Town Hall Movie Nights and Forums

The Town Hall Coalition has sponsored movie nights and public forums throughout the county with panels of experts from government, business, farm labor, scientists, and non-profit organizations. These forums are designed to exchange information and provide community stakeholders and opportunity to speak and listen to each other as well as organize.

At the regional level, we have held seven free public town hall forums. They are: Your Water, Your Wallet, and Your Health! Cancer in Sonoma County, Are You Concerned about Vineyard Development? Pesticides, People, and Healthy Farming, Concerned About Pesticides? Industrial Vineyard Development, and an Evening of Water Issues. Each forum teaches communities about current issues and public policy. Participants meet decision-makers and those knowledgeable about the issues at hand. The forums are designed to provide clear steps about how to get involved and participate in the decision-making process in order to effect social change and create sustainable healthy communities.

Monthly Film Nights

On Wed. May 31, 2006 we showed the movie “INVISIBLE BALLOTS” INVISIBLE BALLOTS is an in-depth exposé of all-electronic computerized voting. Underneath the radar of public scrutiny, election officials and voting machine manufacturers are putting into service tens of thousands of touch screen voting machines that cannot be relied upon for accuracy or security from tampering. Voting is swiftly coming under the control of private corporations using secret software with little or no independent oversight. These companies and the people who run them are rife with corruption and insider alliances. Mysterious election upsets are increasing, and verified recounts are impossible. If we are to preserve representative government, the public must learn the secrets revealed in Invisible Ballots and take action quickly. No host pizza and drinks. Defend Democracy! Stop Election Fraud!

On August 18, 2005 we had a Forest Slide Show and Skit in preparation for August 23 Forest Conversion meeting. At 6:30PM at Coffee Catz, Sebastopol. Town Hall Coalition presents a Slide Show of Sonoma County Forest Conversions on Thursday, August 18th at 6:30PM at Coffee Catz Café in Sebastopol.  See what Forest Conversions look like, and what they do to the landscape, ecology, and habitat.  Find out the latest information and prepare for the Public Hearing.  We will also perform a SATIRICAL skit (inspired by the San Francisco Mime Troupe) which outlines the issues.  Activism and entertainment!

On June 30, 2005 we showed "Coastal Clash" in cooperation with Coast Walk. Whose coast is it, anyway? Coastal Clash, a one-hour, high-definition documentary produced by KQED Public Television, takes an in-depth look at the many sides of the struggle for California's shores. Many Californians believe that the passage of the Coastal Act in 1976 and the subsequent creation of the California Coastal Commission and California Coastal Conservancy effectively saved the coastline for its citizens. But despite the fact that California leads the nation in its protection and management of coastal resources, few locations in the United States rival California for its constant, intense pressure for development or for the politics that plague the operations of the California Coastal Commission. Coastal Clash travels the California coastline and features environmental experts, coastal scientists, government representatives, community leaders and property owners reveal the state's history of tension between public vs. private coastal interests, examine the science of sea walls and their effect on beaches and offer examples of both failed and successful attempts at coastal development. Featured speaker: County Supervisor and Coastal Commissioner Mike Reilly.

On May 19, 2005 we showed "Oil on Ice"- a documentary on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and U.S. energy policy. Followed by a discussion: The Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. What is to be done? How to reshape environmentalism to bring in more people, engage the mainstream, and get past retrograde policies?

On March 10, 2005 we showed a film on Voter Security "Contesting a Stolen Election" followed by a discussion with Eve Roberson: Ohio 2004 Voting Irregularities, Hazards of Electronic (Black Box) Voting, Where were the Exit Polls, and more… Eve Roberson is a former election supervisor, Vice President of League of Women Voters, has served on the Sonoma County Grand Jury, and spent 4 weeks in Ohio this Fall.

The first film night was February 10, 2005. We showed the DVD of Professor George Lakoff called "How Democrats and Progressives can Win" which discussed the concept of "framing" and the metaphor of the family in American politics. A lively discussion followed.

Past Town Hall Forums

Political Comedy Night- April 2, 2006
6:30PM Sebastopol Community Center.
Featuring the SF Mime Troupe's Amos Glick as Dubya and Ed Holmes as Dick.
Also with stand up comedian Johnny Steele. Hilarious political satire, new songs, speeches, a press conference, and more!

