Author Talk with Simon Winchester: Tuesday, 9/20

Sawyer Free Library is pleased to host a virtual conversation with prolific British-American writer, journalist, and consummate adventurer SIMON WINCHESTER on Tuesday, September 20 at 2:00pm.

The NYT bestselling author will cover many aspects of his work across myriad fields of history, technology, and geology as well as the author’s personal expeditions, including his path to becoming the acclaimed author he is today of more than 30 titles, including The Professor and the MadmanPacificThe Perfectionists, and most recently, Land: How the Hunger for Ownership Shaped the Modern World

Virtual Author Talk on Tuesday, September 20 at 2pm

About the Author: Beginning his writing career in journalism, Simon Winchester has found renowned success in the world of non-fiction and now works almost exclusively as an author.  Aside from his numerous books, Simon Winchester OBE has been published in The GuardianThe Wall Street JournalThe New York TimesNational Geographic, and Conde Nast Traveler among many others. Honored with several awards throughout  his career—Britain’s Journalist of the Year in 1971 among them—in 2006 he was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to journalism and literature. In addition, he received an Audie Award for Non-Fiction for The Perfectionists and was made an Honorary Fellow of St. Catherine’s College, Oxford in 2009.  

This is a virtual event, for link, register at sawyerfreelibrary.org. For questions, contact: moneill@sawyerfreelibrary.org or 978-325-5562.

Sawyer Free Library Receives State Grant for Innovative STEM Programming 

Library to Launch Young Gloucester Scientist’s Club for Elementary and Middle School Students 

It’s full STEM ahead for Sawyer Free Library‘s young patrons with the launch of Young Gloucester Scientist’s Club, a new innovative after-school program made possible through a federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC).

The grant of $9,800 will expand Gloucester’s public library’s programming to promote interest in science, engineering, technology, and math (STEM) learning. The Young Gloucester Scientist’s Club supports the digital, scientific and technological goals of 4th through 8th graders aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards. It will introduce young scientists to Gloucester community members with careers across a variety of STEM fields and connect them with Gloucester’s natural environment.

The Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) awarded Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) direct grants to public libraries at its July 7, 2022, board meeting. Federal LSTA grants are funded through the Institute of Museum and Library Services. 

“Each community in Massachusetts is unique and has its own local needs,” said Robert FaviniHead of Library Advisory and Development at the MBLC. “These grants allow libraries to address those local needs directly, whether it’s programming for children and teens, helping residents find a path to citizenship, or protecting the town’s historic documents and artifacts.”

“We’re thrilled to be a recipient of this generous MBLC grant to fund the Sawyer Free Library’s newest program, the Young Gloucester Scientists Club,” said Library Director Jenny Benedict. “Sawyer Free Library plays a vital role in supporting young people to discover their interests and direct their own learning.” Benedict added, “The future of our local environment is dependent on young people today developing a strong sense of place and community and engaging in meaningful learning together to solve our most pressing environmental concerns.”

Children’s Librarian Marisa Hall, who developed the Young Gloucester Scientists Club and applied for the grant, said, “These funds give the Sawyer Free Library an incredible opportunity to expand our current STEM programs and encourage students to further explore their interests in the sciences. This project connects them to a sense of “place” by using our own community’s physical resources and social connections to introduce them to new and innovative STEM concepts and topics.”

The Young Gloucester Scientist’s Club features three components:  in-person programs, circulating STEM kits and online video interviews. The in-person family programming will introduce young people to Gloucester community members with careers across various STEM fields, providing mentors from various backgrounds. Programs will feature local sea, land and sky topics and will highlight our rich Maritime history and culture as Gloucester celebrates its 400th anniversary. 

The Club will take a hands-on approach to learning, build community connections and encourage youth to actively think like scientists by observing, questioning, and experimenting with the world around them. Kicking off in 2023, the library will host Afterschool Young Gloucester Scientist’s Club monthly meetings January through May. In the summer, it will feature a three-day Astronomy “Crash Course” and a series of four Young Gloucester Summer Scientist’s Club Field Trips.  All in-person programs will be held in the Library’s transitional space located on Main Street in downtown Gloucester as well as locations throughout the community.  

