The Ancash Earthquake (1970)

The 1970 Ancash earthquake was a severe undersea earthquake that affected the Peruvian region of Ancash, killing at least 50,000 people. Combined with a subsequent landslide, it was the most catastrophic natural disaster ever recorded in the history of Peru. The quake destabilized part of Mount Huascarán, an extinct volcano and Peru’s highest mountain, triggering a rock and snow avalanche that buried the towns of Yungay and Ranrahirca. What was the magnitude of the earthquake? Discuss

Annapolis Valley Apple Blossom Festival

Nova Scotia‘s Annapolis Valley is widely known for its apple orchards, which begin to flower in late May or early June. The area’s Apple Blossom Festival is a five-day celebration whose events are held throughout the 60 towns and villages of the Annapolis Valley. In addition to a children’s parade, sporting events, tours to view the apple blossoms, apple pie baking and eating contests, and a cooking competition, the festival includes the crowning of “Queen Annapolisa,” who is chosen from among 18 local princesses. Discuss

Walt Whitman (1819)

Whitman was an innovative American poet whose works dealt overtly with topics like sexuality while celebrating the collective experience of an idealized, democratic American life. In 1855, he published at his own expense Leaves of Grass, a volume of 12 poems. It was a commercial failure but became one of the most influential volumes of poetry in the history of American literature. Whitman’s much-recited poem “O Captain! My Captain!” was written as a tribute to what US president? Discuss

Yeomen Warders

Yeomen Warders, popularly known as Beefeaters, are ceremonial guardians of the Tower of London. In the past, they were responsible for guarding prisoners at the Tower and safeguarding the British crown jewels, but today they serve mainly as tour guides and are a tourist attraction in their own right. To become a Yeoman Warder, one must have served in the British armed forces for at least 22 years and have achieved certain distinctions during service. How did they get the nickname “Beefeaters”? Discuss


grace note – An extra note for embellishment, not necessary for the harmony or melody. More…

absolute music, abstract music, pure music – Absolute music (abstract music, pure music) is music for its own sake—concerned only with structure, melody, harmony, and rhythm. More…

air – An expressive succession of musical sounds—a melody or tune. More…

melody – From Greek melos, “song,” its early sense was “sweet music.” More…

Lincoln Memorial Dedicated (1922)

The Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC, has been the site of many historic events, including Martin Luther King Jr.’s legendary “I Have a Dream” speech during the 1963 March on Washington. The building, designed by Henry Bacon and styled after a Greek temple, has 36 massive columns, representing the states of the Union at the time of Lincoln’s death. Inside the building is a heroic statue of Abraham Lincoln by Daniel Chester French. On what unit of American currency is the memorial depicted? Discuss

Indian Arrival Day

The people of Trinidad and Tobago observe May 30 as Indian Arrival Day. This holiday honors the nation’s citizens of Indian descent and acknowledges their contribution to the social and cultural landscape of Trinidad and Tobago. In particular, it recalls the arrival of the first boats from India in 1845. The holiday is celebrated with reenactments of the arrival of the first ships bringing Indians to Trinidad, parades honoring the history of the nation’s Indian citizens and their festivals, and various cultural events. Discuss