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Playing, Dancing and Laughing At The Library

Celebrating The Mighty Nature Of Friendship

By Tara Bannon Williamson

Librarian, Park Hill Branch

Instruments of Peace dedicated a March 11 performance to Planet Earth, and all the inhabitants of the Earth – human and animal alike. The musicians used instruments once used to herald war to promote peace. From left: Doug Reichlin, Cornelius Duncan and Gemma Fedele, who joined in the efforts through meditation. Photo by Tara Bannon Williamson

March 2017 marked a very successful one-year partnership with the Rocky Mountain Ukulele Orchestra, their conductor, Gary Jugert, and the Denver Public Library. Over the past year, Jugert and other orchestra members provided 10 programs to more than 150 people at two library locations.

During that time, two new members have joined the orchestra since attending initial lessons at the Park Hill Branch Library. Tickets are now on sale online for their May 9 concert, Ukulele Around the World.

The idea for the partnership for the program came from friends Ann Spaeth, an orchestra member, and Sue Wofford, a beloved staff member at the Park Hill Branch Library who has been with the library for more than 25 years and a Park Hill resident for even longer. This is a powerful example of the mighty nature of friendship to change lives in unexpected and delightful ways. Their established friendship created many new fledgling friendships that grew from connections made by neighbors playing the ukulele together.

Music draws us together as well as lifts us up. It unites us and reminds us of the greatness and beauty that we are all capable of. As we continue to fight the good fight, we must remember to feed our souls and take pleasure in the joys of life that rejuvenate us and allow us to continue moving ever forward.

In that vein, on March 11 Instruments of Peace played on the lawn of the Park Hill Library. They dedicated their performance to the Earth, the people living on the Earth, as well as all of the animals. Using instruments born of a military tradition of pipes and drums going to battle, Instruments of Peace uses these same instruments to promote peace.

Seeing the faces of the crowd while they played, I was reminded why music plays such a vital role in our everyday lives. From the exuberant dancing of the children, to the enthralled toe tapping of adults seated in camping chairs, and the wistful smiles of those standing on the periphery listening, I was reminded of the Stevie Wonder lyric, “Music is a world within itself, with a language we all understand.” One woman leaned lovingly into the person she came to the concert with and whispered something that made them both smile. Another young lady felt the call to meditate in the lotus position while the music played, and we all felt a little more Zen as a result.

Live music performances continue in April every Wednesday evening with the Stapleton String Band, Man of 1000 Songs, Voice of the Wood, and The Milk Blossoms. Voice of the Wood is a Park Hill favorite with Park Hill’s own Michael and Shirley Marecak playing the cellos. May’s events include Grupo Tlaloc Danza Azteca, a traditional Mexica/Azteca dance group, and Automatic Iris, a family-friendly rock band.

Starting again in June, stand-up comedy will return featuring headliners from Comedy Works, starting with Janae Burris, voted the Comic of the Year at the 2016 Sexpot Comedy Awards.

The library is honored to bring music and laughter to Park Hill for everyone to enjoy free of charge. A world where we all play, dance and laugh together is a world in which I aspire to live.    

Pauline Robinson Library Events

Tech Help One-on-One | Mondays and Wednesdays, Noon-1 p.m.

Get technology assistance from one of our in-house experts on your own device or a public computer. Learn the basics, such as email, social networking, word processing and eMedia. Call the library at 720-865-0290 to schedule an appointment for Monday or Wednesday.

Preschool Storytime | Wednesdays, April 5, 12, 19, 26, 10:30 a.m.

Stories, songs, rhymes and fun for 3-5 year olds and their parents or caregivers.

Paint Chip Cityscapes| Monday, April 3, 2 p.m.

Use paint chips and watercolors to turn a plain piece of paper into an amazing cityscape. Ideal for ages 3-8.

Legos Build Day | Saturday, April 8, 1 p.m.

Come build LEGO creations with us. No registration required. While supplies last.

Anime Club | Saturday, April 8, 3 p.m.

Watch, read, talk, act, eat and breathe Anime. Ideal for grades 7-10.

Stories from the Past: Booker T. Washington’s Great-Grandson | Saturday, April 15, 2 p.m.

The great-grandson of the late African American educator Booker T. Washington will be here to talk about Mr. Washington’s family and share photos and other little known facts about him.

The Pauline Robinson Book Club | Saturday, April 22, 12 p.m.

This month’s selection: Glory Over Everything by Kathleen Grissom.

Drop-ins are welcome.

STEM: Minecraft | Saturday, April 22, 3 – 5 p.m.

Play Minecraft on the library’s accounts and make your own creeper to take home. Ideal for ages 10-18.

Doors Open Denver| Saturday, April 2, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Each spring, the Denver Architectural Foundation (DAF) inspires the community to connect, through self-guided (free) or expert-guided (fee-based) tours of Denver’s unique spaces, including high profile, historic and/or artistic feats of architecture and design. Visit Pauline Robinson Branch Library as one of the many Denver based free tours.

Park Hill Branch Library Events

All Ages Storytime | Thursdays at 10:30 a.m.

Stories, songs, rhymes and fun for children of all ages and their parents or caregivers. Craft activity immediately follows the program.

Baby Storytime | Thursdays and Fridays at 11:15 a.m.

Stories, songs, rhymes and fun for babies ages 0-18 months and their caregivers. Play and social time immediately follow the program.

