SHEFFIELD, Mass. — Beth Carlson has been chosen as the new president of Dewey Hall, the historic stone building on Sheffield's Village Green.
Beth has been a member of the Dewey Hall board of directors for three years and is a founding board member of the Clinton Church Restoration project. She was a coproducer of the Oldtone Roots Music Festival and is currently a partner in Silo Media, a graphic design, film, and marketing business. She is also a co-producer of TapRoot Sessions.
At the board's March 9 meeting, Wenonah Webster was named as vice president, Lynne Jablonski as treasurer, and Ken Terry as secretary. Wenonah heads Webster Landscapes in Sheffield, and Lynne, a former Hall president, is clinical director at Stanton Home in Great Barrington. Ken is a freelance healthcare writer and the author of two books on the subject.
The board has also officially hired Maggie McRae as hall manager, a job she has been doing to great acclaim over the past year.
Dewey Hall had to end its indoor activities last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. But it held a successful outdoor concert series last summer and fall in the Hall's backyard. That series will start up again this spring, along with "Young at Heart" a free Saturday morning program geared toward children and families. More information about concerts, series, and other programs can be found on the Dewey Hall website. With some limitations, private events are also being booked at the hall.
The Hall pulled through the COVID-induced financial crisis with community support for their winter fund drive that raised over $30,000. The Hall has also received several small cultural grants from local towns and is applying for other grants.
Built in 1887, Dewey Hall has served Sheffield residents in many ways through the generations. Before the pandemic, the Hall regularly hosted concert performances, swing and contra dances and private meetings, weddings, and parties. With the end of the crisis in sight, Carlson and the board hope to restore Dewey Hall to its key role to the cultural and social life of Sheffield.
"Dewey Hall has persisted through many ups and downs since its' inception in 1867, and it will continue to unite the community," said Carlson. "We are pivoting the hall back into a central part of Southern Berkshire community life, and continue to invite the public to enjoy this beautiful space."
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