Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Helping Hands for Hand Held Devices


Three Saturdays
January 23, February 27 and March 26
2:00-4:00 pm

Electronically savvy and patient students from San Marino High school will be available on three upcoming Saturdays from 2:00 PM to 4:00 pm at Crowell Public Library’s Thornton Room to help frustrated people figure out how to use their hand-held devices. People can sign up for any or all of the free sessions. Each class is independent and informal. Many people have iPods, Androids, tablets, iPhones, and other gadgets, but can’t figure out all of the features. The teen volunteers are familiar with many of the concepts behind these devices, so even if they haven’t used a particular gadget, they may be able to help a person figure out what to do.
This program was initiated by San Marino High School student Chunbill “Billy” Liu who grew up surrounded by gadgets, but noticed there was a technology gap with people who did not have that advantage. Billy approached Librarian Rex Mayreis about closing this gap, while getting in some community services hours for himself and his friends, but has continued the program because there is such a need. The Los Angeles Times covered a session last year and posted a video about it at http://lat.ms/1sODdVg.
If you are frustrated with online and telephone support options, come to Crowell Library and work with a living, breathing techie that will help you “bond” with your device. There’s nothing like one-on-one assistance to help solve problems and tackle sticky widgets.
Registration is required for this program. To reserve your spot, please call 626-300-0777, extension 579 as soon as possible. There are a limited number of teen volunteers, so slots will fill quickly.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Preparing for Special Needs Adulthood


Thursday, January 21, 7:00 p.m.

Over the next decade, many autistic children will reach adulthood. Parents need to have the resources in place to help them. Parent and motivational speaker Amalia Starr wants to help free families who are trapped in the belief that their autistic adult child would not survive out in the real world. Starr’s son, Brandon has taught her it doesn’t have to be that way.

On Thursday, January 21, Amalia Starr will present a program on how she helped her autistic son live his dream of independence when the professionals deemed it impossible. Amalia has been recognized as a pioneer and a trailblazer. By sharing the truth from her personal experiences over the past forty years, she shines a light on the path ahead to make life easier for other families traveling the same trail. Independence is an ongoing process that takes time but will work best if addressed before children reach their teenage years. If one needs additional motivation, just remember children will live 75% of their lives as adults. “When most people hear autism they associate it with a child,” says Starr. “But like my son, Brandon, our children grow up, and we want them to live well and learn how to survive in the world.”

Amalia Starr is a Transition and Independent Living Coach and founder of the Autism Independence Project. She is the author of Raising Brandon: Creating a Path to Independence for Your Adult “Kid” with Autism & Special Needs. Her latest book, “I Have Autism… What’ll I Do Without You, Mom? How to Prepare for When Your Special Needs Child Outlives You was released in October 2014.
Come to Crowell Public Library on Thursday, January 21 at 7:00 p.m. and benefit from Amalia Starr’s insights and life lessons.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Author & Historian Steve Snyder


Wednesday January 20th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series resumes in 2016 with author Steve Snyder on Wednesday, January 20th at 7:00 p.m. in Crowell Library’s Barth Community Room. World War II enthusiasts and history buffs alike should not miss his fascinating chronicle about the crew of this memorable flying fortress.

The B-17 Susan Ruth was knocked out of the sky by German fighters on February 8, 1944. Some men died, some were captured and became prisoners of war, others evaded the Germans but were betrayed, captured, and shot, and some were missing in action for seven months. Through personal letters, oral and written accounts, military records, and interviews -- all from people who took part in the events that happened 70 years ago -- the stories of the crewmen come alive. Everything is centered around the 306th Bomb Group stationed at Thurleigh, England of which the crew of the Susan Ruth was part.

Steve Snyder graduated from UCLA with a B.A. degree in economics and has lived in Seal Beach, California since 1972. After 36 years in national sales and management, he retired and began his quest to learn more about the World War II experiences of his father, pilot Howard Snyder. After four and a half years of research, Shot Down was finally published and has received fifteen national book awards. Steve’s new career as a World War II historian has resulted in his membership with numerous World War II organizations, and he has become President of the 306th Bomb Group Historical Association. Steve’s program about these true World War II heroes will kick off the 2016 Season of the Friends’ Meet the Authors series at Crowell Library.

With such wonderful Friends as these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Working with Remodeling Contractors


Saturday, January 16, 10:30 am

If you are about to remodel your home or hire a contractor, don’t miss Penny Spark’s free presentation at Crowell Public Library on Saturday, January 16th. She knows the critical questions to ask when interviewing a contractor, the pitfalls to avoid during your home improvement project as well as the legal requirements of the contract you sign. She will outline how to navigate the process from the planning stages through the inevitable changes along the way, as well as inspections, warranties and final payments. She can tell you what projects will increase the value of your home and what modifications you can make to keep seniors safe. You will learn how to stay in charge, control costs and see your job finish on schedule.

Penny Spark has been vetting contractors for over ten years and has guided thousands of homeowners through their remodels, additions and maintenance and repair projects. She started the Southern California Home Improvement Referral Service (now Slate, Ltd.) when she got fed up with contractors she had hired for her own projects. She realized that hiring the right contractor is very time consuming and most people do not do it properly. Matching each job with the right contractor is the main objective of her service.

Protect yourself from contractor schemes, dreaded outcomes and nightmare stories. Come to Crowell Public Library for this informative program on Saturday, January 16 at 10: 30 a.m.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

English for Beginners: 2016 Sessions


Fridays: January 15 - February 26
1:15-2:30 pm

This free class at Crowell Public Library is for those who know just a bit of English, but want to learn more. If you or somebody you know is an English beginner and wants to improve, this free seven week class will help all participants make progress. Instructor Richard Bourell will cover vocabulary and basic concepts. His method is to concentrate on listening and conversation skills so that students can interact in English, building vocabulary and confidence. The class will not dwell on grammar, but will encourage students to learn English through real life situations and dialogs.
Richard Bourell has been teaching English for almost forty years, locally and globally, and is the author of the Video Language DVD series, and In English, a video and workbook-based ESL series. He has taught for the Los Angeles Unified School District, the American English Institute in Mexico City, the Richard Lewis School of Languages in Paris, Huntington Park Community Adult School and the ELS Language Center in Los Angeles. His students have come from all over the globe: Latin America, the Middle East, Russia, Korea and Japan. Now Mr. Bourell is reaching out to the community and offering his course for free, a fabulous opportunity for patrons of Crowell Public Library, so don’t miss out.
Interested learners must register in advance by calling the Library at (626) 300-0777, extension 579.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

The Yosemite Murders: Catching Cary Stayner


Thursday, January 14, 7:00 pm

In February of 1999 at Cedar Lodge in Yosemite National Park, three guests disappeared. It wasn’t until March that the bodies of Carole Sund, her daughter Julie, and family friend Silvina Pelosso were found. Special FBI Agent George Fong and dozens of others in law enforcement chased the killer for over six months, worried that he would strike again. Come hear the story of how the investigation unfolded, where luck played a vital role on the killer’s part, and the mistakes he made that got him caught.

George Fong spent 27 years as a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation where he scrutinized all facets of violent crimes including kidnapping, extortion, serial murders, crimes against children, bank robbery, drug trafficking, and gangs. He worked on a number of high profile murder and kidnapping cases and was a member of the FBI’s Evidence Response Team and a certified Undercover Agent. He served as the Supervisory Special Agent of the Violent Crime Squad before being promoted as the Deputy Program Director of the National Gang Intelligence Center and Unit Chief of the Violent Gang Program in Washington D.C. His last assignment was as an Assistant Inspector before retiring. He now serves as ESPN’s Director of Global Security for the western half of the U.S. and Pacific Rim. Mr. Fong is also a mystery writer and his debut novel, Fragmented was released in February of 2014.

Don’t miss this riveting account of how an investigation unfolded, a mystery was solved and a murderer was captured.

