February 15th – 21st

Happy Valentine’s Day! Sorry about the skipped week, something unexpected came up. But! Back to regularly scheduled programming.

First up, the big thing this week is NERD Summit 2021!

In 2021 we will be virtual again, but are changing the format.

Friday (3/19) will be a normal day of sessions – presentations given by speakers.

Saturday (3/20) will be open discussion sessions, which are commonly called “BOFs” ( Birds of a Feather), people coming together to discuss a topic of interest. These meetings will have a leader who will structure the discussion with 3 or so discussion questions around the topic to be discussed.

Sunday (3/21) will be a Training Day – an opportunity for people to come together and learn from each other. More info coming soon.


Are you in need of help of any sort? Speak with Mass Support! They’re here to help, and they’re doing a lot of stuff virtually this year. You can also just get in touch via MASSSUPPORT@RIVERSIDECC.ORG or 888-215-4920.


Miss the movies? Watch Images Cinema online! Or watch Amherst Cinema online!


You can order Tony DiTerlizzi signed books here from Odyssey Bookshop!


Buy comics from amazing local retailers Comics N’ More! They’re great!


You can join up with the Westfield Athenaeum Monthly Reading Challenge:

Sign up at https://westath.beanstack.org/ to join our Monthly Reading Challenges, running from September 2020 to June 2021. Each month, read a book for a new challenge and then join one or more of our Reader’s Chats to discuss the book you’ve read with other readers on the fourth Tuesdays of every month. Not sure what to read? Check our Facebook page for a themed #shelfiesunday video and Beanstack for book lists for applicable challenges. The challenge and book clubs are for all ages.


Monday from 8PM – 10PM you can check out the Far Out Film Discussion via Zoom, talking about Vive L’Amour.

Far Out Film Discussion will have a zoom meeting to talk about the 1994 film Vive L’Amour by Taiwanese director Tsai Ming-liang. View the trailer here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6L1R0g5Bm8. It can be found online at kanopy  – https://boston.kanopy.com/product/vive-lamour. To virtually attend this discussion, click the link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87523942049

Monday from 7PM – 8:30PM you can join a book club discussion of Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler. Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/98597461665?pwd=VE5IaytqcUdTSmVDVUxyNW1OL1J2Zz09. Meeting ID: 985 9746 1665. Passcode: 437942

Set in the 1930s at the height of the purge and show trials of a Stalinist Moscow, Darkness at Noon is a haunting portrait of an aging revolutionary, Nicholas Rubashov, who is imprisoned, tortured, and forced through a series of hearings by the Party to which he has dedicated his life. As the pressure to confess preposterous crimes increases, he re-lives a career that embodies the terrible ironies and betrayals of a merciless totalitarian movement masking itself as an instrument of deliverance.

Tuesday from 1PM – 2PM teens can play Book Prize Bingo with the folks at Palmer Public Library! Register here!

Play Bingo and win book prizes! Open to ages 12-18! Registration Required. Participants will be sent a blank Bingo card to fill out with the Zoom link. Prizes will be distributed via curbside service. 

Tuesday from 1PM – 2PM you can check out the GREAT JEWISH BOOKS LECTURE | Talking Across Time: A Conversation between Three Great Jewish Women Poets with Zohar Weiman-Kelman. Register here!

Emma Lazarus was born to a wealthy Sephardic family in New York in 1849, and though she died at age 38, was one of the first Jewish American poets to gain fame. Anna Margolin was born in Brisk in 1887 and became known as Yiddish poet in New York, where she died in 1952. Irena Klepfisz was born in 1941 in the Warsaw Ghetto, and became a bilingual English and Yiddish poet, writing in New York to this very day.

In this talk, Zohar Weiman-Kelman will consider lines connecting these three different poets, namely, the way they each create their own transgressive poetic histories crossing lines of gender, religion, and temporality. Bringing the poets into conversation across time and language, Weiman-Kelman will ask what these connections can reveal about the history of Jewish literature.

