The 22nd Annual Peace Fair takes place on Saturday, September 17, 2022, at the historic Buckingham Friends Meetinghouse in Lahaska, just west of Peddlers Village. Local crafts, artwork, food, games, animals and Bucks area non-profits whose focus is peace, community service, healthy living and the environment. Browse the book sale and listen to entertainers Tookany Creek (bluegrass band), Ecoman (kids’ songs), and River Drivers (Celtic folk). Hear Bucks and Montgomery County poet laureates at the Poetry Reading and tour the 250 year old Quaker Meetinghouse, a National Landmark. The fair runs from 10:30am until 4:00pm and is handicap accessible. Admission and parking are free to the public, although donations are gratefully accepted Local residents from toddlers to seniors will enjoy a delightful, engaging and uplifting day at the Peace Fair.
You are invited to a Zoom webinar.
When: Jan 27, 2022, 07:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Topic: “Grassroots Green Energy and Sustainability” Quakers For Peace and Justice SeriesRegister in advance for this webinar:
Sustainable Energy Education and Development Support (SEEDS) and the Clean Energy Cooperative were birthed in a rural county of northeastern PA. The information and challenges these organizations faced will resonant with small towns as well as larger communities. SEEDS and the Clean Energy Co-op will present information on energy efficiency, renewable energy, sustainable living, and mustering community financial resources.
SEEDS podcast “Today’s Main Ingredient: Bringing Farm Food to Your Table” consists of 15-minute programs, focusing on local farms and businesses.
Services provided by SEEDS include virtual and physical community forums and workshops, free residential and nonprofit energy assessments, solar site assessments, and environmental education.The Clean Energy Cooperative Inc. is a member-owned, separate legal entity that ‘spun-out’ from SEEDS in 2014, with members throughout PA and elsewhere, that finances and develops clean energy projects for community-based businesses and non-profits. Four commercial solar projects have been completed to date, including one named the 2016 “National Best Community Renewable Energy Project” by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council. The Co-op, SEEDS, and other partners just received a 2021 Northeast PA Environmental Partnership Award for their public-private partnership that installed solar on a Wayne County government-owned building.
Kathy Dodge (Chair @Sustainable Energy Education and Development)
Kathy is one of the founding members of SEEDS, holding leadership positions from 2008 until the present. She thinks that SEEDS is one of the most inspiring groups she has ever worked with.
She has a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design and a MA from Marywood University. She moved to Wayne County in 1972 to work as staff illustrator at Highlights for Children Magazine. She lives on an old farm in Lake Ariel with husband Pete Snyder where they raised two sons, and continue to raise most of their own food. They have solar power, an all-electric vehicle, and a geothermal system.
Christine (Chris) Weigand (President @Clean Energy Co-op)
Chris is a retired math teacher. She enjoys yoga and outdoor recreation. Chris has had a long-time interest in environmental and social justice issues and has been involved in a variety of local organizations including Audubon, SEEDS, Victims Intervention Program and WJFF radio.
Jack Barnett (Board Member @Clean Energy Co-op)
After a nearly 30 year career in the telecommunications industry, Jack is now an advocate for sustainability, local foods, solar, zero net-energy buildings and electric vehicles; and is past chair of a chapter of the American Solar Energy Society. His on-going project is a super-insulated, solar home and garden near Hawley, PA, owned with his wife, Mary Anne Carletta. Jack is also a board member of SEEDS, and has taken over 100 hours of solar technology and installation courses and volunteered at multiple solar PV job sites. Jack holds Electrical and Computer Engineering degrees from Clemson University and Carnegie Mellon University.
Michele Sands (Founder of SEEDS @Sustainable Energy Education and Development Support)
Member North Branch Religious Society of Friends; founding member SEEDS and Clean Energy Co-op. Principal, Fair Hill Farm, Tyler Hill 1997-2020. Currently residing in Collington Continuing Care Retirement Community near Washington DC.
Michele will provide background on how the work of these organizations relates to Quaker beliefs.
How did a family walk on the beach in 1987 turn into a cleanup that started a movement? How does examination of raked-up beach debris inform us of broader environmental issues that affect us, whether or not we live near a beach? How can we safeguard our shores for future generations? Why does the health of our oceans matter to our daily lives?
Kyle Gronostajski, Executive Director of Alliance for a Living Ocean, will talk about plastic pollution locally and beyond. His presentation will also touch on the various ways to eliminate single use plastics from daily life in hopes of finding less of them in the marine environment.
Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer was the selection for the One Book, One Community read-in sponsored by the Salem Quarter Indian Affairs Committee. The discussion took place over the winter in the comfort of our own homes through dial up and/or log in access called Zoom.
When I googled this title, I found two interesting things. One is that 4,182 people liked it well
enough to write a review for Goodreads, with a 4.6 out of a possible 5 rating. That seemed
quite good to me for a nonfiction book.
Even more appealing, I noticed when I googled the book that Longwood Gardens featured
Braiding Sweetgrass in 2015 as its Community Read selection. On the Longwood Gardens
website, go to events/blogs and enter Braiding Sweetgrass in the search box. You will find a
beautiful description of the book, complete with gorgeous photos of Longwood Gardens, and
quotes from the author, Robin Wall Kimmerer. This recommendation alone makes it worth
checking out the book.
What is fascinating to me about this book is that while it is primarily considered a work of
nonfiction written by a science professor, it is extremely readable. It weaves together many
genres. The author tells of personal experiences with nature as a type of memoir. She brings in
myths and legends about the environment. Throughout the book are references to the Citizen
Potawatomi Nation of which she is a member. She describes scientific facts about ecology in a
way that is easy to understand. Spirituality, poetry and even history can be found within the
pages. The full title of this book is Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific
Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants.
Considering this book’s relevance to Quakerism, one of the main queries Braiding Sweetgrass
addresses is Stewardship of the Environment. The book was published in 2013, and it took
seven years to write. It seems even more important today with looming environmental
challenges. The importance of the Quaker tenets of simplicity and community are well
documented as well.
I close with a quote from the publisher, Milkweed Editions:
“The awakening of ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our
reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of
other beings will we be capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learn to give our
own gifts in return.”
I write this review of Braiding Sweetgrass to encourage others to tell us about books they have
read that would have interest for our wider Quaker audience. Books with examples of our
Quaker tenets would be especially welcome, in addition to books about Quakersim in general.
submitted by Friend and librarian, GH