All posts by Public Affairs

The Library Honors Native and Indigenous Cultures – Native people share culture, traditions, music, crafts, dance and ways of life

For Immediate Release: October 25, 2018

Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252; mindy.linetzky@sfpl.org

Media Contact: Michelle Jeffers
(415) 557-4282; michelle.jeffers@sfpl.org

 

The Library Honors Native and Indigenous Cultures

Native people share culture, traditions, music, crafts, dance and ways of life

 

SAN FRANCISCO, CA November is National American Indian Heritage Month, and San Francisco Public Library is excited to honor the voices of indigenous and native peoples with a month long celebration titled First Person: Honoring Native and Indigenous Cultures.

More than 80 programs for all ages, in all library locations provide a platform for native people to share culture, traditions, music, crafts, dance and ways of life. With First Person, there are opportunities to learn something new, have your curiosity stoked and enjoy the varied programs that honor and celebrate native people – all free at the library.

nativeculturesLearn about early contact between indigenous tribes and settlers of California by attending docent-led tours of the old Mission Dolores. Later in the month, author Elias Castillo discusses his book A Cross of Thorns: The Enslavement of California Indians by the Spanish Missions. Try your hand at traditional Navajo beading. Take part in an interactive presentation on the Indian Occupation of Alcatraz and view the VICE television series, Rise, about contemporary native and indigenous issues. Meet San Francisco Poet Laureate Kim Shuck (Cherokee/Euro-American) at special events that cover topics ranging from basket weaving to the debate around confederate monuments. View a rare collection of photographic prints of The North American Indian series by Edward S. Curtis.

The Library promises something for everyone during our First Person celebration. People of all ages are invited to see award winning Eddie Madril’s performance of the dances of the Plains Indians. Children can learn about traditional agricultural practices as they get hands-on with Sovereign Seeds, play Mayan Yucatec bingo games, enjoy Ohlone-Mutsun language coloring books, and learn plant identification led by park rangers. Also there are special Two-Spirit Storyhours with native authors. All ages can study Cherokee and Hawaiian online through Mango Languages, free with a library card. We also encourage everyone to learn about the edible, wild and native foods growing around the Bay Area during cooking demonstrations and food history programs.

Come into a neighborhood branch and take out a book or movie – read the November On the Same Page pick, Heart Berries by Terese Marie Mailhot, a memoir of a woman’s coming of age on the Seabird Island Indian Reservation. Check out a list of Children’s Books on the Native North American Experience; recommended reads, music and movies for First Person 2018; and a curated list on Native American Cooking that’s not just for Thanksgiving.

View the First Person: Honoring Native and Indigenous Cultures program guide.

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

When Art Is Racist with Kim Shuck & Andrew Jolivette – Nov. 1, 6:30 p.m., Chinatown Branch Library

Sewam Dance with Eddie Madril—Nov. 3, 10:30 a.m., Parkside Branch Library

First Nation Monuments & Funerary Places of the SF Bay—Nov. 14, 7 p.m., Sunset Branch Library

Activism & Aesthetics of the Indian Occupation of Alcatraz—Nov. 17, 3 p.m., Richmond Branch Library

A Cross of Thorns with Elias Castillo – Nov. 17, 4 p.m., Main Library, Koret Auditorium

Exhibition: The North American Indian – Though Dec. 1, Main Library, Skylight Gallery, 6th Floor

Sewam Dance with Eddie Madril

Nov. 3, 10:30 a.m., Parkside Branch Library

Nov. 3, 2:30 p.m., SFMOMA Public Knowledge

 

California and the Americas Food History with Chef Farais

Nov. 3, 3 p.m., North Beach Branch Library

Nov. 14, 3 p.m., Anza Branch Library

 

String Stories with Kim Shuck

Nov. 4, 2 p.m., Visitacion Valley Branch Library

Nov. 9, 3 p.m., Portola Branch Library

Nov. 10, 11 a.m., Merced Branch Library

 

Make Your Own Basket with Kim Shuck

Nov. 10, 2 p.m., West Portal Branch Library

Nov. 8, 4:30 p.m., Main Library, The Mix, 2nd Floor

 

Two-Spirit Storyhour

Nov. 17, 11 a.m., Main Library, Children’s Center, 2nd floor

Nov. 17, 2:30 p.m., North Beach Branch Library

 

Old Mission Dolores Tours— Space is limited, registration at branches required.

Nov. 3, 1 p.m., Noe Valley Branch Library

Nov. 10, 1 p.m., Eureka Valley Branch Library

 

Native American Beaded Bracelets

Nov. 3, 3 p.m., Mission Branch Library

Nov. 3, 11 a.m., Mission Bay Branch Library

Nov. 10, 2 p.m., Parkside Branch Library

Nov. 18, 2 p.m., Potrero Branch Library

 

Sovereign Seeds and Starts

Nov. 3, 2 p.m., Golden Gate Valley Branch Library

Nov. 10, 2 p.m., Sunset Branch Library

Nov. 17, 2 p.m., Park Branch Library

Nov. 28, 3:30 p.m., Anza Branch Library

 

Ohlone-Mutsun Language Coloring Book

Nov. 26, 2 p.m., Ocean View Branch Library

Nov. 26, 4:30 p.m., Ingleside Branch Library

Nov. 27, 11:15 a.m., Glen Park Branch Library

Nov. 27, 2:30 p.m., Marina Branch Library

 

Many more classes, films, performances, events and activities are listed in the First Person program guide. All programs at the San Francisco Public Library are free.

