Forbes Library’s Valley Gives Day Challenge Grant

Forbes Library offers free educational and life enriching programs to people of all ages. Last year alone, over 1800 programs were held at the library and attended by over 30,000 people. These programs provide early literacy experiences for our community’s young children, summer reading activities to support academic success for our school aged children, discussion and socializing activities for teens, and a wide array of programs for adults and seniors including book discussions, film screenings, author panels, and so much more.

Programming at Forbes Library is supported by the generosity of the Friends of Forbes Library and many individuals in our community. Forbes is participating in Valley Gives Day on May 2. This 24-hour online day of giving is organized by the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts and supports non-profit organizations like Forbes Library in raising critical funds. The Friends of Forbes Library have offered a challenge grant to the library and will match all funds raised on May 2 up to $6000 for library programming.

Gifts can be made online starting on April 25, http://forbeslibrary.org/vgd/, call us at 413-587-1011, or visit in person.

“Forbes library is truly one of the joys of my life, and I cannot imagine how much less my life would be without it!”

“Forbes Library is a beautiful, spacious sanctuary for me. I enjoy checking out books & DVDs, have borrowed a musical instrument there, & learned important info from the wonderful staff. It’s a place where everyone is welcome & community is supported.”

Forbes Library Community Survey 2017

Take this survey online and enter to win a $100 Northampton gift card!
http://forbeslibrary.org/survey

Forbes Library is developing a new strategic plan to identify priorities for services and programs for the next five years. Knowing your needs and interests will guide decisions on specific library goals and activities. This survey is voluntary and anonymous, and will take five to ten minutes to complete, depending on your answers. Thank you for participating. 
If you have questions, please contact Molly Moss at (413) 587-1017 or mmoss@forbeslibrary.org.

New Kanopy streaming movie service free @ Forbes

Kanopy-Logo-Thoughtful-Entertainment26,000 more great movies, documentaries, independent films now available to all Forbes Library cardholders. 

Forbes Library is pleased to announce the launch of a new streaming video service, Kanopy, to our digital collection.

All Forbes Library cardholders can now access Kanopy and watch popular films and documentaries anytime by visiting http://forbes.kanopystreaming.com

Kanopy is a video streaming platform for libraries with one of the largest and most unique collections in the world featuring over 26,000 movies, documentaries, and indie and foreign films from over hundreds of producers including The Criterion Collection, Great Courses, Kino Lorber, Media Education Foundation, PBS and thousands of independent filmmakers.

Kanopy is also committed to diversity, with an amazing array of foreign language films and films on race, LGBT and more. Kanopy’s films are also compatible for the hearing (with captions and transcripts) and visually impaired (compatible with technologies such as JAWS).

We are so excited to expand our streaming film collection and think you will discover a wealth of great content in this new database. If you need assistance creating an account, logging in with your Forbes Library card or have any questions don’t hesitate to call us at 413-587-1013 or email us at reference@forbeslibrary.org.

The new Kanopy service is free for Forbes Library cardholders. Patrons can watch up to eight films a month. To get started and enjoy films visit http://forbes.kanopystreaming.com

Forbes Library, Historic Northampton and Wistariahurst host States of Incarceration, a traveling exhibition

States of Incarceration imageSTATES OF INCARCERATION
A NATIONAL DIALOGUE OF LOCAL HISTORIES

March 13-30, Forbes Library, 20 West St, Northampton, MA and Historic Northampton, 46 Bridge St., Northampton, MA

Opening reception: March 13, 5-8 PM; featuring a guided tour of the exhibit at 6pm at Forbes, led by local residents who are featured in the exhibit, and a public reading by Voices from Inside at 7pm at Historic Northampton.

Forbes Library and Historic Northampton are partnering to present States of Incarceration, the first national traveling multi-media exhibition and coordinated public dialogue to explore the history and future of mass incarceration in the United States.

The exhibition will also be on view March 1-12 in Holyoke at The Wauregan (420 Dwight St), hosted by the Wistariahurst Museum with an opening reception on March 1 from 6-8 PM.

Website: http://pv-soi.org / Programs and events: https://pv-soi.org/programs/

States of Incarceration was created by the New School’s Humanities Action Lab, a coalition of 500 university students and formerly incarcerated individuals from 20 cities, including students and faculty from UMass Amherst Public History Program and several local community organizers. It explores the history of incarceration by focusing on human stories from 20 different local communities from across the U.S., including here in western Massachusetts. The exhibit offers a diverse genealogy of the incarceration generation and challenges all of us to remember our own past and use the insights of history to shape what happens next. A Spanish-language exhibit catalog accompanies the exhibit.