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

Rose Pruning Made Easy


Saturday, January 10th, 9:00-11:00 a.m.

Ron Serven, Environmental Services Manager/City Arborist for San Marino will conduct his 22nd annual rose pruning workshop on Saturday, January 10, 2015, and give even the most inexperienced gardeners the knowledge to promote healthy, beautiful rose blooming when spring comes around. Learn the techniques in just an hour or so and be ready to work in companionship with nature in no time.

A former City Parks Division Manager, Ron’s expertise with roses is still visible throughout the city, particularly at Lacy Park. Many rose lovers have benefited from and attended repeat performances of Ron’s workshop at Crowell Library. He will demonstrate optimum rose pruning techniques and answer questions from the audience, such as what to do in cold weather, or how to deal with irregular rainfall. Those who attend will be ready to go out into their own yards the very same day to get the job done. Attendees will get a better sense of how Mother Nature works and will soon be spending some enjoyable time in their home gardens, armed with the knowledge to keep it thriving and beautiful.

This workshop is free and reservations are not required, but if you have questions, please call the library (626) 300-0777, extension 579.

Saturday, December 05, 2015

Modern Cataract Treatment


Friday, January 8, 11:00 a.m.

In the United States, over 24 million people age 40 and older have cataracts, which was a 19 percent increase from year 2000 to year 2012.* Cataracts are the leading cause of blindness, affecting 20 million people worldwide.** On Friday January 8 at 11:00 a.m., Dr. David Richardson will explain what a cataract is, its symptoms and what surgical solutions are available at Crowell Public Library in the Barth Community Room.

When cataracts start to affect your quality of life and interfere with normal activities, such as reading a newspaper or driving a car, it’s time to consider treatment. Delaying surgical treatment for cataracts won’t cause irreversible blindness. However, decreased vision due to cataracts may cause discomfort and even result in accidents. Cataracts often develop slowly and people typically don’t realize their vision has deteriorated until the cataracts interfere with something they need or like to do. Some people start to have trouble reading, watching TV or driving at night.

Presenter David Richardson, MD. is a board-certified ophthalmologist who graduated Magna Cum Laude from USC and earned his medical degree at the Harvard Medical School. He completed his medicine internship at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena, followed by ophthalmology training at LAC+USC/Doheny Eye Institute. He is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Clinical Ophthalmology at Keck School of Medicine and serves as Vice Chief of Staff at San Gabriel Valley Medical Center. As part of the latter group, he presented a very well-attended program at Crowell in 2009 as part of The Doctor Is In series. He has authored a patient-centered book on cataracts, So You’ve Got A Cataract? which is available for checkout at Crowell Library.

Whether cataract surgery is in your future or someone you know, this free program will answer all your questions.

*Reference: Preventblindness.org. New Vision Problems in the U.S. Report | Prevent Blindness National [Internet]. 2015 [cited 2015 Jul 8]. Available from: http://www.preventblindness.org/new-vision-problems-us-report

**Reference: Who.int. WHO | Priority eye diseases [Internet]. 2015 [cited 2015 Jul 8]. Available from:
http://www.who.int/blindness/causes/priority/en/index1.html

Saturday, November 07, 2015

Fall Prevention & Tips for Seniors


Friday, December 11, 2015 - 11:00 am

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one-third of Americans aged 65 and older falls each year: every 20 minutes, an older adult dies from a fall; falls are the leading cause of fatal injury and the most common cause of nonfatal trauma-related hospital admissions among older adults; falls result in more than 2.5 million injuries treated in emergency departments annually, including over 734,000 hospitalizations and more than 21,700 deaths. If that doesn’t impress, the financial toll for older adults falling is expected to increase as the population ages, and may reach $67.7 billion by 2020. With or without injury, falls also carry a heavy quality of life impact. A growing number of older adults fear falling and, as a result, limit their activities and social engagements. This can result in further physical decline, depression, social isolation, and feelings of helplessness.*
On Friday, December 11 at 11:00 a.m., Crowell Public Library will present “Fall Prevention & Tips for Seniors,” a program that will demonstrate how many falls are caused by common hazards in the home and how easy they are to fix. With a few modifications, seniors are able to avoid the potential life-altering impact a fall can cause. If you think you are immune to a fall, think again. Whether one currently enjoys good health, has a medical condition or takes four or more medications, everyone is at risk. This program will be led by Kathy Tucker, RN, who is a Certified Geriatric Care Manager, and Continuing Education Instructor.

Come to the Barth Community Room at Crowell Library and learn some easy safety tips for health and well-being.



*https://www.ncoa.org/news/resources-for-reporters/get-the-facts/falls-prevention-facts/

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The Smart Way to Deal with Stupid People


Monday December 7 - 7:00 pm

Most people have been in frustrating situations where the person in charge has stood in the way of the other person’s goals or needs. On Monday, December 7, author David Silvey will explain, in a fun and practical way, how to deal with these frustrating situations and people, and how to help the person standing in your way get what they want as well. He will demonstrate how to approach a crisis with a clear objective by developing an action plan that will harness anxiety and frustration and use it for good—for others and for one’s self.

According to the National Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older, or 18% of the population.* Learn how to capture the emotions connected to anxiety so you can achieve your goals. According to Silvey, anxiety often comes from fear which is what people experience when they sense they won’t get what they want, and as a result, are experiencing conflict and confrontation in their interactions.
David E. Silvey is the Communications Officer at Huntington Medical Research Institute in Pasadena, where he works for the President and Chief Scientist. He has a B.S. in Management Engineering from Grove City College and an M.B.A. from Regent University. He is one of 10 children and learned at an early age how to get what he wanted in the midst of scarcity while competing with the wants and needs of others who were equally important.

Learn a new way to deal with frustrating people by coming to this free program at Crowell Public Library Monday, December 7 at 7:00 p.m.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Talk About a Fiery Diva!


LA Opera Talk Sunday, November 15th
Norma

On a mountaintop in a Druidic temple during the Roman occupation of Gaul, a clandestine love affair brings two mortal enemies together during a time of war. The pagan priestess Norma discovers that her beloved now loves another, and a fiery new battle begins as betrayal, anguish and fury take the reins. Norma delivers an overwhelming feast of vocal fireworks. It is a tragedia lirica or opera in two acts by Vincenzo Bellini with libretto by Felice Romani after Norma, ossia L'infanticidio by Alexandre Soumet.

LA Opera Community Educator Ron Streicher, will use examples from three live-performance recordings to examine just how each of those sopranos demonstrates her 'divadom,' when he leads this LA Opera Talk at Crowell Public Library, Sunday, November 15th at 2:00 p.m. Norma debuted at La Scala Opera House in Milan in 1831, although the premiere was greeted with a less than enthusiastic response from the audience. The opera is now regarded as the ultimate example of bel canto. From her opening aria, "Casta diva," through to the opera's fiery conclusion, the title role challenges the range, vocal dexterity, endurance, and dramatic capabilities of every diva who dons the mantle of this Druid priestess.

Ron Streicher began his career in music as a pianist, percussionist, and choral conductor. His love for opera was kindled while playing tympani in the pit orchestra of the UCLA Opera Theatre and rapidly grew to an overwhelming passion. His career as an audio engineer has afforded him the opportunity to work with the touring companies of the New York City Opera and Metropolitan Opera, and the Aspen Music Festival and School, where he served as the recording engineer and sound designer for more than fifty opera productions.

Opera has something for everyone. It can sweep you away to foreign lands, take you back in time, dazzle you with pageantry and bring history to life. It is literature, social studies, cultural diversity, multiple languages and most of all, it is exciting! Come explore the world of opera for free through LA Opera’s education programs at Crowell Public Library!


