Thursday, March 12, 2015

Chef's Cooking Series Will Honor Friend of the Library

This spring, the Vineyard Haven Public Library will hold a series of free cooking classes by some of the best-known chefs on the Island. The demonstrations offered over the next few months will feature three different types of chefs, who will show how they prepare some of their favorite dishes. Participants will have the opportunity to sample the dishes and learn recipes and techniques to try at home.

All programs will be held on Wednesday evenings from 6-8pm. Attendance for each class is limited to 30 people, and pre-registration for each program is required. Advance registration will be in person at the library, or through our online calendar.

The series will kick off on Wednesday, March 25th, featuring Doug Smith, restaurateur of Lucky Hank’s. Jaime Hamlin from Jaime Hamlin and Sons Catering will present on April 8th, and Cathy Walthers, a private chef and author of four cookbooks, will conclude the series with her program on May 6th.

This series has been made possible by donations given to the Friends of the Vineyard Haven Public Library in memory of Laurel H. Chapman. Mrs. Chapman was a long-time officer of the Friends, and for several years she recruited presenters and organized refreshments for the Friends' Sunday afternoon programs at the Library.

Laurel Chapman was known by her friends as someone who loved to cook, using every occasion to have a tea or celebration, and she loved to dine out. When the Friends of the Library received a number of generous donations in Laurel’s memory, they agreed that the best way to honor her would be to provide funding for a first-class cooking series. The Library plans to make the Laurel H. Chapman Cooking Series an annual event, supported by the Friends of the Library.

Three Stellar Poets Kick-Off National Poetry Month on April 1st

Poets Lee McCormack, Arnie Reisman and Rose Styron will present their work at the Vineyard Haven Public Library on Wednesday, April 1st at 7 pm, in a reading to kick off National Poetry Month. After the readings, the library will host a reception with refreshments and an opportunity to meet, greet and mingle with these three stellar poets. It will be an evening to remember.

Lee McCormack, the first Martha’s Vineyard Poet Laureate whose work has reached out to large audiences not only at Pathways, but also on Facebook, is a very well-known poet on Martha’s Vineyard, where he has lived for over forty years. Mr. McCormack has worked with such poets as Thomas Lux, Galway Kinnell, Charles Simic, Robert Pinsky, Sharon Olds, and others in what he terms “his criminal pursuit of poetry.”

Arnie Reisman, columnist, radio personality, and the current Island Poet Laureate and director of the Vineyard Playhouse poetry reading series, is nationally known, although perhaps not as well-known yet for his poetry. Mr. Reisman moved to the Vineyard four years ago with Paula Lyons, his wife and co-panelist on the weekly comedy quiz program "Says You!" – now in its 19th year. His new play "Not Constantinople" will premiere this June at the Vineyard Playhouse.

Rose Styron, poet and international human rights activist, has published three books of poetry – (From Summer to Summer – Viking, 1965; Thieves’ Afternoon – Viking, 1973, By Vineyard Light – Rizzoli, 1995)  collaborated on translations of two books of Russian poetry – (Poets on Street Corners, 1968 and Modern Russian Poetry – Viking, 1972). Ms. Styron’s work has appeared in Harper’s, the Yale Review, the Hopkins Review, and American Poetry Review among other distinguished periodicals. In 2009 and 2010 Ms. Styron was a resident fellow at Harvard’s Institute of Politics and its Carr Center for Human Rights. She has chaired PEN’s Freedom To Write Committee and the RFK Human Rights Award, and currently serves on the board of the American Academy of Poets.

The Vineyard Haven Public Library hosts a wide range of cultural and literary events, but this one will be a singular opportunity to hear the work of three brilliant, imaginative and very different poets. Their styles reach across a wide spectrum, but their impact on audiences is always unforgettable.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Register For 2015 Great Decisions Discussion Group

Register online

The Vineyard Haven Public Library Great Decisions Discussion Group will meet for 8 sessions on Thursday evenings at 7pm, beginning April 2nd.

A Great Decisions Discussion Group is composed of interested individuals who want an opportunity to learn and participate in the foreign policy decision-making process. The Foreign Policy Association (FPA) has published the Great Decisions briefing book, a well researched annual publication covering eight timely global topics to be read by group participants in order to prepare for each discussion. At each meeting we will show a 30 minute documentary film on that week's topic, to be followed by a moderated discussion.

Please register online or at the library. The briefing book may be purchased for $22 from the FPA website. (A limited number of books will be for sale at the library.)

