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  1. A 33-year U.S. Army and Navy veteran, Col. Ralph Hodge’s assignments included tours of duty in the Korean and Viet Nam conflicts and he served with a number of other esteemed military notables. He will discuss his role in those wars and his military career at the Allen Public Library, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, February 9. A recipient of the Bronze Star and Purple Heart, Col. Hodge will be escorted to the podium by Boy Scout Troop 328. Sponsored by Bach to Books, Adult Services and VFW 2195, this program is free. A descendant of Captain Thomas Nelson and his mulatto servant Jenny, Col. Hodge has had a life-long fascination with his family genealogy. Captain Nelson served with General George Washington in the Battle of Trenton during the American Revolution. Nelson and Jenny had six children, one being Harry Spurlock from whom Col. Hodge’s family descended. Because interracial marriage was prohibited at that time, the children could not carry their father’s name. “My grandmother was mulatto who appeared white and married Roger Hodge, a black man,†Col. Hodge notes. “My family is comprised of red heads, blue-eyed whites and blacks.â€
  2. ALLen Reads presents Wait Until Dark (1967), starring Audrey Hepburn, Richard Crenna and Efrem Zimbalist Jr., a recently blinded woman is terrorized by a trio of thugs while they search for a heroin stuffed doll they believe is in her apartment, 7:00 pm, January 24, free.
  3. The Upper Grassmen present an exciting blend of traditional bluegrass, as well as country, blues and jazz all played bluegrass style, at 7:30 p.m. Friday, January 20, at the Allen Public Library. With Bluegrass deeply ingrained in the hearts and souls of these four talented musicians, the group has been winning the hearts of fans from all over North Texas. The Upper Grassmen will provide a foot stomping experience and a night to remember. The Twin Fiddles, comprised of twin sisters Megan and Leah Bynum, will open the concert. Playing in tandem, The Twin Fiddles performed for the Allen Heritage Guild’s “Civil War Ghost Talesâ€, Heritage Farmstead Museum in Plano and Willy Nelson’s Church in Abbott, Texas. Because they are classically trained and have played together since they were very young, their fiddling has a unique, synergistic resonance with a classical touch. 214-509-4911
  4. For Sherlock-ians, accepting clues at face value can be challenging, but there are times when the facts are fascinating and far from elementary. Representatives of The Diogenes Club of Dallas will present titillating information on the world’s most famous detective, Sherlock Holmes, at 7 p.m. Thursday, January 19, at the Allen Public Library. A scion member of the Baker Street Irregulars of New York and the Franco-Midland Hardware Company of England The Diogenes Club of Dallas comprises Sherlock Holmes scholars required to publish materials on Sherlock Holmes prior to making presentations on behalf of the club. Sponsored by ALLen Reads, this program is free. Scotland Yard graduate and Dallas Police Department detective Don Casey will discuss the methodologies and techniques that Scotland Yard utilized during the late Victorian era. Sherlock Holmes’ observation skills and ability to deduce meaning from trifles of information helped solve mysterious crimes. For example, Sherlock learned how the different brands of tobacco ash appeared so he could look for clues.
  5. TIME magazine commissioned illustrator C.F. Payne to create its cover for the special edition of President Obama’s inauguration in January 2009. His work has adorned Sports Illustrated, Rolling Stone, Texas Monthly, and The Atlantic Monthly. He has also illustrated ten children books, including The Remarkable Farkle McBride and Micawber, written by John Lithgow. C.F. Payne will appear at the Allen Public Library at 2 p.m. Saturday, January 14, 300 N. Allen Dr. Sponsored by Bach to Books and Storyopolis Entertainment, this event is free. Storyopolis will offer books for sale that can be signed by the artist after the event.
  6. Directed by Otto Preminger, starring Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews and Vincent Price, a police detective falls in love with the woman whose murder he's investigating, 7 pm, Tuesday, January 10, Allen Public Library, free, 300 N. Allen Dr., 214-509-4911.
