Past Exhibitions and Events | 2015

Dec. 5th, 2015 MAC Center for the Arts – 5the Annual Holiday Craft Workshop


The MAC education committee held our 5th Annual Handmade Holiday craft workshop on December 5th.  Due to a miscommunication regarding the time of the event, we only hosted 8 children.  Many of them were regular faces and we were happy to see them again.  The children made four different Christmas tree ornaments to take home and had an enjoyable morning together. 

Photo Cutline (Standing )– MAC Education Committee Member, Diana Poulin instructs members of the Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired on the techniques of pottery making. Seated(l to r): Harriet Hall, John Hall, Neil Young, Jim McIntyre, Kitty McIntyre, (standing) MAC Education Committee member, Bonnie Nash, Paula Fitzgerald, Alain V.

November 28, 2015

MAC Center for the Arts Collaborates with the Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired.

Newport. Recently, the MAC Center for the Arts worked with Harriet Hall from the Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired to conduct a pottery class for thirteen of its members. Even though some of the members are completely blind and many have diminished sight unable to actually see their work, the participants enjoyed using their hands and working with the clay. Each member made two pieces, a pinch pot and a coiled pot which will be glazed and once fired, ready to be returned to them. A special thank you goes to Diana Poulin who organized the event, donated all the supplies and conducted the class.

MAC Center in Newport on Friday December 11th at 7:30


​Derby Line, VT
Looking for the perfect way to celebrate the season and start your holiday with a laugh and a song? Look no further than QNEK Productions Bingle Jells! Fun and follies abound in this off-kilter take on seasonal stories!
Conceived by Lynn Leimer, Bingle Jells takes us on an journey to an alternate universe North Pole featuring a cast of elves singing, dancing, and romancing their way through the night! Will Mrs. Claus be swept off her feet by Elvish Presley? Will one of the elves tap dance right off the stage? Will Santa be able to make all of his deliveries or will the flirtatious singing elves distract him? There’s only one way to find out – join QNEK for this delightful and delirious show!

This festive cast features adults and kids from both sides of the border led by director Susan Lynn Johns and accompanied by Janice Luce. Onstage you’ll see David Harrison, Todd Cubit, Allen Cubit, Lisa Foster, Ruth Ann Fletcher, Anita Morin, Sally Rivard, Judy Castonguay, Susan Kuzma, Nathan Sargent, Mary Hoadley, Chris Planetta, Rhonda Lucas, Victoria Young, Marianna Barrett, Emily Wilkie, Kaeleb Berthiaume, and Caresse Comeau-Ellman.
QNEK’s Bingle Jells is a great way to begin your holiday in a spirit of generosity as proceeds will go to benefit

​the non-profit where each show is being presented. All tickets will will also include dessert and coffee/tea to warm you up on a cold winters night. Bingle Jells will play at the MAC Center in Newport on Friday December 11th at 7:30, and at the First Universalist Parish of Derby Line on Saturday December 12th at 2pm and 7:30pm. Tickets are available by calling 802.334.2216, visiting, visiting, or at the MAC Center in downtown Newport. ​

November 19, 2015


MAC Center for the Arts – 5the Annual Holiday Craft Workshop

Newport.  Break out your holiday spirit and release your imagination…the MAC Center for the Arts is holding its 5th Annual Handmade Holiday Craft Workshop.   It’s free for kids 8 and up although donations are appreciated.  Each child will have the opportunity to make three or four ornaments to take home with them.  They include a folded paper Christmas tree, a bean and lentil covered star and a modern tin art ornament made with aluminum foil.

The workshop will be held in MAC’s downstairs classroom, 158 Main Street in Newport, on December 5th at 9:30 am.  The activities will take 1 to 1 ½ hours to complete so you will be done in time for the Santa parade.  Parents can feel free to get in a little holiday shopping while your child works on his/her projects.

Pre-registration is required and seating is limited.  Just like the Polar Express, get on board before the train leaves the station.  Sign up before Jack Frost nips your nose by contacting Diana Poulin at 673-8808 or by emailing her at

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November 20 – 5-7 pm MAC Center for the Arts Holiday Opening and Vernissage – Main Gallery

Newport.  NOVEMBER 20 is an ART STOP you don’t want to miss. Two exciting art happenings at one location on one night that will dazzle and inspire.

