holiday-music

Nothing brings people holiday cheer quite like turning on the radio and listening to holiday classics sung by various artists throughout the ages. But what happens when you have a particular song you want to hear that isn’t playing on the radio, or you want to listen to holiday music on your own time? This season the Niles Library is bringing you the gift of music, so stop in to pick up a CD (or six) of your favorite holiday tunes.

Here’s a small sample of the vast collection of holiday albums we have to offer:

1) Elvis’ Christmas Album

2) The Beach Boys’ Christmas Album

3) Christmas Portrait (The Carpenters)

4) A Charlie Brown Christmas

5) Merry Christmas (Mariah Carey)

6) A Motown Christmas (Jackson 5)

7) The Very Best of Bing Crosby Christmas

8) A Jolly Christmas from Frank Sinatra

9) The Lost Christmas Eve (Trans-Siberian Orchestra)

10) Cole, Christmas, & Kids (Nat King Cole)

And as always, you can check out dozens of other music genres in our catalog here. Or you can download up to ten of your favorite Christmas carols this month onto your tablet, iPhone, or other mobile device using Hoopla, a new service that lets you instantly borrow movies, music and more 24/7 with your Niles Public Library card. Check it out at hoopladigital.com/home.

Have fun jamming out to your favorite hits!

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elf

The holidays wouldn’t be complete without a few classic holiday movies – and here at the Niles Public Library, we’ve got a plethora of tinsel-wrapped flicks to choose from. Stop in to pick up one of these DVDs and then hurry home, wrap yourself in a warm blanket, and sip hot cocoa as you enjoy some family entertainment.

1) National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

2) A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

3) Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)

4) Home Alone (1990)

5) Elf (2003)

6) A Christmas Story (1983)

7) The Santa Clause (1994)

8) The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

9) Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1965 & 2000)

10) A Christmas Carol (1938)

11) Frosty the Snowman (1969)

12) Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

This is just a taste of what the Library has to offer, so if your favorite isn’t on this list, browse through our catalog! Or you can download up to ten holiday music and movie favorites this month onto your iPhone, tablet, or other mobile device using hoopla, a new service that lets you instantly borrow movies, music and more 24/7 with your Niles Public Library card. Visit hoopladigital.com/home to sign up for this FREE service!

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Black Friday Shopping

Now that November is here, it’s that time of year again…HOLIDAY SHOPPING. But never fear, the Niles Library is here!

The holidays can be stressful when you’re trying to find gifts, sending out greeting cards, AND managing your money all while trying to keep your sanity in tact. That’s why we’ve got three great programs this month to help you get through the holidays with ease.

Join us on Saturday, November 8 at 10am for “Mail Merge,” a technology program to manage your mile-long holiday card list. Learn to use Microsoft Word to create mailing labels for large mailings, and if you bring your list of names and addresses to the class, you can get a head start on your mail project. For more information, click here.

Stop by the Library on Monday, November 10 at 1:30pm for “Managing Your Finances for the Holidays” to learn money-saving tips designed to help you avoid buyer’s remorse (and those looming credit card bills in January). Everyone who attends the program will also receive a money management guide titled Personal Finance Made Easy AND a “Stop. Think. Save!” shopping bag. For more info about registration and the program, click here.

And for the tech-savvy folks out there, join us on Monday, November 17 at 7pm for “Top Tech Tools to Manage Your Money.” Learn about the most popular and useful tools to help manage your money, including budgeting websites and apps to give you more bang for your buck. Participants will receive a copy of Personal Finance Made Easy. For more details about the event and registration, click here.

Now you’re ready to face the Black Friday crowds!

macaulay culkin
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December

*Sat., Dec. 5, 2pm—Angels and Demons, PG-13, 138 min
*Thurs., Dec. 17, 2pm—Four Christmases, PG-13, 88 min
*Sat., Dec.19, 2pm—Josh Groban in Concert, NR, 60 min

January

*Sat., Jan. 2, 2pm—My Sister’s Keeper, PG-13, 109 min
*Mon., Jan. 4—WATCH TO WIN OSCAR CONTEST begins —
see the AV Desk for details.
*Sat., Jan.16, 2pm—Gypsy Caravan: When the Road Bends, NR, 60m.
*Thurs., Jan. 21, 2pm—Julie and Julia, PG-13, 123 min
*Tues., Jan. 26, 2pm—Rebecca, NR, 130 min
*Thurs., Jan. 28, 2pm—Classical Composers in Hollywood

