Workers Win

Billionaires have been getting richer in recent years, as the middle class has gotten smaller, and the ranks of the poor have swelled. But workers in Greenfield are reversing that trend. “We won a good union contract,” John Cevasco told the Valley Post on December 10. He has worked at a grocery store, Green Fields Market, for more than 16 years. About 75 workers at the store, and at a smaller subsidiary in nearby Shelburne Falls, formed a union in 2012.

139 Acres Saved

Activists on August 24 permanently protected 139 acres of forestland in Royalston, Massachusetts. Royalston is near Greenfield and Keene. The land includes several ponds. “Canoeing across this sheltered wetland is a dramatic experience,” said David Kotker. He works for the land trust that saved the land. It has a web site at www.MountGrace.org. “No signs of human habitation are visible.” Among the animals that live there are beavers, a breeding pair of bald eagles, and a rare juvenile golden eagle. A photo of the land is below.

Photos: Rallies for Peace and the Environment

These photos show rallies for peace and the environment. The first photo was taken in Greenfield on July 6. It shows Linda Owen of Brattleboro. Her sign refers to the Canadian town of Lac-Mégantic where three years ago a freight train carrying crude oil derailed and exploded, killing 47 people. Similar trains travel through Greenfield, said rally organizer Tim Stevenson of the group Post Oil Solutions www.PostOilSolutions.org.

Concert Review: Sierra Leone All-Stars

The Sierra Leone All-Stars performed an excellent concert near Greenfield on June 25. It was at the Shea Theater in Turner's Falls, Massachusetts. The dance floor was full. The band has recorded several excellent albums. Most of the songs on the albums are Afro-Pop or “high life” style. Some are reggae.

Lead singer Ruben Koroma asked, "Our country, Sierra Leone, is rich in minerals. Why are our people in poverty?"

Photos: 450 March to Stop Pipeline

About 450 people took part in a four-day march to stop a proposed fracked gas pipeline. The event ended March 20 in Northfield, Massachusetts, near Greenfield. Twenty people walked the entire 53 mile route. Fracked gas causes climate change, which the world's leading scientists say is a major threat to earth's ability to support human life. The march organizers have a web site:

www.SugarShackAlliance.org

More information about the pipeline is at:

www.valleypost.org/node/1143

To enlarge a photo, click on it, then scroll down and click "see full size image."

Four Day March to Stop Pipeline Starts March 17

A four day march to stop a proposed fracked gas pipeline starts March 17. The march will start about 30 miles west of Northampton, in Windsor, Massachusetts. It ends near Greenfield in Northfield, Massachusetts. The public is invited to attend part or all of the 53 mile march. Organizers are offering free food and places to sleep for the marchers. They are also seeking donations.

The march has been endorsed by www.350.org. More information about the pipeline is at www.NoFrackedGasInMass.org.

As of February 23, the march Facebook page said 37 people were planning to attend:

March to Stop Pipeline Set for Presidents Day

On February 15 in Greenfield there will be a march and rally to stop a proposed fracked gas pipeline. The public is invited. The march starts at 10 a.m. at Greenfield Community College's East Building. It will go to 40 Mill Street for a 15 minute rally. Then the march will continue to 43 Silver Street, where there will be a lunch with speeches by Northampton lawyer Tom Lesser and others.

The march is being organized by Hattie Nestel. She organized a march last month that was attended by about 300 people. Photos are at:

www.valleypost.org/node/1136

Photos: March to Stop Pipeline

These photos show some of the 300 or so people who took part in a 34 mile march in the Valley in honor of Martin Luther King. The march took three days and ended on King's national holiday. The purpose of the march was to stop a proposed fracked gas pipeline in the Valley. More information about the march and the pipeline is at www.NoFrackedGasInMass.org. The march was organized by Hattie Nestel.

To enlarge a photo, click on it, then scroll down and click "see full size image."

Martin Luther King Day March Set

To stop a proposed fracked gas pipeline in the Valley, activists will march about 40 miles over three days starting January 16. The march is in honor of Martin Luther King, whose federal holiday is January 18. The marchers will pass through the Massachusetts towns of Northfield, Erving, Montague, Greenfield, Deerfield, Conway, Ashfield, and Plainfield.

Fracked gas causes climate change, which the world's leading scientists say is a major threat to earth's ability to support human life.

Roger Salloom and Charles Neville Concert is November 28

Roger Salloom and Charles Neville plus a five person band will perform at the Arts Block in Greenfield on November 28 at 7 p.m. Rolling Stone magazine said of Salloom, "Superb storyteller with a great sense of timing and the music is incredibly infectious." Neville has performed with James Brown, B.B. King, and Ray Charles. Tickets are $15.