April 30th – May 6th

The Valley Nerd Watch!


There’s a bunch of Free Comic Book Day festivities in the Valley on May 5th! Wherever you are, you can grab some excellent comic books for no cost whatsoever! Spend time hanging out in your friendly local store Comics N’ More, take a moment to say goodbye to Modern Myths, friend to all Valley Nerds, or stop by the Greenfield Public Library!

Don’t forget to submit a talk proposal to Nerd Nite NoHo! We’ve still got open slots for the summer! You get $50, and you get a nice crowd of folks who tell you you’re smart. Who else can promise you that?

We’re particularly excited this week by the MAKE TALK PLAY event featuring Epidiah Ravachol on May 6th at Another Castle in Greenfield! Epidiah’s a top-notch tabletop designer who’s also very good at talking so you know it’ll be fun!

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!

THIS WEEK


Art:

Monday, April 30th
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Star Wars Terrariums
“Build a mini habitat of your favorite fantastical world! This program is open to all ages. Pre-register in the Kids Room 413-259-3091 / kids@joneslibrary.org ” The program to build Enormous Super-Weapon Terrariums to destroy these tiny worlds is next week.
Tuesday, May 1st
Gandara Youth Development Center [306 Race St., Holyoke, MA] at 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Radioplasma Recording Studio Sessions
Meet in the Teen Room to walk as a group to the Radioplasma Recording Studio to get some hands on experience with journalism, storytelling, and sound mixing! SOUNDS cool! Get it? See that? Nice.
Wednesday, May 2nd
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
The Greatest Makerspace in the Galaxy (Ages 8-up)
“Do you know as much about gadgets as Rey? Can you build a droid out of spare parts like a Jawa? Exercise your maker skills with LittleBits and Perler Beads at our Star Wars-themed Makerspace. Please pre-register in the Kids’ Room or at 413-259-3091/kids@joneslibrary.org” First person to build a working droid gets a cease and desist from Disney!
Thursday, May 3rd
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
3-D Printing and More for Teens
Come play around with robotics toys, learn how to use 3D design software, a 3D printer, and more to make your own unique creations! 3D printers are neat, you can make unidfferentiated plastic into shapes that are meaningful to you! Take that, plastic! Contact Rachel to register, rdowd@holyokelibrary.org!
Emily Dickinson Museum [280 Main St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Arts Night Out
Featured performers the steppers from Springfield High School of Science and Technology, featured artist Jennifer Sinclair’s visual art students from SPHST, open mic signups from 5-6pm, open mic starts at 6pm!
Sunday, May 6th
Emily Dickinson Museum [280 Main St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 9:45 AM to 12:00 PM
“Dear to the moss”: Emily Dickinson Wildflower Walk
“Emily Dickinson observed nature keenly, distilling it into poetry. With botanist Connie Parks, we’ll explore, as the poet did, Amherst’s fields and woods, visiting Kestrel Land Trust’s Spaulding Conservation Area on Amethyst Brook… Then, we’ll return to theEmily Dickinson Museum for refreshments and readings of Dickinson’s nature poetry. Meet at 9:45 at the Emily Dickinson Museum tour center. For directions and parking, click here. Complimentary shuttle to the trailhead leaves at 10am. Sturdy footwear suggested. Thunder cancels. Registration Recommended for adults and youth 12 and up. Pre-registration required, as space is limited. Please email edmprograms@emilydickinsonmuseum.org to register. Payment will be taken at the door. $10 adults/$8 Friends/$6 Garden Volunteers (May 5-6), youth and students with valid college ID”

Books:

Tuesday, May 1st
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst MA 01002] at 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
TALK | “People of the Picture Book:” You Shall Not Worship Idols, with Ilan Stavans
In this first in a three-lecture series, Professor Ilan Stavans will investigate storytelling from the Middle Ages/Enlightenement to the ninteenth century, including a look at the Haggadah and the Book of Esther as tools for education Jewish chidlren. Suggested donation of $5!
Wednesday, May 2nd
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Science Fiction and Fantasy Discussion: The Fifth Season
This month the get-together will focus discussion on The Fifth Season, an excellent/terrifying novel about the post-post-post-post-post apocalypse in a world that has apocalypses so regularly they set their clocks by them. Talk about this book or talk about just sci-fi in general because this is a big group of sci-fi nerds who like to talk books!
Thursday, May 3rd
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
Heather Abel, The Optimistic Decade
A sprawling novel about idealism in the 80s and a particular piece of land that changes the lives of five people who live on it. Heather Abel’s debut is coming out in May, and this is your first chance to see it! She’s taught writing at the New School, UMass, and SMith, and she lives in Northampton while dreaming of Colorado. What’s Colorado got that we don’t? Pssh.
Frost Library, Amherst College [Amherst, MA 01002] at 4:30 PM to 6:00 PM
Reading Ramayana in Hindu India
Learn about the Ramayana and Hindu india from a scholar in classical Indian literatures from the University of Chicago. She’s had translations from Sanskrit published by Penguin, and has writtern four books for children including the Ramayana for Children!
Frost Library, Amherst College [Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
You Can’t Read this Book!” Exhibition
“Come see books and related objects that have been hidden, banned, lost or never-opened. You can’t read these books – it’s time to find out why. Food and beverages will be provided!”
Saturday, May 5th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Aaron Becker, Stone for Sascha Book Launch!
A girl grieves the loss of her dog in a beautiful worldess epic by oh no our eyes are too full of tears to continue typing about this children’s book about a dog dying, why does it have to die why aren’t dogs immortal, they’d have fun with it and not even get caught up in all that existential is-it-a-gift-or-a-curse stuff aaagh. This is Aaron’s first book since his Journey trilogy and it’s a good one, you should go get it signed!
Sunday, May 6th
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
International Children’s and Young Adult Literature, with Restless Books
“Programs will include a presentation and storytime by Arshia Sattar, author of Ramayana: An Illustrated Retelling, and an art activity with Mexican cartoonist/artist Eko, illustrator of Juan Don Quixote of La Mancha: 400th Anniversary Edition, and Villoro’s contemporary middle-grade classic, The Wild Book.” A spectacular opportunity to enrich young readers!