This live event will be presented via Zoom and will stream live on the Yiddish Book Center’s Facebook page. Space is limited. If you’d like to reserve a virtual seat in the Zoom audience, which will allow you to submit questions, registration is required.

Tuesday from 2PM – 3:30PM is Teen Paint Afternoon at Westfield Athenaeum! Contact oeberli@westath.org for more!

Join us over Zoom for a Paint Afternoon! Together we’ll go through the steps of painting an out of this world galaxy.  All materials will be provided for participants. You will receive a canvas, paint, and paint brushes. You must come pick them up at the Westfield Athenaeum before the event. You will receive an email notification to let you know when the materials can be picked up. For students in grades 5-12

Wednesday from 3:30PM – 4:15PM you can attend the presentation Hands on Nature: Reading Stories in Animal Tracks! Register here!

*Registration required.* Join special presenter Hands on Nature for a free Zoom webinar for ages 5+! Come discover the tracks of our local mammals and learn to identify which mammals leave which types of tracks. In addition to learning our local mammal tracks, we will also discover the other ‘signs’ wildlife leave behind, such as fur traces, scat and scratch marks. Following an animal’s tracks can teach us a lot about who lives in our woods and their behavior. We will also share some fun track activities to do at home!

Wednesday from 6PM – 9PM you can attend the Northampton Webdive online!

A regular rendezvous of web makers, designers and creative coders. Held on the third Wednesday over the interwebs. Check back around the start of of the event for the link to join the Webive.

Wednesday from 6:30PM – 7:30PM you can join All Ages BINGO at Westfield Athenaeum! Contact bblackburn@westath.org to register!

B-I-N-G-O! When is the last time you played a rousing game of Bingo? Well here is your chance! Everyone in the family can join Game Night on zoom. Register to receive copies of your bingo cards and online access for the game. DVD prize packs will be awarded!  See you there!

Wednesday from 7PM – 8PM you can attend the Irish Writer’s Book Club! Join Zoom Meeting https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82434142330?pwd=QXlIcWFXMmVlaTVNQ0trZmZDSGZJUT09. Meeting ID: 824 3414 2330. Passcode: 258458

Read the best Ireland has to offer!  From the land of great story-tellers, we will be reading famous and lesser-known Irish authors, including contemporary and classic writers of fiction, non-fiction, and plays.  We will discuss style, sense of place, history, psychology, culture, and the Diaspora.  If you are interested in great writing, this is a group you will enjoy being a part of.  Upcoming authors include Edna O’Brien, James Joyce, Samuel Beckett, Donal Ryan, Colum McCann.  Come for the books, stay for the craic!

Wednesday from 7:30PM – 8:30PM you can check out Librarians Discuss: Why Do We Judge Books By Their Covers?

Join us on Facebook Live on the first and third Wednesdays of each month for a group of Westfield Athenaeum librarians to discuss a variety of book and life-related topics. You can either join live and be part of the discussion or watch the episode later on our Facebook page. 

We’ve all heard the saying, but the fact of the matter is that we absolutely do judge books by their covers. In fact, book covers can tell us important things about the books inside that save us precious time in picking out our next read. What are you favorite kinds of covers? Your least? What are these covers conveying to us – advertising to us, really – in the blink of an eye? Much like the books themselves, what are the design conventions that genre books should follow? We’ll be discussing all this and more, so come join us!

Wednesday from 7PM – 11PM you can hang with the lovely folks from Start Playing Online! They gather at the Discord channel: https://discord.gg/fAM8yJw. Most games are played on Board Game Arena if you want to check it out ahead of time. It’s fun and everyone’s nice!

Thursday from 3:30PM – 4:15PM you can check out Inspired by Picture Books: Drawing with the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art!

*Registration required!* Celebrate drawing in this hands-on virtual workshop! Picture books provide the inspiration as we explore how drawings can share feelings, generate a sense of movement, and create settings. Carle Art Educators will facilitate a series of drawing games designed to spark the creative process and encourage students’ own storytelling. This workshop provides a starting point for further drawing explorations and will include pre- and post-workshop extension resources. For ages 3-18. Registration is limited to 25 people. We’ll email the Zoom link and password one day before the event. Please register at: http://bit.ly/3pyqCZs

Thursday from 4PM – 5PM kids ages 7-12 can join Creating Dinosaurs & Books with Roxie Munro!

