Animal Tales Is Here!

We know many of you have waited a long time for this… Animal Tales is now available for purchase!

Animal Tales cover

Take a walk on Dearborn’s wild side with this delightful (and thrilling!) community anthology featuring animal stories, poems, and essays written by over 100 authors of all ages. From humor to haiku, mystery to real-life rescue tales, there’s something here for everyone. Proceeds benefit Dearborn Public Library.

The paperback book is ready and available for purchase on CreateSpace. To order a copy, simply create a CreateSpace customer account (which requires name and email address, including creating a password) – this way, you can order more copies whenever you want. CreateSpace will ask for a shipping address and for a method of payment, and they will mail out a newly printed copy of the book. CreateSpace is print-on-demand, so they only print as many copies as there is demand for.

The book is also available to purchase through Amazon.com, but the library receives a larger percentage of sales when it is purchased through CreateSpace.

The Dearborn Public Library will also have some copies on-site for those who would prefer to purchase a copy at the library. We hope to have Kindle and Smashwords versions in the near future.

A BIG thank you to all the authors who submitted stories and made this book possible!

The Big Read Dearborn Update

On May 17, The Big Read Dearborn ended with a big wrap-up party at the Henry Ford Centennial Library.

Luckily, the weather cooperated and there were a variety of activities outside, including gold panning, sled dogs, Treibball (dog soccer), partner/sponsor booths, and live music.

Inside, the Do You Hear the Call? photography exhibit was on display in the Rotunda Gallery, and several Animal Tales authors read their often funny and moving stories in the auditorium. Upstairs in the youth area of the library, visitors of all ages dressed up to take old-time photos, while kids also had the opportunity to make some fun crafts such as a wolf mask.

To add to the festivities, Leader of the Pack sponsor DFCU Financial raffled off free memberships to The Henry Ford.

Check out some photos of the event, courtesy of the Dearborn Community Fund!

Sled dogs at the Big Read Dearborn wrap-up party at the Henry Ford Centennial Library on Saturday, May 17

The Big Read Dearborn Wrap-Up Party
(click image for more photos)

Stay tuned for Animal Tales – it is now in the final stages of editing and we hope to publish the book very soon. We’ll send out a notice as soon as it’s available for purchase.

Thank you to all who have given feedback on The Big Read Dearborn! If you haven’t yet filled out the brief feedback form, please take a moment to share your thoughts today.

To all who “heard the call,” hope you enjoyed The Big Read Dearborn and found inspiration in reading The Call of the Wild, attending an event, writing a story for Animal Tales, or viewing the photo exhibit. And we hope you’ve been inspired to continue your discovery of great works of literature such as The Call of the Wild!

The Big Read Dearborn Wrap-Up Party is Tomorrow!

Big Read 2013-14 flyer Wrap Up

The Big Read Dearborn Wrap-Up Party flyer [PDF]

Less than 24 hours to go before The Big Read Dearborn Wrap-Up Party begins! Join the celebration tomorrow, Saturday, May 17 from 2:00-4:00 p.m. at the Henry Ford Centennial Library.

Activities will include:

  • Real sled dogs and Treibball (doggie soccer)
  • Gold panning
  • Old-time photo booth
  • Animal Tales author meet-and-greet
  • Popcorn, children’s craft, live music, raffle prizes and more!

This Week’s Big Read Events

This is the last week of The Big Read Dearborn. We hope you’ve enjoyed emBARKING on this literary adventure! If you haven’t read The Call of the Wild yet, it’s not too late to get a free copy.

It’s hard to believe the journey is almost coming to an end, but there are still a variety of great events scheduled for this week, including a movie (The Call of the Wild), children’s storytime, a children’s craft, a book discussion, and a lecture by Professor Karla Armbruster, “The Echoing Call of the Wild: What Jack London Knew about Dogs and Their Wolf Ancestors.” This lecture will be presented twice, on Tuesday at the Caroline Kennedy Library in Dearborn Heights and on Wednesday at the Bryant Branch Library in Dearborn. And don’t forget, you’re invited to The Big Read Dearborn Wrap Up Party on Saturday, May 17!