Comics:

Tuesday, May 1st
Comics N’ More [31 Union St, Easthampton, Massachusetts 01027] at 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Free Comic Book Day!
Comics? For free? It’s the best of all possible worlds! Extremely special offers at Comics N’ More this year: up to 3 free comics per customer, with one more if you donate to the Easthampton Community Center, a bunch of new and used book bargins, and 80 long boxes full of dollar comics! Buy thousands of dollars of comics in addition to your good free books!
Saturday, May 5th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 12:00 PM to 11:00 PM
Free Comic Book Day!
Free comics! Can you imagine anything better than that? Come into Modern Myths and try not to spend the whole time weeping about how it’s the last free comic book day at the stooooore *sob*! And pick up free comics and some 20% sales!
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Free Comic Book Day!
“Greenfield Public Library celebrates Free Comic Book Day on Saturday May 5th from 10 am to 1 pm. The event is free, open to all ages, and will take place throughout all public spaces in the library. Highlights include a demonstration by professional comic book artist Andrew Delvalle. Free comics and much more!”

Community:

Tuesday, May 1st
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 12:30 PM to 2:00 PM
Valley Gives Day – Holyoke!
Free snacks! Hang out with fellow Holyoke charities like Holyoke Reach Out and Read, Community Education Project, and Lighthouse Holyoke, the Womanshelter/Companeras, Holyoke Codes, and Holyoke Creative Arts Center. You can even win prizes for donations! If you donate $10 or more you can win a free night in a studio or king suite at Homewood Suites by Hilton Holyoke!
Saturday, May 5th
Downtown Northampton at 11:00 AM to 12:30 AM
Northampton Pride Parade
Pride is this weekend! The parade is fun and you can march with the Forbes Library staff and patrons if you meet across from Northampton Brewery at 10:45am! Then you walk a mile while crowds cheer and you have a good time. Festive attire encouraged!

Computers:

Tuesday, May 1st
The Foundry [24 Main St., Northampton, MA] at 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Northampton Webdive – After Work
A regular meetup of people who do web dev work! It’s a great place to meet and chat about your work and also fun stuff you do!

Entertainment:

Monday, April 30th
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 5:30 PM to 6:30 PM
Bullet Journaling 101
“Get started with bullet journaling and see what all the fuss is about.  Group will meet the last Monday of each month to prep journal for the upcoming month.  Get tips, share ideas.  All skill levels welcome. Bring your own journal and supplies or we will have some available to get started.” Bullet journaling is basically journaling, but with fewer words.
Wednesday, May 2nd
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
First Wednesday Speaker Series: Walking to Listen
“The First Wednesday Speaker Series welcomes Andrew Forsthoefel, sharing his adventures traveling 4000 miles across America, one story at a time. His book, Walking to Listen, is a young man’s coming of age on cross-country trek story, as told through the stories of the people of all ages, races, and inclinations he meets along the highways of America.”
Friday, May 4th
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM
3rd Annual Star Wars Day–Room Reserved
Kids ages 0-17 and their families are invited to join the staff of the Jones Library Kids room for a Star Wars extravaganza featuring crafts, trivia, raffles, games, photo booth, STEM activities and FUN! Activities will be offered from 3:00-5:00pm. Dressing as your favorite galactic character is encouraged! Following our activities fans of all ages are invited to a free screening of Star Wars: The Last Jedi (PG 13) 5:00-7:30pm Follow beloved characters from the greatest space epic franchise in the galaxy as they explore the Force and combat the rising power of the dark side.” A pretty solid Star Wars lineup!
Saturday, May 5th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Doctor Who Club
Wait what’s this doctor they’re discussing? Why are people so interested in this doctor. Which doctor? Wait, doctor… whom? Anyway go hang out and watch Doctor Who and eat snacks, it’s a good time with cool folks!
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
MakerSpace Event
Make things at the MakerSpace!
Sunday, May 6th
MYSTERY LOCATION at 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Firefly Episode 6 & Potluck
Watch Firefly and eat some delicious food! Some of that food you will need to bring, of course. Join at the meetup to find out where it is held! It’s a fun time for all involved. https://www.meetup.com/4scifi/events/250197304/

