Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Big Read 2013

April Reads for Heather
It was not a BIG read month for me, only 8 books.

Serpent's Kiss (Elder Races, #3)Serpent's Kiss by Thea Harrison. The continuation of a fluffy series dealing in dragons, elves, goblins and magic.

View full imageMortal Engines by Philip Reeve. The is a YA steampunk novel, It is the first of 4.

View full imageLover at Last by JR Ward. Finally the love story for two male vampires.

Oracle's Moon (Elder Races, #4)Oracle's Moon by Thea Harrison. More dragon love, this time with a djinn and an oracle.

Dragon Bound (Elder Races, #1)Dragon Bound by Thea Harrison. The start of the series- Dragon love! snicker.

View full imageUnraveling by Elizabeth Norris. A bit strange in its method of telling. Science Fiction

View full imageThe Taken by Vicki Pettersson. Rockabilly in Vegas with guardians and angels, I'm not sure why I keep reading Vicki Pettersson.

View full imageFragments by Dan Wells. Book 2 of the Partial sequence. I wish someone would tell me what is going on- confusing.

How are you doing on the challenge. Remember you can follow us on Good Reads also. They have a challenge going and it is an easy way of keeping track of the number of books you have read.

April 30 - International Jazz Day

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization officially designated April 30th as International Jazz Day in 2011, to highly jazz and its diplomatic role of uniting people in all corners of the globe.

"Jazz has the power to make men forget their differences and come together ... Jazz is the personification of transforming overwhelmingly negative circumstances into freedom, friendship, hope, and dignity." - Quincy Jones

International Jazz Day is chaired and led by Irina Bokova, UNESCO Director General, and legendary jazz pianist and composer Herbie Hancock, who serves as a UNESCO Ambassador for Intercultural Dialogue and Chairman of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. The Institute is the lead nonprofit organization charged with planning, promoting, and producing the annual celebration, which officially began in 2012.

Every year on April 30th, this international art form will be recognized for promoting peace, dialogue among cultures, diversity, and respect for human rights and human dignity, eradicating discrimination, promoting freedom of expression, fostering gender equality, and reinforcing the role of youth for social change.

International Jazz Day in the culmination of Jazz Appreciation Month, which draws public attention to jazz and its extraordinary heritage in April.

Today is also Bugs Bunny Day, National Honesty Day, and World Healing Day!

Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

- Roman emperor Licinius unified the entire Eastern Roman Empire under his rule in 313.
- Columbus was given royal commission to equip his fleet in 1492
- Mapmaker David Thompson, whose maps were the first to provide a comprehensive view of the western territories, was born in London, England in 1770.
- The Battle of Boulou was fought in 1794, in which French forces defeated the Spanish under General Union.

- Nicaragua declared its independence from the Central American federation in 1838.
- Mexican forces attacked the French Foreign Legion in Hacienda Camarón, Mexico in 1863.
- Chilcotin Indians in BC killed several road workers building a road through their territory in 1864. Five Chilcotin were executed for the incident.
- Philippe Panneton, whose novel, Trents Arpents (1938), is considered a classic of Canadian literature, was born in Trois-Rivières, Quebec in 1895.
- The ice cream cone made its debut in 1904.
- Portugal approved woman suffrage in 1911.
- Folklorist Edith Fowke, an avid collector of folk song recordings, was born in Lumsden, Saskatchewan in 1913.

- Princess Juliana retained a seat in the Dutch Council of State in 1927.
- World Congress for Women's Rights concludes in Istanbul in 1935.
- The Philippines held a plebiscite for Filipino women on whether they should be extended the right to suffrage in 1937; over 90% voted in the affirmative.
- The Boulder Dam was renamed in honor of Herbert Hoover in 1947.

- Mr Potato Head became the 1st toy advertised on television in 1952.
- The CBC Symphony Orchestra gave the world premiere of Igor Stravinsky's Eight Instrumental Miniatures with the composer conducting in 1962.
- Pres Nixon handed over partial transcripts of Watergate tape recordings in 1974.
- The Petroleum Administration Act was passed in 1975, allowing the federal government to set the domestic price of oil and natural gas without the agreement of energy-producing provinces.
- Royal Canadian Mint opened a branch in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1976.
- Terrorists seized the Iranian Embassy in London in 1980.
- Also in 1980, Gordie Howe retired from hockey, having played his last game with the Hartford Whalers.

