First Wednesdays Welcome Page

Last Updated 8/29/2014 12:26:13 PM

First Wednesdays Humanities Lecture Series Hosted by Nine Libraries Around Vermont

2014-2015 First Wednesdays Brochure/Schedule


This eclectic lecture series offers talks in nine towns on the first Wednesday of the month, October through May. Topics are varied, timely, timeless, thought-provoking, and fun.

The 2014-2015 season of First Wednesdays begins October 1. Since its beginning in 2002 at the Kellogg-Hubbard Library in Montpelier, First Wednesdays has expanded to nine sites within or near most of Vermont’s population centers.

The free lectures draw nationally and regionally renowned authors, artists, scholars, and public figures who speak on diverse topics before audiences sometimes numbering several hundred people.

All First Wednesdays talks are free and open to the public, held at libraries and other venues in the host communities.

Here is a sampling of new speakers and topics for each site in 2014-2015:

  • Former NSA senior executive Bill Sullivan: "The National Security Agency: The Law, The Media and Edward Snowden" (Brattleboro)
  • Award-winning novelist Salman Rushdie: "What’s the Use of Stories That Aren’t Even True?" (Essex Junction)
  • Concert pianist and psychiatrist Richard Kogan: "Beethoven’s Deafness: Psychological Crisis and Artistic Triumph" (Manchester)
  • Vermont author Julia Alvarez reads for National Poetry Month (Middlebury) 
  • Richard Blanco, inaugural poet for President Obama: "Becoming American: An Inaugural Poet’s Journey" (Montpelier)
  • Dr. Edward Tick, director of Soldier’s Heart Clinic: "Warrior’s Return: Restoring the Soul after War" (Newport)
  • Long-time NPR commentator Susan Stamberg on the power of radio (Norwich) 
  • Vermont author Jay Parini: "Jesus: The Human Face of God" (Rutland)
  • Bestselling author Sy Montgomery: "Walking with the Great Apes" (St. Johnsbury)

***See communities at right for the 2014-2015 schedule***

First Wednesdays talks always include a question and answer time, offering a chance for the audience to interact with the speaker. The talks bring vitality and the opportunity for lifelong learning to Vermont’s communities.

2014-2015 First Wednesdays Statewide Sponsor:

Vermont Department of Libraries (First Wednesdays is supported in part by the Institute of Museum & Library Services through the Vermont Department of Libraries)

Listen to First Wednesdays on VPR or watch on community television

Vermont Public Radio and Vermont community TV stations have covered many First Wednesdays talks. See a listing of talks available at VPR Presents and on the local TV sites. Listen, watch, download, or find out more information.

 Image: Doorway in the Mausoleum of Moulay Idriss, Meknes by Mark Houlder


At Nine Libraries

Last Updated 12/11/2014 12:51:26 PM

Hosted by Nine Libraries

(Brooks Memorial Library)
Essex Junction
(Brownell Library)
(Manchester Community Library)
(Ilsley Public Library)
(Kellogg-Hubbard Library)
(Goodrich Memorial Library)
(Norwich Public Library and Norwich Historical Society)
(Rutland Free Library)
St. Johnsbury
(St. Johnsbury Athenaeum)
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