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The Summer of 2016 is sizzling hot at the Hartford Public Library! On this page, you'll find information about programs and events for adults ages 19+. Exercise your mind and make your summer of learning a success! To register, please click here.


Marc-Yves Regis I: Headstrong
Opening Reception

Friday, June 3, 6 PM
3rd floor Artwalk

Marc Yves-Regis documents the street vendors who carry Haiti’s economic burden on their heads. Beyond their struggle and labor, their faces show determination, pride, sorrow fear, and joy. Regis provides a window into a life of resiliency and tremendous effort for miniscule reward. 

Exhibit on view through July 15



Hartford Embraced: Paintings by Ken Kahn

Opening reception: Thursday, June 9, 6 PM
Hartford History Center

Ken Kahn, a Hartford resident, painter and cartoonist explores Hartford’s “lovely, welcoming places” but explains that Connecticut’s capital city is also “replete with just enough shadowy corners to make it intriguing and mysterious”.

On display through August 31



















World of Sounds

World of Sounds is a series of seven outdoor concerts, supported by a $4,000 grant from the Evelyn W. Preston Memorial Fund. The Evelyn W. Preston Memorial Fund was established in 1978 under the will of Evelyn Wallace Preston. The Evelyn W. Preston Memorial Fund provides grants for music concerts during the months of June, July, August, and September in parks and other public places for the general public in the City of Hartford.

Saturday, June 4, 12 PM
Downtown Library Terrace

soca, calypso, reggae, pop, classical, gospel and jazz

Wednesday, June 22, 1 PM
Dwight Branch

Latin Jazz and dance rhythms of samba, rumba, cha-cha, salsa, flamenco, tango and bolero

Wednesday, July 6, 5:30 PM
Dwight Branch

music and dances of Peru’s African and criollo populations

Tuesday, August 2, 6 PM 
Albany Branch

pop favorites and island music

Thursday, August 11, 6 PM
Albany Branch

music from the Caribbean, including reggae and steel drum rhythms

Sunday, August 14, noon-1 PM & 2-3 PM
Webster Theater parking lot
31 Webster Street, Hartford, CT 06114
(as part of Barry Square Community Day)

reggae, calypso, soca, gospel and R&B

Thursday, September 15, 1 PM
Downtown Library Terrace

rumba, bomba, pena, salsa and Latin jazz


Chapter and Verse:
Film Screening & Community Conversation

Saturday, June 11, 1 PM
Center for Contemporary Culture

Join film director Jamal Joseph for a screening and discussion of his new film. A reformed gang leader returns from a ten-year prison sentence and struggles to adapt to his changed community. Directed by Jamal Joseph, author of Panther Baby.



Wellness, Fitness & Sports:
Professional Wrestling Legend Bob Backlund

Saturday, July 9, NOON
Downtown Library

Hartford Public Library and the Connecticut State Library present an appearance by author and World Wrestling Champion Bob Backlund, in conjunction with this year’s Summer Learning theme of “Wellness, Fitness & Sports!”

Backlund’s life in sports began as an accomplished amateur wrestler at North Dakota State University, followed by a career as a professional wrestler, spanning nearly 40 years.  In 2015, he released Backlund: From All-American Boy to Professional Wrestling’s World Champion, which recounts amazing behind-the-scenes tales of his four decades in and out of the limelight and his choice to live a healthy, drug-free life.

Backlund was inducted into the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) Hall of Fame in 2013 and has dedicated “the rest of his life” to motivating young people and being a positive role model.

Books will be available for purchase.






Exercise Your Mind
with Mark Twain’s Hartford

Thursday, July 14, 5:30 PM
Hartford History Center, 3rd floor

American writer and adopted Hartford resident Mark Twain recognized the value of reading to contribute to a well-rounded life.  In The Prince and the Pauper, written in Hartford and first published in 1881, Twain wrote “when I am king, they shall not have bread and shelter only, but also teachings out of books, for a full belly is little worth where the mind is starved.”

Hartford Public Library celebrates Summer Learn 2016 and welcomes local author Steve Courtney, who will discuss his latest work, Mark Twain’s Hartford, a pictorial account of rarely seen images. Books will be available for purchase.