Book event inspires cultural awareness in Schenectady County

In its first year Schenectady County Library's One County One Book (OCOB) event inspired a community of passionate readers, and that same enthusiasm seems to have carried over into this year's event.

OCOB coordinator Karen Bradley said one of the greatest aspect's of this year's book selection, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, is that it has made people think about a country most have never even stepped foot in -- Afghanistan.

The library is hosting a number of events in April to celebrate the book, which was selected following a countywide vote in the fall. The library will also continue the trend of community outreach that been a result of this book.

"One of the hopes with this book choice was that people would open their eyes to the Afghani culture. For one, because we have a huge local population, and two, because we have soldiers there now fighting a war," said Bradley.

On Saturday, April 4, at 11 a.m., the Rotterdam branch is hosting photojournalist Connie Frisbie, who will talk about her collection of poetry music and photographs that she collected during her time in Afghanistan. Her research was funded through a grant that allowed her to help give a voice to the more than 3,000 Afghans in the Capital District. The afternoon will feature stories and photos from the book titled "One Day a Friend, The Next a Brother."

On Saturday, April 12, the film adaptation of the "The Kite Runner" will be shown at the central library branch in Schenectady. Bradley said this is an important component of the OBOC program because the movie has sparked a lot of conversation about how it compares to the book.

That same day, a kite-making workshop will be held for young readers.

At the Saturday, April 19, Afghan cultural festival, which wraps up the OCOB program for the year, two local guardsmen will be speaking and answering questions.

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