Pine Hawk Fall Programs

To inquire about Pine Hawk activities or to be added to the Pinehawk  event notification list, please e-mail The Friends of Pine Hawk, at:

Photograph of projectile points in Pine Hawk exhibit at the library


2017 Fall Programs


2017 Fall Programs (PDF)

Wednesday, October 11, 7 p.m. 

THOREAU’S “INDIAN STRIDE”   Local historian Brent Ranalli discusses Henry David Thoreau’s fascination with all things Native American and the odd fact that at least three contemporaries said the Concord philosopher walked like an Indian. Ranalli presents the results of research into the actual biomechanics of traditional Native American and Euro-American walking styles and their cultural significance, as well as a reconstruction of Thoreau’s own gait based on literary sources. Acton Memorial Library; free.


Saturday, October 14, 10 a.m.

ADULT ARCHAEOLOGY WALK  This year's adult archaeology walk led by Linda McElroy focuses on the four Native American ceremonial sites on the southerly side of the Nashoba Brook, where several informational panels were recently installed. Two colonial sites along this portion of the Trail Through Time will be discussed as well. Meet at the end of Wheeler Lane, off Rte. 27 in N. Acton. Wear comfortable walking shoes. About 1.5 miles round trip.  In case of rain or poor trail conditions on October 14, the walk will be held Saturday, October 21, at 10 a.m. Call Acton Memorial Library (978-929-6655) for information or weather update; free.


Tuesday, October 17, 7 p.m.  

FROM HILLS TO ISLANDS: ANCIENT ADAPTATIONS BY NATIVE AMERICANS IN BOSTON HARBOR   Some 6,000 years ago Boston was well inland from the ocean, but as rising sea levels poured in tidal waters around the hills east of Boston, ancient Native Americans lost no time adapting to and enjoying the change. Spectacle Island preserved a wonderful record of several thousand years of clambakes, fishing, and other activities, excavated as part of the Big Dig project. This talk by archaeologist Marty Dudek focuses on how archaeologists are able to reconstruct ancient activities and diet from an unusually well preserved ancient site.  Acton Memorial Library; free.


Thursday, October 19, 3 p.m.

CHILDREN’S PROGRAM: ‘A LOOK INTO A NATIVE AMERICAN TOOLBOX’   Join Craig Chartier, archaeologist and educator from the Plymouth Archaeological Rediscovery Project, for this introduction to the technology of flint knapping (stone tool production) as represented at Acton’s own Pine Hawk site. Participants will get the chance to see a demonstration by Craig and to participate in hands-on activities related to geology and stone tool-making and use. Acton Memorial Library; free. 


Saturday, October 21, 2 p.m. 

EDWARD LODI ON HIS NEW BOOK, THE PEQUOT WAR   In 1637 the Puritans of Massachusetts and the fledgling colony of Connecticut declared war on the Pequot Indians—the most powerful of all the New England tribes. What had the Pequots done to incur the wrath of the English settlers? Why did the Narragansetts and Mohegans side with the English? What role did the Dutch play in the war? Why did the Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony refuse Massachusetts’ request for assistance? Author Edward Lodi provides answers to these and other questions. Acton Memorial Library; free. 


Sunday, October 22, 1 p.m.

HIDDEN HISTORY HIKE: ARCHAEOLOGICAL REMAINS IN THE LOCAL WOODS   Join local archaeologist Kimberley Connors to discover the hidden history of Great Hill Conservation Area. The two mile hike highlights the archaeological remains of Acton’s recent farming past as well as the longer Native American occupation which lasted thousands of years. The walk focuses on how humans were able to survive and thrive in this rich environment. Please wear proper footwear. Meet at the Discovery Museums parking lot. Free with admission to the Museums. Please note that the trails are not ADA or stroller-accessible. Call 978-264-4200 x 120 for more information.


Monday, October 23, 7 p.m.

BOOK DISCUSSION  AMERICAN NATIONS: A HISTORY OF THE ELEVEN RIVAL REGIONAL CULTURES OF NORTH AMERICA BY COLIN WOODARD   Woodard takes readers on a journey through the history of this fractured continent and the rivalries and alliances among its component nations, which conform to neither state nor international boundaries. He illustrates and explains why "American" values vary sharply from one region to another. Copies of the book will be available for loan at the circulation desk in late September. Acton Memorial Library; free.


Wednesday, October 25, 7 p.m.

NASHOBA HILL: VISION QUEST AND NASHOBAH PLANTATION   A very special local hill roars! The Indians thought the winds were pent up inside, the Colonials said it sounded like cannons, some folks climbed it to await “the rapture,” and others erected a stone altar atop it. Its history is even stranger than anything that has swooshed down its slopes or taken its chair-lift up. Gather ‘round the ski lodge fire, friends, and hear Dan Boudillon recount the strange tale of Nashoba Hill—of a dark king under the mountain and an island village of vision quests and shamans. Boudillion has presented and written on the history of the Nashobah Plantation area since 1999. Acton Memorial Library; free. 


Saturday, October 28, 1 p.m. 

STONE PRAYERS: NATIVE AMERICAN STONE CONSTRUCTIONS OF THE U.S. AND CANADIAN EASTERN SEABOARDS   North American stone monuments have been controversial ever since they were discovered, with four hypotheses evolving. This program evaluates the hypotheses using data from 5,550 sites, presenting evidence that strongly disconfirms all but one hypothesis for the vast majority of the sites. Speaker Dr. Curtiss Hoffman has been a professor of Archaeology at Bridgewater State University since 1978. Acton Memorial Library; free. 


Thursday, November 2, 7 p.m.  

ANCIENT MARITIME CULTURES OF THE NORTH ATLANTIC   Peabody Award-winning filmmaker Ted Timreck screens segments of his new work in progress about the effects of human adaptation to the North Atlantic environment going back to the Paleolithic. Filmed on location in Labrador, Quebec and the northern Isles of Scotland, the documentary looks at the sea-going peoples who evolved on both sides of the ocean and the difficulties that archeologists have in understanding the development and importance of these cultures. Ted is a Research Associate in the Anthropology Department at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History. Acton Memorial Library; free.


Sunday, November 12, 1-3 p.m.

FRIENDS OF PINE HAWK COMMUNITY SERVICE This annual effort will again take place on the Trail Through Time, a multicultural heritage trail in the conservation lands of North Acton. The focus will be on trail and mound maintenance around the Nashoba Brook Stone Chamber site. All ages welcome. For those interested, join us also for brunch at Legend's Cafe in West Acton at 11:30 AM. To volunteer and for details, please contact Linda McElroy at 978 263 1579 or Bob Ferrara at 978 263-8642 or


The Discovery Museums are located at 177 Main St. (Rte. 27), Acton. 978-264-4200

Acton Memorial Library is located at 486 Main St. (Rte. 27) next to Town Hall. The parking lot and entrance are accessed from Woodbury Lane. 978-929-6655

To inquire about Pine Hawk activities or to be added to the Pine Hawk event notification list, please e-mail 


Past Programs


Page content provided by The Friends of Pine Hawk