Author E. Andrew Wood to Present at Coffee & Conversation

Coffee & Conversation
Every Monday, 10:30-11:30 AM
St. Charles Public Library
**Special Program on Monday, October 9**
E. Andrew Wood – The Biological Challenges of Flight and the Mayo Connection

On Monday, October 9 at 10:30am, E. Andrew Wood, author of Life at High G-Force, will visit the St. Charles Public Library to speak on “The Biological Challenges of Flight and the Mayo Clinic Connection.”  Wood will discuss Mayo Clinic’s involvement in aviation science before and during World War II.  He will delve into the development of the G-Suit, in which his father, Dr. Earl Wood, played a key role.

Andrew Wood’s recently published book, Life at High G-Force: The Quest of Mayo Clinic Researcher Dr. Earl H. Wood, is the biography of the man whose innovations placed him in the forefront of aviation and medical science in the twentieth century.  Dr. Earl Wood was recruited by Mayo Clinic in 1942 to conduct research on gravitational physiology on their human centrifuge.  Using themselves as experimental subjects, he and fellow scientists investigated the effects of acceleration and the cause of gravitational loss of consciousness.  The result was a vastly improved G-suit, and self-protection straining technique which allowed Allied pilots to outmaneuver Japanese and German planes and win the air battles of World War II.

Following the war, Dr. Wood continued his research, pioneering cardiac catheterization for patients with heart disease.  The oximeter, which was initially developed to detect pulse, was enhanced to measure blood oxygen saturation levels; it is now used in every hospital and clinic in the world and is of critical importance in monitoring cardio-pulmonary status during the COVD-19 pandemic.  In the 1970s, Dr. Wood and his team developed computer-based X-ray techniques, paving the way for modern CAT and MRI scanners.

E. Andrew Wood is the youngest of Dr. Earl Wood’s four children.  He is a graduate of Hamline University and the Mayo Clinic School of Health-Related Sciences and has a Master’s degree from the University of Minnesota.  He spent over 25 years at General Mills as the Manager of Health Promotion and Ergonomics and two years as Director of Ergonomics and Corporate Solutions at Muve Inc., a joint venture with Mayo Clinic, where he was responsible for developing and implementing activity-based ergonomic and wellness programs for corporate clients.  Wood was a consultant for ergonomics at Ferguson Risk Management, where he provided ergonomic and wellness strategies for corporations, including Land O’Lakes, Bayer, Bosch, Dairy Farmers of America, CVS Health, and several government agencies until his retirement in 2021.

E. Andrew Wood has authored several articles and given multiple presentations on the development and assessment of ergonomic and health promotion programs in industry.  He is also fluent in spoken and written German.  In his spare time, Wood enjoys working on the family farm in southeast Minnesota, competitive cross-country skiing, hiking, fishing, and hunting, dog training, and restoring an antique Jeep.  As a person with severe dyslexia, Andy is a graduate of the Rochester Reading Center and is a spokesperson for the Dyslexia Institute of Minnesota.

Wood’s visit to the St. Charles Public Library is part of the weekly Coffee & Conversation program.  Looking for something to do on a Monday morning?  The library is offering free coffee, hot chocolate, and apple cider every Monday, 10:30am – 11:30am.  Drop by the library for a hot beverage and a chat with your fellow community members.

FREE Cookies for Kids, Saturday, September 30

Cookies for Kids
Saturday, September 30, 10:30am – 1pm
St. Charles Public Library

Hey kids!  Welcome back to school!  The staff and board of the St. Charles Public Library would like to invite you for a FREE cookie on Saturday, September 30, from 10:30am – 1pm.  Stop on by, check out everything your local library has to offer, and enjoy a free cookie at the St. Charles Public Library.

VOX Books Now Available in English and Spanish at the Library

Parents and other caregivers are always looking for ways to make reading fun and engaging for kids. Thanks to a new offering from the St. Charles Public Library, they won’t need to look far!  Due to a grant through MiEnergy’s Operation Round Up program and support from the Friends of the St. Charles Public Library, the library was able to purchase a collection of VOX Books in both English and Spanish.

VOX Books include embedded audio, allowing readers to listen to the book while they follow along. VOX Books don’t require CDs, tapes, batteries, devices, or internet access; just press a button and you’re listening and reading! VOX Books can also be used with or without headphones, making them perfect for both solo and group enjoyment.

