President Joan C. Lester’s November 2013 letter to the Membership

Hello, Fellow Members,

What would November be without Thanksgiving, the quintessential New England holiday? This is my favorite holiday and I personally wish each and every one of you a lovely Thanksgiving Day, a day in which to be grateful for all our bounties shared with loved ones. I hope that you can also share some with those who have less. The Marlborough Food Bank can always utilize even the smallest of contributions because they add up to larger ones and help so many.

As the seasonal cold starts here, I am still basking in the warmth of a resent cruise on the Danube River including stops in Vienna and Salzburg and with book-ended stays in Prague and Budapest. The art and architecture, the strolling musicians on cobblestoned streets and town squares, the concerts in Baroque halls, and the fun of going back in history with every step are wonderful memories. But we are home now, and it is good to be home. Travel also brings a fresh perspective to what we have here. We may not have strolling musicians in Marlborough. We don’t even have cobbles! But we do have a new rating as the #3 small town out of 44 in “Connecticut Magazine”, November, 2013, pp. 60-61. That rating includes a high score for culture/leisure and obviously the Marlborough Arts Center is a major factor. We have art and the regional artists who create it; we have the architecture of old New England as our home in the Charles W. Hall historic building; and we have musical evenings monthly. All of this is special. All of this is easily available. All of this is open to everyone in the region.

This month’s musical evening is a concert by Gail Wade and Turning Point on Friday, November 22, at 7:30 p.m. This is a continuation of her annual concerts at the Arts Center, events which are anticipated by people from all over the state and by the audience who fills the hall. Note that the date has changed from early publicity. The concert will be on the 22nd. Come early to secure a seat, see the new items in our renovated Gift Shop, and relax with refreshments before the concert.

As President, I can tell you how proud we are that Jim Grabowski, one of our artists and Board of Directors Member, has had his painting “The Red Phase” accepted into the permanent collection of the New Britain Museum of American Art. What a great honor, and one well deserved. Jim’s paintings grace the walls of homes, offices, state buildings and companies, and now also in this fine museum. The next time you visit MAC, do look for some of his paintings on our walls. They would be a joy to own for your walls too.

Also note that our Stegosaurus sculpture now has a name: MACxine. Elizabeth Peters, 5th grade, won the contest with this name and was honored at a Prides Assembly at the Elmer Thienes Mary Hall Elementary School on October 23, with awards given personally by the sculptor, Neal Alderman. Neal said that he hadn’t really thought about the gender of his sculpture, but when he and the rest of us on the Board heard MACxine, it just seemed right. Congratulations to both Elizabeth and Neal and with appreciation for the collaboration with the school’s art teacher, Denise Ketterer.

Not only does the colder weather presage winter is coming, it also harkens to holidays and celebrations, many with the happy exchange of gifts. Our Gift Shop is a fine spot for finding a perfect gift and knowing that it is a unique piece of original art by one of our artists or fine crafters. The Gift Shop is filled with new, many never before seen, objets d’art. Before you think of joining pushing crowds at area malls, do think of the pleasure of shopping at ease for unusual gifts right here in Marlborough. You and your loved ones who receive the gifts will truly appreciate your thoughtfulness. And, the artists donate 30{eba5a16469fb4a7f18f8ea69c1431b00c5f2da579f8ac6bd75c322ccea0d0754} of their earnings to the Arts Center in order to help maintain all of our artistic activities. We’ll be open every Saturday and Sunday, 12 – 4 p.m. from November 23 – December 22. Check for any other special holiday hours on our website and in local newspapers.

Then give yourself the gift of membership for 2014 by going directly to:, download the membership form, and send it in by mailing it to us: attention Membership, Marlborough Arts Center, 231 North Main Street, Marlborough, CT 06447. Those of you who remember the old P.O. Box address, will note that we have our own mail box now, a very secure locked mailbox, on site. Already we are preparing for the second Membership Directory and want you to have it soon after the New Year. As you can imagine, “making a list and checking it twice” is very time consuming when we are talking about a membership list. In order to meet our printing and distribution goal we are asking that you rejoin now for the 2014 year. The Membership Committee thanks you sincerely for renewing now and making their work easier.

With best wishes and Thanksgiving blessings to all,


Joan C. Lester, President
Marlborough Arts Center

or at home:
(860) 295-9565