Archive for the 'Current Events' Category

Steinbeck In Search of America series

Steinbeck and Charley at his Sag Harbor home.

Canio’s Cultural Cafe presents Steinbeck, In Search of America, a series of talks, films and more celebrating Sag Harbor’s Nobel Prize-winning writer, John Steinbeck.  It began in May with a talk by scholar Susan Shillinglaw. You can at this link:  Steinbeck & the Importance of Home

The Sag Harbor Cinema, John Jermain Library and The Church are all participating in this community celebration.

Sun. May 1, 4pm:  Sag Harbor Cinema Projections series on the Steinbeck Writers Center project: a panel moderated by Steve Hamilton, co-founder of Bay Street Theatre with Tommy John Schiavoni, Southampton Town Councilman; Bret Johnston, Director of the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas in Austin; and Kathryn Szoka, co-owner of Canio’s Books. The discussion will focus on Steinbeck’s work as well as the campaign to create a world-class writing center in Steinbeck’s former home on Bluff Point Road. Afterwards, The Forgotten Village documentary was screened.

Thurs. May 19, 6pm:  in the Rotunda at John Jermain Library. Discussion of The Moon Is Down, with guest lecturer Donald V. Coers on John Steinbeck’s World War II novel. Coers will discuss the relevance of this powerful resistance story today.   Richard Hart, Steinbeck Review editor, will join the discussion. You can listen HERE.

Donald V. Coers is professor of English at Sam Houston State University in Texas. He is author of John Steinbeck as Propagandist: “The Moon Is Down” Goes to War and After The Grapes of Wrath: Essays on John Steinbeck. The Moon is Down tells the story of a military occupation in a small town by an unnamed nation at war with England. A French language translation of the book was published illegally in Nazi-occupied France by a French Resistance publishing house. Numerous other editions were also secretly published across all of occupied Europe, including Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, and Italian versions (as well as a Swedish version); it was the best known work of U.S. literature in the Soviet Union during the war. Written with the purpose of motivating resistance movements in occupied countries, the book has appeared in at least 92 editions across the world.

Weds. May 25, 6pm: at the Sag Harbor Cinema, film screening of Steinbeck’s The Moon Is Down with Q & A following.

Thurs. Aug 4, 6pm: at the Sag Harbor Cinema, film screening of Steinbeck’s Viva Zapata with Q & A following. Directed by Elia Kazan and starring Marlon Brando. The screenplay was written by Steinbeck, using Edgcomb Pinchon’s 1941 book Zapata the Unconquerable as a guide. The cast includes Anthony Quinn, who won an Academy Award for his performance. More information and tickets HERE.

Sat. Sept. 10, 5pm:  Forum on Travels with Charley at The Church with Steinbeck scholar, Susan Shillinglaw. Shillinglaw is English professor at San Jose State University and former Director of the National Steinbeck Center in Salinas, California. Fee, $10. Registration required. Please register HERE.

Sun. Sept. 11 – TBA:  Dramatic Readings from Steinbeck’s work, with music & celebration at Canio’s Lawn. Silent Auction fundraiser for Canio’s Cultural Cafe, an educational non-profit.

Thurs. Sept 14 6pm: at the Sag Harbor Cinema, film screening of Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath with Q & A following. More information and tickets HERE.

* Sag Harbor Cinema Steinbeck films: The Cinema will screen East of Eden (1955); Grapes of Wrath (1940); Viva Zapata! (1952) and The Pearl (1947). Schedule TBA.

To help support this series, a donation can be made to: Canio’s Cultural Cafe

The mission of Canio’s Cultural Cafe (CCC) is to support and engender community interest in the cultural arts, with an emphasis on literature, visual arts, and current events. The CCC will accomplish this by hosting lectures, workshops, seminars and other public forums that will include a diversity of artists, writers, educators, independent scholars, students, and community members who might not otherwise be heard.  Canio’s Cultural Cafe is a 501 (c)(3).

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Preserving Steinbeck’s Home

Remember him, Remember HIM,” were Elaine Steinbeck’s parting words to Sag Harbor’s Nada Barry at John Steinbeck’s funeral.


You can you help us remember John with a small but mighty donation HERE.

