ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 14 * * All Arts News On the Web * * May 27, 2010


      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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      Summer must have started! Near record temperatures! Thunderboomers! Summer music!
      The summer music season officially begins tomorrow evening as Summer Music at Grace kicks off with the ninth appearance of the Annual Farewell Reunion Concert at Grace Episcopal Church in Sheldon at 7 p.m. Young Tradition Vermont presents the concert as an evening of traditional and original music, singing and dancing from Vermont, Appalachia, Scotland, Ireland and beyond.
 ArtBits News Photo     Did I mention "summer" often enough?
      The ninth Annual Farewell Reunion lineup includes the Backyard Bluegrass Band, Bread and Bones (Richard Ruane, Beth Duquette and Mitch Barron), Jim Burns, Patti Casey, Michele and Fabe Choiniere, Roland and Gary Clark, Hannah Beth Crary, Tim Cummings, Becca Hanley, Latimer Hoke, Carol Jones, Mike McCarthy, Ken MacKenzie and Susan Palmer, Tom MacKenzie, Jim McGinniss and Clare Doyle, Will Patton, and Dono Schabner, Doug Perkins, Pete and Karen Sutherland, and more. Mark Sustic hosts the event.
      A potluck dinner and live music on the lawn in front of the church will start at 6 p.m. with contributions from you.
      The suggested donation of $15 per person will benefit the Tom Sustic Scholarship Fund. There are no advance tickets. click here for more info about Summer Music at Grace. The event has support from Events for Tom, the All Arts Council of Franklin County, Cosmic Bakery, Foothills Bakery, Franklin County Dairy Industry, Messenger Print and Design, and Northwestern Medical Center and others.
      Every performer donates his or her performance. We recommend you purchase a CD by one of the performers to help keep them in business.
      This annual benefit concert raises funds for the Tom Sustic Scholarship Fund which awards to Franklin County high school seniors intending to become teachers of young children. Email or click here for more info.


ST. ALBANS--The Bishop Street Artists present their annual show and sale this weekend in the Parish Hall at St. Luke's Episcopal Church. There will be an opening reception tomorrow evening at 6 p.m. The exhibit itself is open Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
      "Come have some refreshments and talk with the artists Friday evening," Jane Bower said.
      Exhibitors include Eric Bataille, Stina Booth, Ms. Bower, Pat Burton, Betty Casavant, Louise Counos, Claire Dunn, Don Grenier, Barbara Hamm, Jill Jones, Beth Maginn, Terry Sheets, Meta Strick, Shanley Triggs, and Linda Wirts. They will present a wide variety of mediums and styles with original paintings, prints, cards, and jewelry made from paintings. Some of the artists will work on new pieces throughout the show.

AROUND THE STATE--The eighteenth annual Vermont Open Studio Weekend is this Saturday and Sunday, Memorial Day Weekend. The statewide celebration of creativity and the visual arts gives visitors an inside look at Vermont artists and craftspeople actually working in their studios. 236 sites with 268 exhibitors are open this year, including 88 people who were not on the tour last year.
      In and near Franklin County, Ken Bassett at Onion River Boatworks designs, builds, and restores wooden boats at his shop on Blockhouse Point Road in North Hero. The Chasworth Pottery and Farm features handcrafted pottery, roving, and handspun yarn by Marcia Hagwood, all on Polly Hubbard Road in Georgia. Greg Drew is a Personalwoodsmythe with practical and artistic wood turnings and treasures in Georgia. Toby Fulwiler's Fairfield Farm Bowls are classic bowls from local hardwoods. Nancy Hayden has her Northwind Studio and Gallery of sculpture, painting, gourds, and altered books and art in Jeffersonville. Get Away With Art with Meta Strick's mixed media, dolls, paintings, calligraphy, and ornaments in Sheldon. Ralph Tursini creates unique green-turned wooden bowls in Cambridge. Karen Winslow's Studio has her oil paintings, landscapes, still life, florals outside Cambridge
      Other statewide participants include furniture makers, glass blowers, ironworkers, jewelers, quilters painters, potters, print makers, sculptors, weavers, and wood carvers. Many galleries will host gallery talks and feature special exhibits in conjunction with this event.
      Directions to the area studios are available on a free map and online but the easiest way to find these artists remains unchanged. Get somewhere near each studio and follow the yellow signs. Admission is free. During Open Studio Weekend, all sites are open 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. After Open Studio Weekend, please call ahead before visiting.
      Click here for the map and directions. Call the Vermont Crafts Council (802.223.3380) or for more info about Open Studio Weekend.


BURLINGTON--Keeghan Nolan hosts the WOKO It's All AboutThe Song Singer/Songwriter round table in the Black Box Theater at 294 North Winooski Ave tonight at 8 p.m. The featured artist is Randy Smith. The singer-songwriter is a Billboard award winning musician who now lives in North Carolina. He has recorded 6 albums and toured extensively throughout the US and Canada.
      Admission is just $5. There are limited tickets available. Call 802.865.3013 for reservations.

ST. ALBANS--J.W. Ryans presents the reggae band Conscious Roots on Friday at 9:30 p.m.
      Reggae, first developed in Jamaica in the late 60s, has a rhythmic style with accents on the off-beat (the skank). It is mellow, easy music, played in 4/4 time or swing time. The Jeffersonville band includes Adam Dunsmore on trumpet and backing vocals; Charles Hungerford on vocals, rhythm guitar and clarinet; lead guitar Jeff Kenyon; Danny Ries on bass and mandolin; and Swanton's own Jason Corbiere on drums.

COLCHESTER--NightCrawlers presents Damage Control on Friday at 9 p.m.
      "We have a little contest going on," Scott Guptill wrote. "The fan that can post the most pics of our show on Facebook will win a Damage Control shirt." No, you can't post the same photo over and over.
      Click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--Chow Bella continues with great music this weekend as Carol Ann Jones plays there with Randy Smith and Keeghan Nolan on Saturday at 7 p.m.
      Ms. Jones usually fronts The Superchargers. Her debut indie album, Out of the Blue, showcases her broad range of music from Mr. Engineer to the "Farmhouse Blues." 8-0-8-4's Mr. Smith, formerly of St. Albans, current solo album is Bittersweet. And Ms. Nolan is Franklin County's own country music star.
      Make reservations. Really.

FAIRFAX--Swanton's own writer Leon Thompson takes his three books, Good Junk, dork. - another look at my junk, and Not Too Awful Bad, all the way to the Fairfax Community Library tonight at 6:30 p.m. I hope his car springs will support all that paper.
      This is a reading and signing which means he will be selling books in a library! Bring your own pen. He needs 'em for the next book.


     David Brewster of Halifax is an alla prima oil painter who showcases the spaces of our natural and manufactured New England environment. He paints on-site in a single session. His site includes a Flash slide show plus a catalog of his work, a biography, info about his process and teaching, his blog, contact info and more.


      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 © 2010 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).
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