A Book for the Burg


Because extraordinary ideas often come out of everyday conversations, we’re eager to have you join us for the next “chapter” of A Book for the ‘Burg, a community-wide reading, learning, and engagement experience. We’ve found that what we read and the conversations we have inspire us to think differently and inform our actions.

We hope you’ll find this year’s topic–the significance of pollinators and their declining numbers—a compelling one. Our approach to the reading experience this year is different. Rather than a single book, our libraries will each have an array of readings available about pollinators, and we’re sure there’s something for everyone.

Pollinators captivate us because of the profound role they play in ecosystems and how essential they are to our food supply. Because we often come together over food to celebrate culture, to cultivate relationships, and to build community, we expect to have lively and meaningful conversations about the relationship between people and the rest of nature.

There are countless opportunities to contribute to a sustainable future in our neighborhoods, communities, and around the world, but the issues and decisions can be complicated. For many of us, the challenge is determining what we can do as individuals to help. A Book for the ‘Burg will let you engage with others in the community to discover the fascinating lives of bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, and to explore what you can do to protect these essential creatures.


A Book for the ‘Burg Community Planning Committee Amanda Bodle, James Madison University; Brittany Clem, Harrisonburg Parks and Recreation; Marci Frederick, Eastern Mennonite University; Deborah Pugh, James Madison University; and Susan Versen, Massanutten Regional Library

A Book for the ‘Burg JMU Faculty Advisory Committee Amanda Bodle, Sustainability Specialist; Amy Goodall, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Geographic Science; Mary Handley, Ph.D., Professor of Integrated Science and Technology; Carole Nash, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Geographic Science; Maria Papadakis, Ph.D., CEM, Professor of Integrated Science and Technology; Michael Renfroe, Ph.D., Professor of Biology; Mikaela Schmitt-Harsh, Ph.D., Interdisciplinary Liberal Studies; and Wayne Teel, Ph.D., Professor of Geographic Science and Integrated Science and Technology

Web Presence



Involves Faculty, Involves Staff, Involves Students, Involves Participants External to JMU




est. 2018


Recurring Event (Occurs on a regular basis but not continual)

Existing Center/Institute/Program


Primary Focus of Program

Cultural Institutions and Programs; Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability

Begin Date


Areas of Engagement

Community Engagement, Engaged Learning



On/Off campus

Off campus

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