Tag Archive | "Hartford Public Library"

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Adult Learning Academy Begins this Fall

HARTFORD — Hartford Public Library will be holding Saturday Adult Learning Academy beginning this fall.

The Asylum Hill branch will offer three free classes at West Middle Community School, 927 Asylum Ave.in Hartford.

Classes include basic Spanish, basic computer skills and citizenship classes. Each class will be held every Saturday from Oct. 6 to Dec. 17 10 a.m. to noon.

All three classes are free and open to the public. An $8 text book is required for the Spanish class.

Registration and orientation will be held on the first day of class.

For more information, call Hartford Public Library at 860-695-6337 or email learning@hplct.org.

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Hartford Library and Wadsworth Poised to Win National Medal

HARTFORD —  On this Valentine’s Day, the Hartford Public Library and the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art received a special kind of love–from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

IMLS on Thursday  announced Hartford Library and the Wadsworth Museum as finalists for the National Medal for Museum and Library Service. The National Medal is the nation’s highest honor conferred on museums and libraries for service to the community. The award as finalists, given to only 33 institutions nationally, celebrates libraries and museums that make a difference for individuals, families and communities.

The IMLS is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums.

“We are honored to be among the best libraries and museums in the nation,” said Matthew K. Poland, the Library’s chief executive officer. “Thanks to the staff, the board, and the amazing people of Hartford we have created this ‘place like no other’ – a  21st century center for learning and civic engagement.”

Congressman John Larson released a statement about the welcoming news:

“The Wadsworth Atheneum and Hartford Public Library provide a wealth of educational, cultural, and historical resources to communities in Hartford. For years their work has helped countless students, adults, and families who benefit from the programs and tools they offer. I am glad the Institute of Museum and Library Services has recognized their work in our communities, and wish each of them luck as the winners are chosen in the coming months,” Larson said.

Beginning today, the Institute of Museum and Library Services in Washington will begin collecting stories from community members who have visited the Hartford Public Library and have experiences to share about how the Library has made a difference in their lives. The way to share your story, which will be posted on the IMLS Facebook page, is to go to www.facebook.com/USIMLSRead more

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John E. Rogers Center Sponsors Black History Month Program

By Rose Henry, Staff Writer

HARTFORD — Ask Meryth Andrews and she can tell you about the founding of the grassroots organization now with renewed passion for community economic development through education and preservation: the John R. Rogers African-American Cultural Center.

That’s because Andrews is the granddaughter of John E. Rogers. Rogers was a local self-taught historian, who championed the teaching of black history. Like Andrews, the new JERAACC board members are dedicated to reviving the organization and cementing its status as “the root in the Greater Hartford community, always there to build up the community through pride and empowerment.”

Of the many activities slated for the 2012 agenda is a black history program: “Race and Representation in Black Connecticut: From Black Governors to Black Legislators in the Age of Barack Obama.”

The free event will be on Feb. 9, 5: 30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Hartford Public Library Atrium. Light refreshments will be served. The event will also feature an exhibit of nineteenth-century black governors and twentieth-century black leaders, including local members of the Tuskegee Airmen.  Historians Ann-Marie Adams of Rutgers University and Katherine Harris of Central Connecticut State University, will lead the community-wide discussion.

Andrews was bursting with enthusiasm about the exciting programs and activities slated for this year.

Citing Marcus Garvey often-quoted words that a people without knowledge of their history is like a tree without roots, organizers laid bare the essence of the organization.

“This is one of the many reasons why the John E. Rogers African American Cultural Center, Inc. is culturally relevant to the Greater Hartford community, particularly during Black History Month,” said Andrews, a local attorney.

This year, the national black history month theme is focused on the black female with Ida B. Wells as the iconic image representing the strength, beauty and resilience of black women across the African Diaspora.

Board members said the Cultural Center “hopes to be the root in the Greater Hartford community…always there to build up the community through pride and empowerment.”

“I think it’s important to build our present and future with the [JERAACC] collection,” said Eugene Green, long-time board chair and a 35-year veteran teacher in the Hartford Public School system. “We had the chance to study our past and then project our future.”

That’s where the new leadership team comes in, organizers said.

“Dr. Rogers was so very passionate about Black History, more specifically the history of Blacks in Connecticut,” Andrews said. “As a lifetime resident of the Greater Hartford area and the granddaughter of Dr. John E. Rogers, it is my responsibility and goal to see this project to fruition.”

The Howard University Alumni Club of Greater Hartford will underwrite a portion of the event.

