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JANUARY 24, 2013
“Food for Fines Amnesty” at Canton Public Library
     During the entire month of February, library patrons may pay off all outstanding fines for overdue materials by donating non-perishable food items to the library, which will benefit the Canton Food Bank. Fines of any amount, excluding charges for lost or damaged materials, will be forgiven in full for patrons who come in and offer at least one (several, we hope) food item, such as canned goods, cereals, pasta, rice, coffee, bottled water, peanut butter and other items.
     Although there will be no reckoning of equivalency for the amount of food brought in relative to the amount of the fine, the library hopes people will be generous. All donations will be given to the Canton Food Bank to assist area residents.
     It is no accident that February is the month chosen for the amnesty program.  Donations peak in the months of November and December; by February donations and supplies are significantly diminished. The shelves need refilling and we ask our patrons to step up and help those in need.
     The February Fine Amnesty idea is not unique to Canton; it has been tried successfully elsewhere in Connecticut and in other states. Supported by the Town of Canton administration, the program aims to encourage patrons who have had long overdue items to return them, as well as allowing others to clear their records in a refreshing way, while helping the community at the same time.

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Categories: What's NewLibrary NewsLibrary Fines

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OCTOBER 11, 2012
Sunday Hours Resume in November
In November Canton Public Library will resume Sunday hours.  The library will be open from 1-4 every Sunday starting November 3, 2012 through March 24, 2013.

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Categories: Library NewsWhat's New

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AUGUST 30, 2012
Universal Class Added to Database Offerings at Canton Public Library
     Canton Public Library’s database offerings have been expanded and enhanced by the addition of Universal Class, which offers over 500 online continuing education courses.  The database, which is a product of Recorded Books,  is designed for adults and teens.

     The database is available both in the library and, through remote access, on patrons’ home computers via the Internet.  Remote access, of course, allows patrons to use the database 24/7.  The program features real instructors and allows users to connect with other students.  Continuing Education Units are offered on selected courses.
 
     Among the subjects offered are computer training, personal finance, GED training, pet and animal care, health services training, music and painting.  Courses include digital photography, life coaching, Microsoft Publisher 2007, MS Word 2007, time management, wedding planning, writing basics 101, dealing with difficult people, anatomy and physiology, cell and molecular biology, Excel 2007, to name just a few of the many offerings.

     For the course listings and availability details, contact Reference Librarian Beth Van Ness.  Canton Public Library is at 40 Dyer Avenue, Canton.  Library hours are Monday-Thursday 10:00-8:00, Friday 10:00-5:00 and, beginning September 8, Saturday 10:00-5:00.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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Categories: What's NewResources

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AUGUST 30, 2012
In the Gallery: Works from the Permanent Collection
      From Tuesday, September 4 through Wednesday, October 31, Canton Public Library will draw upon its permanent collection for a show which features artists whose works have appeared in solo and group shows over the last several years.
     Representing a variety of media including watercolor, print, photography, sculpture, and mixed media, the show includes works by Canton and other Farmington Valley artists:  Walter Kendra, Walt Hampton, Susan Crawford, Mary Louise Pech, Harriet Fox, Pat Carrigan, Lois McDonald, Kent McCoy, Chris London, Tom Kutz, Florin Firimiter, Ruth Warner, Arthur Chouinard, Selma Gage, and Helen Galick.
     In addition to the works which have been enjoyed by patrons in past exhibits of the library’s permanent collection are recent additions by Wick Knaus, Lori Knaus, Marcia Buch, and Gregory Kriss.
      Canton Public Library, which is at 40 Dyer Avenue, is open Monday through Thursday 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM, Friday 10:00-5:00, and, beginning September 8, Saturday 10:00-5:00.   For information: (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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JULY 7, 2012
In the Gallery: Paintings and Pictures: The Artistic Work of Chris O'Herron and Tom Kutz

    
Through the month of August, Canton Public Library’s Gallery features the work of Chris O’Herron and Tom Kutz, two Canton artists who have studios in the Axe Factory.  The show opened on July 5 and will run through Friday, August 31.
     
     O’Herron, who grew up in Simsbury, draws upon the Connecticut landscape for inspiration, including the familiar tobacco fields and semi-rural settings near his home.  His landscapes are oil, and his portraits are oil or charcoal.  “With its subtle nuances, charcoal is an ideal medium for expressive portraiture,” said O’Herron.  His portraits of loved ones and family pets have become very popular commissions for him.
    
     Chris has donated his time and art to help raise money and awareness for the Junior League of Waterbury, Chip In For A Cure (a charity for Cancer research), "Shakespearience" (a non-profit educational group for kids), and several area churches.  He has also drawn a charcoal rendition of Simsbury’s famous “Pinchot Sycamore” which was included in – and later purchased from – the CT Department of Environmental Protection’s Art From CT Forests exhibit.  The traveling educational show featured 50 artists and craftpersons who created art using the material from one single CT Oak tree in order to promote forests and healthy
land management ideas.

