Winter Reading Club 2016

December 8th, 2015
WRC logo2016

From January 11-February 21, 2016 Springfield City Library will offer a Winter Reading Club that’s a perfect fit for any age!

Every day you read, or read to a child, provides an opportunity to win free books, gift cards and more, all funded through the generosity of The Irene E. and George A. Davis Foundation, Berkshire Bank, and the Friends of the Springfield Library.


Adults read any books they want, write the title, a couple of kindlepwsentences as a review and rate the book (giving it one to five stars) on a card with their name and phone number. Each card is entered into that branch library raffle, with the winner receiving a $30 gift card to a local grocery store. A Grand Prize winner’s name will be drawn from all review cards from all branches; the winner will receive a Kindle Paperwhite. Spend a cold day curled up with a good book, because the more you read the better your chances to win!


Teen and elementary ages can also choose whatever they want to read, with a daily goal of reading for at least 20 minutes. Participants will be given reading logs to record their progress plus get a scratch ticket for each day they read. They can win a prize immediately, or their ticket will go into the Grand Prize raffle, and reading every day earns a book of their choosing.


gifted tonesA Kids Winter Reading Club Kick-Off Art Party will be held from 5:30 – 7:00 p.m. at the Mason Square Branch Library, 765 State Street on Thursday, January 14. Gifted Tones Studio will show participants that everyone can make art! Children in grades K-5 can come in and create some cool art while enjoying hot pizza, great prizes and more!

Teens can stop by the Central Library for a Kick-Off on Monday, January 11 from 3:30 – 5:00 p.m. and play board games, enjoy hot apple cider and decorate cupcakes plus pick up a reading log to start reading for a chance to win great prizes, and a book of their choice.

Don’t forget that Winter Reading Club is for babies too!toddler2

When ten books are read to babies, toddlers and preschoolers they’ll receive a free book, plus get an invite to a free family special event at the Sixteen Acres Branch Library at the end of the club. A unique event we’re calling a “Play-cation” will take place on Saturday, February 20 from 9:30-11 a.m. and involves playing at the beach, visiting an artist’s studio, rocking out at a dance party, going on a dragon hunt, and buying snacks and souvenirs – all indoors at the library on a cold winter day! It’s a celebration party recommended for toddlers, preschool and kindergarten children and their families.


Arts & Crafts Fair in the Rotunda

December 1st, 2015

Saturday, December 12, 12:30 – 4 p.m.
Central Library Rotunda
220 State Street, Springfield MA

Download our flyer


Come to our inaugural Fair and enjoy arts and crafts made by local crafters. On display for browsing and purchase will be jewelry, paintings, miniature sculpture, needlework, and much more, just in time for the holiday season! Pick up a perfect gift or stocking stuffer. Artists will demonstrate their handiwork, and be available for questions and answers about their craft. Speak to an artist and earn a raffle ticket good for one of two valuable prizes.

Mischa Epstein

Featured crafters include:

  • Rita Bartholomew (Springfield) lace
  • Bonnie Chandler-Schieb (Chicopee) painted and hand-crafted miniatures
  • Jacquelyn Durkee (Springfield) knitted miniatures and others
  • Mischa Epstein (Springfield) painting and collage miniatures
  • Marisa Graziano (Chicopee) miniature wire sculpture, jewelry, small paintings
  • Steven Hodges (West Springfield) knitting and other needlework
  • Bob Johnsen (Springfield) rock miniatures
  • Valeria Jones (Springfield) crochet
  • Santos quilt
  • Norma Santos (Springfield) quilts and miniatures
  • Delphine Ray (Springfield) jewelry
  • Viva Walters (Springfield) crochet
  • Whitney Wood Rahm of Whitney Works (East Longmeadow) painting and 3D miniatures
  • and others!

