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These events all took place in our Essex store.

Who Left This Footprint?(Essex)

Have you ever wondered who that fresh track in the snow belonged to? Have you ever been curious about what our woodland friends are up to during these cold months? They are leaving us clues in the fields & the forests, wild discoveries to be made! Come learn more about signs & tracks, what to look for, and how to identify what you are looking at.  Please dress in layers and boots as we will be exploring the fields in the surrounding area after our inside informational talk!!!What: Critter Tracking!Where: Phoenix Books & CafeWho: Curious folks, aged 6 & upWhy: Because it's fun!

Vermont's Irish Rebel with William L. McKone (Essex)

Please join us in welcoming William L. McKone, who will read from his new book, Vermont's Irish Rebel: Capt. John Lonergan.Experience the fascinating life of John Lonergan:  The Potato Famine led to the uprising of 1848 near his home town of Carrick on Suir, County Tipperary, and his immigration as a boy to Vermont. Lonergan's dedication to the liberation of Ireland from British rule brought him into the Fenian Brotherhood, where he joined with other militant nationalists. Lonergan formed Vermont's only ethnic military unit, the Emmet Guards, which served as Company A, 13th Vermont, in the Civil War. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for gallantry in the Battle of Gettysburg, leading the charge of the Vermont regiments against Pickett's forces on July 3, 1863. After the war, Lonergan joined in the Fenian invasions of Canada in 1866 and 1870. He died in 1902, before Ireland became "a nation once again," and is buried in Burlington, Vermont.Originally from south Texas, Bill McKone lives in northern Vermont at the foot of Mount Mansfield.  The combination of his own Irish heritage, a deep interest in the Civil War, an MA in military history, five years residence in Canada, and a taste for Jameson whiskey convinced him that Lonergan's tale should be told.

Everything Buddhism with Arnie Kozak, Ph.D. (Essex)

Arnie Kozak, Ph.D., will discuss his new book, The Everything Buddhism Book:  A Complete Introduction to the History, Traditions, and Beliefs of Buddhism, Past and Present."My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness." --Dalai Lama That's easy for the Dalai Lama to say--but for the rest of us, understanding this mysterious, multilayered faith can be very difficult. With this updated and revised edition of the classic Buddhist primer, you can delve into the profound principles of nonviolence, mindfulness, and self-awareness. From Tibetan Buddhism to Zen, you'll explore the traditions of all branches of Buddhism, including:

  • The life of Buddha and his continuing influence throughout the world
  • A revealing survey of the definitive Buddhist texts
  • What the Sutras say about education, marriage, sex, and death
  • Faith-fueled social protest movements in Tibet, Burma, and elsewhere
  • Buddhist art, poetry, architecture, calligraphy, and landscaping
  • The proven physiological effects of meditation and other Buddhist practices
  • The growing impact of Buddhism on modern American culture

In this guide, you'll discover the deceptively simple truths of this enigmatic religion. Most important, you learn how to apply the tenets of Buddhism to your daily life--and achieve clarity and inner peace in the process.Arnold Kozak, PhD took the Bodhisattva vows from His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 1985 and is on the teaching faculty of the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies and the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health in Lenox, MA. Dr. Kozak is a licensed psychologist, and mindfulness is integral to his clinical practice. He founded the Exquisite Mind in 2002, which includes a psychotherapy practice and studio space for teaching meditation. In addition to conducting mindfulness-based psychotherapy for individual patients, he conducts stress reduction workshops, consults with corporations, and teaches continuing education workshops for mental health professionals and physicians. He has practiced Vipassana meditation on a daily basis for twenty-one years, and is the author of Wild Chickens and Petty Tyrants: 108 Metaphors for Mindfulness.

Newt Night (Essex)

Phoenix Books and Café at the Essex Shoppes & Cinema invites budding scientists, concerned citizens, and naturalists-at-heart to join us for Newt Night!  This event is a perfect opportunity for participants to get hands-on experience, become educated about Vermont's amphibian population, and learn how to assist in their protection/preservation. There will be live specimens, a slide show, demonstrations, and "loads of fun & knowledge to be enjoyed by all attendants," says Rachel Mower, Phoenix's Cafe Manager and the coordinator of this event.Newt Night will be hosted by the North Branch Nature Center of Montpelier, as part of Citizen Science, a partnership between scientists and the broader community. Citizen Science allows the every-day person to participate in fun and exciting research projects, and to experience the natural world in a new way. It allows the scientist to enlist a small, or in some cases, a large army of volunteers to help collect data that wouldn't be possible without the help of the community.Space is limited; to reserve a spot or for more information, please contact Rachel Mower at 802-872-7111 or This demonstration involves delicate critters, so is best for ages 5 and up.

Art Reception with Karen Dawson and Jane Sandberg (Essex)

Jane Sandberg was raised within the lakes and mountains of the Adirondacks. Jane has a degree in Elementary Education from SUNY Oswego, and in Landscape Development and Ornamental Horticulture from VTC. When Jane moved to Vermont, she lived in Barre amidst the granite quarries and sculptures. As she raised her 3 children, she progressed from learning stained glass to pastels to watercolors. At VTC, freehand drawing and drafting were introduced; figure drawing, with Bill Braer, began in Montpelier. Jane continued her watercolor studies in classes with Kathy Berry- Bergeron. In 2004 she won First Prize in Watercolor during the NVAA June Juried Show, at the Bryant Gallery, in Jeffersonville. She has taught Beginner and Intermediate Adult watercolor classes and workshops. Jane is a member of the Essex Art League and enjoys painting with friends.Karen Dawson has been operating a visual art studio in Burlington's Lakeside Neighborhood for the last 18 years. She has 30 to 50 paintings in the works at any given time. Her professional experience ranges from farming to real estate to teaching, but art is always at the root of her adventures. She has been an apprentice at a stained glass business for nine years, and stained glass panels, murals, and mosaics are part of the mix in her own studio. Since 1998, she has facilitated four classes a week at a local correctional center. She has been inspired by Emily Carr, Wayne Thibaud, Friedensreich Hundertwasser, and Frank Gehry, among others.


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