6:30 PM Music
7:00 PM Comedy Show

General Admission Tickets for the show: $20.

Tickets available by calling (707) 824-4371 or stop by the Redwood Empire Environmental Center at Gravenstein Station in Sebastopol.

Town Hall Coalition Annual Dinner
"Defend the Commons"

Saturday, December 10, 2005 from 6:00pm-10:00pm
Sebastopol Community Center

Tickets are $25, available by calling (707) 824-4371

Town Hall Coalition, Community Clean Water Institute, and the Redwood Empire Environmental Center are hosting their annual dinner at the Sebastopol Community Center on Saturday, December 10, 2005.

The Theme of the evening is "Defending the Commons." The Commons are the shared wealth of our community including our public schools, wetlands, national parks, forests, air, water, Social Security, Medicare, libraries, and more. Our collectively held public properties and social programs are being sold (privatized) to the highest bidder. Elected officials are relinquishing public ownership, encouraging privatization and extraction, and destroying the framework in which community and democracy operate. How can we defend these Commons?

Author and journalist Jonathan Rowe will be the keynote speaker. Jonathan Rowe is the Founder of Tomales Bay Institute, and the author of "The Common Good: An argument for asserting our rights to quiet, community, a drink of pure water, and a breath of fresh air," and an expert on the importance of protecting the commons. His articles have appeared in The Atlantic, Christian Science Monitor, Yes Magazine, Utne Reader, and more, and he has been a contributing editor to the Washington Monthly. A recent article he wrote appeared in the Sierra Club magazine.

Here in Sonoma County, the acquisition of 3,375 acres in the Willow Creek watershed in Western Sonoma County is a positive example of protecting land for the common good. The environmental activists who made this park a reality will be honored at the Dinner. For years of combating excessive logging through lawsuits and organizing, we will honor Darrell Sukovitzen, Pieter Myers, and Richard Coates. For the work of Willow Creek’s acquisition and permanent protection, we will honor Caryl Hart, Craig Anderson (Landpaths), Richard Retecki (Coastal Conservancy), and Sonoma County Open Space District. A special honor will be given posthumously to Francie Gallegos for her inspiration and work to initiate Willow Creek’s permanent protection.

The dinner menu includes: lasagna, salad, garlic bread and chocolate mousse cake. Music will be provided by Jeffrey Jon (Whitebear) who has just released a new CD titled, “Honoring Life”.

The event will also include music, raffle prizes, and silent auction.

Tickets are $25 tickets and available by calling (707) 824-4371, or at the Redwood Empire Environmental Center, 6741 Sebastopol Ave. Suite 140, Sebastopol. (in Gravenstein Station near Coffee Catz). This is a benefit for Town Hall Coalition and Community Clean Water Institute.

The San Francisco Mime Troupe- "Doing Good"
August 4, 2005- 7PM
Sebastopol Vets Building, 282 High Street, Sebastopol

Political Comedy Theatre at its best! Oil, coup d'etats, dams and roads from the TET Offensive to the fall of the Shah, the Mime Troupe traces history and asks, what price do we pay for affluence? With humor and original music, you will leave the play with renewed energy for change. Join us at this year's hilarious political comedy satire "Doing Good".

Call for information (707) 824-4371.


"Getting the Truth Out In Media"
Join us for an afternoon with: WILLIAM RIVERS PITT
Internationally acclaimed author, and journalist from

Panelists include: Wm. Rivers Pitt, Ron Sundergill-Leadership Institute and Media Expert, Eve Roberson-California Election Protection Network, Dawn Pillsbury-Reporter, Kevin Spidel-Progressive Democrats of America

Guest appearance by Esteemed Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey

Emcee and Moderator SHERRY GLASER
Presenting "Imagine That! The News of Infinite Possibilities"

SUNDAY, JUNE 5, 2005
Former UA Theater

2:00 - 4:00-$10-William Rivers Pitt, Sherry Glaser, and Panel Only
2:00 - 5:30 EVENT-$35-Including William Rivers Pitt, Sherry Glaser, Panelists and Reception with wine, hors d'oeuvres, music, special guests and conversation with the panelists
Doors open 1:30

