Halloween Happenings around town!

Halloween Happenings – no shortages of treats around town this week!

Spooky Tours, Ghost Stories, Trunk-or-Treat, Sleepy Hollow 5K Fun Run, Scarecrow Fest, Salem Witch Trial Talk, Halloween Eve at Hartwell Tavern, Outdoor Concert…. And much more!

Check out Scarecrow Fest on lawns of the Concord Main & Fowler Libraries…

Sign up for spooky tours of local cemetery or ghost stories & Halloween story hours.  Here are just a few of the Halloween theme offerings:

Ghosts in the Gloaming at the Colonial Inn

The Salem Witch Trials in a Nutshell

Concord Tour Company presents: Grave Addiction — An evening walking tour through historic Concord’s graveyards

Encounter the literary spirits of The Old Manse Friday and Saturday of Halloween weekend. Join us for attic tours, art activities for children and families, readings of spooky stories written by Nathanial Hawthorne, and stay for s’mores around our fire pit!

On Friday, October 29th, The Library is offering spooky stories, crafts, cookies and a pumpkin decorating contest. All ages are welcome.

Do you believe in ghosts? Do you like history? Jack o’ Lanterns? Musket firing? Then come visit us at Hartwell Tavern on Halloween Eve.

Concord Tour Company presents: Grave Detectives! Concord’s only cemetery tour for kids.

What could be more fun than running through Sleepy Hollow cemetery in costume? Sign up for this Fun Run that happens Saturday!

Thanks to Concord Rec for offering Trunk or Treat again – a fabulous event!

This free event welcomes participants to decorate their vehicle/tailgate and pass out candy to kids walking with family from car to car. Trick or treating allows kids to have all the fun of trick or treating in a safe, controlled environment.

How about Three Cemeteries Tour the afternoon of Halloween? Hear the voices of the silent stones in concord’s cemeteries on this 90 minute tour.

Treats for adults…

Join CFA Mystery Night emcee and celebrated author Kate Flora to discover how to create suspense in fiction with mystery writers Susan Oleksiw, Dale Phillips and Susan Smith.

Celebrate Fall & support Concord Ed Fund…. Saltbox Kitchen offering: An Apple a Day Old Fashioned and apple hand pies available now through November 7th  – take-out or dine in, 100% of proceeds will benefit the Concord Ed Fund!

Decorate & gather items for BOO Bags at local shops such as Joy Street, Revolutionary Concord, Patina Green, Dotted i, Priscilla’s & Graem!

Time to get those pumpkins & start carving! With numerous farm stands and markets in Concord, you have plenty of spots to pick your pumpkins!

 

Chase Bjork Foundation & Brain Health Bootcamp

About the Chase Bjork Foundation and Brain Health Bootcamp

The Chase Bjork Foundation (a 501(c)3 nonprofit) was established by the Bjork family in February 2020 to honor Chase Bjork, who lost his life to suicide at age 18. Losing Chase ignited a passion to meaningfully address the lack of education and awareness of mental illness resources available to adolescents, their families and the communities in which they live. In September 2021, CBF launched the Brain Health Bootcamp (BHB), a free, online program for students, parents and communities to learn about mental health: what it is, how to talk about it, and how to get help for it. The program is available online at  brainhealthbootcamp.org and can be customized in partnership with school districts that wish to integrate it into their curricula. BHB is being piloted at Concord-Carlisle High School and Waldorf School of Massachusetts Bay.

If you are a parent, student, teacher, or school staff that would like to get involved with promoting mental health education and resources, or bringing the BHB to your school, please reach out to use at team@chasebjork.org. We would love to hear from you!

In Chase’s Memory

Chase Bjork was a beautiful boy who ultimately died from his mental illness. Despite his best efforts, he was unable to overcome the power of his hidden disease. In his memory, the Bjork family and Concord community established the Chase Bjork Foundation to educate families on mental illness and get more adolescents the treatment they need and deserve, pre-crisis.

Read more.

Must See: 2021 Art Ramble “Something in the Air”

2021 Art Ramble
Something in the Air

September 1 – November 14
Hapgood Wright Town Forest

Hours: 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunset

Artist Reception: Friday, September 17, 4:30-5:30PM
Rain Date: Friday, September 24, 4:30-5:30PM

Curated by Laurie Bogdan and Kimberley Harding

The Umbrella Arts & Environment Art Ramble 2021 will be an outdoor art installation in the Hapgood Wright Town Forest in Concord, MA, from September 1 – November 14 in collaboration with Concord’s Division of Natural Resources (CDNR), supported in part by the Foundation for Metrowest.

