community

The Third Annual Shaker Your Plate Celebration at the Shaker Heritage Society is happening on Thursday September 26th.

The annual event is a celebration of the site of America’s first Shaker Settlement, and its purpose is threefold: to raise funds to protect the Shaker National Historic District from the threat of development, to celebrate the Church Family Site as a community center, and to honor our ever-growing corps of volunteers and supporters who see the potential of this site and lead the effort to preserve our local history.

The 1915 Shaker Heritage Barn will be the setting for a lovely evening with great food and a cooking demonstration from Sunhee’s Farm and Kitchen, artisan demonstrations, music and a silent auction.

We welcome Shaker Heritage Society of Albany, New York Executive Director Johanna Batman.

A former aide to Robert F. Kennedy and senior official in the Clinton administration, Peter Edelman has devoted his life to understanding the causes of poverty.

In one of the richest countries on Earth it has effectively become a crime to be poor. For example, in Ferguson, Missouri, the U.S. Department of Justice didn’t just expose racially biased policing; it also exposed exorbitant fines and fees for minor crimes that mainly hit the city’s poor, African American population, resulting in jail by the thousands. As Peter Edelman explains in "Not a Crime to Be Poor," in fact Ferguson is everywhere: the debtors’ prisons of the twenty-first century.

Peter Edelman is the Carmack Waterhouse Professor of Law and Public Policy and the faculty director of the Center on Poverty and Inequality at Georgetown University Law Center.

The 1st Annual T.R.E.A.T "Troy Reads Every August Together" will be held Sunday, August 25 at Riverfront Park in downtown Troy, New York at 3 p.m.

Award-winning author Coleen Murtagh Paratore joins us to talk about the event and her new book, "The Big Book About Being BIG," which will be read aloud among the group.

Murtagh Paratore is also leading Dear Writer, a writing workshop for adults, beginning September 18.

The Arts Mid-Hudson Folk Arts Program, Latinx Project, the Reher Center for Immigrant Culture and History, the Hudson Valley LGBTQ Center, and Kingston City Hall present “The Spaces Between;” a series of exhibitions and programs facilitating exploration of the social spaces of marginalized status in American culture.

“The Spaces Between” challenges traditional views of "marginalized status" by considering the many ways people can be marginalized, including the undocumented community, the LGTBQ community, and the immigrant community through an exploration of statuses related to race, gender, and sexual identity. The project runs through September.

Elinor Levy is the Folk Arts Program Manager at Arts Mid-Hudson and she joined us to tell us more.

Frances Mayes has spent thirty years splitting her time between her native United States and adopted home in Tuscany and writing bestselling books, including the classic, “Under the Tuscan Sun.”

In her latest, “See You In the Piazza,” she and her husband hit the road to explore the country afresh from north to south, eating and drinking their way through. 

This an Off the Shelf edition of The Book Show recorded remotely with a live audience in an event presented by Northshire Bookstore

Named one of the world’s ten most influential intellectuals by MIT, Douglas Rushkoff is an award-winning author, broadcaster, and documentarian who studies human autonomy in the digital age. The host of the popular "Team Human" podcast, Rushkoff has written twenty books. His latest is "Team Human," a manifesto on his most urgent thoughts on civilization and human nature.

In it, he argues that we are essentially social creatures, and that we achieve our greatest aspirations when we work together not as individuals. Yet today society is threatened by a vast antihuman infrastructure that undermines our ability to connect. Money, once a means of exchange, is now a means of exploitation; education, conceived as way to elevate the working class, has become another assembly line; and the internet has only further divided us into increasingly atomized and radicalized groups. If we are to resist and survive these destructive forces, we must recognize that being human is a team sport. In Rushkoff’s own words: “Being social may be the whole point.”

Food has become ground-zero in our efforts to increase awareness of how our choices impact the world. Yet while we have begun to transform our communities and dinner plates, the most authoritative strand of the food web has received surprisingly little attention: the grocery store - the epicenter of our food-gathering ritual.

Through analysis and inspiring stories and examples of American and Canadian food co-ops, "Grocery Story: The Promise of Food Co-ops in the Age of Grocery Giants" makes a case for the transformation of the grocery store aisles as the emerging frontier in the local and good food movements.

Jon Steinman has studied and worked with all things food for over two decades. He was the producer and host of the syndicated radio show and podcast "Deconstructing Dinner."

Book tour info here

Basilica Hudson’s new Green Energy Fair will take place this Sunday, April 14 from noon to 5 p.m. in Hudson, New York.

Produced in partnership with pioneering environmental organizations SunCommon and CYCLEffect Regenerative Ventures, the Green Energy Fair pairs a marketplace of new energy leaders and environmental advocates with an afternoon of presentations and discussions by community leaders and alternative energy experts.

