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Village Talks
Click the arrows below to view the talks that the Program & Events team has sponsored throughout the years for the enjoyment and education of the Greater Newburyport community.

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2024 Village Talks
2024 Village Talks
American Civil Rights Movement Lee Thomas  Retired history teacher Lee Thomas presents an overview of the American Civil Rights movement from the post-Civil War era to the present. Lee uses his experiences growing up in the South in the 1950s and 60s plus research, visuals and music to show where the U.S. has been and where it is now in its quest to create a truly democratic society.
The Historic Wolfe Tavern Bethany Groff Dorau Local historian Bethany Groff Dorau speaks about Newburyport’s connection to the fabled General Wolfe, who fought in the French and Indian War during the battle for Quebec. Newburyport’s Wolfe Tavern was named in honor of the British General even in the patriotic fervor of the American Revolution. For two centuries, the Wolfe Tavern entertained and refreshed the weary traveler. We learn about the long life and slow death of this Newburyport icon through images, artifacts, and ephemera.
3/20 A Fun Overview of Irish History & Art   James Russell For St. Patrick’s Day, James Russell, a native of Ireland, will share his perspective on Ireland’s storied past and artistic heritage.
4/17 Unconventional Gardening   Molly Janicki Molly says that "sustainable gardening is gardening to meet our present needs without compromising future generations' ability to meet theirs."  She explains how "untraditional" practices such as composting and planting native species result in beautiful gardens and provide many enduring benefits to nature and to usl.




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2023 Village Talks
2023 Village Talks
Afghanistan Culture  Susan Carnduff  Having lived and worked in the country for 2 and 1/2 years, Susan gives her perspective on Afghan culture, especially for women in urban and rural settings.
A Caregiver's Guide to Dementia Kelly McCarthy & Kathy Kodwyck of Avita The speakers discuss signs and symptoms of dementia and provide tips for supporting the caregiver and the loved one.

Kathy gives audience volunteers an opportunity to experience what it is like to have dementia through a segment entitled “Join My Journey.”

3/15 Alan Bull & His Art - A Retrospective and Look Forward Alan Bull
Bull presents a 30-year look-back of his work, with many scenes of Newburyport, some of which no longer exist. “What's going to be fun about this presentation,” says Bull, “is that it will show the transition of the work over time, the variety of subjects, the different media, the quality of the work, and how different pieces relate to each other.” He answered technical questions during his lecture.
4/19 Newburyport's Clock Towers Jack Santos Clock towers such as the one at City Hall are highlights of our local skyline.  Jack Santos will reveal each Newburyport clock's history and the role it played in keeping the community on time.
5/17 Elder Law Atty. Margo Birke Margo is a Newburyport attorney who has specialized in elder law for over 20 years. She will speak on wills vs. trusts, eligibility for mass health, and special needs trusts.

6/21 "My Year in Europe & Africa" Judy Tymon Judy looked back at her one-year journey, including getting a degree at Erasmus University, field work in Namibia, visits to world famous museums and an overview of Dutch transportation infrastructure.

7/19 Old Favorite Songs Charles Burnim Charles Burnim presents a concert of Old Favorites. Burnim is a solo vocalist whose repertoire ranges from the songs of Sinatra to those of John Denver and also includes Irish melodies, and show and movie tunes.
8/16 Travel in Chile Donna & Bill Franz The Franzes are Village members who recently journeyed south to visit their son in Chile. Through photographs and reminiscences they share their travels in this fascinating South American country.
9/20 Travels in India Ellen Golden Maine-based artist Ellen Golden recently visited India. Her illustrated talk focuses on the traditions and cultural practices she discovered.

10/18 Black History in Newburyport Ghlee Woodworth Local historian and popular speaker, Ghlee Woodworth, shares some of her recent research into the city’s historic Black community. Fascinating information presented about former slaves, business owners and others who contributed to the social and economic fabric of Newburyport.

