Trivia

September 11th – September 17th

 

The Valley Nerd Watch!


Are you going to see Nerd Nite tomorrow? You should! It’ll be fun! It’s going to be about bats and manipulative presenting tactics! Educational, fun, all the things you like. We’re finally going after that lucrative bats and sociology crowd.

We’re also going to be at The Academy of Music on the 23rd of October! They have 800 seats, did you know that? Did you know that they have more seats than we knew they had and that if people sat in all those seats it would be nervewracking but also if there were a bunch of empty seats it would be a different sort of nervewracking? Anyway please attend!

Hey have you seen the nice retro poster designs that Aaron Wood does? Why not buy a few? They’re all cool and it’s nice supporting a local artist, isn’t it?

Also we forgot if we already said this recently but are you interested in a gigantic number of old comics? We’ve got a gigantic number of old comics. That’s where we keep getting these header images. If you want expensive rare ones, we’re happy to take your money. If you want every issue of Spawn, we’re happy to take a very little of your money!

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, September 12th
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Fall Exhibitions Opening
Five new exhibitions are opening and you’re invited! Food, art, music, and photographer Mimi Cherono Ng’ok are all going to be there! Free and open to all!
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Artist Talk by Mimi Cherono Ng’ok
A Kenyan photographer who lives and works in Nairobi, Mimi has practiced all over the world! From her studies in Cape Town, to residences in Berlin and exhibitions in Mozambique, she’s doing a whole ton of excellent photography! Learn more about her artistic practice at this talk!
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Radioplasma Recording Studio Sessions
Each Tuesday, meet up in the Teen Room and walk as a group to the Radioplasma Recording Studio at 306 Race St. to learn about media literacy, get hands-on experience with song recording, journalism, storytelling, and sound mixing! Also, oddly enough, carpentry. No one tries to make it happen, but everyone comes out knowing more about how to make those nice invisible wood joins.
Goodwin Memorial Library [50 Middle St, Hadley, MA 01035] at 3:30 PM to 5:15 PM
Writing Workshop 3
Learn how to write well! We imagine this will teach you the age-old lesson that books have never existed and we were all just pretending to be literate this whole time!
Wednesday, September 13th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM
Crafternoon
Teens! Come hang out in the Teen Room, your designated room, to create! Write, draw, make jewelry, design things in 3D, play with their technology! Use the library’s resources to make your dreams… reality.
Thursday, September 14th
Goodwin Memorial Library [50 Middle St, Hadley, MA 01035] at 3:30 PM to 5:15 PM
Writing Workshop 4
Learn how to write well! We imagine this will teach you the age-old lesson that all good writing shares one key element: two pages about a bear. No more, no less.
Saturday, September 16th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Upcycled Paper Flowers
Learn how to re-purpose discarded book pages into paper flowers using the Kusudama technique! All materials are provided, but feel free to bring your own decorative accents for the center of the flowers! Amber Ladley is a lifelong crafter and creative entrepreneur, and finds a lot of joy helping people learn how to do stuff that reduces waste! So find joy with her at this session!
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 2:30 PM to 4:30 PM
Upcycled Paper Flowers Session 2
This again! But later.

Books:

Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 10:00 AM to 1:30 PM
Friends Book Sale
Friends, Romans, Countrymen! Lend us your dollars! In exchange for books! Nailed it on the first try with that gag, thank you very much!

Comic Books:

Friday, September 15th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 10:00 PM
Modern Myths Fifteenth Anniversary Party!
The big event this week! “Join us on FRIDAY, September 15th for our annual celebration of defying the odds for one more year! We’ll have our usual spread: Pizza, soft drinks, and amazing (totally vegan!) cupcakes! ALL attendees will receive a door prize, and one lucky winner will get to be our latest LIFETIME VIP, with free admission to all future Day Pass events and FIFTEEN of our sweet new $5 Tokens to spend however they like! We’ll also have a special prize for the winner of our Modern Myths Trivia Contest, where we see who knows the most about the history of the store! Doors open at 6:30 PM and pizza arrives at 7:00. This event is open to ALL AGES, and is totally free, our gift back to the community that’s kept us around for so long. Call or stop by the store for any additional details.”

Community:

Monday, September 11th
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Marie Bartlett — September 11 Program
From the site: “Marie Betts Bartlett, author and illustrator of The Little Yellow Trolley Car, will describe her strategies for writing, illustrating and discussing her children’s picture book Poppy’s Purpose, which is a true story based on a subway car that survived the collapse of the World Trade Center towers.”

Computers:

MYSTERY LOCATION at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Making Smart Technical Decisions – Monthly Full Stack Meetup
“In this meetup, we’ll discuss technical decisions and their impact over the span of years. When is the best time to migrate from an antiquated system that is becoming a pain to manage? Is it worth months of effort to port functionality to the latest and greatest service? Could we avoid these problems up front? Can we migrate incrementally without getting stuck?” Figure out how to resolve technical issues that snag great projects! Check out the Meetup to make sure you know where to meet up! https://www.meetup.com/wmasswebdev/events/242981781/
Wednesday, September 13th
Last Call Media [136 West St., Suite 01, Northampton, MA] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Agile Methods Meetup
Agile! It’s the currently in vogue method for getting things done, and it seems to work rather well for a lot of folks! Learn how to make it work even more excellently by speaking with this group of excellent ScrumMasters and associated experts! There’s pizza and discussion as well as a presentation about specific techniques!
Last Call Media [136 West St., Suite 01, Northampton, MA] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Agile Methods Meetup
Learn Agile from some experts! Talk about your expertise with Agile to some novices! Come together and spread the good news of Agile, and also get some pizza.
Thursday, September 14th
Amherst College [220 South Pleasant St., Amherst, MA] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Hack for Western Mass
Get together and talk about the projects currently underway, propose new ideas, work together to make the Valley a more spectacular place to live! Dinner is served at this even’t!
Sunday, September 17th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Web Design 101 with WordPress: Improving Your Website
Librarian and officially licensed Tech Wizard Dylan Tibert will teach you the fundamentals of designing your own website using WordPress. Classes will be a one hour lecture followed by a hands-on workshop. Perfect for experienced computer users who are beginners at web design! This class covers how to improve the page you built with CSS, SEO, and analytics!

Entertainment:

Wednesday, September 13th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM
Henry David Thoreau Takes the Train to Palmer – and Beyond!
Thoreau hated the train, and we’re going to use the Palmer’s own joke here because we love it, he “railed” against it! But nonetheless it was an important part of his life! He went to lectures, visited friends, and traveled around New England, Palmer, and the to the Midwest! Corinne Smith will let you know why!
Springfield Symphony Hall [34 Court St, Springfield, MA 01103] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Steve Forbes: America’s Future in the Global Economy
Listen to Steve Forbes, noted winner of the HIGHLY PRESTIGIOUS “Crystal Owl” award, speak about the only way for your life to get better is for him to get way more money as quickly as possible. And really we just want to focus on the fact that this extremely wealthy and powerful man with a storied life full of basically non-stop achievement of everything he could want is really putting the danged Crystal danged Owl award front-and-center. We suppose it’s to burnish his bonifides but for real. We’re going to start saying this site has won the Spangled Starling award 9 times every time we send an email.
Friday, September 15th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Annual Eid al-Adha Celebration featuring Haroon Moghul
A big celebration of Eid al-Adha, the Sacrifice Feast, which is one of the biggest Muslim holidays celebrated worldwide every year! Author and commentator and broadcaster Haroon Moghul will be there talking and we’re guessing signing books, and you’ll be able to get food for $8 if you’re a non-student!
Goodwin Memorial Library [50 Middle St, Hadley, MA 01035] at 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM
Ukulele Jam
Play the Ukulele? Just like the look of it and want to try? Play songs and learn at the Jam!
Saturday, September 16th
MYSTERY LOCATION at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Game of Thrones S1E4 & Potluck
Everyone really liked having a GoT meetup, so they’re doing it again! The first time the plan was to watch just the first episode, but it wound up being the first three! See if this one can keep itself under control! Bring food or drink to share!

