Arts & Leisure


THE SCARLET BERRIES of the winterberry shrub add a pop of color to the winter landscape. Photo by Nadie VanZandt
Dominated by shades of gray, the landscape appears bleak in winter. Look closer and you may glimpse muted mauves in the distant mountains or the warm glow that envelopes the land at the golden hour. If that doesn't satisfy your yearning for color, consider planting winterberry shrubs. Their allure is in the brilliant red berries that add a welcome splash of color to the winter landscape. A native woody shrub of North America, the winterberry (Ilex verticillata) is one of 30 species of deciduous holly hardy in U.S. plant hardiness zones 3 through 9. Commonly referred to as black alder or...
(Custom House) When an unknown but interested party finds Howard Stovall Bennett III, living out his last days in a retirement home, and shows him an old photo, Ward, as he was known, is delighted to tell the story of the time he worked as a make-believe cowboy on a dude ranch near Reno, Nev. that catered to the divorce trade, The Flying Leap. In those days, the late 1930s, a woman with means could establish residency in Nevada in just six weeks, and then obtain a divorce. It was Ward’s job to squire these ladies around, take them on gentle trail rides through the dry desert, hold their...
Want to know what love is? Love is sometimes a “Many Splendored Thing,” or “All You Ever Need,” or even “A Battlefield.” Vermont Actors’ Repertory Theatre explores beyond romantic love to celebrate the different levels, aspects, and ways of loving during their February virtual short play festival themed “Four Dimensional Love.” Performances will be broadcast live on Saturday, Feb. 6, at 7 p.m., and Sunday, Feb. 7, at 2 p.m. The festival is free of charge and open to the public. Talkbacks with playwrights, performers and directors will follow the performances. Featured Vermont playwrights...

"Breaking Surface"
The Vermont International Film Festival [VTIFF] and the Middlebury New Filmmakers Festival [MNFF] will continue the online monthly movie series Split/Screen this month.  With the two Vermont film festivals each curating a selection of four entertaining films in alternating months, MNFF takes the helm for January with an offering of two dramas and two documentaries that will run for 10 days, Jan. 22-31.  The series will continue through June 2021. Split/Screen will feature the following films in January: “Kajillionaire,” the latest work from the acclaimed director Miranda July — a biting...

ILLUSTRATION BY ADELAIDE Tyrol
On frigid winter evenings, the hooting of a barred owl (Strix varia) serves as a reminder that the darkened forests of the Northeast are still very much alive with activity. Their nocturnal calling emanates from favorite forest haunts, including along lakeshores, swamps, and rivers. But the sound of an owl late at night also conveys a certain eeriness. Or perhaps we are simply conditioned to feel that way. Owls have generated feelings of awe, fascination, and fear for millennia, and their lives and sounds feature heavily in our collective imagination. The classic “Birds of America,” edited by...

JIM ANDREWS OF the Salisbury Conservation Commission is one of the leading volunteers behind the creation of the new Pitch Pine recreation trail off Plains Road in Salisbury. Independent photo/Steve James
SALISBURY — What’s your go-to walking path? Most of us have at least one, whether it be around your neighborhood — checking out new home renovations and gardens — or a walk in your favorite woods. Addison County is chock full of beautiful trails that we can choose from, and the Salisbury Conservation Commission recently added one more to the list.  The Pitch Pine Trail off Plains Road in Salisbury made its debut quietly in the middle of last year, but the project had been in the works long before that thanks to the steady efforts of the Salisbury Conservation Commission’s volunteer members...
The Bread Loaf Section of the Green Mountain Club (GMC) will hold its 46th Annual Meeting on the evening of Thursday, Jan. 21. This will be an online Zoom meeting and is open to the public. The business portion of the meeting will begin at 6:45 p.m. with local section reports and a report by GMC’s Executive Director and Middlebury native Mike DeBonis. After voting in a new slate of officers, the meeting will adjourn at about 7:15 p.m., immediately followed by a special presentation on an especially timely topic: “Finding adventures close to home.” Guest presenter Leath Tonino, a Ferrisburgh...
CORNWALL — Romy Munkres from Cornwall, was selected as the 2019/2020 Young Tradition Vermont Youth Commission artist for the year. Romy, a 2020 graduate of Middlebury Union High School, was the winner of the Young Tradition Vermont annual contest and was the 2019/2020 Youth Artist Leader for the YTV Touring Group. She was in charge of scheduling and organizing rehearsals and working with Mark Sustic (YTV Executive Director).  As the selected Youth Commission artist, Munkres recruited a group that included brother Ben Munkres and friends Abi Sandy, Hadley Stockwell and Fern Tamagini-O’Donnell...
Della Doodle (the fabulous poodle) in Brandon, waits patiently in the corner of her yard for people to walk by - before pouncing with happy barks.  It is entertaining to her to surprise passers-by! Monica McEnerny Brandon    

ILLUSTRATION BY ADELAIDE Tyrol
As winter approaches and snow coats the ground, the tufted titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor) will again become a ubiquitous backyard visitor. Familiar to even the most casual observers of nature, titmice readily come to feeders, especially those filled with sunflower seeds. Like many other birds that spend winters here, they seem to relish any cold-weather handouts, and I welcome their presence in my yard. A smallish gray bird with a distinctive crest, both the male and female tufted titmouse have dark eyes, a white belly, and rust-colored flanks. When titmice are out of sight, they can be...

Pages

Login for Subscriber Access

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Addison County Independent