Atlanta History Center and Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System Present The Big Read

Atlanta Metro-wide Campaign Encourages Reading of Luis Alberto Urrea’s Into the Beautiful North and Attendance of FREE Accompanying Programs

The Atlanta History Center - in partnership with the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System - presents the Atlanta Metro campaign, The Big Read. A program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest, The Big Read is designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment. The Big Read is the largest reading program in American history and a multi-faceted initiative uniting communities across the nation through great literature. This is the Atlanta History Center’s fourth time participating in The Big Read.

The Atlanta History Center selected Luis Alberto Urrea’s Into the Beautiful North for the 2014 Big Read and encourages the public to get involved by reading the book, attending free programs, and promoting the initiative in their community.

The Big Read launches on September 3, 2014, with a variety of free programs, including a ‘Taste of Mexico’ kick-off party, a keynote lecture with Luis Alberto Urrea, a StoryCorps event, dedicated discussions and lectures at various Atlanta-Fulton Public Library locations, and a film festival.

Into the Beautiful North is written by award-winning and best-selling Mexican American author, Luis Alberto Urrea.  Urrea has written numerous works of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. In his third novel, Into the Beautiful North, Urrea transcends the "us against them" discourse of immigration and writes with compassion, complexity, and humor about the people and places caught up in the border wars. The U.S.–Mexico border is not just a line on a map; it is a dream-like destination and departure point, surrounded by desperation and expectations. Urrea invites us to think of the border as more than a stark divide between nations: he reminds us that it is a place of convergence where meaningful conversations, and even love, between cultures begins.

In conjunction, younger readers are encouraged to participate in The Little Read for pleasure and enlightenment. Tots can read along to I Love Saturdays y domingos by Alma Flor Ada. While middle school ages will surely be swept up by Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan.

Whether an avid reader or simply making up for lost time, everyone in Atlanta can take part in The Big Read. Read alone, read to another, join a book club or discussion group, and discover what happens when all of Atlanta reads the same book.

Register today at BigRead@AtlantaHistoryCenter.com to participate and receive information, updates, and program details.  For more information, call 404.814.4000 or visit AtlantaHistoryCenter.com/BigRead.

                                                                                                   

Public Program Highlights:

All programs are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.  Reservations are required.  For more information or to make a reservation, call 404.814.4150 or visit AtlantaHistoryCenter.com/BigRead.

 

Kick-Off Party – A Taste of Mexico

Location: Atlanta History Center

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

6:00 – 8:00 PM

Join the Atlanta History Center to kick-off the 2014 Big Read with a festive celebration featuring an evening of culinary delights and the exciting sounds of Mexico. Program staff will be on-site to register participants for the Big Read and to distribute Reader’s Guides and bookmarks.

 

Coming to America: Stories from Atlanta’s Immigrant Communities

Location: Atlanta History Center

Monday, September 15, 2014

7:00 PM

Celebrate National Welcoming Week with StoryCorps Atlanta and The Big Read by listening to the stories of those who have emigrated from their home countries to the United States. Their stories span the past half century and around the world -- from as far away as Poland, Vietnam, and Ethiopia; to right across the border in Mexico.  

 

The Big Read’s “Little Read” Storytime

Location: Ocee Library (5090 Abbots Bridge Road, Johns Creek, GA 30005)

Monday, September 15, 2014

10:30 AM

Join the Atlanta History Center and Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System at Ocee Library for a “Little Read.” This free storytime activity is designed for children ages 3-5.

 

The Big Read 2014 Author Talk: Luis Alberto Urrea

Location: Roswell Library (115 Norcross Street, Roswell, GA 30075)

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

2:00 PM

 

The Roswell Library hosts Luis Alberto Urrea, author of the book, Into the Beautiful North. Meet the author and hear him discuss his book.

 

Keynote Lecture with Luis Alberto Urrea

Location: Atlanta History Center

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

7:00 PM

 

Join the Atlanta History Center for an unforgettable evening with Into the Beautiful North author, Luis Alberto Urrea and celebrate The Big Read. This lecture is followed by a book signing.

Into the Beautiful North is a quest novel in the grand tradition, though there are no medieval knights, magic rings, or light sabers within its pages. Author Luis Alberto Urrea sets the novel in the present day, in the highly charged world of the U.S.–Mexico border region.

Nayeli, an energetic and idealistic girl of nineteen, is coming of age in a Mexican village, more than 1,000 miles from the border. She and her friends spend their days working at low-wage jobs and surfing the Internet for videos of their favorite bands and movie stars, dreaming of a wider world they have little hope of knowing.

They live in Tres Camarones (Three Shrimps), a village where folks like things to stay the same. But change is coming fast. Nayeli’s Aunt Irma has just been elected the first female Municipal President of the village. Nearly all of the men of the village, including Nayeli’s father, have gone north to the U.S. to find work, and drug-dealing thugs have recently begun to target the village, anxious to profit from drug-buying American surfers who frequent the nearby beaches.

One night, Nayeli and her friends attend a screening of John Sturges’s classic film, The Magnificent Seven. In the film, a Mexican farming village is terrorized by a bandit until the village elders decide to fight back, electing three farmers to travel to the U.S. to find seven brave gunfighters to help defend the village. Inspired, Nayeli vows to go on a mission to the U.S. to bring back seven men—including her father—to defend Tres Camarones against the drug-dealing bandidos. She persuades her loyal band of friends to accompany her on the dangerous journey, and the quest begins.

