Weekly Update 2.4.19

Weekly Update 2.4.19

“I don’t think I have to go into a detailed appraisal here of the great artistic merit of Negro folk music or of its unquestionable significance for all of mankind….Even in capitalistic America, where there exists racial discrimination of revolting proportions, where many “cultured” whites refuse to recognize the Negro as a human being—even there our folk songs constitute, as strange as it may seem, an object of national pride for many Americans. These songs are striking in the noble beauty of their melodies, in the expressiveness and resourcefulness of their intonations, in the startling variety of their rhythms, in the sonority of their harmonies, and in the unusual distinctiveness and poetic nature of their forms.”
Paul Robeson (1949)
 an African-American bass-baritone concert artist and stage and film actor who became famous both for his cultural accomplishments and for his political activism

Dear {{recipient.first_name_or_friend}} --
     Happy February, WeCAN readers. In this month’s Weekly Email Update we will be taking a look at Black History in Windham County and throughout Vermont. If you have any information or websites you’d like to share with our community please feel free to email them to admin@wecantogether.net. We look forward to hearing from you. 
     The following excerpt comes from local historian Anne Dempsey’s five part series on Black History in Brattleboro, VT that ran in the Brattleboro Reformer in 1994: 
     Even before George Washington became the first President, African-Americans lived as free people in Vermont, where slavery was prohibited in the state's 1777 Constitution; in 1786 Benjamin Wheaton bought land in Brattleboro and was the first African-American man to do so. 
     From 1786 to 1806 Wheaton's town taxes helped care for the poor, pay the minister's salary, and build roads, bridges, and schoolhouses. In 1791 he took the Freeman's Oath, Vermont's prerequisite for voting. He was a literate man, owning a number of books, a brass inkstand, and a share in the Brattleboro Library.
     In 1803 he purchased a pew in the town's meeting house which, at that time, stood across the street from the First Congregational Church. Wheaton's profession is not known, though he owned many tools commonly used in furniture-making. Whatever his trade, Wheaton felt secure enough to purchase land adjoining his property early in 1806.
     In March of the same year the agenda at the annual town meeting included this item: "to see if the town will consent that a pest-house shall be opened and adopt some other measure to prevent the spreading of small pox which has made its appearance in this town."
     Benjamin Wheaton died later that same month (March 1806). Some of his outstanding bills at the time of his death were for services rendered during his "last sickness." It can be assumed that Wheaton contracted and died from smallpox.
     Wheaton had no heirs. Consequently, the town purchased his land from his estate for $51. This money paid Wheaton's doctor bills, his tab at the general store, and the balance of notes and interest on his property.
     A notation on the land deed reads: "to be used by the town of Brattleboro forever as a road, common, or green and for no other purpose." This land today is known as the West Brattleboro Common, a triangular green that borders Western Avenue in West Brattleboro.
Brattleboro Reformer, February 7, 1994.

     

 

Note: There are many new additions to the email this week. Please take a few moments to scroll through to the end and find a new meeting or event to attend!

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   HAPPENING TODAY, SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 3rd, 2019

How are Racial Justice and Climate Justice Connected? Workshop
hosted by 350 Vermont and 350 Brattleboro
Sunday, February 3rd, 2019 at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio for the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 1pm-5pm. Register here: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSebxHWWRNvJ1HSCFbwVYbiCM9ds1u5YchsHpUxT7Tvw_0_pUA/viewform. Admission is by sliding scale, $0 to $40. Please bring cash or check to the workshop, or mail a check made out to "350Vermont" 179 S. Winooski Ave, Suite 201, Burlington, VT 05401 with "RJ CJ Brattleboro" in the memo note. No one will be turned away for lack of funds. Questions? Contact abby@350vt.org
What does racial justice have to do with climate justice? What do we mean by intersectionality? This interactive workshop explores the foundations of these justice movements and how and why they are inextricably bound. Participants will have the opportunity to consider and reflect on their own experiences, listen to the experiences of others, and learn new language and concepts to help support a deepening investigation of climate and racial justice. This is 350Vermont's introductory workshop that offers a series of starting points and questions, rather than a conclusive or summative approach to this content. It will be facilitated by Phoebe Gooding and Abigail Mnookin.

