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Meet Author Laurie Halse Anderson

Find out what inspires this bestselling author of plain-spoken stories for adolescents. Laurie Halse Anderson, whose books include Wintergirls, Fever 1793, and National Book Award Finalists Speak and Chains, will visit us virtually using Skype on Tue., Mar. 1, at 7 pm. To attend, click here to register online, through our event calendar. If you have a question for the author, e-mail it to our teen librarian, Betsy Su, at bsu@champaign.org.

Read Author Laurie Halse Anderson

To get to know Anderson’s books, come to any of our preview discussions on Tuesdays at 7 pm. This month, we’ll look at Chains (2/1) and Speak (2/15). All interested adults and teens are welcome.

Learn About Local Foods

Eating locally grown foods is one way to live in a healthier and more environmentally friendly way. Learn more about growing, buying, and eating local in Champaign-Urbana. Drop in for any or all of these free talks at the library on Sat., Feb. 5.

  • 10 am Master Gardener Tom Seals shares his vegetable-growing expertise
  • 11 am Prairie Fruits Farm owner Leslie Cooperband talks about her creamery
  • 12 pm “Whole Foods, Not Whole Paycheck” – Jacqueline Hannah, from Common Ground Food Coop, discusses eating local and healthy on a budget

EBooks: Free from the Library

Got an eBook reader? Check out our selection of free eBooks to download and read on the Nook, Sony Reader, and other devices (coming soon, the iPad, too!). Look in the library catalog for the gray “MediaMall Downloads” tab. Scroll down past the eAudiobooks — another great downloadable option — to find the eBooks. For step-by-step how-to instructions, see our EBooks brochure.

Overdrive Advantage = More for You!

Champaign patrons now have exclusive access to extra copies and more variety of downloadable audiobooks and eBooks in MyMediaMall. When you’re searching, look for items with the yellow ”Advantage” checkmark. For easiest access to Advantage titles, open MyMediaMall and sign in to your library account first, before you search. All copies of some popular titles may be checked out, just like in our regular book collections — but you can place requests, and have up to 7 items on hold at a time.

Poetry Workshop with Janice N. Harrington

Would you like to share and improve your poetry writing? Do you have memories you’d like to preserve in words? Come to a free poetry workshop led by poet and children’s author Janice N. Harrington at our Douglass Branch, 504 E. Grove St., on Sat., Feb. 12, from 2 to 4 pm. You’ll write poetry and journal entries and learn how to make writing a part of every day. No registration. The workshop is part of the Poetry for the People project, funded by the Urbana Arts Council. Photo by Rachel Eliza Griffiths.

Sugar Artist Buffy Vance: Life Is Sweet

Join us as cake designer and sugar artist Buffy Vance, from Madeline’s Confectionary Arts Studio & Gallery in Urbana, shares how she changed her life by believing in what she hoped for.

Vance, pictured here with one of her cake creations, now travels internationally to learn and teach the art of crafting amazing shapes and patterns from sugar. Join us for our next Lifelong Learners @ the Library talk on Wed., Feb. 9. Coffee is served at 9:30 am, thanks to the Library Friends; the program starts at 10 am. This program series is a community collaboration with Parkland College.

In Concert at CPL: Music of Brazil & Poland

Our In Concert at CPL series lets you sample two distinct international musical flavors this month. First, on Sun., Feb. 6, enjoy the mellow sounds of Brazil with the six-piece CU band Desafinado (pictured). Then, on Sun., Feb. 27, enjoy beautiful Polish folk tunes, combining strings with dynamic vocals, as the Latawiec family performs in traditional costume. Both free concerts are at 2 pm. This series is sponsored by the Library Friends.

Live Homework Help: Tutors Online

“They really helped me and explained well!” That’s a typical comment from Champaign students who use Live Homework Help, the online tutoring service, available free through our website. Students from kindergarten to adults can log on with their Champaign library card between 2 and 9 pm daily. Look for the “Homework Help” button on our homepage, and start there.

“Baby Boogie!” CD Makes a Great Baby Gift

Baby Boogie! is our very own CD of classic children’s rhymes plus fun new tunes. Buy it at our Checkout Desk for $15. A great gift for new grandkids, this Parents Choice Approved Award Winner features local musician David Howie. It’s part of a packet we give to CU newborns to help build early reading skills. Hear sample songs on our website.

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February 2011

Event Calendar

See all of our events on our website calendar. Use the month selector to view other months. Click on any event title to sign up for convenient e-mail reminders. Also see this month’s events on our print-friendly PDF.

Free Magazines & Red-Label Special

At the FriendShop, magazines left from our Magazine Clearance will be free for the taking on Feb. 5 and 6. Plus, all month long, regular-priced items with a red label will be “buy 1, get 1 free.” VHS tapes and CDs will be “buy 1, get 2 (yes, two!) free.” The FriendShop is the used book store on the library’s lower level, open weekends from 1:30 to 4:30 pm. What do the colored labels mean? They help us track when items arrived at the shop.

Black History Wednesdays

Celebrate Black History Month at our Douglass Branch with three Wednesdays of special activities at 4 pm. On Feb. 9, all ages can join in our Black History Scavenger Hunt and discover notable people, places, and events. On Feb. 16, try your luck at Black History Bingo. On Feb. 23, we’ll challenge each other at Mancala Mania.

Winter Sweets at Latte Da!

The approach of Valentine’s Day brings sweet somethings to our Latte Da! Cafe. Try a White Chocolate Raspberry Kiss, Cinnamon Bun Latte, Almond Roca Mocha, Chocolate Covered Strawberry (that’s espresso, dark chocolate, and strawberry syrup swirled with steamed milk), and more!

Book by Book: Log Your Reading Online for Prizes

Our seasonal reading program, Book by Book, is a fun way for grownups to track and rate their reading. Plus, with every two books, you’re entered in a prize drawing! Starting Feb. 1, register and log your reading online at http://bit.ly/bookbybook, or sign up at the library. The spring session runs through May 15.

Backyard Birds

Spring will soon be on the wing! All ages are invited to learn about colorful and lively springtime birds from the experts at the Anita Purves Nature Center. Join us for this free event at the library on Sat., Feb. 5, at 2 pm.

Lego Robotic Fun Day

FIRST LEGO League is a robotics program designed to get kids excited about science and technology, while teaching valuable life and work skills. On Sun., Feb. 13, from 1:30 to 5 pm, local FIRST LEGO teams of 4th through 8th graders will be showing off their Lego robots and helping school-age children build and program a working Lego robot. Activities will be repeated several times during the afternoon, with options for younger and older children. The day will include engineering demonstrations and robot-themed stories, too.

Recycled Rhythms with Chad Dunn

Have eco-friendly fun with percussionist Chad Dunn! Enjoy the sounds of Chad’s unique recycled instruments and learn how to make your own. Families and all ages are invited to the Recycled Rhythms event at the library on Sat., Feb. 12, at 2 pm.

Let’s Get Ready for Kindergarten

On Wednesday mornings in March, we’ll use stories and crafts to help children prepare for kindergarten. Each week will feature a different important concept: Mar. 2: All About Me; Mar. 9: ABCs and 123s; Mar. 16: Simon Says... Communication Skills; Mar. 23: I Can Do It Myself! Mar. 30: Please, May I Be Your Friend? The programs, for ages 3 to 5, will be offered at 9:45 and 10:30 am.

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