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Cheers to Library history! March 31, 2015

Posted by Lauren in Thoughtful Ramblings.
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I attended the Ohio Museums Association’s annual conference on behalf of the Cowan Pottery Museum this past weekend.  This year’s conference took place right here in Cleveland and both Sunday’s museum tours and Monday’s conference sessions were wonderful.  I am excited to have returned chock full of some new ideas to bring to the Museum!

We capped our conference experience with a special treat—a private tour of the Great Lakes Brewing Company facilities in Ohio City.  Though they were much appreciated, my enthusiasm to go on the tour did not rest solely upon the promise of free samples of beer.  Additionally, I was excited to visit a place with an important connection to Rocky River Public Library’s history.  The building that now houses GLBC once housed the operations of the Schlather Brewing Company.  Leonard Schlather did business in Ohio City, but he relaxed at the lavish country estate he built in Rocky River (originally on Wooster Road).  It is because of the bequest of Leonard and Sophia Schlather that the library was able to complete its first major expansion in the 1956 (familiar to you as the “Schlather Room”).  Much of the fine art collection that graces the Library’s walls (given in 1954) is also part of the bequest that Sophia Schlather made in honor of her husband.

GLBC 3         GLBC 2

It was very neat to see that GLBC has some artifacts of Schlather Brewing in their building.  They even have a large piece of the building’s old parapet bearing the Schlather name that was unearthed during construction work years ago and put on display in their tap room.  What a great slice of local history to be enjoyed by museum professionals and beer drinkers alike!

GLBC 1

 

-Lauren

Latest Additions March 30, 2015

Posted by Beth in Fiction.
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This time of year I can’t help but feel a tinge of wanderlust creeping into my being as the weather starts to change and I emerge from my hibernation.  One place I’ve always been curious about is Alaska.  Though we often think about how cold and snowy Alaska is, I can’t help but be curious about the beautiful nature preserved in that remote part of the world.  I look forward to visiting all fifty states throughout my lifetime, especially Alaska.  Did you know that on this date in 1867, Secretary of State William H. Seward agreed to purchase Alaska from Russia for 7.2 million dollars?   There was a lot of skepticism at the time, calling it “Seward’s folly,” and the press referred to it as “Seward’s icebox” and Andrews Johnson’s “polar bear garden.”  (Library of Congress) Frankly, I’m thankful for that purchase 148 years ago and look forward to exploring the polar bear garden someday,  hopefully soon.

Now, enough about far off states, let’s get back to our regularly scheduled report of the Reading Room’s Latest Additions.

bingos run
Bingo’s Run by James A. Levine
Place a hold

first frost
First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen
Place a hold
my sunshine away
My Sunshine Away by M.O. Walsh
Place a hold

small blessings
Small Blessings by Martha Woodroof
Place a hold

station eleven
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
Place a hold

Happy reading!
—Beth

Road trip! March 26, 2015

Posted by Lauren in Thoughtful Ramblings.
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I had a chance to take a mini-getaway to the Windy City this past weekend. Chicago is one of my favorite places to visit!  When I’m on vacation my top priorities usually center on what museums I am going to visit and what I am going to eat—and this trip was no exception.  I got a chance to see a really spectacular retrospective of early 20th Century American painter Archibald Motley at the Chicago Cultural Center and then tackled the Art Institute to visit some old favorites.  Did you know: the Art Institute of Chicago is home to one of Viktor Schreckengost’s iconic Jazz Bowls?  Indeed, the pride of our own Cowan Pottery Museum has a cousin in Chicago.  Of course I took a photo.  People probably wondered why I was so drawn to a funky blue punch bowl while surrounded by some of the most famous paintings in the history of American art, but I didn’t mind (I did the same thing last September at the Smithsonian!).jazz bowl

