Author, Former Congressman, Robert H. Steele to Visit Main Library

Please join us Thursday, May 9, at 6:30 p.m., as we welcome Robert Steele for a book talk and signing of his new novel, The Curse: Big-Time Gambling’s Seduction of a Small New England Town. This free event will take place in meeting room 1 on the lower level of the Main TheCurse_RHSteele_FrontCoverLibrary. No registration is necessary. Copies of the book will be available for purchase.

The Curse is a novel set against the explosion of casino gambling that hit Connecticut during the 1990s, when two Indian tribes emerged to build the world’s two biggest casinos in the southeastern corner of the state. The story begins with the Pequot War in 1637, then jumps 350 years as a Connecticut family becomes embroiled in a struggle to block a third casino that threatens the family’s town and ancestral home.

The lure of easy money drives everyone, from the tribe’s chief to a shadowy Miami billionaire, venal politicians, and Providence mobsters, while a small, quintessential New England town must choose between preserving its character or accepting an extraordinary proposal that will change it forever.
As the battle over the casino reaches a climax, the main character discovers startling truths about his family’s past-including centuries-old events that appear to be impacting the present with devastating effect.

WNPR/Connecticut Public Radio’s John Dankosky calls the novel “fascinating” and Connecticut author Martin Shapiro has described it as “compelling and timely…an epic story of history, money and politics that will make you wonder where America is headed.”

Robert Steele is a former Congressman and candidate for governor of Connecticut. He represented eastern Connecticut in Congress prior to the arrival of Foxwoods and Mohegan Sun, and subsequently lived for 21 years on the edge of the Mashantucket Pequot Reservation, giving him a front-row seat to the political maneuvering that led to the casinos and a first-hand view of their impact. He is currently vice chairman of an international retail marketing agency and lives with his wife in Essex, Connecticut.

Thursday at the Carousel Museum ~ Tunes & Twirls: The Evolution of Carousel Music

April 25th at 6:30 PM

Barbara Pond, award winning musician and leader in the Bristol Symphony and the Musical Club of Hartford, will be presenting Tunes & Twirls: The Evolution of Carousel Music. This lively presentation includes a history of carousel music, a working band organ to enjoy, and carousel rides. Light refreshments will be provided.

New England Carousel Museum
95 Riverside Avenue, Bristol, CT 06010

Bonus Tax-Aide Session on April 3rd Has Been Canceled

Due to unforeseen circumstances, the extra session has been canceled.

The last day to take advantage of this free service at the Main Library will be next Tuesday, April 9th, from Noon until 4:00 PM.

Tax-Aide is a free confidential service run by volunteers who prepare Federal and Connecticut tax returns. The service is offered to low and middle income taxpayers of all ages with special attention to those 60 and older. No appointment is necessary.

For more information please call 1-888-227-7669 or visit the AARP website .

Women’s History Month Program on Historic Hill-Stead Garden Architect, Beatrix Farrand

Colleen Plimpton as Beatrix Farrand

Colleen Plimpton as Beatrix Farrand

On Saturday, March 30, at 2:00 p.m., the Bristol Garden Club, Bristol Historical Society, and the Bristol Public Library will present “Beatrix Farrand, Rediscovered: A Dramatic Presentation of the Life, Times, and Gardens of America’s First Female Landscape Architect and Gardener to the Stars of the Early 20th Century.” This free event, co-sponsored by the Bristol Historical Society, Bristol Garden Club, and the Bristol Public Library will take place in meeting room 1 on the lower level of the Main Library. No registration is necessary.

In addition to being America’s first female architect, Beatrix Farrand (1872-1959) was also a founding member of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Though overlooked for decades, her work is being rediscovered. Many of her gardens, such as Bellefield in Hyde Park, NY; Hill-Stead in Farmington, CT and Garland Farm in Bar Harbor, ME, have been restored. This talk is a dramatic, 45-minute, first person presentation, in costume, backed by a slide show of the distinguished landscape gardener’s creations.

Colleen Plimpton spent 30 years in her first career as a clinical social worker with the chronically mentally ill. Her second career is that of professional garden communicator. She trained at the New York Botanical Garden and has tended her sloping Connecticut acre for 20 years. She’s appeared on numerous TV and radio programs including CBS, ABC, Good Morning America and PBS; she pens a prize-winning newspaper column for Hearst Media Group; coaches gardening; has taught at the New York Botanical Garden; lectures widely; and writes for publications such as GreenPrints, Connecticut Gardener, and Toastmaster. Colleen’s multi-honored garden memoir, Mentors in the Garden of Life was a Finalist for the 2011 Connecticut Book of the Year in the Memoir category. Her new book, Growing a Movement: How a Small Group of Determined Women Changed Horticultural History will be available in 2013.