Kids:

Tuesday, September 12th
Goodwin Memorial Library [50 Middle St, Hadley, MA 01035] at 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Storytime
Give your kids a chance to hear a nice story told by a friendly librarian! Also there are snacks and crafts!
Thursday, September 14th
Goodwin Memorial Library [50 Middle St, Hadley, MA 01035] at 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Lunatunes!
A sign-a-long for babies and toddlers! We imagine the babies are quite a bit less capable of the whole “along” part of the singalong but they have fun. There’s also always a snack, so your kids will not turn into the scary kind of Gremlin.

Movies:

Tuesday, September 12th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA 01375] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Film Screening: Before the Flood
Before the Flood is a film about the ways in which climate change affects our environment and what society can do to save some of what we love. A discussion of the film and climate change will be held after the screening. We recommend holding a discussion about ice cream in your tummy after that if you want to cheer up a bit.
Thursday, September 14th
Westhampton Public Library [1 N Rd, Westhampton, MA 01027] at 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Film: The Brush Shop
“Stan Sherer’s film, The Brush Shop, will be shown at the Westhampton Public Library. This film tells the story of a vital Northampton industry through interviews with former Pro Brush people, archival photographs and commercials and advertisements from different periods.” Learn more about the history of your lovely Valley!
Saturday, September 16th
Goodwin Memorial Library [50 Middle St, Hadley, MA 01035] at 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Dungeons & Dragons
Play D&D with excellent pals, new players welcome! There will be pizza, an integral part of playing D&D!

Science:

Monday, September 11th
World War 2 Club [50 Conz St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Nerd Nite NoHo!
It’ll be another wonderful time with the nerds! Meet new people, have a good night out at a fine local establishment, and learn about how to influence people with presentations and how the bats are doing! Did you not know the bats were having a hard time? They were! We’ll find out why and whether we should be nervous about these cute critters having a hard time again!

 

Advertisements

October 17th – October 23rd

The Valley Nerd Watch!


It’s our birthday weekend! We’re having a great time, which is nice! Birthdays are usually a good time thanks to our very kind friends and family and we really appreciate them all.

ALSO we’re definitely having a bunch of fun picking out what games we’re going to get because we are very functional and attractive adults who are aware that when it is your birthday you get to buy toys.

We hope all of your weekends are going well, whether or not they involve birthdays!

Also you should check out these local Kickstarters that are still going on, they seem neat!

Broker – a quick party card game about trying to keep a straight face while you cheat your undies off!

A.E.G.I.S – a quick fun tactical combat game where the gimmick is that your units can combine together like Voltron to become more powerful!

Rise Up: The Game of People and Power – a game about building successful social movements to create positive change!

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, October 21st
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Materiality at the Mead with Julia A. Ream
Thinking of a career in art conservation? Maybe just curious about the processes and materials involved? The independent conservator of Asian works on paper, Julia A. Ream, will lead a conservation workshop for students and deliver a lecture on her career trajectory and recent work on manuscripts and paintings from the Middle East and South Asia!
Saturday, October 22nd
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Fact or Fiction? The Reality of Clothes in Portraits by Edward Maeder
Textile and costume historian Edward Maeder will examine some of the methods in which early fashion information was distributed from the late middle ages until the middle of the nineteenth century. He will also present and discuss a brief survey of publications that included or were based entirely on dress from the 15th to the 19th century. It’s interesting to consider how eras before really convenient mass-distribution media managed to impart a cultural style to people!
Sunday, October 23rd
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Guerilla Portraiture at the Political Conventions by Barry Goldstein
Barry Goldstein interviewed and photographed participants at the 2016 Republican National Convention for The American Scholar magazine. He also covered the demonstrations in Philadelphia during the Democratic Convention. Barry will describe the technical and logistical challenges of what he calls his on-the-fly “guerrilla portraiture.” See this really interesting set of portrait photos along with audio excerpts from his interviews!
Emily Dickinson Museum [280 Main St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
The Poet and the Bard
Join a tour of the Dickinson estate that focuses on her love for the Bard! It’s $15 for nonmember adults, $10 for museum members, and $5 for students K-12.

Board Games:

Tuesday, October 18th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Palmer Library Game Night
They’ve got games for you to play, or you can feel free to bring your own! We recommend King of Tokyo for a nice quick game that’s easy for everyone to understand, and it’s got cool giant monsters.

Books:

Tuesday, October 18th
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Children’s Book Writers Group
Do you write children’s books? Talk to other folks who write children’s books! It’s a good opportunity to hang out and discuss the art and business of writing and illustrating books for kids!
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Medea Benjamin, author of Kingdom of the Unjust: Behind the U.S.-Saudi Connection
Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CODEPINK, has become famous for direct action protests, mostly against actions by the military that we tend to take for granted. In this book, she researches the nature of the relationship between the US and Saudi Arabia, detailing what she sees as the current problems with the US support of the extremely repressive Saudi regime, and what possible paths to change exist.
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA] at 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Local Author Ellen Wittlinger: Reading from her new novel Local Girl Swept Away
Ellen Wittlinger is the author of fifteen YA and middle-grade novels, and her novel Hard Love won both a Printz Honor Award and a Lambda Literary Award. Her books have been on numerous ALA Best Books lists, Bank Street College of Education lists, and state award lists. Local Girl Swept Away is the story of four friends, two boys and two girls, who in the wake of tragedy and revealed secrets must deal with grief, love, and betrayal. The book is set in the small, beautiful community of Provincetown, Massachusetts.
Wednesday, October 19th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Paul Staiti, author of Of Arms and Artists: The American Revolution through Painters’ Eyes
Author Paul Staiti brings five great artists of the Revolutionary period to live, and shows their lives were every bit as eventful as those of the founders with whom they interacted. These painters contributed immensely to the spirit of a new nation, with their painting providing “a means of narrating the revolution to themselves and to citizens of the new republic” by virtue of how they chose to present the actions and character of the leaders of that revolution. Paul Staiti teaches at Mount Holyoke College and is the author of several books and essays on American artists.
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
Reading by State-honored Writers and Poets
Every two years, the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC) awards grants to some of the most talented writers and poets working in the Commonwealth. Literary artists awarded through MCC’s Artist Fellowships Program will read their work at the Forbes Library!
Thursday, October 20th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
George Lakey, Viking Economics: How the Scandinavians Got It Right – and How We Can, Too
George Lakey’s book is a clear-eyed look at how Nordic countries have achieved a lot of positive social goals, and it’s fun! He takes a look at what has changed and why, and how it’s been an inspiringly short time that these snowy lands have actually been Utopian.
Saturday, October 22nd
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Book Party with Mo Willems!
Join the Carle for an exclusive preview of Mo Willems’ new book, Nanette’s Baguette, set in a meticulously paper-crafted French village, the book follows a plucky heroine on her first solo trip to the bakery! Mo will read from his new book, and you can meet Elephant and Piggie, watch films, and create art of your own!
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 2:30 PM to 4:00 PM
Why Only Women Should Vote
Join a humorous and timely discussion led by Tom Fitzgerald, author of Poor Richard’s Lament. Human Males have been in charge of a lot of things for a long time, and Tom thinks it’s becoming obvious they’re not really doing a top quality job. What to do? Maybe just have women run everything? Audience participation is encouraged at this book reading!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM
Book Launch and Author Reading with John Sheirer: Make Common Sense Common Again
John Sheirer agrees with you, The Voice of the Common Folk, when you say the United States has gone all cuckoo recently and is definitely a real circus unlike other periods in our history during which we were totally not the worst. He’s here to tell you how core American values can overcome the silliness by laughing at ourselves and finding common sense solutions. We’re really looking forward to the Utopian period that will begin immediately after this presentation!

