Mayor Sarno joins East Springfield Library Branch to Celebrate National Library Week

The Springfield Libraries celebrated all our libraries all week with special events for National Library Week (Sunday, April 7 through Saturday, April 13)


Mayor Domenic J. Sarno joined today with Library Director Molly Fogarty, Assistant Director for Public Services Jean M. Canosa Albano, East Springfield Neighborhood Council President Kathy Brown and neighborhood council members, and the dedicated staff of the East Springfield Library Branch to celebrate National Library Week at the East Springfield Library on Osborne Terrace. The Springfield Libraries have been celebrating all our libraries all week with special events for National Library Week (Sunday, April 7 through Saturday, April 13). At the Springfield City Library, it’s all yours, just ask! Visit the library website to learn more:

Mayor Sarno states, “My administration is proud to celebrate and recognize National Library Week at our local East Springfield neighborhood library branch to highlight the essential and important role our neighborhood libraries play in our community. They serve as a place to learn, where the community can gather, and hold numerous events and programs to support and enhance the quality of life in our community. The neighborhood hub feel is alive and well at the East Springfield branch which we look forward to expanding and enhancing the East Springfield Branch which has been around since 1935. Not only has my administration kept all our libraries open with stable and expanded hours, but we’ve also built a new neighborhood branch library in our East Forest Park neighborhood and are working toward more. I want to encourage every resident to stop by and visit and support your local neighborhood library and thank a library worker for everything they do.”

Read more / see photos on the city’s website.

Springfield Local Author Book Fair

Come to the Local Author Fair to meet recently published authors and enjoy their works in this showcase of local talent and achievement.

Meet Your Neighbors, Meet Their Books!

Join us for a celebration of Springfield’s vibrant literary scene at the Local Author Book Fair! This exciting event brings together a diverse range of local authors, all eager to connect with readers and share their passion for storytelling.

Why Attend?

Support Local Authors: Discover the wealth of talent right in your own community. Buy a book directly from the author and help them continue their creative journey.

Find Your Next Great Read: Explore a variety of genres, from captivating fiction to informative non-fiction. There’s something for everyone, whether you’re a mystery buff, a history enthusiast, or a lover of poetry.

Connect with Fellow Bookworms: Chat with authors about their work, get your books personalized with a signature, and mingle with other book lovers who share your passion for reading.

Mark Your Calendars!

The next Local Author Book Fair will be held on Saturday, April 27 from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Rotunda and Rice Hall on the second floor at the Central Library.

Admission is free, so come meet your neighbors and discover the hidden gems of Springfield’s literary world!

List of Authors – April 2024

Below is a list of authors attending the Local Author Fair – your neighbors, sharing their art! Also, titles of their most recent book – although several will have multiple books to share.

Stephen Billias – A Book of Fields
Bela Breslau and Stephen Billias – Pilgrim Maya
Justin Cascio – In Our Blood: The Mafia Families of Corleone
Tian Connaughton – Cardigans For Every Body: because every body is worthy
D. Dina Friedman – Immigrants
Adrián Gras-Velázquez – Lo que hago en mi habitación
Robert Loesch – Out on a Limb and Other Stories
Stephanie Marrero-Wilson – Healing in Him: 31 Day Journaling Devotional
Jane F. Morrissey, SSJ – Finding Jane in the Box – a Memoir
Jennifer Allis Provost – Oleander
Ruth Sanderson – A Storm of Horses: The Story of Artist Rosa Bonheur
Dulce Santana – Flowers in the City
H. Triplett – Perforated Fiber Forbidden Memories
Dennis Walter – The Misguided Mentor

Are You A Local Author?

Get on our list to be invited next time! We hold Author Fairs about twice a year, in the Spring and the Fall.

New Library Catalog

Our library catalog has been upgraded to bring you a better online browsing experience.

Starting March 4, 2024, you may notice several new features when you’re searching the library’s online catalog. The new catalog includes search suggestions, spell check, and grouped records to make finding your next read easier than ever before!

What’s staying the same?

Your account will not change at all. You can log in with the same library card number and PIN/password. All of your current checkouts and holds will carry over to the new system. Your lists and reading history can be imported from the old catalog when you log in.

