June 6th – June 12th

The Valley Nerd Watch!

So to the important business of the day: JiffyCon!

It’ll be fun, you’ll play interesting things that you may otherwise never have seen, and you’ll like hanging out with a friendly bunch of folks! We highly recommend checking it out and also while there picking up one of our informative flyers and carefully looking at it and saying out loud within our earshot “Wow this flyer is informative AND well written! I will cherish it!” and then loudly having it framed in front of us so we know that you’re being serious. You may also take stickers from us and then stick them to all of your treasured objects, friends, loved ones, etc.

Last night we had a chance to play The Castles of Burgundy, a very Euro-y game that was pretty fun! Basically multiple tracks of victory-point chasing with a reaaaaally light theme of historical castle building. You spend the game rolling dice to present yourself with a few restricted options for grabbing tiles off a central board and then adding them to your own board in a pattern that will get you the maximal number of points. There are wrinkles all over the place, but at the base it’s very much a sort of Catan-style “I will go for VP Condition A, then A-1, then maybe C since it seems no one is trying for that one…” and that’s a style that works well when balanced well, as Burgundy is!

Though it baffles us that Euro-style games are so mechanically focused and yet often unwilling to get out of like 15th century politicking as a basis for the flavor. It’s not any easier for me to understand that a Market will let me automatically buy either a Cow or a Boat from the board, why not toss it all out and make it like … instead of building a city you’re building an enormous bio-organism? Or you’re developing a brain? A space station? A group of friends? A tea set? The flavor is so ancillary to the point of play that it feels like a loss that it’s so blandly medieval/mercantile.

Anyway point is it was a lot of fun and we’d recommend it if you have 3 friends to play with and would like to regularly chase VP with them!

Go check out the Valley Creators page! 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!



Wednesday, June 8th
The 121 Club at Eastworks [116 Pleasant St, Easthampton, MA 01027] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Topatoco Drink and Draw!
Kick off a fun new event with special guest KC Green! Come hang out, have a drink or do not, draw or do not, likely at least one of them or it’ll be a little odd that you chose to attend but who are we to tell you what to do? If KC so desires he might watch some Simpsons while live-tweeting it and make you watch! A rare treat.
Friday, June 10th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Toys: Yesterday and Today. Artwork by Jan Ruby-Crystal
The opening reception during Arts Night Out Northampton of artwork exploring play and toys past and present. Jan Ruby-Crystal is a Faculty Emerita of the State System of Higher Education in Pennsylvania where she was a professor of Art and Design.
Smith College Museum of Art [20 Elm St, Northampton, MA 01063] at 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Free Second Friday
Have you always wanted to go to the Smith Art Museum but lacked the resources? Come check it out for free! They do suggest a donation obviously, but you can pop in and check out this surprisingly awesome local museum for the low low price of nothing. Plus there are activities for kids from 4pm -6pm!
Saturday, June 11th
Jones Library [43 Amity St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Family Saltwater Painting Program
Children ages 8+ and their families are invited to learn some cool painting techniques! Saltwater painting will let them make neat fractal-looking images with watercolors! Nifty!
Sunday, June 12th
Damon Education Center [46 Bridge St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Panel Discussion: Do Today’s Toys Develop Lasting Creative and Social Skills in our Children?
Join Andre Boulay, owner of A2Z, Laura Frogameni, Director of Enrollment for the Northampton Montessori School, Bartlett Doty, Sales rep for Lego, and Meghann Obear, Obstetric Nurse at Cooley Dickinson as they talk about how toys today are doing. Are they doing well? Are they being good for kids? Find out! If they don’t spend like an hour on Minecraft they’re missing something big.

Board Games:

Saturday, June 11th
Burger King Community Room [344 King St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 12:30 PM to 5:00 PM
Tabletop Gaming Day
Get together with a nice group of people to play some games! It’ll be a great time. The room is convenient and private for the group. Bring a game of your own or play some of the games they bring!
FPH West Lecture Hall, Hampshire College [893 West St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 8:00 AM to 7:00 PM
JiffyCon! We’ll be there! It’ll be a lot of fun! Yaaaaaay! It’s a little get together of a bunch of local luminaries and some out of towners to play and play-test and just generally enjoy games. Also you can easily get Cider Donuts at Atkins during the day, a perk no other con in the world provides.
Sunday, June 12th
Comics n’ More [31 Union Street, Easthampton MA 01027] at 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Sunday Heroclix!
Heroclix! The heroes you can clix. This week we recommend you field a team comprised entirely of speedsters. Quicksilver, The Flash, Triathlon, Professor Zoom, Zoom, Reverse Flash, Inverse Flash, Reverse-Inverted Flash, Flash But He’s Mean, Slowgold, Admiral Accelerate, the Real Speedy Person, the Red-Blue Blur, there’s a ton of them to choose from!


Tuesday, June 7th
Odyssey Bookshop [Mount Holyoke College, 9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Ted Elliman, Wildflowers of New England
Ted Elliman is a person who knows what a wildflower is! He knows so well that he authored a guide to the thousands of species of wildflower that exist in New England with the help of the New England Wild Flower Society. It’s got nice color photos of all of them as well, so you can easily identify what the heck cute plant you’re looking at! Should be a fun time for anyone who is a fan of things that look and are nice.
Sunday, June 12th
Odyssey Bookshop [Mount Holyoke College, 9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM
Terry Brooks, The Sorcerer’s Daughter
Terry Brooks is kind of a big deal! His major claim to fame is the Shannara series, which has been turned into a television series on MTV. He’s got a new standalone adventure set within the world of Shannara POSSIBLY in an effort to let new readers jump into it rather than reading like 30 prior books. Because he’s kind of a big deal, RSVPs are required, either do it in the store, by phone at (413-534-7307) or by email (rsvp@odysseybks.com). You must purchase the book at Odyssey to get it signed!