States of Incarceration will be on view alongside several additional installations, including an exhibit titled The Carceral Commonwealth on how incarceration impacts families and communities in Massachusetts, a photographic installation about Holyoke-based community organizations (on display in Holyoke), and exhibit panels and artifacts on history of incarceration in Hampshire county (on display at Historic Northampton).

Simultaneous to the exhibition, Wistariahurst, Forbes Library, Historic Northampton and several other organizations are offering public programs on this theme, including field trips, film screenings, workshops, and lectures. Events include a youth-led workshop for school-based professionals led by Pa’lante, a restorative justice group from Holyoke High School; a Know Your Rights workshop led by local civil rights and defense attorney Luke Ryan on March 9; and a talk about the history of the Northampton state hospital on March 29, hosted by Historic Northampton and Forbes Library.

In addition, six local libraries have teamed up to present Hamptons + Holyoke Read, featuring a community read of the book Orange is the New Black and other related programs, including a panel discussion with three women who were incarcerated with Piper Kerman and whose lived experience informed the book and the TV series. On March 30, the exhibit culminates with a “Local Action Forum”, bringing local students, scholars, community members and activists together to discuss ongoing work to build the collective power of communities affected by mass incarceration, hosted by the UMass Alliance for Community Transformation and sponsored by the Feinberg Series. Additional programs will continue into April.

 

States of Incarceration is presented by the Feinberg Family Distinguished Lecture Series, the UMass Amherst Public History Program, Forbes Library, Historic Northampton and Wistariahurst, with support from the Humanities Action Lab, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the National Endowment for the Humanities. Additional support was provided by The Wauregan, NEPR, the UMass History Department, and the UMass Office of Research Development.

States of Incarceration was created by the Humanities Action Lab and designed by Matter Practice. The web platform, statesofincarceration.org, was created by Picture Projects. The Spanish-language exhibit catalog was created by María José Giménez (translator) and Maggie McDonald (graphic designer). The Carceral Commonwealth was created by UMass students and local residents and designed by Jennifer Luxton. Wistariahurst created the photographic exhibit about Holyoke-based community organizations, and Historic Northampton and UMass students collaborated to create the exhibit components on incarceration in Hampshire county. More than three dozen additional students, faculty, activists, community leaders and people with direct experience with incarceration contributed to the creation of these exhibitions and programs.

Hamptons + Holyoke Read: Orange is the New Black

For Immediate release.

February 22, 2017 – Five communities are coming together during March and April in a new partnership called Hamptons + Holyoke Read. The inspiration for this multi-community initiative is the book Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison by Piper Kerman, popularized by the Netflix series. Spearheaded by the public libraries in Holyoke, Northampton, Florence, Easthampton, Southampton and Westhampton, Hamptons + Holyoke Read is sponsoring dozens of events exploring incarceration through discussion, art, film and lecture. Community partners for this project are wide reaching including Holyoke Community College, Historic Northampton, Wistariahurst, Prison Policy Initiative and UMass Amherst Public History Program.

Originally published in 2010, Orange is the New Black tells the true story of the author, a Smith College graduate, who served a 15-month sentence in a federal women’s prison for drug trafficking. Although the book and to a larger extent the Netflix series give a narrow and often unrealistic view of prison life, the organizers of Hamptons + Holyoke Read are using this book as a jumping off point to encourage community conversations about pervasive issues of mass incarceration affecting our communities and our nation.

There are currently 2.2 million people serving time in the United States, which represents a 500% increase over the last 40 years according to the Sentencing Project, a nonprofit research and advocacy group. In Massachusetts alone there are nearly 20,000 people currently serving time. The State Senate will be discussing three important criminal justice related bills this year and nationally prison policy is receiving lots of attention. “The topics raised by this year’s community reading event are extremely timely and important. Participants will have the opportunity to increase understanding and foster conversation about the past, present and future of prison and its impact on our society,” said Lisa Downing, Hamptons + Holyoke Read Co-Chair.

Copies of Orange is the New Black are available to borrow from the participating libraries. For a complete list of events and exhibits please visit http://forbeslibrary.org/hhr.

Concurrent with Hamptons + Holyoke Read, the national exhibit States of Incarceration: A National Dialogue of Local Histories is coming to Holyoke and Northampton during the month of March. For more information about the exhibit and related programs, please visit https://pv-soi.org/.

Molly Moss is appointed new Assistant Director/Patron Services Librarian

Please welcome our new Assistant Director, Molly Moss!

