Thursday, February 27, 2014

Saturday Crafters

Saturday Crafters, a monthly craft group organized by Bernardsville Public Library, will meet on Saturday, March 15 at 3:00 pm.  Individuals are invited to bring their own handwork projects to the Library and work together in a comfortable, communal setting while enjoying the benefits of shared tips and conversation.  They can also take advantage of the many books available at the library on different types of crafts. 

Public Relations Assistant Evelyn Fischel will showcase project ideas and books at each meeting.  A long-time crafter, Ms. Fischel will encourage such interests as knitting, crocheting, paper arts, hand sewing, embroidery and other needlework, as well as any other craft the group wishes to cover.  

There is no charge to attend the meeting, and no sign-up is needed.  For more information, call the library at 908-766-0118.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Bernardsville Library Foundation to Host "Homes of Distinction" at Magnificent Historical Estate

William Clark, son of J. William
Clark, wed Marjory Blair, daughter
of C. Ledyard Blair, on Sept. 20,
1913 at Blairsden
The Bernardsville Library Foundation will host a reception and silent auction on Sunday, March 30, from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. at Peachcroft, the imposing fieldstone estate built in 1907 for J. William Clark, President of Clark Thread Company of Newark.

Guests to the home on March 30 are invited to share food and wine, learn more about life in the Gilded Age, and bid on valuable silent auction items as part of the Bernardsville Library Foundation’s annual Homes of Distinction event.  Food will be provided by Bistro Seven.Three., CafĂ© Azzurro, Carl Posey Catering, Sette Cucina Italiana, The Bernards Inn, The Candy Store of Harding, and The Claremont Tavern.  

Sitting high on the Bernardsville Mountain, the Peachcroft estate is a beautiful and historically significant property.  Its first owner, Clark, was originally from Scotland; the Clark family created one of the first truly multinational companies.  J. William Clark married Margaretta Cameron, a daughter of the U.S. Senator J. Donald Cameron who served as Secretary of War under President Ulysses Grant.  The family’s prominence in society was further enhanced when William Clark, the eldest Clark son, married Marjory Blair, the eldest daughter of C. Ledyard Blair, on September 20, 1913.  Their wedding reception at nearby Blairsden was the social event of the year and attended by more than 600 guests.  A special train was leased to transport guests from Hoboken.

The Bernardsville Library Foundation is proud to offer this wonderful opportunity to visit Peachcroft, courtesy of Anne and Sal Giordano, the current owners.  Tickets for the March 30 event are limited and can be purchased for $100 per person.  For more information, visit or call 908-766-0118.

Yoga Basics

Tuesdays, March 11-April 22 at 1:00 pm (no class April 8.)
Suitable for all students, this class offers an integrated sequence of poses designed to warm up the body and then work toward a specific intention within the natural movements of the spine. Pranayama (breath work) and a final deep relaxation are integral to every class. Instructor: Julie Shaw of Lotus Mind and Body. The total cost for the 6-week session is $30.00. Bring a yoga mat or towel. This program is a partnership between Bernardsville Library and Bernardsville Recreation. Register through Bernardsville Recreation’s Community Pass portal. Register at

Sundays at Three: Colonial Music in America

Anne & Ridley Enslow
in period costume
Anne and Ridley Enslow will recreate the music of American history in a free concert at Bernardsville Public Library on Sunday, March 9 at 3:00 pm. Dressed in historically accurate clothing, the couple will play music of the American colonial period, using instruments appropriate to the period—an 18th-century violin for Ridley and hammered dulcimer for Anne. They sing in harmony and tell stories of the times that gave rise to the music.

Ridley Enslow began playing colonial American music more than 30 years ago while working at Morristown National Historical Park in New Jersey.  He has made five albums with the noted balladeer Linda Russell and four with his wife, Anne.  In addition, he plays bluegrass with a group called “String Fever.”

In his “other” life, he is president of Enslow Publishers, Inc., which publishes educational books for children and teenagers.  All of the Enslow CDs were conceived with educational purposes in mind—to provide an enjoyable history lesson, while also providing entertainment sophisticated enough for adults.  Two of these recordings—"Music of the American Colonies" and "Music for Abraham Lincoln"—were named Notable Recordings by the American Library Association.  The Lincoln CD also received the endorsement of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.

