Sawyer Free Library to present screening of Jane Eyre followed by Cast & Director Talkback on May 6th

Join the Sawyer Free Library on Thursday, May 6, from 6:30-9 p.m. for a free virtual screening of a new adaptation of Charlotte Brontë’s classic novel Jane EyreAdapted by Salem, Mass., resident Julie Butters and performed by Flock Theatre of New London, Conn., the production was filmed over Zoom during the COVID pandemic and supplements live-action performances with shadow puppetry. Butters, who also plays adult Jane, will discuss making the film following the screening alongside director Derron Wood and actor Eric Michaelian (Mr. Rochester) to share the film’s details.

Jane Eyre, an orphan in early nineteenth-century England, overcomes a loveless childhood to become a governess to the ward of the enigmatic Mr. Rochester. Jane soon believes she’s found the home and the love she’s always yearned for, but Mr. Rochester’s dark secrets threaten to keep them apart. Blending gothic romance with a powerful story of personal growth, Jane Eyre explores one woman’s struggle to find love and independence despite barriers of gender, class, and circumstance.  

Register here for this free event or for more information visit SawyerFreeLibrary.org .  

Sawyer Free Library’s Technology on the Horizon: Big Data in Small Slices Presentation on Thursday, April 29

The Sawyer Free Library is pleased to announce the launch of “Technology on the Horizon,” an informative series that spotlights individuals and organizations on the North Shore working with critical or emerging technologies.

Throughout the year, the Library will be hosting local industry leaders who will share their knowledge, insight, and the economic implications of their work in a way that is accessible to all. The series is intended to inspire and inform individuals about new and exciting innovations happening in our community and the possibilities of new career paths in Technology. The live virtual presentations are free and open to the public with advance registration through the Sawyer Free Library’s website.

The series will kick off with “Big Data in Small Slices” on Thursday, April 29, at 7 pm. Data analysis and visualization expert, author, journalist, and resident of Rockport, Dianne Finch-Claydon, will share how data visualization can be used to combat climate change, better our world, and even help your career. Her newly published book, Big Data in Small Slices: Data Visualization for Communicators, which has been called an invaluable resource for anyone interested in storytelling using data, is available now to checkout at Sawyer Free Library. Click here to register and to receive the Zoom link.

For more information about the “Technology on the Horizon” series and the Library’s other programs and offerings, please visit sawyerfreelibray.org

Finding Practical Solutions to Ending Food Waste: A Panel Discussion hosted by Sawyer Free Libary and Backyard Growers

Did you know 33% of all food produced globally is lost or wasted? Food waste is central to some of the key challenges facing the world today, including hunger and poverty, climate change, health and wellbeing, and the sustainability of agriculture and oceans.

To bring attention to this growing global problem, the Sawyer Free Library and Backyard Growers are co-hosting a virtual panel discussion around the topic of food waste on Thursday, April 28, from 6-7 pm.  The live virtual presentation is free and open to the public. Click here to register.

Moderated by Lara Lepionka, Founder & Executive Director, Backyard Growers, the program will provide both broad knowledge and a local perspective of the issues of food waste, along with some actionable steps individuals can take to help make a difference in its reduction. 

The program panelists include Andrew Brousseau, Partner, Compost Manager, Black Earth Compost, Brittany Peats, Program Manager, MA Food System Collaborative, and Gary Sprague, Food Acquisition and Distribution Manager, The Open Door.  Each panelist will have the opportunity to talk about their community organization’s focus and practical recommendations to address the critical issue of food waste in our community.

Following their remarks, there will be a moderated Q&A session.  For more information on the Finding Practical Solutions to End Food Waste Panel Discussion and the Library’s other programs and offerings, please visit sawyerfreelibray.org

Sawyer Free Library presents Digital Photography Basics with Skip Montello on Saturday, April 17

Skip Montello

Do you have a digital camera and need to learn how to use it? Do you already use your camera but want to know how to take better pictures? The Sawyer Free Library is pleased to offer a digital photography basics class with professional award-winning photographer SKIP MONTELLO on Saturday, April 17, from 2-4 pm.  The virtual presentation is free and open to all. Register here for Zoom link.

During the presentation, Skip will introduce the different camera controls and what they do. He will share his knowledge of digital photography basics, including equipment, components of light exposure, elements of composition, and more.

Skip Montello is a photographer working and living in Rockport, Massachusetts. He is an exhibiting member of the Rocky Neck Art Colony, Rocky Neck Gallery, Rockport Art Association, Newburyport Art Association, and the Griffin Museum of Photography.

His passion for photography developed during his career at the Polaroid Corporation, where he spent more than 30 years as a photographic scientist, engineer, and technology leader.

Over the years, Skip has moved from film-based media to digital. He has a deep love for the area in which he lives and finds himself inspired by the ocean. When not photographing, he is a sport fishing charter captain, sailing instructor, and outdoor writer.

Skip’s photography has earned numerous awards at Rockport and Newburyport’s art associations and the worldwide Nikon Small Wonders Competition. He has exhibited in several solo exhibits, and his work is held in private collections in the United States and Europe.

To register or for more information about this and other programs at the Sawyer Free Library visit, sawyerfreelibrary.org.

The Life and Poetry of Mary Oliver presented by the Sawyer Free Library on April 8th

Join the Sawyer Free Library in celebrating National Poetry Month for explore the Life, Natural World & Poetry of Mary Oliver, presented by Andrea Brandeis on Thursday, April 8 from  7 – 8:30pm.

