Starting kindergarten is an exciting time for youngsters. To help these new students anticipate the challenges and emotions of their first school experience, the Canton Public Library will hold a special “Kindergarten: Welcome to School Story Time” on Tuesday, Aug. 23, at 10:30 a.m.
Yoga instructor Beth Griffin will host the event, which is designed to get children feeling happy and excited about going to kindergarten. It will feature stories about starting school, fun yoga poses designed to teach children how to deal with any emotions they may be feeling about entering kindergarten, and a great school bus craft.
Griffin is a certified yoga instructor who teaches yoga to children and families. She holds a bachelor’s degree in communication sciences from the University of Connecticut.
"Overlooking East Beach In Watch Hill, R.I." / Art Chouinard
Story time is free. Registration is required. Participants should dress in comfortable clothes they can stretch and move around in.
“Art Chouinard: Maritime Oil Paintings” continues through August in the Canton Public Library gallery.
Chouinard, a resident of Avon, is known for his realistic and detailed paintings, and has produced limited-edition prints of some of his originals. Chouinard sets up his easel at the library one day a month so patrons can watch him work. He will be at the library on Thursday, Aug. 18, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Maritime scenes are the primary focus of the ongoing show, but a few local and northeastern New England scenes are included. Chouinard’s paintings also are on display at Puffins in Watch Hill, R.I.
The library continues to celebrate its summer reading theme of “Monsters & Dragons & Aliens, Oh My!” for children and teens, 2 to 18.
The Summer Reading Program will end the week of Aug. 15. A pool party for school-age participants who earn their way in is set for Tuesday, Aug. 16, at Mills Pond Pool, and a preschool music party at the library with guest musicians Peter and Ellen Allard is set for Thursday, Aug. 18, at 11 a.m. The wrap party, which is a family concert, is for ages 2 and up. Free. No registration necessary. Continue reading Library Briefs, August
Saturday hours at the Canton Public Library will change for the summer beginning on July 2, when the library will be open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. (instead of the typical 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.). Otherwise, hours will remain the same as usual throughout the summer, with the library also open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The library will be closed on Monday, July 4, in observance of Independence Day.
The library’s summer reading program begins on Friday, July 1, and runs through the week of Aug. 15, when it will wrap up with the third annual pool party for school-age participants (you have to earn your way in) and a preschool music party at the library with guest musicians Peter and Ellen Allard on Aug. 18 at 11 a.m.
Click here for more information about the summer reading program.
The Friends of the Canton Public Library will be collecting books, music CDs, recorded books and DVDs through Saturday, Aug. 27, for their annual book sale on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 10 and 11.
Donations of books and other items may be dropped off any time during library hours.
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 or Laura Hage by leaving a message at the library, 860-693-5800. Training will be provided.
Maritime paintings by Art Chouinard will be on display in the CPL Gallery during July and August. The show opens on Wednesday, July 6.
"Overlooking East Beach at Watch Hill, R.I." / Art Chouinard
Chouinard is known for his realistic and detailed paintings, some of which are available in limited-edition prints.
“Art Chouinard: Maritime Oil Paintings” will include a few paintings of local and northeastern New England scenes. Chouinard’s work is also on display at Puffins, a Main Street gallery in Watch Hill, R.I.
Over the past few years, Chouinard has spent one day a month at the library, demonstrating how he puts together an oil painting. He will be working on one of his signature marine scenes at the library on Wednesday, July 13.
Click here for a dotCANTON.com story about Chouinard just before his two-month show at Canton Town Hall last January and February.
Children’s librarian Heather Baker will be offering a series of drop-in story times on Tuesdays at 10:30 in July and August, with each program geared to the summer reading program’s theme: “Monsters & Dragons & Aliens, Oh My!”
Story times include stories, songs, a short movie, a craft and a snack. Free. No registration necessary.
Book Buddies (teens read to kids) features two groups this summer, one meeting on Thursday mornings at 11 and another on Wednesday evenings at 6. Both groups will meet for six weeks, beginning the week of July 4 and ending the week of Aug. 10.
