October 3rd – October 9th

The Valley Nerd Watch!

Happy Halloween Month! Indulge your cosplay desires in this, the month we all agree it’s acceptable for everyone to dress in a neat costume all hours of every day including the work day because we as a society understand how to make life a bit more decent and are capable of having some fun OR JUST ON HALLOWEEN IF EVERYONE’S GOING TO INSIST.

We’re equally capable of performing our work duties dressed as Doctor Doom, you know.

This week we want to point you all toward a neat Kickstarter from local tabletop game developers Fat Elf Games! It’s called Broker, and the idea is basically that it is a simple and fast paced card game with an explicit rule that you are supposed to cheat as much as possible.

So for instance, if it says “everyone draw 1 card” and you happen to just subtly draw 3, that’s cool! The idea is that you can slowly cheat your way to victory or win the whole game in one intense cheat if you’ve got the gumption! All the while, your friendly competition is both cheating and looking to call you out!


Sounds like a good time, has a very reasonable-looking goal, and we’ve heard from playtesters that it’s a pretty fun experience. Although as always with Kickstarters, only put in the amount of money you can comfortably stuff into a trash bag and set on fire.

Also continue to ramp up your excitement for Nerd Nite next Monday, October 10th! It’s the third anniversary of Nerd Nite NoHo, and the first anniversary of the new hosts who we hear are just the best folks and everyone thinks so.

Go check out the Valley Creators page! As always, be sure to check out our Patreon and 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, October 5th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA, 01375] at 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Pumpkin Decorating for Teens
WARNING! This will not be an ordinary pumpkin painting program. It’s going to be about … painting different images and characters on pumpkins? This press release seems to be describing what we’d call an ordinary pumpkin painting program. Hm. Welp, best pumpkin gets a prize! Go make a fun pumpkin, folks!
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:30 PM to 6:00 PM
Pumpkin Carving
Show those pumpkins what-for! We won’t be intimidated by them this year or any other! We’re going to prove it by carving funny faces into them and then putting them on the doorstep as a warning to any other pumpkins that might try to mess with us. For real though why the heck did we start doing this? We’ve looked it up just now and apparently literally just because people in Scotland and Ireland wanted to make lanterns out of turnips with weird faces on them to creep each other out. You do you, Scotland and Ireland.
Thursday, October 6th
Mead Art Museum [41 Quadrangle Dr, Amherst, MA 01002] at 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Gallery Talk by Rico Gaston
Rico Gaston will talk about his works on view at the Mead including a new mural to be painted with Amherst College students. A bold move, using students instead of brushes, we’ll see how it pays off.
Emily Dickinson Museum [280 Main St, Amherst, MA 01002] at 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Amherst Art Walk and Poetry Night
All night long there will be art in the homestead, at 6pm there’s a poetry open mic, and then some featured readers from the Florence Poets Society including Eileen Kennedy, Howie Faerstein, Tommy “Twilite” Clark, Gerald Yelle, and Marian Kent!

Board Games:

Saturday, October 8th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Dungeon Busters Demo
Dungeon Busters is a recently Kickstarted “filler” card game for 3-5 players that’s supposed to last about 20 minutes. It sounds like maybe something you can bust out when you’re all waiting on someone to arrive and you don’t want to sit down for yet another filler Diplomacy game. Learn more and get a chance to play at the demo this weekend!


Tuesday, October 4th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Becky Wai-Ling Packard, author of Successful STEM Mentoring Initiatives for Underrepresented Students
Professor Becky Wai-Ling Packard will discuss her new book, a research-based guide for faculty and adminstrators teaching them how to recruit and retain students from underrepresented groups using effective mentoring. The book goes through both real and perceived barriers that face underrepresented students and shows how you can mitigate them via effective mentoring programs.
Wednesday, October 5th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Archer Mayor, author of Presumption of Guilt
A forty-year-old skeleton is found encased in a concrete slap at a recently decomissioned nuclear energy site. It becomes a case for the Vermont Bureau of Investigation (VBI) and its leader, Joe Gunther. Delightful! VBI! This couldn’t be more New Englandy if it was trying. See Archer Mayor talk about a cold case mystery in the Green Mountain State!
Thursday, October 6th
Odyssey Bookshop [9 College St, South Hadley, MA 01075] at 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Editor Cathi Hanauer and Contributor Julianna Baggott
Talking about “The Bitch is Back”, Cathi Hanauer and Juliann Baggot will discuss a new batch of passionate and funny pieces about the spirit of feminism, offering unique views from a diverse group of women!
Saturday, October 8th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:30 PM to 3:30 PM
Indie Author Day Gathering
Are you an independent or self-published writer? Maybe you’d like to be! Join a bunch of other folks at the library for a mixer, and share your experience while you learn more about self-publishing! The only rule we know is: if you’re paying someone else to publish you, that is likely not a great idea.

Comic Books:

Sunday, October 9th
Modern Myths [34 Bridge Street #4, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Comic Creator’s Jam
Do you make comic books? Do you make a webcomic? Have you thought about a webcomic? Have you considered that lines can be put to paper using certain methods in order to create the impression in the viewer that those lines form a physical object? You should hang out here! Basically you chat with nice people about how to draw nice or make good comic-making business decisions or whatnot and also play drawing games to loosen up the old creativity. Lots of fun!


