May 8th – May 13th

The Valley Nerd Watch!

Hello and yes! We’re back! This is again a live feed of everything interesting that we can remember to tell you about in the area that we define as the Pioneer Valley which roughly conforms to the common physical locations named as such.

We’d like to call specific attention this week to the newly formed Western MA Film Makers Group! Per their description: “Western MA Filmmakers Group is a chance for people making film to network, attend events, and build community.”

Are you interested in creating film, or just a big fan of film in general? Meet up with fellow “filmeophans” as everyone agrees we should call them and share, discuss, question, brainstorm, and in general get some support, feedback, and community!

The first event they’re all headed to this week is the Focus Locus Presents: Selected Shorts by Kramer, Perry, & Sanders! Check it out in their inimitable company this Tuesday, May 9th, at 7:00 PM at the Parlor Room at Signature Sounds [32 Masonic St., Northampton, MA 01060]. Afterward they’ll do a Producers Group, during which they’ll give a rundown of the sort of supportive feedback they’re hoping to provide at these meetups!

Also of note this week: On May 9th, A.E.G.I.S: Combining Robot Strategy Game will be relaunching their Kickstarter! They’ve got a slightly lower goal, a slightly prettier game, and the same excellent basic gameplay that we so enjoyed when we played it last year! You should definitely check it out when it goes live and see the Facebook Launch Party group!

Go check out the Valley Creators page! As always, be sure to check out our Patreon and the Weekly Events page! There are a lot of fun things happening this and every week! And don’t forget to check out the updated Book Clubs List!



Monday, May 8th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Animal Rocks!
Make some cute animal rocks to spruce up anywhere that needs sprucing! You can even just place them around town if you want. Paint them so they look cute and make you happy! Sign up in advance at the library if you can by calling 413-665-2642.
Wednesday, May 10th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Forbes Library Zine Club
ZINES! Zines for teens! Zines for fiends! Zines for beans! Bean zines for green teen machines! There’s never enough! Talk, create, have a good time!
Friday, May 12th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Opening Reception for “Laws Change. People Die. The Land Remains” curated by Sally Curcio and Anna LaPrade Seuthe
“An exhibition of paintings and sculpture by five Western Massachusetts artists who reflect on how our actions impact the landscape. The five artists are Jesse Connor, Sally Curcio, Karen Evans, Anne LaPrade Seuthe and Jenny Tibbetts.” – Sounds like a wondeful opportunity to expand your mind, get to know the area beter, and eat small cheeses.
Smith College Museum of Art [20 Elm St, Northampton, MA 01063] at 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Free Second Friday
Free artwork! Free culture! Generally being immersed in the wonder of an excellent local museum!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Arts Night Out Reception for Northampton High School Student Art Exhibition
“Student artwork from the Foundations of Art, Drawing & Painting 1 & 2 , Ceramics 1 , Sculpture and Honors Art 1-4 classes at Northampton High School will be exhibited. The selection of artwork is curated by teachers Lisa Leary and Sheryl Jaffe, who collectively teach approximately 200 students each year.”
Saturday, May 13th
Emily Dickinson Museum [280 Main St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:30 AM to 11:30 AM
Poetry Walk
“The Emily Dickinson Poetry Walk marks the anniversary of the poet’s death (on May 15, 1886) with readings of her poetry at historic sites in Amherst. This spring’s Walk will feature Dickinson’s works inspired by the natural world and the plants she grew in her conservatory at the Homestead, which has been restored this spring.” Conduct the rites that keep Dickinson contained! Seal her grave anew!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 3:45 PM
Weaving Social and Political Issues into your Writing
“Join authors Naila Moreira and Ellen Meeropol for a two hour writing workshop. We’ll focus on ways to weave thorny issues – climate change, racism, war – into our fiction and nonfiction. Come prepared to imagine, to hope, and to write. Ellen Meeropol is the author of the political and environmentally-themed novels House Arrest, On Hurricane Island, and Kinship of Clover. Naila Moreira, author of poetry chapbooks Gorgeous Infidelities and Water Street, has written nonfiction for The Boston Globe, Seattle Times, Daily Hampshire Gazette and other publications.”