The Book Buddies program is free, and registration for children 3 to 8 is required. Teen volunteers can fill out an application in the children’s room.
“Movies on the Big Screen” offers the opportunity for young library patrons to join friends, munch on popcorn and watch some new movies and some classics. The big screen lights up in the adjoining Canton Community Center on Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. The movies and the refreshments are sponsored by The Friends of the Canton Public Library.
The series begins with “Gnomeo and Juliet” on July 7, a 2011 Disney animated film rated G. On July 14, it’s Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast,” rated G, for children 3 and up. “Rango,” rated PG, is scheduled for July 21, with “Pete’s Dragon,” rated G, slated for July 28. The series concludes with “Mars Needs Moms,” rated PG, on Aug. 11.
“Movies on the Big Screen” is free. No registration necessary.
Youngsters looking for a dramatic experience this summer will be able to join one of two Readers Theater Clubs at the library. Readers Theater is for youngsters who love to perform and are able readers.
Two sessions will be held this summer. The first group will meet weekly on Monday evenings at 6:30, beginning on July 11 and culminating in a performance on Aug. 8. Participants must be available for that performance. This group is open to youngsters ages 6 to 12. Continue reading Library Briefs, July
Second Vice President Betty Eisen, First Vice President Carol Shimelman, President Sue Ann Uccello, left to right, and Secretary David Drumm, far right, of The Friends of the Canton Public Library present a $15,000 check to Canton Public Library Director Robert Simon in a recent ceremony. Photo provided by The Friends of the Canton Public Library.
Following a year of fundraising efforts, The Friends of the Canton Public Library recently presented a $15,000 check to Robert Simon, director of the CPL.
The Friends raise money for the library at their annual September book sale, through their yearly membership drive, in a book sale that continues throughout the year at the library, in a holiday sale of gift-quality books, and through the sale of book bags.
The group’s annual membership drive is ongoing. Applications can be downloaded from the library’s website, picked up at the library, or obtained by mail (call 860-693-5800 and leave a message for Carol Shimelman).
Donations of books, music CDs, recorded books and DVDs for The Friends’ annual book sale, which is scheduled for Sept. 10 and 11, are now being accepted at the library.
As a result of The Friends’ fundraising and volunteer efforts, the library has been able to purchase many collection items, programs, equipment and services not provided through its operating budget. Examples of items purchased in the past year include:
• Books, downloadable audiobooks/e-books, computer software, a circulating collection of Wii games, DVDs and compact discs.
• Fifteen admission passes to Connecticut museums, cultural sites, state parks and beaches.
• Information databases (Learning Express Library, Historical Hartford Courant and Ancestry.com).
• Children’s programs, including storytellers, magic shows, science demos, singers, craft workshops and weekly yoga-themed story times for ages 3-8.
• Adult programs, including author visits, music concerts, programs on food, gardening and personal organization, and an annual crossword puzzle tournament.
A look at the all-purpose room at the Canton Community Center the day before last September's Friends of the Canton Public Library book sale. Photo: dotCANTON
Beginning today, Monday, June 20, Friends of the Canton Public Library will begin accepting books, music CDs, recorded books and DVDs for their annual sale on Sept. 10 and 11.
Items may be dropped off any time during library hours: Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Beginning on Saturday, July 2, the library will be open on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. through Aug. 27. The last day for dropping off books and other items is Saturday, Aug. 27.
The Friends have been holding a book sale for more than 30 years, beginning with a table at the Lions Club Flea Market, later moving to the Canton Green complex, then to a booth on Sam Collins Day, and finally to the Canton Community Center in 2003.
As technology has burgeoned, the “book sale” has become much more than a book sale. Carol Stevens and Sally Hartman will head up this year’s drive.
As a volunteer organization, the Friends are always looking for new 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 Stevens by leaving a message at the library (860-693-5800). Training will be provided.