11/15 Newburyport & the Civil War Bill Hallett Civil War re-enactor and historian, Bill Hallett, shares stories of the many roles Newburyporters played in this conflict. 

On the battlefield, on the home front, in the political arena, we learn about many of the war time personalities and events connected with Newburyport.

12/20 African Adventures Paula Wright Village member and world traveler, Paula Wright, shares her most recent trip to Africa. Paula went on safari and volunteered at a cheetah wildlife preserve, an “experience beyond compare.”

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2022 Village Talks
2022 Village Talks
N/A N/A No Village Talk due to the virus.
No Village Talk due to the virus.
3/16 Lucy's Love Bus  Mike Wilson
Jackie Walker
Lucy's Love Bus helps children with cancer and their families. Learn about the charity from Jackie and how Mike raised funds by running across the country, from Santa Monica to the Newburyport boardwalk. 
4/20 Travels in Asia, Part II
Paula Wright Paula Wright shares her Asian Travelogue, including photos and commentary about Tibet, Thailand, and China. 
5/18 Maudslay State Park History Donna Sudak Donna Sudak, a Maudslay State Park interpreter, presents a talk on the history of Maudslay.
6/15 The "Opoidemic" Wane Pasanen, MD Dr. Pasanen speaks on the opiate use disorder that results in over 100,000 deaths annually in the U.S.  The talk focuses on the drugs and medications that cause this and the treatment programs currently in place.
7/20 No Village Talk due to Cancellation

8/17 Safety in the Home & Fall Protection
Kelly Crotty Occupational therapist Kelly Crotty talks about steps to take to avoid falls.
9/21 Sustaining the Monarch, One Yard at a Time Katie Banks Hone Katie Banks Hone lecture focuses on the biology and conservation of the monarch butterfly and reveals how to garden for monarchs and pollinators.
10/19 Newburyport, Then and Now Ghlee Woodworth Ghlee Woodworth presents old photos and fascinating historical tidbits about Newburyport.
11/16 Benin & Ghana: A Brief Look at History, Tradition & Culture
Ellen Golden Maine-based artist Ellen Golden shares images and experiences from a January 2022 trip to the West African countries of Benin and Ghana.
12/21 Merrill
Lewis, the “Moxie Man”
Merrill Lewis A narrated slide presentation on the history and mystique of New England’s distinctively different beverage and magic elixir known as
Moxie to learn how this beverage evolved from a 19th century herbal remedy to a
popular soft drink.

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2021 Village Talks
2021 Village Talks

Boston's Molasses Flood

Lois Ascher

Boston's Molasses Flood: Municipal Planning in a Just SocietyA presentation and discussion of the flood and the cultural conditions that drove the catastrophe. 

Boston Bound Lois Ascher Boston Bound: Disrupting the Single Story - A discussion of the dangers of holding onto "a single story," of holding onto stereotypes we have learned since childhood. 
  Taking the Renaissance Apart   Lois Ascher   Part I: Sources of Modern Art
Part II: Demystifying Modern Art
Part III: The Feminine Vision
4/7   Beautiful Montana    Bill Gette   Enjoy Bill's travelog of Montana, along with his nature photos from Benton Lake National Wildlife Refuge, the Rocky Mountain Front, Freezeout Lake, and Glacier National Park.

