February 2020

~Chamber Newsletter~

Info and happenings in our 
Chamber and Town!

Brandon Area Chamber of Commerce- Candidates Forum 
Thursday, February 27th at 6:30pm

 To be held in the Town Hall downstairs meeting room. 
The Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a forum for the 
three candidates vying for the two  1 year select board seats 
in Brandon.  Candidates will have an opportunity to introduce themselves, share their ideas, and answer questions from 
the public.
For more information contact the Chamber at 802-247-6401 or email info@brandon.org
The three candidates are- Alison Walter, Seth Hopkins and Doug Bailey.
Your vote is your voice, be informed!

And be sure to attend Town Meeting on Monday night March 2nd and 
vote on Tuesday March 3rd from 7am-7pm!!  Both events in the Town Hall.
Or vote early at the town offices.

Leap Year Roast Pork Dinner
Leap  into the Fellowship Hall
Saturday, February 29th  5-7 p.m. 

Brandon Congregational Church
1 Carver Street, Brandon, Vermont
Menu: Pork Roast, Mashed Potatoes, Maple Roasted Carrots and Green Beans, Applesauce, Homemade Pies and Rolls
Free Will Offering

Town Hall 2020 events
Exciting entertainment!!

Ending a busy winter schedule and starting off spring-

Feb 28, Wildlife Encounters of New England 6:30pm $5
March 13 The Local Scene! Teen Bands 7pm $5
March 21 Brandon Idol 7pm $5
April 4 Carol Ann Jones and the Superchargers 7pm $15
April 11 Brandon Idol $5
April 25 Deb Brisson and the Hay Burners! $15
May 9 Brandon Idol $5

Brandon Music welcomes the 
Michelle Fay Band 
Saturday February 29th at 7:30pm.

Lovers of authentic folk and Americana music welcome opportunities to hear the Michele Fay Band perform original well crafted original songs and Americana music. This energetic and unpretentious group brings forth a comfortable groove of folk, swing, and bluegrass-influenced songs, woven seamlessly together. Fay's heartfelt lyrics are central to the ensemble, as she sings with a crystal clear, authentic voice. The Rutland Herald called her voice "smooth and entrancing" and says "While the band's playing is top-notch, there's a reason it's called the Michele Fay Band, and that's Michele's voice."
Fay's three band musicians are a perfect match for her talent as a singer-songwriter, and they add to the charm and sincerity of these songs without detracting from their earnest messages. Kalev Freeman, on fiddle, brings forth a light-hearted, lilting sound. Michael Santosusso, on upright bass, (Smokin' Grass, Big Spike, Hot Pickin' Party) adds dynamic beat and perfectly matched harmonies and Fay's husband, Tim Price, contributes accomplished, melodic instrumentals on mandolin and guitar.
"There is something so reassuring about this kind of music... these tunes are Grand Ole Opry worthy. They make me think of the kind of songs country folks would love to dance to on a saw-dusted wooden floor," says Kimmy Sophia Brown of The Noise-Boston.com.
The band's growing musicianship is increasingly being well received throughout the region as it continues to gather its well-deserved recognition. "Michele is now recognized as a performer who knows how to write strong songs and deliver them entertainingly." (Art Edelstein, Rutland Herald)  The Michelle Fay Band has the skill to entertain their audience, put them at ease and welcome them in.

Concert begins at 7:30pm. Concert tickets are $20. A pre-concert dinner is available for $25.  Reservations are required for dinner and recommended for the show. Venue is BYOB. Call (802) 247-4295 or e-mail info@brandon-music.net for reservations or for more information. Brandon Music is located at 62 Country Club Rd. Brandon, VT 05733 www.brandon-music.net

The Road Home- Peg Racine- watercolor
The exhibit opens with a free reception on March 6 from 5PM to 7PM, and will run through April 28.

As the landscape thaws and life begins to stir, the Brandon Artists Guild (BAG) presents "Wanderlust" - a new, all-member, all-media    art show.
"Wanderlust" celebrates journeys real, fanciful, and metaphorical. The show features original artwork from the BAG's exhibiting members in glass, watercolor, oil, ceramics, fabric, photography, and more.
"Even when we're happy at home in lovely Vermont, our hearts sometimes yearn for the romance of new locales and experiences - that's wanderlust," explains BAG artist and board member Ashley Wolff. "Part of the artists' journey is to try to express that beautiful restlessness. We invite the public to come along."
The Brandon Artists Guild is an artist-run gallery with approximately 40 exhibiting members and additional supporting members. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit cultural organization, the BAG supports the visual arts through exhibitions, lectures, demonstrations, and educational programs.