 

About San Francisco Public Library

San Francisco Public Library is dedicated to free and equal access to information, knowledge, independent learning and the joys of reading for our diverse community. The library system is made up of 27 neighborhood branches, the San Francisco Main Library at Civic Center and four bookmobiles.

Visual Poetry: A Lyrical Twist – Thomas Ingmire Calligraphy and Poetry in Collaboration

For Immediate Release: October 24, 2018
Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252; Mindy.Linetzky@sfpl.org

 

VISUAL POETRY: A LYRICAL TWIST

Thomas Ingmire Calligraphy and Poetry in Collaboration

San Francisco—The San Francisco Public Library’s Book Arts & Special Collections Center is pleased to present Visual Poetry: a Lyrical Twist, featuring Thomas Ingmire’s unique modern and expressive calligraphy in the creation of collaborative works with eleven contemporary poets. Poetry readings open the show on November 17, 2018, at 1:00 p.m., in the Koret Auditorium, with a reception to follow. The exhibition is on view through March 31, 2019, in the Jewett Gallery, Main Libraryingmire.

Bay Area poets Jack Hirschman, Dean Rader and Tsering Wangmo Dhompa are featured along with poets Li-Young Lee, Robert Bringhurst, David Annwn, Christine Kennedy, Geraldine Monk, Alan Halsey, Allen Fisher and Robert Sheppard. The exhibition features unique artists’ books—works that build on a tradition of visual artists and poets being inspired by each other.

Ingmire has been a practicing calligrapher since 1977 and currently lives and works in San Francisco. For the last 20 years, he has concentrated on the making of artists’ books, exhibiting widely in the United States and abroad.  In describing Visual Poetry: a Lyrical Twist Ingmire writes, “For over three decades, I have drawn on poetry typically associated with modern calligraphy, including texts by William Blake, Arthur Rimbaud, Dylan Thomas, Denise Levertov, and Wallace Stevens. Traditional characteristics of elegant writing and decoration have been part of my work, but I was also interested in the pictorial possibilities of language itself: the word as image, and the expressive potential of calligraphy to capture the emotion and atmosphere of a text. This involved the creation of new non-traditional letterforms and testing the limits of various techniques including distortion, fragmentation, shifts in placement of text, composition, and color. I am intrigued by the ways these adjustments can influence the reception and meaning of a poem.

In this exhibit I continue the visual interpretation of poetry, but attempt something additional. Working in collaboration with contemporary poets, I have incorporated their actual voice, concerns, and interests. Trying to find a working language for engagement with the poets led to the idea of making music part of the collaboration process. Music not only served as a linking device, but an inspiration for both calligraphy and the poetry. Connecting words to music opened new doors for my thinking about meaning, which in turn led to new images, letterforms, and page compositions. I hope this exhibition—resulting in books, drawings, and broadsides—invites your own broadening experience with the poetry you will read and see here, as well as your involvement with poetry in the future.”

 

The Poets

Jack Hirschman, Dean Rader, and Tsering Wangmo Dhompa are poets residing in the Bay Area. Li-Young Lee, from Chicago, is a recent recipient of the Levinson prize for his poem, “Changing Places in the Fire.” Robert Bringhurst, from Canada, and David Annwn, Christine Kennedy, Geraldine Monk, Alan Halsey, Allen Fisher, and Robert Sheppard, all from the UK, have been associated with the British Poetry revival. The exhibition features unique artists’ books and framed wall pieces, including a 35 foot long rendition of Li-Young Lee’s poem.

 

Thomas Ingmire: Biography

Thomas Ingmire was born in 1942 in Ft. Wayne, Indiana. He received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Landscape Architecture and worked in the field in the early 1970s before discovering calligraphy. In 1977 he joined English master calligrapher and illuminator Donald Jackson’s one-year postgraduate study, and subsequently became the first foreign member to be elected as a Fellow of England’s Society of Scribes and Illuminators. In 1980, Ingmire was granted a Newberry Fellowship for the continuing study of calligraphy.

Ingmire’s early work focused on teaching and calligraphic research involving the exploration of calligraphy as a fine arts medium. He has taught workshops throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, and several countries in Europe as well as in Japan and Hong Kong.

Ingmire has exhibited widely in the United States and abroad. His works can be found in numerous special collections in public and university libraries, and museums throughout the United States, including the San Francisco Public Library; the Library of Congress; The Morgan Library, New York; The New York Public Library; The Newberry Library, Chicago; Stanford University Library;  University of California, Los Angeles; Beinecke Library, Yale University; Lorca Foundation, Spain; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Letterform Archive, San Francisco; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; the Sackner Archive of Concrete and Visual Poetry, Miami; the Victoria & Albert Museum, London; Stiftung Archiv der Akademie der Künstem Berlin, Germany, and many other public and private collections.

