ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 14 * * All Arts News On the Web * * September 2, 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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ENOSBURG FALLS--The Artist In Residence Gallery features different artists each month. This month, the spotlight is on painters Corliss Blakely, Peter Miller, and Henry Trask Riley, plus potter Susan Delear. The A.I.R. gallery hosts a free meet-the-artists reception with refreshments tonight from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. The exhibit continues through the end of September.
      The Artist in Residence art cooperative is owned and operated by the members provide a venue for local artists to display and sell their work, and to bring the creative economy to Enosburg Falls and surrounding area. A.I.R. features paintings, fiber arts, stained glass, sculpture, lamps, pottery, folk art boxes, scarves, hats and more by 45 Franklin County and surrounding area artists. The Village Frame Shoppe is located within the coop as a resident framer. The gallery, located at 349 Main Street, is open Wednesday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, noon to 5 p.m. Call 802.933.6403 for more info.

ST ALBANS--The Northwestern Medical Center Gallery hosts black and white photography by Moria Routhier this month.
      "Her photos of ordinary objects at interesting vantage points make us see them in a different way," Dolly MacNeil said. Ms. Routhier "creates a special mood with her photos, as black and white photography can do."
      The show continues through the end of September.


ESSEX JUNCTION--The Champlain Valley Fair continues with excellent weather and free performance by the US Marine Corps Band, the First Night Stars, and the Vermont Talent Showcase on the Burlington Free Press Stage, plus the Dixieland Band Strollers on the grounds.
      The Vermont Talent Showcase features the Keeghan Nolan Band on Friday and Saturday afternoons at 2 p.m.

ESSEX JUNCTION--On Tap at the Lincoln Inn offers Blues Night with the Nobby Reed Project tonight at 7 p.m. and the Phil Abair Band tomorrow at 9 p.m.
      Call 802.878.3309 or email for more info.

BRIDGEWATER--The 3rd annual North Branch Labor Day Weekend Bluegrass Festival begins Friday and continues through Sunday with ten New England bluegrass bands, 15 musician workshops, a songwriters contest, great home cooking, plus free horseshoes, darts, and marshmallows by the campfire.
      The old-fashioned family festival on the north branch of the Ottaquechee River includes Big Spike Bluegrass and Summer Sounds favorites Possum Haw.
      The gate opens at 9 a.m. each day. Day tickets are $20 for adults and $5 for those aged 5-15, accompanied by a supervising adult. A four day weekend camping pass which includes the festival will cost $50 for adults, $20 for youths, and children under age 5 are free. Call Heather Kennedy (802.672.3042), email or click here for more info.

MONTGOMERY--The Last Fling of Summer at the Montgomery Village Recreational Field on Monday at 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. offers a day of arts and crafts vendors, yard sales, delicious food, live music and more at this end-of-summer celebration.
      Admission is free. Call 802.578.7103 or click here for more info.

CRAFTSBURY--Music Box presents The Missing Cats on Wednesday at 8 p.m. The Vermont acoustic jazz combo of singer-songwriter Lewis Franco, guitar; Will Patton, mandolin; Dono Schabner, guitar; and Justin Rose, upright bass does originals as well as gypsy swing and jive swing tunes from the 1930s and 40s with close 3-part vocal rhythm harmonies and improvisation.
      Call 802.586.7533 or click here for more info


     Kevin Laddison of First Step Dance begins ballroom dance classes at the St. Albans Historical Museum on Wednesday. Each class will meet for an hour each week for four weeks.
      The Level I Rhythm class will cover the basics of Rumba, Cha Cha, and Merengue for an hour starting at 6 p.m.
      Level I Smooth class will cover the basics of Waltz, Foxtrot and Tango at 7 p.m.
      Level II Smooth class will continue building on the basics of Waltz, Foxtrot and Tango at 8 p.m.
      There will be a ballroom dance social with short lessons and open dancing at the Museum on September 24.
      Each 4-week class is $50/person. No experience is required for the Level I classes but you should have taken Level I or have other dance instruction and experience for Level II classes. Click here for more info.


     Summer has 21 official days to go but the 20th season of Summer Sounds came to an end. The good news is that, despite this looming Labor Day cold front, we'll be back in the 70s next week and may even see the 80s by Monday the 13th. Summer continues at least for a little while.
      The big news is the popular series enters its 21st season in 2011. The All Arts Council will need your help to host Summer Sounds concerts in several Franklin County towns. I am taking suggestions for the performer list right now. You can help us arrange an appropriation in your Town to visit there. And we need a major sponsor to help underwrite and advertise the series. Email the All Arts Council to volunteer or for more info.
      The 2010 Summer Sounds free concert series dodged rain drops one night and used the rain site twice. Oh, well. Carol Ann Jones and the Superchargers with special guest Keeghan Nolan played into the Fireworks at Bay Day. Jenni Johnson brought the Junketeers and the local Junkettes in a crowd pleaser. Mark LeGrand brought the Lovesick Band and Sarah Munro in a show that had the audience asking for reruns. Tammy Fletcher as Mountain Girl gave a stunning performance and Possum Haw played superb original bluegrass for the first time in the series. Singer-songwriter Roy Hurd who lost his Adirondack home in a devastating fire sang and played and told stories. The season wrapped with the Fizz in the Methodist Church again.
      The free concerts in this series have been sponsored by the supporting Towns and the All Arts Council, and underwritten by Chevalier Drilling, Desorcie's Market, Drummac Septic Service, O. C. McCuin and Sons, Ray's Extrusion Dies and Tubing, and Scotty's Taxi.
      The community based All Arts Council brings the performing and visual arts to northwestern Vermont. The concerts are always on Sunday evenings, always at 7 p.m., always in a Town Park, and always free.


     Bill Botzow of Bennington sculpts, paints, draws, performs, and creates digital media on site specific projects. The site has everything we could want -- pages of action art, Kansas (it includes Bill and Meg's Diary), galleries, and contact info and news (in Huh?) -- in an oversaturated format.


      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).
      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.