  7. And Then There Were None (1945), starring Barry Fitzgerald, Walter Huston and June Duprez, pm, January 3. Based on a novel and subsequent stage play by Agatha Christie; ten people are invited to an isolated island, only to be killed one-by-one. Could one of them be the killer? 214-509-4911
  8. Award-winning children’s illustrator David Catrow appears at the Allen Public Library at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, free. He has illustrated more than 70 books for kids, including Don't Take Your Snake for a Stroll by Karin Ireland, Where Did They Hide My Presents? by Alan Katz, and Kathryn Lasky's She's Wearing a Dead Bird on Her Head!, which was named a New York Times Best Illustrated Book of the Year. Recently, David is excited about his easy reader series entitled Max Spaniel, published by Scholastic. A former cartoonist for the Springfield News-Sun and Copley News service, Catrow’s works were syndicated in over 900 newspapers including the New York Times, Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Sun-Times. In addition, Catrow created the visual development for 20th Century Fox’s “Horton Hears a Who†(2008). “As a five-year-old, I read Dr. Seuss’, which became a seminal moment in my life because of the intense emotional feelings of joy it evoked and have lived inside me since that experience,†this illustrator recalls. “In 2005, film directors Jimmy Hayward and Steve Martino asked me to help develop the look of a film based on Seuss’ beloved book of the same name and I quite literally jumped at the offer. In a little over a year I cranked out so many drawings, that if you tied them together in a bundle and dropped them on your foot you’d break a few toes. It was an ethereal and delightful experience because it afforded me the opportunity to revisit those feelings I first experienced reading Cat in the Hat. I also became sensitive to how my art might influence a generation like Dr. Seuss affected me.â€
  9. Award-winning children’s illustrator David Catrow appears at the Allen Public Library at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, free. He has illustrated more than 70 books for kids, including Don't Take Your Snake for a Stroll by Karin Ireland, Where Did They Hide My Presents? by Alan Katz, and Kathryn Lasky's She's Wearing a Dead Bird on Her Head!, which was named a New York Times Best Illustrated Book of the Year. Recently, David is excited about his easy reader series entitled Max Spaniel, published by Scholastic. A former cartoonist for the Springfield News-Sun and Copley News service, Catrow’s works were syndicated in over 900 newspapers including the New York Times, Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Sun-Times. In addition, Catrow created the visual development for 20th Century Fox’s “Horton Hears a Who†(2008). “As a five-year-old, I read Dr. Seuss’, which became a seminal moment in my life because of the intense emotional feelings of joy it evoked and have lived inside me since that experience,†this illustrator recalls. “In 2005, film directors Jimmy Hayward and Steve Martino asked me to help develop the look of a film based on Seuss’ beloved book of the same name and I quite literally jumped at the offer. In a little over a year I cranked out so many drawings, that if you tied them together in a bundle and dropped them on your foot you’d break a few toes. It was an ethereal and delightful experience because it afforded me the opportunity to revisit those feelings I first experienced reading Cat in the Hat. I also became sensitive to how my art might influence a generation like Dr. Seuss affected me.†He advises aspiring authors and illustrators to “observe life and develop the narrative voice within and capture it on paper. Ideas for my illustrations are sometimes obtained when I am walking my dogs, riding my bicycle, and sometimes my dreams help assemble my ideas.†Catrow also emphasizes, “Students should focus less on income potential and examine their soul to determine what brings them joy.†214-509-4911.