4/21   Dickens & the Rise of the Novel   Bill Franz    Learn about Charles Dickens' life, his novels and their reception, literacy in nineteenth century England, and book publishing during Dickens' time.  Dickens and the Rise of the Novel
 5/5   Merrimack, Resilient River   Dyke Hendrickson   Beginning in central New Hampshire and flowing to the sea in Newburyport, MA, the Merrimack River continues to be an essential resource for the region.
6/16   Becoming A Successful Author After Age Sixty
  Edith Maxwell   Edith talks about her path toward publishing her twenty-four books currently in print. An Agatha award winner, her books include the Quaker Midwife Mysteries and the Local Foods Mysteries.
7/21   The Rise of the Novel: The Early Years   Bill Franz   Bill examines the lives and works of Charles Dickens' predecessors, including Samuel Richardson, Henry Fielding, Frances Burney, and Ann  Radcliffe, who all contributed to the new literary form called the novel. The Rise of the Novel - The Early Years
8/18   Stay Healthy with Stamps   Henry Lukas
  Stamps can spread useful information; throughout the years thousands of stamps have celebrated medical accomplishments. Henry presents the history behind some of them. Stay Healthy with Stamps
9/15   C-10 Presentation   Natalie Hildt Treat   Concrete Degradation, Climate Resiliency, & the Seabrook Nuclear Power Station. C-10: Concrete Degradation, Climate Resiliency, & Seabrook Nuclear Power Plant
10/20   Food Insecurity   Jane Merrow   Jane Merrow, who represents the First Parish Newbury Food Pantry, talks about Food Insecurity in the Newburyport Area.
11/17   Theodore Roosevelt   Lee Thomas   An Afternoon with Theodore Roosevelt, as he was in 1919, as he muses on his eventful life.
12/15   Travels in Asia   Paula Wright   Part 1 of Travels in Asia includes photos and commentary on Vietnam, Cambodia, and Bhutan.

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2020 Village Talks
2020 Village Talks


Barbara Dowd,
Jane Tuohy,
Frances McLaughlin

Stories and photographs of adventures in Tanzania in support of Africa Asante Foundation (AAF), which assists young people in rural areas with educational and job opportunities. 

A Veteran's Walk Across America
William Shuttleworth Walking across America to heighten attention to veterans' needs, with a focus on veteran suicide, homelessness, and health care, the speaker also makes a plea for more veterans to run for office at all levels.
3/18 Canceled N/A Social activities canceled due to covid-19; the Village transitioned to online offerings.
Virtual Offering Documentary April's Virtual Village Talk: Newburyport: A Measure of Change
  Public Space/Common Wealth 
The origins and importance of common space in a democracy.
 May   Video   Jean
  Newburyport's French Canadian Community
Polar Opposites Paula
Polar Opposites: Antarctica & the Arctic
Nature Talk
Nature Near Home: Escape to the woodlands and open landscapes within ten miles of Newburyport.
  Journey across Southern Africa - Part I - Enjoy Paula's brilliant photos and lively tales of her excursions throughout southern Africa.
Boston's Molasses Flood
Professor Ascher talks about Boston's Molasses Flood and municipal planning in a just society. 
7/15   Rebuild Shallop   Graham McKay   A boat builder, and the Director of Lowell's Boat Shop, talks about rebuilding a shallop for Plimouth Plantation.
7/29   Fungi   David
  Fungi - The Foundation of the Forest: David explains that the forest and other terrestrial ecosystems depend on fungi!
Southern Africa Paula

Journey across Southern Africa - Part lI - Enjoy the second part of Paula's excursions in southern Africa.
Deaf & Hearing Cultures Diana Mele Bridging the Gap: Deaf & Hearing Cultures
Diana explains how deaf and hearing cultures differ and how to respectfully bridge the gap.
10/7   Clipper Heritage Trail   Ghlee Woodworth   Newburyport Clipper Heritage Trail
Ghlee walks us through her newest book and highlights the mariners, shipbuilders, soldiers, artisans, philanthropists, and others who created the city.
John explains that The Carriage Museum has expanded its focus to include the industrial history of Amesbury.
Crossing Bhutan Bill
Bill shares his wildlife adventures and photography from his three visits to this beautiful country.
11/18   The US Presidency   Lee
  The United States Presidency: Where It's Come From & Where It's Headed; Lee explains how the Presidency has evolved.
History of the US Post Office Henry
Henry, the Education Director at the Spellman Museum of Stamps, uses stamps to walk us through the History of the Post Office.