Card Games:

Saturday, October 22nd
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Kaladesh Game Day
Play Magic: The Gathering! Experience the wonder that is card-gaming! Win some prizes! It’s a blast and a half.

Comic Books:

Monday, October 17th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Queers in Comics & Games
Talk to interesting people about comics and games! It’s a freewheeling discussion group led by the absolutely excellent manager of Modern Myths and it is a wonderful opportunity to meet new folks and learn about comics and games.

Community:

Saturday, October 22nd
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA] at 1:30 PM to 2:30 PM
Iron Chef Fall Edition
The SECRET ingredient THIS WEEK will be…. AAAAAPPLES! The teens will choose at least three different ingredients to pair with the apples, one ingredient at least will have to come from the “Strange” food category, foods you wouldn’t normally pair with apples! Sign up in advance at the Sunderland Public Library or call (413) 665-2642.
Sunday, October 23rd
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Community Open House
A day of events for the whole family! There’s an oral history presentation, a tour of the world’s first Yiddish museum, demonstrations in the reproduction Yiddish print shop, a talk by Aaron Lansky, a concert with the Schaechter Sisters and Binyumen, and it’ll be an amazing time!

Computers:

Thursday, October 20th
Northampton Community TV [380 Elm St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
WordPress Developers and Admins
WordPress is the world’s most popular web framework, powering 26% of websites, everything from personal blogs to business websites. Do you own or administer a WordPress site? Are you a WordPress developer? Learn from other people in the Valley, and talk about WordPress! The room seats 20, so sign up on the Meetup page if you plan to come! http://www.meetup.com/wmasswebdev/events/234654923/

History:

Wednesday, October 19th
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Music to Get Elected By: Wayne Haskin
A lecture and multimedia presentation about the history of American campaign music with Wayne Hankin, a nationally recognized music performer and educator! The presentation will trace the origins of our unique American genre, and will show major music events that shaped the American political landscape!

Kids:

Monday, October 17th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Rad Women Worldwide
A new collection of 40 biographical profiles from the authors of bestselling book Rad American Women A-Z! Kate Schatz and Miriam Klein Stahl tell inspiring tales of perseverance and radical success by pairing well researched biographies with powerful cut-paper portraits. Featuring figures from Hatshepsut to Malala Yousafzi to Poly Styrene, this book is a compelling addition to women’s history. The authors will be there to read, sign, and answer questions!
Saturday, October 22nd
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA] at 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Meet a Therapy Dog!
Meet Cynthia Hinckley and her extraordinary Therapy Dog Lily! Learn what Therapy Dogs do, find out how they’re trained, and discover where these special dogs visit! Heck if you’ve got a particularly awesome doggie, maybe they’ll be a candidate to be a great Therapy dog!

Movies:

Tuesday, October 18th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM
Scary Movies for Teens
Are you a teen? Do you like scary movies? Join other scary teens and watch scary films in a scary library! Wait no it’s a normal library. Still, fun times!
Wednesday, October 19th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
Watch the classic tale of a gaudily-dressed serial murderer who definitely seems to kill like 90% of the people in the movie but then everyone’s cool with it? Roald Dahl was a really odd children’s book author yeah? The late great Gene Wilder makes this role his own, and it’s a really amazing movie. All are welcome to this free screening!
Thursday, October 20th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Film Screening: Bernadette
A portrait of the Irish dissident and political activist, Bernadette Devlin, by artist Duncan Campbell. She was instrumental in a lot of the most contentious years of modern Irish political history, and helped form the Irish Republican Socialist Party and supported prisoner rights.
Sunday, October 23rd
Amherst Cinema [28 Amity St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:45 PM to 3:00 PM
Forbidden Planet
See a one-time showing of an absolutely classic bit of science-fiction! It’s loosely based on The Tempest, and it’s just really damned good. It also stars Leslie Nielsen in the only serious role you’re likely to watch him play!

Science:

Monday, October 17th
FPH Main Lecture Hall [893 West St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 5:30 PM to 6:30 PM
Theory of Brain Network Control: First-Principles Computations and Ethical Considerations. A Lecture by Dr. Danielle Bassett
Dr. Danielle Bassett is the Skirkanich Professor of Innovation at the University of Pennsylvania and she’s the youngest person to ever be awarded a MacArthur ‘genius’ grant! She’ll talk about how the “network control theory” of mental functioning might provide us with a better way of anticipating the effect of targeted interventions into mental functioning, and damned if it isn’t super neat this is happening in town she’s a big deal!
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Researching your French Canadian Ancestors
By 1900, one third of Holyoke’s population was of French Canadian descent. This evening’s special guest Pauline Cusson, editor of the journal American-Canadian Genealogist, will share her expertise in the field of French Canadian genealogical research, drawing on both U.S. and Quebec resources. We don’t think we’re French Canadian, but French Canada is real neat.

October 10th – October 16th

The Valley Nerd Watch!


Wow! Tons of neat events this week, over thirty! Be sure to check out Nerd Nite NoHo, because it’s excellent and everyone has a great time and it’s the third anniversary this week! It’s going to be about toxoplasmosis, diversity, and tropical bird conservation!

We just had a chance to check out the Puzzled Escape Games room at Eastworks and dang if that wasn’t a great time! We’ll have a more comprehensive review of it later this week but wow, it was honestly just fun. All the good bits of an adventure game shoved into an hour, and the hosts were quite nice.

It’s pretty well-paced to deliver epiphanies and we had more than a few moments where we screamed in glee at newly revealed features of the room! Super great, highly recommended. We hadn’t realized it was a local operation until looking up the site, either! Neat!

We also want to alert you to a few ongoing Kickstarters we’ve been alerted to by locals:

Broker – a quick party card game about trying to keep a straight face while you cheat your undies off!

A.E.G.I.S – a quick fun tactical combat game where the gimmick is that your units can combine together like Voltron to become more powerful!

Rise Up: The Game of People and Power – a game about building successful social movements to create positive change!

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:

Thursday, October 13th
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Materiality at the Mead with scientist Bruce Kaiser
Bruce Kaiser, chief scientist at the Bruker Corporation, will explain the process of X-ray Florencent testing using the Mead’s bronze sculptures by A. Phimister Proctor. He’ll explain the tool’s value to the field of art conservation and how it advances understanding! Science and art, together and loving it!
Friday, October 14th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Mask by Jenni Sussman Opening Reception
Jenni Sussman will be displaying her collection of paintings that question early photographs and the people depicted therein! What’s on display and what remains hidden, and why? She’s a regionally recognized artist living and working in delightful Northampton!
Smith College Museum of Art [20 Elm St, Northampton, MA 01063] at 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Free Second Friday
Do you love museums but not like $5 love museums? This is the night for you! For real it’s an amazing museum and you can visit it and do some activities for free this Friday!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Arts Night Out Reception: Fractal Art by Bob LaClair, Diorama by Judith Abraham
Judith looks justifiably proud of her diorama, you should check that out. It’s neat and it’s got a bunch of tiny books in it, mimicking the larger books on display around the library! Also fractals are never not cool, math is great. Add Forbes to a fun Arts Night Out!
Saturday, October 15th
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Northampton Community Music Center Family Concert Series: The Return of the Flannery Brothers
For just $5 you and your kids can see some real fun songsters sing delightful songs!