If you have any difficulty accessing your account in the new catalog, please contact the reference desk for assistance, at (413) 263-6828 ext. 213 or via

What’s changing?

  • One of the biggest changes is that ebooks and audio books from Libby and Hoopla are fully integrated in the new catalog. You can place holds for electronic resources right in the catalog, and your app will update accordingly.
  • There are numerous changes to the appearance. Your lists and account details may look different, due to the way our content will be displayed in the new catalog.
  • The new search function is more user-friendly. You will not need to be as precise, and you may find that you need assistance from librarians less often. We are always happy to help, but this change is designed to empower patrons to find items independently.
  • You may notice links directing you to databases and other digital resources.

What else do I need to know?

Please excuse any broken links you may find on for the duration of March. Our search bar and many links to books or book lists need to be updated manually.

Western Mass. state legislators discuss their priorities with Springfield library community (WAMC)

State lawmakers and local librarians gathered in Springfield, Massachusetts on Friday to discuss funding, digital equity and more.

February 26, 2024
View full article at WAMC Northeast Public Radio | By James Paleologopoulos

Advocates for public libraries across western Massachusetts met with lawmakers as the two groups sat down for a special “Library Legislative Breakfast” at Springfield’s Brightwood Branch Library.

There, legislators representing parts of Hampden County and the surrounding area listened to the needs of the region’s libraries – while also presenting their own work on Beacon Hill.

Organizations such as the library sharing network, Central and Western Massachusetts Automated Resource Sharing or “CW MARS,” and the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners made their case for increased funding.

For fiscal year 2025, the MBLC’s legislative agenda requests a total of $51.4 million for multiple line items – a year-over-year increase of $4 million.

That includes direct, local aid for public libraries, as well as funding that assists groups such as CW MARS in their own operations, connecting their member libraries with others to allow patrons to reserve and take out books across western and central Massachusetts.

Executive Director Jeanette Lundgren says library users will be able to access the system in a new way in early March.

“We’re rolling out a new online catalogue – this will be a new front-end to the catalogue that will help promote discoverability of both our online and physical content, and provide more opportunities for our libraries to interact and connect with their patrons,” Lundgren said.

According to Lundgren, the over 150 public library systems taking part in CW MARS have access to nine million items in its shared catalogue, including 2.4 million “e-items” such as ebooks and audiobooks, which were at the center of a much-discussed piece of legislation Friday.

Throughout the lineup of guest speakers, both lawmakers and librarians referred to House Bill 3239 — An Act empowering library access to electronic books and audiobooks.

MBLC Commissioner Vicky Biancolo says when it comes to negotiating with publishers, libraries are unable to purchase digital books and audiobooks the same way as consumers, and are instead forced to pay figures that can be at least triple the cost.

In one instance, Biancolo described how an audiobook with a consumer price tag of $15 would end up costing a library $130 for a two-year license.

It’s a costly endeavor for libraries across the commonwealth, especially when the digital editions are in high demand and library waitlists only appear to be getting longer.

“Networks have doubled what they spend on ebooks and audio books and wait times, can be 60-90 days up to six months I’ve heard for some titles,” Biancolo said. “We just can’t keep pace with demand – it just is continuing – this is – never ending.”

The commissioner encouraged the lawmakers in attendance to support the bill, which was filed by Democratic Representative Ruth Baler of Newton. The legislation calls on the state’s consumer protection laws to force publishers to use fairer practices when negotiating with libraries.

Another piece of legislation highlighted included a bill to better protect librarians from an onslaught of book challenges, championed by State Senator Jake Oliveira of Ludlow and State Representative Aaron Saunders of Belchertown.

Libraries across Massachusetts are seeing a steady uptick in book challenges, in addition to thousands of complaints, which Oliveira says often target communities of color and those who identify as LGBTQ+.

“We need to push back against that – that’s why we need your help – to get these bills over the finish line,” the senator said as the group of book lenders before him broke out in applause.

Among other functions, the bill would require libraries to adopt the American Library Association’s “Library Bill of Rights” to be eligible for state funding.

The Bill of Rights holds that “materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.” It would also establish a “Book Access Fund” for localities challenging book bans.

