“Taunaha Whenua: Naming the Land”, a Matariki Kōrero from Honiana Love

Tēnā koutou katoa e te whānau! Nau mai, haere mai ki te whakarongo ki tēnei kōrero. This matariki, we are proud to present a kōrero from Honiana Love about the significance of place names around Pōneke.

Honiana Love, Kaiāwhina Tumu Whakarae, Ngā Taonga Sound. Photo credit: Stephen A’Court.

Matariki is a powerful time of reflection, and there’s no better time than now to learn more about the history of Aotearoa.

Ngā Taonga, The National Library and Wellington City Libraries are proud to present Honiana Love’s kōrero “Taunaha Whēnua: Naming the Land”, at the National Library, on 16 July at 1230pm.

Honiana is Tumu Whakarae / Chief Executive of Ngā Taonga, and she will be discussing how names like Owhiro, Pipitea and Kaitoa have much to tell us about the gardens, swamps and food-gathering areas which have stood where we stand today.

This event is a free presentation of Ngā Taonga, The National Library of New Zealand and Wellington City Libraries. All are welcome, and the event will be recorded and shared at a later date.

“Taunaha Whēnua: Naming the Land” is part of Wellington City Libraries’ #purapurawhetu Matariki festival. You can learn more here about our other events, for tamariki and their whānau, these school holidays.

Grab a book, pull up a seat and relax in the Outdoor Reading Room

Te Ngākau Civic Square will be transformed into a giant Outdoor Reading Room stocked with decommissioned library books that readers are free to take home.

Mayor of Wellington Andy Foster in the Civic Square with the Pop Up Library

The five-week-long celebration of books will be open from 10am to 3pm Wednesday to Saturday. The first scheduled day is Wednesday 12 February, the last day will be Saturday 14 March. All days are weather dependent.

The Civic Square’s artificial turf will be reconstructed into the Outdoor Reading Room using 24 bean bags, shelves of books, outdoor umbrellas, café style tables and chairs, stools and a large kids activity table. The furniture will be a mix or red, orange, yellow, green and blue, taking inspiration from the City Gallery’s Yayoi Kusama installation in 2009.

We have provided a stock of decommissioned library books which will be regularly replenished as readers find gems to take home.

Some book-related events will also be held at the Outdoor Reading Room. These include readings from local authors involved with the New Zealand Festival, and children’s reading sessions with Wellington City Libraries.

Free daily copies of The Dominion Post, back copies of Capital magazine, Salient student magazine, as well as crayons and colouring cards will also be available.

WellingtonNZ General Manager Anna Calver says the Outdoor Reading Room will help bring vibrancy back to Civic Square.

“We expect it to be popular with a wide range of people from parents taking their children and lunchtime workers, through to those missing the Central Library and visitors to Wellington.

“The Outdoor Reading Room is the perfect place to grab a book and relax in the heart of Wellington. It also provides the opportunity for booklovers to check out the nearby galleries, cafes and shops.”

Mayor of Wellington Andy Foster in the Civic Square with the Pop Up Library

Wellington Mayor Andy Foster says the Outdoor Reading Room is a very welcome event.

“Te Ngākau literally means the ‘heart’ and events like this keep the heartbeat of Civic Square alive.  The Outdoor Reading Room will bring people back to the area to enjoy a novel pop-up library.

“Civic Square is an important location for people to mix and mingle and I know people are pining for the Central Library. We’ve worked hard on the three other city libraries and expect some decisions on the Central Library in coming months.

“But right now, all we have to do is hope Wellington’s weather is kind and then it’s time to slap on the sunscreen and get down to Te Ngākau Civic Square.”

The Te Ngākau Civic Square Outdoor Reading Room is a joint initiative between WellingtonNZ, Wellington City Council and Wellington City Libraries.

The event will be staffed by WellingtonNZ.

Johnsonville Library is opening at Waitohi Hub!

This Saturday, come and join us at the official opening of Johnsonville Library at Waitohi, the new Johnsonville community hub. There will be a morning of celebrations including the ribbon cutting-ceremony and cultural performances. 

