NEA Big Read Classes

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The National Endowment for the Arts Big Read is designed to broaden our understanding of our world, our communities, and ourselves through the joy of sharing a good book. White Bear Center for the Arts is one of 60+ nonprofit organizations to receive a grant to host an NEA Big Read project.

WBCA is thrilled to partner with community organizations in 2022 and 2023 to bring in-depth, creative programming surrounding the book The Bear.

The Bear, written by Andrew Krivak, traces the journey of a young girl who lives off the land and follows a mysterious talking bear as she tries to survive in a world without other humans. This book asks us to consider the stories and mythologies we grow up with, how these are passed down, and what they tell us about our perception of ourselves and our relationship with the natural environment.

WBCA is currently hosting Big Read programs both on-site at WBCA, as well as with partner organizations. Browse classes below, and register today! Most Big Read events are free, thanks to support from the National Endowment for the Arts.

NEA Big Read is a program of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest.

‘The Bear’ Book Discussions

Join White Bear Center for the Arts for an in-depth conversation about The Bear at these in-person book discussions throughout the community! You’ll be invited to connect with other readers in the community, and share your thoughts and impressions of the book. A facilitator will be present to help guide conversation and foster connection. Century…

BR15 – Northern Lights

BR15 – Northern LightsInstructor: Aryn Lill Paint a colorful aurora borealis silhouette in acrylic paint on a 12”x16” stretched canvas. You will be guided step-by-step to learn about the practice of painting through close observation. Shape, pattern, texture, contrast, and painting basics will be instructed. Watch live demonstrations, experiment with a variety of materials, practice,…

BR07 – Storytelling Performance

BR07 – Storytelling Performance Instructor: Laura Packer Please join us for a special performance from the students of WBCA’s Big Read class, Sharing the Stories of Our Lives, Nature, and Family. For three weeks this winter, these students have unearthed stories from their personal and family histories. During this immersive evening, hosted by teaching artist…

BR06 – Sharing the Stories of our Lives, Nature, and Family

BR06 – Sharing the Stories of our Lives, Nature, and Family Instructor: Laura Packer Join storyteller Laura Packer for a three-session workshop that explores stories from life, nature, and family, inspired by The Bear. The workshop will conclude with a fourth session where participants will share their stories with friends, family, and community. This storytelling…

BR05 – Virtual Talk with Jim Rock

BR05 – Virtual Talk with Jim Rock James Rock is a citizen of the Dakota nation and Director of Indigenous Programming for the Marshall W. Alworth Planetarium at the University of Minnesota Duluth, where he also teaches ethno- and archaeoastronomy. Rock is an activist, consultant and author on archaeo- and ethno-astronomy and for sacred sites…

BR04 – Virtual Reading with Author Andrew Krivak

BR04 – Virtual Reading with Author Andrew Krivak White Bear Center for the Arts is pleased to welcome author Andrew Krivak for a virtual reading and conversation on Zoom. This event will connect the WBCA community with the author of our Big Read book choice, The Bear. Andrew Krivak is the author of three novels,…

BR14 – Marking Time

BR14 – Marking Time Instructor: Sue Swanson In Andrew Krivak’s The Bear, the girl tells time by reading signs in the natural world. How do we mark the passage of time now? How do we keep track of the seasons? We will study the Celtic cross quarter days as well as rituals to honor the…

Book Club in a Bag

Ramsey County Library is including The Bear in its Book Club in a Bag program. Each bag contains 10 copies of the title and a notebook with discussion questions, author information, recommended reading lists, bookmarks, information on the library, suggested reading lists, web resources, and information on how Book Club in a Bag works. For…