The “Young Scientist” STEM kits will provide participants with fun and engaging learning at-home activities. The hands-on kits will be available to check out and include accompanying guides with FAQs, discovery tips, parent conversation starters, and more. There will be seven types: Mini Drone, Microscope and Color Camera, Reflector Telescope, Space Rover Inventor, Coding, and Marine Biology Explorer Kits. Materials will be available in English, Spanish, Portuguese, and, if needed, other languages to be inclusive and accessible to all interested participants.

The “Let’s Meet an Expert” online videos will feature interviews with Gloucester’s STEM experts and scientists conducted by young scientists. The videos will create connections to those working to explore, discover and protect Gloucester’s natural environment. Topics will include Ocean Conservation and Sea Turtle Rehabilitation (NOAA), SnotBots, Drones and Observing Whales (Ocean Alliance), Whale Protection (The Whalemobile), Astronomy (Gloucester Astronomy Club), Using our Natural Environment to Design Solutions for our Future (Biomimicry New England) and more. 

The schedule and specifics of the new after-school program will be forthcoming. For more information, visit SawyerFreeLibrary.org.

Twenty-one libraries received Federal LSTA grants for a total amount of $220,085 awarded. Grants are open to libraries of all types that meet the eligibility requirements. In addition to the direct library grant program, the MBLC uses LSTA funds to support statewide programs and services, including summer reading programs, research databases, the statewide eBook program, the Commonwealth Catalog and mass.gov/libraries which has information and resources for residents. LSTA is administered on the federal level by the Institute of Museum and Library Services and in the Commonwealth by the MBLC. More information about LSTA can be found at www.mass.gov/mblc.

Kids Poetry Afternoons at Sawyer Free Library

Join young Gloucester poet Willa Brosnihan to explore & enjoy poetry this Friday afternoon, August 26th at the Sawyer Free Library.

12:00 to 1:00 p.m. – For children entering grades 3 to 6 and younger. Write & read poems, try out rhyme, personification and haiku.  Register here.

1:30 to 3:30 p.m. – For kids entering grades 6 to 12. Poets from various eras and movements will be explored. Writing in response to prompts and investigating the mechanics of poetry will be explored. Register here.

All workshops are free and open to all! If you have questions, contact: crosso@sawyerfreelibrary.org or 978-325-5500.

Impact Players: How to Take the Lead, Play Bigger and Multiply Your Impact – Author Talk with Liz Wiseman

Join the Sawyer Free Library on Thursday, August 25 from 12:00 – 1:00 pm for a virtual conversation with Liz Wiseman, New York Times Best Selling author, researcher, and executive adviser. Liz will talk about her latest book, Impact Players: How to Take the Lead, Play Bigger and Multiply Your Impact, and her other work. Register HERE for the link!

In Impact Players, Liz asks the question, why do some people break through and make an impact while others get stuck going through the motions? In every organization, impact players are indispensable colleagues who can be counted on in critical situations and consistently receive high-profile assignments and new opportunities. Managers know who these top players are, understand their worth, and want more of them on their team, whether on center stage or behind the scenes. 

Wiseman reveals the secrets of these stellar professionals who play the game at a higher level. Drawing on insights from leaders at top companies, Wiseman explains what the most influential players are doing differently, how small and seemingly insignificant differences in how we think and act can make an enormous impact, and why– with a little coaching–this mindset is available to everyone who wants to contribute at their highest level and do more meaningful work.  