Free and open to the public, this annual program will invite attendees to come together to seek solutions for the greatest communal challenge now facing us, the climate and energy crisis.

We are joined by Melissa Auf der Maur, Co-Founder and Director of Basilica Hudson, Chris Lindstrom, Director of CYCLEffect, and Jeff Irish, VP & General Manager of SunCommon.

Hubbard Hall Center for the Arts and Education in Cambridge, New York will present “Annie,” the Broadway smash musical, April 5 through 14. Performances are Fridays-Saturdays at 7:30 pm and Sundays at 2 pm.

The production is a collaboration between Hubbard Hall and the Cambridge Central School, which for the past three years have worked closely together to produce the musical at Hubbard Hall while giving students training in acting, singing, dancing, voice & speech, text and improvisation with Hubbard Hall artists. The CCS Drama Club at Hubbard Hall gives students opportunities to grow as individuals and artists while learning to take risks, work as a team and express themselves clearly and creatively in front of an audience.

We’re going to talk about “Annie” now – and preview Hubbard Halls’ 2019 Spring Gala which will take place on May 18 and will honor WAMC's Joe Donahue with the 2019 Making Art & Community Happen Award.

Here to tell us more: W.B. Belcher, chair of Hubbard Hall Board of Directors, owner of Word Horse Strategies, LLC and published author and David Andrew Snider, Executive & Artistic Director of Hubbard Hall and Adjunct Professor at Skidmore College.

Jennifer Zeynab Joukhadar and book cover "The Map of Salt and Stars"
Neha Gautam

“The Map of Salt and Stars” is the debut novel by Syrian American writer Jennifer Zeynab Joukhadar. It is the story of two girls living eight hundred years apart: a modern-day Syrian refugee seeking safety and a medieval adventurer apprenticed to a legendary mapmaker, showing the pain of exile and the triumph of courage. 

Seiji Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood
Sarah LaDuke

The Days in the Arts (DARTS) program is a summer residential program near Tanglewood that provides middle school students with high-quality arts immersion experience, allowing each student to engage with and create art with their peers in a positive, non-judgmental environment.

The program unites students from urban, suburban and rural communities – and has been doing so for 50 years! Each summer since 1968, the BSO operates the Days in the Arts residential education program that invites students from across Massachusetts to gather together to explore the arts. DARTS serves 400 middle school students each summer during eight one-week sessions.

We are joined by the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Executive Officer for Education, Community Engagement, and Inclusion, Zakiya Thomas and the Associate Director of Education and Community Engagement Claire Carr. 

Celebrate Stephentown 2018

Aug 15, 2018

The inaugural Celebrate Stephentown in 2017 was an effort to bring people together to celebrate the rural community. Celebrate Stephentown’s family friendly events showcase the work of artisans, artists, businesses, farmers, musicians, service organizations, and more.

Celebrate Stephentown 2018 will take place this weekend – Friday, August 17 through Sunday, August 19.

Husband-and-wife team Scott Menhinick and Jennifer Peabody are the co-organizers of Celebrate Stephentown, which this year will feature 40 events at 21 different locations over the course of three days in Stephentown, NY. In addition to their work as officers of the Stephentown Memorial Library and Stephentown Food Pantry, respectively, they also run their own consulting business, Berkshire Brand Management.

Shaleena Bridgham has nearly two decades of experience in the specialty cheese industry, with the last five years focused on her family’s own artisan creamery, Four Fat Fowl, which is about to open its newly renovated and greatly expanded production facility in the former Stephentown Elementary School.

Allen Gannett is the founder and CEO of TrackMaven, a software analytics firm whose clients have included Microsoft, Marriott, Saks Fifth Avenue, Home Depot, Aetna, Honda, and GE. He has been on the “30 Under 30” lists for both Inc. and Forbes.

In his book, "The Creative Curve," he overturns the mythology around creative genius, and reveals the science and secrets behind achieving breakout commercial success in any field.

We have been spoon-fed the notion that creativity is the province of genius; of those favored, brilliant few whose moments of insight arrive in unpredictable flashes of divine inspiration. And if we are not a genius, we might as well pack it in and give up. Either we have that gift, or we don’t. But Allen says that isn’t true.

Recent research has shown that there is a predictable science behind achieving commercial success in any creative endeavor, from writing a popular novel to starting up a successful company to creating an effective marketing campaign.

CN Lester is an academic, musician, and leading British trans rights activist. A critically acclaimed singer-songwriter, Lester also works as a composer and classical performer. They consult and educate on trans issues with a wide range of organizations and they've written on the trans experience for various outlets.

In their new book, "Trans Like Me," CN Lester takes a measured, thoughtful, intelligent and approachable tour through the most important and high-profile narratives around the trans community, turning them inside out and examining where we really are in terms of progress.

