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Learn, Explore, Create, Connect
Alexandria Library Embraces Diversity Month starting Saturday, September 29

National Diversity Awareness Month is celebrated during the month of October. Starting on Saturday, September 29, Alexandria Library will have a cultural display traveling to each branch location for a full week during the month of October. The cultural display will contain items from library staff’s personal cultural experiences and/or international travel.

The display will rotate each week to a different library branch location:

Saturday, September 29 Friday, October 5
Beatley Central Library (5005 Duke Street)

Tuesday, October 9 Friday, October 12
Burke Branch Library (4701 Seminary Road)

Monday, October 15 Friday, October 19
Barrett Branch Library (717 Queen Street)

Monday, October 22 Friday, October 26
Duncan Branch Library (2501 Commonwealth Avenue)
October Library Closure
Alexandria Libraries will be closed on Monday, October 8 for Columbus Day.

View our list of other 2018 holiday closures here.


Mental Illness Awareness Week (October 7 - October 13)

During Mental Illness Awareness Week (Sunday, October 7 through Saturday, October 13), Alexandria Library raises awareness of Americans suffering with mental illness.

Beatley Central Library (5005 Duke Street) is hosting Mental Health programs during the month of October to include but not limited to:

Medicaid Expansion Explained: How Medicaid Expansion Will Help Low-Income Adults Access Physical & Mental Health Services
Thursday, October 4 at 1:00pm
What does Medicaid “expansion” mean and who does it help? What is the intersection between Medicaid expansion and The Affordable Care Act? Healthcare Navigator Susan Nolan will provide an overview of eligibility for both programs including when to apply, how to apply and how to get help.
Attendees must register! Email or call 703-746-1751.

Film Screening
Thank You For Your Service: The Reality of War Inflicted Mental Illness

Sunday, October 14 at 2:00pm
The U.S. military faces a mental health crisis of historic proportions. Thank You For Your Service takes aim at our superficial understanding of war trauma and the failed policies that result. Director Tom Donahue interweaves the stories of four struggling Iraq War veterans with candid interviews of top military and civilian leaders. Observing the systemic neglect, the film argues for significant internal change and offers a road map of hope. (88 min)

Youth Mental Health First Aid Training, Parts 1 & 2
Monday, October 22 & Wednesday, October 24 at 4:00-8:00pm
Youth Mental Health First Aid is designed to teach parents, family members, caregivers, teachers, school staff, peers, neighbors, health and human services workers, and other caring citizens how to help an adolescent (age 12-18) who is experiencing a mental health or addictions challenge or is in crisis.

This is a two-part training over two days. Attendees completing the full training will receive a 3-year certification in Mental Health First Aid and may be eligible to receive 8 CEUs. Attendees must register!

For more information about our Mental Health programs, please visit our events calendar at

Upcoming Programs at Alexandria Library

Beatley Central Library (5005 Duke St.)

Saturday, October 6 at 1:30 p.m.
Hispanic Heritage Fiesta

Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with music, crafts, food, and dance! All ages. (More Info)

Tuesday, October 16 at 7 p.m.
Art for Relaxation

As part of our Mental Health Awareness series, join us for an experiential art-making workshop as we learn how creating art can help us reduce stress. (More Info)

Saturday, October 20 at 11 a.m.
Mucha Musica
Audiences are transported to Latin America to experience the many rhythms and unique instruments from different regions. (More Info)

Tuesday, October 23 at 7 p.m.
Maker Series: BYOP (Bring Your Own Pumpkin)

Bring your own pumpkin to paint for Halloween! We'll supply paint, stickers, and other odds & ends. For ages 8 and up. (More Info)

Barrett Branch Library (717 Queen St.)