     He has had solo shows in Connecticut at The McLean Home, Miss Porter’s School, FastFrame of Avon, and Gallery 101 Main in Collinsville.  He has exhibited paintings and portraits at the Maine Art Gallery in Kennebunkport, ME; the Beth Ellis Cove Gallery in Ogunquit, ME; Gallery On the Green in Canton, CT; Green Trees Gallery in Northfield, MA; Autumn Light Studio & Gallery in Avon, CT; the Talcott Mountain Music Festival in Simsbury, CT; and the Simsbury, Farmington and Prosser (Bloomfield) Libraries in CT.   His work can always be found on the walls of Brookside Bagels, in Simsbury, and Rootz Hair Salon, in Collinsville.

     He graduated from Syracuse University in 2001 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in illustration.  Beyond the classroom experience, he had the opportunity to study and paint in Florence, Italy, in 2000.

     Tom Kutz was born in New York City and grew up on Long Island. “I have been taking pictures since I received my first camera at the age of 7,” said Kutz.   He attended Rochester Institute of Technology, graduating with a B.F.A. in Photo Illustration. “After college I traveled for a few years working on Cruise ships as a photographer. For the last 25 years I have worked as a commercial photographer photographing people, places and products.  My personal photos are based on a surreal reality.” Kutz has shown his work in galleries and shows throughout the last 30 years and has made Collinsville his home for the last 20 years.

     Said Kutz, “The photos that I create are usually based in a surreal point of view. I enjoy images that give the viewers a treat if they spend the time to look at them. Most of my pictures are very personal to me in one way or another. I tend to create art as an outlet for the daily stress of life. Sometimes the photos work, sometimes they don't, but  I enjoy using photography as my artistic medium.”

     CantonPublic Library is at 40 Dyer Avenue, Canton.  Library hours are Monday-Thursday 10:00-8:00, and Friday 10:00-5:00 and Saturday 10:00-1:00 through August 25).  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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JULY 2, 2012
Friends of the Canton Public Library Are Accepting Donations for September Book Sale

     The Friends of the Canton Public Library are busy collecting and organizing donations for their September book sale, a process that began on June 20.  Over the summer they will be collecting books, music CD’s, recorded books, and DVD’s for their sale on September 8 and 9.  All those books that are spilling out of your shelves could find a new home and earn some money for the library in the process.  And of course your  donations will make the 2012 Friends Book Sale bigger and better than ever and will give you a tax deduction.
 
     Book and other items may be dropped off any time during library hours:  Monday through Thursday 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM, and Friday and Saturdays from 10:00-1:00 through August 25.  The last day for dropping off books is Saturday, August 25.
 
     The Friends have been holding a book sale for over 30 years, beginning with a table at the Lions Club Flea Market, later moving to Joel Fried’s Funnybones at the Canton Green shopping complex, then to a booth on Sam Collins Day, and finally to the Canton Community Center in 2003.  Along with a change in location has come a huge increase in the number of items for sale.  And as technology has burgeoned and media have proliferated, the “book sale” has become more than just books.
 
     What hasn’t changed is the reputation that the Friends of the Canton Public Library have built over the years.  “Everybody says how organized we are.  We sort and categorize to the nth degree,” said Carol Stevens, who heads up the drive. 
 
     As a volunteer organization, the Friends are always looking for a few good volunteers, especially for help with the book drive, which requires constant and extensive sorting throughout the summer.  Anyone wishing to volunteer a few hours is asked to contact Carol Stevens by leaving a message at the library, 693-5800.  Training will be provided.
 
     The Friends emphasize that all donated items must be in good condition.  Books that are yellowed, ripped, tattered, highlighted, or underlined cannot be accepted for the book sale.  Magazines, encyclopedias, textbooks, the Time-Life series, computer books, condensed books, and VHS tapes will not be accepted. 
 
     CantonPublic Library is at 40 Dyer Avenue in Canton.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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Categories: Friends of the LibraryLibrary News

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MAY 31, 2012
“The Great Geek Summer of 2012” Canton Public Library’s Summer Reading Program


    It has become very cool to be a geek, and Canton Public Library will be a very cool place to be a geek this summer.  Children’s Librarian Heather Baker has announced the theme for the library’s summer reading program:  “The Great Geek Summer of 2012.”  Young readers will have many programs and events to fill their summer hours.
 
    Being a geek has become a culturally popular phenomenon.  A geek is one who has an intense passion and an extensive knowledge of a particular theme or topic, such as superheroes, vampires and zombies, Star Wars, Star Trek, or legos.  Geeks demonstrate thorough involvement in their passion and nearly encyclopedic mastery of the topic.
 
    “The Great Geek Summer of 2012” is a summer reading theme unique to Canton Public Library, according to Baker.  “The theme grew out of the community,” she said.  The town is a comfortable place for both kids and adults to pursue their “geeky” interests, and the library supports those pursuits.
 
    The summer reading program officially begins the week of July 2 and wraps up the week of August 13.  Our fourth annual Pool Party & Dunk Tank will be held on August 16 at Mills Pond for school-aged participants (you have to earn your way in!)  The Pool Party is sponsored by the Friends of the Canton Public Library, with the help of the staff of Canton Parks & Recreation.  Our Preschool Music Party, with Starr & Shello, will be held on August 14 at the library.  Sponsored by the Friends of the Canton Public Library, the wrap party is for children aged 2 and up.  Refreshments will be provided by ShopRite of Canton.  No registration is required.
           
