Holyoke

July 10th – 16th

The Valley Nerd Watch!


Spider-Man: Homecoming was a movie we really liked a lot, and we think we can recommend it pretty wholeheartedly. Dragged a bit in places, but overall our favorite take on Peter Parker as Spider-Man pretty much period in a long time.

We also had the absolutely positive addition of a young child who helpfully provided the sort of color commentary that enhances a viewing experience like “That’s bad guys?” when people were introduced robbing a bank and “Oh ha ha, ho ha ho!” when there was a plot twist!

This week we want to specifically call out Nerd Nite NoHo at the World War 2 Club Monday at 7pm because that’s the thing we do and you should go! Thank you for reading we appreciate you!

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, July 10th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 3:00 PM to 4:30 PM
Metal Work With Heather Beck
Heather has been metalworking for a few years now, specializing in jewelry and other accessories. Learn how to pound out metal and properly stamp words and designs into the metal! Teens will have a chance to develop their own unique metal bookmarks! Try out some blacksmithing! Sign up by calling 413-665-2642!
Tuesday, July 11th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 12:30 PM to 3:30 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, July 12th
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Family Workshops at the Mead
Need a nice family fun time activity? Need some air conditioning? Visit the Mead for some art-making! There’s also story-telling, short film screenings, and a bunch of activities inspired by the art at the Mead! Fun for all!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM
Forbes Library Zine Club
Zines! Zines are keen! Zines are little booklets you can print out about cool things you like, which is fun! Go make some fun zines!
Thursday, July 13th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM
I Went Into the Woods: The Life and World of Henry David Thoreau
This program will look at the life and times of Thoreau, a mid-nineteenth century poet that we feel comfortable saying was “pretty good” and also changed American literature forever.
Friday, July 14th
Smith College Museum of Art [20 Elm St, Northampton, MA 01063] at 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Free Second Friday
Visit a world-class museum for free! Although if you want to put $5 in the donation tin they wouldn’t mind it. There will also be a few complimentary light refreshments and a guided conversation about a piece of art on display at 6pm as well as hands-on art making from 4pm – 7pm!
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Make a Cat Happy Today!
Make some cat toys that will be donated to the Dakin Animal Shelter! Materials will be provided, so get to helping kitties feel nice!
Sunday, July 16th
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Sunday Sketch at the Mead
Sketch! Draw whatever you like in the beautiful confines and grounds of the Mead! We suggest you draw a really excellent robot.

Board Games:

Monday, July 10th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Game On!
Play some games! Indoor and outdoor! Everything from Frisbee to Apples to Apples!
Wednesday, July 12th
The Brass Cat [65 Cottage St #101, Easthampton, MA 01027] at 7:00 PM to 10:30 PM
Wednesday Games at the Brass Cat!
Play board games at the Brass Cat! This week the theme is Escape Room games! Which is funny because the whole point of escape room stuff is that you’re physically interacting with a space but because there are rules and concepts that can be communicated via a boardgame of COURSE there are a bunch of boardgames about them now! There’s probably a boardgame about running a small local newsletter.
Friday, July 14th
Burger King Community Room [344 King St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 10:30 PM
Tabletop Game Night
Take a moment to hang out with a great group of people playing board games! We recommend Clank! because we had fun with it recently and we are fickle.

Books:

Tuesday, July 11th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Roger Ekrich, American Sancturary: Mutiny, Martyrdom, and National Identity in the Age of Revolution
Roger Ekrich’s book begins with the bloodiest mutiny ever suffered by the Royal Navy, the British frigate HMS Hermione in 1797 and continues to cover rebellion in the US, France, and Ireland. He lays out the revolutionary fervor of the turn of the century in 1800 and how it affected the election campaign between Jefferson and Adams and how THAT led to the spectacular decision on the part of the US to grant politcal asylum to refugees.
Wednesday, July 12th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Madeleine Blais, To The New Owners: A Martha’s Vineyard Memoir
Madeleine Blais’s in-laws bought a vacation house on little-known but very pretty island Martha’s Vineyard for just $80k in the 70’s. It wasn’t much, but it was lovely. It was finally sold in 2014, after a wonderful several decades of beaches and meals and nights under the stars. She’ll share her memoir of a house that made some lives more lovely, in the form of a missive to the new owners!
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM
Bikes and Books Club
Read and discuss a book, then get a free bike maintenance lesson, go for a ride, and play some games!

Card Games:

Sunday, July 16th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Star Wars Destiny
The first ever constructed Star Wars Destiny tournament! Bring constructed Star Wars Destiny decks, $10 entry, booster packs and promo cards will be offered as prizes! There are going to be three rounds in a Swiss format. Go find your Destiny! See what we did there? That’s the game’s name!

Computers:

Monday, July 10th
MYSTERY LOCATION at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Datomic with Cognitech! – Monthly Full Stack Meetup
Tim Ewald, the VP of Engineering at Cognitect, will talk about a distributed Clojure database that separates reads, writes, and storage called Datomic! Sounds like a great opportunity to learn about a useful new tool for database design. Hm, maybe we could use that instead of a giant google sheet.
Tuesday, July 11th
The Foundry [24 Main St., Northampton, MA] at 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Northampton Webdive – After Work
Speak to a bunch of friendly people about web development, it is generally a freewheeling discussion about whatever else is on the minds of attendees as well!
Thursday, July 13th
Massachusetts Green High Performance Computing Center [100 Bigelow St., Holyoke] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Hack for Western Mass
After some quick updates about ongoing projects there will be a discussion about upcoming projects and then it’s time to get hacking! Help make a difference in your community using the skills you’ve got!

