Calling All Young Inventors!

Join us this Sunday for a fun, STEM program at Hammond Castle Museum, the home of one of the nation’s greatest inventors of his time!

Check-in will begin at 12:30 and the program will begin at 1pm.
*This program is geared to children in late elementary school and early middle school grades.

Inventing has changed a lot over the last century since our founder, John Hays Hammond Jr. began his illustrious career, but many of the fundamentals remain the same. Hammond Castle Museum is delighted to partner with the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in presenting a new event: Inventors Day.

The event is inspired by one of Hammond’s inventions: “Seleno,” the world’s first robotic dog, which was controlled by a beam of light. During this two hour-long STEM program, competitors will group into teams with the goal to construct their own light-controlled robot. Each team will be given a robot kit to assemble as well as additional components and electronics to modify and improve upon the core design. The teams will then compete in a series of scored challenges using their robots. Each member of the winning team will receive an award and special recognition across Hammond Castle Museum’s social media platforms as well as its website. Winners also may enjoy all the bragging rights they could want as they may consider themselves a member of the Museum’s exclusive list of inventors.

Reservations & Chaperone tickets are $10 each and available at: www.hammondcastle.org.

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.

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. 

Sawyer Free Library Celebrates Summer with a Slate of Cool Offerings for All Ages  

Library kicks off summer reading fun with a family friendly concert on June 28 at 11AM

The Sawyer Free Library (SFL) will officially be the hottest place to be this summer! 

The Sawyer Free Library is excited to announce the launch of its annual “Summer at the Library,” offering free programs for all ages to entertain, spark, and encourage a lifelong love of reading and learning. From innovative reading challenges to ukulele lessons and shark week adventures to book discussions, author talks, and much more, there’s something for everyone.  The summer fun kicks off on Tuesday, June 28 at 11:00 am with a family-friendly concert featuring Elijah T. Grasshopper’s Rainbow Dance Party in the Library’s outside amphitheater.

Family Concert at Library on Tuesday, June 28 at 11AM

The theme for this year’s annual summer reading challenge, “Read Beyond the Beaten Path,” encourages readers of all ages to explore new worlds and experiences in books that expand their imaginations. The Library’s innovative incentives and activities encourage kids and teens to stay active and read for fun and help them avoid the black hole that is the summer slide, when critical skills learned during the school year are lost over the summer. 

“Learning for kids and teens goes on all year round at Sawyer Free Library, and we know how important free ways to keep learning through the summer are for families,” said Library Director Jenny Benedict. “Summer is the perfect time for all ages to read, create, engage and have fun discovering new interests and exploring new topics. We hope all children and families make the Sawyer Free Library a regular stop this summer.”

To get started, young people and their families can pick up their “Welcome to Summer Reading Packets” Summer Reading and Activity Log at the Library, which has program information, the event calendar, activities, and fun summer treats. Children can stay on top of their summer reading with their “Read Beyond the Beaten Path” time-tracking reading logs. Then from June 28 to August 6, after reading for 500 minutes (or are read to), they win prizes, including tickets to the Topsfield Fair. People can register in person or online for the program.  

Highlights of Summer at the Library programming for children include (with all details sawyerfreelibrary.org):

  • Learn to play campfire songs on the Ukulele with Julie Stepanek on July 5 and enjoy musical story time with Ruthanne Paulson on Friday, July 22, and August 19. 
  • Move your body with Creative Movement in the Library’s Amphitheater on July 7 and be wowed by Jungle Jim’s Camp balloon magic on Wednesday, August 3. 
  • Children can get an up-close look at exotic and native animals on zoom presented by Wildlife Encounters Ecology Center on Tuesday, July 12, and then learn about the snakes of the world with Rick Roth on Saturday, July 23.
  • Kids can get their hands dirty on select Thursday mornings with Backyard Growers while learning about gardening and planting in the Children’s Library garden. 

And all are invited to a midsummer celebratory outside concert featuring the two bands, “Ants on a Log” and “Bee Parks and the Hornets,” in collaboration with Rockport and Manchester-by-the-Sea Public Libraries, on Saturday, July 30.  