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HAPPENING THIS WEEK, MONDAY, FEBRUARY 4th, 2019-SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 10th, 2019

 

More Yoga Locally for Planned Parenthood
hosted by Yoga Locally 
Tuesdays and Saturdays throughout February; Happening this Tuesday, February 5th, 2019 AND this Saturday, February 9th, 2019 at 118 Elliot Gallery (118 Elliot Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301).
Tuesdays at 5pm-6:30pm, Saturdays at 10:15am-11:45am. No Reservations are necessary for yoga. There is a suggested donation per class and all donations will directly support the new Brattleboro Planned Parenthood.
Yoga Locally vigorous core flow yoga classes are held every Tuesday (5pm) with Laura and Saturday (10:15am) with Jonathan at 118 Elliot Street in Brattleboro. This is not a beginner class, but it will be accessible to every body. 

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Women Veterans Weekly Coffee and Tea Social
Thursday, February 7th, 2019 at Brattleboro Legion Post 5 Inc. (32 Linden Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 9am-10am.
All female veterans are invited to join in the weekly Women Veterans group coffee held at the American Legion.  All women veterans are welcome; you do not need to be a Legion member.

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Virtual Cross Class Dialogue Circle
hosted by Equity Solutions
Thursdays, February 7th, 14th, 21st, and 28th; March 7th, 14th, and 21st, 2019 at https://www.equitysolutionsvt.com/cross-class-dialogue-circles/. 6pm-8:30pm(EST). This is an online, virtual event. Please see below for technical requirements. 
Join us to explore, deepen understanding and connections, and work towards economic justice! Find more info, and to sign up: https://www.equitysolutionsvt.com/cross-class-dialogue-circles/
We use an online video platform called Zoom. You need a computer (with webcam/internal camera and a microphone: most laptops have these) and internet access to be part of the circle. If you would like to participate and do not have access to a computer with a webcam, contact us and we'll brainstorm how to get you connected. We’ll strive to make this online offering as accessible as possible. Please check the registration materials for more info. 
The economic divide in the US is growing, but we rarely talk to each other meaningfully about class. Cross Class Dialogue Circles bring together up to 20 community members with a diversity of class experiences, from being homeless to managing family foundations, and everything in between. These Circles are a powerful way for people from all different economic backgrounds to come together and talk about their own experiences, listen to each others’ stories and perspectives, and then work together as change makers for economic justice.

 

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Protest Vigil at TD Bank
sponsored by Post Oil Solutions
Friday, February 8th, 2019 (and every Friday) at TD Bank Brattleboro (215 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT). In front of the building. 12pm-1pm. Signs will be provided
TD is a major investor in Tar Sands. TD helps to fund the Dakota Access Pipeline. What You Can Do (besides attending the vigils): If you’re a TD depositor, change banks! Founded in 2005, Post Oil Solutions is a 501c3 community organizing project in Southeastern Vermont whose mission is to help empower the people of the Central Connecticut River Valley bioregion in this era of global warming and climate change to develop sustainable, resilient , collaborative, and socially just communities leading to a self- and community-sufficient post petroleum society.

