Saturday, March 17, 2018

Register For 2018 Great Decisions Discussion Group

Register online

The Vineyard Haven Public Library Great Decisions Discussion Group will meet for 8 sessions on Thursday evenings at 7pm, beginning April 5th.

A Great Decisions Discussion Group is composed of interested individuals who want an opportunity to learn and participate in the foreign policy decision-making process. The Foreign Policy Association (FPA) has published the Great Decisions briefing book, a well researched annual publication covering eight timely global topics to be read by group participants in order to prepare for each discussion. At each meeting we will show a 30 minute documentary film on that week's topic, to be followed by a moderated discussion.

Please register online or at the library. This year, a limited number of briefing books are available for purchase at the library for $24, payable to the Friends of the Vineyard Haven Library.

Topics and meeting dates:

Thursday, April 5th
The waning of Pax Americana?
During the first months of Donald Trump’s presidency, the U.S. began a historic shift away from Pax Americana, the liberal international order that was established in the wake of World War II. Since 1945, Pax Americana has promised peaceful international relations and an open economy, buttressed by U.S. military power. In championing “America First” isolationism and protectionism, President Trump has shifted the political mood toward selective U.S. engagement, where foreign commitments are limited to areas of vital U.S. interest and economic nationalism is the order of the day. Geopolitical allies and challengers alike are paying close attention.

Thursday, April 12th
Russia's foreign policy
Under President Vladimir Putin, Russia is projecting an autocratic model of governance abroad and working to undermine the influence of liberal democracies, namely along Russia’s historical borderlands. Russia caused an international uproar in 2016, when it interfered in the U.S. presidential contest. But Putin’s foreign policy toolkit includes other instruments, from alliances with autocrats to proxy wars with the U.S. in Georgia, Ukraine and Syria. How does Putin conceive of national interests, and why do Russian citizens support him? How should the United States respond to Putin’s foreign policy ambitions?

Thursday, April 19th
China and America: the new geopolitical equation
In the last 15 years, China has implemented a wide-ranging strategy of economic outreach and expansion of all its national capacities, including military and diplomatic capacities. Where the United States has taken a step back from multilateral trade agreements and discarded the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), China has made inroads through efforts like the Belt and Road Initiative and the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). What are Beijing’s geopolitical objectives? What leadership and political conditions in each society underlie growing Sino-American tensions?  What policies might Washington adopt to address this circumstance?

Thursday, April 26th
Media and foreign policy
State and non-state actors today must maneuver a complex and rapidly evolving media landscape. Conventional journalism now competes with user-generated content. Official channels of communication can be circumvented through social media. Foreign policy is tweeted from the White House and “fake news” has entered the zeitgeist. Cyberwarfare, hacking and misinformation pose complex security threats. How are actors using media to pursue and defend their interests in the international arena? What are the implications for U.S. policy?

Thursday, May 3rd
Turkey: a partner in crisis
Of all NATO allies, Turkey represents the most daunting challenge for the Trump administration. In the wake of a failed military coup in July 2016, the autocratic trend in Ankara took a turn for the worse. One year on, an overwhelming majority of the population considers the United States to be their country’s greatest security threat. In this age of a worsening “clash of civilizations” between Islam and the West, even more important than its place on the map is what Turkey symbolically represents as the most institutionally Westernized Muslim country in the world.

Thursday, May 10th
U.S. global engagement and the military
The global power balance is rapidly evolving, leaving the United States at a turning point with respect to its level of engagement and the role of its military. Some argue for an “America First” paradigm, with a large military to ensure security, while others call for a more assertive posture overseas. Some advocate for a restoration of American multilateral leadership and a strengthened role for diplomacy. Still others envision a restrained U.S. role, involving a more limited military. How does the military function in today’s international order, and how might it be balanced with diplomatic and foreign assistance capabilities?

Thursday, May 17th
South Africa's fragile democracy
The African National Congress (ANC) party has governed South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994. But the party today suffers from popular frustration over official corruption and economic stagnation. It faces growing threats from both left and right opposition parties, even as intraparty divisions surface. Given America’s history of opportunistic engagement with Africa, there are few prospects for a closer relationship between the two countries. Meanwhile, a weaker ANC could lead to political fragmentation in this relatively new democracy.

