ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 6 * * All Arts News On the Web * * May 23, 2002


      ArtBits always features a calendar of the goings on of Franklin County artists. Check out these events around Franklin County. Each issue includes the entire text of our weekly newspaper column.

      Stop in for the AAC CoffeeHouses at 7 p.m. on the second and fourth Wednesday of every month. These gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and workshops. We come together on the second Wednesday for a booked musical performance and an art exhibit at Simple Pleasures in St Albans. On the fourth Wednesday come to the Kept Writer in St Albans for acoustic Open Mike Night featuring music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.


      There are so many contestants this year, the Dairy Scholarship Pageant will be divided into two nights, with shows tonight and next Thursday evening. "We have 18 girls," organizer Lise Gates said. "Tonight we are going to do the creative and performing arts and speech categories only."
      All contestants are college bound seniors from Enosburg, Richford, and St Albans this year. The overall winner receives a $500 scholarship; the first runner up receives $300 and second runner up, $200. The first , second, and third place winners in creative and performing arts and in speech also receive $150, $75, and $50 scholarships each.
      "On May 30, we will do the rest of the judging," Ms. Gates said. "In the morning, each contestant will have a one-on-one interview with each judge so when the pageant starts May 30, two of the categories are already scholastic achievement and the personal interview
      "They are all working very hard on their youth fitness dance which is over five minutes long this year to let the judges get more time with the girls."
      The talent show includes singers, dancers, flute, clarinet, tap, line, and modern
      The Pageant begins tonight at 7:30 p.m. at the Opera House at Enosburg Falls. Tickets for the performance and speech show tonight are available at the door.
      "We're not going to have enough seats for next week," Ms. Gates said. Advance sale tickets for the May 30 Pageant night will be on sale at the Opera House from 6-8 p.m. on May 28 and May 29 only.


      "It never rains on the Dairy Festival," said Enosburg Lions President Bob May. The 46th annual Vermont Dairy Festival begins next weekend, May 30 through June 2, in downtown Enosburg Falls.
      The Dairy Festival celebrates Milk ... is White Gold with a weekend packed with family events. There is new four wheeler pull and the Dairy Scholarship Pageant, pedal pulls, agricultural displays, a dairy baking contest, a fabulous midway, a parade, and the "finest horse pull in the East" will pack The Burg. The High School Sports Association has taken over the bathtub races and the Emergency Squad runs the cow plop.
      All the music will be on the bandstand this year.
      The 21st annual Colgate Country Showdown will anchor the entertainment on Saturday by putting the teeth back into country music. The winner of this first step in the nation's largest country music talent search goes on to the State Finals. The strong 2002 competition lineup includes Penny Bohannon of Alburg, Bonnie Drake of South Burlington, Amy Greenia of Enosburg, Skeeter Lee of Windsor, Samantha Madison and Wild Card of the New Hampshire Lakes Region, Renegade of St Albans, and Shayna Sherwood of Enosburg. Borderline is the host band.
      The Colgate Country Showdown is sponsored and operated by Jane Silk and WLFE-102.3 FM. Over 400 radio stations stage the local competitions for the nation's largest country talent search.
      Dairy Festival family entertainment also features the EFHS Jazz Band, the famed Fernald Lumber Yankee Hitch Show, a large parade, the Marching Band competition, country music with Showdown host band Borderline, rock and roll music with local legends Silverback, hypnotist Ron Cote, and the fireworks.
      The Festival "allows us to work to gather as a club it allows us to meet the needs of many people within this area and within the state of Vermont. We are a service organization and all of the money we raise goes to serve people," said Mr. May of the activity that help the Lions continue community service activities such as international eye and hearing care, plus the free osteoporosis screening at the Festival. This event is their primary fund raiser


      The Opera House at Enosburg Falls has accomplished a task that makes every other nonprofit in Vermont slobber with envy: they have recruited a great new group of volunteers to work on committees and ongoing activities.
      "We aren't requiring anyone to make a committee commitment," said OHEF director Jon Scott.
      Next week, we will meet new members Andrew and Sally Bobkowicz, Deb Moskevitz, Tonya Pearson, and Lewis Rose. These and other volunteers will take on projects and specific tasks at the Opera House.
      "We have reorganized and revisited the mandates of our committees because we are now up and running as opposed to fund raising for the restoration," Mr. Scott said. There is now a finance committee, plus long range planning, programs, publicity/marketing (which I will provide on an interim basis), and volunteer/staffing.
      The Finance Committee prepares and proposes the annual budget, completes tax returns, and plans the necessary fund raising for all events and for the other committees. The Long Range Planning Committee determines further rehabilitation/improvement of the physical plant of the Opera House and establishes a time-line for those projects. This committee will also create a vision plan with the Friends' mission and to orient future development towards the Opera House goal. The Publicity/Marketing Committee designs and delivers a publicity campaign to bring audiences in to the Opera House Series and sponsored events.
      The Program Committee searches out, creates, designs, and produces events by indigenous performers and artists with particular emphasis on the youth
      The Opera House needs volunteers right now to handle membership campaigns and to make the house ready for events. Call 802-933-6171 or click here for more info.


ST ALBANS--The Kept Writer presents Jim Daniels and Jim McGinniss in an evening of original and traditional old-time country and bluegrass music, Friday at 7 p.m. Admission is $5. Call 527-6242 for info.

MONTGOMERY--The Red Barn studio in Montgomery opens for the season May 25-27 with new works by Montgomery and Boston watercolor artist Michael Domina.


      The AAC shows at the Opera House, the Highgate Springs border station, and the Swanton Library will change the first of June. The border station and the library are "one-man shows."
      If you are a Franklin County artist working in any two- or three-dimensional media and want to exhibit your work, All Arts Council for info about our exhibits.


SELLING IT, part I--About a year ago, Getty Images folded its venture although the domain name survives ( bought it for online poster sales).
      On Monday, was declared insolvent. Eyestorm is an online art gallery that offers exclusive artwork to all purchasers and collectors. Unlike other online buyers, art lovers proved reluctant to buy pieces without in-person viewing or experience. Eyestorm's web site is still accepting orders although they will not debit credit cards or ship the works until the company's future is settled. Creditors will meet tomorrow.

SELLING IT, part II--8084 is a local band with an international audience and a good marketing program that includes their web site. The band now has "rough studio outakes" of Allright and The Last Great Train online at 8084 New Sounds
      The files stream in Real Audio format. Bringing fans to the site with free samples helps 8084 sell CDs and promote their concerts and tours.
      The free Real Audio plug-in, can be downloaded at Real Audio


Franklin County Event


      ArtBits features a quick weekly peek at the bookshelf or night stand of the folks you know in and around Franklin County. That popular feature has a page of its own at the Franklin County Bookshelf here on the AAC site.


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      This article was originally published in the St Albans Messenger and other traditional print media. It is Copyright © 2002 by Richard B. Harper. All rights reserved. Archival material is provided as-is. Links are not necessarily maintained (if a link in this article fails, try or your favorite search engine).
      Thanks to recent misuse of copyright material on the Internet by individuals and archival firms alike, we emphasize that your rights to this article are limited to viewing it and printing it for personal use only. You must receive explicit permission from the All Arts Council and the author before reprinting or redistributing this article in any medium.