    Summer at the library is packed full of activities for all ages and all interests.   Programs include A Readers Theater Club, A Singers Theater Club, and two Book Buddies groups.  Movies on the Big Screen (with free hot popcorn) will be shown on Thursday evenings at 6:30. Tuesday morning drop-in story times with Ms. Heather will meet at 10:30 AM from July 3 to August 7.  
 
    An addition to the summer offerings is a craft series, “Awesomely Geeky Projects and Activities,” which begins on Monday, July 2 and runs through Monday, August 6.  Themes for the crafting workshops, which will be held on Mondays at 4:30 PM, include straw rockets, match-box balloon-powered cars, and crash-test dummies.  Each activity will require separate registration and each may be geared for different age ranges.  Youngsters are limited to participation in two of the activities.
 
     Special events include a performance by the Canton High School Ukulele Club on Tuesday, July 10 at 7:00 PM.    On Tuesday, July 24, the library hosts Jim Napolitano and his Nappy’s Puppets in a Sing-Along, sure to be popular with children ages 2 and up.  (The puppet show takes the place of the drop-in story time on that day.)
 
    “Movies on the Big Screen,” always a popular outing for children, seniors,  and families, will feature many of the popular new releases, including The Mysterious Island, The Adventures of Tin Tin, The Muppets, The Goonies, Hercules, and The Lorax.  

    This summer the Book Buddies Program (Teens Read to Kids) features two groups, one meeting on Thursday mornings and one meeting on Wednesdays in the early evening.  Both groups will meet for five weeks, beginning the week of July 9 and ending the week of August 6.  Registration for children (ages 3-7) is absolutely required; registration opened on June 11.  Teen volunteerscan fill out an application in the children’s room.  The Book Buddies program is sponsored by the Canton Dental Center and Jason Kasprzak, DDS.
            
    Readers Theater is for youngsters ages 6 and up who love to perform and are able readers.  The group, which this year has a Dr. Seuss theme, will meet for the week of July 30 to August 6 with a “Summer Seuss Celebration” performance on the evening of August 6th.  Readers Theater will once again be led by Heather Nielsen, a recent Hampshire College graduate who will be a Masters Degree candidate at the University of Massachusetts in the fall.  This will be Nielsen’s fourth year leading the program.

   Singers Theater, led by Michael Coderre, will meet from July 12 to 19 with a performance on July 19th.  Singers Theater is for ages 8 and up, does not require an audition, and will use music based on the interests and abilities of the participants.  Coderre has a Master’s Degree in Voice and in Music Composition from the University of Alberta.  He is Director of Choirs at Bristol Eastern High School and the Music Director at Asbury United Methodist Church in Forestville.  He has more than 20 years of experience working with youth performers and singers of all ages.

     Registration is required for both the Readers Theater and Singers Theater programs, and youngsters and parents are warned that these programs fill up quickly.  All participants must be available for their performances.  

    Tuesday Morning Drop-In Story Times with Ms. Heather will meet every Tuesday morning from July 3 to August 7 at 10:30 a.m.  Themes will include superheroes and local heroes, birds behaving badly, platypuses, a galaxy far away, and “yarn-bombing,” to name a few.  Story time includes stories, songs, a short movie, a craft and a snack, for ages 2 and up.

    Thanks to a technology grant from The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, youngsters will have some very exciting science programming this summer on Friday afternoons from July 6 through August 10.  Using our new laptop computer lab, educators from The Talcott Mountain Science Center will present entertaining and educational programs on sound waves, astronomy, bubbles and optical illusions.  The programs are geared for different ages and require separate registration.  Advance registration is required, and youngsters may register for up to two programs.

    Summer Reading Logs for school-aged children and preschoolers will be available starting on the last day of school.  Coupons/Prizes/Bracelets earned for the completion of summer reading goals will be available only starting on July 2 through August 16.  The library will also have copies of the books from all Canton schools summer reading lists, and we have copies of those lists available in the library all summer long. 

    As in years past, the summer reading program is supported by a number of community businesses, including Applebee’s, Ben & Jerry's of Canton, Barnes & Noble Booksellers, Canton Creamery at Petals & Paws, McDonald's of Canton, and Riverfront Mini-Golf, all of which will supply coupons for reader treats.

    Prizes will be supplied by other businesses, Bremar Rental, Benidorm Bike, Canton Dental Center, Children's Museum of Connecticut, Collinsville Canoe & Kayak,  Cosi of Avon, Glow Cove of Canton, ImagineNation Museum, International Skating Center of Simsbury, Joe Pizza, Jump Zone, Kiddly Winks, Perfect Toy of Avon, Simsbury Commons Cinema, Ski Sundown, Target, Warner Theater of Torrington, Wal-Mart of Avon, Flatbread Company, Joni’s Child Care, Larsen Ace Hardware, and ShopRite of Canton.  Every prize winner—child, teen, and adult—will, in addition to his or her prize, walk away with a gift certificate to Flatbread Company in The Shoppes of Farmington Valley.  And every child and teen who wins a prize will also receive a book, many of them signed by the author.  (This is, after all, summer reading.)

