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Library Reading Club opens new chapter

For the first time in its 72-year history, the Library Reading Club in Cloquet can count men among its ranks. About a dozen people, including three men and a toddling boy, turned out for the Monday club meeting held in the Evergreen Gracious Seni...

For the first time in its 72-year history, the Library Reading Club in Cloquet can count men among its ranks.

About a dozen people, including three men and a toddling boy, turned out for the Monday club meeting held in the Evergreen Gracious Senior Living community room. The change in gender rules came with a recent change in leadership.

The club was in danger of folding in December until Anne Dugan, Carlton County Historical Society director and Wrenshall resident, presented the group with a plan to keep it alive.

"We thought it would be a darn shame if the oldest reading club in the area was left to die," she said.

Dugan and friends plan to keep many of the traditions of the club alive - from creating hand-made "invitations" to book club events - to using the same basket for treats that a member adorned with rosemaling many years ago.

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The objective of the club according to traditional bylaws reads, "...to carry on a program of reading and discussion on subjects of common interest to the club." A later addition said, "Anyone who loves to read and is willing to prepare a program is welcome to join."

The first book of the year was "Schulz and Peanuts, A Biography," by David Michaelis. The meeting included much lively discussion about Schulz's life with supplemental comics, cartoons and books.

Future reads include "Watchman," by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, "The Fountainhead," by Ayn Rand and "The Unsettling of America," by Wendall Barry. Each year the club tackles one classic novel, one non-fiction, one fiction and one readers' choice.

Those interested in joining should contact Anne Dugan at 879-1938.

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