2020 Events

  • Oyster River Community Read
  • Oyster River Community Read

Check our Facebook page for program additions and weather cancellations. 


Sunday, Feb. 9, 4pm  

A musical retelling of the American Revolution's political struggle in the Continental Congress to declare independence. Produced in 1972, directed Peter H. Hunt, and starring William Daniels, Howard da Silva, and Ken Howard. Freedom Cafe, 10 Mill Rd., Durham.

Thomas Jefferson    

Tuesday, Feb. 11, 6:30pm (part 1) and Thursday, Feb. 13, 6:30pm (part 2) 

A biographical film by Ken Burns about The United States' influential and profoundly enigmatic Founding Father. Community Church of Durham, 17 Main St., Durham.

Not for Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton

and Susan B. Anthony

Tuesday, March 10, 6:30pm (part 1) and Thursday, March 12, 6:30 pm (part 2)

The story of Elizabeth Stanton and Susan B. Anthony and their life long fight to bring equal rights to women. A film by Ken Burns and Paul Barnes.

Community Church of Durham, 17 Main St., Durham.

The Chinese Exclusion Act

Tuesday, April 2, 6:30 pm

A PBS American Experience film that tells of the origin, history, and impact of the 1882 law that made it illegal for Chinese workers to come to America and for Chinese nationals already there to become U.S. citizens.

Community Church of Durham, 17 Main St., Durham.



A film by Ava DuVernay that explores race and the Thirteenth Amendment

Tuesday, April 7, 6:30pm, Community Church of Durham




FEB 4, 11:30am-12:30pm  

Art Talk with exhibiting artist Richard Haynes. Community Church of Durham, 17 Main St. Durham. 

Exhibit will be on display until Jun 1. 

Haynes work will also be on view at the Durham Public Library until Jan 30.


What is your earliest memory of race? 

FEB 12, 6:30-8:30pm 

Led by Katherine Towler.  RSVP at the Madbury Public Library, 9 Town Hall Rd., Madbury.


MAR 15, 7pm  

Come share a poem, some music, or a short narrative on race and diversity. 

Durham Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 2-14 Woodman Rd., Durham

ARTS WORKSHOP SERIES:  Culture Keepers: Culture Makers

Make art, even if it is something you never do. Tap into your creative side to explore how you define culture. Classes and conversations led by artist Richard Haynes. Free and No art experience necessary. Open to ages 12-adult (we hope many ages join us!) Here is the link to the schedule. Participants must commit to all dates.  Go here to learn more.



"I'm a good person. Isn't that enough?" from Waking Up White.

APR 16, 5pm  Community Dinner at Oyster River High school, 55 Coe Dr., Durham 

RSVP for the dinner here: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0944adae23a4fc1-april1/52069757

APR 16, 7pm Waking Up White and Finding Myself in the Story of Race author, Debby Irving, 

speaks at Oyster River High School.



What's Next? Oyster River Community Conversation
May 3, 6pm-9pm  

Join us to shape next steps to sustain a fair and equitable community. Facilitated by NH Listens of the Carsey School of Public Policy, UNH. Event at Oyster River High School.

Sign-up here: http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=4pj54lcab&oeidk=a07ef9avx7n7157f47a



Hosted by Oyster River Parents of Preschoolers (ORPP) at the Durham Public Library, 49 Madbury Rd., Durham.

FEB 6, 1pm 

Featured book: One Family by George Shannon. This will be followed by a puzzle art activity. 

APR 11, 10:30am with Special Guest, Mast Way Principal, Ms. Vaich

Featured book: The Crayon Box that Talked by Shane DeRolf. This will be followed by a Play Doh activity.


MAR 2, 10:30am 

Tim Van Egmond shares his original children's performance, Building Bridges. Sponsored by Madbury, Durham, and 
Lee Public Libraries at Lee Church Congregational, 17 Mast Rd., Lee.

FEB 12, 3:15-4:15pm  

Sign-up at Durham Public Library. This is a perfect group for those youth who have read the book and who would enjoy talking about it.


(Stay tuned for dates)

UNH's Community Literacy Center will host an on-going, Brown Girl Dreaming book club for those who want to discuss the book chapters at a time at Oyster River Middle School. 






