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Harp Music for Spring at the Almaden Branch Library

Harpist at AlmadenEnjoy Harp Music for Spring, Saturday, March 16, 2013, 2:00 PM at the Almaden Branch Library. Celebrate the season with some St. Patrick's Day-inspired harp music persented by accomplished harpist Beth Erickson. She will be available after the concert for questions about harps and harp music.

Celebrate Dr. Seuss' Birthday at the Almaden Branch Library

read every day!Come and help us celebrate Dr. Seuss' birthday on Friday, March 1, 2013 at the Almaden Branch Library. The day's schedule includes:


  • 11:00 - 11:45 AM - a Dr. Seuss craft project for small children in the Children's Library
  • 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM - Dr. Seuss Reading Stations in the Children's Library
  • 3:30 - 4:30 PM - Birthday Party with cake and refreshments in the Library
  • 3:30 - 4:00 PM - Dr. Seuss Reading Stations in the Children's Library
  • 4:00 - 5:00 PM - Teen Creativty Workshop with Janice Garcia (Library program room)

This celebration is part of the Read Across America Day and generous financial support was provided by the Friends of the Almaden Library.

Oscar Classics

Gone With the Wind coverThere are many outstanding classic films that have been either nominated or have won academy awards in the near or distant past.  Which films are some of your all-time favorites?  One of my favorites is Casablanca.


San Jose Public Library has the books that inspired the films. 

Here are some of the films that were awarded for best picture:



For some time, TCM will be showing academy award nominated and winning films during their 31 Days of Oscar program.  Another great way to re-visit those well-loved films! 

Brian Castner, Author of The Long Walk

You are cordially invited to visit with Brian Castner, author of The Long Walk: a Story of War and the Life That Follows, at Almaden Branch Library on Saturday, March 2, at 11:00 AM.


In this free author visit, Brian talks about his being in combat and the difficulties he experienced when he returned home. Q&A follows his talk.


"Brian Castner served three tours of duty in the Middle East, two of them as the commander of an Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit in Iraq. Days and nights he and his team-his brothers-would venture forth in heavily armed convoys from their Forward Operating Base to engage in the nerve-racking yet strangely exhilarating work of either disarming the deadly improvised explosive devices that had been discovered, or picking up the pieces when the alert came too late.


"When Castner returned home to his wife and family, he began a struggle with a no less insidious foe, an unshakable feeling of fear and confusion and survivor's guilt that he terms The Crazy. His thrilling, heartbreaking, stunningly honest book immerses the reader in two harrowing and simultaneous realities: the terror and excitement and camaraderie of combat, and the lonely battle against the enemy within — the haunting memories that will not fade, the survival instincts that will not switch off." —


As Brian states: "I initially wrote The Long Walk for my children, four sons, now aged 14 to 3. I was not the father I could have been following my return from Iraq, and I needed to explain my experience — my post-war anxiety, my fears, my actions in combat that haunted me daily, my adrenaline-fueled need to run every day — to both myself and them. I needed to get down in writing, as best I could, what it feels like to come home from a war. I didn't expect a catharsis or cure, simply a record." —


More information about Brian and The Long Walk can be found at and at


In addition, The Long Walk is being featured in the library's Online Book Club for January and February.


This event is part of Silicon Valley Reads 2013 and is co-sponsored by the Friends of Almaden Library.


Listen to an excerpt from The Long Walk:

Get Seussical at the Library!

Read Across America Cat in the Hat LogoCelebrate the upcoming birthday of beloved children's book author Dr. Seuss! Special Dr. Seuss Birthday Parties will be held at several San Jose Public Library locations in early March. Kids will enjoy Seuss stories, Seuss-themed crafts, and other activities.


Dr. Seuss, author of The Cat in the Hat, The Lorax, and more than 40 other children's books, was born on March 2, 1904. His birthday coincides with the National Education Association's Read Across America Day, and many schools and libraries are holding special events to celebrate both.


