Monday, July 28, 2014

Introduction to e-Textiles

Bernardsville Public Library would like to introduce you to e-textiles on Friday, August 15 at 10:00 am. Bring an article of clothing or an accessory which you’d like to “enhance” with LED bulbs, and staff member Sarah Gillis will demonstrate the basics of sewing soft circuits using conductive thread. Then you’ll be on your way to creating your own unique design. This program is one of a series of creative workshops offered in anticipation of the Library’s first “Maker Day” which will take place on Saturday, September 20 from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm.

All supplies will be provided for the e-textile program. There is no charge to attend, but advance sign-up is required. Click here to register or call the library at 908-766-0118 to sign up. 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Illuminating Havana

As a member of a small group of architects sanctioned as cultural ambassadors by the U.S. State Department, Bernardsville resident Philip Kennedy-Grant, FAIA, recently traveled to Havana, Cuba. Mr. Kennedy-Grant will present a lecture on what he saw and learned, illustrated with photographs and drawings, at Bernardsville Public Library on Wednesday, August 13 at 7:00 pm. Impressed by his experience, he will describe the recent history and culture of one of the most fascinating and provocative cities in the world.

Mr. Kennedy-Grant is an architect, artist, author, and musician.  A Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, he has had his architectural practice in Bernardsville since 1989.  Mr. Kennedy-Grant is the co-author and editor of the book, AIA New Jersey Guidebook: 150 Buildings and Places. He has received multiple awards for design excellence, and his work has been widely published. His art has been exhibited in Washington, D. C., Las Vegas, and throughout New Jersey. His travel sketches have been published in Arcade and Places magazines. As a member of the Board of Trustees of The Center for Contemporary Art, he initiated and conducted the international competition and exhibit, “Art in Architecture,” in 2010.

There is no charge to attend the program at the library, but advance sign-up is requested.  Click here to sign up, or call the library at 908-766-0118. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Sandy’s Wake-Up Call - Request for Entries -Juried Photography Show at Bernardsville Library

In November of this year, Bernardsville Public Library will host a juried exhibition of photographs, “Sandy’s Wake-Up Call,” organized by the Bernardsville Green Team and Shade Tree Committee. All photographic interpretations of Superstorm Sandy’s impact on our lives and environment now and into the future will be eligible for consideration.
The devastation that Superstorm Sandy wreaked on our region was a wake-up call to everyone. As heroic and committed as the response to this storm was, the problems will be with us for a long time. By keeping the memory of Sandy alive, the goal of the show is to find images that epitomize hopes to preserve what makes our lives meaningful and productive.

Photos may be submitted from July 28 through September 5, 2014 by emailing them to Specific guidelines about file size and quantity are available on the library website at Photos might illustrate “before and after,” “the fury of the storm,” “recovery,” “restoration,” irreplaceable treasures,” or “planning for the future,” and “visionary approaches.”

Judges for the show are Dwight Hiscano, a widely published and highly collected photographer; Dave DesRochers, a member of the North American Nature Photography Association; and Philip Witt and Rebecca Witt, long-time volunteers at the Scherman Hoffman Wildlife Sanctuary where they co-lead the photography workshop series.

The exhibition will be on view at Bernardsville Library from November 2 to November 30, with a public reception on Saturday, November 8 from 2:00 to 4:00 pm. From there, a portion of it will travel to the New Jersey Audubon facility in Plainsboro for exhibit in December and then to the Scherman Hoffman Wildlife Sanctuary in Bernardsville where it will be on view in January and February 2015.

For all the details regarding submission guidelines, exhibition dates, the judges and the show, go to

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Paintings by Judy Hummer on Display in August

Fractured Birds
Bernardsville Public Library is pleased to present an exhibition of transparent watercolors by Judy Hummer during the month of August. There will be an opening reception for the public on Thursday, August 7 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm.

Ms. Hummer, who resides in Bridgewater, looks at each painting as an opportunity to challenge herself to deliver the viewer an unexpected point of view—a vision of beauty in subjects that may ordinarily be overlooked. She uses an array of transparent watercolor techniques which she describes as "an exciting medium with a mind of its own."
"I love experimenting with techniques that allow me to use watercolor to evoke emotions, environments and movement," she said, "I enjoy working with various painting surfaces, including 140 lb. cold press, yupo paper, clayboard and rice paper.

Her subject matter is quite diverse, including urban, landscape, florals and water scenes--whatever excites her at a particular moment, whether it is a dramatic sky just before a storm rolls in, or people walking down a city street in the afternoon light. She usually takes photographs as reference and then completes the work in her studio. By working on a variety of subjects and utilizing various techniques, she aims to convey a spontaneous, energized feel rather than focusing on a single, labored, repetitious subject. This approach allows her to expand her areas of inspiration and explore her creativity. "I especially enjoy preserving the white of the paper, then applying layers of color and texture, sometimes preserving more areas as I go along. My hand tends to splash on loose applications of pigment and sharpen details as the painting progresses. Then, near the end, the most exciting part is when I reveal all of those preserved areas. Then I enjoy the surprise and satisfaction of the resulting image and understand how it all fits together into a cohesive painting."

Ms. Hummer has had a lifelong passion for art and was introduced to watercolor as a teen by Ruth Wilson under whom she studied for quite some time. She finds watercolor the most challenging, rewarding, spontaneous medium with which to work.

This exhibition will be on view in the library’s Community Room from August 2 through August 27 during regular library hours unless a meeting is in progress. For further information, please call the library at 908-766-0118.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Great Falls at Paterson

On Monday, August 4 at 7:00 pm, Kevin Woyce will present an illustrated program on the Great Falls at Paterson. Recognized as a natural wonder in Colonial days and recently designated a National Park, the Great Falls of the Passaic River powered the factories of America's first great industrial city throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries.

