Cold Turkey Plunge On Thanksgiving

This annual Atheneum fundraiser features hundreds of spectators and swimmers who brave the cold waters at Children’s Beach on Thanksgiving morning to benefit the Weezie Library for Children. This year join us in-person or particulate virtually!

Individual Plungers and teams are encouraged to have their family, coworkers and friends sponsor their participation in the Turkey Plunge by donating to the event! All proceeds benefit the Nantucket Atheneum Weezie Library for Children, the island’s public library.

Please REGISTER ONLINE or pick up a Plunge Card at the Atheneum’s main desk. 

On Thanksgiving morning, please arrive at the beach at least 30 minutes early to complete registration and receive your wristband and Plunge tee-shirt (while supplies last).

The Cold Turkey Plunge takes place rain or shine. All funds raised for this event are nonrefundable. More details here.

Outdoor Chess & Checker Board

The Weezie library for children, Nantucket Atheneum

An outdoor chess/checker table has now been installed off the Garden at the Nantucket Atheneum. Library patrons can begin to enjoy this new amenity after June 5th, made possible by a donor. You can ask the Circulation Desk about the chess set. The Atheneum hopes the whole community will enjoy playing chess on the granite chess tables with comfortable wooden slatted benches to the library.

The second mission of the outdoor table is to promote another way to enjoy the garden and the downtown community.

Libraries have always been a place people go in order to encounter new ideas, learn new skills, and to meet the rest of the community. So stop on by the Atheneum and try your hand at a bit of chess. You may find it suits you.

The Atheneum has a chess set with an electronic timer in one package. The chessmen are available, with a library card, from the circulation desk.


Let’s make Summer Slide a thing of the past!

20 minutes a day is all it takes.

What has come to be known as “Summer Slide” is the biggest challenge for teachers every fall. Study after study has shown that children who join a summer reading program keep their minds active and enter school in the fall ready to learn and prepared to succeed. Conversely, research has shown that children who do not read during the summer may lose two months or more of the reading progress they had made in school. Find a time that works for you and set it aside for reading; 20 minutes a day is all it takes.

The Weezie Library for Children is happy to offer a summer reading program for children and teens that begins each year in mid-June and runs through the end of August. You may register for the program at the Weezie desk starting in June. Every reader receives a book bag (while supplies last) and a reading record, along with other goodies and helpful tips on making the most of your summer reading.

Each year brings a new theme with accompanying programming and prizes! Make sure to check our current calendar for the latest news and events.

Clams catalog and app

The Cape Libraries Automated Materials Sharing (CLAMS) catalog is the primary catalog of the Nantucket Atheneum.

CLAMS is the shared library catalog of the Cape and Islands Libraries Automated Materials Sharing Network, a non-profit, cooperative association of libraries on Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket.

Member libraries share resources – over 1.6 million items including books, magazines, and non-print resources – through a computer network with terminals located in each member library and also through an online portal.

A CLAMS library card allows patrons to borrow books and other materials from all member libraries.


Together with our fellow cape libraries, we offer you CLAMS Library Network app for searching, reserving and self-checkout. The CLAMS Library Network app is available for iOS and Android.

Don’t have a library card? Request one through the app and access e-content right away.

The CLAMS Library Network App is available through the App Store and Google Play. Search for “CLAMS Library Network” to download the app to your mobile device.

Find more information at CLAMS, Introducing Our New App.

The Nantucket Atheneum is pleased to offer Community Service opportunities in cooperation with the Nantucket High School Guidance Department.

Participants must be students at Nantucket High School and members of the Atheneum’s Teen Advisory Board. Community Service hours are earned for actively participating in Teen Advisory Board meetings and for library projects and teen programs that emanate from those meetings.

Possible other opportunities include repairing library materials, shelving books, assembling new patron packets, or helping with children’s programs.

For more information or to join, please see Teen Advisory Board.

Programs for teens at the Atheneum are developed with the suggestions and fresh perspective of our Teen Advisory Board, which meets once per month during the school year.


Services and programs for teens are located on the Second floor on the West side of the Great Hall.

The comprehensive teen collection includes fiction and non-fiction titles, DVDs, magazines, graphic novels, video games, and reference materials. With the help of the Teen Advisory Board composed of teens from local schools, the Atheneum offers a wide range of teen programs throughout the year.

Please stop by and visit the Young Adult Area which is open 6 days per week during regular library hours and staffed with a YA Services Assistant from 2:30 pm to 5.30 pm on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday; 2.30 pm to 7.30 pm on Thursday; and 12:00 pm to 4.00 pm on Saturdays.

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“A child who reads will be an adult who thinks.”