A similar piece of legislation geared toward public school libraries was filed by Sen. Julian Cyr of Truro and Rep. John Moran of Boston.

Also highlighted at the meeting was funding for the “Massachusetts Center for the Book,” which offers family literacy programming in gateway cities.

Speaking with WAMC, Springfield State Senator Adam Gomez emphasized the importance of events such as Friday’s, adding it’s vital to listen to librarians, who are deeply embedded in their communities.

“Keep our ears open, make sure that we are listening to the advocates that are actually doing the work when it comes to our communities, especially these free spaces, our branches and libraries which are community centers and also, I would say, a place where imagination is created,” Gomez said.

More information on the MBLC’s legislative agenda can be found here.

Springfield Thunderbirds bring “Boomer’s Reading Club” back to Springfield City Library (WWLP)

Join Springfield Thunderbirds hockey players as they share some favorite books with you.

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Springfield Thunderbirds are thrilled to announce the return of their community partnership with the Springfield City Library and the T-Birds Foundation through “Boomer’s Reading Club.”

On five afternoons in February, Thunderbirds forward Drew Callin, alongside a teammate, mascot Boomer, and T-Birds staff, will engage in interactive reading sessions and activities with local youth at various branches of the Springfield City Library.

“Going to a T-Birds game is fun for the whole family, and so is going to the Springfield City Library! We are so excited to renew our partnership with the Springfield Thunderbirds with Boomer’s Reading Club, which combines reading, library activities, and a chance to meet some of your favorite hockey players,” expressed Jean Canosa Albano, Assistant Director at Springfield City Library. “For the second straight year, we’ll share some great books and discover why getting into reading when you are young is so important and fun.”

The tentative dates and locations for Boomer’s Reading Club are as follows:

  • Thursday, Feb. 8: 3:45-4:45 p.m. – Springfield Central Library Children’s Room (220 State Street)
  • Monday, Feb. 12: 3:45-4:45 p.m. – East Forest Park Branch (136 Surrey Road)
  • Thursday, Feb. 15: 3:45-4:45 p.m. – Mason Square Branch (765 State Street)
  • Wednesday, Feb. 21: 3:45-4:45 p.m. – East Springfield Branch (21 Osborne Terrace)
  • Tuesday, Feb. 27: 3:45-4:45 p.m. – Sixteen Acres Branch (1187 Parker Street)

Apart from Callin’s involvement, the T-Birds Foundation will contribute to Boomer’s Reading Club with book donations and various supplies for each branch.

Thunderbirds President Nathan Costa expressed, “We are proud to continue our support of the Springfield City Library and thank Drew Callin for his commitment to our youth in the area. The T-Birds Foundation will be directly involved once again to ensure that the Springfield City Library and its numerous branches have every resource necessary to enhance the experience for all children who visit. We hope that the different branches see another tremendous turnout and, more importantly, we join in their wishes that reading becomes a lifelong passion for these young children.”

Boomer’s Reading Club represents the latest reimagination of Thunderbirds’ community programming. In 2023, the Thunderbirds made over 300 appearances in the Greater Springfield community, including trips to more than 40 participating schools in the Thunderbirds’ Stick to Reading program, promoting the love of books in local school districts, including Springfield Public Schools.

View the full article on WWLP

Read the T-birds press Release

Springfield library to host Freedom Stories of the Pioneer Valley event (The Reminder)

Stories of Black men and women living in Springfield and the surrounding areas in the 1700s and 1800s will be shared during an upcoming event with Cliff McCarthy, an archivist from the Springfield Museums’ Library and Archives.

PLEASE NOTE: This program has been rescheduled for February 17, 2024 at 11:00 AM. Please register on our event calendar.

January 31, 2024. Full story on The Reminder.

SPRINGFIELD — Stories of Black men and women living in Springfield and the surrounding areas in the 1700s and 1800s will be shared during an upcoming event with Cliff McCarthy, an archivist from the Springfield Museums’ Library and Archives.

The Freedom Stories of the Pioneer Valley will take place on Feb. 3 in the Mason Square Library Branch community room from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

Because Springfield Central Library is located on the quad with the museums, there is a close relationship between the two.