Entertainment:

Tuesday, July 11th
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Tanabata Evening
Tanabata, or Star Festival, is a celebration of the meeting of two lovers who are gods represented by the stars Vega and Altair. The Jones Library will celebrate Tanabata this year with East Asian-themed stories, crafts and snacks followed by a storytelling presentation by Motoko. A native of Osaka, Japan, Motoko first came to the U.S. as an exchange student at UMass Amherst. She has since performed at hundreds of schools, libraries, museums and festivals. The event is free and open to the public; children of all ages are welcome.
Wednesday, July 12th
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Dog Days of Summer
Walk your dog to the Mead and then enjoy hot dogs, but be certain to explain to your cool dog that you would never eat a cool dog, only a hot dog! To clarify this is a cookout! There’s also going to be music and animal-themed exhibit tours!
Mount Sugarloaf at 8:30 AM to 11:00 AM
Community Hike Up Mount Sugarloaf
People of all ages! Join a big old hike up a hill to a nice pretty lookout. It’s also Henry David Thoreau’s 200th birthday, so why not use that as an excuse to commune with nature? There will be light refreshments at the top! Though we do feel like we need to make it clear that you can in fact get light refreshments in far simpler manners.
Thursday, July 13th
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 2:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Yidstock Day 1
Legitimately too much going on to discuss! Music! Workshops! Talks! See Eleanor Reissa & Frank London’s Klezmer Brass Allstars at night, learn about music during the day! Members $8, $10 general admission for the talks and workshops! The concert pass is $198 for members, $236 for general admission if you want to go to every show!
Friday, July 14th
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 11:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Yidstock Day 2
Too much again to discuss! Workshops about Yiddish dance and a dramatic reading and discussion of The Last Survivor, followed by the Hankus Netsky and Eden MacAdam-Somer duo as well as the Nigunim Trio! Members $30, non-members $36! The concert pass is $198 for members, $236 for general admission if you want to go to every show!
Saturday, July 15th
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:00 AM to 9:30 PM
Yidstock Day 3
So much! Folk Oratorio at night, “A Night in the Marketplace”, members $45, general admission $50, and talks during the day! Please purchase tickets in advance to the workshops and talks, space is not guaranteed! The concert pass is $198 for members, $236 for general admission if you want to go to every show!
Sunday, July 16th
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:30 AM to 9:00 PM
Yidstock Day 4
The final day of the event! Learn about Yiddish songs, how a million Yiddish books are about to change the Jewish world, and see Klezmer, the Alicia Svigals and Lauren Brody Duo, and the Andy Statman Trio at night! What a time! The concert pass is $198 for members, $236 for general admission if you want to go to every show!

History:

Tuesday, July 11th
Connecticut River Greenway Park, Damon Road, Northampton at 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM
From Northampton to the Boundary Waters (or at least the boundary with Hatfield)
Take a 16-person boat down the beautiful Connecticut River! Learn about the natural and cultural history from rowing coach and generally informed person Betsy Powell as well as co-director of Historic Northampton and naturalist Laurie Sanders! No prior experience necessary, but unfortunately it’s full up! Email islanders@historicnorthampton.org to be placed on the waiting list!
Thursday, July 13th
Deerfield Community Center [16 Memorial Street, Deerfield, MA 01342] at 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM
2017 Summer Lecture Series: Neal Hurst “For the heat is beyond your conception: Dressing for the Heat in the Eighteenth Century”
Join Neal Hurst, the associate curator for costumes and textiles at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, to discuss how folks dealt with the summer in the eighteenth century! We’re not certain exactly what they wore, but we imagine it’s something that would cause us to actually de-cohere into a sweat puddle.
Saturday, July 15th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
The Other Battle of the Somme: The Smith College Relief Unit in World War 1
Smith College was always pretty awesome, and not just because they had amazing hats according to this historical photo. Learn about the group of young women from Smith, of the Smith College Relief Unit who went to Grecourt, a small village in the Somme Valley, to work with a traumatized local population. They went there to help rebuild a community that had just faced a war of apocalyptic proportion, using their skills to act as mechanics, farmers, well-diggers, and caregivers! Lecturer Jennifer Hall-Witt of Smith College will enlighten you as to the history of these brave women!

Kids:

Tuesday, July 11th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 10:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Makerspace Workshop
Cool technology, innovative ideas about building things, and a bunch of materials! Come to Palmer to invent, learn, play, and create a new thing using some really neat resources! See if you can invent a library with a makerspace and fractalize this whole thing.
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Makerspace Workshop Session 2
Learn to create robots! Carve 3D objects! Print 3D objects! Make anything you can imagine! Every participant will get to 3D print and take home one of their designs! Open to all kids 10 and up, pre-register by calling 413-283-3330 ext. 102!
Wednesday, July 12th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 10:30 AM to 11:15 AM
Pumpernickel Puppets
Pumpernickel Puppt shows are presented with a cast of colorful puppet characters, audience participation, and entertaining imaginative fast paced scripts! There’s also a demo period about how things work behind the scenes after the show! And we can’t stress this enough, the puppets cannot bit hard enough to break skin.
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 2:30 PM to 4:00 PM
Fun With Cartoons!
Kids ages 7-14 are invited to come find out how to make interesting cartoons! Learn some tricks and tips of the cartoon world, and design and draw your own cartoon characters! Paper and pencils are made available! Space is limited so call 413-665-2642 to register!
Thursday, July 13th
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
The Curious Giraffe Show
We know nothing about this, but it sounds excellent. Kind of hoping that this is literally just a nice, curious Giraffe.
Saturday, July 15th
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Nutshell Playhouse Presents: Mambo and Nemonee’s Worldwide Adventure
Mambo and Nemonee are working to save the endangered, spectacular, Floratius Serendipitus! Follow them on their adventures as they’re brought to life with puppetry, masks, and live music! Tickets can be purchased by calling 413-559-6336!
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 10:30 AM to 11:30 AM
Esh’s World Folktales
Esh Bumpus captivates audiences with world, African-American, and African folktales full of humor, music, mystery, and just plain good storytelling. He’s a master at physical characterization, a renowned storyteller, and an accomplished jazz vocalist. Learn about the world via folktales!

RPGs:

Wednesday, July 12th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Indie Game Night
Playtest a new RPG by a local creator! Alex Tully’s new flexible story game “Cards on the Table” uses the mechanics of Texas Hold’em to help you tell stories! You can also try out a game run by store manager Melissa, “Tales From the Loop”, which is a sort of kid-sci-fi RPG based on work by Simon Stalenhag about an alternate 80’s where Weird Things are happening and only kids are noticing! It sounds nifty.

Science:

Monday, July 10th
World War 2 Club [50 Conz St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Nerd Nite NoHo
Nerd Nite! The best Nite in the world, as you are aware! It’s lovely. This week we’ll talk Marijuana Policy in MA and Water Quality! It’ll be an informative and fun night for all! It’s $5 at the door, and half the proceeds will go to charity!

Video Games:

Saturday, July 15th
MYSTERY LOCATION at 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Nintendo Night
Play some of the best games ever put out by Nintendo! You will need to join up at the meetup page, though, since it’s hosted somewhere secret! Check out https://www.meetup.com/thepvg/ to join!

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March 6th – March 12th

The Valley Nerd Watch!


So hey here’s a thing we just found out about recently despite ostensibly being a news source: due to a variety of circumstances both unforeseen and ultraforeseen the lovably local game shop co-op Worlds Apart Games is going to cease to exist soon. Like, by the end of March. So that’s a really unfortunate thing, right? It’s very important to our continued steadiness of mind that there exist Game Places in all Valley towns so that we have ample reason to go putter around somewhere should we find ourselves out and about.

