ARTBITS by Richard B. Harper

VOLUME 25 * * All Arts News On the Web * * October 21, 2021


      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--The Swanton Microbusiness Group meets at the Swanton Free Public Library on Monday at 6 p.m.
      The group invites artists and anyone else starting or growing a microbusiness, side hustle, start-up, or sideline in Swanton to share business resources, ideas and opportunities with others. The group meets on the last Monday of each month. Call (802.868.7656 or email for more info.


     COVID case counts in Vermont jumped by 26% over seven day, setting a new record earlier this month; infection rates are highest among children younger than 9 years old.
      Vermont reported 1,168 new COVID-19 cases last week and 345 people have died. Franklin County reported 240 cases in the 14 days ending Sunday. Unvaccinated Vermonters are still three to four times more likely than vaccinated Vermonters to contract COVID-19 according to the Vermont Department of Health. Vermont has adopted the CDC Guidance around masks.
      Here's my own, still current, advice. Get the shot(s) and take precautions. The vaccines are extraordinarily effective but nothing is 100% foolproof. Wash your hands. Wear a mask where you can't control the airflow around you until we reach the same herd immunity we have for smallpox and once had but lost for measles. Bonus: it will also help protect you from pollen, summer colds, and the winter flu.
      Vaccination clinics for booster shots and for the first or second dose of vaccine are open across Vermont for anyone age 12 or older. Call 855.722.7878 or click here to make an appointment or for more info. You can also walk-in at Costco, CVS, Hannaford, Price Chopper/Market 32, Rite Aid, Shaw's, Walgreens, or Walmart, or get an appointment with CVS, Kinney Drugs, Walgreens, or UVMMC Outpatient Pharmacies.


MILTON--The Milton Artists' Guild hosts an Art Supply Sale of donated art supplies of all varieties at seriously discounted prices on Saturday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
      The MAG online shop is open 24/7 and the gallery is open Wednesday-Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Find them on Facebook for more info.


MILTON--The Milton Artists' Guild will host Learn the Art of Kumihimo with instructor Paula Galle on Saturday at 10 a.m. Kumihimo is the traditional Japanese braiding technique; the workshop will choose from nine colors of satin to braid a Kumihimo cord make a bracelet, and more. The Kumihimo braiding disk, bobbins, weights, and instructions are included.
      The cost is $60 for members or $65 for non-members. Click here to reserve a space.

COLCHESTER--Once Upon A Rock and the Spanked Puppy host Pebble Art on Tuesday at 6 p.m.
      Jean Ferguson picks up a rock or a stone or a pebble and "sees a thousand possibilities" as she "shops" for rocks and stones on beaches and shorelines all over Vermont. This workshop will use pebbles, rocks, stones, driftwood and lake glass to create artwork. From framed pieces to Christmas ornaments to candle holders, each piece is unique.
      The cost is $35. Click here for tickets and more info. Limited seating is available so spaces will go quickly. Find them on Facebook for more info.

MORRISVILLE--River Arts hosts Inspired Poetry with JC Wayne on four Wednesdays beginning this Wednesday from 5 - 7 p.m. The Poartry Project dives into the ancient form of "ekphrastic" (art-inspired) poetry, a rich field of inspiration and collaboration for telling stories and describing experiences through poems. Ms. Wayne is a poet, visual artist, cartographer of the unseen, and founder host of the Voicing Art Poetry Reading Series.
      The cost is $65. Click here to enroll and for more info.


     Vermont has lifted all remaining statewide COVID-19 restrictions.
      Here's my own current advice, updated to today. Get the shot(s) and take precautions. The vaccines are extraordinarily effective but nothing is 100% foolproof. Wash your hands. Wear a mask where you can't control the airflow around you until we reach the same herd immunity we have for smallpox and once had but lost for measles. Bonus: it will also help protect you from pollen, summer colds, and the winter flu.

Thursday-Sunday, October 21-24
ESSEX JUNCTION--On Tap has another weekend of music with John Geno this evening at 5:30 p.m., two shows Friday night, the Hubcats at 5 p.m., and then the Dark Star Project for late night music starting at 9 p.m., plus two more shows live on Saturday night with Jerborn jerborning at 5 p.m. and Supernatural starting at 9 p.m. Call 802.878.3309 or email for more info. And to confirm. Click here to reserve a table.