Thursday, May 24th
Global health: progress and challenges
The collective action of countries, communities and organizations over the last 30 years has literally saved millions of lives around the world. Yet terrible inequalities in health and wellbeing persist. The world now faces a mix of old and new health challenges, including the preventable deaths of mothers and children, continuing epidemics of infectious diseases, and rising rates of chronic disease. We also remain vulnerable to the emergence of new and deadly pandemics. For these reasons, the next several decades will be just as important—if not more so—than the last in determining wellbeing across nations.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Spring Schedule Changes

The Vineyard Haven Public Library will be closed for the day on Easter Sunday April 1st, and closed on Monday April 16th for the Patriots Day holiday.

The Library will close early at 6:30pm on Tuesday, April 10th, due to the Tisbury Annual and Special Town Meetings which will take place at the Tisbury School Auditorium beginning at 7pm. Library computers will be shut down at 6:15pm that evening.

The Library will be closed on Sundays beginning April 22nd. Sunday hours will resume after Columbus Day.

Tisbury School Building Model and Public Presentations

An architect's model of the planned new Tisbury School building and campus is on display at the Vineyard Haven Library.

On Tuesday, March 27th at 7pm, join the Tisbury School Building Committee at Vineyard Haven Library as they present their plans for the new Tisbury School. The new school project will be voted on at the Town Meeting on April 10th followed by a ballot vote on April 24th. This is the time to get the facts and ask your questions about the project.

The Tisbury Vision Council will also host a presentation for the public on Thursday, March 28th at 7pm, at the Katharine Cornell Theater.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

New! Kanopy Streaming Film Service

The popular on-demand film streaming service Kanopy is now available for free through Vineyard Haven Public Library. Library cardholders can access Kanopy and sign up to start streaming films instantly by visiting

Kanopy showcases more than 30,000 of the world’s best films, including award-winning documentaries, rare and hard-to-find titles, film festival favorites, indie and classic films, world cinema, The Great Courses, PBS and thousands of independent filmmakers. Films can be streamed from any computer, television, mobile device or platform by downloading the Kanopy app for iOS, Android, AppleTV, Chromecast or Roku. Currently users are limited to 4 films per month.

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Weather Related Schedule Changes

Updated Wednesday, March 14, 2018
Vineyard Haven Public Library will be open regular hours starting at 10am on Wednesday, March 14th. Power, heat, computers, internet, wifi all working!

Updated Monday, March 12, 2018
All Town offices including Vineyard Haven Public Library are expected to be closed Tuesday March 13th due to oncoming inclement weather.

Updated Sunday, March 4, 2018
Opening Early at 10am on Sunday, March 4th
Vineyard Haven Public Library will be open extended hours from 10am to 4pm this Sunday March 4th (Regular Sunday hours are noon to 4pm).

Updated Saturday, March 3, 2018
Library Hours Saturday March 3rd
Please be aware that heat is not working at library this morning. We plan to open at 10am but there is a possibility of closing if heat is not restored.

Updated Friday, March 2, 2018
Library Closed on Friday, March 2nd
Vineyard Haven Library will be closed for the day due to weather. Afternoon programs are cancelled. Tisbury Town Hall will also close at noon.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

"Food for Fines" Food Drive in March

Vineyard Haven Library will be holding a "Food for Fines" food drive throughout the month of March. During this time, pay your overdue fines with canned goods or healthy non-perishable food items (unopened, current items only, please check your expiration dates). This applies to late fines only and not to replacement charges for lost or damaged items. The food collected will be given to the Island Food Pantry for distribution to those in need in our community. Suggested donation is one item for each $2 waived in fines.

While all non-perishable, unopened, and unexpired groceries are appreciated, the Food Pantry suggests donating the following:

Pasta Sauce - Salsa - Ketchup/Mustard - Mayonnaise - Olive Oil - Salad Dressing - Dried Fruits & Raisins -Salted or Unsalted Nuts/Sunflower Seeds - Coffee/Teas - Canned Protein (Tuna/Salmon/Chicken) - Hearty Soups - Crackers - Muffin/Cake/Bread Mixes - Gluten Free Foods - Interesting Cold Cereals - Boxed 100% Fruit Juice - Fruit Leather - Graham/Animal Crackers - Granola Bars - Baby Food

New CLAMS Library Text Messaging Service

CLAMS library patrons can sign up for a new text messaging service powered by Shoutbomb beginning on March 1st, 2018.

