Town and Village

Around the Towns

Kindergarten sign-ups begin in Brattleboro

BRATTLEBORO - The three elementary schools have begun kindergarten registration for children who turn age 5 before Sept. 1, 2024. Information and links to all forms are at; click the Enrollment tab.

Families who would like to request paper copies can contact Kerri Beebe at 802-579-1013 or [email protected]. For children who attend private early education programs that partner with the school district, their packets can be found at their program.

Registration paperwork should be returned by Friday, Feb. 16, to: WSESU Central Office, Attention: Kerri Beebe, 53 Green St., Brattleboro, VT 05301. Families who reside in outlying town schools in WSESU/D should call their school directly to register: Dummerston, 802-254-2733; Putney, 802-387-5521; Guilford, 802-254-2271; and Vernon, 802-254-5373.

'Souper Wednesdays' in Westminister

WESTMINSTER - The First Congregational Church of Westminster, 3470 U.S. Route 5, will once again host "Souper Wednesdays" every Wednesday, from noon to 2 p.m., through April 24.

There will be at least two choices of soups and warm bread served. Take-outs will be available; call 802-518-0321 to reserve a meal. Donations are appreciated, but not required. This is a time for everyone and anyone to come and visit and have a warm meal.

Guilford Country Store celebrates anniversary


With this in mind, reflecting their community spirit, the board joins West and Warwick in inviting the whole community to come to the store on Thursday, Feb. 1, to celebrate the occasion.

Birthday-party coffee and cupcakes will be offered, and "the store's great food will be available," the board writes.

Windham County Genealogy Interest Group meets Feb. 3

BRATTLEBORO - On Saturday, Feb. 3, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Windham County Genealogy Interest Group will meet online to present two topics: "Using Artificial Intelligence in Genealogy" and "Using the David Rumsey Map Collection for Genealogy." Register at to receive a Zoom link before the meeting. Questions may be submitted at registration.

Jerry Carbone of Whetstone Brook Genealogy will discuss the David Rumsey Map Collection at Stanford University, which began in 1966 and contains more than 200,000 maps, 128,000 of which are online. The collection focuses on rare maps from the 1550s through the present. The collection's scope is worldwide, but is very strong on various maps of the United States.

The collection includes atlases, globes, wall maps, school geographies, pocket maps, books of exploration, maritime charts, and a variety of cartographic materials including pocket, wall, children's, and manuscript maps.

Maps of importance for genealogical use are property, insurance, railroad, military, and topographic maps. The presentation will focus on how to find the maps and use the various tools that are part of the collection.

Wayne Blanchard, co-founder of Windham County Genealogy Interest Group and genealogy volunteer at Rockingham Free Public Library, will give his insights into artificial intelligence and its current and future use in genealogy.

Companies such as Ancestry and MyHeritage are beginning to incorporate AI in their websites to support users in their family research. Blanchard has been experimenting with some of these tools and he will share what he has learned.

The Windham County Genealogy Interest Group is supported by Brooks Memorial Library in Brattleboro and Rockingham Free Public Library in Bellows Falls. Contact Carbone or Blanchard at [email protected].

'Remembering the Ancestors,' a celebration of Black History at Brooks Library

BRATTLEBORO - Local poet, story weaver, and artist Djeli (formerly William Forchion) will present "Remembering the Ancestors," Monday, Feb. 5, at 7 p.m. in the main reading room of Brooks Memorial Library, 224 Main St.

The presentation, sponsored by the Friends of Brooks Memorial Library, will be a conversation about our shared history, and it will intentionally step into the future. It will include recent unpublished writings as well as readings from his published poems and essays.

Describing himself as a story weaver who helps transform overwhelm to overjoy, Djeli uses oral and written traditions, including poetry, to create an atmosphere of curiosity and dialogue around even difficult topics. He helps others "breathe life into their own stories as part of a healing process by speaking from the heart."

Books that Djeli has written will be available for sale and signing. The free program is accessible to people in wheelchairs.

For more information, visit or call 802-254-5290.

Bone Builders classes resume Feb. 6

WEST BRATTLEBORO - The Bone Builders class at the All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church, 29 South St., will resume on Tuesday, Feb. 6. The class runs 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Bone Builders is modeled after the Growing Stronger Program created at Tufts University Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. The interactive strength-based exercise program benefits all genders and has been proven to help build strength, maintain bone density, improve balance, coordination, and mobility, reduce the risk of falling, and help maintain independence in performing activities of daily life.

Anyone aged 55 and over is welcome to attend. The class is free, and weights are provided. Participants who wish to participate in the exercises using weights must have a release from their doctor.

Attendees should contact Bev Miller at [email protected] to register and to get a medical consent form in advance of the first class.

Get ready for 2024 solar eclipse with help from RFPL

BELLOWS FALLS - The Rockingham Free Public Library will host Southern Vermont Astronomy Group (SoVerA) member Claudio Véliz on Thursday, Feb. 8, at 7 p.m for a presentation about the total solar eclipse that will happen on April 8, which program organizers describe as an opportunity to experience a rare - even once-in-a-lifetime - natural event.

In this graphic-rich presentation, Véliz will cover how to prepare for the eclipse, where to be, and what to do if it is cloudy. He will distribute safe, solar-filtered glasses to in-person attendees, complete with instructions for how to use them when this solar event occurs.

This program is free, and accessible to those with disabilities.

In case of cancellation due to weather, the program will be rescheduled to Thursday, Feb. 15.

For more information, email [email protected], call 802-463-4270, or visit

Grace Cottage's Cabin Fever Online Auction begins Feb. 14

TOWNSHEND - Grace Cottage's Cabin Fever Online Auction is "a perfect way to bring fun and joy to your winter," say organizers, who describe items to be auctioned as "practical, delectable, delightful, and inspirational."

Bidding takes place Feb. 14–28.

Each year, the auction includes vacations, Vermont foods, local gift certificates, handcrafted items, jewelry, art, and other donations from area businesses and individuals.

All proceeds support patient care at Grace Cottage Family Health & Hospital. Visit the auction website,, to register, view the selection, and plan bidding beginning Valentine's Day.

For more information, visit or e-mail [email protected].

This Town and Village item was submitted to The Commons.

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