Monday, Jul 04th

chasingthecobraPhillip V.G. Wallace, author of Chasing the Cobra and Call of the Sea, will give a presentation at the Scarsdale Public Library on January 19th at 8:00pm in the Scott Room.

In the early 19th century, the U.S. experienced ongoing conflicts with the Barbary pirates of North Africa. After officially obtaining independence from England with the Treaty of Paris in 1783, the U.S. was left unprotected without the Royal Navy, and pirates captured many merchant ships. This forced the U.S. to start a Navy.

Wallace will discuss his novel, Chasing the Cobra, which is a story set during this period of conflict. Though based on fact, the novel includes romance amidst sea battles against pitiless pirates. Wallace’s presentation will include slides of artwork done on the topic.

Wallace’s film The Majesty of America received a CINE Golden Eagle Award for excellence and represented the U.S. in international competition. Another film, American Catholic Diary, was viewed by Pope John Paul on his visit to the U.S.

Wallace was an executive at two major advertising agencies. He painted the covers for both of his novels, and is a former president of the Scarsdale Art Association. He currently resides in Scarsdale, where he and his late wife Ann raised four children.

For more information contact the library at (914)-722-1300.

akeelahThe holiday season melds into the bee season as the community gears up for the first annual Adult and Teen Spelling Bee. Sponsored by the Friends of the Scarsdale Library, the fundraiser will be held on Friday, January 28 at 7:30pm, at the Scarsdale High School Auditorium.

To build on the excitement of the upcoming spelling bee, the Scarsdale Public Library is sponsoring a children’s poster program in early January and will be presenting two spelling-themed films in the weeks leading up to the much-anticipated fundraiser.

The poster program will be offered at the Library on Thursday, January 6th at 4pm. Children in grades K-5 are invited to create colorful posters to promote the upcoming spelling bee. Registration is suggested.

Akeelah and the Bee, a story about an 11-year-old girl from south Los Angeles whose life gets turned around in her pursuit to participate in a national spelling bee, will be shown on Saturday, January 8th at 2pm. Spellbound, a funny and gripping documentary that follows eight teenagers on their quest to win the National Spelling Bee, is scheduled for Sunday, January 23rd at 2pm.

Registration for spelling bee teams is open until January 7. Each team consists of up to three members, high-school age or above, and pays an entry fee of $150. Proceeds from the Spelling Bee will support the acquisition of state-of-the-art technological equipment for the community room at the Scarsdale Library.

Application forms for Spelling Bee teams are available at the Library or online at For more information, contact Spelling Bee Chairs Renu Lalwani at (917) 584-8834, Carolyn Mehta at (914) 723-4739 or or Kelly Berkell at .




hawkanddoveThe Scarsdale Public Library will welcome the Hindu New Year by celebrating Diwali, the Hindu Festival of Lights, on Sunday, November 7, at 2 p.m. The program will feature “Indian Tales to Celebrate Diwali” told by noted storyteller LuAnn Adams, traditional Indian sitar music, dancing by children from the community and food. The event is free and open to the public; registration is not required.

Diwali, the most popular holiday in India, means, “Row of lighted lamps,” a reference to the rows of lamps that were lit to welcome the return of Rama after his victory over the demon, Ravana. Lights are displayed to represent the importance of good over evil. Each of Diwali’s five days has special significance. The fourth day is New Years and the fifth, falling on November 7, honors siblings.

Traditions and customs vary throughout India. Generally, Diwali is celebrated with fireworks, firecrackers and dazzling lights. The fireworks are dedicated to the gods in thanks for health, wealth, and intelligence. Rangoli, a traditional Indian folk art consisting of beautiful designs and bright colors, decorates the interiors and exteriors of houses.

On Monday November 8, The Friends of the Scarsdale Library proudly present writer Nicholas Thompson, author of The Hawk and the Dove - Paul Nitze, George Kennan, and the History of the Cold War at 8 p.m. in the Scott Room of Scarsdale Public Library. Admission is free.

“May be the most important political biography in recent memory” —The Washington Times

“Brilliant … a penetrating, amazingly accessible study of the origins and conduct of the Cold War.” —James Hoagland in The Washington Post

“The book is brimming with fascinating revelations about the men and the harrowing events they steered through.” —The New York Times

“In this important and astute new study, Nitze emerges as a driven patriot and Kennan as a darkly conflicted and prophetic one.” —The Washington Post Book Review

For more information on both events, call the library at 722-1300.



spellingbeeThe Friends of the Scarsdale Library will host the first Annual Adult and Teen Spelling Bee at the Scarsdale High School auditorium on January 28, 2011. Children in grades K-5 are invited to help get the community buzzing for this event by making a poster on any aspect of a spelling bee contest, bees or spelling in general. BEE creative! Posters should be on an 8 ½ x 11 inch white sheet of paper, and crayons, markers, pens, paints and collage are all acceptable art forms. The child’s name should be written on the bottom right of the poster. Completed posters should be placed in the “Spelling Bee Poster Box” at the circulation desk at the Scarsdale Library by Wednesday, December 17, 2010. The poster activity is co-sponsored by the Scarsdale Recreation Department.

The posters will be displayed in the Library prior to the Spelling Bee and at Scarsdale High School on the night of the Spelling Bee. Proceeds from the Spelling Bee will be used to upgrade technology in the Scarsdale Public Library’s community room. For more information about forming a spelling bee team, becoming a sponsor or making a poster, please contact Co-Chairs Renu Lalwani at (917) 584-8834 or; Carolyn Mehta at (914) 723-4739 or; or Kelly Berkell at



books1Public input into Scarsdale Library 2020, the strategic planning process undertaken by the Scarsdale Library Board to set a vision and roadmap for the next decade, will be sought on Monday, November 1 at 8 p.m. at the Scarsdale Library.

The session, an important component of the effort, will seek the views of residents on such areas as what new services, improvements and resources they want; what changes should the library plan for; how should the role of the library in the community evolve over the next decade; and how should the library harness new technology.

“The last strategic plan for the library was prepared in 1991,” said Sara Werder, Library Board President. “As we all know, advances in technology and lifestyle changes since then have had a dramatic impact on our lives. The library wants to stay current with these changes and is seeking input from the community on our future direction and services and the evolving role of the library in the community. We also want to know what we should keep and to hear your concerns.”

The public session is part of the second phase of the strategic planning process. Phase I involved a review and analysis of current library operations and procedures by Alan Gray, a consultant retained to work with the Library Board and the library administration and staff on the plan. Phase II includes community input, with the November 1 open meeting, several focus groups and discussions with community leaders. At the completion of Phase II, the Board will develop the plan based on an analysis of current operations, projections into future use of the library and the information gathered from the community. The plan will be completed during the spring.

“The Scarsdale Library is one of the crown jewels of our community and used by a broader range of residents than any other organization,” Werder said. “This really is your library and we want to have as much input from you, the residents, as possible.”

Residents, whether they attend the meeting or not, can mail their comments to Elizabeth Bermel, Director, Scarsdale Public Library, 54 Olmsted Road, Scarsdale, NY 10583, or fill out the survey on the library website or get a copy at the library.

The strategic planning process is funded by the Friends of the Scarsdale Library.



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