Board Games:

Friday, May 12th
Burger King Community Room [344 King St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 10:30 PM
Tabletop Game Night
“Bring a game that you’d like to share, if you have one. Beginners are welcome. We most often play Euro strategy games, but you are welcome to bring any game you’d like to share. Some of the games we’ve played in the past include: Pandemic, 7 Wonders, Ticket to Ride, Carcassonne, Settlers of Catan, Dominion. The Community Room is all the way in the back. If you come in the side entrance, the room is directly to your right. If you come in the main entrance, just head to your right, then straight back. “
Saturday, May 13th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Palmer Scholastic Chess Tournament
Four sections: K-3, 4-6, 7-9, 10-12, round one starts at 10am on the dot! There’s a four-round swiss system and tropies to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in each category! Entry is free, and you should bring a chess set and clock if you have them and a bagged lunch! For a power play just bring an edible chess set for lunch, that’s intimidating.


Wednesday, May 10th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Samuel E. Abrams talks about “Education and the Commercial Mindset”
“Drawing on his book, Education and the Commercial Mindset (Harvard University Press, 2016), Sam Abrams, a Holyoke native, will discuss the divergent paths taken by education policymakers in Chile, Finland, Sweden, and the United States. In addition, Abrams will address the implications of Donald Trump’s presidency for schooling in the United States. Joining Abrams on stage for a Q&A will be Gus Morales, another Holyoke native and a veteran local teacher.” Understand why you were educated in the manner you were educated! Get a clear picture of what it is that US education policy prioritizes and what you can do about it!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:45 PM
Writers as Climate Activists
“Climate change is one of the greatest challenges of our time, threatening the very fabric of our society. Here, three writers use fiction, young adult fiction, and memoir to explore this thorny problem.” Ellen Meeropol, Brian Adams, and Jennifer Browdy will read at this event.
Thursday, May 11th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Hala Alyan, Salt Houses
“Lyrical and heartbreaking, Salt Houses is a remarkable debut novel that challenges and humanizes an age-old conflict we might think we understand—one that asks us to confront that most devastating of all truths: you can’t go home again.” We actually have found that we’ve been able to go home again. You’re just generally not allowed back in the the door so you just need to critique the new family’s garden from the other side of the street.
Saturday, May 13th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 4:00 PM to 4:45 PM
Water Street Book Launch
“Author reading and signing with Naila Moriera, Forbes Library’s Writer in Residence. Set at an old converted farmhouse apartment by the Mill River, the poems of Water Street explore the tension between freedom and domesticity as reflected in the natural world: the minks, bats, frogs, spiders, and wasps, as well as the plants and trees and the river itself. “


Monday, May 8th
Westhampton Public Library [Town of Westhampton, One South Road Westhampton, MA 01027] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Women, Crime, and Justice: Mass Incarceration and Mothering
“Nicole Hendricks of HCC will present. The number of women behind bars or under some form of correctional control has risen significantly in the last four decades, where now, no country incarcerates more women than the United States. At the intersections of this crisis, we find disproportionate numbers of women of color, and poor women, many of whom leave behind children, and are more likely to be locked up thousands of miles away from those children. What are the collateral consequences for our communities when parenting takes place behind bars?”
Tuesday, May 9th
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
“The Future of Hate” with Ilan Stavans
“Anti-Semitism remains an inextricable part of contemporary life. In today’s America, it finds partners in unlikely places, from the government to college campuses to rural communities. In this series of three talks, each with a different focus, author and Amherst College Professor Ilan Stavans considers the “new normal” in today’s United States and the ways anti-Semitism manifests in regions as diverse as Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East.”
Thursday, May 11th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Plant Swap
“This monthly plant swap is free and open to the public to encourage the exchange of plants and other garden related items. You many bring as few or as many of the following items as you like: perennials, annuals, edibles, seeds, garden produce, tools or any other garden related items.”
Friday, May 12th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM
A lot of people don’t apply for supplemental nutrition assistance because they don’t know they’re eligible! You should check it out even if you own a home or a car or make a wage. It’s important to make sure you’ve got all the food you can get!
Saturday, May 13th
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 2:00 PM to 5:30 PM
League of Women Voters Event
Unspecified event for the League of Women Voters! But you can trust that whatever it winds up being it will be useful and pertinent. Contact Nicole Moore at nicolemmoore [at] hotmail [dot] com for more information!
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 12:30 PM to 3:00 PM
Represent US Meetup
“Introductory Meeting: Learn about http://www.Represent.US and how you can help fight corruption and get Big Money out of politics.” Fight the forces that are likely causing you real and immediate harm every day of your life!