  10. Celebrated children’s author Andrea Davis Pinkney appears at the Allen Public Library at 2 p.m. Saturday, November 12, free. A New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of many books for children and young adults, Ms. Pinkney has written picture books, novels, works of historical fiction and non-fiction. A graduate of Syracuse University’s Newhouse School on Public Communications, Ms. Pinkney began her career as a magazine editor. After marrying her husband, illustrator Brian Pinkney, a recipient of two Caldecott Honor awards, she was inspired to try her hand at writing children’s books. She has since authored more than twenty books for young people. When asked about the importance of reading, Ms. Pinkney explains, “Books open doors for children by showing them new worlds and new experiences, or by reflecting their own experiences, One of Ms. Pinkney’s first picture books, Bill Pickett: Rodeo Riding Cowboy, is about Texas native Bill Pickett, a legendary cowboy and rodeo champion of African-American and Native American descent from Taylor, Texas. Ms. Pinkney says, “In researching the story of Bill Pickett’s life and legacy, and to learn more about the rodeo sport known as bulldogging, I attended rodeos and completed research at the Black American West Museum in Denver, Colorado. Black cowboys are exciting to study because they forged a trail as American pioneers, and as African-American heroes.â€
  11. Attired in hand-made regalia, Sons of Eagle Horse light up the Allen Public Library with dance and percussions at 3 p.m. Saturday, November 5. A full-size tipi will adorn the stage while the Eagle Horse brothers provide a living history lesson that opens a window into Lakota culture and spirituality. Upholding traditional heritage through their performances, the Sons of Eagle Horse provide an inspiring and educational experience. Ta’Cha, TaTanka and Sunkmanitu Eagle Horse are members of the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe of the Lakota Nation in South Dakota and are dedicated to preserving Lakota traditions. Their mother Diane Eagle Horse explains that the dancing and percussions honor their ancestors and but also ignite the fire within those who observe. Each of the sons credits his parents for sharing their knowledge of and commitment to preserving their Native spirituality and a belief that no one truly owns the land. Keeping the native traditions alive, especially the dancing, is another motivator for TaTanka. Sunkmanitu adds that he considers it to be a significant honor being asked by the elders to dance. Call 214-509-4911.
  12. The road to Rock ‘n’ Roll was paved by the numerous African-American musicians and promoters of the 1930s and ‘40s who were forced to perform in venues that were safe for them during this time of intense segregation. This informal network of juke joints and clubs gave us artists such as Louis Jordan, T-Bone Walker and Wynonie Harris. Acclaimed journalist Preston Lauterbach discusses his exciting book The Chitlin’ Circuit and the Road to Rock ‘N’ Roll at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21, at the Allen Public Library, 300 N. Allen Dr. Because of Lauterbach’s documentation of the fascinating stories of these talented yet often forgotten musicians, American musical history is more complete. In recognition of Lauterbach’s accomplishment, he is also a featured author at this year’s Texas Book Festival, Oct. 22-23 in Austin, Texas. The initial inspiration for his book came from traveling the current Chitlin Circuit with artist Bobby Rush. Lauterbach quickly recognized the role these vibrant, profitable, and entertaining venues played in American musical history. His curiosity was piqued. Although his initial investigation was on how these businesses functioned, unearthing the historical background behind them quickly took precedence. As answers to his questions became elusive, he felt compelled to dig deeper. 214-509-4911
  13. Caldecott Medal winner Paul Zelinsky visits with Allen Public Library patrons at 2 p.m. Saturday, October 15. In 1998, Zelinsky received the highly revered Caldecott for his illustrated retelling of Rapunzel, as well as Caldecott Honors for his books Hansel and Gretel (1985), Rumpelstiltskin (1987), and Swamp Angel (1995). Sponsored by Bach to Books and Storyopolis Entertainment, this program is free. As a sophomore at Yale, Zelinsky studied under the legendary Maurice Sendak, author and illustrator of Where the Wild Things Are (1964). Although Zelinsky had been drawing since childhood, he considers this experience his defining inspiration to pursue children’s book illustrating. Known for the extraordinary richness of his artwork, it is Zelinsky’s willingness to risk and experiment that results in his reputation for versatility. He does not feel his work represents a specific style and does not want to be known for a certain style. "I want the pictures to speak in the same voice as the words,†he explains. “This desire has led me to try various kinds of drawings in different books. I have used quite a wide stretch of styles, and I'm fortunate to have been asked to illustrate such a range of stories.†Sally Holmes Holtze commented in School Library Journal that "Zelinsky uses line, space and color in a unique way." Like many beginning illustrators, the young Zelinsky carried his portfolio to numerous publishers and faced rejection after rejection. Then, in 1979, Pantheon thought of him when an illustrator for Emily Upham's Revenge was needed. This success his was followed by illustrations for How I Hunted the Little Fellows, a Russian story set in the 1890s. In 1981, The Maid and the Mouse became Zelinsky’s first book in full color and the New York Times and School Library Journal awarded it as Best Illustrated Book. Zelinsky cites these early career experiences as examples of the need for discipline and perseverance to succeed. 214-509-4911
  14. Experience the excitement of the powerful rhythms of the Aztec dance troupe Ollin-Tonalzin (Movement of the Sun) at 3:00 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 9, at the Allen Public Library, 300 N. Allen Dr. In honor of their ancestors, members of Ollin-Tonalzin wear colorful traditional regalia, burn incense, and play nature-based percussion instruments as they perform the sacred dances and songs passed down from their elders. The group’s music and dance acknowledge and reflect the four elements—fire, water, wind and earth—that are the building blocks of the universe. Free! Dancing represented the fulfillment of the eternal search of man for cosmic harmony and integration of body and spirit for the Aztecs and other Pre-Columbian tribes. It was considered a form of prayer, but also a means for communicating with the gods. Aztecs connected all aspects of the dance with their ancestors and nature, uniting them in body and mind. Call 214-509-4911.