SFL has big plans for middle school kids and teens this summer too. Students entering grades 6-12 are encouraged to track their Summer Reading on the custom form available on the Library’s website to qualify for weekly prize drawings and the grand prize drawing of two whale watch tickets, courtesy of Cape Ann Whale Watch. There is also a full summer schedule of weekly programs, including Stem-tastic Thursdays, Science Saturdays, Tween Nights, Gaming Club, Summer Reading Help, and much more. 

Due to last year’s success, SFL is once again giving adults the chance to get in on the summer fun with Adult Book Bingo 2022. From now until September 1, 2022, those 18 and older can keep track of the books they read on the Library’s downloadable custom bingo card by writing the title and author in the matching square. Each completed horizontal, vertical, or diagonal line enters you into a raffle to win $25, $50, or $75 Cape Ann Gift Certificates. In addition to the programs the Library always offers adults—technology training, job search help, author talks, etc.—there will also be summer-themed special programs available.

Thanks to the generous support of the Massachusetts Library System, the Boston Bruins, the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners, and the Gloucester Cultural Council, a local agency supported by the Mass Cultural Council, program participation is free. Registration is now open for all children, teens, and adult programs.

Sawyer Free Library’s summer operating hours beginning on June 18, will be Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 8am to 6pm, Thursday 10am to 7pm, Friday 10am to 5:00pm and Saturday 10:00am to 1pm and 24/7 at sawyerfreelibrary.org.

For more information about the “Summer at the Sawyer Free Library” and to register for programs, visit: sawyerfreelibrary.org or call 978-325-5500.

Not to miss GloCon’22 Workshops – this Saturday at the Sawyer Free Library!

Come check out Sawyer Free Library‘s first annual comic con event, Glo Con on Saturday, April 30 from 10am – 3pm! We’ve got artists, authors, crafts, workshops, cosplayers, snacks, a photo booth, MarioKart on the big screen, and other superhero/comics/graphic novel activities all fun for the whole family!  Visit: SawyerFreeLibrary.org for all the details!

Be sure to sign up ahead of time for these cool workshops:

10:00 – 11:30 a.m. Make Your Own Comics! Come have fun while drawing your own comics! In this workshop, students will play silly drawing games, generate ideas for their own characters, and start to write their own comic book stories. All levels of experience are welcome! The workshop is run by Cathy G. Johnson, Providence-based writer and artist of the graphic novel The Breakaways. REGISTER HERE.

10:30 a.m. – Storytime: We Dig Worms – Young children and their families can enjoy a fun science-filled story time with author and illustrator Kevin McCloskey. No registration needed.

11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Cartooning Workshop with Mark Parisi Recommended for grades 2-7, but all ages will enjoy this fun event with Marty Pants author Mark Parisi. There will be lots of funny cartoons, live drawing, writing and drawing tips and an author Q & A.

Mark is a Gloucester native and the cartoonist behind the comic panel Off the Mark, which is syndicated nationally and appears in The Gloucester Times. He has also authored and illustrated humorous middle-grade books. Mark will be signing books after his presentation.  No Registration Needed.

1:00-3:00 p.m. LightSaber Training – Dabble in the Dark Side or learn how to fight it with the 501st Legion! No Registration Needed.

2:00 – 3:30 p.m. Your Story Matters – Explore storytelling through writing and drawing exercises with Leela Corman, the Providence-based, award-winning artist, cartoonist, and author of the graphic novel Unterzakhn. This program is best for teens and adults.  REGISTER HERE

And that is just the start! From MarioKart, oversized Mad Libs, and a Pokemon Scavenger Hunt to cool crafts, fantastical prizes, graphic novels, and comic books, it will be a day filled with fun activities for all ages to discover.

The Sawyer Free Library is located at 2 Dale Avenue in Gloucester. All Glo Con 2022 presentations and activities are free and open to the public. To register or for more event information, visit sawyerfreelibrary.org or 978-325-5500.