Affordable Care Act: Free Albuquerque Info Sessions

November 7, 2013 by  
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If you’re one of the people seeking information on the new Affordable Care Act, your choices and how the new health care act will affect you, free help is at hand!

Yes, we’ve all heard the news stories about the Affordable Care Act – or Obama Care as it’s known. For those individuals affected by the health care laws and feeling confused about their options, Albuquerque and Bernalillo County Library offers a series of free information sessions.

The ABC Library Affordable Care Act information sessions are given in partnership with New Mexico Health Connections. (Scroll down the page at the link to see them all.) Admission is free but seating is limited, so these sessions are on a first-come, first-served basis.

Upcoming one-hour sessions on the Affordable Care Act include:

  • Friday November 8 at 2 pm: Cherry Hills Library, 6901 Barstow NE
  • Saturday November 9 at 10 am: South Valley Library, 3904 Isleta SW
  • Tuesday November 12 at 1 pm: Erna Fergusson Library, 3700 San Mateo NE
  • Thursday November 14 at 5 pm: Special Collections Library, 423 Central NE
  • Saturday November 16 at 1 pm: East Mountain Library, 1 Old Tijeras Rd., Tijeras

Others sessions are offered by Blue Cross Blue Shield of NM at the Main Library on Copper, on various dates. More sessions may also be added at the link.

I am one of the self-employed people trying to figure out whether to stay with my existing “grandfathered”  health care plan, which costs a lot for very few benefits… unless I fall out of a plane or something equally drastic. Or whether it would be better to switch from that ‘catastrophic health insurance’ plan to a different plan in the Health Insurance Marketplace at www.healthcare.gov.

So far I’ve managed to get myself signed up for the site… but I can’t actually log in to see the plans available. Sigh.  However, two of my friends who could not afford any health insurance at all before HAVE successfully navigated the site, and they are delighted with the good value plans they found.

Well, they promise the website technical hitches will be solved by the end of November.  Fingers crossed!

If you’re in the same or similar boat as me and uncertain about your Affordable Care Act options, I hope the free info sessions by ABC Library will be helpful.  If you go, let us know how useful it was in the comments box below!

–Tania


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Free Amp Concerts: Wagogo, Mala Mana, QTango

July 31, 2013 by  
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The community series of free AMP Concerts gives everyone the chance to hear some great live music from local and touring bands not just on the cheap, but without paying a single cent. Reservations are usually required in advance and it’s easy to book online.

On the current lineup of free AMP Concerts, August and September 2013 brings a several familiar and popular names to play for our pleasure. Book a space at the concerts via the above link.

WAGOGO: August 5

The Albuquerque band Wagogo performs on Monday August 5 at 12:30 pm at the N4th Theater, 4904 4th Street NW. The group mixes up Chicano and Mexican influences with the spirit music of Zimbabwe.

MALA MANA: August 10 and 17

Mala Maña perform in two free concerts on August 10 and 17.  The Albuquerque-based all-female percussion band plays music from merengue to reggae, and mixing up the Latin, African and global music styles.

The Mala Maña concert on Saturday August 10 is held at 12 noon at East Mountain Library in Tijeras. (Nice and cool up there!) The concert on Saturday August 17 will be at 12 noon at Taylor Ranch Library, 5700 Bogart NW.

Sounds like a very pleasant way to groove it out on a Saturday afternoon. (Yes, I’m very old. That’s why I say things like “groove it out”.)

QTANGO: September 5 and 7

QTango from Albuquerque (could ya guess it by the name?) plays authentic Argentine tango music of the Golden Age of tango. The first of the two QTango concerts is on Thursday September 5 at 5:30 pm at the Special Collections Library, 423 Central Avenue NE.  The second is on  Saturday September 7 at 1 pm at the Ernie Pyle Library, 900 Girard SE.  I do love the Ernie Pyle Library, it’s one of my most frequent haunts to pick up and drop off my books. The house is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and designated a National Historic Landmark.

The organizers request that music-lovers reserve a space at the free AMP Concerts online in advance.

–Tania

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Día de los Niños Día de los Libros – Children’s Book Events: April 24 – 30

April 23, 2013 by  
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The Albuquerque Bernalillo County Library is holding fun free events for kids and families from April 24 to April 30, 2013, at various locations. It’s all part of El Día de los Niños – Día de los Libros or Children’s Day – Book Day celebrations. Get a free book, too!

Children’s Day-Book Day is a multicultural celebration that runs over a week at various ABC libraries, with storytellers, music, and drumming. One of the highlights is the presentation by Four Shillings Short of Around the World in 30 Instruments. This is a nationally touring act and they’ll play traditional music from all over creation, including the Americas, Ireland, and Scotland, on 30 different instruments such as the hammered dulcimer, bouzouki, Medieval and Renaissance woodwinds, tin whistles, sitar, and more. Sounds like great fun!