  15. Prepare for a foot-stomping evening of entertaining songs and stories as Roger Tibbs joins Tex and Mary Schutz at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 8. The audience will be treated to a variety of classic country tunes that cover a wide range of subjects including life on the farm, a cowboy named Eddie, driving a truck for a living, being a cowboy, Jesus as a young boy, and ordinary country folks. For several winters, Tex and Mary entertained guests at resorts in Arizona and South Texas and continue to perform each summer at festivals, community concerts, churches and RV rallies across the country. They present their own “Miles of Memories Country MusicFest†each September in Hastings, Nebraska, a family event that includes concerts, theme shows, learning sessions and lots of music, fellowship and fun for fans of traditional country, bluegrass, cowboy and gospel music. This duo is regularly featured on “Midwest Country Music,†carried on RFD-TV, which is recorded each week at the Midwest Country Music Theatre in Sandstone, Minnesota. Tex is originally from Texas (by way of Nebraska) and is an award-winning vocalist, guitar, mandolin and Dobro player. Together, Tex and Mary have won awards for their harmony singing and are long-time members of the Mid-America Country Music Hall of Fame. Mary calls Nebraska home and is proud of her farm-girl heritage. The couple makes their home on a lake near Streetman, Texas. . New Zealander Roger Tibbs has been featured on “That’s Country†television where he shared the stage with Emmy Lou Harris, Connie Smith and Johnny Russell. Roger recorded his hit album “Yodeling Man†on the Music World label, which won that label's Gold Disc Award for strong sales. In addition, this album won the Gold Guitar award for the highest-selling album in Australia at the Tamworth NSW Awards in 1987. He remains the only male New Zealand artist to be awarded a Tamworth Gold Guitar. In 2010, Roger was inducted into America's Old Time Country Music Hall of Fame, a project of the National Traditional Country Music Association. Sponsored by Bach to Books, this program is free and no reservations are required. Call 214-509-4911 for more information.
  16. Fortunately for this country, George Washington garnered the lessons learned from his youthful mistakes to win a war with the British Empire against overwhelming odds. David Clary discusses his book, George Washington's First War: His Early Military Adventures at 7 p.m. Thursday, September 22, at the Allen Public Library, 300 N. Allen Dr. Sponsored by Bach to Books and the Bernardo de Gálvez chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, this program is free and no reservations are required. Clary demonstrates that in his first and challenging period of his military career, the youthful Colonel Washington was given sensitive responsibilities that were inappropriate for his age and experience. Superiors provided little guidance, but Washington’s resiliency and ability to learn from mistakes enabled him to take on an undefeated British Empire and win. When asked what inspired him to write this book, Clary replied, “After exploring the close relationship between the middle-aged George Washington and the adolescent Marquis de Lafayette during war and revolution (Adopted Son), I became curious about Washington's own adolescence during an earlier time of war, in the 1750s. I concluded that his unfortunate record during that period was owing to the fact that it happened during his painful transition from boy to man, without guidance from a trusted elder. If there is a lesson here for all of us, it is that the mistakes we make as youngsters are less important than our willingness to confront and learn from them. When it came to learning from hard experience, Washington proved himself the supreme master.†DAR Vice-Regent Alice Blanchard points out, "This is a revealing, well-documented picture of the young Washington as he proceeds to naively tackle the call to action presented by the French and Indian War. His initial self importance diminishes as greater principles surface and his personal growth is melded by experience in the blunderous skirmishes of politics and war. Clary's research mingles the paths of the famous and infamous who deal with an immature Washington in his twenties. This is an important, fast paced read for those who appreciate the history and background of a burgeoning nation." David A. Clary became the first Chief Historian of the U. S. Forest Service in1976, following a career in the historical and historic preservation programs of the National Park Service. Clary is the author of eleven books including: Before and After Roswell: The Flying Saucer in America, 1947-1999; Rocket Man: Robert H. Goddard and the Birth of the Space Age; Adopted Son: Washington, Lafayette, and the Friendship that Saved the Revolution; Eagles and Empire: The United States, Mexico, and the Struggle for a Continent; and George Washington’s First War: His Early Military Adventures. Call 214-509-4911 for information.