The BAG, at 7 Center Street in Brandon, is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10AM to 5PM, and Sunday from 10AM to 4PM. Open seven days a week starting April 1. Information: 802 247-4956. www.BrandonArtistsGuild.org. Instagram: @brandonartistsguildvt 

  The Journey-Ashley Wolff-         Side Roads- Judith Reilly-fabric        Heading Home-Joan Drew- 
      watercolor                                                                                             watercolor

Italian flatpicking guitar maestro and vocalist Beppe Gambetta at Brandon Music 
Saturday March 7 th at 7:30pm. 

Brandon Music is thrilled to be welcoming master innovator of the acoustic guitar Beppe Gambetta, on Saturday March 7
th at 7:30pm. 
From his background as an Italian musician in love with both American roots music as well as the music of his native country, Beppe has traveled the world and even crossed the "Iron Curtain" to dazzle and charm music enthusiasts everywhere. After 11 CDs, DVDs, teaching books and collaborations with many other top-flight musicians, Gambetta is known as one of the true master innovators of the acoustic guitar.
While Gambetta still lives in his native Genova, Italy, he travels to North America at least three times each year. His reputation in the U.S. and Canada is reinforced by his participation in prestigious festivals like the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas, Merlefest in North Carolina, the Four Corners Festival in Colorado and Canadian Folk Festivals in Winnipeg and Edmonton, as well as events like the radio shows "All Things Considered" and "E-Town."
Gambetta has performed at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. He has performed with some great heroes of the folk scene including David Grisman, Gene Parsons, Doc Watson, Norman Blake, and with the band Men Of Steel: an international guitar summit (Dan Crary, Tony McManus, and Don Ross) of different guitar schools with complex musical interactions.
Gambetta's masterful playing and quality vocals stand out for their intimate emotions, communication, tone, sobriety, and humor. His music modestly avoids relying solely on his high level of technical excellence but reveals the innermost feelings of a brilliant, playful mind that is always exploring and innovating while staying firmly rooted in tradition.  
Gambetta is continually composing his personal mosaic of sounds and flavors, exploring new possibilities and pushing beyond conventional borders. He creates a fusion where American roots music and Ligurian tradition, emigration songs and folk ballads, steel-string guitars, and vintage harp guitars not only coexist but interact, weaving a deep dialogue.
Concert begins at 7:30pm. Concert tickets are $20. A pre-concert dinner is available for $25.  Reservations are required for dinner and recommended for the show. Venue is BYOB. Call (802) 247-4295 or e-mail info@brandon-music.net for reservations or for more information. Brandon Music is located at 62 Country Club Rd. Brandon, VT 05733 www.brandon-music.net

Celebrating fifteen years of musical partnership: the Cerutti-Reid Duo perform on piano and viola
at Brandon Music
Saturday, March 14
at 7:30 pm

Brandon Music is delighted to welcome the Cerutti-Reid Duo on Saturday, March 14, at 7:30 pm when they will be performing an evocative and varied classical program of 19 th to 21 st century music on piano and viola.
  Pianist Alison Bruce Cerutti and violist Elizabeth Reid are two of Vermont's finest instrumentalists and are also members of the Northern Third Piano Quartet - well known for their first rate performances. This present series of concerts as a piano-viola duo is intended to celebrate 15 years of Cerutti and Reid's musical partnership. 
As part of this stirring program the Cerutti-Reid duo will give the world premiere of Vermont composer Carol Wood's work for viola and piano, The Long Parting. Also featured are the American premieres of the works Curfew by Elisabeth Blair and Sonata for Viola and Piano by David Jaeger. The program will also include Ballade by Claude Debussy, Fratres by Arvo Pärt and will conclude with Sonata in F minor for viola and piano by Johannes Brahms.  This latter piece sparked the start of Cerutti and Reid's collaboration as a duo. They will be performing this program at venues throughout Vermont
Concert begins at 7:30pm. Concert tickets are $20. A pre-concert dinner is available for $25.  Reservations are required for dinner and recommended for the show. Venue is BYOB. Call (802) 247-4295 or e-mail info@brandon-music.net for reservations or for more information. Brandon Music is located at 62 Country Club Rd. Brandon, VT 05733 www.brandon-music.net

The ever popular Snake Mountain Bluegrass at Brandon Music 
Saturday March 21 st  at 7:30pm

