Books

Library board gets down to the nuts & bolts of strategic planning

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News When the Wood County District Public Library approves Director Michael Penrod’s next three-year “to-do” list, going to the hardware store probably won’t be one of the chores included. But the board may embrace a notion that Penrod shared from a recent library conference: “If our city is the best in the world then the library is its hardware store.” Penrod offered assurances though that he didn’t want to compete with Floyd Craft owner of ACE Hardware. The library will have plenty else on its agenda, which will be set by a new Strategic Plan for the years 2018-2020. Penrod and the board will have that plan ready by the beginning of next year. The plan is important because it brings the library through November, 2020, when it will have to be on the ballot to renew its levy. That levy generated almost $1 million in 2016, about 40 percent of the library’s revenue. When the strategic plan is done, Penrod said, its message should be simple enough to explain to an 11-year-old. Little will be simple about the process of getting to that point. The library is planning for an uncertain future, operating within…


Poet Cheryl Lachowski’ “Ditches” cuts to the heart of the Black Swamp

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The ditches of the Black Swamp collect a lot of material – water, cattails, the occasional vehicle. Poet Cheryl Lachowski’s expansive project “Ditches” takes in even more. Lachowski, who teaches General Studies Writing at Bowling Green State University, gave a presentation earlier this week on the work in progress. She’s nearing the end of a semester-long leave, a welcomed respite from grading student compositions. The time to focus on poetry was made possible through a grant from the university’s Institute for the Study of Culture and Society. She said it was “unbelievable” that she, as a non-tenure track faculty, could avail herself of such a leave. One requirement is to give a presentation on the work accomplished during the leave. Ditches are a defining feature of the Great Black Swamp. They transformed the swamp from wildlands into farmlands, and they form the divide between the two sections of Lachowski’s books. The first section, which she is finishing up thanks to the leave, is “Watershed.” The second will be “Homestead.” The devoted to the time before ditches transformed the region, and the other afterward. The first before white settlers took hold, and the second when…


BGSU arts events through April 18

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS April 7 – The Collegiate Chorale and University Women’s Chorus will perform at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center. Advance tickets are $3 for students and children and $7 for adults. All tickets are $10 the day of the performance. Tickets can be purchased at the box office in the Wolfe Center, by phone at 419-372-8171, or online at http://www.bgsu.edu/the-arts/. April 7 – The elsewhere theater season concludes with “Dying City,” written by Christopher Shin and directed by Tanner Lias. The performance begins at 8 p.m. in the Eva Marie Saint Theatre located in the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Additional performances will be at 8 p.m. on April 8 and 9. Free April 8 – The Dr. Marjorie Conrad Art Song Competition will take place in Bryan Recital Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center. Preliminaries will begin at noon, with finals following at 8 p.m. Free April 8 – An opening reception for the MFA I Thesis Exhibition will begin at 7 p.m. in the Dorothy Uber Bryan and Willard Wankelman Galleries in the Fine Arts Center. Free Through April 18 – The MFA I Thesis…


Sherman Alexie shows pure power of storytelling

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Readers familiar with Sherman Alexie probably weren’t expecting him to sit back in a leather chair and stoically read from his novels. But they may not have been expecting him to slaughter so many sacred cows. “You have billboards of me,” Alexie said to the sold out crowd at the Bowling Green Performing Arts Center, Thursday evening. “I saw it and I wanted to put a Bible verse up.” Not a real verse, but something like “Jason 99:12” just to mess with people. He warned that he wasn’t a typical Native American. If the audience was waiting for him to thank them for welcoming him here, they could just keep waiting. “You f—— stole everything in Ohio,” he said. He poked fun at pompous professors, conservative Christians, white Americans who are anti-immigrant, and ultra protective parents who won’t get their children immunized. “This is from a person whose entire race was almost wiped out by smallpox,” he said. “F— you.” He also warned the audience wanting autographs after the program to avoid one particular topic of conversation. “Later a lot of you are going to come up and tell me you’re part…


