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Author Archive for Kara Logsden



Beware of the 3 Czech Ice Kings!

by Kara Logsden on March 28th, 2016
Beware of the 3 Czech Ice Kings! Cover Image

2016 03 Spring FlowersLonger days, spring flowers, and sunshine have me in the mood for garden planning. A little voice in the back of my head, though, has been telling me I shouldn’t get ahead of myself and to remember the Three Ice Kings my Grandmother, Mother, and Father have always warned about. I remembered to “Beware of the Ice Kings” but I couldn’t remember the details beyond they had something to do with planting tomatoes (a staple in my garden).

I was talking to a Master Gardener, who also happens to be an ICPL Reference Librarian, and asked if she’d ever heard of the Three Ice Kings. Expert sleuth she is, she found a couple articles including this one from Homegrown Iowan:

“As the story goes, the three kings or saints – Pankrac on May 12, Servac on May 13 and Bonifac on May 14 – were frozen when the temperature dropped while they were fishing at sea. On May 15, St. Zofie came along with a kettle of hot water to thaw out the three frozen kings.

The legend, brought to the United States by Czech immigrants, means that, for Iowans,  it’s a good idea to wait until May 15 to plant your tomatoes, peppers and other tender vegetables and flowers, or at least provide them with some protection in case overnight temperatures drop below freezing.”

My Grandmother is 100% Czech and first generation Iowan from Czech immigrants, so it makes sense she would know about the Ice Kings Legend.

So with a few more weeks to wait before planting, I decided a quick trip to the Library’s New Nonfiction Collection would help with garden planning. The first book I found is Vegetable Gardening in the Midwest by Michael VenderBrug. Not only does this book share a calendar for garden planning, but it also focuses on Midwest gardening issues. I especially liked the section addressing trellising tomatoes.

Foodscaping by Charles Nardozzi gives practical information about introducing edibles into regular landscaping. The pictures are great and I appreciated the information about container gardening.

Mystery writer Diane Mott Davidson’s book, Goldy’s Kitchen, weaves some of my favorite things into one book: Mysteries and Food. The Heirloom Tomato Salad recipe from her book, Fatally Flaky, looks perfect for my future tomato and basil harvest.

While I’m waiting for the Three Ice Kings, it’s nice to know I can find spring gardening inspiration at the Library.

Music on Wednesday-Susan and Greg Dirks

by Kara Logsden on March 5th, 2016

Susan and Greg Dirks grew up with music and began performing together as a duo in 2008. They compose most of their own music but also play cover songs from well-known musicians such as Eric Clapton and The Rolling Stones. Their music is an eclectic mix of folk, acoustic and folk rock.

We are honored to host Susan and Greg Dirks at the Library as a part of the Music on Wednesday series on March 9, 2016 at Noon in the Lobby.

A quote in ReverbNation about the Dirks’ music piqued my interest: “Some themes you may feel or identify in our music: love, family, friends, children, people we miss, passion, wind gently blowing through trees, water shimmering in the sunset, mountains rising majestically through clouds, the swelling expanse of the Pacific on the northern California coast, redwood forests, the Iowa countryside on a still summer night, rivers strong and gentle, shining ribbons of railroad tracks disappearing into the horizon, good books, history, selfless people doing good things.”

Music can often sweep us away. I’m looking forward to the Dirks’ music and the beautiful themes that will come alive through their performance. See you soon!

Holds @ ICPL

by Kara Logsden on March 2nd, 2016

2015 12 don't forgetWhat did Iowa City Public Library patrons do 146,917 times in Fiscal Year 2015? They placed a HOLD on a Library material. You may place a hold by logging into your account online or Library staff are happy to help you place a hold.

Holds, also known as “Reserves” are a convenient way to access Library materials. At the Library there are two different kinds of holds: Holds on materials checked out to other patrons and Holds on materials checked in and available (we’ll pull the items from the shelf for you!). You may have 10 free holds on your Library Account at any given time and, as a convenience, items stay on the Holds Shelf for 6 days to give you time to come in and pick them up.
Unfortunately, some holds are not picked up. We understand … sometimes plans change, sometimes you forget, or sometimes you are out of town. We have a new service to help you better manage your holds: FREEZE a HOLD.

