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This just in: Readers of Antony John’s “Mascot” weigh in

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater For Children  Mascot Left Bank Books Antony John

Due to time constraints, I rushed to publish yesterday’s post about Antony John’s appearance at Left Bank Books without including reviews of his latest book, Mascot. I had hoped to have some remarks from young readers before posting, but the first reviews didn’t arrive until today. They are so wonderful that I felt it was important to include them in a second post.

Reviews always inform my choice of reading material, and I hope that 5th generation CWEnders Bobby, Frankie & Johnny Dunn’s well written and informative thoughts will attract many to search out Mascot at Left Bank Books.

From Bobby (age 12): “I liked Mascot because I’m a baseball fan, and there was some suspense about why the car crash happened. I thought it was an all-around very good book.

From Frankie (age 10): “I liked Mascot because it took place in St. Louis, where I live.”

From Johnny (age 8): “I liked Mascot because Noah is a good baseball player and he likes baseball just like me. I also like how the book encourages people who have a disability to accomplish things they think they can’t.

Thanks to Mary Dunn for sending the review to me, and to her boys for contributing to this post. I am sure the author will be grateful too.

Left Bank Books, 399 N. Euclid, (314) 367-6731.

A frigid Fat Tuesday in the CWE

A bitterly cold Fat Tuesday meant fewer people joined the 2nd Line Parade led by the Saint Boogie Brass Band and Jennings High School Marching Band as they traveled along Euclid from Washington to Maryland Plaza. There, the bands joined the McCluer South-Berkeley High School Band for a group performance. The Fat Tuesday event, the first of what we hope will become a tradition in the neighborhood, ended at 1764 Public House at Euclid and West Pine.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Events, Sightings Food and Drink For Children  Saint Boogie Brass Band Pi Pizza McCluer South - Berkeley High School Band Jennings High School Marching Band Evangeline's

The parade route started at Evangeline’s at Euclid and Washington where the Saint Boogie Brass Band performed before marching to Pi at the corner of Euclid and McPherson.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Events, Sightings Food and Drink For Children  Saint Boogie Brass Band Pi Pizza McCluer South - Berkeley High School Band Jennings High School Marching Band Evangeline's

There they were joined by the Jennings High School Marching Band.

 

Nicki's Central West End Guide Events, Sightings Food and Drink For Children  Saint Boogie Brass Band Pi Pizza McCluer South - Berkeley High School Band Jennings High School Marching Band Evangeline's

Nicki's Central West End Guide Events, Sightings Food and Drink For Children  Saint Boogie Brass Band Pi Pizza McCluer South - Berkeley High School Band Jennings High School Marching Band Evangeline's

Some of the hardy souls who joined in the 2nd Line Parade.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Events, Sightings Food and Drink For Children  Saint Boogie Brass Band Pi Pizza McCluer South - Berkeley High School Band Jennings High School Marching Band Evangeline's

At the corner of Maryland and Euclid the bands converged with the McCluer South-Berkeley Band, below. Nicki's Central West End Guide Events, Sightings Food and Drink For Children  Saint Boogie Brass Band Pi Pizza McCluer South - Berkeley High School Band Jennings High School Marching Band Evangeline's

Nicki's Central West End Guide Events, Sightings Food and Drink For Children  Saint Boogie Brass Band Pi Pizza McCluer South - Berkeley High School Band Jennings High School Marching Band Evangeline's

The high school band members were troopers to battle the cold as they entertained the crowd that had gathered for their group performance, above and below.

Finally, I wanted to share a favorite moment featuring one of Jennings High School’s Band Members during last holiday season’s Window Walk.

Thanks to Kate Haher, Executive Director of CWENorthCID, Erica Lembo, Marketing and Communications Director, and intern, Ellie Stuhlreyer for producing this fun event. And special thanks to all the band members who braved the elements to celebrate Fat Tuesday in the CWE.