For more information, contact Matthew Jaquith at 413-263-6828 ext 221 or email:

Ray earrings Durkee decorated bag Chandler gord woman

Rock the Stacks! at Mason Square

November 28th, 2015

A free, community-based after school music arts programming series for young people ages 6-14.
Wednesdays, December 2, 2015 through April 6, 2016
Mason Square Branch Library, 765 State Street

Come together and learn drumming at the library! Join the Mason Square Library and the Community Music School of Springfield for a six-week community-based after school music arts program. Youth ages 6-14 can learn an instrument and find new ways of self-expression, while promoting whole brain engagement, self-discipline, stronger math and language arts skills, and more.

Community Music School instructor Rick Marshall will lead the bucket-drumming program on Tuesday, December 1, 8, 15, 22, 4:00-5:00 p.m., as well as Tuesday, January 5 & 12, 2016 from 4:00-5:00 p.m. Participants will have an opportunity to be a part of the bucket-drumming ensemble taking part in the community-wide Dr. King Day celebration at the MassMutual Center on January 18, 2016.

The bucket-drumming teacher, Rick Marshall, has been a force on the Springfield music scene for more than 30 years. He has toured the country with Matt “Guitar” Murphy of the Blues Brothers fame, and played and recorded internationally with numerous renowned musical groups. Rick teaches drumming and drumming history, leads drumming workshops throughout New England and leads several of Community Music School of Springfield’s Community Partnership programs.

Planned for January and February is a six-week Hip Hop program; and in March and April a six-week Latin Rhythm’s for Recorder program. All programs are free of charge and include all supplies, and snacks will be provided at every session.

“Rock the Stacks” is made possible through the generous support and partnership of the Association for Library Services to Children, Disney, and the Community Music School of Springfield.

Bucket Drumming
Wednesdays, December 2 — January 13
A six-week program teaching self-expression through music with bucket drumming, regardless of participants’ background or experience level. This program emphasizes self-expression and the benefits of learning a musical instrument; participants can be a part of the bucket drumming ensemble at the 1/18/16 MLK Day celebration at the Mass Mutual Center.
Program dates: (all programs from 4-5pm)
Wednesday, December 2, 2015
Wednesday, December 9, 2015
Wednesday, December 16, 2015
Wednesday, December 23, 2015
Wednesday, January 6, 2016
Wednesday, January 13, 2016


Hip Hop
Wednesdays, January 20 – February 24
A six-week program providing an introduction to self-expression by engaging young people and developing their unique voice. Participants learn to freestyle and rhyme, spit lyrics, and develop beats, working on their own music which they will be creating and recording.
Program dates: (all programs from 4-5pm)
Wednesday, January 20, 2016
Wednesday, January 27, 2016
Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Wednesday, February 10, 2016
Wednesday, February 17, 2016
Wednesday February 24, 2016

Latin Rhythms for Recorder
Wednesdays, March 2 — April 6
A six-week program teaching basic rhythms and musical literacy. The concept of rhythmic notation will be introduced to support mathematic skills, logic and reasoning. Programs will focus on elements of Latin music and celebrate Springfield’s diverse cultural roots, and will conclude with a gala public ensemble performance! Recorders will be provided to all students.
Program dates: (all programs from 4-5pm)
Wednesday, March 2, 2016
Wednesday, March 9, 2016
Wednesday, March 16, 2016
Wednesday, March 23, 2016
Wednesday, March 30, 2016
Wednesday, April 6, 2016 

For more information, or to sign up, call Ted McCoy at 413-263-6853, or sign up online using our Event Calendar.

Discussion on High Speed Rail in Western Mass.

November 5th, 2015

Monday, November 16, 6:30-8:00 p.m.
Sixteen Acres Branch Library

Sign up online

State Sen. Eric Lesser
State Sen. Eric Lesser

Please join State Senator Eric Lesser and Sixteen Acres Library Branch Manager Reggie Wilson for a discussion on the future of high speed rail developments in Western Massachusetts. This program will also feature a progress report on the Union Station renovation project currently underway in downtown Springfield. Please register for this free program by calling the Sixteen Acres Branch at 413-263-6858, signing up online, or stopping by the branch.