2016 01 Freeze a HoldFREEZE a HOLD – what does that mean? If you requested an item, but want to delay when it is ready to be picked up, you can log in to your account and freeze the hold on that item. For example, if you are going on vacation and don’t want to miss getting your requested items, you can freeze the holds before you leave and then unfreeze them when you return. You will do this by logging into your account and indicating which holds you wish to freeze or unfreeze. There are some times when a hold may not be frozen – if you received a notice the hold was available for pick-up it is too late to freeze it at that point.

If you have questions about this new service, please stop by or give us a call.

Music on Friday School of Music Program

by Kara Logsden on February 24th, 2016

2016 02 ui school of music logoUniversity of Iowa School of Music students will present a wonderful noon-time program on Friday, February 26, 2016 in Meeting Room A. Please join us for an hour of enjoyment.

This program is free and open to the public. For a complete list of Music is the Word programs, visit www.icpl.org/mitw

Friday’s program will include:

Horn Trio in E flat Major Op.40                                  Johannes Brahms (1833 – 1897)

  1. Andante
    II. Scherzo (Allegro)
    III. Adagio mesto
    IV. Allegro con brio

Performed by: Three Oakes (Ethan Brozka, horn, Jenna Ferdon, violin, Max Tsai, piano)

Sonata No.23 Op. 57 F minor “Appassionata”      Ludwig van Beethoven  (1770 – 1827)

  1. Allegro Assai

 

Etude Op. 25 No. 10                                                            Frédéric Chopin (1810 – 1849)

Maple Leaf Rag                                                                     Scott Joplin (1868 – 1917)

Performed by: Hana Song, piano

Music on Wednesday: Anthony Arnone

by Kara Logsden on February 19th, 2016

2016 01 Anthony ArnoneA few years back I received an interesting telephone call. An Associate Professor at the University of Iowa, Anthony Arnone, wanted to play his cello in our Lobby. Arnone explained he was getting his car serviced and, instead of the waiting room magazines or donuts, why not play the cello during his wait? He had such a positive response, he started a project called “Bach to Work-Random Acts of Music,” playing his cello in unexpected locations.

We scheduled Mr. Arnone to play at 10:15 on a Monday morning, just as families were heading in for Storytime. The experience of hearing music was mesmerizing. People entering the Library stopped to listen and many children were curious about his playing.

Fast forward a couple years, and we are delighted to welcome Anthony Arnone back to the Library as a part of our Music on Wednesday series. Mr. Arnone will play his cello at Noon on Wednesday February 24th. If it is warm outside, he will play in the Lobby. If it is cold out, we’ll move the program to the Gallery on the first floor of the Library.

Cheers to “random acts of music” at the Library!

My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout

by Kara Logsden on February 11th, 2016
My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout Cover Image

I love books that stick with me. I like to ruminate over words, ponder what the author was saying, and think about themes and how the book fits into my bigger world. My Name is Lucy Barton is one of these books. And just like Elizabeth Strout’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Olive Kitteridge, My Name is Lucy Barton is a book to be savored.

Lucy Barton was raised in poverty in Amgash, Illinois. She escapes this poverty by working hard, ignoring ridicule, becoming a writer, and creating an adult life in Manhattan. Unfortunately Lucy cannot escape her past and the the loneliness and insecurities that follow her.

The book is also about family ties and love – wanting love and giving love – and coming to terms with one’s expectations for love vs. the reality of love. The story meanders like a stream, and Strout gives important details quietly, like a whisper in the reader’s ear. As I read I pondered each whisper, and silently hoped for happiness and love for Lucy as she faced her life’s journey.

 

Music on Wednesday: Music from the Heart

by Kara Logsden on February 5th, 2016

2016 02 Preucil LogoFebruary is Love Your Library month and there’s a lot to love at Iowa City Public Library! From the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten kickoff to Black History Month programs & displays, and continuing Music is the Word programs, there’s a lot of love for reading, connecting, and life long learning.

