ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 24 * * All Arts News On the Web * * May 28, 2020


      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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      Vermont's State of Emergency extends to June 15. At his press briefing last Friday, Gov. Phil Scott announced:       Gatherings in homes are now allowed as are small gatherings of 10 or fewer people. The 14-day quarantine is still in effect. Vermont's Long Trail is now open.

      The 30th annual Summer Sounds concert series for 2020 has been canceled; Summer Sounds will return in 2021. 20/20 Visions, the Montgomery Center for the Arts Summer Art Show and Fundraiser, the Barre Heritage Festival, Bay Day, summer shows at Burton Island, the Vermont Dairy Festival, Evenings at the Meeting House, the entire 2020 season at the Opera House at Enosburg Falls, the entire Enosburg Town Band Summer Concert Series, and many Young Tradition events have been canceled. The 99th annual Champlain Valley Fair will wait until next summer.

      Although so many of our favorite activities won't happen this year, all the volunteers will stay as active as possible and this weekly column about the arts and entertainment around the region will continue to serve up live and almost live events and artists from around the region. Read all about it here every Thursday.


      The Franklin County Regional Chamber of Commerce maintains a list of links and resources for individuals, businesses and volunteers during the current pandemic. These updates are modified weekly, as orders and guidance changes. Click here for the list.
      Most Town offices remain closed to the public but are open for business--employees working remotely mean Town business is still happening. Check with your Town clerk for more info.

      Shalaco shares 11 tips for photographers, creatives or really anyone on How to Apply for Covid-19 Financial Support. Click here for the video.


     Whitney Farnsworth has shared a new piece of public art on the SAC art wall at the Swanton Municipal Complex.
      There are six art walls in the Swanton area: near John's bridge, in front of the municipal complex and in front of Salon Elixir. Bring an idea and your own paint to complete the project. No fee. No approval necessary. Email with questions.

ST. ALBANS--The Artist In Residence Gallery features different artists each month but the Featured Artists Reception for June has been postponed. Find albums of AIR artists on Facebook.
      The Artist in Residence art cooperative features paintings, fiber arts, stained glass, sculpture, lamps, pottery, folk art boxes, scarves, hats and more by 40 Franklin County and surrounding area artists. It is owned and operated by the artists and sponsors. click here for more info.

ST ALBANS--The Northwestern Medical Center Gallery Art Wall is also on hold due to the coronavirus. A new exhibit may not return until year's end.


MILTON--The Milton Artists' Guild will host a series of online seminars beginning with Pinterest: Professional Development for Artists with instructor Caitlyn Kenney on Tuesday at 6 - 7:30 p.m. This beginner-level professional development for artists seminar will teach the building blocks for running a Pinterest page for an art business. Upcoming sessions include Instagram.
      The cost is $5 for members or $10 for non-members per session. Click here to reserve a space.


SWANTON--The regular Swanton Arts Council board meeting and update will be held via Zoon on Monday at 6 p.m.
      SAC meetings are held on the first Monday of each month. Email or message via Facebook an hour before the meeting for the link. Click here for the April minutes.


ST. ALBANS--Bayside Pavilion presents Eleven live on Friday night at 6:30 p.m. Find them on Facebook for more info.

SOUTH HERO--Carol Ann Jones and Jon Sochin will be back at the Blue Paddle on Tuesday at 6 p.m. They'll be there every Tuesday evening now but there will be no open mic until restrictions loosen. Seating is very limited with lots of restrictions in place and reservations are a must. Call 802.372.4814
      Ms. Jones and Mr. Sochin snuck in a pop-up concert live at the Blue Paddle on Saturday in her first gig since February. "It was great and recharged me," she said.

All Week
ST. ALBANS--It's showtime! Twiggs has limited outside seating and is ready to serve you. They will have music in the window on selected evenings. Ordering will be through your phone or through disposable menus. There is a ten-person maximum per table. Reservations or call ahead are required Call 802.524.1405 or click here or see the video on Facebook for the whole scoop.


     With many venues still shut down and the fairs and festivals gone, we have to rely on ourselves for entertainment so sing from a manhole. Record yourself in the belfry with the bats. Paint your porch railing burgundy and silver and white green. OK, maybe not that.
      You're housebound? Your show is canceled or postponed? You're bored? How about putting on a show?
      Get the band together and video or live stream a rehearsal every day. Or set up your easel and video a painting coming together. Read a few pages from your novel or a short story or a poem. Get in costume and video that play or the dance. Do some improv in your living room.
      We're locked down, too, and missing you. You'll get in a session and we'll like seeing you. Please share your efforts with your local arts council, too. And if the artist has a donation button, the audience can express appreciation through PayPal, Venmo, or other services.
      Here's a roundup for this week.

      Summer Sounds favorite John Bartus will perform a new Social Distancing Concert 10 Live from the Florida Keys from his studio in Marathon, Florida, thanks to Facebook Live every Friday at 7:30 p.m. Each week, Mr. Bartus makes an appeal to make donations to Mangrove Mike Forster's free food distribution in the Keys. Last week's concert is on Facebook.
      Find him on Facebook for the concert link for this week.

      Andrew Lloyd Webber will stream his musicals in the free YouTube series, The Shows Must Go On, every Friday at 7 p.m. for 48 hours. A new show begins tomorrow. Clips of famous performances and behind-the-scenes footage also appear on the channel beside the full shows.
      Click here for Mr. Webber's YouTube channel for all the details and to subscribe.

      Autumn Rose Lester on fiddle and Eric Eid-Reiner on piano will perform an online concert of traditional and contemporary music from Ireland, New England, Cape Breton, and beyond on Saturday at 7:30 p.m.
      Tune in Mr. Eid-Reiner's YouTube channel or watch live on Facebook. There is a shared tip jar for the concert at PayPal.

      Eleven performed the Corona Sessions, Part 2, on Facebook. "We come to you, as right now, you can't come to us. We hope this improptu jam finds everyone well and we hope to be back out real soon."

      Jacob Green posted the Music Video for his original song, Bring the Blues Back, on Facebook

      Carol Ann Jones will do another pop-up concert in her dining room but she "can't tell when. All the stars have to align and then I just go for it." Follow her on Facebook for her events.

      George Murtie was live at Twiggs on Saturday; it streamed live here on Facebook. Masked Tom Caswell followed with guitar and vocals on Facebook.

      Americana vocal trio Red Molly (Laurie MacAllister, bass; Abbie Gardner, dobro; and Molly Venter, guitar), brings musicianship, songwriting, and strong harmony to weave threads of American music from folk to bluegrass, from ballad to honky tonk.
      This is a story of virtual connections. A woman who graduated with the sister of friend in Pennsylvania; she sent him an invite to the "Mollies" virtual song circle. He sent me this link on Facebook.


FAIRFIELD--The Bent Northrop Memorial Library has curbside service, digital services, 24/7 WiFi that reaches the parking lot to use from your car, and a virtual craft night. Upcoming is Waldorf Window Stars: Virtual Adult Craft Night. Patrons can download eBooks and audiobooks, learn in their Universal Classroom, and visit the Vermont Online Library. And the librarians are available by phone or email to assist patrons.
      Their new "curbside service is going well," Wendy Maquera said. "Our May circulation numbers are pretty close to May of 2019."
      Click here for more info.

      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


Links to the Summer Music series in Franklin County
Summer Sounds
Summer Music at Grace
Downtown Summer Concert Series
Summer Evenings with
Vermont Treasures
Citizens Band
Wednesday Night Live
Enosburg Town Band


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All Arts Council of Franklin County

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