Mary Oliver was one of America’s most treasured poets, whose honors include the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award. Her poetry explores the interconnectedness of spirituality and the natural world. This virtual program is intended for anyone– from beginner explorers of poetry to experts. This program will be held via Zoom.  

Register here for the event. The Zoom link will be sent out 15 minutes before the presentation begins. If you register after that, there may be a small delay.

For more information on all the the programs being offered at the Library, visit sawyerfreelibrary.org

Sawyer Free Library presents screening of “Left on Pearl”documentary in celebration of Women’s History Month on Saturday, 3/20

Celebrate Women’s History Month with activists marching through Cambridge for women’s rights in the award-winning documentary LEFT ON PEARL! Join the Sawyer Free Library for a virtual documentary screening followed by a filmmakers’ panel on Saturday, March 20 from 2-4pm.

Register here for the link to the film and presentation. The film will be made available to registrants a few days before the presentation if you’d like to watch it in advance.


Also be sure to check out the What She’s Reading at SawyerFreeLibrary.org this month. The Library asked several of Gloucester’s cultural, civic, and community women leaders to share books that they love or have inspired them, written by fellow women. The results are a mix of close to 100 titles, including classics, new discoveries, and more. The complete list is on the website, with recommended books available at Sawyer Free Library or easily ordered from libraries in their consortium.

What She’s Reading” at the Sawyer Free Library

For more information about these programs and other Women History Month activities at the Sawyer Free Library visit: SawyerFreeLibrary.org

Antarctica: Lessons from the Bottom of the World presented by the Sawyer Free Library on Saturday, 2/20 at 2pm

Join environmental attorney, diver and photographer Michael Carvalho, for a Live Zoom presentation about his arctic exhibition to Antarctica in 2018, “Antarctica: Lessons From the Bottom of the World,” on Saturday, February 20 from 2 to 4:00 p.m. Registration is required in order to receive the Zoom link. Register here. 

Illustrated by his breathtaking photography he will discuss the developments in Antarctica, the rising sea levels and its impact locally. According to experts, temperatures in the Antarctic region are rising due to “heat-trapping gas pollution,” which has serious global consequences. Gloucester, like all coastal regions, is vulnerable to increasingly extreme weather.

Since obtaining his open water scuba certification in 1978 in Rockport, Carvalho has completed more than 2,500 dives on six continents.

Carvalho is the former chairman of the board of directors for the National Council for Science and the Environment. In 2019, he represented the United Nations Environment Program for North America as a delegate at the UNEA-4 Conference in Nairobi, Kenya. He is currently a member of the board of directors for Salem Sound Coastwatch and a trustee with the Manchester-Essex Conservation Trust.

This free virtual lecture presented by the Sawyer Free Library to foster civic engagement and discussion on issues facing the community. For more information, visit sawyerfreelibrary.org.

A View from a Different Lens: Sawyer Free Library to host a presentation on Race Amity on Thursday, Feb 25 at 7pm

Race Amity: advancing the discourse on race through friendship.

On Thursday, February 25 from 7:00-8:30pm, the Sawyer Free Library will be hosting a Zoom presentation of WGBH’s powerful documentary series “American Stories: Race Amity and The Other Tradition.”  This presentation will include a brief introduction to the film by Dr. William H. Smith (creator, executive producer, and writer of the series), a reading from the book “Race Amity: A Primer on America’s Other Tradition,” a viewing of the film “Race Amity: America’s Other Tradition,” a commentary by Dr. Smith, and a Q&A Session. Register here!

By sharing healing, inspirational stories of the power of race amity, the documentary explores the moral counterweights to the tradition of racism in America and how we can move together towards unity and love. Created by WHS Media Productions LLC, the film discusses the “better in us” perspective needed in the current climate of disunity across racial, religious, and political lines.

“This grand Race Amity Project is a timely work that speaks to our hearts and souls! I am blessed to fully support it.” – Rev. Dr. Cornel West, Professor Harvard Divinity School, Social Commentator   

This virtual event is FREE and open to the public. Advanced registration is required to access the Zoom link. Please register on the Library Calendar at sawyerfreelibrary.org.  

Dr. William H. Smith is the founding executive director of the National Center for Race Amity. He is the creator, executive producer, and writer of the series, “American Stories: Race Amity and The Other Tradition” and the producer and co-writer of the award winning Invisible Soldiers: Unheard Voices.  

Sawyer Free Library’s Winter Wellness Series: GRETA WILLIAMS to discuss Natural Health and Acupressure on 2/11 at 7pm

The Sawyer Free Library is presenting an engaging and informative virtual educational series to help patrons learn ways to support their health and wellness this winter-and all year long.

Thursday, February 11 at 7 pm: Learn about the benefits of Natural Health and Acupressure with GRETA WILLIAMS, Licensed Acupuncuturist. Register for vitural event at SawyerFreeLibrary.org.

Be sure to also mark your calendars for these upcoming classes in the Winter Wellness series:

Monday, February 22 at 7 pm: Gentle Yoga, Stretch and Meditation with Janet Green Garrison, Certified Yoga Instructor (M.Ed., R.Y.T., CADAC)

Monday, March 8 at 7 pm: Learn about Hiking Cape Ann with Taylor Ann Bradford

For all programs, register on the Library Calendar at SawyerFreeLibrary.org. The Zoom link will be emailed to you.