ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 13 * * All Arts News On the Web * * June 18, 2009


      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 1 p.m., at various restaurants around Franklin County throughout the week, 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.

      Find links to these events and more in our Spotlight!

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      The St. Albans Franco-American Heritage Festival begins this evening with Music at the Bay. The mostly free, all family-friendly festival is the first of four Quadricentennial Signature Events this summer at St. Albans Bay and in St. Albans City. There will be music, exhibits, and more that highlight the cultural heritage of our region, with a special focus on Champlain’s 1609 exploration, art, French and Native American culture, and living history.
      The Lois McClure returns to St. Albans Bay for the festival.
      Exhibits include an art show, the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, a living history performance from Chambly, Quebec, genealogy, craft shows, traditional food, a dinner soiree, a school workshop on traditional culture, an historical walking tour, a scavenger hunt, and dancing, The music, exhibits, and activities kick off this evening and continue tomorrow and Saturday only.
      Entertainment includes continuous music headlined by award-winning, internationally known performers Benoit Bourque with his current and former La Bottine Souriante colleagues Andre Brunet and Eric Beaudry plus Maine fiddler Don Roy, our own Michele Choiniere, Will Patton, and Yankee Chank.
      St. Albans Historical Society hosts an historical lecture by Fred Wiseman on Saturday at 3 p.m., French genealogy exhibits, a walking tour of the historically significant locations of St. Albans City led by John Newton and Allyn Mcdonald on Friday at 2 p.m. and Saturday at 10 a.m and 2 p.m.; and other events.
      The Chambly Caravane des Arts, a theater production from Quebec, casts Samuel de Champlain as emcee to introduce the artistic, cultural, and historical achievements across 400 years from Champlain's initial discoveries to the present.
      The St. Albans Artists Guild art exhibit will be open in the Stone Pavilion at St. Albans Bay tonight, 6 - 10 p.m., tomorrow 12 noon - 5 p.m., and Saturday 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
      Tonight, the Will Patton Ensemble plays the ticketed Opening Gala at St. Albans Bay Park at 6 p.m. The Gala features the inaugural viewing of the schooner Lois McClure and a dinner by Jeff's Maine Seafood. Admission to the Gala is $40/person or $70/couple. Call the Franklin County Chamber of Commerce (802.524.2444) for tickets.
      On Friday, the music schedule at St. Albans Bay Park begins with Fabe and Michelle Choiniere plus Arthur Boulerice and Jeanne Begnoche at 11 a.m., Roger Perrault at noon, Fiddleheads at 1 pm., and Don Roy at 1:45 p.m.
      The Friday evening action in Taylor Park begins with Fiddleheads at 5 p.m., a Family Dance with Fiddleheads and the Don Roy Ensemble called by Mark Sustic at 5:20 p.m., a Don Roy Ensemble performance at 6 p.m., Michele Choiniere et Compagnie at 6:45 p.m., and Yankee Chank at 8 p.m.
      Saturday starts bright and early in St. Albans Bay Park with Roger Perrault at 9:30 a.m., the Don Roy Ensemble at 10:30 a.m., the Chambly theatrical production through the lunch hour beginning at 11:45 a.m., Michele Choiniere et Compagnie at 1:30 p.m., De Temps Antan at 2:45 p.m., and an Ensemble Soiree at 4:15 p.m.
      Taylor Park will host Fabe and Michele Choiniere and guests at 9:30 a.m., Fiddleheads at 10:15 a.m., a Family Dance and City School students with Benoit Bourque, Sabin Jacques and Rachel Aucoin at 11:15 a.m., all at the Farmer’s Market. Moving to the Edric Loomis Memorial Bandstand, M. Bourque with Trish and Mike perform at 12:15 p.m., the Don Roy Ensemble at 1:30 p.m., and Frank Heyburn at 2:45 p.m. There will be a "Knights of Columbus Sneak Peak" of Josee Vachon's show at 3:35 p.m. The Conservatory Ballet performs at 4 p.m.
      The Knights of Columbus hosts a ticketed soiree, a dinner and dance with Josee Vachon beginning 6:30 p.m. Soiree admission is $25/person. Call the Knights of Columbus (802.524.1492) for tickets.
      All events are free to the public, with the exception of the Thursday night Gala and the Saturday night soiree. A free shuttle bus will operate between parking sites, Taylor Park, and St. Albans Bay.
      This event is underwritten by the Lake Champlain Basin Program, City of St. Albans, Franklin County Regional Chamber of Commerce, Grand Isle Chamber of Commerce, Knights of Columbus, St. Albans Artists Guild, St. Albans Historical Museum, Town of St. Albans, and the Vermont State Department of Tourism, with support from Ben and Jerry’s, Champlain Tent Rental, Chittenden Bank, Efficiency Vermont, Energizer, Howards the Flower Shop, Jeff’s Seafood Restaurant, Kevin Smith’s Sports Connection, La Quinta, Mylan Technologies, National Endowment for the Arts, Peerless Clothing International, Peoples Trust Company, Quebec Consulate, Union Bank, Vermont Arts Council, VT 2000 Technical Services, and BUZZ, JOYFM, KOOL105, WIZN, WOKO, and WPTZ.


ST. ALBANS--The Citizens Concert Band presents its first summer concert of the season in the E.A. Loomis Memorial Bandshell in Taylor Park on Wednesday, June 24, at 7:30 p.m.
      The Citizens Concert Band is a community band that plays a popular series of summer concerts in St. Albans City, St. Albans Town, and Swanton. All concerts are rain or shine. Click here for the schedule of concerts and rain sites.

BURLINGTON--Fiddleheads are extra busy this weekend as they join performers from Burundi, Bhutan, and Burma to celebrate World Refugee Day at the Unitarian Church on Sunday at 3 p.m.

MIDDLEBURY--The Town Hall Theater hosts a Gala Fundraiser for the Addison County Humane Society on Friday at 8 p.m. A Concert For The Critters features Urban Folk and Jazz Artist KJ Denhert and her Band with a little help from our own Jim Branca and the Mystic Mojo Trio.
      General admission is $25 and includes coffee and dessert during intermission. The $50 Gold seats include a pre-concert reception at 7 p.m. with food, drinks, and an opportunity to mingle with the artists. Tickets are available at Town Hall Theater Box Office or click here.


     Photographer and former teacher Lowell Klock of Wallingford works with digital images, uses Photoshop, creates original photographic cards, and restores historic photographs. Her site includes her image galleries, an artist statement and biography, info about photographic restoration, and how to purchase works.


      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 © 2009 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.