Register HERE

About the author:  Liz Wiseman is a researcher and executive advisor who teaches leadership to executives worldwide. She is the author of the New York Times bestseller Multipliers:  How the Best Leaders Make Everyone SmarterThe Multiplier Effect:  Tapping the Genius Inside Our Schools, Wall Street Journal bestseller Rookie Smarts:  Why Learning Beats Knowing in the New Game of Work, and Wall Street Journal bestseller Impact Players: How to Take the Lead, Play Bigger, and Multiply Your Impact. She is the CEO of the Wiseman Group, a leadership research and development firm headquartered in Silicon Valley, California. 

Long Bright River: Author Talk with Liz Moore

The Sawyer Free Library is pleased to offer an author talk with New York Times Bestselling author Liz Moore as she discusses her international bestseller, Long Bright River, and her other works

The virtual event will take place on Tuesday, August 9 from 9:00 to 10:00pm. Register here to receive the zoom link.

The novel takes place in Philadelphia, where Moore has lived for a decade. She traces the story of two sisters estranged from each other but bonded by their choices. Mickey is a cop, and Kacey lives on the streets in the vice of addiction. When Kacey disappears, Mickey panics over her sister’s safety—obsessed with finding the culprit and her sister before it’s too late.

Drawing on deeply personal volunteer work, Liz Moore spins a story that is both graphically honest and dignified. Long Bright River puts a very human face on the effect that addiction can have on generations of families and communities. 

About the Author

Liz Moore is the author of four novels, a winner of the 2014 Rome Prize in Literature, and she teaches in the MFA program in Creative Writing at Temple University.

To learn more about the Library’s upcoming author talks brought to you in partnership with the Library Speakers Consortium click HERE.

Next up in August:

The Beauty in Breaking: Author Talk with Michele Harper 
Michele Harper – NYT Bestselling Author and NYT Notable Book
August 22nd at 9:00 PM EDT  See More and Register

Impact Players: How to Take the Lead, Play Bigger and Multiply Your Impact – Author Talk with Liz Wiseman 
New York Times Best Selling Author – Liz Wiseman
August 25th at 12:00 PM EDT See More and Register

SAWYER FREE LIBRARY WILL MAKE THE MOVE TO MAIN STREET THIS FALL 

The Sawyer Free Library (SFL) is pleased to share that it has selected a temporary location for the Library during the upcoming renovation and expansion project. The construction project, which involves a renovation of the Library’s 1976 main building at 2 Dale Avenue and an addition of 15,000-square-feet, is expected to begin in early 2023 and take approximately eighteen months.

The Library’s Board of Trustees secured a multi-year lease for 21 Main Street in downtown Gloucester, the former space of Cape Ann Cinema and Stage. The SFL plans to move to its new temporary location this fall. 

“When 21 Main Street was proposed as an option for the temporary Sawyer Free Library, we jumped at the opportunity,” said Mern SibleyPresident of the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library’s Board of Trustees. “Located downtown, just a few blocks from our current location, it has the space and the requirements our dedicated library staff need in order to continue serving our community’s diverse cultural, educational, and informational needs and interests.”

“The commercial real estate market is very tight in Gloucester with few available properties,” continued Sibley. “We feel fortunate to have secured a space that meets our specifications with only minor modifications needed. This temporary space presented itself at the right time, and it is one that we believe will serve the community best during this exciting and historic time for the Sawyer Free Library.”

In its new temporary home, the Sawyer Free Library will offer select in-person services, curbside services, outreach programming, and an enhanced level of online services. The approximately 3,600 sq. ft. at 21 Main Street will accommodate library services for both children and adults, as well as the Library’s local history research resources and Wellspring House’s client intake center. The space will have public computers, Wi-Fi access and study tables. The size of the space limits the quantity of materials onsite.  However, through the hold system, cardholders have access to thousands of titles and resources from storage in Saunders House and other NOBLE libraries.

The Library’s hours will remain the same, open six days a week, with the familiar faces of the Sawyer Free Library’s staff available to assist the public. The centrally located space on Main Street is handicap accessible and offers ample parking in the nearby city lot. 

