Monday, October 28, 2013

Help us test recipes from your favorite Cambridge restauraunts

Calling all home cooks! Our esteemed Cambridge Cooks editor, Judith Elstein, is seeking your assistance in the kitchen.

The Friends of the Cambridge Public Library have embarked on a new project: we are creating a cookbook to be published in 2014. And not just any cookbook. Ours will contain recipes from some of the best, most interesting, and most creative restaurants in Cambridge.

So far we have received more than 60 recipes from restaurants such as Rialto, Craigie on Main, Elephant Walk, Bondir, Toscano, East by Northeast, Oleana, Asmara, and RendezVous. We have recipes for appetizers, soups, salads, vegetables, pasta, entrees, desserts, and even a few drinks.  

Now, we have to test the recipes – and that’s where you come in. The Friends need home cooks to try out and report on the recipes so we can be certain that directions are clear and quantities are accurate.

If you would like to be a Cambridge Cooks recipe-tester, please write to us at, and we will get in touch with you.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Thanks, Friends!

Thanks to all our Friends who joined us last week for the Friends of the Cambridge Public Library Annual Meeting. 

Not only did we get a preview of plans for the 2014 Secret Gardens of Cambridge tour, but also enjoyed a special behind-the-scenes look at how our fabulous Cambridge librarians keep the books in circulation fresh and in-demand.

In case you were wondering…sometimes a particularly unappealing cover can get a book bumped off the order list! But when library patrons ask for a book, ugly cover or not, it’s almost always available within days.

Stay tuned for more about Friends’ events in the coming year to help promote the library and raise important dollars to support library programs we all enjoy. There are always great things happening at the library! For more information on how you can get involved with the Friends to help support our Cambridge libraries, click here.

Monday, October 21, 2013

This Week! Wikipedia Loves Libraries and Massachusetts History

If you're interested in Massachusetts history, make your mark and help share important history about all things Cambridge.

Join history, library, and Wikipedia buffs for an edit-a-thon and behind the scenes tour in the Cambridge Room at the Cambridge Public Library on Wednesday, October 23, 5pm - 9pm.

This Wikipedia editing event will focus on Cambridge history and is part of Open Access to Mass History 2013, a planned series of edit-a-thons during Open Access Week themed around Massachusetts history. The Cambridge Room is located on the second floor of the main library.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

In memory of our Friend, Frances Tenenbaum

The Friends of the Cambridge Public Library and the Cambridge community recently lost a dear friend. Frances Tenenbaum, an award-winning garden writer and one of the original founders of the Friends’ Secret Gardens of Cambridge tour, died in late September at the age of 94.

Frances first became involved with the Friends of the Cambridge Public Library when she was recruited at a used book sale to join the Friends Board. 

Former Friends Board President Susan Twarog recalled, “It was one of the best things to happen to the Friends! Almost as soon as she joined the Board, she raised the idea of a garden tour fundraiser.”

It was January 2000, and with Susan as her co-chair, Frances was persistent and committed to making the garden tour happen that spring. It was an amazing success and the Secret Gardens of Cambridge tour has since become the Friends’ signature fundraising event to benefit the Cambridge Public Library. As a respected garden writer and long-time Houghton Mifflin editor, Frances lent not only her expertise and credibility to support of the library community, but also her enthusiasm and wit!

“I loved working with Frances,” Susan remembered. “Those five or six years were great fun. Frances was at least 35 years older than me, but I never felt that -- she was so vibrant, intelligent and funny.”

Frances and Susan co-authored The Secret Gardens of Cambridge book, which offers a bit of history about the beginning of the biennial event and features striking photos of some of the secret gardens that have been revealed as part of the tour.

Frances was an active community member in both Cambridge and Aquinnah on Martha’s Vineyard, where she was also a seasonal resident. Read more about Frances’s amazing life here in the Vineyard Gazette.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Solano Poetry Series Gets Started in Style

Earlier this month, the Cambridge Room at the Cambridge Public Library hosted a reception to honor Louisa Solano and kick off the Solano Poetry Series. Read more about the series in our previous post. Here are a few photos from the occasion, courtesy of Alyssa Pacy, the Library's Archivist:

Exhibition of Louisa Solano's collections donated to the Cambridge Room.

Louisa Solano, former Grolier Book Shop owner (center), talking with a guest at the reception.

Poets Tino Villanueva, Harris Gardner and Mark Pawlak at the poetry series opening reception.

Former Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky and Library Director Susan Flannery discuss the exhibition.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

It's that time of year again!

Find out what the Friends of the Cambridge Public Library have been up to and more about some of the exciting activities we have planned for the coming year at our annual meeting on Tuesday, October 15 at 7pm.

Here's a sneak peek:
*News about the Friends Board and organization
*Next spring's Secret Gardens of Cambridge Tour
*A brand new cookbook project
*Fun tidbits from behind the scenes at the library

We'll meet in the Community Room and refreshments will be served. Please join us and bring a friend (or Friend)!