In keeping with this year’s thematic focus on “Air,” the 2021 Art Ramble “Something in the Air” Call for Art recognizes that Air is invisible and yet essential to life. Its quality affects our quality of life, as well as that of all living things. Our call seek works that illustrate human, animal and botanical interactions with air, and encourage exploration of the atmospheric aspects of the Hapgood Wright Town Forest.

The result was an exceptionally strong slate of regional artists creating what the curators call an exhibition marked by “drama, mystery, change, or movement”.

Art Ramble Artists

Paul Angiolillo – Breathing (9) | [audio]

Laurie Bogdan and Kimberley Harding – Ethereal Dreamer (7) | [audio]

BARD (Barbara Ayala Rugg Diehl) – In and Out (2) | [audio]

Johanna Finnegan-Topitzer – Air Currents (3) | [audio]

Jennifer Fuchel – Up in the Air (8) | [audio]

Jude Griffin – The Luna Moth Life Cycle (5) | [audio]

Liz Helfer – Foggy Morning (15) | [audio]

 

Martha Heller – The Shutter Dresses (4) [audio]

Janet Kawada – Collected Breath (13) | [audio]

Silvina Mizrahi – Every breath you take (12) | [audio]

Nilou Moochhala – The In-Between Series (10) | [audio]

Lisa R. Nelson – Waves of the Aerial Sea (6) | [audio]

Melissa Shaak – Forest Air (11) | [audio]

Rebecca McGee Tuck – Airing out the House (14) | [audio]

Kiyomi Yatsuhashi – Windblown (1) | [audio]

Paul Angiolillo – Breathing (9)
Wood, paint
Bio
Paul Angiolillo studied wood carving with Boston-based sculptor Joseph Wheelwright and stone carving with Peter Smith (Princeton NJ). He makes indoor sculptures, outdoor pieces, and furniture art. Paul first took up sculpting as an avocation, while also working as a journalist and an editor, after getting an undergraduate degree from Yale U. in literature and Humanities. He works in mainly wood, stone, and other natural materials, as well as some salvaged objects. Experimenting with both representational and abstract forms and styles, he often gravitates toward the semi-organic–plant, animal, and human–as well as whimsical interpretations of common objects. His sculptures can be seen in art and craft exhibits, outdoor shows, fine-art centers and galleries, and museum gift shops.
www.paulangiolillo.com
Artist Statement
Breathing is made up of two tall, animal-like figures, salvaged from parts of trees that I flipped upside-down, creating long necks and upturned heads sniffing the air. They’re semi-abstract interpretations of forest denizens who’re catching a scent or enjoying the breeze. You’re invited to pause with them, view them as wood carving sculptures, and look up with them at the sky and forest canopy–like them, smelling, tasting, and listening to the environment.
[audio]

Laurie Bogdan and Kimberley Harding – Ethereal Dreamer (7)
Fused plastic, hand-dyed round reed, wire, thread
Laurie Bogdan Bio
I am a collage artist from Arlington MA. I am involved in the growth of ArtLinks, a local arts networking group and have contributed to a variety of public art and environmental projects. In a world where many ordinary objects and books are tossed away or not appreciated, I try to find a way to reimagine and bring new life to them.
yourturnart.blogspot.com
Kimberley Harding Bio
Weaving sculptures using basketry techniques in my Arlington, MA studio feels primeval to me, both in the sense of belonging to an immensely early period of human history and as well as instinctive. I thrive on the connection I feel with the natural world and ancient peoples as I weave, while striving to connect with a modern audience with my commentary on personal, societal, and environmental issues. My work has been shown in galleries throughout Massachusetts, as well as in Basketry+ magazine and online exhibitions.
Artists Statement
Living most of her life below the surface of the water, the dragonfly transitions into a being of the air at adulthood. With her agile flight and iridescent wings, she appears to be a miniscule dragon inhabiting the realms of the fairies, such as Fairyland Pond in the Hapgood-Wright Town Forest. In many cultures, the dragonfly symbolizes change or transformation. One could view this ethereal creature as a messenger who encourages us to molt off the negativity that holds us back, and to fly forth to achieve our goals and dreams.
[audio]

