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Mar 31, 2023
The community, the town, the world! All from Shutesbury, Massachusetts.

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Diane - Tue, Nov 29, 2022, 7:37 P
Magpie Concert 12/2 7pm
MAGPIE Concert
Friday – December 2 - 7:00 pm
Mount Toby Concerts - 194 Long Plain Rd. (Rte. 63), Leverett, MA

With a career that has spanned forty years, Magpie has traveled the globe, bringing its unique sound and breathtaking versatility to audiences everywhere. Award-winning recording artists, songwriters, musical historians and social justice activists, Greg Artzner and Terry Leonino always promise a presentation that is highly entertaining as well as provocative and deeply moving.

Magpie's songs touch on historical, cultural and social interests with a large selection focusing on Civil Rights and the environment. Terry and Greg's sound is that of two very strong voices, one female, one male, in powerful leads and two-part harmony, embellished by Terry's guitar, harmonica, mandolin and dulcimer. Theirs is a powerful sound, full of passion and fire.

This performance will focus on the story of John Brown. It will draw from their CD featuring 11 songs about the famed abolitionist, his family, friends and associates. Plans are in the making for the presentation of their one-act play of the same name on May 6, 2022.

In Greg's words: We have also tried to raise some questions about violence. Our national history is rife with violence. In our present day most of us deplore violence and take a lofty moral view of U.S. history as if our nation all along was non-violent. Nothing could be further from the truth, and slavery represented one of the most violent aspects of that history, far more violent than anything Brown ever did. So the question is: when is violence, and further, violent civil disobedience, appropriate? When is a law or a government so wrong and so intransigent that it may be deemed appropriate to resort to it? Which is a greater "immorality" or a greater "evil," pro-active violence aimed at a redress of injustice or silent complicity in the injustice? How do we as a racist society deal with this story and with the legacy of slavery? From our point of view, Brown’s most important and most disquieting legacy is a call to direct action, not to violence. We believe, as people who have had the benefit of the great leaders Gandhi and King, that non-violent direct action is always best. Indeed, as we enter a new century there remain many problems in our society rooted in the negative aspects of our history which still require us to take direct action. We encourage everyone to search their own conscience and find their own way to take that action for the things they believe in. In particular, we encourage people everywhere to become involved in learning and practicing anti-racism, not just what is euphemistically referred to as non-racism. In our opinion, if you’re not part of the solution to racism, you’re part of the problem.

Suggested donation $15 to $25
Reserve seats at or call 413-336-2589

COVID -19 Policy: Masks are required indoors. Proof of Vaccination for the virus is no longer required. Measures we have taken at the concerts include reduced room capacity to 50 people and distancing of seating from others. We also use two room purifiers.
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Laurel - Sat, Sep 28, 2019, 10:10 A
Wendell Monthly Market
The last Wendell Monthly Market will be Saturday October 5th for the 2019 season. Pull on your warm sweater for brisk fall weather when you go to the north common by the gazebo from 10-1 for a fun time with vendors, musicians and Shell Hines doing bodywork. The Friends of the Wendell Library will have their Table Top Sale and food too!
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Laurel - Wed, Jul 3, 2019, 3:58 P
Wendell Monthly Market
Saturday Jul 6, 2019, 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM

The Wendell Monthly Market will be held at the gazebo on the Wendell town common this Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and will repeat the first Saturday of each month.

Come to buy, come to sell, come to browse, come to make music with neighbors and friends. Vendors will be joined by a bodywork practitioner in the gazebo.

For an idea as to what to expect, there will be organic veggies, cut flowers, starts, eggs, maple syrup, crafts, bric-a-brac, jewelry, locally made herbal remedies, artisan soaps, woodenware, native pollinator/wildflower plants and food, with a Table Top sale to benefit the Friends of the Wendell Library too!
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Laurel - Tue, Sep 6, 2016, 12:31 P
Found Owner
Buck is home safe and sound and on yard restrictions now! He belongs to a family that lives near the boat ramp.
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Laurel - Tue, Sep 6, 2016, 12:07 P
Chocolate Lab Found
My partner and I found a chocolate labrador on Lakeview Road this evening 9/5/16) at 9:40PM. He was a large male, with no collar. We tried to approach him, but he was too skittish.
If anyone is missing a lab or knows of someone who is, the dog was walking fast towards the corner of Lakeview and Lockes village road.
We hope that someone finds him soon.

Hollie Sutherland
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Laurel - Fri, Jun 10, 2016, 11:46 A
Wendell Farmers Market
The Wendell Farmers Market (Saturday mornings, Wendell Common, 10-1:00) is a unique, weekly offering of high-quality, home-grown produce, plants, flowers, herbs, syrup and more, conceived in Wendell's inimitable spirit of diversity, generosity, creativity and mutual support. The vendors and practitioners of the Wendell Farmers Market aim to provide healthy, fresh and locally-grown sustenance (and services) to our friends and neighbors as well as other regional visitors to Wendell, especially those who value and are otherwise isolated from other good food sources. As well as fine produce, the Wendell Farmers Market often includes an on site healer/bodyworker, drummers and/or other minstrel musicians. Patrons include food lovers, friends, as well as local neighbors who come not only for the incredible, fresh, (largely organic!) produce, but as well to barter, kibbitz and talk gardening/food with the passionate farmer-teachers, onsite.

The Wendell Farmers Market welcomes other local growers, crafters, musicians and healers to participate, whether as "vendors", consumers, barterers or just to enjoy fellowship and a lovely view from the historic Wendell Common. Stop by and see us, Saturdays 10:00-1:00!

Sugarbush Farm features premium maple syrup crafted by Wendell farmer Bill Facey (who built a post-and-beam sugarhouse in Wendell. Laurel markets his syrup and can usually be seen on Saturdays at the Wendell Farmers Market as well as at the house at 47 Davis Road, off Mormon Hollow Road.

Laughing Dog Farm (of nearby Gill), run by Wendell "ex-pats" Divya Shinn and Dan Botkin, is a five acre, permaculture-inspired market farm, sanctuary and learning site, producing a wide variety of heirloom, seasonal and storage produce (plus herbs, flowers and garlic) to share with neighbors and friends... (CSA shares still available for summer.) 413-863-8696

Sarah Kohler's Joyfarm from New Salem and Caro Rozwell's new CSA will be there too!
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JennyB - Fri, Jun 3, 2016, 7:11 A
Seeking Housemate For Beautiful Bdrm House
Seeking one person for a 2 bdrm house share in a unique and beautiful home. Looking for someone interested in participating and collaborating in making the household work. A great fit is a person who enjoys connecting and communicating, and who also loves cats! Please view my ad on Craigslist for all the details:
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mmuller - Tue, Aug 6, 2013, 2:51 P
2013 Montague Soapbox Derby is ON!
Attention Soapbox Derby Racers!

Get ready to race in the Montague Soapbox Derby on Sunday, September 22nd, 2013!

Visit our website to sign up for one of the 100 available racing slots. We've kept the advance racer fees at the same rate to make it affordable. Sign up right now! As an incentive, the first 25 racers will get some free derby shwag.


We are also looking for race day volunteers; please let us know if you can help. We've got t-shirts and other collectibles for volunteers, and will provide refreshments.

Good News For Local Businesses

We are working with many local public access TV stations so we can air the race live on more area cable access stations this year in addition to Montague, including Greenfield, Shelburne, and very likely Bernardston / Northfield and the Deerfield area as well. We can offer some great publicity to the fine local businesses who have sponsored the Derby as well as some new ones. Space is limited, so if you know of a business that would like to be a sponsor, please let us know. All sponsors will not only have a hay-bale banner at the race, but will be mentioned on the air by the announcer, as well as showing up in print on the screen. Don't miss it.

We will also be listing sponsors on our Facebook page as they come aboard. Please check it out, like it, and pass it on.

For those of you who participated last year, note that we will have 2 reliable back-up generators to avoid any electrical interruptions. We apologize for last year's long interruption and will conduct intensive public relations to boost attendance.

If you have questions, please visit the website. All will be answered there.

Many thanks!
Mik Muller, Race Director
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BrooksBendFarm - Tue, Jun 11, 2013, 3:03 P

My name is Devin Hickman. I am starting a small dairy selling 100% grass-fed organic raw cows milk here in Montague. I am trying to gauge community interest for raw milk being available in Montague by conducting a small survey

If you are interested in healthy, great tasting, raw milk from grass-fed pastured cows being available right here in Montague, please take this small survey:

The survey is short, you don't need to register to take the survey, its free, and no demographic or personal information is required. The information will help me to figure if there is a good market for raw milk here in Montague.