  17. Emanating from the heart and soul of all cultures, folk music brings people together in a way no other musical genre can accomplish. The Allen Folk Festival holds its inaugural event at the Allen Public Library, Saturday evening, September 17, 300 N. Allen Dr. To open the program, an audio interview of Pete Seeger will be broadcast at 6:30 p.m. This will be followed at 7 p.m. with live performances from popular local folk musicians. Sponsored by Bach to Books, this program is free and no reservations are required. Allen resident Kevin Vaught opens the festival. A graduate of the University of North Texas, majoring in theater, Kevin is an adherent of the philosophy that music is too important to be left solely to professionals. "An ever-popular staple of folk music venues across North Texas, the duo of Ann Armstrong and Steve Hughes have been entertaining audiences with their blend of Texas blues, folk and rock, for over 20 years. They have shared billings with Albert Collins, Jerry Jeff Walker, Hot Tuna, Arlo Guthrie, Guy Clark, and more. Their recent venues have included the South by Southwest Convention, and they are regulars at the internationally acclaimed Kerrville Folk Festival. Bruce Balmer and Lisa Markley perform an exciting blend of jazz and folk. After studying music at Marlboro College, Bruce played lead guitar for rock, jazz, and country bands, and composed for dance performance and film. A multi-instrumentalist, Lisa holds a degree in music composition. In 2000, she received "Honorable Mention" in the John Lennon Songwriting Contest for two of her songs (in both the jazz and in the folk categories). The musical duo Twice As Far delight and engage audiences with music that ranges from traditional mountain dulcimer tunes to contemporary and original songs. Jeannie Clark Fisher began her career as a singer/songwriter in Red Bank, New Jersey, where she opened for Bruce Springsteen in his early days. When she and Judi Altstatt Allen formed their duo Twice As Far, her folk roots resurfaced. Jeannie also sings with the Dallas Opera Chorus. Judi Altstatt Allen earned a bachelor of music education degree and continued her training by completing a master's degree in clarinet performance. She plays with the Allen Symphony and teaches band at Ereckson Middle School in Allen. For information, call 214-509-4911.
  18. Readable History Book Club invites all Viet Nam Veterans and history lovers to join them for a lively discussion at 7 pm, Thursday, Sept. 15, at the Allen Public Library, 300 N. Allen Dr., as they discuss This Time We Win: Revisiting the Tet Offensive by James S. Robbins. Washington Times senior editorial writer James Robbins argues that the Tet Offensive was actually a failure for the North Vietnamese and that the U.S. media and left-wing academics created a false impression of its importance. Robbins also teaches International Relations at the National Defense University in Washington, DC. and is a frequent commentator on national security issues for The Wall Street Journal, National Review and other publications. Mr. Robbins will participate via teleconferecne call from his Washington D.C. headhuarters. Call 214-509-4911.
  19. Meet Raul Colón, one of America’s award-winning children’s book illustrators, at the Allen Public Library, 2 pm, Saturday, September 10, 300 N. Allen Dr. Colón has illustrated over two dozen acclaimed books, including Angela and the Baby Jesus by Frank McCourt, Roberto Clemente: Pride of the Pittsburgh Pirates, and How to Bake an American Pie. Colón will discuss the creations and designs of some of his illustrations, and after his discussion, answer questions from the audience. Sponsored by Bach to Books and Storyopolis Global Entertainment, this program is free.