Springfield City Library Training and Programming Librarian Elizabeth McKinstry said, “Cliff McCarthy, who works in the library archives over at the history museum has been participating [and] working on research on this for a long time but also participated in this community history project called documenting the early history of Black lives in the Connecticut River Valley.”

McCarthy told Reminder Publishing that he plans to share stories of African American men and women who achieved their freedom in extraordinary ways. “All of them lived locally, but each of these stories reflects an important aspect of our nation’s history regarding Black Americans. I will also be highlighting a recent project that is enabling researchers to learn more about them and others, by diving deep into local archives to find the evidence of their lives,” he said.

This is the first time this event will take place at Springfield, although other area libraries have hosted it in the past.

“It’s all about remembering these people and their stories. When you say their names and tell their stories, we assure their lives will never be forgotten, again,” McCarthy said.

When researching this topic, McCarthy discovered information that interested him. “Jupiter Richards was a patriot who fought in the American Revolution before coming to Springfield and finding work in the Springfield Armory. He was convicted of stealing a small amount of grain and was given a fine by the court, which he couldn’t pay. What happened to him next, will probably break your heart. These stories are extraordinary, often unknown, and give us perspective on the lives of Black people then and now,” he said.

He went on to say that the story that first got him interested in these narratives is the rescue of Angeline Palmer — a story he will not likely tell on Feb. 3. “Angeline was a free-born Black child “bound out” to work in the home of a white Belchertown couple. When the couple moved to [the] state of Georgia, they planned to take Angeline with them and sell her into slavery. The scheme was discovered by some young men in Amherst, who went to Belchertown and snatched her from her home and sent her into hiding. The young men were convicted and did time in the Northampton jail, but never disclosed her whereabouts,” McCarthy said.

In addition to this event, McKinstry said Maggie Keane, a reference librarian at the Central Library, has been doing an “extremely popular” series of local history events. At the East Forest Park Branch Library, Keane shared the history of a Springfield female bootlegger during the time of prohibition.

McKinstry noted that there will be an event in March about the history of women’s basketball and in April, there is an event like the Freedom Stories of the Pioneer Valley, which shares genealogy ancestry about connecting to your roots.

“The library is for everybody,” McKinstry said. “We reflect that in our history programs and we’re very excited to be doing more presentations on local history and genealogy because people love that and we encourage them to come to the library.”

At the Springfield Central Library in particular, McKinstry said they offer help for people looking for information on local history and have “a good collection” and librarians that specialize in helping people in requests looking for that information.

During February — Black History Month — there will be an author event that takes place every Thursday from 3:30-4:30 p.m. at the Brightwood Branch. The series — designed for children and their parents — will include stories and poetry.

In terms of adult programming, the Freedom Stories of the Pioneer Valley is the largest event.

To learn more, visit

City Officials Meet to Discuss ongoing plans for Renovations and Expansion of East Springfield Library Branch

The Springfield City Library has submitted a grant application with the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners to expand and renovate the branch.


Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, City Council President Attorney Michael Fenton, Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris, Parks, Buildings and Recreational Management (PBRM) Executive Director Patrick Sullivan, Capital Assets and Construction Director Peter Garvey, My-Ron Hatchett, Senior Project Manager, Springfield Library Director Molly Fogarty, and Board of Library Commission Chair Stephen Cary met today to discuss ongoing plans for the renovation and expansion of the East Springfield neighborhood library branch. The Springfield City Library has submitted a grant application with the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC).

Mayor Sarno states, “I want to thank Council President Attorney Michael Fenton and East Springfield Neighborhood Council President Kathy Brown for expressing their support to renovate and expand our East Springfield neighborhood library branch.  I am proud of the fact that while other communities have consolidated their local library branches, my administration has worked hard with our local stakeholders and partnerships to not only renovate our neighborhood library branches but to build new and expand them as well.  My dedicated team, including HHS Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris, PBRM Director Patrick Sullivan, the Capital Assets and Construction team of Peter Garvey and My-Ron Hatchett, and our dedicated Library team of Director Molly Fogarty and Board Chair Stephen Cary, are working closely with the MBLC to support our grant application to help fund this important project.”

