Laura MacKenzie to Perform “The Irish Piper”

Laura MacKenzie Performs “The Irish Piper”
Wednesday, August 10, 2 PM
St. Charles Public Library

Known as the “Celtic Music Wizard,” Laura MacKenzie will visit the St. Charles Public Library on Wednesday, August 10 at 2pm for a music-filled retelling of the story of the Pied Piper.  Based on author Jim Latimer’s book, “The Irish Piper,” MacKenzie’s interpretation will feature many different instruments, a good story, and wonderful illustrations.

Laura MacKenzie is an extremely versatile musician, skilled in wooden flutes, many different whistles, concertinas, Scottish smallpipes, Border pipes, French Cornemuse, Spanish Gaita, Medieval English Greatpipes, Leicester smallpipes, gemshorn, as well as voice.  Her talents have earned her many honors, awards, and fellowships over the years, such as being selected for the original Cherish the Ladies series, featuring noted women in Irish music in America.  In recent years, MacKenzie was awarded a coveted Bush Foundation Artists Fellowship in Traditional and Ethnic Performing Arts as well as a McKnight Foundation Performing Artists Fellowship.

In her career, MacKenzie has worked with such ensembles as Boiled in Lead (world beat rock ‘n reel), Walking On Air (British Isles folk), Macha Trí (Celtic trio), and Lorie Line’s Pop Chamber Orchestra, with whom she toured nationally from 1997-2005.  MacKenzie has been privileged to perform with some of the great names in Irish music, including Dáithí Sproule (of Altan), Paddy O’Brien, Liz Carroll, Martin Hayes, and Katie McMahon (of Riverdance). She has also been honored to share the stage with heroes of Scottish and English piping Hamish Moore, Jon Swayne, and Julian Goodacre.

In her visit to the St. Charles Public Library, MacKenzie will share the classic story of the Pied Piper, adding Irish music to the traditional German tale.  Following the story, MacKenzie will also share a couple of traditional song games for children to enjoy.

MacKenzie’s visit to St. Charles is made possible due to a Library Legacy Grant.

See a Live Eagle at the Library

Live Eagle Program with the National Eagle Center
Friday, August 5, 2 pm
St. Charles Public Library

On Friday, August 5 at 2pm, the National Eagle Center will bring a live eagle to the St. Charles Public Library.  Located in Wabasha, Minnesota, the National Eagle Center aims to be the world’s premier resource for impactful eagle education and experiences.

In an engaging and entertaining presentation by one of their naturalist interpreters, the National Eagle Center will provide an opportunity for kids to learn all about eagle biology, ecology, natural history and cultural connections.  A live eagle ambassador will be featured in the program.  Cameras are welcome.

This program is made possible by a Library Legacy Grant.

Celebrate National Night Out at the Library

National Night Out Celebration
Featuring Salsa del Soul
Tuesday, August 2, 5:30 – 8 PM

Tuesday, August 2 is National Night Out and the St. Charles Public Library will be throwing a party to celebrate, from 5:30 – 8 PM.  Salsa del Soul, a Twin Cities-based band, will perform live Latin American music.  The St. Charles Police Department and Fire Department 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 Moose Lodge.

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 sixteen thousand communities participate in National Night Out.  In Minnesota, parties are registered in 176 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 Salsa del Soul as the special performers for National Night Out.  The musicians of Salsa del Soul represent some of the finest talents in the Twin Cities Latin music scene.  The group performs various styles of dance music from the Spanish-speaking regions of the Caribbean.  Salsa del Soul was formed with the purpose of providing great dance music for Minnesota Salsa fans.  The styles of music they perform include Son, Son Montuno, Plena, Cha-chacha, Bachata, and, of course, Salsa!

Salsa del Soul’s visit to the St. Charles Public Library is possible due to a Library Legacy Grant.

Build an Owl with the International Owl Center

Build an Owl with the International Owl Center
Wednesday, July 27, 2 PM
St. Charles Public Library

Learn first-hand about owl adaptations by picking out the pieces and parts that belong to an owl and putting them into a “magic” box.  If correct, a live owl comes out from under the magic box for a visit.  This program is made possible by a Library Legacy Grant.