  20. By Tom Keener Come hear one of the world’s oldest musical instruments when Allen’s own “Ocarina Diva†Cris Gale performs at 7:30 p.m., Friday, August 12, at the Allen Public Library, 300 N. Allen Dr. She will be performing classical standards as well as contemporary and classical pieces from Asia. Cris explains, “I suppose the program could be described as East/West Classical Fusion.†Sponsored by Bach to Books, this program is free and no reservations are required. From the United States to Switzerland to Senegal, Italy to Japan, ocarinas bring peoples of the world together. Primitive forms of these instruments have been excavated from sites of various ancient civilizations, including Aztecs, Mayans, Chinese and Pacific Islanders. Cris has been featured in the popular video game The Legend of Zelda: The Ocarina of Time. Cris began playing the ocarina in 1999, and since then, she has performed at renaissance festivals, weddings, and as a studio musician for a meditation CD. In 2009, she won STL Ocarina’s International Search Competition and subsequently joined STL Ocarina as a consultant and performer. Cris declares, “It is just something that I deeply enjoy doing that happens to bring me peace and happiness. I can't imagine life without it. When I attended the ocarina festival, I met a maker/performer from Norway that lost one of his hands in an accident. He made himself a special ocarina so that he could keep playing. Despite what's happened to him, he continues to make beautiful music. I don't think he had a choice. I think that once music gets a hold on you, it never lets go.†Cris’s version of Handel’s HWV 362 can be found at (http://crisgale.com/album/hwv-362-handel). Call 214-509-4911 for more information.
  21. Remember when neighbors jammed with instruments and other inanimate objects on porches while folks gathered and listened to the free session? Treat yourself to a delightful evening that will boost your spirits and start your weekend with energy, 7:30 pm, Thursday, July 21, 300 N. Allen Dr. Their “porch music†is played on acoustic instruments and pays homage to our varied Texas musical roots. It is influenced by Country Blues, Texas folk music, Jazz and swing standards, and Depression Era country songwriters. Guitar playing styles include finger picking and slide guitar. Other instruments include the acoustic bass, harmonica, cymbal, and a drum-like instrument of their own design made out of a wooden soda pop box. This is a small band with a big sound--up to eight instruments will be heard simultaneously, along with harmonizing vocals. The band is comprised of two members, Rudy Littrell, and Duane Brown. Rudy Littrell, a self-proclaimed "recovering percussionist," has the coordination to play four instruments at one time--acoustic bass, high hat, harmonica, and a wooden soda pop box. Duane Brown has been making music since he was a kid, when he strummed the broom (today it’s a guitar and harmonica) and sang Roger Miller songs for the neighbors. “Rudy noticed that every time he hit an E-flat, the porch would resound to that," said Brown's wife and band publicist, Adah Leah Wolf. Thus, the E-Flat Porch became the name. The E-Flatters present an educational and entertaining introduction to folk music, to enable the audience to understand and appreciate the folk roots of today’s music. Through their original songs, they carry on a tradition of creativity in its musical form. The E-Flat Porch Band has performed at folk and blues festivals throughout the Southwest, Texas Metal Arts Festival in Gruene, Folk Festival in Denton, Richardson’s Wildflower Festival, Texas Arts and Crafts Fair in Kerrville, and Texas Folklife Festival in San Antonio. Sponsored by Bach to Books, this program is free and no reservations are required. Call 214-509-4911 for information.
  22. The Allen Public Library will feature Tuskegee Airman Lt. Calvin Spann, at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, July 14, Allen Public Library Civic Auditorium, 300 N. Allen Dr. He will discuss the rigorous training at the Tuskegee University Moton Airfield, aerial campaigns during World War II that included traversing the treacherous Alps and encountering a newly invented German weapon-jet aircraft. These brave airmen also distinguished themselves by achieving the singular distinction of never losing an escorted bomber to enemy plane fire. This is an exciting opportunity to hear an eyewitness to history’s biggest war. Boy Scout Troop 328 will present the colors to commence the program. After the program, Mr. Spann will be available for questions and photographs. A reception with refreshments will follow. Calvin and his wife Gwenelle, reside in Allen and give talks to schools and libraries on the role of Tuskegee Airmen. For more information, call Tom Keener at 214-509-4911.
