MANCHESTER - Every two years, the friends of Southern Vermont Arts Center have come together for a night of food, music, dancing and celebration to support the Arts Center's mission of making the visual and performing arts an integral part of life in the community and region. For many years, the event was known as The Scottish Ball and offered attendees a chance to don elegant highland attire and spend a night dancing and mingling with art lovers from around the region. After a brief hiatus, the Arts Center's leadership has chosen to return to the festive fashion motif of the past. In a slight change, this year's event has been named The Tartan Ball as the Arts Center wishes to honor both an old and valued tradition and signal an openness to new influences. The benefit gala is the Arts Center's most important fundraising event.

Proceeds from the Ball will be dedicated to ensuring the highest quality exhibitions and performing arts events in the Wilson Museum, Yester House Galleries and Arkell Pavilion, as well as expanding educational programs in the Hay Madeira Center. Under the direction of new Executive Director Seline Skoug and an energized board and membership, the Arts Center is preparing to enhance its programming and expand community access to the visual and performing arts in Southern Vermont. Proceeds from the ball will greatly help this effort. Individual and corporate sponsorships are available and tickets can be purchased by going to www.svac.org/thetartanball or by calling 802-362-1405. Many have already stepped forward as sponsors, including Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, Orvis, The Weinstein Group PC, Shaw Insurance, Landscape Contractors and Blue Flame Gas Company, as well as generous individuals. For further information, contact the Southern Vermont Arts Center at www.svac.org or 802-362-1405.