By Robert McCafferty
Dear Friends of the Southern Vermont Arts Center,
I wanted to take this opportunity to communicate what is happening on the hill at SVAC. First of all, I am happy to announce we had a successful 2015, from the stimulating art in the Yester House Galleries to the moving Wilson Museum exhibit of "Art and Remembrance-Fabric of Survival," inspired by the story of a Holocaust survivor. In addition, the entertaining performances in the Arkell Pavillion, as well as the education department's expansion of classes which included the popular "Studio Uncorked" and figure drawing, all contributed to that achievement. The Arts Center was the recipient of a bequest from our dear friend and longtime SVAC artist Elfriede Abbe. Our fundraising efforts were also enhanced by the wonderful Bridge event hosted by the Ekwanok C.C. in August and the Fine Art Auction we held in October. A special thanks to our staff and the many volunteers for their efforts in 2015!
I am excited to announce that six new Trustees joined our board and bring a plethora of art, curatorial, facilities-management, and marketing experience — all of which will contribute substantially to our efforts to elevate the future of the Arts Center. Please join me in welcoming Arnold Gottlieb, Todd Nebraska, Erika Lawlor Schmidt and Heidi Hutchins Stokes, Jim Viscusi, and Paul Wheeler.
The board of trustees contracted with a nonprofit consulting organization based in New Hampshire to review every aspect of our operations and to assist us in community outreach, market analysis, and the development of new strategic and business planning.
Looking ahead, SolarFest is partnering with SVAC to host their 2016 festival in July and the Manchester Music Festival will once again call the beautiful Arkell Pavilion at SVAC home for their 2016 summer series concerts. The SVAC calendar is full of intriguing art classes for all ages. The Yester House will be filled with outstanding art from new artists and our valued artist members. Beginning in May, the Wilson Museum will showcase additional art for sale with new and exciting exhibitions. From the ever popular Bridge event, to a lively concert by Bob Stannard, the fundraising events and performing arts schedules are not to be missed. Please check our website at www.svac.org for details.
Together, the talented staff, dedicated board of trustees and marvelous volunteers are working to ensure the upcoming year is a success as well. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact the Arts Center, I'd love to have you join us.
May 2016 be good to all of us, and I look forward to seeing you on the hill.
Robert McCafferty is the president of the Southern Vermont Art Center's board of trustees.