- Devin :)
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mmuller - Mon, Mar 11, 2013, 5:11 P
MWW Moves to the Cloud
MWW Moves to the Cloud

Montague WebWorks will be moving its servers to a cloud environment in March

After five years of hosting our websites on a single server (or even a shared server, back in the old days) Mik Muller of Montague WebWorks decided it was time to take the next step in the evolution of Montague WebWorks -- to move up to the cloud.

The big move will start Friday morning, March 15th, and continue through Sunday evening, March 17th. Every website and email we host will move from our existing servers to our new Cloud Servers. There should be no interruption of service, though we ask you to bear with us.

What are Cloud Servers?

Cloud Servers are the same as regular servers, except that a very large number of them are tied together through networking and software to act as a larger, faster single server, that you can then take a "slice" of as a virtual single server.

The main benefit of this is that upgrading to more processing power and storage is literally a mouse-click away, rather than physically cracking a server case open and adding resources to a single box.

This means that, for Montague WebWorks, we will be moving from ONE server that hosts all our websites, our databases, our email server, to TWO cloud servers that will each actually be multiple processors spread across many machines. One of the servers will now be dedicated to only hosting the websites, and the other server will host the databases and the email server.

The plan is to further expand, by the end of the year, to a third cloud server so we can split our databases and email server onto separate machines.

And while we're moving up to two cloud servers, we're also upgrading all the software. Our web hosting server software will get a double upgrade -- from IIS 7 to IIS 8, and from ColdFusion 8 to ColdFusion 10 -- and our email server software will upgrade from SmarterMail 8 to Smartermail 11, which has major improvements for mobile devices.

What's the Bottom Line

The bottom line is that everything will become faster. This website will load faster, and if we also host your email, your email will send and arrive faster, and the webmail interface will run faster, and on all your mobile devices.

Montague WebWorks is moving up, and expanding. By the end of April we should have around 150 RocketFusion websites, with a goal of 200 by the end of the year.

If you're ready to switch your website over to Montague WebWorks, please call Mik at (413) 320-5336. We can get started early next week.
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carlson - Tue, May 22, 2012, 11:10 A
Reading Celebration for the public, students and families with young children
"Reading Celebration! For the public, students and parents with young children"
Shutesbury Elementary School, 23 West Pelham Road, Shutesbury
Thursday, June 14 from 1-3pm

Author/illustrator talk with Jef Czekaj. Handmade book-making, a story walk, nursery rhyme olympics, book bingo, refreshments, summer reading information and more! Funding provided by Friends of the MN Spear Memorial Library, Union 28 Community Network for Children, SES PTO, and Community of Readers' grant with federal funds from the Mass. Board of Library Commissioners. For more info contact the school librarian, Marcia Bernard, at 413-259-1212.
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NatureLady - Thu, May 17, 2012, 10:58 P
Plants and Garden Books Needed!
The Leverett Historical Society is having its annual fundraiser Plant and Garden Book Sale
on Sat. May 26 9-Noon
BUT we still NEED plants and garden books to be donated!

Labelled Plants can be dropped off behind the Leverett Town Hall anytime this week.
Garden books can be dropped off at the Leverett Libary entryway anytime also. (there is a box labelled "Book Sale").

Then put the date on your calendar and come by to support the Leverett Historic Society and this year the Lev Elementary School greenhouse project!

For more info., contact Dawn 367-9562 or Julie 367-2656
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mmuller - Thu, May 3, 2012, 9:04 A
Town Meeting
Is there a Town meeting in Shutesbury on Saturday at 9:00, with a Special Town Meeting before it at 8:30?
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Laurel - Thu, Apr 19, 2012, 10:49 A
Kellers commune talk
From the Friends of the Wendell Free Library:

Local Political Communes of the 1960s: a multimedia talk by Dan & Nina Keller
Friday April 20, 7pm (followed by Q&A, refreshments and social) at the Wendell Free Library

The Sixties, remembered as a decade of social change and turmoil (the Civil Rights Movement, assassinations of national leaders, the Vietnam War,) also saw widespread experiments in “back to the land” communal living. Many such communes or “intentional communities” existed in our local area.
Dan and Nina Keller will discuss the history and influence of such local communities with a focus on two where they were members: the Montague Farm, from which the alternative media Liberation News Service operated and Jimmy's Popcorn, which Dan founded in Wendell. Using a selection of books about the Montague Farm and documentary film footage taken by Dan and others, they will reflect upon how these communities extend a long utopian tradition in Massachusetts. In discussion afterwards we can compare this history to current local agricultural and protest movements.
Refreshments will be served after the program to continue the discussion and reminiscence.

Dan Keller, documentary film maker and organic farmer, also a long-time member of the Wendell Selectboard.
Nina Keller, educator, organic farmer, writer, political and NO NUKES activist, has been farming in Montague and Wendell for 43 years.
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carlson - Thu, Mar 29, 2012, 12:55 P
And one more CNC Event for April!
Craigieburn Alpaca Farm Field Trip - INSTEAD OF the Shutesbury playgroup on Friday, April 27 we will head over to the Alpaca Farm in Shutesbury, 243 West Pelham Road. 9:30-11am. We will get up close and personal and learn about the alpacas from Susan and Steve Rice, owners. Wear mud boots and farm clothes to explore the pastures. CNC will provide a light snack. Enjoy a simple craft with farm materials. For more information and to register contact Gillian Budine, CNC Coordinator, at 978-544-5157. This program is sponsored by Union #28 Community Network for Children.
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carlson - Thu, Mar 29, 2012, 12:24 P
Community Network for Children programs
Community Network for Children - April Programs

~Parent Support Group for Parents of Children with Special Needs (Erving, Leverett, New Salem, Shutesbury and Wendell families) - Wednesday, April 4 at Leverett Elementary School, 85 Montague Road from 6-7:30. Free child care and potluck dinner. Registration required.

~Noticing Nature with Young Children in Your Own Backyard - Parent / Caregiver workshop to be held at the Erving Elementary School, 28 Northfield Road, Erving on Thursday, April 12 from 6-8pm. Free child care and dinner. Registration required.

~Birds, Beasts, and Bugs - series for children preK-3rd grade to be held at the Leverett Library, 75 Montague Road on Saturdays, April 14, 21 and 28 from 10:30-11:30am. Registration appreciated.

~4-H Babysitting Workshop - Shutesbury Elementary School, 23 West Pelham Road on Friday, April 20 from 9:30-4pm. For ages 12-18 years of age. Registration required.

In order to register for any of our programs or to be put on our mailing list, please contact Gillian Budine, CNC Coordinator, at 978-544-5157. We look forward to hearing from you!
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drmaiella - Tue, Mar 20, 2012, 9:50 A
Lyme prevention tincture, and tick bite procedure
Hi everyone,

I've put together an herbal formula that I use for my patients during the spring/summer and fall. This formula is meant not to 100% prevent Lyme disease, but more to increase your immune system so if you are bitten by a disease carrying tick, your body will do a better job at fighting it off.

I would be more than happy to talk with anyone about the herbs.

I dispense an 8 ounce bottle per person, and dose it at 2 dropperrfuls per day. At that dose, an 8 ounce bottle should last through the summer/spring and fall (witha one month hiatus in July).

I alson have a tick-bite protocol on my website,

It just walks you through the steps of taking off the tick, where to send it to, and what to do next.

Dr. Emily Maiella
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carlson - Thu, Mar 15, 2012, 11:20 A
Franklin County Area Early Education and Care Family Resource Fair
Co-Sponsored by the Gill-Montague, Mohawk, Greenfield, Pioneer, Union #28, and Union #38 Coordinated Family and Community Engagement programs, PCHP and First Church in Greenfield.

Come learn about options for preschool, Head Start, family childcare, out-or-school time programs, playgroups, story hours, and other community resources in the Franklin County Area. Each family will receive a FREE book. Refreshments available. A special visit with Tom Ricardi and his Birds of Prey!

This is a FREE event. To be held on Saturday, March 24 at the First Church in Greenfield, 43 Silver Street from 12:30-2:30pm. For more information, contact Deb Wood, Pioneer Valley Schools CFCE Coordinator, 413-498-2660
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mmuller - Wed, Feb 29, 2012, 1:58 P

Mutton & Mead, the Medieval Festival in Montague, MA, to be held on Saturday and Sunday, June 23rd and 24th, 2012, is looking for Day, and Pre-Faire Volunteers.

