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Crazy Quilt

Banned Book Week 2015—Banned Theater!

Date: September 28, 2015, 6:00pm
Location: Downtown Library, Center for Contemporary Culture

Join an all-star panel of area theater professionals and the ACLU of Connecticut for a discussion on banned plays, including Blues for Mister Charlie by James Baldwin, My Name is Rachel Corrie, edited by Alan Rickman and Sister Mary Ignatius Explains It All For You by Christopher Durang.

Featuring Rob Ruggiero (TheaterWorks), Rachel Alderman (Hartford Stage), Jacques LaMarre (playwright/The Mark Twain House & Museum) and David McGuire (ACLU of Connecticut). Moderated by Dr. Lois Brown, Director of the Center for African American Studies at Wesleyan University.


Discount for employeesDiscounts!

Bear's BBQ, 89 Arch Street, Hartford Use your HPL card on Monday and enjoy a 10% discount off of your order.

The Kitchen, HPL, Downtown Location Enjoy a 10% discount when you use your HPL library card anytime at The Kitchen!




Find Your Way to the ExtraordinaryPhotography & Creativity: A Digital Photography Workshop Series

Tuesdays, September 29 November 17, 2015 10:00 a.m. 12:00 p.m.
Camp Field Branch (30 Campfield Avenue)

In “Photography & Creativity: A Digital Photography Workshop Series” at the Camp Field Branch, participants will learn the basic operations of a compact digital camera, including settings, how to review photos in camera, how to delete unwanted photos in camera, memory card function, and methods of downloading digital images from the camera. Once comfortable with camera usage, students will then learn how to “see” through the camera lens through a series of exercises and discussions. To register, please call 860-695-7440. Click here for more information.

Creative Aging in America's Libraries is supported by a National Leadership Grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services in collaboration with Lifetime Arts, Inc., AARP Foundation, American Library Association and Westchester Library System.


Crazy QuiltCreative Aging in America’s Libraries

Beginning in fall 2015, four distinct eight-week Creative Aging in America's Libraries workshops for adults 55+ will launch at multiple Hartford Public Library locations: Camp Field, Dwight and Park branches, and the Downtown Library.

Simply Crazy Quilting Class

Date: Mondays, October 12 December 7, 2015, 10:30 a.m. 12:30 p.m.
Location: Downtown Library (500 Main Street)

Join local quilter and teaching artist Irma Nelson for a free, 8 week quilting workshop. Designed for both absolute beginners and quilters with some experience, this creative aging program for adults 55+ will provide instruction in the basic aspects of traditional quilting. Participants will complete a 27 ½" square quilt project to display at a reception after the last class. Materials will be provided. Space is limited registration is required! Call 860-695-6377 or email Sarah (spelletier@hplct.org) to register. Click here for more information.


Salsa SocialsSalsa Socials

Every Third Tuesday, 6:00 p.m.
Downtown Library Atrium

Salsa socials are back at HPL! Join us for an open session welcoming dancers of all levels, free of charge! No partner or experience needed. Dancing and teaching for over twenty years, Rey Bermudez will share his passion for salsa at these open dance sessions.


Hartford Independent Chamber OrchestrHartford Independent Chamber Orchestra Lunch Time Performance!

October 7
Downtown Library, Atrium

A roster of premier musicians from the Hartford Independent Chamber Orchestra will broaden your musical perspectives with a special lunch time performance in the soaring Atrium of the downtown library at 12:00 noon.

HICO presents these midday musical breaks with a wide array of modern classical music by 20th and 21st-century composers. Concerts are free and open to the public. Bring a lunch and share in the musicians’ enthusiasm for all things classical.


Artist LectureRichard Brunton—Not Just a Connecticut Artist—Lecture with Deborah M. Child

Thursday, October 8, 6:00pm
Hartford History Center, Downtown Library, 3rd floor

Author Deborah M. Child follows in the footsteps of Richard Brunton, a British grenadier who fought in the American Revolution before deserting in 1779. A trained engraver and diesinker, his primitive but charming works include some of the earliest pre-printed family registers in America. Despite his many talents, he was never able to make an honest living from his craft and spent time in Connecticut’s infamous Old NewGate Prison for counterfeiting and forgery.

“Soldier, Engraver, Forger: Richard Brunton’s Life on the Fringe in America’s New Republic” (New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2015) will be available for purchase immediately following the lecture.


Poets on PoetryPoets on Poetry Series

Last Saturday of every month
Downtown Library

The Connecticut Poetry Society continues its monthly poetry book group discussions with Come Thief by Jane Hirshfield, (moderated by Ginny Connors) on September 26 and selected poems of Emily Dickinson, (moderated by David Epstein) on October 31. 10:15 am–12:30pm. Free and open to the public. For further information, visit www.ctpoetry.net.