Anne Enslow began playing colonial music when she met her future husband.  She played as a regular substitute on Broadway in the orchestra of "The Secret Garden" in 1992-1993.  In her “other” life, she is executive editor of Harvard Health Publications’ special health reports, and she worked for many years as a correspondent at Newsweek.  She does most of the duo’s research, which has included hours spent in the Library of Congress, Colonial Williamsburg, the Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center, historical societies and various archives.  With rare exceptions, all of their music is drawn from original manuscripts, sheet music and songsters, and it is performed on instruments accurate to the period.

This is a free concert funded by the Friends of the Bernardsville Public Library.  Children aged ten and up are also welcome.  No sign-up is needed.  Just come!  Doors open at 2:45 pm.   For further information, call the library at 908-766-0118.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Readings by Local Self-Published Authors

We have a lot of very creative people in our midst!  Come to Bernardsville Public Library on Saturday, March 8 at 2:00 pm to listen to local self-published authors read from their fiction and non-fiction work.  The books range from mystery, thriller and adventure, to memoir and cookbook.  The authors will also tell us what inspired them, about their writing process and the path to publication.  Their books will be available for purchase and signing.

Participating authors are Gary Eddey (Weather House), Keith Hirshland (Cover Me Boys, I’m Going In), Cheryl Larkin and Kate Kurelja (Savoring the Shore), Rebecca Parkinson (The Mystery of Pocomo Meadows) and Alan Winter (Savior’s Day).  All the authors live locally in Bernardsville, Basking Ridge, Peapack and Morristown.

There is no charge to attend the reading, but advance sign-up is requested at  Follow the link from Adult Programs.  For further information, call the library at 908-766-0118. 

Home School Parent Panel

If you are new to home schooling or new to the area, come to Bernardsville Library on Tuesday, March 4 at 1:30 pm to listen to a panel of parents who are experienced home schoolers.  They will discuss their teaching techniques and share their knowledge of curricula, home school cooperatives, and scheduling practices.  

Speaking will be a diverse group of homeschooling mothers who will share a bit of their journey, some of their favorite resources and how they provide individualized educational experiences for their children.  It will be an opportunity for making connections and meeting others who homeschool in our area in the hopes of facilitating group discussion and creating a support network.  "The purpose of talking about homeschooling is to empower parents to provide individualized educational experiences for their children," said Brigid Glynn-Young, one of the participants, "…to think outside of the box."

There is no charge to attend the program, and no sign-up is needed. Call the library at 908-766-0118 for further information.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Splendid Life Meditation Group To Meet at Bernardsville Library

Basking Ridge resident Fauzia Burke will lead the next monthly guided meditation session at Bernardsville Public Library on Friday, March 7 at 10:00 am.  Ms. Burke’s style of meditation incorporates many cultural traditions and uses the power of word and imagery to facilitate a meditative experience; there is no right or wrong way, no particular way to sit, or words to say.  Each experience is honored as unique and can help reduce stress, generate creativity, and create positive energy.  

“Our intention for these gatherings is to find peace and serenity through a practice of regular meditations, and to develop a community for support and friendship,” says Ms. Burke.  She has been meditating for over 15 years and leading meditation groups for eleven years.  By day, she is the President and Founder of FSB Associates, an Internet marketing firm that promotes books and authors on the Web.  She lives in Basking Ridge with her husband and two daughters, and volunteers to lead the Splendid Life meditations in an effort to help others achieve the peace of mind and inspiration that she has found through mediation. 

There is no charge to attend the program, and no sign-up is required.  No experience in meditation is necessary.  Bring a journal and pen, and wear comfortable, loose-fitting clothing.  For further information, call the library at 908-766-0118.
Bernardsville Public Library’s book discussion group, Saturday Samplers, will meet on Saturday, March 1 at 3:30 pm to discuss "Unknown Man #89" (1977) by the late Elmore Leonard.  The novel follows Detroit process server Jack Ryan who has a reputation for being the best in the business at finding people who don't want to be found.  He's looking for a missing stockholder known only as "Unknown Man No. 89."  But his missing man isn't "unknown" to everyone: there's a pretty blonde involved and a man named Royal, and Ryan unwittingly becomes the third person pursuing the elusive quarry.  

Elmore Leonard, who died last year, was often described as the best writer in crime fiction.  He wrote forty-five novels and nearly as many western and crime short stories in a career that spanned more than six decades.  Some of his bestsellers include "Road Dogs," "Up in Honey's Room," "The Hot Kid," and the critically acclaimed collection of short stories "Fire in the Hole."  Many of his books have been made into movies, including "Get Shorty," "Out of Sight," and "Rum Punch."  He was a recipient of the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, the Lifetime Achievement Award from PEN USA, and the Grand Master Award of the Mystery Writers of America.  He was known to many as the 'Dickens of Detroit' and was a long-time resident of the Detroit area.

