July 6th – 12th

Covid-19 is here to stay for a long while in the US thanks to the official federal policy of “this is hard and we give up”! It’s awful and we all need to do what we can to mitigate the danger to ourselves and our neighbors.

Wear a mask, first and foremost. Every trip out of the house, for the whole trip. Second, no hanging out indoors with other folks for a long time. That means no indoor dining, and no bars. If it is at all possible, stay home. This has been a long haul, but the only way through is to keep it up. Relaxing our guard early just means an long and punishing series of new waves. Massachusetts is doing mostly alright, let’s keep it that way.

Thankfully, protesting doesn’t seem to spread the virus very effectively. Support protesters by donating to:

Do whatever you can. Find a protest (wear a mask, stay distant, stay safe), donate what you can, call your local government officials and ask why they’re spending more on police than they are on providing for people, go to virtual council meetings, write letters because some people still think letters mean more than emails, support your community any way you can.

On Monday from 8PM – 10PM the Far Out Film Discussion group will be talking via Zoom about The Lighthouse, a 2019 film by Robert Eggers about lighthouse keepers in the 1890s! The trailer can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hyag7lR8CPA. The film can be found online at kanopy: https://forbes.kanopy.com/product/lighthouse. To virtually attend this discussion, click the link: https://zoom.us/j/838291785

Tuesday from 7PM – 8PM you can check out a Virtual Book Discussion Group with the Greenfield Public Library. Contact them at librarian@greenfieldpubliclibrary.org for the video link.

Wednesday from 3PM – 3:30PM there will be a conversation with Bob Drinkwater, author of the new book In Memory of Susan Freedom: Searching for Gravestones of African Americans in Western Massachusetts. The interview will be streamed live on the Jones Library Facebook page.

Also on Wednesday from 7PM – 9PM you can attend Zine Club (password – 614664)! Read them! Make them! Share them!

And finally on Wednesday from 7PM – 11PM you can hang out with the wonderful folks of Start Playing Online! There are board games and there is chatting and it’s nice! You can as always join the Discord at https://discord.gg/fAM8yJw!

Thursday from 6PM – 7:30PM there will be a writing class for adults about how to write memoir and autobiographical writing.

Open to adults of all ages. This class will be held live on Zoom. Participants need no other supplies at home except for a writing utensil and paper. No one will be asked to share unless they want to – we’re here to write, learn, and have fun! Registration is required and space is limited. Register by contacting ghohmeyer@westath.org.

Thursday from 7PM – 8PM is an opportunity for folks to see a presentation by Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, co-authors of The Berkshires Farm Table Cookbook: 125 Home-Grown Recipes from the Hills of New England. To join just click here!

Also Thursday you can join the Yiddish Book Center for a Virtual Public Program! You can register here!

Brett Sokol, journalist and editor of “Shtetl in the Sun: Andy Sweet’s South Beach 1977–1980,” a vivid photographic portrait of the then-thriving and now-vanished Jewish community of retirees that existed on South Beach during the late 1970s, will be speaking about his newest book, “Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah: Andy Sweet’s Summer Camp 1977.” A companion to “Shtetl in the Sun,” “Hello Muddah” chronicles the summer of 1977 at Camp Mountain Lake—from the parade of trunks as 300 predominantly Jewish campers arrive at Mountain Lake’s rural North Carolina setting to the end-of-August Dionysian frenzy of “Color War,” Sweet’s photos tell a classic coming-of-age story, one full of awkward crushes, intense friendships, and the kind of deep truths that emerge over late night, campfire-toasted marshmallows.

As always on Friday Forbes has its Virtual Book Chat from 1PM – 2PM, you can join here!

As always this week you can check out excellent indie films on the Images Cinema website and join up to play Magic: the Gathering with the folks at Pioneer Valley Planeswalkers!

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