7am-8am Public opening ceremony

  • Master of ceremonies : Jennifer Parker (Wellington City Council)
  • Welcome – Kura Moeahu and Taku Parai (Iwi leaders)
  • Introduction – Laurinda Thomas, Libraries Manager (Wellington City Council)
  • Speech from Hon Tracey Martin – Minister of Internal Affairs
  • Speech from His Worship the Mayor of Wellington
  • Ribbon cutting ceremony
  • Unveiling of commemorative plaque
  • Performance by Wellington Chinese Language School children’s group
  • Wellington Interfaith Council presentation “We Are One”
  • Bharatanatyam performance by Natraj school of Indian dance
  • Lion dance by Wellington China Cultural Centre

The new café, Common Ground Waitohi. will open at 8am and we will have exclusive tours of the building starting at the same time. The new library will open for everyone to visit at 9am. We hope to see you there!

Festive storytimes are here!

Ho! Ho! Ho! Deck the halls with books of jolly…! These festive storytimes are a family favourite every year, and we are excited to announce the 2019 line up.

Suitable for families with children of all ages, come along in your favourite Christmas costume or pajamas, and listen to stories and songs about the Christmas Season. No need to book, just turn up!

Thursday 12th December

Karori Library, 6 – 7pm
Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library, 6.30 – 7.30pm

Friday 13th December

He Matapihi (Molesworth St) Library, 10 – 10.45am, Bilingual Storytime

Saturday 14th December

Arapaki (Manners St) Library, 10.30 – 11.15am

Monday 16th December

Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library, 6 – 7pm
Miramar Library, 6 – 6.45pm
Brooklyn Library, 6.30 – 7.15pm

Thursday 19th December

Island Bay Community Centre, 4.30 – 5.30pm, Christmas Crafts
Island Bay Library, 6 – 6.45pm
Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) Library, 6 – 6.45pm
Khandallah Library, 6 – 7pm
Wadestown Library, 6.30 – 7.15pm

Friday 20th December

Newtown Library, 6 – 6.45pm Multicultural Storytime

Saturday 21st December

Johnsonville Library at Waitohi Hub, 2 – 3pm

festive-storytimes

 

Khandallah Heritage Night this week

Come along to the Khandallah Library this Thursday evening (7th November) from 6pm where we will be celebrating the heritage of the greater Onslow area with the rededication  of a memorial scroll in honour of F.L (‘Fanny Louise’) Irvine-Smith.

Born in 1878, Irvine-Smith was a pioneering educationalist who lectured at the Wellington Teachers College and had a notable role in first introducing Māoritanga and NZ History to the primary school curriculum. She is best known for her work as a historian and her book The Streets of my CityFirst published in 1948, her book presented Wellington’s past through a tour of its streets and how they had been named. It was a radical departure from the dry, pedestrian works of local history which had been published to that time and it went on to be re-printed multiple times. However, we remember her for her extraordinary efforts over many years to establish the Khandallah Library. A strong believer in the importance of libraries to the social health of a community, she lobbied the council and walked the streets of the suburb to gather nearly 1300 signatures on a petition supporting the library’s establishment.

As well as unveiling the memorial scroll we are going to take the opportunity to launch a digitised collection of a historic local magazine, The Ngaio and Khandallah Review and its follow-up publication, The Social Review which were published in the early-mid 1930s. Drawn from the collection of the Onslow Historical Society, we worked collaboratively with the society to allow these  extremely rare copies to be made available to the general public for the first time on our digital heritage platform, Wellington City Recollect. They offer a fascinating insight into the local community 85 years ago and will become an invaluable source of local history and genealogical information. Once launched, the digitised magazines will be fully key-word searchable.

Come along to the Khandallah Library on Thursday evening from 6pm to share your memories of the library and the greater area. Light refreshments will be served. There is no need to R.S.V.P but space will be limited. 

Get creative at your library these October holidays!

Are you looking for something fun and creative to do with your tamariki during the school holidays? Your local libraries and community centres have you covered from 28 September — 13 October with a wide range of free activities and events to engage, delight and inspire children and their families. From beeswax wraps to creative writing workshops, robotics and technology playgrounds to board games, arts and crafts to cultivating a mysterious alien garden, Wellington City Libraries is open for creativity and exploration these holidays.

For a full schedule, click here or visit your local library to pick up a calendar. We’ve picked out some of our favourite events below to whet your appetite. What new thing will you create, try out, or learn at the library these holidays?

Building BLOOM is like cultivating an alien garden on another planet – what shapes will you create?

