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Vol. 2, No. 17
Friday, March 17, 2017
PEABODY
Library director retires after 17 years
By Melanie Higgins
M
artha Holden is putting
her career on the shelf.
After 17 years as Peabody’s li-
brary director, the longtime
city employee is retiring. Her
last day was March 3. Holden
is succeeded by Acting Direc-
tor and former Assistant Direc-
tor Gerri Guyote.
Holden played a pivotal role
in preserving the spirit of the
Peabody libraries in addition
to innovating services, accord-
ing to those close to her. “She
made our job very easy be-
cause shewas so dependable,”
said one of the library’s trust-
ees, Jean Ahearn. “She was an
advocate for the library and
for progress. She brought the
library forward by leaps and
bounds.”
Ahearn said that Holdenwas
particularly skilled at keep-
ing up with trends in tech-
nology, which is evidenced in
her helping to bring the “Cre-
ativity Lab” to the library. The
Creativity Lab is a “communi-
ty makerspace” that houses
tools and provides programs
to allow its visitors to achieve
their creative dreams, whether
in graphic design, woodwork-
ing or other areas of art and
technology. The space, which
is open often throughout the
week, operates 3Dprinters and
other devices, such as sound
recorders and computer-pro-
gramming software.
During her career Holden
also helped guide the renova-
tion of the Main Branch, and
pioneered many education
programs for both children
and adults.
“Martha took the Peabody
Institute Library to extraordi-
nary heights.” said a post on
the City of Peabody’s Face-
book page. “We wish Martha
great happiness in retirement
and thank her for her commit-
ment to improving the lives of
so many Peabody residents.”
The trustees are in the pro-
cess of looking for a more per-
manent director. The board
will be collecting applications
until April 7.
West School honors Dr. Seuss’ birthday
By Melanie Higgins
S
tudents at the West Memo-
rial School are going plac-
es, if famed children’s author
Dr. Seuss can be believed. On
March 2 the school celebrated
its annual National ReadAcross
America Day (which also hap-
pens to be Dr. Seuss’s birth-
day) bypartaking inabroadar-
ray of ceremonies that includ-
eddress-up, amagic showand
visits from numerous guest
speakers from around town.
Thanks to the deft coordina-
tion of teachers and the Parent
Teacher Organization, kids en-
joyed a day full of reading and
entertainment. Librarian Dale
Sampson from theWest Branch
Library came into one of the
classrooms to talk about the
importance of reading to the
children. In addition, school Re-
source Officer Rick Cochran vis-
itedto read fromsomeofDr. Se-
uss’s books. To cap it all off, Ma-
gicianTommyJamesperformed
a45-minuteperformancecalled
the “Dr. Seuss Magic Reading
Show,” which included magic
music and sound effects.
“Tommy totally captivat-
ed the students,” said cultur-
al event coordinator Nicole
DiBenedetto-Ramsdell. “The
show was full of surprises and
it was a great learning experi-
ence for our children.”
Meanwhile, many enjoyed
the activitieswhilewearing the
iconic red and white striped
hats from the “Cat in the Hat,”
andbluewigswithtopsmarked
“Thing1”and“Thing2.”Accord-
ing toKristenBedard, president
of the school’s Parent Teacher
Organization, theDr. SeussDay
has been a longstanding tradi-
tion at theWest School.
Thebelovedchildren’sauthor
penned over 60 books in his il-
lustrious career, including “The
Cat in the Hat,”“How the Grin-
ch Stole Christmas,” “One Fish,
Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish,”
and“Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”
Mrs. Covino’s first grade class at theWest School celebrates Dr. Seuss’ birthday as a part of National Read Across America Day.
Library Director Martha Holden is honored by Mayor Ted Bettencourt