February

*Sat., Feb. 6, 2pm—The Proposal, PG-13, 108 min
*Mon., Feb. 8—PICK THE WINNERS OSCAR CONTEST begins —
see the AV Desk for details.
*Tues., Feb. 9, 2pm—The Lost Weekend, NR, 101 min
*Thurs., Feb. 11, 2pm—Amélie, R, 122 min
(in French with English subtitles)
*Sat., Feb. 13, 2pm—Patsy Cline: Sweet Dreams Still, NR, 60 min
*Wed., Feb. 17, 7:30pm—Road to the Oscars® w/Reid Schultz:
2009 in Film!
*Thurs., Feb. 18, 2pm—My Life in Ruins, PG-13, 95 min

March

*Tues., Mar. 2, 2pm & 6pm—My Fair Lady, G, 170 min — SINGALONG

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OK—everyone has seen it. Everyone knows the story. Some people can even recite the dialogue (I would have to confess, I’m in this category). When you get right down to it, this is a great movie. Sad thing is that it gets so over-watched around the holiday season that many people have the “not again” mentality. PLEASE don’t disregard this movie just because it has been overplayed, colorized and basically abused. What director Frank Capra does here is capture a little slice of Americana—something that Capra excelled in. Unlike Capra’s other Americana films (most notably Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, Meet John Doe, and Mr. Deeds Goes to Town), this one has a dark edge—a hardness that makes us think for a second that maybe America is not all that it’s cracked up to be. That is where Jimmy Stewart’s acting genius kicks in. His portrayal of the lowly, always-disappointed George Bailey has the audience rooting him on, even when he’s at his most weak. I mean, here is Bailey, standing by a bridge, looking down into the icy waters of the river, waiting for the perfect moment to jump. Does anyone really believe he will? No—not with the genuine way Stewart breathes life into Bailey. No one with that much compassion in their heart could really ever end it all? But, that’s why Stewart is perfect as Bailey. He does give Capra a “hard” edge, all while keeping the film, at its core, a feel-good film…one that can and should be enjoyed ANY time of year, not just in the holiday season.

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When I rewatched this one recently, I fell in love all over again with Robert Mitchum’s character (OK — and with Mr. Mitchum himself). This one is a true classic…a film that gets very little attention during the holiday season, but should be up there with those notables Miracle on 34th Street and The Bishop’s Wife. Mitchum plays a wandering ex-Army man, who really just wants to make enough money to move to California and build boats. But, to save for the trip, he works retail stores at Christmas. Janet Leigh plays a widowed single mother who works as a comparison shopper…going from store to store buying things to compare prices at different places. She encounters Mitchum during one of her buys and the sparks start from the get-go. Even though she has a fella who’s sweet on her, she and her adorable son gravitate to the charming and debonair Mitchum. I mean, I sure would. Wouldn’t you?

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A fun, entertaining holiday movie with star of stars, Barbara Stanwyck. The premise seems a bit silly, but trust me, it works. Stanwyck plays a food/homemaking columnist (remember — this is the 1940s) who cannot do anything domestic herself…just write about it. But, low and behold, she is forced to become the domestic goddess when her editor makes her practice what she preaches. Stanwyck excelled in comedies like this…low key and very smart. She’s always excellent but in scatterbrained roles like this one, she’s priceless. Not just a holiday movie either — good all year around!

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A warm, lighthearted film set during the holiday season that involves a married couple and an angel who comes between them. Disillusioned bishop David Niven finds out that funding his church is more demanding a task than he originally thought. His troubles at work begin to consume him, causing strife in his marriage to Loretta Young. Enter Cary Grant as the angelic savior (and the most debonair angel in Heaven) who assists Niven with his work woes. At the same time, though, Grant befriends Young, who becomes quite smitten with the angel. Niven and Young shine as a confused married couple, especially Niven’s early reactions to the presence of an angel in his life. Grant perfectly downplays his role, never showing any obvious attraction for Young, but also never directly putting off her affections. Although not one of the more popular holiday films, this classic is very timely for the season just the same.

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