Crowell: First Library in the World to Offer Dakim Brain Fitness

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Coping with Sight Loss


November 13 & 20, 10 am-12 noon

According to the Braille Institute, twenty-one percent of people age 65 and over report some form of vision impairment. This represents 7.3 million people.* Crowell Public Library is partnering with the Braille Institute in presenting two free seminars that will address all your questions related daily life with low vision. There are many causes of visual impairment and Braille Institute helps people of all ages overcome obstacles caused by low vision. They will offer the latest information on adapting to these visual changes and which assistive devices might be appropriate.

Sight loss can be caused by macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts or diabetic retinopathy.
Practical day-to-day applications will be presented such as organizing and identifying money and marking and labeling household items. The importance of staying connected will also be explored: rediscovering the joy of reading, writing and communication. Attendees will learn about resources for getting around town, assistance with orientation and mobility. And all will be provided information on Braille Institute and low vision rehabilitation consultant appointments.

These free sessions will be held on two consecutive Friday mornings, November 13th and 20th from 10:00 a.m. to noon in the Barth Community Room.


* http://www.brailleinstitute.org/sight-loss-blog/395-facts-about-sight-loss-symptoms-leading-eye-diseases.html

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Helping Hands for Hand-Held Devices


September 26 and October 24
2:00-3:30 pm

Electronically savvy students from San Marino High school will be available on two upcoming Saturdays from 2:00 PM to 3:30 pm at Crowell Public Library’s Thornton Room to help people figure out how to use their hand-held devices. People can sign up for any or both of the free sessions. Many people have iPods, Androids, tablets, iPhones, and other gadgets, but can’t figure out all of the features. The teen volunteers are familiar with many of the concepts behind these devices, so even if they haven’t used a particular gadget, they may be able to help a person figure out what to do.

This program was initiated by San Marino High School junior Chunbill (“Billy”) Liu who grew up surrounded by gadgets, but noticed there was a technology gap with people who did not have that advantage. Billy approached Librarian Rex Mayreis about closing this gap, while getting in some community services hours for himself and his friends, but has continued the program because there is such a need. The Los Angeles Times covered a session last year and posted a video about it at http://lat.ms/1sODdVg.
If you are frustrated with online and telephone support options, come to Crowell Library and work with a living, breathing techie that will help you “bond” with your device. There’s nothing like one-on-one assistance to help solve problems and tackle sticky widgets.

To reserve your spot for this program, please call 626-300-0777, extension 579 as soon as possible. There are a limited number of teen volunteers, so slots will fill quickly.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

LA Opera Talk: Moby Dick


Sunday, October 18th, 2:00 p.m.

This upcoming opera at the Music Center is based on Herman Melville's classic novel: a fanatical sea captain’s unrelenting obsession for revenge drives his entire crew into the face of death and destruction as they explore the vast and mysterious oceans in search of a monster. Jake Heggie’s sweeping, gorgeously detailed score for this Moby Dick has already taken its rightful place as a true contemporary masterpiece. Learn more about this thrilling production on Sunday, October 18th at Crowell Public Library with a fascinating audio visual program in the Library’s Barth Community Room. LA Opera Community Educator Sean Muhlstein will present the background on this stunning work, enhancing the richness of the opera experience for one and all. Sean is also a board member of the Opera League of Los Angeles and is eager to share his expertise with opera fans new and old.

Opera has something for everyone. It can sweep you away to foreign lands, take you back in time, dazzle you with pageantry and bring history to life. It is literature, social studies, cultural diversity, multiple languages and most of all, it is exciting!

Come explore the world of opera through LA Opera’s education programs.

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

A Primer in Human Genomics for the Curious Non-Scientist


with USC Professor Hal Slavkin
Beginning Tuesday October 6, 12:30 - 2pm

If you’ve ever wondered what all this genome business is about, you won’t want to miss a single session of this upcoming free class brought to Crowell Library by USC’s Emeriti Center College: A Primer in Human Genomics for the Curious Non-Scientist. In six sessions, participants will explore evolution, healthcare and biotechnology, with a focus on the new personalized, precision healthcare options. Advances in human, animal, plant and microbial genomics is rapidly enhancing the understanding of genes, allowing innovations in designing new organisms for specific applications such as removal of hydrocarbons from sea water, and precise approaches to diagnosis and drug treatments. The mantra “faster, cheaper and better” is rapidly advancing genomics, especially with drug designs for specific individualized cancers.

Back in 2000 when the Human Genome Project completed its first draft, the effort took more than a decade at a cost of millions of dollars -- to just partially complete one person’s genome. By the end of 2013, the human genome was completed and the cost of sequencing was reduced to $1,000 per person’s genome within a 24 hour time period. How did that happen and what does this mean for the future?

These classes will be presented by Professor Hal Slavkin, Dean Emeritus, University of Southern California School of Dentistry, who retired in June 2014 after 46 years on the full-time faculty. During his academic career he served as Chair of Biochemistry, Dean of the School of Dentistry, and served as the Director for the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda. He is a Member of the Institute of Medicine, a Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the International and American Associations of Dental Research, and the International Society of Developmental Biology. Professor Slavkin lives in Marina Del Rey.

Reserve your spot in class by calling the library at (626) 300-0777.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Three Secrets to a Healthy Life with Bernardo Perez III, D.C.


Tuesday, October 6, 7:00 p.m.

Who doesn’t want to have more energy, better digestion, better quality of sleep, or maybe lose weight? Come to a free presentation, “Three Secrets to a Healthy Life.” Bernardo Perez III, DC will demonstrate ways to create a lifestyle that protects you from premature aging and illness. Nutrition, exercise and stress reduction are the keys to health and happiness. But according to a recent study, very few adults actually meet the criteria for a healthy lifestyle. The study, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, showed that only 3% of American adults got a perfect score on what the authors say are the four basic criteria for healthy living. Just 13.8% met three of the criteria; 34.2% met only two criteria. Women scored slightly better than men.*

Don’t miss this great opportunity to get a foothold on health and happiness. Dr. Perez has presented a number of health-related programs at Crowell Library and is a popular and fun presenter. He is nationally board certified, California Board Certified and a member of the International Chiropractic Association. He attended the Cleveland Chiropractic College in Los Angeles and was born and raised in southern California. Dr. Perez specializes in identifying and correcting brain and neurotransmitter imbalances. He is dedicated to helping people of all ages by applying knowledge and experience in rehabilitation so they can attain their optimal state of health and well-being.

Whether thirteen, thirty or beyond, everyone benefits from a healthy lifestyle. This program at Crowell Library will be an easy way to get started on that road, or to just fine-tune day-to-day health strategies.

* http://www.webmd.com/diet/4-steps-healthy-lifestyle

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Friends of Crowell Library: Meet the Authors!


Ken Oder: The Closing
Tuesday September 22nd 7:00 p.m.
Alice Simpson: Ballroom
Thursday, October 22nd 7:00 p.m.
Edward Larson: The Return George Washington
Thursday, November 12th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series continues this fall with writer Ken Oder who grew up in White Hall, Vir¬ginia, a farm town of about fifty peo¬ple near the Blue Ridge Moun¬tains. Although he moved to Los Ange¬les in 1975, prac¬ticing law and serving as an exec¬u¬tive, White Hall’s moun¬tains and its peo¬ple still come out in his stories. His latest, The Closing, was voted Number 1 Best-Selling Kindle Legal Thriller and Number 6 Best-Selling Kindle Mystery novel on Amazon.com. The story begins when two men meet in the Virginia state penitentiary and discover they have only one thing in common: they both want their lives back. Meet Ken Oder on Tuesday, September 22 at 7:00 pm in the Library’s Barth Community Room.