Go on a virtual visit to Roxie Munro’s studio! Roxie will talk about the research and preparation involved in creating a nonfiction book, discuss her steps in creating a book, and give us a sneak peek at what she is working on next. Time will be left at the end of the program for young authors and artists to ask Roxie questions! This program is designed for kids ages 7-12. Space is limited, register in advance on Eventbrite.  

Thursday from 4:30PM – 5:15PM kids ages 6-9 can attend the Nonfiction Book Club Online at Jones Library!

Our next virtual Nonfiction Book Club will meet via Zoom on Thursday, February 18th, from 4:30-5:15 pm. We will discuss the book “Ruby’s Chinese New Year” by Vickie Lee, illustrated by Joey Chou. The book will be available for participants via Outdoor Holds Pick-Up at the Jones. We will also provide supplies for a Take-and-Make STEAM activity! To register and learn more, send us an email (kids@joneslibrary.org) or leave us a voicemail (413-259-3091) and we will get back to you.

Thursday from 6PM – 7PM you can attend the UMass OEB Science Cafe! This time it’s “Don’t Kale My Vibe: How Fungi Make Plants Sick” with Dr. Li-Jun Ma!

We at the Life Science Cafe team are very excited to announce our first speaker of the season: Dr. Li-Jun Ma! Please join us in learning about her research on Thursday February 18th at 6pm EST. Please register here. 

Thursday from 6:30PM – 8:30PM you can join Trivia Thursday: American Presidents! Contact ghohmeyer@westath.org for more info and to register!

Play with friends and family from comfort of your own home. This event will take place over Zoom and use Kahoot. You will need an extra internet connected device (smartphone, tablet, laptop, etc).  You can also split the screen of a computer to play. Calling all history buffs! In honor of the upcoming President’s Day, we will be hosting American Presidents Trivia! This will be an all ages event cover all the presidents you always hear about and the ones you always forget about. Slides will include fun extra tidbits to amuse the whole family!

Thursday from 7PM – 8PM you can attend a panel discussion at The Carle! We Dream a World: Panel Discussion with Denene Millner, Charly Palmer, and Cozbi A. Cabrera. Register on Eventbrite!

The Carle is honored to welcome Denene Millner, New York Times best-selling author and editorial director of Denene Millner Books, along with award-winning illustrators Charly Palmer and Cozbi A. Cabrera. Join us for a discussion about how they craft images of Black children and families in their work, the art of making children’s books, and why it’s important to offer positive contemporary portrayals of Black children and families in books.

Thursday from 7PM to 8PM you can attend a book discussion of Silent Spring at Forbes.

The Lilly Library, in conjunction with the Forbes Library and Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary will be hosting a 2-session online nature and environment book discussion group. This group, led by Arcadia Teacher/ Naturalist Kim Hoff, will be held on Thursday February 18th and Thursday March 25th from 7:00-8:00pm. The books we’ll be discussing are Silent Spring by Rachel Carson (on Feb 18th) and Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teaching of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer (on Mar 25th).  *Please register for both dates if you would like to attend both discussion. Register for the second discussion here.*

Thursday from 7PM – 9PM you can join folks from Odyssey Bookshop on Crowdcast for a conversation with Nicole Lesperance, author of The Wide Starlight and YA author Jesse Sutanto. Questions about joining an online event? Email events@odysseybks.com for more info. This event is free and open to the public. To register, please click here.

Thursday from 7PM – 8PM you can Meet Your Neighbors virtually with the Greenfield Public Library!

In February, the GPL Circle will be talking chocolate… Need we say more?! Join us at the Greenfield Public Library on Thursday, February 18, at 7 pm for a virtual recipe exchange of our community’s favorite recipes containing chocolate (Chicken Mole or Chocolate Lava cakes, any one?) which will help us get through the end of winter. It’s easy to play: just send your recipe and photo to: librarian@greenfieldpubliclibrary.org, and we will send you the Zoom link. All recipes will be shared! The deadline for submission is Monday, February 15 at 5pm. This program, sponsored by the Friends of the Greenfield Public Library, is free and open to the public.

