Arts & Culture

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People sit in rows of chairs with bidding numbers.
Erica Heilman / VPR

Every Tuesday and Friday night, there’s an auction at the corner of Lower Plain Road and Route 25 in Bradford.  Ely Commission Sales is run by Ernie Stevens, and VPR's Erica Heilman went down on a recent Friday night to talk with Ernie and check out the auction.

Explore the connections between music and the mind in this special Timeline presentation.
Vermont Public Radio

VPR Classical host James Stewart brings a special Timeline podcast presentation to Vermont Edition entitled "Music and the Mind." The show explores the validity of "The Mozart Effect," traces the use of music in advertising and political campaigns, looks at auditory illusions and experiments and follows the history of music therapy.

A green alcohol-free cocktail on a black bar napkin.
Lydia Brown / VPR

January marks 100 years since the 18th Amendment banned alcohol across the United States. Vermont tried its own alcohol ban decades earlier. Today, the state boasts about its craft beer and spirits, even as Vermont has high rates of excessive drinking. And sober-curious drinkers can increasingly find alcohol-free beer and cocktails on the menu. We look at how our relationship with alcohol continues to evolve.

Poet Jericho Brown stands in front of a National Book Foundation background.
Greg Allen / Associated Press / Invision

Poets Jericho Brown and Carmen Giménez Smith — both 2019 National Book Award finalists  — are among those participating in Bennington College’s Writers Reading series in January.

6 square panels, clockwise from top left: woman with sign outside a library, person parading a boar's head, group of football players, two people in snowy woods with dog, Star Pudding Farm Road sign, a person wearing wings.

The bulk of 2019 is in the rearview mirror, and on this yearlong journey we've heard a number of stories that brought a smile to the face of Vermonters. Some were heartfelt, some were quirky, and if you're looking for an end-of-year reminder of those moments, here's a round-up of 19 such stories (brought to you in no particular order).

Good TV seems to be coming at us in increasingly large quantities and from so many different directions. Just last month, two major services — Apple TV+ and Disney+ — launched, joining the crowded field of streaming services. All this added up to a great year for quality television. Here's a list of my favorite shows of 2019.

A stage with musicians on it.
Pete Checchia/Allen Cohen / Courtesy of Marlboro Music Festival

Organizers of the Marlboro Music Festival say the festival will remain on the Marlboro College campus even if the school closes at the end of this academic year.

Empty music room with lights turned on.
John Matychuk / Unsplash

Calling all musical minds! Vermont Edition is going all out this year with our annual 2-hour music show on Friday, Dec. 13. We're looking for your input on music—any music—that was important to you in 2019, and the songs that captured moments of joy, provided solace in times of need or felt special to you in any way.

Stack of books topped with jar of pencils.
Debby Hudson / Unsplash

As the second decade of the 21st century draws to a close, we're here to talk about the best books you've read this year. In Vermont Edition's semi-annual book show, we'll be talking about your literary picks for the year, whether that's novels, history, memoir or poetry.

A written message of 'Happy Holidays' from VPR.
Marcus Lindstrom / iStock

This holiday season, make VPR and VPR Classical part of your celebrations! Enjoy a variety of traditional and new programs and music, VPR Classical's "Messiah Watch" and more.

Hands near multiple bingo cards on a table
Erica Heilman / For VPR

There's a lot of bingo in grange halls across Vermont, particularly in winter. Bingo starts at 6 p.m. on Saturday nights at the Blue Mountain Grange, in Ryegate Corner.

NPR's Book Concierge returns with 350+ new books handpicked by NPR staff and trusted critics. This year, for the first time, users can explore seven years of Concierge recommendations all in one place – that's more than 2,000 great reads.

Open the app now!

Peter Gelb has not enjoyed a particularly smooth tenure as the general manager at New York's Metropolitan Opera. But the company's board expressed its faith in him on Monday by extending his contract through 2027.

The agreement — which arrived a full two and a half years before Gelb's current contract expires — signals the board's strong commitment to Gelb, who earned some $2.17 million in combined pay and benefits during the company's last reported financial year.

Wood cut outs spelling "Jake" on stop of a snowy mountain.
Lisa Rathke / Associated Press

Jake Burton Carpenter has been called the "godfather" of snowboarding, founding Burton Snowboards and helping transform the sport from a novelty into a staple of winter recreation. He died last week from complications related to cancer. He was  65. 

Vermont Edition spoke with snowboarders and associates to reflect on Carpenter's life, career and legacy.

Three ships at sea in the sunset.
Jeremy Merritt

Last month, we received a pitch from a listener named Kim. "I was thinking today that a fun theme for a future show might be all of the salty residents of this tiny state," she wrote. By "salty residents," Kim is referring to the community of Merchant Mariners who live in Vermont. According to Kim, "it's an amazing career with long periods away from home, solitude, intensity..."

A man sits in front of a bookshelves
Elodie Reed / VPR

Wolfgang Mieder, a professor of German and folklore at the University of Vermont, has a private collection of 9,000 books of proverbs from all over the world. Amassed over decades, his collection stretches more than the length of three football fields. It's now housed at UVM's Billings Library, but before that? He was in danger of losing the vast majority because he was running out of space in his Williston home.

The Grammy Awards' category for new artists has always been the Hufflepuff house of the event, a mishmash of eccentrics, high achievers and hard-working young music industry favorites. (Notorious category winners Milli Vanilli did work hard, just not at singing.) Rarely has the field clearly pointed toward an exciting new musical era. But this year, that's exactly what it suggests.

Sophie Vershbow has seen her share of "OK, boomer" memes in recent weeks. The phrase that's suddenly everywhere is meant to convey a fundamental disconnect between younger generations and baby boomers who cling to outdated, off-base ideas.

To Vershbow, a 30-year-old social media manager, the sentiment behind the memes is this: "I think it's a dismissive, 'OK, whatever you say.' "

A college student sits in front of a window
Amy Kolb Noyes / VPR

A month ago, Champlain College sophomore Peter Kuli was in his dorm room, messing around with a friend's rap song about baby boomer attitudes. He uploaded the remix online, and in the weeks since the song – and its "OK boomer" catchphrase – have gone viral. 

From our continuing series ‘Vermont Edition Presents’, bringing you to live events in communities around Vermont, a performance that blends the old and the new as Burlington soul-singer Kat Wright teams up with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra in a sold-out show at Higher Ground.