The Friends emphasize that all donated items must be in good condition. Books that are ripped, tattered, highlighted or underlined cannot be accepted for the sale. Magazines, encyclopedias, textbooks, the Time-Life series, computer books, condensed books, and VHS tapes will not be accepted.
The book sale in September will follow an established format. An early Saturday morning sale is popular with collectors and bibliophiles. It’s held from 8 to 9:30 a.m. with a $10 admission. Hours for the regular sale on Saturday are 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. On Sunday, there will be an opportunity to fill a bag for $6, a favorite with bargain hunters.
Canton residents can begin registering for the Canton Public Library’s summer reading program on Monday, June 13, at 10 a.m. The program begins on July 1 and concludes during the week of Aug. 15.
Registration can be done in person, by phone or by e-mail, but priority is given to individuals who show up in person. Registration opens up for everyone, regardless of place of residence, on Monday, June 20, at 10 a.m.
This year’s theme: “Monsters & Dragons & Aliens, Oh My!”
Click here for detailed information about the program.
Paul Rego of the state Department of Environmental Protection concludes his presentation on black bears Wednesday night, May 25, at the Canton Community Center. Photo: dotCANTON
By Steve Wilder dotCANTON.com
Connecticut DEP wildlife biologist Paul Rego kept the quips and insights flowing at the Canton Community Center Wednesday evening, May 25, as he spoke to an audience of approximately 160 about black bears in Connecticut.
Fire alarms sounded about 7:40 p.m., forcing the evacuation of the library and community center, but Rego was back at it 25 minutes later, when the building was reopened and his library-sponsored program, “Black Bear History, Biology and Management in Connecticut,” resumed.
A fire alarm forced the temporary evacuation of the Canton Community Center Wednesday night in the middle of Paul Rego's presentation on black bears. Photo: dotCANTON
Rego said wildlife officials tag both male and female bears, but he said you can be sure that a bear wearing a collar is a female.
“Why do we only collar females?” Rego asked rhetorically. “We’re interested in the females because males are dull in every species.”
Rego opened his presentation with a history lesson about the bear population in Connecticut. He said there were plenty of black bears here in the 1600s, when about 100 percent of the land was forested. That landscape changed dramatically, however, by the mid-1800s, when the European settlers had turned what was now known as Connecticut into a farm state, and only 20 to 30 percent of the land remained forested.
There weren’t many bears around by then, Rego said, and when one was spotted passing through it was usually shot dead.
“Bears are a very forest-dependent species,” Rego said. “Their numbers declined as their forest habitat declined, and their numbers declined as they were persecuted.”
When farmers left for the Midwest and trees began growing again, there were occasional reports of bears in the first few decades of the 20th century, “but no evidence we had resident bears,” Rego said. “It wasn’t until about 30 years ago that we began to see evidence of a resident bear population.”
With Connecticut now 60 to 70 percent forested, according to Rego, why did it take so long for the bears to come back? Probably, Rego said, because they prefer a mature forest, where older trees produce better acorn crops, and where trees die and fall, providing homes for the insects bears eat and dens for the bears themselves.
Now that they’re here, their population is going to keep growing. “At present, there is no population control,” Rego said. Bears aren’t hunted in Connecticut, so, Rego said, vehicles are probably their biggest threat. With the first year survival rate for black bears “very high” at 81 percent, Rego said, we should see the black bear population “doubling every five to seven years.”
Some more from Paul Rego:
- Male black bears tend to wander great distances; female bears remain in the area they were born.
- Skunk cabbage is one of a bear’s primary foods in early spring.
- Bears love “colonial” insects such as bees, wasps and ants.
- Bears are scavengers; they’ll eat road kill and “winter kill.”
- “Acorns are probably the most important food for bears.”
- Bears den for three to five months.
- Bears give birth in January.
- “One of our biggest messages is that once winter is over, put the bird feeders away. Birds don’t need feeders this time of year.”
- Bird feeders are “the number one damage complaint” linked to bears.
- Black bears can kill people, but that’s “exceptionally, exceptionally rare.”
Click here to link to the state DEP Web page “Black Bear Do’s and Don’ts.”