Since 2002, Ingmire has concentrated on the making of artists’ books. He has embarked on a number of collaborative projects, including a series of artists’ books with poetry by Pablo Neruda and Federico Garcia Lorca and original drawings by Manuel Neri; work as an illuminator on the St. John’s Bible; and two major series of works with a number of contemporary poets.

The exhibition is sponsored by the Marjorie G. and Carl W. Stern Book Arts and Special Collections Center of the San Francisco Public Library. The center houses highly esteemed collections, including the Robert Grabhorn Collection on the History of Printing and the Development of the Book, the Richard Harrison Collection of Calligraphy and Lettering, and the Schmulowitz Collection of Wit and Humor.

High resolution images available upon request.

Visual Poetry: a Lyrical Twist – Nov. 17-March 31, 2019, Main Library, Jewett Gallery

Opening event poetry readings – Nov. 17, 1 p.m., Main Library, Koret Auditorium

2018 San Francisco Veterans Film Festival – Stories of Strength and Discovery

For Immediate Release: October 23, 2018

SFVFF Contact: Eddie Ramirez
(415) 244-7100 / Eduardo.Ramirez415@gmail.com

SFPL Contact: Mindy Linetzy
(415) 554-4252 / Mindy.Linetzky@sfpl.org

2018 San Francisco Veterans Film Festival

Stories of Strength and Discovery

High resolution images available upon request

WHAT:  7th Annual San Francisco Veterans Film Festival

WHEN:  Saturday, Nov. 3, 10 a.m. -5:30 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 4, 12 – 4:30 p.m.

WHERE:  Koret Auditorium, Main Library, 100 Larkin Street, SF (Grove Street entrance)

COST:  Admission is free

San Francisco, CA – OneVet OneVoice and the San Francisco Public Library announce the lineup for the 7th annual San Francisco Veterans Film Festival (#SFVFF18), the Bay Area’s premier military and veteran film event. The festival, with screenings on November 3 and 4 at the Main Library, shares authentic veteran stories and gives the public an opportunity to learn about the challenges and perspectives of veterans and active duty military.

This year’s festival features stories of veterans who find healing through creativity and discover surprising new connections. Films include the reunion of two Red Cross ‘Donut Dollies;’ the story of the challenges faced by a returning medevac unit; the tale of veteran poets who find a newfound tribe in each other; and Visions of Warriors, which depicts how veterans working with the VA in Menlo Park used photography therapy to help them heal.

The two-day festival includes 16 films, both short and full-length. Military service periods range from World War I through modern day. The program is free to the public, and everyone is welcome to attend all or part of the two-day event. Saturday festival attendees are also invited to the evening’s Filmmakers Reception.

“We are grateful to provide a forum for veterans to express their creativity, explore the complexity of their experiences and emotions, and connect with other veterans as well as our civilian brothers and sisters. We hope this brings honor and healing to our service men and women and builds stronger bonds among all Americans,” comments Eddie Ramirez, founder of the San Francisco Veterans Film Festival and the sponsoring organization OneVet OneVoice.

Highlights of the 2018 San Francisco Veterans Film Festival include the following:

We Are Not Done Yet (40 min) Sareen Hairabedian

Ten U.S. veterans of varied backgrounds come together in hopes of battling their traumatic military pasts through the art of written word. Grappling with PTSD, the “warrior poets” share fears, vulnerabilities and victories that eventually culminate into a live performance of a collaborative poem under the direction of actor Jeffrey Wright. In the process of creating their poetry and rehearsing for the performance, these men and women build a new-found tribe in one another, allowing them to share the too often hidden truths about their intimacy with war, death and trauma.
Screening Saturday, Nov. 3

Trauma (1 hr 27 min) Harry Sanna

After saving lives on the battlefields of Afghanistan, the members of a helicopter medevac unit return home to their families, each changed in different ways.
Screening Saturday, Nov. 3

Visions of Warriors (1 hr 33 min) Ming Lai

Four veterans from the Vietnam War era to the Iraq War participate in the groundbreaking Veteran Photo Recovery Project at the VA Menlo Park and use innovative photography therapy.
Screening Sunday, Nov. 4

Donut Dollies (1 hr 26 min) Norm Anderson

In 1968, two best friends joined an elite team and flew into a war zone wearing powder blue dresses. They were Red Cross Donut Dollies. These idealistic young women embraced their mission – to cheer up the GIs in Vietnam – with energy, creativity, compassion and resolve but had no idea what they were getting into. 47 years later, they reunite in Vietnam to retrace their steps; ask why they went; ask whether they made a difference; unlock buried memories and share their stories for the first time.
Screening Sunday, Nov. 4

The full line up of screenings is available at www.sfveteransfilmfestival.org.

