Not-for-Profit, Award-Winning Community News and Views for Windham County, Vermont • Since 2006



Performing arts

BRATTLEBORO Ladies of the Rainbow Drag Show to benefit the AIDS Project of Southern VT: Adult entertainment, songs and stand-up comedy, plus 50/50 raffle and cash bar. The AIDS Project, established in 1988, supports local people living with HIV/AIDS and works to reduce the risk of transmission to others in Windham, Bennington and southern Windsor counties. The show is not suitable for children. 8 p.m. (doors open 7 p.m.). $20 ($150 for a table of 8). Veterans of Foreign Wars, 40 Black Mountain Rd. Reservations: 802-254-4444,

PUTNEY "Puppet Crimes": This raucous puppet piece features traditional German hand puppet heroes Kasper and Gretel as they struggle to survive in an old shack on the margins of society. As the centuries pass through their little puppet booth, war is always raging and Kasper tries to avoid getting blamed, arrested and drafted - yet this puppet always ends up being the scapegoat for larger crimes. In a grotesque world of gun-runners, outhouses, a declining monarchy, Kasper (with the humor and wit of the common man) ducks out from under authority and manages to survive another 200 years. This action-packed work in progress is inspired by German, British, Italian hand puppet traditions. Jana Zeller of Spybird Theater is a second generation puppeteer who has researched this 400-year-old European tradition extensively. She's intrigued that these little puppets, who first appeared in the fairgrounds of Europe in the 1600s and spoke to the common people about politics, the church, society, have survived to this day, defying authority, economic hardship and censorship, and that the themes they addressed then still have relevance. 7:30 p.m. $14 ($12 students/seniors). Sandglass Theater, 17 Kimball Hill. Reservations recommended: 802-387-4051,

The written word

BRATTLEBORO Friends of Brooks Memorial Library: Like-New Holiday Book Sale: Come on in and browse from the excellent selection of fiction, nonfiction, kids' books, CDs, and DVDs, and say hello to these hard-working library fundraisers. Proceeds help fund library programming (including the First Wednesday Lectures), as well as technology purchases, plus resources such as the Foundation Center and Holiday gift basket raffle ongoing till 12/16. 12/1: 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Free. Brooks Memorial Library, 224 Main St. Information: 802-254-5290; Click for more info on Web in new window.

NEWFANE Reading with Jackson Ellis - Author of "Lords of St. Thomas": This Vermont native's book was awarded the 2017 Howard Frank Mosher First Novel Prize. It tells the dramatic story of the beleaguered Lord family, forced off their land by the creation of Lake Mead. At the heart of the book are the patriarch Henry Lord, who refuses to leave his doomed home and town and his young grandson and namesake. Books available for purchase. 11 a.m. Free. Moore Free Library, 23 West St. Information: 802-365-7948; Click for more info on Web in new window.

Visual arts and shows

NEWFANE Opening Reception - Mohammed Daoudi's "Aches, Pains and Happiness of Paper": Light refreshments served. Some of the art is available for purchase. Reception: 4 p.m. - 6 p.m. Show extends through December. Free. Crowell Gallery at the Moore Free Library, 23 West St. Information: 802-365-7948; Click for more info on Web in new window.

Celebrations and festivals

W. BRATTLEBORO Holiday Bazaar - Festival of Wreaths and Greens: Holiday handmade swags, wreaths, table arrangements made from locally cut fresh greens and natural wonders to decorate spaces of all sizes will be available for sale. Berries, cones, and other items from nature adorn the wreaths, making a festive statement celebrating the beauty of VT. Handmade ornaments to decorate your Christmas tree. The Cafe on Friday offers a variety of chilies and corn bread to-go. On Saturday, the Cafe serves lunch with a menu offering soups, bread, desserts. Baked goods including holiday specialties such as Stollen, fruit cake made with real fruit, a Cookie Bar, and other goodies at the Artisan Bake Table. The Gift Emporium will offer crafts for sale such as felted and knit items, maple syrup, jewelry holders. Buy raffle tickets for theme baskets which make great gifts. The Eco Table will have homemade cloth gift bags, Fair Trade chocolate, DVD movies. All proceeds benefit the All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church at West Village Meeting House, whose building is the home of the Theater Adventure Program as well as a gathering for special occasions, community events, and conferences. 11/30: 3 p.m. - 7 p.m. 12/1: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m. (12 noon - 2 p.m. lunch). West Village Meeting House, 29 South St. Information: 802-254-9377; Click for more info on Web in new window.