Wednesday, May 10th
Last Call Media [136 West St., Suite 01, Northampton, MA] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Agile Methods Meetup
Meet up and discuss the Agile methodology! Get your dev team on track to use the hip new management technique, but also learn from sensible people how to actually do the thing. Plus they’re nice and you’ll probably make friends!
Thursday, May 11th
Last Call Media [136 West St., Suite 01, Northampton, MA] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Hack for Western Mass Meetup
Meet and dicuss your ongoing projects for the community! Or if you’ve never been, lend your expertise to an existing project or propose a new useful way to give back to the community we all so love!


Thursday, May 11th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Anime Club
Watch anime with people! We’ve been playing Persona 5 lately so we can say with confidence that anime is good.
Saturday, May 13th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Tea and Chocolate: A pleasant Pairing
Well. That’s kind of driect. We suppose so! They are pleasant alone and better together! Sample tea and chocolate pairings, learn what pairs best, and they say learn the “health benefits” but let’s be real people the benefits in both cases are the same: these foods taste good and it makes you feel nice to eat them.
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Doctor Who Club
Free and open to all! Discuss what exactly this doctor is, why he’s doing what he’s doing, and which way he’s going next!


Saturday, May 13th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Wildlife Changes in Northampton: From Nonotuck to Now by Laurie Sanders
“During the last 500 years, major changes have occurred in Northampton’s wildlife. Wolves and passenger pigeons and mountain lions are gone, while beaver, bear and turkeys, which had disappeared for decades, are now back in abundance. In this presentation, Laurie Sanders will highlight some of the major trends and changes that explain the mix of animal species that we now encounter in Northampton, from its urbanized center to its wilder spaces.” Learn about where you live! Learn why all the deer in the Valley have a sort of subtle red glow to their eyes and you never see them move, you just see them appear near your windows late in the evening.


Monday, May 8th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Far Out Film Discussion: Eraserhead
“Far Out Film Discussion is formatted like a book club: check out the film, watch it at home, and attend the meeting to discuss it. (We will not be screening the film at the program.) Our next movie is Eraserhead – a black and white surrealist film from 1977 which was written, produced and directed by David Lynch. Copies of the film will be available in the Reference Dept. and the Arts and Music Dept. You can also watch the film via – sign up for a free account with your Forbes library card and stream it online :
Wednesday, May 10th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Film: The National Bird
“This 2016 documentary follows the dramatic journey of three whistleblowers who are determined to break the silence around one of the most controversial current affairs issues of our time: the secret U.S. drone war. At the center of the film are three U.S. military veterans. Plagued by guilt over participating in the killing of faceless people in foreign countries, they decide to speak out publicly, despite the possible consequences.”
Friday, May 12th
Sheraton Springfield Monarch Place Hotel at 11:30 AM to 6:30 PM
DAY-2-PLAY: 4th Western MA Film and Media Exchange
“Join filmmakers, television and other industry professionals for a day of technical seminars and hands on-demonstrations with the latest lighting, camera and broadcast equipment. The Exchange also includes lunch, keynote speaker, and networking opportunities with others in the industry. Vitec Videocom brings their Roadshow to Springfield. You don’t want to miss it!” This sounds kind of amazing and we’re really appreciative of the new Western MA Film Makers Group for bringing it to our attention!


Thursday, May 11th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
RPG Club
Play RPGs with some people! They’re going to be great and so are you!


Monday, May 8th
World War 2 Club [50 Conz St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Nerd Nite May: Korean Comic Books and the Roma
Learn about the fascinating world of Korean Comic Books from Nathan Chung, who read a lot of them while growing up in South Korea! We’ve been big fans of American comic books for a while and it’s going to be exciting to learn more about a style from which we’ve read only a few works! Then we’re going to find out about the history of the Roma, a people whose complex history and tense current relationship with Europe will be explained to us by Christine Hurst, who’s currently working on her MSW at Rutgers.
Thursday, May 11th
Nacul Center [592 Main St., Amherst, MA] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
OEB Science Cafe: Laura Doubleday presents Dangerous Liasons: Pollinators, Herbivores, and the Quirky Sex Lives of Plants
Plants are at a very basic level absolutely odd and the way they reproduce is a big part of it. Flowers, pollen, bees, seeds, there are so many moving parts and so many physical transfigurations involved! Learn more from the spectacular Laura Doubleday!

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