BLOOM
Is it a dinosaur, a spaceship, a chandelier, a cloud? Bloom consists of thousands of identical pink pieces that let children and big kids connect, construct and deconstruct 3D installations with no boundaries or rules. Your whānau is welcome to drop in at any time during these sessions, and BLOOM is appropriate for all ages. BLOOM is proudly supported by Capital E.

Monday 7 October, 11am – 4pm at Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library
Tuesday 8 October, 11am – 4pm at Newtown Library

These cute robots will have a crucial role to play as you guide them safely through the Minotaur’s labyrinth.

Minotaurs vs. Mini-Robots
Ancient myths + Robots = awesome time! Come along and decode one of the most fascinating myths of Greek Mythology, the myth of Theseus and the Minotaur. Code Ozobots and navigate them in a dark labyrinth. Can you escape the Minotaur? Let’s find out. Suitable for ages 6+ with their caregivers.

Monday 30 September, 11am – 12pm at Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library
Friday 11 October, 11am – 12pm at Khandallah Library
Saturday 12 October, 11am – 12pm at Karori Library

Have something to say, but not quite sure how to say it? Our creative writing workshops are for you!

Creative writing workshops
Our creative writing workshops come in two flavours these holidays: Spring Scribblers and Storm the Castle! In Spring Scribblers, you’ll immerse yourself in the joy of language as you discover how to bring out your unique voice in writing. Storm the Castle! will guide you through the Hero’s Journey as you go through all the main beats that make up nearly every great book and movie. Suitable for ages 11+ with their caregivers.

Tuesday 1 October, 2 – 3pm at Karori Library (Storm the Castle!)
Thursday 3 October, 12 – 1.30pm at Churton Park Community Centre (Spring Scribblers)
Friday 4 October, 2 – 3.30pm at Johnsonville Library (Spring Scribblers)
Tuesday 8 October, 2 – 3pm at Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library (Storm the Castle!)
Wednesday 9 October, 2 – 3.30pm at Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library (Spring Scribblers)

Author Talk: In Conversation with Liz Nugent and Kirsten McDougall

Join us for a special evening with two acclaimed storytellers who craft suspenseful tales centred on unforgettable protagonists.

Liz Nugent, who was named Irish Woman of the Year in Literature in 2017, chats to Wellington writer Kirsten McDougall about turning to psychological thrillers after a career in Irish radio and television, and the art of getting inside the heads of monstrous characters. Please note: this is a free event.

When: Thursday, 3 October
Where: Karori Library
What time: 6.30pm – 7.45pm

Liz Nugent has published three novels–Unravelling Oliver, Lying in Wait and Skin Deep–which have all been #1 bestsellers and have collectively won four Irish Book Awards. Lying in Wait was voted Readers’ Choice for the famed Richard and Judy Book Club.

In 2018, Kirsten’s second book Tess was a finalist for the Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Novel and longlisted for the Acorn Prize for Fiction at the Ockham New Zealand Book Awards.

Beyond the Page: a literary festival for tamariki and their whānau

Mark the date: from 6-21 July, public libraries from around the Wellington region are excited to be bringing Beyond the Page – New Zealand’s largest children’s literary festival – to the young people of Wellington and their families. 2019 marks the third year that this multi-disciplinary arts festival will delight, engage and inspire audiences and participants in public libraries and community venues from Ōtaki to Island Bay, and everywhere in between.

Beyond the Page is a collaboration between Wellington City Libraries, Hutt City Libraries, Upper Hutt City Libraries, Kāpiti Coast District Libraries, and Porirua City Libraries. This year’s festival will comprise over 140 events, from author talks, workshops, and live interactive theatre to Lego, puppets, stories, music, dance, robots and more. It aims to reflect the ‘other’ side of libraries – the side that fizzes, that is creative, energetic, entrepreneurial, tech-driven, and adventurous – and it’s all totally free!

You can find the full programme of Beyond the Page events on the festival website or follow us on Facebook, but check out some of the highlights below for a taster of what’s on around the city!

On the 10th of July, experience the wonder of Matariki storytelling as you never have before – while riding on the historic Wellington Cable Car! Take a return trip on the cable car (departure times are 10.00, 10.20, 10.40, or 11.00am) and enjoy beautiful stories and waiata from our wonderful Beyond the Page librarians. Be sure to book your free tickets by getting in touch with the Beyond the Page team. Suitable for children aged 3+ with their caregivers.

