The Vermont Maple Festival includes a world record event this year. The 40th annual festival begins Friday April 28 in St. Albans, Vermont, with about 50,000 visitors.
WORLD'S LARGEST PALETTE
Palettes of Vermont will be the largest statewide arts exhibit ever and Franklin County shoot for its fifth World Record by manufacturing and decorating the largest artist's palette on Earth.
The All Arts Council and St. Albans for the Future will achieve Franklin County's fifth record with the assembly and decoration of the World's Largest Artist's Palette at the Maple Festival. This Paul Bunyanesque palette is inspired by and a part of the statewide Palettes of Vermont project.
The project took off when AAC chair Dick Harper suggested it to the community in February. The giant palette will be a joint effort of the All Arts Council and St. Albans for the Future. Harper, S.A.F.F. board member Mike Curtis, and S.A.F.F. committee chair Bonnie Pelkey are shepherding the construction effort.
Harper, an engineer, designed the palette to be 12 feet tall by 16 feet long. "It replicates the standard size palettes in the Palettes of Vermont project," he said. "Except it is a wee bit bigger." It will be built as a sandwich using maple plywood surfaces and a structural foam core.
Muralist Natalie LaRocque-Bouchard of Franklin created a design for each side of the palette. One side will be a pointillist image created from hand prints; the other is a scene of Franklin County attractions. The community side will be painted in Taylor Park during the Maple Festival. Every Maple Festival attendee is invited to apply their hand to the design.
"We want as many Maple Festival visitors to make their mark as possible," Pelkey said.
The World's Largest Palette will be set up and decorated in the Edric Loomis Bandstand in Taylor Park on Friday and Saturday, April 28-29. On Sunday, April 30, the palette will be fully assembled and take part as a featured float in the Maple Festival Parade.
Palettes of Vermont is open to all Vermonters, not just professional artists; it offers an opportunity for people to become engaged in their local communities.
Other Guinness World Records first achieved in Franklin County include the world's largest Ice Cream Sundae, the world's largest Snowman, and the world's largest Sugar on Snow in St. Albans. Franklin County Field Days was the site for the world's largest pancake flipped by a helicopter.
The giant palette will appear at every major outdoor event, starting with the Vermont Maple Festival and continuing through the 2006 Dairy Festival, Bay Day, and Franklin County Field Days. The artists' palettes will be exhibited by the All Arts Council, S.A.F.F., and other organizations at many events throughout the county.
"We want to see how hundreds of Franklin County folk turn that bare slab of wood into art," Harper said. Palettes of Vermont will also be the largest Franklin County arts exhibit.
An All Arts Council Fine Art Exhibit and Sale will also take place during the Maple Festival with the first major exhibit of Palettes of Vermont art. The event will also feature exceptional oil and watercolor paintings, fine art photographs, illustrations, digital art, mixed media, and prints by Franklin County artists, all in the St Albans Historical Museum. The exhibit will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday, April 28-30. Admission is free.
The World's Largest Palette record attempt is sponsored by the Peoples Trust Company, R. J. Fournier, Sticks and Stuff, and Union Bank. It is a project of the All Arts Council and St Albans for the Future. The statewide project is sponsored by Chittenden Bank, Casella Waste Systems, and National Endowment on the Arts, Times Argus, NRG Systems, VermontVacation.com, and Vermont Wood Manufacturers Association, with promotional support from the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing. The Franklin County events are a project of the All Arts Council and St Albans for the Future with considerable assistance from community partners including BFA-St. Albans, Rene J. Fournier Farm Equipment, Franklin County Regional Chamber of Commerce, New England Central Railroad, People's Trust Company, the St. Albans Historical Museum, Sticks & Stuff, and Union Bank.
Download the construction brochure here.
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Dick Harper, Chair
P.O. Box 1
Highgate Springs, VT 05460