There was plenty of great food and drink (I ate TWO cheeseburgers at two separate restaurants) and lots of walking around the city which offered us some pretty perfect sunny weather.  I even stopped in the Chicago Public Library!  I’d never been inside what is a really gorgeous building (inside and out) right downtown.  The best part was the “Winter Garden” up on the very top floor with its spectacular atrium.  (Also tried to get a library card, totally denied…boo…)

chicago library

-Lauren

A Day at the Movies March 24, 2015

Posted by Dori in Movies.
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Are you a fan of movie musicals? Join us to watch Into the Woods on the big screen at the library this Friday, March 27th at noon. Into the Woods is based on the Stephen Sondheim stage musical that premiered on Broadway in 1987 and won numerous Tony Awards. I saw it years ago at Baldwin Wallace and was struck by its dark message about wish fufilment – I mean, it’s got Cinderella and Jack and Rapunzel and Little Red intoRiding Hood, so it seems like it should go in one direction – towards happily ever after – but it absolutely does not. The movie rendition is a Walt Disney film, so I’m curious how the dark elements will be handled, but it’s directed by Rob Marshall of Chicago fame and features Meryl Streep as the Witch, so that’s promising. Hope to see you on Friday – and don’t forget we’ll have popcorn and lemonade.

DVD Releases 3-17-15 and 3-23-15:

The Theory of Everything – DVD & Blu-Ray
Dumb and Dumber To – DVD & Blu-Ray
Penguins of Madagascar – DVD & Blu-Ray
Exodus: Gods & Kings – DVD & Blu-Ray
Top Five – DVD & Blu-Ray
Annie – DVD & Blu-Ray
Into the Woods – DVD & Blu-Ray
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies – DVD & Blu-Ray
The Physician –
DVD
Son of a Gun – DVD & Blu-Ray
Song One – DVD
The Way He Looks  – DVD

 

Happy Watching
~ Dori

Latest Additions March 24, 2015

Posted by Beth in Fiction.
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Did you miss me yesterday?  I sure missed you.  Believe me, I would have much rather been at work writing up our latest additions to the Reading Room rather than the alternative.  Life has a funny way of throwing some tough situations at us when we least expect them.  This past weekend included a car accident for my husband (don’t worry, everyone was fine), and a case of food poisoning for myself. I’ll spare you the details, but just know I would have much rather spent Sunday evening preparing for my work week and Monday at work.    On the bright side, we both survived, relatively unscathed, and I had a lot of down time to get some reading in, so now I’m looking for my next read.   Maybe I’ll choose from one of the following latest additions:

all the bright places

All The Bright Places by Jennifer Niven
Place a hold

amazing gracie

Amazing Gracie by Sherryl Woods
Place a hold

attachments

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell
Place a hold 

beautiful disaster

Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire
Place a hold

Wonder of all things

The Wonder of All Things by Jason Mott
Place a hold

After reviewing some of our latest additions to the Reading Room, it’s safe to say I will be adding a few of these to my “to read” list.  Until next time, I wish you all a safe and healthy week!

Happy reading!

—Beth

The Art World’s Great Mystery March 18, 2015

Posted by Lauren in Fiction, Thoughtful Ramblings.
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Today marks the 25th anniversary of the theft of 13 works of art totaling $500 million from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. On March 18, 1990, in a plot that one imagines could only happen in the movies, two thieves disguised as police officers were buzzed into the museum by a security guard in the early morning hours. They then bound and handcuffed both guards on duty before stealing a number of Rembrandts (including his only known seascape), a Vermeer, and five Degas drawings, among other objects. The Museum initially offered a $5 million reward for information leading to the recovery of the works, but 25 years later the case remains open.

In 2013 the FBI announced that they believed the theft had been carried out by a New England-based crime organization and that some of the works had possibly been sold around Philadelphia in the early 2000s. Today all 13 works are still missing.

The theft has been the subject of much speculation and attention in popular culture, including Barbara A. Shapiro’s The Art Forger from 2012. Claire Roth is a struggling artist, reduced to creating copies of masterworks to make a living instead of forwarding her own career. She is approached by a gallery owner and agrees to forge a Degas drawing that was stolen during the famous heist in exchange for an exhibition of her own work. Claire quickly realizes the situation is more complicated—and more dangerous—than she could have ever imagined. Sounds like perfect reading for today!

artforger

 

-Lauren

Latest Additions March 16, 2015

Posted by Beth in Fiction.
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Happy Monday!  Maybe it’s a happy Monday because warmer weather is finally upon us, or maybe you are having a happy Monday because you are just an all around optimistic person.  If you aren’t having a happy Monday, may I suggest you attempt to turn it around in order to kick-start your week in a positive manner.