- Proposals to amend the Canadian Constitution were unanimously accepted in principle by the First Ministers at Meech Lake in 1987. The written accord received unanimous agreement in Ottawa on June 2 and 3.
- The 208th & final episode of the Cosby Show aired on NBC-TV in 1992.
- 42 million watched as stand-up comedian/actress Ellen DeGeneres "came out" on Oprah in 1997.

- In 2004, U.S. media released graphic photos of American soldiers abusing and sexually humiliating Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison.
- Major flooding began in the Montérégie region as rapid snowmelt and heavy rains caused water levels to rise in Lake Champlain and the Richelieu River in 2011. All bordering municipalities would be affected, with nearly 3000 homes and much arable land flooded. In early May, Premier Jean Charest requested assistance from the Canadian Forces.

Here's what happened last week in science:

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!

Monday, April 29, 2013

April 29 - International Dance Day

International Dance Day was founded in 1982 by the International Theatre Institute, to be celebrated every year on April 29th, the birth date of Jean-Georges Noverre (1727-1810), the creator of modern ballet.

International Dance Day is intended to celebrate dance, to revel in the universality of the art form. It was created to cross all political, cultural, and ethnic barriers, bringing people together with a common language - the language of Dance.

Every year a message from an outstanding choreographer or dancer is circulated throughout the world. This year's message comes from Lin Hwai-min, Founder/Artistic Director of Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan. Read his message here: http://www.international-dance-day.org/en/picts/IDD_2013_LHwaimin_En.pdf

Today is also "Peace" Rose Day.

Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

- The Compagnie des Cent-Associés, founded by Cardinal Richelieu, chief minister of Louis XIII, was granted New France from Florida to the Arctic in 1627 to establish the French empire in North America. The Company was given full seigneurial ownership of New France. The company was granted a fur trade monopoly in the St. Lawrence Valley.
- Sweden & Denmark signed a defense treaty against the Duke of Wallenstein in 1628.
- Guillaume Couillard-Lespinay, Louis Hébert's son-in-law, was reportedly the first person in Canada to use a plow in 1628.
- Charles Darwin's expedition reportedly saw the top of the Andes from Patagonia in 1834
Apr 29, 1903 - A rock slide (commonly called the Frank Slide) from Turtle Mountain, NWT, onto the town of Frank killed at least 70 people in 1903, the most disastrous rockfall in Canadian history.

- Andrew Hill Clark, historical geographer, was born in Fairford, Manitoba in 1911.
- Irish Nationalists set a post office on fire in Dublin in 1916.
- Robert Falls, the 1st Canadian to be chair of the NATO Military Committee, was born in Welland, Ontario in 1924.
- Jews were forced to wear a Jewish Star in the Netherlands and Vichy-France in 1942.
- Quebec law was changed to admit women to the Bar in 1941. They were not permitted to become notaries until 1956.
- Aretha Franklin released "Respect" in 1967
- Premier Robert Bourassa announced the development of the James Bay Project in 1971.
- Phillie Steve Carlton became the 1st lefty to strike out 3,000 batters in 1981
- About 200 000 books were destroyed by a fire set by an arsonist in the LA Central Library in 1986. The building remained closed until 1993.

- Wrecking cranes began tearing down the Berlin Wall at the Brandenburg Gate in 1990.
- Croatia declared independence in 1991.
- The longest sausage ever (2877 miles long) was made in Kitchener, Ontario in 1995.
- Oldsmobile built its final car in 2004, ending 107 years of production.

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

April 28 - Workers Memorial Day

Worker's Memorial Day (also known as "Day of Mourning") is an annual, international day of remembrance and action for workers killed, disabled, injured, or made unwell by their work.

In 1984, Worker's Memorial Day was started by the Canadian Union of Public Employees, becoming an annual day of remembrance on April 28, 1985, the anniversary of the comprehensive Workers Compensation Act, passed in 1914. The event became an official Worker's Mourning Day in 1991, when the Canadian Parliament passed an Act respecting a National Day of Mourning for persons killed or injured in the workplace.