Day Volunteers will work a four-hour shift within the festival, on either day (or both) and then have four hours access as a guest on that day.

Pre-Faire Volunteers will assist with the creation and set-up of the festival on weekends and some evenings leadig up to the Festival weekend, at their availability, on tasks such as set design, construction, materials transport and management, or committee work. All pre-faire volunteers who put in at least eight hours of volunteer time will gain access to the festival for one day. Those who put in at least 16 hours of volunteer time will gain access to both days of the festival.

All volunteers will receive a free t-shirt and a certificate of appreciation from the festival.

Everyone wishing to register as a volunteer for the Mutton & Mead Medieval Festival should go to the online application form, located on the Festival's official website.

Donna DuSell, the Volunteer Manager, will coordinate all volunteers, and can be contacted through the form above.

More information about the Festival and photos from last year can also be found on the website.

Mutton & Mead's Medieval Festival is a fund raiser for both the Food Bank of Western Mass and the Montague Grange.

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carlson - Mon, Feb 27, 2012, 2:40 P
Community Network for Children programs - March
Our playgroups and story hours are happening regularly in all 5 towns in our school union nearly every day of the week! Check out the Shutesbury Story Hour (Mondays 10-11am) at the MN Spear Library and the Shutesbury Playgroup (Fridays 9-10:30am) in the Elementary School Gym.

Also this month, Happiest Baby on the Block parent/caregiver workshop - Tuesday, March 6 from 6-8 at the Erving Elementary School. Free dinner and child care provided with registration. Call Gillian, CNC Coordinator, at 978-544-5157 to register.

Toileting Tips parent/caregiver workshop - Tuesday, March 20 from 6-8 at the Swift River School, New Salem. Free dinner and child care provided with registration. Call Gillian, CNC Coordinator, at 978-544-5157 to register.

"Things That Go!" Pajama Story Time with Shutesbury's own Jennifer Swender - Sunday, March 25 from 5-6pm at the Erving Public Library. No registration required.

Franklin County Area Early Education and Care Family Resource Fair - Saturday, March 24 from 12:30-2:30 at First Church, 43 Silver Street in Greenfield. Tom Ricardi and his Birds of Prey will be there to entertain!

Any questions or to be on our mailing list, please call 978-544-5157 and speak to Jessica or Gillian!
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mmuller - Fri, Jan 20, 2012, 11:54 A
TONIGHT! Benefit Concert @ Leverett Crafts & Art
The Barnes Gallery @ Leverett Crafts and Arts Center

A benefit for Kiran.

Friday, January 20, 6 pm to midnight.

Music by Rebelle, Gaia Roots, Iriko Nuevo, and Omulu Guanabara.
Silent auction, the proceeds to benefit Kiran.
To donate an auction item, call Shanti Stark at 413-367-9491.

Come and show your support.
Any donation is welcome; $10 and up encouraged.
All proceeds go to the family.
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carlson - Mon, Jan 9, 2012, 3:23 P
Community Network for Children programs
Free weekly programs for families with young children (birth to age 5)!
MONDAYS: Shutesbury Story Hour at MN Spear Library from 10-11am
Erving Playgroup at the Erving Elementary School, 10-11:30am
Leverett Story Hour at the Leverett Public Library, 10:30-11:30am
Wendell Playgroup at the Wendell Free Library, 10-11:30am
THURSDAYS: Tales and Tunes with Happy Dan at the New Salem Library, 10:30-11:30
FRIDAY: Shutesbury Playgroup at the Shutesbury Elementary School, 9-10:30am

YMCA Open Gym Time at the YMCA in Greenfield (for families with children birth
to third grade):
Certain Sundays from 2:15-3:15
Jan. 22, Feb. 26, March 11 and April 1

Coming soon: "Toileting Tips" parent workshop, "Happiest Baby on the Block"
parent workshop

If you would like more info or would like to be on our mailing list, please
contact Gillian Budine, program coordinator, at 978-544-5157.
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mmuller - Tue, Dec 20, 2011, 10:03 P
Roadtown Review a Success
Congrats to everyone involved in putting together a very impressive production tonight. Huzzah!
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mmuller - Wed, Dec 14, 2011, 6:58 P
Shutesbury Fire Wrecks Home
From Jeanette Wilburn, via Facebook:

As many of you know, a Shutesbury family lost their house to a fire and a mom and her two girls are homeless and in need of clothing, shoes, and some toys. Any donations can be dropped off at Wilburn Chiropractic.

They need: Girls clothing size 9 or 10/12 in blues/blacks; shoe size 2. Girl clothing size 6 or 7/8 in pink, girly colors. Shoe size 13. Women's clothing size XL with feminine style, solid colors, shabby chic; size 10 shoes. Thank you for helping this family!!!
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mmuller - Tue, Dec 13, 2011, 10:26 A
Shutesbury Fire Wrecks Home
Christmas tree left too close to fireplace

Recorder staff

SHUTESBURY — It was the terrified growl of a cat named Spooky that alerted Sinneh Rose to the fire that ravaged the home she and her two daughters lived in.

Rose said that she and her daughters had gone to bed about 9 p.m. Sunday and about two hours later, Spooky had come into the bedroom, growling and crying, waking her up.
It was then she saw the flames from the living room.
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carlson - Tue, Nov 22, 2011, 1:56 P
Pajama Story Time at Wendell Free Library
Pajama Story Time at the Wendell Free Library, "Just One of Those Days!" for children 3rd grade and younger and their adult caregiver/s.
Wednesday, November 30, 6:30-7:30 pm
Wear your PJ's, bring a pillow or cozy teddy bear. Hear some stories and enjoy a cozy night out with family and friends. Small snack and take home activity provided too!
Sponsored by Union #28 Community Network for Children. Questions? Contact Gillian Budine, CNC Coordinator, at 978-544-5157 or
Wendell Free Library
7 Wendell Depot Road, Wendell
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Dragonflyzone - Thu, Nov 17, 2011, 10:33 A
Shutesbury Holiday Marketplace
Greetings Neighbors and Friends,

The Shutesbury Elementary School PTO is holding their annual Holiday Marketplace THIS SATURDAY at the school. This is a great opportunity to do some holiday shopping and support local artisan crafters and fair trade purveyors. I don’t have a list of all the venders.(over 30) but I know there will be glass, fiber, fabric, maple syrup, photography, holiday ornaments, quilts, wood and so much more. I will be there as usual with heat/cold natural therapy pillows, market totes, beaded dragonflies and spiders, and cuddle dogs. This is such a fantastic community event - it’s really a "do not miss"! In addition to all the artisan crafters there will also be soups donated by Karma, Hope And Olive, Mango Mango, and The Black Sheep along with bread from Wheatberry and Bread Euphoria.

I hope to see you there! The Marketplace is in the school gym and will be open from 10 am - 3 pm. There is no admission charge.

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EnergyMA - Mon, Oct 3, 2011, 4:58 P
FREE Solar Energy Workshop
Free Solar Energy Workshop

MA State has one of the most lucrative solar programs in the country! Representatives from a local solar energy company (based in Ludlow) will show you how to get started with solar electric (PV). They will explain how the technology works, how much it costs, what incentives and rebates are available to you from State and Federal governments, and all about Solar Renewable Energy Credits (SRECs). Come to this free presentation to learn how you can start turning the sun into money today!

Where: Leverett Library, 75 Montague Road, Leverett, MA

When: Saturday, October 8
1:30 - 2:30 PM

More information: 1-866-312-7673
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carlson - Mon, Aug 29, 2011, 12:44 P
Children’s Colonial Picnic
Faith Deering of Historic Deerfield will bring colonial dress ups and children's games to the Farmer's and Artisan's Market this Saturday, Sept. 3 at the Shutesbury Town Hall from 10:30am-noon. Please bring a picnic lunch to enjoy afterwards! This program is sponsored by the Community Network for Children and the Shutesbury Cultural Council and supported by the 250th Anniversary Committee. Questions, be in touch with Gillian Budine, CNC Coordinator, at 978-544-5157.
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mmuller - Fri, Aug 12, 2011, 12:04 A
Montague Soapbox Derby!
The 2011 Montague Soapbox Derby will be held on Saturday afternoon, September 17th, in Unity Park, Turners Falls. Race Applications are available on the website, as are the Race Rules. Deadline for entry is Wednesday, August 31st.

Due to the overwhelming enthusiasm for the race last year, and the potential to have more racers than can be handled, the committee is capping the number of entrants to 100. If you plan to enter you are urged to get your application in early. Racers who raced last year may apply for the same racer number, and may also enter the same cart if they wish. Racer fee: $25.

