ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 21 * * All Arts News On the Web * * May 25, 2017


      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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SHELDON--Summer Music at Grace kicks off the new Summer Season with French music from Louisiana and Quebec in the 15th annual Farewell Reunion concert at Grace Church on Friday at 7 p.m.
      This year, the popular show features Cajun fiddler David Greely and Zigue (Claude Methe and Dana Whittle) as well as a cast of thousands, thousands, I tell you.
Mark Sustic's original Farewell Tour of the 2002 season celebrated Mr. Sustic's 20 years as Coordinator of the Franklin County Early Childhood Programs. He was joined on stage by many of the great roots, folk, and pop musicians he knew as founder of the Champlain Valley Festival and as a performer and organizer. The Farewell Reunion concerts have all had that same format with FOM sharing the stage.
     This is the 20th season of the popular and eclectic Summer Music at Grace series. The church is the home of the newly restored 1833 Erben pipe organ.
      A $20 suggested donation supports the Tom Sustic Fund, supporting families with children in life-altering situations. Bring a dessert to share at intermission. Beverages will be provided. The concert is presented by Young Tradition Vermont and Grace Church. Presenting partners include the All Arts Council and others.
      Call 802.326.3603 or visit and for more info.


AROUND THE STATE--Vermont's 24th annual Open Studio Weekend begins Saturday at 10 a.m. This statewide celebration puts Vermont artists and craftspeople "on exhibit" in their own studios. The event begins the summer season during Memorial Day Weekend each year.
      Some of the artists open their working studios to the public only during this weekend. It is an opportunity for them to talk about their work and to demonstrate the skill and processes used to make it. The participating artists plan to get work done as well as teach while visitors poke around.
      Hundreds of other sites will be open with more than three hundred artists and artisans participating this year including these spaces in and around Franklin County. Pick up a hard copy map at any studio, tourist information centers on Vermont's interstate highways.
      Meta Strick Gets Away With Art in Sheldon. Her carved, painted, wood figures, and ornaments in her log studio.
      Handweaver Carol Crawford of Bakersfield has been weaving for most of her life and, even after forty years, finds herself enthralled by the moment her shuttle crosses the warp and creates the woven piece.
      Other statewide participants include furniture makers, glass blowers, ironworkers, jewelers, quilters painters, potters, print makers, sculptors, weavers, and wood carvers including Hounds Bay Woodworking, Sweet Enemy Art, and Mary Hill Studios around Underhill. Many galleries will host gallery talks and feature special exhibits in conjunction with this event.
      Click here for maps, directions, and more info.


MORRISBURG--River Arts and Sundog Poetry Center present the final AMP Night of the season this evening at 6 p.m. The series of creative evenings features a special guest artist, musician, and poet on Thursdays.
      This week, sculptor Clark Derbes plays with illusion and geometric pattern and tree stumps, steelpannist and composer Emily Lanxner will play, and poet Darren Higgins will read poems and stories. El Hornero will bring locally sourced and made international savory and sweet pastries.
      Click here for more info.

WESTFIELD--The Westfield Concert Series presents the Missisquoi River Band at the First Congregational Church of Westfield this evening at 7 p.m. A potluck supper begins at 6:00 pm.
      Patrick Murphy and Jim and Cindy Weed play original and traditional bluegrass music with string wizard Will Patton on mandolin and National Steel tenor guitar. Their unique three-part harmony arrangements are masterful. Their CD Plenty of Heartaches will be available for purchase.
      Admission is by suggested donation of $10 with all proceeds helping to fund the church restoration efforts.

BURLINGTON--The Discover Jazz Festival begins with a Kickoff Party at Halvorson's this evening at 7:30 p.m. and continues through June 11 with people you know by heart and people to hear for the first time.
      Click here for more info.

Friday SHELDON--The Abbey hosts Carol Ann Jones and Will Patton in a special concert and benefit dinner for the Sheldon Historical Society on Friday at 6 p.m.
      There will be food, fun, and entertainment plus a chance on winning up to $200, a piece of history to take home, or a hand-made quilt.
      Admission is $12. Tickets are available at Sheldon Town Office and the Sheldon Mini-Mart. Call 802.933.4630 or 802.933.4566 for more info.

ST. ALBANS--Kick off the long weekend; BBP is back at 14th Star on Friday at 6 p.m.
      Bruce Patenaude, Bill Jock, and Pat Maddix play familiar favorites from over four decades on stage.

ST. ALBANS--Twiggs presents soul and blues man Dave Keller on Friday and Burlington's indie-rock duo Jesse & Dave on Saturday. Shows begin at 7 p.m.
      Call 802.524.1405 or click here for more info.

ST. ALBANS--14th Star celebrates its fifth birthday on Sunday with a Parking Lot Party of live music, food, games, and brews from noon on. The outdoor party kicks up a notch with tunes from Tyler and Ryan at 1-4 p.m. and Justice rocks some Memorial Day Mayhem at 6-10 p.m.
      The crew will have a birthday cake from Andrea Viens Mudgett and a pig roast from Smokin' Butt's Bar-B-Q.
      They will also release special edition cans of the new Maple Maibock as well as our limited 5th Anniversary glassware and no cover charge.


      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.

Good News!

There are so many events around the region that we miss some of them.
Be sure to check these calendars for what's happening near you ...
All Arts Council of Franklin County
Cambridge Arts Council
Franklin County Regional
Chamber of Commerce
Island Arts
St Albans Community Arts
Swanton Arts Council
Young Tradition Vermont


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All Arts Council of Franklin County

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