With the Shoutbomb Text Messaging Service, you can use your mobile phone to:
  • Receive text notices about: your holds that are available, items that are due soon, overdues, and fines.
  • Send a text to renew an item.
  • Receive text alerts for other cards within your family.
All you need is a text messaging capable phone and a subscription to a text messaging plan with your wireless carrier. You do not need a smartphone.

To sign up, visit

NOTE: There is no charge from the library for this service; however, you may see a charge for incoming text messages at the standard rate applied by your cell phone carrier, depending on your plan or package.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Tax Forms Now Available

Selected Federal and State tax forms are now available at the library. This year, the IRS has only provided the 1040, 1040EZ, and 1040A forms and instruction booklets.

If you need additional forms, you can request that they be mailed to you. Most forms are also available online.

To obtain tax forms not available at the library:

Order forms be delivered by mail:
Download from the IRS website:

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Art in the Stacks: Reflective Abstractions, Photographs by Paul Doherty

Join us for a talk by the photographer on Tuesday March 13th at 7pm!  
Talk by Paul Doherty has been rescheduled for 2pm Sunday March 25th!

The Friends of the Vineyard Haven Library are pleased to present "Reflective Abstractions," an exhibit of photographs by Paul Doherty, on display on the lower level of the library during regular library hours from February 20th through March 30th, 2018. The photographs are all reflections of things in water -- often taken from his kayak as he moves around the harbor.

Paul Doherty moved to Martha's Vineyard following a 30-year career in theatre, television and film as a New York–based actor. Now his passion for abstract art, love of kayaking, and proximity to Vineyard Haven Harbor allow him the opportunity to create his own version of abstract art through photography. According to Paul, "I am fascinated with the reflection in the water that comes off the beautiful sailboats and vessels, images that change in an instant depending on the waves, wind and light to create something completely new and unique. My optimum time to photograph is just before the sun rises when these beautiful colors take center stage. The images that nature creates in those fleeting moments are forever moored to the boats that created their palette but transcend the physical to become ephemeral reflections of time that will never be repeated."

The Vineyard Haven Public Library's "Art in the Stacks" space features rotating monthly exhibits and is managed by the Friends of the Library. The library also has a permanent collection of artworks that are displayed throughout the year, including 12 paintings by Vineyard artist Captain John Ivory. Artists interested in showing their work may contact the library at (508) 696-4210.

School Vacation Week Activities February 26th - March 2nd

Vineyard Haven Library has planned special programs for kids of all ages during school vacation week.

Monday February 26th

10:30 am Over the Top Storytime including active play and simple craft. Best for ages 2-4.
11:45 AM  -  12:45 PM    Community Soup & Bread Lunch by Island Grown Initiative. All are welcome! Drop-in craft to follow.

Tuesday February 27th

10:30 am Tales for Tots: Traditional storytime. Best for ages 3-5.

7pm Dick Jennings: Osprey on Martha's Vineyard

Wednesday February 28th

10:30 am Wee Ones: Lapsit storytime. Best for ages 0-2.
2:30 pm - 3:30 pm Build Club: Minecraft Perler Beads. For ages 8 and up.
3:30 pm to 5pm Kids Movie: Enjoy an ice cream sundae while you watch a movie  based on a New York Times bestseller, the film tells the inspiring story of a boy with facial differences who attends mainstream elementary school for the first time. Rated PG.

Thursday March 1st

2:45-3:45 Celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday with cake and a very special guest reader.
4:00-5:30 Kids Movie: A fun-loving bulldog, a wise golden retriever, and a hilarious Siamese cat travel through the rugged Sierras in a search of their missing human family. Rated G.

Friday March 2nd

2:30 pm - 3:30 pm Craft: Day of the Dead confetti eggs. For ages 8 and up.
3:30 pm to 5pm Kids Movie: Despite his family's generations-old ban on music, young Miguel dreams of becoming an accomplished musician like his idol Ernesto de la Cruz. Rated PG. Also enjoy some Mexican themed treats!

