in this production of "Alice in Wonderland"

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One Chicago theater company, Lookingglass Theater, is setting out to combine theater, dance, music and circus into a production of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. The play, called "Lookingglass Alice," is currently playing at New York's New Victory Theater. The next stop of the tour is in Philadelphia's Arden Theatre in May and then the troup returns home to Chicago in June. For more information you can read an article on NPR that discusses the acrobatics in the play, or check the Lookingglass Theater's website for images, video and tour dates.

2nd Annual AADL Staff Art Exhibit

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Exhibit Showing through February 27
Be sure to stop by and see the talent of the 18 AADL staff members currently on display in the lower level exhibit cases at the Downtown Library. This year's show features a wide mix of media, including cell phone photos, painted kimonos, blown glass, welded scrap metal (shown here: "Kelper no. 2", by Anne Drozd), graphic novel illustrations, mixed media assemblage and digitally manipulated photographs.

Sancho's Scene: Community Events that Wander off the Path

Little miss…Washtenaw? Fans of the super-popular film, Little Miss Sunshine, and pageants alike can check out the real thing this weekend. Tweens and teens will compete for the Little Miss Washtenaw title this Saturday in a performance open to the public. Winners go on to compete in the state pageant, a part of the Miss America competition. Pick up a Zoom Lends copy of the film and make a day of it!

An Author's Recommendation . . . See the Movie!

Last weekend I had the pleasure of hearing a speech given by author Katherine Paterson. She's the author of The Bridge to Terabithia. This was the 1978 Newbery Award winner. The movie of that story is opening this week. Ms. Paterson said to ignore the movie trailers . . . they make it look like a fantasy. The story is not a fantasy. But she said she has seen the movie three times and likes it a lot. The screenplay was written by her son. She urged her audience to read the book and then go see the movie. Have you read the book yet?

So whether you read it or go see it . . . pack the tissues. It's a beautiful but sad story.

Celebratory chocolate stories and recipes

To celebrate Valentine's Day, check out this delicious story on NPR. In this week's edition of "Kitchen Window" Krishna Brown recounts stories of childhood Valentine's Days and provides two scrumptious recipes as well.

For other fantastic chocolate recipes check out these books at the library:
Chocolate from the cake mix doctor (my favorite for dressing up cake mix)
Pure chocolate
The art of chocolate
Celebrate with chocolate
The Chocolate Bible
...and more!

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