New Salem Town & Local Events,

Opportunities & News

The Continental Plate Comes to the Shutesbury Athletic Club

The Continental Plate, the beneficial feast, is a new dining and entertainment experience in the North Quabbin area brought to you by local folk.

Dinner will run from 5:30-8:00 pm. Apps and desserts until 9:30 pm. Our diverse menu includes dishes that are sure to thaw out the mid-winter cold (see attached menu) and local musical ramblers The Tectonics. There will also be tastings, raffles and prizes and a silent auction.

You will be supporting your community every time you join us at the Continental Plate. We donate our net proceeds to causes and organizations that support and serve our communities. The net proceeds from the Shutesbury Athletic Club event will benefit the North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy. This association works to develop and support relationships for people with mental disabilities who will benefit from guidance, companionship, and/or advocacy. Tickets for adults are $15 in advance or $17 at the door. Children twelve and under are $7 in advance or $8 at the door. Tickets available at North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy at 978-544-7794 or Snow date is Sunday, February 1st. Flyer attached.

New Salem Library News
The Friends of the New Salem Public Library appreciate the responses we have received for our Annual Appeal.  We'd also like to remind you that our Gently Used Book Sale shelf is constantly getting restocked.
Tweens and Teens Special Events: New Salem Library Teen News! What’s new in the New Year? The Library is open every Wednesday (moved from Fridays) from 1:30 to 5:30 for 11 to 18 year olds, only! Use our new Google Chrome computers, watch a newly-released movie on our projector, have a snack and hang out with friends. Need help with homework? A book for class? Wednesday, January 7 – Teen Advisory Board Meeting and Game Night
Wednesday, January 14 - Sharpie Mug Design
Wednesday, January 21 - Smoothies and more with Seeds of Solidarity!
Wednesday, January 28 - Henna tattoos and a movie

Stay tuned for news about our Winterfest - Sledding after dark, hot chocolate and more! Call 978-544-6334 for more info. (This project is being funded through the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners with funds from LSTA (Library Services and Technology Act), a Federal source of library funding provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences.)
Kids Club: The Kids Club will be meeting from 3:30-5:00 pm on Tuesday, January 6.
Pizza and Pages: On Tuesday, January 6th from 5:00-6:30 pm: Pizza and Pages, a teen reading club, will be discussing The Last Olympian, by Rick Riordan.  Pizza available thanks to the New Salem General Store.
LEGO Club: On Thursday, January 8th from 3:30-5:00 pm, the LEGO Club will meet. Kindergarten and up welcome. Recent additions to the Lego Collection are "little bits," to motorize Legos. The LEGO Club, a New Salem Academy grant-funded club, meets every second Thursday of every month.
Book Discussion Group
: On January 14th at 7:00 pm, the Book Discussion Group will be discussing Wild by Cheryl Strayed.  There are copies available for check out at the front desk.  This is an exciting memoir that is the basis for a recently released film starring Reese Witherspoon.

Reading Aloud for Grown-ups Program: The 2015 season schedule is:

Wednesday, Jan. 14 - Dee Waterman and Sue Blake
Wednesday, February 11 (snow date Feb. 18) - Adam Frost and Jane Clukay
Wednesday, March 11 (snow date March 18) - Sally Howe and Allen Young
Wednesday, April 1 (snow date April 8) - Mira Bartok and Mike Ross

If you haven't had an opportunity to enjoy having a great story read to you in a friendly environment, please come and experience the pleasure on hand at this Friends of the Library sponsored event.  Free coffee, and tea, with delicious home baked goodies sold to benefit the Friends of the Library.
Book Info: The Friends of the Public Library encourages you to check the Front Desk for books not appearing on the shelves.  There may be a waiting list for the book you wish to check out.  We also want to point out a list posted on the Friends of the Library Bulletin Board which contains the names of recently purchased books using funds from that group.  In addition, there is a list featuring books the library has purchased posted near the Front Desk.  When the shelves look a bit sparse, books are being checked out which is all to the good of our library.
Chess Club for Tweens and Teens: The Library is looking for someone to teach the rudiments of chess to local tweens and teens. If you are interested, contact the library at 978-544-6334 or If you have a chess board around your house gathering dust, please donate it for the kids to use at the library. More information to follow.
Computer Help: Sue Dunbar is available for one on one computer help anytime, but especially on Tuesdays at 6:00 pm.  Please ask Sue if you are having a computer problem.
Beverages Available: The Friends of the New Salem Public Library remind you that we have coffee, tea, cocoa, and cider available to patrons.  Check out the Keurig machine and offerings on the table next to Diana's window.  Donations are gratefully accepted for these beverages.