Tuesday, October 2 at 7 p.m.
In Our Own Voice

In Our Own Voice explores how individuals living with a mental health condition experience recovery. Presenters will walk through their experiences with a mental health condition, from early onset symptoms to how they are today. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions. Presented by NAMI Northern Virginia (the National Alliance on Mental Illness.) (More Info)

Wednesday, October 3, October 10, October 17, October 24 at 4:30 p.m.
Spooky S.T.E.A.M

Ghost/bat rockets, slime, and other S.T.E.A.M. activities perfect for the month of October. A new activity each week. Ages 5 & Up. All materials supplied. No registration required. (More Info)

Thursday, October 4, October 11, October 18, October 25 at 4 p.m.
Art Explorers

Explore art history with a story time followed by a process focused art project. All supplies provided. Ages 3-6. Registration required - space is limited. (More Info)

Saturday, October 20 at 11 a.m.
Observe the Moon Night

To prepare, the Barrett Branch Library will show a 30 minute recorded lecture entitled Observing the Moon and Sun. Afterwards, you'll have the chance to make a Moon Phases Calendar & Calculator. We'll have an interactive map where you can see what Moon observation events are happening in the DMV. (More Info)

Burke Branch Library (4701 Seminary Rd.)
Saturday, October 6 at 10:30 a.m.
Native Shrubs for the Home Garden
A variety of native shrubs thrive in our area that can provide beautiful structure and ecological function to your yard. Learn which are best for you! (More Info)

Thursday, October 11 at 7 p.m.
Buying a Home
Learn how to shop for a home and be successful in the competitive metro Washington, DC, area market. (More Info)

Thursday, October 25 through Sunday, October 28 (Various Times)
Burke Branch Friends' Book Sale
Come support the library and pick up books, cds, and dvds at discounted prices. (More Info)


Duncan Branch Library (2501 Commonwealth Ave.)
Wednesday, October 10 at 7 p.m.
Death Cafe

At a Death Cafe people drink tea, eat cake and discuss death. Our aim is to increase awareness of death to help people make the most of their (finite) lives. This Death Cafe will be hosted by Amy Johnson, a hospice and palliative care Social Work who specializes in grief and trauma counseling. (More Info)
Wednesday, October 17 at 7 p.m.
Duncan Book Discussion Group: "Lilac Girls"

The Duncan Book Discussion Group meets on the third Wednesday of each month. This month we are discussing "Lilac Girls" by Martha Hall Kelly. (More Info)

Friday, October 19 at 4 p.m.
Teen Comic Book Club: "Anya's Ghost" by Vera Brosgol
Welcome to Teen Comic Book Club where we discuss great comic books and graphic novels. Snacks provided! For teens in grades 6-12. (More Info)
Monday, October 22 at 7 p.m.
Author Talk: Paula Tarnapol Whitacre

Join Paula Tarnapol Whitacre, author of "A Civil Life in an Uncivil Time," for a free talk about Civil War Alexandria. (More Info)
Want to get involved with Alexandria Library?

Do you enjoy biking in Alexandria? Alexandria Library invites the community to participate in Le Tour d’Alexandria Library, the Library’s 6th annual bicycle tour of all library locations on Saturday, October 20 at 10:00 a.m. This year's theme is: The Three Quarters Tour.

During the tour, we will discover the rhythm and musical flavor of the cultural contributions of individuals in and around the Alexandria community. Participants can bring their bicycle and join library staff for a leisurely 2-hour loop of Alexandria starting and ending at Beatley Central Library, located at 5005 Duke Street.

Registration for the event is required, as space on the tour is limited. Riders must be over the age of 13 to participate. Children and teens under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

For more information and to register online visit

Alexandria Library celebrates 'National Friends of Libraries' Week

From October 21 through October 27, Alexandria Library celebrates 'National Friends of Libraries' Week.  Each library branch has a Friends of the Library group that you can join. Your membership contribution to the Friends will enhance library services for children and adults, and provide funds to supplement library resources. For more information about the activities of the Friends groups, call your local branch, or click here.

Copyright © 2018 Alexandria Library, All rights reserved.

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