Daily: Visit the Children's Room to create something amazing at the Tinker Table during school vacation days.

Children under age 8 should be accompanied by a parent or mature caregiver.

Friday, February 2, 2018

February Fine Amnesty and Food Drive

Have you had a library book or DVD for so long that you're afraid to bring it back? Now is the time!

Martha's Vineyard Libraries are going fine free for February. No overdue fees will be charged on any item returned undamaged. If you have older unpaid fines, mention "Amnesty" at the service desk and staff will waive past fines from Martha's Vineyard Libraries. Fine Amnesty ends March 1st. Fees for library services, billed, or damaged items will not be waived.

If you can, please consider bringing in a donation for the Island Food Pantry when you visit Vineyard Haven Library this month. All non-perishable, unopened, and unexpired groceries are appreciated, especially the following:

Pasta Sauce - Salsa - Ketchup/Mustard - Mayonnaise - Olive Oil - Salad Dressing - Dried Fruits & Raisins -Salted or Unsalted Nuts/Sunflower Seeds - Coffee/Teas - Canned Protein (Tuna/Salmon/Chicken) - Hearty Soups - Crackers - Muffin/Cake/Bread Mixes - Gluten Free Foods - Interesting Cold Cereals - Boxed 100% Fruit Juice - Fruit Leather - Graham/Animal Crackers - Granola Bars - Baby Food

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Ring in the Chinese Lunar New Year with Family Puppet Program!

Note time change for this event: performance begins at 6:30pm


In anticipation of the Chinese lunar new year,  Vineyard Haven Public Library will present an exciting free family event on Thursday, February 8th at 6:30 pm. Behind the Mask Studio will perform "Monkey King Makes Mischief in Heaven", the tale of a boisterous and unlikely hero in search of immortality, who causes havoc in Heaven and Hell. Boston-based puppeteers Eric Bornstein and Margaret Moody will use a combination of masks, music, storytelling, and dance to tell the story.

Bornstein received his MLA from Harvard, studied mask-making in Bali and Italy, and founded Behind the Mask Studio in 1990. Over the past thirty years, his masked characters have appeared in a variety of venues including the Museum of Fine Arts, the Boston Ballet, the Peabody/Essex Museum, the Boston Lyric Opera, the Windsor School, and Young Audiences of Massachusetts, and, for fifteen years, were a highlight of Boston’s First Night celebrations. Bornstein explains that “mask-making is about rich storytelling and fascinating characters—human, animal, magical. When I create a mask, I celebrate the depth and diversity of the stories I love, the natural and the mystical worlds we inhabit, and my very own soul.”

Puppeteer and voice actress Margaret Moody will also be adding her talents to the program. Margaret loves old stories and the characters that inhabit them. She studied traditional puppetry in Taiwan, and often uses traditional Chinese choreography and small puppets in her work. Margaret’s multitude of characters, hand, rod and life-sized puppets, act as windows into folktales, fantasies, and historical stories and bring history and heritage to her performances.

This free family event is made possible by a grant from the New England Roundtable of Children’s Librarians and the Massachusetts Library Association. The Jordan Miller Storytelling Grant is awarded bi-annually to a New England library to bring storytelling to its patrons. The award is named for Alice M. Jordan (1870-1960) who was the first Supervisor of Work with Children at the Boston Public Library, serving from 1900 to 1940. In 1906, Jordan founded NERCTL to provide a meeting ground for the profession. Since 1960, NERTCL and the MLA have sponsored the Jordan-Miller Grant in recognition of her commitment to storytelling.

The hour-long program is suitable for ages 4-94 and begins at 6:30 pm. Seating is limited.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Massachusetts State Tax Forms Now Available

A limited number of Massachusetts state resident tax form booklets are now available at the library.

Federal tax forms are not yet available. This year, the IRS will only provide the 1040, 1040EZ, and 1040A forms and instruction booklets. If you need additional forms, you can request that they be mailed to you. Most forms are also available online.

To obtain tax forms not available at the library:

Order forms be delivered by mail:
or Call 1-800-829-3676

Download from the IRS website:

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Art in the Stacks: Photographs by Benjamin McCormick

Sand Pennies by Benjamin McCormick
The Friends of the Vineyard Haven Library are pleased to present an exhibit of photographs by Benjamin McCormick, on display on the lower level of the library during regular library hours from January 14th through February 15th, 2018.

