Reading Jubilee celebrates libraries
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.”
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.