Mr. Woyce, who specializes in programs on our region’s past, will explain the history of the falls, discuss the industries that grew up around them from locomotive building to silk weaving. He will also introduce the colorful personalities who shaped that history, including founding father Alexander Hamilton, who first suggested harnessing the falls in 1791; the industrious Colt family; and silk merchant Catholina Lambert, who once watched over his factories from a mountainside castle.

There is no charge to attend the library program, 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.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

The" Can-Do Connection"

The next meeting of "The Can-Do Connection" will convene at Bernardsville Public Library on Wednesday, July 30 at 7:00 pm. “Finnegan, Begin Again” is this meeting’s theme. Professional Inspirer Andrea Mastrobattista will discuss how to re-start when you get frustrated with the progress you are making toward your goals.

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.

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Legacy of Gustav Stickley & Craftsman Farms

Craftsman Farms is located nearby in Morris County, but many neighbors have yet to visit. To find out what you can see at this 30-acre National Historic Landmark, the centerpiece of Gustav Stickley’s early 20th century country estate, come to Bernardsville Public Library on Wednesday, July 23 at 7:00 pm. Acting Executive Director Vonda Givens will explore the past, present and future of Craftsman Farms, Gustav Stickley’s home and “Garden of Eden,” through the tale of one table set within its elegantly rustic interiors. Join Ms. Givens “at the table” and trace the journey over the years as a manifestation of Arts and Crafts ideals, a symbol of early 20th century America, and a representation of Stickley’s vision. A noted turn-of-the-century designer, Stickley was a major proponent of the Arts and Crafts movement in decorative arts, home building, and furnishing styles.

Ms. Givens is a regular speaker on Gustav Stickley and Craftsman Farms and became the Director of Education at the Stickley Museum in 2008; she is currently its Acting Executive Director. She has directed museum educational programs for adults and children for the past 11 years, and she has been a museum docent for 14 years. She has a Master’s Degree from Texas A & M University and resides in Denville.

There is no charge to attend the library program, 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.

Memoirs and Coffee Book Group to Discuss "A House in the Sky"

The next meeting of Bernardsville Public Library’s book discussion group, Memoirs and Coffee, will be held on Tuesday, July 22 at 10:30 am in the library’s Community Room. Pat Kennedy-Grant, Readers’ Services Manager for the library, will lead the discussion of “A House in the Sky” (2013) by Amanda Lindhout with Sara Corbett. [The author will not be present.]

The book became a New York Times bestseller, won the 2014 CBC Bookie Award for Best Canadian Nonfiction and was nominated for the 2014 Libris Award for best non-fiction book of 2013. It has been optioned to be made into a movie. 

A dramatic memoir, the book describes a woman whose curiosity led her to the world’s most beautiful and remote places, its most imperiled and perilous countries, and then into fifteen months of harrowing captivity in Somalia.

As a child, the author escaped a difficult home life by paging through issues of National Geographic and imagining herself in its exotic locales. In her teens, she worked as a cocktail waitress in Calgary, Alberta and saved her tips so she could travel the globe. She backpacked through Latin America, Laos, Bangladesh, and India, and then went on to Sudan, Syria, and Pakistan. In war-ridden Afghanistan and Iraq, she worked as a television reporter, and in August 2008, she traveled to Somalia—“the most dangerous place on earth.” On her fourth day, she was abducted by a group of masked, armed teenagers. She was held hostage for 460 days, and this book tells her story of what happened and how she survived.

Eliza Griswold The New York Times Book Review wrote of the book, “Exquisitely told…[A House in the Sky] is much more than a gonzo adventure tale gone awry—it’s a young woman’s harrowing coming-of-age story and an extraordinary narrative of forgiveness and spiritual triumph….There’s no self-pity or grandiosity in these pages. In the cleanest prose, she and Corbett allow events both horrific and absurd…to unfold on their own. Lindhout’s resilience transforms the story from a litany of horrors into a humbling encounter with the human spirit.” 

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

Black-Out Poetry

Do you enjoy the hunt of a word find game? Relish crossing things off a list? Then “black-out” poetry was invented for you! Come find out more on Friday, July 18 at 10:00 am at Bernardsville Public Library when staff member Laura Shabazz will demonstrate how to combine a love of word finds and lists to reveal your inner poet. This program is one of a series of creative workshops offered in anticipation of the Library’s first “Maker Day” to be held on Saturday, September 20 from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm.
All supplies needed for black-out poetry will be provided. There is no charge to attend, but advance sign-up is requested. Register online at and follow the link from Adult Programs, or call the library at 908-766-0118 to sign up. 

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Fifty Book Challenge Group to Meet

Community members are invited to come to the next meeting of the 50 Book Challenge on Saturday, July 19 at 3:00 pm in the library’s Community Room. Reading fifty books in fifty-two weeks may seem daunting, but share the goal with a supportive group and it can be a lot of fun.  

At this meeting, which will include animated discussion, reading suggestions and snacks, ambitious readers will trade notes on their progress as well as books they like and books they don't.  New members are welcome at any time during the year. The group meets quarterly.  

The fifty books in fifty weeks are suggested, not required, for participation in the program. Each reader will choose which reading “counts” as part of the total. There are no limitations as to which formats can be read: downloaded books, audio books, e-books and graphic novels are all acceptable.  
For more resources and for email updates for the 50 Book Challenge, go to the library's webpage, /50_book/. For further information, call the library at 908-766-0118.   

Saturday Crafters to Meet

Saturday Crafters, a monthly craft group organized by Bernardsville Public Library, will meet on Saturday, July 19 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.