Around the Towns

Talk highlights what social movements could gain from the Declaration of Independence

BRATTLEBORO - With its universal claims of equality and liberty, the Declaration of Independence established the principles of a free nation. Since its promulgation, abolitionists, suffragists, civil rights leaders, and the Black Panther Party have relied on the principles of the Declaration to persuade the nation in the direction of liberty and equality.

Scholar Meg Mott will present a history and context of the Declaration and its influence Wednesday, July 13, at 7 p.m., at Brooks Memorial Library, 224 Main St.

In the digital era, social movements are more likely to rely on retweets than first principles, protests instead of persuasion. This presentation considers what today's social movements might learn from the Declaration's playbook.

The program will be presented in person and is free and open to the public. The venue is accessible to people in wheelchairs. For more information call 802-254-5290 or visit

Free breakfast served

WILLIAMSVILLE - Come and enjoy free baked goods, coffee, tea, juice, and Wi-Fi at Williamsville Hall, 35 Dover Road, on Thursday, July 21, from 8 to 10 a.m. Eat-in or take-out. Donations are welcome.

Remember: Depot Road is closed for repair of the Arch Bridge. Instead, take the detour to Grimes Hill Road. The Hall is on the left just past the construction area and church on the left.

Historical Society plans virtual quarterly meeting and program

DUMMERSTON - The Dummerston Historical Society will host a quarterly meeting and program via Zoom on Thursday, July 21, at 7 p.m. A brief business meeting will be held first, followed by a program by Glenn Annis, a resident of Dummerston, who is considered the foremost authority on the West River Railroad. He will share his research that began more than two decades ago.

Have you viewed the big stone bridge piers beside Route 30 near the Covered Bridge? Have you wondered why they are where they are? Those towers are about all that is left of the West River Railroad, a 36-mile narrow gauge line that began in 1878 and went out of business in 1934. Annis will talk about the history of the railroad, how it was built, the cause of its demise, and will show photographs of the railroad and the depots along the way.

If interested in attending, join them via Zoom at The meeting ID is 839 5931 2783, and the passcode is 102413 For more information, email Gail at [email protected].

Town seeks help to save its ash trees

VERNON - The Vernon Conservation Commission says they need help from the community to inventory ash trees on roads and town properties for signs of the presence of the Emerald Ash Borer, an invasive species that kills ash trees. This inventory is used for safety and conservation planning.

Join the Conservation Commission on Thursday, July 28, at 6 p.m., at the Governor Hunt House to learn more about this opportunity to participate in a citizen science project. Students on summer break who need community service hours, retirees, and anyone who enjoys helping the town are welcome.

Joanne Garton of the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, will lead the training. She is a coordinator with the Urban & Community Forestry Program, and will teach participants how to identify ash trees and how to use the State's Roadside Assessment Survey App. Be sure to download ArcGIS Field Maps to your phone or tablet prior to the meeting.

This project allows for you to help as little or as much as you want. To pre-register or receive additional information, email [email protected].

Hospital Fair Day returns Aug. 6

TOWNSHEND - Grace Cottage Hospital will hold its traditional Hospital Fair Day on Saturday, August 6, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., on the Townshend Common, including all of the favorites: the Birthday Parade, an all-day auction, bingo, pies, jewelry, T-shirts, bargain booths, fried dough and other food, kids' games, live music, and more.

This free, all-day, family-friendly event - now in its 72nd year - will be held rain or shine.

Volunteers are needed to help with the auction and other booths on either Friday or Saturday; call 802-365-9109. Grace Cottage is also still accepting donations of furniture and other auction-worthy items, books, and White Elephant items, if you can deliver them. Call 802-365-9109 to arrange for your donation. For more information, visit

NewBrook Fire Department seeks items for annual silent auction

NEWFANE - The annual silent auction to benefit NewBrook Fire and Rescue, the all-volunteer fire department that serves the towns of Newfane and Brookline, will return this November.

During the warm weather seasons of cleaning out barns, sheds, and corners for tag sales and donations, the auction committee says it hopes that the NewBrook Silent Auction will be a considered destination for your treasures.

They are always looking for antiques, collectibles, new or gently used household and recreational items, holiday items, art, hand-made crafts, and gently used furniture. Pickup of items can be arranged.

For more information: contact Samantha Wilson, 802-258-0614 or wilsonsamantha030@gmail; Angela Sanborn, 802-579-3133, [email protected]; or Lauri Miner, 802-365-4194, [email protected].

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