Rebecca Soffer
Elaina Mortali

When Rebecca Soffer was in her early 30s she lost both of her parents - just a few years apart. While navigating the pain of loss and logistics that accompany death, she kept thinking that if everyone dies -- and everyone does -- why is noone alive talking about how hard it is to lose someone? She partnered with Gabrielle Birkner to create the website Modern Loss and start that taboo conversation.

The site features personal essays about the aftermath of loss that vary widely and show that: there is no right way to to grieve; a lot will come up that one couldn’t expect, both emotionally and practically; and that the sorrow doesn’t disappear just because a year or two passes.

Earlier this year, Harper Wave published Soffer and Birkner’s book which extends the mission of spurring the conversation and this Thursday at 6 p.m. The Mount in Lenox, Massachusetts presents “An evening of Modern Loss storytelling with Rebecca Soffer.”

The event will feature Joey Chernila, Jane Larkworthy, Courtney Maum, Emily Rapp Black, and Hannah Van Sickle.

The Flying Deer Nature Center in New Lebanon, New York is a wilderness school and community dedicated to mentoring children, adults, and families in deep connection to nature, self, and others.

Their educators guide people of all ages in nature immersion and education. Michelle Apland is the Executive Director of Flying Deer Nature Center.

When Mark Zuckerberg changed the mission of Facebook this summer to be focused on community, he hired Jennifer Dulski to lead Groups, at the center of their new strategy, and used by more than one billion people to build meaningful communities around the world.

With a career as a tech executive at Yahoo! and Google, a startup founder and CEO, and a social change leader as president of Change.org, Dulski is now combining her own experience with stories of other inspiring leaders to show how we all have the power to start movements that matter.

In her new book, "Purposeful," she walks through the steps to go from idea to impact and shares specific tips and stories from real movement starters whose movements have created everything from new laws to new companies.

Our Falling into Place series spotlights the important work of -and fosters collaboration between- not-for-profit organizations in our communities; allowing us all to fall into place. Falling Into Place is supported by The Seymour Fox Memorial Foundation, Providing a helping hand to turn inspiration into accomplishment. See more possibilities … see more promise… see more progress.

Today we learn about Berkshire Food Project’s Empty Bowl fundraising event which takes place this year on Friday, May 4 with seatings at 5:30 PM and 7 PM inside the First Congregational Church on Main Street in Williamstown, Massachusetts.

Executive Director of Berkshire Food Project Kim McMann, and owner of Jackie Sedlock Pottery Jackie Sedlock join us.

The small village of Norwich, Vermont, has an unusual knack for creating Olympians. Despite only having about three thousand residents, they have sent an athlete to nearly every Winter Olympics in the past thirty years, and three times the athlete has returned with a medal.

But according to our next guest, this unusually high success rate is not the result of tiger moms and eagle dads – it’s the result of a community culture of supportive, hands-off parenting that encourages children to enjoy themselves and try everything, without any emphasis on winning.

Karen Crouse is an award-winning New York Times reporter who stumbled upon this quiet village that has the secret to not only raising better athletes, but happier and healthier kids. Her new book is "Norwich: One Tiny Vermont Town’s Secret to Happiness and Excellence."

David Brooks
CNN

David Brooks has a gift for bringing audiences face-to-face with the spirit of our times with humor, insight and passion. He is an observer of the American way of life and a savvy analyst of present-day politics and foreign affairs.

He holds several positions as a commentator, including bi-weekly Op-Ed columnist for The New York Times, and regular analyst on PBS "NewsHour" and NPR’s "All Things Considered."

David’s newest book, "The Road to Character," explains why selflessness leads to greater success. He tells the story of ten great lives that illustrate how character is developed, and how we can all strive to build rich inner lives, marked by humility and moral depth.

David Brooks will be at Proctors on Wednesday, January 17th at 7:30 p.m.

Dubbed by the New Yorker as "one of America's very best singer-songwriters," Dar Williams has made her career not in stadiums, but touring America's small towns. She has played their venues, composed in their coffee shops, and drunk in their bars. She has seen these communities struggle, but also seen them thrive in the face of postindustrial identity crises.

In her book, What I Found in a Thousand Towns: A Traveling Musician's Guide to Rebuilding America's Communities—One Coffee Shop, Dog Run, and Open-Mike Night at a Time, Williams muses on why some towns flourish while others fail, examining elements from the significance of history and nature to the uniting power of public spaces and food. Drawing on her own travels and the work of urban theorists, Williams offers real solutions to rebuild declining communities.

O+ was founded in 2010 in Kingston, NY by a small group of artists-activists, doctors and a dentist. It is now a national nonprofit working in cities around the country that builds long-term relationships between creatives and health & wellness providers to help strengthen local communities. 

Their year-round efforts culminate in one-day and weekend-long celebrations, during which underinsured artists and musicians create and perform in exchange for a variety of services donated by doctors, dentists and complementary care providers.