We are at the brink of an extraordinary opportunity — we have the chance to save his home in Sag Harbor as a Writers’ Retreat for future generations, spearheaded by Canio’s Books and the Sag Harbor Partnership, and aided by a prestigious University willing to guide and further fund its development once purchased. We are not far from making an acceptable bid to the willing seller, but we need your help to get us to the finish line.

We continue to seek additional pledges and funding sources. And, because we have made good progress, it is now possible for everyone to participate with a small but mighty donation and join the team.  Our initial small donation goal is $250,000. 

Would you please stand with us and donate $10, $50, or even $100 or more if you can, to make the Steinbeck Writers’ Retreat a reality, and save this international treasure?    

If our efforts to purchase the Steinbeck home do not succeed, all funds collected will be donated to the Sag Harbor Food Pantry and Volunteer Fire Department, something we believe Steinbeck would have blessed. 

We are so close, and with your help, we firmly believe that we will realize our goal to preserve Steinbeck’s legacy, his iconic homestead, and to remember John. 
Thank you for your time and your support! 

Please DONATE HERE

If you can make a pledge of $500 or more please contact us directly at info@sagharborpartnership.org for information. All donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.


2021

Imagine wrapping John Steinbeck’s home on Bluff Point with a gigantic red bow and presenting it to the literary world as a gift for the ages. This you could do today, February 27, Steinbeck’s birthday, with a cool $17.9 million, the asking price for the waterfront property where the Nobel Prize-winner once lived. In a more cultured world, that property and especially Steinbeck’s writer’s studio would be preserved for its world-wide literary value. Steinbeck wrote his last novel, The Winter of our Discontent, in that studio he named Joyous Garde, looking out on Sag Harbor Cove. His book Travels with Charley begins when Hurricane Donna kicks up those same waters and threatens his beloved boat, named for his wife, The Fayre Eleyne.  So maybe we band together with half a million friends and split the costs, however that would work out? Maybe squat the property? Better yet, let’s get local, regional, national agencies interested enough to add their voices and their coffers to this worthy cause. Sag Harbor village prides itself on being a writers’ village. Steinbeck was deeply fond of our place, and even founded our first Whalers festival. Couldn’t the village, the state and beyond recognize the importance of preserving this literary treasure? We sure hope so. Happy Birthday, John Steinbeck!

Listen HERE as co-owner Kathryn Szoka joins the Southampton Press Group to discuss saving Steinbeck’s place.

SIGN this PETITION to SAVE his Sag Harbor home. Sign NOW. Share widely. Many thanks!

20 Years at Canio’s!

How did we get here? How did we get to be counting 20 wonderful miraculous years as owners of Canio’s Books? We got here because of so many dear loyal fascinating smart quirky customers who’ve taught us much over the years. Who’ve supported us as their neighborhood bookshop, or who’ve ordered books from afar; who came to events in all kinds of weather, who were speakers themselves; who made donations, baked cookies, autographed copies; who volunteered to help keep our doors open.  Through twenty very full years as booksellers, we’ve been humbled, amazed, inspired by all those we’ve met here at Canio’s. The bookshop is indeed our University. Thank you for being part of our ongoing efforts to give back to this community so rich in creativity, in literary and artistic history, and precious natural beauty.

Read more about our anniversary here: https://easthamptonstar.com/20191017/20-years-literature-and-community-canios

Come celebrate with us at our Literary Costume Party, Saturday, November 2 from 5 to 7 p.m. Dress as your favorite writer, character or creative person. And that could be you!

Got Moby?

