all events at 6:30pm unless otherwise noted
October 23: Chris Myers Asch
Talk focusing on: Chocolate City: A History of Race and Democracy in the Nation’s Capital
Chris Myers Asch moved to Maine in 2013 from his hometown of Washington, D.C. when his wife became rabbi of Temple Beth El in Augusta. A graduate of Duke University with a Ph.D. in American History from the University of North Carolina, he is an alumnus of Teach For America and an Echoing Green Fellow. He co-founded the Sunflower County Freedom Project in 1998 and the U.S. Public Service Academy initiative in 2006. Asch teaches history at Colby College, and his new book “Chocolate City: A History of Race and Democracy in the Nation’s Capital” was recently released through The University of North Carolina Press. He and his wife, Erica, have three children and live in Hallowell.
November 27: Claire Hersom
Claire Hersom’s poetry focuses on Maine themes, and has appeared in several poetry journals and anthologies, as well as in Yankee Magazine’s New England Memories series. She works in local elementary schools presenting poetry workshops, and in 2011 was awarded an Emerging Artist Grant in Literature from the St. Botolph Club Foundation of Boston. Claire is also on the Board of Directors for Maine Equal Justice Partners. Her poem “Norman Lee” was awarded first place by the Maine Poets Society as Best Poem about Maine in 2007. She has three grown children, several grandchildren and lives in Winthrop, Maine.
December 1: Winthrop Handbell Ringers | 1:30pm
The popular Winthrop Handbell Ringers will give a holiday themed concert in the King Event Room. The Handbell Ringers have performed together for over 25 years, and will perform a medley of holiday favorites.
January 29: Laurie Apgar Chandler
Talk focusing on: Upwards: The Story of the First Woman to Solo Thru-Paddle the Northern Forest Canoe Trail
In the summer of 2015, at age 53, Laurie Apgar Chandler became the first woman to solo thru-paddle New England’s 740-mile Northern Forest Canoe Trail. Her memoir “Upwards” provides one of the most comprehensive looks yet at the NFCT, the country’s longest mapped inland paddling trail. Her story of achieving an improbable dream combines inspiration with a down-to-earth account of the joys and challenges, nature and people of this historic route. Chandler holds degrees in biology and forestry and worked for many years as a research forester. She is the author of numerous scientific publications. She lives year-round in Maine, sharing her parents’ log cabin in Bremen, and enjoys swimming, canoeing, hiking, and snowshoeing.
February 26: Maeghan Maloney
Talk focusing on: The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit
Maeghan Maloney is the District Attorney for Kennebec and Somerset counties. As a child, she lived in the Tall Pines Low Income Housing Project in Lewiston until her family moved to Turner, where she graduated from Leavitt High School in 1989. She received scholarships to attend Swarthmore College and Harvard Law School. After graduation, she worked as a prosecutor in Portland, Oregon starting in the trial unit until she was promoted to run the forfeiture unit. Maeghan spent a year in Asia working to stop domestic violence on a Luce Fellowship. In Maine, she worked as an assistant attorney general before being elected to the Maine legislature. Maloney will discuss the North Pond Hermit case as well as topics such as alternative sentencing. Maloney was the prosecutor for the case.
March 26: Michael Miclon
Talk focusing on: Vaudeville in Maine
Michael Miclon is the Executive/Artistic Director of the Johnson Hall Performing Arts Center in Gardiner, and will give a talk called “Vaudeville in Maine,” which connects the history of vaudeville performers in Maine to the state’s rich performing arts culture. Miclon produces over fifty performances annually as well as waterfront concerts and Johnson Hall’s Artist in the Schools program. Michael is also leading the renovation of the second and third floors of the historic Johnson Hall Opera House, due to reopen in 2019. Michael began his career in 1982 at the age of 14 as an apprentice to Benny and Denise Reehl of the New England New Vaudeville Revue, formerly the Buckfield Leather and Lather Traveling Variety Show. Miclon continued study in 1985 with Mime Master Tony Montanaro at the world renowned Celebration Barn Theater in South Paris, Maine. Miclon is known internationally and has performed in theaters across the U.S. and Europe, including the Kennedy Center, the White House, the Keller Theatre in Germany, the Victoria Jungfrau Grand Hotel in Switzerland, and the Fiesta Americana in Italy.
April 30: Wesley McNair
Talk focusing on: The Unfastening: Poems
The Library will celebrate National Poetry Month by hosting Maine’s former poet laureate Wesley McNair. During his five-year term as poet laureate, McNair launched five statewide initiatives in partnership with the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. “All of them have the same motive,” he says, “which is to make poetry part of the cultural life we all share.” McNair, who has twice been invited to read his poems at the Library of Congress, will read from his newly released poetry collection, “The Unfastening.” McNair has won numerous awards for his poetry over the years, including Rockefeller and Guggenheim fellowships, and a United States Artists Fellowship as one of America’s “finest living artists.”
May 28: Susan Conley
Talk focusing on: Elsey Come Home
Susan Conley is a native of Maine whose work has been published in The New York Times, The Daily Beast, The Paris Review, the Harvard Review and The North American Review. As an editor at Ploughshares Magazine in Boston, she wrote book reviews and profiles. She has also taught creative writing and literature at several colleges including Emerson College, Simmons College, The University of New England, and within Harvard’s Teachers as Writers Program. She currently teaches at the University of Southern Maine’s Stonecoast MFA Program and is the Jack Kerouac Visiting Writer at the University of Massachusetts at Lowell.
“Elsey Come Home” is Susan’s second novel, and fourth book. Is is described as a dynamic portrait of contemporary womanhood, with themes of addiction, marriage, and motherhood. The Bailey Title Waves Book Group will also discuss the novel on Wednesday, May 15th at 6:00pm, and all are invited.
June 25: Leonard Kalkwarf
Talk focusing on: Exploring the Libraries of the U.S. Presidents
Kalkwarf was a parish minister and served congregations for more than fifty years in New York, Pennsylvania, and Kuwait. He earned a doctorate from Princeton and received an honorary doctorate from Central College in Pella, Iowa, his alma mater. He is listed in Who’s Who in America. He lives in Springfield, Virginia with his wife Beverly, and spends his summers at his cottage in Readfield, Maine.
Kalkwarf began his hobby of studying presidential history when he retired. Since 2006, he and his wife, Beverly, have visited all thirteen presidential libraries and have also visited one or more historical sites associated with each of the former forty-three presidents. He regularly gives lectures on past presidents. Since January 2010, he has been a White House volunteer in the Presidential Correspondence Department.