Fountain PenThe Author’s Table

Hartford Public Library is pleased to introduce The Author’s Table, an opportunity for local writers to showcase their latest publication and connect with downtown library visitors.

Hartford Public Library will publicize your scheduled appearance and will make available your book in the circulating collection, in a special section for local authors. Hartford authors will be given first consideration.

Please contact the Public Programming and Cultural Affairs Department at 860.695.6322 for more information.



Fountain Pen“DNA Sequencing: Implications for Society and Medicine”

“Beyond the Podium” Science Conversation Series Returns October 5

October 5, 2015 at noon
Downtown Library, 500 Main Street, Hartford History Center, 3rd floor

Join Hartford Public Library and the Connecticut Science Center for our next lunchtime conversation, “DNA Sequencing: Implications for Society and Medicine.”

Dr. Stephanie Airoldi, STEM Program Coordinator at the Connecticut Science Center, will lead the discussion that begins at 12:00 noon.

Bring a lunch and join the conversation!



Artwalk Pic"Calling All Artists”

Submissions Accepted Through October 1st

ArtWalk at Hartford Public Library, one of the largest and most stunning exhibition spaces in metropolitan Hartford, is seeking proposals from artists in Hartford county for exhibitions in 2016.

Situated on the third floor of the Downtown Library in a space that looks over historic Main Street, the gallery offers unique visibility and exposure, adding to the increasing vibrancy of Downtown Hartford. The ArtWalk hanging system’s movable hanging panels allow maximum flexibility for each show.

The state-of-the art gallery was made possible through the generosity of donors, especially the Beatrice Fox Auerbach Foundation at Hartford Foundation for Public Giving. For rules on eligibility and information on how to send submissions click here.


Summer Arts ProgramSummer Arts Appreciation Program Exhibit

August 20—September 25
Downtown Library, 2nd Floor

This collection of artwork was created by a group of seven Hartford Public High School teenagers enrolled in the Owl Enrichment Center Afterschool Program at Hartford Public High School. Under the guidance of community artist Robert Charles Hudson, the students studied art appreciation, focusing on Harlem Renaissance artist Romare Bearden.

As a team, the teens completed several creative projects over the course of the program. Highlights include a hand sewn quilt depicting the Underground Railroad bowtie design and a montage mural exhibiting their individual artistic designs along with telling a collective story.


Blue Veil

Opposite Sides of the World – Connecticut to Singapore Janette Maxey

on display through October 9, 2015
Downtown Library

Maxey is an American painter, born in California and now living and working in Connecticut. She recently returned from Singapore where she lived for four years.

She has exhibited in New England, Italy, and Singapore. Her works are included in private and public collections in North America, Europe, and Asia. She holds an AS in Fine Arts from Tunxis Community College and a BFA (magna cum laude) in Painting from The Hartford Art School. While completing her BFA, she studied abroad in Cortona, Italy. Maxey has also studied at the Art Students League of New York, New York Studio School and The School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts.


Images of HartfordImages of Hartford 1865-1955

August 25—Sept 30
Downtown Library, 3rd Floor

Highlights include the origins of the Fuller Brush company on Park Street, the 1885 location of the Aetna Insurance Company on State Street, the Hartford Post Office on the East lawn of the Old State House and the home of poet Lydia Sigourney, the “Sweet Singer of Hartford.”

To learn more about the Hartford History Center or to access our Digital Repository, please visit http://hhc.hplct.org


Hartford on Mind“Hartford on My Mind: Words and Images from 550 Main Street” Exhibit

September 19-November 30
Downtown Library, 3rd floor

The City of Hartford’s iconic Municipal Building turns 100 years old on November 4, and serves as the inspiration for a special exhibit from participants of Hartford Public Library’s Arts & Archives spring workshop, geared toward adults who wish to explore and develop their creative abilities.

Guided by master artists, poet Kate Rushin and photographer Karen O’Maxfield, participants in the “Hartford on My Mind: Words and Images from 550 Main Street” classes were challenged to create original compositions using poetry and photography as their tools.


Venture ExhibitVenture Smith Exhibit at Hartford History Center

October 15 January 15, 2015
Downtown Library, 3rd Floor

Hartford History Center, in partnership with the Documenting Venture Smith Project presentsMaking Freedom—The Life of Venture Smith, an exhibit that tells the story of a unique American, originally an African prince who was enslaved in the 18th century by New England traders, labored in bondage for 25 years, purchased his own freedom, wrote a narrative of his life and became a respected businessman in Connecticut.



Free Online ClassesAccess More Than 500 Online Classes – Free!

Your HPL library card can unlock a world of learning, wherever you are, for free! Universal Class offers more than 500 online classes in a variety of subjects, from accounting to photography, financial management to psychology, algebra to computer programming, and more. Learn at your own pace, on your schedule. Click here and enter your library card barcode to begin! 