Fun fact: Dr. Seuss, whose real name was Theodor Seuss Geisel, used the pseudonym Dr. Seuss for books he both wrote and illustrated, and the pseudonym Theo LeSieg for books he wrote that were illustrated by others. LeSieg is Geisel spelled backward! Find titles by both Theo LeSieg and Dr. Seuss at your local library. For all things Seuss, visit -- and come to the library for a birthday celebration!

Native Plants in a California Garden

garden plants and bird bathDo you want to include native plants in your garden for beauty, habitat, and sustainability, but don’t know where to start?


Come to this free talk by Rebecca Schoenenberger in the Program Room at Almaden Branch Library on Wednesday, Feb. 27, at 6:00 PM.


Rebecca's gardens have been featured on the Going Native Garden Tour.


Learn about easy-to-grow native plants — trees, shrubs, perennials, and annuals — for the home garden.


Growing California Native Plants cover In the meantime, check out some of the library's books on gardening with native plants:


This program is sponsored by the Santa Clara Valley Chapter of the California Native Plant Society and made possible by the generous donation of Friends of the Almaden Library.

Posted by Michael Sarhad on Feb 15, 2013 | Comments: 0 |

Children's Author, Brenda Ehrmantraut, Comes to Almaden Library

Night Catch coverauthor Brenda EhrmantrautPlease join us on Friday, February 8, at 11:15 AM in the Almaden Branch Library when children's author Brenda Ehrmantraut will read her beautiful picture book Night Catch.


Night Catch tells the story of how a soldier whose work takes him half way around the world finds a way of staying connected with his young son: they play catch using the North Star! It "is a timeless story that connects families while they are apart and offers comforting hope for their reunion."


Brenda will talk about how the book was important to her family when her own brother was deployed. Afterwards there will be a craft where children will be given the opportunity to create thier own night skies.


This program is part of Silicon Valley Reads. Check out our events calendar to see other Silicon Valley Reads programs that are happening at San José Public Library.

Operation Prom Dress 2013

The Office of Vice Mayor Madison Nguyen presents
Operation Prom Dress 2013


Don't let the tough economy discourage students from attending Prom. 

Donate a new or gently used dress today!


Donations are currently being accepted through March 3, 2013.



Stop by one of the following branch libraries to make your donation:

For a full list of participating locations click here.

Lunar New Year and Korean "Seollal(설날)"

A lunar calendar is a calendar that is based on cycles of

the lunar phase. Because there are about Seollal(Korean New Year Day)twelve lunations (synodic months) in a solar year, this period (354.37 days) is sometimes referred to as a lunar year as quoted on wikipedia.


China (including Hong Kong), Taiwan, Korea, Vietnam, and Malaysia celebrate the lunar new year.

Koreans call "Seollal(설날)" for the lunar new year day.
Here is the informative video for "Seollal."

Koreans count their age from conception and base it on the lunar year. Korean babies are officially one years old when they get born.Korean babies are officially one years old when they get born.  Korean babies are officially one year old when they get born, and Koreans will not use the 1st of January as the day when they get older, but the first day of the lunar new year (which is usually in early February).


Bayarea Lunar New Year Event

San Jose Public Library Collections

Lunar New Year Crafts in San Jose Public Library

Additional Information

SAT-ACT Combo Practice Test at Almaden Branch Library

Free SAT/ACT Combo Practice TestAlmaden Branch Library will be offering a FREE SAT/ACT Combo Practice Test on Saturday, January 26, 2013, at 10:30 AM.


The practice test lets you become familiar with the SAT test and the ACT test, giving you more versatility (how’s that for an SAT or ACT word?) than other students.

The test lasts about 4 hours and will be proctored by Kaplan. Half of the test will cover the SAT, and the other half will cover the ACT.


The practice test will be followed by a review session at Almaden Library which parents and students may attend on Wednesday, February 6, at 6:30 PM.


Pre-Registration is required for this practice test.


You may register by calling 1-408-808-3040 or by visiting the Information Desk at Almaden Branch Library (open Wed 11-8, Thu 10-6, Fri 10-6, Sat 10-6).


If you know anyone who might like to take the practice test, please pass this message along.


And if you can't make this live practice test, you can prep for the tests by using these free online resources provided by San José Public Library (Library Card required):


Check them out and best wishes on your testing success.