About the San Francisco Veterans Film Festival

San Francisco Veterans Film Festival is a robust forum for Veterans and civilian filmmakers to express their creativity and to share their stories, which in turn helps further healing and brings greater awareness to the public on the challenges our nation’s veteran’s face. The annual festival spotlights both veteran and civilian filmmakers addressing issues about Veterans and military-related topics.  For more information visit www.sfveteransfilmfestival.org.

About OneVet OneVoice

OneVet OneVoice is a non-profit based in San Francisco founded on the belief that healthcare, education, housing and employees for veterans and military families should be inextricably linked together.  The goal of the San Francisco Veterans Film Festival is to support one of the key missions of OneVet OneVoice: to educate the general public about the current issues facing our veterans, and provide a place for veterans to learn more about current support available.

About the San Francisco Public Library’s Veterans Resource Center

San Francisco Public Library’s Veterans Resource Center, located on the 5th floor of the Main Library, supports the veteran community with free computer access, a specialized veterans book collection, and information and assistance for veterans and their families. For more information please visit www.sfpl.org/veterans.

vetfilm

Free Financial Planning Day at the Library

For Immediate Release: October 11, 2018
Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252; Mindy.Linetzky@sfpl.org

Free Financial Planning Day at the Library

San Francisco, CA – The San Francisco Public Library, in partnership with the Financial Planning Association of San Francisco and the San Francisco Treasurer’s Office, are pleased to announce the 9th annual San Francisco Financial Planning Day on October 27, 2018 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.  At this event, Bay Area residents will be able to meet one-on-one with dozens of highly qualified Certified Financial Planner™ professionals to discuss their personal finance questions, concerns and interests.

The event is a great opportunity for a free, private consultation with an expert on a wide variety of personal finance issues, including debt management, retirement planning, investment strategies, income taxes, insurance, and estate planning, among many others. Programs will run throughout the day covering budgeting and credit counseling.

Financial Planning Day 2018’s programs include something for everyone. There are sessions related to investing basics, planning for higher education without loans, and how the new tax law will impact consumers. New for 2018, will be presentations about financial recovery after a disaster, property taxes, and San Francisco housing programs. Spanish and Chinese translation will be available.

Best of all, there are no strings attached. Financial planners are volunteering their time and will not pass out business cards, marketing materials or sell products or services. They will be stationed at tables and will meet with one individual or a couple at a time. Prior events have served 300-400 Bay Area residents each year.

The event is free and open to the public.

Financial Planning Day at the Library – Saturday, Oct. 27, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., Main Library, 100 Larkin St.

financial

Tenth Annual Tricycle Music Fest Kicks Off September 30

For Immediate Release:  September 26, 2018
Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252; Mindy.Linetzky@sfpl.org

Tenth Annual Tricycle Music Fest Kicks Off September 30
Free Grammy Music Line Up

San Francisco – San Francisco Public Library proudly announces the 10th Anniversary of the Tricycle Music Fest, welcoming parents and their little ones to free concerts across the City. We are celebrating ten years of Rock! Play! Learn! with Grammy-award winning or nominated performers.  So release the foot break on the stroller and boogie on down to the library to catch a concert with us!

tricycleTricycle Music Fest kicks off with a special concert at our newest branch, Public Knowledge at SFMOMA, on Sunday, September 30. At 11:30 a.m., 2017 Grammy nominee Alphabet Rockers take the stage and drop beats inspiring social justice and youth empowerment.  After the performance, concertgoers can enjoy SFMOMA’s Family Free Day.  Alphabet Rockers will also rock the books at Parkside on October 6th and Bernal Heights on October 7th.

On Sunday, October 14, Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band, the 2013 Latin Grammy winner, will have kids tapping their feet, jumping and hopping to their international sounds.  Jose-Luis Orozco, 2015 Grammy nominee, brings out his guitar on Saturday, October 20th encouraging all to sing and learn Spanish and will delight the audiences at Merced and West Portal branches.

Lastly, due to popular demand, we bring back the Okee Dokee Brothers, 2012 Grammy winners, who bring Americana folk music, banjo included!  Our Sunday morning October 28th show at the Main Library is almost filled (via Eventbrite), but families can see them at the SFMOMA for an afternoon show starting at 3:00 p.m.  Space is limited to seating capacity.

Tricycle Music Fest is proudly sponsored by Friends of the San Francisco Public Library and co-presented by San Mateo County Library. Together we bring the biggest and best kindie rock music to Bay Area families. Because playing is just as important as singing in early childhood learning, we will raffle off one tricycle to a lucky concert goer at each event.  Families, get ready for a hip-shaking, head bopping dance party explosion of indie fresh pop rock beats—only at the library!

For the full 2018 Tricycle Music Fest line-up and to hear sounds of the Grammy performers, go to sfpl.org/tricycle and smcl.org/tricycle.