    Registration for one-time programs and the program series began on Monday, June 11 for Canton residents. Canton Public Library is at 40 Dyer Avenue, Canton.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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Categories: What's NewSummer Reading

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MAY 24, 2012
On Display: “Couples Collections”

     For the month of June, Canton Public Library’s display case will hold its first “Couples Collections,” featuring the collections of Ray and Dru McNeill.  The display will run from Friday, June 1 through Saturday, June 30.  On display will be hourglasses and alphabet books.
 
     Originally from West Hartford, Ray moved to Canton in 1968. He has been fascinated by hourglasses since he was a boy. Ray has acquired quite a few from various sources including antique shops, tag sales, catalogues, friends, and family.  He has one which is made from an old mill company spool; one that hung from a ship to keep it level as the movement of the sea caused it to rock; and another, his favorite, which is a plexiglass column with the hourglass itself set inside. Ray’s collection includes various materials and a variety of colored sands.
           
     Ray's wife, Dru, has been collecting alphabet books for a number of years. Perhaps her years as a teacher in Canton encouraged the idea for this type of book.  Her specialty alphabet books come from a number of sources, including catalogues and museums.
 
     Library hours are Monday-Thursday 10:00-8:00, Friday and Saturday 10:00-5:00.  Canton Public Library is at 40 Dyer Avenue, Canton.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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Category: On Display

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MAY 5, 2012
In the Gallery: Parallel Visions
     For the month of June, Canton Public Library’s Gallery will feature the work of “Parallel Visions,” a group of very talented artists, most of whom  have been working together since the summer of 2008.  The artists are Walter Kendra, Estrid Eklof, Carolyn Newell, Lisa Tellier, and Josa Weatherwax.  The show will run through Saturday, June 30. 
 
     The members of Parallel Visions are all accomplished artists who have painted individually and in groups for a number of years.  Their group meets weekly, providing support and companionship as well as helpful criticism.  Beginning in 2009 they have had several group shows, including at galleries in Hartford, Farmington, New Britain, and Colchester.  Their weekly painting sessions have taken them to many of Connecticut’s well-known scenic locations, including the Hill-Stead Museum in Farmington, Topsmead Farm in Litchfield, and Ashlawn Farm in Old Lyme.  Farther afield, they have painted on Monhegan Island and Rockland, Maine, and in Little Compton, Rhode Island.

     Estrid Eklof and Carolyn Newell had been painting together for a number of years in both Connecticut and Maine.  During weekly study with watercolorist David Dewey in Old Lyme, they met Lisa Tellier.  The three began to paint under the direction of Susan Finnegan, an area artist and teacher at the University of Hartford Art School and Trinity College.  At about this time, Walter Kendra was retiring from his position as a professor of art at Central Connecticut State University and was looking to join a painting group.

 
     Walter Kendra, a Collinsville resident and the founder and president of the Maxwell Shepherd Memorial Arts Fund, is known primarily for his work in the printing medium.  By joining the group of painters, he has renewed his long-neglected interest in oil and watercolor painting.  Walter is very active in both the New York and New England art scenes,  In addition to appearing in numerous group shows, he has had solo exhibitions in New York, Connecticut, Virginia, and North Carolina and is represented in private and college collections.    He has been honored with first prize awards in sculpture, painting, and graphics.  He is currently on the Board of Trustees for the Art School at the University of Hartford.
 
     Estrid Eklof, a resident of Kensington, CT, trained as a professional classical pianist, with a degree from Boston University School of Fine and Applied Arts.  While performing as a pianist, she took breaks to study watercolor painting in Maine and Connecticut.  Her work has been included in several group shows, including the New Britain Museum of American Art, the Hill-Stead Museum, and a number of library galleries in Connecticut.
 
     Carolyn Newell of Avon has degrees in zoology, art history, and accounting.  She has studied painting, sculpture, and drawing at the University of Hartford, the West Hartford Art League, Wesleyan University, Central Connecticut State University, and at the Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts.  Her work has been included in shows at the New Britain Museum of Fine Arts, the Canton Art Guild, and several library galleries in Connecticut.
 
     Lisa Tellier, who lives in East Haddam, began her serious instruction in the arts studying watercolor at the Fitchburg Art Museum.  Later she went on to the School of the Worcester Art Museum, Paier College of Art, and the Lyme Academy College of Art.  She has exhibited her work at the Lyme Academy and the West Hartford Art League, among others.

      The newest addition to the group is Josa Weatherwax.  Much of her work includes abstractions based on traditional  landscapes and often combines paint, printmaking, and sculpture.  Recent and current exhibitions include shows at Rockwell Art in Ridgefield, CT; the Silver Circle Gallery in Putnam, CT; the CCNS show in Rowayton, CT; and the Junior League Show House in West Hartford.  She has studied at the Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts, the University of Salamanca in Spain, and the Hartford Art School.  Josa currently has a show at Rockwell Art in Ridgefield, CT.   Her work has been exhibited in galleries throughout the country and is held in both public and private collections. 
           
     Each artist in the group has developed a unique style and approach to the subject.  In working together and in showing their work in group shows, they provide their audiences with a fascinating opportunity to view a subject captured in a multitude of ways.  The shows highlight the differing perceptions that make art ever new and varied.  Such is the case with “Parallel Visions” in the Canton Public Library Gallery.

