Adult Services Featured Programs
"Strengthening Pontiac Through Literacy Partnerships"
Genealogy Basics for Beginners
Saturday, 03/23, 3:30-5pm, Auditorium: In this session, Mr. John Mills, Trustee and Committee member of the Western Wayne Genealogical Society, will teach participants the basics of getting started in genealogy and family history. Attendees will learn techniques and tips to complete Pedigree Charts and Family Group Sheets, and begin their internet searches to find sources of their family history!
Mondays, 05/06, 06/03, 07/01, Auditorium:
05/06, 6:30-7:15pm: Yaktown Yoga Chair Yoga: This is a gentle therapeutic class. Students perform yoga postures and breathing
exercises with the aid of a chair. Students can experience the benefits of yoga without having to be on the floor. Benefits include increased flexibility,
strength, balance, range of motion and stress reduction. It is suitable for all.
06/03, 6:30-7:30pm: Yaktown Yoga Basic Yoga: A yoga class for those newer to yoga. This class introduces foundational yoga postures that will open, stretch and restore your body. You will learn how to breathe and feel comfortable on your mat. It is suitable for all. We are asking Participants to bring yoga mats. A few will be available to use in the class.
07/01, 6:30-7:30pm: Yaktown Yoga Deep Stretch: This is a class that goes deeper than the surface. We will surrender and let got through longer holding yoga postures aimed at targeting the connective tissues and joints. All levels welcome. We are asking Participants to bring yoga mats. A few will be available to use in the class.
Birding! Locally and Abroad: Discover a whole new world and community around you!
Friday, 05/10, 4-5:30pm, Auditorium: Roughly 1/5 of all Americans consider themselves Birdwatchers and the
first 2 weeks of May are known as the biggest weeks in American Birding! So, what better time to learn about birding and meet some people with the same interests!
This program is designed for beginner to intermediate birders.
During this program, Robyn and Paul will talk about how to start getting into birding, including gear needed, how to start identifying birds in your area, websites and apps to use, and joining and meeting your local birding community in person and through social media! They will also talk a bit about their birding adventures all over the globe, including conservation, and photos of some amazing birds.
Meet The Author: Brenda Montgomery
Saturday, 06/01, 3:30-5pm, Auditorium: Come to our library to meet author Brenda Montgomery presenting her book: "Birthed in the Wilderness". You will be able to purchase a signed copy of her book.
Author's Bio: "I grew up in the East end of Little Rock Arkansas, and went to school in all black neighborhoods, where I had lots of challenges in life. I struggled with my identity as a child. I knew part of me, but the other part was confusing. I knew I was different, I did not fit in. I had lots of dreams of being a business minded person, but I never knew how I would succeed in doing it. I ended up being a drug addict for 30 something odd years. I was 18 when I tried using, and I never quite got it all together until I met Jesus and my life changed drastically. I was healed and delivered from drugs in 2008. Drug rehab could not do it, but God did something in me that I will never forget. He blew a breath of wind on me and my whole thought process changed. I fought a lot of battles attempting to walk out a lifestyle that I never intended on having, but I wouldn’t trade my journey for anything in this world. I am now free to be who I am called to be, and free to live the life I had in mind from the start."
Book Description: This book is for those who are pregnant with something. This is for those who are seeking out a promise from God. When you perceive life as God does, it takes you on a journey to fulfill a calling that you might not have signed up for, but was designed just for you. You are walking out a pattern that was tailor-made for a life that no one else can give you except God. The journey is not for the swift but for the one who endures. It deals with being in toxic relationships to unprofitable seed. Transforming your whole being is the goal of this book. You must maintain a zealous spirit for the things of God! We, as Christians, understand that we have this stimulus itch to push us through tormented situations. Suffering is real and, to walk this journey, you might even get wounded along the way. But Jesus is right there to fix what is broken! The wounds come from having toxic people in your path. Learning how to get out of relationships that keep you bound will get you moving. God intended for us to have beautiful relationships when he decided to place Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden to tend to it. His intentions were to preserve them for a later use. God trusted them just like he is trusting you and me to nurture the seed that he planted in the garden. Part of your garden is devoted to physical and spiritual growth for the development of the seed. If the seed is not planted on the foundation that God is actively building on, there will be no results of an expected end.
