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The first 100 attendees will receive a free copy of Melissa Gilbert’s memoir Back to the Prairie: A Home Remade, A Life Rediscovered.

A home remade, a life rediscovered

Melissa Gilbert

Her previous books include Prairie Tale: A Memoir and (2009) and the children's book Daisy and Josephine (2014).

7 p.m. Wednesday, November 30, 2022
Campus Center West Auditorium,
University at Albany
1400 Washington Avenue, Albany NY 12222
View map

Free and open to the public.

Melissa Gilbert endeared herself to America as Laura Ingalls on the classic TV show, "Little House on the Prairie" (1974-1983). She starred subsequently in numerous made-for-TV movies and served two terms as president of the Screen Actors Guild (2001-2005).

Read an interview with Melissa Gilbert published in the Times Union.

In 2018, she and her husband Timothy Busfield moved to a rustic cottage on 14 acres in the Catskills, where they grow their own food and raise chickens. With self-deprecating humor, she recounts her quest to lead a simpler life— with all of its unexpected mishaps and challenges— in the new book, Back to the Prairie: A Home Remade, A Life Rediscovered (2022). Publishers Weekly called the book, “utterly entertaining."

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Melissa Gilbert

It was a standing room only crowd at the Campus Center West Auditorium

What a wonderful evening with Melissa Gilbert!

Joe Donahue and Melissa talked onstage like old friends and we treated to a heartwarming and emotional conversation with stories from "Little House on the Prairie" and Hollywood days, her mentor/father figure Michael Landon, her mother's advice when she was getting married to actor Timothy Busfield ("Don't F this one up"), her thoughts on "aging gratefully," and life in the Catskills with her pink crossbow.

Good to see lots of new folks who’ve never come to one of our events before.

Photo credits: Michael Huber and Paul Grondahl

Melissa Gilbert's Back to the Prairie

More about Back to the Prairie

The New York Times bestselling author and star of "Little House on the Prairie" returns with a hilarious and heartfelt memoir chronicling her journey from Hollywood to a ramshackle house in the Catskills during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Known for her childhood role as Laura Ingalls Wilder on the classic NBC show "Little House on the Prairie," Melissa Gilbert has spent nearly her entire life in Hollywood. From "Dancing with the Stars" to a turn in politics, she was always on the lookout for her next project. She just had no idea that her latest one would be completely life changing.

When her husband introduces her to the wilds of rural Michigan, Melissa begins to fall back in love with nature. And when work takes them to New York, they find a rustic cottage in the Catskill Mountains to call home. But “rustic” is a generous description for the state of the house, requiring a lot of blood, sweat, and tears for the newlyweds to make habitable.

When the pandemic descends on the world, it further nudges Melissa out of the spotlight and into the woods. She trades Botox treatments for DIY projects, power lunching for gardening and raising chickens, and soon her life is rediscovered anew in her own little house in the Catskills.

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