Tickets available at Copperfields Bookstores, The Last Record Store, purchase at the door, Or call for reservations-707-586-5913. Co-sponsored by: Women for a Better World, Progressive Democrats Sonoma County, Town Hall Coalition, Redwood Empire Environmental Center, Project Censored/North Bay Progressive, Community Clean Water Institute

"Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures, until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear." Harry S. Truman

"The only security of all is a free press." Thomas Jefferson

Post-Election Political Comedy Night

Saturday, January 29, 2005- 7:30 PM at the Sebastopol Community Center.
Amos Glick and Ed Holmes from the San Francisco Mime Troupe as Dubya and Cheney

With live music, raffle, silent auction, and awards for grassroots peace and environmental activists: Pocket Canyon Protection Group, Coffee Lane Alliance, Coastal Forest Alliance, Healdsburg Peace Project.
Buy $20 advance tickets at Copperfield's Books in Sebastopol, at the Redwood Empire Environmental Center, or call (707) 824-4371 to reserve tickets by phone.


Are You Concerned About Dead and Dying Redwoods and Other Trees?
Climate Change, Acid Rain, Global Warming, Clearcuts, Forest Fragmentation Threaten Tallest Trees in the World.
Thursday, November 6th, 2003-7 PM Find out what we can do to protect Redwood Trees-Our National Treasures. A Community Forum and Slideshow Presentation featuring Dr. Reese Halter of Global Forest Society. Dr. Halter is President and founder of Global Forest Society (which is conducting studies of forests around the world and the effects of climate change and other factors impacting their health and survival.
Learn about specific threats to the world's largest trees and the impacts of global climate change on our coastal redwood forests.
Sponsored by Town Hall Coalition. This is the first of a series of community forums on this issue. Second forum will take place in January 2004. For more information call 874-9110.

click here to view the flyer (PDF version)

Stop Corporate Water Theft!
A follow-up to the October 23rd forum, this event on December 9, 2002 took place at the Santa Rosa Public Library. The crowd of over 120 people heard from an expert panel featuring Juliette Beck of Public Citizen's Water for All Campaign, Nancy Price, National Co-chair of Alliance for Democracy, Michael Warburton of the Public Trust Alliance, and Fifth District Supervisor Mike Reilly. Of the many issues explored during the evening, the belief that water is a human right and should not be treated as private property was central to the discussions. Nor should water be exploited for the exclusive benefit of a multinational corporation eager to use the auspice of international trade agreements to undermine community control of the commons. The event was organized by a diverse coalition of organizations including Alliance for Democracy, Community Clean Water Institute, Sonoma County Peace and Justice Center, Town Hall Coalition, and World Stewardship Institute.

Gualala and Albion River Water Bags, Water Rights,Privatization, and the Public Trust
Town Hall Coalition was actively involved in the successful campaign to oppose the proposed water export from the mouths of the Gualala and Albion Rivers for sale to San Diego. On October 23, 2003, after the 60 Day Notice to Appropriate Water was filed, Town Hall Coalition lended support to North Coast activists by hosting an action forum feauturing Fifth District Assemblymember Patricia Wiggins, Antonia Juhasz of the International Forum on Globalization, Ursula Jones and Don Kemp from Friends of the Gualala River, and Bernie MacDonald of the Albion River Watershed Protection Association. The event was followed by a protest form workshop led by Friends of the Gualala River in which participants filed the official water export protest form with the State Water Board.

Youth Activist Convergence: "Our Future, Our Choices"
Youth Activist Convergence: Report Back
The First-Annual Youth Activist Convergence, held on April 12th-14th in Sebastopol, was a complete success in its efforts to educate, inspire, and unite emerging activists...
Youth Activist Manifesto

Youth Activist Convergence Participating Organizations

Water Action Forum
The formation of the North Coast Water Coalition was another successful outgrowth of the Water Forum. On February 9, 2002 over 100 activists representing all the major rivers in Mendocino, Sonoma and Marin counties, watershed restoration groups, and other water-impacting interests such as gravel, wastewater and forest practices participated in this action-packed forum. The North Coast Water Coalition chose water as their unifying theme for 2002 because water speaks to all of us on an emotional level and is integral to health--people hear this theme and are compelled to act.

