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Newsletter | Walking Tours | Chestnut St. Mosaic | Community Improvements


From the Armoury-Quadrangle Civic Association (AQCA)
Serving the Downtown Neighborhood

For a more complete listing of events, go to

Become a member of AQCA.
Only $10 a year per household or $20 a year per business.
Become a member or renew. Memberships are DUE NOW.
Make a check payable to AQCA,
Mail to: AQCA, 140 Chestnut Street, Springfield, MA 01103.
We'll get your membership card to you.
We provide an array of informative programs.
You do not need to be a member to attend our meetings.
AQCA Neighborhood Meeting
Thursday, November 17, 7:00 pm
at Classical Condominiums
235 State Street

Three Presentations!

1. Gardening the Community will discuss their training program created for youth to grow vegetables and fruits on vacant and abandoned lots, to learn principles of urban sustainable living, and to sell their produce locally.
2. PVTA will discuss major changes occurring in bus routes and bus stops.
3. Springfield Thunderbirds will discuss the new team, tickets, and an invitation to support them at the Mass Mutual Center.
Refreshments provided.
Ample free parking in adjacent Library/Museums lot.


Don't Miss
The Last Second-Saturday Walking Tour

November 12: "Bas Relief Sculpture in Downtown Springfield" led by Steve Shultis, Commissioner, Springfield Historical Commission

As always, the tour begins promptly at 10:30 AM at the Springfield Museums Welcome Center and end some time around noon. The tour happens rain or shine and involves walking. Participants are encouraged to dress comfortably.

The tours are a joint venture of the Springfield Museums and the Armoury-Quadrangle Civic Association (AQCA) and are an all-volunteer undertaking.
2016 is the tenth year of Second Saturday Walking Tours, and tickets are still a mere $5.00 per person and are free for those who present a Springfield Museums or AQCA membership card at the Welcome Center. Any proceeds go towards neighborhood beautification.


Cats in Hats
At the Springfield Museums
- A Special Exhibit Through April 30, 2017 -

Next summer, the Springfield Museums will open The Amazing World of Dr. Seuss, becoming the first museum to honor Springfield native Theodor Geisel (aka, Dr. Seuss). In anticipation of that momentous occasion, the Michele and Donald D'Amour Museum of Fine Arts will be hosting a new exhibit titled Cats in Hats: Illustrations by the Western Massachusetts Illustrators' Guild. The exhibit will feature over 40 original works centered around the common theme of "cats in hats," in honor of Geisel's most famous work of children's literature.

The Western Massachusetts Illustrators' Guild includes some of the region's best-known illustrators, including Diane deGroat, Ruth Sanderson, and Jane Yolen, among others. Their artistic styles range from children's books to fantasy art to editorial pieces and beyond.

For this exhibit, cats are represented in a variety of scenes - some cute and fanciful, others quite serious and even scary. For example, Astrid Sheckels' delightfully sophisticated cats sip tea in their best attire in At the Feline Café, while Scott Murphy's Pounce de Leon features a helmed cat posed in dramatic profile, and Jeff Mack's orange tabby wears a green pail as a jaunty hat in A Day at the Beach. A special sculpture installation, Look Who the Cat in the Hat invited to Dinner, created by Jane and Brooke Dyer, will add a three-dimensional element to the exhibition.

An interactive space for visitors within the exhibit will include a special "Cat Walk" scavenger hunt, highlighting hidden cats located around the Museums' campus; a Cat "Paw-trait" Wall-Selfie Photo Booth with a whimsical hats and cat ears try-on and Cat-Toons cartoon station area will be featured.


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
Meet Your Samurai Ancestors!

This fall, the Springfield Museums will host a unique and imaginative exhibit that will bring together original graphic novel art from the popular Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series with colorful Japanese woodblock prints depicting samurai warriors and examples of 19th century armor and swords used by actual samurai.

“Turtle Power! Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Samurai Heroes” draws from the collection of local TMNT enthusiast Elias Derby, and from the Museums' own world-famous collection of Japanese artwork, arms, and armor to provide visitors with a rare glimpse of the real-life inspiration for the popular cartoon and graphic novel series. The exhibit will be on view at the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum through May 14, 2017.

Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird were both living in nearby Northampton, Massachusetts, when they formed Mirage Studios and issued their first TMNT comic book in 1984. Since then, the characters of Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael, and Michelangelo have become cult heroes among aficionados of comics and graphic novels. Known for their swashbuckling style, their "Cowabunga" rallying cry, and their love of pizza, the characters have been featured in numerous comic books, graphic novels, and movies over the past three decades. Their commitment to protecting the innocent as well as their adherence to the bushido code of honor, discipline, and morality harkens back to the age of the samurai (1185-1867). The exhibit includes 80 original illustrations including examples by Eastman, Laird, and over 20 renowned graphic novel and comic book artists.

