The Thing We Love Most About April in Lake Oswego: Lake Oswego Reads

Once again, the Lake Oswego Reads program has selected a book, How Much of These Hills Is Gold by C Pam Zhang, that invites participants to not only read and learn something but also to feel something too.

As one book reviewer said, “This book will stay with you for a long time for all the right reasons. It’s also gonna make you mad as hell in places.”

And another: “For those who want something gritty and uncomfortable, yet shimmering, poetic, and serene, this is a great choice.”

And finally, “It made me sad, it made me cringe, it made me put it down and abandon it and then take it back to continue.”

Luckily Lake Oswego Reads organizers have lined up a series of FREE events to help us all process what we read. Here are some of the highlights. For a complete list, visit the library’s website.

FIND A POT OF GOLD. The new City Hall Booktique has hidden three items that lead to a pot of gold. Bring your young gold miners in for a fun activity. Friday, April 2 from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., 380 A Avenue.

CALLIGRAPHY LESSON FOR KIDS. Tim Loh, Chinese Brush Artist, will offer families the opportunity to learn about the tools and techniques of Chinese calligraphy. Says Loh, “… brush calligraphy is the foundation of Chinese brush painting.” Mr. Loh will provide the materials for everyone to experience trying calligraphy themselves. Saturday, April 2 at 11:00 a.m. Lake Oswego Public Library, 706 Fourth Street.

STUDENT PANEL DISCUSSION. Listen in and walk in the shoes of LOSD students as they discuss the role of gender identity as young people in today’s day and age. Sunday, April 3 at 2:00 p.m. Pre-registration is required. Join with Zoom.

DISORIENT FILM FESTIVAL: CURTAIN UP! This film, about theater club students in an elementary school in New York’s Chinatown, won the Best Feature Documentary Award at DisOrient 2021 as well as the Audience Choice Award for Feature Documentary. Get ready to have your hearts won over by these young thespians as they face their fears and stereotypes. Sunday, April 3, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:45 p.m. Lakewood Center for the Arts, 368 S. State Street.

LAKE OSWEGO READS ART SHOW. Hear and see how local artists translated Zhang’s words into visual expressions that will be on display throughout April. Light refreshments will be served. Monday, April 4 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Lakewood Center for the Arts, 368 S. State Street.

MASSACRED FOR GOLD. In his book, Massacred for Gold, R. Gregory Nokes tells of the experiences of the tens of thousands of Chinese who journeyed across the Pacific to mine gold and build railroads throughout the American West. They go from being wanted to fill a labor shortage to being reviled when jobs became scarce, a hostility that drove the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, barring any more Chinese laborers, but allowing those in the country to remain. Wednesday, April 6 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Oswego Heritage house, 398 10th Street.

TRANSGENDER HISTORY IN THE 19TH CENTURY. Ms. Burleton, Program Director of TransActive Gender Project at Lewis & Clark, will explore the intersections between transgender history in the 19th century and how that was impacted by nonbinary Chinese immigrants. Friday, April 8 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Lake Oswego Public Library, 706 Fourth Street.

IN SEARCH OF LAKE OSWEGO’S CHINATOWN. Join historian Susanna Kuo for a guided walk in Old Town and George Rogers Park to learn about the Chinese workers who once lived and worked in Oswego. The walk will begin at the Iron Workers Museum on Wilbur Street and conclude at the iron furnace in lower George Rogers Park. Sunday, April 10 at 1:00 p.m. beginning at the Iron Workers Museum at 40 Wilbur Street and concluding at the iron furnace in lower George Rogers Park.

AS AMERICAN AS CHOP SUEY. This talk explores the experiences of Chinese immigrants and Chinese Americans through the lens of Chinese cuisine. Professor Glosser will examine Chinese restaurants as one strategy for finding a niche in the United States, the chop suey craze of the early 20th century, cookbooks written for non-Chinese, and the international developments of the 20th century that changed white American’s perspectives on China and Chinese Americans. Wednesday, April 13 at 7:00 p.m. Lake Oswego Public Library, 706 Fourth Street.

MAYOR’S BIKE RIDE. Mayor Joe Buck and friends will lead cyclists through Lake Oswego with stops at Iron Mountain Park to learn about Oswego’s early history as a mining town and at Babica Hen for a snack. Pre-registration and completed waiver is required. Saturday, April 23 from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., beginning at Millennium Plaza, 200 First Street.

PORTLAND CHINATOWN MUSEUM VISIT. Enrich your understanding of this year’s story and the themes it carries with a visit to Oregon’s first museum about Chinese American history, art and culture. Pre-registration is required. Sunday, April 24. Van leaves from the library at 1:30 p.m. for a 2:00 p.m. tour which should last an hour. There will be an additional 30 minutes of free time afterwards. You may also drive yourself and meet the group there but please indicate that when registering. Lake Oswego Library, 706 Fourth Street. Portland Chinatown Museum, 127 NW 3rd Avenue.

DUMPLING DEMO. Learn how to make two kinds of Chinese dumplings with Chef Abbie Qi, Liping Jin and Emily Zou. Check the website for recipe and ingredient list. Sunday, April 24 at 4:30 p.m. Pre-registration required. Join on Zoom.

LAN SU GARDEN TOUR. Considered one of the most authentic Chinese gardens outside of China, this is your chance to tour this Portland treasure. Pre-registration required. Tuesday, April 26. Meet at the library (706 Fourth Street) at 10:30 for a van ride to the tour at 11:00. Vans are scheduled to return to the library at 12:30.

C PAM ZHANG PRESENTS: HOW MUCH OF THESE HILLS IS GOLD: REIMAGINED HISTORIES. Hear the book’s author explain her research and her approach as well as other insights into the writing process and the role fiction can play in our understandings of history.
Questions for the author can be submitted ahead of time. Tickets are required and were given away on March 5. Friday, April 29 at 7:00 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Lakeridge High School Auditorium, 1235 Overlook Drive.

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About lovelakeoswego

I feel pretty lucky—I live where I work and I love where I live. As a Realtor in Lake Oswego, I get to share that enthusiasm with clients every day. Through this blog, with the help of my freelance writer wife, Genita, I’d like to share that enthusiasm with you. The quality of life you’ll find in Lake Oswego belies its size—there is so much to experience here from a fireworks show over the lake on the 4th of July to the Festival of the Arts--one of the premier arts events in the region. So please check in each week for another reason why I love Lake Oswego and who knows—maybe you’ll fall in love too! If you’re interested in experiencing Lake Oswego personally, please feel free to contact me either on my cell at (503) 939-9801, via email at or check my website by clicking the link in the "Contact me" section in the right-hand column. I would love to show you around.
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