Board Games:

Wednesday, October 12th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:30 PM to 6:00 PM
Games for Teens
Teens only! But they can be any type of teen. Tall, short, fire-type, steel-type, paladin… any combination of teen traits are cool to play boardgames together and have a fun time!
Saturday, October 15th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Palmer Scholastic Chess Tournament
There are 4 sections, K-3, 4-6, 7-9, and 10-12. It’s a 4-round Swiss System with a trophy to everyone who’s 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in each section and entry is free! Bring a set and a clock if you’ve got them, and a bagged lunch!
Sunday, October 16th
Comics n’ More [31 Union Street, Easthampton MA 01027] at 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Sunday Heroclix!
Sundays are for hero-clicking! This time you should create a team entirely out of people who wear tiaras! That means at a minimum Wonder Woman and Luke Cage!

Books:

Tuesday, October 11th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Okey Ndibe, author of Never Look an American in the Eye: A Memoir of Flying Turtles, Colonial Ghosts, and the Making of a Nigerian American
A fascinating and hilarious look at a journey to a new place, Okey Ndibe talks about his fear of encountering the obviously common threat according to American movies of black-hat gunslingers and the fact that after he made it to New England where he learned actually no it’s winter that’s trying to kill you.
Wednesday, October 12th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
One City One Story: The Faery Handbag
Pick up a copy of a fantasy novelette, the Faery Handbag, or read it for free online, then join in a discussion! You can read it here: https://bostonbookfest.org/one-city-one-story/
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Tracy Kidder, A Truck Full of Money
Soul of the New Machine, only about Kayak that travel website that you maybe use but was bought for two BILLION dollars. It’s primarily focused on a biographical account of Paul English, who came up with the site, and how he dealt with the aftermath of stupendous success. Tracy will be there to read excerpts and answer questions!
Thursday, October 13th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Margot Livesey, author of Mercury: A Novel
Two people have complex and emotionally affecting life moments dealing with a lot things! Donald Stevenson is a disaffected eye doctor trying to stay the course and his wife Viv is a vibrant woman dealing with giving up her dreams when she encounters a horse, Mercury, who she thinks might be capable of making her a championship rider.
Friday, October 14th
Amherst College Frost Library, Center for Humanistic Inquiry at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Did Emily Dickinson Really Exist? An Evening with Jerome Charyn
Now we weren’t even aware this was even a question but wow okay oh wait no no okay it’s just a provocative title folks she definitely did exist! Yay! It sounds like a great book of Dickinson scholarship, though! She seems like she was a real awesome person.
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM
YA Panel: Dawn Kurtagich (And the Trees Crept In) and Dawn Metcalf (Twixt series)
Two authors of dark fiction, psychological horror, and romance will talk about you know all that sort of thing! It’ll be a good time, they both write neat stories and panel discussions are usually fun. Get some books signed and come with interesting questions prepared!
Saturday, October 15th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St, Sunderland, MA] at 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
Book and Bake Sale
Buy books, buy treats, support a great local library. There’s absolutely nothing that can be done to improve this! Grocery-bags of books for only $7!
The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art [125 West Bay Rd., Amherst, MA 01002] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Special Storytime: Angela DiTerlizzi
Angela DiTerlizzi will talk about her book Some Pets and read from it! There will also be adorable reading therapy dogs there!

Community:

Wednesday, October 12th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St, Sunderland, MA] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Drop-In FAFSA Help
College is incredibly expensive and it should be your goal to minimize that to any extent you are able. College debt follows you through the veil of death, it torments you beyond the dimensions we know. It’s a super good idea to get everything you can out of FAFSA!
Thursday, October 13th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM
Kids Voting in the Presidential Library
Who represents you? What’s voting about anyway? What does election cake taste like? Find out the answers to these questions, kids, and meet the mayor! Also kids talk to your parents before reading news about the current presidential election!

Computers:

Tuesday, October 11th
MYSTERY LOCATION at 5:30 PM to 6:30 PM
Functional Programming with CLojure – Monthly Full Stack Meetup
Learn how to put functional programming to work for you with lessons from local developer Jochen Rau! He’ll explain the basic concepts of functional programming like lazy evaluation and tail recursion and he’ll also walk you through a real-world web application! A great opportunity to get started on the path to a new skillset and ask questions of a professional!
Wednesday, October 12th
Last Call Media [136 West St., Suite 01, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Agile Methods Meetup
October is going to focus on Story Points, Velocity and #NoEstimates why is only one of these a hashtag do they mean the like social interaction that involved the hashtag or are we actually starting to hashtag conceptual things now? Mostly it’ll be a discussion of best practices around these concepts, and everyone’s quite nice and there’s pizza. Really, can’t recommend it enough to people who want to learn to use or learn to improve Agile development processes!

Entertainment:

Wednesday, October 12th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:15 PM
A Ukulele Renaissance with the Well Tempered Ukes
Experience five hundred years of history in song and experience those songs in the most majestic of string instruments: the UKE!
Thursday, October 13th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St, Sunderland, MA] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Laser Tag at the Library!
Shoot your friends with lasers in the library in what we have to say is a very weird turn to high-tech blood-sport on the part of the library.
Saturday, October 15th
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 2:30 PM to 4:00 PM
Slavery in the Valley: Five Unsung Heroes Who Resisted
Robert H. Romer, physicist and historian, is a Professor Emeritus of Physics at Amherst College. He’ll discuss some of the enslaved people of the Valley and what they did to resist their masters. He’ll explain why it’s so important to remember those who lived in slavery in the Valley, invisible men and women of our colonial past.
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Wildsboro & Roberts Meadow Walk
Walk along Mosquito Hollow Road with John Clapp to check out the cellar holes, stone walls and stone lined wells of the former residents of Wildsboro, a long-forgotten neighborhood located withing the larger village of Roberts Meadow. Get a peek at the secrets of a town lost to time!

Kids:

Thursday, October 13th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
3 & 4 Year Old Storytime
Take your kids to story time to delight their imaginations!
Friday, October 14th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St, Sunderland, MA] at 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Fire Prevention Story Time
Fire fighter Megan Ahearn from the Sunderland Fire Department will share stories with you and you’ll get to see a real fire truck! You’ll also learn how to prevent fires and what to do in the case of a fire. This is adorable AND useful!

Movies:

Tuesday, October 11th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM
Scary Movies for Teens
They’re PG-13 at maximum so scary is less likely than funny/creepy but hey that sounds like a danged nice time as well!

RPGs:

Friday, October 14th
Chesterfield Scout Reservation [22 Sugar Hill Rd., Chesterfield, MA] at 9:00 PM to 12:00 AM
Sins of a Nation LARP Game 2
A “Full Metal Fantasy” full-weekend LARP! Basically you adventure on expeditions into an ancient and ruined kingdom. You can get more information here! https://www.facebook.com/SinsSixthKingdom Start thinking up your character now!
Saturday, October 15th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 4:00 PM to 12:00 AM
D&D Storm King’s Thunder GIANT ADVENTURE
Another GIANT ADVENTURE against the GIANTS! It’s a full day of gaming for only $20, which includes pizza and a soft drink. Hours of fun fighting giants AND food? Good gracious. The attendance is strictly limited to the first 15 signups so pre-register with Modern Myths as soon as you can!

