Friday, April 18 Dance community gathering

BENNINGTON -- Come dance at Nataraja, a new monthly gathering for the local dance community on the third Friday of each month. The next gathering will be from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. at The Yoga Place.

The forming of Nataraja came out of a desire from and for dancers of any shape, size and ability to have a safe and fun place to find their artistic expression. Talking is kept to a minimum. Bring a water bottle and there will be no alcohol or mind-altering substances. Each person is asked for a $5 donation; proceeds will be donated to The Greater Bennington Interfaith Council’s food pantry, or to the homeless shelter.

Music is eclectic and will vary each month. Call 720-298-7910 for more information.

American Legion Auxiliary dinner

POWNAL -- The American Legion Auxiliary of Pownal Post 90 will serve a fish and chips dinner on Friday, April 18 at the American Legion on Route 7.

The menu will include fried haddock, french fried potatoes and cole slaw. Dessert is included and beverages will be available. The cost for adults is $8.50; children, $4 (ages 12 and under). Dinner will be served from 5 to 7 p.m. Everyone is welcome to attend. This is a fundraiser to support the post’s veterans programs. If you have any questions, call 802-823-5016.

All ages program at Grafton Library

GRAFTON. N.Y. -- Storyteller Gil Payette will presents "Native American Animal Spirits," at 6:30 p.m.

In this program, Payette will weave together his teaching and storytelling skills to give us a glimpse of how Native Americans understand spiritual and sacred animal power. Some Native American languages had no word for "animal." These life forms were considered extended family -- brothers, sisters, cousins -- each one unique unto itself, a symbol of power, of the soul, a creative element with a spiritual purpose. Special prizes will be given.

Women’s council meeting

BENNINGTON -- The next Women’s Council will meet at 6:45 p.m. in Room 2 at Second Congregational Church, 115 Hillside St. The topic will be "Staying Connected -- What makes you feel whole?"

Come explore the depths of your being and share in a safe circle of kindred souls. Bring an open heart and mind, as well as paper and pen. Admission by donation, $10 minimum. Contact Teresa King at 802-733-5729 or teresaking1@live.com to reserve a space.

Sr. Natalie Cain will speak on Catholic Social Teaching

NORTH ADAMS -- The Northern Berkshire Interfaith Action Initiative will host a presentation on Catholic Social Teaching by Sr. Natalie Cain at its Friday, April 18, monthly meeting.

The meeting will begin at 10 a.m. in the Eagle Street Room of the First Baptist Church of North Adams. All are welcome.

Cain, a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph, is well-known in Northern Berkshire and a former longtime employee of the Northern Berkshire Community Coalition.

Catholic Social Teaching came into its own when Pope Leo XIII initiated its modern phase in response to the abuse of workers during the Industrial Revolution. Exemplified now by Pope Francis’ concern for the poor and a more just economy, this teaching includes such concepts as solidarity, participation, the right of all people to a fair share of resources and, increasingly, protection of the natural environment.

We will reserve some time to reflect on community response to the recent announcement of the closing of North Adams Regional Hospital.

Call Mark at 413-664-0130 for more information.

Announcement

Fresh Air Fund host sign-ups

NEW YORK -- Sign up to make a difference in a Fresh Air child’s life. Open your heart and home to a New York City child; Fresh Air volunteers need your help to create another fun-filled summer for children from New York City. Each summer, over 4,000 children visit volunteer host families in rural, suburban, and small town communities across 13 states from Virginia to Maine and Canada. Host families simply want to share their homes with city children and the pure joys of summertime outside of the city. Families find hosting so rewarding that more than 65 percent of all Fresh Air children are re-invited to visit the same host families year after year. First-time Fresh Air visitors are six to 12 years old and Fresh Air hosts range from young families to grandparents. All it takes is the willingness to welcome a New York City child to your community.

The Fresh Air Fund, an independent, not-for-profit agency, has provided free summer experiences to more than 1.8 million New York City children from low-income communities since 1877. For more information about hosting a Fresh Air child this summer, please contact Martha Thompson at 212-897-8890 or visit The Fresh Air Fund online at www.freshair.org.