LECTURE: New Date- MAR 28, 6:30pm 

Michael Ward discusses his autobiography, A Colored Man in Exeter

Lee Safety Complex, 20 George Bennett Rd., Lee 

This first volume, “A Colored Man in Exeter”, recounts some of Harold’s experiences in the Exeter, NH area from  1959 until 1975. During this time, he often worked with people who had never spoken to or seen a "colored person" before. He became an ambassador for his race in an era where people were known for their deeds and not their bluster. Sometimes the challenge was overwhelming. But he and Virginia were equally relentless in disproving the existing stereotypes of the era. They succeeded. Throughout their lives, Harold and Virginia taught their children five basic tenets: 1. We are equal and will not stand to be treated any other way. 2. Racists are either ignorant or stupid. Ignorant people can be taught. Stupid people can’t, so don’t waste your time on them. 3. Any commitment you make is total; there is no excuse for not fulfilling one. 4. Do not spend time doing what everybody else does. Do what’s right for you as well as you possibly can. 5. When you are in the right, you do not quit. No one ever successfully countered those positions.

FILM: FEB 18, 4pm 

Shadows Fall North. Facilitated conversation to follow.

Community Church of Durham, 17 Main St., Durham.

How does a state with the motto “Live Free or Die” and a celebrated legacy of abolitionism confront and understand its participation in slavery, segregation, and the neglect of African-American history? This film seeks to answer the question: What happens when we move toward a fuller understanding of our history by including all voices? For more information about the film, visit blackhistorynh.com.

LECTURE: FEB 21, 6:30pm 

Dan Billin: Abolitionists of Noyes Academy. New Hampshire Humanities' program. Durham Public Library, 49 Madbury Rd., Durham.

In 1835, abolitionists opened one of the nation's first integrated schools in Canaan, NH, attracting eager African-American students from as far away as Boston, Providence, and New York City. Outraged community leaders responded by raising a mob that dragged the academy building off its foundation and ran the African-American students out of town. New Hampshire's first experiment in educational equality was brief, but it helped launch the public careers of a trio of extraordinary African-American leaders: Henry Highland Garnet, Alexander Crummell, and Thomas Sipkins Sidney. Dan Billin plumbs the depths of anti-abolitionist sentiment in early nineteenth-century New England, and the courage of three young friends destined for greatness.


 Dr. Jason Sokol: All Eyes Are Upon Us: Racial Struggles in the Northeast from Jackie Robinson to Deval Patrick

 New Hampshire Humanities' program. Madbury Town Hall. From Brooklyn to Boston, from World War II to the present, Jason Sokol traces the modern history of race and politics in the Northeast. Why did white fans come out to support Jackie Robinson as he broke baseball’s color barrier in 1947 even as Brooklyn’s blacks were shunted into segregated neighborhoods? How was African-American politician Ed Brooke of Massachusetts, who won a Senate seat in 1966, undone by the resistance to desegregation busing in Boston?

FILM: MAR 11, 4pm 

Ta-Nehisi Coates Lecture at West Point, April 12, 2017.

Facilitated conversation to follow. Community Church of Durham, 17 Main St., Durham.

According to the West Point Parent Review, "the Department of English and Philosophy hosted the second annual Zengerle Lecture in the Arts and Humanities, with speaker/author Ta-Nehisi Coates who addressed an audience of over 800 USMA cadets, staff and faculty members. 'I had to come here because I can’t think of a more important place to be for the things that I discuss, the things I’ve spent basically since my childhood perusing,” Coates recalled when he was accepting his invitation to speak at West Point. “It was my feeling that those who are charged with defending the country have to know the country'."

LECTURE: APR 11, 6:30pm

Donna and John Moody: Town by Town, Watershed by Watershed: Native Americans in New Hampshire. New Hampshire Humanities' program. 
Durham Public Library, 49 Madbury Rd., Durham.

Every town and watershed in New Hampshire has ancient and continuing Native American history. From the recent, late 20th century explosion of local Native population in New Hampshire back to the era of early settlement and the colonial wars, John and Donna Moody explore the history of New Hampshire's Abenaki and Penacook peoples with a focus on your local community.  

Watch & Listen

FILM: APRIL 12, 9:30am

 Lost Boundaries. This 1949 movie Classic stars Mel Ferrer and Beatrice Pearson. Ferrer plays a light-skinned African-American doctor whose family is "passing" in an all-white New England community. When the truth comes out, the more bigoted neighbors demand the expulsion of Ferrer and his family. Based on a true story.