At the end of each free event, children will be given a free book to take home, as long as supplies last.

See the full schedule of Día de los Niños Children’s Book Events at the ABC libraries website, as events may be updated or change times. But according to a press release from the library, this is the line-up:

April 24, North Valley Library, 11 am: Songs and Stories with Sean Etigson

April 25, Tony Hillerman Library, 10:30 am: Storytime Laura Metzler

April 25, Main Library, 10:30 am: Songs and Stories with Andy Mason

April 25, Los Griegos Library, 11:15 am: Storytelling with Steven Plá

April 26, Alamosa Library, 10:15 am: Floppo Puppet Theatre with Loren Kahn

April 26, Westgate Library, 10:30 am: Songs and Stories with Andy Mason

April 26, Ernie Pyle Library, 10:30 am: Around the World in 30 Instruments with Four Shillings Short

April 26, East Mountain Library, 3 pm: Around the World in 30 Instruments with Four Shillings Short

April 27, Cherry Hills Library, 2 pm: Around the World in 30 Instruments with Four Shillings Short

April 27, Juan Tabo Library, 3 pm: Storytelling with Steven Plá

April 27, San Pedro Library, 2 pm: Songs and Stories with Sean Etigson

April 29, Taylor Ranch Library, 11 am: Around the World in 30 Instruments with Four Shillings Short

April 30, South Valley Library, 11 am: Isotopes Storytime

April 30, Erna Fergusson Library, 11 am: Songs and Stories with Andy Mason

April 30, Lomas Tramway Library, 6 pm: Around the World in 30 Instruments with Four Shillings Short

–Tania

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Community Baby Shower: March 24

March 20, 2013 by  
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The Albuquerque Public Library Foundation has teamed up with ABC Library to host a new series of community baby showers for new parents and expecting parents. The first one is on March 24, 2013.

The free quarterly events aim to encourage parents to use and enjoy library resources and programs, and foster a love of learning in kids from an early age.

Parents and parents-to-be are invited to the first free Community Baby Shower on Sunday, March 24 from 2:30 – 4 pm at the Erna Fergusson Branch Library. Take baby along too so they can gargle and giggle at other babies while the moms and dads chat too! The event includes crafts, gifts, and a chance to learn about Albuquerque and Bernalillo County library resources and community information.

Partners in the program include St. Joseph Community Health, ABQ Health Partners, the New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force, March of Dimes, Women, Infants and Children (WIC), and Albuquerque Business Education Compact.

Erna Fergusson Branch Library is located at 3700 San Mateo Boulevard NE.

–Tania

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Free Movies: Books to the Big Screen

January 3, 2013 by  
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Albuquerque’s Books to the Big Screen free movie series celebrates books that have been adapted to film. I’m celebrating too as you don’t have to pay a cent to enjoy these film favorites.

The series runs through January 2013 in an initiative by Albuquerque and Bernalillo County Libraries, partnering with various screening locations including the Guild Cinema and the South Broadway Cultural Center.  There are movies here for adults and kids, starting on January 5.

The Books to the Big Screen free movies on the schedule at time of writing are:

    • January 5 at 12:30 pm  : Wise Blood directed by John Huston, based on the Flannery O’Connor novel, at  The Guild Cinema.
    • January 12 at 12:30 pm :  Watership Down based on the Richard Adams book, at The Guild Cinema.
    • January 12 at 2 pm : Charlotte’s Web from the children’s book by E.B. White, at the South Broadway Cultural Center’s John Lewis Theater.
    • January 19 at 11 am : Sense and Sensibility from the Jane Austen novel and starring Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, Hugh Grant and Alan Rickman, at the Downtown Main Library on Copper.
    • January 26 at 11 am : Little Women based on the Louisa May Alcott classic and starring Winona Ryder, at the Downtown Main Library.
    • January 26 at 2 pm : Vertigo, the Alfred Hitchcock thriller starring James Stewart and Kim Novak, based on the French novel by Pierre Boileau and Thomas Narcejac, at the Special Collections Library on the corner of Central and Edith.

Admission is free – check out the Books to the Big Screen site for updates and more info.

–Tania

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Free Literary Moon Party

November 8, 2011 by  
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The Literary Moon After Hours Party at the Tony Hillerman Library includes owls, authors, and telescopes, which for some reason makes me think of Harry Potter. I think he would approve of this free event! Plus, if you’re in Santa Fe this week, come say hi to me at a free public event at the Tony Hillerman Writers Conference.

The Literary Moon After Hours Party at the Tony Hillerman Library goes moon-watching on the evening of Saturday November 12,  from 7 pm – 10 pm.