Founders of CWE Farm publish “A Gift Garden”

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink For Children Health & Wellness Urban Gardens  Trinity Episcopal Church Second Presbyterian Church Nancy Culbert Gift Garden Fresh Food Foundation First Unitarian Church CWE Farm Central Reform Congregation Arthur Culbert

“It’s best to take the picture while we’re harvesting,” Arthur Culbert said, as he and his wife Nancy were hurriedly picking the last of the summer’s bounty grown at the CWE Farm to benefit neighborhood food pantries. With the first frost in the forecast, there was little time to pose for photos the morning I visited to learn more about the couple’s new book, A Gift Garden. The illustrated book, which the Culberts have been working on for the past 2 years, was inspired by their experience working with all the 4th graders who have participated in the “Citizens Making a Difference” curriculum at New City School.

The book launch is scheduled for this Monday, December 10, at The Mahler Ballroom (more information follows).

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink For Children Health & Wellness Urban Gardens  Trinity Episcopal Church Second Presbyterian Church Nancy Culbert Gift Garden Fresh Food Foundation First Unitarian Church CWE Farm Central Reform Congregation Arthur Culbert

Photos above: Arthur Culbert and 4th grade students at New City School.

Arthur started the CWE Farm 8 years ago on a vacant lot in the 5000 block of Waterman (just west of Kingshighway). Over the past 7 growing seasons the farm has produced approximately 16,000 pounds of organic fruits and vegetables for food pantries at Trinity Episcopal Church and Second Presbyterian Church. Tying the farm’s mission to eliminate hunger in the community to a program for neighborhood school children where they learn where food comes from, how to plant and grow it for those less fortunate to enjoy, was a brilliant idea and what inspired the Culberts to write A Gift Garden.

“We hope that the book will inspire others and initiate a movement working together towards eliminating hunger,” said Nancy, who co-authored the book aimed at a 4th grade reading level and up. They were able to work almost every vocabulary word that New City School 4th graders learn into the story. Arthur added that Nancy brought a magical touch to the writing.

The Culberts, who have been married for 11 years, have backgrounds in the public health arena. Arthur was dean of a public health program in Boston for 31 years before moving to St. Louis 13 years ago, and Nancy recently retired after 16 years as the Director of Student Services at the College for Public Health & Social Justice at SLU.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink For Children Health & Wellness Urban Gardens  Trinity Episcopal Church Second Presbyterian Church Nancy Culbert Gift Garden Fresh Food Foundation First Unitarian Church CWE Farm Central Reform Congregation Arthur Culbert

Central Reform Congregation and First Unitarian Church, which are neighbors of the CWE Farm, contribute vegetables from their own gardens to the CWE pantries as well. Together they have contributed an additional 1400 pounds of produce. Generous “alley” neighbors from Westminster Place have also joined the effort by contributing produce from their backyard gardens too.

Nicki's Central West End Guide Books, Dance, Music, Theater Food and Drink For Children Health & Wellness Urban Gardens  Trinity Episcopal Church Second Presbyterian Church Nancy Culbert Gift Garden Fresh Food Foundation First Unitarian Church CWE Farm Central Reform Congregation Arthur Culbert

December 10, the date of the book launch, coincides with the 70th anniversary of first proclamation of the Universal Declaration of  Human Rights which in Article 25 declares that everyone has a right to food.

In A Gift Garden, 10-year-old Bea, described as a super hero, declares: “Every person has a right to food,” as she and her friends develop a project to help feed the hungry. The book’s characters decide to become citizens making a difference and work toward planning, building and growing a community gift garden.

Tickets for A Gift Garden Book Launch at The Mahler Ballroom, 4915 Washington, $25 (for soft cover book) to $35 (for hardcover edition), include a copy of the book, a CWE Farm signature drink, light hors d’oeuvres, and music. At 7 p.m. there will be a reading by the authors followed by a Q & A led by KMOV reporter Alexis Zotos. Tickets are available on Eventbrite here. A Gift Garden will be available soon at Left Bank Books.

CWE Farm is a non-profit organization. Proceeds from Monday’s book launch benefit Gift Garden Fresh Food Foundation.