Student Documentaries: 11:30 AM Sunday, June 11, 2017, The Moviehouse, Millerton, NY
Event Date : 06/11/2017
If you think today's high school students think of nothing but social media and video games, wait until you see the mini-documentaries they are producing this year as part of the Civic Life Project. This program is designed to encourage area high school students to investigate current topics and find out how government involvement works.

Projects they are working on this year include: Combating the Stigma of Teen Depression and Suicide, The Militarization of Police Departments, The Unfairness of Pretrial Detention and The Bail System, Drinking And Driving After The Death of A Fellow Student and The Safety of Nuclear Energy and the Closing of Indian Point. 

The student directors and producers will be on hand to discuss their films after they are screened. You will be impressed by their knowledge and understanding of these complex subjects.

Bringing Nature Home, 7:30 PM, Friday, May 12, 2017, Hotchkiss
Event Date : 05/12/2017
After seeing the Grand Canyon in 1908, Teddy Roosevelt uttered the five words that would save it: “Leave it as it is.” Unfortunately, it is no longer an option to leave most of our country as it once was.

/secure/images/gallery1/136-CjZjrts3Rhhz.jpgAcclaimed author and ecologist Douglas Tallamy says only five percent of the lower forty-eight states are in anything close to a pristine ecological state. Ninety-five percent of our country has been logged, tilled, drained, paved, and otherwise “developed.” Our rivers have been straightened and dammed (damned?), and several no longer reach the sea. Our air has been polluted, our aquifers pumped nearly dry, and our climate changed for centuries to come. We have purposefully brought thousands of species of plants from other lands—3300 of which are now “naturalized” and aggressively displacing the native plant communities on which local food webs depend.

Think for a moment about your own yard, he says. When choosing plants for your landscape, you have only considered their decorative value; you have given no thought to the many roles your plants could have played within your local ecosystem had you chosen them wisely. We must accept the new reality that how each one of us treats our local biological heritage impacts not just us but our neighbors and our neighbors’ neighbors.

Refuge From Conflicts, 7:30 PM, Friday, April 21, 2017, Housatonic Valley Regional High School
Event Date : 04/21/2017
The number is so large most of us can't comprehend the scope of the crisis. 65 million people have been displaced in the global refugee crisis. Since the civil war exploded in 2011 more than 11 million people have fled their homes in Syria alone. More than 4 million refugees have fled the country for Jordan, Turkey and other neighboring states.

/secure/images/gallery1/135-69V4TM7H4vA0.jpgGeorge Rupp knows this issue well. He was president of the Internal Rescue Committee from 2002 to 2013 directing a staff of 12 thousand colleagues in over 40 countries.He is a past president of Columbia University and is now a senior fellow at the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs.

More than a million desperate people have made the perilous journey in overcrowded rafts to Europe. Most landed in Greece and then pushed north into Germany and other countries. It's a mind numbing problem that Dr. Rupp dealt with. His talk will be both provocative and informative.

Newtown, 11:30 AM, Sunday, January 29, 2017, The Moviehouse, Millerton, NY
Event Date : 01/29/2017
/secure/images/gallery1/133-CDBDd1rnrR02.jpgNewtown is a riveting new documentary detailing the trauma and tribulations of families and community members dealing with emotions and life after the massacre of 20 children ages 6-7 years old and six adult staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut by 20 year-old Adam Lanza.

Newtown was directed by Kim A. Snyder. Snyder is a New York based filmmaker known for I Remember Me, One Bridge To The Next and Welcome To Shelbyville. She will be on hand to discuss the documentary after the screening.

Snyder effectively incorporates the interview into her narrative throughout weaving testimonies into the film's narrative interspersed with sweeping scenes of the natural beauty of the area. The Sandy Hook School Nurse, Sally Cox, described her feelings hearing the shots being fired wondering when they would stop. A Connecticut State Trooper refused to discuss the graphic details of what he saw at the crime scene focusing on the emotional impact instead. And this theme drives the film.

Adam Gopnik, 7:30 PM, Friday, Dec. 2, Housatonic Valley Regional High School
Event Date : 12/02/2016
Paris To/secure/images/gallery1/130-2GBFjEVe5b8A.jpg the Moon, Angels and Ages, The King In the Window, and The Table Comes First: Family, France and the Meaning of Food. These are just a few of the books, magazine articles and essays to spring from the witty and whimsical mind of Adam Gopnik. A staff writer for The New Yorker since 1986 Adam Gopnik has earned three National Magazine awards for essays and criticism and a George Polk Award for Magazine Reporting.  Video of Lecture

He was the magazine's Paris correspondent for 5 years from 1995 to 2000. The he returned to New York to writeabout life in the city. Lately he has written about gun violence and gun control in America. The title for his talk at The Salisbury Forum is "Notes Of A Reluctant Pundit Writing Sanely About Politics In A Less Than Sane America."

Anne Garrels, 7:30 PM, Oct. 21, 2016, The Salisbury School
Event Date : 10/21/2016
Anne GarrelsFor more than three decades Anne Garrels has reported from some of the most dangerous places on earth. First for ABC News and then for National Public Radio she has reported from the Soviet Union, the Middle East, Nicaragua, El Salvador, both Gulf Wars, Afghanistan and Iraq. Her insights into the issues facing us in this election year will be important.  Video of Lecture

In 2003 she published Naked In Baghdad a memoir about her time in Iraq reporting before, during and after the American bombing campaign. She began her career as a research assistant for ABC News and because of her fluency in Russian she was assigned to Moscow. She built relationships there that gave her unusual insight to the struggles of the Russian people through the fall of the Soviet Union to the Putin era. 

Her latest book Putin Country is a study of Russia and her people through the frame work of a city deep in the interior. She says Putin Country is sort of like middle America. It is hardcore, industrial and like most of the country outside of Moscow. The city is Chelyabinsk. By describing the effect of the collapse of the Soviet Union, the corruption, the sanctions and now new intimidation she helps us understand Putin's appeal with his image of standing up to the west and promising to make Russia great again.

The Value of a Liberal Arts Education, 7:30 PM, Friday, Sept. 23rd Salisbury School
Event Date : 09/23/2016
/secure/images/gallery1/128-LT4G0y9L74Jt.jpgDoes a liberal arts education obtained at great expense prepare students for today's job market? Lynn Pasquerella, Ph.D. says that a discipline fostering critical-thinking, writing and arguing skills is necessary in a rapidly changing, globally interdependent world where the jobs of the future have not yet been invented.

The president of Mount Holyoke College for six years Dr. Pasquerella is becoming president of the Association of American Colleges & Universities, a 1,300 member organization that advocates for undergraduate liberal arts education.

Do we really need more welders and fewer philosophers as Senator Marco Rubio once suggested as a presidential candidate? Dr. Pasquerella says that in a society where success is equated with wealth parents worry that their children may not have a better life than they have. But she argues there is a false dichotomy between welding and philosophy between vocational and liberal arts education. She says everyone can benefit from the illumination of human consciousness through literature, philosophy, music and the arts. Most important, she says, it furthers our nation's historic mission of educating for democracy.

Her views on higher education will foster a challenging and provocative discussion.