New San Mateo library celebrates one-year anniversary

With a birthday cake from San Mateo’s own Kathy’s Kreative Kakes, the new San Mateo Public Library building will celebrate its one-year anniversary Sunday with a full afternoon of terrific activities and entertainment.

Kicking off the program at 1 p.m. will be cake decorating with Kathy’s Kreative Kakes. At the same time, there will be a screening of a film about Persian rug-making, and, on the second-floor reading room, a music session with guitarists Marc Games and Ted Randazzo.

At 1:30 p.m., the Hillbarn Theatre Conservatory Youth Group will perform “Summer Nights” from its successful summer musical “Grease” in the Oak Meeting Room.

“Our sold-out production captures an era of the ’50s and ’60s that so many people remember. Since the ’70s, this show has maintained a definite place in musical theater history,” said Joe Duffy, the conservatory’s interim director.

In addition, two cast members from the original work “Kids Play,” created last summer by Ken Mederna, will sing a duet, “Will You Be There?”

At 2:30 p.m. in the Oak Room, famed bilingual educator, children’s author and recording artist Jose-Luis Orozco will appear in concert. Orozco is widely recognized as an expert in children’s music, promoting the Spanish language and Latin American culture.

Born in Mexico City, Orozco as a youngster learned many songs from his paternal grandmother. After joining the Mexico City Boy’s Choir, he traveled throughout the world. He moved to California, where he earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley and a master’s degree from the University of San Francisco.

San Mateo’s Jazz-Ma-Tazz dance troupe will showcase jazz, hip-hop and lyrical dancing at 3:30 p.m. Under the direction of Gina Lorton, the group of sixth- to 12th-graders performs regularly at city events, senior centers and the county fair.

At 2 p.m., Mayor Jack Matthews, library officials, the board of trustees and public library foundation members will preside over a cake-cutting ceremony.

Speaking of food, fresh popcorn will be available on the mezzanine level all day; for another all-day activity, paper crafts and art are on the schedule in the children’s area.

The day’s last event is a martial arts show with the award-winning Omei Wushu Fremont.

According to city librarian Ben Ocon, the library received more than 530,000 visitors last year.

Ocon said, “Becauseof the larger space and meeting rooms we posted over 150 programs for adults and children. These included author readings, music programs, with concerts and recitals for families, business workshops and seminars in the biotech area. Plans for this coming year include launching a passport service for county residents. We also plan to establish a foundation center where nonprofit groups in San Mateo County may obtain information to apply for grants. We are very proud of our wonderful volunteer program offering a wide variety of positions for all ages.”

The library is at 55 W. Third Ave., San Mateo. For more information, call (650) 522-7855 or visit www.smplibrary.org.

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