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Bradbury Birthday Bash Will Benefit Library : Proceeds from the event honoring the science fiction writer's 75th year will aid the Thousand Oaks facility.

August 17, 1995|FRANCES HALPERN | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

As anyone who has read Page 3 of this section already knows, Ray Bradbury will be honored on his 75th birthday at a gala celebration Tuesday to benefit the Thousand Oaks Library.

Bradbury's support of libraries is legendary. He has been tireless in responding to appeals to help raise funds, confront book burners and encourage young people to use the library. He never fails to remind his audience that the hours he spent reading in the library fired his imagination and shaped and informed his career.

Some years ago I was present at a confrontation between a Friends of the Library group and members of a right-wing organization who were hysterical about the "communist and sexual" content of certain books in the library. Chairs were thrown around the room and the police were called to restore order. The library was under siege and the well-orchestrated attack seemed to be getting some support.

Bradbury was called by the Friends and asked to make an appearance to rally the community against those who would ban books. His response was immediate and because of the admiration he inspired among both young and mature readers, the turnout to meet him was enormous. His ringing condemnation of book burning won the day and the community rallied behind its library.

The benefit birthday reception will begin at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the Forum Theatre, Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza.

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There may still be openings in the master playwriting workshop at 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday at Learning Tree University's Thousand Oaks campus. Call 497-2292.

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A double-header Saturday at Barnes & Noble, 4360 E. Main St., Ventura, features a well-known author who has penned "Just Desserts" under the pseudonym G.A. McKevett. His/her true identity will be revealed at 1 p.m. At 3 p.m., Sharla Scannell Whalen will sign "The Betsy-Tacy Companion," her biography about author Maud Hart Lovelace.

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Performance artist Dale Wayne Jackson will involve the audience in storytelling and poetry reading at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at Barnes & Noble. Anyone interested in sharing poetry is encouraged to attend.

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Can you turn your passion for travel into a career as a professional journalist? Ojai author Jerry Camarillo Dunn, whose many credits include National Geographic Traveler, Islands Magazine and Smithsonian, will answer that question in the travel writing workshop scheduled from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 26 at Learning Tree University, Thousand Oaks Campus. Call 497-2292.

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