Morris libraries offer hands-on activities

July, 30, 2011

The Internet may have all the answers but Morris County libraries are offering a wide variety of programs that range from historic to international to green and poetic.

“I wanted to do something fun,” said Chris O’Brien, senior librarian at the Jefferson Township Public Library, who will lead an Aug. 21 class tied to the 150th anniversary of the Civil War. “I saw that during the Civil War men had to make berry ink and use twigs or feathers to write. So we’re going to make berry ink and pens.”

The library is marking the sesquicentennial with a variety of displays and events and as part of that, O’Brien will teach participants how to make berry ink using a 19th-century recipe whose main ingredient is a quart of blueberries. While the workshop takes place, music from the Civil War era will be played and the group will be surrounded by images of the conflict.

Other programs around the county include one that teaches people how to lure birds to their backyards, a poetry class that draws its inspiration from William Blake, a Korean wedding complete with food, a laughter-is-the-best-medicine class and a presentation on drinks that are green in many senses.

Here are some of the more unusual programs, chronologically:

Backyard rirds through the seasons

7 p.m. Tuesday

Pequannock Township Public Library, 477 Newark-Pompton Turnpike, Pompton Plains

Registration at 973-835-7460

www.pequannocklibrary. org

Want to attract wild turkeys to your yard? Or Ruby-throated Hummingbirds?

Dorothy Smullen of Long Hill Township, teacher/naturalist at the Scherman Hoffman Wildlife Sanctuary in Bernardsville, will talk about how to identify area birds and what each likes to eat.

“If you want to attract turkeys, you can put out corn,” Smullen said. “I also use niger seed, a thistle seed that attracts the Eastern Goldfinch, our state bird. One nice thing is that squirrels don’t bother with it.”

Sharpie Tie Dye

4-5:30 p.m. Wednesday

The Morristown and Morris Township Library, 1 Miller Road, Morristown

Registration at 973-538-6161

Teen Librarian Sandy Hall invites teens to bring their own shirts for a craft night.

“We’ll provide a 24-pack of Sharpies and instruction,” Hall said.

Teens will draw on the shirts and then squirt them with rubbing alcohol, which makes the drawings bleed, giving a tie-dyed effect.

Illuminating poetry

7-9 p.m. Thursday

Madison Public Library, 39 Keep St.

Registration at 973-377-0722, ext. 226 library

Artist Ian Thompson of Madison continues his arts programs at the library with “Illuminating Poetry.” The class is inspired by his fondness for the famous illuminated poetry of William Blake, the seminal poet, painter, and printmaker of the Romantic Age.

Unlike Blake, who etched into copper, Thompson will give each participant a thin layer of linoleum mounted on a wooden block.

“I invite people to bring a poem with which they feel a connection,” he said, “and carve out a drawing on the block that represents that poem to them. This is a way of connecting a visual study with a poetry study.”

There is a $5 fee.


7-8 p.m. Aug. 8

Long Hill Township Public Library, 917 Valley Road, Gillette

Registration at 908-647-2088

www.longhilllibrary. org

Carolyn Hammer, the library’s own professional storyteller, will tell interactive stories and sing songs for children ages 3 and up.

Laughter as medicine

2 p.m. Aug. 11

Whippanong Library, 1000 Route 10 West, Whippany

Registration at 973-428-2460

www.whippanong. org

Presented by Shannon Maldonado, health education program coordinator for Morristown Medical Center, this presentation focuses on how laughing contributes to good health. Tea will be served.

Green drinks

7-8 p.m. Aug. 11

Mendham Township Library, 2 W. Main St., Brookside

Registration at 973-543-4018 or programs@ mendhamtwplib.orgKaren Tenenbaum, 45-year-old personal trainer and founder of Green Drinks 2 Go, will talk about her organic green drink creations and why they’re vital for health. The drinks are blends of organic fruits and vegetables loaded with vitamins, nutrients, antioxidants, fiber, and electrolytes.

Tenenbaum also will provide samples blended that morning for participants to try.

“I love watching people’s facial expressions go from unsure to joyous when they taste a drink for the first time,” Tenenbaum said. “It’s the green color that scares them most, which is sad because that green color, that chlorophyll, is energy. It’s the sun’s liquid energy. That’s what our bodies want.”

50 Wonders of Korea

2-4 p.m. Aug. 13

Morris County Library, 30 East Hanover Ave., Whippany

Registration at mocolib1 , click on “Speakers and Interest Groups,” then “Author Talks”

Yon Han of the Korean Spirit and Culture Promotion Project will present “50 Wonders of Korea,” according to Mary Sanders, principal librarian. The program includes two brief films on ancient Korean art and modern industrial Korea.

“There’s also going to be a live re-enactment of a traditional Korean wedding ceremony right in the library,” Sanders said.

A complimentary traditional Korean meal will be served.

Civil War scribes

2-3:30 p.m. Aug. 21

Jefferson Township Public Library, 1031 Weldon Road, Oak Ridge

Registration at www.jefferson

It’s all about celebrating the 150th anniversary of the start of the Civil War at the Jefferson Township Public Library, which is marking the sesquicentennial with a variety of displays and events. O’Brien will teach participants how to make berry ink using a 19th-century recipe whose main ingredient is a quart of blueberries. “We’re also going to make pens of twigs or feathers cut off at an angle,” she said.

Chester Library's 100th Anniversary Open House

9 a.m.-2 p.m. Aug. 27

Chester Library, 250 W. Main St., Chester

To celebrate the 100th anniversary of its opening, the Chester Library presents five hours of programmed activities, including a theatrical performance of “Peter Pan,” a barbershop quartet, and an Emily Dickinson Monologue by Hannah Hendry of the Black River Playhouse.

“We were looking for things that would have been popular to people living in 1911, the year the library was founded.” said Library Director Lesley Karczewski. “The ‘Peter Pan’ production was published in 1911.”

Also featured are vintage children’s games popular in that era such as potato sack races, three-legged races, jump rope, and ring toss.

Food and beverages will be available, as well as overflow parking at Chubb Park.