Newsletter                                           June 2017
Executive Director's Letter

Dear Library Patrons,
As May ends and June begins, we anticipate both arrivals and departures at Otis Library.  On the departure side, we say goodbye to Development Manager Kate McDonald. Kate will be devoting herself to expanded teaching duties at the University of New Haven, complementing her busy schedule at Mitchell College and Southern Connecticut State University. 

We welcome two new staff members.  Barbi Gardiner is our new IT Librarian.  Barbi will be responsible for managing the library's social media as well as technology training for the public and staff.  Bethany Jensen joins Otis Library as a new Library Assistant III.  Bethany will take over some of the children's programming, which is much in demand.

A third arrival at Otis is of an inanimate nature, but that does not diminish its importance. Through the good offices of City Historian Dale Plummer and the generosity of Reverend George E. Blair III and United Congregational Church of Norwich, we now have a contemporary portrait of our eponym, Deacon Joseph Otis. Having spent many years in storage, the good deacon is in need of some attention, and the ministrations of a painting conservator are a priority. For the moment, Deacon Otis is safely ensconced in a clean, temperate space while his condition is reviewed and actions taken to restore him to a viewable status. 

Robert Farwell
Executive Director

Congratulations Bassem!
Otis Library is pleased to announce that Bassem Gayed, our Multicultural Services Coordinator, is this year's recipient of the Adult Education Community Service Award!  The Community Service Award is given to an individual from outside Norwich Adult Education who has gone above and beyond whatever their job description is to work with and for students and the staff offering support, help and opportunities to become better students, parents, employees and citizens.

This year's ceremony was held on May 25th, at the Kelly Middle School Auditorium. Please join us in congratulating Bassem on this award!

Summer Learning Program "One World" Kick-Off Show (all ages)
Monday, June 19, 6pm - 7pm

Celebrate the start of our Summer Learning Program "One World" with a performance of national dancers from Peru.  The performance will be held in the Atrium and is suitable for all ages.  Refreshments from around the world will be available!  No registration required.

The Jim Lafayette Memorial Series of Writers of Science Fiction and Fantasy

The 10th Anniversary of the Jim Lafayette Memorial Series of Writers of Science Fiction and Fantasy, hosted by Otis Library, will welcome Erik Amundsen, C. S. E. Cooney, Carlos Hernandez, and Julia Rios, authors and poets of the fantastic on Monday, June 26, at 6:00 p.m. in the Community Room.  This program honors the memory of local science fiction and fantasy fan and writer Jim Lafayette with appearances by authors of the genre.  Norwich native Faye Ringel, Ph.D., retired Professor of Humanities at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, will facilitate the program.  The participants will read - and sing - their own works and answer questions about poetry in these genres.

Erik Amundsen

Erik Amundsen is a Connecticut resident.  His poetry and prose have appeared in Strange Horizons and other journals. Two of his poems have been nominated for the 2017 Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association Rhysling Award. 

C. S. E. Cooney
C. S. E. Cooney

C. S. E. Cooney of Westerly, RI, was a previous Lafayette  Memorial lecturer. An audiobook narrator, she has won the World Fan tasy Award for Collected Fiction for  Bone Swans: Stories  (Mythic Delirium 2015).  Her poetry collection  How to Flirt in Faerieland and Other Wild Rhymes features Rhysling Award-winning "The Sea King's Second Bride."  She also composes and records as Brimstone Rhine and will sing several of her compositions at the June 26th program.

Carlos Hernandez
Carlos Hernandez of Queens, NY is the author of over 30 works of fiction, poetry, prose, and drama.  An Associate Professor at the City University of New York, he teaches English at the Borough of Manhattan Community College and is a member of the doctoral faculty at The CUNY Graduate Center.

Julia Rios
Julia Rios of Boston, MA is a writer, editor, podcaster, and narrator. Her fiction, non-fiction, and poetry have appeared in many journals. She was a fiction editor for Strange Horizons from 2012 to 2015 and is currently the poetry and reprints editor for Uncanny Magazine.

This event is free and open to the public.  Copies of the latest books by these authors/poets will be available for sale and signing.  Refreshments will be served. For more information, please call (860) 889-2365, ext. 128.
DVD Collection
Otis Library recently added several new television series to the adult DVD collection.  Titles such as The Americans, House of CardsThe X-Files and many more are now available to borrow. Each season may be checked out for two weeks.