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2019 Village Talks
2019 Village Talks

A Newbury-port Marine in World War I

Bethany Groff

The life and legacy of Eben "Bunny" Bradbury, son of two historic Newburyport families. 


Exploring Alaska


A photographic adventure through the Seward Peninsula, Denali National Park, the Kenai Peninsula, and the fauna and flora of these areas.

Newburyport's Irish Community
Jean Doyle This one-hour film tells the story of Irish families in Newburyport from the mid 1800s through Bossy Gillis' terms as mayor from the 1020' to the 1940s.
Living Near Seabrook Nuclear Plant Natalie Tildt Treat, Chris topher Nord
Learn more about the C-10 Research and Educational Foundation and  safety issues related to the Seabrook Station Nuclear Plant.
Greenway Carousel and The Fox
Jeff Briggs Hear Newburyport sculptor, Jeff Briggs, explain the creative process used in the development of Boston's iconic Greenway Carousel.
If This House Could Talk Jack Santos Learn where the idea of "Talking Houses" came from and some of the program's challenges. 
Whaleboats and Whaling Graham McKay Learn about the history and evolution of whaleboats and whaling from a marine archeologist, boat builder, and Executive Director of Lowell's Boat Shop in Amesbury.

A Savvy Traveler's Tips
Paula Wright
Paula shares tips about traveling alone and on a budget, educational opportunities abroad and at home, and her experiences visiting 86 countries and seven continents!
Henry Coit Perkins Susan C.S. Edwards
Learn about this native son, Harvard educated country doctor, and experimental daguerrotype photographer.
Amesbury Women Edith Maxwell Learn about local women's daily lives at the turn of the 20th century from this Amesbury author.
Shady Talk: All About Trees Jean Berger,
Cris Miller
Newburyport trees in a nutshell and the organizations enhancing our urban forest.

Holiday Choral
Children's Chorus & Sing-along An invitation to enjoy the delightful voices and spirit of the Newburyport Children's Chorus.

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2018 Village Talks
2018 Village Talks
Newburyport & HABS

Reginald W. Bacon             
Newburyport through the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS).   



Newburyport's South End


Tom Horth

The history of Newburyport's South End between 1850 and 1950 when it was the poor fishing and clamming part of town, and learn of its local streetcars.


  Rounder Records

  Marion Leighton Levy &
Ken Irwin

  Part III: The Studio - A conversation about the independent record business and an opportunity to get answers to your questions.



   Service Dogs

  Carlene White

  The founder of Service Dog Project, Inc. in Ipswich, MA, spoke about the inspiring and effective ways that service dogs serve veterans and patients with neurological challenges. Link: Service Dog Project

  Newburyport in World War II
  Jean Foley Doyle

  A two-hour documentary that examines World War II history as experienced by Newburyporters, both on the battlefield and on the home-front.

  Newburyport/ Bura Alliance

  Joanna Hammond & Ted Van Nahl    
  This talk is about the twenty-five year-long relationship between the greater Newburyport area and the people of Bura, Kenya. Twenty-Five Years: Greater Newburyport/Bura (Kenya) Alliance video

  101 Days Across America

  Kate Derrick & Tom Lochhaas
  The Joys of Retirement Camping: In January, Kate and Tom left Newburyport on a coast-to-coast camping trip that lasted 101 days and almost 10,000 miles. Click here to see the video.                 

  Urban Renewal
  Lois Ascher

A Tale of Two Cities - Urban Renewal, Newburyport, and Boston’s West End

  Stamps & History

  Henry Lukas

  Thinking Outside the Box: Stamps & History. Learn about the history of the U.S. postal system by viewing stamps issued since1847.

  The Life & Times of Abraham Lincoln    

  Presentation includes photographs and music from Lincoln's life (in Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana), his family, and presidency. 


  Nautical Newburyport
  Dyke Hendrickson
  Popular speaker returns to Village Talks to speak about Newburyport and its relationship to the Coast Guard.