Click here to link to the state DEP Web page “CT Bear Fact Sheet.”
Click here to link to the state DEP Web page “Black Bear Sightings.”
Click here to link to the state DEP Web page “Report a Black Bear Sighting.”
"Seascape" by Joe De Thomas / from the collection of Rose Winchester
Canton resident Rose Winchester will share some of her art collection with library patrons throughout June in an exhibit titled “The Art Collector Next Door.”
Winchester, who grew up in Simsbury, traces her interest in art to a seventh-grade teacher who displayed pictures of famous paintings each week. After completing her schooling, Winchester was drawn to New York City because she “knew the art was there.” She says her first husband “was a natural born painter.”
Why did she become a collector? “I just wanted art all around me,” she says.
The Canton Land Conservation Trust will be featured in the display case at the library throughout the month of June.
The Land Trust has constructed and maintains 14 hiking trails on Land Trust properties and has published a guide to most of the trails. The three-ring binder guide is available for purchase or may be borrowed from the library.
Most of the Land Trust properties, whether they have trails or not, are open for “passive recreation and nature appreciation.”
“How To Prepare for Long-Term Care: An Informational Session for Families & Seniors” is scheduled for Wednesday, June 1, at 6 p.m. Sponsored by the library, Canton Senior Services and Cherry Brook Health Care Center, the program will feature three speakers who will bring a wealth of information, experience and advice.
The event is free, and you can register by calling Rachel DeMaida at 860-693-7777, ext. 110. Refreshments will be served.
Dr. Brian Nardi, a chiropractor in Avon, will host a program titled “Issues in Men’s Health” on Saturday, June 4, at 2 p.m. Free. No registration required.
Paula Webster of Canton Physical Therapy will host a program on scoliosis on Saturday, June 11, at 2 p.m.
Webster will talk about scoliosis (curvature of the spine) in the elderly, but her main focus in the presentation will be on screening for young adults. Free. Registration requested.
Poetry lovers will have a chance to read and listen to both original and favorite poems about love in all its forms at “Love: An Open Poetry Reading” on Saturday, June 11, at 3 p.m. in the library’s lower garden area. If the weather is bad, the event will be held indoors.
Organizer Beth Van Ness welcomes poets of any age. She encourages local poets to read their own work, but reading favorite poems by others is welcomed as well. The only requirement is that the poem be about love, whether love of a person, nature, a pet, God — love in any form.
Beverages will be provided. The event is free. Anyone planning to read should contact Van Ness at the library, 860-693-5800.
“The Space Between Us” by Thrity Umrigar is the Monday Night Book Club‘s June selection. A discussion is set for June 13 at 7 p.m.
Copies of the book are available at the library. New members are welcome.
Artist Art Chouinard will be at the library on Thursday, June 16, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., working on one of his signature marine scenes. Chouinard spends one day each month at the library.
Drop-in knitting‘s Saturday group will meet on June 18 from 1 to 3 p.m.; the Monday night group will meet on June 20 from 6:30 to 8 p.m.
Crocheters and spinners are also welcome. Participants should bring a project to work on. The sessions are for beginners and advanced knitters. Tips can be shared, but there’s no instruction provided.
The Teen Book Club has chosen “Are You There Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea” by Chelsea Handler as its June selection. The club normally meets on Saturdays, but in June will gather on Monday, June 20, at noon.
Copies of the book are available at the library. New members are always welcome. Registration requested.
Saturday Book Conversations has selected “Hidden in Plain View: A Secret Story of Quilts and the Underground Railroad” by Jacqueline L. Tobin, Raymond G. Dobard and Maude S. Wahlman. Some claim that quilts, along with codes and songs, were part of the secret communication that aided escaping slaves during the Civil War. Others disagree.
The discussion is set for June 25 at 1 p.m.. Copies of the book are available at the library. New members are always welcome.
For additional information on all of these events, please contact the Canton Public Library at 860-693-5800 or go the library’s website (see link in column to the left).