“Neighborhood library branches are an integral part of our community.  They support not only much-needed library programs and reading for residents and students, but also serve as a place for our community to gather and meet for various programs and initiatives.  Our East Springfield Library branch has been providing successful and popular library services for our community since 1934.  The East Springfield Library Branch plays an important role as a community center for educational and cultural programs, as well as a social gathering for our students and the community.  It is a hub for free access to information and technology, social and civic engagement and personal enrichment and lifelong learning.  We are hopeful that the MBLC will support our application so that we can enhance this neighborhood learning center so that it can serve our community for another 100 years,” added Mayor Sarno.      

Read more at the City website.

Teen Mental Health Survey

We want you to tell us how we can help! Survey will stay open until Feb 10, 2024.

Springfield City Library is trying to expand how we can help teens and young adults between the ages of 14-24 with mental health care!

Would you like to see a peer group once a month to be able to talk about things that might be bothering you? Would you like a free yoga class? A chance to create and display art to express yourself! You are the boss! You tell us!

Springfield officials take steps to improve 91-year-old East Springfield Library branch (

The city will upgrade the East Springfield Library, saying the busy branch has not seen major improvements since it opened in 1932.

SPRINGFIELD – The city will upgrade the East Springfield Library, saying the busy branch has not seen major improvements since it opened in 1932.

“We want to make sure our library has the capacity to serve the community for the next 30 years,” said Kathy Brown, president of the East Springfield Neighborhood Council.

The council started talking about rebuilding or expanding and renovating the building on Osborne Terrace around 2014, but the first community meeting to start the process was held around 2019. That came just as the new $9.5 million East Forest Park Library, built with the help of a $4.9 million state grant, was completed.

Springfield City Library officials last week petitioned the City Council for approval to apply for a Massachusetts Public Library construction grant that will help pay for the project. It also requested a $150,000 transfer from the city’s capital project fund to cover initial planning costs.

“It doesn’t meet the standards of a 21st-century library. We can’t provide the services that we can provide at other libraries,” said Molly Fogarty, director of the Springfield library system.

It is the only Springfield library that has never seen substantial renovations and it needs them. It measures about 3,000 square feet on two levels, but the only level that is accessible to the disabled is 2,200 square feet, she said.

‘Over a decade’

“The neighborhood has been working on this for over a decade,” said City Councilor Michael Fenton, who represents the East Springfield area. “It requires substantial improvements and maintenance. It is the library that probably has received the least improvements in the city.”

Brown said the library, located in the middle of a residential neighborhood and between the busy streets of Carew and Page Boulevard, gets a lot of use.

Libraries are far more today than just books, she said. The neighborhood needs enough space for computers for adults and students who want a place to do homework. It also needs a private meeting room and an area for remote meetings and children’s programming.

The council is asking people to fill out a survey about what the library needs to offer now. It can be found online at There are paper forms available at the branch, but Brown encouraged people to answer the survey online if possible because it saves members from having to type in the answers.

Planning is in the preliminary stages, so no decisions have been made on the project, including whether the building should be renovated and expanded, torn down and replaced or a new one constructed in a different location.

The City Council voted 13-0 on both proposals that would start the process to improve the library.

“This is a great project, the neighborhood really deserves it,” City Councilor Tracye Whitfield said.


Springfield residents meet candidates ahead of municipal election (WWLP)

Election season is here for the city of Springfield, and Wednesday night residents had the chance to get to know the candidates a little better.

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Election season is here for the city of Springfield, and Wednesday night residents had the chance to get to know the candidates a little better.

The Springfield City Library hosted the meet-and-greet for candidates in Springfield’s municipal election. This as early voting is currently underway for the preliminary election for mayor, city council at-large, and Ward 6.

Voters there telling us its important to make future city leaders accessible to residents. “They can come here and talk to the incumbent and somebody running against the incumbent, and say “how are you going to address this situation in my neighborhood?” And they can decide for themselves who will represent them better,” says Assistant Director for Public Services at Springfield City Library, Jean Canosa Albano.

The preliminary election for Springfield is Tuesday, September 12th.

Click through to watch the video!