Oversight and SustainabilityFall 2015 Nonprofit Series

The Board's Role In Governance And Management

Thursday, October 1, 10:00 am to noon
Hartford Public Library

Presenter: Priya Morganstern, Esq ,Director, Hartford Pro Bono Partnership, Inc. Though the primary responsibility of a board is governance, members often find themselves slipping into a management role. This workshop clarifies essential governance functions, roles and structures, and provides tips on how to maximize the board’s leadership role.

To register: Email your name and email address to dalexandre@hplct.org



ESL ClassesESL Classes

Downtown Library: Saturdays, 9:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., and Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Dwight Branch: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Park Branch: Mondays, 5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Free English language classes for speakers of other languages are offered twice a year for beginning levels only. Open to students ages 17 and older. Click here for more information.

Presented in partnership with the Hartford Adult Education Center. 



Skate ParkSkate Park Garden

Tuesdays and Fridays, 2-2:30 PM
YOUmedia, Downtown Library, 2nd Floor
Open to teens 13-19 only!

Help save Heaven in Hartford Concrete Skate Park. Visit us to see how. For a complete schedule of our weekly classes, workshops and open labs, visit www.youmedia.hplct.org!


Photoshop BasicsPhotoshop Basics

Wednesdays and Thursdays, 3-6 PM
YOUmedia, Downtown Library, 2nd Floor

Gamers and illustrators: Create your own 3D characters that can be used in video games and more. For a complete schedule of our weekly classes, workshops and open labs, visit www.youmedia.hplct.org!


3D Sculpting3D Sculpting

Wednesdays and Thursdays, 3-6 PM
YOUmedia, Downtown Library, 2nd Floor
Open to teens 13-19 only!

Gamers and illustrators: Create your own 3D characters that can be used in video games and more. For a complete schedule of our weekly classes, workshops and open labs, visit www.youmedia.hplct.org!


Lets Draw MangaLets Draw Manga

Tuesdays, 3-4 PM
YOUmedia, Downtown Library, 2nd Floor

Otaku of Hartford: Use the computer to create your own manga during our weekly workshop. For a complete schedule of our weekly classes, workshops and open labs, visit www.youmedia.hplct.org!


App InventorApp Inventor

Wednesdays, 2-3 PM
YOUmedia, Downtown Library, 2nd Floor

Program and build your own mobile apps for Android smartphones. For a complete schedule of our weekly classes, workshops and open labs, visit www.youmedia.hplct.org!


Breakfast ClubBreakfast Club

August 1, 10-12 PM
YOUmedia, Downtown Library, 2nd Floor

On the first Saturdays of every month, make pancakes, meet new friends and get involved with the community! For a complete schedule of our weekly classes, workshops and open labs, visit www.youmedia.hplct.org!


Wake Up YogaWake Up Yoga

August 15, 11:30-12:30 PM
YOUmedia, Downtown Library 2nd Floor
Ppen to teens 13-19 only!

Join us on the third Saturday of every month for a quick and refreshing yoga flow to get your weekend started right. Come ready to breathe and open up. Flexibility NOT required!

Bring your own mat or borrow one of ours (supplies limited). For a complete schedule of our weekly classes, workshops and open labs, visit www.youmedia.hplct.org!


Apply for PassportApply for your Passport at HPL!

Monday – Thursday, 3:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.; Saturday 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
American Place, Downtown Library, 1st Floor

Did you know? You can apply for your passport right here at the Library! A staff member is available to assist with the application, requirements, photo, and submission.
Click here for more information.

   Our Blogs


Perfect ComebackThe Perfect Comeback of Caroline Jacobs

(Author: Matthew Dicks)

Each week, Hartford Courant columnist Carole Goldberg reviews books in our collection. Wife, mother of grumpy, punky, tattooed teenager Polly and an underappreciated studio and art photographer, shy Caroline Jacobs is an adult still trapped in teenage angst. Long ago, Emily, her best friend rejected her publically in order to fit in better with the “cool kids,” leaving poor unconfident Caroline hurt and abandoned and afraid to speak her mind. Living in this social prison of her own device for 25 years, Caroline seems unlikely to break free, until the obnoxious president of the local PTO pushes her beyond her comfort zone and Caroline surprises her, the other parents and herself by dropping the F bomb and telling her off. This explosion of truth-telling propels Caroline to yank her recalcitrant daughter out of school and set off to her old hometown to finally right the wrong done to her many years ago. When she arrives, she finds many things have changed, but not all. By the time she leaves, many more changes have taken place and no one is more surprised than the newly confident Caroline and her new champion, her daughter Polly. Read more!




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For further information, please contact Matt Poland, CEO, at 860.695.6303 or by email at mpoland@hplct.org



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