April 2013 Newsletter

Douglas Brooks
We are pleased to welcome Japanese boatbuilder Douglas Brooks for his lecture "An Apprentice Boatbuilder in Japan" on Wednesday, April 17th at 7 p.m.  Photo courtesy of Douglas Brooks

In the News and Upcoming Events
Arts and Culture Series 
We wish to extend our appreciation to Nancy Marie Brown for her informative lecture on medieval Iceland, Snorri Sturluson and Viking lore. Our next lecture is:

"An Apprentice Boat Builder in Japan" 
Douglas Brooks
In partnership with the Vermont Humanities Council Speakers Bureau
Wednesday, April 17 at 7 p.m.

Douglas Brooks' work is focused on the appreciation and continued use of traditional wooden boats, and the preservation and sharing of the skills and knowledge needed to build them.  These include American and English boat types, as well as the small boats of Japan. For the full press release, click here. For the complete schedule of the 2013 Arts and Culture Series, click here
April 2013 First Wednesdays - April 3, 2013 at 7 p.m.
Free Speech Isn't What It Used to Be: Sexting and Cyberbullying Meet the Constitution
Location:  Stewart Black Box Theater (in the Charles Hosmer Morse Center for the Arts at St. Johnsbury Academy)

The potential harm to young people who send and receive harmful messages and images in cyberspace is enormous and new. UNH law professor Sarah Redfield outlines the constitutional and real-life issues.  For the full press release, click here.
First Wed. March 2013
March 2013 First Wednesdays - LECTURE RESCHEDULED  
Early Photographs of Native North Americans
Wednesday, June 26th at 7 p.m.

Richly illustrated with nineteenth- and early twentieth-century photos of Native peoples, this talk by UNH Vice Provost and professor Lisa MacFarlane explores the stories behind the iconic and often stereotypical images, providing a glimpse into the history of clashing cultures.

First Wednesdays is a program sponsored by the Vermont Humanities Council with additional support from the Friends of the Athenaeum.  For the complete 2013 First Wednesdays schedule, click here.
Gala logo
Friday, May 17 at 7 p.m. 
St. Johnsbury Athenaeum 
Tickets are $50 per person 
All are welcome 

We are pleased to announce our plans for the largest annual fundraising event for the Athenaeum.
The Hidden Treasures Gala will feature multiple displays stationed throughout the Athenaeum. We will invite our guests to discover and explore the many hidden treasures that highlight key items in our extensive collection. Some of these items have never been shown to the public.
Our Gala Special Guest! Author Howard Coffin will be joining us at the Gala to introduce and sign his new book Something Abides: Vermont Civil War Stories and Places.  Howard Coffin's fourth book on Vermont Civil War history lists more than 3,000 Civil War sites that survive throughout the state. Coffin is a seventh generation Vermonter with six ancestors who served in Vermont Civil War regiments. He has given more than 300 talks on the Civil War in Vermont alone and leads tours of Civil War battlefields.

To view the Gala promotional flyer and ticket mail-in form, click here. We hope you can join us!  Tickets are on sale at the Athenaeum or by mail.  


Support the Athenaeum Today!
We were grateful that the appropriation from the Town of St. Johnsbury ($115,000) was approved.  We invite everyone to come and experience the valuable programs and services made possible through the generous support of those who care for this treasured institution.  Please donate today and help us to thrive for another 142 years!  To make a donation online, visit our home page.
Library Notes
National Library Week - April 15 - 20

Celebrate National Library Week at the St. Johnsbury Athenaeum

Our themes for the week are community, innovation, and technology. Visit us during the week of April 15 thru April 20 and meet the library staff. We will be available for personalized instruction and group demonstrations on topics such as basic web services, using your library from home, and local genealogy research. Our youth library will be featuring special story times and a youth concert. We will also be showing informative TED videos on subjects concerning technology, innovation, art and education. Stop by and see what's new.    

Sarah and Acorn Club Kickoff
Acorn Club
The Acorn Club is the children's literacy outreach program at the Athenaeum. We had a great kickoff event on March 6 at the ABC & LOL Daycare Center in St. Johnsbury.  Thank you to Heather Hudson and her staff!  Our plans are to welcome 100 additional children into the program this year. 

Thank you to our Acorn Club sponsors:  TD Charitable Foundation, Community National Bank, Passumpsic Savings Bank, Union Bank and the Vermont Community Foundation.

Music Concert - Wednesday, April 18 at 3:30 p.m.  
Join us in the children's library to welcome Sam Saltars and friends - children are asked to bring their favorite instruments. 
Children's Storytime -Tuesdays and Saturdays 
Children's storytime is every Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. and every first and third Saturday, also starting at 10:30.   Join us for stories, songs, activities, games and a small snack.   

Thank you to our corporate sponsors in the Children's Library! 
Jeff Moore and Pellets Now have provided funding to purchase the new Red Clover and Green Mountain Award Books and Dr. Richard Leven and Optical Expressions has sponsored the Dorothy Canfield Fisher Award books for 2013.  

Scrabble Club meets Saturday, April 6 from 11 - 3 p.m.

