Associated Programming

~Please note that all programming is virtual~

(The A&A Reading Group, and the Authors and Artists Festival February 27-28, 2021 are Free: the other Associated Programming helps pay for the festival. Please note there are no refunds unless the events are cancelled, but you can give someone your electronic ticket if you can’t make it. Thank you for supporting the A&A Festival!)

A&A Reading Group (free!)

The Authors and Artists Reading Group is free. We will read one book/month written by an A&A speaker between September 2020 and the festival in February 2021. Join us the first Sunday of every month from 11am-12noon.

Books to be discussed:

Sunday, September 6, 2020 (11am-12noon): Sacred Instructions by Sherri Mitchell. Drawing from ancestral knowledge, as well as her experience as an attorney and activist, Sherri Mitchell addresses some of the most crucial issues of our day, such as environmental protection and human rights. For those seeking change, she offers a set of Indigenous cultural values that will preserve our collective survival for future generations.

Sunday, October 4, 2020 (11am-12noon): World Enough and Time: On Creativity and Slowing Down by Christian McEwen. This book is a beautiful guide for writers and others about how to be in the moment and create.

Sunday, November 1, 2020 (11am-12noon): Making Love While Farming: Field Guide to a Life of Passion and Purpose by Baruch and Habib. This book is by the founders of Seeds of Solidarity farm and nonprofit in Orange, MA and the Garlic and Arts Festival. Very inspiring and fun to read. Bonus: The authors Deb Habib and Ricky Baruch will join us for this discussion! See more full description below.

Sunday, December 6, 2020 (11am-12noon): We will read a melange of Joan Maloof’s books about Old Growth Forests: The Living Forest; Nature’s Temples; Among the Ancients; and Teaching the Trees. Choose one or more– we will discuss all in our group. Note: Also see below for a discussion at 12:30 about Patrick Curry’s book Enchantment—the author will join us to facilitate the discussion!)

Sunday, January 3, 2021 (11am-12noon): Animal-Human Relations Month! We will discuss two books about animals and their relationship with people: Susan Cerulean’s I Have Been Assigned the Single Bird (memoire includes birding and her father’s dementia) and Gay Bradshaw’s Talking with Bears: Conversations with Charlie Russell. These books are full of stories—read one or both.

Sunday, February 7, 2021 (11am-12noon): The Way of Imagination by Scott Russell Sanders. A new book of essays from a master Nature writer on how the combination of compassion and imagination can solve our climate crisis. BONUS: The author, Scott Russell Sanders, will join us for this discussion!

Making Love While Farming: Deb Habib and Ricky Baruch

Dr. Deb Habib and Ricky Baruch, authors of Making Love While Farming: A Field Guide to a Life of Passion and Purpose, join us to discuss their book as part of the free A&A reading group. All are welcome.

Rooted in the authors’ three decades of experience as farmers, educators, and community organizers, their stories affirm the possibility and necessity of lives and livelihoods that respond to environmental and social justice issues with creativity, love, and balance. Deb and Ricky are the founders of Seeds of Solidarity Farm and Education Center in Orange MA, and their solar-powered family farm uses all no-till, regenerative methods. The non-profit wing innovates programs that awaken the power among people of all ages, and they organize the North Quabbin Garlic and Arts Festival with their neighbors. They will share some of their passion and methodology for making good community here in the valley. 

This discussion is part of our free reading series.

Leo Hwang, Julia Sibley-Jones, David Dault, and Holly Harden: Blogging

Talk Description: Dr. Leo Hwang and associates will offer a workshop on blogging. This panel of experienced bloggers will answer your questions about how to get your voice out there.

Saturday, November 14, 2020 (3:00-4:00pm) Cost $5 (all proceeds to support the A&A festival—Thanks Leo!)

Enchanting the Season: with the author of Enchantment, Dr. Patrick Curry

A conversation about Enchantment: We will discuss Enchantment with Patrick Curry. A more in-depth and personal discussion than his presentation in the festival, together we will find individual sources of enchantment in our lives, and seek ways to keep them alive during this season of glitz and glamour. A bonus, related essay by Dr. Simon Wilson (speaking February 28 at 4pm): “Walking into the Heart of the Landscape to find the Landscape of the Heart” is available to add to our discussion:

Sunday, December 6, 2020: 12:30pm-1:30pm (Free)

Marty Espinola: Nature Photography

I became interested in photography at the age of 13 and soon was developing and printing my images. While in college I became president of the school’s camera club and I had many photographs published during those years. Later as a school teacher I worked weekends as a newspaper and freelance photographer. Now that I’m retired I not only enjoy pursuing my love of nature photography but also mentoring local photography groups and doing workshops for amateur photographers. Some of my photos can be seen at

Nature Photography Workshop In this workshop we will briefly cover the basics of exposure and the relationship between aperture, shutter speed, ISO. We will then briefly review the basics of composition with  a few sample photos. After that we will look at a variety of photographs of everything from plants and animals to waterfalls and sunsets, and learn techniques for producing images that reflect the visual experience that touched your spirit when you took the photo. 