History:

Wednesday, May 2nd
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
Stonewall and the Mafia
What does a gay rights protest have to do with the mafia? Kind of a lot, it turns out! Justin Cascio presents a complex story that spans gay culture, criminal alliances, the immigrant experience and the classic American anti-hero. Learn more about an important part of history in order to better deal with the present.
Saturday, May 5th
Emily Dickinson Museum [280 Main St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Curves, Carpets, and Color: Olmsted, the Dickinsons, and 19th Century Landscapes
“Join landscape historian and author Marta McDowell for an illustrated talk exploring the development of American landscaping in the nineteenth century. While discussing developments in style, from formal to romantic to Victorian, we’ll meet the great tastemakers of the 1800s, including the individual who cointed the term “landscape architect. $12 for adults, $8 for Museum Friends, Free for participants of garden volunteer days May 5-6. No reservations required, but space is limited.”

Movies:

Monday, April 30th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Far Out Film Discussion: Donnie Darko
Watch the movie first! This is like a book club but for movies. Watch that good story about how Donald Darko and his friend a frightening rabbit costume save the day in a twisty time-travel story! You can pick up a copy at the library or watch it free with your card on Canopy! Then talk about it with fellow film afficionados!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:45 PM
Film Screening: Patagonia Treasure Trail
Or did you want to WATCH a movie at the library? Then check out this mother/daughter road trip but not roads fields and on horseback movie about two people journeying into a pristine wilderness that has just been sold off, dealing with many types of loss in several ways. Hope emerges from unexpected places! Also a horse learns to knit.
Tuesday, May 1st
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM
GPL Teen Pizza and Movie Night
Pizza and a movie: the ultimate chance to have pizza and also watch a movie. Teens, don’t let this slip by! This is your chance to have pizza and watch a film! It’s a hoot to do so with pals!
Thursday, May 3rd
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Film Screening & Panel Discussion: Promesa
An independent short documentary that examines the horrific economic crisis in Puerto Rico before Hurricaine Mario and explores how Puerto Rico’s colonial relationship with the US impacts the island on a personal and political level. There will be a panel discussion after the film with filmmaker Michelle Falcón Fontánez and activists Samantha Marie Medina Figueroa and Johanyvette Rodriguez González.

RPGs:

Sunday, May 6th
Another Castle [30 Olive St, Suite 2, Greenfield MA] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
MAKE TALK PLAY | Roleplaying Games with Epidiah Ravachol!
“We’re pleased to announce that local game designer Epidiah Ravachol will be joining us at the next MAKE TALK PLAY! Epidiah will be presenting us with a brief history of tabletop roleplaying games from Dungeons & Dragons to the finest indie games of the valley. After the talk he (and maybe a few others) will be running a few demos. So come out, hang out and lets talk games.”

Science:

Tuesday, May 1st
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
Zach Schonbrun, the Performance Cortex: How Neuroscience is Redefining Athletic Genius
Q: Why couldn’t Michael Jordan, master athlete that he was, hit a baseball? Why can’t modern robotics come close to replicating the dexterity of a five-year-old? Why do good quarterbacks always seem to know where their receivers are? A: He did not practice hitting baseballs very often, they picked a particular dextrous five year-old to try to copy, good quarterbacks tie a gossamer strand to each receiver in the huddle.
Wednesday, May 2nd
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Dispelling Myths and Confirming History: Dendroarchaeology Studies as a Means for Establishing Accurate Building Construction Dates
Have you ever seen those plaques on old houses and wondered if they were installed by tricksters out to dazzle you with artificially old houses? Of course you have! Everyone shares our understandable house-age paranoia. Well Dendroarcheologist Bill Flynt has been doing some studies throught the Northeast and he’s finding that we were correct to be wary! He’ll share how he studies old wood to understand old houses and how what he’s found re-writes our local history!
Saturday, May 5th
Frost Library, Amherst College [Amherst, MA] at 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Aesthetics of Information Conference
“What are the aesthetics of information? Fifty years after “the society of the spectacle,” how does information entangle with spectacle—as news, entertainment, propaganda or style? How do ideologies of information inflect forms of sensing and knowing? What are the social, legal and technological consequences of prioritizing information over communication as societal infrastructure? How do characteristics of information direct our attention, dazzle and confuse us?” All these questioned answered succinctly at this good conference in the Frost Library!

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