Brian Freeman to Speak at St. Charles Public Library

Brian Freeman Author Visit
Wednesday, July 20, 6:30 PM
St. Charles Public Library

On Wednesday, July 20, at 6:30pm, Minnesota author Brian Freeman will visit the St. Charles Public Library.  Freeman writes psychological thrillers that have been sold in 46 countries and 22 languages.

Freeman’s debut novel, “Immoral,” won the Macavity Award and was a finalist for the Edgar, Dagger, Anthony, and Barry awards for Best First Novel.  “Immoral” was also chosen as International Book of the Month by book clubs around the world.  His novels “The Bone House” and “Season of Fear” were both named finalists for the Audie Award for Best Audiobook in Thriller/Suspense.  He won the Minnesota Book Award for his novel “The Voice Inside” and has been a finalist for the award multiple times.

Freeman’s stand-alone novel “Spilled Blood” won the award for Best Hardcover Novel in the International Thriller Writers Awards, and his novel “The Burying Place” was a finalist for the same award.  His novel “The Deep, Deep Snow” was a finalist for the Edgar Award, with the audiobook version a #1 Audible and Amazon Audio bestseller.  Freeman’s thriller “The Night Bird” was one of the top twenty Kindle bestsellers of 2017.

Freeman was selected by the Robert Ludlum estate to take over Ludlum’s Jason Bourne series.  His first Bourne novel, “The Bourne Evolution,” was named one of the Best Mysteries and Thrillers of 2020 by Kirkus Reviews.

“My goal is to write books with haunting characters and a lightning-fast pace,” Brian writes on his website, “My stories are about the hidden intimate motives that draw people across some dark lines. The twists and turns keep you turning the pages, and each piece in the puzzle gives you new insight into the heroes, victims, and villains.”

“I don’t like books where the characters are all good or all bad,” he adds. “I want them to live in the real world, where morality means tough choices and a lot of shades of gray. I hope that’s why readers relate so intensely to the people in my books.”

Freeman’s writing has been praised by critics and bestselling authors alike, including Michael Connelly, Nelson DeMille, Jeffery Deaver, and Lisa Gardner. “A master of psychological suspense,” Gardner said of Freeman. London’s Daily Mail called Freeman “up there with Harlan Coben in the psychological crime stratosphere.”  Freeman has lived in Minnesota with his wife, Marcia, for more than 35 years.

This program is made possible by a Library Legacy Grant.  All programs are free.

Meet Author Walter Bennick

Meet the Author: Walter Bennick
Monday, July 18, 6:30 PM
St. Charles Public Library

Walter Bennick, an archivist with the Winona County Historical Society, compiled information and photos into a brand new book on Winona County rural life.

Secret Life of Puppets with Z Puppets Rosenschnoz

Secret Life of Puppets with Z Puppets Rosenschnoz
Wednesday, July 13, 2 p.m.
St. Charles Public Library

Take a trip around the world and throughout the ages to learn the tricks of turning sticks, cloth, string and even your own hands into fun characters.  Z Puppets will present a dynamic demonstration of different styles of puppets that have popped up across our planet with dips into history, culture and hands-on exploration of what’s behind the magic!  This program is made possible by a Library Legacy Grant.

Fish Printing with Whitewater State Park

Fish Printing with Whitewater State Park
Thursday, June 30, 2 p.m.
St. Charles Public Library

On Thursday, June 30 at 2 p.m. the St. Charles Public Library will host a special Fish Printing program.  Join a naturalist from Whitewater State Park to learn about the fish of Minnesota.  We’ll paint rubber fish to make fish prints you can keep.  This program is free of charge.  Ages 3 and older.  A parent or caregiver must be present.  Come try your hand at this ancient art form while learning more about the fish that live in Southeast Minnesota.

Author Natalie Warren to Speak at the St. Charles Public Library

Natalie Warren at the St. Charles Public Library
Monday, June 27, 6:30pm

A lifelong paddler and river lover, Natalie was one of the first two women to paddle over 2,000 miles from Minneapolis to Hudson Bay. She captured this remarkable 85-day journey in her critically acclaimed book, Hudson Bay Bound.

This program is made possible by a Library Legacy Grant.