Some suggestions for turning an ordinary Monday into a happy Monday include:

  • Treat yourself to your favorite ice cream.
  • Go for a walk with a friend.
  • Watch videos of cute animals on YouTube.
  • Write a letter of gratitude to someone in your life.
  • Perform a random act of kindness.
  • Find yourself a good book to read.

If you decide on my final suggestion and are in need of some suggestions, here are a few of our latest additions to the Reading Room:

how to build a girl

How to Build a Girl by Caitlin Moran
Place a hold

pegasus
Pegasus: A Novel by Danielle Steel
Place a hold

season of the dragonflies
Season of the Dragonflies by Sarah Creech
Place a hold

spark

Spark by John Twelve Hawks
Place a hold

drop

The Drop by Dennis Lehane
Place a hold

Thanks for checking out the latest  additions to the RRPL Reading Room.  Happy reading!

—Beth

Spring is coming! March 11, 2015

Posted by Lauren in Fiction, Thoughtful Ramblings.
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So it’s *only* mid-March. And I know it will *most likely* snow again in the coming weeks. But when I woke up the other morning the first thing I thought to myself was… “it’s coming.” Before I looked out the window, before I stepped outside, I could feel that feeling in the air—spring is coming. (This feeling may also be attributed to the loudly chirping birds that now accompany my alarm clock going off, but I refuse to be mad at these birds. I welcome the chirping birds. Keep it up, birds.)

Clevelanders are part of a special set of people that can look forward to spring like nobody’s business. In general, I am excited about getting OUTSIDE and not needing to add multiple layers to do so. In particular, I am looking forward to banishing my snow brush from the floor of my passenger seat to the trunk, riding my bike (preferably to an ice cream establishment), and ballet flats.

Here are a few books that put me in a “spring mood”:

secretgarden
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

anneofgreengables
Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
I often reread books from my childhood if they were particularly special to me. The Secret Garden is already on-deck (= on my nightstand).

icapturethecastle
I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith

treegrowsinbrooklyn
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith

roomwithaview
A Room with a View by E.M. Forster

-Lauren

A Day at the Movies March 10, 2015

Posted by Dori in Movies.
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It’s that time again – time to check out only a couple of intriguing looking films or become a movie zombie at The Cleveland International Film Festival. The festival begins on March 18th with an opening film and continues until Sunday, March 29th with a closing. There’s a huge slate of films, so there should be something for everybody. I have only just nicked the surface of their extensive catalog, but already have found far too many that I’d like to see, including Slow West with Michael Fassbender (didn’t I just mention him a couple of posts ago?) and a couple of Peruvian films (my better half is from Peru). I’d also like to see one of the Shorts selections – I went to one last year and really enjoyed the variety offered. So, after you’ve recovered from the St. Patty’s Day parade, get thee to Tower City!

DVD Releases 3-10-15:

Nightcrawler – DVD & Blu-Ray
Rosewater – DVD & Blu-Ray
Kill the Messenger – DVD & Blu-Ray
Night at the Museum, Secret of the Tomb
DVD & Blu-Ray
Listen Up Philip – DVD
Pioneer – DVD & Blu-Ray
Remote Area Medical – DVD
Turn: Washington’s Spies, Season 1  – DVD
Happy Watching!
~ Dori

Latest Additions March 9, 2015

Posted by Beth in Fiction.
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HOORAY!  The sun is out! The snow is melting!  HOORAY!  We’ve been lucky enough to have multiple beautiful days in the Cleveland area and that’s cause for a celebration!  I’m all about celebrating the small things, along with the big events in life.  Frankly, seeing the sun regularly and watching the snow melt seems like a huge event!    One of my favorite ways to celebrate is by slowing down and taking it easy, possibly while indulging in a cheese platter.  I highly recommend it. Nice work, fellow Ohioans, you’ve survived another brutal winter.   Now let’s all enjoy the coming rainy season with some good books,  and if you’re interested, maybe some cheese.  Here are some of the latest additions to the Reading Room:

The farm

The Farm by Tom Rob Smith
Place hold

firefight

Firefight by Brandon Sanderson
Place hold


geek girl
Geek Girl by Holly Smale
Place hold


heroes are my weakness
Heroes Are My Weakness by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Place hold

House broken
House Broken by Sonja Ingrid Yoerg
Place hold

Happy reading!

—Beth

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