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Town seeks input on website redesign

BRATTLEBORO — The town is looking for user feedback as part of the process of redesigning the municipal website, brattleboro.org.

A focus group to discuss items such as website navigation, content, and design will meet for 90 minutes on a date to be determined in December.

Participants will be able to participate on Zoom or in person at the Municipal Center. Focus group participants will receive a small stipend for their time.

If you are interested in being a part of the focus group, submit your name to Planning Director Sue Fillion at sfillion@brattleboro.org or call 802-251-8112.

Lecture examines hidden history told by graphic novels

BRATTLEBORO — The current renaissance of picture books and graphic novels written by and about marginalized communities provides new ways to engage with history. On Wednesday, Dec. 1, at 7 p.m., Latinx scholar Dr. Laura Jiménez describes how contemporary authors and illustrators use visual literature to center narratives previously unseen in mainstream publishing.

Her talk is part of the First Wednesday lecture series, a collaboration between the Vermont Humanities Council and Vermont public libraries that will be delivered via Zoom. Register at bit.ly/641-hiddenhistory.

Dr. Jiménez, department chair for language and literacy education at Boston University, studies literature and literacy through a social justice lens. Her book reviews and calls for social justice in children’s literature can be found on her blog, booktoss.org.

The First Wednesday series is held every month from October through May in nine communities statewide, featuring speakers of national and regional renown. Brooks Memorial Library programs are sponsored by the Friends of Brooks Memorial Library.

For more information, contact Brooks Memorial Library at 802-254-5290, or visit brookslibraryvt.org.

Newbrook Fire and Rescue auction wraps up Dec. 6

NEWFANE — The 19th annual silent auction to benefit the NewBrook Fire and Rescue Department is now live and bidding will close Monday, Dec. 6 at 11:45 p.m.

More than 220 items are available for bidding at bit.ly/641-auction.

All proceeds will benefit the all-volunteer fire and rescue force, which serves Newfane and Brookline and is a member of Southwestern New Hampshire District Fire Mutual Aid.

Organizers have set a goal of $8,000, of which almost $3,500 has been raised as of Nov. 28.

For more information about the effort, visit bit.ly/641-nbfd.

Vermont Center for Photography hosts holiday photo sale

BRATTLEBORO — To kick off the holiday season, Vermont Center for Photography (VCP) is hosting a holiday photo sale in its spacious new downtown gallery.

An extensive inventory of new and used digital and film cameras, tripods, lenses, camera bags, equipment, gear, film, photo books, art prints, gift cards and more is available for photo enthusiasts of every level.

The sale opens on Friday, Dec. 3, and runs through Sunday, Dec. 19. Visitors can also view the current work on exhibit, browse the library shelves, and check out VCP’s darkroom and digital lab facilities.

VCP is open Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Enter at 22 High St. and take the stairs to the second floor, or use the street-level accessible entrance at 10 Green St.

For more information, call 802-251-6051 or visit vcphoto.org.

Mitchell-Giddings hosts memorial show for Jackie Abrams

BRATTLEBORO — Mitchell-Giddings Fine Arts, 181-183 Main St., will host a memorial exhibition for artist Jackie Abrams, who died on Nov. 6.

The exhibit opens on Friday, Dec. 3, from 5 to 8 p.m., with a reception during the First Friday Art Stroll. It will be on display through Jan. 9, 2022, and will contain work created over the last few months of Abrams’s life.

The gallery describes the event as “the last opportunity to select baskets and vessels from her remaining collection.”

Proceeds will help support the newly established Jackie Abrams Legacy Scholarship for North Country Studio Workshops (founded by Abrams in 1993), as well as the gallery’s forthcoming Jackie Abrams Invitational Exhibit.

For more information, contact the gallery at 802-251-8290, email info@mitchellgiddingsfinearts.com, or visit mitchellgiddingsfinearts.com.

Local artists plan group show, sale at 118 Elliot

BRATTLEBORO — As part of the First Friday Art Stroll, gallery openings and other festivities around town on Friday, Dec. 3, 118 Elliot will host an expanded “The Call of the Loon” group show.

The show features new work by seven local artists: Roxcell Bartholomew, Schuyler Gould, Collin Leech, John Loggia, Tina Olsen, Markie Sallick, and Lydia Thomson.

Artists will do a meet-and-greet, with free hot chocolate and snacks from 5 to 8 p.m.

The show continues through December with the gallery open Fridays and Saturdays, 3 to 6 p.m., or by appointment.