BARD (Barbara Ayala Rugg Diehl)– In and Out (2)
Recycled fabric and steel
Bio
Originally from Nevada, BARD (Barbara Ayala Rugg Diehl) currently works and lives in Massachusetts. She brings her diverse backgrounds into her art subject matter and processes, having received her BA in Theater and English from Brandeis University and her MA in Sustainable International Development from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management. Her attraction to mixed media stems from both her work as an environmental educator and her creative curiosity. By using found items and reusing her own objects and clothes, she both reduces waste and explores the tangibility of art. In many of her pieces she utilizes 3-D elements to redefine who can interact with visual art, adding Braille and durable interactive elements to allow blind and low-vision audience members to enjoy her work. Her art has been featured in solo and group exhibits in seven states across the country, as well as internationally in Australia.
Artist Statement
Sometimes called the “lungs” of the Earth, trees produce oxygen as well as purifying it by filtering and sequestering contaminants. This cycle of give and take between our carbon dioxide and their oxygen is like a breath itself, an essential part of our connection within ecosystems and the planet. “In & Out” explores this connection by combining human imagery with the photosynthesis process. A procession of lungs formed by leaves line the forest path, a gradient from black to green. Each lung hangs on a trunk and root system of its own, separate yet connected to the forest as a whole. Taken along this journey of air and breath, our inverse needs are demonstrated, and the project can take on new meaning either way it is experienced. From green to black demonstrates the sequestration of carbon dioxide, ammonia, nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxides, and more. From black to green is the cleaning of the air in both our rural and urban areas. Being a project of opposites or two sides of the same coin, the installation has both positive and negative undertones. On the one hand the fade to black is a stark reminder of the increasing burden we put on trees to save our air, all the while continuing to decimate their populations. While on the other hand the fade to green is an appreciation for the work trees do, and a sign of hope for a cleaner future where we work in tandem with our breathing partners. Trees and green spaces ultimately are becoming increasingly important as we work to stave off heat islands and enjoy clean air. Learn more within my Conservation Law Foundation report, and follow my art at https://barbaraayalarugg.wixsite.com/artbybard
[audio]

Johanna Finnegan-Topitzer – Air Currents (3)
Copper, enamel, wire
Bio
Johanna is a New England artist focused on wildlife and issues surrounding wildlife, particularly climate change. She creates in a variety of media from 2 dimensional gouache paintings to acrylic paintings with relief elements to 3 dimensional pieces. But always, the focus is on animals. Formerly of Somerville, MA, she was very involved with Somerville Open Studios being on the Board for 4 years and showing her work. She has been an Artist-in-Residence at Acadia National Park and Grand Canyon National Park where she took inspiration from the landscape and unique wildlife in those protected areas. She was also the recipient of a Massachusetts Cultural Council Fellowship for her 3 dimensional works. Her work has been shown in many galleries and shows in the area and she also teaches her art to others.
www.jfinnegantopitzer.com
Artist Statement
Birds depend on air currents to help them migrate long distances. The currents let them understand the direction of travel and when to leave as the seasons change. The wildfires out west create so much smoke, that migrating songbirds are thrown off course and suffocate. Last fall, hundreds of thousands of songbirds were found dead on the ground throughout the southwestern states as they migrated south. In the east, birds use the clues the currents bring to understand when to migrate north in the spring. Spring has been coming earlier and earlier so they follow the signals. However, they (and their hatchlings) often get caught in cold snaps as the season hasn’t completely changed over. Both of these events in the air can be linked to a changing climate which brings with it hotter, drier air to produce intense forest fires and falsely signal a spring not yet ready.
[audio]

Jennifer Fuchel – Up in the Air (8)
Mixed media
Bio
Jennifer Fuchel just retired from teaching graphic design at Suffolk University. She now has the time to pursue her own art interests, working in a broad range of materials from traditional to digital. Much of Jennifer’s work is inspired by her love of nature. She has been involved in several exhibitions and collaborative projects both indoors and outside. Jennifer works at home in North Cambridge, at Mudflat, and at her Vernon Street studio in Somerville.
www.niftyarts.com
Artist Statement 
Inspired by the theme ‘Something In The Air’ and by being stung by several flying insects during my 2020 installation, I started thinking about the insects around us.
Entomologists believe that the first flying creatures were insects who evolved from crustaceans 400 million years ago. Most insects that existed 280 million years ago were larger than current ones — the North American Meganeuropsis had wings 12” long! Today, the insect population is being negatively affected by pesticides, loss of habitat, etc. and this is taking a toll on these smaller creatures. Most flying insects are seen as pests (including those who stung me!), but they are an essential part of our forest’s ecosystem and the cycle of life. A reduction of insects means an eventual decrease in other animal populations.
When one takes the time to look at insects, one notices how amazing they are. Their lives are highly structured, each playing a significant role in their community. Their wings and bodies are fascinating, intricate and sometimes incredibly beautiful. I hope my art piece suggests stages of an insect’s life cycle from birth, development, to death, and makes people realize how important it is to protect them from decline for the health of our world.
[audio]

