COVID, Hotchkiss, Hamish Lutris and Black History Month, Bingo
Lots of good news from Noble Horizons! As of January 21, every person living or working at Noble is COVID-free, and 100% of Cobble, Wagner, Riga and Whitridge residents have been vaccinated! In addition, scores of Noble team members like longtime nurse Mary Ellen Baldwin, pictured here, lined up for vaccinations last week and cottagers received the vaccination on January 18. We are enormously grateful for the swift administration of the vaccine and though we will continue COVID testing for the foreseeable future (you can't be too safe!), we look forward to the final round of shots in early February.
Life isn't all COVID, and the pictures scattered through this newsletter attest to the spirit and energy animating these winter days. We celebrated a 95th birthday, made dog biscuits for local canine friends and peanut butter bird seed feeders for our aviary visitors, welcomed a new photo exhibit from Hotchkiss students, honored Martin Luther King Day, created fresh flower arrangements, and of course, are enjoying books, puzzles, movies and daily indoor exercise. We hope you have found fulfilling ways to pass the winter days (please note Noble's many new programs below!) and have noticed the hopeful sign of lengthening days...
Farming for the Future at The Hotchkiss School
On February 1 at 7 pm, join The Hotchkiss School's Amy Sidran, Education Coordinator of the School's 287-acre farm for "Education, Outreach, and Sustainability: Farming for the Future." Established in 2008, the School's farm grows 40,000 pounds of produce a year, is a major supplier to Lakeville's Corner Food Pantry, provides cattle pastures for Salisbury's Whippoorwill Farm, and supplies 30% of the school's fresh food for the 2000+ meals served daily. Noble residents have made numerous visits to the farm where they enjoy the spectacular views, animals, and chatting with the students.
Sidran will discuss the school's organic, sustainable farming techniques; new initiatives to provide healthy, nutrient-dense food; plans to increase learning opportunities through hands-on experiences, and the expansion of the school's substantive farm-based leadership and community-building programs. Please click for more information or to register for a Zoom link.
Discovering Shakespeare’s Sonnets
On February 2 at 11 am, Hotchkiss School Shakespeare instructor Parker Reed will begin a three-week series on the sonnets of William Shakespeare. Shakespeare is one of the world's most celebrated playwrights, but he also wrote 154 sonnets-one stanza poems of 14 lines-exploring love, infidelity, lust, mortality, beauty, and desire.
Reed teaches in the English and Theater Departments and holds The Peter Jay Sharp '48 Chair; he earned an MFA in Staging Shakespeare, founded a Shakespearean acting company, and directs for the Hotchkiss Dramatic Association. Please click for more information and a Zoom link.
Honoring Black History Month with Hamish Lutris
Don't miss Hamish Lutris's three-part series featuring the history and achievements of Black Americans over the last several centuries. All classes begin at 1 pm; please register here for a Zoom link.
February 11: Partus Sequitur Ventrum: The History of Slavery in America
The practice of slavery in the United States began in 1619, when 20 Africans were sold in Virginia. The economic potential of the New World encouraged the international trade in human beings, and by the 19th Century, the United States was becoming richer than any nation ever seen on Earth, largely based on the wealth generated by slavery and its attendant industries, like textiles, insurance, and commerce. Shedding the country of this practice would require a civil war, although its after-effects continue to plague the nation. Lutris will discuss the early days of slavery in America, how it fostered US wealth and power through the early 1800s, and the crisis that brought on the Civil War in 1861.
February 18: Connecticut’s African-American Soldiers
This talk will center on the 29th and 30th Connecticut regiments of African-American soldiers which saw valuable service in the war. The experience of these men, who served in the war with little more to anticipate from its ending than the chance to create future opportunities for others, is an inspiring story of courage and sacrifice.
February 25: "An American Dilemma:" African America after Freedom, 1865-present
Though freed in name in 1865, African Americans have faced severe limitations to full equality in the United States. This talk will examine the rocky road that has been traveled by African-Americans and the nation as a whole as a result of slavery and its after-effects. The Jim Crow South, the various currents of black activism, and the events and personalities that have made the civil rights struggle one that has taken on world-wide significance.
Who Doesn't Love Bingo?
If you have the hankering to connect with friends and family, win free prizes (e.g. $100 gift cards!), laugh yourself silly, and support Noble Horizons, please join us for Bingo with a Kick on February 13 at 2 pm!
The game's popularity is exploding as people seek ways to be together and enjoy the high-spirited, old fashioned competition of bingo with the added benefit of raising money for non-profits.
We will be playing for the Noble Horizons Auxiliary whose volunteers have raised funds to enrich life at Noble for almost 50 years. The pandemic has forced the cancellation of their signature events, including the Festival of Trees, Holiday Fair and tag sales, but their spirit and will to contribute have not flagged! Don't miss this great afternoon of pre-Valentine's Day FUN! You may click to sign up, learn more or email questions.
Learning, Practicing and Living with Diversity and Inclusion
On February 18 at 7 pm, The Hotchkiss School’s Yassine Talhaoui, Director of Diversity and Inclusion will be joined by Meg Allen, Director of Inclusion and Equity Education at Salisbury School for a free program entitled, "Building Diversity and Inclusion Amidst our Differences and Commonalities". Allen and Talhaoui will talk about how communities must foster the essential values of equity and inclusion in an increasingly complex world.
This includes strategies to divest communities of racism, marginalization, and bigotry and developing the tools and skills to utilize differences in ways that enable people to work together to cultivate better understanding, more acceptance, and attitudes of inclusion. Please click for more information or to register.