Largo, Md. – The Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS) invites the community to celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, learn about children’s mental health awareness, and explore the history of the civil rights movement this May. The rich and varied contributions of Asian and Pacific cultures on American culture will be recognized in special programs featuring poet Kirun Kapur (“Women in the Waiting Room”), author Eric Nguyen (“Things We Lost to the Water”), and chef and interior designer Lyna Vuong. Civil rights programs feature Steve Fiffer, co-author of the late civil rights icon C.T. Vivian’s memoir “It’s in the Action,” and Steve Suitts who will discuss the impact of the Brown v. Board ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Tuesday, May 11 at 7 pm | Adults
Poet Kirun Kapur discusses her new collection of poetry, “Women in the Waiting Room,” that explores the twin forces of silence and speech. It sketches a room full of women returning from the far edges of experience to find a voice.
Monday, May 24 at 7 pm | Adults
Join Eric Nguyen for a reading and discussion on his debut novel ‘Things We Lost to the Water.’ An Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Millions, We Are Bookish, and Nerd Daily Most Anticipated Book of the Year.
Monday, May 10 at 7 pm | Adults
This documentary film discussion is about the “Soul of a Banquet – The Modern Matriarch of Chinese Cooking” directed by Wayne Wang (“The Joy Luck Club”). The documentary profiles Cecilia Chiang, the woman who introduced America to authentic Chinese food. The film features interviews with Alice Waters, Ruth Reichl, and Cecilia Chiang herself. This month’s guest is Cecilia Chien, who has taught courses on pre-modern and modern China, East Asia in film, and the Asian American experience.
Wednesday, May 26 at 3 pm | Adults
Discover the professional journey of Lyna Vuong during a career chat with a chef and interior designer with a passion for design, food justice, and advocacy.
Additional Asian Pacific American Heritage Events
- Community Conversation: How to Stop Anti-Asian Bias
Thursday, April 29 at 4 pm | Adults
- Asian Pacific American Heritage Month Children’s Reader’s Advisory
Wednesday, May 5 at 7 pm | Ages 5-12
- Cooking Demo: East Asian Noodles
Thursday, May 13 at 7 pm | Teens & Adults
- How Much of These Hills is Gold by C Pam Zhang Book Discussion
Tuesday, May 18 at 7 pm| Adults
- Instagram Live: #StopAsianHate
Wednesday, May 19 at 4 pm | Adults
Discover the many contributions of generations of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders who have enriched and contributed to American history, society, and culture by visiting the Library’s Asian Pacific American Heritage webpage year round. PGCMLS fervently condemns the recent violence and hatred directed at Asian Pacific Americans. The Library stands in solidarity with our Asian Pacific American relatives, neighbors, friends, and colleagues.
In reflecting on the struggle for civil rights, Steve Fiffer, co-author of the late C.T. Vivian’s “It’s In The Action,” on May 4 at 7 pm shares Vivian’s activism, his strength, and his commitment to equity. The heart-wrenching and inspiring stories from C.T. Vivian’s lifetime of nonviolent activism come just in time for a new generation of activists, similarly responding to systems of injustice, voter suppression, violence, and oppression.
This May commemorates the 67th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education. PGCMLS is hosting Steve Suitts on “Overturning Brown” on May 17 at 7 pm. In “Overturning Brown: The Segregationist Legacy of the Modern School Choice Movement,” Suitts examines the parallels between de facto segregationist practices and the modern school choice movement.
During Mental Health Awareness Month, PGCMLS will shine a spotlight on the ways that all community members can support their own wellness. Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week is May 2-8 and National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day is May 7. On Thursday, May 6 at 4 pm, the guest on Community Conversation will be Tiffany Thomas, the Program Coordinator for the Maryland Children’s Mental Health Matters Campaign. Additional programs include Up and Out with PGCMLS (May 12 at 4 pm), a conversation about LGBTQ+ mental health. On May 20 at 4 pm, Christine and Clay Gregory will discuss their work with Mettle Works Behavioral Health. Discover more May events related to health and wellness at pgcmls.info.
About the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System
The Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS) helps customers discover and define opportunities that shape their lives. The Library serves the 915,000+ residents of Prince George’s County, Maryland through 19 branch libraries, a 24/7 online library, and pop-up services throughout the community. PGCMLS is a responsive and trusted community-driven organization. Programs, services, and outreach activities serve booklovers, immigrants and refugees, job seekers, children, young professionals, seniors, and families alike.
PGCMLS’ robust online offerings include curated content collections for kids, teens, educators, Spanish speakers, and more. Virtual events and outreach provide access to the Library from the comfort of home or on the go. Special programs include the D.R.E.A.M. Lab, STEM Pals, and 3D printing, which offer teens and lifelong learners with opportunities to learn cutting-edge technology and STEM skills for job readiness or personal enrichment. The Library also provides drive-up WiFi access at all branches and mobile hotspot devices. The Library’s Laurel Branch Library received the 2018 AIA/ALA Library Building Award and was designated the best new public building in Maryland.
As a strong community partner, the Library regularly collaborates with local government agencies and non-profit organizations to provide access to essential community services and programs. Partners include the Prince George’s County Human Relations Commission, Employ Prince George’s, Prince George’s County Public Schools, and Prince George’s Community College. Learn more at pgcmls.info or by visiting the Largo-Kettering Branch at 9601 Capital Lane, Largo, MD 20721 Phase 2 Limited Six-Branch Reopening updates available here. New Phase 2 Library hours are Tuesday, Thursday and Friday (1-6 pm), Wednesday (1-8 pm) and Saturday (1-5 pm) with the exception of Baden. Baden Branch hours (Wednesday-Thursday 2-6 pm and Friday 11 am-2 pm) remain the same.