These modern representations of the warriors take on new meaning when juxtaposed with the imagery and trappings of their samurai ancestors. Numerous scholars have lauded the Springfield Museums for the quality and depth of their Japanese collections, particularly in the areas of samurai arms, armor, and ukiyo-e prints, and have ranked their holdings of Meiji-era art as among the finest of any public institution in the world. The exhibit's inclusion of prints featuring legendary samurai heroes by the famed ukiyo-e artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1797-1861), underscore the importance of the collection.

George Walter Vincent Smith, whose collection is housed in the museum that bears his name, was fascinated by Japanese arms and armor, especially swords. Many of the weapons date back to the 14 and 15th centuries, and feature intricate embellishments of dragons, flames, and other decorative motifs on the blades, handles, and scabbards. The exhibit will display a selection of swords and will also include three complete suits of samurai armor as well as examples of traditional samurai helmets.


Museums a la Carte Lecture Series

Thursday, November 17, 12:15 pm – 1:00 pm
in the D'Amour Museum of Fine Arts

“WWI Nurse Edith Cavell's Fate: Decision or Destiny.”
Terri Arthur, RN, BS, MS, author, British nurse, gives an overview about how Cavell was a key link in the underground effort to rescue Allied soldiers, and how her execution ultimately helped to bring the US into World War I.

Admission is $4 ($2 for Museums members)
(cookies and coffee are provided).


at the Central Library:

Noon Hour Book Discussion Group. A new book each month. Newcomers are always welcome! The group meets on the second Tuesday of each month. Copies of each discussion book are always kept available at the library. Drop in and see if you'd like to be a member.

Book Selection for Tuesday December 13:
The Secret Chord: by Geraldine Brooks, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of “March,” Caleb's Crossing,” “People of the Book,” and “Year of Wonders”



Pathways for a Career in Cybersecurity, Insight for Educators, Employers, and Job Seekers:
Tuesday, November 15, 7:30 pm, UMass Center

Holiday Craft Fair:
Friday, November 18, 11:00 am – 2:00 pm, Food Court

Tower Square Parade of the Big Balloons:
Friday, November 25, 11:00 am – Noon, Main Street

Holiday Open House:
Friday, November 25, 11:00 am – 2:00 pm, 1st and 2nd Floors

Festival of Trees:
November 25 – December 11

Berkshire Hills Music Academy Concert:
Tuesday, November 29, Noon, Food Court



Silent and Live Auction and Sale of Works
by internationally known artists.

At Classical Condominiums, 235 State Street
From 3:00 to 8:00 pm


A Classical Holiday Concert
. . . . and more!

Sunday, December 4
At Classical Condominiums
235 State Street

At 2:00 pm – Architectural Tours of the Building and a Peek Inside Some Condo Units

AND . . .

At 4:00 pm – A Special Holiday Concert
by the entire Springfield Sci-Tech Band (over 100 strong!)
Hear some terrific holiday music performed by this wonderful group of Springfield musicians

This Event is FREE.

Refreshments Available.
Ample Free Parking in adjacent Library/Museums Lot.


City Stage and Symphony Hall
Great Shows!

Call 413-788-7033 for info and tickets

Upcoming Shows:

11/12: Sex Tips For Straight Women From a Gay Man

11/18: Boston Comedy Festival, Best of the Best

12/15: A Christmas Carol

1/20: Moondance

1/28: Mike's Super Magic and Illusion

2/10: Rockin' Road to Dublin

You don't have to travel far to experience the best in live entertainment! Whether you're planning a girls night out, love a good laugh, or want to experience the magic of live theater- come see why both audiences and critics alike have been raving about these shows.


At The Bing Arts Center
716 Sumner Avenue


Charles Neville and the New England Neville Brothers
Saturday, November 26, 8 pm
Grammy-winner Charles Neville with his sons Khalif and Talon will produce some sweet sounds and rhythms to keep the Thanksgiving spirit going! Tickets available in advance at

Doors open at 7:30.
Refreshments available.
$15, $10 for students.

AQCA Neighborhood
Holiday Party!!

Thursday, December 15
At Kimball Towers
140 Chestnut Street

5:00 pm – Come and Eat!
5:30 – Santa Arrives (with GIFTS!)
6:00 pm – Performance by the Community Music School
6:30 pm – Holiday Singalong

Don't Miss it!
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Monthly Print Newsletter / Email Updates

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Second Saturday Walking Tours

This page was last updated on 12/01/16