In the Main Gallery our annual Holiday Reception and display of new works at the MAC Center for the Arts, 158 Main Street, Newport.   Join MAC from 5-7pm, November 20 for a Vernissage. Browse the plethora of unique hand crafted gifts by our artisans working in pottery, glass, wood, on paper, on canvas, in fiber and yarn arts, basketry, photography, jewelry, quilts, book binding and books and listen to some of our performers on their latest CD’s

In the Lower Gallery – Lisa Eshleman Foster One Woman ShowAncestorsGoing Way Back – Opening Reception, November 20, 2015, 5-7 pm.  Show continues through January 23, 2016. This extraordinary installation by Lisa Eshleman Foster is sometimes theatrical, often amusing and wry, but mysteriously moving and very personal.  Not to be missed!!!!  

For more information and holiday hours, call  802 334 1966 or visit and follow us on Facebook.  Award winning MAC Center for the Arts is a local non-profit. Have a Heart, support the Arts!

November 4, 2015
On Monday, November 2nd, MAC’s education committee worked with Harriet Hall from the Vermont Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired to conduct a pottery class for 13 of its members.  Even though a couple of the members are completely blind and many commented that they couldn’t see their work, everyone enjoyed using their hands and working with the clay.  Each person made two pieces, a pinch pot and a coiled pot which will be glazed, fired and returned to them.  A special thank you goes to Diana Poulin who organized the event, donated all the supplies and know-how and conducted the class

TAKE NOTE: Nostalgia - a musical event. Friday,October 23, 7:30 pm

Photo by Douglas Flint


TAKE NOTE: Nostalgia – a Musical Event

Newport. What does the words Nostalgia mean to you? Perhaps a wistful desire to return in thought or in fact to a former time in one’s life, to one’s home or
homeland, or to one’s family and friends; a sentimental yearning for the happiness of a former place or time.

Come to the MAC Center for the Arts on Friday, October 23, 7:30 pm for a truly memorable evening of Nostalgia. A myriad of tunes will create an ambiance of joy, melancholy and effervescence. Emcee’s for the evening, Susan-Lynn Johns and Lynn Leimer will take you on this esoteric journey that embraces every genre of musicality. Featured performers include Janice and Ben Luce, John Selmer, Mary Damiani, Linda Schneck, Todd Cubit, Allen Cubit, Logan Chaput and of course the dymanic duo of Johns and Leimer.

Seating is limited, so purchase your tickets early. The Dusit Thai Cuisine and the Newport Ciderhouse Bar and Grill will be offering at 10% discount when you present your ticket the evening of the show. Legendary Champlain Chocolates will be providing some sweet treats for intermission and all of this for only $7.00 per person. Tickets are available at the MAC Center for the Arts as of October 2, 2015. All proceeds benefit the Memphremagog Arts Collaborative.

The show is performed with special arrangements with ASCAP. MAC is located at 158 Main Street Newport. Visit us on the web at or call 802-334-1966.

 MAC Center for the Arts presents TAKE NOTE: Nostaliga – a musical eventFriday,  October 23,  7:30 pmTickets $7.00. Performers (Standing l-r: Linda Schneck, Logan Chaput, Lynn Leimer, Janice Luce, Ben Luce, (seated l-r: Todd Cubit, Mary Damiani, Allen Cubit) missing from the photo John Selmer, Susan-Lynn Johns.

Newport's Fall Foliage Festival MAC won " Most Original Scarecrow"

Fourth Annual Vermont Watercolor Show Sept. 18 - Oct. 31, 2015

Mountains & Meadows by Donna Walsh


MAC Center for the Arts to Host
Vermont Watercolor Society Exhibition 2015

Newport.   The MAC Center for the Arts, 158 Main Street, will host the Fourth Annual Vermont Watercolor Society Exhibition entitled ‘Memories’, Friday,  September 18 through  Saturday, October 31, 2015.

Founded in 1995 by a small group of painters, the Vermont Watercolor Society (WVS) currently boasts over 240 members.  The Society is dedicated to promoting the awareness and appreciation of watercolour to a membership of all levels of ability and to the community by providing opportunities and venues for participation, education, fellowship and exhibitions. The VWS is a state-wide non-profit arts organization.  Due to its broad demographics, regional events are coordinated throughout the year.

 MAC Center for the Arts has the honor and distinction of being one of those venues.

This captivating evening will afford patrons the opportunity to view breathtaking and unique works as well as meet a plethora of local and regional watercolor artists.  All the art will be juried and fortunately for the attendees it is also available to purchase.

