Tompkins County Public Library

Friday, October 13, 2017

Library to Host Wizarding Yoga

In Celebration of Ithaca’s Wizarding Weekend, the Tompkins County Public Library will host “Wizarding Yoga,” a fun-filled, drop-in yoga program for children ages 5 through 12, Friday, October 27 from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Library’s Thaler/Howell Programming Room.

Facilitated by Diane Hamilton, “Wizarding Yoga” participants will bring “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” to life by choosing their house—lion, badge, snake or raven—riding the train from platform 9 3/4, flying on broomsticks, using potions and wearing invisible cloaks during this family-friendly introduction to yoga.

Hamilton will offer four sessions of “Wizarding Yoga,” between 2 and 4 p.m., with each session lasting approximately 30 minutes. Participants are invited to drop in any time to join the fun. Mats are not necessary, but a limited supply will be available.

“Wizarding Yoga” is one of several programs for children, family and teens being held at the Library during Wizarding Weekend. For a complete schedule of the Library’s Wizarding Weekend events, visit

Library Transforms Into School of Witchcraft and Wizardry During Ithaca's Wizarding Weekend

Tompkins County Public Library’s School of Witchcraft and Wizardry is now enrolling promising wizards, witches, and even a few brave muggles, for its special three-day, fall semester.

Classes begin Friday, October 27 at 4 p.m. in the BorgWarner Community Room when Dumbledore’s Army welcomes recruits ages 11 through 18. Led by TCPL’s finest wizards and witches, this course will help students perfect the skills needed to ward off Death Eaters, including wand-handling techniques and Defense Against the Dark Arts. The program will conclude with a competitive Wizarding Duel!

School is back in session for magically-gifted scholars of all ages and abilities Saturday and Sunday.

Saturday Family Programming

Young learners will explore the magic of reading and literacy as Professors Doolittle and Shortle offer an enchanting Family Storytime and Puppet Show at 11 a.m. in the Thaler/Howell Programming Room. Young apprentices and their mentors will be delighted by songs, stories, crafts and hand-on fun.

Rookie spell-casters are invited to return to the Library at 2 p.m. to work their magic by turning individual bricks into imaginative works of art during LEGO at the Library. LEGO bricks and LEGO idea books from the Library’s collection will be provided. Creations will be displayed in the Youth Services Department for one week.’

Saturday Adult and Teen Programming

Classes for advanced wizards and witches begin at 9:30 a.m. with Fantastic Beasts: Fairy Races of the British Isles. Rev. Robert “Skip” Ellison, Archdruif Emeritus of Ar nDraoicht Fein, will present his findings on the fantastical fairy races from Brittany, England, Ireland, the Isle of Man, Scotland and Wales. Most commonly-recognized witches and wizards are families with brownies and pixies, but Rev. Ellison has the inside scoop on lesser-known fairies of folklore.

TCPL’s School of Witchcraft and Wizardry’s popular Herbology course is back for the Third Annual Wizarding Weekend with an 11:30 a.m. session by Amanda David, owner of Rootwork Herbals and co-founder of The Bramble Collective. Students will learn how to connect with regional plants and their uses for health and healing.

Awaken your Inner Eye and gain access to your inner self and future through Tarot as Jhenah Telyndru, priestess, author, educator and founder of the Sisterhood of Avalon, offers a 1:30 p.m. Divinations class, including information and insight about the intricate meanings of behind the cards.

Saturday’s classes will conclude with a 3:30 p.m. course in Astronomy taught by Professor David Kornreich. Students will study the movement of stars and planets, learn which ones garnered the attention of ancient wizards and discover how to use a wand to measure celestial movements and predict seasons.

Sunday Family Programming

Children’s classes continue on Sunday at 1:30 with Charms for Children. TCPL’s Professor Fontana will lead children and their caregivers in the creation of charms for attracting good luck and warding off evil.

Professor DeVoe will take over at 3:30 p.m. with Potions for Children. Students will learn to make magic through science by employing the principles of physics and chemistry to concoct creative potions.

Sunday Adult and Teen Programming

Teens and adults are encouraged to learn the foundations of using the positions of celestial bodies to more fully understand themselves and the world, as Meghan Tauck offers Divinations: Astrology at 1:30 p.m. in the BorgWarner Community Room.

The School of Witchcraft and Wizardry concludes is 2017 academic year at 3:30 p.m. with a Paranormal Investigations course led by MJ Carcuro, co-founder of the Albany Paranormal Research Society. Participants will learn how to identify ghosts and paranormal beings like Nearly Headless Nick, Peeves and the other ghosts of Hogwarts Castle during this spirit-filled program.

Tuition for all courses held at Tompkins County Public Library is free, however, space is limited. Classes for adults and teens are limited to 110 attendees. Classes for children and families are limited to 57, and Dumbledore’s Army Training will be limited to 50 participants.

Library participation in Wizarding Weekend 2017 is made possible by the Tompkins County Public Library Foundation with support from the Phyllis and Charles Brodhead Memorial Endowed Fund.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Library to Host ESL Community Read Book Club

Tompkins County Public Library invites non-native English speakers to experience the shared bond of reading, Wednesday, November 1 at 3:30 p.m. in the BorgWarner Community Room-West, during a free ESL Community Read Book Club.

This program will include a judgment-free discussion of this year’s Community Read selection, “Blasphemy: New and Selected Stories” by Sherman Alexie facilitated by Librarian Teresa Vadakin, co-facilitator of the Library’s popular ESL Snack and Chat program.

For information about the ESL Book Club, to register or to reserve a copy of the book, contact Vadakin at or (607) 272-4557 extension 272.

Library to Host Dennis for Presentation on Native American Culture and History

Tompkins County Public Library will host Yvonne Wakim Dennis, co-author of the “Native American Almanac:  More than 50,000 Years of the Cultures and Histories of Indigenous Peoples,” Wednesday, November 1 at 6 p.m. in the BorgWarner Community Room.

A contributor to the Library’s Local Voices collection, Dennis, is the education director for the Children’s Cultural Center of Native America. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and Lotus Service to the Native Community Award and the Arab American National Museum’s Best Children’s Book of the Year Award for her book, “A Kid’s Guide to Arab American History.”

Dennis’ Library program is being held in conjunction with the Library’s 2017 Community Read of Sherman Alexie’s “Blasphemy: New and Selected Stories,” and will include a look at information about Native American culture, history, environmental justice and living in a multi-cultural world.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Tom Burns at

Now in its 15th year, the Community Read encourages readers to experience the bond of literature by reading and discussing the same title. Copies of the book are available to borrow from the Library’s collection and limited copies are available for local book groups and not-for-profit organizations.