Great Pumpkin Roll
'A big old house full of big ideas, and all of it for free. Public Library.' Lonesome Brother Jim Armenti offers The Great Pumpkin Roll to help Westhampton get a new public library. In 2005, after 10 years of planning, Westhampton was awarded a $926,000 grant for a new library from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners. The plan called for buying the Parsonage, and then adding a new library onto it. In the process, the town would also gain a 2 1/2 acre field adjacent to the Parsonage as a public park. Although residents at Westhampton's 2005 Annual Town Meeting unanimously endorsed the plan, approval of a tax override to fund the project did not follow. In October 2006, supporters sent out mailings, made door-to-door visits, held informational meetings, and organized the town's first Fall Festival. The event was held on the field next to the Parsonage, and among the highlights were a homemade catapult for hurling squash, a scarecrow contest, storytelling, a bonfire, and THE GREAT PUMPKIN ROLL! The winning pumpkin rolled more than half a mile and sent Jim Armenti, local resident and singer-songwriter, on his own roll-writing 2 songs a week for five weeks. The result is a new CD about the joys of libraries and the benefits of reading books. "The words on this album express our love and affection for our libraries and by extension for one another-the musical expertise is icing on the cake," Anne Larsen, Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners Everyone who loves libraries and cares about books has got to hear this record," Mark Edmundson, NPR Culture Critic, author of "Why Read", and Distinguished Teaching Professor, University of Virginia I would have thought that as Jim's music spread across the village, a library would appear whole, right out of the good earth," David Lenson, Editor, The Massachusetts Review; Professor of Comparative Literature, University of Massachusetts.