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The Eric Carle Museum
of Picture Book Art
  • 125 West Bay Road
  • Amherst, MA 01002


  • Thursday, Friday10 am-3 pm
  • Saturday 10am – 4 pm
  • Sunday 12 pm - 4 pm

Closed Monday,Tuesday, Wednesday

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Annual Fall Appeal 2020

Dear friends,

I am filled with gratitude as I write to you today. 

When the pandemic began, our Museum community recognized an immediate truth: picture books, and the comfort, wisdom, and inspiration they offer, would be needed more than ever. 
We need books that challenge us to think. Silly books that help lighten the load on a hard day. Books that remind us to be kind, or to laugh at ourselves. Beautiful books that show us the good in the world and all the reasons for hope. 

 With the help of the many teachers, librarians, artists, writers, and publishers we work with, our staff began offering creative new ways to share picture books. Throughout these bewildering months, we have reached hundreds of thousands of families around the world with art, stories, and experiences that inspire and console. 

As I look back, I am reminded of my favorite quote from The Phantom Tollbooth by our friend and supporter Norton Juster: “So many things are possible just as long as you don’t know they’re impossible.” 

You have shown us what is possible in 2020 at The Carle. 

Online experiences are crucial.
 More than 30,000 of you have viewed our first online exhibitions, ART in PLACE: Social Distancing in the Studio and Now &Then: Contemporary Illustrators and their Childhood Art. Thousands more have enjoyed our virtual programs—like storytimes and at home art-making—created especially for children learning remotely. We’ve also presented online gallery tours, talks with authors, artists, and curators, and professional development for teachers and librarians. 

Visiting a museum in person is a profound experience.
Thousands of you have come to The Carle since we reopened with a renewed appreciation for gathering safely in a beautiful place to enjoy art and reading. And ingenuity helps! This month, 240 very un-wimpy families lined up in cars outside The Carle for a “drive-thru pool party” with Jeff Kinney to celebrate the launch of his newest book from the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. Jeff safely handed out signed copies of The Deep End with the help of a six-foot-long pool skimmer! 

Picture books are an important part of a more equitable future.
Our new Reading Library exhibition Black Voices: Picture Books as Antiracist Resources, features more than 70 books, with many of them from exciting new writers and artists. In February, we’ll open Picture the Dream: The Story of the Civil Rights Movement Through Children’s Books, a major exhibition, three years in the making, co-organized with the High Museum of Art in Atlanta. These exhibitions, and others coming soon, encourage honest discussions about race and racism in our country’s ongoing struggle for equality. 

We will keep striving to make the impossible possible. We have come so far this year—and we can see clearly how far we still can go, with your support. I hope you’ll join me by giving to our year-end appeal. Together, we can ensure that picture books light the way to a bright and hopeful future.   

In gratitude, 

Alexandra Kennedy
Executive Director


P.S. You can make a gift online at, or by calling Rebecca Miller Goggins, director of development, at 413-559-6308. Thank you! 

Eric Carle, Illustration for Animals Animals compiled by Laura Whipple. Collection of The Eric and Barbara Carle Foundation. © 1989 Penguin Random House LLC.




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