The nice thing is that it seems like some very dedicated people of various stripes and interest categories are of the same opinion and working to figure out how to fill the void that will be left and with what to do the filling. Community game space? Event-hosting space? Something that lets a bunch of people play Magic the Gathering there really often seems like it could garner a decent amount of support.

Which is what they need! Support from you! Interested in playing a boardgame in Amherst that doesn’t involve being at someone’s house? Then go to their Facebook page and check out what’s up and head to their meetup at 5pm this Wednesday the 8th at The Works in Amherst to talk through things.

At a very minimum you’ll get to meet nice people and talk to them so that’s decent you know? Also maybe you’re independently wealthy and have a weird interest in sustaining a game shop in Amherst we don’t know our audience that well.

And finally check out NERDSummit.org! Again, if you’ve already seen it! The schedule’s up and it is going to be great and you should attend because it’ll be great and also full disclosure because they paid us money to tell you to attend so the more of you who attend the more obvious it becomes that giving us cash is met with great success and happiness. If you could carry signs or wear shirts saying “We came here because of the wonderful marketing of the folks at Valley Nerd Watch” we would appreciate it.

Have a lovely week, folks!

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, March 6th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Makerspace Monday
A weekly group gathering to play with stuff, make art, and just generally create new things for the joy of it!
Wednesday, March 8th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 4:30 PM to 6:00 PM
Knitting Clinic
Neet help knitting? Get help knitting! Know how to knit real real nice? Knit real real nice and help out people who need help knitting! Somehwere in between nice nice and need help? Then enter the Cave of Shadows and brave the trials three for access to the knitting secrets or ask for some tips from fellow knitters!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Forbes Library Zine Club
ZINES! Zines across the nation! Zines in our veins! Zines for teens! Zines for monotremes! Zines for any and all who have access to cheap copiers! Learn how to create a zine and distribute it!
Friday, March 10th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Unidentified Woman an Exhibition by Jodi Colella
In this exhibit the artist takes headwear and photos so old they’re actually daguerreotypes from the collection of Historic Northampton and explores the role of headwear in indicating the class, status, and occupation of the wearer. Collela stitches together the past and future by colorfully exploring women whose names have been forgotten by history.
Smith College Museum of Art [20 Elm St, Northampton, MA 01063] at 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Free Second Friday
Do you want to go to a great local art museum but also you don’t have $5? Go ahead and check out the Free Second Friday! It’s a ton of fun and is totally without cost. Though if you can drop a couple bucks in the donation bin that would be very nice.
Saturday, March 11th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Make Harry Potter Potion Bottles
Do you wish your life involved more slightly-sinister storage, Snape-style? Suffer no longer! You can create some neat distressed bottles and make them look just like Snape’s! And hey if you don’t care about pretending to be a magical folk you can just make neat antique bottles!

Board Games:

Friday, March 10th
Burger King Community Room [344 King St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 10:30 PM
Tabletop Game Night
Board game meetup by the folks at the Pioneer Valley Geeks & Games at the Burger King! Bring a game if you want to share one or just play what other folks have brought! Beginners welcome, and there’s no better audience if you’ve got a game you’d really like to try!
Saturday, March 11th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Palmer Scholastic Chess Tournament
There are four sections, K-3, 4-6, 7-9, and 10-12. It’s going to be a 4-round Swiss System and there are trophies for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place! Entry is free but you should definitely bring a chess set and clock if you can and a bagged lunch if you want to eat!

Books:

Monday, March 6th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
Poetry Discussion Group
A weekly poetry discussion group open to regulars and drop-ins! This week they’re going to discuss poems about Climate Change!
Wednesday, March 8th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Garry Brown Talk and Book Signing
Garry Brown will talk about the best stories he’s written over the past fifty-danged-nine years writing at Springfield newspapers which what the heck he has written an infinite amount we’re pretty sure. If we’re still writing these newsletters in fifty-nine years we’d just yell at people to give us a medal at any sort of signing.
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Warm up with Kestrel Land Trust’s Love the Land Book Share
Grab a favorite read related to nature, land, or the nature of land and share it in an informal gathering! Heck you don’t even need to grab the book, just have a title and an author and a short bit about why you liked it and share it with the group! RSVP required but it is free! Email katy [at] kestreltrust [dot] org!
Thursday, March 9th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Ani Tuzman, The Temble of Love: A Novel of the Baal Shem Tov
In partnership with the Yiddish Book Center for an evening, the Odyssey will host a novel inspired by Rabbi Yisroel ben Eliezar, known as the Ball Shem Tov or the Good Master of the Name. Set in the 1700s Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth this reimagining of one of the most revered of history’s mystics allows readers to experience the timelessness and grace of unrestrained love! Which is pretty impressive for a novel, most of the ones we read just allow us to experience how cool lasers are.
Sunday, March 12th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Mohsin Hamid, Exit West
A love story, a magical realist story, a sci-fi story, a story about being a refugee… this book is a lot of things! Nadia and Saeed are young lovers thrust into an uncertain existence during a civil war and given the option to escape through a mysterious doorway. Emerging somewhere alien, they try to hold on to each other. It sounds like it’s worth a read! Buy it at Odyssey and get it signed!

Comic Books:

Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Comic Creator’s Jam
Are you a comicser? A comicilizer? Someone who makes artwork or writes stories and then slaps them together into a single thing? Hang out with a bunch of really nice creators who travel from near and like slightly less near but still pretty near to discuss the craft and business of comics! All it takes to get in is a $5 day pass that immediately becomes store credit!

Community:

Wednesday, March 8th
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
National Women’s Strike
From the description: “In support of International Women’s Day, join the conversation after the demonstration on the Greenfield Town Common!”

Computers:

Monday, March 6th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM
One-on-one Tech Tutoring
Tech tutoring in English and Spanish! Register for an hour one-on-one session at least 24 hours in advance every weekday from 11:30am – 1:30pm or 4:30pm – 6:30pm! Sign up by calling 413-420-8118 or write to grivera [at] holyokelibrary [dot] org!
Tuesday, March 7th
The Foundry [24 Main St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Northampton Webdive – After Work
Designers regular a coder nendezvous makers of web! It’s a good time to hang out and talk to folks who work on web-dev stuff and just generally have an alright time at a nice bar.
Thursday, March 9th
Cultivate and Nest [2 Bay Rd., Suite 100, Hadley, MA] at 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Hack for Western Mass Meetup
After a couple quick updates about ongoing projects, there will be a discussion about potential future options and then people are going to join teams and get hacking to make the community a bit better! It’s a really great group and they’re doing interesting stuff, you should join! Also dinner and drinks are on them so like there’s literally no reason to not go to this thing and say hi!
Friday, March 10th
North Amherst Library [8 Montague Rd, Amherst, MA 01002] at 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Drop-in Tech Support with PC Doctor Hank
PC Doctor Hank will put a stethoscope on your PC and diagnose what woes it! Hank knows what’s up with PC innards and is happy to help you understand it all!

