Public invited to Big Read kickoff Feb 6

DEARBORN – The public is invited to Henry Ford Centennial Library Feb. 6 for the kickoff of The Big Read–Dearborn, a community-wide initiative that will focus on 19th century poet and mystery and macabre writer Edgar Allan Poe.

The kickoff will be from 2 to 4 p.m. and will set the tone for a variety of events centered on Poe that are planned for February and March.
The kickoff will feature:

• Free refreshments, books, and the “Do You Know Poe?” tabloid, created by students at the Dearborn Public Schools’ Michael Berry Career Center.
• Music from Poe’s day performed by Dearborn Symphony Orchestra musicians.
• Dramatizations of Poe’s works, including a performance of “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Tony Lucas of The Henry Ford.
• Raffle to win a night at the Poe House, courtesy of the Dearborn Inn (drawing at the “Meet Poe” event on March 19).
• Opening of the “Dreams” art exhibit, coordinated by the Artists’ Society of Dearborn.
• Poe craft for all ages.

The Feb. 6 activities are designed to help people answer the question “Do You Know Poe?” which is one of the tag lines for the promotion of The Big Read.

The Big Read encourages people of all ages to read for pleasure and enlightenment and engage in fun and interesting activities related to a selected book. The Big Read-Dearborn will use “The Great Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe” as the centerpiece of the 2016 program.

Many might recognize Poe for “The Raven,” “The Tell-Tale Heart,” “The Pit and the Pendulum” and the poem “Annabel Lee.”

He also is considered the inventor of detective fiction and wrote early versions of science fiction stories. His writing has inspired many films.

This is the second time for The Big Read in Dearborn, following the successful series of events in 2014 that focused on author Jack London and “The Call of the Wild.”

During the kickoff event, light refreshments will be served in the Rotunda area of the library, and the program will include brief remarks from Mayor John O’Reilly Jr., Library Director Maryanne Bartles, and a representative from DFCU Financial, which is a major sponsor (Raven Level) of The Big Read-Dearborn.

Additionally, Dearborn Public Schools faculty and students who worked on the tabloid will be called up to the stage for acknowledgement of their tremendous accomplishment.

Go to to sign up for email updates and to view a full schedule of events planned for February and March.

The Big Read is managed by Arts Midwest, and is a One Book One Community program of the National Endowment for the Arts.