2018 Schedule

Alphabet Rockers

Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band

José-Luis Orozco

The Okee Dokee Brothers

Urban Libraries Council Recognizes San Francisco Public Library for Library Innovation

For Immediate Release:  September 10, 2018
Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252; Mindy.Linetzky@sfpl.org

Urban Libraries Council Recognizes San Francisco Public Library for Library Innovation

FOG Readers Demonstrates the Irreplaceability of the Library as a Community Institution

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – The Urban Libraries Council announced San Francisco Public Library as one of 10 Top Innovators during the 2018 ULC Annual Forum on September 5-7 in Baltimore, MD. A panel of expert judges selected SFPL’s “FOG Readers: Helping Struggling Readers Succeed” from 220 submissions in 10 categories that demonstrate the value and impact of public library service. The San Francisco Public Library won the Top Innovator award in the category of “Education: Birth through Teens.”

The 2018 Top Innovators and Honorable Mentions were announced during a special Innovations Celebration. Award winners were recognized for their innovative programs, services and operating practices. “Today’s public libraries are bold and pioneering community leaders that play many roles, from educational institutions to technology centers and entrepreneurial hubs,” said Urban Libraries Council President and CEO Susan Benton. “I congratulate San Francisco Public Library for illustrating a persistent commitment to realizing a groundbreaking initiative that has transformed their community.”

San Francisco’s Top Innovator awardee, FOG Readers, helps elementary students overcome reading difficulties, using Orton-Gillingham methodology and multisensory techniques. The free program bridges a gap between a child’s current reading level and his or her full reading potential. FOG Readers breaks reading and spelling into smaller skills involving letters and sounds, and builds on these skills over time.

Half of SFUSD 3rd and 4th graders are not meeting grade level standards for reading. In San Francisco, intervention costs $65-95/hr. For many students, FOG Readers is their best chance to build the skills they need to succeed. On average, the Library’s students are about 1.3 grade levels behind when they start the program, and gain more than half a grade level just in the first three months. Parents say FOG students are reading more at home and have increased confidence in all of their school subjects.

Tutors meet with students once a week at a library, teaching critical reading skills and enjoying books together. Currently there are 120 active tutor/student pairs at 23 of our 28 neighborhood libraries. The library trains and pairs tutors with students and we’re always looking for new volunteers.

“San Francisco Public Library is committed to excellence in the delivery of innovative programs and services to meet the needs of our residents,” said Acting City Librarian Michael Lambert. “Recognition from the Urban Libraries Council is a tremendous honor for the City and County of San Francisco and a testament to our staff’s passion for helping young people overcome their struggles with reading in order to enrich themselves and thrive.”

For more information about FOG Readers and volunteer tutor opportunities, see the webpage.

About San Francisco Public Library

San Francisco Public Library is dedicated to free and equal access to information, knowledge, independent learning and the joys of reading for our diverse community. The library system is made up of 27 neighborhood branches, the San Francisco Main Library at Civic Center and four bookmobiles. For more information, see www.sfpl.org.

About Urban Libraries Council

Urban Libraries Council (ULC), founded in 1971, is the voice for public libraries and the force that inspires them to evolve. ULC creates the tools, techniques, and ideas to make ongoing improvements and upgrades in services and technology. ULC also speaks loudly and clearly about the value public libraries bring to communities, and secures funding for research that results in the development of new programs and services. And by serving as a forum for library leadership, ULC produces innovative ideas and best practices that ensure community impact. To learn more about ULC and to view all the 2018 ULC Innovations, see www.UrbanLibraries.org.

fog

San Francisco Public Library Announces 2018 One City One Book – The Best We Could Do, an illustrated memoir by Thi Bui

For Immediate Release: September 6, 2018

Media Contact: Katherine Jardine
(415) 557-4295 / Katherine.Jardine@sfpl.org

Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252/ Mindy.Linetzky@sfpl.org

 

San Francisco Public Library Announces 2018 One City One Book

The Best We Could Do, an illustrated memoir by Thi Bui

 

San Francisco, CA — San Francisco Public Library is excited to announce that The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui has been selected as the 2018 One City One Book. Published by Abrams ComicArts, this is the first graphic novel that has been selected for One City One Book.

bestcoverIn what Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist Viet Thanh Nguyen calls “a book to break your heart and heal it,” The Best We Could Do explores the anguish of immigration and the lasting effects that displacement has on a child. Thi Bui documents her family’s daring escape after the fall of South Vietnam in the 1970s and the difficulties they faced building new lives for themselves in America. The Best We Could Do is a haunting memoir about the search for a better future and a longing for a simpler past. As the child of a country and a war she can’t remember, Bui’s dreamlike artwork brings to life her journey to understanding her own identity in a way that only illustrations can.

“I am truly honored that The Best We Could Do has been selected for One City One Book 2018,” says author Thi Bui. “As a refugee of the Vietnam War and an Asian American woman, the Bay Area’s rich history is incredibly important to me. It is where the term ‘Asian American’ was coined in the 60’s by student activists at Berkeley, and was also the site of historic protests against the Vietnam War. We are living in a time in U.S. history where anti-immigration policies are simultaneously closing doors on displaced people and separating families currently living in the U.S, and it is incredibly important that communities come together on a local level to speak out against these injustices. The Best We Could Do is a book about the traumatic effects displacement has on families and the individual, and I hope that in being selected for the One City One Book program it is able to inspire Bay Area readers not just to have thoughtful and nuanced conversations about these issues, but also to take action.”