Brandon Music welcomes Snake Mountain Bluegrass to Brandon Music on March 21 st at 7:30pm. This fun and energetic group is extremely popular and always well received.
Whether you enjoy traditional bluegrass or a more eclectic flavor, Snake Mountain's "toe tapping tunes combine the best of modern and traditional bluegrass" according to Seven Days, with harmonies and songs that vary in tempo from "breakdown" to ballad.  They are known for their vocal, instrumental and original songwriting talents, plus a great sense of humor and on-stage banter.
Retired Middlebury College professor Gregg Humphrey and soon to change focus, Middlebury construction company owner Mike Connor formed Snake Mountain Bluegrass about 30 years ago. At the time, both Humphrey (guitar and vocals) and Connor (banjo and vocals) were living near Snake Mountain, and someone asked them what style of bluegrass they played. "Snake Mountain bluegrass," was their immediate response, and the name has been theirs ever since. They are joined by Earle Provin and Jacob Blumberg.  This popular group always puts on an authentic show for everyone.
Concert begins at 7:30pm. Concert tickets are $20. A pre-concert dinner is available for $25.  Reservations are required for dinner and recommended for the show. Venue is BYOB. Call (802) 247-4295 or e-mail info@brandon-music.net for reservations or for more information. Brandon Music is located at 62 Country Club Rd. Brandon, VT 05733 www.brandon-music.net

Join us at the Brandon Free Public Library for stimulating book discussions led by Sumner Erbe!!

Segment 6-Brandon Celebration Event: 2 days to show off!
Friday, Sept. 25 & Saturday, Sept. 26

The Brandon Chamber, working with many other town entities, is putting on a town wide celebration for all of Brandon to enjoy and to bring folks from near and far to shop, walk, eat, listen to music, and see what we all have accomplished...a beautiful, new, walkable, drivable, vibrant downtown. The goal is to stir up buzz that weekend and showcase our town so that folks will come back again and again! Other events planned include music in the parks, town historical tours, visiting dignitaries, Brandon past and present photo displays, artwork, a talent show and lots more!

  Watch for details and information as we finalize plans and sign up for our 
newsletter at   www.brandon.org

Red Clover Ale Co.
Beautiful downtown Brandon

Red Clover Ale Company is a small 3 BBL brewery and taproom in Brandon, VT.  We believe that beer is the most complex and wonderful beverage in the world and we want to highlight that complexity.  Our goal is to brew an array of delicious beers and to have an ever changing tap list to allow for new beer drinking experiences.  Our work is inspired by our backgrounds in farming, the changing seasons, and the natural beauty of Vermont. Also, our tastebuds!

We are a "bring your own food" taproom and there are several options within walking distance. We strive to be very kid and family friendly. Come hang out, play some games, and have some beer!

Everyone loves Mexican food & Red Clover's beer!!
Every Thursday you can find authentic Baja style Mexican food served up fresh  by Mari Luisa Verduzco  Murguia, of La Catrina fame! Delicious with all of Red Clover's great beers. 
 Check her out on Facebook to see each week's scrumptious offerings and tasty desserts.

Serving from 4:00-9:00 pm

Brandon's own NIFTY THRIFTY !
Next to the Episcopal Church-nice new digs, 
same nice folks, same nice prices!!

New address is: 19 Conant Square, Brandon VT. That is the
painted-brick, Federal style house, the rectory for the Episcopal Church, 
at the corner of Rt 7 and Prospect  Street. Great parking in the back.

  Our winter hours are:
Monday - Saturday 10am - 2pm.

Our Mission- Nifty Thrifty's Mission is to help our community as it cultivates its image as a cultural, spiritual, commercial, recreational and educational center. 
We do this by giving to local programs, projects, events,  activities, organizations and  ideas.

We have a Facebook page too.  NIFTY Thrifty Thrift SHOP   
Come visit us and check out our neat new location!

Brandon Dog Park at 
Estabrook Park
Fundraising effort

Location: Estabrook Park, Route 7 South, Brandon
Goal: Half to one Acre 6' chain-link fenced dog park with double entry gate and mowing entrance, small and large dog area, rule sign, dog waste trash bin with bag dispenser, large donor name listing.
Estimated cost for fence, installation, signs: $15,000-$20,000

Project Organized and Supported By Volunteers, Brandon Recreation and Town of Brandon- Questions: brandonvtdogpark@gmail.com

Miller Hill Farm, Nursery 
& Gardens  
2127 Rte 73 E.  Sudbury 623-7373

"Nurture your imagination in alluring surroundings"

We're working on our spring orders and getting prepared for a great season! 

Make up your wish list and fill it here on the Hill!

Thursday, March 19th is the first day of spring

"Brandon Chamber Members receive 10% off" Click here and check us out!   See what's happening in our newsletter too. 

