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The written word

BRATTLEBORO BMAC - Five New Exhibits: Maria Elena Gonzalez: "Tree Talk"; Thelma Appel: "Observed/Abstract"; Fafnir Adamites: "Interfere (with)"; Doug Trump: "By Rail"; Gordon Meinhard: "The Lives of Tables." "Tree Talk" is a multisensory, multimodal rumination on nature and art. The basic building block of the installation is the birch tree—its bark, its presence in the Maine woods, and the ways in which its animating spirit inspired the artist. "Observed/Abstract": During the '60s/'70s, Appel painted large landscapes imbued with the energy and color of VT's fields/forests. After 9/11, her imagery shifted from pastoral to apocalyptic. "Interfere (with)": The use of highly tactile materials and repetitive, contemplative techniques allows the work to function as a tool for acknowledging, examining, and making sense of painful memories and experiences, thereby diffusing them. "By Rail": Intimately scaled abstract paintings. "The Lives of Tables": Modulates between painting and drawing. . Through Sunday, February 9. Brattleboro Museum & Art Center, 28 Vernon St. Information: 802-257-0124; Click for more info on Web in new window.

PUTNEY "The Benefits of Being an Octopus" - Lets Read with Author Ann Braden: Set in a fictionalized version of Brattleboro, this is the powerful story of a young girl finding her courage and voice in the face of poverty, bullying, and a challenging home life. It was an NPR Best Book of the Year for 2018, a Junior Library Guild Selection, a 2019 Global Read Aloud Contender, a 2019-2020 Dorothy Canfield Fisher Book Award Nominee, and included on Bank Street Best Children's Books of 2019. According to the School Library Journal, "This heartbreaking, beautifully written book about finding one's voice will offer some readers a relatable reflection and others a window that can help build empathy and understanding." Let’s Read 2019 is made possible thanks to generous support from the Vermont Humanities Council, the Windham Foundation, Brooks Memorial Library, and is sponsored by WSESU, Food Connects, and Brattleboro Area Prevention Coalition. 6:30 p.m. Suitable for children in 4th grade and up, as well as adults. Free. Putney Public Library, 55 Main St. Information: 802-387-4407; Click for more info on Web in new window.

Ideas and education

BRATTLEBORO What is Baha'i?: With Marie Procter. 12 noon - 1 p.m. Free. River Garden - Brown Bag Series, 157 Main St. Information: 802-246-0982; Click for more info on Web in new window.

BRATTLEBORO Two Icebreakers at Brattlemasters: The very first speech given by a new Toastmasters member is called an icebreaker. Two new members will tell something about themselves in 4-6 min. Suzanne Bansley will emcee - speech evaluations, reports from the "ah" counter, timer, grammarian. Everyone can try their hand at a speaking off-the-cuff exercise - without any preparation, volunteers answer questions in 1-2 minutes. Everyone will attempt to use the Word of the Day, announced by the grammarian near the start. Toastmasters International has helped people from diverse backgrounds become more confident speakers, communicators and leaders. 6 - 7:30 p.m. in Rm. 249 (2nd and 4th Thurs.). Free. Vermont Technical College, 41 Harmony Pl. Information: Members of BrattleMasters.


BRATTLEBORO Open Mic for Musicians hosted by Kevin Perry: 6 - 9 p.m. every Thursday. Marina Restaurant, 28 Spring Tree Rd. Performers receive 50% off their meal - and should call to sign up in advance: 802-257-7563,

BRATTLEBORO Anna Patton Teaches "Ear Training for Everyone": There are virtuosic listeners just as there are virtuosic performers - you can learn to be one! Are there songs you love and wish you could articulate what is so great about them? Do you harmonize with your voice/instrument and wonder why some harmonies sound great or weird or wrong? Write music and feel as though you always follow the same patterns and wish you had more options? This course draws on Patton's fascination with learning and creating music by ear and is designed for singers, instrumentalists, curious listeners; people with/without formal music training. Learn to identify the harmonic gist of songs by listening, finding bass lines, making educated guesses about chord progressions. Exercises to sharpen musical ears through harmonizing and e-harmonizing well-known songs. We'll have group compositions, experiment with harmonic options and steal ideas we like from the songs we've studied. While vocalizing will be central, these skills are not just for people who consider themselves singers - they're also at the core of improvisation, composition, and general music appreciation. 5:30 - 7 p.m. on Thursdays. Through Thursday, November 21. $20 per class. One Eighteen Elliot, 118 Elliot St. Information:,

Kids and families

BRATTLEBORO Co-op Month Tastings: Join us for special tastings of products from local, national, and international cooperatives. There is something to try every day! Alaffia, Blue Diamond Almonds, Equal Exchange Chocolates, Neighboring Food Co-op Association Veggies, Cheeses, Riojana Olive Oil, Organic Valley, Florida’s Natural, Kombucha, Welch’s Juice, Real Pickles, Alvarado St. Bread Bagels, and Kerrigold Irish Butter. . Through Wednesday, October 30. Brattleboro Food Co-op, 2 Main St. Information: 802-257-0236; Click for more info on Web in new window.


GUILFORD Tai Chi for Fall Prevention: Regular practice improves balance, promotes correct posture and good health. Classes are paced for seniors combining qigong energy exercises with basic movements. 10 - 11 a.m. beginners; 11 - 12 p.m. ongoing, intermediate. $2 suggested donation. Guilford Community Church, Crnr Rte. 5 and Guilford Center Rd. Information: 802-579-1350,

BRATTLEBORO Weekly Mid-Day Meditation: Join Vera Riley for meditation time. She will offer instruction to help you create more peace and relaxation in your life through meditation. Vera has studied different meditation types, such as Zen, with several teachers including Shinzen Young and, currently, Soryu Forall. Chairs available, but you are welcome to bring your own meditation cushion/mat. 1 - 1:30 p.m. on Thursdays. Use the Canal Street entrance. Free. Brattleboro Food Co-op Community Room, 7 Canal St. Information: 802-246-2821; Click to e-mail for more information.

Community building

W. BRATTLEBORO Apple Picking with Edible Brattleboro: . Through Thursday, October 31. Free (donations welcome). West Brattleboro Orchard (Edible Brattleboro). Appointments (any day until the trees are bare) / directions: 802-254-9121,

PUTNEY Puteny Community Cares - Knife Sharpening: 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. Reserve a time with Ogi to have your knives to be sharpened. Free. Putney Community Center, Christian Sq. Information: Kate: 802-387-2120.

GUILFORD Seniors Hang Out Cafe: This new offering invites seniors to spend casual time socializing with old friends and making new ones. Play games, sip coffee, and munch on snacks. Sponsored by Guilford Cares. 1 - 3 p.m. every Thursday. Drop in for a few minutes or stay the whole time. Free. Broad Brook Community Center, 3940 Guilford Center Rd. Information: 802-579-1350,



October 2019