B y Derek Liebig

The remnants of a long, cold winter may still be holding on but, inside Granville’s museums, spring has arrived.

The Slate Valley Museum and the Pember Library and Museum will usher in the season tomorrow night during their monthly First Friday celebrations.

“Spring is finally here and winter has been officially banned from the hemisphere. We’re putting winter on notice,” said Pember Trustee Rob McGuire. “Just so there’s no lingering doubt, April First Friday at Pember will usher in the season with a sumptuous display of historical botanical prints.”

The Pember will present an exhibit of 28 plates from the “Temple of Flora,” created by Robert John Thorton, an English physician and botanical writer between 1799 and 1807. It was one part of his “New Illustration of the Sexual System of Linnaeus.”

The exhibit’s plates will feature exquisitely detailed flowers. The depictions of the flowers are notable for their unusual settings. Interwoven amongst the images are various descriptions, histories and poetic odes regarding the flowers featured.

Although the book wasn’t well received during Thorton’s time, it altered the course of illustration and is considered by some art historians to be among the greatest of all flower books.

Augmenting the exhibit will be this month’s featured artisan, jeweler Shannon Gould.

Her work includes tumbled gemstones and quality materials and incorporates her Native American heritage.

“I want people to be able to enjoy my pieces as much as I do in creating them,” Gould said.

The evening will also feature the music of Moose Crossing, a Poultney, Vt.-based jazz band. The group describes its music as “jazz, evolved” and its arrangement includes the saxophone, piano and bass.

The band consists of Zak Hampton, Tim Duch and Joe Plotts.

Slate Valley Musuem

A short jaunt across the Mettowee River, the Slate Valley Museum will welcome the return of spring with an evening of Easter activities.

Families and kids are invited to explore the museum and keep their eyes open for clues on where they can find Easter eggs filled with treats.

Decorating activities, highlighting springtime and the Eastern European tradition of egg-decorating, will be offered. Those traditions were brought to America by European immigrants, including the slate workers and their families who settled in this region.

Kids of all ages are welcome to participate in the egg hunt and craft activities, but must be accompanied by an adult.

During their visit, guests are encouraged to help the museum curate its 20th anniversary exhibition by choosing from among 40 objects in the museum’s collection that are currently on display. The staff will use the public’s votes to choose 20 objects to be featured in the exhibition on display this summer.

First Fridays are held each month from 7 to 9 p.m. Admission is free, although donations in support of each institution are appreciated.

For more information, call the Pember at 518-642-1515 or visit thepember.com. The Slate Valley Museum can be contacted at 518-642-1417 or slatevalleymuseum.org.

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