Faces of Dryden: Ahoy, matey! Pirates on the horizon at Southworth


By Cathy Wakeman


Where can you fight scurvy, walk the plank and tie up the knots on your sinking sails? Why, Pirate Day at the Southworth Library, of course.

The second Saturday of the month is family storytime at the Southworth Library. Library Director Diane Pamel searches the high seas for programs and activities that will appeal to the entire family. This month’s guest, Captain Jack Sparrow, certainly has that appeal. While several swooning teens, and a few grown women, have inquired if actor Johnny Depp will be in Dryden, Diane clarifies that this Captain Jack is Johnny Depp approved, but is actually Sparrow imitator Rick Martinez of Weedsport, NY.

“I first saw Rick at a Library Summer Reading Showcase. He looks and sounds exactly like the character from the movie (the popular Pirates of the Caribbean series). Staying in character for the entire presentation, he encourages the kids in their reading and keeps the adults entertained.”

Warming up the crowd for Captain Jack will be Dryden School Superintendent Josh Bacigalupi, who will share pirate stories and sea shanties. Pamel recalls some of Bacigalupi’s visits to the library when he was vice principal at Dryden Elementary. “He is a wonderful storyteller. He was always willing to jump into character, put on a costume and join wholeheartedly into each program.”

After Josh’s stories, which will begin at noon on Saturday, Sept. 15, there will be time for pirate practice before Captain Jack takes the stage at 1 p.m. Miss Pamel has a treasure hunt planned that will be teaching pirating skills and providing pirate fun.

“September 19 is National Talk Like a Pirate Day,” Diane explains. “One of the services available to library card holders is a free online language learning program called Mango Languages. On their list of 71 languages, right between Persian and Polish is a lesson on speaking Pirate.”

Thanks to a generous grant from the Rosen Library Fund of the Community Foundation of Tompkins County, each family will receive a copy of “Treasure Island” or another pirate inspired title to take home.

The fun for young readers continues as two book clubs for kids in grades 2 through 5 begin later in the month.

The American Girl Book Club begins on Wednesday, Sept. 19 and meets roughly every other week from 3:30 to 5 p.m. The group will explore the inspirational story of freed slave Addy Walker as she and her mother work to reconvene their family. Through book discussion, activities, and period crafts, students will discover life in the Civil War era.

For the more technologically inclined, the Frank Einstein Book Club begins on Tuesday, Sept. 25. This New York Times Best Seller by Jon Scieszka features kid-genius, scientist and inventor Frank Einstein, his best friend Watson and a collection of assembled creatures as they explore various scientific topics. Engineers from Cargill Deicing Technology will join the group to lead the science explorations.

To register for either of these programs, contact the library at southworthlibrary@gmail.com. Bus transportation is available from Dryden Elementary School with a permission slip.

Did Hiawatha visit Dryden Lake?

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s epic poem was an instant success when it was published in 1855. While the setting has been considered well west of here, local historian David Waterman would like us to take another look.

The Dryden Town Historical Society gives us a chance to do just that when they host Waterman on Thursday, Sept. 13 beginning at 7 p.m. in the Dryden Village Hall, 16 South St (enter on the George Street side of the building).

The society’s announcement states, “Longfellow stole his name and applied it to an unrelated Ojibwa legend, but the real Hiawatha was a local Onondaga prophet, one of the founders of the Haudenosaunee Confederation of Seneca, Cayuga, Onondaga, Oneida, and Mohawk tribes. His story takes place in the primitive “stone age” setting of upstate New York before any European contact. A portion of the narrative relates Hiawatha’s suffering and subsequent revelations while wandering in the area south of Syracuse.

David has been researching the Haudenosaunee establishment legend and relevant anthropology of early Iroquois culture. He will present an original theory that Hiawatha’s travels, when compared to topographic maps, bring him to the Cayuga annual campsite known to have existed north of Dryden Lake and to a larger Cayuga settlement at or near Forest Home, Ithaca. This groundbreaking theory will move our town’s first specific historical event back in time by hundreds of years.”

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and, as always, this event is free and open to all with donations gratefully accepted.


Welcome Dr. Montague

A Lion’s roar welcomes to the fourth president of Tompkins Cortland Community College, Orinthia Montague. SUNY Chancellor Kristina Johnson presided at the installation ceremony on Friday, Sept. 7, while local and state government officials and academic and other community leaders took part. Dr. Montague invited mentors to speak at the installation, including Ray Schlather, the chair of the College’s Board of Trustees.


Change in Worship time

Church Office Administrator Arlene Krebs shares that Sunday worship at First Presbyterian Dryden Church will start at 10:30 a.m. beginning Sept. 9. Sunday School will begin at 9:30 a.m. for learners of all ages. We welcome you to worship with us.


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