ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 18 * * All Arts News On the Web * * May 15, 2014


      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.

     Franklin County's arts and music gatherings bring new opportunities, gossip, "show-and-tell" and occasional workshops. There are also booked and acoustic Open Mic Nights that feature music, readings, and more from the best new artists in Vermont.

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SWANTON--Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge begins the Friends of the Refuge 2014 exhibit Art on the Refuge with a reception on Saturday at 10 a.m.
      Vermont artists working in oil, acrylics, watercolor, pen and ink, pastels, photographs and fabric interpret the plants, wildlife, and wild landscape of the Refuge. There will be images of water, the lake, river, marsh, forest, wildlife, wildflowers, fields, bugs, weeds, sky, and people.
      There will be plenty of food and coffee. Art on the Refuge will run from May 17 through July 18.


ST. ALBANS--The St. Albans Arts Council festival, Arts in the Park, begins with Garden Night Out on Wednesday, May 21 at 4 p.m. for the art of gardening and a BBQ sponsored by Bob's Meat Market.
      The festival continues through Saturday, May 24, with a poetry slam, live painting, music and drama on stage, writers, and comedians.
      Click here for more info.


     Elissa Campbell has a studio in Montpelier for hand-binding journals, photo albums, and guest books using traditional bookbinding techniques. She works with handmade papers and materials with recycled content from local artisans and from around the world. Her site has her bio, a portfolio, how to buy, events, teaching, her blog, and contact links.


     Who cares about May showers? (They bring June flowers, right?) It will be 80 today, arts fans!
      The Meeting House on the Green in East Fairfield presents the first of the Summer Evenings with Vermont Treasures concert series with a special John Cassel concert on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
      The "first hippie" in Bakersfield, a jazz piano legend, and East Fairfield's favorite musical son, Mr. Cassel has helped build the music scene in Vermont for forty years. He is a classically trained jazz pianist who can and does play country, folk, pop, rock, and dinner music. He calls the latter the "kind of music you should talk over." His recordings include the musical Green Mountain Lucky, Christmas Music from the Trapp Family Lodge - Volumes 1 and 2, Moon Dream, Kids (of all ages) Dig Jazz, Jade Lady, and more.
      We profiled Mr. Cassel in 2005.
      Built around 1876, the church is an architectural, social, and spiritual anchor of East Fairfield thanks to marriages, baptisms, funerals, candlelight services, and many a roast beef dinner. the Fairfield Community Center Association acquired the Meeting House in 2012. The small non-profit provides essential services and enrichment programs to the region.
      So far, they have rebuilt the roof on the shed addition over the old tracker organ, removed the chimney, repaired of eaves and soffits, installed a new electrical service, wiring, and lights, removed the old furnace and oil tanks, and leveled and stabilized the front entrance.
      These concerts will benefit the restoration of this historic landmark for future generations.
      Admission is $15 and kids under 12 are free. Refreshments will be for sale at intermission. Call 802.827.6626 to reserve tickets.


FAIRFAX--The Country Pantry presents singer/songwriter Troy Millette on Friday at 6 p.m.

ST. ALBANS--The Twiggs Comedy For A Cause series continues on the Main Stage Friday evening at 7 p.m. The evening will help out the BFA Booster Booth Project. The stand up show celebrates one year raising funds to support nonprofits in our community.
      Colin Ryan of A Stand Up Life produces the show. Admission is $20. There are just 75 seats available at the restaurant. Call Ann Markle (802.238.4960) or Wendy Morrill (802.527.7850) or email for tickets. Make dinner reservations prior to the show since only drinks, appetizers, and desserts will be served during the show.
      Next up, Twiggs presents Bravacado, one of "Vermont's up-and-coming young bands" in a free show in the window on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.
      Call 802.524.1405 or click here for more info or booking requests.


ENOSBURG--Pirates of Penzance, an Opera House event, will hold auditions for all parts at the Opera House at Enosburg Falls again on Sunday from 12 noon - 4 p.m. The performance will run July 24-27.
      The Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera has male roles for a tenor, two baritones, a bass-baritone, and a bass; female roles for a soprano, two mezzo-sopranos, a contralto, and a speaking role; plus a chorus of pirates, police, and General Stanley's daughters.
      Rehearsals will take place on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and Saturday afternoons. Everyone will be required from July 18 through Opening Night. The production may be able to work around rehearsal calendar conflicts. Click here for more info.


4TH ANNUAL PET PHOTO CONTEST (May 31)--Buck Hollow Farm's event is a chance for pets to shine. First prize is two free nights, and a second prize of one night at the Inn.
      Send a photo of your pet, along with its name, your email address, and a very short title for the picture. All the submitted photos will appear online with instructions on how to submit a popular vote. Only one photo per household.
      Email your entries or questions to Jackie.

FEED THE PLANET MAIL ART PROJECT (May 31)--Send in your vision on the Feed the Planet exhibit theme. The 2014 show will take place at historic sites in Alphen-Chaam during Cittaslow International World Assembly. Size and technique are free. No entry fee. Email or click here for more info.

GET A ROOM! GOVERNORS ISLAND ART FAIR (June 2)--4heads calls independent artists worldwide in all disciplines for New York's largest independent exhibition. More than 100 artists will receive free exhibition space amongst the landmark architecture of historic Governors Island. $35 to apply, free to exhibit. Click here for more info.


      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 © 2014 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.