Science:

Monday, October 10th
The World War 2 Club [50 Conz St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Nerd Nite NoHo 3rd Anniversary!
It’s an anniversary bash! Giveaways, treats, and most important of all three amazing presenters! Daniel Vahaba will talk about terrifying/interesting cat disease toxoplasmosis, Presley Pizzo will talk about the power and utility of diversity in a diverse array of situations, and Zeke Jakub will talk about how conservation efforts for birds in Argentina affect us here in the Valley, and vice versa! It’s going to be great tell your friends to come.
Thursday, October 13th
The Nacul Center [592 Main St., Amherst] at 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Matthew Boyer – Unprotected Pollination: How Pollinators Transmit Plant Diseases
Learn about how our little pollinator friends can be hijacked to transmit disease to the plants they pollinate! That’s so sad, they just want delicious pollen, they didn’t mean to hurt a plant. Poor bumblebees!

Video Games:

Thursday, October 13th
Moriarty’s Pub and Grille [755 Liberty St., Springfield, MA 01104] at 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM
The Pub Brawl: Super Smash Bros Tournament
A second tournament to follow the successful first outing! There’s two setups for a Super Smash Bros Wii U tournament and another setup for a PS3! There are cheap drinks, snacks, and good times! There’s also a $5 cover, and an $8 fee to enter the tournament officially. The winner gets a cash prize and a chance to fight the reigning champion! Sounds like a lovely time if we’ve ever heard of one.
Saturday, October 15th
Toyota Oakdale Theatre [95 South Turnpike Road, Wallingford, CT] at 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Retro World Expo: New England’s Classic Gaming Expo
The second annual celebration of classic and retro gaming will include an auction, cosplay contest, freeplay arcade and consoles, panels, bands, and tournaments! It’s jam-packed with fun! Check out the meetup to join other locals! http://www.meetup.com/thepvg/events/234339172/

August 31st – September 6th

XMen131CoverThe Valley Nerd Watch!


OH GOSH OH GOLLY IT’S ALMOST TIME

TOPATOCON! THE BIG EVENT! SEPTEMBER 26th – 27th

For real though we’re incredibly jazzed about TopatoCon, what fun it will be! Lots of nice artists and writers and designers and other creative types will be there hanging out with their wares. You can contribute directly to art you find enjoyable!

You can have that pleasant but kind of awkward conversation you have with a person you feel you know via their artistic output but who does not feel the same way about you! You might not be able to become fast friends with your idols, but it is still thrilling to have an opportunity to speak with them!

Also, guess what? Nerd Nite is the middle of the month this month! September 14th, put it in your calendar! It will be about cool artwork and implicit biases, you’ll like it. It will also have a shocking announcement! Your minds will collectively blow! If you only go to one Nerd Nite… please don’t do that, go to all the Nerd Nites they’re all fun.

Finally, if you are currently playing Rocket League – the excellent game about cars in hats with rocket engines playing soccer with a giant bomb – let us know! We’d love to play on a team with our wonderful readers.

As always, be sure to check out 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


Board Games:

Sunday, September 6th
Comics n’ More [31 Union Street, Easthampton MA 01027] at 1:00pm – 4:00pm
Sunday Heroclix!
Heroes that click! Heroes that fight! Also villains! Also just like, background characters at this point. BUT the point is here’s a miniatures game where you can make Wolvering team up with Venom to fight Shatterstar and Spiral, it’s awesome and you should give it a shot… bub! Hosted by Jaimie!

Books:

Friday, September 4th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:30pm – 4:30pm
Crafternoon: Book Bags!
Hey, you. Yeah, that’s right. Come over here. We here you like…. <__>… booooks. Yeaaaah. Yeah, you’re into books, we could tell. Well if you love books so danged much you sometimes have trouble carrying them home, head to forbes to get a library bag and then decorate it!

Card Games:

Tuesday, September 1st
Greenwood Park Senior Center [231 Maple Rd, Longmeadow, MA 01060] at 6:45pm
Longmeadow Cribbage Club
Some people at a senior center are looking for cribbage players! Cribbage is sort of like Magic the Gathering or Netrunner except it is considered classier because the pictures on the cards are more boring. And you don’t tap anything. Co-ed, 21+, call (413)848-2147!
Sunday, September 6th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 12:00pm – 5:00pm
GPT Pittsburg – Modern
Alright we’re going to play Event Detective here. The only thing in this event description is a little gerblin with a lamp made of thorn vines. We assume this is Pittsburg, the Modern Gerblin. Your task is to play enough Magic the Gathering to make him happy again! Try to help out good old Pittsburg this Sunday!

Computers:

Tuesday, September 1st
The Foundry [24 Main St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00pm
Northampton Webdive – After Work
Do you web-code? Do you gleam the cube? Hack the matrix? Are you Zero Cool? Well come meet up with other super cool um… phone phreakers? We’ve been putting up a false front everyone we got no clue about computers. If you do, meet up with fellow coders for a drink!

Entertainment:

Thursday, September 3rd
Jones Library [43 Amity St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Jones Library TRIVIA!
Mark “Harpo” Power has offered to host trivia on Thursdays now! Lovely! Do the Art Walk and then join everyone for a Trivia Night. Bring your friends and family if and ONLY if they will contribute to your team. If they aren’t trivia buffs, force them to wait in the car. Five people per team, $5-$10 suggested donation!
Palmer Public Library [1455 North Main Street, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Anime Club
Teens! Young adults! Anime fans! But we repeat ourselves. All cool teens and youngsters are anime fanatics. Meet to discuss and watch and read and enjoy anime and manga! It will be delightful.

Movies:

Wednesday, September 2nd
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:45 – 9:45
Beetlejuice on the Lawn
Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice is playing on the lawn! And beforehand, a band that plays unplugged movie soundtrack songs, the Super 8 Players, will be playing a short set. Bring snacks and a blanket and friends! We either accidentally put this in last week’s Nerd Watch or it got moved, we forget!

RPGs:

Thursday, September 3rd
Palmer Public Library [1455 North Main Street, Palmer, MA 01069] at 4:00pm – 6:00pm
RPG Club
Come hang out at the Palmer Library and play some sort of a Role-Playing Game with people who are nice! Create your own character or even characters! Describe their adventures until someone says “wait wait no roll a die first… okay yes continue”!
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00pm – 5:00pm
Indie RPG Night: Night Witches
Indie RPG Night is a great way to play interesting games with wonderful people. And what an interesting game this time! Players take on the role of a member of the brave Night Witches, Russian female aviators in WW2 who flew 1920’s-era prop planes in some of the most daring missions of the war!
Friday, September 4th
Chesterfield Scout Reservation [22 Sugar Hill Road, Chesterfield, MA 01096]
The Market of the Moons
Two days of fun for the whole family inspired by fairies! Don’t worry, bring your kids to this fun LARP! It isn’t like fairies are know for child-theivery! They assure us they’re just going to have a fun camp, vend interesting materials, and lead people on a fun dungeon advenutre! Ten dollars gets you access for the entire weekend. Bring your own tent or sleep in a group cabin! Come dressed in costume! Definitely don’t worry about fae folk robbing you of your little lones!
Saturday, September 5th
Comics n’ More [31 Union Street, Easthampton MA 01027] at 1:00pm – 5:00pm
Pathfinder Society
The brave and mysterious Pathfinder Society has come to Comics N’ More! They all work toward a single goal… for now! Who knows what plots the people pulling their strings have cooked up? Join up now to find out over the course of a long and eventful official adventuring season!
Comics n’ More [31 Union Street, Easthampton MA 01027] at 5:00pm – 8:00pm
Public RPG: D&D 5th Ed
Join the dark and mysterious Master of the Dungeon LEX MANDRAKE as he weaves his spell of mystery and adventure around and about the crenelations of your brains! This is a single-session spectacular hand crafted by the Comics N’ More staff! New players are welcome and pre-made characters are provided!
Sunday, September 6th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm – 10:30pm
Saga of the Icelanders RPG
Based on the popular, extensible, fun, and LOCAL Apocalypse World system by Vincent Baker, this game is all about managing to settle the harsh environs of Iceland in 874! Play a Norse settler dealing with honor, blood feuds, and harsh winters! Build a new society from scratch and write your own Saga this Sunday!