Author Alice Simpson will talk about her latest title, Ballroom on Thursday, on October 22, also at 7:00pm. A novel told in interconnecting stories, Ballroom is a poignant story about a group of strangers united by a desire to escape their complicated and unhappy lives, if only for a few hours each Sunday evening, in a dilapidated Manhattan dance hall on the verge of closure. Kirkus Reviews wrote: “…Simpson is a master at creating realistic characters. Readers who enjoy seeing inside the hearts and minds of others will relish sharing the lives of Simpson’s creations.”

And on Thursday, November 12, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and Professor of Law at Pepperdine University Edward Larson, will present insights into his latest book, The Return of George Washington: Uniting the States, 1783-1789, an exacting and elegant look at the critically important, yet “forgotten” years in Washington’s distinguished life.
All programs are free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served. With such wonderful Friends as these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Free Picture Tapping Workshop


Wednesday, September 16, 7:00 p.m. and
Thursday, September 17, 7:00 pm

Parents, teens and even younger kids can learn a mind-body technique that might help them cope with anxiety, worry and stress on September 16th and 17th at Crowell Public Library. By intervening in the body's flight, fight or freeze response, this technique has been used to help students improve their test performance, help executives overcome their fear of public speaking, athletes improve their performance and hospital patients deal with pain and stress. Instructor Tee Ming Ooi uses a combination of EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), neuro-linguistic programming and inner-child work that strives to intervene in the body's flight, fight or freeze response to thwart self-sabotaging patterns. Her mission is to help everyone reduce their stress levels naturally.
Participants in this two-part workshop will learn about mental and emotional first aid, how to acknowledge their emotions, change their physical state, direct their emotional release through “tapping,” and embrace a positive future while forgiving others and oneself.
Tee Ming Ooi has conducted workshops for parents and boy scouts and has provided online resources on various stress relief tools. She offers easy techniques that adults, teens and kids can use to shift from anxiety, stress, anger or frustration to more resourceful states of calm, peace and love. She is a “life coach” trained in several mind-body-emotion methods, who wishes to spread this knowledge so that many can experience increased peace and productivity.
Learn to how deal with anxiety, worry and stress naturally at this free workshop Wednesday, September 16 and Thursday, September 17 at 7:00 p.m. at Crowell Public Library.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Self-Publishing Workshop


Saturday September 12th 11:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

As part of the Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series back in February, local author Christopher Lynch proved a dynamic and highly likeable speaker when he gave a talk on his latest novel, One-Eyed Jack (which has since been optioned for a feature-length film). He has also self-published many short stories and is back this Fall to present a workshop on the ins and outs of self-publishing. This free workshop will include the pros and cons of doing it yourself versus traditional publishing, editing, formatting the manuscript as an e-book or print on demand, cover design, ISBNs and barcodes, costs of services, pricing, sales channels, promotion, and a live step-by-step demonstration of an e-book being uploaded and created on Amazon.

With an extensive background in non-fiction, Chris has written for numerous local and national publications. He recently wrote and published an authorized biography of the iconic child actor Ken Osmond, (Eddie Haskell from the TV series Leave it to Beaver) Eddie: The Life and Times of America's Preeminent Bad Boy. When he’s not writing, Christopher enjoys mountain climbing and has reached the summits of Mount Whitney, Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, and most recently, completed a trek to Mount Everest Base Camp. He once trained and led eleven blind hikers to the summit of 10,000 ft. Mount Baldy, the highest point in Los Angeles County, and the third highest point in Southern California. A documentary film is being made of this adventure. Chris is a member of Sisters in Crime Los Angeles chapter, as well as Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators.

Don’t miss this great opportunity to learn about self-publishing from a true pro on Saturday, September 12 at 11:00 a.m. in the Library’s Barth Community Room. The authors will keep coming this Fall, thanks to the Friends of Crowell Public Library.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Social Security Workshop


Thursday, September 10, 6:30 p.m.

According to famed financial journalist Jane Bryant Quinn, the average retiree leaves thousands of dollars on the table* simply because they don't understand how to optimize their Social Security benefits. This upcoming free workshop at Crowell Public Library offers a chance to avoid this mistake. This informative and easy to understand evening will be led by John Pak, a Certified Financial Planner who will simplify some of the more popular rules as well as the confusing ones. He will revisit the origins of the Social Security system, take a closer look at the mechanics of the program, and explore the ways in which individuals can maximize benefits and avoid the pitfalls. This workshop is open to all who are interested in learning and discussing this federal program. Did you know there are over 500 different ways that enrollees can claim benefits? Or that one can claim 50% of one’s ex-spouse's benefits? Or that one can earn 8% per year for delaying benefits?

John C. Pak has 15 years of experience in the financial services industry. He received a B.A. in Finance through Cal State Fullerton's Mihaylo School of Business and completed financial planning training through NYU. He is very active in spearheading community outreach initiatives with local colleges, public libraries and lifelong learning centers in the greater Los Angeles County area to promote financial literacy and empowerment. John's firm, Searchlight Financial, is the host of KFWB 980AM radio’s “Smart Money Fundamentals.” This workshop has been conducted at numerous Los Angeles area libraries, as well as UCLA extension, UCR extension, UCSB extension, Cal State University of Long Beach (OLLI) and Cal State University of Fullerton (OLLI).

People who have worked hard all their lives should get the most out of their benefits. Don’t miss this free seminar Thursday, September 10th at 6:30 p.m. at Crowell Public Library.

*http://www.aarp.org/work/social-security/info-10-2013/when-to-claim-social-security-benefits.html

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

LA Opera Talk -- Gianni Schicchi and Pagliacci


Sunday, August 30th, 2:00 p.m.

For more than six years, LA Opera has visited Crowell Public Library with its Opera Talk series where volunteer community educators present fascinating facts and musical excerpts from the operas that are playing downtown at the Music Center. LA Opera’s 30th Anniversary Season will open in September with the double bill of Puccini’s comedic masterpiece Gianni Schicchi and Leoncavallo’s thrilling drama Pagliacci. Opera superstar Pl├ícido Domingo will perform a rare stunt by singing the lead role in the first opera and conducting the orchestra in the second! Join Community Educator Ray Busmann for an engaging and informative talk about these two gems of the Italian repertoire and learn about LA Opera’s stunning stage productions by Woody Allen and Franco Zeffirelli.

This free presentation will include plenty of video excerpts from both operas. Funny and witty like a prime-time sitcom, Gianni Schicchi is the story of a greedy family trying desperately to rewrite the will of their deceased patriarch for their own benefit. And in the heart-wrenching Pagliacci, an explosive mix of jealousy, lust and hate leads to a shocking and murderous conclusion.

Ray Busmann, a former classical music radio announcer in his native Germany, has loved opera ever since he was five years old and enjoys sharing his passion for the art form with audiences of all ages. He has worked as an artist and educator for over 30 years and he freelances as a translator and voice-over artist for Hollywood movies. This is his third season as a volunteer Community Educator for LA Opera.

Opera has something for everyone. An opera can sweep you away to foreign lands, take you back in time, dazzle you with pageantry and bring history to life. It is literature, social studies, cultural diversity, multiple languages and most of all, it is exciting! Come explore the world of opera through LA Opera’s education programs. Learn all about this sensational season opener at the LA Opera on Sunday, August 30th at 2:00 p.m. at Crowell Public Library.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Medicare 101: Thursday, September 3 – 7:00 p.m.


Whether you’re approaching age 65 or are already receiving Medicare benefits, you’ll want to attend this free educational seminar at Crowell Public Library, Thursday, September 3 at 7:00 p.m. An independent broker working in Pasadena, John Dickey will present an audio-visual program on the many aspects of Medicare and will answer all your questions. He will serve as your free resource and advocate, now and at any time in the future, to help you find the Medicare information you need. John’s consultations and advocacy work are always free and available to seniors for any Medicare questions they may have. His guidance, and advocacy on behalf of seniors is always totally independent of any insurance company and is governed by CMS (Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services).

