Previous Special Events

Friday, November 15, 2013
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

Run away with the circus as Happy Faces Entertainment ringmaster Dennis Porter takes you into the excitement of the big top. Enjoy an interactive program of music, magic, juggling, and more.

Porter has worked with communities, educational institutions, churches, amusement parks and professional theaters around the country, performing as a clown, actor, magician, storyteller, educator, and emcee.

Appropriate for all ages.


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Few journalists have studied the issue of global warming with the thoroughness of The New York TimesJustin Gillis, who has raised hackles by comparing global warming skeptics to opponents of evolution.

Now, Time magazine editor-at-large David Von Drehle holds a public conversation with Gillis about Covering Climate Change.

Gillis, who reports and blogs on the environment for the Times, warns that “the hour is late … To head off the worst consequences of global warming, we needed to get started 20 years ago and we did not. If we started today it would be hard, and we’re not starting today.”


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Several hundred spectators in Dealey Plaza witnessed the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in November 1963. Everyone else experienced it through the eyes of Dallas dressmaker Abraham Zapruder, whose home movie of the shooting is among the most famous – and closely examined – films in history.

Journalist and historian Max Holland looks at the Zapruder film, delving into how it came to be, its exalted status as the dominant document of a national tragedy, and how it has helped – or hindered - our understanding of precisely what happened 50 years ago this month.


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Patrick Rosal’s poetry, writes one critic, “skillfully navigates between despair and love, between violence and music, between loss and transcendence ... I’ve seen him make people cry during his readings. I’ve seen him play a guitar, play the piano, sing, and yes, dance.”

Rosal holds a discussion about his work with New Letters on the Air host Angela Elam.


Sunday, November 10, 2013
2:00pm @ Plaza Branch

During her mother’s struggle with Alzheimer’s, Deborah Shouse explored ways to connect with her and developed new rituals to anchor holidays and other celebrations. She is joined by Ron Zoglin, a professional storyteller, and Michelle Niedens, education director of the Heart of America Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, for a discussion of her book, which offers humor and hope to family members, friends, and caregivers.


Friday, November 8, 2013
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

The 14th Annual Kansas City Storytelling Celebration features folk tales, historical sagas, performance art, intergalactic yarns and more.

The celebration begins with Friday Night Family Fun at 6:30 p.m. in the Kids’ Corner,with the Sadarri and Company Multilingual Storytellers followed by Ghost Stories in the Truman Auditorium at 7 p.m. with: Peter Cook, Marilyn Kinsella, Willy Claflin, and Rosie Cutrer.


Thursday, November 7, 2013
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch


This event has been canceled at the author’s request due to an illness.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was contemplating retirement when war broke out in Europe and he was forced to decide whether to seek a third term, both to lead the American mobilization and preserve the advances of the New Deal.

In a discussion of his new book, Roosevelt’s Second Act, Richard Moe examines Roosevelt’s duality: the bold, moral statesman who set lofty and principled goals, and the arrogant, manipulative politician in pursuit of them.


Wednesday, November 6, 2013
6:30pm @ Plaza Branch

In the same way that Walter Cronkite was “the most trusted man in America,” Martin Bell represents journalistic integrity and straight talk to several generations of Britons.

Beyond his career as a reporter, Bell is a member of the Order of the British Empire who has also been elected to Parliament, an ambassador for UNICEF, and a tireless critic of the state of journalism.

Now Bell discusses his life, his war experiences, his brief political career, and his recent incarnation as a poet.

Co-sponsored by the English-Speaking Union.


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

For nearly 30 years Mark Skousen — financial economist, university professor, and author — has been collecting the wisdom of Wall Street in the form of adages, proverbs, and legends. He discusses how interviews with financial old-timers, his reading of rare business books, and his own experiences in the markets has resulted in his new collection of pithy sayings and observations in Maxims of Wall Street: A Compendium of Financial Adages, Ancient Proverbs, and Worldly Wisdom.


Monday, November 4, 2013

The creative challenges of writing a book are at least matched by the difficulty of shepherding it to publication.

Author Mira Bartok offers a common-sense guide to navigating the world of publishing, from finding an agent and publisher to undergoing the editorial process and handling publicity.