TEDxHartlandHill hosts inaugural event at Billings Farm & Museum Sept. 24

Tickets for a full day of inspirational speakers, interactive displays, food, swag and live music are on sale now

Saturday, September 24th – WOODSTOCK – TEDxHartlandHill takes place on September 24th from 9am to 8pm at Billings Farm & Museum. The independently organized, TED-licensed event will feature local voices and TED Talks videos on What is Community? Homeland, Heart & Hearth”.

Launched in 2009, TEDx is a program of locally hosted events that bring the community together to share a TED-like experience. Some of the best talks from TEDx events have been published on TED.com and have attracted millions of viewers around the world.

Woodstock, with its history of conservation and reputation as one of America’s most beautiful small towns, is an ideal place to engage in conversations about creating peaceful communities, innovating in business, agriculture, technology and living more sustainably. TEDxHartlandHill created a forum to find the best new ideas for building cohesive communities and celebrating local innovation with respect for the past and an eye to the future.

Speakers will address what community means to them under the categories of home, heart and hearth, sometimes referring to the literal issues surrounding housing and other times exploring the less tangible ways community enables us to do things together build up.

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These include well-known Upper Valley neighbors such as Helen Hong, executive director at COVER in White River Junction, and Thato Ratsebe, associate director and program manager at the Association of Africans Living in Vermont; and guests from afar including Alpaslan Özerdem, Dean and Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at George Mason University’s Carter School, and former neo-Nazi recruiter Tony McAleer, who spoke about how we as a community deal with hate. Artists such as Robert Sturman, international photographer, and Robert DuGrenier, glass artist known for the redesigned flame on the Statue of Liberty, will discuss the impact of their work on society. Recent Transplant Ben Mezrich – International bestselling author and best known for writing Founding of Facebook, a Tale of Sex, Money, Genius and Betrayal, which was then adapted into an Oscar-winning screenplay by Aaron as The Social Network Sorkin – is uniquely positioned to speak about how social media affects our sense of community, for better or for worse.

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A full list of speakers and their resumes can be found at tedxhartlandhill.org/speakers.
Organizer Deborah Greene said: “This is a unique moment of growth in so many communities around the world. This isn’t just a conversation about a community. This is a conversation that is necessary and happening around the world. What new ideas are shaping our world as we emerge from the last few years? How can we change for the better and still honor the past? How do we strengthen our sense of humanity and humility in difficult times? And what new innovations can we celebrate?”

The daily schedule includes breaks for food and drinks, yoga, sound healing, participation in interactive displays, and exploring Billings Farm. The day concludes with an Artistree-hosted after-party in the Hayloft featuring the music of KeruBo, a Kendu Bay, Kenya-born Vermont singer/songwriter whose musical style spans from traditional African music to gospel, blues and Afro- Jazz.

In addition to a busy schedule at Billings Farm, TEDxHartlandHill is also putting together an Innovator’s Showcase at The Woodstock Green – a curated marketplace of the best local “sharing ideas” and innovations. This is an opportunity for local innovators, entrepreneurs and others to illustrate new ideas where innovation thrives in the community:
Farming + Cuisine + Sustainability + Theater + Technology + Activism + Housing + Arts + Business + Education + Community Building + and more.

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Speakers at TEDxHartlandHill include:
Jeff Kahn – “Community to Community”
Tina Packer – “Women & Art”
Helen Hong – “COVER Home Repair”
Ben Silberfarb – Preview of Upcoming Documentary “Whitman Brook”
Ben Mezrich – “Social Media and Remote Work”
dr Jen Ashby – “Bridges to Health: East Meets West”
Jamie Forbes – “Difficult Conversations”
Rev. Dr. Leon Dunkley – “Community”
Tony McAleer – “Tolerance”
Robert Sturman – “International Artist/Photographer”
Robert Du Grenier – “NFT/Glass Blowing”
Thato Ratsebe – “Growing Community”
Alpaslan Özerdem – “Global Connectivity”

Tickets are now available in limited numbers and offer the option of attending the full day of the program or just half a day. TEDxHartlandHill sponsors include: Mad Old Nut, Woodstock EDC and Billings Farm & Museum.

For more information on TEDxHartlandHill speakers and a detailed schedule, visit tedxhartlandhill.org.

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