Donations for black history month themed, school-aged books are being accepted by for the Howard University Alumni Club of Greater Hartford’s Read Across America Program. For more information about HUACGH reading program, contact: Kristen Clark at huaa_region_one@yahoo.com.

For more information about the Hartford Public Library black history month program, call Ira Revels at 860-695-6320.



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Mark Twain Library Finds New Home

By Marie Lopez, Staff Writer

HARTFORD — It was a cramped space. But it attracted scores of patrons during openings, especially students from nearby schools. At times, the store-front library would be so crowded, the door had to be open to give it a sense of more space, customers say.

Well, today the Mark Twain Library, formerly of 256 Farmington Ave., will have a little bit more space in another venue: Hartford Public High School, just a couple of blocks down the street.

For the next five years, the library will be located at Hartford Public High School in the school’s Lewis Fox Media Center at 55 Forrest St. in the Asylum Hill neighborhood.

Mayor Pedro Segarra will join Hartford Public Library CEO Matt Poland at the new, temporary home of this marquee branch.

The plan is to relocate the Mark Twain branch to West Middle Elementary School on Asylum Avenue in 2016.

Earlier this year, the $55 million renovation project was approved by the board of education. The project is contingent on state funding.

Library hours at the high school will be 12:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Monday; 12:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday; 12:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Friday; and 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday.


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Hartford Library Kicks Off Summer Reading Program

HARTFORD — The Hartford Public Library kicked off it’s summer reading series on Thursday at the downtown branch on Main Street with Sandra Rodriguez Barron (shown in featured photo).

Novel Destinations is the theme of Hartford Public Library’s 2011 summer reading program for adults. Participants borrow books, audiobooks, and magazines, read them, and then complete and submit an entry card for each item read. The more someone reads the more chances that person has a chance to win prizes. Residents should visit any of the Library’s 10 locations for more information.

Over the summer, area authors, including The Hartford Guardian‘s Ann-Marie Adams, will be reading from and discussing their books or upcoming books on Thursdays, June 30 through August 25, from 12:10-12:50 p.m., at the Downtown Branch, in the Café Space on the Main Floor.

Attendees are invited to bring their lunches and the Library will provide beverages. Each time that someone attends, he/she will receive an entry for the Library’s adult summer reading program, Novel Destinations, prize drawing.

All author events from 12:10-12:50 p.m. unless otherwise noted.

June 30 – Steve Liskow

July 7 – Patricia Sheehy

July 14 –Judith K. Ivie

July 21 – Okey Ndibe

July 28 – Dr. Ann-Marie Adams

August 4 – Silvio Support and Anthony Riccio


August 11 – José Garcia

August 18 – Judith Kappenman

August 25 – Cindy Brown Austin

Events are free and open to the public. If special accommodations to participate in an event are required, please contact Access Assistance at 860-695-6365 or TTY 860-722-6890, two weeks prior to the event.

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Hartford Library Set For One ‘Big’ Night

HARTFORD — MSNBC’s Morning Joe stars Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski will headline Hartford Public Library’s fundraiser event, One Fabulous Big Summer Night, at the Connecticut Convention Center on June 22.

The event will be from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. Reception, silent and live auctions and entertainment followed by a summer supper. Honorary Chairpersons Governor and Mrs. Dannel P. Malloy; Masters of Ceremonies Gerry Brooks, News Anchor, NBC Connecticut and Duby McDowell, President, Duby McDowell Communications, LLC.

MSNBC’s Morning Joe, the showTime Magazine calls “revolutionary” and the New York Timesranked as the top news program of 2008. Joe is a former Congressman from Florida who served as the publisher and editor of the award-winning newspaper The Florida Sun. This April, Joe was named to the prestigious Time 100 list of the most influential people in the world. In addition to his career in television, Joe is also the author of the New York Times bestseller,

Mika got her start in journalism as a reporter for local news stations right here in Hartford, before joining CBS news as ananchor of the CBS Evening News Weekend Edition and as a CBS News correspondent who frequently contributed to CBS Sunday Morning and 60 Minutes.

Her memoir, All Things At Once, became a New York Timesbestseller in January 2010. Mika has just published her second book, Knowing Your Value,which examines the role of women in the workplace and the fight to gain recognition and a fair salary.

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Hartford Mayor Segarra Skeds Town Hall Meeting

HARTFORD — In another push to engage the city in the 2011-12 budget process, Mayor Pedro Segarra will hold a town hall meeting on Tuesday at the Hartford Public Library.