Topics and meeting dates:

Thursday April 2
Russia and the Near Abroad
As calls for closer ties with the EU failed to be met, Ukrainians took to the streets in in November 2013. As the movement later known as the Euromaidan, or “Euro Square,” pulled western Ukraine closer to its European neighbors, another powerful force threatened to tear away the country’s eastern half: Russia. Putin’s pushback against European expansionism has the West wondering: If Putin’s Russia isn’t afraid to take an aggressive stance against Europeanization in Ukraine, what does that mean for the rest of Russia’s neighbors?

Thursday April 9
Privacy in the Digital Age
The idea of “privacy” has undergone significant changes in the digital age, as has the idea of privacy “harm.” Fearful of British spying, influence and intervention, the founding fathers granted citizens significant protections in the Constitution. Now, the tables have turned: Concerns about what some see as a U.S. “dragnet” and unwarranted privacy intrusions have compelled other countries to revamp their own privacy protections. Legislation, both at home and abroad, hasn’t kept pace with technological developments, leaving some wondering if privacy as we know it is long dead.

Thursday April 16
Sectarianism in the Middle East
Many of the current conflicts in the Middle East have been attributed to sectarianism, a politicization of ethnic and religious identity. From the crisis in Iraq and Syria to the tension between Iran and Saudi Arabia, the struggle between Sunni and Shi‘i groups for dominance is tearing apart the region and shows no signs of abating. But for all the religious discourse permeating the conflict, much of its roots are political, not religious. How does sectarianism fit into a larger narrative of the Middle East? How have governments manipulated sectarian differences? And finally, what is the U.S. doing about it?

Thursday April 23
India Changes Course
Fed up with corruption, dynastic policies and ineffective public services, Indian voters catapulted Narenda Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party to power in the country's 2014 elections. For voters, Modi embodied real change and an India that wasn't stumbling, but running, to greatness. But for the U.S., change in India brings its own set of unknowns, heralding an age ruled by a prime minister new to national office and other policymakers who have been out of the public eye for a decade. Now, the U.S. has to determine how to best secure its interests as India asserts itself on the world stage.

Thursday April 30
U.S. Policy Toward Africa
Africa is in the midst of an unprecedented transformation. The continent is home to some of the fastest growing economies in the world, and it’s become a draw for foreign investors from across the globe. After the “Obamamania” of 2008 died down, though, the realization that Obama wasn’t going to overturn, or even prioritize, U.S. Africa policy kicked in. Still, the U.S. has promised to promote “strong institutions, not strong men,” and to favor good governance and healthy economies over profit. How can U.S. policy live up to its promise and values while securing its interests in the region?

Thursday May 7
Syria's Refugee Crisis
Syrians have for a century welcomed over a million refugees from Armenia, Palestine, Iraq and other countries around the region. Now, thanks to a multiyear civil war, they are on track to become the source of the world’s largest refugee population in a matter of months. As Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and other neighbors strive to accommodate the millions of Syrians, the risk of allowing Syrians to become dependent on emergency aid and forming a “lost generation” remains. Ultimately, though, the safety of displaced Syrians rests with the whole international community.

Thursday May 14
Human Trafficking in the 21st Century
Human trafficking represents a multibillion in international trade per annum and continues to be one of the fastest growing criminal industries. While undeniably a global phenomenon, the U.S., as one of the world’s leading human trafficking importers, bears a special responsibility to combat this practice. The U.S. and the international community have adopted various treaties and laws to prevent trafficking, but to truly understand and combat the issue, they must find the root causes enabling traffickers to exploit millions of victims.

Thursday May 21
Brazil's Metamorphosis
Brazil — it’s the “B” in the acronym BRICS, five emerging economies once seen as soon-to-be superpowers. After economic troubles in the 1990s, Brazil has risen to new global prominence — it’s drawing in more investment, working on global issues ranging from climate change to peacekeeping, and even hosting the 2016 Olympics. But some of Brazil’s trickiest problems — deep divisions over how to tackle serious income inequality, weak civic institutions and poor regional leadership — have held it back.

Register online

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Delayed Opening, Early Close Thursday March 5th

Vineyard Haven Library will have a delayed opening Thursday March 5th, opening at 12 noon.

Update: All library programs are cancelled today. The MV Photography Club meeting has been rescheduled for next Thursday, March 12th, at 6pm.

Update: The Library will close early at 4pm this evening.