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Medfield experiences Joy of Nature

By Lauren Schiavone
Hometown Weekly staff

Medfield residents didn’t have to travel far to interact with faraway desert and rainforest animals as the Medfield Public Library hosted a live animal show on August 2. The afternoon was full of snakes, insects and more. 

Desert and rainforest creatures were the stars of “Joys of Nature,” sponsored by the Friends of the Medfield Public Library. Head of Children’s Services Bernadette Foley thanked attendees and introduced Joy Marzolf, animal handler and educational program leader.

Marzolf guided children and adults in petting extraordinary animals -- and learning more about the climates in which they reside. Beginning with some crawly, but not particularly creepy insects, Joy acclimated the Madagascar cockroaches to the library. Typically found on the forest floor, these bugs hiss, similarly to snakes, to protect themselves. Brave library patrons took two fingers to pet along their backs, as they did with all of the friendly animals, including a bearded dragon, chameleon, and snakes. Charmer the chameleon was a favorite as kids laughed, able to spot his default green exterior, which turns brown or black depending on mood and temperatures.

Marzolf made her mission clear: to love and respect animals as much as possible. Recognizing that animals serve a purpose in the ecosystem, she fielded questions and brought up important discussion points, such as animals reaching extinction and uninformed exotic pet adoption in a conversational manor. She reiterated the message that knowledge is power. Before leaving, she let patient friends have one last chance to pet snakes. She then urged children and adults to check out books on these special animals at the library in order to learn more about them. 

Follow along with the Joy of Nature at, and the Medfield Public Library at

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