ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 7 * * All Arts News On the Web * * July 3, 2003


      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 live music and more at the Fairfax Music Sessions at the Foothills Bakery in Fairfax most Saturday afternoons, at the Kept Writer in St Albans most Friday and Saturday evenings, at the Bayside in St Albans Town most Sunday afternoons, and the Cambridge CoffeeHouses at 7 p.m. on the first and third Wednesday of every month.
     These gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and occasional workshops. The booked performances and acoustic Open Mike Nights feature music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.


      Bay Days 2003 is more than family fun and fireworks. The summer festival is a multi-faceted family day of arts and music with the Great Race, lakefront games, sports, fair food, carnival rides, fireworks, plus continuous live music and an exhibit of major Vermont artists.
      Bay Days 2003 takes place in St Albans Town Bay Park all day Sunday. The fireworks raindate is Monday, July 7. It's not going to rain, right?

SUMMER SOUNDS--St Albans Bay Park will jump as the Handy Group -- Handy Chevy-Olds, Handy Dodge-Toyota, and Handy Cadillac-Pontiac-GMC -- presents the Milton Community Band Independence Day tribute in the Vermont Maple Festival/Summer Sounds series at Bay Days on Sunday evening.
      The Milton Community Band play list has tunes everyone enjoys. The Summer Sounds audience will hear marches, show tunes, and some special symphonic works from volunteer musicians of all ages. Director John Gordon includes serious concert band work as well as old pops tunes like A Bicycle Built for Two. They also perform current arrangements and will feature patriotic songs for the Independence Day celebrations: the Star Spangled Banner, the Battle Hymn of the Republic and the Armed Forces Salute.
      Formed in the Fall of 2001, the Milton Community Band features well known regular members from Franklin County. They will play Milton's Olde Fashioned Fourth of July Celebration tomorrow, and later this season a Faifax Community Library concert, several outdoor concerts in Milton Recreational Park, plus the opening ceremonies for the Champlain Valley Fair.
      The Vermont Maple Festival presents the Summer Sounds concerts in St Albans to keep music and maple together all year. The concerts are sponsored by the Town of St Albans and the All Arts Council, and underwritten by Ben & Jerry's Homemade, the Handy Group new car dealers, Merchants Bank, Northwestern Medical Center, and the St Albans Main Street Merchants.
      The community based All Arts Council brings the performing arts to northwestern Vermont. The concerts are always on Sunday evenings at 7 p.m., always in a town park, and always free. Bring a blanket or a lawn chair and maybe an umbrella as you settle in to enjoy outdoor family music and festivities.

ART--The All Arts Council will host a Red-White-and-Blue visual art exhibition of two- and three-dimensional art by Vermont artists. The Red-White-and-Blue exhibit in the St. Albans bath house pavilion will feature exceptional oil and watercolor paintings, fine art photographs, digital art, mixed media, prints, and sculpture by Franklin County artists including Eric Bataille, Corliss Blakely, Bob Brodeur, April Henderson, David Juaire, Natalie LaRocque-Bouchard, and me.
      Vermont's premier artist, Corliss Blakely of St. Albans, will exhibit two new oil paintings.
      Vermont Life scenic photographer David Juaire of Georgia shoots with a medium format camera for its exceptional clarity.

LIVE MUSIC ALL DAY--the Town of St Albans and the All Arts Council will offer continuous live music starting at 2 p.m. on the stage at St Albans Town Park at the Bay.
      MadJones starts the day at 2 p.m. with a collection of the standards and substandards of rock. The band, all members of the Lebanon, NH, Jones family ranging from second grade to much grownup, includes Mary Catherine on vocals, Eric on guitar, Tim on drums, and Caroline on harmonica, tambourine, shakers, and vocals. Their repertoire ranges from Arlo Guthrie to Patsy Cline to Three Dog Night.
      The Dares play 3-4 and 5-6 in the park. This six-piece pre-teen rock band from Burlington performs original music written by band members Matt and Ben Peterson. They are popular performers on WCAX, at the St Patrick's Day celebration, at First Night, and at the Vermont Maple Festival. Click here for a video clip of The Dares; it requires a broadband connection.
      Presented by St Albans Town and St Albans City Recreation, the Bay Days-Summer Sounds social will be an all day event with the Bay Days food vendors starting to serve at about noon.


      What better choice for the Fourth of July than America's Award Winning Musical, 1776. The Fairfax Community Theatre Company presentation of 1776 continues today and Saturday in BFA-Fairfax
      Sherman Edwards used the words of the founding fathers as he wrote the music and lyrics for this charming and moving history lesson of the events leading up to the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Director Margie Cain brings together a huge cast including Peter Harrington as John Adams, Al Allen as Benjamin Franklin, Tom Townsend as John Hancock, Bob Martin as Thomas Jefferson, and John List as Richard Henry Lee who attempt to convince the second Continental Congress to vote for independence from the shackles of the British monarchy.
      Performances began last night at Bellows Free Academy-Fairfax and continue July 3 and 5 at 7 pm. Admission is $10 adults, $7 seniors and students under 12. Call (802) 899-2730 or Click here for info and for reservations.


ST. ALBANS--The Kept Writer hosts an Open Mike night tonight and every Thursday at 7 p.m.

MONTGOMERY--The Montgomery Rec Center sponsors a Fourth of July celebration tomorrow with a parade, chicken barbecue and live music. Area musicians will begin an afternoon of live music about 1 p.m. and continuing throughout the afternoon.

FAIRFAX--The regular Music Session continues Saturday with acoustic instrumentalists playing traditional songs at the Foothills Bakery, 1-4:30 p.m. Admission is free by donation.

RICHFORD--Old Home Days on Saturday and Sunday include concerts, a parade, and a Lion's Club BBQ on Saturday plus a car show and Fireworks on Sunday.


      The Brass Band ring links brass band sites. These are primarily the British style of band but with others in Europe, Japan, Australasia and North America. Click here.
      Cycle of Fifths links together community music organisations across the globe. Orchestras, choirs, composers, brass and wind bands, and solo performers are all on the ring. Click here.


      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 © 2003 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.