  The Village Sings!
  Children's Chorus
  The Village Talks turns to songs with the delightful voices and spirit of our own Greater Newburyport Children's Chorus.

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2017 Village Talks
2017 Village Talks
1/11   You CAN Keep Collecting!   Paula
  Repurposing Your Art Legacy from local artist and owner of Paula Estey Gallery.
1/25   Decluttering Can be Fun!
  Corinne McKeown   Certified Senior's Real Estate Specialist offers suggestions about how to approach decluttering your space and downsizing your belongings.
2/15   The Adventures of a Local
Jeopardy Champion
  Jill Santopietro
  This champion tells her story of applying and auditioning for Jeopardy and her February 2016 appearance on the show.
3/29   Tales of a Wildlife
  Wildlife rehabilitation shares his experiences and advice.
4/19   Pentucket Teachers Make
Poland Personal
  Cheryl Martin &
Janet Eppoliti
  Teachers share their experience of visiting Poland to learn about the Holocaust with the goal of sharing with their students.
5/17   Newburyport's Waterfront:
Industrialization, Decay,
& Rebirth
  Skip & Marge Motes
  Skip and Marge share the history of the waterfront.
6/21   Smart Phones
& Tablets
  This Tech Guru addresses why we need these tools and gives us tricks for using them.
7/19   Dating Houses in Essex
County & Newbury
  Talk from the "Old House Whisperer," former SPNEA (previously titled Historic New England) Property Manager.
8/18   Nautical Newburyport
  Dyke Hendrickson   Journalist and author shares "A History of Captains, Clipper Ships, and the Coast Guard."
9/20   Restoring the Coachman's
House at Maudslay
  Curator shares the steps he has taken and where the project is going.
10/18   Emerging Trends, Resources,
and Living Options for Seniors 
  Corinne McKeown   Certified Senior's Real Estate Specialist discusses how to navigate later-in-life moves.
11/15   Nature in our Back Yard
  Former Joppa Director shares how to awaken to what's only a few steps away. 
12/20   Sing-Along Entertainment   Barry
  Good fun with old and new friends!

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2016 Village Talks
2016 Village Talks
1/20 Mystery
on the Merrimack
Graham McKay Manager Master Boat Builder and Museum Curator at Lowell's Boat Shop asks "Is this the Wreck of Lightship No.17?"
1/27   How Records
Get Made: Rounder Returns
  Marian Leighton
Den Irwin
  A conversation with two of the three founders of Rounder Records.
2/17   Resiliency Planning for Sea-Level Rise   John W. Duggan
  Registered Environmental Engineer Commonwealth of MA and Professor and Chair of the Dept. of Civil Engineering & Technology at Wentworth Institute of Technology presents the roles and responsibilities for a proactive community.
2/24   U.S. Coast Guard Search & Rescue Missions
  Travis L. Capps   Talk presented by Operations Petty Officer at the U.S. Coast Guard Station Merrimack River.
3/16   The Tiny House Movement - Why Now?
  Presented by Tiny House designer, builder, dweller, author, sustainability educator, mother, reclamation artist, and organic gardener.
3/23   Font Smart: Five Important Things Everyone Should Know about Type
  Consulting Typographer, author, storyteller, and Director of Words and Letters at Monotype; Past positions: President of the Type Directors Club and Executive Vice President of the International Typeface Corporation.
4/20   What's the Buzz? It's All About Bees   Anita Deeley   Beekeeper, MA State Bee Inspector, Board Member for Essex County Beekeepers Association and MA Beekeepers Association.
4/27   Elephant Orphans: A Glimpse into the Power of Love
  Dr. Mary Baures   Author, artist, expert in treating trauma. Doctorate in Clinical Psychology Antioch University; CAGS in Human Development from Harvard University.
5/18   Let the Colors Begin! Preparing your Lawn & Garden for Spring
  Tim Lamprey Founder of the Harbor Garden Center in Salisbury and author of "Tim's Tips" in the Daily News.
A Walk Through Newburyport History 
  Ghlee Woodworth   Local historian, author, and preservation award recipient.
6/15   Colonial Blacksmithing
  Peter Cassidy   Forging the Past & Present by Cassidy Brothers Forge in Rowley, MA.
6/22   Keeping the Past Alive - Meet Artist Richard Burke Jones
  Richard Burke
  Newburyport's City Clerk is a gifted artist who researches, designs, and paints historical scenes of many 19th century New England towns.
9/14   Get to Know the Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society
  Executive Director of the Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society.
9/28   Elephant Orphans: A Glimpse into the Power of Love
  Dr. Mary Baures
  Author of "Love Heals Baby Elephants" is an expert in treating trauma. 
10/5   Scandal & Slander in the Quarterly Court
  Bethany Groff
  Exploration of 17th century records of Essex County Quarterly Court from Historic New England.
10/26   Tour Cedar Mesa and Grand Gulch   Barbara Dowd & Mike Prendergast
  Barbara and Mike share their experiences working as Volunteer Rangers on and around Cedar Mesa, Utah.
11/9   Port Family Sails to Turkey and Back   John & Lory Douglass   This pair of sailors and adventurers recount their family journey across the Atlantic, through the Mediterranean, to Turkey and beyond. 
11/16   The High Arctic: Research & Adventure   Lon E. Hachmeister   One of the first Oceanographers to do research in the High Arctic region when almost nothing was known about its physical geography.
12/7   Championing the History of Amesbury's Industry and People   John
  John is the Executive Director of the Amesbury Carriage Museum. 

