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Sunderland and Tilton Libraries engage in a series of mindfulness activities

Sunderland and Tilton Libraries invite residents to take some time to slow down their lives with mindfulness activities in and around Sugarloaf Mountain.

With Sugarloaf Mountain overlooking both communities, the libraries are bringing the program series “You Are Here: Connecting with Nature on Sugarloaf Mountain” to their backyards with four activities starting later this month and ending in October.

“Sugarloaf, I know it’s in Deerfield, but in Sunderland we feel a strong connection to it and I know Deerfield feels the same,” said Katherine Umstut, director of the Sunderland Public Library. “Both of our communities feel a shared ownership of it.”

Candice Bradbury-Carlin, director of the Tilton Library, said the partnership was born out of uncertainty about COVID-19 cases, which has led to the library’s desire to set up external programs. She said that mindfulness is a good thing for people to practice.

“I think vigilance is a term in the trend now. Especially as we get life back to normal,” Bradbury Carlin said.

Each program is available to a limited number of participants and the tree selection process is already full, but waiting lists are available. To enroll in a program, visit the Tilton Library or the Sunderland Public Library website.

“We are really excited that these shows have been so popular and they are filling up,” Amstott said. “Even before the pandemic, mindfulness was needed for all ages. … Now, after the pandemic, it has multiplied tenfold.”

The first activity will be family yoga at the top of Sugarloaf Mountain on September 22, 10-11 a.m. Yoga instructor Sarah Coplin will lead families through mindfulness exercises while enjoying views of Deerfield and Sunderland.

On September 23, in association with Sunderland-based Adventure East, people can take a bus at 5:30 p.m. and go for a walk through the woods at the “Forest Bathing Experience”, where people can immerse themselves in the sights and sounds of the forest.

“The idea of ​​bathing in the woods is to take a mindful approach to being in nature,” Amstott explained. “Experience the power of nature and peace, and find a little stillness in your life.”

On September 27, from 5-6 p.m., participants will embark on a tree-knowing tour around the base of Sugarloaf Mountain. The walk will be led by Laura Beltran, teacher of Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary, who will teach attendees how to identify trees, as well as how environments change.

The program tour concludes with nature-based mindfulness yoga at Sugarloaf Mountain October 15, 10-11 a.m. Coplin will lead the program again.

Bradbury-Carlin said the libraries planned to “give a range” of nature-based mindfulness options, and offering these types of programs is another way libraries can serve their communities.

“The library can be considered a place for literacy to read,” she said. “But you can bring literacy into a lot of things. … I think what we do here is health literacy.”