Saturday, 06/15, 12-5pm, Adult Area: Come to our library to meet authors from Pontiac, Detroit, and other Michigan areas, check their new books, and purchase signed copies of their books.
Phil Hale Trio-Jazz Concert
Saturday, 06/29, 4-5pm, Auditorium: Come to our library for an afternoon with live Jazz music.
Here is a listing of some of the many groups Phillip Hale has played with throughout his history:
BLUES … Blues diva, Thornetta Davis; Detroit's queen of the blues, Alberta Adams; bluesman Johnny Bassett; Laura Rain & The Caesars;
R&B … Pat Lewis (of Isaac Hayes' "Hot Buttered Soul") & Thrust, Mack Rice, New Birth, r&b vocalist Bettye Lavette, Belita Woods, Sandra Feva, Nikki James & The Flamthrowers Calvin Brooks, Althea Rene, Rayse Biggs, Norma Jean Bell, Ortheia Barnes, Joan Crawford, Shahida Nurullah, Cynthia Dewberry (of Straight Ahead), drummer/promoter RJ Spangler, Audrey Northington, Ramona Collins, Leslie Ferguson, contemporary saxman David McMurray (from Was, Not Was);
NEO SOUL … Sky Covington & Club Crescendo;
JAZZ … Jazz guitarist, Stanley Jordan (trumpet legend), Marcus Belgrave, progressive jazz bassist Ralphe Armstrong, saxman Mike Fleming, jazz sax legend Larry Smith, jazz guitarist Robert Lowe, acclaimed saxman James Carter, jazz drummer Roy Brooks, vocalist Sherry Scott (of Earth, Wind & Fire), Nikki Pearse, trumpeters Roy Hargrove and Ron Jackson, guitarists Stanley Jordan, Davis Myles, Perry Hughes, Larry Barris; Cody Black, drummers Skeeto Valdez & Milton Hale; vocalist Nancy Davis, Faruq Z. Bey (of Griot Galaxy); Jazzhead, Soul Clique, saxman Alan Barnes, tambourine queen Sheila Hale;
GOSPEL … Apostle Thomas Butler; Crusaders for Christ/25th St. COGIC; Herbert Pickard; The Ridgeway Sisters;
FUNK and ROCK … George Clinton; Gabe Gonzales; Trey Anastasio;
WORLD MUSIC … Pathe Jassi of Senegal; Raggae recording artist/producer, Ras Kente;
MOTOWN … Motown legend, Martha Reeves; Motown drum legend, Pistol Allen;
POETS/SPOKEN WORD/RAPPERS … Life On Earth, featuring poet Roberto Warren, poet Aurora Harris; poet Ron Allen, DJ Mike "Agent X" Clark; DJ Scott Ferguson;
Recording and performing with top-quality artists; evolving musical forms.
• Cassettes: "Supernatural" (1989), "Give 'em Hale!" (1992);
• CDs: "Urban Symphonies" (1999), "Beyond" (2002), "Unexplained" (2003), “The Back Room”; The Birth of Urban Progressive;
• With Calvin Brooks (co-produced): "Rose My Dear" (2001);
• With Apostle Thomas Butler (co-produced): Special Kind of Love;
• With Thornetta Davis: "Thornetta Davis Recorded Live at the Music Menu" (2001), "Remember Love On Christmas Day" (2009), “Honest Woman” (2017);
• With Laura Rain & The Caesars: "Electrified" (2013), “Closer” (2014);
• John Sinclair, "Detroit Life" with the Motor City Scholars;
• Jazzhead "For The People”. Awards:
2014 Detroit Black Music Awards for Keyboardist of the Year;
2012 Detroit Music Award for Outstanding Jazz Instrumentalist;
2009 Emmy Award with Detroit Free Press for their documentary on Christ Child House;
2007 Detroit Music Award for Outstanding R&B/Blues Instrumentalist.
RJ Spangler Quartet-Jazz Concert
Saturday, 07/13, 4-5pm, Auditorium: Come to our library for an afternoon with live jazz music. The RJ Spangler Quartet is featuring Detroit jazz sax great Larry Smith.