Racers are encouraged to upload images of their carts in progress to the Facebook fan page:

Race event is Rain or Shine.

This event is a fundraiser for Montague Community TV, a 501(c)(3) non-profit.
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drmaiella - Sun, Jul 10, 2011, 4:48 P
Help wanted in Naturopathic Practice
I'm looking for a person who is interested in working in my naturopathic office, doing front desk reception. Responsibilities would include: answering the telephone, taking messages, calling back, booking appointments and doing some basic accounting and book keeping. Quickbook experience would be very desirable. An absolute "must" is the ability to be kind and receptive to patients.

Tuesdays only (and possibly Fridays): 9:30-3:30 or 4:00. Beginning August 2nd.

Please call Emily Maiella if interested: 413.230.4462
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GregC - Wed, Jul 6, 2011, 11:47 A
Brazilian Drumming at Rebel Café Thursday nights
A Brazilian drummer, Ricardo Frota, is leading a drum circle on Thursday nights at the Rebel Café on Rt 202 in Pelham from 7 to 9pm. Everyone is welcome to join in or just listen.

I went last Thursday. Took my dumbek (Middle-eastern drum) and had a fun cross-cultural evening. Folks are bringing their own drums or borrowing his. He also welcomes other people's music and song. Ricardo does accept a small donation for his time but I get the impression he'd rather have people participate regardless of their financial situation.

You can find more about Ricardo and his music at

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unclelen - Tue, Jul 5, 2011, 6:59 P
Fireworks ARE bad!
How about predator drone attacks in North Waziristan and Libya? Can they be toxic to humans? Can they contribute to environmental pollution? Probably not as much as cherry bombs over Lake Wyola! Having said that, I am requesting that no one exhales - your carbon emissions will contribute to Global Warming, and as a consequence, the planet will melt. Where will we be then? Thank you for your kind cooperation, and have a nice day. :)
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Diane - Tue, Jul 5, 2011, 1:36 P
No Fireworks
Here's some info on the toxicity of fireworks. Aiming them into the lake would endanger, not only the wildlife there, but swimmers. See the entire article at: http://environment.a...a/toxicfireworks.htm

Dear EarthTalk: Do fireworks celebrations cause any significant pollution?
—David Hiebert, Scottdale, PA

Perhaps it should come as no surprise that the fireworks displays that go on around the U.S. every Fourth of July are still typically propelled by the ignition of gunpowder—a technological innovation that pre-dates the American Revolution itself. And the fall-out from these exhibitions includes a variety of toxic pollution that rain down on neighborhoods from coast to coast, often in violation of federal Clean Air Act standards.

Fireworks Can Be Toxic to Humans
Depending on the effect sought, fireworks produce smoke and dust that contain various heavy metals, sulfur-coal compounds and other noxious chemicals. Barium, for instance, is used to produce brilliant green colors in fireworks displays, despite being poisonous and radioactive. Copper compounds are used to produce blue colors, even though they contain dioxin, which has been linked to cancer. Cadmium, lithium, antimony, rubidium, strontium, lead and potassium nitrate are also commonly used to produce different effects, even though they can cause a host of respiratory and other health problems.

Fireworks Contribute to Environmental Pollution
The chemicals and heavy metals used in fireworks also take their toll on the environment, sometimes contributing to water supply contamination and even acid rain. Their use also deposits physical litter on the ground and into water bodies for miles around. As such, some U.S. states and local governments restrict the use of fireworks in accordance with guidelines set by the Clean Air Act. The American Pyrotechnics Association provides a free online directory of state laws across the U.S. regulating the use of fireworks.
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Rebecca - Tue, Jul 5, 2011, 12:31 P
No Fireworks
Well someone attempted to have them anyway. I don't know if they were shut down by the police or not, but I heard them at my house. I do think that the local police were under pressure by the state. From what I heard there is/was someone on the lake, or maybe a few folks, who objected to the fireworks and they had the state law on their side.

I think the whole experience lends itself to the debate about whether towns should have the right to legalize fireworks in their towns instead of the state deciding for all. At the lake it has worked pretty well in the past for private people to safely aim their fireworks into the lake. It doesn't cost taypayer money and the shows usually last a lot longer than the 30 minute performances that Greenfield and Amherst put on. Plus those of us who live near the lake don't have to worry about parking or crowds etc.

It would be nice if Shutesbury could legalize them. Maybe they could open up the boat ramp or the state park for public viewing and the local lakefront residents could do them as they have in the past. However the way the laws are right now that's not an option.

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mmuller - Sun, Jul 3, 2011, 11:14 P
No Fireworks
Call me an outsider, but the number of disappointed people around the lake tonight could be measured in the near-thousands, I would guess. Ridiculous.
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Laurel - Wed, Jun 29, 2011, 10:52 A
Teens and Tweens welcome to Harry Potter Marathon
*Harry Potter Movie Marathon at the Wendell Library Cinema*
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 is scheduled to open in major cinemas on July 15, 2011.
Here is your chance to revisit all the films leading up to this grand finale.
Saturday July 9th 5pm Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001)
7:30pm Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)
Sunday July 10th 3pm Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)
5:30pm Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)
8pm Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)
Monday July11th 5pm Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009)
7:30pm Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010)
Hosted by the Teens and Tweens Program. All ages welcome.
Start times of the second and third movies will begin as close to the posted times as possible.
Feel free to bring snacks to share. The films are Rated PG or Pg-13.
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carlson - Mon, Jun 27, 2011, 12:56 P
Leverett Library’s Summer Reading Program Kickoff Celebration- with ice cream!
One World, Many Stories - Leverett Library Summer Reading Program Kickoff Celebration-with Ice Cream Sundae Bar!
Thursday, June 30 7-8pm
Who: Kids finishing grades K-6 are invited to take part
How: Sign up at the library and receive a logbook to record the titles of the books you read or listen to this summer
Why: Every book and audiobook that you read will help us raise money for disaster victims in Japan and Western Mass. (Thanks to support from the friends of the Leverett Library, the library will donate the funding up to $180 toward relief efforts in these locations.)
Make your own ice cream sundae, learn to make some origami figures or color a country’s flag to decorate the library.
Optional: Come wearing an item of clothing from a part of the world that interests you!

Sponsored by your local library, the Mass. Library System, the Boston Bruins, and the Mass Board of Library Commissioners. The Leverett Library’s program receives generous support from the Friends of the Leverett Library and Union #28 Community Network for Children.
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carlson - Mon, Jun 27, 2011, 12:38 P
Puppet Performance at New Salem Library
At the New Salem Library this Thursday, June 30 from 11am-noon.... Nicol B. Wander of Wanderful Creations will present "The Frog Prince" and "Little Red Riding Hood" puppet performances. All the fairy tale characters are ingeniously created out of everyday household objects. Her performance will capture the imagination of all who see it and will take them back to a world of make believe. A special dancing marionette will be part of the finale. Meet and greet with the puppets and puppeteer. This program is supported by Union #28 Community Network for Children.
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unclelen - Thu, Jun 23, 2011, 11:28 A
What is it
This is a spy box placed here by ancient aliens. BTW, there is no "e" at the end of "Leverett."
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Ann - Wed, Jun 22, 2011, 5:38 P
Thanks for the information.
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Laurel - Wed, Jun 22, 2011, 12:46 P
What is it?
These are ash borer traps that are being put out around the county by the USDA. See "The Recorder" on page C3, June 13, 2011 for a complete article with photos.
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GregC - Wed, Jun 22, 2011, 12:15 P
What is it?
There are quite a few of these objects in the area -- one on West Pelham Road near Leonard, another on North Valley Road near the Robert Frost trail parking space and another on Rt 202 on New Salem just north is the Shutesbury line -- but I, foe one, have NO idea what they are :-( An art project??!?
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Ann - Wed, Jun 22, 2011, 11:11 A
What is it
At the corner of Leonard and West Pelham road is a purple metal triangle object. It is hanging from a tree (you must look up) and is anchored by a wire. Anyone know what this is. I understand there is one in Leverette, too.
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Diane - Thu, Jun 16, 2011, 1:50 P
Adorable kittens ready for adoption. Orange males, tiger girls, calicos, black&white. Call Diane at 413-548-9394
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mmuller - Tue, Jun 14, 2011, 3:54 P
Mutton & Mead this Saturday
Looking for some serious fun this Saturday?