GRAFTON Christmas in Grafton Festival: From horse-drawn hayrides through the village to cookie decorating and Christmas tree lighting, the festival is full of free events, concerts and caroling, food and fun, holiday shopping. Festivities include the annual Christmas Bazaar at Grafton Chapel with food available and more vendors at Grafton Elementary. Grafton Fire and Rescue will sell Christmas Trees at Phelps Barn and Grafton Historical Society will sell wreaths and more. The Nature Museum offers arts and crafts projects for the entire family. Saturday: Children will enjoy cookie decorating at MKT (Grafton's central store), meeting Santa, and Christmas stories with Bill Toomey (both at the Library). Stay around for the angelic voices of Grammy-nominated vocal ensemble Seraphic Fire. Sunday: Hayrides depart every 30 minutes from Grafton Inn. The Bellows Falls High School Wind Ensemble performs. Holiday weekend will be topped off with a tree lighting ceremony at the Grafton Public Library with Santa on hand, followed by refreshments at Grafton Inn. 12/1: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Bazaar at Grafton Chapel, 11:15 p.m. Santa and 2 p.m. Christmas stories (both at Grafton Library), 7 p.m. Seraphic Fire. 12/2: 4:30 p.m. BF High School Wind Ensemble at the White Church), 5:30 p.m. Tree lighting at Grafton Library, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Refreshments at Grafton Inn. Through Sunday, December 2. $15 for Seraphic Fire (must be purchased in advance at Grafton Inn, 92 Main St. Information:,

BRATTLEBORO Holiday Bazaar at Centre Congregational Church: Find a holiday treasure, that special basket of treats in our silent auction, holidays greens, wreath or swag. Friday night: Enjoy a light supper, the bazaar, stay to hear Peter Galbraith speak at the Windham World Affairs gathering. Saturday: Breakfast of waffles, light lunch, Community Messiah sing, Children's Activity table, handcrafted quilt raffle, and baked goods. Fri: 5 p.m. supper and bazaar, 7 p.m. talk. Sat: 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. breakfast, 11/30 a.m. - 1 p.m. light lunch followed by Community Messiah sing, plus Children's Activity table, raffle, baked goods. Centre Congregational Church, 193 Main St. Information: 802-254-4730; Click to e-mail for more information.

GUILFORD Christmas Bazaar at Guilford Community Church: Featuring handmade crafts, decorated wreaths, holiday cookie platters, white elephants, and many unique gift items. Raffle table includes a handmade quilt, an American Girl doll, and more. Hot beverages, chili, and soups will be for sale. All proceeds from the Bazaar benefit the church, which actively supports numerous local programs and organizations serving the wider community. 9 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. Free. Guilford Community Church, Crnr Rte. 5 and Guilford Center Rd. Information: 802-257-2776.


BELLOWS FALLS Rhythm Future Quartet: This acoustic jazz ensemble keeps the spirit of Gypsy jazz alive and expanding in today's musical universe. The virtuosic foursome, named for a Django Reinhardt tune, offers up a newly minted sound, influenced by the classic Hot Club of France, yet wholly contemporary. Led by violinist Jason Anick and guitarist Olli Soikkeli, the quartet performs dynamic and lyrical arrangements of both Gypsy jazz standards and original compositions that draw upon diverse international rhythms and musical idioms. With Max O'Rourke on second guitar and Greg Loughman on bass, Rhythm Future is dedicated to expanding the boundaries of a vital musical genre. 7:30 p.m. in the Chapel. $20, $15 seniors, $35 premium (prices go up at door). The Chapel, 20 Church St. Information: 802-460-0110,

BRATTLEBORO UMass Percussion Ensemble: Percussionist and marimbist Ayano Kataoka is known for her brilliant and dynamic technique, as well as the unique elegance and artistry she brings to her performances. A versatile performer, she regularly presents music of diverse genres and mediums. A leading proponent of contemporary repertoire, she has participated in consortiums to commission works for solo marimba or chamber ensemble from such composers as Charles Wuorinen, Martin Bresnick, Paul Lansky, and Alejandro Viñao. She was the first percussionist to be chosen for The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society Two, a three-season residency program for emerging artists offering high-profile performance opportunities in collaboration with The Chamber Music Society. Ms. Kataoka joined the faculty of the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2008. Reception with the performers follows. 7 p.m. in the Wolf Kahn & Emily Mason Gallery. $5, free for youth 18 and under and BMAC members. Brattleboro Museum & Art Center, 28 Vernon St. Information: 802-257-0124; Click for more info on Web in new window.

BRATTLEBORO Friends of Music at Guilford - "Community Messiah Sing" benefit for the homeless: Rededicated as a benefit for the area's homeless since 2007, the Sing has raised over $20,000 in door donations for the Groundworks Collaborative to help fund its food shelf, emergency housing, and other support programs. For the 31st season, William McKim serves as organist. Soloists include veteran volunteers Junko Watanabe, soprano; Walter Cramer, tenor; Cailin Marcel Manson, baritone, while Julie Olsson steps in to sing the alto solos. Joyana Damon adds trumpet highlights. Under Ken Olsson's baton, 200 or more singers perform the choruses in the Christmas portion of Handel's masterwork, in addition to later favorites. Scores are available to borrow or buy at the door.Audience members are also welcome to simply enjoy the sound of such a grand choir. Attendees are encouraged to bring donations of nonperishable food, winter outerwear, long johns and blankets, as well as new unwrapped toys, for a Groundworks collection in the church foyer. 1 p.m. in the sanctuary. Centre Congregational Church, 193 Main St. Information: 802-254-3600,

