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“Ethan,” a work by Rick Havlak, draws an appraising glance Wednesday at the grand opening of the Catamount Prowl in Bennington. (Peter Crabtree)
“Ethan,” a work by Rick Havlak, draws an appraising glance Wednesday at the grand opening of the Catamount Prowl in Bennington. (Peter
“Ethan,” a work by Rick Havlak, draws an appraising glance Wednesday at the grand opening of the Catamount Prowl in Bennington. (Peter Crabtree)
Thursday May 23, 2013

ELIZABETH CONKEY

Staff Writer

BENNINGTON -- On Wednesday night, the Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce hosted the Catamount Prowl unveiling party at the Brush building.

For a small admission fee, guests were able to both browse the 32 uniquely embellished catamounts on display, as well as meet each cat's artist.

Chamber member P.J. DeVito was pleased with the event's turnout.

"At the end of the day, it's the community members who determine the success of these events," she said. "I couldn't be more pleased with the support and enthusiasm."

Massachusetts native Fran St. Peter attended the party in support of her sister-in-law Everly St. Peter, the artist of "The Magic of Vermont." However, she found herself impressed by the work of all the other artists present as well.

"Each cat is so different from the next," said St. Peter. "I'm just blown away by the detail Wicked awesome," she laughed, "As they say in Boston."

Chamber of Commerce President Brenda Jones was equally as ecstatic about the event's success.

"The quality and caliber of the artwork here tonight is absolutely fabulous," said Jones, "and the turnout is fantastic too," she added. "I'm so excited!"

According to Jones, one of the goals of this exhibit and the chamber in general is to increase Bennington's tourism.

"We want to make Bennington a destination rather than just the place people drive through," she explained.


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"We want tourists to explore our shops, our restaurants Everything!"

Friday, the catamounts will hit the streets in time for Mayfest, and will be displayed in and around Bennington until October.

Contact Elizabeth Conkey at econkey@benningtonbanner.com. Follow her on Twitter @bethconkey