Tuesday, October 4th
Palmer Public Library [1455 N Main St, Palmer, MA 01069] at 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Down on Main Street: Planning Palmer’s Future
Chart the future of Palmer! Guide the ages with your own hands, and wreak your terrible visions upon the world. Well, upon Palmer. Well, and you will probably have to work with other people whose visions are not necessarily as terrible or awe-inspiring as your own. Still if you live in Palmer this is the place to be.
Saturday, October 8th
Sunderland Public Library [20 School St., Sunderland, MA, 01375] at 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Questions about FAFSA
Basically everyone finds planning college finances terrifying. If you’ve got any questions about the process, this is an opportunity to ask them! We aren’t really experts but we’re very comfortable saying that you should as early as possible jump through every hoop available that will reduce your student debt, because that death follows you to death and beyond. The literally dig up your skeleton and force it to work in the mines.
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 3:30 PM to 4:30 PM
Free Sign Language Workshop
Join Signing Basics at Forbes for an hour of learning the basics of ASL. Learn greetings, spell your name, and play a fun game that’s common in the Deaf Community. No experience necessary, and open to all ages!


Tuesday, October 4th
The Foundry [24 Main St., Northampton, MA 01060] at 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Northampton Webdive – After Work
Hang out with local coders and web developers, and web DEVELOP a relationship with folks who have similar interests and skillsets to your own! It’s a good opportunity to put down the computer for a bit and focus on talking to other people, which is called “networking” if you want to make it sound less fun.


Wednesday, October 5th
Springfield Public Forum [34 Court St., Springfield, MA] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Nancy Lublin: How Tech and Big Data Can Save Lives
Tech and Big Data are of course our friendly neighborhood super-team. Tech may look a bit scrawny, but their command of gadgetry more than makes up for their size in a fight! And Big Data, of course, possesses the Cerulean Gem of Knowledge, giving her a complete understanding of any object within her gaze as well as tremendous physical strength! Wait oh goodness wow no this one is actually a talk by Nancy Lublin about how it’s possible to use technology and large-scale data collection to save lives via a service that gathers up texts to a crisis hotline and suggests alterations in regional and local policy to address trends in that data.
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 7:00 PM to 8:45 PM
Mystery, Horror, and the Northampton State Hospital
The Northampton State Hospital stood on Hospital Hill from 1856 until its demolition in 2006. At this event you’ll hear three authors read from their mystery and horror novels inspired by Northampton’s historic institution. Dave Stern will read from Shadows in the Asylum, Emily Arsenault will read from The Evening Spider, and Katherine Anderson will read from Hospital Hill!
Greenfield Public Library [402 Main St, Greenfield, MA 01301] at 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
First Wednesday Speaker Series: Patrick Barron with Defining the Machine
Patrick Barron, a person who ran for Congress as an Independent and did not win in 2010, wrote a book about how our political system is broken and how to fix it and we’re just going to go out on a limb and say that the fixed system would totally have elected him. But for real, get an inside look at what it’s like to attempt to work through problems via getting elected to office and what might make our kind of weird and awful system of elected positions better.
Saturday, October 8th
Forbes Library [20 West St, Northampton, MA 01060] at 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Forbes Library Doctor Who Club
Who? What? Why? The Doctor? No we don’t know any Doctors. We did meet a procession of aroun a dozen men of varying levels of personal ridiculousness, is that what you’re talking about? Anyway watch a classic TV show with a friendly bunch of local folks at the Library!


Thursday, October 6th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
The History of Market Street: 1730s to the End of the Civil War with Lu Stone
Historian and author Lu Stone will lead a walking tour based on her research of the Market Street Neightborhood. You’ve got to pre-register and there’s a suggested donation of $5 for members, $10 for non-members. Find more info and pre-register here: http://www.historicnorthampton.org/market-street.html!
First Church of Deerfield [71 Old Main Street, Deerfield, MA 01342] at 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Lecture: “The Future of Historic Preservation: Saving the Places that Matter”
David J Brown, Chief Preservation Officer of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, will present a free lecture about how we preserve our past. Deerfield is a place with immense volumes of human history, a Native homeland for 12,000 years and a community of colonizers since the 1600s. Why are places like Deerfield important to America? Why should we prioritize their preservation? Find out at this talk!
Saturday, October 8th
Historic Northampton [46 Bridge Street, Northampton, MA 01060-2406] at 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Saturday Walking Tour led by Steve Strimer
Walk the African American Heritage Trail, leaving from the Sojourner Truth Statue at the corner of Park Street and Pine Street in Florence, this time with Steve Strimer of the David Ruggles Center Committee and the Sojourner Truth Statue Committee!


Tuesday, October 4th
Holyoke Public Library [250 Chestnut St, Holyoke, MA 01040] at 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM
Scary Movies for Teens
They are all PG and PG-13 so it’s less likely “scary” and more likely “funny” but it’ll still be an excellent time!
Sunday, October 9th
Yiddish Book Center [1021 West St., Amherst, MA 01002] at 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM
Talk: Stars in the Ring: Jewish Champions in the Golden Age of Boxing with Mike Silver
Boxing Historian Mike Silver talks about the all-but-forgotten history of Jewish boxers from the 1890s to the 1950s including their domination of the sport in the ’20s and ’30s and the ways boxing helped Jewish people assimilate to life in the US, there will be a chance to get the book signed after the talk!


Friday, October 7th
Chesterfield Scout Reservation [22 Sugar Hill Rd., Chesterfield, MA] at 7:00 PM to 12:00 AM
Magestry LARP Autumn 2016 Game 3
Magestry needs NPCs to challenge the increasing population of PCs! Get out there for FREE and get FOOD! Also, get to be a barbarian or an orc or whatnot! It seems like a ton of fun, and they’d love to have you whether you can be there the whole weekend or just a few hours! You’ve got to join the Meetup to see the contact email, and if this sounds like fun you definitely should check it out

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