Since the enrollment period for Medicare runs from 10/15 to 12/7, this workshop is timely to say the least. And when the time comes to choose a Medicare plan, reviewing all of your options can be overwhelming. This "Medicare Made Clear" meeting will offer tools and resources that make it easier to understand and apply all of the basic rules of Medicare, plus attendees will receive a free Medicare Clarity guide book to keep for future reference. Learn the rules of Medicare, the available elections and options, how to avoid penalties, and what Parts A, B, C, D,and E are.

John Dickey has given numerous presentations throughout San Gabriel Valley on Medicare, including Arcadia, Altadena and Monrovia. He frequently attends insurance training seminars and classes to stay current on all government regulations and available plan options. He is a fully licensed certified Health Insurance Planner, has an MBA, and has lived in San Gabriel Valley for 20 years. Don’t miss this opportunity to get all your questions on Medicare answered.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The Impact of Feng Shui on Our Lives



Saturday, July 25, 2015, 2:00 p.m.

Feng Shui is centuries old systematic knowledge and wisdom from Chinese ancestors. From the definition given by H.H. Grandmaster Lin Yun: “Mankind use the knowledge available to them at the time to choose, to build, to create a most suitable environment to live for their better survival, that knowledge is called Feng Shui.” Regardless whether one believes in it or knows about it, the impacts of Feng Shui exist objectively. Feng Shui affects many different aspects of our lives, career, relationships, education, travel, wealth, family, marriage, children, and health. Bad Feng Shui causes problems in our daily life, but on the other hand, we can benefit from having good Feng Shui. We also can improve our lives through Feng Shui adjustments and enhancements.

Feng Shui is getting more and more popular in the Western world and in this insightful lecture, attendees will gain an overview of Feng Shui, learn what it can do, and bring home a couple Feng Shui tips. Crystal Chu is a spiritual teacher, meditation master, author, international speaker, and an international Feng Shui educator and consultant. She is also an Adjunct Professor at the School of Arts and Letters at San Diego State University, the CEO of Yun Lin Temple, and the Chairman of Taipei Lin Yun Foundation. Crystal Chu holds a B.A. in Sociology from National Taiwan University, and an MBA from University of Georgia. In 1998, Crystal Chu was recognized and consecrated by His Holiness Lungtok Tenpai Nyima, the supreme leader of Tibetan Bon tradition, and honored with the title of Khadro Rinpoche which represents the highest female religious position and a precious spiritual teacher in Tibetan Buddhism.

Don’t miss this enlightening afternoon at Crowell Public Library, Saturday, July 25 at 2:00 p.m.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

The Honey-Lulus in Concert!


Sunday, June 14, 2015, 3:30 p.m.

Say aloha to the Honey-Lulus: Christina Linhardt, Kate Friedricks and Justeen Ward, three charming and talented ladies who will perform vintage songs of the islands and dance like the swaying palms, live and in color at Crowell Public Library, Sunday, June 14th. They promise to make your summer with their ukuleles and vocal harmonies that conjure up warm breezes, happy hukilaus and sunny shores – the perfect summer entertainment extravaganza!

Kate Friedricks has created new arrangements with a vintage feel for Hawaiian and tropical music that was popular in early and mid-twentieth century America. Christina Linhardt and Justeen Ward bring their years of experience as variety entertainers all over the world to create this eclectic show. Audience members may be invited to learn the hula and will definitely be wowed with this fast-paced musical trip to an imaginary Tiki Island.

Kate Friedricks has performed at Disneyland, Universal Studios and the Renaissance Pleasure Faire and is known for her entertaining arrangements and facility with many different instruments. Christina Linhardt is well known for melding vaudeville and opera in a combination that has made her popular in Europe as well as the United States. Justeen Ward is the queen of singing telegrams in the Los Angeles area. She has spent years designing and performing celebrity impersonations and doing comedy for children and adults. She has also traveled to Europe and Japan singing and doing comedy improv.

Take a little vacation at Crowell Library where you can almost “feel” the ocean spray!

Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Read to the Rhythm! June 8 – July 18, 2015


Shake, rattle and roll to the library for Read to the Rhythm! This summer at Crowell Public Library, the kids aren’t the only ones having fun. Adults 18 years and up can register for the Adult Summer Reading Club, which has the theme Read to the Rhythm this year. Register at the Adult Reference Desk where you can get the lowdown on all upcoming concerts, prizes and movies:

A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC ON THE PATIO: Summer Family Concerts
Wednesdays at 7:00 p.m. in the Library’s Schow Patio

June 10: Chocholaty Rose Duo (flute and harp)
June 17: Bluesman Brother Yusef
June 24: Paul Stein (violin)
July 1: John Mclean Allan (bagpipes)
July 8: Joseph Peck (Caribbean drums)
July 15: the Tea Trio (jazz)

MOVIE MUSICALS!
THURSDAY, June 18, 12:30 P.M. “Chicago,” 2002. Winner of six Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Supporting Actress for Catherine Zeta-Jones.
THURSDAY, July 16, 12:30 P.M. “Singin’ in the Rain,” 1952. Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds star in what critic Roger Ebert called “the greatest Hollywood musical ever made.”

REGISTER, READ AND WIN!
Beginning June 8th, readers aged 18 and up can register for the program at the Adult Reference Desk. Receive a goody bag and learn how to be eligible for weekly prizes.

Don’t miss all the summer fun and music at Crowell Public Library beginning June 8th.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Where Are My Keys? Separating Facts from Fear About Memory Loss


Wednesday May 20th 7:00 p.m.

Did you know that if you live to be 85 years old you have a 50% chance of having dementia? So what is dementia and how is it different from Alzheimer’s disease? When it comes to memory and aging, what’s normal and what’s not? How do family members and caregivers adjust when someone they love is diagnosed with dementia? Learn the answers to these questions and many more in a relaxed, friendly, interactive presentation facilitated by Silverado – The Huntington, and The Alzheimer’s Association, California Southland Chapter.

Dementia is not a specific disease. It's an overall term that describes a wide range of symptoms associated with a decline in memory or other thinking skills severe enough to reduce a person's ability to perform everyday activities. Did you know there are reversible dementias as well as irreversible dementias? What are the most common types of dementia? What are the 10 warning signs of Alzheimer’s Disease? How is someone diagnosed and how long does it take? How do the symptoms of dementia affect family members and caregivers? While there is currently no cure for most progressive forms of dementia, it doesn't mean we're powerless against them. Mounting research is building an understanding that there may be ways to slow the progression and change the pathologies of many common dementias, giving those afflicted with them and their families the possibility of more precious, fulfilling moments together.

Susan Howland is Director of Education for the Alzheimer’s Association, Southland Chapter and Theresa Adams, Community Ambassador at Silverado – The Huntington, will work together to help separate fact from fear about memory loss and aging. In addition, Liz Perrigue, Certified Senior Advisor from Visiting Angels will give a brief overview on the difference between home health and home care.

Bring your questions, your curiosity and a friend. All are welcome, refreshments and giveaways will be provided.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Your Retirement Checklist


According to a survey of recent retirees conducted in 2005 by Fidelity Investment, over half (57%) of recent retirees look back on the years before leaving the workplace and they wish they had done more retirement planning before they retired.* We need to know what to do ahead of time, because age 65 comes upon us before we know it. The rules, regulations, deadlines and formulas associated with Medicare, Social Security, IRAs and 401(k)s can be confusing. Simply checking off the wrong box could irrevocably trigger taxes and penalties that could have been avoided. After working this hard to climb the mountain, one doesn’t want to stumble just when planting the flag. Attend this free seminar to learn about all the basics, and to see what’s required of that retirement plan.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics,** the average duration of retirement has increased from 8.1 years in 1950 to 20 years in 2007, with the average retirement age being 65, but many people will live considerably longer than that. Will your money last as long as you do? This free program will help you better prepare for all those “golden years” in the future.
Presenter ALAN KONDO, a specialist in retirement and estate planning, is a Certified Financial Planner and Chartered Life Underwriter, and a business columnist for the Rafu Shimpo. He is an independent Registered Investment Advisor offering securities and investment advisory services through Charles Schwab.