Toddler Storytime | Fridays at 10:30 a.m.

Stories, songs, rhymes and fun for toddlers ages 18-36 months and their caregivers.

Owl Pellet Dissection | Monday, April 3, 3 p.m.

Taking apart an owl pellet is a memorable, hands-on and fun way to learn about the eating habits of owls. Great for all ages, but please no unaccompanied children or adults.

Magic Club | Monday, April 3 and Monday, April 17, 4:30 p.m.

Are you a teen in grades 6-12? Do you already play Magic: the Gathering, or are interested in learning? Join us two Mondays a month to play and meet other Teens who are also Magic-Minded.

The Stapleton String Band | Wednesday, April 5, 6:30 p.m.

The Stapleton String Band combines the melodic tones of the mandolin, banjo, guitar, ukulele, and violin in a repertoire that spans everything from folk and bluegrass to acoustic rock. Sing or dance along to their enjoyable rhythms.

No Strings Attached Book Chat | Saturday, April 8, 11 a.m.

Read whatever you want and attend whenever you can. Share a recent read, an old favorite, or anything in between.

Behind the Scenes of the Denver Silent Film Festival with Howie Movshovitz | Saturday, April 8, 2:30 p.m.

Howie Movshovitz, film critic at KUNC, instructor at UCD’s College of Arts & Media and Director of the Denver Silent Film Festival will screen a short silent movie and share tidbits about the upcoming festival.

Bridge Time: Dealing With the Consequences of Change | Tuesday, April 11, 4 p.m.

Most of us aren’t fond of change, invited or not, but change is a given. Instead of resisting, how can we engage change and embrace a new way of being? Although we cannot control everything that happens in our lives, we always retain the freedom to choose an attitude in response to the changes. Our choice directly impacts our lived experience and quality of life.

Teen Advisory Board (TAB)  | Tuesday, April 11 and Tuesday, April 25, 6 p.m.

Teens ages 13 and up are invited to join the Park Hill TAB. Help plan library events and projects at the Park Hill Library, talk about your favorite books, and make your opinion count. Join us for twice monthly meetings.

The Man of 1000 Songs | Wednesday, April 12, 6:30 p.m.

Rob Wivchar will entertain music-lovers of all ages with a guitar and harmonica while performing storytelling songs with surprising backgrounds.

Early Childhood Book Share | Wednesday, April 12, 6:30 p.m.

An adult book club celebrating books for preschool and early elementary aged children. Bring some books to share on this month’s topic: Poetry.

Laura DiSilverio and Christine Goff: Let’s Get Cozy with Mysteries | Saturday, April 15, 11 a.m.

After spending 20 years as an Air Force intelligence officer, Laura DiSilverio is now a national best-selling and award-winning author of offbeat mystery and suspense novels. DiSilverio’s Close Call was named one of the Top Five Mysteries of 2016 by Library Journal. Christine Goff is the award-winning author of the Birdwatcher’s environmental mystery series, and Dark Water, nominated for the 2016 Colorado Book Award in the Thriller category. Meet these two authors as they discuss their craft and take questions from you.

Genre Chat 2nd/3rd Grade Book Club | Tuesday, April 18, 3:30 p.m.

Read a biography from the Who Was… series. We will play 20 questions to guess who your book is about.

Yes I Think I Can: Cross-Country Cycling After 60 | Tuesday, April 18, 6:30 p.m.

It’s never too late to say, “Yes!” to bigger things! Facing her 60th birthday, Lin Bruce decided to join a cross-country bicycle tour when she’d never before bicycled farther than across town. In the years since, she’s ridden across the U.S. several more times. Be entertained and inspired by the story of that first ride and the five steps that can help you achieve something you’ve never done before.

Voice of the Wood Chamber Players | Wednesday, April 19, 6:30 p.m.

Enjoy beautiful and lively music played by cellos and violins from the Evergreen Chamber Orchestra as they play pieces by Dvorak, Shostakovich, and Telemann.

Blooming Readers 4th/5th Grade Book Club | Thursday, April 20, 3:30 p.m.

Feathers by Jacqueline Woodson; Activity: Feather heart wreath

Earth Day Terrarium | Saturday, April 22, 3 p.m.

Create a mini plant habitat with your kids and learn what it takes to make an ecosystem work. This is an ideal family project with kids ages 3 and up.

Financial Resilience Workshop with AARP Colorado | Tuesday, April 25, 4 p.m.

Whether you are still working, or getting ready to collect Social Security, we introduce you to the tools to help you calculate what you have and what you’ll need. We also help you find real advice about collecting your benefits, how to save more money and how to cut down on unnecessary costs so you may experience the comfortable retirement you hoped to achieve.

The Milk Blossoms | Wednesday, April 26, 6:30 p.m.

The Milk Blossoms believe in the subversive power of fragility within music, within art, within life and within each other. Combining ukulele, expressive beatboxing and piano, the trio blends to create dark pop music.

The Lannisters Send Their Regards: A Game of Thrones Celebration | Saturday, April 29, 2:30 p.m.

On behalf of the Small Council and the Queen of the Seven Kingdoms, you are hereby invited to our celebration. As we all await the return of the next season of Game of Thrones this summer, and the long-awaited next book, revel in this bloody and beloved series with food, fun and surprises. Costumes welcome.

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