Entertainment:

Thursday, March 9th
Franklin Patterson Main Lecture Hall at Hampshire College at 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM
No More Talk About Us, Without Us!
The real women of the hit TV show and book “Orange is the New Black” discuss the reality of prison life and the way it feels to have people take a look at your own harrowing actual experiences though the lens of entertainment in a panel discussion that seems informative and necessary.
Saturday, March 11th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Doctor Who Club
Doctor Which is at it again with his scarfs! Free and open to all, snacks “strongly encouraged”! Watch some classic episodes of the show that’s endured for so long our parents were fans when they were our age!
Sunday, March 12th
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:30 PM to 9:30 PM
“The Real Deal Purim-Shpil” with the Wandering Jew Players of the Congress for Jewish Culture
A musical mash-up featuring Purim plays, drinking songs, and general holiday cheer by great Yiddish writers including Sholem Aleichem, Itzik Manger, Moyshe Nadir, and more! It’s $8 for students, $10 for members, and $12 for general admission!

Kids:

Saturday, March 11th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Saturday Morning Kids Arts and Crafts
St. Patrick’s Day themed readings and arts and crafts! Make a Shamrock, or a pot of gold, or any of the innumerable items appropriate for children during this, the easiest holiday to make child-friendly!

Movies:

Tuesday, March 7th
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 5:00 PM to 7:30 PM
GPL Teen Pizza and Movie Night
Join librarians Francesca and Steve for the delicious combination of pizza and a film, open to ages 12 and up!
Wednesday, March 8th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Which Way Home
This film tackles immigration issues by focusing on the youngest victims of the struggle to just exist in the world. The film follows some of the thousands of unaccompanied children from all over Latin America who fled from their homes as they attempt to make the trecharous journey across the US border.
Sunday, March 12th
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM
Film Screening, “There Are Jews Here”
More than a million American Jews live in small towns around the country, and this movie explores people working ot keep the Jewish spirit alive in places like Laredo Texas and Dothan Alabama. It’s $4 for students, $6 for members, and $8 for everyone else!

Science:

Tuesday, March 7th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM
Diabetes: Our Journey to Improve Our Health
This week, you’ll learn about diabetes and the effects carbohydrates have on it! Anne Bernardin will educate you and share her success story, as well as recap the other lessons in case you’re just coming in this week!
Thursday, March 9th
Nacul Center [592 Main St., Amherst, MA] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
OEB Science Cafe: Is it hot in here? Thinking about the evolution of menopause.
With Dr Lynnette Sievert this cafe will explore the evolution of mopause and post-reproductive aging as a human trait! She’ll talk about how humans as individuals and different cultures deal with menopause and the fact that we’re as species that oulives our reproductive years!

February 20th – February 26th

The Valley Nerd Watch!


Oh jeez we forgot we had our two-year anniversary! Whoops!

Happy two years to the Nerd Watch! We hope that you got something out of it, we’ve been having fun <3. We've written about 150 posts, totaling something like 200,000 words! That's a lot of words, and the best part is that every last one of them is perfect.

On to other matters!

First off: we've been playing Valley Creator Rob Daviau's Seafall recently and dang if that's not a neat game. It's a bit of a bear to read the rulebook at first because there's a lot of if/then/else stuff to do that we had a bit of trouble keeping in our heads but darn it is a fun time once you get going. You sail around in little boats, you give people nicknames, you explore islands, you make friends and enemies, it's a great time and like all Legacy games you'll play it more often than literally any other game you own.

Also we just finished playing like a LOT of Subnautica after purchasing the Humble Freedom Bundle and it is extremely good! The ocean is dark, and the ocean is terrifying, and nothing good lives in the ocean BUT also it is compelling to explore and we love it.

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:

Tuesday, February 21st
Herter Hall 231, UMass Amherst at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Dread Scott: On the Impossilibity of Freedom in a Country Founded on Slavery and Genocide
Artist Dread Scott will give a public lecture in the company of Associate Professor of History Barbara Krauthamer about his work. he’s an acclaimed American artist wose work has gotten a bunch of attention and addresses a lot of important topics like police brutality and the legacy of slavery and racism in the US. It sounds like an opportunity to educate yourself about some difficult topics.
Friday, February 24th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 3:00 PM to 4:30 PM
BYO Fiber Arts & Crafts Group
For kids and their grownups, make some crafts! Knit, crochet, sew, malinger, spin, unravel, felt, and of course
Saturday, February 25th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Florence at the Turn of the Twentieth Century: The Goodwin Photographic Collection by Steve Strimer
Steve Strimer will present a selection from the Goodwin Photographic Collection of over 300 glass-plate negatives taken by J.W. Bird and Ferdinand Schadee. See the growth of Florence in the not-too-distant past!
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Young Adult Tween/Teen Craft – Block Printing (Ages 11 – 17)
Whether you rankle at being called a teen or seethe quietly at being called a tween, this is the event for you if you want to do some printing. Printing is a lot of fun and generally it’s not tough to make something that looks really cool so we recommend you take a look.

Books:

Tuesday, February 21st
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Children’s Book Writers Group
Adults who write for children are invited to a critique group! Speak to other people about your work, and trade opportunities for development as well as writing and publishing tips. You can also read and discuss stories with other members! For more info call Jane at the library at 413-772-1544!
Wednesday, February 22nd
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Words in Transit Panel with John Voci
Contributors to the book Words in Transit, a collection of first-person narratives by immigrants to western New England, will present their stories during a panel discussion facilitated by John Voci, the NEPR director of programming and a producer for the Words in Transit project. Learn about your neighbors! They’re nice folks.
Thursday, February 23rd
MYSTERY LOCATION at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Discussion and Dinner
Go to [place] and eat [food] while discussing a very funny book! Get more context https://www.meetup.com/4scifi/events/237092179/ here as it develops. Hitchhiker’s a nice book that we like a lot, one of the first chapter-books our parents read to us. How did we find any humor in jokes about aspects of adult life for which we had no context? Simple, we were small and not very smart yet so we pretty much just laughed whenever our dad laughed.

