George Monbiot will deliver the 40th annual E.F. Schumacher lecture Sunday, Oct. 25. Photo courtesy Schumacher Center for a New Economics

Bits & Bytes: Schumacher lecture; Halloween StoryWalk; ‘Local Characters: Back to School’; West African drumming class

Participants in the Halloween StoryWalk will follow the numbered pumpkins on the map to historic town buildings.

George Monbiot to deliver 40th annual E.F. Schumacher lecture

Great Barrington — On Sunday, Oct. 25, at 1 p.m., the Schumacher Center for a New Economics will virtually present George Monbiot, who will deliver the 40th annual E.F. Schumacher lecture, titled “Private Sufficiency, Public Luxury: Land is the Key to the Transformation of Society.” The event will be moderated by Jodie Evans and Greg Watson.

Monbiot is an author, columnist for the Guardian and environmental campaigner. His best-selling books include “Feral: Searching for Enchantment on the Frontiers of Rewilding,” “Heat: How to Stop the Planet Burning” and “Out of the Wreckage: a New Politics for an Age of Crisis.” Monbiot cowrote the concept album “Breaking the Spell of Loneliness” with musician Ewan McLennan and has made a number of viral videos. One of them, adapted from his 2013 TED talk, “How Wolves Change Rivers,” has been viewed on YouTube over 40 million times. Another, on Natural Climate Solutions, that he co-presented with Greta Thunberg, has been watched over 50 million times.

Jodie Evans. Photo courtesy Schumacher Center for a New Economics

Evans is co-founder and co-director of CODEPINK and has been a peace, environmental, women’s rights and social justice activist for 40 years. She is the co-founder and board chair of 826LA, and sits on the boards of Rainforest Action Network, Drug Policy Alliance, Institute of Policy Studies, Schumacher Center for a New Economics, California Arts Council and the People’s Forum. She is a mother, grandmother and regenerative farmer.

Greg Watson. Photo courtesy Schumacher Center for aNew Economics

Watson is director of policy and systems design at the Schumacher Center for a New Economics. In 1978 he organized a network of urban farmers’ markets in the greater Boston metropolitan area. He served as the 19th commissioner of agriculture in Massachusetts under governors Dukakis and Weld from 1990 to 1993 and under Gov. Deval Patrick from 2012 to 2014. Watson served as education director and later as executive director at the New Alchemy Institute on Cape Cod. In 2005 he coordinated the drafting of “A Framework for Offshore Wind Energy Development in the United States” and, the following year, founded the U.S. Offshore Wind Collaborative. In 2015 he founded the Cuba-U.S. Agroecology Network following a trip to Cuba to learn about its agroecology system. He serves on the boards of Ocean Arks International and Remineralize the Earth.

The event is free and open to the public. Registration is required. For more information or to register, see the Berkshire Edge calendar, or contact the Schumacher Center for a New Economics at (413) 528-1737 or


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The village walking map for the West Stockbridge Public Library’s Halloween StoryWalk. Image courtesy West Stockbridge Public Library

West Stockbridge Library to hold Halloween StoryWalk

Image courtesy

West Stockbridge — From Saturday, Oct. 24, through Saturday, Oct. 31, the West Stockbridge Public Library will offer a Halloween-themed StoryWalk centered around the book “The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything” by Linda Williams. Participants will follow the numbered pumpkins on the map shown above (and also available in hardcopy from the library) to historic town buildings starting at Shaker Mill Books (1804), continuing on to No. Six Depot (the old train station), AW Baldwin Ture Value Hardware (1842), Baldwin Extracts (the old wagon shop) West Stockbridge Congregational Church (1882) and the West Stockbridge Historical Society building (the 1854 Old Town Hall).

The event is free and open to the public. Participants are reminded to wear masks, social distance and walk in family groups. For more information, contact the West Stockbridge Library at (413) 232-0300 x308 or


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‘Local Characters’ to return to Ancram Opera House

Ancram, N.Y. — Ancram Opera House will present “Local Characters: Back to School” in three installments on the Fridays of Oct. 23, Oct. 30 and Nov. 6. This series of recorded interviews looks at what “going back to school” means in the time of COVID-19 and features a local teacher, parent and student. Each new episode will be posted for viewing on its specified Friday 1 p.m. on AOH’s website and YouTube channel.

“I’m an educator myself and delivering quality instruction to my students has been difficult, to say the least, during COVID,” said Paul Ricciardi, co-director of Ancram Opera House and associate professor of Theatre Arts at Kingsborough Community College. “I want to hear how teachers, parents and students in our community are handling these same challenges.”

Ricciardi will be interviewing Beth Flores, a librarian at Taconic Hills Middle School in Craryville; Colleen Lutz of Ancramdale, parent of two, including a senior at Stissing Mountain High School in Pine Plains; and Zin Wong, a senior at Webutuck High School in Millerton and participant in the North East Community Center Teen Team.


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Spencertown Academy to offer virtual West African drumming class

Greg Mosley. Photo courtesy Spencertown Academy Arts Center

Spencertown, N.Y. — On Saturday, Oct. 24, from 10 to 11 a.m., Spencertown Academy Arts Center will present “Style and Rhythms of West African Drumming,” an interactive drumming class via Zoom taught by Greg Mosley. Recommended for students ages 12 and up, the program will offer a basic understanding of djembe drum fundamentals. Participants may use African hand drums or any available hand drums, and tabletops and plastic buckets are also fine for this class.

Mosley is a lead drummer for the Kuumba Dance and Drum Academy in Hudson and specializes in beginner percussion experiences. He will be accompanied on drums by Elena Mosley.

The class is free and open to the public. Advance registration is required. For more information or to register, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact Spencertown Academy Arts Center at