How far in the future is affordable high speed rail travel between Springfield, Worcester and Boston for area residents along the populous inland rail route? Imagine being able to travel between Springfield’s Union Station and Boston’s South Station at speeds exceeding 100 miles per hour.

  • The program will discuss the benefits of being able to attend a Celtics/Red Sox/Bruins game, concerts, outstanding museums and other cultural events in the eastern part of the state. Once in Boston, extremely popular train connections to Cape Cod, Maine, New Hampshire or Canada are significantly closer via land travel for tourists.
  • The Big E, Basketball Hall of Fame, Springfield libraries, Quadrangle Museums, MGM Casino, Brimfield Fair and other Western Mass. attractions would be easily in reach for Eastern Massachusetts residents.
  • Can high speed rail possibly spur tremendous gains in workforce and economic development? Reliable high speed rail could lead to shorter commutes to more lucrative jobs in the eastern part of the state.
  • The route would give students rapid access to world class colleges, universities, and technical schools along the Northampton/Amherst, Worcester, and Boston knowledge corridor.
  • The program will show film clips of technologically advanced high speed trains traveling hundreds of miles per hour. These trains are commonplace in many countries throughout the world.
Amtrak Train

The program will also feature a progress report on the old Union Station currently being renovated.

  • The audience can share past and present recollections about using Union Station.
  • The program will provide a progress report using photographs and a scale model of the metamorphosis of Union Station into the area’s transportation hub.
  • The program will address how the massive renovations made to Union Station, originally built in 1926, could trigger an urban renaissance in the North End of Springfield providing a safe place for shopping, fine dining, and commuting.

Walsh, Zanetti School Students “Super” Summer Readers

November 4th, 2015

Schools to receive trophies, Springfield Superhero visit, Invitation to Winter Reading Club

Every hero has a story, and the last chapter of the Springfield City Library’s 2015 Summer Reading Club story features hundreds of children who read thousands of books for fun during their school vacation. This year’s Summer Reading Club had a superhero theme and Springfield’s own superhero, Menzuo, made a promise to deliver a trophy to the schools with the highest percentage of readers. Assemblies will be held at Mary M. Walsh School, 50 Empress Court, Springfield on Wednesday, November 4 at 9 a.m. and at the Alfred G. Zanetti Montessori Magnet School, 474 Armory Street, Springfield, on Friday, November 6, also at 9 a.m.

Menzuo, embodied by Springfield resident and author Keshawn Dodds, issued a challenge to all kids to read over the summer, and he will join Springfield City Library staff at the assemblies to offer all students a sneak peak at the upcoming Winter Reading Club which will feature prizes such as free books, tickets to see the play Shrek, and a pizza party at the library.

The 2015 Summer Reading Club was sponsored by the Friends of the Springfield Library, the Boston Bruins, the Massachusetts Library System and the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

Indian Orchard Branch Closed

October 30th, 2015
Indian Orchard Branch

Due to the automobile accident at the Indian Orchard Branch on Thursday, October 29, the branch is closed until further notice. We hope to have repairs completed as soon as possible.

MassLive article

Voters Guide Available at all Library Locations

October 28th, 2015

City residents can get informed about the candidates for Mayor and City Council by stopping in to any Springfield City Library branch and picking up a copy of the 2015 Voters Guide, prepared by the League of Women Voters. At the Central Library they are on display in Rice Hall near the elevator, in the front entryway (lower level State Street entrance) and on the free newspaper table in Wellman Hall.

Library staff are available to help residents find out which ward s/he votes in and what the polling place is, note it on the form, and give them the form to take to the polls with their notes. It’s not a facsimile ballot, but it does list everyone who will be on the various ballots.

Additionally, the Forest Park, Mason Square, and Library Express at Pine Point Branches are polling places, and will be open their regular hours on Election Day, next Tuesday, November 3. Polls in Springfield are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

For a list of candidates plus the wording of the two ballot questions, download our Voters Guide November 2015.

