Music & Entertainment | Art Exhibits | Writing Workshops & Readings | Author Talks | Arts & Crafts

Music & Entertainment

Dance Salsa! at Forest Park

Thursday, September 24, 2015, 6:30 – 7:45 p.m., Forest Park Community Room
Sign up online

Dance teachers Dina DelBuono and David Bovat will present an introductory class in salsa dancing. Bring yourself, a comfortable pair of shoes, and get ready to have fun with invigorating and healthy dancing. Be prepared to move, and bring a friend, though partners will be provided if you do not have one. No prior dance experience is necessary. Good for 18+.

Art & Photography Exhibits

Mateo Violet July2015

Brighwood Gallery
October 1 – 30, 2015
Opening Reception: October 8, 6:30 p.m.

Throughout the month of October the Brightwood Branch Library Gallery, 359 Plainfield Street, will feature paintings by Miriam Mateo and Juan Rodriguez. Miriam is a dedicated amateur who works with acrylic and oils. Juan is an art teacher for the Springfield Public Schools.


In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month there will be an Opening Reception on Tuesday, October 8 at 6:30 p.m. Stop by, meet the artists and talk to them about their work at this free event open to all. As a special bonus, one artwork will be raffled off to those in attendance. The free raffle and refreshments are provided through the generosity of the Friends of the Springfield Library.

Writing Workshops & Readings

7 Minutes: A Literary Arts Spotlight

Central Library Community Room, Saturday, August 29; Sundays, September 13, October 18, November 15, December 13, 2015

Note: The Literary Spotlight has been rescheduled and is now being offered on Saturday, August 29, instead of August 8, from 1-3 p.m. in the Central Library’s Community Room.

In this literary showcase of local and regional writers, preregistered literary artists (18+) will share a seven-minute reading of their writing from ANY genre. The public (18+) is invited to come listen. Books and other literary materials will be available for sale and for autographs.

Springfield’s first Poet Laureate and award-winning, multilingual poet María Luisa Arroyo will host this monthly event. Please contact María Luisa ( for registration information.

Maria Arroyo Spr Poet Laureate2014 Award-winning multilingual poet and educator, María Luisa Arroyo has facilitated numerous poetry workshops, including at the 2012 Split This Rock Poetry Festival in Washington, DC, and has performed in various parts of the country and in Puerto Rico. Her publications include Gathering Words: Recogiendo Palabras (Bilingual Press: 2008), Touching and Naming the Roots of This Tree (self-published chapbook, 2007) as well as many poems in various journals. Contact her at: or


Inspirations: a Public Reading of Recent Writings
Sunday, October 25, 2015 starting at 1 p.m.
Central Library Rotunda

Writers from the library’s 2015 writing groups and others from Writers Spring Forth will share brief reading samples from their recent poems and prose. Enjoy their inspired creations in this public reading suitable for all ages. This program is partially funded by the Springfield Cultural Council.

Writing Workshops: Strengthen Your Writing’s Power and Effectiveness

** Fall at the Forest Park Branch Library in the Community Room
Saturday afternoons, September 19 & 26, plus October 3 & 10, 2015 from 1-2:45 p.m.

To register, sign up online on our calendar or call the Reference Desk at 413-263-6828 ext 213 or the Forest Park Branch at 413-263-6843.

writinggroup This is a series of four writing workshops, designed for would-be writers who dream of publishing a book, but see a need to develop their writing skills first. These personalized workshops focus on improving grammar, vocabulary, spelling, punctuation, and other basic aspects of writing, and include workshops designed to help writers find their voice. The series is led by Phyllis St. George and partially funded by the Springfield Cultural Council.

1. Finding Your Voice: This is the first of four fun writing workshops perfect for the novice or more experienced writer. In Finding Your Voice, you’ll write free-form from visual prompts to find and enliven your unique voice as a writer.

2. Super Sentences: Strengthen your grasp on basic sentence structure, form, and grammar. Review standard syntax, and enjoy building a better writing style and vocabulary.

3. Editing Your Own Writing: In this interactive and dynamic workshop, participants will review the writing of one another and offer helpful and sensitive feedback aimed at increasing awareness of effective grammar, vocabulary, and style.

4. Reading to Find Your Own Voice: The best writers are also readers! Bring in a few pages of a favorite book, story or essay and, using the Amherst Writers Method as a model, write an imitation with your own characters. Feedback on the writing will focus on what is enjoyable and strong.

In the Fall (date to be determined) there will be a public reading at the Central Library of writing samples created by the workshop attendees.

For more information, call Matthew Jaquith at 413-263-6828 ext. 221.


Author Talks


Suzanne Strempek Shea
Tuesday, October 13, 6:30 – 7:45 p.m.
Sixteen Acres Branch

Sign up online

Join us for a talk and book signing with gifted local author Suzanne Strempek Shea. Suzanne will give fans of her splendid novels the latest news about her numerous writing projects and will also sign copies of her books that will be available to purchase.

After taking a break from authoring novels, she recently released her new, splendid ninth novel Making a Wish but not for Money that does not disappoint. The heartwarming book tells of “Rosie Pilch, whose lifelong job as a bank teller is lost in the recession, and her subsequent depression ends only when a friend elopes, moves and leaves Rosie her palm-reading business at Orchard Mall, once a groundbreaking shopping experience touted as ‘Main Street Recreated,’ now a sluggish ‘dead mall’ in its last months of existence before the wrecking ball arrives.”–Jacket. You won’t believe what happens next in this fantastic and heartwarming story.

Don’t miss this special afternoon with Suzanne Strempek Shea.


Author Talk: The Books of Andrew Lam
Saturday, November 14, 2015, 1:30 p.m., Sixteen Acres Branch Library (Community Room)

Sign up online

Join us for an engaging talk by writer and physician Andrew Lam. Dr. Lam is the author of the 2013 book Saving Sight, a fascinating work of non-fiction about pioneering practices in eye health and corrective surgery. His latest book, Two Sons of China, is a powerful novel based on a real life event from the close of World War II. Don’t miss the opportunity to meet this accomplished local author! For more information on Dr. Andrew Lam, visit his website.

Arts & Crafts

The Springfield City Library offers occasional arts and crafts workshops throughout the year, including needlework coaching, pastel painting workshops, upcycling projects, and more.

Gregs-cropped-single-poppy-257x300 Pastel Painting: Scarlet Poppies and Realism Made Easy

Saturday, September 26, 2015 at the Mason Square Branch Library Sign up online

With Georgia O’Keeffe’s scarlet poppies as a guide, participants in this expressive and fun workshop will easily learn painting techniques used to recreate the style. All materials are being supplied by artist and teacher Greg Maichack.

Partial funding provided by the Springfield Cultural Council.


Craft Groups

Are you interested in needlework? Visit any one of our knitting or crochet groups to hone your skills, make new friends, or swap great needlework ideas with other needlework fans. People new to needlework or experienced crafters are both welcomed!