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October 4, 2019 - January 5, 2020 | First Floor

Discover the delectable offerings of Culinary Curiosity, a collaborative exhibition that celebrates the preparing and sharing of food across time and cultures. This extraordinary collection is on public view for the first time outside its original home at Chicago’s Kendall College at National Louis University. The more than 250 rare cooking tools, utensils and gadgets are on display across four area libraries.

At the Arlington Heights Memorial Library (AHML), view more than 50 culinary artifacts and two historic stoves. Marvel at the technical innovations in the world of food and cooking implements. Topics include Hearth to Cookstove, A Tasting Menu, Appetizers and Amuse-Bouches, Mudge Sterilizer and Steam Cookers.

Continue your exploration of Culinary Curiosity at Aurora Public Library, Gail Borden Public Library District and Schaumburg Township District Library. Each library features a uniquely-themed part of the collection. Visit some or all of the library exhibits and collect stamps at each location for a chance to win culinary-themed prizes.

Culinary Curiosity, made possible by the Kendall College Trust, is presented with the generous support of the Friends of the Library at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library. Items in the exhibit are from the personal collection of food industry veterans Mel and Janet Mickevic.

Be Our Guest and Share Your Story

Be our guest At the Table where you can add your personal touch by sharing your experiences, stories or memories around food and shared meals with family and friends. Visit the exhibit on the first floor of the library to participate. Your story may be featured on the library’s social media. 

Pick up a Passport and Earn Stamps to Win Prizes

Culinary Curiosity passports are available at each participating library. Visit two- or all- Culinary Curiosity library exhibits to get a stamp at each location and earn prizes. Visit two library exhibits, and you can receive a gift at any participating library – show your passport at the Checkout desk to redeem your prize. Once you have visited all the participating libraries, drop your passport with stamps from all four libraries in a box by the exhibit to be entered to win the grand prize. Winners will be announced by January 10, 2020. You do not have to be present to win. Passports are available at all participating libraries beginning in October. Ask staff at any library if you need assistance.

Join a Guided Tour

Learn more about the exhibit by joining a tour guided by our volunteer docent. Tours meet near the elevators by the Marketplace on the first floor, and are approximately 20 minutes long. For all ages. Drop in. Please check back for dates and times for upcoming tours.

Contribute to a Community Cookbook

The libraries participating in this exhibit are compiling a community cookbook. Share your recipes at
Feed Your Culinary Curiosity with A to Z World Food
After you’ve seen the Culinary Curiosity exhibit at the library, keep your culinary adventures going with the A to Z World Food database. You can explore US and world regional cuisines and culinary customs, and print out recipes to try yourself. At-home use requires login with your AHML cardholder username/password. Need help? Contact the library for assistance at 847-392-0100.

Related Programs

Wednesday, October 23, 7:008: 30pm/Cardinal Room
Thursday, October 24, 7:009: 00pm/Hendrickson - South, Hendrickson - North
Monday, October 28, 7:008: 30pm/See Description for Location
If your status is Confirmed Registration, your spot for the event is confirmed.

If registration for this event is full, you will be placed on a waiting list. Wait listed registrants are moved to the confirmed registration list (in the order of registration) when cancelations are received. You will receive an email notification if you are moved from the wait list to the confirmed registration list.

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The Library offers various venues in which patrons can contribute content that is accessible to the public.  These include, but are not limited to, blogs, reviews, forums, and social tagging on the Library’s website and catalog.  Any instance in which a patron posts written or recorded content to any of the Library’s venues that are accessible to the public is considered “patron-generated content” and is subject to this policy.
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