Your Water, Your Wallet, Your Health!
In March of 2001, Town Hall Coalition cosponsored a forum in Santa Rosa on issues relating to water in the Eel and Russian Rivers and the role of the Sonoma County Water Agency. Your Water, Your Wallet, Your Health! Forum was moderated by Daniel Solnit, Director of Leadership Institute for Ecology and the Economy; and attended by over 350 people. Panelists included Assemblywoman Virginia Strom-Martin; David Keller, former Petaluma City Councilman; Brenda Adelman, Director of Russian River Watershed Protection Committee; Nadananda, Executive Director of Friends of the Eel River; Alex Forman, member of the Marin Municipal Water District; and Don McEnhill, Friends of the Russian River. Special thanks go to members of the Working on Water group for organizing this successful event. Members of the group have continued to follow up on issues relating to gravel extraction in the Russian River, water diversions, water rates, and growth.

Are you Concerned about Cancer in Sonoma County?
In April of 2001, Santa Rosa City Councilwoman Noreen Evans moderated a town hall forum in Occidental titled Are You Concerned about Cancer in Sonoma County?. Debra Anderson, President of the Occidental Chamber of Commerce and owner of the Lookinglass Salon, worked incredibly hard to organize this emotional and informative event. Anderson has developed a map and a cancer registry where people with cancer and their loved ones can record information and put them on the map. Molly Boice and the Juicy Tomatoes presented a reading from Press Democrat Columnist Susan Swartz’s book by the same name. Panelists included Francine Levien, Founder and Director of Marin Breast Cancer Watch; Marty DeKay-Bemis, West County Health Center; Britt Bailey, Center for Ethics and Toxics; Ginger Souders-Mason, Marin Beyond Pesticides; Dr. Kathryn Scott, Sonoma County Public Health; and Emmie Morgan, representative for Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey. Tapes of all the forums are available at the Town Hall Coalition office.

Sharpshooter and Pesticides Forum
On July 27, 2001, in Occidental, hundreds gathered to review farming practices, pesticides, Pierce's Disease, and the Glassy-Winged Sharpshooter. The event featured a special panel presentation of farmers, health and resources experts. They discussed such issues as the Sonoma County grape industry, land use practices and how health (especially children's, the elderly, and those that are chemically-sensitive), wildlife, property rights, and organic farming are affected by pesticide applications.

Water Forum
Several hundred people participated in the Town Hall Coalition forum on water at Salmon Creek School on April 26, 2000. Biologist Brock Dolman presented an excellent slide show about habitat and watershed protection from the Eel to the Russian Rivers, creeks, springs and beyond. Brenda Adelman informed us about the Sonoma County Water Agency, sewers and sewer pipelines planned to support growth around the county. Attorney Jack Silver explained how people can test their wells for contamination and Stephen Fuller-Rowell discussed how to test your own wells, springs and ground water for quantity and recharge to establish water rights. If you would like more information about these issues please call the THC Resource Center at 707 874-9110.

Are you concerned about vineyard development? Forum #3
On December 7, 1999, the Town Hall Coalition presented a forum giving the community the opportunity to hear from governmental representatives.
Panelists included Andy Baker of the State Water Quality; Alan Buckman of the State Department of Fish & Game; Dr. Andrew Lerand, Professor at SRJC & farmer; Supervisor Mike Reilly; Bev Wasson, Board Member of the Regional Water Quality Control Board and grape grower; and John Westoby, Sonoma County Agricultural Commissioner.

Are you concerned about vineyard development? #2
This follow-up to Forum #1, took place on September 30, 1999, and dealt with watershed protection, forest conversion to vineyards, timber harvest plans, soil erosion and sedimentation, noise and toxic pollution, loss of quality of life, and rural subdivisions.

Are you concerned about vineyard development?
The Town Hall Coalition spawned from this forum dealing with forest conversions to vineyards, on September 9, 1999. The gathering of people discussed such issues as what you can do to protect your property, family, and community from threats to public health, safety and the environment.


























































Town Hall Coalition
6741 Sebastopol Ave. Ste. 140 Sebastopol California 95472
T: 707-824-4371 / F: 707-824-4372