movie_clapperboard     BLOCKBUSTER FILM SERIES – The Call of the Wild

Date and Time: Monday, May 12, 2014, 7:00pm – 9:00pm

Location: Henry Ford Centennial Library, 16301 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, MI 48126

Synopsis: In The Call of the Wild (1935), gold prospector Jack Thornton (Clark Gable) braves the Alaskan wilderness in hopes of striking it rich in this Western loosely based on Jack London’s novel (89 minutes, not rated). A discussion will follow the film.

bookworm_penguin     YOUTH EVENT (CHILDREN) – Hear the Call Storytime

Date and Time: Tuesday, May 13, 2014, 6:30pm – 7:30pm

Location: Henry Ford Centennial Library, 16301 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, MI 48126

Children with a caregiver are invited for stories and songs focusing on dogs, wolves, and the wild. Space is limited. Register by phone at (313) 943-2345 or in person at any Dearborn Public Library location.

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LECTURE – The Echoing Call of the Wild: What Jack London Knew about Dogs and Their Wolf Ancestors

Date and Time: Tuesday, May 13, 2014, 7:00pm – 8:00pm

Location: Caroline Kennedy Library, 24590 George Ave., Dearborn Heights, MI 48127

Karla Armbruster, professor of English at Webster University in St. Louis, MO, specializes in ecocriticism and animal studies. In this talk, she will explore how Jack London and other writers have used the idea that dogs evolved from wolves to support various and sometimes competing visions of the relationship between wild nature and human culture. Please call (313) 791-3800 to register. Note: This lecture will also be presented on Wednesday, May 14, 12:00pm – 1:00pm at the Bryant Branch Library in Dearborn.

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LECTURE – The Echoing Call of the Wild: What Jack London Knew about Dogs and Their Wolf Ancestors

Date and Time: Wednesday, May 14, 2014, 12:00pm – 1:00pm

Location: Bryant Branch Library, Dearborn Chamber Conference Room, 22100 Michigan Ave. Dearborn, MI 48126

Karla Armbruster, professor of English at Webster University in St. Louis, MO, specializes in ecocriticism and animal studies. In this talk, she will explore how Jack London and other writers have used the idea that dogs evolved from wolves to support various and sometimes competing visions of the relationship between wild nature and human culture. Note: This lecture will also be presented on Tuesday, May 13, 7:00pm – 8:00pm at Caroline Kennedy Library in Dearborn Heights.

bookworm_penguin     YOUTH EVENT (CHILDREN & TEENS) – Third Thursday Craft

Date and Time: Thursday, May 15, 2014, 11:00am – 7:00pm

Location: Henry Ford Centennial Library, 16301 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, MI 48126

Drop-in craft. Wild shadow puppets – create a set of shadow puppets and tell your own story! Younger children may need adult assistance. Crafts available while supplies last.

green book     BOOK DISCUSSION – Dearborn Public Library

Date and Time: Thursday, May 15, 2014, 1:00pm – 2:00pm

Location: Bryant Branch Library, Dearborn Chamber Conference Room, 22100 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, MI 48124

Librarian Kirt Gross will moderate a discussion of The Call of the Wild.

paw-print     SPECIAL EVENT – The Big Read Dearborn Wrap-Up Party

Date and Time: Saturday, May 17, 2014, 2:00pm – 4:00pm

Location: Henry Ford Centennial Library, 16301 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, MI 48126

Join in a special celebration at Henry Ford Centennial Library to wrap up The Big Read Dearborn. The party will include real sled dogs, Treibball (dog soccer), an old-time photo booth, gold panning, an Animal Tales meet-and-greet, popcorn, live music, and more!

The Big Read Dearborn Wrap Up Party is on May 17!

Saturday, May 17, 2014, 2:00-4:00 p.m.
Henry Ford Centennial Library
16301 Michigan Ave., Dearborn MI 48126

Big Read 2013-14 flyer Wrap Up

Download The Big Read Wrap Up Party flyer and spread the word!

