Read­ing Ju­bilee cel­e­brates li­braries

The Register Citizen (Torrington, CT) - - FRONT PAGE - By Noel Am­bery

SHARON — The tales told ranged from T.S. Eliot’s “Old Pos­sum’s Book of Prac­ti­cal Cats,” leg­endary Ir­ish fairies, as well as “Goldilocks and the Three Bears.”

It was all part of the Hotchkiss Li­brary of Sharon’s first an­nual Read­ing Ju­bilee on Satur­day. Thirty-five read­ers of po­etry and prose from the town’s community or­ga­ni­za­tions rang­ing from the Amer­i­can Le­gion Post 126 to the Sharon’s Woman’s Club to Sharon Cen­ter School were sched­uled to read from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 10 Up­per Main St. The event was or­ga­nized by The Friends of the Hotchkiss Li­brary in or­der to cel­e­brate Na­tional Li­brary Week, Na­tional Po­etry Week and the 125th an­niver­sary of the li­brary.

Li­brary Co-ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Lor­raine Kerr Fai­son said prior to the event, “It is quite a mix­ture of prose and po­etry. Each per­son (is) des­ig­nated to have 10 min­utes to read.”

Tom Grue­newald of Sharon was one of sev­eral em­cees dur­ing the day. “We have a lot of com­pe­ti­tion in terms of events,” said Grue­newald. “The nice weather be­ing one, plus other events, so we are keep­ing our fin­gers crossed.”

Grue­newald is the pres­i­dent of the Friends of the Li­brary and also serves as di­rec­tor of the re­gional Ta­conic Learn­ing Cen­ter and artis­tic as­so­ciate of Sh­effield, Mas­sachusetts’ Aglet Theatre Com­pany. Grue­newald was sched­uled to read from the afore­men­tioned Eliot book later in the af­ter­noon.

Fol­low­ing read­ings of E.E. Cum­mings’ po­etry and other works read by mem­bers of Sharon’s Town Hall and the Christ Epis­co­pal Church, the Ju­bilee’s Chil­dren’s Read­ing Hour oc­curred at 11 a.m., with li­brary co-ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Robin Yu­ran read­ing “The Bad Mood

and the Stick” by Lemony Snicket; Sharon Day Care’s Car­rie Olsen read­ing “Goldilocks and the Three Bears;” Sharon Cen­ter School’s Judy Gafney read­ing “I Want a Dog” by Dayal Kaur Khalsa; and the young reader Evie Scofield per­form­ing Drew Day­walt’s “The Leg­end of Rock Paper Scis­sors.”

Sharon Select­woman Jes­sica Fowler read an ex­cerpt from the novel “News of the World” by Paulette Jiles to an au­di­ence of 25 peo­ple at 12:30 p.m. Fowler said she had been in­tro­duced by her book club to the 2016 Na­tional Book Award-nom­i­nated novel, which is the story about a 71-year-old lec­turer named Cap­tain Kidd who un­ex­pect­edly be­comes the care­taker of a trau­ma­tized 10-year-old girl dur­ing the af­ter­math of the Amer­i­can Civil War in 1870.

Sharon His­tor­i­cal So­ci­ety mem­ber El­iza Klose read po­ems from Billy Collins’ “Sail­ing Alone Around the Room: New and Se­lected

Po­ems,” specif­i­cally the poem “Ques­tions about An­gels,” which asks:

Or­ga­nizer and Friends of the Li­brary sec­re­tary Carol Ascher said about the event: “It is a way to cel­e­brate Sharon’s va­ri­ety of vol­un­teer or­ga­ni­za­tions. Ev­ery­one from the Fire Depart­ment to the Sharon Garden Club is par­tic­i­pat­ing.” Ascher said the idea for the in­au­gu­ral event started small but “one idea leapfrogged into an­other,” re­sult­ing in an all-day read­ing event.

Ascher is the au­thor of var­i­ous fic­tion and nonfiction works, in­clud­ing the most re­cent history book “A Chance for Land and Fresh Air: Rus­sian Jewish Im­mi­grants in Sharon and Ame­nia, 1907-1940.”

Dur­ing the read­ings,

li­brary Board of Di­rec­tors mem­ber Linda Peech staffed the baked goods ta­ble, with treats de­rived from recipes of the cook­book on sale, “Sharon Cooks!,” the Li­brary’s 2017 community cook­book. “It’s a lot of fun,” said Peech while serv­ing guests plates of apri­cot bars and ox­ford meringues, “and peo­ple come out from all over the community.”

Noel Am­bery / For Hearst Con­necti­cut Me­dia

Sharon Select­woman Jes­sica Fowler reads an ex­cerpt from the novel “News of the World” by Paulette Jiles to an au­di­ence of 25 peo­ple at the Hotchkiss Li­brary of Sharon’s Read­ing Ju­bilee on Satur­day.

Li­brary Board of Di­rec­tors mem­ber Linda Peech works the baked-goods ta­ble de­rived from recipes of the cook­book on sale, “Sharon Cooks!” the Li­brary's 2017 community cook­book.

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