The Brandon Museum & Visitor Center  at the Stephen A. Douglas Birthplace 
Another benefit for Chamber members-

The Janet Mondlak visitor center has advertising space for chamber members. The visitor center is open every day of the year. Visitors to the a rea stop in regularly to get information about things to do. If you have a rack card which  advertises your business, drop some off at the museum between 11:00 and 4:00 weekdays or at Carr's Gift Shop downtown.

Brandon's Energy Committee-
Quick recommendation if you're looking to 
save some money!

1) lighting, 2) heating, cooling and ventilation, 3) insulation, windows and doors, 4) refrigeration and commercial kitchens, 5) renewable energy, 6) appliances, 7) electronics, 8) transportation, 9) agricultural equipment, and 10) industrial and special equipment costs.
Efficiency Vermont has all of the products available here:
And all of the rebates available here:
(Background on Efficiency Vermont: Founded in 2000 as the nation's first energy efficiency utility, they are Vermont's objective adviser on saving energy through efficiency, which is the most affordable, local fuel source. In every county, they provide Vermonters with technical services and financial support to improve their homes, businesses, and communities. They also train and partner with local providers of efficient goods and services so all Vermonters can easily find the efficiency resources they need.)
Here's a quick list of all that's covered on their site:

  For more info click here-  https://www.efficiencyvermont.com/rutland

BARN OPERA Transitions to prepare for the first production of 2020 at the NEW BARN!

Announces a change in location and programming affecting the following productions:
TOSCA by G. Puccini (Sung in Italian with English Supertitles)
(Brandon, VT)- With the exciting news of the purchase of the new barn and renovations to prepare for the first production of 2020 in the new space,
BARN OPERA has decided to make some adjustments to the completion of the 2019 season.
Please click here for complete information on these exciting happenings with Barn Opera

Free online tech support!

This is why we love the Brandon area, and the folks who make up our Chamber of Commerce!
Many thanks to Greg Smela of 
" Simple Systems of Vermont", a locally owned tech company. Greg will provide free online tech support for BACC members via an online support forum.

How does it work?

Easy! Current BACC members can sign up at www.ssvt.net/bacc. You'll be prompted to create an account by entering your name, email address, company/organization name and phone number. Your account will be activated within a few hours and you'll receive instructions at the email address you provide. 

What do you get? Simple... free support. That means, if you have a computer or other tech-related question you can post it in the forum and expect to receive an answer generally within 24 hours (but most likely much sooner). What kind of support is provided? We'll assist with hardware and software support and advice. Are you having a problem deciding on what hardware might work for your business or what software application will do the job? Post away and we'll help you.
What isn't covered: Telephone or email support. We can't answer your individual questions by email or phone as we are a business too and need to earn our keep! We also can't help your Aunt Ida or your friends, kids, pets, etc., but we hope this free service will help you deal with the small problems you may face from day to day.

We ask that you limit participation to one account per BACC membership. We are providing this for current BACC members as a way to help support our wonderful Brandon community.
                    Many thanks Greg!!
Celebrate the good life with Brandon's own award-winning beer and wine.
Brandon's home grown beers and wines!

Foley Brothers Brewing and Neshobe River Winery's tasting barn is open Wednesday through Saturday 11 to 5. Tasting flights, growler fills, bottles, and a country setting await you. Bring your friends or make some new ones here!

Others drive hundreds of miles to enjoy the beer that's right in your back yard! Come visit us today.
 Follow us on Facebook and don't miss our latest release.
 Open Sundays 11-4:00 starting Memorial Day weekend!
  Read a great little review from a Woodstock B&B blog here!
  Foley Brothers Brewing
Neshobe River Winery
Inn At Neshobe River
79 Stone Mill Dam Rd.   247-8002   oldmillbnb@yahoo.com

CoWork @ The GRANARY
29 Union Street, Brandon

CoWork @ The GRANARY is a newly developed coworking space in Brandon, just steps away
from the village center. It is the perfect contemporary environment to work, collaborate and
be productive. This space provides high speed internet, a comfortable professional work
environment and client meeting space. This is the answer to the problem of slow internet
speeds and social isolation that freelancers, creatives and remote workers often experience.

$150/month includes 24/7 access,150 Mbps high speed internet, all utilities

CoWork @ The GRANARY provides 24/7 access to an attractive, fully furnished, shared
nomadic work environment. The extra-large space includes: high speed internet, office desks
and chairs, conference table, comfortable couch and seating, privacy screens, lighting, kitchen
area, private conversation space, cubbies and miscellaneous office supplies.

