ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 20 * * All Arts News On the Web * * August 25, 2016


      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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Summer Sounds is resting up for next year but there is still plenty of music playing as the Big Music Weeks of Summer continue with concerts in Alburgh, Burlington, East Fairfield, Essex Junction, Grand Isle, Milton, Sheldon, South Burlington, St. Albans, Swanton, and more.


      The 26th season of Summer Sounds brought exceptional performances "from away" with groups rarely heard here in Franklin County but the regular season came to an end on Sunday, just in time for the Champlain Valley Fair to start. The series dodged rain drops a couple of times but we needed the rain.
      IncaHOOTS, the "firm" of Sullivan, Davis, and Hanscom, Anderson Gram, Bob Amos and Catamount Crossing, and Jenni Johnson and the Jazz Junketeers wowed the crowd in July with the hottest country-rock-jazz-pop, music from the 60s,70s, and 80s, straight up folk originals, high energy bluegrass, and our favorite American jazz. Troy Millette and Dylan Gombas brought youth to the stage and the Christopher Dean Band brought a little bit of soul and a whole lot of heat to a rainy night.
      Just before each concert, we enjoyed a Summer Sounds Social in the Park. The social hour is a chance to visit with friends and eat hearty.
      The 2016 Summer Sounds concerts were sponsored by the Town of Highgate and the All Arts Council, and underwritten by Chevalier Drilling Co. Inc, Desorcie's Market, Drummac Septic Service, La Quinta Inn and Suites of St Albans, O. C. McCuin and Sons, and Ray's Extrusion Dies and Tubing.
      The community based All Arts Council brings the performing arts to northwestern Vermont. The concerts are always on Sunday evenings, always at 7 p.m., always in a Town Park, and always free "but we do pay the bands!" The rain site is the Highgate United Methodist Church. Bookmark for more about Summer Sounds.


ENOSBURG--The Opera House at Enosburg Falls will hold auditions at the House for The Odd Couple--the Female Version on Sunday at 1 p.m.
      The hilarious show casts six women and two men: Olive Madison, Florence Unger, Manolo Costazuela, Jesus Costazuela, Sylvie Mickey, and Renee Vera. The House also needs volunteers to help with sets, costumes, props, and stage management. email for more info and audition scenes.


BURLINGTON--Vermont Lake Monsters have invited Carol Ann Jones to sing the National Anthem for Lake Monsters v. Lowell game at Centennial Field this evening at 6:45 p.m. The first 1,000 fans also receive a special edition Vermont Lake Monsters baseball cap.

ST. ALBANS--The One Fed Summer Concert Series presents the Nobby Reed Project this evening at 7 p.m.
      The summer concert series has performers under the tents and draft specials every Thursday, rain or shine.

SOUTH BURLINGTON--Higher Ground concludes the Northern Exposure Summer Series with The Canteens, About Time, George Boone Blues Band, and Hornbeam in the Showcase Lounge tonight at 8:30 p.m.
      Northern Exposure provides an opportunity to see some of the best up-and-coming Vermont bands. This event is all ages. Admission is $6.

ST. ALBANS--Twiggs presents the Tony Whedon Trio tonight, Chad Hollister on $4 Friday, and The Duo on Saturday. Music begins at 7 p.m. each evening.
      Call 802.524.1405 or click here for more info.

MILTON--Sean Casey plays the Friday Night Live Music and Buffet Series at the Arrowhead Golf Course on Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. There will be a buffet dinner and a beautiful deck
      "Come run with us at 5:30, then enjoy the buffet and sunset." The music is free and the buffet is open to the public.

