Joann Erenhouse

The Bennington Center for the Arts has two shows opening. One features scenes of New England. Fishing villages and shorelines will be exhibited next to snowy country roads leading to bucolic farms in the show that opens Aug. 2 -- now in its fourteenth year. "Impressions of New England," a show curated by the staff at The Bennington, will include paintings and bronzes of scenes in and of New England will be on exhibit and for sale until the middle of December.

In both shows, artists from around the country submitted work. Many pieces chosen are by nationally recognized artists while other work is by relative newcomers.

Another sales show that also opens August 2 is "Portraying the Human Spirit." In the past the center curated a show called "Women -- The Artist's View." This year they have decided to widen the subjects to include men and women, young and old. "We are hoping not to exhibit formal portraits but rather those pieces that capture the joys and sorrows of everyday life," said Hutchins, when asked about the new show. "Many emotions are portrayed in this exhibition -- joy, sorrow, weariness, tenacity, pride. We feel the group of artists selected did a great job of capturing those feelings and that is a very difficult thing to do, to capture those personal, fleeting thoughts."

Have you all noticed Catamounts playing on the lawn in front of the Chamber of Commerce? We were so thrilled with the gorgeous Midsummer Night's Auction and Party last week at Colgate Park that we hate to give up the celebration.


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Several are waiting to be picked up by their new owners and we are in no hurry to say "good-bye." The 1768 Hubbell Homestead at Colgate Park was a fantasy of lights, flowers, music, food, sculptures and partygoers amidst the most beautiful landscape and views in Bennington. The Jeromes have installed every amenity to make an event run smoothly and look perfect at the same time. Thyme Tables Catering prepared a lovely menu and bar with great style as well. Thank you to all who gathered to help us raise money for our super talented local artists. Rae Tetlow won "Pink" so we hope to hear soon where it will be finding a new home. Nice to know a local got lucky. Our thanks to all raffle ticket purchasers who helped add to the donation we will be making to local Cancer Research and Recovery efforts. Once again a special thanks to our hosts, Jamie and Vicki Jerome who donated not only their time and assistance but also for their financial generosity making the event possible for this community.

August 6 is the date of the next Chamber Mixer. It will be held at the Mt. Anthony Country Club from 5:30-7 p.m. How lucky are we to live where there are such beautiful places? RSVP by calling Marie at the Chamber Office at 802-447-3311 so we can help the Country Club plan for the event. This is a Wednesday night and we look forward to a great time!

Contact Joann Erenhouse at 802-447-3311 or at director@Bennington.com to reserve your space in the Vermont Vacation Guide 2015 co-op page. The Chamber is sending around the information via email to its members. The Shires of Vermont always has a nice spread of business ads from Bennington County. Be a part of our message.

A huge thanks to the Bennington Museum for hosting our July Mixer last week. The galleries were very impressive. If you have not been in to visit all the new exhibits you need to go. It is not the same old museum you remember from years ago. While it keeps its flavor there are new and innovative exhibits that you don't want to miss. Director Robert Wolterstorf has brought new creative and intellectual vigor to this wonderful Bennington resource.

Last week the Southwest Vermont Beer and Spirits Forum was held at Colgate Park. Once again Jamie and Vicki Jerome provided their property and party tent for a community project. BCIC Director Peter Odierna has brought together community leaders (John Shannahan of BBC, Michael Harrington of the Town Economic Development Office, Joann Erenhouse of the BACC and others), a local master brewer William Gardner, SBA executive Christine Herriman, VT Sustainable Jobs Fund Deputy Director Janice St. Onge with Farm to Plate updates, USDA Rural Development executive Jon Muise, Hops Grower Peter Hopkins, Bennington Water and Sewer Updates by Terry Morse of the Town of Bennington all presented compelling reasons of why Bennington should become a Beer Brewing Hub in Vermont. Richard Collins of the BCIC Board and Energizer as well as Dan Strohl of the Bennington Young Professionals presented comments encouraging the creation of a multipurpose facility with near-by barley and hops agricultural efforts to support the future production capability. Colgate Park has a well developed water, sewer, electrical, and permitted infrastructure capable of supporting these activities. Ideas are flowing on how we can create a real Brewery and Distilling Boutique Destination here in Bennington.

Enjoy the rest of July.

Joann Erenhouse is executive direcot of the Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce. Her column appears weekly in the Banner.