 
     Library hours are Monday-Thursday 10:00-8:00, Friday and Saturday 10:00-5:00.  Canton Public Library is at 40 Dyer Avenue, Canton.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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APRIL 14, 2012
In the Gallery: "Real Toys"
     For the month of April, visitors to Canton Public Library will be immersed in the nostalgia of childhood.  An exhibit titled “Real Toys” will cover the walls, fill the display case, and feature some programming for both adults and children.  The gallery exhibit opens on Monday, April 2 and runs through Friday, April 27 with an opening reception on Thursday, April 19 from 5:00-8:00 PM.

     “Real Toys” is a collaboration between Tina Parsadanov and Ron Todd.  The main part of the exhibit will be photos by Parsadanov and Todd of the well-loved, sometimes broken, scruffy toys, and the attachment that children feel towards them, sometimes desperately clutching them and refusing to leave them behind.

      “We will have some of the toys themselves, and we will also share stories of both children and adults who have or had favorite stuffed friends and even stories of how they came to lose them. People have come forward with offers to lend us stuffed toys that they have had as constant companions for more than four decades,” according to Todd.

     Stuffed friends become “real” to the people who love them.  They dry tears, they play without complaint, they are a soft friend to cuddle any time of day or night, and they are always there to love and care for. We create personalities for our stuffed friends and we love them forever. “We hope to remind adults of their fond memories or even sad memories of their favorite stuffed friends and how stuffed friends are something that all generations have in common,” said Todd.

     A program that is definitely for children, but not exclusively for children, is “A Special Story Time:  The Velveteen Rabbit,” with guest reader Ron Todd.  In the 1922 book by Margery Williams, a toy rabbit yearns to become “real” through a child’s love.  The story time will also feature a short, eight-minute film version of the book.  The special story time is for ages 4 and up.  Youngsters are encouraged to bring along their own beloved “real toys.”  REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED.

     Tina Parsadanov is a Connecticut-based photographer specializing in portraits, along with documentary images. She is the mother of two children and concentrates her art work on exploring childhood.  Ron Todd is a Professor of Art at Central Connecticut State University teaching photography, video and media. He often works in a collaborative environment producing installation art. 

     All of the programs associated with the exhibit “Real Toys” are free.  Registration is requested for the film and REQUIRED FOR THE STORY TIME.  Canton Public Library is at 40 Dyer Avenue, Canton.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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Category: On Display

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DECEMBER 2, 2011
In the Gallery; The Farmington River Collection

     If Collinsville has become a destination, the Farmington River is no small part of that allure. 
 
     For the months on January and February, the Gallery at Canton Public Library features an exhibition by Tom Cameron, a photographer who has captured the Farmington River’s wild and scenic beauty and whose photography underscores the magic of this magnificent resource.
 
     Cameron has been fascinated with the outdoors and has spent much of his time on the water.  “I have always been at home in, on, and around the water—swimming, canoeing, fishing, and scuba diving,” he says.  “All of the photographs  in this show come directly from time on and around the Farmington River.”  He has captured the river in the light of early morning and as the light changes through the day.  “From wind-driven rapids and falls to the early morning mirrored flat-water, the variety of images that light generates on and in water is endless.”
 
     His lens has captured the plants and animals that inhabit the river’s ecosystem, from herons to spiders to the occasional fisherman.  Waterfalls, water reflections and the symmetrical images created are another interest for Cameron.
 
     Cameron is general manager at Ultimate NiTi Technologies in Briston, CT. His education includes mechanical engineering and materials science.  His photography education includes college level course work and multiple seminars including an extended course from master printer George DeWolfe.
 
     Library hours are Monday-Thursday 10:00-8:00, Friday and Saturday 10:00-5:00, and Sunday 1:00-4:00 PM.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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NOVEMBER 5, 2011
In the Gallery: Travels . . . Body, Mind and Soul

     For the month of December, Canton Public Library’s Gallery features the work of three artists in a show titled “Travels . . . Body, Mind and Soul.”  The show explores the work of Susan Crawford, Carol de Berry, and Walt Hampton, who have shared artistic spaces in the past. The exhibit will run through Saturday, December 31.

     “We like how our work goes together,” said Susan Crawford.  “All three of us tend to experiment with and within different media.”

     Susan Crawford works mostly in mixed media, sometimes beginning with a monotype.  She has won numerous awards and exhibited widely in New England.  Her work is held in private collections here and abroad.  She is a former longtime board member and twice chair of the Canton Artists’ Guild and the former art curator at Canton Public Library.
Carol de Berry, whose studio is in Portland, CT, often relies on monotype to create a first impression, whether a landscape, interior space, or still life.  She uses masses of color combined with linear marks to suggest an image.  She also enjoys using caran s’ache, water soluble wax crayons, to achieve a fluid watercolor effect in prints.

     De Berry has a fine arts background, with a BA from Connecticut College and graduate work at Wesleyan University.  Recently she has been included in juried shows at The New Britain Museum of American Art, The Lyme Art Association, and The Gallery on the Green in Canton.   She has been elected to membership in Connecticut Women Artists and the New Haven Paint and Clay Club.
 
     Walt Hampton is an adventure photographer, high altitude mountaineer and attorney who has conquered four of the world's highest mountains, including Denali, Aconcagua, Kilimanjaro and Mt. Elbrus. He cites, as one of his inspirations, legendary adventure photographer Galen Rowell, “who often said that great outdoor photography was found at the edges of things: land and sea; earth and sky; the oncoming storm; the clearing dawn.” 
 