It’s free and open to all ages,  with some of the action taking place inside, and night sky viewing outside (obviously, otherwise the ceiling gets in the way) with telescopes and guidance by The Albuquerque Astronomical Society.

They’ll also have rescued owls from NM Wildlife Rescue – I love owls and saw the most darling tiny pygmy owl at a recent event. I *think* that was a Wildlife Rescue of New Mexico bird too.

Other activities include crafts, face painting, lunar stories, and lunar lessons with The Science Guys, plus discussions with local authors S.M. Stirling and John Miller. The Tony Hillerman Library is located at 8205 Apache Street NE, behind the Hoffmantown Shopping Center.

Speaking of Tony Hillerman, I’m on faculty at the Tony Hillerman Writers Conference in Santa Fe this week, and if you’ll be in Santa Fe, the conference opens with a free public event on Thursday November 10 at 7 pm, on A Spy’s Guide to Santa Fe with E.B. Held, author of A Spy’s Guide to Santa Fe and Albuquerque, and Director of Intelligence and Counterintelligence at the Department of Energy in Washington DC. He sounds like a very busy man.

You do NOT have to be registered for the Tony Hillerman Writers Conference to turn up for that free evening. Find me and say hi if you do! The venue is Hotel Santa Fe, 1501 Paseo de Peralta,  by Santa Fe’s Guadalupe Railyard District.

–Tania

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Amazon Prime Free Kindle Library

November 6, 2011 by  
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Free Kindle book loans for Amazon Prime members, free book downloads even if you don’t own a Kindle, & free Amazon Prime memberships…

Amazon just announced that Amazon Prime subscribers can use the new Kindle Owners Lending Library
to borrow books for free. Amazon Prime costs $79 a year and includes unlimited free two day shipping and streaming of movies and TV shows. (They’re clearly trying to give Netflix a run for their money, and I’m still considering whether to switch all my viewing to Amazon Prime after the recent Netflix price increase.)

If you’re a Kindle owner with Amazon Prime you can start borrowing from a selection of thousands of books including many bestsellers, up to one book a month with no due return date. If you don’t have Amazon Prime you can get a free one month trial, with unlimited instant video streaming of movies and TV shows. Be sure to cancel your subscription before the free trial ends or select “do not upgrade” once you’re registered for the freebie, if you don’t want your credit card to be automatically charged for the $79 subscription at the end of the trial period.

Don’t have a Kindle?

Even if you don’t own a Kindle, you can read many of the free Kindle books, downloaded to a PC or other mobile device, using Amazon’s free app at the links:

Kindle Popular Book Classics that can also be downloaded to your computer or other mobile device, include Dracula, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Pride and Prejudice, Fairy Tales Every Child Should Know, Little Women, Treasure Island, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, and many more.

Kindle Store Limited Time Offers with freebies also available on PC include:

There are many more in the list but these free offers can change quickly, so may vary.

Free Amazon Prime: College Students and Child Carers

College students signing up for the free Amazon Student membership program also get Amazon Prime free for one year with free two-day shipping and no minimum order, plus student discounts.  The free offer does not include movie streaming, nor the Kindle library.

Similarly, the free Amazon Mom program is not just for moms – anyone caring for a baby or child can join – and benefits include free two-day shipping for three months, not just on child products but across all categories, 20% off diapers, and if you shop in the Baby Store, for every $25 you spend they’ll add another month of free two-day shipping to your account, up to a year’s worth. There’s no restriction on the child’s age and the program is open to moms-to-be, dads, grandparents, aunts, or anyone caring for a child. The Amazon Mom Frequently Asked Questions gives the full skinny, and again the free offer doesn’t include movie streaming.

Free ABQ Library eBooks, Video, Audio Book Downloads

Albuquerque and Bernalillo County libraries let you borrow ebooks, audio books, and videos online and download them at home, from the Albuquerque and Bernalillo County Libraries Digital Media website.

You need a library card to download up to four titles at a time, and “borrow” them for ten days. Once the lending time is up, titles automatically return to the library. If the title you want is borrowed already, you can place a hold on it – up to five titles at a time.

As far as I can fathom, the free downloads work on Windows PCs and Mac computers, iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry, and other devices, according to the type of digital media you’re borrowing. For example, ebooks are in Adobe PDFs, and audio books come in MP3 and other formats.  For some loans it may be necessary to download free software, provided at the library site.

Hope you find something entertaining in there to enjoy!

–Tania Note: I’ve given you my Amazon affiliate links. If you feel like sending a little love this way to help support ABQ on the Cheap, please use the link. Thanks!