Jude Griffin – The Luna Moth Life Cycle (5)
Metal, wire, paint, leaves, twigs, beads, silk thread, papier-mâché
Bio
Jude Griffin loves arts and crafts of all kinds, but most especially public art. Her public artwork includes a street mural in Salem, MA; a painted piano sited nearby the New England Aquarium for the public to play as part of the “Play Me, I’m Yours” project; nature-inspired art mounted inside an old telephone booth in Somerville, and flash poetry on demand at Boston festivals. She was a selected artist for an innovative CSA in Cambridge: Community Supported Art, and, along with eight other artists, produced 50 pieces of art over the summer that were then “harvested” by the CSA subscribers at the end of the season.
Artist Statement
I love nature and art, and “Something in the Air” is a perfect opportunity to combine those two passions. “Luna Moth Life Cycle” takes the viewer through the life of one of our most beautiful and spectacular native moths: from egg to caterpillar to cocoon to butterfly. Luna moths, like far too many other native insects, are in steep decline due to habitat destruction, pesticides, introduced predators, and light pollution. Insects are critically important to the entire food web, including 96% of birds which feed insects to their young. Protection can take the form of chemical-free yards and parks, restoring native plants to the landscape, the reduction of lawns, and turning off our lights at night. The whimsical touches in this installation are a nod to the frequent attribution of sightings of luna moths to the presence of fairies. What better place to showcase this than Fairyland Pond?
[audio]

Liz Helfer – Foggy Morning (15)
Steel, chicken wire, nylon mesh, construction barrier
Bio
Material choice plays a critical role in my sculpture practice. I have focused on metal since 2009 because of its historical complexity and perceived value. However, I have been moving away from singular material choices and have moved into a mixed media practice that addresses our impending environmental peril. My studio is located in Waltham, MA.
http://www.elizabethhelfer.com/
Artist Statement
Foggy Morning connects the idea of rest, peace, and environmental innovation. As the planet heats up, new technologies have become increasingly important to human survival. One of these technologies pulls water directly from the air, a “fog net” that maximizes water collection from the morning dew. Foggy Morning is a pseudo fog net shaped like a large worn pillow. The pillow has many mesh layers that reveal the smaller layers within, a reflection of the complex and intersecting issues at work due to increased water scarcity.
[audio]

Martha Heller – The Shutter Dresses (4)
Bio 
Martha Heller is a self-taught textile artist living in Newton, MA, whose art practice includes mixed media art quilts, textile sculptures, wall hangings, and framed thread drawings.   Influenced by her work as a costume designer and her work with the historical costume archives at Blithewold Mansion, Gardens and Arboretum in Bristol, Rhode Island, she often creates textiles that include artistic interpretations of constructed dress garments.  Martha has exhibited in galleries and museums including The New England Quilt Museum/Lowell MA, The Mosesian Center for the Art/Watertown MA, Belmont Gallery of Art, The Kathryn Schultz Gallery/Cambridge Art Association, and The Appalachian Center for Craft/Smithville TN.  In September her work will be included in “Honoring” at the Attleboro Arts Museum in Attleboro MA.
https://www.marthahellertextileartist.com/
Artist Statement 
For the Art Ramble I have taken an installation piece called The Shutter Dresses off my garage doors and adapted it to hang in the trees by Fairyland Pond. The fabric is a painter’s drop cloth used to paint my house shutters. The striped patterns are made by the paint sprayed on the shutter slats. Some of the textile work I create uses the dress form as a starting point for the expression of themes or an exploration of materials and techniques. My “dress pieces” include outdoor installations, small tabletop sculptures, and wall hangings.
Why include The Shutter Dresses here, at Something In The Air? The various dress installations that I have created are brought to life when they catch a bit of air moving through my backyard. Who can see the wind? To see the dresses come to life reminds me that the air is moving through the yard, spreading seeds and pollen –and sometimes insects!– through the garden beds. Here at the pond, the wind can be “seen” in the trees, the grasses, the shrubs, and sometime on the surface of the water. What seeds and insects are moving through that wind today?