Bea Lee-Smith from the Royal New Zealand Ballet will be taking you on a magical journey into the world of Hansel and Gretel. Through music and mime, children will learn simple ballet steps and positions. This interactive telling of an old favourite tale will be a great appetizer for you and your family in advance of the RNZB’s exciting new production of Hansel and Gretel later in the year. Suitable for pre-schoolers and primary school aged children.

Next up we have the amazing New Zealand author Donovan Bixley, who has had over 100 books published around the world. His show will have you laughing with amazement as you dive into a world of letters, words, and fuzzy doodles. Suitable for children aged 5+ with their caregivers.

Next up is the fabulously spellbinding storyteller Tanya Batt. Tanya describes herself as a “green-fingered witch, a word warbler and a story stitcher.” You can join Tanya in one of her imagined worlds as part of this year’s festival, with amazing costumes, live music, and tantalising tales to boot. Suitable for children aged 4+ with their caregivers.

You definitely shouldn’t miss Toro Pikopiko, New Zealand’s most established puppetry theatre company, in their performances of the world’s first Māori rock-art musical for puppets! This incredible show featuring over 80 hand-crafted puppets is bound to inspire and amaze, and is suitable for children of all ages with their caregivers.

There’s something on for everyone during Beyond the Page this July. We can’t wait to see you there!

Take a look inside the Archives of Gender and Sexuality

As we approach the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, Wellington City Libraries is proud to present an evening talk on our queer resources.

Queer Stories: Discovering LGBTQI+ History at the Library

Newtown Library Friday 14 June 2019 5:30 to 7:45pm

One of the main focuses of the evening will be the Gale Archives of Gender & Sexuality. Parts I and II include a vast array of material produced by the queer community.  There are regular publications of newspapers and magazines, meeting minutes, oral histories, posters and pamphlets. Included are records from the Gay Activists Alliance, an organisation founded after 1969’s Stonewall riots, and ACT UP, a group founded in 1987 in response to the AIDS crisis. This gives researchers the ability to understand the times from first hand accounts.

As with all of our eLibrary resources, access is free with a library card! All you need to do is enter your card number and last name to access these fantastic resources.

And there are some real gems – for example, you can read for yourself documentation from the trials of Oscar Wilde and Alan Turing featured in the Wolfenden Report:

You’ll also find posters from the first Pride Parade – Christopher Street Gay Liberation Day in 1971:

New Zealand LGBTQI history is included too – you’ll find among other topics coverage of the Homosexual Law Reform, the “Moyle Affair”, and news clippings & posters relating to entertainers like the Topp Twins too.

Wellington City Libraries is also proud to be the first public library to feature the third part of the archive: Sex and Sexuality, Sixteenth to Twentieth CenturyThese historical records are invaluable in showing the historical context of queer culture. Details include the medical and legal construction of sexualities and the reflection of the cultural and social attitudes of the past for gender. 

Contents of the archive include:

  • Private Case from the British Library,
  • Special Subject Units from Sex Research: Early Literature from Statistics to Erotica, a part of Dr. Alfred C Kinsey’s original library.
  • A collection of rare and unique books from the New York Academy of Medicine, a rich combination of materials from the humanities to the hard sciences.

Even if you can’t join us at our Queer Stories event this Friday, you can enjoy looking through these resources online – all you need is your library card.

Queer Stories – Library Event

Discovering LGBTQI+ History at the Library

 

Join us at Newtown Library on Friday 14 June from 5:30 to 7:45pm for an event highlighting queer resources available through Wellington City Libraries. There are snacks to get you through to dinner time and a movie from the queer vaults free to view from around 6pm.

Delving through the WCL collection, we will be focussing on queer culture and history. Our book collection, both print and ebook, features local and far flung icons, authors of fiction and factual material that tell stories of a diverse community that has faced challenges, lived in hiding and spoken it’s truth.

 

The electronic resource, Gale Archives of Gender and Sexuality has a wealth of material to offer those interested in the social, political, health and legal aspects affecting gender and sexuality around the world.

Wellington City Libraries is currently the only public library in the world to provide access to Gale’s third collection: The Archives of Sexuality & Gender: Sex and Sexuality, Sixteenth to Twentieth Century which offers over 400 years of fascinating historical material, providing multiple perspectives on the study of sex, sexuality and gender. From early queer posters and playwriting to gender exploration, these historical documents detail a compelling and diverse world.  All this and more on Friday 14 June at Newtown Library.