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2015 Village Talks
2015 Village Talks
4/15 A Tour of Historic New England: Historic Homes and Preserved Properties
Bethany Groff
Bethany represents Historic New England
4/20 Newburyport's South End in the 20th Century
Author presents this topic.

5/6   Whaleboats & Whaling in Local Industry 1650-1920
  Graham McKay   Speaker is from Lowell's Boat Shop. 
5/13   Multiple Intelligences: It's not how smart you are - it's how you're smart!
  Deidre Budzyna   Speaker is from Northern Essex Community College
5/20   Herd Around Town: My Life with Alpacas
  Dave Sanderson   Speaker is from Parker River Alpaca Farm.
5/27   Increasing your Energy and Focus through Yoga and Meditation
  Chris: Med, RYT, Instructor
6/3   Birds of Western Cuba   David M. Larson,
  Speaker represents MA Audubon Joppa Flats Education Center
6/10   Uprising: The Market Basket Crisis of 2014   Grant
  Speaker is from The Lowell Sun newspaper. 
9/30   A Flash from the Past: The History and People of the Former Mosley Family Estate
  Donna Sudak   Speaker is a Park Interpreter of Maudslay State Park
10/7   A Journalist's Insights into the Marathon Bomber Trial   G. Jeffrey MacDonald   Correspondent for USA Today and Pastor of the First Parish Church of Newbury
10/14   Where the Wild Things Are: New England's Diverse and Abundant Wildlife
  By Director, MA Audubon's Joppa Flats Education Center
10/21   Come All Ye Rounders: Journey into American Music   Marian Leighton Levy &
Ken Irwin 
  Presented by two of the three founders of Rounders Records
11/4   Around We Go with Jeff Briggs: The Carousel Man   Jeffrey Briggs   Sculptor and Carousel Designer presents
11/11   It's not how smart you are - it's how you're smart!    Deidre Budzyna 
  Professor, Northern Essex Community College and Co-owner, Acting Out Productions

11/18   The Grand Canyon, Lake Baikal, and the Concert for the Earth   Inga
  The speaker links personal stories with cultural events.
12/2   The Triple Crown of Open Water: Tales of Swimming in the Ocean   David
  Presented by this Nuclear Physicist and Master Swimmer.

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