Janet Kawada – Collected Breath (13)
Window screening, monofilament, steel rods, paint
Bio
Janet Kawada received her BFA from Massachusetts College of Art and MFA from Vermont College. She taught at MassArt and NESAD for over 20 years and ran numerous workshops around the area in addition to curating. She is a member of the Studios Without Walls and New England Sculpture Association. Her work can be found in collections around the United States, Canada, and Japan. Kawada is included in the book, Artistry in Fiber, Volume 2, Sculpture. In her recent work she is interested in exploring the theme of place and home.
www.janetkawada.com
Artist Statement
Collected Breath represents a group that stands together in solidarity.  Made of screening, the structure demonstrates solidity through 320 pieces of screened boxes which individually would be fragile.  There is a quietness about the group as it remains stationary.  Through the wash of the color and the moray patterning of the screen itself, the viewer is invited to pause and reflect. The woods surrounding Collected Breath give it room to breathe. Wind moves around and through it. Scenery is glimpsed as air swirls or glide in and over. As the seasons change, so will the piece.  Be still, listen to the sounds of where you are.  Breathe.
[audio]

Silvina Mizrahi – Every breath you take (12)
Welded scraped steel and paint
Bio
I’m an interdisciplinary artist and art educator based in Boston. I like to work with different mediums and techniques. My work encompasses figurative bronze sculptures, abstract expressionist mixed media paintings, recycled materials sculptures (created with diverse communities) and public art. My art is a mirror of my experiences as a Latino immigrant, memories from my childhood, Jewish traditions, and my commitment to environmental causes.
Artist Statement
We need oxygen from trees to survive; without forests humanity ceases to exist. Using the fired cut technique and welding on scraped steel, I created a group of figures that represent humanity and their environment. The negative spaces on the sculpture invite the forest behind to be an active and essential part of the whole sculpture, symbolizing our intrinsic relation as humans with nature.
[audio]

Nilou Moochhala – The In-Between Series (10)
Image fabric panels, poetry
Bio
Nilou Moochhala’s visual practice has been channeled into examining issues of cultural change and transformation by juxtaposing found objects, imagery, and language to create social and political narratives – be it in public art spaces or private galleries. Nilou has been an award recipient of numerous grants including the Massachusetts Cultural Council and New England Foundation for the Arts. She was selected as the 2021 Spring Artist-in-Residence by the Arlington Commission for Arts & Culture. Her work has appeared in publications such as the Boston Globe, Print, Arlington Advocate, and Big, Red & Shiny.
https://www.niloumakes.com/
Artist Statement
These pieces rest in the spaces ‘in-between’ – between the unconscious and conscious, the liminal and formed, the past and future. What does it mean to belong to a place, to breathe fully, to immerse oneself in our environment, to have a place in the world around us? These works have been created as a response to deep meditation practices in nature, and convey the fleeting sensations of transcendence, solitude, change, beauty, love, grief…and many more. The interwoven poetry was written by collaborator/writer Francesco Fiondella.
[audio]

Lisa R. Nelson – Waves of the Aerial Sea (6)
Wood panel, watercolor and acrylic paint
Bio
Based in rural Ayer, Massachusetts, I attended Massachusetts College of Art and Design (MassArt), receiving a BFA with a major in Illustration in 1998. I later returned to my alma mater for further study and received a graduate graphic design certificate and found work as a graphic designer/event planner. During this time my work became less design-centric and lacking the creative focus that originally drew me to art school, I found myself regretting the decision to not pursue a path in visual arts. With the arrival of the pandemic, I saw my work hours reduced and was eventually laid off and determined not to let a second chance pass me by and threw myself back into my artwork. Through all this time, art had always been extremely important to me. I made sure to keep painting and being creative whenever possible and found I was never as happy as when I was in the hallowed halls of a beloved museum. Now that I am pursuing my dreams of being a full-time artist, I know that I am doing what is finally right for me. And thus, I am currently taking continuing education classes from MassArt, Fivesparks Community Arts Collaborative, deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, as well as the Fruitlands Museum. I am a member of the Concord Center for the Visual Arts and have done illustration work for both non-profits as well as corporations. As of March of 2020, my illustrative work has also appeared in print. I am now 100% dedicated to pursuing my art wherever it takes me and finding my place as an artist.
http://painterlisa.com/
Artist’s Statement
I love maps. I have always been inexplicably drawn to them. I love what they say about a place, its history, and how it fits into our worldview. I love how they unlock the secrets to navigating our way through our world as well as finding our place within it. To understand the map of a thing is to understand that thing. This is true for buildings, parks, homes, people, animals, trees, anything and everything exists somewhere on a map. My work explores this through the creation of each map while also considering what makes each uniquely beautiful. There is so much is our world that is fleeting, and my work strives to capture and celebrate what I can before it fades from our view or morphs into something completely different. I want my art to document what was, what is, and what shall be. I do this by meticulously studying each subject and drawing and redrawing it until I find what is distinctive about it. I look for the eloquence in a meandering riverway or the forceful pace of a chaotic highway. I look for how the map can be abstracted until one is lost in the details of it and it no longer resembles a chart but more a feeling of a place. Once I find what I want my painting to focus on, I transform it into bright paint pigments transmuted by water with brushes until it becomes something uniquely mine.
[audio]

