Saturday, September 6, 2014

Our Prairie Heritage at the Library

This is the weekly column that is published in the Dakota County Star.  We thank them for their support of the South Sioux City Public Library.

Our Prairie Heritage at the Library
Our Prairie Heritage:  Diane Blankenship will speak on “Our Prairie Heritage” on Wednesday September 10th at 6:30 p.m. at the Library

"Our Prairie Heritage" - a program that is part of "Iowa" Prairie Heritage Week. Historic photos will be presented and also up-to-date images regarding prairies and native plants in Iowa and Nebraska.

Diane Blankenship is a prairie preservationist and natural historian who is associated with the Iowa Prairie Network and with her husband Bill, guided the development of the Garden of Discovery at the Lewis and Clark Interpretative Center in Sioux City, Iowa.

Ms. Blankenship has collected historic nature images of the Iowa prairie, as well as her contemporary photos.  Her presentation shed new life on our prairie heritage, as well as our current state of our prairie environment.

For more information on this event, you may contact Dave Mixdorf at the library, 402-494-7545,

Redbird Classic Tomato & Salsa Tasting Contest:  The library will hold the Redbird Classic Tomato & Salsa Tasting contest on September 11th at 6:00 p.m.  The tomato categories are:  red slicing, yellow/ gold slicing, other colors slicing, cherry, plum/ grape, and paste.  Salsa categories are mild and hot.  For more information, you can visit the library website for details.
Tangled Yarns meets on Tuesday September 2nd at 6:30 p.m.

Youth Programs:  Preschool Story Time Monday at 1:00 p.m., Night of FUN Tuesday 6:30 p.m., and Preschool Story Time 9:30 a.m. & 4:30 p.m.  

Going with the prairie theme, you may want to read, Light on the prairie:  Solomon D. Butcher, photographer of Nebraska's pioneer days by Nancy Plain, Once President Lincoln signed the Homestead Act of 1862, which granted 160 acres of free land to anyone with the grit to farm it for five years, the rush to the Great Plains was on. Solomon D. Butcher was there to document it, amassing more than three thousand photographs and compiling the most complete record of the sod house era ever made. Butcher (1856–1927) staked his claim on the plains in 1880. He didn’t like farming, but he found another way to thrive. He had learned the art of photography as a teenager, and he began taking pictures of his friends and neighbors. Butcher noticed how fast the vast land was “settling up,” so he formed the plan that would become his life’s work—to record the frontier days in words and images.  Alongside sixty-two of Butcher’s iconic photographs, Light on the Prairie conveys the irrepressible spirit of a man whose passion would give us a firsthand look at the men and women who settled the Great   Plains. Like his subjects, Butcher was a pioneer, even though he held a camera more often than a plow.-from the catalog record

Books on Tomatoes:  With a tomato and salsa tasting contest, and classes on making salsa this week, we offer these recommendations of books about tomatoes.

The heirloom tomato: from garden to table: recipes, portraits, and history of the world's most beautiful fruit by Amy Goldman, “looks at varieties of tomatoes - their botany, cultural background, and history, and includes recipes for main dishes, soups, sandwiches, and desserts that feature tomatoes.”- From the catalog record.

Heirlooms:  Notes from an Accidental Tomato Farmer by Tim Stark “is an eloquent book on contemporary farming life from the organic farmer whose fruits and vegetables inspire the top chefs of New York City.”- from the catalog record

Cooking for comfort: more than 100 wonderful recipes that are as satisfying to cook as they are to eat by Marian Fox Burros “presents one hundred easy, delicious recipes, from buttermilk mashed potatoes to toasted cheese sandwiches with cream of tomato soup, that offer hassle-free preparation and represent simple home cooking.”- From the catalog record

Have a good week and read good books.   

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