 

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Free Training in Nonviolent Communication with host Laura Rabut
presented by Restorative Community Justice of Southern VT (RCJSV)
Saturday, February 9th, 2019. Location TBD. 10am-1pm.
RCJSV trainings are free to all community members (donations for the use of the space are welcome). Please RSVP by replying to rcjsvt@gmail.com.
Restorative Community Justice of Southern VT (RCJSV) provides free monthly trainings in restorative practices (RP), methods of restorative justice (RJ), and nonviolent conflict resolution. This month, we're pleased to host Laurie Rabut for another installment of training in the use and methods of Nonviolent Communication (NVC).
Laurie will lead a session of concrete practical skills for dealing with conflict using the Non Violent Communication model developed by Marshall Rosenberg. The session will include brief general background of NVC consciousness and review of the concepts covered at her last training for newcomers and will also allow an opportunity to continue and deepen the work for those who attended the last training.
We will practice:
- Making observations without layers of judgement/interpretation
- Empathic listening
- Connecting with feelings that arise
- Identifying the universal human needs generated by those feelings
- Making requests that offer an opportunity for choice and connection 
- Power dynamics (power with vs power under)
- Hearing the “yes” beneath the “no”

 

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Brattleboro Winter Farmers Market
a project of Post Oil Solutions 
Saturday, February 9th, 2019 (and every Saturday thru March 30) in the C.F. Church Building (80 Flat Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 10am-2pm. Accepting credit, debit, and EBT.  Crop Cash turns $10 EBT into $20 every week. Lunch cafe and live music. For info email farmersmarket@postoilsolutions.org, call 802-869-2141, or visit us at www.brattleborowinterfarmersmarket.org.
New Location! Larger and more accessible. Free Parking. All local - farm produce, meats, syrup, fresh baked goods, cheeses, fruits, cider, pickles, preserves, handmade jewelry, pottery, soaps and more. Building community every week.

 

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Sweet Treat Open House: A Vernon Community Center Discussion
hosted by Friends of Vernon Center
Sunday, February 10th, 2019 at Governor Hunt House (Governor Hunt Road, Vernon, VT). 2pm-4pm. Refreshments (baked goods! beverages!) will be served.
Join the Friends of Vernon Center for an open house at the Governor Hunt House on Sunday, February 10th, 2019 from 2pm-4pm! Now that Northstar has begun decommissioning work at the Vermont Yankee plant, the Governor Hunt House may become available to the Friends of Vernon Center (a non-profit organization working to encourage development of a village center) for use as a Community Center for Vernon.
What activities would you like to see there, if the Governor Hunt House became the Vernon Community Center? Possibilities include meetings, community events, private events, music, theater, art displays, craft fairs, food festivals — and more! We want to hear your ideas!

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UPCOMING EVENTS

Reading Frederick Douglass 2019
Monday, February 11th, 2019 at the Rockingham Free Public Library (65 Westminster Street, Bellows Falls, VT, 05101). 6pm. For more information please contact Anne Dempsey at 802.463.4270.
Join us as we read together the fiery July 5th, 1852 speech in which the great abolitionist orator Frederick Douglass took exception to being asked to commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence. This is a participatory event. Community members are invited to witness and/or join in the reading. Copies of the speech will be provided.

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Coffee with Coffey
hosted by Representative Sara Coffey
Monday, February 11th, 2019 at the Guilford Country Store (475 Coolidge Highway, Guilford, VT, 05301). 5:30pm-6:30pm.
During the legislative session Sara will hold monthly "Coffey Hours" with constituents to share updates, answer questions and listen to ideas and concerns. Stop by for a few minutes or for the entire hour!

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Coffee with Coffey
hosted by Representative Sara Coffey
Saturday, February 16th, 2019 at the Vernon Free Library (567 Governor Hunt Road, Vernon, VT, 05345). 9:30am-10:30am.
During the legislative session Sara will hold monthly "Coffey Hours" with constituents to share updates, answer questions and listen to ideas and concerns. Stop by for a few minutes or for the entire hour!