Segarra is scheduled to unveil his budget plans before he submits it to the City Council on April 18.

Organizers of the town hall meeting said this gathering is an opportunity for the mayor to hear city residents’ ” ideas and suggestions about how to both balance the budget and make City Government more efficient, more effective and more transparent.”

They said residents are encouraged to ask questions and share thoughts on how best to achieve a a balanced budget that ” will improve the quality of life for all our residents in our diverse neighborhoods.”

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Hartford Library To Honor First Black Librarian

HARTFORD —   The Hartford Public Library will celebrate the life and work of Spencer G. Shaw, the first African American librarian in the city and who was designated  an “authentic and forthright spokesperson for children and youth librarians, contributing enormously in motivating and guiding the nation’s youth,” by the American Library Association.

The celebration will be from 2 to 4 p.m. on  Tuesday at The Hartford Public Library, 500 Main St. Tuesday’s program will be free to the public.

A native of Hartford, Shaw, was hired at the library 1941. After an illustruious career nationallly, he returned to Bloomfield, Connecticut in 2004. He died in June at the age of 93.

Shaw was a renowned Children’s and Academic Librarian with a professional career that spanned six decades. He  served as a Branch Manager in the Hartford Public Library. He was also program and storytelling specialist in the Brooklyn New York Public Library, a Consultant in Library Service to Children in the Nassau County Public Library System and Professor in the Information School at the University of Washington.

Throughout his career,  Shaw received numerous national and international recognition as an authority in his specialized field dedidcated to children.

For more information, call 860-695-6297.

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Adult Reading Program “Water Your Mind” Begins

HARTFORD — Hartford Public Library announced a new program, Water Your Mind: READ!, the Library’s summer reading program for adults. The program, created specifically for adult readers, will run from Tuesday, July 6 through Saturday, Aug. 28, with prizes and events at each of the library’s 10 sites.

As part of the summer reading program for adults, the library will feature Water Your Mind: LISTEN!, a series of story times for adults, at the downtown Library. Those who remember sitting back and listening to great tales when they were children will agree that kind of fun shouldn’t be only for kids. Story times for adults will be held on Thursdays, July 15 and 29, and Aug. 12 and 26, from 12 p.m. to 12:45 p.m. Participants may bring their lunches; the library will provide a sweet and a beverage.

For more information, call or visit any Library site or check out the Library’s Web site at www.hplct.org. All events are free and open to the public. View Hartford Public Library events and programs at www.hplct.org/calendar.

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CT Readies for Shift in College Market

HARTFORD —  Many people think it’s difficult to go back to college. But it really isn’t, said Martin Estey, one of the many vendors at a recent college fair at the Hartford Public Library.

Estey is a program director at Career Beginnings, an agency that helps put high school students on the path to college. He was one of several representatives giving advice to prospective adult learners who are interested in completing requirements to attain a bachelor’s degree.

About half a million people in the state have some college credits but not enough to have received an associate or a bachelors degree. With the ongoing economic downturn, many residents are returning to college, a reflection of a national trend. Experts say the college market has recognized that more people are having fewer children and therefore shrinking the future college-ready pool.

Targeting adults is the future of the industry, said Sam Irizarry admissions officer at Charter Oak State College, an online college.

“With us it’s more of people who have at least nine credits and are thinking of going back to college,” Irizzary said. “Like anything else a lot of people start having family issues and stopped.”

That’s in part why the Metro Hartford Alliance organized the fair: they recognized a need.  The other reason was to help colleges collaborate and seek out funding to provide services for this growing market, said John Shemo, vice president and economic director of development at the Alliance.

Services would include workshops on financial aid, course load, and work/life balance, Shemo said. And to fund this, he will look to colleges to put in about $5,000 each and then seek funding from the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving. Gov. Jodi Rell, also present to survey the fair, was briefed about the initiative’s funding campaign.

Although some services are already provided by college campus advisors and counselors, there is still a need for the information, said Harford resident and parent Michelle Walker, who was at the fair with her daughter.

“There ‘s some good information here,” Walker said. “They should also give [high school] students this kind of information too because some of them don’t know about these resources.”

Walker said she is not thinking about going back to college right now but is instead thinking about her daughter who is getting ready for college.

Like Walker, the few in attendance learned about the college fair when they entered the library and saw signs at the library’s entrances.

Shemo said the fair didn’t attract many traffic because it was an opportunity to get colleges working together.

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