Come to Crowell Public Library on Saturday, May 9th at 10:30 a.m. and learn what should be on that very important retirement checklist.
*http://seniorliving.about.com/od/manageyourmoney/a/retiresurvey.htm
** http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2001/10/art2full.pdf

Crowell: First Library in the World to Offer Dakim Brain Fitness

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1890 Huntington Drive, San Marino, CA 91108-2595 ● Phone: (626) 300-0777
www.CrowellPublicLibrary.org

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Meet the Authors: Naomi Hirahura, Steph Cha & George Fong


Wednesday May 6th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series celebrates Asian Pacific Heritage Month with authors Naomi Hirahura, Stephanie Cha and George Fong Wednesday, May 6th in the Library’s Barth Community Room. Naomi Hirahara is the Edgar Award-winning author of the Mas Arai mysteries and a new series featuring a young female bicycle cop, Officer Ellie Rush. Murder on Bamboo Lane was the first in that series and a finalist for the T. Jefferson Parker Award. Grave on Grand Avenue is the second in that series and was released this month. Naomi Hirahara was born in Pasadena, California and received her bachelor's degree in international relations from Stanford University. She also studied at the Inter-University Center for Advanced Japanese Language Studies in Tokyo.

Steph Cha’s writing has appeared in The Los Angeles Times, The L.A. Review of Books, and Trop Magazine. A graduate of Stanford University, she studied English and East Asian Studies. She also graduated from Yale Law School and works as a temp attorney. She lives in her native city of Los Angeles, California with her husband Matt and her dog Duke. Beware Beware is her second novel.

George Fong spent twenty-seven years a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, investigating all facets of violent crimes, including kidnapping, extortion, serial killings, crimes against children, bank robbery, drug trafficking, fugitives, and Asian gangs. He was a member of the FBI’s Evidence Response Team and a certified undercover agent. He is now the Director of Security for ESPN. Fragmented is his first novel.

This event is free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served. With wonderful Friends like these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Senior Scam Stopper


Friday May 1st - 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Senator Carol Liu (D- La Canada, Flintridge) is partnering with the California State Contractor’s Licensing Board to host a Senior Scam Stopper workshop on Friday, May 1st from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at Crowell Public Library in San Marino. Residents are invited to listen and engage directly with speakers from various government agencies on how to avoid scams relating to construction, medical care, and automotive repair. Crowell Public Library is located at 1890 Huntington Drive in San Marino.

“Many scams target seniors who are often vulnerable because they live alone, are more trusting, and don’t always have access to reliable information,” said Senator Liu. “That is why I am pleased to bring critical up-to-date fraud protection information directly to seniors at community locations.”

Interested residents are encouraged to contact Senator Carol Liu’s office at: 818-409-0400 for more information.

Sen. Carol Liu represents about 930,000 people in the 25th Senate District, which includes Burbank, Bradbury, Glendale, Pasadena, La Canada Flintridge, La Crescenta, Montrose, Altadena, San Marino, Shadow Hills, South Pasadena, Sierra Madre, Sunland-Tujunga, Monrovia, Duarte, San Dimas, La Verne, Claremont, Glendora, and Upland.

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Echoes From Gold Mountain


Sunday May 3rd - 2:00 p.m.

A game of hide-and-seek uncovers an unexpected treasure chest of “riches” for two kids visiting their grandparents’ old store in Northern California. In Echoes Of Gold Mountain, the children discover a secret room containing letters dating back to the 1850s. Readers are transported back in time to get a glimpse of the lives of the early Chinese pioneers who came to “Gold Mountain” in search of opportunity during the Gold Rush. The story was inspired by a school project created by author Debbie Yamada’s daughter when she was studying California history in the fourth grade. After doing some research, Ms. Yamada discovered that at the peak of the California Gold Rush one out of every five miners was, in fact, Chinese, numbering close to 50,000 Chinese miners. Set against this historical backdrop, the author sets out to create characters and imaginary letters that embody the hopes, dreams and struggles of the Chinese sojourners of long ago. Echoes of Gold Mountain adds another dimension to the events of the California Gold Rush by shedding light on the people who were often overlooked in American history. Ms. Yamada’s presentation will cover the inspiration for the book, the writing process, development of illustrations, a reading of selected passages and a question and answer period.

Debbie L. Yamada is a second generation Chinese American born and raised in Southern California. She has a B.A. in art history from the University of California, Irvine and a M.A. in Asian art history from the University of Hawaii. She has shared her research about the Chinese miners during the California Gold Rush and her writing experiences with numerous historical societies, authors’ festivals, teacher and library conferences, museums and schools throughout California. She is a retired art teacher for elementary school students.

Debbie Yamada has written a historical novel that can be enjoyed by readers eight to eighty. Bring the whole family to this free event. Light refreshments will be served.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Patton & Nazi Gold


Monday April 20th 7:00 p.m.

Chasing Gold: The Incredible Story of How the Nazis Stole Europe’s Bullion describes the greatest robbery in world history. During World War II, the German Nazi government robbed more than 600 tons of European gold. That bullion was vitally important for financing the German army’s wars of conquest that started with the invasion of Austria in 1938. At that time, the gold was worth $600 million, but at today’s price for bullion it would be worth $22 billion. Nazi gold reserves were running out in 1940, when the Germans got their biggest haul during the invasion of Western Europe, seizing 205 tons from Belgium and 137 tons of Dutch gold. This financed the invasion of the Soviet Union a year later. In February 1945 with the war clearly coming to an end, Berlin officials sent two trainloads of gold and precious art works to a salt mine in Merkers, a village in central Germany. Two months later, U.S. troops stumbled upon that treasure.

George M. Taber is the author of Judgment of Paris, the 2006 wine book of the year for Britain's Decanter magazine. His second book, To Cork or Not to Cork, won the Jane Grigson Award from the International Association of Culinary Professionals and was a finalist for the James Beard Foundation Award for best book on wine and spirits and the Andre Simon Award for best wine book. Before turning to writing books, Taber was National Economic Correspondent and Business Editor for Time magazine and then started the weekly newspaper NJBIZ, which covered business news in New Jersey.

Learn how General George Patton’s Third Army rescued the stolen gold when author George Taber comes to Crowell Public Library Monday, April 20th at 7:00 p.m. This event is free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Meet the Author: Thomas Perry


Thursday April 16th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series continues with New York Times bestselling author Thomas Perry and his latest in the Jane Whitefield series, A String of Beads. In this breakneck thriller, Jane undertakes a dangerous mission for her Seneca people. A year after getting shot on a job that took a dangerous turn, Jane Whitefield has settled into the quiet life of a suburban housewife in Amherst, New York—or so she thinks. One morning, as she comes back from a long run, Jane is met by an unusual sight: the female leaders of the eight Seneca clans are parked in her driveway in two black cars. The clan mothers tell Jane that Jimmy, a childhood friend from the reservation, is wanted by the police for the murder of a local white man. But instead of turning himself in, Jimmy has fled, and no one knows where he might be hiding. Readers will revel in this suspenseful novel about how abandoning the past can sometimes be the hardest thing to do, even when your life, and the lives of those you love, depends on it.

Thomas Perry is the bestselling author of over twenty novels, including the Edgar Award-winning The Butcher’s Boy, Poison Flower, and The Boyfriend. His first Jane Whitefield novel, Vanishing Act, was named one of the 100 favorite mysteries of the twentieth century by the Independent Mystery Booksellers Association. He lives in Southern California.

This event is free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served. With wonderful Friends like these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Take the Survey: Win a Prize!?