Melissa Shaak – Forest Air (11)
Acrylic cutouts on steel stands
Bio
Melissa Shaak is a Somerville, MA artist working in acrylics and mixed media on paper. Her most recent ventures include stop motion animation and video. She is a core member of Fountain Street Gallery in Boston’s SoWa Art + Design District. Her studio is located at River Street Artists/Waltham Mills.
Statement
My artmaking process is full of creative sparks and enigmatic turns, as if there were indeed “something in the air.” This is particularly true for my installation “Forest Air,” in which seven life-size cutout figures stand in a large circle. They are an ensemble, and they’ve been on a fantastic journey together—going from two dimensions to three, from paintings into space and time, and now amidst the towering trees in the cool, fall forest air. They are trustworthy personas made manifest to help us navigate and mediate the world today. Each raises a torch, or scepter, holding the light for us, signaling and leading the way. You can see the original paintings, haiku, and a video starring the cutouts on my website www.melissashaak.net.
[audio]

Description automatically generated” height=”200″ src=”https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/ZTC8ytcAoYcs2cb7GD_cfkO1-fGIosbeWggzTcDzU4_y7lSiqR4JG7vXe3sc66abmQse9P7NV2F9hKftVYmMC4KA_sxMhIX76nVWbJRD_yc__8Z1Ji3EmNT343h43-gDzmZD8nI” width=”200″ style=”box-sizing: border-box; border: 0px; max-width: 100%; height: auto; margin: 15px;”>

QR code for music video

Rebecca McGee Tuck – Airing out the House (14)
Steel, wire, crowd sourced plastic bags, VCR tape
Bio
Rebecca McGee Tuck is a fiber artist, a sculptor and a collector of lost objects. Her work is a visual narrative of what she accumulates from a throwaway society and as a result she gives new life to what others discard. Tuck has shown her work in multiple juried shows throughout New England including the Beacon Gallery and the Fitchburg Art Museum, and has been invited to be an Associate Member of the Boston Sculptors Gallery. She recently won the Present Tense Award from ArtsWorcester which recognizes an artist whose work exemplifies new practices, artistic risk-taking, and excellence in execution. Tuck works among her menagerie of debris from her studio at the Mill Contemporary Art Studios in Framingham.
https://www.rebeccamcgeetuck.com/
Artist Statement
We all were cooped up in our homes for over a year during the Pandemic and some must remain this way for longer. I had the idea for this sculpture from something my mother used to say. After a long winter there inevitably would be a spring cleanup of our childhood home — closets cleaned, floors scrubbed, school and work papers organized and thinned out. Part of this ritual was to open up all of the windows in the house on the first nice day, to flush out the stale air of the closed up winter. Airing out the house felt like turning the page on the short and dark days in order to make way for the fresh bright start of spring. Though we seem to have more of a mountain to climb before the end of our troubles with the virus, I have chosen to take a deep breath and exhale. I suggest to everyone: Open up your windows wide and let in the fresh clean air, spruce up, reinvigorate and revitalize your spirits to take on what comes next with renewed moxie.
[audio]