  23. Fablehaven author Brandon Mull appears at the Allen Public Library at 1 p.m. Saturday, May 7, 300 N. Allen Dr., Allen Public Library. After the program, patrons can ask questions, purchase books and have them signed by the author. Sponsored by Bach to Books and Storyopolis Global Entertainment, this program is free. Buried in the subconscious of all people is the need for a location where one can seek safety and protection. Robert Frost wrote, “Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in.†Fablehaven is that secret nature preserve that protects mythological beings and legends from the outside world. Mull declares, “Fablehaven is a fantasy adventure about a wildlife park for magical creatures. I figured that if I could learn to write a good scene, I could eventually write a good novel.†His works about imagniary creatures offer a realism that helps the reader launch into fantasy while discovering their inner self. Mull also wrote The Candy Shop War. Because many young readers are interested in his books, Mull crosses the country talking to students, sharing the message that "imagination can take you places.†As a child, Mull lived in his head, creating adventures, daydreaming and sometimes sharing imaginary games with siblings and friends. Daydreaming was part of his life, but as an adult, his stories grew to be more elaborate and he shares them with all who are willing to enjoy his imaginary possibilities. Currently, Mull is writing a new three-book series called "The Beyonders," and the first was released March 15, 2011. A sequel to "The Candy Shop War," titled "The Arcadeland Catastrophe," is scheduled to be released in the second half of 2011. Having worked as a comedian, a filing clerk, a patio installer, a movie promoter, a copywriter, and briefly as a chicken stacker before becoming a published writer, Mull now lives happily with his wife Mary and their four children. Call 214-509-4911 for more information.
  24. Honor children and promote literacy at Allen Public Library’s free Day of the Child/Day of the Book program from 1:30 to 4:30 pm, Sunday, May 1. This event is hosted annually throughout Latin America and across the United States. At 2:30 pm, the Younger Generation Chorus of Plano presents “Can’t Keep From Singingâ€, an afternoon of fun, upbeat, Show Tunes and Pop Music. Younger Generation is a premier children’s choir serving youth from Collin County communities. Under the direction of Tenesa Rasmussen, the chorus has achieved national recognition for excellence, and has traveled from Plano to the White House. A folk harpist and head choir director at Thomas Jefferson High School in Dallas. At 3:30 pm, the Repertory Company Theatre of Richardson presents Little Red. Although many variations of this story have been told, this unique version has a 1950s style and is sure to rock ‘n’ roll! Little Red strives to be a rock star and she travels to Granny's with an attitude. As in the more traditional tale, Little Red encounters the Wolf, but this one tells her he is a talent agent and can make her famous and a huge star. Meanwhile, Little Red’s mother is courted by the handsome and shy woodcutter who proves to be most courageous. Other activities for the day include crafts, refreshments and face painting. The library is located at 300 N. Allen Drive, 75013. For more information, call 214-509-4906. b]
  25. Award-winning author and photographer Carolyn Jones shares her path for self awareness, healing and recovery from addiction through her photography and words at the Allen Public Library, 7 pm, Thursday, April 28, 300 N. Allen Dr., 75013, reception and book signing afterwards. Carolyn’s journey is an inspiration for all who are affected by addictions and personal struggles in themselves or their family and friends. Her words and art give hope and courage to those in conflict and encourage and empowers those that are already on their path. Carolyn photographed antique wrought iron gates in Victorian neighborhoods that contain impressive Fleur-de-lis and Curly Q designs. Beams of light that permeate the gates create multicolored mystical images and shadows. Gates can be symbolic of life’s closing chapters but they also signify new horizons. Gates protect our family and pets but they grant access to those we love. Because they move, gates are not intended to be permanent and neither is life. Author of Opening the Gates of the Heart: a Journey of Healing, Carolyn has been awarded two Honorable Mentions: one for spirituality from the 2010 New York Book Festival, and one for photography/art from the 2010 San Francisco Book Festival. Author Mike Farrell states, “This is a lovely celebration of those who have been on the journey, and an invitation to those for whom the journey awaits.†Call 214-509-4911.
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