May 4th – May 10th

XMen22Cover

The Valley Nerd Watch!


This week the trivia theme at The Quarters is, predictably, Star Wars! May the 4th, and all that? Still, if you happen to be a walking wookiepedia, you could clean up!

We hope you had an excellent Free Comic Book Day this weekend! Don’t forget that your local comic retailers are open even on days when they are not handing out free books and also that comic books are super cool.

In case you missed it, check out our interview with local hero Jesse Bemben of Pioneer Valley Games!

As always, be sure to check out the Weekly Events page! There are a lot of fun things happening this and every week!

THIS WEEK


Board Games:

Saturday, May 10th
Greenfield Games [228 Main St Greenfield, MA 01301] at 1:00pm – 4:00pm
D&D Attack Wing: Tyranny of Dragons Month Three Tournament
The sun rises on a windswept field. Two deadly armies have assembled and prepared for battle. Humans, Elves, Chemists, Orcs, Napoleon, the Avengers, Dragons, Wizards, A Painting of a Wizard on the Side of a Van and more are here to prove they’re the strongest! D&D Attack Wing, a miniatures game about making every fantasy creature imaginable fight, sounds like a fun time. Greenfield Games is holding the middle event of a six-month Story Line Organized Play, come join the fight and win fun prizes! Entry fee is $5!

Books:

Wednesday, May 6th
Forbes Library [20 West Street, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm
Local History/Local Novelists Series
Four local authors will come to Forbes to read to you from their latest works! Ellen Meeropol, John Clayton, MB Caschetta, and Alex Myers will be in attendance. Insist that they do silly voices!
Forbes Library [20 West Street, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm – 8:30pm
Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Group: Hydrogen Sonata
Have you read the epic Hydrogen Sonata by legendary science fiction author Iain M. Banks? Can you read it by Wednesday? Then come talk about it with friendly people!

Computers:

Tuesday, May 5th
The Foundry [24 Main Street, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00pm
Northampton Webdive – After Work
Ah, nothing like a cool dip into the refreshing waters of the web after work, are we right? Come hang out with local web designers, coders, and generally the sort of folks who might go to a webdive. RSVP on their meetup page!
Saturday, May 9th
Owl and Raven [2 Conz St Unit #42, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00pm – 5:00pm
Code-In
Hey, if you like Joshua Yearsley’s talk at Nerd Nite, why not attend a code-in at the cooperative he helps run? We’ve been to a couple of these, and it’s a nice way to get an introduction to the co-working space and to meet other interesting people!

RPGs:

Thursday, May 7th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm – 10:30pm
Indie RPG Night
Getting a bit tired of having played Dungeons & Dragons exclusively for an incredibly long time? Kind of hate Elves now, in a way that makes you feel weird because you didn’t think it was possible to develop this kind of malice toward something fictional? Try something, ANYTHING different at Indie RPG Night! Last time the Nerd Watch attended, we played a game about being pro wrestlers and it was a lot of fun!
Saturday, May 9th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:00pm – 6:00pm
Star Wars RPG
Star Wars! The thing we hope you weren’t planning on attending last weekend because that was a clerical error on the part of the Nerd Watch staff. Sorry about that! THIS is the weekend for Star Wars. We’re sure last weekend was also a weekend for Star Wars somewhere, but this weekend is the weekend you can actually get together with a pre-established group of people and play the Star Wars RPG at Modern Myths!
Comics n’ More [31 Union Street, Easthampton MA 01027] at 1:00pm – 5:00pm
Mutants and Masterminds
So you saw Age of Ultron this past week and had one overwhelming thought: you could totally do better. Well here’s your chance! Create a blockbuster superhero spectacle using the power of your imagination! Rip the veil between worlds and wrench into existence beings possessed of power no mortal mind can comprehend! Witness the apocalyptic destruction of this reality as it is supplanted by a higher plane! Do this primarily by rolling dice and consulting a rulebook. It should be a fun time! It’s hosted by either Crispy AND Nola, or by Crispy who also goes by Nola. Either way they’re probably a great GM.
Friday, May 8th – Sunday, May 10th
Chesterfield Scout Reservation [22 Sugar Hill Road, Williamsburg, MA 01096] at All Day Every Day
LARPing! It seems like one of the more fun ways to spend a weekend. Though we’re still not actually veterans of any particular LARP, it’s certainly a style of roleplaying with a heck of a lot more potential and range than either computer or pen-and-paper RPGs! Give it a shot this weekend!

Science:

Monday, May 4th
Eastworks [116 Pleasant St, Easthampton, MA 01027] at 7:00pm
Nerd Nite
Two exciting talks this week! First of all, Ph.D. candidate Kristina Curro will go into the extremely fun concept of reality as a biologically constrained illusion! Like how you always perceive your visual field as whole even though you have testable blind spots! It’s super cool, and we’re excited. Then, Joshua Yearsley of the wonderful Owl and Raven will discuss how tabletop games can make us better people. Given their track record, we expect this talk will be snowed out. As always, admission is $5.
Wednesday, May 6th
Amherst Cinema [28 Amity St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm
Science on Screen: Blade Runner
See a classic science-fiction film, preceded by some discussion of science fact! Lee Spector, professor of Cognitive Science at Hampshire College will speak about the possibility of developing an artificial brain and what that might mean for humanity. Then we’ll watch Blade Runner and think super deep thoughts about sentience!

February 16th-22nd

The Valley Nerd Watch!


In a town with 5 colleges and 500 grad students per square foot, it can get difficult keeping up with all the events in town that cater to the vaguely defined sub-cultural group we’ve decided to call nerds.

We’re here to help! We’ll let you know what trivia, gaming, science, comic, and just plain interesting events are happening in our fair Valley!

We’ve split it up like this: any one-off events around the Valley that are only happening this week, only happen a couple times a month, or any interesting updates to existing events will be up top in “This Week”. Anything that happens every single week without fail or much in the way of alteration will be in the “Weekly Events” section at the bottom.

THIS WEEK


Board Games:

Thursday, February 19th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Miniatures Paint and Play
Join the friendly people at Modern Myths for an afternoon of miniature painting! If you don’t know how, their experts will show you! Bring some supplies or use the ones they have. There’s a $5 entrance fee, BUT all attendees get a mini to work on and then keep!