Mutton and Mead Medieval Festival
The Renaissance Faire in Montague, MA, tucked away in the pastoral hills of Western Mass!
Theme: "Thieves of Honor" Robin Hood of Sherwood Forest

Saturday, June 18, 2011, 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
* * * RAIN OR SHINE * * *
On the grounds of Millers Falls R&G Club
210 Turners Falls Road Turners Falls, MA, 01376

Adults: $15 at the gate
Kids and Seniors: $10 at the gate

DISCOUNTED TICKETS: Mutton and Mead is a fundraiser for the Foodbank of Western Mass. Donations of non-perishable food at the gate will get you $1-off the ticket price for each two items, up to $3 total.

The first annual Mutton and Mead Medieval Festival is coming to Turners Falls on the grounds of the Millers Falls Rod and Gun Club on Saturday, June 18, 2011. The festival, traditionally known as a Renaissance Faire, will bring together fun, food, and entertainment with a medieval flair. This will be a day for everyone, kids, teens, and adults alike. Dressing up in period costumes is not required, but it will heighten the experience for everyone.

The theme for the inaugural year is Robin Hood of Sherwood Forest, "Thieves of Honor." Many characters from the legend, including Robin and his band of Merry Men, will be making appearances in the woods around the faire along with a varied assortment of entertainers, craftspeople, and other vendors from across New England. There will also be jousting, eagles and falcons, knife throwing, archery demonstrations and contests, various food vendors selling contemporary and period-authentic foods, as well as artisan crafts and medieval merchandise.

Be transported through time

So travel back in time with us to the early 13th Century. The Mutton and Mead Tavern is holding their annual summer festival, and collecting food for the poor. The shire folk are worried the Sheriff of Nottingham will come and exact tax payment on the collected food, but are confident that Robin Hood will swoop in and save the day!
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carlson - Thu, Jun 9, 2011, 2:40 P
Puppet Performance at New Salem Library
Puppet Performance at the New Salem Library: 11am (after the Yoga Playdate) on Thursday, June 30. Nicol B. Wander of Wanderful Creations will present "The Frog Prince" and "Little Red Riding Hood." All the fairy tale characters are ingeniously created out of everyday household objects. Meet and greet with the puppets and puppeteer. This program is sponsored by the Community Network for Children Program and is funded by the CFCE Grant for the Massachusetts Dept. of Early Ed. and Care. For more information contact, Gillian, CNC Coordinator, at 978.544.5157.
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carlson - Tue, May 31, 2011, 11:59 A
Family Hike - Community Network for Children
Join us for a family hike led by Dawn Ward at Ruggles Pond/Wendell State Forest on Sunday, June 5 at 10:30. We will provide a light snack, but you're welcome to bring a picnic lunch and stay after the hike. For more info contact Gillian Budine, CNC Coordinator, at 978.544.5157.
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drmaiella - Fri, May 20, 2011, 2:51 P
Lyme Disease lecture, May 24th
HI Everybody,

I'm giving a lecture at the Jones Library in Amherst THIS Tuesday, May 24th, at 5:00. The lecture is on Lyme disease, and will cover diagnosis (specialty/independent testing and the conventional testing that most docs run), tick identification (the UMASS lab has lent me an outrageous specimen collection!), and of course treatment. I will cover traditional antibiotic treatment, as well as natural medicines.

I'll also help to demystify the elusive western blot tests!

I am an ILADS trained physician (the school of thought that Lyme does have the potential to become chronic if not treated appropriately.) I've been treating Lyme with an integrative approach for the past 6 years and seeing really good results! Come to the lecture. 60 minutes, with a 30 minute Q&A following.

Dr. Emily Maiella
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mmuller - Mon, May 2, 2011, 12:25 P
Looking for Local Talent
Are you or someone you know talented? Mutton and Mead, the upcoming Robin Hood-themed Medieval Festival in Montague, MA, aims to provide a venue to showcase your talents as a performer, educator, crafter or artisan. We have stages and we have streets and we are looking to pack them with talent!

We are looking for musicians, singers, bards and other performers or entertainers to put the “festive” in “festival.” Are you or someone you know a singer, musician, bard, juggler, dancer, storyteller, puppeteer, sword fighter, acrobat, tumbler, fire eater, stilt walker, sword swallower, juggler, rope walker, ventriloquist, or otherwise talented person? We are looking for both professional and novice performers. Send them to where they can find out how to get involved.

We are also looking to tap into New England talented community of artists, artisans and crafters. Likewise, if you or someone you know is a painter, jewelry maker, wood artisan, sculptor, weaver, metal worker, glass worker, or otherwise makes or sells something visitors of Mutton and Mead might want to buy, please send them to

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stevetx7 - Sun, Apr 17, 2011, 7:11 P
Ice Dams Prevention
No More Ice Dams
Free public presentation on ice dam prevention.
Shutesbury Athletic Club
282 Wendell Road, Shutesbury, (
Wednesday, April 27th 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.

Roof top ice dams occur when accumulation of ice builds up along the edge of a building's or home's roof, which can cause leaking, structural damage and other problems. Many homes in Shutesbury and around the valley experienced problems with ice dams. Now is the time to address this issue before winter rolls around again.

Information on DIY fixes and longer term solutions will be followed by a question and answer session.


Bick Corsa of Bick Corsa Carpentry is Winner of the Zero Energy Challenge for building the Stephens/Clarke Residence in Montague. Currently, Bick is teaching a home weatherization training course through Greenfield Community College, and also does Home energy audits for the -Home Energy Plan - a new service that he and partner Kent Hicks of now offer.

Sponsored by Transition Shutesbury. This volunteer group of local residents is working to increase the resilience of their towns in the face of economic uncertainty, increasing energy costs, and climate related challenges.

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Laurel - Sat, Apr 16, 2011, 12:32 P
Hoophouse Design with Dan Botkin - at the Wendell Library
Place of workshop next Thursday is the Wendell Free Library's Marion Herrick Meeting Room. Sorry to have omitted that!
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Laurel - Sat, Apr 16, 2011, 12:26 P
Hoophouse Design with Dan Botkin
_"Basic Hoophouse Design and Building"_
Thursday, April 21st 7pm ($2-$5 donation requested)
The four season, steel and plastic "hoophouse" can offer huge growing opportunities to the aspiring backyard gardener or micro-farmer. Growing seedlings and plants (even perennials!) in hoophouses fosters superior growth with much less disease, earlier (and later) harvests, as well as a precious winter habitat for off-season horticulture, recreation and learning projects. In this lively slide show and lecture, farmer Dan Botkin will review basic hoophouse design options, and step by step building information. We will discuss both home fabrication (salvage...) as well as working with a commercially available hoophouse "kit". We will discuss single and double walled greenhouses, options for doors, endwalls and "roll up" ventilation.
Dan Botkin
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stevetx7 - Tue, Apr 12, 2011, 8:30 A
Free Composting Workshop April 13
Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
and the town of Shutesbury Presents

Composting and Healthy Gardens

A Free Workshop

Learn how to compost and have a beautiful garden that’s healthy for your family, neighbors, pets and the environment!

April 13, 2011

Shutesbury Elementary School
23 West Pelham Road, Shutesbury

Call 413-567-5027 or e-mail to pre-register and for directions for this free workshop.

Refreshments served! Free gifts for participants! Win a compost bin!

Sponsored by the Shutesbury Recycling Committee

View All Comments
Mammalou - Thu, Mar 31, 2011, 8:55 P
Delay? Closed?
I don't think we will know until they officially make the announcement around 5:30ish tomorrow morning.

View All Comments
mmuller - Thu, Mar 31, 2011, 6:11 P
Delay? Closed?
Any ideas on whether or not the school will be delayed or closed tomorrow? The latest forecast makes tomorrow morning look pretty bad.
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mmuller - Tue, Mar 1, 2011, 6:14 P
Internet Access
Anyone know if Baker Road has Internet access? Either DSL or broadband. Hoping that satellite is not required.
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mmuller - Wed, Jan 19, 2011, 3:55 P
Open Auditions: Call for Talent
Open Auditions: Call for Talent
To be held Sunday, January 23rd, 2011 at the Montague Grange hall

For Immediate Release

Montague Renaissance Faire Seeks Talent

Mutton and Mead, Montague's Medieval Festival, seeks Actors, Singers, Dancers, Minstrels, and other creative types at an audition and open house on Sunday, January 23rd, 2011, from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM at the Montague Grange hall, for "THIEVES OF HONOR" a Robin Hood-themed Renaissance Faire to be held on June 18th in Turners Falls, MA.