Library programs are a wonderful way to bring communities together to share a common interest or learn about a new one. And patron preferences are a great concern at Crowell Public Library. Since 2008 the Library has been offering programs for adults and has urged patrons to give feedback and suggestions. The Library is now offering a chance to win a Starbucks gift card for those locals who fill out the survey on the Library’s website: http://crowellpubliclibrary.org.

In the past seven years, Crowell has offered programs on history, health, science, mathematics, music, finance as well as a wide range of author events. Some Library events have been hugely popular while others have fallen flat, even though they seemed like a good idea at the time. Crowell Library hopes to avoid the latter and engage more patrons to relish the library experience. As always, the Library strives to advance the intellectual, cultural, and creative vitality of the citizens of San Marino by providing access to programs that support the community’s interests and diversity.

Crowell Library is always looking for new ideas and qualified presenters. Let the Library know what subjects peak your interest. Knitting? Book clubs? Gardening? If you are age 13 or over, please take a few minutes to complete the survey on the library website. A Starbucks gift card may be in your future!
Did you know Crowell was the first Library in the world to offer Dakim Brain Fitness?

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Meet the Author: Mona Simpson - NEW DATE


Monday March 16th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series continues with Mona Simpson whose powerful new novel, Casebook, is a witty, perceptive story of family life, part coming-of-age story and part detective yarn. The acclaimed and award-winning author of Anywhere But Here and My Hollywood, Simpson’s latest is about a young boy’s quest to uncover the mysteries of his unraveling family. What he discovers turns out to be what he least wants to know: the inner workings of his parents’ lives. And even then he can’t stop searching.

Casebook reveals an American family both coming apart at the seams and, simultaneously, reconstituting itself to sustain its members through their ultimate trial. Mona Simpson gives the reader a boy hero for our times whose story remains long after the novel is over.

Mona Simpson moved to Los Angeles as a young teenager and attended UC Berkeley, where she studied poetry. She worked as a journalist before moving to New York to attend Columbia's MFA program. During graduate school, she published her first short stories in Ploughshares, The Iowa Review and Mademoiselle. She stayed in New York and worked as an editor at The Paris Review for five years while finishing her first novel, Anywhere But Here. After that, she wrote The Lost Father, A Regular Guy and Off Keck Road.
Her work has been awarded the Whiting Prize, a Guggenheim, an NEA grant, a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, the Lila Wallace Readers Digest Prize, Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize, Pen Faulkner finalist, and most recently the Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
This event was previously scheduled for Thursday, March 12, so update those calendars for the following Monday, March 16th at 7:00 p.m. Light refreshments will be served. With wonderful Friends like these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Friday, February 06, 2015

LA OPERA with Singers!


Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro
Sunday, March 15th, 2:00 p.m.

LA Opera is presenting the popular comedy opera that is sure to delight: Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro. The story follows Figaro as his world is turning upside down. On the eve of the wily barber’s marriage to Susanna, Count Almaviva’s wandering eye has landed on the lovely bride-to-be. Servant and master go head to head, and even the Countess herself must spring into battle when she learns of her husband’s plans. Or is she embroiled in a liaison of her own? On Sunday, March 15 in Crowell Library’s Barth Community Room, learn all about this classic opera and enjoy performances by two local singers, Anne Gholson and Cody Lowery, accompanied by keyboards. They will sing selections from Mozart’s opera interspersed with the speaker’s discussion.
Cody Lowry grew up in Pasadena,CA and studied classical voice at Pasadena City College. He's worked with Aram Barsamian, Gail Gordon, and thanks to the Pamela L. Gerard Scholarship, the internationally acclaimed artist Carol Vaness. He has performed such roles as Figaro (Le Nozze di Figaro at PCC), Masetto (Don Giovanni), Don Alfonso (Cosi fan Tutte at The Broad Stage), and Papageno (The Magic Flute at PCC). Anne Gholson obtained her B.A. of Music, with a focus in Vocal Performance at Cal State University of Long Beach. Once her love of opera had blossomed, she performed the role of Zerlina in Don Giovanni and Barbarina in The Marriage of Figaro. Anne has had musical theater roles as Eliza Doolittle in My Fair Lady, and Vera Charles in Mame.

An opera can sweep you away to foreign lands, take you back in time, dazzle you with pageantry and bring history to life. It is literature, social studies, cultural diversity, multiple languages and most of all, it is exciting! Come explore the world of opera through LA Opera’s education programs. Opera has something for everyone. From the breathless opening notes of the overture to the touching final curtain, Mozart’s comic masterpiece brilliantly bucks the conventions of his time to deliver an ageless message of love and forgiveness. Don’t miss this special treat!

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Meet the Author: Mona Simpson


Thursday March 12th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series continues with Mona Simpson whose powerful new novel, Casebook, is a witty, perceptive story of family life, part coming-of-age story and part detective yarn. The acclaimed and award-winning author of Anywhere But Here and My Hollywood, Simpson’s latest is about a young boy’s quest to uncover the mysteries of his unraveling family. What he discovers turns out to be what he least wants to know: the inner workings of his parents’ lives. And even then he can’t stop searching.

The boy’s amateur detective work starts innocently but quickly takes him to the far reaches of adult privacy as he acquires knowledge that will affect the family’s well-being, prosperity, and sanity.
Casebook reveals an American family both coming apart at the seams and, simultaneously, reconstituting itself to sustain its members through their ultimate trial. Mona Simpson gives the reader a boy hero for our times whose story remains long after the novel is over.

Mona Simpson moved to Los Angeles as a young teenager and attended UC Berkeley, where she studied poetry. She worked as a journalist before moving to New York to attend Columbia's MFA program. During graduate school, she published her first short stories in Ploughshares, The Iowa Review and Mademoiselle. She stayed in New York and worked as an editor at The Paris Review for five years while finishing her first novel. Anywhere But Here. After that, she wrote The Lost Father, A Regular Guy and Off Keck Road.
Her work has been awarded the Whiting Prize, a Guggenheim, an NEA grant, a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, the Lila Wallace Readers Digest Prize, Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize, Pen Faulkner finalist, and most recently the Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

This event is free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served. With wonderful Friends like these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Friends of Crowell Public Library Meet the Authors Series: Christopher J. Lynch: One Eyed Jack


Thursday February 26th 7:00 p.m.

The Friends of Crowell Public Library’s Meet the Authors series continues with Christopher J. Lynch, a lover of crime fiction, whose debut novel, One Eyed Jack (Your Secrets Are Safe With Me), is a hard-boiled thriller about a professional blackmailer named “John Sharp,” a man who knows how to keep a secret – for a price. But when a routine case of infidelity takes an unexpected detour, he soon finds himself caught in a tangled web of double-blackmail, commodities manipulation, and trying to rescue the woman that had once been his target.

Some reviews from Goodreads.com:
“This book is entertaining right from the first sentence. You will be drawn in by the humor, the creative writing approach, and of course the subject matter.”
Elizabeth Silver 5 of 5 stars

“This tangled web is a quick read and an engaging novel. I believe it has good writing and a great balance with fascinating incidents and suspense… readers will like the impressive debut novel that Christopher J. Lynch has crafted in an uncertainty of what may or may not happen in this page-turner.”
Jeannie Walker 5 of 5 stars

Los Angeles native Christopher J. Lynch has written for numerous local and national publications and short stories. He recently co-wrote and published an authorized biography of the iconic child actor Ken Osmond, (Eddie Haskell from the TV series Leave it to Beaver) Eddie: The Life and Times of America's Preeminent Bad Boy. Chris is an avid cyclist and a mountain climber with successful summits of Mount Whitney, Mount Shasta, Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, and has recently completed a trek to Mount Everest Base Camp. He counts as one of his greatest accomplishments the successful training and leading of nine blind hikers to the summit of 10,000 foot Mount Baldy, the highest point in Los Angeles County and the third highest peak in Southern California. A documentary film is being made of this adventure. He's a member of Sisters in Crime Los Angeles chapter, as well as Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators.