RJ speaks about the history of Detroit's jazz & blues roots and performs musical examples with an all-star band.
About Larry: Born near Pittsburgh in 1947, he got his start playing jazz, showing the ropes to his friend, jazz guitar great George Benson. Smith moved to New York where he played with big names such as Shirley Scott and Rahsaan Roland Kirk. Larry had a special relationship with one the all-time great sax players - Sonny Stitt. Sonny knew and encouraged Larry going back to his teenage years. This lead to Larry touring with Sonny as a regular member of his group. Quite an honor for a man that plays the same instrument as the leader! As Charles Latimer said in the Metro Time: "His specialty is ballads. He shuts his eyes, hunches his shoulders, and holds his saxophone like a prom date. The ballads are so touching they'd make the devil cry." Larry appears as a special guest on James Carter's 1996 ‘Conversin' with the Elders’ and Live at Baker's Keyboard Lounge. He has also toured with the queen of soul, Aretha Franklin.
Drummer RJ Spangler has appeared on over 60 recordings and has toured the US, Canada, and Europe quite a few times. He lectures on Detroit jazz & blues history and beyond his trio, he leads the Planet D Nonet swing band as well as a blues band.
Guitarist Oliver Nevels is another veteran player whom has recorded & toured nationally with organist Charles Earland. He has also toured with organist Richard "Groove" Holmes and "Brother" Jack McDuff.
Bassist Greg Cook is a Detroit main stay, having proven himself playing with the top of Detroit's jazz scene: Geri Allen, Roy Brooks, Marcus Belgrave, and many others. He toured Europe with soul great Bettye LeVette and held down the bass chair in Rat Pack show for countless performances in addition to performances with international stars like Mose Allison and Johnny Hartman.
Vital Mix-Jazz, R&B, and Blues Concert
Saturday, 07/27, 4-5pm, Auditorium: Come to our library for an afternoon with live music. Vital Mix is a band of seasoned musicians who perform a variety of music genres which includes Jazz, R&B, Blues and gospel. The core members of the band consist of three brothers, Ray, Solomon, and Mark Green, who are all natives of Pontiac, MI. Each member received their early development as musicians in church and school and they have perform in various venues across the country. The brothers have mentored and assisted in the development of many young musicians throughout the country. Some of these young musicians occasionally perform with the band, including their sons, nephews and friends, thus the name "Vital Mix".
Guitarist Ray Green is the co-founder of Vital Mix, he began performing at age six in church and occasionally performed with local Bands. After graduating high school in 1977, he moved to Minneapolis, MN where the music scene was just beginning to explode. The Minneapolis music scene provided him the opportunity to sit in on jams sessions with the late iconic artist Prince before he became famous, and exposed him to other rising artist of Minneapolis. His musical influences are George Benson, Al McKay, and Tony Maiden just to name a few.
Bassist Solomon Green who is also one of the founding members, began his musical journey at age nine playing in church, then in the school orchestra. Some of his musical influences as a bassist are Stanley Clark, Jaco Pastorius, and Bootsy Collins to name a few. Yet he often stresses the importance of originality by stating "No one can beat you at being you".
Guitarist/Pianist Mark Green began his musical career at age five playing in church and the school band. He has played throughout the country in various venues and is also the founder of "America Let's Exercise", a non profit organization established in Auburn Hills, MI that utilizes music to help promote physical fitness.
Saxophonist/Keyboardist Aaron Green began his musical career in the school band and then the church. He has performed with The Four Tops led by Pontiac native and professional artist Ronnie McNeir, as well as a variety of musicians and artist around the country.