Actors should come with a two-minute monologue and be prepared to participate in some improvisational activities. Not looking for a major role? We are also seeking extras for "depth and color" and will provide training. If you sing or play an instrument please bring it and a song to present.

Not an actor, but still interested in helping bring our medieval village to life? Mutton and Mead is also seeking volunteers, crafts-people, merchants, theater crew, designers and carpenters, independent acts, interns and staff. Just contact us or stop by on audition day. There are several Managerial spots available as well, for those who like to work on these types of events.

Are you some other creative type? Our hope is that Mutton and Mead will provide a venue for the community. We welcome your ideas on how we can make that happen. We hope to see you or hear from you too.

Auditions and Open house to be held at the Montague Grange hall, 34 Main Street, Montague Center, on Sunday, January 23, 2011, from 10:00 AM through 4:00 PM.
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carlson - Thu, Jan 6, 2011, 1:06 P
Toileting Tips Workshop for Parents/Caregivers
Presented by Sarah Patton, LICSW, HHC and Union #28 Community Network for Children
Thursday, February 10 from 6-8 pm
At Shutesbury Elementary School, 23 West Pelham Road, Shutesbury
To register contact Gillian Budine of Community Network for Children at 978-544-5157 or

When to start? What to do? When to worry? Bring your questions, concerns and ideas about what has worked or not worked for you. Appropriate for those who are just beginning or those 'still working on it'!
Dinner served at 5:30. Child care available with registration.
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Diane - Mon, Nov 29, 2010, 3:21 P
SI KAHN Concert - Dec. 11
Veteran singer/songwriter, activist and community organizer, Si Kahn, will appear at the Echo Lake Coffeehouse in the Town Hall, 9 Montague Rd., Leverett, MA, on Saturday, December 11 at 7:30 pm. Tickets may be reserved by calling 413-548-9394 and are $15-$20.

Si Kahn is an accomplished author and musician who incorporates his passion for people’s rights and dignity into his songwriting, concert and festival performances, conference keynotes, workshops and residencies.

His songs of family, community, work and freedom such as Aragon Mill, Wild Rose of the Mountain and Gone, Gonna Rise Again have been recorded by hundreds of artists, including Dick Gaughan, Robin and Linda Williams, June Tabor and the Oyster Band, Patrick Street, Laurie Lewis, Planxty, Hazel Dickens, Dolores Keane and Renaud Séchan.

In addition to his 16 CDs of original songs, he partnered with Pete Seeger and Jane Sapp to record Carry It On (Flying Fish, 1982), a double album of traditional songs from the labor, civil rights and women's movements.

The May 2010 publication of Creative Community Organizing, A Guide for Rabble-Rousers; Activists and Quiet Lovers of Justice is a moving memoir. Faith Petric's review. states . . it is a pleasure to read, full of stories, written in everyday English.

Courage, a CD with 16 new songs about the quiet heroism of everyday people, superbly produced and accompanied by Jens Kruger and featuring harmonies and liner notes by Kathy Mattea, was ranked Number 1 played CD and Si as Number 1 most played artist for May and June 2010 on the Richard Gillmann Folk DJ survey. Rich Warren's Sing Out! review reports: " Kahn’s writing and energy remain at the peak of his career. He addresses subjects overlooked by most writers, and he always defends the underdog."

Si Kahn has worked for over 45 years as a civil rights, labor and community organizer and musician. He is a Distinguished Senior Fellow at Demos: A National Center for Ideas and Action. He also serves as Executive Director Emeritus of Grassroots Leadership, the Southern-based national organization he founded 30 years ago. For the past 11 years, Grassroots Leadership has worked to oppose privatization and to defend the public sector. This work currently includes a campaign to abolish all for-profit private prisons, jails and detention centers, including immigrant detention centers, as a step towards helping create a prison and criminal justice system that is truly just and humane.
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mmuller - Tue, Nov 16, 2010, 12:46 P
Food Safety Modernization Act
There is a bill about to be introduced to the floor of the US Senate that many people are alarmed about. One aspect of it would outlaw the saving of seeds, and regulate home-grown food.

This website has a pretty heavy-handed and overstated view of the bill, but does bring to light some of the ramifications:


Clearly this is a corporate-sponsored bill.

How to protest Senate Bill 510, "Food Safety Modernization Act"

Call your senators:

John Kerry: (202) 224-2742
Scott Brown: (202) 224-4543

Once connected ask to speak to the legislative staff person responsible for agriculture. If they are unavailable, leave a voice mail message. Be sure to include your name, town, and phone number.

Explain that you are a constituent of the senator and that you oppose the Food Safety Modernization Act, s510, in its entirety. It is a destructive law that will destroy the future of food in America. We may lose our right to grow our own food and save our own seeds if Senate Bill 510 passes.

This is a dangerous law that would criminalize many of the very people growing our food and turn food production into yet another corporate monopoly.

Please take the time right now to contact your U.S. Senator and voice your strong opposition to this bill. When you're done, post your experience here.

BTW, I just called both and spoke with someone who took my request. Apparently neither senator has formed an opinion on the bill yet, so your calls could have a strong impact.
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mmuller - Mon, Sep 20, 2010, 4:52 P
September is Shutesbury Report Troubles to Verizon Month
[re-posting from the deepsoft mail list. -Mik]


From: "Aron P. Goldman" <>
Date: Mon, 20 Sep 2010 16:24:54 -0400

[I'm pretty sure Verizon doesn't really track this stuff (we've heard different stories from VZ insiders over the years), but the Shutesbury Town Administrator is making an effort, and deserves our help. She devised this:]

Sept is "Shutesbury Report Troubles to Verizon Month". The goal is report each and every Verizon line trouble in Shutesbury. Reports need to be made BOTH to the town and to Verizon.

Step 1: Call Verizon at 866-745-3741 or file online:

Step 2: File incident with town - call 259-1214 or online form:

Also see flyer for full info and please share with others:
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Diane - Sat, Sep 18, 2010, 2:11 P
Kittens for adoption
Adorable 8-week old kittens ready for their new homes. Medium length haired Black & White females, one calico and one short-haired orange boy. Call 548-9394.
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Diane - Sat, Sep 18, 2010, 1:26 P
Echo Lake Coffeehouse Schedule of Concerts
Schedule of Concerts thru May 2011
Sept. 19 - Sun - 4:00 pm - Larry Kirwan
Oct. 16 - Sat - 7:30 pm - Colleen Kattau
Nov. 18 - Thu - 7:30 pm - Dana & Susan Robinson
Dec. 11 - Sat - 7:30 pm - Si Kahn (reservations required in advance 413-548-9394)

2011 - all concerts on Saturday at 7:30 pm
Jan 15 - Spook Handy
Feb. 12 - Magpie
Mar. 12 - Sue Kranz & Ben Tousley
Apr. 16 - Ben Bedford
May 14 - David Ferrard

Please mark your calendars so you won't miss these special appearances of performers from far and near, including the North Carolina, the Midwest, Scotland and even New Jersey!

You can catch many of these singer/songwriters on my radio show, "Music of the People", now streaming on Mon 4 pm, Tues 4 am, Wed 9 pm and Thurs 9 am at
(All times are Eastern seaboard times-adjust for your area)
My playlists can be viewed at the blogspot address listed below.

Diane Crowe
Music of the People, WMCB 107.9 LPFM, Greenfield, MA, DJ, -
Echo Lake Coffeehouse, Leverett, MA, Mgr.,
People's Music Network, Coordinator,
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mmuller - Tue, Aug 17, 2010, 12:15 P
Montague Race Entry Deadline Extended to August 30th
Turners Falls - People wishing to enter the Montague Soapbox Races who haven't yet sent in their entry form now have an extra two weeks to get them in. The new entry deadline is Monday, August 30th, 8:00 PM.

The Montague Soapbox Races, the first of a new annual event, is a fundraising event for Montague Community TV, and will be held on Sunday, September 19th, from high noon till the last cart goes down the hill. Winners will be handed real metal trophy cups in a winners ceremony at the end, hosted by Russ Brown, State Senator Stan Rosenburg, and Montague Selctboard chair Pat Allen.

Entry forms are still coming in to the TV station every day. The race will stop at a maximum of 150 racers. The race entry fee is $25. Spectators attend for free.

Race entrants who need technical assistance putting their cart together will be invited to a cart building party on Sunday, August 29th, in Turners Falls. Some of the Race Inspectors and Race Officials will be on hand as well to give professional advice.