Masked and vaccinated art lovers are encouraged to attend. For more information, contact the gallery at 118 Elliot@gmail.com.

All Souls Church presents annual holiday bazaar

WEST BRATTLEBORO — The All Souls Unitarian Universalist Holiday Bazaar will take place on Saturday, Dec. 4, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the West Village Meeting House, 29 South St., as well as online.

The in-person event will take place outside, like a European Christmas Market, and will follow Covid protocols.

“Dress warmly and wear your masks,” event organizers urge.

The bazaar will feature handmade and decorated artisan wreaths and ornaments; traditional holiday baked goods; jams, jellies and baking mixes; a gift emporium; and much more.

View and purchase some of the offerings at special.ascvt.org.

For more information, call 802-254-9377.

Genealogy group to meet on Dec. 4

BRATTLEBORO — The December meeting of the Windham County Genealogy Interest Group will be held via Zoom on Saturday, Dec. 4, at 10 a.m. The free session is open to the public. Register for the meeting at bit.ly/WCGIG4Dec.

The free session will cover the world’s largest, free genealogical database, FamilySearch, which has more than eight billion records searchable by name and the world’s largest shared family tree.

FamilySearch offers about 10 times the contents of U.S. academic research libraries, information that is available to anyone who signs up for a free account.

Because of its large size, there are many ways to search for information on the website: for records, images, family tree, genealogies, catalog, and books. A research wiki can help narrow the search.

The session will discuss ways to find useful information about ancestors that can add to a family history, help participants focus on using the catalog to find the most helpful database, and search the crowdsourced family tree to find reliable sources on specific people.

For more information, contact windhamcountygig@gmail.com.

Windham Philharmonic in concert at Latchis

BRATTLEBORO — The Windham Philharmonic presents a concert spanning the centuries on Monday, Dec. 6, at the Latchis Theatre, from 7 to 8 p.m., under the direction of music director Hugh Keelan. Admission is by donation; all audience members should be vaccinated and masked.

Works of Florence Price, Giovanni Gabrieli, and Johann Sebastian Bach are on the menu. Price’s symphonic tone poem, The Oak, written in 1943, is described in a news release for the event as “by turns fierce and grand, plaintive and nostalgic.”

The newest member of the Philharmonic community — Eric Thomas, music director of the Putney School — will share his perspective as a Black musician on The Oak.

Contrapunctus No. 3 by Bach and Sonata No. 18 by Gabrieli are both contrapuntal works arranged for orchestra by Keelan.

For more information, visit windhamphilharmonic.org.

Nowell Sing We Clear performs virtual holiday concert

BRATTLEBORO — Nowell Sing We Clear — Tony Barrand, Fred Breunig, Andy Davis, and John Roberts — will sing and tell stories drawn from their repertoire and adventures over decades of performing their Pageant of Mid-Winter Carols on Tuesday, Dec. 7, at 7 p.m.

You can watch the concert live on YouTube, sponsored by Brooks Memorial Library.

For four decades, Nowell Sing We Clear presented its seasonal concert in Brattleboro, across New England, and beyond. Based on traditional Anglo-American songs and carols, the show always featured two aspects of the season: the familiar Christmas story as recounted in the New Testament, and the visiting customs involving gift-giving, performing dances and plays, and sharing food and drink with neighbors and family.

Visit nowellsingweclear.com for information on the group’s book, Nowell Sing We Clear: Songs & Carols of Midwinter and Christmastide, access to six CDs, and free content.

Story night at Hooker-Dunham

BRATTLEBORO — The Hooker-Dunham Theater holds a story night on the second Thursday of each month at 7 p.m.

Each story night will feature four storytellers sharing a wide range of stories, from funny to heartfelt, to personal to fictional.

Be advised that the stories are not suitable for children.

The event is free, and bring proof of vaccination to attend.

For more information, visit hookerdunham.org or email info@hookerdunham.org.

Dover Free Library holds Adopt-A-Book fundraiser

DOVER — During December, Dover Free Library presents its annual Adopt-A-Book fundraiser. Your tax-deductible donation allows you to choose library materials from pre-selected options to enhance the library’s collection.

A bookplate showing a donor’s name will be placed in each selected new book, DVD, or audiobook. You may choose to dedicate the items to the memory of, or in honor of, someone special to you. The name will be shown on the bookplate as well.

Stop by the library, select an item or items, and make your check payable to the Dover Free Library.

The fundraiser will run through Dec. 31.

For more information, contact the library at 802-348-7488.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #641 (Wednesday, December 1, 2021). This story appeared on page A8.

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