This event is free and open to all. Light refreshments will be served. With wonderful Friends like these, the authors keep coming at Crowell Public Library!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Tea-One Tasting: The Spectrum of Taiwan Oolongs


Thursday February 19th, 7:00 p.m.

Start the new year off on a refreshing note! Come to Crowell Library on the lunar new year and learn all about the processes that result in the “Spectrum of Taiwan Oolongs.” Every year our favorite Ambassador of Taiwan Tea, Thomas Shu and his lovely wife Josephine Pan, take a group of professionals to Taiwan for a tour that explains the production aspects of oolongs that so many enjoy. Learn about the amazing craftsmanship involved -- the picking, withering, oxidation, fixation, rolling -- every step that results in producing the different types of oolongs. From lush gardens to tea cups! And of course samples will be available to savor!

At past workshops with Thomas, patrons have learned to savor and appreciate teas like fine wines. They explored the aromas of an array of teas that can soothe or stimulate, but always tantalize the taste buds and elevate one’s well being. Thomas Shu has presented tea workshops for almost every university in California and other institutions, such as Princeton, Duke and Harvard. He is a third-generation tea specialist from Taiwan, where his family has been conducting tea business for more than sixty years. He works with many major tea companies and importers from Asia, Europe, and the United States. It was in 2007 that Thomas received the honorary title, “Ambassador of Taiwan Tea,” from Taiwan Tea Manufacturers Association in recognizing his dedication and contributions for the industry. He is one of the founding members and board directors of American Premium Tea Institute, now known as Specialty Tea Institute. Thomas and Josephine are founders of Taiwan Tea Institute in Los Angeles, as well as hosts for Azusa Tea Club, a monthly meet up.

As every year, there are surprises in store: this year it involves a Taiwan puppet show for the celebration of Lunar New Year 2015!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

LA Opera Talk: Gioachino Rossini’s Barber of Seville


Sunday, February 8th, 2:00 p.m.

Dashing Count Almaviva has lost his heart to the spunky Rosina, whose doddering guardian is determined to marry her himself. It’s Figaro to the rescue, as the resourceful barber conjures up wacky schemes and strategies to unite the young lovers. Rossini’s razor-sharp musical wit glints through every scene of this delicious comedy, one of the most playful and popular in the entire operatic repertoire. Learn more about this beloved opera on Sunday, February 8th at 2:00 p.m. in Crowell Library’s Barth Community, when Community Educator BOB EMIRHANIAN will provide facts, insights and audio highlights. This program will be a wonderful introduction to the music and story of the Barber of Seville. Bob will be discussing the composer Rossini and his place in music history, as well as the librettist and playwright Beaumarchais.

Opera is not just magnificent music, dance and theater with astounding sets on a beautiful stage. An opera can sweep you away to foreign lands, take you back in time, dazzle you with pageantry and bring history to life. It is literature, social studies, cultural diversity, multiple languages and most of all, it is exciting! Come explore the world of opera through LA Opera’s education programs. Opera has something for everyone.

Bob Emirhanian taught Economics for over ten years and was a Senior Planner for over 37 years at the State of California Department of Transportation. He has been giving opera talks together with his wife Betty for over 14 years. This program is free and open to all opera aficionados and first timers. Light refreshments will be served.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Learning English


Six Fridays:
February 6, 13, 20, 27 & March 6, 13
1:00-2:30 pm

If you or somebody you know is a beginner in English, and wants to improve, this free six week class will help all participants make progress. Richard Bourell, creator of a 20 DVD set of English instruction and accompanying workbooks, will lead the class. His method is to concentrate on listening and conversation skills so that students can interact in English, building vocabulary and confidence. The class will not dwell on grammar, but will encourage students to learn English through real life situations and dialogs. Study books and DVDs will be furnished for free while they last.

RICHARD BOURELL has been teaching English for almost forty years, locally and globally, and is the author of the Video Language DVD series, and In English, a video and workbook-based ESL series. He has taught for the Los Angeles Unified School District, the American English Institute in Mexico City, the Richard Lewis School of Languages in Paris, Huntington Park Community Adult School and the ELS Language Center in Los Angeles. His students have come from all over the globe: Latin America, the Middle East, Russia, Korea and Japan. Now Mr. Bourell is reaching out to the community and offering his course for free, a fabulous opportunity for patrons of Crowell Public Library, so don’t miss out. Interested learners must register in advance by calling the Library at (626) 300-0777, extension 579.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Library Open House! Snow at Lacy Park!

Saturday, January 24, 2015
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

The Crowell Public Library Foundation, Friends of the Library and Library Staff invite one and all to celebrate the Library’s seventh anniversary with an open house on Saturday, January 24th. Stop by to see the wide variety of services and programs the library has for seniors, teens and kids. Did you know the Library offers passport acceptance and test proctoring? Library visitors can see the work of artist Debbi Swanson Patrick in the Crain Art Gallery, named after long time librarian, Carolyn Crain. Learn about the Meet the Authors series, sponsored by the Friends of the Library and take advantage of the great bargains in the Friends Book Shoppe. Seniors can see a demonstration of Dakim Brain Fitness, made possible by the Library Foundation. Dakim is a clinically tested computer-based program with a touch screen that anyone can use. The Foundation has also recently donated 36 new library computers, all equipped with Window 8.1, 24 inch monitors and the complete Microsoft Office Suite of programs.

In the children’s area, there will be face painting from eleven to two, and a demonstration of the new Early Literacy Station donated by Library Trustees Mary Hsu and Debra Sadun. This is a dynamic all-in-one digital learning solution for children ages 2-8 featuring more than 70 educational software applications spanning seven curricular areas. At 10:45 there will be bi-lingual storytime. At noon, the annual bookmark contest winners will be announced and kids can enjoy a magical performance from Abbit the Average at 2pm. Outside there will food trucks for all: The Pudding Truck, Don Chow’s Tacos and Slammin’ Sliders.

Down the street at Lacy Park, enjoy a day of fun in "Snow Marino!" Fifty tons of snow will be delivered for sledding, snowballs, and snowmen. Parents can watch their kids ride the train, or slide down the giant slide. Coffee, kettle corn, and food will be sold. To participate in Snow Day, a wristband will be required. Pre-sale wristbands will be available for $7 at the Recreation Department. Admission at the door is $9. Children two years and under are free. For more information, please call the Recreation Department at (626) 403-2200. Celebrate San Marino Community Services on Saturday, January 24th!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Helping Hands for Hand-Held Devices


Three Upcoming Saturdays:
January 31, February 28 & March 28
2:00-4:00 pm

Electronically savvy students from San Marino High School will be available on three upcoming Saturdays from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM at Crowell Public Library’s Thornton Room to help people figure out how to use their hand-held devices. People can sign up for any or all of the free sessions. Many people have iPods, Androids, tablets, iPhones, and other gadgets, but can’t figure out all of the features. The teen volunteers are familiar with many of the concepts behind these devices, so even if they haven’t used a particular gadget, they may be able to help a person figure out what to do.

This program was initiated by San Marino High School junior Chunbill (“Billy”) Liu who grew up surrounded by gadgets, but noticed there was a technology gap with people who did not have that advantage. Billy approached Librarian Rex Mayreis about closing this gap, while getting in some community services hours for himself and his friends, but has continued the program because there is such a need. The Los Angeles Times covered a session last year and posted a video about it at http://lat.ms/1sODdVg.

If you are frustrated with online and telephone support options, come to Crowell Library and work with a living, breathing techie that will help you “bond” with your device. There’s nothing like one-on-one assistance to help solve problems and tackle sticky widgets.

To reserve your spot for this program, please call 626-300-0777, extension 579 as soon as possible. There are a limited number of teen volunteers, so slots will fill quickly.