Director's Update, February 21, 2021

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We are closing out the month of February with some special programming!

Some exciting highlights include the new Cambridge Room series starting this week, as well as a timely presentation and panel discussion about the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccines and our final Black History Month event with the acclaimed author Danielle Evans in conversation with Kim McLarin.

Black History Month Featured Event: Celebrated Author Danielle Evans in Conversation with Kim McLarin

On Thursday, February 25, at 6:30 p.m., celebrate Black History Month with Danielle Evans, the author of The Office of Historical Corrections: A Novella and Stories, a finalist for The Story Prize, and is longlisted for The PEN/Faulkner Award, The Joyce Carol Oates Prize, and The Aspen Words Literary Prize. Evans will be in conversation with Kim McLarin, the author of a forthcoming critique of James Baldwin's Another Country and is best known for Growing Up X: A Memoir by the Daughter of Malcolm X, co-authored with Ilyasah Shabazz, daughter of Malcolm X. This event is cosponsored by the Mayor's Office, the City of Cambridge Employees' Committee on Diversity, the City Manager's Office, and the Cambridge Public Library. Registration is required.

Vaccines and the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Primer for the Public

Join us on Wednesday, February 24, at 6 p.m., as Dr. Zuri Sullivan and Dr. Bruce Walker of the Ragon Institute provide information for the general public about where the virus that causes COVID-19 came from, how vaccines work, and the prospects for these vaccines to contain the pandemic now that there are mutant viruses.

Josefine Wendel of the Cambridge Public Health Department will discuss vaccine distribution in Cambridge, current vaccine eligibility, and how people can make an appointment to get a vaccine. This event is part of the Our Path Forward series. Registration is required.

STEAM KIT Surprise!

The Cambridge Public Library is excited to roll out STEAM Kit Surprise! These popular STEAM Kits will be available at the Main Library and the Central Square, O’Neill, and Valente branches using our Contactless Holds Pickup service. Simply complete this brief form, and we’ll match your STEAM interests with an available kit. Requests for specific kits cannot be taken at this time. We kindly request only one submission per household at a time.

Virtual ESOL Classes

Virtual English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) classes occur on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Introductory ESOL takes place at 11 a.m., beginner ESOL at 1 p.m., and intermediate ESOL at 3 p.m. Registration is required for each class. See the Library’s online events calendar for more details.

The Hive Open House

On Tuesday, February 23, at 5 p.m., join us for a virtual tour of the new makerspace, recording studios, and extended reality lab at the Main Library. See what is possible here and learn about upcoming virtual workshops where you can design projects to be produced and picked up from The Hive. Registration is required.

Soul Food 101 with Chef Anthony Brooks of the Coast Cafe

Renowned for its soul food, the Coast Cafe is a Cambridge institution that requires no introduction. Join the owner and chef Tony Brooks on Tuesday, February 23, at 7 p.m., as he prepares some of the key dishes of the Coast Cafe's menu. Registration is required.

Lamp x the CPL Present: A Book Club Walks Into a Bar

Join Lamplighter and the Cambridge Public Library for our virtual book club, where we’ll celebrate contemporary fiction from new voices. We welcome our new partner, All She Wrote Books, an intersectional, inclusive, feminist, and queer bookstore that supports, celebrates, and amplifies underrepresented voices through a thoughtfully curated selection of books spanning all genres.

This month, we’ll read Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler. This dystopian novel, set in 2025, follows one Southern California woman’s journey as the world descends into anarchy around her. We’ll meet over Zoom to discuss it at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, February 23. Registration is required.

Parable of the Sower is available as an e-book and digital audiobook through OverDrive (or the Libby app) and Hoopla (or the Hoopla app), using a Minuteman Network library card.

Virtual Baby Lapsit

Children who are not yet walking and their caregivers are invited to enjoy time together with other parents, caregivers, and babies to learn, play, and develop language and motor skills. The final event of this series takes place on Wednesday, February 24, at 10 a.m. Registration is required.

Library at Home: LearningExpress

On Wednesday, February 24, at 3 p.m., join us for a virtual demonstration of our newest online resource, LearningExpress Library. This program supports those looking to improve core academic skills, pass the GED, prepare for college, join the military, get occupational certification, find a job, change careers, become a U.S. citizen, and much more. Registration is required.

Inkscape 101: Leather Bookmark

On Wednesday, February 24, at 3 p.m., or Thursday, February 25, at 6 p.m., learn the fundamentals of Inkscape to design and edit images for a bookmark. Participants may share a completed design file to be made into a bookmark from recycled leather in The Hive and can arrange to collect their finished work through our Contactless Holds Pickup service. Basic computer skills are necessary for this course, so we recommend that you download the free Inkscape software before the workshop. Registration is required. Alternative materials are also available.

Wellness for Seniors: Virtual Zumba Gold

On Thursday, February 25, at 11 a.m., put on your dancing shoes to improve your flexibility and balance, strengthen your muscles, and have a great time! The certified Zumba Gold instructor Emily B. will lead you through 45 minutes of low-impact and easy choreography in your own home.

Register for this event. Separate registration is needed for each session.

Rainsford Island : A Hidden History of Neglect and Activism in Boston Harbor

On Thursday, February 25, at noon, join us for the first in a series of conversations presented by the Cambridge Room, the home of the Library's Archives and Special Collections.

For centuries, Boston Harbor's Rainsford Island was an offshore repository for Boston's unwanted: "small pox victims, impoverished immigrants, violent criminals, drunkards, unwed mothers and their infants, mentally ill, and delinquent boys." The brutal living conditions left nearly 1,800 dead in unmarked graves. Robin Hazard Ray and Bill McEvoy will share their research into the stories of those incarcerated and those who agitated to shut down the island. Registration is required.

Join us for Story Time

We invite children and their grownups to join us from home for 20-25 minutes of engaging stories. Plan to join in, sing along, and move around!

STEAM Story Times include hands-on activities to explore science, technology, engineering, the arts, and math.

We are happy to offer these Story Time programs this week:

Registration is required for each event.

COVID-19 Survey for Residents

The City of Cambridge and Cambridge Public Health Department have created a short survey to get information directly from residents related to the COVID-19 vaccine. We want to know how our residents feel about the COVID-19 vaccine, and we want to understand your questions and concerns. Your participation will help us communicate critical information more clearly to all members of the community.

Stay Connected

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Best wishes,

Maria McCauley, Ph.D.
Director of Libraries

Page was posted on 2/21/2021 2:57 PM
Page was last modified on 2/21/2021 2:59 PM
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