Thursday from 7PM – 8PM you can join the AUTHOR TALK | “The Great Kosher Meat War of 1902,” with Scott D. Seligman. Register here!

“The Great Kosher Meat War of 1902” recounts the inspiring story of immigrant women and the dramatic and effective mass consumer action they launched in turn of the century New York City.

Scott D. Seligman is a writer and historian. He is the author of several books, including the award-winning “The Third Degree: The Triple Murder That Shook Washington and Changed American Criminal Justice” (Potomac Books, 2018) and “The First Chinese American: The Remarkable Life of Wong Chin Foo.” His articles have appeared in the “Washington Post” and the “Seattle Times,” among other publications.

This live event will be presented via Zoom and will stream live on the Yiddish Book Center’s Facebook page. Space is limited. If you’d like to reserve a virtual seat in the Zoom audience—which will allow you to submit questions—registration is required.

Thursday from 7:30PM – 9:30PM you can attend a poetry discussion about Victoria Chang’s work. Join Zoom Meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/92356592326?pwd=OVNHM3JFQW5uVGw2dDNtN0JUeElMQT09. Meeting ID: 923 5659 2326. Passcode: 475928

Friday from 12:30PM – 1:30PM teens can join the folks at Palmer Public Library to talk Teen Cooking: Chicken Quesadillas! A smart thing to learn how to make. Register here!

Learn how to make delicious chicken quesadillas for lunch with Julie Manning from Simply Focused Wellness Coaching! Open to all ages, registration is required. Recipe will be sent with Zoom link, please shop ahead of time so you have the ingredients ready!

Friday from 1PM – 2PM at Forbes there’s a virtual Afternoon Book Discussion about Angie Kim’s “Miracle Creek”. You can join the Zoom Meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83532872599?pwd=cEhIay9IQS9SZktFTUNqT3R0WmJLdz09. Meeting ID: 835 3287 2599. Passcode: 188946

In a small town in Virginia, a group of people know each other because they’re part of a special treatment center, a hyperbaric chamber that may cure a range of conditions from infertility to autism. But then the chamber explodes, two people die, and it’s clear the explosion wasn’t an accident.

A powerful showdown unfolds as the story moves across characters who are all maybe keeping secrets, hiding betrayals. Chapter by chapter, we shift alliances and gather evidence: Was it the careless mother of a patient? Was it the owners, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? Could it have been a protester, trying to prove the treatment isn’t safe?

Saturday from 2PM – 3PM you can check out the Virtual Social Justice Book Group talking about The Warmth of Other Suns! Join Zoom Meeting https://us02web.zoom.us/j/93620070920?pwd=c0tKQnorNDNqRGxFajRvWWlRNnJyQT09. Meeting ID: 936 2007 0920. Passcode: 340325

From 1915 to 1970, this exodus of almost six million people changed the face of America. Wilkerson compares this epic migration to the migrations of other peoples in history. She interviewed more than a thousand people, and gained access to new data and official records, to write this definitive and vividly dramatic account of how these American journeys unfolded, altering our cities, our country, and ourselves.


Games time! Foundation is a very pleasant city-builder that’s still in early access but is a bunch of fun already. It’s pretty sedate, with most of the challenge coming from how quickly you try to expand rather than from a ton of external pressure. But you’ll want to expand because of two great ideas: one is that some structures called Monuments allow you to build elaborate bespoke architecture. We’re not amazing at it, but it’s pretty easy to put together a neat looking church or tavern or castle keep, and you don’t even have to make it all connected! You can have a little church with a side domicile or whatever. Two is that you don’t specifically build and place housing, your citizens do that themselves after you paint an area as residential. Roads area also just whatever paths they walk down to get to the various buildings. This means you get to ping-pong between doing some fun model-building to try to make the most impressive church you can, managing supply chains, and then just watching things grow on their own.

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