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The Big Read: Edgar Allan Poe Free Events

October 6, 2011 by  
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Albuquerque’s Big Read in October celebrates the work of Edgar Allan Poe  – perfect spooky timing to lead us into Halloween!  A bunch of free events take place throughout the month, here are some of the highlights I’m spotting on the ABC Libraries website.

Albuquerque’s Big Read Edgar Allen Poe events include:

  • October 7: Edgar Allen Poe Funeral Party at the KiMo Theatre, free admission, 7 – 9 pm, doors open at 6:30 pm.
  • October 8:  Who’s Who in the World of Black Birds Bird walk and presentation by Ranger Karen Herzenberg at 8:30am. Free at the Rio Grande Nature Center, but parking is $3 per vehicle.
  • October 8:  Poe’s Weekend of Woe from 1 – 3 pm at Cherry Hills Library with family activities including Spin the Wheel of Misfortune (ha!), creepy puzzles, scavenger hunt, and readings.
  • October 15: Free House of Usher film screening starring Vincent Price at the Guild Cinema, 12:30 pm. It’s free, but get there early to nab a seat.
  • October 22:  Free The Pit and the Pendulum Film Screening of the 1960’s movie also featuring Vincent Price at The Guild Cinema, at 12:30pm. It’s first-come, first-served on seats.

Check out the full roster of Albuquerque’s Big Read Edgar Allen Poe events for details on these and many other literary horror happenings, from a poetry slam to a genealogy workshop.

–Tania

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Free Baraka Moon Concerts

September 9, 2011 by  
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Baraka Moon appear at Globalquerque 2011 next weekend, but they’re also giving three free performances on September 14 and 15, 2011.

Baraka Moon is a trio of musicians from USA, Pakistan, and Great Britain. Baraka is apparently the Sufi word for ‘blessing’ and the trio performs world music inspired by trance songs, and blending in Middle Eastern, Indian, and African vibes too, as well as the Australian didgeridoo. Wow! That’s a positive United Nations of influences.

The free events are two daytime AMP Concerts featuring one or two members of the band and including discussions, and one free evening concert by the full band as part of Old Town’s Wildcard Wednesday.

  • Wednesday September 14 at noon at the Tony Hillerman Library (8205 Apache NE) featuring Baraka Moon’s Stephen Kent with the didgeridoo. Reserve your free AMP Concert tickets online in advance.
  • Wednesday September 14 at 7 – 8 pm at Albuquerque Old Town Plaza in the Gazebo as part of Old Town’s Wildcard Wednesday. The full Baraka Moon trio performs from 7 pm, and before that you can hear Michael Tait Tafoya playing four different instruments all on his ownsome, from 6 – 7 pm.
  • Thursday September 15 at 12 noon at the South Valley Library (3904 Isleta SW) with Baraka Moon members Sukhawat Ali Khan and Geoffrey Gordon presenting ‘Music of India and Pakistan’. Reserve your free AMP Concert tickets online in advance.

–Tania

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Free eBooks, Video, Audio Book Downloads for Library Members

August 24, 2011 by  
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Albuquerque and Bernalillo County libraries let you borrow ebooks, audio books, and videos online and download them at home. Free books online – love it! This truly is the 21st century, and I’m just catching up with it…

The Albuquerque and Bernalillo County Libraries Digital Media website is a one-stop online library for ebooks and audio books including fiction and nonfiction, and videos from classic films and comedies, to documentaries, dramas, cartoons and animations, and children’s videos.

Of course you need a library card, and members may download up to four titles at a time, and “borrow” them for ten days. Once the lending time is up, titles automatically return to the library. If the title you want is borrowed already, you can place a hold on it – up to five titles at a time.

As far as I can fathom, the free downloads work on Windows PCs and Mac computers, iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry, and other devices, according to the type of digital media you’re borrowing. For example, ebooks are in Adobe PDFs, and audio books come in MP3 and other formats.  For some loans it may be necessary to download free software, provided at the library site. 

The ebooks can be transferred to the Barnes & Noble Nook with these instructions, but can’t be read on Amazon’s Kindle. (But you can get the top 100 free books for Kindle at Amazon.)

It’s a 24-hour service, so I reckon this is super-handy if you find youself bored one night and you want some quick free entertainment. It’s great if you’re traveling too, and didn’t make it to the library before you left town. And at a time when Netflix just increased its prices on certain plans… need I say more? The video selection obviously isn’t as huge as a commercial site, but hey, it’s free!

Find all the titles to borrow and tutorials at the Albuquerque and Bernalillo County Libraries Digital Media website.

–Tania. Note: I’ve given you my affiliate link for the Amazon Kindle freebies. If you feel like sending a little love this way to help support ABQ on the Cheap, please use the links.

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I WISH YOU A GOOD LIFE.