Since the publication of the hardcover in March 2017, The Best We Could Do has made a place for itself in the graphic novel canon and has received 5 starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Booklist, Library Journal, School Library Journal and Shelf Awareness. It was also nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award in the autobiography category and made it onto over thirty “Best of 2017” lists everywhere from the Washington Post to Entertainment Weekly. Thi Bui is a rising star in the comics and literary world, and her debut work is not to be missed.

Read The Best We Could Do and join the Library for the 14th Annual One City One Book program extravaganza. Copies of The Best We Could Do will be featured in all San Francisco libraries and at bookstores around the city.

Citywide programming will take place in October. Participants can join book discussions, check out themed exhibits, attend author talks and participate in many other events.

Featured Event

Thi Bui in Conversation with Author Lauren Markham – Oct. 25, 6 p.m., Main Library, Koret Auditorium

For more information, see sfpl.org/onecityonebook.  View the program guide here.

About the Author

thibuiThi Bui was born in Vietnam three months before the end of the Vietnam War and came to the United States in 1978 as part of the “boat people” wave of refugees from Southeast Asia. Her debut graphic memoir, The Best We Could Do (Abrams ComicArts, 2017) was a national bestseller and has been selected as National Book Critics Circle finalist, an Indies Introduce pick, a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers title, and a Junior Library Guild selection. She is also the illustrator of A Different Pond, a children’s book by acclaimed poet Bao Phi (Capstone, 2017). Bui taught high school in New York City and was a founding teacher of Oakland International High School, the first public high school in California for recent immigrants and English learners. She currently teaches in the MFA in Comics program at the California College of the Arts. She lives in Berkeley with her son, her husband and her mother.

Editorial Reviews + Awards

National bestseller
2017 National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) Finalist
ABA Indies Introduce Winter / Spring 2017 Selection
Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Spring 2017 Selection
ALA 2018 Notable Books Selection

“Be prepared to take your heart on an emotional roller-coaster journey with this thought-provoking account that completely satisfies as the story comes full circle.”

— Library Journal

“Like Art Spiegelman’s masterpiece, “Maus,” Bui’s memoir elicits complex emotions from understated pen-and-ink drawings.”

— The San Francisco Chronicle

“…a nuanced and heartfelt immigrant tale, brought to true life through beautiful and brilliant illustration. On top of that, it’s an especially poignant read from the vantage point of 2017.”

— Refinery29

“…a cinematic epic that poignantly tracks several generations through immigration and emotional dislocation. At its best, this memoir feels not just created but also deeply lived.”

Michael Cavna, The Washington Post

“When Bui began work on The Best We Could Do in 2005, she couldn’t have predicted the significance it would hold when it was released in 2017, but now that it’s here, it feels like one of the first great works of socially relevant comics art of the Trump era…Bui presents that saga in a way that is narratively intricate, intellectually fastidious, and visually stunning.”

— Vulture

“Thi Bui’s stark, compelling memoir is about an ordinary family, but her story delivers the painful truth that most Vietnamese of the 20th century know in an utterly personal fashion—that history is found in the marrow of one’s bones, ready to be passed on through blood, through generations, through feelings. A book to break your heart and heal it.”

Viet Thanh Nguyen, Pulitzer Prize winning novelist

“In creatively telling a complicated story with the kind of feeling words alone rarely relay, The Best We Could Do does the very best that comics can do. This is a necessary, ever-timely story to share far and wide.”

Booklist

“She does not spare her loved ones criticism or linger needlessly on their flaws. Likewise she refuses to flatten the twists and turns of their histories into neat, linear narratives. She embraces the whole of it… In this mélange of comedy and tragedy, family love and brokenness, she finds beauty.”

— Publishers Weekly

“The Best We Could Do burns back the dead skin of public War memory. Underneath is the raw flesh of another kind of war story—of mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, brutally intimate and intimately brutal. This book is a must-read.”

— Lawrence-Minh Bùi Davis, The Asian American Literary Review, curator for the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center

“This bold, brutal book is the new calligraphy—an exquisite marriage of alphabet and imagery. Each sentence, each scene, and each story breaks down a country, a family, and a father. Then, frame by frame, with artistic vigor and monastic devotion, Thi Bui rebuilds a world in which guilt conquers grief and gratitude becomes not only a guide, but our new Deity. The Best We Could Do teaches us how to say no to fear and yes to truth.”

 Fae Myenne Ng, author of Bone, a PEN/Faulkner Award Finalist, Steer Toward Rock, winner of the American Book Award

About One City One Book

onecityOne City One Book: San Francisco Reads is an annual citywide literary event that encourages members of the San Francisco community to read the same book at the same time and then discuss it in book groups and at events throughout the City. By building bridges between communities and generations through the reading and most importantly the discussion of – one book, we hope to help to make reading a lifelong pursuit and to build a more literate society. Sponsors for One City One Book include the San Francisco Public Library and Friends of the San Francisco Public Library. The program is also supported by many bookstore partners, program partners and media sponsors.