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Celebrating the Lunar New Year of China, Korea, and Vietnam: A Lantern Festival
hosted by the Asian Cultural Center of Vermont (ACCVT)
Sunday, February 17th, 2019 at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center (10 Vernon Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 1pm-4pm. Parking is located next door in the lot for 28 Vernon St. This is a potluck event; please bring an item to share. More information is located on the website: http://accvt.org/. For phone inquiries please call 802-257-7898 to leave a voicemail before the event; for information on the day of the event please call 802-579-9088.
The Asian Cultural Center of Vermont (ACCVT) presents Lunar New Year of China, Korea and Vietnam on Sunday, Feb 17th, 2019 at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center.
Lunar New Year celebrations run from February 5th to February 19th and conclude with the Lantern Festival. We will celebrate the Lantern Festival with stilt walkers, sweet rice balls and the Korean card game Hwatu (Go Stop). Li Fei Osborne returns to share a dance of the Yi people (one of the Chinese ethnic minorities) and then teach us all a Yi dance. Join us to dance with the Dragon, do Qigong, join in a Korean tug-of-war, make a paper lantern, and sing an Asian New Year song. You don’t have to be Asian or know anything about Asia to participate!  We usher in The Year of the Brown Earth Pig, a year full of joy, a year of friendship and love; an auspicious year because the Pig attracts success in all the spheres of life. Don’t miss the chance to dance with the 30-foot Vietnamese dragon. It will arrive around 2:15, and then parade up from the Museum towards Main Street bringing us luck for the coming year.  According to Chinese folklore, this enormous marionette, requiring at least 9 people to hold, is forever chasing the ‘heavenly pearl’ in its pursuit of wisdom. Seth Harter, Director of Asian Studies at Marlboro College, brought this extraordinary dragon back from the village of an accomplished Vietnamese craftsman. During the rest of the year, the dragon ‘lives’ in the Marlboro College dining hall.

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Meet the Candidates for the Brattleboro Selectboard Open Seats
Wednesday, February 20th, 2019 and 
Thursday, February 28th, 2019 at the Robert H. Gibson River Garden (167 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 12pm.
Meet the candidates for Brattleboro Selectboard 1-year and 3-year seats. Q&A and moderated discussion plus snacks! All are welcome.

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Climate Change Café Presents "Secret Ingredients"
a project of Post Oil Solutions
Tuesday, February 26th, 2019 at the Brooks Memorial Library (224 Main Street, Brattleboro, VT 05301). 6pm-8pm. Free. Light refreshments available. For more information please email bereal@vermontel.net. Lori Schreier, local organic farmer/owner of Fertile Fields Farm, will host a group sharing at the end of the film. This powerful film by Amy Hart and Jeffrey Smith shares remarkable stories of people who regain their health after discovering the secret ingredients in their food and making a bold commitment to avoid them.
The secret ingredients in our food may be a lead driver of our obesity, infertility, cancer, digestive problems, autism, brain fog, skin conditions, gluten sensitivity, allergies, fatigue, anxiety, and many other conditions. Meet more than a dozen people who turned around serious health conditions after adopting a diet that avoids genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and food sprayed with toxic herbicides like Roundup. Learn from leading physicians who say that these are not coincidences. They see illness and recovery like this every day in their practice. And listen to the scientists who explain why. The film shares powerful stories of people who regained their health after changing to an all organic diet, free of GMOs, Roundup and other toxic pesticides. Skin and digestive conditions disappear; cancer patients now have a clean bill of health; autistic children are now thriving; infertile couples now have healthy babies.

 

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4th Annual Creative Black-Tie Gala
h
osted by Southern Vermont Young Professionals
Saturday, March 16th, 2019 at The Brattleboro Museum and Art Center (10 Vernon Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 7:30pm-10pm. Admission includes lite food, music, and access to all of the galleries, but bring some cash for the bar and raffle. Tickets for YP Members are $15, and the promotion code is in your membership email! Tickets are $20 for non-members.
We're back for our fourth year of fun and fundraising for the So.VT YP's!
Join the Southern Vermont Young Professionals on March 16th for the Creative Black-Tie Gala, your chance to dust off your funkiest threads to eat, drink, and mingle with the YP community.
Not a member yet? Click through to the Eventbrite page and you'll find a link to join.