SAXTONS RIVER "Wintertide" - Cameo Baroque Concert: This quartet offers music by English, Italian, and German composers such as William Boyce, Antonio Caldara, Georg Philipp Telemann, George Frideric Handel and Tomaso Albinoni and perform on period instruments - Beth Hilgartner, recorder and voice; Leslie Stroud, traverso (Baroque flute); Ernie Drown, harpsichord; and Laurie Rabut, viola da gamba. Cameo Baroque is known for performances of transcriptions by Hilgartner of works originally written for voices of other instrumentation. A reception with the musicians follows. Refreshments, non-alcoholic beverages, and a BYO table with ice for adult beverages will be provided. 7:30 p.m. $20. Main Street Arts, 37 Main St. Information: 802-869-2960; Click for more info on Web in new window.

Farmers' markets

BRATTLEBORO Brattleboro Winter Farmers' Market: New location for this weekly diverse indoor farmers market. Local farm produce, meats, syrup, fresh baked goods, local cheeses, fruits, cider, pickles, preserves, handmade jewelry, pottery, soaps, and more. Delicious lunch menu and live music with Sunny Lowdown. 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Through Saturday, March 30. C. F. Church Building, 80 Flat St. Information: 802-869-2141,

Kids and families

DOVER Dover Free Library's Annual Holiday Event: Santa Clause is coming to town once again bringing gifts for local children. Holiday music, craft activities at the Elf's Workshop, and seasonal refreshments will be offered. 3 p.m. - 5 p.m. Free. Dover Free Library, 22 Holland Rd. Information: 802-348-7488; Click for more info on Web in new window.

BRATTLEBORO Santa Claus is Coming to Town: Santa Claus will arrive on a tractor provided by The Robb Family Farm and escorted by the Police and Fire Depts. Children can visit with Frosty, Santa and his Elves, and everyone is welcome to take photos. "Santa's Workshop" will be open for children to decorate Christmas cookies which are donated and made by Mrs. Claus and the frosting was made by Vermont Country Deli. The BUHS Band will play Christmas tunes. 1 p.m. Free. Gibson-Aiken Center, 207 Main St. Information: 802-254-5808.

Community building

BRATTLEBORO Holiday Shopping Extravanza supporting Brattleboro Area Hospice: Items for sale represent a wide range in style, taste, and price. This eclectic collection is curated with an eye for gift giving. Think contemporary, tribal, vintage, antique. There is something for everyone. All gift items are donated by our community with the wish that proceeds of the sales of the items will benefit others by making possible free support services to people at and around end of life. Friday night will have live music by the Moondogs and sweet treats. All proceeds benefit Brattleboro Area Hospice, an independent, community-based, non-profit organization that provides a broad range of volunteer-based services for living and dying well, focusing on end-of-life, bereavement and advance care planning. Our programs reflect our community's values of kindness, decency, and dignity. Founded in 1979 on the belief that no one should die alone, they are dedicated to offering all services free of charge. 12/1: 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. in the Atrium. Brooks House, 41 Harmony Pl. (Main and High St.). Information:

Arts and crafts

BRATTLEBORO Brattleboro-West Arts Fifth Annual Fine Art and Craft Sale: Original works: Paintings, pastels, photography, botanical etchings, pottery, textiles, woodworking, jewelry, glass. Among exhibitors offering fine art and craft for holiday purchase are those whose works have been on exhibit at Harvard University, Reynolds Fine Art Gallery in CT, the National Aviary's Wings & Wildlife Show in PA, and at the League of NH Craftsmen's annual nine-day fair. 12/1: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., 12/2: 11 a.m. - 5 p.m. Through Sunday, December 2. One Eighteen Elliot, 118 Elliot St. Information:

BRATTLEBORO Quilt Expo: The River Garden transforms into a cozy quilter's paradise, with works by local quilters on display, and quilts and supplies for sale. Faith Evans, a local quilter who has been leading quilting workshops for over 30 years, will be at the Expo both days offering ongoing demonstrations on how to make a crazy quilt square. Her "Trip around the World" quilt is being raffled off as a fundraiser for the Stroll's Farm to Table Apprenticeship Program. 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. The River Garden, 157 Main St. Information: 802-246-0982.


BELLOWS FALLS Wundergroove! - Music and Dancing: DJs regale with funk and disco. Tapas-based menu, special cocktails. 9:30 p.m. - 1 p.m. music and dancing (9:30 p.m. kitchen closes). No cover. Wunderbar, 22 Rockingham St. Information: 802-489-0289; Click for more info on Web in new window.



December 2018