First Friday celebration offers heritage and history

Bringing in the new month and finishing summer at First Friday tomorrow night will be reenactments, traditional art and music at the Pember Library and Museum and the Slate Valley Museum.

History will repeat itself at the Pember, where Cedar River Photography’s reenactment pictures will be on display.

“Joe and Kathryn Cormier have photographed Revolutionary and French and Indian War encampments throughout the region, and their stunning and evocative photo portraits of re-enactors will leave you breathless,” Trustee Rob McGuire said.

He said locals are invited to attend the event in period costume, and there is an open call for reenactors to attend.

As far as other art, Bill Brassard will display his paintings. McGuire said Brassard is known for his large murals, church art and American Indian and animal themes. 

For musical entertainment, the Hebron Honker will be playing the Mississippi saxophone with Terry Glazer on harmonica.

In keeping with its Carpatho-Rusyn theme, the Slate Valley Museum will host Carolyn Guest, who creates through the Polish folk art of Wycinanki, or paper cutting. She will both display and demonstrate her art.

Using skills she learned as a 4-H youth exchange student in Poland, Guest uses antique sheep shears to cut out intricate designs of barns, farm animals and scenes from rural Vermont, officials said. Her craft became popular in the mid 1800s and originated with shepherds cutting designs out of tree bark and leather.

“Along with the traditional Slovakian craft of Pysanki egg decorating, Wycinanki paper cutting was also common within the Carpatho-Rusyn region of Eastern Europe,” Museum Director Kate Weller said.

Guest is a nationally recognized artist, who has been featured on HGTV and has presented her Wycinanki ornaments to Former First Lady Laura Bush for the White House Christmas tree.

To enhance Guest’s cultural feel, museum volunteers will also offer a selection of Polish food made from recipes found in the Slate Valley Museum cookbook.

Guest’s work will be on display at the museum through the end of September.

As always, First Friday takes place from 7 to 9 p.m.

For more information about the Slate visit slatevalleymuseum.org or call 518-642-1417. For more information about the Pember visit pembermuseum.org or call 518-642-1515. Both museums are also on Facebook.

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