The Memphremagog Arts Collaborative is a non-profit organization and the Gallery is open Monday – Saturday,

10-5.  For more information and hours of operation, call 802 334 -1966

Join us at the MAC for the Opening Reception Friday, September 18, 5-7pm.

Twenty-two artists submitted 82 paintings for the show. These entries were judged by Mark Nielsen, President of the Vermont Watercolor Society and the following winners were announced:
First Place: Caroline McKinney for “Mabel”
Second Place: Jean Lumbra for “Lake View”
Third Place: Thomas Livermore for “Country Road”
Honorable Mention:
Donna Walsh for “Mountains & Meadows”
Sam Thurston for “Still Life with Sculptures”
Robert Compton for “ Spirit of the Trail”

Art in Bloom July 23, 2015

MAC CENTER FOR THE ARTS celebrates the Fifth Annual Art in Bloom

Newport. Mark your calendars! You won’t want to miss this summertime hallmark event! The MAC Center for the Arts, 158 Main Street will kick off the Fifth Annual Art in Bloom replete with a Vernissage, Thursday evening July 23 from 5-7 pm.

Every third week of July, MAC hosts Art in Bloom, a glorious three day extravaganza of floral decorations created in collaboration with the Four Seasons Garden Club and inspired by works on display at the MAC Center for the Arts.

Art in Bloom takes place all over the country, in venues great and small, where beautiful floral arrangements are matched with visual arts and handcrafts making for an impressive event for gardeners and art lovers alike. The benefit evening, July 23, for both the MAC and the Four Seasons Garden Club, will have some lucky patrons leaving with some fabulous door prizes. Tickets are on sale at the MAC for $10 or from any participating MAC member or Four Seasons Garden Club member. The show will run July 24 and July 25, 10-5.


As an added bonus, attendees will be delighted to have the distinct opportunity to visit the Downstairs Gallery and enjoy the retrospective artwork by Donna Jean Safford, 25 Years of Painting 1990-2015, on view until September 8, 2015.

Donna Jean Safford, 25 Years of Painting July 4 – September 8, 2015


Donna Jean Safford, 25 Years of Painting, 1990-2015 -Selected Works

Saturday July 4 – Tuesday September 8, 2015 
Opening reception for the artist Friday July 3, 5-7pm
at MAC Center for the Arts

158 Main Street, Newport, Vermont

Donna Jean Safford is a celebrated painter throughout New England although her life in painting began in sculpture and printmaking in Hartford, Connecticut largely because, she says, “I couldn’t afford the price of paint”. But paint she did. After moving to San Francisco, where she experimented briefly with acrylics until, expensive tube by tube, she began to work with oils and has never stopped since, nor regretted that foray into what has become a lifelong obsession. She has been painting in her studios in Derby Line, where she and her husband have lived for over 25 years, and at Mad Brook Farm, her earliest home in the Northeast Kingdom. She says of her move there in the 70’s that, “I had never planted as much as a pansy before Vermont”. Interestingly, Mad Brook will be working with the Vermont Historical Society in their study on migration of city people to the country.

But gardens aside, it is to painting that Donna Jean Safford always returns to. The 25 years of this beautiful exhibition cover the period from 1990 to the present and takes the viewer chronologically through several periods of artistic and very personal development. In her candid opinion she remarked, “The work was so tight at first … one of my earliest paintings took four months… four months! But the more I worked with paint the looser the work became, and I am less hung up on technique but much more concerned now with the paint, the medium itself. What it does, how it works, its astonishing versatility. Maybe I am painting for myself now to show what paint can do”. And she certainly has.

The 50 paintings on exhibit are organized into distinct categories: dolls, hats, the Adrienne series, remasters, mixed media, animals, doll dresses, chairs, portraits and finally abstraction. These reflect not only the 25 year period, but her personal interests, obsessions with objects and individuals, her own limitless imagination in a lyrical often playful approah to her subject…chancy too, in how she perceives the boundless possibilities presented to her.

The MAC Center for the Arts is delighted to present this wonderful, often magical, brilliantly painted work of Donna Jean Safford. While she has been a member of MAC almost since its inception, her work may not yet be as familiar to the Northeast Kingdom as it is to other arts organizations in Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts where for many years collectors there have patiently waited for new work….we are lucky to have her here.

For more information, call 802-334-1966 or

Muse-ical Harvest III - Such Short Little Lives May 16, 2015

MAC Center for the Arts presents Muse-ical Harvest III – Such Short Little Lives

Newport. When MAC Member Cat Holm mentioned a story of hers was to appear in the short story anthology “Rescued: The Stories of 12 Cats, Through Their Eyes, she provided the theme for the third in the MAC Center’s “Muse-ical Harvest” performance series. Friday, June 5, 6:30 pm performance will be about “our animal companions”

MAC will present poems, songs, and stories about them.