     Hampton believes that “adventure is about exploring those edges and, through photography, endeavoring to capture the magic of those moments, so that one can remember and still know.  It is about our journey along these edges, and in that journey, learning how to live. My hope is that the adventure found in these photographs will inspire you to explore and experience the edges in your own life and discover the excitement and the knowing that the journey brings.”
 
      Library hours are Monday-Thursday 10:00-8:00, Friday and Saturday 10:00-5:00, and, beginning Sunday, November 6, 1:00-4:00 PM.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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NOVEMBER 5, 2011
On Display: Dona Dalton: Stories and Spirits—Toys as Sculpture


     For the month of December, Dona Dalton will be a delightful presence at Canton Public Library.  Her whimsical and spirited creations filled the display case in November, and in December a new display will be featured,  “Juxtapositions and Partnerships:  Birds and Animals.”  Many of the items in the display case will be available for sale, which is good to know for anyone contemplating holiday gifts.  The display is sponsored by the Maxwell Shepherd Memorial Arts Fund. 
 
     It’s hard to pin a label on Dalton’s work.  Is it a toy?  Is it art?  Is it a toy for children?  Or a toy for adults?  Is it an heirloom that should reside on a shelf out of the reach of tiny hands?  Or does it demand to be played with—now!  Or is it “all of the above?”
Dalton calls her creations “Toys as Sculpture” because they are not for “throwing around or into the toy box.”  She adds, “they encourage the imagination and relationship which I felt towards my playthings. My intention is to capture gesture, personality, and something of the spirit, especially as it exists in relationship. A Kingfisher at your workplace, or a cat in a boat can be the best of companions.”
           
     Dalton’s menagerie is made up of brightly painted wooden creatures, mostly animals, some real and some fanciful, often in unexpected combinations.  There are farm animals and wild animals; equines, felines, and canines; birds, frogs, snakes and fish; running, sniffing, slinking mice.  There are sets of creatures:  animals on an ark, animals on a farm, and a dinosaur den.  There is a smattering of humans, angels, and merpeople (maids and men).  Many of the creatures are on wheels.
Whatever we call them, they are a pleasure to look at, to hold, and to play with, and they are an unlikely blend of the primitive and the sophisticated.
 
      In a third-floor studio, Dalton handcuts her creations on a bandsaw, then sands and paints free hand.  “Each one has its own personality and uniqueness and is signed,” she said.  “Color, gesture, pattern and attitude are qualities I try to incorporate in the smallest to the largest piece.”
 
      Dalton, a Philadelphia artist who has been crafting her toys for more than 30 years, sees herself as “a painter who uses a three-dimensional canvas.”  She has a BA in sculpture from the Philadelphia College of Art, and has studied advanced drawing at the University of Pennsylvania, where she also immersed herself in Egyptian art.  Her creations are sold in galleries and museum shops throughout the country.  She has lectured widely and has been featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and in American Craft  magazine.

      Library hours are Monday-Thursday 10:00-8:00, Friday and Saturday 10:00-5:00, and, beginning Sunday, November 6, 1:00-4:00 PM.   For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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JUNE 8, 2011
In the Gallery: "The Art Collector Next Door"

Imagine living in an art gallery and you will have an idea of what it’s like for Rose Winchester, a Canton resident who has decided to share some of her collection with Canton Public Library patrons.  The exhibit titled “The Art Collector Next Door” will be featured for the month of June.

Mrs. Winchester grew up in Simsbury, where her family owned Zablocki’s, a ladies boutique on Hopmeadow Street.  She traces her interest in art to a seventh grade teacher, Mrs. Welch, who every week displayed pictures of famous paintings.  Once her schooling was finished, she was drawn to New York City because she “knew art was there.”  Originally she wanted to become an actress,  and she performed with a group that took Shakespearean plays to high schools.  Although an acting career never really took off, she met and married her first husband in New York City.  “He was a natural born painter,” said Mrs. Winchester, and her world became filled with art and other artists. 

After traveling with her husband to Idaho and later Oregon, she returned to Connecticut, first to Simsbury and later to Canton.  And she continued to build her art collection so that it now graces nearly every room and hallway in her house, including a modest grouping of her own paintings. 

“I just wanted art all around me” is how she describes her motivation to collect.   Her generosity and her impulse to share her collection will be evident when her pieces grace the gallery at Canton Public Library, where her art collection will be all around us.

Canton Public Library is at 40 Dyer Avenue, Canton.  Library hours are Monday-Thursday 10:00-8:00, Friday and Saturday 10:00-5:00.  For information:  (860) 693-5800 or www.cantonpubliclibrary.org

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JUNE 8, 2011
On Display: A Look at the Technical Services Department
In the display case for the month of June, step back into the Canton Public Library’s Technical Services Department for a look at what goes on “behind the scenes” at the library.
 
Anyone who has seen the office of Sarah McCusker, Head of Technical Services, knows that she has decorated with geeky posters, pictures of her son Ian the Library Baby, and lots of crazy toys — but her office is also full of many thick cataloging manuals, tech books, and library publications.  Using these resources, she orders new materials for the library, assigns call numbers to items, makes sure the computer records in the library catalog are complete and accurate, and updates the library website.
 