MARATHON, FL--The Marathon Community Theater finishes its three-week run of the Carol Burnett Show Skits this evening plus tomorrow and Saturday at 8 p.m. Directed by Jimmy Zimmerman, the classic sketches include the Old Folks, Bonnie & Clod, and Gone with the Breeze.
      Admission is $28. Tickets are available at the theater (305.774.0994) or at

Friday, October 22
ST. ALBANS--14th Star presents Chris & Erica for a night of live music in The Room on Friday at 6 p.m. Find them on Facebook for more info.

BURLINGTON--The Lane Series and Vermont Humanities present Rising Tide: the Crossroads Project with Robert Davies and the Fry Street Quartet live in UVM Recital Hall on Friday at 7:30 p.m. The Crossroads Project addresses global sustainability with an original score by composer Laura Kaminsky plus the music of Haydn and Janacek as the backdrop to the film and scientific storytelling. Dr. Davies is a physicist at Utah State University. A question and answer session will follow.
      Admission is $38.50 or $5 for students. Click here for more info and here to purchase tickets. Enter the discount code of VTHum21 to receive $5 off the ticket price.

Saturday, October 23
EAST FAIRFIELD--The live Meeting House on the Green Concerts continue with the Will Patton Ensemble live on Saturday at 5 p.m.
      Bakersfield's own multi-instrumentalist and composer, Mr. Patton leads band with mandolin/octave mandolin, violin, guitar, flute, clarinet and string bass. The group focuses on Gypsy jazz and Brazilian styles plus straight up bebop, and performs many original compositions in their repertoire.
      Admission is by suggested donation of $10 at the door with those under 16 admitted free. Fall concerts are held indoors with COVID precautions in place, masks required, and limited seating available. "Grab and go" light fare will be available for sale or bring your own picnic. Call 802.827.6626 or click here for more info.

SHELDON--The Abbey 2021 Music Series continues with the Johnny Cash Tribute Show on Saturday at 7 p.m. George Richard stars as the "golden-throated" man in black and Marie Ragan joins in signature duets as June Carter. The group has played the Franklin County Field Days, the Opera House at Enosburg Falls, the Bayside Pavilion, the Wounded Warrior Project Oktoberfest in Shelburne, on WCAX-TV's nightly The :30 news magazine, and more.
      Admission is $10. Click here for tickets. Find them on Facebook for more info.

BURLINGTON--Nectar's presents Jamie Lee Thurston's Howl-O-Ween Bash in a Benefit for the Jimmy T Fund on Saturday at 8 p.m. Doors at 7. This is a "full band" event for the Nashville singer-songwriter.
      Admission is $10 in advance or $15 day of show. All proceeds go to the Jimmy T Memorial Music Fund, benefitting the Waterbury Elementary School Music Department.

Wednesday, October 27
ESSEX JUNCTION--Shake brings the acoustic trio to 1st Republic Brewery to wrap up their Wednesday Night Residencies on Wednesday at 6 p.m.


     Virtual music and events continue this week.

      Summer Sounds favorite John Bartus' Perpetual Island Tour played Sparky's Landing, Boondocks twice, and the Key Colony Inn live, plus Social Distancing Concert #76 from the studio on Facebook on Friday evening. Find him on Facebook for the next watch party.

      The Ben Patton Band performs I Can't Let Myself Think That Way from the album The Swan, For Instance on YouTube.

      Summer Sounds favorite Mark Shelton sang Songs of Yesteryear on Facebook on Tuesday. Follow him on Facebook for a link to this week's offerings.


JEFFERSONVILLE--Cambridge Arts Council will be Catching People's Stories with Jane C. Beck at the Cambridge Historical Society on Saturday at 1 p.m.
      Ms. Beck uses recorded interviews for exhibits, media, and writings to put the focus on people, personal history, family stories, experiences, values and attitudes of ordinary people often doing extraordinary things. The Vermont Humanities program is free. Call Cambridge Arts Council (802.644.1418), email or find them on Facebook for more info or to RSVP.

ONLINE--The Vermont Humanities Council presents Vermont Teen Shakespeareans Save the Planet with Funnery founder Peter Gould and a panel of campers on Zoom this evening at 7 p.m. In 2020, the Get Thee to the Funnery Shakespeare camp for teenagers studied Merchant of Venice to frame a discussion of prejudice and hate speech. And in 2021, the group discussed global warming and climate justice through Midsummer Night's Dream.
      This free lecture from the VHC Fall Conference 2021 will be held via webinar. Registration is required. Click here for more info and to register.


      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
Music at the Meeting House
Citizens Band
Wednesday Night Live
Enosburg Town Band


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All Arts Council of Franklin County

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