Racers should bring whatever they have already completed, as well as all parts and supplies they intend to use, including bolts, screws, nails, wood, concept drawings and their own tools (very important). the build party host has a large supply of bicycle parts and wheels to provide for free. All racers under 18 years old must be accompanied by an adult.

Race rules and applications can be downloaded from the official race website and printed. If you don't have a printer you can pick up a pre-printed application at the Montague Town Hall clerk's office, any of the three Montague public libraries, or the TV station itself, at 34 Second Street in Turners Falls.

The race is still looking for vendors, either to sell food or wares, or distribute their information or fundraise. Please contact Nancy Paglia (413) 548-9015.

The race is also looking for sponsors and hay bale advertisers. Please contact Doug Fontaine (413) 522-8382.
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mmuller - Sun, Aug 1, 2010, 6:02 P
AG probes bad phone service in rural Mass.

AG probes bad phone service in rural Mass.

By BEN STORROW Staff Writer
Published on July 30, 2010

The number of Verizon customers in western Massachusetts reporting problems with their phone service is higher than anywhere else in the state except southeastern Massachusetts, according to the state attorney general's office.

And the number of complaints here is 60 percent higher than in the Boston area.

Those findings were filed by the attorney general's office as part of the state Department of Telecommunications and Cable's investigation into Verizon telephone service throughout the region. They also came several weeks before reports of widespread telephone and Internet service outages in Shutesbury, where 50 residences reported a loss of telephone service, Internet service or both over the first two weeks of July.

The incident attracted the attention of U.S. Sen. John Kerry, who wrote to Verizon's regional president urging the company to cooperate with the state investigation. The DTC is currently conducting a regional service investigation, which also includes looking into allegations of faulty phone service in the towns of Leverett, Hancock, Rowe and Egremont. Verizon is the sole provider of landline phone service in both Shutesbury and Leverett.

The attorney general's report says that the number of average monthly trouble reports per hundred lines, or RPHLs, is high in western Massachusetts. The Springfield district, which covers the four counties in western Massachusetts, had 257,750 Verizon phone lines and reported an average of 3,649 monthly trouble reports in 2009, giving the region an RPHL score of 1.4.

Boston, in comparison, had 360,445 Verizon phone lines and saw 3,121 monthly reports, receiving an RPHL score of 0.9, the lowest in the state. The Marlboro district had 444,321 lines, 5,432 monthly reports and an RPHL of 1.2, while the Southeast district had 405,426 lines, 6,321 reports and an RPHL of 1.6.

Yet those numbers do not tell the story of phone service in rural western Massachusetts, the Attorney General's report says. Urban areas like Springfield receive better phone service than rural areas, thus improving the region's average for number of monthly trouble reports. The Springfield region had far more wire centers witnessing RPHLs of 3.0 to 4.0 between January and August 2009 than any other region in the state, the report said.

The Amherst wire center had RPHL scores of 1.49 in February, 3.5 in July and 3.42 in October 2009.

"With an RPHL that is almost 60 percent higher than that experienced by their counterparts who reside in the Boston district, Western Massachusetts consumers clearly are not receiving reasonably comparable service," the report stated.

Corroded wires

Leverett Selectman Peter d'Errico says the phone service complaints in his town are similar to those reported in other communities. "Calls are dropped, dial tones are lost and the situation is exacerbated when there is any sort of dampness in the air."

D'Errico thinks the problem is due to holes in the telephone wires, which are known as "open plants."

"There were hundreds and hundreds of situations where Verizon had not done any fixing [of open plants]," d'Errico said in an interview this week. "Gradually over the years that has left the stuff unprotected and allowed corrosion to come in. The wires that had been exposed, and where the weather was getting in, are in bad shape. Now it is not just fixing the hole, there is damage inside."

According to the attorney general's report, Verizon has fixed 1,248 open plants in western Massachusetts and has plans to repair an additional 3,500 by the end of 2010. However, the company had completed only 16 percent of those repairs as of May, the attorney general's report said.

The DTC investigation will determine whether the state believes Verizon will fix the problems on its own, whether the threat of an investigation will be enough for the company to rectify the situation or whether there is a need for continuing state oversight, d'Errico said.

"The department is now carefully analyzing the evidence and briefs and will be issuing a decision within the next few months," DTC spokeswoman Kofi Jones said in an email to the Bulletin.

Rain's effect

Meanwhile, residents in rural towns anxiously await the state's ruling.

"If it rains you don't have any telephone service in Shutesbury," said Mary Anne Antonellis, a town resident and the local librarian. She said she was without phone service at her house while the M.N. Spear Memorial Library had only intermittent Internet service between July 1 and 15.

"It is a big joke up there. People will say, ‘It rained, that's why you didn't have a phone yesterday,' " Antonellis said.

Phil Santoro, Verizon spokesman, disputed the notion that his company provides substandard service to the region.

"The evidence that we have presented in the DTC's proceeding clearly demonstrates that Verizon provides excellent service quality throughout the region," Santoro wrote in an email to the Bulletin.

Regarding the recent outages in Shutesbury he said, "while we strive to restore service as quickly as possible for our customers, we regret that in this case, having performed several tests and dispatched technicians on several occasions, this was a particularly difficult problem to diagnose and resolve. We have restored customer service and apologize for the experience."

When Santoro was asked to specify what the problem had been and what the company was doing to fix it, his response was brief, repeating that diagnostic steps were taken.

Meanwhile, Shutesbury residents interviewed say that while their telephone and Internet service has been restored since the outages at the beginning of the month, they have not received an explanation from Verizon.

"We haven't heard anything from Verizon, no response," said resident Jody Brush, who reported losing service from July 8 to 12. During that time her 8-year-old daughter, Noelle, fell and broke her wrist. Brush said she was unable to call the pediatrician's office before taking her child to the hospital.

Then, she said, her family lost phone service a second time on July 16. "Our telephone service was restored on Monday and four days later there was a thunderstorm and we lost service again from 5 p.m. to 2 or 3 the next afternoon."

Combined-broadband mailing list
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Laurel - Mon, Jul 26, 2010, 9:57 A
The Maya Seed Ark Project
Please join us on August 10 at 7:30 in the meeting room at the the Wendell Free Library for an evening with Camila Martinez, of the Maya Seed Ark Project (

The evening, a Benefit to raise funds and resources for Camila Martinez's Maya Seed Ark Project, includes Camila's special reading of THE MAYA PROPHECIES, also storytelling and a compelling media presentation of the very present crisis of GMO infiltration of heritage seed corn stock that is profoundly effecting the Maya people in Mexico, Guatemala and Belize. For the Maya this is not only an environmental crisis--- it is a spiritual and cultural crisis. The Maya know themselves as the 'People of the Corn'. Corn is central to their spiritual heritage, ceremony, and food security, as well as their daily nurture.

Camila Martinez has been a tireless advocate for native seed banks amongst the Maya populations in southern Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize. Her Maya Seed Ark Project has been instrumental in educating about the effects of GMO and establishing functioning heirloom seed banks amongst native populations. Bioneers has recently requested that Camila Martinez and the Maya Seed Ark Project be the Guest of Honor at their 2010 Food and Farming Banquet. Camila has spent many decades studying, living, and working amongst indigenous peoples in Central and North America. She is passionate about her cause and we think you will be too after hearing her story and the stories of the Maya people.

This event is co-sponsored by the Friends of the library and the Wendell Agricultural Committee. It is free, although donations to help Camila with this work will be gratefully accepted.
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mmuller - Thu, Jul 15, 2010, 5:59 P
WesternMA Connect, Inc. July 2010 Broadband Update
MBI Application Successful!

On July 2, 2010, Governor Deval Patrick and members of the Massachusetts Congressional delegation announced that the Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) had been awarded $45.4 million of federal ARRA funds. These funds will be used to construct over 1,100 miles of fiber-optic middle-mile infrastructure in western and north central Massachusetts. The award was formally announced at a ceremony held on July 8 at Greenfield Community College. Event attendees included U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, U.S. Senator John Kerry, Governor Patrick, and Congressmen Richard Neal and John Olver. Both Senator Kerry and Congressman Olver recognized Connect for its decade-long support for the creation of an advanced telecommunications landscape throughout the region. All speakers made reference to the many letters received in support of the application. Your compelling stories definitely impacted the application outcome. Thank you to everyone who submitted letters and congratulations to the MBI!

What Does This Mean For You?

