“‘Tis the season to be jolly” we sing along with other holiday songs and Christmas carols, and I am pleased to add my personal wishes for lovely holidays to each one of you. I find it fascinating that people have been celebrating at this season over the millennia, long before we had Christmas, even before we had Hanukah, before we had polytheism, and even before that we had ancient pagans celebrating the Winter Solstice. The shortest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere with the longest period of darkness, meant that the following days would be longer and that “the sun had returned”. Certainly this needed celebrating and so the ancients did just that, with bonfires to remind them of the increasing light and with the sharing of gifts. And we still do celebrate with light, exchanging the bonfires for electric lights decorating our homes and Christmas trees, and with gift giving in various ways. Truly and historically “‘Tis the season”. May you all enjoy it.
And while you do, please come to the Arts Center and see how we have also decorated with lights and art and gifts for you and yours. I may be biased, but I think the Art Gallery and Gift Shop are particularly beautiful in this season. We are open every Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4:00 p.m. through December 22. Just to come in for a visit will lift your spirits! If you are looking for a gift for someone, this is the perfect place to come also, because our artists have filled the Gallery with a variety of works in various genres, and the fine crafters have outdone themselves in the range of unique gifts available in the Gift Shop. And all sales also benefit our artists and the continuing activities of the Arts Center.
Beyond the art, as you know we have a long history of collaboration with the schools and greater community so are hosting this month our Elementary School Band concert under the direction of Bruce Foote, as well as the Judy Albano Dance Studio’s recital. These talented young people also brighten up the center with their music and movement. I expect that some of you members have also been in the audiences for these events and have seen and felt the joy they bring. For those of you music lovers who are regulars at our 4th Friday @ the Arts Cafe, we will have our next group in January. Circle January 24 now for the first of the 4th Fridays in 2014.
I close with warmest wishes to you – to us – as members. May these holidays be bright with the symbolic light that warms our souls and the atmosphere. And may you enjoy each day – each moment – of this special season.
Joan C. Lester, President