Archive for July, 2007

Back in 2005, the Terrebonne Parish Library System, located 60 miles southwest of New Orleans, participated in the September Project. That was before Katrina, before Rita, and before a substantial part of the parish and one of the Terrebonne libraries was destroyed.

Now in 2007, we’re encouraged by the news (and delighted to announce!) that the Terrebonne Parish Library System will once again participate in the project–and they’re participating in a dramatic and spectacular way! So far, the library is offering public lectures, artistic displays, voter registration, book discussions, and a music concert. Here’s more information about their exciting events, scheduled throughout September AND October!

This year, the Terrebonne Parish Library System will provide its patronage with informative lectures, voter registration days, and creative outlets, celebrating patriotism and civic duty. Scheduled for this September are lectures from the New Orleans Archdiocese Catholic Charities Immigration Accreditation Representative, voter registration booths in the library throughout the month, and a patriotic themed art exhibit sponsored by the Houma Regional Arts Council. The month of September also ushers in the RELIC program (Readings in Literature and Culture) at the library. This year’s theme is “Being American” and focuses on immigration in American history. The Friends of the Terrebonne Public Library’s annual book sale is held in September and this year will feature a collection of American and patriotism-oriented literature.

The Houma Regional Arts Council will launch the Big Read program in celebration of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird. The Big Read in Terrebonne Parish is presented in partnership with the Terrebonne Parish Library System. The Big Read is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), designed to restore reading to the center of American culture. The NEA presents the Big Read in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services in cooperation with ArtsMidwest. The Big Read brings together partners across the country to encourage reading for pleasure and enlightenment. Terrebonne Parish will celebrate To Kill a Mockingbird from September 1st through December with movie screenings and book discussions; visit www.neabigread.org for more information about activities and a full calendar of events.

To Kill a Mockingbird has two broad themes: tolerance and justice. Within these two broad themes there are sub-themes of religious & racial tolerance, prejudices, personal integrity, and defiance of social norms, among others.
We invite artists to focus their artwork on the themes of To Kill a Mockingbird in relation to the September Project’s theme of “Being American”.


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as part of their september project, portland state university library is hosting an art exhibit between july 25 and october 10, 2007. the exhibit features facsimiles of pablo picasso’s preliminary sketches for his landmark mural guernica.


portland state library has a web site for the event which notes: “The process of the artist’s vision is uniquely portrayed in these sketches for one of the most powerful, political murals of social art protesting the horrors of war.” john burchard, fine & performing arts librarian, and kimberly willson-st. clair, public relations coordinator, are organizing this excellent event.

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nan carmack, events and marketing coordinator for bedford (VA) public library system, recently shared her library’s september project. some or all branches of bedford public library – big island, central, forest, moneta/sml, montvale, and stewartsville – will screen the guys, a film about a new york fire captain and the eight eulogies he delivers after 9-11.

their publicity strategy is extremely creative. apparently, they have designed tray liners which will be distributed by local fast food joints. (at fast food joints?!? i’d love to hear more about this!) the library has also designed posters which the EMS community will distribute throughout the community. finally, each library branch’s local fire captain will participate in post-movie discussions.

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professor emmanuel j. yannakoudakis (department of informatics, athens university of economics and business), professor taso lagos (department of communication, university of washington), and university of washington students studying abroad in greece are organizing a conference for their september project. the conference will take place in the main hall of athens university of economics and business (in english) on september 21. i hope the organizers will keep us updated!

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Ronald Gross, a long-time September Project participant and devotee of the Socratic Way, is sharing his unique program again this year with those lucky enough to attend. Here are the details:

“Patriotism” will be the subject of a Socratic Conversation on Tuesday, Sept. 11 (Patriot’s Day) on the Columbia University campus in New York City, facilitated by Ronald Gross, author of Socrates’ Way.

The event will be at 4-5 p.m. at the Gottesman Libraries, Columbia University, 525 West 120th Street.

If you want to attend, please RSVP to Ronald Gross at grossassoc @ aol.com so that entry to the building can be arranged.

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on september 23rd, 24th, and 25th, seattle public library brings mountain climber turned humanitarian greg mortenson to town for a series of author readings and discussions. readings take place at three libraries – beacon hill branch, douglass-truth branch, and green lake branch – and at town hall seattle.

mortenson will share his experiences building more than fifty schools in remote parts of pakistan and afghanistan and read from his book, three cups of tea: one man’s mission to promote peace … one school at a time, co-authored with david oliver relin. the book won this year’s kiriyama prize for nonfiction.

three cups of tea

this program is part of the seattle public library’s 2007 september project and is presented in cooperation with elliott bay book company and the kiriyama prize. for more information, contact chris higashi.

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planning a september project event for teens? consider using kids, know your rights! a young person’s guide to intellectual freedom, a four-page electronic publication that can be downloaded for free.

kids, know your rights

using kid-friendly language, the brochure is divided into six sections: 1) a brief introduction to the history and importance of intellectual freedom in the US; 2) challenges to the first amendment (especially in libraries); 3) defending intellectual freedoms (including an excellent set of suggestions for young people interested in fighting censorship); 4) issues of privacy and confidentiality; 5) respecting, listening to, and learning from the opinions of others; and 6) an annotated reading list of seventeen fiction and non-fiction titles for further exploration.

kids, know your rights! was written by members of the intellectual freedom committee of the association for library service to children (ALSC), a division of the american library association (ALA), and beautifully designed by amanda o’brien of skokie (IL) public library.

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