Statistics gathered by the International Labour Organisation tell us:
- Each year, more than 2 million women and men die as a result of work-related accidents and diseases
- Workers suffer approximately 270 million accidents each year, and fall victim to about 160 million incidents of related illnesses
- Hazardous substances kill 440 000 workers annually - asbestos claiming 100 000 lives
- 1 worker dies ever 15 seconds worldwide. 6000 workers die every day. More people die while at work than those fighting wars. 
Worker's Memorial Day serves to highly the preventable nature of most workplace accidents and ill health, as well to promote campaigns and union organization in the fight for improvements in workplace safety.

Though April 28th is the focal point of remembrance - a day of international solidarity - campaigning and other related activities continue throughout the year all around the world.

Today is also Biological Clock Day, Lag B'omer, National Pet Parent's Day, and Mother Father Deaf Day.

Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

- At the Battle of Ste-Foy in 1760, the British were defeated by the French but were able to hold Québec.
- The Rush-Bagot Agreement between the US and Britain in 1817 limited naval forces on Lake Champlain and Lake Ontario.
- The CPR steamer Empress of India first arrived in Vancouver in 1891, carrying 486 passengers and 1839 tons of tea, silk, and rice. This steamer continued to make regular trips around the world by way of the Suez Canal.
- W.H. Carrier patented the air conditioner in 1914.
- Zbigniew Basinski, recognized as the doyen of Canadian metal physics, was born in Wolkowysk, Poland in 1928.
- Singer Ginette Reno was born in Montreal in 1946.
- Former Philippine First Lady Aurora Quezon was assassinated while en route to dedicate a hospital in memory of her late husband in 1949; her daughter and 10 others are also killed.
- Muhammad Ali refused induction into the army, and was stripped of his boxing title in 1967.
- Samuel Lee Gravely Jr. became the 1st black admiral in the US Navy in 1971.
- Over 6000 Mk. 82 500 pound bombs detonated over the course of 18 hours in a railyard in northern California in 1973. 5500 structures were damaged, and the town of Antelope, California ceased to exist, with every building being reduced to the foundation. This accident led to the passing of the Transportation Safety Act of 1974, which made the NTSB an independent agency.
- Aloha Airlines Boeing 737 roof tore off in flight in 1988, killing an unsecured stewardess.
- Iran protested the sale of "Satanic Verses" by Salman Rushdie (Salmon Fishing in the Yemen) in 1989.
- A 14-year-old boy armed with a .22 calibre rifle shot and killed 2 students at W.R. Myers High School in Taber, Alberta in 1999. The killings followed by 8 days the Colorado massacre.
- The first Northrop Frye Literary Festival opened at the esteemed literary critic's hometown of Moncton, New Brunswick in 2000. Forty authors gave readings.
- Millionaire Dennis Tito became the world's first space tourist in 2001.

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

April 27 - Save the Frogs Day

In an effort to raise awareness of the plight of amphibians, the scientific community has declared Saturday, April 27th the 5th annual Save the Frogs Day. This global event encourages the appreciation and celebration of amphibians by people from all over the world.

Only a small portion of our public is aware that frogs are disappearing. Amphibian conservation efforts will not be successful with an uninformed public. The goal is to make the amphibian extinction crisis common knowledge.

"When we save the frogs, we're protecting all our wildlife, all our ecosystems and all humans." - Dr. Kerry Krifer, Founder & Executive Director of "SAVE THE FROGS!"

Join "SAVE THE FROGS!" here: http://www.savethefrogs.com/members/index.html

Today is also Bulldogs are Beautiful Day, Babe Ruth Day, Morse Code Day, Eeyore's Birthday Day, World Healing Day, Penguin Day, World Veterinary Day, Sense of Smell Day, and National Rebuilding Day!

Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

- David I became King of Scots in 1124
- In 1628, Samuel de Champlain recorded in his journal that, for the first time in New France, land had been “broken by the plough drawn by oxen,” a task typically carried out by human strength.
- Beethoven composed his famous piano piece, Für Elise in 1810.
- An American force of 1700 men captured York (Toronto), looted the town and burned down the Parliament building in 1813.
- Myfanwy Spencer Pavelic, first Canadian-born artist to have a painting accepted in permanent collection of the British National Portrait Gallery, was born in Victoria in 1916.
- Michael Kusugak, an Inuit children's writer, was born in Repulse Bay, NWT in 1948.
- Pianist Louis Lortie, one of his generation's outstanding musicians, was born in Montréal in 1959.
- NASA launched Explorer 11 into Earth orbit to study gamma rays in 1961
- Pan Am 707 crashed into the mountains of Bali, killing 107 in 1974
- Over 70 inches of snow fell on Red Lake Montana in 1984
- Beijing students took over Tiananmen Square in China in 1989
- Betty Boothroyd became the first woman to be elected Speaker of the British House of Commons in its 700-year history in 1992
- Construction began on the Freedom Tower for the new World Trade Center in New York City in 2006

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Greatest Books of All Time
Week 13

100 Greatest Books
of All Time.
What is your favourite book of all time? Cast your vote by commenting here at the bottom of this post, posting a note on our facebook page or adding it to our in-house ballot box.
Each Friday we will tabulate the votes and post them on our
Facebook, Twitter and Blog accounts.
One vote per visit please.
The final Top 100 will be announced at the end of December.
The Stand by Stephen King
is still in the lead with eight votes.

Publication Date
The Wishing Spell
Chris Colfer
Disney's Aristocats

April 26 - National Kids and Pets Day

National Kids and Pets Day was created in 2006 by Family & Pet Lifestyle expert Colleen Paige, to further the magical bond between children and animals, and to help bring awareness to the plight of pets in shelters awaiting new homes.

"Every boy should have two things: a dog, and a mother willing to let him have one." - Robert Benchley.

Children that grow up with pets tend to be extremely nurturing and compassionate, making dedicated and loving parents and pet owners themselves. Children with learning disabilities greatly increase their academic success by reading to pets, while pets can help shy children open up to the world and boost their confidence.

For tips from Colleen Paige about child/pet safety, and choosing the right pet for your family, go here: http://www.kidsandpetsday.com/tips.htm

National Kids and Pets Day encourages you to adopt, rather than "shop" for pets. Millions of orphaned pets sit in shelters (not all of which are "no-kill" shelters) awaiting new homes with families ready to take on the responsibility of loving and caring for them as part of the family.
Join us as we celebrate kids and pets - every day of the year!

Today is also Hug an Australian Day, Audubon Day, National Pretzel Day, Richter Scale Day, Arbor Day, and National Hairball Awareness Day!

Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

- Copernicus made his 1st observations of Saturn in 1514

- William Shakespeare was baptized in the parish register of Holy Trinity Church in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire in 1564

- Dan Sickles was acquitted of murder on grounds of temporary insanity in 1859, the 1st time this defense was successfully used.
- The Huntsville Electric Co. formed in 1887
- Italy secretly signed the Pact of London with Britain, France & Russia in 1915
- Baldur Stefansson, leader in development of rapeseed from an unadapted crop, was born at Vestfold, Manitoba in 1917
- Nova Scotia women won the rights to vote and to hold provincial office in 1918
- Jeanne Sauvé, the 1st female Governor General of Canada, and 1st female Speaker of the House of Commons, was born at Prud'homme, Saskatchewan in 1922

- A Coal mine explosion killed 1,549 at Honkeiko Manchuria in 1942
- Cuba invaded Panama in 1959
- A landslide in Huancavelica Province Peru created a natural dam in 1974
1991 - "Dinosaurs" premiered on ABC-TV in 1991 (Not the Momma! Not the Momma!)
- The federal government introduced a bill instructing the CRTC to begin licensing satellite-to-home television services in 1995
- The first cases of H1N1 flu, or "swine flu," were reported in Canada in 2009. Thought to have originated in Mexico one month earlier, the flu is a combination of swine, avian, and human Influenza A viruses. Deaths were recorded in several countries, and the spread of the virus was declared a pandemic by the WHO on June 11.
- Also in 2009, Daniel Nestor reached an historic milestone in Canadian tennis in, celebrating his 100th Tour final when he and partner Nenad Zimonjiæ won the Barcelona Open doubles title over former partner Mark Knowles and Mahesh Bhupathi of India. He holds 58 titles at the ATP world level.
- Indonesia suspended imports of American beef in 2012 after a confirmed case of mad cow disease in California.