Reviews From Our Library Services Team

Grace by T. Greenwood
Grace is a page-turner where the human condition is raw and real. The characters are multi-generational and anyone who reads this book will find someone to relate to, or a situation that pulls at your heartstrings.  The story is about a young teen who is the victim of bullying, and his dysfunctional family you will grow to love and root for. Greenwood writes about a way of life that is very familiar, as the story takes place right here in our own backyard, a story that could be about any one of us.  Our patrons have rated this book a "4", and I highly recommend it to teens and adults.   Donna Stinehour, Associate Librarian

The Wire (television series-DVD)

As the Youth Services Librarian, I would normally review a children's or teen book, but I just checked out season 5 of The Wire, and I have been hooked from the beginning! This isn't your typical cop show; whereas Law and Order and similar cop dramas focus on a different case for each episode, The Wire devotes an entire season flushing out each case. Not only that, but as the seasons progress, their cases intertwine, and it's a treat to get to know the characters: cops, drug dealers, drug users, and dirty politicians. By truly getting to know these characters, you see that your cops don't always make the best choices, and the drug dealers often have a moral code of their own. Like Breaking Bad, the protagonists are realistically portrayed as imperfect and the antagonists will surprise you. Furthermore, if you enjoy books, films, or shows that really flush out gender and racial stereotypes, I highly suggest checking out this show from our adult DVD collection.  Mackenzie Ross, Youth Services Librarian

The Postmistress by Sarah Blake 

This story highlights the impact journalism in radio broadcasts had on small towns in America during WWII before its involvement in the European conflict. During the London blitz, a young female journalist, mentored by Edward R. Murrow, brings the tragic stories of loss and devastation resulting from the blitz into the living room of a newly married doctor and his wife, residing in a small Cape Cod town in Massachusetts. The broadcasts bring profound personal change to the lives of this couple and the fictitious community in which they reside. Frankie Bard hopes her eyewitness accounts from London will open the eyes of Americans and convince them that they can no longer turn a blind eye to the war in Europe. In Franklin, Massachusetts, someone hears her words and responds to the call, leaving behind a community struggling with its own conscience as they prepare for what news is to come or not come. The characters in the story are drawn together at the end to make sense of the war that has impacted their lives. This story superbly reveals the human emotions of a nation on the edge of a war taking place so far from home.
Shara McCaffrey, Librarian

The Spellman Files by Lisa Lutz

Described by the author as Nancy Drew after a bottle of Jack Daniels, Izzy Spellman is an almost thirty, romantically challenged college drop-out, who works for her parents' San Francisco PI firm. With the firm located in the Spellman home, the line between work and life is a blurry one. When Mr. and Mrs. Spellman hire their youngest daughter, Rae, to follow Izzy in order to uncover the identity of her latest boyfriend, Izzy retaliates by giving her two week notice. Her parents accept her resignation only if she agrees to solve one final case. The Spellman Files is the first in an on-going and bestselling series.  Alex Lent, Librarian 

News from the Collection
Bob and Capstone Students
Freshmen Capstone Project

Bob Joly has been meeting with St. Johnsbury Academy Freshman on their Humanities Capstone project. Topics include the history and significance of the Athenaeum's building and collections, a comparison of 19th century and contemporary children's literature, QR code-guided gallery tours, descriptive plaques at key architectural elements in the building, and documentaries describing the Athenaeum in relation to other key buildings in St. Johnsbury. Projects will be completed by the end of April, and we are anxious to see the results.    

Athenaeum and Catamount Arts Summer Arts Education Camp

For eight weeks this summer, the Athenaeum and Catamount Arts will jointly host an arts camp for children in grades 1-2 and 3-4. The camp will run on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30-11:00 beginning June 18 through August 15. Activities include clay work, mask making, drawing and painting, bookmaking, and a close review of the paintings and sculptures in the Athenaeum. Staffed by artists and musicians selected by the Athenaeum and Catamount, the program will be administered through the St. Johnsbury Recreation Department's Kamp Iwannahavfun Summer Day Camp. For registration information click here 


Slow Art Day logo
Slow Art Day with Jeff Gold 
Saturday, April 27 from 11 - 1:30 p.m. 

When people look slowly at a piece of art they make discoveries. The most important discovery they make is that they can see and experience art without an expert (or expertise). It unlocks passion and creativity and helps to create more art fans.  One day each year - April 27 in 2013 - people all over the world visit over 230 local museums and galleries to look at art slowly. Participants look at several works of art for 10 minutes each and then meet together for refreshments to talk about their experience. The goal is to focus on the art and the art of seeing. Join our docent Jeff Gold as he leads us through this shared experience. For additional information, visit www.slowartday.com.

Friends of the Athenaeum
Congratulations to the newly elected members of the Friends of the Athenaeum Executive Committee.  They are President Charise Baker, Vice President Reeve Lindbergh, Treasurer Elinor Levy and Secretary Bonnie Dasher-Andersen.  The next Friends of the Athenaeum meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, April 10 at 5:30 p.m. at the Athenaeum.

The Friends consist of people, such as you, who value the Athenaeum as a rich community resource.  By becoming a Friend, you join a great group of people who help with fundraising, event planning, volunteering at Second Hand Prose, help with our children's library and so much more.  To become a Friend, click here to obtain a sign-up form and send in your membership payment.  Thank you! All donations are tax deductible.

Kay and Abby
Second Hand Prose
We wish to thank two of our youngest volunteers who work in the used-book store.  Abby (left) and Kay Conner assist with sorting books and greeting customers.  Abby is eleven years old and is a student at Caledonia Christian School.  Kay is nine and attends the St. Johnsbury School.  Thank you Abby and Kay for providing such great help (and smiles).  If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Pat Eldridge at Second Hand Prose at 748-9222. 
Second Hand Prose
Our used book shop located at 922 Main Street is brimming with mysteries and fantasy/science fiction paperbacks!  In addition, the volunteers at SHP have revamped the children's book section and there are many great deals!

Please stop by and meet our dedicated group of volunteers who help to manage the bookstore. They maintain the bookshelves and guide shoppers to our best deals! Tell your friends! Hours of Operation: Mon, Tues, Thurs, Sat 11-3; Wed 1-5; Fri 11-5.  Phone:  748-9222
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The St. Johnsbury Athenaeum
A National Historic Landmark Library and Art Gallery
Established 1871 

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