Comic Books:

Monday, February 20th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Queers in Comics and Games
A great place to discuss topics regarding representation of LGBTQIA+ folks in games and comics! It’s a good discussion with a lot of nice people and you’ll probably have fun. Admission is by day pass, $5 that immediately becomes store credit!

Community:

Tuesday, February 21st
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Animal Communication 101
Learn how to speak to dogs, we can only assume. Why is this not a bigger deal? We had no idea all it took was a two-hour course! But for real learn how to interpret and connect with your animal pals!

Computers:

Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM
Google Apps and Gmail Workshop: The Ins and Outs of Your Account
Have you just started using a bunch of Google Apps? Want to make sure you’re getting the most out of your various Google-branded things? Learn how to collaboate, make contact lists, organize yourself, share your calendar, and much more!

Entertainment:

Thursday, February 23rd
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
New Director Welcome Tea
Join the friends of the Forbes Library for an event that serves refereshments! Yay! Also, you’ll get to meet the newly appointed Library Director Lisa Downing!
Friday, February 24th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Layaali Arabic Music Duo
Tickets are $10, $6 for students and seniors, to this night of delightful music and entertainment with Mohammed Mejaour and Michel Moushabeck! Arrive early to shop at a 20% discount!
Saturday, February 25th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Teen Iron Chef
Ever wanted to try your hand at unseating the Iron Chefs? This is your moment to shine, aspirational teen chef! The main food is going to be chocolate. You’re going to get 8 ingredients, 4 of which will be odd. You need to use at least one of the weird ones and 3 overall to make the best tasting dish! The winner gets a little prize!
MYSTERY LOCATION at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Nintendo Video Game Night
Check out the meetup group https://www.meetup.com/thepvg/ to sign up and get further details if this sounds interesting! Play some classic Nintendo games as you salivate in anticipation of the Switch!

History:

Sunday, February 26th
Deerfield Community Center [80 Old Main St, Deerfield, MA 01342] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Winter Lecture Series: Renounce the Baneful Herb: Colonial Boycotts and the Invention of Liberty Tea
Learn about early American boycotts of British trade goods and how they created a common American identity in a country that was still super super British. Always a good plan to know your history, keeps you from being caught flat-footed if the Doctor ever needs your help.

Kids:

Monday, February 20th
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Special Storytime: Hazel Mitchell
Author/Illustrator Hazel Mitchell will read her new book Toby, a sotry about the bond between a child and an adorable dog!
Tuesday, February 21st
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM
Kids’ Craft Club
Read a story, make a craft! You know the drill, folks.
Thursday, February 23rd
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Special Storytime: Josh Funk and Anna Staniszewski
Storytime about dinosaurs! Josh Funk will read Pirasaurs, a tale of dinos gon rogue, and Anna Staniszewski will give a sneak peak of her new book Dogosaurus Rex!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM
LEGO Club
Build LEGO! It’s the building toy that hurts more than you can possibly imagine when you step on it only you don’t need to imagine because you’ve definitely stepped on it we all have.
Friday, February 24th
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Special Storytime: Corinne Demas and Artemis Roehrig
This mother-daughter team will teach kids manners via pirates! We should teach more things via pirates, it’s a solid didactic methodology.
Saturday, February 25th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Saturday Morning Kids, Learn Magic Tricks!
Learn some cool magic tricks to keep you feeling cool while the weather’s cool! … cool.
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Northampton CommunityMusic Center Family Concert Series: Jason Didner & Jungle Gym Jam
Jungle Gym Jam will delight and entertain your kid while secretly also teaching them to be a bit nicer to folks.

Movies:

Wednesday, February 22nd
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
We Need to Talk About Injustice
From the description “In an engaging and personal talk — with cameo appearances from his grandmother and Rosa Parks — human rights lawyer Bryan Stevenson shares some hard truths about America’s justice system”, educate yourself!
Friday, February 24th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
The Tale of Desperaux
Have some snacks as you watch the a delightful children’s film in the Community Room!

Science:

Thursday, February 23rd
MYSTERY LOCATION at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
OEB Science Cafe: A Day in the Life, Stories from Your Neighborhood Biologists
This one got hit by the SNOWPOCALYPSE and moved to a new date! Still has the same great biologist content though!

February 13th – February 19th

The Valley Nerd Watch!


First of all! Next month is NERDSummit! They asked us to tell you this, and they also gave us some money which is a very good way to get us to remember to do a thing! Check it out March 18th 9am – 6pm and 19th 10am – 5pm at the UMass Integrated Sciences Building! There are going to be a lot of great folks there to learn from and workshops for everyone from absolute beginners or non-coders to advanced coders!

So hey also we’ve been really digging Pandemic Legacy recently AND BUT ALSO we just got to play Seafall, which is the newest Rob Daviau creation and it’s a heck of a game. We just got to play the introductory bit, but it was a pretty decent combination of simple decisions and complicated effects.

The story being told also seems interesting. Sort of a fantasy colonialism but with a really obvious bent toward how incredibly short-sighted the provinces doing the colonizing are. Lots of “the locals say that there’s a VERY GOOD REASON to not do what we’re about to do, and they also demonstrated it directly with several very compelling examples but on the other hand aren’t we the smartest and best? Yes.”

“Anyway we did the thing and now half our crew have spontaneously combusted in what we can only assume is an entirely separate event.”

You should definitely check out Nerd Nite NoHo this week! It’ll be a really good time and we always appreciate seeing you there! As always half of the money plus whatever you want to put in the donation box goes to charity! It’s a very good system for doing good things for folks.

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, February 13th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Learn to Paint the 45 Million Dollar Flower
Possibly the fastest way we can imagine to save for retirement! Award-winning pastel artist and teacher Gregory Maichack will teach you to paint Georgia O’Keeffe’s elegant Jimson Flower and then sell it for the price that people are willing to pay for a painting of this nice flower: $45.4 million dollars. Why haven’t we already done this! It’s so simple!
Tuesday, February 14th
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM
Mead Reimagined: Take 2
The debut of Kota Ezawa’s “Gardner Museum Revisited”, which recreates 13 paintings stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in 1990! The paintings were worth over $500 million and the mystery is still unsolved because no on has ever been smart enough to catch us wait nO HOW DO WE DELETE POSTS
Wednesday, February 15th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 4:30 PM to 6:00 PM
Knitting Clinic
Having trouble with your knitting projects? want to modify a pattern? Bring stalled projects of any type to the knitting clinic so they can help!
Thursday, February 16th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Cookies with a Curator
Informal conversation and show and tell with the Forbes Library collection. And cookies!
Friday, February 17th
Emily Dickinson Museum [280 Main St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Emily Dickinson Poetry Discussion Group
The session topic will be “Emily Dickinson and the Art of Hiding”. So if you really want to impress them, just don’t show up and say you were there but you’re incredible at hiding. That’s using your noodle.
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Submissions and Revisions
A free drop-in group of writers who gather to polish and send out submissions of work to magazines, agents, and editors! The submissions process can be terrifying and demoralizing, so do it with a group of friends who’ll applaud every time you shout “Sent!”

