New Canaan Library’s 14th Annual Literary Luncheon Welcomes Bestselling Author Martha Hall Kelly, Speaking on Latest Novel, Sunflower Sisters

New Canaan Library is delighted to once again welcome guests to an in-person setting for its Annual Literary Luncheon. Continuing the tradition of featuring respected and award-winning authors, the 14th Annual Literary Luncheon presents The New York Times bestselling author Martha Hall Kelly as guest speaker. Ms. Kelly, well known for her impeccably researched historical fiction, will be speaking about her latest novel, Sunflower Sisters. The event will be held on Thursday, November 4, 2021, at 11 a.m. at the Woodway Country Club, Darien, Connecticut. Information on individual tickets and Benefactor tickets/tables is available on the Library’s website, luncheon.

“Women’s Roles in the Civil War” Presented by Professor Catherine Clinton, Via Webinar from New Canaan Library

New Canaan Library presents a fascinating lecture by historian and professor Catherine Clinton, who will discuss the wide range of roles women took on during the Civil War. The live webinar will take place on Thursday, October 21 at 7 PM EST. Please register at for Zoom sign in. This program supports the Library’s annual Literary Luncheon fundraiser, an event that this year features author Martha Hall Kelly, speaking on Sunflower Sisters, her latest historical novel set during the Civil War years. Most depictions of the Civil War – be it literature, documentaries, or art – focus heavily on male soldiers and military leaders.

Movements in Cinema: “Watching Parasite in the Era of Mukbang” Presented by Professor Kyung H. Kim via Webinar from New Canaan Library

Korean films have seen a considerable increase in popularity in the last decade, both in the U.S. and internationally. New Canaan Library welcomes Professor Kyung Hyun Kim, a scholar, film producer, and creative writer who is currently a professor in the Department of East Asian Studies, UC Irvine. Professor Kim will focus on the film Parasite (2019), directed by Bong Joon-ho, and probe the reasons why it became one of the most successful films ever made outside Hollywood. The live webinar and will be held on Tuesday, October 19 at 7 PM EST. Zoom sign in information will be provided upon registration at

Author Grace Young Presents “Stir Frying for the Soul” and Speaks on Chinatown Activism, Via Webinar from New Canaan Library

Award-winning author Grace Young, dubbed the “Stir-Fry Guru” by The New York Times, presents her considerable culinary skills during a virtual stir-fry event, and will then speak about how Covid affected Chinatown, and her documentary film series on the topic. The event takes place on Thursday, October 14 at 7 PM EST. Please register at for Zoom sign in. Ms. Young will demonstrate a simple and quick stir-fry, Aromatic Vegetarian Fried Rice, with pointers on how to add meat or seafood if desired. In addition to cooking, Grace will offer a screening of a portion of her film series, Coronavirus: Chinatown Stories, which was recently nominated for the IACP media awards.

Petitioners Fail To Obtain Required Signatures for Referendum Vote on Town’s $10 Million Grant for New Canaan Library Project

Those seeking to force a referendum vote on town’s $10 million grant to New Canaan Library for its widely anticipated rebuilding project failed to garner enough verifiable signatures before deadline, officials say. The petitioners needed to obtain 689 signatures of New Canaan registered voters—5% of qualified local electors as of the most recent voter list—in order to force a town-wide vote on the grant, Town Clerk Claudia Weber has said. Yet after verifying the names and qualifying status of the names submitted to her office, Weber said the petitioners fell short. 

They obtained 528 signatures of support, Weber told 

“On behalf of the thousands of New Canaanites eagerly waiting for the new New Canaan Library, we look forward to receiving our building permit and starting construction,” Library Director Lisa Oldham said. Opponents to the library’s plan for a new 42,641-square-foot facility—located closer to Maple Street and with a new entrance facing south—emerged soon after the organization unveiled its project in January 2020. Many of those opposed to the project said the library should be required to preserve the original 1913 library and a 1930s-era addition.