The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities has named scholar, historian, and educator William Pederson the 2013 Humanist of the Year. This and other statewide awards in the humanities will be presented at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, April 6, at Houmas House Plantation and Gardens on River Road in Darrow.

Each year, the LEH honors Louisianians who have made outstanding contributions to the study and understanding of the humanities. Tickets to the awards luncheon are $50 per person. For tickets or additional information, contact Brian Boyles at the LEH, (504) 620-2632 or

The 2013 honorees are:

Humanist of the Year: William Pederson, Ph.D., of LSU in Shreveport

Lifetime Contribution to the Humanities: Alfred Lemmon, Ph.D., of the Historic New Orleans Collection

Chair’s Award for Institutional Support: The Shell Oil Company and Foundation

Public Humanities Programming: Elaine Black and the Georgia Public Library Service

Public Humanities Programming: Patrice Melnick

Individual Achievement in the Humanities: Greg Lambousy

2013 Humanities Book of the Year:The Accidental City by Lawrence N. Powell, Ph.D.

2013 Humanities Book of the Year: Ernie K-Doe: R&B Emperor of New Orleans by Ben Sandmel

Humanities Documentary Film of the Year:T-GALOP: A Louisiana Horse Story

Michael P. Smith Memorial Award for Documentary Photography: Keith Calhoun and Chandra McCormick

2013 Humanities Teacher of the Year: Vicki Bell of Queensborough Elementary

Summer reading

“Underground” is the theme of the State Library of Louisiana’s 2013 Summer Reading Program. Children, teen and adult programs each have a different slogan. The children’s slogan is “Dig into Reading”; the teen slogan is “Beneath the Surface” and the adult slogan is “Groundbreaking Reads.”

The Summer Reading Program offers a variety of activities to draw families into libraries such as art projects, creative writing, sports and gaming. These activities encourage students to continue to read throughout the summer and cultivate a love of reading in Louisiana’s next generation. Families are encouraged to check with their local public library to learn about specific incentives and programs available in their communities.

In 2012, 93,000 people participated in the Summer Reading Program and Louisiana libraries offered 8,250 free programs with more than 278,000 patrons in attendance. Studies show that youths who read during the summer return to school in the fall at or above their spring reading levels.

The Summer Reading Program is part of the Collaborative Summer Library Programs, a national cooperative to encourage reading throughout the summer. Those registered with the State Library’s Talking Books and Braille Library may also participate. Visit

Livingston Parish Library

Young Writers Club will meet at 5 p.m. Thursday, April 4, at Denham Springs-Walker branch, 8101 U.S. 190 in Denham Springs. The club is open to anyone between the ages of 10 and 17, and the goal of the club is to write for both publication and performance. Young writers are encouraged to explore their writing interests and develop their voice and style through collaborative activities. The program also offers free workshops in poetry, short stories and creative nonfiction. For more information, call (225) 665-8118.

Writers Circle will meet at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, April 4, at Denham Springs-Walker branch, 8101 U.S. 190 in Denham Springs. If you are a writer who is looking for some feedback, go see what the club has to offer. Published and unpublished adult writers of fiction or nonfiction for adults, young adults, or children are welcome. The group provides a forum for sharing writing, a venue for learning more about the writing craft and information about publishing/self-publishing. For more information, call (225) 665-8118.

Book club:

  • ?Albany-Springfield Book Club will meet 10 a.m.-11 a.m. Monday, April 1, at the Albany-Springfield branch, 26941 La. 43, Hammond. Members will discuss In the Sanctuary of Outcasts by Neil White.

EBR Parish Library

Book clubs:

  • ?The Evening Book Club will meet 6:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 2, at the Baker branch, 3501 Groom Road. Members will discuss Best of Me by Nicholas Sparks. Call (225) 778-5940.
  • ?DGB Book Club will meet 2 p.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday, April 6, at Delmont Gardens branch, 3351 Lorraine St. Members will discuss Hair Story: Untangling the Roots of Black Hair in America by Ayana D. Byrd and Lori L. Tharps. Call (225) 354-7055.

Iberville Parish Library

Book club:

Oak Tree Readers will meet at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 6, at the Plaquemine branch, 24605 J. Gerald Berret Blvd. in Plaquemine. Members will discuss Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson.

Lafayette Public Library

Teen Poetry Night will be held 6 p.m.-7 p.m. Wednesday, April 3, at North Regional branch, 5101 N. University Ave. in Carencro. All young poets who would like to speak their minds are invited to come and join the spoken word group Project SOUND for a night filled with reading, writing and expressing yourself through poetry. For ages 13-18.

Library links

East Baton Rouge Parish Library:

Livingston Parish Library:

Ascension Parish Library:

West Baton Rouge Parish Library:

Iberville Parish Library:

West Feliciana Parish Library:

Audubon Regional Library:

Lafayette Public Library:

St. James Parish Library:

St. John the Baptist Parish Library:

St. Charles Parish Library:

Jefferson Parish Library:

New Orleans Public Library:

St. Bernard Parish Library:

St. Tammany Parish Library:

St. Martin Parish Library:

Writers’ group

Barnes & Noble Westbank, 1601B West Bank Expressway in Harvey, is hosting a Writers’ Group 6 p.m.-8 p.m. on Tuesdays. This is a networking and critiquing forum for writers of all skill levels. Be prepared to read what you are working on, to take constructive criticism and to give it.

World War II discussion group

The World War II discussion group will meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 4 , at Jefferson Parish Library East Bank branch, 4747 W. Napoleon Ave. in Metairie. Keith Haxen, Stone Director of research at the WWII Museum in New Orleans, will speak. Call (504) 456-1420. Free.

Marcel to appear

Spoken word artist and philosopher Marc Marcel will speak at 8 p.m. Monday, April 1, at the Northgate Tavern, 36 W. Chimes St. Marcel has 17 released spoken word CDs, and volumes of unreleased work.


Wiley Cash, author of A Land More Kind Than Home, will sign copies of his book at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 4, at Octavia Books, 513 Octavia St. in New Orleans.

Nathaniel Rich, author of Odds Against Tomorrow, will sign copies of his book 6 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Thursday April 4, at Garden District Book Shop, 2727 Prytania St. in New Orleans.

Johnette Downing, author of How to Dress a Po’Boy, will sign copies of her book at noon Friday, April 5, at A Tisket A Tasket Books and Gift Baskets, 910 Decatur St. in New Orleans.

Jennifer Barnes Maggio, author of Overwhelmed: The Life of a Single Mom, will sign copies of her book at 7 p.m. Friday, April 5, at Healing Place Church, Single Moms, 19202 Highland Road.

Whitney Miller, author of Modern Hospitality!, will sign copies of her book at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 6, at Barnes & Noble Metairie, 3721 Veterans Blvd. in Metairie.

Helana Brigman, author of Fresh Table: Cooking in Louisiana All Year Round, will sign copies of her book 1:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday, April 6, at Garden District Book Shop, 2727 Prytania St. in New Orleans.

Items for Book Events were provided by Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, State Library of Louisiana, Livingston Parish Library, East Baton Rouge Parish Library, Iberville Parish Library, Lafayette Public Library, Barnes & Noble, World War II discussion group at Jefferson Parish Library and Darryl Strange.