Friends approve museum passes, plan for future events

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SHIRLEY — Two museum passes were approved by the Friends of the Hazen Memorial Library last week.

Now available at the library front desk, the passes can be used by library patrons and entitle users to free or reduced-fee entry to:

The Fruitlands Museum, a member of the Freedom’s Way Heritage Association. The museum features four galleries including the Shaker Museum, the first museum in the world to portray Shaker living. The Fruitlands Farmhouse and Gallery encompasses the life of Bronson Alcott and his small group of followers who tried to begin a utopian community by living off “the fruits of the land.”

Visitors to the museum can also browse the picture gallery and learn about New England natives at the Indian Museum.

Davis Farmland, located in Sterling, Mass., featuring a children’s learning farm and the well-known cornfield MegaMaze, the largest maze of its kind in New England.

Other passes are available at the library as well. They are provided by the Friends of the Hazen Memorial Library and other donors, such as the Worcester Art Museum, the Boston Museum of Science, the Hands-on Art Museum and the Ecotarium.

A full list of museum passes can be found by calling (978) 425-2620 or visiting www.shirleylibrary.org.

Also at the meeting, the board:

Approved a slide show presentation to be given by mystery author M.E. Kemp, who was a speaker at the recent Sisters In Crime event held at the library. The event will take place on April 8, at 1 p.m.

During this adult-themed event, Kemp will present “Naughty Puritans and Saintly Sinners,” giving a lecture about our colonial ancestors who have been stereotyped as “narrow-minded, gloomy-Gus Puritans for whom pleasure was a sin.”

The discussion will highlight the strong heritage of public education the Puritans left behind, scientific inquiry and democracy in government.

This event will be free of charge. For information call the library.

Discussed the success of Antiques Appraisal Day, which accounted for more than $700 in receipts to be used for future library events.

Attendance was lower than what the library had seen at the first appraisal day two years ago, friends Chairperson Cheryl Gregory said. However, the increased donation fee per item brought in nearly the same amount of money.

Antiques appraiser of fine arts, antiques and collectibles Paul Royka told Gregory he does not do too many appraisal days anymore other than for Shirley and Marblehead, which he donates his time for.

”One of the reasons (he did it this year) was because the first year … was such a success,” Gregory said.

Royka received four consignments from the library’s Antiques Appraisal Day, according to member Helen Kramer.

”I think he was pretty happy with his day,” she said.

Began brainstorming for a possible future event to feature recipes from “Cooking with Shirley’s Best,” a compilation of the favorite recipes of Shirley residents.

Members discussed renting a hall to have recipe providers cook and present their culinary favorites so community members could come in and sample the dishes.

The first step is to choose the types of food and contact the people about cooking, said Helen Kramer.

Other fund-raising by the friends includes the sale of the recently received book bags, available at the library for $15 to Friends of the Hazen Memorial Library members and $18 for non-members.