Neighborhood Library

Japan's Gift to America

Published on Tuesday, April 15, 2014

cherryblossomsThousands of people visit Washington, DC each year to see the beautiful cherry trees that surround the Tidal Basin. Do you know how the cherry trees got here?
If you'd like to know this fascinating story, you need to read the book Eliza's Cherry Trees: Japan's Gift to America
Eliza Scidmore was born in 1854 and lived in Washington, DC. She went to Oberlin College and traveled a great deal after she graduated. Over the years, she visited Alaska, India, Russia, China, Indonesia, and Japan. Eliza especially loved Japan; she grew to love the people and culture, and learned to speak Japanese. One of Eliza's favorite things about Japan were its gardens, and the sakura, the Japanese cherry tree, was to her "the most beautiful thing in the world." When Eliza returned to Washington, she thought that the growing capital city could be made more beautiful if it had sakura of its own. She told the parks directors her idea to plant cherry trees by the water, but year after year, they said no. Eliza continued to travel, and became the first female board member of the National Geographic Society. She wrote articles and took photographs for the magazine, and also became a photographer for the Smithsonian Institution. In 1909, Eliza wrote a letter to President Taft in order to share her idea. Mrs. Taft loved the idea, and two thousand cherry trees were sent to Washington, with the help of Dr. Jokichi Takamine, a Japanese scientist. Sadly, the trees were infested with disease and bugs, and they were burned so as not to contaminate other trees. But in 1912, Eliza's dream came true, and 3,000 Japanese cherry trees were sent to Washington as a gift from the people of Tokyo, Japan. More than one hundred years later, people still come to admire the cherry trees, just like Eliza hoped they would. The trees have become an international symbol of peace and friendship.

Published on Monday, April 14, 2014

Image of people walkingAre you fabulous at 50+?  Are you looking for a way to get out, meet new people, get some exercise and fresh air, and explore the Petworth neighborhood?  The Petworth Pacers, our walking fitness program for seniors, began last summer and fall to foster fitness and friendship.  We’re getting the Pacers group up and running, err, walking again on May 4, just in time for Older Americans Month. 


Published on Tuesday, April 8, 2014

incorrigibleHave you ever heard the expression, "Those children must have been raised by wolves!" to refer to children that are exceptionally naughty?

Well, Alexander, Beowulf and Cassiopeia Incorrigible were!

Their young nanny, Miss Penelope Lumley, had taught them the Greek classics, stopped them from chasing squirrels and given them lots of love and affection. Now they only howl at the full moon, and chase chickens once in a while. 

Published on Monday, April 7, 2014

oam logoMay is Older Americans Month. Since 1963, our nation has designated this month as a time to celebrate the many contributions of older Americans and to focus attention on staying healthy and active.

From 1963 until 1973, May was referred to as Senior Citizens Month. In May 1974, President Jimmy Carter changed the name to Older Americans Month. 

Each year, the Administration for Community Living, an organization of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, selects a theme for Older Americans Month. This year’s theme, “Safe Today. Healthy Tomorrow,” focuses on injury prevention.

Tweens, come see what Petworth Library has planned just for you!

Published on Tuesday, April 1, 2014

We are happy to feature programming for children of all ages, including tweens.

Who are tweens, might you ask?

Well, they have outgrown story time for little ones but are not quite old enough to be in the teen space. So, if you happen to be an older elementary student/early middle schooler who is somewhere between the ages of say 9-12, tween programming is for you! 

Here's what we have lined up for tweens in April:

Published on Saturday, March 29, 2014

Jobseekers ImageJobseekers’ Drop-in Clinic
Every Tuesday at 1:30 p.m.
One-on-one help for jobseekers including help job searching, formatting resumes, and more. 
AARP Tax Assistance
Every Monday, 1:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m., and every Friday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Tax assistance free to taxpayers with low and moderate income with special attention to those 60 and older.  The last date will be Monday, April 14.
Family Story Time
Every Saturday at 10:30 a.m.
Story time event for all ages.
Every Saturday at 11 a.m.

Published on Friday, March 28, 2014

Ductigami : the art of the tape / Joe Wilson book coverTape Sculpture
Wednesday, April 2 at 4 p.m. 
Ever dream of becoming a sculptor? Here’s your chance! Learn this legendary sculpting technique that utilizes readily available materials such as packing tape and is an excellent way to create life‐size molds of objects or human forms. The final result is hollow, light‐weight, transparent and easily installed.

Escultura de Cinta
miércoles, 02 de abril at 4 p.m. 

Published on Thursday, March 27, 2014

plaFrom March 12-15, in Indianapolis, Ind., librarians from the DC Public Library joined thousands of like-minded librarians from all over the United States and Canada.

We met to learn from each other, to inspire each other, and to brainstorm with each other the best ways to serve our public library patrons.
It was a wonderful opportunity to get fresh ideas, and to come back to our libraries motivated and excited to make them the best they can be.

One of the highlights of the conference was listening to closing speaker, author David Sedaris. He regaled the audience with hilarious, poignant and very moving personal stories and observations of the world around him.

Play more games!

Published on Saturday, March 22, 2014

TableTop Day imageI love games of all kinds - board games, card games, strategy games and more. But I don't often get a chance to play them, partly due to lack of time but also due to lack of opponents!  

I also love learning new games but sometimes it seems like my friends know the same games I do.  If you're like me -- looking for more types of games and more opportunities to play them -- you should visit Petworth Library on April 5 between 1-4 p.m. for TableTop Day. 

Published on Friday, March 21, 2014

Imagine it: It's a brisk spring morning and you rush up the steps to the Petworth Library as a cold gust of wind blows your jacket wide open. You reach for the heavy wooden door and hurry inside.

As you frantically rub your hands together to thaw out, you slowly lift your head in wonder...

Sunday, March 30 at 1:30 p.m.

Published on Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Statue of LibertyLawyers from the American Immigration Lawyers Association will be at Petworth Library for an information session about all aspects of the citizenship process.  

Anyone who is interested in becoming a naturalized citizen of the United States is invited to attend.

Topics include:

  • How to apply for citizenship by naturalization
  • Requirements for qualification and eligibility
  • Where to get help with the application
  • Steps in the application process, from filing to the Oath Ceremony