New Salem Town & Local Events,

Opportunities & News

 New Salem Library News

The First Ever Colossal Games Day
on Friday, November 21st, from 3:00-6:30 pm, the Library will host the first ever Colossal Games Day! We’re taking over the library to play games and eat! Come play a variety of Wii games like Rock Band 2 and Just Dance 2, computer games, board games, chess. We’ll have Risk, Scribblish, Dominoes, Pictionary and lots more. There’ll be a Mario Cart Race-off. Borrow games to take home! You must be between 11 and 18 to attend. Be sure to get your survey back. We want to pick a day and time for our regular teen hours and we want to keep you in mind when we do

Holiday Book Sale at the Library

The Friends of the New Salem Public Library will be holding their annual Holiday Book Sale beginning Saturday, November 22nd.  We are taking donations of paperbacks in excellent condition, particularly fiction and recent non-fiction, coffee table books, cookbooks, craft books, and children's books.  We are also introducing a coffee/tea break for those who come to the library.  Bring in your gently used books, have a cup of coffee and check out the Holiday Book Sale all at the same time!

 Library Book Discussion Group Book Available

The New Salem Public Library's book discussion group will be discussing In the Company of the Courtesan, by Sarah Dunant on Wednesday, December 3rd at 7:00 pm.  Books, including audio books, are available at the front desk.

 Teen Activities at the Library

Movie Night: On Friday, November, 28 from 4:00-6:00 pm, there will be Movie Night with a great new release and popcorn.

After School Club: The After School Club for 3rd grade to 6th grade kids will be meeting with Jean Daley from 3:30-5:00 pm on Tuesdays, November 4th and 25th. Be sure to reserve your spot on the bus!  Note: There will be no After School Club on Tuesday, November 11th.

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.

Movie Night: The Library is planning a Movie Night. Details to follow!

2015 season of Reading Aloud for Grownups at the New Salem Library

We have a great roster of readers. Here is the schedule. So mark your calendars and be prepared to be entertained by some great readers reading some great stories.

All readings are at 7:30. Looking forward to seeing you there.

Wed., Jan. 7 (snow date Jan. 14) - Dee Waterman and Jane Clukay

Wed., Feb. 11 (snow date Feb. 18) - Adam Frost and Sue Blake

Wed., March 11 (snow date March 18) - Sally Howe and Allen Young

Wed., April 1 (snow date April 8) - Mira Bartok and Mike Ross

Council on Aging News

Bingo and Lunch: We will continue to meet in the Town Hall until the end of October. We gather will at 10:00 a.m. for coffee and Bingo followed by lunch at noon. Please call Hendra Reidy by the Monday prior to sign up at 978-544-2178.
Flu Clinic: There will be no flu clinic in New Salem this year.  We were told that they may not have enough vaccine left over to hold one in all the smaller towns.  Any New Salem residents can go to the Orange Armory on Wednesday, October 8th, between 9 and 11AM for a flu shot.  Be sure to bring your health insurance card.
New Members Sought: The Council is looking for some new they have had several resignations this year.  Please call Hendra if you are interested.  (You do not even have to be a senior to be a member!!)
Help with Computers and E-readers: Diana Smith and Sue Dunbar at the Library will schedule visits with you in your home or at the Library to learn how to use email, Word, attach pictures or learn basic computer skills. If you have an e-reader, you can learn how to download books that can be “borrowed” from the Library system. Please call the Library to set up an appointment at 544-6334.
Busy Bs: The Busy Bs continue to meet every Wednesday, weather permitting, at the Stowell Building from 1:00-3:00 p.m.  Bring your project and join us.  We have knitters, crocheters, embroiderers, and other crafters all enjoying each other's company and admiring each other’s work.

Test Your Soil Now: Learn Info at Agricultural Commission Soil Workshop December 4th

The New Salem Agriculture Commission presents Soil Testing with UMass soil chemist, Solomon Kariuki. We will learn how to decipher soil tests, the proper use of soil amendments, and the importance of soil fertility on Thursday, December 4th at 6:00 pm at the New Salem Public Library. This event is free to the public.

Be ready for next spring and test your soil now!  Bring test results with you.  Please visit the UMass Soil Testing website to download instructions and the order form:

 Results will be emailed to you within approximately 3-5 days or bring soil samples to the class and our presenter will take them to the lab for testing.

 Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) of Mass will be in attendance with forms for their Bulk Order which offers significant savings on compost, soil amendments and fertilizers through group purchasing power. An RSVP is not required.  Call Harmonie for questions at 978-544-9709

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

July Winner of Transfer Station Trash Bags
Jane McKay won a package of yellow New Salem trash bags for picking up the trash on the side of the in the month of July. If you would like to try and win some bags for the Transfer Station, talk to Bob the attendant at the Transfer Station. Thank you Jane from the Board of Health.
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 General Store Free Brew Tastings

Lefty’s Brewing Company Free Beer Tasting: On Friday, November 21st from 5:00-7:00 pm, Lefty’s Brewing Company will showcase new brews, old favorites and seasonal varieties and a collaboration they cooked up with the New Salem General Store!

Turkey Orders for Thanksgiving: The store is also taking orders for fresh turkeys from Diemand Farms. The sign-up sheet is at the register.

Brewfest Update: This year’s 6th annual Brewfest was attended by approximately 950 people, even under the threat of bad weather! The money raised enabled the following donations: New Salem Fire Department, $5000; Petersham Fire Department, $1500; Wendell Fire Department, $1500; and Shutesbury Fire Department, $1500. This year $1500 was also donated to our local dive team which provides an invaluable support service to our local emergency services.

New Salem Central Congregational Church News
Operation Christmas Child: On Saturday, November 8th we will have our Operation Christmas Child Shoe Box Packing Party at the church at 10:00 am.   Bring your "goodies" and we will help you pack! Additional items have been donated stuffed Santas, beanie babies, pencils, pens, etc.  Pre-stamped shoe boxes will be available to all! We have 100!  Donations still accepted to help fill the boxes for the boys and girls in orphanages around the world. Don't forget your envelopes to enclose, in hopes of receiving a reply back. We have pre-stamped letters for you to fill in the blanks. You can include a photo of yourself if you wish. We will have a small brunch followed by an ice-cream social. Hope you will join us!  Sunday, November 16th will be our deadline! Reverend Jim will bless our shoe boxes during the service before we send them on their way. If you have any questions or if you want to help, please call 978-544-2659.
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 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.