Gathering Volumes to host Independent Bookstore Day event

From GATHERING VOLUMES The 2017 Independent Bookstore Day marks its third year of celebrating independent bookstores nationwide on Saturday, April 29th, with literary parties around the country. 450 Independent Bookstores nationwide will be participating in Independent Bookstore day on April 29, 2017. Gathering Volumes bookstore in Perrysburg will be hosting a local author event as well as additional activities for Independent Bookstore Day on Saturday, April 29. The event will host multiple authors both inside and outside of the store, live musical acts , children’s activities, The Glass City Mashers will be offering samples of beer brewed locally, and Mom’s Mobile Mission. The Glass City Mashers are a beer, mead, and cider homebrewing club of Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan, formed in 2011. The non-profit organization looks to find ways to raise awareness for homebrewed and craft beer along with helping other charities in Northwest Ohio. They will be offering samples of beer brewed locally. Mom’s Mobile Mission is a nonprofit Organization helping those in need in the Perrysburg Height and surrounding area. They will be collecting non-perishable food during the event. “Gathering Volumes will open an hour early, at 10 am, for a special Elephant & Piggie story time, coffee,…


BGSU Arts Events through April 12

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS March 31 – Jazz Week continues with a trombone performance from Jazz Lab Band I with Grammy-nominated guest artist Alan Ferber. The recital will begin at 8 p.m. in Kobacker Hall of the Moore Musical Arts Center. Tickets can be purchased at the box office in the Wolfe Center, by phone at 419-372-8171, or online at www.bgsu.edu/the-arts/. Advance tickets are $3 for students and children and $7 for adults. All tickets are $10 the day of the performance. April 1 – Bravo! BGSU celebrates the very best of the arts. Experience a magical evening of vocal, instrumental and theatrical performances, plus exhibitions and demonstrations by student and faculty artists in glass, ceramics, metals and digital arts. Enjoy a festive atmosphere and an array of appetizers and tasty treats. The celebration will begin at 7 p.m. in the Wolfe Center for the Arts. To purchase tickets to the event, contact Lisa Mattiace in the President’s Office at 419-372-6780 or by email at lmattia@bgsu.edu April 1 – Students from BGSU’s College of Musical Arts will be featured in an afternoon chamber music concert at 1 p.m. at the Way Public Library, 101 E. Indiana Ave.,…


BGSU arts events through April 4

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS   Through March 31 – The BFA Senior Thesis Exhibition will be on display in the Bryan and Wankelman Galleries, located in the Fine Arts Center. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays and 1-4 p.m.Sundays. Free March 24 – Bowling Green Opera Theater features Kurt Weill’s “Street Scene.” The performance will begin at 8 p.m. in the Donnell Theatre located in the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Advance tickets are $5 for students and children and $15 for adults. All tickets are $20 the day of the performance. Tickets can be purchased at the box office in the Wolfe Center, by calling 419-372-8171 or online at www.bgsu.edu/the-arts/. An additional performance will be at 3 p.m. on March 26. March 24 – EAR | EYE Listening and Looking: Contemporary Music and Art explores the relationship of contemporary music and art through music performances in response to specific works of art and discussion. It is a partnership between the doctoral program at BGSU’s College of Musical Arts and the Toledo Museum of Art. The event begins at 7 p.m. at the Toledo Museum of Art, 2445 Monroe…


Pro soccer player Robbie Rogers finds emotional release playing out of the closet