Kiyomi Yatsuhashi – Windblown (1)
Shibori and rozome wax-resist dyed cotton and silk organza, indigo dye
Bio
Kiyomi Yatsuhashi has been working with Japanese textile techniques including rozome, katazome, shibori and aizome indigo dyeing for more than 20 years. Her work includes traditional crafts such as kakejiku scrolls, kimono and yukata, as well as large scale mixed media installations, and collaborations with visual and performing artists. Yatsuhashi studied Fine Art History at Tufts University, Studio Arts (printmaking, ceramics and mixed media) at the Museum School (SMFA), and Japanese textile dyeing at Kyoto City University. She has exhibited and collaborated extensively in Japan, Korea, Germany and the United States.
Artist Statement
My textile installation Windblown reflects the flow and energy of air as seen in pattern and movement in nature. As long as I can remember, I have been sensitive to air quality, and the growing concern of its significance to our personal and environmental health. As I pass by different pathways and terrain through Hapgood Wright Town Forest, I feel the changes in the temperature and quality of the air. I hear it rustle in the trees and see it moving all around me. With my flowing textiles, I hope to heighten your sense of wonder of these natural elements which are so key to the harmony and make-up of the Earth.

Upcoming Parenting Education Programs and Resources

Center for Parents and Teachers Upcoming Parenting Education Programs & Resources

The Center for Parents and Teachers announces a new and innovative offering on How to Manage Stress in Uncertain Times

Please find instructions below each workshop on how to register for individual sessions.

Wish to attend all 4 sessions?  Please email cpt@concordps.org and type “Series on Managing Stress” in the subject line. We are happy to announce that due to a generous grant, these programs are being offered free of charge!

About the offerings:  Stress is a natural, automatic, often unconscious part of daily life. Yet its impact — on our emotions, behavior, bodies — can be corrosive to both our wellbeing and the quality of our relationships. Join us for one workshop or for all of them as we gather on zoom on 4 consecutive Monday evenings, starting October 18 at 7:30.  We will explore science-backed tools and insights that calm the nervous system to better manage stress.

All sessions are held online for 45 minutes and are facilitated by our instructor, Carolyn Wilkins,  who trained at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine.

  • Monday October 18 at 7:30 PM “Key Partners to Combat Stress: Restorative Sleep & Mindfulness”.

Pre-registration by October 11th is required by emailing cpt@concordps.org and typing “October 18” in the subject line.

Only 1 in 3 adults get the recommended 7-9 hours sleep each night, with consequences ranging from impaired memory, compromised immune function to hypertension and obesity. And the throughline to stress is clear: Among over 85 sleep disorders, the #1 root cause is stress, giving us a vital key to crack this code. Join this 45-minute session as we explore the practical, behavioral, and social implications for achieving better sleep.

  • Monday October 25 at 7:30 PM “Redefining Social Connections for Optimal Wellness”

Pre-registration by October 18th is required by emailing cpt@concordps.org and typing “October 25” in the subject line

After 18 months of social restriction, we’re beginning to reframe and reprioritize our social interactions. Science shows us that social connections are vital to buffering stress, helping us to modulate fear and anxiety. Join us as we explore ways to mindfully assess our social and prosocial connections as a way to enhance wellness.

  • Monday November 1 at 7:30 PM “Stress Warning Signals: What are they & what can they teach us?”

Pre-registration by October 25th is required by emailing cpt@concordps.org and typing “November 1” in the subject line

Stress is more than feeling distress and discomfort; it’s the root cause of 60-90% of all doctor visits, begging us to forge a healthier approach to managing daily stress. Where and how stress manifests itself in our minds and bodies become valuable data, especially when married with a science-backed toolkit of techniques to calm the nervous system and make us more resilient.

  • Monday November 8 at 7:30 PM “Meditation & Mindfulness”

Pre-registration by November 1 is required by emailing cpt@concordps.org and typing “November 8” in the subject line

Developing a mentally clear and emotionally calm, stable state first requires that we acknowledge the critical role that meditation & mindfulness play in making us more resilient. Learn how developing a practice can happen, and what it can offer us as we seek to buffer the daily impact of stress.

About the Instructor

Concord resident Carolyn Wilkins is a Certified Positivity and Relaxation Training (PART) instructor trained at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine. She leads (online) group stress management classes through her business, Wilkins Wellness, providing proven tools to be healthier and happier, creating greater calm and clarity in these uncertain times.

A cycle instructor, 20+ year triathlete, parent to teens and outdoor enthusiast, Carolyn draws upon her own practice that blends mental and physical wellness to provide balance and joy. She and her husband, Mike Farber, have raised two young adults in Concord and can often be found on their bicycles.

