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Making excuses to get together in and around Hardwick, Vermont.


People want to gather with their neighbors, both the ones they know and the ones they haven’t met. But in an increasingly divided world, we are rarely in rooms with people unlike ourselves, particularly without spending money. Our mission at the Civic Standard is to provide many ways for the people of Hardwick to do just that. We believe that the very best culture is made from the inside-out, and we work with our neighbors to build cultural events that are of interest to us. Examples of our past events, and events still to come, include Bingo at the Grange Hall with live jazz piano, podcast profiles of local residents, takeout soup suppers and neighborhood bonfires, live theatrical events in abandoned downtown storefronts and at summer fairs. Our mission is to make events where everyone is welcome, and everyone comes. It is a simple idea but a timely one, and we believe the Civic Standard could become a blueprint for like-minded projects far and wide.




This project is led by Rose Friedman, director of Modern Times Theater; Tara Reese, visual artist and community cook; Erica Heilman, producer of the podcast, Rumble Strip; and is supported by a board of directors, and a volunteer base of hundreds of members of our greater Hardwick community.

(photo: Terry Allen)

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