Monday, June 23, 2014

Portage Library to host book discussion, community connection meeting this week

HOUGHTON -- The Portage Lake District Library announces two community events -- a book discussion on June 25 and a community connection meeting for trailing spouses on June 26.*

"Reading as Inquiry" discussion June 25

The Portage Library invites everyone to bring a lunch and gather on the dock outside the library for a community book discussion from noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, June 25.

This event is part of a series of events planned for Michigan Technological University’s "Reading As Inquiry" campus and community summer reading program.

The book chosen for this year is In the Sanctuary of Outcasts: A Memoir by Neil White. It tells the story of how White served eighteen months in a federal prison in rural Louisiana for bank fraud. This prison was also home to the last people in the United States who were disfigured by leprosy. Amid an unlikely mix of leprosy patients, nuns, and criminals, White’s compelling new life journey began. White describes his discovery that redemption can be taught by society’s most dreaded outcasts.

This book leads to a great discussion on many levels and people are welcome to participate even if they have not had time to read the book yet.

In case of bad weather, the book discussion will be held in the community room.

White will give a presentation for the public at the Rozsa Center from 9 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. and from 1 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, August 26.

Community Connection Meeting June 26

The Portage Lake District Library will host a community connection meeting that is designed to help trailing spouses who would like to network with other people to find ways to fit in and contribute to the community.*

The meeting will be held from 10 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 26. Childcare will be provided in the library during the meeting.

Susan Nielsen and Catherine (Hui-wen) Hsin will facilitate the meeting and guide participants as they brainstorm ways to use their talent, expertise, education, and experience in ways that fit with their current family situation. Beyond volunteering or employment, this venue can serve as a means of making friends, sharing resources, and seeking input on aspects of life in the Keweenaw where participants may need support.

Nielsen has lived in the area for three years and has met spouses searching for a way to keep their skills sharp and apply their talents in ways that are meaningful to them, their children, and the community. Hsin also moved to the area three years ago and is currently teaching part-time at Michigan Tech. She hopes more spouses in this area -- regardless of their ethnicity, culture, or background -- can find opportunities here that utilize their expertise and skills in addition to raising children.

Library programs are free and everyone is welcome. For more information please call the library at 482-4570 or visit

* A "trailing spouse" is a person who follows his or her life partner to another city (or country) because of the partner's work assignment.

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