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Soccer star Robbie Rogers should have been happy. At 24 he had achieved so much of what he’d been dreaming about and working for since he was 7. He’d won a national collegiate championship in his freshman year at the University of Maryland. Played on the US National team. Played in the Olympics. Won a professional championship with the Columbus Crew. And now was supporting himself as a soccer player on an English team. Yet time and again he found himself after a victory alone in his room, feeing hollow. “Why am I not happy?” he found himself wondering. “Why am I not out celebrating with my friends?” While he was showing the world what kind of soccer player he was, Rogers was not showing even those closest to him who he really was beneath the surface, a gay man. “Football was my escape, my purpose, my identity” he told an audience at Bowling Green State University. “It hid my secret and gave me more joy than I could imagine.” Rogers visited BGSU at the invitation of We Are One Team, a student organization that promotes diversity and inclusion through sports, as part of…


Sherman Alexie’s Community Reads talk sold out

With only a little under three weeks to go until Community Reads author Sherman Alexie visits Bowling Green, the author’s free event on April 6 at 7 p.m. in the Bowling Green City Schools Performing Arts Center  is “sold” out. A limited number waiting list has been started for the event. Community Reads is asking that current ticket holders whose circumstances change and find they are no longer able to attend the April 6 talk by Alexie, call Wood County District Public Library’s Information Desk at 419-352-5050, or stop by the Bowling Green library , so that tickets which are no longer needed may be cancelled and made available to those on the waiting list. As tickets become available, people on the waiting list will be contacted in the order in which they joined the list. “The Community Reads planners knew Mr. Alexie would be a big draw, but have been astounded at how quickly tickets for his talk were grabbed up,” said library spokesperson Mary Callahan Boone. “We were hopeful we’d match the number of people who came to see Community Reads authors like Homer Hickam (Rocket Boys) and John Grogan (Marley and Me). Roughly 650 were in attendance for each…


BGSU arts events through March 29

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS March 16 – The Creative Writing Program’s Reading Series features visiting writer Dustin M. Hoffman. Author of the story collection “One-Hundred-Knuckled Fist” and winner of the 2015 Prairie Schooner Book Prize, Hoffman earned his MFA in fiction from BGSU.  The reading will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Prout Chapel. Free March 17 – The Brown Bag Music Series continues with Opera! The performance will begin at 11:45 a.m. in the Simpson Building, 1291 Conneaut Ave., Bowling Green. Free March 17 – Elsewhere productions continue with “Jimmy and Sally.” The show will begin at 8 p.m. in the Eva Marie Saint Theatre located in the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Additional performances will be at 8 p.m. on March 18 and 19. Free March 18 – The ARTalk series presents “Where Next: The Future of Art.” Prominent artists and scholars will discuss the future of art in work, education and careers. Featured speakers include Cynthia Crow, program officer for the Fulbright Scholar Program in New York; Regin Igloria, multidisciplinary artist and arts administrator in Chicago, and John Jennings, graphic designer and associate professor at the University of Buffalo. The ARTalk will begin at 4…


Young filmmaker Caroline Koziol’s dream has taken her to slums in Brazil, & Bowling Green

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News At 23, Caroline Koziol has already lived a well-traveled life. Born in Poland, she immigrated to England. She came to study theater and film at Bowling Green State University for semester and stayed to graduate. Now she’s back in London doing graduate studies in film. That’s just the outline. She’s hitchhiked along Route 66 and around Morocco. Her dreams have also taken her to the slums of Brazil where she found the subject for both a documentary and a book. Koziol’s ambitions to be a documentary filmmaker revolve around the Dream Catcher project, where she approaches strangers and explores with them what their dreams and fears are, and what they are doing to achieve them. She found people who dream of fame and a lottery jackpot. She found someone who wanted to have a cup of coffee with her, and a man who thought she should run for president. She probes and encourages and teases her subjects, justifying her intrusion in their daily life with a beaming smile and bubbly repartee. It’s an approach that works across cultures. Koziol tells those she meets the time to start pursuing their dreams is now. And she…


