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The Neighborhood Association Council of Wauwatosa has announced its schedule of events to celebrate the fourth annual Tosa’s All-City Read program.

The idea behind the ACR is to create a common reading program designed to bring neighbors together and build a sense of camaraderie and community while promoting literacy at all ages.

The events complement the book “A Man Called Ove” by Swedish author Fredrik Backman, which was chosen by the NAC for Wauwatosa residents to read and discuss in January and February.

The NAC has planned the following events in an attempt to get as many neighbors involved in the ACR as possible:

  • A community discussion on “Embracing Cultural Diversity,” led by Ex Fabula fellows and the Frank Zeidler Center for Public Discussion at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 15 at the First Congregational Church.
  • A demonstration and tasting of Swedish and Persian cuisine with Il Mito Chef Michael Feker at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 6 at Whitman Middle School.
  • An afternoon of Swedish Culture and Swedish pancakes with representatives from the Swedish American Historical Society of Wisconsin at 1:30 p.m. Feb. 7 at the Muellner Building in Hart Park.
  • Disco dancing lessons with the music of Swedish band ABBA at 7 p.m. Feb. 10 at the Grand Hall at Tosa Pool.
  • A storytelling workshop with trainers from Ex Fabula at 1:30 p.m. Feb. 12 at the Wauwatosa Library and an opportunity to use those storytelling skills at a Story Slam at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 22 at Cranky Al’s Donuts.
  • The opportunity to paint a Swedish Dala horse at Arté Wine and Paint Bar from 7 to 9 p.m. Feb. 16. 
  • The movie “A Man Called Ove” at the Rosebud Cinema Drafthouse at 10:30 a.m. Feb. 18 and Feb. 19; and at 7 p.m. Feb. 20.
  • The Amazing Tosa Race Road Rally Feb. 19, which will send teams all over Tosa answering questions about Tosa landmarks related to the book, leaving at 1:30 p.m. from the city hall parking lot.
  • A Princess & Prince Tea Party to celebrate the fifth birthday of Princess Estelle of Sweden at 4 p.m. Feb. 23 at Café Blue.

There will also be monthlong events, including a “Do Something Sweet for Your Neighbor” movement, a collection for stray animals at North Shore Bank, a Book Club Contest, and Writing and Visual Arts contests for school children and adults.

All of the events except the Swedish and Persian food tasting and tea party are free. Full details and registration information for each event are available on the website at tosasallcityread.com/events.

Readers who aren’t in a neighborhood book club or those who would like an additional opportunity to discuss the book are invited to join free, public book discussions at Colectivo Coffee on Wells Street (7 p.m. Feb. 9), Design Vision Optical (10 a.m. Feb. 16), Ono Kine Grindz (6:30 p.m. Feb. 21), and Mt. Zion Lutheran Church (7 p.m. Feb. 27).

The book's main character Ove (pronounced OOH-vah) is a curmudgeon who has staunch principles, strict routines and a short fuse, according to the All-City Read website. People call him “the bitter neighbor from hell” and wonder if Ove is bitter just because they rarely see him walking around with a smile on his face.

"Behind the cranky exterior there is a story and a sadness," the site says. "So when one November morning a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove’s mailbox, it is the lead-in to a comical and heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unexpected friendship and the ancient art of backing up a U-Haul."

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