If you’ve groaned whenever someone mentioned Melville’s  Moby-Dick, if you’ve tried to read it but couldn’t, or if you’ve run screaming away from it,  we want you! One of the reasons we continue the marathon reading tradition, begin around 1983 at the bookshop, is to introduce this leviathan beauty to new readers. Sure we love the book. Sure we cheer when it mentions Sag Harbor (twice). But we really love the way it calls to new readers even in 2019. We want to give folks an easy way in to the language, the poetry, the vast sprawl of the book. Come listen for a bit. Hearing the great work read aloud makes quick converts. You can’t help get swept out to sea with Ishmael, Quequeg, Starbuck and Capt. Ahab. This year’s event will be our best-ever. It’s Melville’s Bicentennial! We’re honored actors Harris Yulin and Alec Baldwin will read. We want to be sure you’ve Got Moby, too. June 7 through 9.  See our 2019 MOBY-DICK MARATHON EVENTS SCHEDULE

Just One Book

If we could recommend just one book for all on your gift giving list this holiday season, it’d be, with a doubt The Lost Words written by British nature writer Robert Macfarlane and illuminated with gorgeous illustrations by acclaimed artist Jackie Morris. This oversized art book collects nature words, simple ones like “fern”, “ivy”, “magpie” and “starling” and spins poetry around them, splashes pages with greens and gold and rich earth tones in stunning displays. Collects these words and paints them on outsized pages, reweaving them into the language. Why? Because they were left out of the recent junior edition of the Oxford English Dictionary. In their place, words from the world of technology crept in. But careful readers noticed and objected and turned their concern into action, creating a charity dedicated to inspiring young people to become advocates for the natural world. A portion of book sales is donated to Action for Conservation. Just one book. But with so many important words to say. Copies available at Canio’s. How many should we reserve for you?

If It Weren’t For Joe Pintauro…

Tracing a line from cause to effect can be an inexact pursuit. Serendipity is hard to map. But we know for sure there’s a meandering path from creative inspiration to published book, to reader, to bookshop owner beginning with one novelist Joe Pintauro whose books Snow Orchid and Cold Hands led one reader, Canio Pavone  to visit Sag Harbor one ambling  afternoon. Canio wanted to see the town Joe had written about. What Canio saw that day as he drove through village streets and down to the harbor, was a “For Rent” sign in an empty storefront window at 290 Main. The rest of the story spins out from there, and is still being written.

So it was with particular sadness that we, along with nearly the entire East End arts and literary community, marked the passing of Joe Pintauro, novelist, playwright, poet, priest, photographer and more. Our condolences to Joe’s husband and partner of 40 years Greg Therriault, to his family and to his many friends far and wide.

Remembering Barbara Wersba

Remembering Writer, Teacher, Publisher Barbara Wersba

We remember fondly and with great admiration Barbara Wersba a longtime customer and friend of Canio’s Books.  Barbara’s keen intelligence, sharp wit and literary insight were a few of her qualities that distinguished her in a community of literary types.   Barbara Wersba wrote  Walter, The Story of a Rat, a charming story set in Safe Harbor about a friendship between a lonely writer, Miss Amanda Pomeroy and a rat with literary aspirations.  Other titles include Penny Parade: A Christmas Story; Let Me Fall Before I Fly among other titles. Her Bookman Press produced a series of chapbooks, designed by Jerry Kelly, noted for their physical beauty as well as their literary quality. Bookman Press published stories, essays and poems by such authors as George Sand, Kennedy Fraser,  Simon Van Booy, and Joe Pintauro among many others.

Barbara lived for many years in North Haven where she opened her home to writing students with whom she shared her exacting literary standards as well as her encouragement.

A graveside service will be held Friday, February 23 at 11 a.m. at Oakland Cemetery, Jermain Avenue, Sag Harbor.

Keeping Sag Harbor Salty

Sag Harbor without its cinema, is one thing. A very big thing. We hope the cinema will be rebuilt soon. But now the pizza place? Word is out that Conca D’Oro, recently sold to a well-known restaurateur who promises to keep the name and the general feel of this 1950s-style trattoria. We hope so.

All this change makes us only more committed to keeping Sag Harbor a little bit salty. To provide this village with quirky and interesting books worth reading. To bring engaging voices to the community. To be a place for people, passion, poetry, prose & yes, T-shirts. Literary ones. Our handsome midnight-blue Moby-Dick marathon 2017 issue, for example.

If you haven’t been by for a while, you’ll find not much has changed about the basic plan of the shop. The floor boards still creak and the shelves are still jammed. If you’re a frequent visitor, you know there’s always something new to discover in those stacks.

Sometimes things can get just a little too slick around here. But rest assured, we at Canio’s will do our part to keep Sag Harbor’s literary legacy going strong. Now, please pass the salt.