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COMMUNITY OPPORTUNITY
The Inclusion Center Board Member Opportunity
We are excited about finding a few new Board Members for Inclusion Center! The Inclusion Center board is looking for individuals who feel a passion for the goals and ideals of our program. 
Board members commit to giving just two hours a month to furthering the development of Inclusion Center, and if they give more, that's all the better! If you are interested in learning more about the Inclusion Center board, please contact us at inclusioncenter2013@gmail.com. We look forward to having some new energy, ideas and assistance!

 

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RESOURCE FOR WeCAN: Rapid Response Text Alert System

When WeCAN began Song & Solidarity set up a Rapid Response Text Alert System for WeCAN Groups. Directions for signing up are on WeCAN's website, here: https://www.wecantogether.net/rapid_response We were reminded of the Rapid Response text alerts system as President Trump moves towards firing Mueller. In the event Mueller is fired, MoveOn is planning a nation-wide simultaneous protest. The trick will be to get the word out fast if/when the time comes. We are grateful to Song and Solidarity for providing this service.

 

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STANDING REGULAR MEETINGS

 

Brattleboro State Representatives’ Updates and Community Conversation
First Saturday of the Month, alternating between 10am and 4pm (2.2.19 was at 10am). Location information to follow. Childcare available upon request by contacting EmilieKornheiser@gmail.com.
As promised, all three of your Brattleboro State Representatives, Mollie Burke, Emilie Kornheiser, and Tristan Toleno, will gather in Brattleboro to host a community conversation and share updates from the first few weeks of the legislative session. Our series of monthly conversations— scheduled for the first Saturday of the month— will alternate between 10am and 4pm. 

 

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Women Veterans Weekly Coffee and Tea Social
Thursday Mornings at Brattleboro Legion Post 5 Inc. (32 Linden Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301). 9am-10am.
All female veterans are invited to join in the Women Veterans group coffee held at the American Legion.  All women veterans are welcome. You do not need to be a Legion member.

 

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Lost River Racial Justice, Black Lives Matter-South, and People Of Color Caucus Regular Meeting
Reoccurring racial justice organizing meetings every 2nd Monday at The Root Social Justice Center (The Whetstone Studio of the Arts, 28 Williams Street, Brattleboro, VT, 05301) on the First Floor. 6pm-8pm. Childcare provided. Fragrance & nut free space.  

 

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Youth 4 Change

Meetings are held on the 1st and 3rd Mondays of the month from 5:30pm-8pm. 
For more information please contact Youth 4 Change at youth4changeaction@gmail.com.
Agenda:
5:30pm: Drop in homework time and art making
6:00pm: Food
6:30pm: Meeting and Organizing
Youth 4 Change is for local-area youth 12-22 interested in political organizing around local/state/national social justice issues that are important to them. Brattleboro area advocates and educators are holding a space, and assisting youth in building a strong personal tool kit to organize for change.  Using a variety of creative methods, we aim to enable youth with tools for resilience, courage and compassion, while fostering their ability to speak up about issues that matter to them, and to take action in the name of love and liberation for all people.  Come explore issues of racial, economic and gender justice through art, movement, first-hand accounts and contemplative practices. Connect with area youth around the issues that matter to you and strengthen your tool kit for action! 

 

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ONGOING EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMMING 

Indigo Radio
Sundays at 12pm on Brattleboro Community Radio 107.7FMTo stream live: Visit www.wvew.org 
Indigo Radio, deepening understanding and making connections! IndigoRadio is a group of area educators seeking to learn through engaging with others in our community and throughout the world. We will be talking about educational and social issues both globally and locally and connecting them to our lives and Brattleboro community. Find us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/indigoradiowvew/. For archive recordings of past shows: https://soundcloud.com/user-654648353.

 

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Have a wonderful week, WeCANners! We hope to see you at a meeting or event in the near future. 


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Joanna and Leslie 
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