Card Games:

Saturday, February 21st
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 9:00am – 10:00pm
Preliminary ProTour Qualifiers
Win a seat at the regional ProTour Qualifier of your choice! The PTQs are being held April 25th, and the closest ones are in Catskill, NY; Philadelphia, PA; and Montreal, Quebec. (We here at the Nerd Watch highly recommend you check out Montreal, it’s a great city!) A cash prize Travel Award of $200 will be part of the first place prize, to help you make the trek.
Registration Opens at 9AM
$40 Sealed Deck @ 10AM
$25 Standard @ 1PM
$25 Modern @ 4PM
GUARANTEED PRIZE SUPPORT FOR EACH EVENT:
Up to 64 players (6 rounds):
1st = Invitation to Regional ProTour Qualifier on April 25, 2015, $200 Travel Award
2nd = 2 Booster Boxes (72 packs)
3rd/4th = 1 Booster Box (36 packs)
5th-8th = ½ Booster Box (18 packs)
9th-22nd Place, players with:
13-14 Match Points = 12 Booster Packs
12 Match Points = 6 Booster Packs
Play a gigantic amount of Magic, win some boosters!
Saturday, February 21st
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 10:00am – 11:00pm
Fate Reforged Sealed League February
The month long Magic sealed league kicked off again last month. Come and join! It’s only $25 and you get a full month of play and prizes! Matches can be played any day at any time, and play for this month runs through the 21st.
Saturday, February 21st
Greenfield Games [228 Main St Greenfield, MA 01301] at 2:00 – 7:00pm
First Ever Netrunner Store Championship
Netrunner! The game of cyber-kings. Come to the lovely Greenfield Games and experience the excitement that is one of the very few asymmetrical competitive card games! There are prizes too! First place gets a plaque, and a card granting a first-round bye at the regional championship of their choice. The top four players get a playmat, the top eight get a deck box, and the top thirty-two get one alternate art card! There’s a $5 entry fee.

Science:

Wednesday, February 18th
Earth [Solar System, Orion Arm, Milky Way, Local Group, Virgo Supercluster, Universe] at Night
New Moon
A new moon! Without all that pesky reflected light, you can see fainter objects during your peer into the infinite! A great time to go out and get really cold and see if you can spot distant galaxies.
Thursday, February 19th
Neilson Library Browsing Room at Smith College [7 Neilson Dr. Northampton, MA 01063] at 5:00pm
Using Neurotechnologies to Enhance Virtues: A Posthuman Model for Cultivating Character
Are you interested in Buddhism, neuroscience, and new technology? Man! What luck! This is probably the only event that’s going to fire all your cylinders for a while. Come see James Hughes, director of the surprisingly sinister-sounding Cyborg Buddha Project, present about how he sees neurotech altering the human search for personal growth. We’re almost certain this guy can help you win that Netrunner championship. Check out his 2013 paper on the topic, and his TEDx talk as well!
Sunday, February 22nd
Earth [Solar System, Orion Arm, Milky Way, Local Group, Virgo Supercluster, Universe] at Sunset
Conjunction of Venus and Mars
Well, they missed Valentine’s day, but Venus and Mars are getting together this week! These two lovely planets will be separated by a mere half a degree in the evening sky! Look west just after sunset to see this impressive sight.

WEEKLY EVENTS *UPDATED*


Board Games:

Monday, February 16th
Community Room [Burger King, 334 King Street Northampton MA 01060] at 5:30pm – 10:00pm
Northampton Scrabble Club
Love Scrabble? Come play with nice people! Players of all ages, abilities, and personalities are welcome. Call (413) 387-9678 for more information
Wednesday, February 18th
Off the Wall Games [41 Russell St – Hadley MA, 01035] *NEW*
Miniature Gaming With The 131
Come hang out and play miniatures games! Warhammer and the like, on the big tables with terrain on them and all that.
Thursday, February 19th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Board Game Playing and Learning Night
Experts available to teach and play board games with you and your friends! They take requests, too! No experience needed.
Saturday, February 21st
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00pm – 11:00pm
Board Game Night
Come hang out and play board games from the stock at Modern Myths! Try something new or just get the players you need for an old favorite.

Card Games:

Monday, February 16th *NEW*
Off the Wall Games [41 Russell St – Hadley MA, 01035] *NEW*
Commander/EDH
Play Magic, maybe win prizes!
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Magic Booster Draft
Play Magic, maybe win prizes! $10 cover.
Tuesday, February 17th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm – 8:00pm
Legacy with Unlimited Proxies
Play Magic, maybe win prizes! $5 cover goes to the prize pool. Anyone with a positive record gets a prize!
Wednesday, February 18th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:30pm – 10:00pm
Commander/EDH night Magic
Buy-in is $5, everyone gets a participation pack and a chance for prizes. If you don’t want to buy in, you can play for free but you don’t get a shot at prizes!
Thursday, February 19th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm – 10:00pm
Thursday Night Modern
Play Magic again! Constructed Modern event similar to Friday Night Magic. Entry is $5, and there are booster pack prizes.
Off the Wall Games [41 Russell St – Hadley MA, 01035] *NEW*
Magic Draft
Play Magic, maybe win prizes!
Friday, February 20th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm – 11:00pm
Friday Night Magic
Play magic, meet new people, maybe win foil prize cards. $16 entry fee, tax included. Draft format. Prize pool: 1.5 packs per player, everyone gets at least one prize pack and top players get one or two more.
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm – 10:00pm
Friday Night Magic
Play magic, meet new people, maybe win prize cards. $5 entry fee. Constructed Type II (Standard). Prize pool: booster packs and store credit.
Off the Wall Games [41 Russell St – Hadley MA, 01035] *NEW*
Friday Night Magic Modern Tournaments
Play Magic, maybe win prizes!

RPGs:

Monday, February 16th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00pm – 10:00pm
Ongoing RPG Night
Join people at Modern Myths for their regular evening of ongoing campaigns! It’s a great time to join another group or find players for your own ongoing game. You can also join people for Dungeons and Dragons Expeditions using your Adventurer’s League character or contact Modern Myths to set up your own game! Admission is by Day Pass, $5 that you get back in store credit. DMs/GMs play Free!
Tuesday, February 17th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:00pm – 10:00pm
D&D Encounters
A D&D adventure one short encounter at a time. Great for new players and old hands. New storyline every couple months.
Wednesday, February 18th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm
D&D Encounters
A D&D adventure one short encounter at a time. Great for new players and old hands. New storyline every couple months, $5 entry fee that you get back in store credit.
Sunday, February 22nd
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00pm
Pathfinder Society Organized Play
Epic play in the world of Golarion over the course of multiple seasons, during which you and your fellow Pathfinders create an ongoing storyline. Each season consists of at least 28 4-hour adventures. $5 entry fee that you get back in store credit. NOTE: Modern Myths is looking for Pathfinder GMs! GMs get free passes and store credit for running full tables. Contact them for details.
Off the Wall Games [41 Russell St – Hadley MA, 01035] *NEW*
Pathfinder Society
Epic play in the world of Golarion over the course of multiple seasons, during which you and your fellow Pathfinders create an ongoing storyline. Each season consists of at least 28 4-hour adventures.

Trivia:

Monday, February 16th
The Quarters [8 Railroad Street, Hadley, MA 01035]
Trivia Night
Teams can be 1-5 people, and it’s $5 per person to enter. There are cash prizes and gift certificates for the top 3 teams. Nerdy trivia in general, probably up your alley if The Quarters itself appeals to you.
Tuesday, February 17th
Amherst Brewing Company [10 University Drive, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:30pm *NEW*
Trivia Night 
There is little information about this mysterious trivia night but you can probably expect undergrads.
The Harp [163 Sunderland Road, Amherst, MA 01002] at 9:00pm
Trivia Night 
Teams can be as big as you feel like! Usually lots of undergrads, for good or ill!
Thursday, February 19th
The World War 2 Club [50 Conz Street, Northampton, MA 01060] at 8:00pm
Trivia Night
Teams can be 1-5 people, and it’s $5 per person to enter. There are cash prizes for the top 3-5 teams. The trivia is well-curated and idiosyncratic due to the fact that it has been put on by the same person for 5 years. It’s also hard as all living heck most nights, don’t get discouraged!