Saturday, December 19, 2020 (3:00-5:00pm) Cost: $10 (to benefit the Authors and Artists Festival–thank you Marty!) Option to post participants’ art on the A&A website will be available.

Rebecca R. Burrill: Movement-Language-Nature-Art

Movement Artist and Educator

Rebecca R Burrill is an ecocentric dancer, artistic director, and movement-based child developmentalist-educator. Her work focuses on the aesthetics of first perceptions—movement-sound—as primary language, the language of human kinship with Nature. She engages people of all ages in the experience of these deep psycho-biological processes, culminating in community ceremonial site-specific dance performance.

Movement Language Nature Art explores the inherently aesthetic organization of human first perception—movement-sound. Organized in utero as one perception movement-sound constitutes primary language—the kinship language we humans share with the many intelligences of the Natural World. Through guided imagery mediation, movement-sound explorations, and art-making through perceptual sequencing, participants follow an experiential pathway discovering the inner processes of primary language. This gives experience for participants, post festival, to direct their own Nature immersion primary languaging session. From this experience participants make art—poetry, prose, and/or visual—through the immediacy of primary languaging processes.

Saturday, January 23, 2021 (10:30am-12:30pm): Movement Language Nature Art ; Cost: $25 The results of the workshop (at students’ discretion) will be made available on the A&A website….

The Way of Imagination: Scott Russell Sanders

Dr. Scott Russell Sanders, author of more than 20 books about the environment, leads a discussion of his new book of environmental essays: The Way of Imagination, in which he explores the role of imagination in art, science, and ethics. In this discussion, we will explore how imagination might guide us through the current social and environmental upheaval, as climate heating, epidemic diseases, divisive politics, and loss of biodiversity alter our place on the planet and our lives together. If it were not so common a talent, imagination would be recognized as a superpower rivaling anything dreamed up for comic-book heroes, for it breaks the shell of the status quo, summoning up objects that do not yet exist, actions that no one has yet performed, and wiser ways of living.

This discussion is part of our free reading series.

Slate Roof Press: Into the Mystery — The Bodypoem

Speak a poem with your body! Come join Slate Roof poets Audrey Gidman and Anna M. Warrock in the physical experience of language. What parts of the poem warrant motion? Does one image evoke the wrists, another the hips? Sign language? Shadowplay? Stillness? In this perfection-free zone, we’ll speak bodypoems, using short writing prompts to launch us into movement, invitation, physical questioning, and possible arrival. For poets and non-poets, adults and high-schoolers.  

Audrey Gidman won the Elyse Wolf Prize for her chapbook, body psalms, forthcoming fromSlate Roof Press. Her work has appeared in Q/A Poetry, mutiny! magazine, Confrontation, Slippery Elm and elsewhere. She has facilitated a variety of workshops, including exploratory erasure poetry workshops with adults and teens, a poetic excavation of etymology in conjunction with A CLEARING, and love letter activism workshops. 

Anna M. Warrock’s latest book, From the Other Room, won the Slate Roof Press Chapbook Award. Besides appearing in The Sun, The Madison Review, Harvard Review, and elsewhere, her work is anthologized in Kiss Me Goodnight, women writing on childhood mother-loss, a Minnesota Book Award Finalist. Her poems have been choreographed, set to music, and inscribed in a Boston area subway station.

Saturday, February 20, 2021 (2:00-4:00pm) Cost $15 (sliding scale available, email:

Stories in Motion: Arts by the People

Stories in Motion combines spoken word, poetry, and dance to create a uniquely interpretive and sensorial experience for participants, mixing original works created in our poetry workshops with choreography. Each poem/dance provides a catalyst for discussion: language, imagery, emotional embodiment, and physical interpretation.

Stories in Motion is open to everyone. It is an engaging workshop led by director and author, Paul Rabinowitz with Stories in Motion resident artist(s), Marsha Guirlande Pierre, Jennifer Sanchez or Alyssa Tiren (dancer/choreographer)

Workshop Sunday, February 21, 2021 (noon-2:00pm), $25 includes 2 tickets to the March 7th performance (you and a friend)

Performance Sunday, March 7, 2021 (2:00pm-3pm), $10

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