St. Charles area residents can borrow these engaging VOX Books for free. All they need is a library card!

VOX Books have won awards from parents’ groups, including the 2021 National Parenting Product Award in their Best Books for Kids and Families category, and a 2021 Mom’s Choice Award. A recent review in School Library Journal noted that “Narrators are lively and will keep readers engaged. Educators can use VOX Books to help early or struggling readers learn to pronounce words, hold a book, and turn pages, and practice tracking text from left to right. This is a valuable tool not only for libraries but also for teachers to use in the classroom and for parents to use at home.”

Fall Gardening Tips During Coffee & Conversation at the Library

Coffee & Conversation
Every Monday, 10:30-11:30 AM
St. Charles Public Library
**Special Program: Fall Gardening Tips and Q & AMonday, September 25 **

On Monday, September 25 at 10:30AM, Winona County Master Gardener Volunteer Laura Armstrong will visit the library to offer fall gardening tips.  She will also be able to answer questions on gardening in southeastern Minnesota.

This program is part of the St. Charles Public Library’s weekly Coffee & Conversation program.  Looking for something to do on a Monday morning?  The library is offering free coffee, hot chocolate, and apple cider every Monday, 10:30am – 11:30am.  Drop by the library for a hot beverage and a chat with your fellow community members.

Meet a Peregrine Falcon at the Library

Peregrine Falcons with Jackie Fallon
Wednesday, August 9 at 2PM
St. Charles Public Library

On Wednesday, August 9 at 2pm, the St. Charles Public Library will host a visit from a peregrine falcon.  Jackie Fallon, with the Midwest Peregrine Society and the Mayo Clinic Peregrine Falcon Program, will help us understand the past, present and future of peregrine falcons in Minnesota and the region.  Come and discover the wonder of raptors, why they are important, and what you can do to help them survive.  Make sure to bring a camera to get a special photo of your experience during your visit and take home some special items to celebrate peregrine falcons!

If temperatures are too high, the program will be postponed until August 11 at 2pm.  A postponement will be announced on the library’s website or Facebook page.

RavensFire Band to Perform at the Library

Coffee & Conversation
Every Monday, 10:30-11:30 AM
St. Charles Public Library
**Special Program: Music from the RavensFire BandMonday, August 7 **

On Monday, August 7 at 10:30am, the RavensFire Band will play music at the weekly Coffee & Conversation program at the St. Charles Public Library.  Drop by the library to enjoy some good music and a selection of free coffee, hot chocolate, or apple cider.

The RavensFire Band is well-known around the area for their energetic performances, beautiful vocal harmonies, and skilled instrumentals while playing and singing their unique collection of traditional world folk, bluegrass, vintage American favorites, and original music.  Creating music on the mandolin, guitar, penny whistle, and bodhran, the talented group of musicians love to perform.

RavensFire has played dozens of venues and festivals through the years, including the main stages at festivals in Milwaukee, St. Paul, Emmetsburg, La Crosse, and Rochester.  Their busy calendar includes performances at concerts, fairs and festivals, theater productions, churches, and public and private events.

Band members Larry and Melissa Schmidt live in St. Charles.  They have been professional musicians ever since they met in the early 1970s.  Their love of music has kept them happily singing and playing together, winning many music contests, and recording in Nashville, Las Vegas, and Dublin, Ireland.  They have toured three times in Ireland, sharing their music with delighted audiences all along the way.  They are joined by Judy Havelick of Rochester, who shines with a sturdy beat on the bodhran.

Come to the library and hear this talented group of musicians perform!

Celebrate National Night Out at the Library

National Night Out 2023
Tuesday, August 1, 5:30-8PM
Lions Club Hot Dog Meal – Free Will Donation
Special Performance: TaikoArts Midwest at 6PM
St. Charles Public Library (Rain Location: St. Charles Community Center)

Tuesday, August 1 is National Night Out and the St. Charles Public Library will be throwing a party to celebrate from 5:30-8PM.  The evening will feature a 6PM performance from TaikoArts Midwest, a Twin Cities-based drumming group.  The St. Charles Police Department, the St. Charles Fire Department, and the Winona County Sheriff’s Office will drop by for a visit.  Also, the St. Charles Lions Club will provide hot dog meals for a free will donation.  In case of rain, the program will move from the library to the St. Charles Community Center.