February 8th-15th

Welcome to the inaugural Valley Nerd Watch!


In a town with 5 colleges and 500 grad students per square foot, it can get difficult keeping up with all the events in town that cater to the vaguely defined sub-cultural group we’ve decided to call nerds.

We’re here to help! We’ll let you know what trivia, gaming, science, comic, and just plain interesting events are happening in our fair Valley!

We’ve split it up like this: any one-off events around the Valley that are only happening this week, only happen a couple times a month, or any interesting updates to existing events will be up top in “This Week”. Anything that happens every single week without fail or much in the way of alteration will be in the “Weekly Events” section at the bottom.

THIS WEEK


Art:

Sunday, February 15th
Westhampton Public Library [1 North Road Westhampton, MA 01027] at 2:00pm
Art in the Face of Mortality: A Sampling of Gravestone Art in the CT River Valley
What it says on the tin! See some of the interesting and we’re guessing skull-filled artwork decorating local gravestones.

Books:

Thursday, February 12th
Forbes Library [20 West Street, Northampton, MA 01060]
Friends of Forbes Raffle
Enter all week for a chance to win a Kindle Fire and other gifts! $1 per entry, $5 for six entries! The raffle drawing is on Thursday at a time they’ve chosen to keep secret. Just camp out I guess?
Sunday, February 8th – Saturday, February 14th
Edwards Library [30 East Street, Southampton, MA 01073]
Have a Blind Date with a Book
Read a book without judging it by its cover, then complete a review form to either introduce another reader to a great book or save them from great pain!

Card Games:

Saturday, February 14th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:00pm
Fate Reforged Game Day, Day 1
All participants receive an exclusive promo while supplies last. Top 9 players receive an exclusive full-art promo card. In addition, the first place will receive an exclusive limited-edition playmat. 
Registration begins at 1pm, play begins at 2pm!
Sunday, February 15th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 1:00pm
Fate Reforged Game Day, Day 2
See above!
Registration begins at 1pm, play begins at 2pm!

Computers:

Saturday, February 14th
Owl and Raven Co-Working Space [2 Conz St Unit #42 Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00pm
Code-In
A Valentines day Code-In! Owl and Raven is a co-working space where you can bring a laptop and an idea to work on and just hang out learning and working in the company of others. Even if you don’t know how to code yet, you can help other people out! Everyone needs documentation and design help.

Science:

Sunday, February 8th
Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary [127 Combs Road Easthampton, MA 01027] at 3:00pm – 6:00pm
Winter Crows
Slide program on crows followed by a trip to see one of their nighttime roosts! Play your cards right and you might get elected Crow King by the crafty corvids.
Monday, February 9th
Eastworks [2 Conz St Unit #42 Northampton, MA 01060]
Two interesting talks in a friendly setting! 
‘Welcome to Your Brain: Reality is a Biologically Constrained Illusion’ by Kristina Curro, a PhD candidate at Umass
‘Profound Games: Empathy, Community, and Teamwork at the Table’ by Joshua Yearsley, a freelance editor specializing in board games.
Thursday, February 12th
Springfield Museums [21 Edwards St Springfield, MA 01108]
Live Birds of Prey
Tom Ricardi, of the Mass. Birds of Prey Rehabilitation Facility, gives this Thursday’s a la carte lecture.
$4 to attend.

WEEKLY EVENTS


Board Games:

Thursday, February 12th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:00pm – 9:00pm
Board Game Playing and Learning Night
Experts available to teach and play board games with you and your friends! They take requests, too! No experience needed.
Saturday, February 14th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00pm – 11:00pm
Board Game Night
Come hang out and play board games from the stock at Modern Myths! Try something new or just get the players you need for an old favorite.

Card Games:

Monday, February 9th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Magic Booster Draft
Play Magic, maybe win prizes! $10 cover.
Tuesday, February 10th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm – 8:00pm
Legacy with Unlimited Proxies
Play Magic, maybe win prizes! $5 cover goes to the prize pool. Anyone with a positive record gets a prize!
Wednesday, February 11th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:30pm – 10:00pm
Commander/EDH night Magic
Buy-in is $5, everyone gets a participation pack and a chance for prizes. If you don’t want to buy in, you can play for free but you don’t get a shot at prizes!
Thursday, February 12th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm – 10:00pm
Thursday Night Modern
Play Magic again! Constructed Modern event similar to Friday Night Magic. Entry is $5, and there are booster pack prizes.
Friday, February 13th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm – 11:00pm
Friday Night Magic
Play magic, meet new people, maybe win foil prize cards. $16 entry fee, tax included. Draft format. Prize pool: 1.5 packs per player, everyone gets at least one prize pack and top players get one or two more.
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 7:00pm – 10:00pm
Friday Night Magic
Play magic, meet new people, maybe win prize cards. $5 entry fee. Constructed Type II (Standard). Prize pool: booster packs and store credit.

RPGs:

Monday, February 9th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00pm – 10:00pm
Ongoing RPG Night
Join people at Modern Myths for their regular evening of ongoing campaigns! It’s a great time to join another group or find players for your own ongoing game. You can also join people for Dungeons and Dragons Expeditions using your Adventurer’s League character or contact Modern Myths to set up your own game! Admission is by Day Pass, $5 that you get back in store credit. DMs/GMs play Free!
Tuesday, February 10th
Worlds Apart Games [48 North Pleasant Street B2, Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:00pm – 10:00pm
D&D Encounters
A D&D adventure one short encounter at a time. Great for new players and old hands. New storyline every couple months.
Wednesday, February 11th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00pm
D&D Encounters
A D&D adventure one short encounter at a time. Great for new players and old hands. New storyline every couple months, $5 entry fee that you get back in store credit.
Sunday, February 15th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00pm
Pathfinder Society Organized Play
Epic play in the world of Golarion over the course of multipe seasons, during which you and your fellow Pathfinders create an ongoing storyline. Each season consists of at least 28 4-hour adventures. $5 entry fee that you get back in store credit. NOTE: Modern Myths is looking for Pathfinder GMs! GMs get free passes and store credit for running full tables. Contact them for details.

Trivia:

Monday, February 9th
The Quarters [8 Railroad Street, Hadley, MA 01035]
Trivia Night
Teams can be 1-5 people, and it’s $5 per person to enter. There are cash prizes and gift certificates for the top 3 teams. Nerdy trivia in general, probably up your alley if The Quarters itself appeals to you.
Tuesday, February 10th
The Harp [163 Sunderland Road, Amherst, MA 01002] at 9:00pm
Trivia Night 
Teams can be as big as you feel like! Usually lots of undergrads, for good or ill!
Thursday, February 12th
The World War 2 Club [50 Conz Street, Northampton, MA 01060] at 8:00pm
Trivia Night
Teams can be 1-5 people, and it’s $5 per person to enter. There are cash prizes for the top 3-5 teams. The trivia is well-curated and idiosyncratic due to the fact that it has been put on by the same person for 5 years. It’s also hard as all living heck most nights, don’t get discouraged!