Springfield Elections office homepage.

Check your voting status (am I registered to vote, who represents me, what ward am I in).

Where do I vote? Massachusetts Elections Office or Springfield Polling Locations.

Bestselling Author and Surgeon to Speak

October 21st, 2015
Author Talk: The Books of Andrew Lam Sixteen Acres Branch Library Saturday, November 14, 1:30 p.m.   Dr. Andrew Lam, an author and retinal surgeon at Baystate Medical Center, will be discussing his recently published books, Saving Sight and Two Sons of China, at the Sixteen Acres Branch Library, 1187 Parker Street in Springfield, on Saturday, November 14, at 1:30 p.m. Dr. Lam is an Assistant Professor at Tufts University School of Medicine. The event is free and open to the public. savingsight In Saving Sight, Dr. Lam takes readers into the operating room, revealing the stress and joy of a job that enables him to turn darkness into light, and in which failure can mean blindness. “We are living in a golden age of sight-saving treatments,” Dr. Lam says. “Eye surgeons remove cataracts in minutes, perform LASIK surgery yielding instant 20/20 glasses-free vision, and are beginning to implant retinal microchips that return sight to the blind.” The book reveals an unflinching look at a surgeon’s approach to cataracts, LASIK, macular degeneration and more. Lam also blends his personal story with profiles of ophthalmology’s greatest heroes, innovators whose inventions saved the sight of millions around the world. Saving Sight has been an Amazon bestseller, won Honorable Mention Awards at the New England and London Book Festivals, and was a Finalist in the 2014 Next Generation Indie Book Awards. two_sons Prior to becoming a surgeon Dr. Lam earned a history degree from Yale. His second book, Two Sons of China, is an historical novel from a forgotten theater of World War II. The book centers on an unlikely friendship between an American soldier and a Chinese Communist guerilla fighter who, despite their deeply held, clashing convictions, form a bond of brotherhood in battle. “Too few people are aware of America’s role in China during World War II,” says Lam. “This is an action-packed, romantic war novel that shines a light on unsung American heroes who served with honor in a distant, difficult land.” New York Times bestselling author William Martin writes, “Prepare to be captivated. Two Sons of China takes you to WWII China, introduces you to a fascinating cast of characters, and spins a terrific tale of adventure and romance. If you love historical fiction, or any fiction, don’t miss it.” Two Sons of China won the 2015 Independent Publisher Book Award and Foreword Reviews’ 2014 Book of the Year Award for military fiction.

Entrepreneurial Dreams Workshops

October 13th, 2015

Entrepreneurial Dreams: First Steps
Brightwood Branch Library
Tuesday, October 13, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
Forest Park Branch
Thursday, November 12, 5:30-7:30 pm.

Entrepreneurial Dreams: From Wondering to Knowing if You Should Start a Business in 21 Days
Indian Orchard Branch
Tuesday, October 20, 6:00-7:30 p.m.

ValleyVenture Mentors

Do you have an idea for starting your own business, but don’t know where to start? If so, Springfield City Library’s upcoming “Entrepreneurial Dreams: First Steps” is meant for you. We’re partnering with Valley Venture Mentors, Springfield’s highly regarded entrepreneurship program so expect a fast paced, high-energy evening involving a lot of interaction, discussion, advising, and initial mentoring. New entrepreneurs will present their ideas for new ventures, and receive “lovingly critical” guidance on how to develop their pitch and how to assess their business proposition. Sign up for one of our “pitch camps” and get ready for some feedback!

This is “Shark Tank” — with a heart! Pizza and refreshments will be served. The workshop will be offered twice, on Tuesday, October 13, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Brightwood Branch Library, 359 Plainfield St., 413-263-6805; and again on Thursday, November 12, 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Forest Park Branch Library, 380 Belmont Ave., 413-263-6843. To save your seat please call the branch or register at our Events Calendar.