Friday through Labor Day
ESSEX JUNCTION--The Ten Best Days of Summer kicks off Friday when the Champlain Valley Fair opens continues through Labor Day. The Fair hosts Vermont's Music Showcase on the Koffee Kup Stage in the Adsit Building every day at 11, 1:30 and 5:30.
      The Showcase and the Music Gazebo feature Jamie Bright, Toni Catlin, Will Clifford, Christine and Jess, Cricket Blue, Tim Fitzgerald, Antara Garsh, John Gratton, Steve Hartmann, John Holland, Joey Keough, Leatherbound Books, Luke McMartin, Lisa Piccirillo, Micah Plante, Owl Stars, and Julian Young.
      The Showcase and the Music Gazebo feature Milton Busker, Chris & Erica, Bethany Connor, Ana D'Leon, Steve Hartmann, Brett Hughs, Leather Bound Books, Troy Millette, Micah Plante, and Root 7.
      Click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--Brews for Rescues is a family and dog friendly day of live entertainment, food, demonstrations, prizes and more at 14th Star Brewing on Saturday from 11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
      Admission is free and dogs are welcome but must be leashed. All proceeds benefit Franklin County Animal Rescue.

SWANTON--The Swanton Chamber of Commerce hosts Almost Nowhere in the Swanton Park Concert on the Bandstand on Saturday at 6 p.m. Admission is free.

ALBURG--The Alburgh SummerFest and Chili Cookoff presents the Nobby Reed Project, Bruce and Mary, Coon Hill John Band, Donna Thunder and Friends, and a special Rick Norcross solo on Saturday. There will be bands (bring a chair), pony rides, bouncy house, lawn mowers racing, a car show, over 50 vendors, pies, and this year the "first annual" Chili Cook off.
Admission is $5 per car.

EAST FAIRFIELD--Summer Evenings with Vermont Treasures presents the Austin Piazzolla Quintet at the Meeting House on the Green on Saturday at 7 p.m.
      The Quintet specializes in the music of Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla as well as original nuevo tango compositions. James Anderson, violin; Jonathan Geer, piano), Mike Maddux, accordion, bandoneon; Tony Rogers, cello; and Pat Harris, bass; the band continues the tradition of nuevo tango through intense live shows with unique arrangements of Piazzolla's compositions, innovative original works, and fiery improv.
      Admission is by $10 suggested donation at the door and kids under 12 are free. Call 802.827.3275 to reserve a seat. The concert series helps fund the restoration of the Meeting House on the Green. Bring a picnic and enjoy the shady village green before the show. Great desserts are available at intermission. Click here for more info.

SHELDON--Summer Music at Grace celebrates the Grace Church 200th Anniversary with organist Bridget Chatterly on Sunday at 3 p.m.
      Click here for more info.

GRAND ISLE--The Island Arts 2016 Summer Concert Series concludes with PossumHaw at the Grand Isle Lake House on Sunday at 6:30 p.m.
      PossumHaw is what folk and bluegrass music is all about -- excellent original acoustic live music delivered with skill, sincerity, and personality. Lead singer Colby Crehan was named Vermont Vocalist of the Year and her song, Road to Mara, Vermont Song of the Year.
      Admission is $25 at the door and $20 in advance. and check the Island Arts Facebook page Tickets are available can be purchased at the Country Store in Isle La Motte, the Alburgh Public Library, the Back Chamber in North Hero, and in South Hero at the Green Frog and Hackett's Orchard. Youth under 12 are free. Grounds open for picnicking at 5:30 p.m. Profits go to the Island Arts Youth Scholarship Fund. Call 802.372.8889 or check the Island Arts Facebook page for more info. Click here to purchase tickets.

ST. ALBANS--A&M concludes the Downtown Summer Concert Series in the E.A. Loomis Bandshell in Taylor Park on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. The Road Grill BBQ serves food at all of this year's Summer Concerts Series events.
      Admission is free.

MORRISVILLE--Moog's Place has "live music every night we're open, starting between eight and nine pm" with open mic night scheduled most Thursdays at 8:30 p.m.
      Click here for more info.

MORRISVILLE--River Arts holds a Farmers and Artisans Market at the River Arts Center every Wednesday from 3 - 7 p.m. Click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--Shooters Saloon sponsors an open-mic night every Thursday and scheduled music on some other evenings.
      Call 802.527.3777 for more info or booking requests.


      ArtBits features a quick weekly peek at library events in and around Franklin County. That popular feature has a page of its own at the Franklin County Bookshelf here on the AAC site at We also take an occasional peek at the bookshelf or night stand of the folks you know in and around Franklin County. Those reviews can be found on the ArtBits Bookshelf.


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