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Why Volunteer?

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Did you know that people who volunteer are more likely to be successful in school and at their jobs? Volunteering, whether at the library or another organization, is a great way to positively impact your community while strengthening your own skill set at the same time!

The library and other organizations like the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, the Dumb Friends League and the Denver Zoo, rely on volunteer involvement to assist in many important and fun tasks! The experiences you have while volunteering will help you know what kind of career you might be interested in pursuing.

Happy Birthday, Dame Maggie Smith!

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

Dame Margaret Natalie Smith, aka Maggie Smith, was born December 28, 1934 in Essex, England. She is a highly respected actress, winner of 2 Academy Awards, 2 Golden Globes, 2 Emmy Awards, 2 SAG Awards, and a Tony. Her films have ranged from the serious to the comedic. She currently stars in the television series Downton Abbey. Check out one of the titles from her vast filmography today!

Othello (1964)

The V.I.P.s (1963)

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969)

Travels with My Aunt (1972)

Death on the Nile (1978)

2012: Are You Ready?

2012: The War for Souls

The year 2012 is fast approaching. To many writers, 2012 seemed like a good year far in the future in which to set their stories. Other books are centered around a prophecy that the world will end in 2012. Get ready for the new year with some fiction set in 2012!

Angel Fire East, Terry Brooks

2012 Airborne Prophecy, Nina Anderson

Apocalypse 2012 & The 2012 Codex, Gary Jennings

Domain, Steve Alten

If you're not rockin' it with Dick Clark on New Year's Eve...

Not everyone has glamorous plans for New Year's Eve and probably those of us who don't are perfectly content just to stay home. Here are some films that include memorable New Year's Eve moments. Eat, drink and be merry, for next week it will be time to suck it in and check out our yoga and fitness DVDs.

From chick flicks to bad adventure, and comedy to action, these DVDs will help you usher in 2012 with a smile, a tear, or amazement that they were even made:

Coming Soon – 2012 Building Contest!

The Lego Ideas Book

Start planning now for the Fresh City Life My Branch 2012 Building Contest! Entries will be accepted between January 3-13. What will you build? See below for guidelines, and branches for official entry forms!

2012 Lego Contest Guidelines
Create a scene using our “Supersonic World – 2012 and Beyond!” theme using Legos! Creativity is a must, so all entries must come straight from your imagination (i.e., no Lego sets). Prizes will be awarded in adult, child (by age group), teen, and family categories. Judging will be held at the Bear Valley branch on Saturday, January 14, 2012 at noon.

Go ahead, ask the internet

Our age will probably be largely remembered as the time when humans outsourced large chunks of our brains to our web-connected gadgets: if you had asked me a friend’s phone number 20 years ago, I could recite it by heart – now, I have to make all new friends if I lose my cell phone.

Often, many of my questions can be answered with a simple Google query – “What is the square root of 144?” or “Who played James Bond in Goldfinger?” – but anything moving beyond a simple factual question can mean wading through page after page of results. Search engines, like Google, Yahoo, or Bing, give you a list of websites that may​ have your answer, but they won’t help you sort through them. To do that, you need to access actual people - and there are a wealth of sites that let anyone ask questions to people with the knowledge you need.

NPR's Back-Seat Book Club January Selection

The Watsons Go To Birmingham – 1963

NPR's Back-Seat Book Club for 9 to 14-year-olds has announced their selection for January: The Watsons Go To Birmingham – 1963.

The Watsons Go To Birmingham – 1963 is the award-winning story of the Watsons, an African American family living in Flint, Michigan, who take a trip to Alabama in the summer of 1963. Young readers will relate to Kenny, the 10-year-old narrator of the story – his authentic observations and reactions really bring the experiences of an African American family in the 1960s to life.

Celebrate Kwanzaa with the Library

Kwanzaa

You are invited to learn about and celebrate Kwanzaa at the Library. Kwanzaa is a non-religious African American holiday which celebrates family, community and culture. It is celebrated for seven days: December 26 - January 1.

Join us for Kwanzaa programs featuring performers and light refreshments:

Tuesday, December 27, 2 p.m. - Kujichagulia
Ford-Warren Branch Library

Wednesday, December 28, 2 p.m. - Ujima
Pauline-Robinson Branch Library

Wednesday, December 28, 6:30 p.m. - Ujima
Green Valley Ranch Branch

Thursday, December 29, 2 p.m. - Ujamaa

SBTRKT the mask and you still have the smooth...

SBTRKT album cover

It's pronounced "Subtract" but this Batman of the UK dance scene is making additions to his resume this year...

Up until now, DJs and beat lovers mostly knew this south London producer for some high-profile remixes of the likes of M.I.A., Basement Jaxx and Underworld, but this year the man behind the mask drops his full-length self-titled album "SBTRKT", and it is a smooth journey across genres which definitely brings him into the spotlight.

Xu Beihong Exhibit at the Denver Art Museum

Xu Beihong Exhibit

I've just walked through the Xu Beihong Exhibit at the Denver Art Museum and was blown away.  The exhibit includes ink and watercolor (my favorites), charcoal drawings, pastels, and oil paintings.  I loved the way the ink and watercolor works are mounted on very large scrolls surrounded by what looks like exquisite silk fabric in colors and textures that complement the artwork.  The pieces are absolutely stunning!

The exhibit emphasizes Xu Beihong's importance and influence in establishing a modern style in Chinese art while maintaining Chinese art's traditional roots.  The short informational film played at the start of the exhibit says that he was one of the very first Chinese artists to travel to Europe and train with Western artists, and he brought some of those techniques back to China, sharing what he learned with other artists.

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