Molly Moss, Assistant Director

Molly Moss, Assistant Director

Head of Reference at Forbes Library since 2010, Molly is excited to take on this new role at Forbes. Molly has worked as a Reference Librarian since 1997, spending several years as an academic science librarian before making the move to public libraries in 2003. Since starting at Forbes, she has led an LSTA grant for Readers Advisory services, remodeled the Doland Reference Room, and co-founded the Readers Advisory Round Table for Western Massachusetts. Molly has also served as a library trustee, both in Illinois and currently in Shutesbury, Massachusetts. In her new role at Forbes, she looks forward to continuing her focus on improving customer service and working more with programming, collections, and community outreach.

CANCELED: Friends of Forbes bus trip to Hyde Park, NY, National Historic Sites

Franklin Delano Roosevelt's home[Update: The Friends of Forbes Bus Tript to Hyde Park has been canceled due to low enrollment. 3/28/2017]

The Friends of Forbes are presenting a 1-day bus trip on Saturday, May 13, 2017, to Hyde Park, NY, with guided tours of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s home & library and the Vanderbilt mansion, plus lunch. Both homes are National Historic Sites. The cost is $139 per person, which includes a donation to the Friends of Forbes and is based on 42-50 participants. Motor coach departs at 7:00 a.m. from Forbes Library, 20 West St., Northampton. Estimated return is 7:00 p.m.

If you have not reserved a seat yet, you may use PayPal (below) or mail a check to Friends of Forbes Library, P.O. Box 1363, Northampton, 01061. For questions call 413.584.8334.

You may park for the day on the 2nd and 3rd floors of the Smith College parking garage, which is just a few doors beyond the library on West Street. There is no charge for that parking. The 1st floor is for students, who have paid to park there.

Seats are limited. Deadline for reservations is March 29, 2017.

Tickets may also be bought online via PayPal.

Outreach Delivery Service

Is it difficult for you or someone you know to get to the library?

Let us bring the books to you! Forbes Library volunteers deliver and return library materials to home bound residents in Northampton, Florence and Leeds.

Apply online or pick up an application at the library. For more information call 413-587-1019.

Applications available for Hosmer Gallery

Exhibit Opportunity for Western Mass. Artists in All Media

Applications and details: http://forbeslibrary.org/gallery/info-for-artists/

From January 3 through February 5, 2017, artists may apply to exhibit their work in the Hosmer Gallery at Forbes Library next year.

The application can be completed online or printed and mailed with a CD of images. Criteria for review include technical and artistic quality, a coherent theme, and contribution to an interesting and varied program for the year. Artists living and working in the greater Northampton area are eligible to apply. First-time exhibitors, individuals and groups are welcome.

Art exhibits featuring the work of local artists have been part of Forbes Library’s cultural mission for over 100 years. The Hosmer Gallery has versatile display panels, cases and pedestals to accommodate a variety of two- and three-dimensional art formats.

The Hosmer Art Gallery is designed to provide opportunities for local artists to show their work to the public. Exhibits include a wide range of media and content reflecting the diversity of the Pioneer Valley community. The gallery is curated and scheduled by the Head of the Arts & Music Department.

There is no fee for application or for the use of the space. Applications and details can be found at http://forbeslibrary.org/gallery/info-for-artists/.

Food for Fines in January

Forbes Library is offering its annual Food for Fines during the month of January. This is a time of year to support the needs of people in our community and clear accumulated overdue fines. During this time, patrons may pay overdue fines by donating items in demand by the Northampton Survival Center.
This year the drive has been expanded beyond food to include personal care items and cleaning supplies. The library will be accepting donations of canned goods (please check expiration dates) and healthy non-perishable food items; personal care items including deodorant, lotion, soap, toothpaste, toothbrush, toilet paper, conditioner, powder, shaving cream, razors, diapers, lip balm,  feminine hygiene, shampoo; and household cleaning supplies including laundry detergent, dish soap, and any household, kitchen or bathroom cleaners.
The suggested donation is one item for each $2 in fines that are waived and applies to late fines only and not to lost or damaged fees.

Sarah Johnson is new head of Children’s and YA Services

Sarah Johnson

Please welcome our new head of Children’s and Young Adult Services, Sarah Johnson!

Sarah is originally from Mendon, Massachusetts and is thrilled to be back in her home state. For the past five years she worked for Brooklyn Public Library in New York. While there, she launched a storytime at a nearby community garden, co-wrote the library’s strategic plan, helped create an online readers’ advisory service, and served on BPL’s Children’s New Books Showcase Committee. Some of her favorite parts of being a Children’s Librarian are introducing patrons to great books and hosting interactive storytimes with songs, puppets, and felt board stories. In her new role at Forbes she looks forward to conducting lots of outreach, increasing programming, and working with colleagues to launch interesting new projects to meet the needs of our community.