Holiday Shopping in Bennington
Christmas Family Night
The First Baptist Church of Bennington will be hosting a Christmas Family Night at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, December 16, in the church annex. The evening will include a Christmas pageant, carols, a potluck supper, and a surprise visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus. Please bring a dish to share, if able. The Church is located at 601 Main Street in Bennington.
Come for ‘A Musical Interlude’ at Bennington Museum
Join the Bennington Museum on Saturday, December 16, at 2 p.m. for a free concert in the Museum’s Paresky Wing. Escape the hectic pace often found this time of year as you sit back and enjoy ‘A Musical Interlude,’ performed by the Taconic Chamber Players featuring Joana Genova on violin, Deanna Baasch on violin, Ariel Rudiakov on the viola and Nathaniel Parke on the cello. This varied program includes music by Vivaldi and Bach as well as Duke Ellington and many others. The concert is part of the Music at the Museum series sponsored by Alison Nowak and Robert Cane. Admission to the galleries is not included.
Bulgarian violinist Genova, artist associate at Williams College and co-artistic director of newly-founded Taconic Music, has an active career as a chamber musician, orchestral player, teacher and soloist. Violinist Deanna Baasch, a native of Vermont, began studying the violin at the age of eight. By the time she was 17, she had performed both violin and flute in more than 30 countries including China, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Brazil, Argentina and throughout Europe. She teaches violin and viola in Manchester, and is also a mental health therapist and restorative yoga teacher. Parke performs as principal cello with the Berkshire Symphony, and has also been a member of the Boston Composers String Quartet. He is currently artist associate in cello at Williams College and instructor of cello at Bennington and Skidmore colleges. Conductor and violist Rudiakov received his early musical training from his parents before attending pre-college at Manhattan School of Music. He is music director and conductor of the Danbury Symphony Orchestra in Connecticut, and co-founder and co-artistic director of Taconic Music. He was artistic director of Manchester Music Festival from 2000 to 2016.
Bennington Museum is located at 75 Main Street/Route 9 in Bennington. To learn more, visit benningtonmuseum.org or call 802-447-1571.
Fair Trade Shop Alleviates Poverty Near & Far
Alliance Fair Trade Gifts has opened at 198 Crescent Boulevard in Bennington. Fair Trade provides a livable wage for people in developing nations – many women – helping to restore their dignity and self-worth through gainful employment. The shop offers a variety of products, including hand-crafted woolen winter wear, artisan jewelry, colorful cross-body bags and cotton backpacks from Nepal, Guatemala, Thailand and Jordan. Alliance also supports the Women’s Bean Project, a program which trains unemployed women to produce nourishing food products, while learning business skills. Their products include soup and chili mixes, corn bread, dip mixes and chocolate-covered espresso coffee beans. Also available are hand-turned wood and acrylic pens crafted by local artisans in The Tools For Change Workshop housed near the gift store. All are priced fairly, and profits go back into the community through financial donations to the Greater Bennington Interfaith Community Services, the Bennington County Coalition for the Homeless and the Cancer Center Community Crusaders. Volunteers staff the shop Monday and Wednesday 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon, Thursday 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday 12 to 4 p.m. For more information, call 802-733-7663.