Programs for Adults

Technology Classes
Feeling a little lost with all the new technology?  Maybe even some of the old technology?  We are ready to assist you with one-on-one instruction tailored to your specific needs. Topics include basic computer skills, navigating the internet, e-mail, e-readers, and Microsoft Office. Assistance will be provided by appointment only on Wednesdays, 5pm - 8pm. Please call 860-889-2365, ext. 100, for additional information or to make an appointment.

Technology Classes are offered in Spanish on Mondays between 5pm - 8pm by appointment only.  Please call (860) 889-2365, ext. 100, to register.  

Drop-In Chess
Wednesdays, 5pm - 8pm in the Business Center 
Players of all ages and skill levels are invited to play chess. Use one of our chess sets or bring your own.  

Drop-In Knitting Group
The Rows City Knitters meet every Friday at 10am in the Meeting Room.  All skill levels welcome!  For more information, call (860) 889-2365, ext. 128. 

Book Discussion with Professor Nathalie Etoke
Nathalie Etoke, Ph.D.
Monday, June 5, 6pm
Nathalie Etoke, Ph.D., Associate Professor of French and Africana Studies at Connecticut College, will facilitate a book discussion of We Love You, Charlie Freeman by Kaitlyn Greenidge. Copies of the book are available to borrow at the Front Desk.  Join us for great conversation and refreshments! No registration required.

Changing Minds Book Club
Wednesday, June 14, 5pm
Join us in the Meeting Room for great conversation and refreshments as we discuss Chancers: Addiction, Prison, Recovery, Love: One Couple's Memoir by Susan Stellin and Graham MacIndoe. Copies of the book are available to borrow at the Front Desk. No registration required.

Mental Health and the Movies
Friday, June 23, 10am - 3pm
Join us for our annual film festival and conversation on how mental health is portrayed in films.  This year we will be showing Ordinary People (Rated R, 1980) and The Madness of King George (Rated PG-13, 1994). Free event; lunch is included. Registration is required.  Please call (860) 889-2365, ext. 128, or register online.  

Fort Griswold: A History of Retelling
An Educational Presentation by Michael Carroll
Wednesday, June 28, 6:30pm
What is commonly referred as the 'Battle of Fort Griswold' took place on September 6, 1781 in Groton, CT during the American Revolutionary War.  Claiming many American and British lives, it was the last battle in the State of Connecticut, as well as one of the last battles of the entire War.  Many books have been written about the events surrounding the battle and the people involved.  Families have clung to popular stories, passed down from generations.  But what if some of those claims aren't accurate?  What if things didn't happen exactly as thought? 
Michael Carroll is a historian and researcher, most notably from the American Revolutionary War through the American Civil War.  Michael has a passion for digging up facts and stories that are seemingly lost to the sands of time.   Free event; no registration required.

Programs for Tweens and Teens

All programs are offered at no charge to the public.  Registration is required for some programs. Please register in person at the Front Desk; by calling (860) 889-2365, ext. 100; or you may register for our programs via our  online calendar.

Food, Cultures, and Reading (ages 9 - 14)
Wednesdays, June 21 - July 26, 6pm - 7:30pm
Learn about a different country each week and enjoy related activities, stories, and recipes.  This program is run by the 4-H of New London County.  Space is limited; please register for one or all classes beginning June 1.

Henna With Jamilah (grades 5-12)
Monday, June 26, 2pm - 4pm
Learn about this ancient art and get a henna decoration! Register online or by contacting the Front Desk beginning June 1.  Program will take place in the Young Adult Department.

Tween Book Club (grades 6- 8)
Monday, June 26, 4pm-5pm
Read A Wrinkle In Time: The Graphic Novel by Madeline L'Engle, adapted and illustrated by Hope Larson.  There will be pizza and related activities!  Pick up a copy of the book at the Front Desk.  Program will take place in the Storytime Room. Registration required.

Tween Advisory Board Meeting (grades 5 - 8)
Hamilton: The Musical Party!
Wednesday, June 28, 6pm - 7pm

If you're into Hamilton: The Musical fandom, join us for fun, music, food, songs, trivia, and style at this event for Teens and Tweens.  Party will take place in the Story Room.    Registration required.  

Children's Programs

All programs are offered at no charge to the public. Registration is required for some programs.  Please register in person at the Children's Desk; by calling (860) 889-2365, ext. 114; or you may register for our programs via our online calendar.

Recipe for Success (ages 8 - 11)
Saturday, June 10, 11am - 12pm
Enjoy making your own delicious ice cream sundae to welcome in all the yummy joys of summer!  Stories and related activities complete the fun! Space is limited; please register.   

Open Art Clinic (ages 5 - 12)
Sponsored by Attorney Bart Sayet and Ms. Lori Lindfors - thank you!
Wednesday, June 14, 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Create a cool work of art at our Open Art Clinic! Express yourself by making a take-home project with a variety of art materials.  No registration required.