And now there’s more to love because we heard from Preucil School of Music today and they are preparing a wonderful “Music from the Heart” program for our Music on Wednesday series next week. Stop by Meeting Room A at Noon on Wednesday February 10th to hear an hour of Music from the Heart. Preucil faculty and students will be playing their favorite violin, viola, cello and piano pieces. Faculty performers will be Laura Shaw, cello and William Preucil, Sr., viola.

While you are here, stop by the 1st Floor Gallery and make a Valentine for the Library or browse the Blind Date with a Book or Blind Date with an Album display. Who knows, you may find a new love!

Or send us a note and let us know why you Love Your Library.

PS – Why do I love My Library? Because it’s an awesome place to work, t2014 02 Love your Libraryhere’s always something new going on, I see many friendly people each day, and I get to check out and enjoy great books.

Music on Wednesday-Deb Singer

by Kara Logsden on January 9th, 2016

2016 01 Deb SingerOnce upon a long time ago my daughter decided she wanted to take guitar lessons. I checked around and Deb Singer’s name kept coming up as a recommended teacher. For some reason we decided I should take lessons too, so soon my daughter and I had guitars and we were meeting with Deb once a week.

I’d love to say that we became guitar masters but alas, it was not meant to be (and this was no fault of Deb’s :) ). Mostly we enjoyed listening to Deb play with us and were amazed at how great we sounded when we were with Deb (an how not great we sounded when we were home practicing).

Please join us on Wednesday January 13, 2016 at Noon when Deb will share her classical guitar favorites with our Library audience. If the weather is mild we will be in the Lobby. If it’s cold we’ll move the program to the 1st Floor Gallery area near the magazine collection.

Deb is very well known in our community with the “under 5 crowd.” She is a regular at ICPL Storytimes and at local preschools. Deb has a passion for music and movement and it is a joy to watch and listen as she plays and dances with children.

Deb is a founding member and plays acoustic guitar with the Iowa City-based world music band, Kol Shira. Kol Shira’s CD, A New World, is available on the Library’s Local Music Project at http://music.icpl.org/kol_shira/a_new_world.

Circling the Sun by Paula McLain

by Kara Logsden on December 18th, 2015
Circling the Sun by Paula McLain Cover Image

OK-It happened again. I could not go to sleep until I finished reading the book Circling the Sun by Paula McLain. I started out listening to the book on disc – an excellent narration by Katharine McEwan BTW – but I got impatient and was obsessed with finishing the book.

I am not sure why I was so drawn to this book. Maybe it was the excellent writing by Paris Wife author, Paula McLain. Maybe it was because it was set in Kenya. Maybe it was because it reminded me so much of Isak Dinesen and the book/movie Out of Africa. Or maybe it was the unforgettable main character, Beryl Markham.

Circling the Sun transports the reader to colonial Kenya in the 1920’s. McLain’s fictionalized story is based on the real life of aviator Beryl Markham. Markham, abandoned by her mother when a child and by her father when she was a teenager, struggles to find her path. Circling the Sun not only captures what made Beryl Markham famous (horse training and racing expert when this field was dominated by men and the first woman to successfully fly across the Atlantic from east to west) but also chronicles her free-spirited childhood, adolescent struggles, happiness, insecurities, and heartbreaks. 

If you are looking for a great historical fiction novel to go with hot chocolate and a warm fire, I’d highly recommend Circling the Sun. Just be prepared to throw another log on the fire!

Music on Wednesday-Preucil School of Music

by Kara Logsden on December 9th, 2015

I just received the program for TODAY’s Music on Wednesday concert with Preucil School of Music at Noon in Meeting Room A. If you are Downtown over the lunch hour, stop in. Today’s selection includes music played on violas, violins, cellos and our wonderful Meeting Room A piano. Songs include traditional classical music as well as folk and holiday selections. As a special treat, William and Doris Preucil will perform Duos for 2 Violins by B. Bartok.

See you soon!




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