Board Games:

Saturday, February 18th
Comics n’ More [31 Union Street, Easthampton MA 01027] at 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Mutants and Masterminds!
Why read about superheroes when you be superheroes? Well, probably because of the inherent difficulty in getting together a lot of folks to play an RPG regularly. That’s what this is for though! New players are always welcome for a wonderful time battling evil!

Books:

Wednesday, February 15th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Lisa Carey, The Stolen Child
Lisa Carey will discuss her book about magic and love and secrets and all that fascinating stuff. Set in Ireland in 1959, the novel follows a woman whose hands can mystically harm as she begins a tumultuous affair with a mysterious American woman who visits the secluded island on which she lives and the events of a winter full of terrifying and possibly mystical troubles!
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Book Talk & Signing: Katherine Anderson
Katherine will talk about her novel Hospital Hill, set in the Northampton State Hospital. In it, Valerie Martin – a former employee – returns after the closure of the hospital and discovers a dark secret! Why does no one ever return to an abandoned asylum and discover a delightful secret?
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
SCBWI (Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators) Writing Critique Group
Writers of picture books, middle grade, and YA books meet to read and get some feedback! The group is facilitated by following SCBWI guidelines but you don’t have to be a member to participate.
Thursday, February 16th
Gamble Auditorium, Mount Holyoke College at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Roxane Gay: Flashpoint!
The best-selling author of books such as An Untamed State and Bad Feminist will present a lecture exploring social critique and innovative reasoning on race, gender, and identity.
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Jilly Gagnon, #famous Book Prom!
Prizes for the best dressed at this book prom! Debut author Jilly Gagnon will talk about her novel about falling in love in front of the whole world and the terrifying thrill ride of social media and also liking another person!

Comic Books:

Saturday, February 18th
Comics n’ More [31 Union Street, Easthampton MA 01027] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
LGBTQ Comics Meet-up
A good conversation with friendly people in a comic shop. Meet new people and talk about comics!

Computers:

Thursday, February 16th
The Dirty Truth [29 Main St., Northampton] at 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM
User Experience, Accessibility, and Inclusive Design
For digital makers who are interested in creating products and services that provide a good experience for everyone! Things like considering whether or not your UI is readable to people who don’t see a difference between red and green!
Northampton Community TV [380 Elm St., Northampton, MA] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
WordPress Developers and Admins
Talk about current projects, problems and solutions for members, BuddyPress and bbPress, and installing SSL Certificates! It’s a great chance to get a rundown of some useful information about WordPress and to meet friendly people!

Entertainment:

Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Anime Club
Watch some anime! We’ve heard Jojo’s Bizzare Adventure is… weird? Good? We honestly can’t tell, but at least we can say we’ve heard that it exists, which means something!

History:

Monday, February 13th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Conversation with Author Series: Derek Strahan’s new book “Lost Springfield, Massachusetts”
Derek Strahan takes readers on a tour of the historic landmarks and wonderful old buildings that are living monuments to the history of a city of firsts, ad well as a look at some of the most historically significant places that no longer exist!
Tuesday, February 14th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM
A Polish Odyssey
Family historian Sara Campbell will tell the unique story of the Rzewski family and their travails as they attempt to reunite in their new Holyoke Home over the course of conscription into the Russian Army, children being scattered by WW1, and a pacific crossing! It’s a story of the deep familial love that keeps hope alive over the course of a long and difficult immigration process!

Kids:

Wednesday, February 15th
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Story & Craft Time @ North Amherst Library
Hear a story, make a craft, generally enjoy the fact that you’re a kid and you’re having a good day!
Thursday, February 16th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Come Play Laser Tag in the Library!
Cauterize your friends! It seems like it makes very little sense to provide teens with lasers and set them loose in a library but hey we’re not in charge. Grades 5th – 8th, please sign up in advance!
Friday, February 17th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 3:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Stuffed Animal Sleepover in the Library!
See what your favorite doll or stuffed animal or action figure gets up to when they spend the night at the library! Hear a special story and then leave your stuffed pal for a night of fun! You can drop them off any time between 10am and 7pm! Reunite with them on Saturday at 10:30am and enjoy breakfast and pictures of their sleepover! This is so frigging adorable we cannot handle it.

Movies:

Wednesday, February 15th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Film Screening: Richard Pryor, Live on the Sunset Strip
Richard Pryor! Classic of comedy, in one of his first performances after his very public battle with drugs. A venerable comic mind tackles a lot of topics and we’re like 90% certain holds up without that wrenching disconnect you get with some older comedy specials.
Saturday, February 18th
MYSTERY LOCATION at 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Potluck and Brazil (Director’s Cut)
Bring food and/or drink to share! After a nice dinner, the Western Mass Sci-Fi Group will watch a classic of weird SF, Brazil! It’s a Terry GIlliam film so you’re in for really distinctive visual design and a plot you can understand a bit in retrospect.  Sign up for the Meetup Group to find out where this is!

RPGs:

Thursday, February 16th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
RPG Club
Play an RPG! Be a person you’re not in a world you aren’t! Or… or you could role-play exactly who and where you are! Just sort of recurse through your current experiences like you’re in a hall of mirrors!

Science:

Monday, February 13th
The World War 2 Club [50 Conz St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Nerd Nite NoHo: Trees and Nerds
Join us for another fun Nerd Nite! Half of all proceeds go to charity! This time around Henry Lappen will be around to teach us about trees and their various mysteries, and Melissa Lewis-Gentry will speak about nerd communities and how to host nerd events in a really meta talk!
Saturday, February 18th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Scientific Kids Club
Explore geology and volcanoes with Steven and Ralph this month! We’re assuming Stephen and Ralph is what the library calls their pet volcanoes.

January 23rd – January 29th

The Valley Nerd Watch!


We hope you had a delightful weekend, we had a good one.