Other Programs and Resources:

(1) Topic: Grieving For anyone in our community suffering the loss of a loved one, we want you to be aware there is a resource available to you:  The Children’s Room is a long-standing non-profit organization, located in Arlington that offers caring support for grieving children, teens and families.  Services are provided both in-person and virtual.  Learn more at https://childrensroom.org/support/

(2) Topic:  Talking to Youth about Climate Change
Some of you may have been with us in January 2019 at Willard when many parents and students attended an in-person event where Varshini Prakash addressed what young people can do in response to climate change. Her message was inspiring and motivating for all of us!  We are thrilled the Discovery Museum is offering a Virtual event with Varshini Prakash: Youth Voices in Climate Change. Thursday, September 23, 2021, 7pm to 8:30pm. Moderated by WBUR’s Miriam Wasser. Presented virtually by Zoom webinar, the event is free with required pre-registration at https://26033.blackbaudhosting.com/26033/Discovery-Museum-Speaker-Series-2021-Featuring-Varshini-Prakash. Varshini Prakash, originally from Acton, is the Executive Director and co-founder of Sunrise, a national movement of young people working to stop climate change and create millions of good jobs in the process through the Green New Deal. Varshini has been a leading voice for young Americans, including when she helped lead a mass demonstration for that went viral and put the climate crisis at the top of the political agenda for the 2020 elections. Varshini’s work has been featured in The New York Times, MSNBC, The New Yorker, BBC, The Washington Post and more. In 2019, she was named to Forbes 30 Under 30 list for law and policy, and TIME 100 Next, a new list of rising stars who are shaping politics, popular culture, science, and more.  Please join us for this important event!

(3) Topic:  Parenting younger children (up to age 9).  Please check out a free program offered by First Connections, held virtually on Tuesday, Sept. 28, 6:30 p.m.  To register please email: lmatthews@jri.org

Behavior is Communication – 3 Surprising Reasons Your Child Won’t Listen. presented by Kathy Whitham, R.N.
You want your child to listen and you want your child to talk to you. Gaining a deeper understanding of the language your child uses to communicate is crucial to getting through to your child and building a solid foundation for connection and communication throughout their development. In this 1 hour Webinar, you’ll discover 3 surprising reasons that get in the way of communication with your child (and learn the science behind them). You’ll also gain practical strategies to help you avoid yelling to be heard, and be the parent your child talks to. Includes at least 20 minutes for interaction around your questions.
Kathy Whitham, RN, is a Parenting Coach, Child Behavior Specialist, Mom, Grammy and poet. She helps parents and caregivers understand what’s happening with their child and learn to respond rather than react to button-pushing behaviors.
. Kathy’s No-Yell™ parenting approach promotes deep connection and communication and lies at the intersection of brain science, attachment theory, inter-generational family dynamics and parents’ inner wisdom.

(4) Topic:  Depression. Families for Depression Awareness is presenting a free online program What If I Say the Wrong Thing? Tips for Communicating When Your Loved One Is Depressed on Wednesday, October 27, 2021 from 7:00 to 8:30 PM 

In this webinar, Dr. Chris Segrin shares how caregivers can communicate effectively with a loved one about their depression, manage conflict, maintain their own boundaries, and offer hope to a person living with depression.
Register to join them for a live webinar discussion or watch on demand after it airs. After the webinar, complete the online evaluation and you’ll receive a free copy of 60-page handbook – Helping Someone Living with Depression or Bipolar Disorder: A Handbook for Families and Caregivers.
Click here to register:  https://us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_a7ZPzexWT8apgeYtSnz0Cg

Can’t attend the live webinar? Register today to submit your questions and watch the recorded webinar after it airs.

(5) Topic:  Vaping  Please check out this site for resources to understand the risks of vaping so you can have more productive discussions with your teens/pre-teens:

https://massclearinghouse.ehs.state.ma.us/category/Vaping.html

(6) Topic:  Fentanyl Awareness  Earlier this month the nationally televised Today Show offered a segment, featuring youth voices, addressing the crisis of fentanyl contamination leading to poisoning.  Most adults are unaware of how pervasive this threat is — and the vital need to discuss this with our teens.  Please check out the clip below (just mute the initial ad). The entire clip is only a few minutes long but worth your consideration.

https://www.today.com/video/families-sound-alarm-on-fenta-pill-epidemic-120266309680

The Center for Parents and Teachers is your local nonprofit that has been dedicated for 35 years to supporting families and educators in raising healthy children.  As a small nonprofit relying on donations and grants, we are grateful for your support.   https://centerforparentsandteachers.org/donate