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!

Thursday, April 25, 2013

April 25 - Red Hat Society Day

The Red Hat Society was officially founded in 1998, though it began in 1997 when artist Sue Ellen Cooper gave a friend a 55th birthday gift consisting of a red bowler purchased from an antique store, with a copy of Jenny Joseph's poem "Warning", beginning:

"When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat that doesn't go and doesn't suit me."

The gift became popular among her friends, and eventually several of the women bought purple outfits and held a tea party on April 25, 1998.

The Red Hat Society is a global society of women that supports and encourages women in their pursuit of fun, friendship, freedom, fulfillment, and fitness.

Though it began with a small group of followers, as of 2011 the Red Hat Society consisted of over 40 000 chapters various countries throughout the world.

Today is also Hairstylists Appreciation Day, Malaria Awareness Day, Hug a Plumber Day, and World Penguin Day!

Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

- Open conflict began over the disputed border of Texas, triggering the Mexican-American War in 1846
- The Parliament Buildings in Montréal were burned down in 1849 in riots protesting Lord Elgin's signing of the Rebellion Losses Bill. The seat of government was removed from Montréal and the Parliament met alternatively in Toronto and Québec City.

- Paul Julius Reuter used 40 pigeons to carry stock market prices in 1850
- PEI obtained responsible government in 1851, with George Coles as premier.
- The first wave of miners from California arrived at Victoria in 1858, en route to the Fraser River Gold Rush. The Gold Rush caused a precipitous decline in the Native population and politically unified British Columbia.
- Ground was broken for Suez Canal in 1859

- The great Cree chief Crowfoot died at Blackfoot Crossing in 1890. He was a perceptive, farseeing and diplomatic leader who became disillusioned with the Canadian government.

- John Grierson, film producer and founder of the National Film Board, was born in Deanston, Scotland in 1898
- About 15 000 people lost their homes, 3 lost their lives as the worst fire in Canadian history destroyed two-thirds of Hull, Québec in 1900
- In 1903, the Québec legislature adopted legislation requiring Jews to pay their taxes to the Protestant schools panel, and granting them education rights equal to those of Protestants. In 1928, the Privy Council ruled that the 1903 Act was ultra vires (beyond legal authority).
Apr 25, 1923 - Ballerina Melissa Hayden was born in Toronto, Ontario in 1923

- Québec women were the last in Canada to earn the rights to vote and run for office in provincial elections in 1940
- Robert Noyce patented the integrated circuit in 1961
- In 1967 the House of Commons passed an Act combining the Royal Canadian Navy, Canadian Army and Royal Canadian Air Force into a unified service known as the Canadian Armed Forces.
- Supreme Court rules pension plans can't require women to pay more in 1978
- More than 100 workers were exposed to radiation during repairs of a nuclear power plant in Tsuruga, Japan in 1981
- John Demjanjuk (Ivan the Terrible) was sentenced to death in Jerusalem in 1988
- The Hubble space telescope was placed into orbit by shuttle Discovery in 1990
- The final piece of the Obelisk of Axum was returned to Ethiopia in 2005 after being stolen by the invading Italian army in 1937.

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

April 24 - Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day

The Armenian Genocide, also known as the Armenian Holocaust, Armenian Massacres, or the "Great Crime", was the Ottoman government's systematic extermination of its minority Armenian subjects from their historic homeland in the territory that would become the Republic of Turkey. Occurring during and after World War I, this Genocide was implemented in 2 phases: the wholesale killing of the able-bodied male population through massacre and forced labour, and the deportation of women, children, the elderly, and inform on death marches to the Syrian Desert. An estimated 1.5 million were killed. The Assyrians, the Greeks, and other minority groups were similarly targeted for extermination by the Ottoman government, and their treatment is considered by many historians to be part of the same genocidal policy.