Council on Aging News
Luncheons: On Friday, January 9th, we will meet at the Stowell Building for a Pizza Party at noon.  The cost will be $5 per person.  Please let Hendra Reidy (978-544-2178) know that you are coming if you have not already signed up.  We will gather at 10 am for a brief meeting followed by Bingo and coffee.  The snow date will be the following Friday.
Trip to Vermont Horse Farm: The Council will be sponsoring a trip this spring thanks to a grant from New Salem Academy.  The trip will be to the Vermont Horse Farm in Townshend, VT, to view Fresian horses.  There will be a carriage ride and a choreographed musical show with lunch to follow at the New England House Restaurant.  We will be announcing the date as soon as their schedule for 2015 becomes available.  The cost will be $20 per person.  This trip is not just for seniors, so if you wish to sign up for the trip, please keep tuned to the New Salem News where we will publish news about the trip as soon as it is available.
Busy B's: We continue to meet on Wednesday at the Stowell Building from 1:00-3:00 pm.  Bring your project and join us this winter. Some of us knit, crochet, embroider, or quilt.  If the weather is iffy, please feel free to call Judy Jewett (978-544-2216) to see if we are meeting.


Community Network for Children

Please visit our website for weekly scheduled Story Hours and Playgroups in New Salem and Wendell, as well as other fun events.


Transfer Station News

Suggestion Box at Transfer Station
There will be a suggestion box at the New Salem Transfer Station. If you have any suggestions for ways to improve the Transfer Station just leave it in the box.


Agricultural Commission News

The Agricultural Commission is looking for new members, as we only have five and need more members for generating ideas, assisting with planning and development of new ideas. If you are interested, our next meeting is September 4th at 6:00 pm in the New Salem Public Library. The meeting lasts about an hour, so please join us!
Also, the Agricultural Commission is interested in having guest speakers join our meetings to discuss pollinator development, amending soil, best organic practices, etc. We hope other community group


The New Salem Community Garden News
As the summer air turns cooler, and the daylight lessens, gardeners at the Community Garden harvest the last of their tomatoes, cabbage, cucumbers and squash. Thanks to all for making this growing season a success! Please help yourself to any of the remaining vegetables ripening in the free giving plot designated by the blue rope and flags, and we'd love if you'd leave a message on our notepad!
     Most recently, we were awarded a$500 grant through Massachusetts Agricultural Commission (MAAC) which will be used towards our shed project. On August 27th we were interviewed by the CROPP organization through Organic Valley in Wisconsin in response to a grant proposal submitted at the end of July. Cross your fingers they are interested in supporting our garden project efforts!


Notes on "Lost" Wildlife from Mass Wildlife

See links below for information:

Notes on lost wildlife /rehab/wildlife_rehab_index.htm

New Salem Town & Local Events Calendar
Please note:  Click on the event in the Calendar for event details.

New Salem Central Congregational Church News
Community Freezer: We also have a Community Freezer with home-made meals ready to go for any members of the community who are in need of a break from whatever they are facing.  If you are or if you know anyone who wants to raid our freezer, please call Lisa DeWitt at 978-544-1912 or Janet Henderson at 978-544-3410.

New Salem Academy Grants Awarded

In November, New Salem Academy Board of Trustees continued its tradition of awarding grants to organizations promoting educational events in the North Quabbin region.  The following organizations will receive grant monies for their upcoming events and projects:

North Quabbin Citizen Advocacy - Social Media Forum
NWC Quabbin Anglers - Fishing trips and Teenager Conservation Camp
Swift River School Library - Visiting Author
New Salem Council on Aging - Vermont Horse Farm Trip

Swift River School - Boston Trip

Mass Audubon Society - Native Amphibian Program

Shutesbury Elementary School - Whale Study Program

Library Lego Lady - Lego Program at New Salem Library

Friends of Historic New Salem - Story Teller and 17th/18th Century Life

Athol YMCA - Summer Camp Programs
The Village School - Summer Programs
Mahar Fish N Game - Deep Sea Fishing Trip
Swift River Historical Society - Swift River valley Day

New Kitchen Compost Pails Available at Transfer Station!