September is National Library Card Sign-Up Month

For Immediate Release:  September 4, 2018
Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252; Mindy.Linetzky@sfpl.org

 

September is National Library Card Sign-Up Month

Sign up for a new SFPL library card for a chance to win a pair of JetBlue tickets

SAN FRANCISCO, CAnewcardWith a library card, you can download books and magazines; stream music and movies; borrow new vinyl records, best sellers, cook books, DVDs, CDs, magazines, and more; enroll in online high school; hang out at a teen center; attend story times every day; learn a foreign language online; gain financial planning help; learn to read; obtain museum passes; make guacamole with your neighbors; watch movies; borrow a MIFI; research your family history; digitize old photos; take computer classes; and of course, check out a book. The sky’s the limit with a new library card!   

jetblueThis September, the library is encouraging everyone to check out your neighborhood branch and see what you’ve been missing. Sign-up for a new library card or renew your existing card for a chance to win a pair of JetBlue tickets. More details at www.sfpl.org/library-card-sign-up.

National Library Card Sign-Up Month is sponsored by the American Library Association. The campaign started in 1987 as a response to then Secretary of Education William Bennett, who stated, “Let’s have a campaign … Every child should obtain a library card and use it.” ALA’s theme this year is “The Incredibles” and we think the San Francisco Public Library is pretty incredible as the winner of the 2018 Library of the Year award.

pickcardThere are ten San Francisco library card designs to choose from including Warriors’ cards! Anyone who lives in California and presents a valid photo ID at any of our 27 library locations or at our four bookmobiles is eligible for a new library card.

One winner will be chosen at random from a list of all patrons who received a new library card or renewed their existing library card during the month of September. All existing rules and requirements for obtaining and renewing a San Francisco Public Library card apply. One winner will receive vouchers for a pair of round-trip JetBlue tickets which are valid until August 15, 2019 and are good to and from any city that JetBlue serves. Terms and conditions and blackout dates apply. #LibraryCardSignUp

San Francisco’s Garden District Opens Its Doors Sept. 29 for 12th Annual Portola Garden Tour

For Immediate Release:  August 30, 2018

Media Contacts:
Mindy Linetzky (415) 557-4252; Mindy.Linetzky@sfpl.org
Ruth Wallace, Portola Garden Tour organizer (415) 420-6185;
Rwallace57@gmail.com

San Francisco’s Garden District Opens Its Doors Sept. 29 for
12th Annual Portola Garden Tour

Neighborhood grown hops featured at community after-party

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Once home to flower-growing enterprises and farms, The Portola is known as San Francisco’s Garden District. The garden tour is a self-guided walk through private and public gardens in the sunny Portola neighborhood in San Francisco’s southeastern quadrant. A surprising array of hidden gardens lay behind primarily mid-century modern homes. The tour is also a fundraiser for City College horticulture students.

Participants will learn about what plants thrive in San Francisco, how to make even small spaces outstanding, ideas for decks and patios and fun landscaping tips — and get inspired to work on their own back yard. It’s a wonderful community experience as neighbors open their yards to hundreds of tour participants.

This year the tour features a community “after-party” at local brewery Ferment, Drink, Repeat on San Bruno Avenue. Portola gardeners have been growing hops which will be turned into a truly locally-made brew and served at the close of the tour.

What: Portola Garden Tour featuring 20+ private and public gardens

When: Saturday, September 29, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Where: The Portola neighborhood – garden locations will be listed on the ticket

Tickets: $25 or $20 each for two or more – purchase online at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3594065

After party: 3 p.m. at Ferment, Drink, Repeat (FDR) brewery, 2636 San Bruno Avenue, San Francisco

More information: www.facebook.com/portolagardentour  and www.portolagardentour.com

The Portola is one of the City’s most diverse neighborhoods with a rich history.  Maltese, Italian and Jewish immigrant families settled in The Portola in the late-19th century, followed by African American shipbuilders who moved to San Francisco from the south during World War II. In the decades since, Latinos, Filipinos, Chinese, Vietnamese and others have planted roots in The Portola, a neighborhood that welcomes all.

Roughly bordered by Silver Avenue to the north, Mansell Street to the south, San Bruno Avenue to the east and McLaren Park to the west, The Portola is one of the last undiscovered sections of San Francisco. Young families, as well as long-time San Franciscans, find it an attractive and convenient place to live. Many of the homes have large yards – by San Francisco standards – as well as bay and city views.

The Portola Garden Tour began in 2007 as a fund-raiser for the Portola Branch Library, whose own public garden and seed lending library will be on the tour this year. When the library opened in 2009, the community decided to continue the popular event as a fundraiser and created The Portola Garden Scholarship at City College San Francisco for Environmental Horticulture and Floristry Department students. To date, 17 scholarships and three work projects in The Portola have been awarded to City College students.

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The Library Honors Southwest Asian and North African Heritage

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, September 29, 2018

Media Contact: Mindy Linetzky
(415) 557-4252; mindy.linetzky@sfpl.org

Media Contact: Katherine Jardine
(415) 557-4295; Katherine.Jardine@sfpl.org

 

The Library Honors Southwest Asian and North African Heritage

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SAN FRANCISCO, CA San Francisco Public Library is honoring the diverse cultures, traditions and histories of Southwest Asian and North African heritage with more than 70 programs in September. Throughout the month, enjoy lectures, films, cooking demonstrations and performance programs for all ages at every library location.