Thursdays, June 29 - August 3, 2pm - 4pm
Create a piece of process-oriented art each week in the Story Room.  No registration required.

Bella! Therapy Dog Extraordinaire (all ages)
Wednesday, June 14, 5pm - 6pm
Courtesy of Ms. Pepin - thank you!
Visit and read to our very favorite therapy pub, Bella.  No registration required.

Kids Imagine! Book Club (grades 3 - 5)
Monday, June 19, 4pm - 5pm
Claudette's fondest wish is to slay a giant; but her village is so safe and quiet what's a future giant slayer to do?! Packed with action and laughter,  Giants Beware! by Jorge Aguirre and Rafael Rosado will win your heart and tickle your funny bone.  There will be pizza and related activities!   Please register. Pick up a copy of the book at the Front Desk. 

Mother Goose & More: Rhyme Time and Playgroup (ages newborn to 23 months) Mondays, June 19 & 26, 10:30am (program); 11am - 12pm (playgroup)
Enjoy 30 minutes of rhymes, songs, and other activities for the very young, then stay (or not) for a one-hour open play group. Older siblings are welcome! No registration required.

Toddler Storytime (ages 2 - 3)
Tuesdays, June 20 - August 1, 10:30am - 11am
Enjoy stories, songs, rhymes and a simple craft with your child!  Space is limited; please register beginning June 1.

Food, Cultures, and Reading (ages 6 - 10)
Wednesdays, June 21 - 26, 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Learn about a different country each week and enjoy related activities, stories, and recipes.  This program is run by the 4-H of New London County.  Space is limited; please register for one or all classes beginning June 1.

Preschool Storytime (ages 3 - 6)
Thursdays, June 22 - August 3, 10:30am - 11:15 am
Children enjoy stories, songs, rhymes, and a craft while their grownups wait in the Children's Department.  Space is limited; please register beginning June 1.

Build It! Clinic (grades K - 8)
Mondays & Wednesdays, June 26 - August 2, 10:30am - 12:30pm
Build structures using a variety of materials in the Meeting Room.  No registration required.  

Delicious Discussions Author Series

Please join us for our next Delicious Discussions Author luncheon with Leah
DeCesare, author of Forks, Knives and Spoons. The luncheon will be held on Tuesday, June 27, 12-1:30pm at Michael Jordan's Steak House at Mohegan Sun. This luncheon is part of an ongoing partnership with Bank Square Books and Michael Jordan's Restaurants and generously sponsored by GUINAN & HOULE, Attorneys at Law. 

The cost for the luncheon is $40 and includes lunch, a copy of the book , dessert and author signing. To register, please contact Kate McDonald, Development Manager at (860) 889-2365 x.127 or

Leah DeCesare's childhood dream was to become an author though she never expected her first book to be about parenting.  The Naked Parenting  series stemmed from her main gig as mother of three, and she writes between car pools and laundry.   Forks, Knives, and Spoons  is her debut novel. (SparkPress, April 2017). Leah has also written articles for publication in  The Huffington Post,  the  International Doula The Key , and other online outlets and local publications.

Seed Lending Library 
Sponsored by Wheeler Library and Diana Hunt 
Otis Library has partnered with Wheeler Library to share a Seed Lending Library open to all!  How does it work? Choose one or two seed packets from the box at the Front Desk. They are free - really!  If you would like more, you may browse the collection at Wheeler Library, 101 Main Street, in North Stonington.  No residency required. To learn about Wheeler Library's Seed Lending Library, visit their website.

Change your mind, or have more than you need?  Bring them back to Otis Library or Wheeler Library and we will make them available to other gardeners. At the end of the season, if your plants have made seeds for you, please bring some to Wheeler Library, so that they may continue to sponsor the Seed Lending Library.

We would love to see photographs of your plants from the Seed Lending Library!  Please share them with us, and we may post them to the Otis Library Facebook page!
CORE:  A Shared Calendar of Regional Events
Looking for things to do this weekend? Visit the CORE calendar!  CORE is a collaborative of organizations based in eastern CT with a shared goal of providing the community one regional go-to calendar of events for all things happening in the area. Be sure to check back often as it is updated daily!
Otis Library | 261 Main Street, Norwich, CT 06360 | (860) 889-2365 |

 Monday & Wednesday 10:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Tuesday, Thursday & Friday 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Saturday, 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Closed on Saturdays in July & August

Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter  Find us on Pinterest  View our videos on YouTube