‘New Orleans Disasters’ author to speak about his stories of 7 major tragedies at library events | Entertainment/Life

Royd Anderson, Cuban-American filmmaker, teacher and historian specializing in Louisiana disasters, will discuss his new book, “New Orleans Disasters: Firsthand Accounts of Crescent City Tragedy” at two events in August.

The first discussion/signing will be at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, August 2 at the Jane O’Brien Chatelain West Bank Regional Library, 2751 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey.

The second will be at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, August 3 at the East Shore Regional Library, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave., Metairie.

“New Orleans Disasters” is a collection of stories exploring seven disasters through first-hand interviews, planting readers in the midst of chaos.

They include the 1976 Luling ferry disaster; the 1982 Pan Am Flight 759 plane crash; the 1999 Mother’s Day bus crash on I-610 that killed 22 people; the unsolved fires at the Rault Center in 1972; the UpStairs show in 1973; the Continental Grain elevator explosion in 1977; and Howard Johnson’s 1973 Sniper Terror.

Copies of the book will be available for purchase at both events.

POETRY MEMORY: Contributors to a new poetry anthology, “Hearths III,” will read excerpts from the collection at 1 p.m. on Saturday August 6 at the Old Metairie Library, 2350 Metairie Road.

“Hearths III, A Magazine of Poetry, Prose and Interviews” is dedicated to the memory of local poet Lee Grue, founder and director of the New Orleans Poetry Forum, dubbed the city’s unofficial poet laureate. She was editor of the literary journal The New Laurel Review. She died in 2021.

The 10 poets featured in the anthology are Martha McFerren, Dave Brinks, Gina Ferrara, Nancy Harris, Chris Champagne, Bill Lavender, James Nolan, Peter Cooley and Carl Mayeaux. Grue is represented with nine of her poems. Lenny Immanuel is the editor of Hearths III.

During this event, the poets will read one of Grue’s poems and one of their own.

METAIRIE LIBRARY UPDATE: Over the past year, the East Bank Regional Library has undergone several physical upgrades, including a new roof, a new maintenance building behind the library, and two new generators. Minor cosmetic improvements were made to the interior.

IT’S A MYSTERY: The Mystery Book Club will be discussing Kate Khavari’s “Botanist’s Guide to Parties and Poison” at 5.30pm on Monday August 8 at the Belle Terre Library, 5550 Belle Terre Road, Marrero.

The book centers on new research assistant Saffron Everleigh, who attends a big dinner party, expecting to strike up a conversation about a university department’s big expedition to the Amazon. What she did not expect was the death of Mrs. Henry, who falls to the ground, poisoned by an unknown toxin.

GENEALOGY: Margaret Scully presents “South Louisiana Repositories of Family History Records” at 1 p.m. Wednesday, August 3 at the East Bank Regional Library. Gaynell Brady presents “African American Genealogy” at 1 p.m. Wednesday, August 10, at the same location.

TALKING ABOUT WWII: Jake Yount, a doctoral candidate in history at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, will present “Bushido Abandoned: Allied Prisoners of War Under Imperial Japan,” at 7 p.m. Thursday, August 4, at the East Bank Regional Library. Yount is an archivist at the Louisiana State Archives.

CREATIVE WRITING: The next session will be from 2-4 p.m. on Saturday, August 13 at the River Ridge Library, 8825 Jefferson Highway. The chef is Nicholas Caluda, a library staff member who holds a master’s degree in English literature from the University of Alabama.

This adult workshop is for creative writers of all levels who want to hone their voice, style and character by producing, sharing and critiquing texts written by other writers. Authors should attend at least one session before submitting a short text (no more than five pages) to read and discuss during each session.

Writers are encouraged to continue working on their plays over several meetings. For more information, call (504) 736-6455.

SUMMER READING PROGRAM: Upcoming events that are part of the annual summer reading program include:

  • Professor Universe: Into the Deep: 11 a.m. to noon Wednesday, July 27, Terrytown Library, 680 Heritage Ave., Terrytown.
  • Professor Universe: Into the Deep: 2:30-3:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 27, Live Oak Library, 125 Acadia, Waggaman.
  • Professor Universe: Into the Deep: 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Thursday, July 28, East Bank Regional Library.
  • Professor Universe: In the depths: 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Thursday, July 28, Old Metairie Library.
  • Professor Universe: Into the Deep: from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Friday July 29, Belle Terre Library.
  • Professor Universe: Into the Deep: 2:30-3:30 p.m. Friday, July 29, River Ridge Library.

COMPUTER LESSONS : Receive free computer training at the East Shore Regional Library and the Jane O’Brien Chatelain West Shore Regional Library. Places are limited and online registration is mandatory.

Visit the Computer Courses page on www.jplibrary.net/training and click on “East Bank Regional Schedule” or “West Bank Regional Schedule”.

Upcoming Farmhouse courses include:

  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., Wednesday, July 27.
  • Individual computer skills: 2 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., Wednesday, July 27.
  • Microsoft Word 2: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., Thursday, July 28.

Upcoming Harvey courses include:

  • JPL Digital Content: 10 a.m. Friday, July 29.

Chris Smith is head of adult programming at the Jefferson Parish Public Library.

Lola R. McClure