Drummer William Green began his musical career playing in the school band and then the church. He has gained a great deal of professional experience during his young life by performing with a variety of musicians and bands around the country. He is often referred to as "the metronome" because of his ability to lock in on the beat.
Tuesdays, 07/30, 08/06, 08/13, 08/20, 6-7:30pm, Auditorium: The Heartfulness Meditation Program offers a simple set of relaxation and meditation exercises, which when practiced daily, help restore balance in life, manage stress, better your health, and most of all will lead you to inner calm and peace. The relaxation and meditation techniques are taught over free courses: Each class covers both the conceptual framework as well as practical meditation and relaxation sessions (classes last for 1.5 hours). As classes progress, we add other techniques to help you go into a deep meditative state, faster. Ideally, all participants may register for all six sessions. Participants will be meditating in chairs. Those wishing to meditate while sitting on the floor may bring their own floor cushions. The entire program will be conducted by certified Heartfulness trainers, who have been meditating and training for several years.
Airey B and Trio-Jazz Concert
Saturday, 08/10, 3:45-5pm, Auditorium: Come to our library for an afternoon with live Jazz music.
Airey B is bold, impressive, and admirable, a bodacious singer/songwriter, guitar player and
piano player. Her voice is captivating, expressive, and emotional. She invokes the spirit of the first ladies of the blues like Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith and
Lizzie Miles. A breath of fresh air, she helps to revive the true spirit of the blues for other generations to come.
James O'Donnell (trumpet) is a native Detroiter. He lived in Mexico City playing at a jazz club for several years & has traveled the world as a bandleader on cruise ships. James studied with Carlos Rivera of the DSO as well as trumpet masters Russell Green (Jimmy Lunceford band), Marcus Belgrave & Herbie Williams, and also Uan Racey (MGM Studios). His playing style encompasses the use of the various techniques using the plunger/growl and other muted effects that were handed down to him to carry on a tradition of this music. He has performed with Jerry Gonzales, Sir Mack Rice, Pinetop Perkins, Lou Reed, Hubert Sumlin, and the Regal Brass Band of New Orleans. Currently he plays with RJ’s Kansas City Six, King Sweat, Motor City Street band and the Coachmen Orchestra. James leads his own groups the Nickyboy Street band and The Motown Mariachi Band. Co-leading the Planet D Nonet with RJ Spangler has been a long term dream project come true. James teaches privately at Anderson Music in Troy. James is on every PD9 recording since the very beginning.
Jeff Cuny (string bass) recently completed work on his Graduate degree in jazz studies at WSU and is a fine young string bassist. He is also the chief arranger for the Planet D Nonet and appears around the city with Tbone Paxton and also the Rhythm Society Orchestra.
Jake Matthews, Metro-Detroit drummer, percussionist, and educator, has been professionally performing since the age of sixteen years old. Receiving the degree of Bachelor of Music, concentrating in jazz drum set, from Wayne State University’s College of Fine, Performing, and Communication Arts, Jake has studied as well as worked with some of Detroit’s finest musicians, including Russ Miller, Edward Gooch, and David Taylor, among others. Over the past few years, Jake has been frequently performing throughout the greater metro-Detroit area, playing in all genres as well as various venues such as Cliff Bell’s, Meadowbrook Theatre, The Dirty Dog Jazz Café, The Cube at Orchestra Hall, and Royal Oak’s Arts, Beats, and Eats, just to name a few. Additionally, Jake is also a freelance recording session drummer and has played on multiple local artists’ albums.
PHOTO/VIDEO USE - The Pontiac Public Library reserves the right, under federal, state and local law, to use photographs and video taken at library events for reproduction on the library's website or in other official library publications and displays, including but not limited to print or online, without consideration or compensation. The Library reserves the right to crop or treat the photographs/video at its discretion. Full names will not be used unless participants express their desire to be identified.