Technical Services Assistant Annie Barrett processes new books, DVDs, and CDs to get them ready for library patrons to borrow — all items need barcodes, protective covers, and a variety of identification stickers.   Many DVDs and CDs need to be removed from their original packaging and given new, library-appropriate cases.  
 
There is also a constant flow of materials needing repair.  Annie and Sarah repair book spines, re-cover books, replace broken cases, tape torn pages, clean and repair dirty and scratched discs...and a whole host of other things to ensure that people can
continue to enjoy our library materials.
 
Take a look at some of the tools of the trade in the display case!

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MARCH 16, 2011
Youth Art Month exhibit
    In honor of Youth Art Month in March, Canton Public Library will display the artwork of the talented artists in every level of the school system.  The art will fill the main gallery, the Children’s Room, and the display case of Canton Public Library from March 1 to March 31.  A reception for the show will take place on Wednesday, March 16 from 6:30 – 8:00 PM.

    The exhibit will feature more than 100 pieces from students in kindergarten through grade 12 and will include a variety of media, from three-dimensional ceramic and sculptural pieces to two-dimensional work including watercolor, colored pencil and more.

    The schools represented in the show are Cherry Brook Primary School, grades K-3, with art teachers Kezia Hearn and Ellen Raposo; Canton Intermediate School, grades 4-6, with art teacher Deb Beaudoin; Canton Middle School, grades 7-8, with art teacher Linda Klusek; and Canton High School, grades 9-12, with art teachers Renee Hughes and Roselyn Marino.

    Youth Art Month celebrates its fortieth anniversary this month.  Created originally as Children's Art Month in 1961 by The Crayon, Water Color & Craft Institute (now the Art & Creative Materials Institute) in cooperation with the National Art Education Association, it was expanded in 1969 to include secondary school students and, hence, became Youth Art Month. Many schools and communities have planned projects and events to emphasize the value of participating in art for all children. 

    Stop by the library and be prepared to be impressed.  Students and parents will have a bigger exhibit space than the refrigerator, and library patrons will be treated to the lively, colorful, and creative work of our schoolchildren.

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FEBRUARY 23, 2011
On Display: Photography of Lewis S. Mills

            If we google “Lewis S. Mills,” we’re faced with an endless string of references to Lewis S. Mills Regional High School in Burlington.  How many people know anything about the man after whom the school was named?  And even those who do know that he was one of Connecticut’s early and important educators may not know that he also made significant contributions to the field of photography.  For the months of January and February, Canton Public Library hopes to change all of that in an exhibit titled “Lewis S. Mills, Photographer.” 
 
            Lewis Sprague Mills was born on September 5, 1874 into one of Canton’s oldest families.  His lineage can be traced back to the man who gave Canton its name, Ephraim Mills.  Lewis was raised on the Mills homestead on Barbourtown Road, the eldest son of Archibald Mills and Mary Loomis Mills.
 
            Archibald, who served in the Civil War, was a farmer and a harsh taskmaster as a father.  To say that he was parsimonious would be an understatement.  “Little Lewis,” as his father referred to him in his diary, was lame from the age of three, but his father put him to work in the tobacco field at the age of seven.  Lewis began attending school in April 1881, when he was five years old, and was allowed by his father to attend until he was 14, at which time his father took him out of school and made him a full-time farmhand.  He was not allowed by his father to enter Collinsville High School until he was 18.  His mother, who had always supported Lewis’s desire to attend school, was able, on her deathbed, to extract a promise from Archibald that Lewis be able to finish high school.  For his entire high school career, he was required to return home at lunch to his farm chores and to work after school until 7 PM. 
 
            Although a harsh taskmaster, Archibald makes note in his diary of a number of important milestones in Lewis’s life.  He had his first “store haircut” in 1893.  He was “united” with the (Canton Center) Congregational Church in 1895.  He read Greek with Birdsey Case in 1896.  He had a poem published in 1897.  And Lewis took pictures of haying in 1901, got a $50.00 camera (8”x10”) in 1901, and took pictures of tobacco in 1901.  And in 1902, Archibald built Lewis a photography studio in the house.
 
            Photography became a lifelong interest of Lewis.  He photographed local scenes when he lived in Canton, and, when he moved to other Connecticut towns to teach and later to supervise schools and educators, he continued to photograph  schools and students.  When he went off to New York City to attend Columbia University for his bachelors and masters degrees, he was able to use photography to help support himself.  As a photographer in Connecticut, he is known for capturing as many as 500 pictures of the one-room schoolhouses that once dotted the state before advances in transportation  made it possible for towns to build “union” and “consolidated” schools.
 
            After a long and distinguished career as an educator, including the writing of The Story of Connecticut for use as a textbook in schools, he retired to a second career, as editor, writer, and photographer for The Lure of the Litchfield Hills, a magazine which contains invaluable historical resources for anyone interested in local lore and which has become highly sought by collectors.
 