This year’s O+ Festival in Kingston takes place October 6-8 and the line-up includes Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Amanda Palmer, San Francisco-based rock band Deerhoof, songwriter/guitarist Steve Gunn of Brooklyn, New York's White Hills, Baltimore rap artist Abdu Ali along with local favorites The Mammals and The Big Takeover.

You Never Think Alone

Jul 25, 2017

The human mind is both brilliant and pathetic. We have mastered fire, created democratic institutions, stood on the moon, and sequenced our genome. And yet each of us is error prone, sometimes irrational, and often ignorant.

The fundamentally communal nature of intelligence and knowledge explains why we often assume we know more than we really do, why political opinions and false beliefs are so hard to change, and why individually oriented approaches to education and management frequently fail. But our collaborative minds also enable us to do amazing things. This book contends that true genius can be found in the ways we create intelligence using the world around us.

Steven Sloman is a professor of cognitive, linguistic, and psychological sciences at Brown University. He is the editor in chief of the journal Cognition. Philip Fernbach is a cognitive scientist and professor of marketing at the University of Colorado’s Leeds School of Business. 

The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College has a jam-packed summer of arts and culture – including their 4th annual Frances Day Community Celebration on July 15th, a new season of UpBeat on the roof concerts and great new exhibitions in all the galleries.  Plus a special new book celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Skidmore Summer Jazz Institute and its founder Don McCormack.

Ian Berry, Dayton Director of the Tang Teaching Museum at Skidmore College and Michael Janairo, the museum’s Assistant Director for Engagement  join us to tell us more.

Each July and August the Williams College Museum of Art (WCMA) produces Summer School, a series of public programs that teases out new ways of thinking about learning, art, community, and museums. This summer, the series offers a playful taste of college culture taking inspiration from unconventional archives and the quirkiest kinds of libraries. It’s a weekly mashup of mini courses, extracurriculars on WCMA’s patio, a lending library, and pop-up programming in the museum’s Reading Room. 

Each week, Williams faculty and local experts lead hour-long mini courses in the galleries. These talks explore the museum’s collection, exhibitions, and spaces through the lens of libraries and archives.

To tell us more – we welcome Nina Pelaez - Assistant Curator of Public Programs at Williams College Museum of Art. 

The last remaining farm within Saratoga Springs city limits is under new management by a team that will use the property as a center for agriculture and education. 

Pitney Meadows Community Farm is ready for summer with Community Gardens, and local farm and food training and education. They’ll be a year-round farm-hub that shares the bounty of upstate New York agriculture and community. The grounds will also provide nature trails and host community events.

Barbara Glaser and Natalie Walsh join us now to tell us more.

Barbara is a leader in open-space preservation in Saratoga Springs since the 1980s, Barbara Glaser has played a key role in the establishment of Pitney Meadows Community Farm. Natalie is the director of the new Pitney Meadows Community Gardens.

  Traditional economics measures the ways in which we spend our income, but doesn't attribute worth to the crucial human interactions that give our lives meaning.

Clair Brown, an economics professor at U.C. Berkeley and a practicing Buddhist, has developed a holistic model, one based on the notion that quality of life should be measured by more than national income. 

Her book is Buddhist Economics: An Enlightened Approach to the Dismal Science.

Peak Joel McHale

Dec 13, 2016

For years, Joel McHale’s stand-up performances have sold out venues across the country, and his role in the beloved cult series Community and as the host of E!’s The Soup have made him a household name in comedy and pop culture.

He currently stars in the new CBS comedy The Great Indoors which is about an adventure reporter for an outdoor magazine when he becomes the desk-bound boss to a team of millennials in the magazine's digital department. 

McHale's submission to the vast world of celebrity tell-all books is Thanks for the Money: How to Use My Life Story to Become the Best Joel McHale You Can Be.

William W. Goldsmith is Professor Emeritus of City and Regional Planning at Cornell University. He is coauthor of Separate Societies: Poverty and Inequality in U.S. Cities.

In his new book, Saving Our Cities, William W. Goldsmith shows how cities can be places of opportunity rather than places with problems. With strongly revived cities and suburbs, working as places that serve all their residents, metropolitan areas will thrive, thus making the national economy more productive, the environment better protected, the citizenry better educated, and the society more reflective, sensitive, and humane.

Even as US spending on healthcare skyrockets, impoverished Americans continue to fall ill and die of preventable conditions. Although the majority of health outcomes are shaped by non-medical factors, public and private healthcare reform efforts have largely ignored the complex local circumstances that make it difficult for struggling men, women, and children to live healthier lives.

In Dying and Living in the Neighborhood, Dr. Prabhjot Singh argues that we must look beyond the walls of the hospital and into the neighborhoods where patients live and die to address the troubling rise in chronic disease.

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