Anyway! On to the new stuff this week: You should take a look at Direct Action Comics, a new gallery show at UMass that starts January 30th and goes until February 25th! There’s also a reception on February 2nd. From the mouth of the very horse:

The exhibition “Direct Action Comics: Politically Engaged Comics and Graphic Novels” will present over 50 of the most influential and provocative graphic novels dealing with political and social issues. The exhibition will include printed copies of each book plus original art for representative pages and a variety of associated materials, including preliminary sketches and drafts for outstanding an important works, examples of rare posters and promotional materials, and a selection of important precursors for contemporary graphic novels including underground comics and the work of the political artists collective who produce World War III comics.

Also we’d again like to draw your attention to the forum on combating climate change this weekend on the 28th!

On Saturday, January 28 at 3 pm we will be holding a forum “Climate Action in a Time of  Crisis”  in the sanctuary of First Churches, 129 Main Street in Northampton. Featured will be State Senate President Stan Rosenberg and other representatives from the Massachusetts legislature, climate scientists and activists to discuss the problem and an action plan that will protect our earth from climate destruction. The forum will be one step in forming our segment of the massive movement that will be necessary to protect our earth and the generations to come.

Have a great rest of the week, lovely readers!

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:

Wednesday, January 25th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Crafternoons in the Library
Unwind in the teen room and make some neat crafts! It’s a fun time and you should come up with some new craft ideas if you think that sounds fun!
Thursday, January 26th
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Team Mead Presents: Create & Curate
Become a curator for the night as you cast your vote for the Mead’s next acquisition! Presentations will be done by students participating in the class Collecting 101: Acquiring Art for the Mead. You’ll get refreshments, crafts, and a musical guest! It’s pretty neat and you should support a lovely local museum with your voting and refreshment eating!

Board Games:

Tuesday, January 24th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Game On
Play board games at the Holyoke Public Library! It’s a good time for young and old and we really have to again recommend you check out Cosmic Encounter it’s just amazing.
Thursday, January 26th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Family Game Night
Play board games with your family and also your family at the Holyoke Public Library, which is to say the friendly staff!

Books:

Monday, January 23rd
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
World Literature Book Club
There’s 100% not time for you to read the book, A Constellation of Vital Phenomena, but you can attend to say hi and find out about the NEXT book they’re going to talk about!
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Comedy and Tragedy on the Mountain: 70 Years of Theatre on Mt. Tom
Join author Jacqueline Lynch as she talks about her soon to be released book about the history of theater on Mt Tom, from vaudeville to the final acts in the 1960s at the Mt. Tom Playhouse!
Wednesday, January 25th
Morrison Room, Willits-Hallowell Center, Mount Holyoke College at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
OFF-SITE: Kate Hennessy, Dorothy Day: The World Will Be Saved by Beauty
Saturday, January 28th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Sunderland Short Story Series
Court Dorsey will be reading “Assembly Line” by B. Traven, and Alice Grendon will be reading “Pricing Green Beans” by local author Juanita Nelson, plus there’s going to be one bonus story! Everyone loves a good story, and we are assuming that these are some great stories, hence these folks feel like they should share them. This is a perfectly logical line of thinking! Good job, us.

Community:

Wednesday, January 25th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM
The Henshaw Society
Meet for a friendly debate about current topics in culture and politics. It’s a structured debating society where two speakers each debate the Pro and Con sides of an argument and then people talk about it afterward! It sounds fun, we did debate in high school and it was pretty fun! Good way to hone the argumentation skills.
Saturday, January 28th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Forbes Library Tour
Learn about the wide ranging services available at our spectacular local library! It’s a useful, beautiful, friendly place.

Entertainment:

Tuesday, January 24th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM
Adventures Travelling in India
A slide show will be presented about a trip to India including Kerela, Rajasthan, and other places in what we can only describe as a pretty great use of the library.

Kids:

Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM
Kids’ Craft Club
Read a story, make a craft, enjoy being a kid! It’s nice, give it a shot.
Thursday, January 26th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM
LEGO Club
Build LEGO structures in the company of friends, an activity that all can agree is fun for kids from ages 9-90. Also, 1-8 and 91-…. … 120? What’s the oldest anyone has ever been? Apparently 122 years, 164 days according to Wikipedia. Dang. Anyway, after 123 we can’t guarantee LEGO is fun anymore!
Saturday, January 28th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Make Your Own Friendship Bracelet, Saturday Morning Kids
Get your best friend and head to the Odyssey! Make some friendship bracelets using the materials and support they provide, or bring your own! Seal your friendship in the most solid of manners possible: via bracelet!
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Valentine Card-Making Party
Get a friend and make some creative Valentines! The museum will provide all the materials you need to make some fun stuff for your friends and family and classmates! Ages 3 and up with an adult!
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:30 AM to 11:30 AM
Saturday Stories, Songs, and Crafts (Ages 0-5)
A great time for kids where you will hear stories, sing songs, and make little craft things!
Sunday, January 29th
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Special Sundays in the Studio: Our Feathered Friends
There’s no description for this so we’re assuming it has something to do with EITHER meeting some really cool birds OR just human beings who grew feathers!

Movies:

Wednesday, January 25th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
In Pursuit of Peace
A feature length documentary film that makes the case for unarmed civilian peacemaking and mediation as a response to violent conflicts. It was made about two Canadian men who work for the Non-Violent Peace Force and it follows them through their work. It’s going to be introduced by Annie Scariff, an advocate for the organization who’ll speak about their current activities. It’s presented by the Northampton Committee to Stop War!
Friday, January 27th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:00 PM to 4:30 PM
Matilda
Popcorn and children’s Carrie but with a happy ending movie Matilda! Matilda is a pretty wonderful film that’s fun for all kids who secretly think they’re the most intelligent person in the world and also maybe have psychic powers! It is based on the classic book by Roald Dahl

Science:

Monday, January 23rd
Union Station [125 Pleasant St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
“Where am I?” and Other Fundamental Questions Robots Think Long and Hard to Answer
What is a robot? What can they do for us? How do they work? Why do they find it hard to do things that we find trivial? What will they look like a decade from today? Joydeep Biswas, assistant professor of informtion and computer science at UMass, will talk to you about these questions and more! Since it’s a SciTech Cafe, expect adorable children to ask questions!

December 19th – December 25th

The Valley Nerd Watch!


Have an extremely good holiday season this year! Bring good cheer to other folks, it’s a good time to make sure that other people are doing okay and that they have what they need. Lots of gift-giving holiday times does sometimes mean a bunch of stress, though! Take care of yourselves.