Led by Evelyn Fischel, Saturday Samplers is a book discussion group dedicated to sampling various kinds of literature, including short stories, nonfiction, new and old novels, and even teen fiction.  Its goal is to search out interesting, noteworthy, and sometimes overlooked books.  Readers can find information about the group and about the books and authors on the reading list at  No sign-up is needed to join the discussion.  Call the library at 766-0118 for more information.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

The "Can-Do" Connection

The next meeting of "The Can-Do Connection" will convene at Bernardsville Public Library on Wednesday, February 26 at 7:00 pm.  This workshop is an outgrowth of last year's "The University of Can-Do Master's Program."  Led by Professional Inspirer Andrea Mastrobattista, February's session will concentrate on one of the most important connections you can make: to yourself.  "In a society that encourages us to fit into specific molds of who and what people think we should be, we sometimes lose the connection to who we really are.  Come to this workshop to discover how to shed the person you are expected to be and start becoming the true you!  The year 2014 promises to be one of reconnecting," said Ms. Mastrobattista.  

Ms. Mastrobattista has been leading her inspirational workshops on Wednesday evenings at the library since 2006.  She heads a company called Operation INSPIRATION and also facilitates workshops in the Somerset Hills such as "Facing Your Fears" and "Transforming Negatives Into Positives" in which she helps people to fully form their goals and develop a strong can-do attitude for achieving them.  Her core belief is that, no matter what circumstances people face, they have the strength and ability to create and live fulfilling and inspiring lives.  She also owns Golden Slipper Productions, a company which creates websites and promotional materials for small and mid-sized businesses.

There is no charge to attend the library workshop, but advance registration is requested.  Register online at, and follow the link from Adult Programs, or call the library at 908-766-0118 to sign up.

Memoirs & Coffee Book Group to Meet

The next meeting of Bernardsville Public Library’s book discussion group, Memoirs and Coffee, will be held on Tuesday, February 25 at 10:30 am in the library’s Community Room.  Pat Kennedy-Grant, Readers’ Services Manager for the library, will lead the discussion of “The Astronaut Wives Club” (2013) by Lily Koppel. [The author will not be present.] 

America's Mercury Seven astronauts were selected in 1957, and, as they launched on death-defying missions, television cameras focused on the brave smiles of their young wives. Overnight, these women were transformed from military spouses into American royalty. They provided one another with support and friendship, coffee and cocktails. They also formed bonds that lasted for over fifty years.  This book tells the wives' stories—the women who stood beside some of the biggest heroes in American history.  The Chicago Tribune reviewer wrote of the book, "A fair and accomplished reporter… Lily Koppel offers a grounded, irresistible and sociable social history…Koppel does an excellent job of capturing a group portrait with enough highlights, low points, sunny spots and shadows for individual features to emerge.”

Lily Koppel is the best-selling author of "The Red Leather Diary. She has written for The New York Times, New York Times Magazine, Huffington Post, and Glamour.  

There is no charge, and no registration is needed to join the discussion.  Call the library at 766-0118 for more information.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Bridge Builder in Petticoats: Emily Warren Roebling and the Brooklyn Bridge

Carol Simon Levin
as Emily Roebling
She was called “one of the most noted women in the country” and “the most famous woman in New Jersey”…yet today few people even know her name!  Come to Bernardsville Public Library on Tuesday, February 25 at 7:00 pm to see Carol Simon Levin bring Emily Warren Roebling to life and learn the true story of the 19th century woman who helped supervise the greatest engineering project of the age.

Many books and films have featured the Brooklyn Bridge and millions of people have crossed it.  Built between 1869 and 1883, without modern machines or even electric light, it was the one of the most amazing technological achievements of its time.  Yet few people know Ms. Roebling’s role: how, after her husband became bedridden, she became his liaison to the project and helped supervise much of its construction.  Later she helped design the family mansion in Trenton, studied law, organized relief for returning troops from the Spanish American War, attended the coronation of the Tsar of Russia and even took tea with Queen Victoria.

Carol Simon Levin is a Youth Services Librarian at the Bridgewater Branch of the Somerset County Library.  She is an experienced storyteller and a member of the New Jersey Storyteller’s Network.  She has always been fascinated by the history of technology and women’s history, and is currently writing a book on Emily Warren Roebling.  

There is no charge to attend the library workshop, but advance registration is requested.  Register online at, and follow the link under Adult Programs, or call the library at 908-766-0118 to sign up.