Jesup fundraiser combines great food with great books

BAR HARBOR — The first of a series of literary and culinary fundraisers for the Jesup Memorial Library kicks off at the Acacia House on High Street on Saturday, Jan. 10. Pages & Repasts combines good food with a literary theme, and each event will have a different host.

“The Jesup serves an astonishing diversity of people in ways most of us don’t even know,” said Jill Goldthwait, who along with her husband Sheldon Goldthwait, will host one of the dinners. “I’m happy to return the favor.”

At Acacia House on Jan. 10, brunch begins at 11 a.m. in Lothlórien, the Elven forest realm featured in J.R.R. Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings.” Ten spots are available. Feast on fruit, pastry, a main course and a hot and cold beverage, all for just $25 per person. All proceeds benefit the Jesup.

On Saturday, Jan. 31, join host Judith Swazey at her home for The Wicked Good MDI Mystery Dinner. This isn’t a “whodunnit” mystery; diners will be given clues to what each course will be in this meal catered by Cas Dowden. Paired with a discussion of favorite mystery writers, this will be a fun evening. It’s open to six people, and the cost is $50 per person.

Linda Greenlaw’s “The Hungry Ocean” is the theme for a meal on Saturday, Feb. 28, at the home of Mary Ratner. It is open to 10 people, and the cost is $50 per person.

The Goldthwaits host on Saturday, March 14, with a meal devoted to writing about food and inspired by Art Buchwald, who said, “Dinner is not what you do in the evening before something else. Dinner is the evening.” The cost is $50 per person, and the meal is open to eight people.

The final Pages & Repasts dinner is hosted by the Jesup at the Saltair Inn on Saturday, April 11, at 7 p.m. Dinner with Mr. Darcy will feature talk about Jane Austen’s classic “Pride and Prejudice” along with a menu inspired by Austen’s novels. It’s open to eight people, and the cost is $75 per person.

Pages & Repasts is a fun way to help us raise critical funds. “We’re grateful to our hosts,” said library director Ruth A. Eveland. “Lively conversations about books over good food is definitely the recipe for a great time.”

All tickets will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis at the Jesup’s front desk. Sign up in person, by calling 288-4245 or by emailing Melinda Rice at [email protected]

The Jesup is a private nonprofit that serves as the public library for Bar Harbor, but receives less than 5% of its annual funding from the town. Endowments provide 49%. The rest must be raised by the Jesup.

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