Tag Archives: Minnesota

Guest Post for CMLE Reads Across Minnesota: Onigamiising: Seasons of an Ojibwe Year

Minnesota is the land of 10,000 lakes, and it also has many interesting books. In this series, we are sharing some of the books we like from Minnesota, or Minnesota authors.

We are mapping our literary journey around Minnesota, so you can see all the interesting places where our books are set. Follow our progress on our Google Map, accessible by clicking that link or searching for the title CMLE Reads Across Minnesota!

This is a guest post from CMLE member Violet Fox. Want to write a book review for us? Let us know

As a relative newcomer to Minnesota I’ve been making a concerted effort to learn more about this state, especially the unique cultures that have shaped the state’s history. Onigamiising: Seasons of an Ojibwe Year, is an enjoyable read focusing on the experiences of author Linda LeGarde Grover, member of the Bois Forte Band of Ojibwe and professor of American Indian studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth. In this book of essays Grover shares stories from her life, finding beauty in everyday life and illustrating her strong spirituality and love for the people in her community.

Onigamiising (pronounced, approximately, AH-nih-gum-AY-sing) is the Ojibwe word for Duluth, meaning “the place of the small portage.” In Grover’s reflections there is a sense of loss of the traditional ways of living that the Ojibwe practiced for hundreds of years in the area before colonization. Grover’s background as an educator gives even further weight to the grief that she shares when discussing the disastrous effects of the boarding schools, where American Indian children were sent by the federal government to attend subpar schools and intentionally be separated from their families and their cultural heritage. But this heartbreak is deftly balanced by an expansive gratitude for the natural world and especially the long-held spiritual and cultural values that are shared by the Ojibwe people.

From the publisher’s description: “In fifty short essays, Grover reflects on the spiritual beliefs and everyday practices that carry the Ojibwe through the year and connect them to this northern land of rugged splendor. As the four seasons unfold—from Ziigwan (Spring) through Niibin and Dagwaagin to the silent, snowy promise of Biboon—the award-winning author writes eloquently of the landscape and the weather, work and play, ceremony and tradition and family ways, from the homey moments shared over meals to the celebrations that mark life’s great events. Now a grandmother, a Nokomis, beginning the fourth season of her life, Grover draws on a wealth of stories and knowledge accumulated over the years to evoke the Ojibwe experience of Onigamiising, past and present, for all time.”

Many of these essays have been previously published in various places. I found the book best enjoyed by reading just one or two essays at a time, with time to reflect on the lessons in each story. Check out one of Grover’s essays online, “Passing on the Ojibwe language,” and then pick up Onigamiising: Seasons of an Ojibwe Year to savor the wisdom and lyricism of her stories.

MALF Invites Applications For Two Major ‘Friends’ Awards

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“The Minnesota Association of Library Friends invites your applications for the 2017 cycles of our two most popular Friends of the Library awards.

First up is our flagship prize, the Evy Nordley Award for Best Project.

Minnesota libraries treasure Friends of the Library groups not only for the financial support they provide, but for the original ideas and innovative projects they generate on behalf of the library and its goals. MALF recognizes this fact each year with the Evy Nordley program.

Continue reading MALF Invites Applications For Two Major ‘Friends’ Awards

RART Retreat April 1: Embracing Romance

The RART Retreat is back! Register by March 28 and join us on April 1, 10:00-3:00, to discuss readers’ advisory for romance fiction and related genres and enjoy a talk by best-selling paranormal romance author MaryJanice Davidson. Cost is $25 for MLA members and $30 for non-members and includes breakfast and lunch.


Inver Glen Branch, Dakota County Library
8098 Blaine Ave.
Inver Grove Heights, MN 55076
(651) 554-6840

Schedule at a glance:

10:00 – 10:30  Registration
10:30 – 11:00  Ice Breaker and Introductions
11:00 – 12:00  MaryJanice Davidson
12:00 – 12:30  Lunch
12:30 – 1:30    Romance Panel Discussion
1:30 – 1:45     Break
1:45 – 2:45     Diversity and the Romance Genre
2:45 – 3:00     Wrap up

(Note from Mary: I really like MaryJanice Davidson’s books! If you like fun, fluffy, with a swig of vampires/mermaids/werewolves, that take place in Minnesota – these are the books for you!)

Help Mrs. Porter’s 2nd Grade Class!

While not a library survey, this second grade class found lots of willing participants in their online survey.

“Please help our class as we study surveys and graphs. We would love to see how many responses we can get and all of the different places our responses come from. Each student in our class has created one of the questions in this survey.”

Their survey is now closed, but we’re sure they received lots of good data to work with!

Do you work with a group, second graders or not, who need some lovely library responses?? Send it in, and we will post your survey here!

The St Paul Snowblower Ballet!

This is my first Minnesota winter, and it’s very exciting to see how much everyone embraces the cold! And I was completely charmed to see this existing as a real thing – not some fevered too-much-cold-weather dream: a snowblower ballet.

Their slogan: The Drudgery of snow removal becomes performance art. Because it’s Minnesota.

The beauty of falling snow has inspired artists ranging from poet Robert Frost to painter Pieter Bruegel.

But what about the aesthetic value in getting rid of the stuff?
Continue reading The St Paul Snowblower Ballet!