 

 

Not the Last Picture Show

Just two weeks ago we went to see Moonlight at the Sag Harbor Cinema. We bought our tickets from the lovely lady in the little booth, got a bag of popcorn and grabbed a few of those small thin napkins neatly arrayed on the counter. We found our favorite seats, row five, center and settled into the chattering darkness. What a heartbreakingly beautiful film Moonlight is, and how further heartbreaking that Moonlight is the last film we saw at that historic movie house.

The facade’s been torn down after Friday’s fire, piles of black rubble carted away. A gaping dark hole in the street where dreams and fantasies once flickered on the screen. The Sag Harbor Cinema, lone independent movie house on the East End brave enough to show “art” films and “foreign” films, and films that challenged as even as they inspired us. The musty smell of the old seats, the banging pipes as  heat slowly seeped into that cavernous room are now nostalgic memories.

cinema-interior-post-fire

We hope they will rebuild. We’re sure other buildings damaged or destroyed will rise again Phoenix-like from the ashes. We’re thankful no one was injured. We are all so grateful to our heroic firefighters. How quickly our compassionate community pulled together to lend a hand. A friend described a fire as something that refines, or clarifies, I put in. Just what will be refined or clarified from this December 16 fire remains to be seen. But fundraising efforts are underway and Sag Harbor will rise again! The village has endured several  devastating fires from the time when villagers lit their lamps with whale oil to as recently as just a few years back. Please show your support for Main Street Sag Harbor, this holiday season and beyond.

*Photo taken the day after the fire. (c) Kathryn Szoka

Read, Connect, Act

What now? Friends are asking in the wake of the presidential election shocker last week. What we can offer to those questioning how we got here, is more of what we so believe in: the power of books to inform and inspire. The power of community to support and strengthen the insights gained. And action, a plan for creative sustaining ways forward, to apply what we’ve gained through reading, reflection, conversation.

To that end, Canio’s Cultural Cafe will again offer a series of community discussion courses focusing on environmental issues. This winter we’ll present inspiring, engaging material to read, discuss & act upon focused on environmental activism, living simply, sustainable energy, and more. Join us for an upcoming course. Now more than ever the planet requires your participation. Find out more by contacting the shop.

We’re grateful to organizations like Northwest Earth Institute for creating and promoting these courses, and to Orion Magazine for providing inspiring articles to engage the imagination, the heart and mind in our understanding of our responsibilities toward Earth.

 

The Only Poll You Need to Know About

Undone by the relentless vacillations in this year’s presidential election polls, to say nothing of that nail-biting late-night extra-inning rain-delayed World Series Championship win by the come-from-behind Chicago Cubs (whew!), I just had to consult our Parisian pollster and restaurateur Craig Carlson.

Do you know his amazing memoir, Pancakes in Paris: Living the American Dream in France? This highly recommended read takes us on a wild ride from Craig’s “crazy” idea of opening an American-style dinner in Paris, to realizing that dream complete with pleasures, pitfalls and panic-attacks along the way. Sort of like those Cubs, rallying after near elimination! Craig is victorious with three popular Breakfast in America locations in the culinary capital of the world! Craig read at Canio’s in September, and yes, we even served pancakes with Vermont maple syrup.

So how is the Breakfast in America “presidential election” going in Paris? Back in 2012 his restaurant offered customers “an election” choice between two blue-plate specials:  the Romney Omlette and the Obama Burger. They kept count, and announced the overwhelming winner: the Obama Burger by a landslide!

This year he’s featuring a choice between the Hillary “Hot & Nasty” Hamburger served with hot sauce, a nod to Secretary Clinton’s penchant for Tabasco, and the Trump “Totally-Rigged” Wrap with a “wall” of tortilla chips.  The count right now: 34 hamburgers to 4 wraps. Voila! That settles it for me! Bon appetite and happy reading!


Canio’s Books is located at 290 Main Street, Sag Harbor, NY 11963, 631.725.4926. Call or email us, caniosbooks@verizon.net. While we love you to SEE you, you can also order new titles at our online storefront or some of our second hand inventory HERE. Thanks for visiting!