            “Lewis S. Mills, Photographer,” Canton Public Library’s exhibit, will feature photographs of one-room schoolhouses in Canton and surrounding towns in the Farmington Valley, including Avon, Barkhamsted, Burlington, Farmington, Harwinton, and New Hartford.  The photographs of Canton’s one-room schoolhouses will be accompanied by text selections from Larry Carlton’s lecture “Canton’s District Schools.”  The exhibit will also feature photographs of local bridges and rural, agricultural scenes such as photographs of the Mills tobacco operation.  Many of the photographs are from the “Mills Collection” at the Connecticut State Library and from the Canton Historical Museum.
 
            As a record of Connecticut education in the early 1900s, the photographs of the one-room schoolhouses, both exterior and interior, and the group shots of students are fascinating and telling.  We are very fortunate to have them as a record of the experience of schooling at that time. 
 
With an eye to the future, Canton Public Library will, along with the Mills photographs, feature a corollary photographic exhibit of Canton schools in 2010.  The photographs of Canton education in 2010 are the contribution of Canton Girl Scout Troop 61245, a group of 10 girls ages 15-16, who have been together since kindergarten.  Their leaders are  Elizabeth Nardi and Sandy Yost.  This photographic record of Canton schools as they exist in 2010 will, after the exhibit, reside in the library’s local history room.  Decades from now, when people look back on history in the early 2000’s, their photographs will help tell the story.
 
For the months of January and February, the library’s display case will also be devoted to Lewis S. Mills.  Patrons will be able to see Mills’s photographic equipment,  including his cameras, glass slide negatives, and dark-room equipment, which provide a snapshot of late 19th and early 20th century photography. <

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OCTOBER 6, 2010
On Display: Canton Fire and EMS
The Town of Canton Volunteer Fire & EMS Department is partnering with Dish ‘n Dat of The Shoppes at Farmington Valley to present “Fire Prevention Month” in the display case of Canton Public Library for the month of October.

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SEPTEMBER 1, 2010
In the Gallery: "All Seasons: The New England Landscape"

For the months of September and October, Canton Public Library’s Gallery features the paintings of Jim Laurino in a show titled “All Seasons:  The New England Landscape.”  Jim’s works, in both oil and acrylic, depict local scenes at various seasons.
 
Jim, who began painting in his teens, later studied painting and color theory at the University of Connecticut at Storrs.  He had an early interest in painting marine subjects.  His style of painting, which has been called “coarse and vibrant,” has been honed in select workshops and independent study.  He prefers working on site, plein air, often completing the painting in the studio.  The paintings are typically displayed in rustic frames which he constructs from scrap wood and other recycled materials.
 
Of his paintings, Jim says:  “Textured paint is typically worked into my landscapes, and I enjoy the dimensions and color folds that the resulting uneven surfaces offer.   Not surprisingly, my work can best be categorized as representational and impressionistic.”  He most often chooses subjects which offer “multiple, subtle focal points,” allowing the viewer to “bounce around the subject areas of an otherwise mundane scene.”           
 
Jim is an associate artist member of the Lyme Art Association and a member of the West Hartford Art League. His award-winning landscapes have been juried into numerous regional exhibitions.

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SEPTEMBER 1, 2010
On display: Pitchers
For the month of September, Canton Public Library’s display case will feature a collection of pitchers.  The collection belongs to the library’s head of circulation, Katie Bunn.
 
Pitchers can be squat or tall, plain or decorative, utilitarian or sophisticated.  They can be made of glass, ceramic, metal, or plastic, to name a few materials.  We use them to hold cream, water, flowers, iced tea, sangria. 
 
In the case of Katie Bunn’s collection, the 50 or so pitchers were inherited from her grandmother, Glennis Maguire of Maine.  “I’m not a collector,” said Katie.  “She was. She collected not only pitchers but also antique kitchen gadgets.”  The pitchers in her grandmother’s collection are all ceramic and are decorative.  “She didn’t use them.  She displayed them.”  And displayed they will be when the collection fills the Canton Public Library display case in September.

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APRIL 23, 2010
In the Gallery during May: Robert Andrew Parker: Letters and Pictures

When it comes to talent, the northwestern corner of Connecticut is rich with more than its share of artists, musicians, writers, and actors.  One such is Robert Andrew Parker, whose art will appear in Canton Public Library’s Gallery for the months of May and June in a show titled “Robert Andrew Parker:  Letters and Pictures.”     

Robert Andrew Parker, who turns 83 in May, is an artist, illustrator, and printmaker who happens also to be a musician, a sculptor, and a writer.  He has illustrated upwards of 90 children’s books.  His illustrations have appeared in most major publications, including The New Yorker, The New York Times, Esquire, Fortune, Sports Illustrated, Village Voice, and Playboy, to name a few.  His drawings and paintings have accompanied the work of Marianne Moore, William Faulkner, Seamus Heaney, Randall Jarrell, W. H. Auden, Vladimir Nabokov, Franz Kafka, and Joseph Heller.  The library show features the Parker illustrations which have appeared in both magazines and books.  It also includes four of his delightful alphabet series, in which he selects an image to illustrate each letter of the alphabet, including W. H. Auden’s “Airman’s Alphabet” and illustrations for a Spanish alphabet.

Canton Public Library’s Gallery exhibit of Parker’s work complements the show being held at the Gallery on the Green titled “Travels with Bob:  The Art of Robert Andrew Parker” from April 23 through May 23.  In addition, Canton Public Library’s display case features Parker’s illustrations which have graced  children’s books.

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