The series featured in Mr. McCormick's show at the library represents the current direction of his work, shooting from the macro perspective, mostly underwater, with ample light, to bring out the maximum natural color available. The subjects are all things found here on the island as he combs the beaches.

The artist has said of his work, "My love of fish and fishing has been a constant and defining characteristic throughout my life. The ocean has always amazed me with its power, mystery, and infinite lessons. Noticing the rhythms of the sea has given me a broader appreciation of nature, and the endless variety of forms, color, and design therein. The art is always there for the taking, whenever you look with interested eyes."

The Vineyard Haven Public Library's "Art in the Stacks" space features rotating monthly exhibits and is managed by the Friends of the Library. The library also has a permanent collection of artworks that are displayed throughout the year, including 12 paintings by Vineyard artist Captain John Ivory. Artists interested in showing their work may contact the library at (508) 696-4210.

More information about the artist available at

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Vineyard Haven Public Library Closed Due to Weather

Vineyard Haven Public Library will be closed for the day and all programs and meetings cancelled.

Martha's Vineyard Photography Club Meeting has been rescheduled for Thursday, January 11th at 6pm (meeting topic to be announced).

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Sunday with Friends: Peter H. Luce Play Readers

On Sunday, January 21st 5:30pm, the Peter H. Luce Play Readers will perform a free reading of the one-act play "Face to Face" by David Williamson. The reading is presented by special arrangement with Cameron's Management, Sydney. This free performance is co-sponsored by the Friends of the Vineyard Haven Public Library and the Martha's Vineyard Mediation Program, and refreshments will be served. Doors will open at 5pm for the 5:30pm performance at the library.

"Face to Face" is a moving and powerful play about lies, betrayal, sex and bullying in the workplace. This dramatic and character-driven play takes its format in a realistic setting of 'community conferencing,' an alternative method of justice which celebrates the strength of community over our "rigid and often seemingly unfair court system." When young construction worker Glen rams into the back of his boss’s Mercedes in a fit of anger, he is given the opportunity to discuss his actions in a community conference, rather than going straight to court. This face-to-face confrontation between the young man, his boss, his boss's wife, co-workers, and others lifts the lid not only on his dysfunctional life but on their workplace dirty laundry.

David Williamson is Australia’s most enduringly popular social comedy writer. As one of Australia's best-known dramatists and playwrights, he has been the recipient of four Australian Film Institute Awards for Best Screenplay. His play "Face to Face" was adapted into a film in 2011, directed by Michael Rymer. Reviewers for the Daily Telegraph have said "The emotional twists and turns the script takes to reach the end point are alternately subtle, disturbing and occasionally hilarious as Williamson takes us into an exploration of conflict in the workplace and the humanity and compromise required to overcome it."

For more than 15 years, the Peter H. Luce Play Readers have met every Wednesday of the year at the Vineyard Haven Senior Center from 9AM to Noon to read plays of every era and of every genre, from the Greek and Roman classics to the cutting-edge works of contemporary playwrights... and everything in between: Shakespeare, Shaw, Checkov, Moliere, Miller, Ibsen Albee, O'Neil, Pinter and Neil Simon. The group is named for its founder, Peter Luce, who died in 2007. This reading will be directed by John Brannen, and cast includes Mike Adell, Bob Aldrin, Sophia Anthony, Joe Corbo, Paul Doherty, Marianne Goldsmith, Roberta Hurtig, Kathy Hochberg, Louis Pashman and Jay Sigler.

The Friends of the Vineyard Haven Public Library encourage public understanding of the Library's vital role in the community, support activities for both adults and children, and provide various other volunteer services. Their mission is to support the Library, to build a partnership between the Library and the community and to advocate for exemplary library service. All volunteers and those who are interested in knowing more about the Friends meet at 10:30am on the first Saturday of every month at the library.

Late Opening at 2pm Tuesday January 9th

The library will open late at 2pm on Tuesday, January 9th so staff can attend offsite training. Storytime will be cancelled for the day.The library will be open from 2pm to 8pm.