SFL will continue to offer a robust schedule of programs for residents of all ages throughout the community and is looking at off-site locations in Gloucester’s public schools, preschools, community centers, municipal spaces, local cultural institutions, parks, and other outdoor spaces. It will also work with its many community partners to host collaborative programming.  In addition, the Library will continue to utilize and enhance its remote and online virtual programs.

“Community residents have come to expect a wide range of educational and informational services and programs from our library, and we intend on continuing to deliver on that promise,” said Library Director Jenny Benedict. “Our dedicated Sawyer Free Library staff is committed to making this temporary transition smooth for all. We are excited to share our expertise in new and creative ways. Our talented librarians, resources, and services that Gloucester looks to and relies on will continue to be there for them, whether it be in person in our temporary space, out in the community, or online. We are beyond excited for the 2025 Sawyer Free Library and all it will mean for our community.”

SFL will be working with a relocation service to facilitate the upcoming move of library collections, furnishings and equipment to the temporary location. The Saunders House will be used for library staff office space and onsite storage during the construction.  The exact dates and the specifics of the move will be forthcoming.

“In order for the 2025 Sawyer Free Library project to move forward on schedule, it’s imperative that the current Library is available to the construction company as soon as the project and financial approvals are in place,” said Sibley. “There is also an urgency to relocate before the winter in order to move the public and our collections and equipment into a safe space where they are no longer at risk due to the deteriorating conditions of the current building.”

When doors open at the 2025 Sawyer Free Library, the building will exemplify what a 21st-century public library can and should be in terms of architecture, sustainability, accessibility, use of natural resources and light, wayfinding, lines of sight, air quality, and public safety. The modernized and expanded Library will double in size with the addition. It will boast new community spaces, including a 110-seat community room with state-of-the-art science presentation technology, a dedicated room for teens, and a digital maker space with a film production suite and a sound recording studio. Additional features will include a Library History Center, a quiet Reading Room, and a 16-seat Conference Room.

The Sawyer Free Library recently announced the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners approval of the funding for a $9 million provisional construction grant toward the estimated $28 million historic project. In October, the Gloucester City Council is expected to vote on the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library’s request for a city loan to provide the financing for the project and allow the City to access the state grant. Gloucester’s public library is owned by the Gloucester Lyceum and Sawyer Free Library, a nonprofit corporation, which will repay the loan through grants, corporate and individual donations. 

The Sawyer Free 2025 fundraising campaign is underway, with several large corporate gifts committed, the campaign continues to gain traction and is attracting donations both big and small. Sawyer Free 2025 continues to seek funding through individual and corporate donors, federal, state, and municipal government grants, and nonprofit foundations. The public is encouraged to learn more about the project by visiting sawyerfree2025.org.

 Artist rendering of the view from the northwest corner on Dale Avenue of the Sawyer Free 2025. Rendering by Oudens Ello Architecture provided by Sawyer Free Library 



Community Concert Co-Sponsored by Sawyer Free Library on Saturday, July 30 at 11am

Community Concert with THREE libraries! Join Sawyer Free, Rockport & Manchester-by-the-Sea libraries at Masconomo Park in Manchester for a great family outdoor summer show! Lots of fun with TWO musical groups: Ants on a Log joins Bee Parks & the Hornets for this fun community event!

Saturday, July 30 at 11:00am! Open and free to all!

Rain location is Manchester Elementary School.

For more information visit SawyerFreeLibrary.org or 978-325-5500

“Snakes of the World” with Rick Roth at the Sawyer Free Library on Saturday morning!

Rick Roth and the Cape Ann Vernal Pond Team will bring their exciting presentation, SNAKES OF THE WORLD, to the Sawyer Free Library outdoor amphitheater on Saturday, July 23 from 11am -12pm.

Join Rick and his team as they introduce many snakes, large and small, and some local! You will have the opportunity to hold and handle the snakes or admire them while learning about the amazing creatures.

The event is free and open to all. In case of inclement weather, the presentation will be held in the Library’s Friends Room. Questions? Contact: jvitale@sawyerfreelibrary.org or 978-325-5505.