Paying for textbooks could put a dent in BGSU budget

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Bowling Green State University could take a significant financial hit if a state budget proposal requiring colleges to pay for students’ textbooks becomes law. At a session of the BGSU Faculty Senate in late February President Mary Ellen Mazey said that even with the option of a new $300 annual textbook fee, the cost of providing textbooks would be significant. Mazey reported that the estimates for state aid are a 1-percent increase this year with a freeze in the second year of the biennial budget. She also expects a freeze on tuition and fees, other than the possibility of the new textbook fee. No one, she said, knows how much paying for textbooks would cost. “I’ve heard as low as $6 million and as high as $18 million. That could be a major, major budget cut if we go in that direction.” She noted that the governor had already instructed universities to find ways to control textbook costs. As a result the university has surveyed what it now does to contain those costs and has formed a textbook affordability committee to study how the university could do more. As reported to Faculty Senate late…


Alberto Gonzalez finds distinction close to home

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Professor Alberto Gonzalez has come a long way and not far at all. The first time Alberto Gonzalez set foot on the Bowling Green State University campus was when he and his twin brother, Gil, arrived to move into Kohl Hall. Sons of a Mexican American worker from nearby Sandusky County, they hadn’t done college visits. For them even heading 30 miles west to Bowling Green was a major move. In a way it was their generation’s migration. Their grandparents had been born in Mexico. Their parents were born in south Texas. They grew up in rural Riley Township near Fremont, and now they were attending college. Alberto Gonzalez graduated from BGSU in 1977 before continuing his graduate work in communications at Ohio State where he earned a doctorate. He ended up returning home to teach, and at its February meeting the university’s board of trustees named him a distinguished university professor. Gonzalez, who has taught at the university since 1992, was pleased with the honor for more than what it said about him. “For me it brings attention to the School of Communications and speaks to the quality of work, the quality of…


BG writer adds her voice to “The Nasty Women Project”

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News For Kirsty Sayer, the rise of Donald Trump was personal. The Bowling Green woman was just starting to emerge from a complex Post-Traumatic Stress when Trump started his general election campaign. What she felt was more than political disagreement. His inescapable appearance triggered something deep inside. Emotions that she was just starting to come to grips with. Deep trauma that had controlled her life. Now Sayers saw in Trump a reflection of the older family member who has sexually abused her. And the candidate’s dismissive attitude toward the women who accused him of sexual improprieties, including assault, reminded her of how her abuser treated her. They were cut from the same cloth, both domineering narcissists. So Sayer was one of so many other women who “gritted our teeth” as the election approached, waiting for it to be over. Hopeful, even confident, that after Nov. 8 they’d be done with Donald Trump. Then the votes were counted, in Florida, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan and Ohio. “There was a sense of great helplessness,” Sayer said. “We were just unmoored. Nobody was really expecting it. … Now what?” For Sayer and about 80 other women, the…


BGSU arts events through March 3

Feb. 23—The Creative Writing Program’s Reading Series features visiting writer Callista Buchen. The BGSU MFA alumna and author of chapbooks “The Bloody Planet” and “Double-Mouthed” will share her work. The reading will begin at 7:30 p.m.in Prout Chapel. Free Feb. 23 – The Department of Theatre and Film presents the second week of performances of “The Penelopiad,” Margaret Atwood’s version of Homer’s “Odyssey” told through the voices of Penelope and her 12 hanged maids. Speaking from beyond the grave, Atwood’s characters explore this mythic tale of love, betrayal, responsibility, and power. The performance begins at 8 p.m. in the Eva Marie Saint Theatre, Wolfe Center for the Arts. Tickets are available at bgsu.edu/arts, 419-372-8171 or at the Wolfe Center Box Office, and cost $5 for students and $15 for adults in advance, and $20 for everyone on the day of the performance. Additional performances are at 8 p.m. Feb. 24 and at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Feb. 25. Feb. 23 – The Hansen Musical Arts Series features the Grammy-winning ensemble Roomful of Teeth. Through study with masters from singing traditions the world over, the eight-voice ensemble continually expands its vocabulary of singing techniques and, through an ongoing commissioning process, forges a…