Seen above: Armenian intellectuals and political leaders led on a "Death March".
Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day is observed annually by Armenians in dispersed communities around the world to commemorate the victims of the Armenian Genocide from 1915 to 1923. In Yerevan, the capital of Armenia, hundreds of thousands of people walk to the Tsitsernakaberd Genocide Memorial to lay flowers at the eternal flame. Eternal flames are most often used to commemorate a person or event of national significance, or to serve as a reminder of commitment to a common goal such as international peace.

Today is also Administrative Professionals Day!

- The Greeks entered Troy under the guise of the Trojan Horse in 1184 BC (traditional date)
- Halley's Comet sparked an English monk to predict his country would be destroyed in 1066
- The North West Company was formed in Montreal in 1779
- Fire alarm & police telegraph system were put into operation in San Francisco in 1865
- Mt. Vesuvius erupted in 1872
- General Middleton engaged Gabriel Dumont's Métis at Fish Creek, NWT in 1885; the battle was a stalemate.
- Sherlock Holmes began his "Final Problem" in 1891
- Nova Scotia-born Joshua Slocum set out in his small boat Spray from Boston, Massachusetts, on his voyage around the world, which he completed in 27 June 1898. He was the first man to sail around the world alone.
- Andrew Halliday, cable car pioneer, passed away in 1900
- Hersheypark, founded by Milton S. Hershey for the exclusive use of his employees, was opened in 1907.
- Composer Violet Archer was born in Montreal in 1913
- In the Persons Case if 1928, the Supreme Court of Canada unanimously decided women were not "persons" who could hold public office as Canadian senators. In 1929 the British Privy Council reversed the decision.
- United Negro College Fund incorporated in 1944
- Canadian troops defended the Kap 'Yong Valley in Korea against a Chinese attack in 1951, at the cost of 10 dead and 23 wounded.
- The first shipment of oil from Alberta arrived in Ontario via pipeline and freighter in 1952
- Winston Churchill was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 1953
- The last streetcar ran in Vancouver in 1955, ending 65 years of street-rail service in the city.
- The first convention of the Fédération des femmes du Québec opened in 1966, with Thérèse Casgrain as president. The group’s mission was to gain equal pay for women and an increase in family allowance.
- In 1969 Paul McCartney informed the public there were no truth to the rumors that he was dead.
- The federal government banned fishing off the New Brunswick coast and the area around Port aux Basques, Newfoundland in 1972, to conserve dwindling fish stocks.
- Eric Kripke, American television writer (Supernatural), director and producer was born in 1974
- In 1985, the Supreme Court of Canada found that the Lord's Day Act was contrary to the freedom of religion guaranteed in the Charter of Rights.

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

April 23 - International Marconi Day

International Marconi Day celebrates the huge part Guglielmo Marconi played in the invention of the radio. Marconi improved upon the designs of wireless telegraphy made before him, making it marketable and successful.

A little known fact: the radio operators on board the Titanic were employed by Marconi. Using his equipment, they were able to alert the Carpathia, saving 700 souls.

International Marconi Day is a 24-hour amateur radio event, held annually to celebrate the birth of Marconi in 1874. The purpose is for amateur radio enthusiasts around the world to make contact with historic Marconi sites using communication techniques similar to those used by Marconi himself.

Sounds like fun!

Today is also Movie Theatre Day, Impossible Astronaut Day (any Whovians out there?), Talk Like Shakespeare Day, and World Book Night!

Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

- The 1st English order of knighthood (Order of Garter) was founded in 1348
- William Shakespeare's The Merry Wives of Windsor was first performed in 1597, with Queen Elizabeth I of England in attendance.
- Canada issued its 1st postage stamps in 1851
- McMaster University was founded in Toronto by the union of Woodstock College and the Toronto Baptist College in 1887
- Lester Bowles Pearson, a statesman and the only Canadian to win Nobel Peace Prize, was born in Newtonbrook, Ontario in 1897
- Poet Margaret Avison was born in Galt, Ontario in 1918
- The New Symphony Orchestra, now Toronto Symphony Orchestra, gave its first concert at Massey Hall under the direction of Luigi von Kunits in 1923
- The Shakespeare Memorial Theatre opened at Stratford-on-Avon in 1932
- Vancouver's mayor Gerry McGeer read the Riot Act in Victory Square to disperse a large crowd of protesting unemployed in 1935
- "Hammerin' Hank Aaron" hit the 1st of his 755 homers in 1954
- At a Toronto convention lasting from April 23 to April 27 of 1956, the Trades and Labor Congress of Canada merged with the Canadian Congress of Labour to form the Canadian Labour Congress, effective as of May 1.
- Also in 1956, the US Supreme court ended race segregation on buses
- Sirhan Sirhan was sentenced to death in 1969 for killing Bobby Kennedy. In 1972, his sentence was commuted to "life imprisonment".
- Falconbridge Nickel was ordered to shut down its Sudbury operation due to excessive air pollution in 1974. It was the first time an industry was shut down because of air pollution emissions.
- Coca-Cola announced it was changing its secret flavor formula in 1985
- McDonald's opened its 1st fast-food restaurant in China in 1992
- In 1999, paleontologists announced that they had discovered a fossil skull in Ethiopia that belonged to a previously unknown species of human ancestor.
- Also in 1999, Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the lower courts should apply traditional disciplinary practices when sentencing Natives found guilty of criminal offences.
- 38 000 London Marathon entrants had their home and email contacts published in a data protection breach in 2012

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!

Monday, April 22, 2013

April 22 - Earth Day

Before we get started, check out this video (I'm sure we've all seen it before, but it never gets old): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJvJaad-LS4

Earth Day was first launched in the United States in 1970 as an environmental awareness event. Earth Day as we know it is now celebrated as the birth of the environmental movement. Wisconsin Governor Gaylord Nelson and Harvard University student Denis Hayes spearheaded the movement, involving 20 million participants in teach-ins that addressed decades of environmental pollution. Their event inspired Congress to pass clean air and water acts, and to establish the Environmental Protection Agency to research and monitor environmental issues and enforce environmental laws.

2 million Canadians joined 200 million people in 141 nations in 1990 in celebrating the first International Earth Day. The global event put pressure of heads of state from many countries to take part in the UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro to address issues such as climate change, and the worldwide loss of species.
In Canada we celebrate Earth Day/Week/Month, from large public events - Victoria's Earth Walk, Edmonton's Earth Day Festival, and Oakville, Ontario's Waterways Clean-Up - to thousands of small, private events in schools, employee groups, and community groups.

Now more than 6 million Canadians join 1 billion people in over 170 countries in staging events and projects to address local environmental issues. Nearly every school takes part in Earth Day activities - and you can too!

Come to the library tomorrow at 4:00 and check out our Recycled Bookend Contest for Teens! We're making our own bookends out of old, refurbished materials!

Learn more about Earth Day and the various ways to participate here: http://www.earthday.ca/pub/

Today is also Chemists Celebrate the Earth Day, Girl Scout Leaders Day, Mother Earth Day, and National Jelly Bean Day!

Here are some interesting things that happened on this day in history:

- King Charles II of England chartered the Royal Society of London in 1662, the oldest scientific organization in Britain.
- At the Battle of Ypres, Belgium in 1915, the Canadian 13th Battalion stood firm despite chlorine gas and shelling, until reserves were moved up on April 23. The French troops had broken and fled.
- Pierre Hétu, who conducted Canada's leading orchestras, was born in Montréal in 1936
- Sandra Birdsell, a writer whose fiction investigates the lives of small-town working-class figures, was born in Hamiota, Manitoba in 1942
- Lester Pearson was sworn in as Prime Minister in 1963
- The Liberals under W. Ross Thatcher won the Saskatchewan provincial election in 1964, displacing the CCF-NDP after 20 years.
- The Royal Commission on Corporate Concentration of power in Canada was appointed in 1975, with Robert Bryce as chairman.
- Parliament announced Canada would join the US-led boycott of the Moscow Olympics over the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1980
- Lebanon released US hostage Robert Polhill after 39 months of captivity in 1990
- Holocaust Memorial Museum was dedicated in Washington, DC in 1993
- A lollipop weighing over 3000 pounds was made in Denmark in 1994
- Four Canadian soldiers were killed 75 kilometers north of Kandahar, Afghanistan by a roadside bomb in 2006

Stay tuned for our next, "On This Day in History"!