Get your read on this month

Published 10:12 pm Thursday, April 16, 2015

How appropriate that a regional literary collaboration is having its official kickoff during National Library Week.

The national recognition of all that libraries and the people who run them do for our communities ends this Saturday, which coincides with the beginning of the “7 Cities 1 Book” project in Hampton Roads.

Folks in all seven cities are being encouraged to read the chosen book — “Fahrenheit 451,” by Ray Bradbury — and attend at least one event related to the book.


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The events are multi-faceted, ranging from art exhibits featuring art responding to the book and group discussions on the book to kid-friendly events where the youngsters get to meet real firefighters and learn fire safety — a reference to the main character of the book, whose job as a “fireman” is to burn books in a dystopian society where they are not permitted.

There are dozens of events taking place in the seven cities. Suffolk, as the city that initiated this event, is hosting about a dozen, including the official kickoff.

The North Suffolk Library will host a day of fun and activities on Saturday, while the Suffolk Art Gallery will have a free opening reception, from 7 to 9 p.m., for a juried exhibition of work responding to Bradbury’s novel. The exhibition runs through May 29.

On April 25, children can visit the fire safety house starting at 11 a.m. at the Morgan Memorial Library to learn about fire safety. They can also attend firefighter storytime and meet a real firefighter, on April 29 at the Morgan Memorial Library and on May 9 at 6 p.m. at the North Suffolk Library.

Kids can also make their own comics and get a free comic book at 2 p.m. May 2 at the Morgan Memorial Library.

Other related events in Suffolk include:

  • Street Style Graffiti Journal workshop — Suffolk Art Gallery, 1 to 4 p.m. April 26; work with paper, canvas, fibers, stencils and spray paint to create graffiti-inspired designs and textures; ages 16 and up; $38 for Suffolk Art League members or $45 for non-members; call 925-0448 for more information
  • Beautiful Bezels: Beginners’ Torch Soldering Workshop — Suffolk Art Gallery, 1 to 4 p.m. May 3; learn the basics of torch soldering, cutting, filling and hammering copper to make beautiful round bezels that can be made into pendants; age 18 and up; $60; call 925-0448 for more information
  • Altered Book Workshop — North Suffolk Library, 6 p.m. May 5; get hands-on and make a book into a beautiful new piece of art; call 514-7150
  • Altered Book Workshop with Nikki Webb — Suffolk Art Gallery, 1 to 4 p.m. May 9; ages 18 and up; $60; use a variety of techniques and materials to turn a discarded book into a work of art
  • Poetry, Prose and Pizza with host Nathan Richardson — Suffolk Art Gallery, 6 to 8:30 p.m. May 14; share poems, prose and songs at a special, “Fahrenheit 451”-inspired open mic night; free and open to the public

Pick up copies of the program guide at any participating location or visit for the guide, which includes a complete listing of the programs in other cities.