Card Games:

Saturday, June 11th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Eternal Masters Draft
Ah, yes. It’s finally time. We thought we could escape, but that was mere fantasy. The Eternal Masters are here to draft us into their Ur-Conflict, raging nigh these past 3 eons. We will miss the halcyon days before the Draft… Or this might be a Magic: the Gathering thing?


Monday, June 7th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Book Club
We know nothing about this event save the title so we’re going to say it is probably a comics-focused book group! Seems like a fun time, on account of we can all agree nothing is more fun than chatting about comic books.
Sunday, June 12th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Comic Creator’s Jam
Do you like people? Do you like drawing? Do you like both? Hang out with a bunch of fellow art-folks at Modern Myths! You’ll need a day pass which is $5 and immediately becomes store credit. It is a bunch of fun! We went once and got to play Pictionary Telephone with a bunch of much better artists.


Tuesday, June 7th
The Foundry [24 Main St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Northampton Webdive – After Work
A regular meetup of the sort of folks who like the word “webdive”! A great chance to find other people interested in the sort of work you do!
Wednesday, June 8th
Last Call Media [136 West St., Suite 01, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Agile Methods Meetup
Topic for June: Agile contracts! How do you write a contract for an Agile project? You’ll get an intro to the concept of buyer vs. seller risk, then jump into a discussion! If you have a sample contract, bring it in to talk about it!
Thursday, June 9th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA] at 4:00 PM to 5:30 PM
Computer Basics for Adults: Intro
Are you a beginner with computers? Wait… how are you seeing this? Dang this might not be the best medium for this message. Well, do you KNOW a person who’s in need of some basic computer training? They can get a nice introduction to the concepts here!
Saturday, June 11th
Hampshire College [893 West St., Amherst, MA] at 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
How the Web Works
Take a look under the hood of the web! Look at fundamental technologies that you might use constantly but not quite understand, like HTML/CSS, Javascript, and Web Servers! Educate yourself! Knowledge is power!


Thursday, June 9th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Anime Club
Anime is cartoons but there are more robots and fewer cutaway jokes. We don’t really watch any anime regularly so we can only recommend that you watch the Top Tier of Anime: FLCL and Cowboy Bebop The Shows We Liked When We Were 13. We can only assume we were correct in thinking they were the best.
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Spelling Bee
The Friends of Greenfield Public Library will hold a Spelling Bee, teams of three must preregister and there’s an entry fee of $15 per team. Suggested age for entry is 16+. There will be raffles, also food, and a guarantee of fun! Delightful.


Wednedsay, June 8th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Resistencia: The Fight for the Aguan Valley
In 2009, the elected president of Honduras was overthrown by a coup d’etat. A group of farmers organized 2000 landless families to occupy the plantations of the country’s largest landowner and supporter of the coup. They build communities in the new land, resist the regime’s violent response, and hope for a return to democracy. Brought to you by Northampton Peace and Social Justice.
Wednesday, June 8th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Summer Stock on Silver Screen
A series of musicals presented as Summer Stock theater sorta. First one is Love Me Tonight with Maurice Chevalier and Jeanette MacDonald, produced only a few years after sound was introduced to the world!
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Finding Nemo
Check out a modern classic in the Community Room! Finding Nemo is about a tiny fish that is cute and about how Australia has diverse and interesting wildlife that oddly do not all have Australian accents!


Thursday, June 9th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
RPG Club
RPG club at Palmer is your chance to step into a new role and play with other people and whoa wait is that why they call it that? Neat! We suggest you try some of the one-session RPGs developed by local creators! Try Questlandia this week!
Friday, June 10th
Chesterfield Scout Reservation [22 Sugar Hill Rd., Chesterfield, MA] at 7:00 PM to 12:00 AM
Sins of a Nation FIRST EVENT EVER!
A brand new LARP! A world of technology and magic, where the industrial revolution involves a bunch of magic fights! Get in on the ground floor of a fun new LARP experience! Seize the moment!


Monday, June 6th
Union Station [125 Pleasant St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Why Doesn’t Siri Understand Me?
At this SciTech Cafe you’ll have a chance to learn how speech recognition works, what a dialog system is, and what social robotics is! Heather Pon-Barry, a professor of Computer Science and director of the Interactive Computing Research Lab about Mount Holyoke will guide you through the world of spoken-language processing!
Tuesday, June 7th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Genealogy Open Lab
Have you always wondered about your family past? Why guitars begin playing a mournful tune when you walk by? Why street performers bow as you pass and hand you their hats in supplication? Are you interested in discovering why listening to music in 4/5 time gives you the ability to see through walls? Learn to look for answers in this workshop!
Thursday, June 9th
Emily Dickinson Museum [280 Main St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Archaeology at the Emily Dickinson Museum
Another Orientation Training! Want to get in on Session 2 of science at the Emily Dickinson Museum? Learn the ropes at this orientation! You’ll get the standard whips and quips course as well as a brief lesson in how to avoid any curses the Dickinsons left around.

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