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Building Improvements Planned for the Jamaica Plain Branch of the BPL

Posted on March 26th, 2015 by admin in Media Releases
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Major renovation will improve collections, technology, and spaces for all ages, including a reading room addition

The Jamaica Plain Branch of the Boston Public Library at 12 Sedgwick Street in Jamaica Plain will undergo major building improvements beginning in August. The building renovation necessitates a temporary closure of the branch while work takes place. The temporary closure period will begin at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, August 1, 2015, and is expected to last 18-24 months.

“The branch transformation marks a new era of library service for Jamaica Plain library users; once the renovation is complete, the branch will be a more user-friendly, welcoming place with offerings for all community members to enjoy,” said Christine Schonhart, Director of Library Services, Branches.

The goals of the renovation project include an enhanced and expanded children’s area, creation of a teen area and gallery space, and improved technology, including a maker space, expanded adult reading area, an upgraded multi-purpose room, and refreshed collections. A 700-square-foot addition to the building will provide a new reading room for the community.

Collections may be returned to the Jamaica Plain Branch up until August 1. During the temporary closure period, Jamaica Plain Branch users are encouraged to use the Connolly Branch, located at 433 Centre Street in Jamaica Plain; and the Egleston Square Branch at 2044 Columbus Avenue in Roxbury, as well as any of the Boston Public Library’s other locations throughout the city. An interactive map of locations is available on the Boston Public Library website. The library will post information about the project on the Compass Blog on the Boston Public Library website along with any necessary program rescheduling information.

Boston Public Library has a Central Library, twenty-four branches, map center, business library, and a website filled with digital content and services. Established in 1848, the Boston Public Library has pioneered public library service in America. It was the first large free municipal library in the United States, the first public library to lend books, the first to have a branch library, and the first to have a children’s room. Each year, the Boston Public Library hosts thousands of programs and serves millions of people. All of its programs and exhibitions are free and open to the public. At the Boston Public Library, books are just the beginning. To learn more, visit

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April Literary Events at Boston Public Library Locations

Posted on March 25th, 2015 by admin in Media Releases
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booksCentral Library, Adams, North End, South End, West End, West Roxbury branches to host

•Lorenz Finison explores how cyclists of all backgrounds made Boston the hub of 19th-century bicycling on Thursday, April 2, at 2 p.m. in the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street. Part of the Never Too Late series.

• Cultural historian Ben Yagoda speaks about his book The B Side: The Death of Tin Pan Alley and the Rebirth of the Great American Song, which draws upon previously untapped archival sources and illuminates broad musical trends through a series of intertwined stories. Thursday, April 9, at 6 p.m. in the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street. Read more »

Women’s History Month

Posted on March 19th, 2015 by Anna Williams in General

SWWMarch is Women’s History Month, and Boston Public Library locations host a variety of events and activities that honor women. Programs Include:

  • Lecture: Writer and educator Desiree Taylor explores the life of former slave Amanda Berry Smith on Saturday, March 21, at 11 a.m. at the Jamaica Plain Branch.
  • Kids Club: Children ages 5 and older read about three female naturalists – Maria Merian, Jane Goodall, and Wangari Maathai – and make a nature journal on Wednesday, March 25, at 4 p.m. at the Jamaica Plain Branch.
  • Crafts: Children ages 4-7 listen to stories and make crafts about women in history on Fridays, March 20 and 27, at 3:30 p.m. in the Children’s Library at the Central Library in Copley Square.
  • Family Art: Children and families listen to stories about artist Frida Kahlo and create artwork in her style on Saturday, March 28, at 3 p.m. in the Children’s Library at the Central Library.
  • Open Mic Night: Share stories and memories of a woman who has made a difference in your life on Monday, March 30, at 6:30 p.m. at the Connolly Branch.

You can also explore notable women in history year round by visiting our digitized collections. Highlights include the papers of Emily Dickinson, a rare first of edition of Phillis Wheatley’s Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral, the work of book designer Sarah Wyman Whitman, and images of Eleanor Roosevelt and Amelia Earhart.

The Handel and Haydn Society: Bringing Music to Life for 200 Years Exhibition Opens at BPL

Posted on March 17th, 2015 by Rosemary Lavery in General

1865 postponed concertArchives tell the story of 200 years of music history

The exhibition The Handel and Haydn Society: Bringing Music to Life for 200 Years opens at the Boston Public Library’s Central Library in Copley Square in the Cheverus Room on Tuesday, March 24, and runs through Saturday, September 5. The bicentennial exhibition explores Handel and Haydn Society’s long musical history and features original artifacts drawn from H+H’s private archives and the Boston Public Library’s Rare Books & Manuscripts Department, including photographs, program books, newspaper clippings, and other materials dating back to the early 1800s.

“This exhibition is a must-see for classical music fans and admirers of the Handel and Haydn Society. But all visitors with interests in Boston and American history will find a great deal here that is appealing, illuminating, and fun,” said Handel and Haydn Society’s Executive Director and CEO Marie-Hélène Bernard. “It’s perfect for families.” Read more »

Libraries Are for Making: Teen Tech Week at the BPL

Posted on March 6th, 2015 by admin in General
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Basic CMYKWorkshops for teens take place March 9-14

Boston teens are invited to check out a wealth of programs during the Young Adult Library Services Association’s nationally celebrated Teen Tech Week, which takes place March 9-14 with the theme “Libraries Are for Making.” Six neighborhood locations in the Boston Public Library system have events planned, including the Central Library and Grove Hall, Dudley, East Boston, Hyde Park, and Mattapan branches.  Offerings throughout the system range from coding and gaming workshops to learning about the BPL’s digital resources.

Download the flyer (two pages)

The Central Library’s Teen Central, which opened last month, features a digital lab complete with a 3D printer and more than a dozen software programs to enhance teen’s experiences with technology. A few highlights of BPL programs for Teen Tech Week  include the Central Library’s Digital Lab 3D Design workshop on Wednesday, March 11, at 3 p.m., at 700 Boylston Street and an Hour of Code with the Best Buy Geek Squad on Monday, March 9, at 4 p.m. at the Mattapan Branch, located at 1350 Blue Hill Avenue.  View the complete schedule of events for Teen Tech Week via the BPL calendar.