This is a great time to become a sustaining monthly donor of a great charitable organization like the Food Bank of Western Mass! You can also donate in the name of your friends or family as a way of avoiding having to figure out what the heck to get them. Well, and as a way to do good in the world. But like, with the side benefit of making shopping for gifts during the Gifting Season less stressful.

Anyway, Happy Holidays!

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:

Friday, December 23rd
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 12:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Cookie Decorating
Open to all ages! They’re going to provide the frosting and the sprinkles and the cookies, you bring the ability to assemble those items into little adorably decorated cookies! It’ll be a top-notch time.

Board Games:

Tuesday, December 20th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Palmer Library Game Night
Play board games at a Game Night! We’ve been playing a bunch of Pandemic: Legacy, you should take a chance to try out Pandemic: Not Legacy and see if that seems like a fun time. It’s a super nice game that works well, and even better in Legacy form!

Card Games:

Friday, December 23rd
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 10:30 PM
Friday Night Magic: Booster Draft
Draft cards, play magic, win prizes! A $16 entry fee includes tax, and gets you 3 booster packs to draft with, and adds a pack to the prize pool! Everyone gets at least 1 prize pack, and extra packs and foil cards will be awarded for exceptional play!

Comic Books:

Monday, December 19th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Queers in Comics and Games
A discussion group for excellent folks led by the inimitable manager of Modern Myths! It’s a great place to discuss comics and games, get recommendations, and meet friendly folks in a very nice store full of games and comics!

Entertainment:

Wednesday, December 21st
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Youth Holiday Bingo
Bingo! That’s what you say when you’re playing the game Bingo, a sort of live gambling game which we have to say seems like a lot of fun. It’s kind of just an attention-game, like multiple people can win at the same time but you need to be on point to shout out the keyword (bingo) first!
Thursday, December 22nd
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Anime Club
Anime! The sport of kings. We’ve heard a ton of good things about the anime Fullmetal Alchemist! The recent Brotherhood re-make of it is a lot shorter and well-regarded we think. The little kid in the suit of armor is so neat is mostly what we gathered from the series!

Movies:

Monday, December 19th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM
Monday and a Movie for Teens: Great Unsung Women of Computing
A special screening of the movie Great Unsung Women of Computing! Learn about the mothers of computation, the people responsible in a direct manner for the very device upon which you read these words! There’s also popcorn and a discussion after the film!
Wednesday, December 21st
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:15 PM
Film Screening: Scrooged
Bill Murray in a classic tale of the fantastic: an extremely wealthy man coming to the understanding that other humans are worthwhile persons and not objects! Also it’s a retelling of the Dickens classic “A Christmas Carol”, it’s really funny and good!

RPGs:

Wednesday, December 21st
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
RPG Encounters: Star Wars
Did you like Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, About the Movie Star Wars Which You Watched and Enjoyed? Then play an RPG set in the universe! Did you not like Rogue One: A Star Wars Tale About the People in Star Wars? Well, you probably have strong opinions which you can express by playing an RPG set in the Stars Wars universe!
Thursday, December 22nd
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
RPG Club
Step inside another life! RPGs are fun time games for folks who like to play pretend around a table. You can basically play whatever, though Fake Medieval Place Role-playing is pretty much the most common.

Local Podcasts!

Ever since the invention of podcasts – when all radios in the Northern hemisphere intercepted a panicked discussion between a group of survivors of the Great Hiveship Anaximanious who had accidentally flipped their escape pod’s internal tele-speak on “broadcast” during a panicked hunt for the SOS transmitter before having an enlightening conversation about comedy, music, movies, board games, and oddly enough the American penal system – we’ve all been fans of this on-demand radio for the internet.

There’s a podcast for everyone! And now that’s truer than ever, with LOCAL podcasts diving onto the scene like majestic eagles. Each of these podcasts is the recipient of a special award that we definitely did not make up on the spot.

Top One About Games Featuring Two Friends Bickering: Chairmen of the Boards

  • What it’s about: Board and video-style games. Mostly the sort of bickering back-and-forth you get after completing a game and thinking about what you liked or did not like about it. Organized into loose themes like “open-world games” and “betrayer games”.
  • Who’s on it: Jesse Mayhew and Arvid Nelson. Arvid is an author, co-created and currently writes the comic Rex Mundi for Dark Horse, and works on video games. Jesse Mayhew performs labor in exchange for remuneration.
  • Why you should give it a listen: It’s only a few episodes in, but they’ve got a pretty solid rapport that’s easy to listen to. They’ve also managed to focus much more effectively than a lot of the chatty podcasts we’ve listened to. The discussion is on-topic and usually about a half hour. Because they don’t drift too much, you usually get a better understanding of the topic in less time than you might from a 3-hour “let’s talk about whatever in games” podcast.
  • If you’d like to be a guest: Contact them! They’re interested in speaking to local game designers and probably interesting and charismatic local folks in general.

Top One About Psychosocial Games Featuring Two Sisters Pleasantly Discussing: Games People Play

  • What it’s about: Games, but not that sort of game! Based on an old psychological theory proposed by Eric Berne about how social interactions are “games”, this podcast examines various social “games”. Things like “the 30-life crisis game”, played by both 30 year-olds and the sort of people who ask “so when are you settling down?”. Or the Christmas/Holidays Game where you try to achieve a Good Holiday without feeling horrid. It’s super high concept for a chatting podcast and we’re totally into it.
  • Who’s on it: Local game designer Hannah Shaffer and her sister Alanna, a local comedian and writer.
  • Why you should give it a listen: The high-concept premise is worth the price of admission in our opinion. Hannah and Alanna get along well and are easy to listen to. The structure of the discussion allows them to bounce back and forth between discussing more standard game design and discussing social structures that we tend to think of as invisible rather than designed.
  • What’s the theme music like: It’s totally awesome.

Top One About Comics and Games and Movies and Everything By A Local Comic Shop: Mythspoken

  • What it’s about: Basically all of the stuff that people working at Modern Myths are into! It covers a really wide swath. Talking to creators, talking about how to use Kickstarter, talking about comic movies, talking about race in gaming, talking about lots and lots of things. It is currently defunct, but the Modern Myths newsletter has said that this year it’s going to be back in business! We await it excitedly!
  • Who’s on it: The friendly folks at Modern Myths! It varies, and in particular the next set of people will be different from the current set of episodes since the staff has changed in the meantime.
  • Why you should give it a listen: Freewheeling discussion of a wide variety of topics that holds up even years later! The folks at Modern Myths are nice and also well-versed in the nerd stuff they’re discussing.
  • When’s it coming back: IT IS A MYSTERY but we’re hoping it’ll be soon.