Blogs

Preston Sturges: Hollywood's Everyman

Baby, It's Not Cold Outside. But we need a little Christmas anyway.

The term Christmas in July can be traced to Southern hemisphere celebrations -- for countries that celebrate Christmas but where the winter months fall around July. In the U.S., sponsoring a Christmas in July celebration became popular at summer camps for children in the 1920s and 30s. But it took a Hollywood film directed by Preston Sturges to turn the phrase into a part of the vernacular of the common people.

Journey to Space, Health, or Crafts--And Take a Picnic!

wire and stone heart craft

Join Fresh City Life My Branch for food, a journey, or a craft this week!

There are offerings for whatever you want to learn this week through Fresh City Life My Branch! Hungry? Try Picnic Foods tonight, July 11 at 6:30 p.m. at Schlessman. Learn to liven up your picnics or hikes with dishes that everyone will love! Recipes and samples included! Or maybe you're thinking of changing the way you eat.

Q: What's in a Name? A: Fame.

Doris Day and Rock Hudson (Doris Kappelhof and Roy Fitzgerald)

Want to go see a movie starring Roy Fitzgerald and Doris Kappelhof? Have you ever seen Reginald Kenneth Dwight in concert? Would it make you quake if Marion Morrison rode into town to restore justice?

A lot of actors, musicians and even politicians have played the name game -- changing up their name for something more befitting someone whose star is destined to rise. Hollywood movie star Joan Crawford built a formidable career after the studio held a contest in which fans got to choose a new name for starlet Lucille LeSueur. It's very possible Barry Manilow found it easier to write the songs that make the whole world sing after he legally left Barry Alan Pincus behind. John Denver may have felt Henry John Deutschendorf was bumming his Rocky Mountain High.

This Just In: Free Veggies from CSA/Grant Family Farms

Farm Fresh City cooking demos begin 7/9

It's true: Grant Family Farms is bringing two share boxes of veggies to our cooking demo "What the hell is this?" -- and you could take one home. Eligibility? Just be in the audience! And Chef Kark is making Lettuce Wraps and Red Curry for you to sample.
Central Library, Level B2 Conference Center, 1:30 p.m.

Take Me Out to the Ball Game Section of the Library

Wow!

Do you find baseball games a little slow? If you're like me, a game can seem to go on forever, and don't even get me started on extra innings. Too bad they're not all like this:

Instead, take a good book along.

These titles (suggested by former DPL librarian Jon Flanagan), should cover all the bases:

The New Bill James Historical Baseball Atlas

Speleologically Speaking

National Park Service Pictogram for Spelunking

Looking for something a little closer to home than touring the caves of France?  There are resources available at the Library for vicarious spelunking enthusiasts.

If the 3-D film, The Cave of Forgotten Dreams had you wishing for a sequel, try the following films:  

Practice your tech skills at home!

gcflearnfree.org

Maybe you're the son or daughter of a parent who has just begun attending classes at the Community Technology Center. Or perhaps you have recently decided you'd like to create Excel spreadsheets or Tweet about your business. Whether you'd like to practice what you learned in class or you are hoping to master something new, there are free online lessons and tutorials that can help you improve your skills!

Goodwill Community Foundation has an outstanding website, www.gcflearnfree.org, that has self-paced instruction and videos on everything from creating a brochure in Microsoft Publisher to adjusting your privacy settings on Facebook. You can also create an account and register for free online classes, which earn you accredited Continuing Education Units and a Certificate of Completion! Over two million people have expanded their repertoires wtih GCFLearnFree.org. Give it a try!

Are You Chicken?

backyard chickens

Raising backyard chickens (and ducks and goats) just became a lot easier in Denver thanks to a recent City Council vote.

The Food Producing Animals ordinance took effect June 24th and allows residents to raise 8 chickens or ducks and 2 dwarf goats after obtaining a one-time license.  See the details here.  Curious about the potential joys and pitfalls of having backyard livestock?  Grab your overalls and get started with these great resources.

Chickens:

Best Albums of 2011...So Far

Wye Oak

The year is halfway complete and the best albums of 2011 lists are starting to appear so I thought I'd add my two cents and highlight some from our fantastic music collection.

Knowing how fickle my tastes can be, it will be interesting to see how many of these will survive into my year end lists when December rolls around. Some of these have a lengthy request queue, but worth the wait in my opinion.
What are your favorites so far?

Love Books? Make Your Own!

The Art of the Book

Love books and want to both learn about the history of the art of the book and how to make your own? Join us! Basic Book Arts: Creating Your Own Books on Sunday, July 10 at 2:00 p.m. at Schlessman.

In this 2-hour class, you'll learn the basic tools, terms, history, and experience of book arts. You'll hand bind 2 or 3 different kinds of books, and explore Japanese stab binding, the accordion fold book, and more! We'll discuss and experiment with everything from cover design to using unique materials to the contents of your books (poetry, photos, drawings, etc). You will leave with at least 2 finished books and the knowledge of how to make books at home.

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