The beautifully renovated, historic building houses thirteen artist studios, small business offices
and a coworking space. The building offers lots of windows and natural fluorescent light,
handicapped ramp, and parking. The creative and business community includes milliners,
jeweler, graphic designer, writers, painters, sculptors, insurance office, railroad company,
medium and hair salon. The GRANARY is located in the vibrant village of Brandon, walking
distance to shops, restaurants and galleries.

Stephanie 802-683-8209, sjerome@visuallearningsys.com
Brian 802-683-4126, bjerome@visuallearningco.com

Call for Exhibit Proposals at the Compass Music and Arts Center
Compass is seeking innovative work for solo and/or group exhibits from artists working in a variety of media.

Curators and both emerging and established artists are encouraged to apply. Site-specific work/installations will also be considered. This is a rolling open call for exhibits.
  A variety of exhibit spaces are available, giving flexibility to artists for the scope of their vision and needs.
  Further information, including a sample exhibit contract and submission guidelines, can be found at www.cmacvt.org.
  Compass is a multi-faceted arts center with many components drawing visitors through its doors, including artist studios, gift shops, a consignment shop, music, a café, and a variety of events. Located in Brandon, Vermont it is also in the heart of a pulsing arts community.
  The Compass Music and Arts Center is located in Park Village at 333 Jones Drive, Brandon VT, 05733 (Park Village used to be the Brandon Training School, located 1.5 miles north of downtown Brandon off Arnold District Rd.).

The Divine Art Recordings Group at Compass
Many people still don't realize that Brandon is home to one of the busiest and critically praised classical music record companies. 

 We moved our headquarters from England in 2009 and  now have our offices and a dedicated CD store at the Compass Music & Arts Center, in Park Village.  We specialize in contemporary music and rediscovered  masterpieces - not the same old pieces that everyone else records..... we have just completed a massive ten -CD  series for  Russia's greatest living composer  Artyomov, a similar series for Cambridge MA organ composer Carson Cooman and are signing superb artists from around the world Including (this year already) USA, UK, France, Australia, Malta and Iran.  Our recordings are available at all CD and digital /streaming sites but you can come to our store, discuss and sample over 500 titles of music from the 15 th to 21 st century.  

We are open Monday-Saturday 10-5 at 333 Jones Drive, Brandon. 247-4295. 
Please note we do NOT have a local recording studio.

Studio and Gallery Spaces available to rent now at the Compass Center


Calling all artists in all disciplines! Have you ever dreamed of creating and working in a supportive environment with other artists? A place where there is space for artists to create, display and sell their work, provide classes, meet with colleagues and have access to a café and other amenities.  Compass Music and Arts Center is such a place. For more information and to schedule a visit, call Edna Sutton at 802-247-4295.  Very reasonable rates starting from $170 per month inclusive of all utilities.  Short leases available.
Compass Music and Arts Center 333 Jones Drive, Park Village, Brandon, VT.

Here at Awesome Graphics we want to let our fellow chamber members know of these great offerings!
#1 MENUS!!
Awesome Graphics now offers Menus that are done on waterproof paper! No more messy and costly lamination needed.
This amazing process is great for short run menus of any size - up to 11x17!
Cost start at .50 per menu and up depending on size.
Call today for a FREE sample of your menu!
Now offering rental equipment for your next trade show! 
If you want to have a fresh and unique look for your next show and save money on hardware consider our NEW Trade show Hardware Rental Program!
We have a lot of inventory to choose from - give us a call today!

Get on board the successful Gateways
to Adventure promotion!
You can sponsor a page at any time,
for one full year, for only $25.00
Sponsor ALL eleven pages
for only $200.00  
Gateways to Adventure        Click here for a printable PDF   Sponsorship form


Chamber "dollars"- a refresher course!

Every now and then I think it's important to
remind those of us who have been taking Brandon Green for years, and new businesses that have joined the Chamber, about the process for handling the certificates.
The $5.00, $20.00 and $25.00 certificates are legal tender and handled just like a check. You take the Brandon Green and give your customer change back, just like cash or a check. Then you deposit the Brandon Green into your account, just like a check. Simple and supportive of all our members.
Click here for more info on our popular Brandon Green

Vermont Association of Chamber Executives
Insurance program offerings for Chamber members.
Products offered through VACE include, Dental and Vision packages.
M ore information on all of these products can be found at www.vaceinsurance.com
Or contact the Richards Group (802) 775-2503 

Next Chamber Meeting-
Monday, April 20th, 2020 will be our next meeting!    6:30pm
(The board is having a goal setting retreat in place of our March meeting.) 

The Brandon Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors will meet at 6:30pm in the Cliver Room at the Stephen A Douglas Birthplace. Chamber membership  and the general public are invited to attend.