We hope you’ve enjoyed emBARKING on discovery with The Big Read Dearborn these past several weeks! This literary adventure has been a great ride as we’ve explored American literature and our connection to animals and nature through Jack London’s The Call of the Wild. But it’s not over yet…there will be a party at the Henry Ford Centennial Library on Saturday, May 17 and it will be BIG! It’s The BIG Read Dearborn, after all. There will be lots of fun activities, including:

  • Real sled dogs and Treibball (doggie soccer)
  • Gold panning
  • Old-time photo booth
  • Animal Tales author meet-and-greet
  • Popcorn, children’s craft, live music, raffle prizes and more!

If You Missed the Lecture “Was Jack London a Nature Faker?”…

You can still read about the “nature faker” controversy in a blog post by Donna Braden, Curator of Public Life at The Henry Ford. Here’s an excerpt from her post:

“The Nature Faker controversy had its roots in Americans’ growing appreciation for nature during the late 19th century. Natural areas suddenly seemed to offer a rejuvenating respite from the chaos, crowds, and machine-age clatter of urban life. This led to the creation of America’s national parks (Yellowstone being the first in 1872) as well as public parks and nature preserves closer to home.

Childrens-Museum-Nature-Study-Club

Children’s Museum Nature Study Club in Bedford Park, New York, 1890-1915. From the collections of The Henry Ford

During the heyday of this “cult of nature,” nature writing became immensely popular. One particular genre that emerged was the so-called “realistic” wild animal story. For the first time in popular literature, wild animals were depicted in a positive light—as compassionate creatures with which readers could sympathize.

Jack London was one of many authors at this time who wrote in this genre. In his book The Call of the Wild (1903), London revealed the thoughts and emotions of his dog-hero, Buck, with such sophistication and literary skill that it was easy for readers to become convinced that London was truly revealing Buck’s innermost self.

Enter naturalist John Burroughs—in his 60’s by this time—who was known far and wide for his many essays. These received praise in both literary and scientific circles, as Burroughs believed in both reporting the objective facts of nature and describing one’s subjective feelings. But he was adamant that these should remain clear and separate.”

Henry-Ford-and-John-Burroughs

Henry Ford and John Burroughs at Woodchuck Lodge, Roxbury, New York, 1915. From the collections of The Henry Ford

Read more at The Henry Ford’s blog!

Get a Free Copy of The Call of the Wild!

It’s not too late to get a free tabloid copy of The Call of the Wild, created by students from Dearborn Public Schools just for The Big Read Dearborn.

  • Big Read tabloid cover

    The Call of the Wild tabloid, created by students from Dearborn Public Schools (PDF, 72 pages)

    Pick up a free tabloid copy at one of many locations around Dearborn.
  • Get a free online version in audio or text format.
  • Borrow a copy from the library (available in various formats and editions including an Arabic/English dual-language edition).

This Week’s Big Read Events

Only two weeks left of The Big Read Dearborn! Check out the events schedule for all the remaining events. There’s going to be a BIG wrap-up party on Saturday, May 17, 2:00-4:00 p.m. at the Henry Ford Centennial Library. Mark your calendars!

green book     BOOK DISCUSSION – AAUW Dearborn

Logo - AAUW DearbornDate and Time: Wednesday, May 7, 2014, 1:00pm – 2:00pm

Location: Henry Ford Centennial Library, Mezzanine Conference Room, 16301 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, MI 48126

The American Association of Women (AAUW) Dearborn Branch will discuss The Call of the Wild.

speech_bubble     LECTURE – Michigan Wolves: Past, Present, and Future

Dorothy-McLeerDate and Time: Thursday, May 8, 2014, 6:00pm – 8:00pm

Location: Henry Ford Centennial Library, Mezzanine Conference Room, 16301 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, MI 48126

Dorothy McLeer of the University of Michigan-Dearborn Environmental Interpretive Center will discuss the history and the current status of wolves in Michigan.

paw-print     SPECIAL EVENT Mutt Strut & Pet Expo

Mutt StrutDate and Time: Saturday, May 10, 2014, 9:00am – 3:00pm

Location: Ford Field, 22051 Cherry Hill St., Dearborn, MI 48126

The Mutt Strut & Pet Expo is an annual pledge-driven dog walk and community-wide animal celebration, organized by the Friends for the Dearborn Animal Shelter. There is always lots of entertainment, shopping, and fun focused on pets and their families. It will take place rain or shine – all weather is dog weather! View the schedule of events and learn more about donating or participating today!