The subtitle for the event, “Such Short Little Lives,” comes to us
courtesy of John Grogan, the author of “Marley & Me: Life
and Love with the World’s Worst Dog.” Mr. Grogan’s funny
and touching eulogy to Marley, Saying Farewell to a Faithful
Pal, will be read by our emcee, Bradleigh S. Stockwell, to
begin the evening. The third Muse-ical Harvest will include a

genuinely impressive roster of talent by MAC Members
Cat Holm, John Selmer, Dianne Laplante, Susan-Lynn
Johns, and by our two newest members: Mary Damiani
and Diana Stockwell. An added attraction is a special
appearance by Blackbird Storm –guitarist, Nathan Sargent
and percussionist, Jim Duckless. Their quirky mixture of
country and pop is becoming known in Vermont as a
must-hear. A portion of the proceeds from Cat Holm’s book

RESCUED will be donated to the POPE Frontier
Animal Society.

Once again Dusit Thai and Newport Ciderhouse Bar and
Grill will graciously acknowledge all tickets for a 10%
discount off any meal (not including tax, tip, or alcohol).
Go before the show or after and take advantage of this
stellar offer. Support the MAC, support local business
on Main Street and support the local economy. Tickets
on sale now at the MAC Center for the Arts,

158 Main Street, Newport.

For more information call 802-334-1966 or visit
us on the web at

Recycle into Spring Exhibit Opening Reception April 17th


 MAC Center for the Arts Spring Opening Reception
Friday April 17, 2015
TIME:  5-7 pm
LOCATION: 158 Main Street, Newport

Newport.  Tired of being snowbound? Greet Spring with abandon and come to the First Season Opening Reception at the MAC Center for the Arts Friday, April 17 2015  from 5-7pm and it’s a TWO FOR ONE – with new works by our talented painters and handcrafters on the Main Floor, and a new and unusual  exhibit in the Downstairs Gallery entitled Recycle into Spring! an exhibition of works created using recycled materials -including unique masks created at a very popular recent MAC workshop. Spend time lingering thru the gallery and listen to the extraordinary music provided by guitarist, Ben Kinsley. He will be available to autograph his CD’s on sale that evening.

Special Downstairs Gallery Opening:  Recycle into Spring! will run April 17- June 12, 2015 during MAC’s opening hours.  All are invited to visit, revisit, and enjoy.  For more information, visit or call 802-334-1966.

March 30, 2015

Friday, March 27th 25 kids, teens and moms gathered in the MAC Classroom to create recycled faces using items destined for the trash. The creative energy was great. You can see their work during the Recycled into Spring exhibit in MAC’s downstairs gallery from April 17th to June 12th.


Muse-ical Harvest II - Moonlight In Vermont Friday, April 10th, 2015


Muse-ical Harvest II –  Moonlight In Vermont – An evening of words and music 

DATE: April 10, 2015
6:30 pm
: MAC Center for the Arts, Main Street, Newport
Purchase tickets in advance and receive 15% discount that same evening for dinner at Dusit Thai or Newport Ciderhouse Bar and Grill (doesn’t include tax, tip or alcohol)

At 6:45 p.m. EDT on March 20, the sun appeared directly overhead at the Earth’s equator marking the start of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere.  This year, the spring equinox had the unusual distinction of coinciding with both a supermoon and a total solar eclipse; and there hasn’t been a solar eclipse on either the March or September equinox since 1662! Well if you can’t wait until March 20, 2034 to see this event again, then you need to shout Fly Me to the Moon and get to the MAC CENTER FOR THE ARTS on Friday, April 10 at 6:30 pm to see the full moon up close and personal.

A special treat for early birds, buy your tickets in advance and present them to Dusit Thai or the Newport Ciderhouse Bar and Grill the evening of the show and receive %15 off your dinner selection (not including tax, tip and gratuity). Be sure you plan early so you make it to the Lunar Event at 6:30 pm at the MAC Center.

Once you’ve landed, Emcee, Bradleigh Stockwell will guide you thru the stars, the performing stars, that is, for an evening of words and music in an eclectic forum of poetry and musicality. Words by Cat Holm, Dianne Laplante, and Bradleigh and Diana Stockwell will create an insouciant charm that sets the tone for the moonstruck. Music by John Selmer, Susan-Lynn Johns, Lynn Leimer and our own “Sinatra” will create a glow that will have you basking in moonbeams. 