Luis Alberto Urrea’s books including Into the Beautiful North will be available for purchase from A Capella Books.

 

The Big Read Book Chat

Location: Hapeville Library (525 King Arnold Street, Hapeville, GA 30354)

Thursday, September 18, 2014

2:00 PM

Join the Atlanta History Center and the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System at Hapeville Library for a The Big Read book chat on Luis Alberto Urrea’s Into the Beautiful North.

 

The Big Read Book Chat

Location Bowen/Bankhead Library (2685 Donald Lee Hollowell Pkwy NW, Atlanta, GA 30318)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Noon

Join the Atlanta History Center and the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System at Bowen/Bankhead Library for a The Big Read book chat on Luis Alberto Urrea’s Into the Beautiful North.

 

The Big Read Book Chat

Location: Northeast/Spruill Oaks Library (9560 Spruill Road, Johns Creek, GA 30022)

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

4:30 PM

Join the Atlanta History Center and the Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System at Northeast/Spruill Oaks Library for a The Big Read book chat on Luis Alberto Urrea’s Into the Beautiful North.

 

The Big Read Film Festival

Location: Atlanta History Center

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Noon – 5:00 PM

Spend an afternoon celebrating the parallels between page and screen as the Atlanta History Center showcases movies that relate to the topics and themes in Luis Alberto Urrea’s Into the Beautiful North.

 

Noon                The Magnificent Seven

Into the Beautiful North pays homage to this 1960 John Sturge’s classic Western film in which an oppressed Mexican peasant village assembles seven gunfighters to help defend their homes. This film stars Yul Brynner, Eli Wallach, Steve McQueen, and Charles Bronson.

3:00 PM            Under the Same Moon (La Misma Luna)

This film tells the parallel stories of nine-year-old Carlitos and his mother, Rosario. In the hopes of providing a better life for her son, Rosario works illegally in the U.S. while her mother cares for Carlitos back in Mexico. Unexpected circumstances drive both Rosario and Carlitos to embark on their own journeys in a desperate attempt to reunite. Along the way, mother and son face challenges and obstacles but never lose hope that they will one day be together again. This film stars Eugenio Derbez, Kate del Castillo, and Adrian Alonso.

 

ABOUT THE BIG READ:

The Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest designed to revitalize the role of literature in American culture and to encourage citizens to read for pleasure and enlightenment. It is the largest reading program in American history and a multi-faceted initiative uniting communities across the nation through great literature.

The Big Read answers a big need.  Reading at Risk: A Survey of Literary Reading in America, a 2004 report by the National Endowment for the Arts, found that not only is literary reading in America declining rapidly among all groups, but that the rate of decline has accelerated, especially among the young.  The concerned citizen in search of good news about American literary culture would study the pages of this report in vain.

The Big Read aims to address this crisis squarely and effectively.  It provides citizens with the opportunity to read and discuss a single book within their communities.  The initiative includes innovative reading programs in selected cities and towns, comprehensive resources for discussing classic literature, an ambitious national publicity campaign, and an extensive website providing comprehensive information on authors and their works.

Each community event lasts approximately one month and includes a kick-off event to launch the program locally, ideally attended by the mayor and other local luminaries; major events devoted specifically to the book (panel discussions, author readings); events using the book as a point of departure (film screenings, theatrical readings); and book discussions in diverse locations and aimed at a wide range of audiences.     

 

ABOUT THE ATLANTA HISTORY CENTER: 

Founded in 1926, the Atlanta History Center is an all-inclusive, thirty-three-acre destination featuring the Atlanta History Museum, one of the nation’s largest history museums; two historic houses, the 1928 Swan House and the 1860 Smith Family Farm; the Centennial Olympic Games Museum; the Kenan Research Center; the Grand Overlook event space; Chick-Fil-A at the Coca-Cola Café, a museum shop, and 22 acres of Historic Gardens with paths and the kid-friendly Connor Brown Discovery Trail. 

In addition, the History Center operates the Margaret Mitchell House located in Midtown Atlanta. For information on Atlanta History Center offerings, hours of operation and admission call 404.814.4000 or visit AtlantaHistoryCenter.com.

 

ABOUT THE ATLANTA –FULTON PUBLIC LIBRARY

The Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System serves as a cultural and intellectual center that enriches the community and empowers all residents with essential tools for lifelong learning.

The Atlanta-Fulton Public Library System serves the citizens of Fulton County and the City of Atlanta (including the portion of the city in DeKalb County). It is the largest in the state, with 34 libraries and a collection of more than 2.5 million items. It offers innovative programs, services and virtual resources tailored to meet the needs of each branch's community. Children, teens and adults may choose from a variety of classes, visit exhibitions, listen to authors discuss their work, check out videos, DVDs and CDs, attend book club discussions, get homework help, hear music and see live performances. Last year patrons borrowed more than 4.2 million items, made 4 million visits to the libraries and its website had over 4 million hits. 

Tags:

About Us

The Atlanta History Center is an all-inclusive destination featuring the Atlanta History Museum; two historic houses, 1928 Swan House and 1860 Smith Family Farm; the Centennial Olympic Games Museum; Kenan Research Center; Grand Overlook event space; Chick-Fil-A at the Coca-Cola Café, a museum shop, and the Goizueta Gardens, featuring 22 acres of gardens, walkways, paths and trails. In addition, the History Center operates the Margaret Mitchell House located in Midtown Atlanta.

Subscribe