The Franklin County Solid Waste District recently purchased a large number of “Sure-Close” kitchen compost pails. These 1.9-gallon pails are meant to collect food waste in the kitchen, and the materials then emptied into backyard or municipal compost bins. The lid latches securely and can be made to stay open for ease of use. The vented lid has pinholes that act as a filter (but with no expensive or hard-to-find filter); moisture can pass through the lid, which reduces odors.

New Salem was among 15 district towns received varying amounts of pails: Bernardston, Colrain, Conway, Erving, Gill, Hawley, Heath, Orange, Montague, New Salem, Rowe, Shelburne, Sunderland, Wendell, and Whately. They are available free at our transfer station while supplies last.  The kitchen pails are also offered for sale to District residents for $5 at the District Office, 50 Miles St., Greenfield; call 413-772-2438 for hours or more info. Earth Machine outdoor compost bins are also for sale for $45 at the District office


These municipal compost programs are available free to permit holders at the transfer stations in Leverett, New Salem, Northfield, Orange, and Whately. The majority of this purchase was funded by Mass DEP’s Sustainable Materials Recovery Program  (SMRP) small-scale initiatives grant. The grant requires that funded items contain 35% recycled content; therefore these pails are an avocado green color to mask any color variations in the recycled product. The District previously offered a beige version of the same pail. District Towns also received a total of 44 Earth Machine compost bins, funded by the SMRP grant. For more information, please call (413) 772-2438.

Bee Swarms Welcomed

This time of year, honey bees are evaluating their housing and may feel their current situation is not ideal. About half the hive population leaves with the current queen in search for greener pastures. A swarm is typically very docile, even though they are a noisy bunch. The swarm generally stays in temporary location, such as a tree branch, for about 24 hours while the scouts find a new dwelling. We would love to provide a home for them on our New Salem property. Please call Harmonie or Dennis at 978-544-3869 if you see a swarm in your neighborhood.

A Home for Bats

The Friends of Historic New Salem which oversees the New Salem Academy Building, are preparing a home for bats. As you may know the bat population has been struck by the White Nose Syndrome and the numbers are diminishing.  We have many migrating bats which have chosen to nest in the attic of the Academy building which we discovered after the building had been restored. After consulting with Dr. French of the Massachusetts Wildlife, we have taken measures to change their nesting spot.  It was suggested we add lights and maybe a radio on a timer to discourage the bats from nesting in the attic, but this must be started before they nest on June 1st. Dr. French also offered plans for a bat house large enough to hold the migrating population and construction has started. The bat house will be placed near the garden area behind the town hall.

The Friends have begun the process to direct the bats to another nesting place and warn that they may try to nest in homes and buildings surrounding the common. If you are concerned that the bats may find your home inviting, we suggest you follow Dr. French’s advice and add a light and radio connected to a timer to any dark, inviting places before June 1st. After the bats have begun to nest the lights and radio are not necessary.

North Quabbin Food Co-op
COMING SOON! A Food Co-op in downtown Orange! The North Quabbin Community Co-op, a member-owned grocery store, will be moving to downtown Orange this summer and will serve the region with healthy and locally produced products.  Join Amy Borezo and Michael Skillicorn for an informal gathering at the New Salem library to hear more about it on Tuesday, May 20 at 7:00 pm. Go to: for more information about the co-op.

Hatha Yoga Class
Janice Doubleday is offering an on-going Hatha Yoga class for beginners and intermediate on Tuesdays, 5:30-6:30 p.m. at the Wendell Senior Center. She has a 200 hour certificate. Classes are $10. Contact her at or 978-544-7079 with any questions.

Board of Health Litter Drawing Awards
In the month of April, Jeffrey Duga and children walked the sides of the roads in New Salem  and picked up 15 bags of rubbish. They won the drawing for the free bags for that month. Hugh MacKay won the May drawing for the free bags for his part in keeping New Salem clean. Thanks to all of you from the Board of Health and the Town of New Salem for helping to keep New Salem clean. If anyone is interested in participating in the drawing for the free trash.