Upcoming Speaker Events

Upcoming Speaker Events

Nov 18, 2020

We at the River Bookshop really believe that hosting a number of Speaker Series is key to our ambition to be a powerful Third Place that educates, inspires, engages and entertains our community. We have already commenced series on Racial Justice, Climate Crisis, Sports, Nature and History. Health and Wellness launches in January, to be followed by Leadership and Urban Planning

We plan to take a small break over the holidays to host our first annual Christmas Market (full details on that in our December 1st newsletter), but we are still going to very busy with seven events before that time. Our speaker series will restart in the new year.


Peter Sloly, "Systemic Racism in Policing" - November 18


We've already announced our second presentation in our Racial Justice series, Ottawa Chief of Police Peter Sloly on November 18 at 7 pm, but with defunding the police, racism and Black Lives Matter so much in the news nowadays we thought we would remind you that Sloly’s talk on “Systemic Racism in Policing” is available on Zoom and there are still a couple of seats open in the Hole in the Wall. The event is free. Email info@riverbookshop.com to book your seat or sign up for the Zoom link.


David Miller "Solved: How the World's Great Cities are Fixing the Climate Crisis" - November 24

David Miller is the the North American Director for the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, a former president of WWF Canada and was the mayor of Toronto from 2003-2010. During Miller's mayoral tenure, Richard Peddie worked closely with him to bring MLS and Toronto FC to Canada. Miller was also the creator of Toronto’s Transit City LRT plan that was axed by Mayor Ford. A plan, that if it had been executed, would have made public transit much much better in Toronto today.

On November 24 we will host the second talk in our Climate Crisis series when Miller will talk about his new book “Solved - How the World’s Great Cities are Fixing the Climate Crisis”. David will talk about how large progressive cities like Oslo, NYC, Sydney and Shenzhen are addressing the crisis, but his message is relevant for smaller communities in Essex County as well.

Purchase of “Solved” is required to watch his talk on Zoom or at the Hole in the Wall.


Brian Burke, "Burke's Law: A Life in Hockey" - November 25

I must admit I am a big fan of Brian Burke. Yes he is bombastic, gruff, and sometimes a little profane, but he is a great story teller, knows his hockey, is a strong leader and a generous stand up friend. Brian will talk about his new book “Burke’s Law” - its a great read. It covers his hockey playing career, time at Harvard, working in the NHL, time as a General Manager of five NHL teams and now his role in media. It is also very personal and insightful. I am really looking forward to going to toe to toe with Burkie when I interview him on November 25 at 7 pm.

Purchase of “Burke’s Law” is required to watch his talk on Zoom or at the Hole in the Wall.

Rick Vaive, "Catch 22: My Battles in Hockey and Life" November 26

Only three Maple Leafs scored over 50 goals in a regular season. Rick Vaive did it three times: 54, 52 and 51.

On November 26 Rick will be interviewed by Scott Morrison on his new book “Catch 22 - My Battles In Hockey and Life”. In this book Rick gets to set the record straight by telling his own story about: playing for the Leafs under the late Harold Ballard, being stripped of his captaincy and traded out of town, growing up in an environment filled with alcohol and alcoholism; and his own personal struggles and battles.

I am delighted Rick is coming back (virtually) to Amherstburg again. Back when the Libro Centre opened Rick lead an Old Timers Leaf team that demolished a local all star team made up of guys half their age. Purchase of “Catch 22” (no not the Joesph Heller book) is required to watch his talk on Zoom or in the Hole in the Wall.


Dr. Beverly Jacobs "Reconciling with Mother Earth" November 30

This event is postponed - stay tuned for updates. 

During this time when people are following (or should be following) what’s happening in the Haudenosaunee (Six Nations) territory, at 1492 Land Back Lane in Caledonian, or the situation with Mi’Kmaq lobster fishermen are being attacked by local fisherman - the rights of Canada’s Indigenous people have seldom been more in the news. At the River Bookshop we respect the treaty rights of our Indigenous peoples and that’s why we start off all our talks with a Land Acknowledgement.

On November 30 we are very pleased to be hosting the University of Windsor’s new associate dean (academic) who sees her role at the university to educate students and members of our community on the effect Canada’s own colonial laws have had on Indigenous people. Born and raised on the Six Nations of the Grand River Territory and a member fo the Mohawk Nation of the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy, Bear Clan, Bev is understandably knowledgeable and passionate about the issues facing her people. Her talk that night is entitled “Reconciling with Mother Earth” and is about.the challenges and injustices the Indigenous people have faced for over 400 years.

Don’t miss this important third talk in our Racial Justice series and learn what a Two Row Wampum Belt is, and why it is relevant in dealings with Indigenous legal issues. This event is free and will be available on Zoom.



Meg Reiner "A Century Ago: Amherstburg in the 1920's" December 2



On December 2nd, Meg Reiner of the local Marsh Historical Collection will present the second in our History Series “A Century Ago: Amherstburg in the 1920’s. The photograph above shows an aerial view of the town in the 1920’s - so much has changed!

Meg’s very interesting talk will include prohibition, industries and entertainment, and a general idea of life in the town in that decade. We, at River Bookshop, are delighted that Meg and the Marsh Collection have agreed to put this talk on as we know from research that residents wish to learn more about the history of the Amherstburg. We also think that the 1920’s decade is a perfect topic to be presented in our Hole in the Wall because the theme of the room is the 1920’s: F Scott Fitzgerald, the roaring 20’s, jazz and yes, rum running.

If you come to the event please check out the photographs of the town, in the Hole in the Wall, that the Marsh Collection and the Freedom Museum provided that capture our town’s past so well. This event is free and will also be available on Zoom

As you can see we have a broad range of speakers. You may not be interested in all of them but we are confident that one or more will catch your eye. Go to riverbookshop.com to book your space.


Penguin Random House National Virtual Events

In November we are also partnering with Penguin Random House for two live virtual events - Margaret Atwood & Lorna Crozier this week on the 18th and Rachel Joyce on the 28th. A purchase or pre-order of the qualifying book gets you exclusive access to these virtual events.

See you soon,

Richard, Colleen, Lori and the River Bookshop team.