In recent years, the Library has celebrated Middle Eastern Heritage. In order to recognize more of our residents and the region, we are renaming our celebration SWANA. Many universities are adopting this language for use with their Middle Eastern studies programs. Southwest Asian and North African is a way to describe the region in a geographical, non-political, non-religious and non-Eurocentric way.

swanaDuring SWANA, view a collection of outstanding short films from the Arab Film Festival, listen to beats by Opium Sabbah, son of the legendary Algerian DJ Cheb I Sabbah, attend calligraphy demonstrations, learn about traditional Palestinian garb and attend a presentation about the role and status of Muslim women today. Fantastic food programs include sampling dishes by Chef Aliza with her unique Israeli spice blends, Palestinian food tastings and hummus making classes.

For younger audiences, enjoy Arabic dances by Heaven Mousalem and a special performance by the Shahrzad Dance Company. More live performances include Leila’s Quest for Flight presented by the Golden Thread Fairytale Players and cultural performances by the Kidswork Touring Theatre. Teens can get an exclusive sneak peek of a teen written-and-produced podcast about contemporary Muslim fashions with the de Young Museum’s Teen Advisory Board. Local baker Nora Takouat teaches families how to make authentic Algerian desserts, and the library brings out the bike-powered blender to whip up tasty batches of hummus.

View the SWANA program guide.

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With SWANA, we hope that our residents from this region recognize that San Francisco welcomes and celebrates them. We also hope all our residents learn something new, have their curiosity stoked, and enjoy our varied programs. Learn more at sfpl.org/SWANA.

 

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

Best of Arab Shorts – Sept. 22, 1 p.m., Main Library, Koret Auditorium
World Music with Opium Sabbah – Sept. 1, 1:15 p.m., Park Branch Library
Calligraphy Demonstration and Performance – Sept. 22, 2 p.m., Marina Branch Library
Palestinian Dress – Sept. 8, 3 p.m., Excelsior Branch Library
Muslim Women beyond the Stereotypes – Sept. 29, 2 p.m., Golden Gate Valley Branch Library
Shahrzad Dance Company – Sept. 5, 3 p.m., Bernal Heights Branch Library
Leila’s Quest for Flight – Sept. 21, 3 p.m., Portola Branch Library
Algerian Sweet Treats – Sept. 20, 4 p.m., Sunset Branch Library
Sneak Peak: Contemporary Muslim Fashions Teen Podcast – Sept. 22, 2 p.m., The Mix at SFPL

Music, Dances & Traditions of Southwest Asia to North Africa by the Kidswork Touring Theatre
Sept. 22, 11 a.m., Main Library, Fisher Children’s Center
Sept. 22, 1:30 p.m., Parkside Branch Library
Sept. 22, 4 p.m., Western Addition Branch Library
Sept. 23, 1 p.m., Ingleside Branch Library
Sept. 23, 3:30 p.m., Merced Branch Library

Arabic Dance with Heaven Mousalem
Sept. 8, 11 a.m., Mission Bay Branch Library
Sept. 8, 2 p.m., Golden Gate Valley Branch Library
Sept. 13, 3:30 p.m., Chinatown Branch Library
Sept. 15, 11 a.m., Mission Branch Library
Sept. 15, 2 p.m., Marina Branch Library
Sept. 29, 3 p.m., Eureka Valley Branch Library

Israeli Spice Blending with Chef Aliza
Sept. 1, 1 p.m., Golden Gate Valley Branch Library
Sept. 1, 3:30 p.m., Bayview Branch Library
Sept. 29, 1 p.m., Eureka Valley Branch Library
Sept. 29, 3:30 p.m., Ortega Branch Library

Palestinian Food Tasting with Chef Nikki
Sept. 15, 12 p.m., Ingleside Branch Library
Sept. 15, 3 p.m., Visitacion Valley Branch Library
Sept. 29, 1 p.m., West Portal Branch Library
Sept. 29, 3:30 p.m., Presidio Branch Library

Hummus Making Classes & Middle Eastern Snack Trials
Sept. 4, 7 p.m., Parkside Branch Library
Sept. 6, 2 p.m., Excelsior Branch Library
Sept. 9, 4 p.m., Noe Valley Branch Library
Sept. 15, 2 p.m., Ocean View Branch Library
Sept. 16, 3:30 p.m., Portola Branch Library
Sept. 17, 3 p.m., Ocean View Branch Library
Sept. 25, 3:30 p.m., Bayview Branch Library
Sept. 27, 5:30 p.m., Richmond Branch Library

SWANA Program Guide

About San Francisco Public Library

San Francisco Public Library is dedicated to free and equal access to information, knowledge, independent learning and the joys of reading for our diverse community. The library system is made up of 27 neighborhood branches, the San Francisco Main Library at Civic Center and four bookmobiles.