© Sandra Costello 2015
© Sandra Costello 2015

Actually what is a day in the life of a business owner really like, and what does it take to build a profitable business, not just tinker with your favorite hobby and make an occasional sale? The Indian Orchard Branch Library will host Angela Lussier, award-winning speaker, business coach, and CEO of Angela Lussier Enterprises, with “Entrepreneurial Dreams: From Wondering to Knowing if You Should Start a Business in 21 Days.” This informative workshop on starting a small business will be held on Tuesday, October 20, 6:00-7:30 p.m. at the 44 Oak Street branch.

In the workshop, an introduction to Angela’s new book, Who’s With Us? From Wondering to Knowing if You Should Start a Business in 21 Days, you’ll complete two self-assessments to get you moving from wondering to knowing. So rather than ponder this path for a lifetime, attend and go from “Would it work?” to “I know what I’m going to do next!” To register call the branch at 413-263-6846, or sign up at our Events Calendar.

Angela is the creator of the Do+Make Business District, an online school and community for business owners, and author of The Anti-Resume Revolution and Do+Make, The Handbook for Starting Your Very Own Business. Her advice has been featured on ABC, NBC, Yahoo!,, The Ladders,, and CBS Money. She is a recipient of the 40 Under Forty award from Business West and mentors startups through Valley Venture Mentors. Angela will be one of the featured speakers at TEDxSpringfield on October 9, 2015.

New Location for Candidates Forum

October 8th, 2015

Rebecca Johnson School, 55 Catharine Street to Host Free Event
Wednesday, October 14, 5:30 – 8 p.m.


The Springfield City Library is again partnering with the City’s Election Commission to offer Springfield residents an opportunity to participate in a forum with candidates for Springfield Mayor and City Council. Participants can bring their concerns and hear directly from candidates at the free event to be held at Rebecca Johnson School, located at 55 Catharine Street, Springfield, on Wednesday, October 14 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.


Join us at 5:30 p.m. to learn about important ballot questions, check your voter status, find out where their polling place is, and register to vote. A moderated forum will be held from 6:00-7:30 p.m.

If you are working on a campaign and haven’t responded yet or missed the invitation, please contact Jean at 413-263-6828, ext. 291.

Fall Festival at Mason Square

October 7th, 2015

Come to the Mason Square Branch Library on Thursday, October 15th for the Fall Family Festival! Participants are encouraged to join us in the branch’s reading garden for a full afternoon of fun activities.


At 4:30, meet a variety of farm animals, visiting from the Forest Park Zoo! There will be chickens, goats, sheep, and maybe even a pig, right here at the library.

After that will be beanbag toss, corn cob print-making, and a doughnut on a string contest. Be the first to eat a powdered doughnut suspended on a line–with no hands–before it falls to the ground! There will be prizes!

And did we mention the cider and pie? Grab a slice and settle down on a hay bale. We’re holding storytime at dusk.

The event runs from 4:00 to 7:00.

Annual Fall Fest at East Springfield

October 5th, 2015

East Springfield Branch Library
21 Osborne Terrace
Wednesday, November 4, 2015 from 1-8 p.m.

fallfoodJoin us for the annual celebration of the East Springfield Branch Library and its neighborhood. Music, refreshments, henna tattoos, a visit by Jonathan Hall and Toto the Tornado Kitten for story time, plus the ever-popular pie contest and more will happen at various times throughout the day for all to enjoy.


Activities include:

  • Pinecone Owl drop-in craft for the whole family: all day
  • Voting for Repurposed Book Contest: all day
  • Henna tattoos: 3-5 p.m.
  • Pie Contest judging: 5:30-6 p.m.
  • Toto the Tornado Kitten reading and visit: starting at 6 p.m.
  • Visit by Springfield fire truck: 6:30-7:30 p.m.
  • Fiddle playing by Emma Reyes, 7-7:30 p.m.