The highlight of the evening will be the World Premiere of DESERT SUITE for guitar and keyboard, composed by Ben Luce – performed by Ben and Janice Luce. While the initial presentation of the piece was performed at the Cabin Fever Follies, March 22, Desert Suite makes its professional debut at the MAC Center for the Arts, April 10.  The four movement piece: I- Deer Trap Mesa; II – Mortendad Canyon Spirits; III – Moonlight in Frijoles Canyon; IV – Sunrise at Apache Springs will not only mesmerize and enthrall, but the haunting beauty of the piece will resonate and inspire soulful illumination that can’t be eclipsed.

Well if all this Moon-speak doesn’t motivate you, perhaps the words of Robert Frost will ….”We ran as if to meet the moon” and you will, with the artful rendition of the Full Moon painted by Bradleigh Stockwell hanging overhead to wax …or wane – you chose. Come to Newport and enjoy dinner, show and soon to be Spring! And in the immortal words of Ralph Kramden, “One of these days Alice, bang, zoom, to the moon”.


Recycled Art Workshop Friday, March 27

Faces of Re-Use, a collaborative art project consisting of original masks made using paper mache forms and recycled trash. The resulting work of art will be displayed in MAC’s Recycled Art Exhibit from Tuesday, April 14 to Friday, June 12 in MAC’s lower gallery. All materials will be provided although special trash treasures are welcome. MAC artists will be on hand to help and parents are welcome to participate. Younger children should have an adult helper. The project will take about an hour to complete so plan to arrive no later than 4 PM. Students and parents are invited to Opening Night Reception for the exhibit on Friday, April 17, 5 – 7 PM. Masks may be taken home at close of show on June 12.

Robert Burns Day January 7, 2015

January 7, 2015


MAC Center for the Arts fetes Robbie Burns Event

Break out your Tartan (Plaid) Tammies, Tassles, Knickers and Kilts and join us at the MAC Center for the Arts to celebrate poet Robbie Burns,  January 18, 2015, from 2:00-4:00 p.m.  This celebration includes Scottish piper, Beverly Davis, who will set the mood, with additional music provided by, harpist, Linda Schneck ,  and vocal harmonies by Ben and Janice Luce, Susan-Lynn Johns and Lynn Leimer.  Setting the tone is The Chairman, our Master of Ceremonies, Bradleigh Stockwell, who will Address the Lassies and Brian McCrae who will process in with the Haggis and Address the Haggis. Poetry, Readings, Games, and Auld Lang Syne.  Unleash your inner Bard and come share in the tatties and neeps. Not sure what that is? Well here are some other things you probably didn’t know:
Seven Facts you never knew about “Robbie Burns”:

  1. Bob Dylan selected Burns’ 1794 song “red, Red Rose” when asked for the source of his greatest creative inspiration.
  2. A miniature book of Robbie Burns’ poetry was carried into orbit by astronaut, Nick Patrick, on a two week space mission completing a 5.7 million mile trip and 217 orbits of the Earth.
  3. A status of Burns in Camperdown, Australia, is thought to be the oldest existing statue of the poet anywhere in the world.  The sculpture, cared by John Greenshields, was shipped to Australia in the 1850’s.
  4. Pop singer Michael Jackson was said to have been a big fan of Robert Burns and was reputed to have worked on an album setting some of the Bard’s poems to music.
  5. John Steinbeck to the title of his 1937 novel “of Mice and Men’ from a line contained in Burns’ poem “to a Mouse”:   “The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men/Gang aft agley”.
  6. The town of Mosgiel near Dunedin, New Zealand was named after Robert Burns’ farm in Ayrshire.
  7. The Soviet Union was the first country in the world to honor Burns with a commemorative stamp, marking the 160th anniversary of his death in 1956.

Gather your Clan for A Man’s a Man for A’ That and My Luve is like a Red Red Rose and join the   Wee Beasties for some Grand Fun! This is a Benefit for the MAC. Seating is limited, $10 tax deductible donation to the MAC. Reservations are encouraged by emailing or purchase your tickets in advance at the MAC Center for the Arts, Main Street, Newport. Additional support for this event provided by: Heron’s Path, Designs by B. Stockwell, Paul Monette, Price Chopper, Shaws, Vista, Derby Village Store, and  Newport Natural Foods.