Community Stuff 2/22/13

stone wall historian speaking at library

Drive along any back road in New England and you’ll most likely see miles and miles of stone walls.  These walls can teach you much about the commercial and cultural history of an area if you know how to read them.  Kevin Gardner, author of The Granite Kiss, has been building and studying the stone walls of New England for nearly forty years. He distills his years of experience into principles and practices that are adaptable to a wide variety of designs and circumstances. Travelling throughout New England, Gardner has been speaking at dozens of historical societies, bookstores, and libraries.  He seeks to refocus attention on these fascinating landmarks, explaining why and how they were originally built and how their styles have changed over time.  On the practical side, he also provides tips and techniques for restoring stone walls as well as information about design and materials for preservation.

Gardner has also worked as a feature writer and producer for New Hampshire Public Radio and as an actor, critic and teacher of theatre.  His book, The Granite Kiss (Countryman Press), received  great critical response and was selected as one of the top fifty books of 2001 by Christian Science Monitor.

Gardner will be appearing at the Sawyer Free Library to discuss not only the history and philosophy behind New England stone walls but also to give amateur wall builders some hints on basic techniques.  Along the way, Gardner will consider the mythology of the stone wall and its place in the New England imagination. As part of his presentation, Gardner builds a miniature stone wall atop his podium/table, illustrating the techniques he is teaching. 

Gardner’s presentation on Saturday, March 9, will run from 2 to 4 pm in the Sawyer Free Library, 2 Dale Avenue. The program is part of the Gloucester Lyceum’s Adult Lecture Series and will include a question/answer period during which attendees are encouraged to bring up questions or problems concerning their own projects.   The program is free and open to the public.

September 24, 2010
This image is believed to be a view from the top of the hill near the exit 4 southbound off ramp on 93, looking towards Derry, New Hampshire.


Inn Magnolia announces our third annual Women’s Retreat Weekend: Relax and Renew – April 12, 13, & 14

(Please reply with "photo" if you’d like a couple of JPEGs of the inn)

Join Inn Magnolia for a weekend of relaxation and strengthening of the mind and body. Our practitioners will pamper and inspire you to take on the spring with a rejuvenated approach and an optimistic outlook. The weekend is chock-full of activities, which range from sublimely calming to joyously energizing, and we have some special offerings to satisfy your tastebuds (all meals are provided).  Group sessions in Yoga, Alexander Technique, Meditation, and an inspirational talk, as well as one hour-long and one twenty-minute-long private session in a selection of massage techniques are ALL INCLUDED. We made sure you will have a wee bit of time free to explore the beautiful beach and incredible conservation land nearby, or just to curl up and read, but you’ll want to take advantage of all the programming that is provided by our extraordinary practitioners.

Our past two retreats have brought together an incredible set of warm, intelligent and friendly guests and practitioners.  We can’t wait to meet this year’s group!

Prices range from $295-$465 per person, including lovely accommodations.  Our early-bird rates apply to those who sign up before March 31.

Please see events.html for more information, or email us at

Thank you!