Founded in 1984, National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live.  National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community.  Furthermore, it provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances.

Across the country, approximately seventeen thousand communities participate in National Night Out.  In Minnesota, parties are registered in 242 different cities and towns, of which St. Charles is one.  Communities and neighborhoods celebrate the evening through block parties, festivals, parades, cookouts, safety demonstrations, seminars, youth events, visits from emergency personnel, exhibits and much, much more.

The St. Charles Public Library is excited to host TaikoArts Midwest as the special performers for National Night Out 2023.  Join us for a movement infused, heart-pounding, dynamic group drumming performance by the Enso Daiko ensemble from TaikoArts Midwest.  Taiko is the Japanese word for drum and refers to the modern style of playing these drums by combining music, dance, culture, and pure athleticism.

TaikoArts Midwest’s visit to the St. Charles Public Library is possible due to a Library Legacy Grant, and is free and open to the public.

Nature Journaling with Whitewater State Park

Nature Journaling with Whitewater State Park
Wednesday, July 26 at 2pm
St. Charles Public Library

Hey kids! Want a chance to be like a real scientist? Come learn how scientists use field journals to study nature.  Make your own journal to take home!  This program is brought to the St. Charles Public Library courtesy of Whitewater State Park.

Meet the RAD Zoo at the Library

Reptile and Discover (RAD) Zoo
Wednesday, July 19 at 2pm
St. Charles Public Library

On Wednesday, July 19 at 2pm, the Reptile and Amphibian Discover (RAD) Zoo will visit the St. Charles Public Library for a live reptile program.

Marvel at the amazing creatures of the reptile and amphibian world during this fun, safe and educational program.  RAD Zoo is dedicated to connecting people to nature through engaging, interactive experiences.  The program will include turtles, lizards, snakes, and a small alligator.

This program is made possible by a Library Legacy Grant and is free and open to the public.

Art Donahue & a Message from Minnesota

Coffee & Conversation
Every Monday, 10:30-11:30 AM
St. Charles Public Library
**Special Program: Art Donahue & a Message from MinnesotaMonday, July 17**

Join us at the St. Charles Public Library on Monday, July 17 at 10:30am for the thrilling story of our own St. Charles native Arthur Gerald Donahue who went to war in the defense of democracy nearly a year and a half before Pearl Harbor.  Frederick Beseler of Houston, Minnesota will share Donahue’s story and will read selections from Donahue’s books: “Tally Ho! Yankee in a Spitfire” and “Last Flight from Singapore.”

Aviator Art Donahue joined Britain’s Royal Air Force to fly the legendary Supermarine Spitfire fighter in combat against the overwhelming German Luftwaffe during the Battle of Britain.  He later flew Hurricane fighters in defense of Singapore against invading Japanese forces, for which he earned the RAF’s Distinguished Flying Cross.  Donahue’s first book, “Tally Ho!” was based on an article that appeared in the Saturday Evening Post magazine.  “Last Flight” was published posthumously.

Donahue and his Spitfire, “Message from Minnesota,” were lost in combat over the English Channel on September 11, 1942.  His squadron mates found the manuscript of “Last Flight” among Art’s belongings when he failed to return.

Art Donahue’s military service is commemorated on the Battle of Britain Monument in London and on the Memorial to the Missing at Runnymede in England – and on the St. Charles Veterans Memorial.

Frederick Beseler is retired after 40 years as a technical, advertising and marketing writer and editor in the commercial air conditioning industry.  He has also written numerous articles and speaks often on aviation, civil war, and steam boating history.  In 2001, his article about Art Donahue was published in the Battle of Britain Historical Society’s annual magazine. He spoke about Art Donahue in 2021 at the annual Twin Cities Antiquarian Book Fair at St. Thomas University.  Earlier this year he presented on the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) of World War II at the Richard I. Bong World War II Museum in Superior, Wisconsin, and later at the Woman’s Club of Minneapolis.

Beseler is also a private pilot and a past member of the Board of Directors of the Wisconsin Aviation Hall of Fame.  Frederick and Jane Beseler moved to Houston in 2019.  Jane Beseler retired as the Executive Director of the La Crosse County Historical Society.