In 2008, Governor Patrick and the Massachusetts Legislature established the MBI with the mission to extend affordable high-speed Internet access to ALL residential, commercial and public places across the Commonwealth. This new federal award will be combined with the $26 million of state funding already in place to make this a reality. Internet service providers have stated that once the MBI's network is complete, it will become more cost effective for them to bring high-speed Internet access to those who currently have none.

What's Next?

In the coming months, the MBI will continue to be very busy designing and engineering the network, negotiating access to state-owned assets, forming partnerships to support network deployment, and encouraging the telecommunications industry to be prepared to provide services and invest in the region. Meanwhile, the MBI has contracted with Connect to work collaboratively with regional planning agencies, local municipalities, and other organizations to ensure that this network is constructed as quickly, cost-effectively and efficiently as possible. Under the terms of the federal grant, two-thirds of the project must be built by 2012 and the network completed in 2013. This is a huge undertaking. Although you may not visually see progress right away, be assured that the MBI and many others are working diligently to meet the federal timeline and requirements set.

How Can You Help?

If you have not already done so, please visit and complete the online survey. Encourage your friends and neighbors to do the same. This information will assist the MBI in its effort to more accurately map where broadband does and does not exist. If you are an elected official or local department head, please respond to outreach conducted by the MBI and Connect. This network cannot succeed without your participation!
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Laurel - Mon, Jul 12, 2010, 9:14 A
Blueberry Festival this Sunday, July 18, 2010
Blueberry Celebration!
Sunday, July 18th from 2:30-5:00 p.m.

In the backyard of Wendell's Deja Brew

It's Potluck - Bring your favorite blueberry dish

Deja Brew will be open for beverages (no BYOB please)

Tell your favorite berry-picking stories

Share your blueberry recipes

Sponsored by the Wendell Agricultural Commission

For more information, contact Linda Hickman at 978-544-8604

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mmuller - Sat, Jul 10, 2010, 11:44 A
Apologies for emails
My sincere apologies for all the old emails some of you received yesterday. The Calendar reminder script wasn't working for a while, and when I finally fixed it yesterday morning it sent out all the back-logged reminders. 3,800 total emails were sent, and I got 135 of them.

Ah well. Programming has its funny sides sometimes. At least we now know the calendar reminders work.

Keep smiling.

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mmuller - Wed, Jun 16, 2010, 11:21 P


First Local Soapbox Race in Decades

Montague will host the first Soapbox Race in Franklin County in decades on September 18th, 2010. The gravity-fed race will take place at Unity Park in Turners Falls on the 1st Street hill. Racers must be at least 8-years old and reside in Franklin County. All carts must be made from scratch, not from kits or pre-fabricated, and must include no propulsion of any kind.

The entry fee is $25 per racer and only 150 applications will be accepted. There will be three age brackets: kids, teens and adults. Yes, adults may race! The application deadline is August 15th. Racers may obtain sponsorship to help defray the cost of building their vehicle.

Racers in each age bracket will win real-metal trophy cups based on distance or creativity. The event will be free to watch, and it is hoped families will come out to picnic with the many local food vendors.

Race Director Mik Muller remarked “Unity Park is a perfect location for a downhill race: the 1st Street hill is quite steep and the bend at the bottom requires some skill, both in vehicle construction and driving; the wide lawns in the park are perfect for spectators to gather and cheer; there is plenty of room for vendors to sell their food and wares; and of course there is the Connecticut River spanned by the Turners Falls Gill Bridge as a beautiful backdrop, an icon for Turners Falls.”

This is the first derby since the Old Home Days derbies of the mid-1960’s in Montague Center, and before that the 3rd Street derbies of the late-1940’s in Turners Falls.

Vendors interested in having a table at the race should call Nancy Paglia at (413) 548-9015. Those wishing to advertise, sponsor or underwrite the race please call Doug Fontaine at (413) 522-8382. Anyone wishing to volunteer on race day (free staff t-shirt!), please call Mik Muller at (413) 320-5336.

Race rules, all required forms, and more information can be found on the official race website.
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carlson - Thu, Jun 3, 2010, 10:53 A
CNC Family Fun Day
Family photo booth, Mademoiselle Pixie Belle Face painting and balloons, cold potluck lunch, arts and crafts tables, musical entertainment by Ed Hines, Safe Kids car seat safety check point! On June 19th at Mill River Park in North Amherst on Route 63 from 10am-1pm. To be held rain or shine. Families with young children welcome! For more info contact Gillian Budine, CNC Coordinator, 413-423-3180.
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lakewyolaroadrace - Wed, Jun 2, 2010, 12:31 P
Lake Wyola Road Race - June 13
Register for the race and get more information at:

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Diane - Mon, May 17, 2010, 1:33 P
Kittens for Adoption
I have two kittens born March 20, ready to go to their new homes. Black with white markings, one male and one female. Would like to see them adopted by the same home. They are adorable, playful and energetic! $25 each. Call 548-9394
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mmuller - Fri, May 14, 2010, 9:30 A
Lake Wyola Road Race - June 13

Lake Wyola Road Race
Sunday, June 13, 2010
Walk at 10:00 am
Run at 10:30 am
Association Building
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carlson - Thu, May 6, 2010, 10:33 A
Community Network for Children May events
Just wanted to update families with young children and child care providers about some events happening in May.

~"Drumming Away the Blues of Winter and Welcoming the Sun!" Family Potluck and Interactive Entertainment with Craig Harris to be held on Friday, May 14 from 5:30-7:30 at Leverett Elementary School.

~REACH visits to Shutesbury (5/14/10 from 9-10:30am) and Erving (5/19/10 from 10-11:30am) playgroups. Preregister for a screening if you have questions about your child's development. Screenings for children under 3 years of age.

~"Could it be Autism?" discussion for parents with Sean O'Neill, Inclusion Specialist for Union #28. To be held at Erving Elementary School on Monday, May 17- pizza dinner served at 5:30, workshop begins at 6:00.

~"Is My Child Ready for School?" workshop for parents of children entering preschool or kindergarten. To be held Thursday, May 20 at Swift River School in New Salem. Pizza dinner served at 5:30, workshop begins at 6:00.

~"No, I Won't and You Can't Make Me! Secrets for Handling Children's Power Struggles with Success" with Bill Corbett of Cooperative Kids. To be held on Saturday, May 22 from 9:30-12:30 at Erving Elementary School.

If you need more information or to register please be in touch with Jessica or Gillian at 413.423.3180
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Laurel - Tue, Apr 20, 2010, 1:12 P
"Fresh," the movie
Friday, April 23, 2010, the movie, "Fresh," will be shown at the new Wendell Free Library at 7:00 p.m. "Fresh" offer new thinking about what we are eating and encourages local food consumption. Come for a lively discussion. Sponsored by the Wendell Agricultural Commission.
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carlson - Sun, Apr 4, 2010, 9:33 P
Shutesbury Elementary School Silent Auction and Spaghetti Dinner
Friday, April 9 from 5:30-9:00pm at the Shutesbury Elementary School. Tickets needed for both seating of Spaghetti Dinner (6pm and 7:30). Contact the school office for ticket info. This year's Silent Auction includes over 200 donations from local businesses and individuals! Themed baskets will be raffled off for only $3/ticket or $10/5 tickets!! Children's raffle happening in the conference room! Should be an exciting night out in Shutesbury. Please join us!
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carlson - Fri, Mar 19, 2010, 10:40 P
Skate Night
Please join us for a family friendly skate on Sunday, March 28 from 5:30-7:30 at Interskate 91 at the Hampshire Mall in Hadley. $5.50 per person plus $3.25 inline or roller skate rentals. Concessions open. Brought to you by the PTOs of Leverett and Shutesbury Elementary Schools. Put it on your calendars today! If you have questions please get in touch with Jessica Carlson-Belanger, 253-9120

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mmuller - Tue, Feb 9, 2010, 11:06 A
Welcome to
Thanks to Weezie for some website images. I've put the mountains / tree logo image in the top left of the whole website, and am using the town sign on the homepage.

Looking forward to the folks in town to start posting their events and buy / sell stuff.

Also, there's now a link to the Business Directory in the left-side navigation. If you own or run a business in the Shutesbury area, feel free to post your business. It's free.
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mmuller - Thu, Feb 4, 2010, 8:29 A
Welcome to
Hello, and welcome to the new community website for Shutesbury, MA.

Please use the "Around Shutesbury" corkboards to make announcements or start conversations. The calendar is perfect for community events. There's also a pictures area where you can upload photos of ... well, whatever.

The Buy & Sell area is obvious.

We will be adding new areas to the site in the coming weeks, for non-profits in the town, and any agencies who could use an interactive community component.

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