Area events: June 29 – August 26, 2023

Wonka and Oompa Loompas
Photo contributed
Wonka and Oompa Loompas.

‘Wily Wonka’
Thursdays-Sundays, June 29-July 16
The Valley Players will present the family-friendly musical Roald Dahl’s “Willy Wonka” June 29-July 16 at the Valley Players Theater in Waitsfield. Performances will be on Thursdays-Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays, July 2 and 16, at 4 p.m. Roald Dahl’s “Willy Wonka” follows enigmatic candy manufacturer Willy Wonka as he stages a contest by hiding golden tickets in five of his scrumptious candy bars. Whomever comes up with these tickets will win a free tour of the Wonka factory, as well as a lifetime supply of candy. Purchase tickets or more information.

Mushroom meander
Thursday, June 29, 5-7:30 p.m.
The Birds of Vermont Museum in Huntington hosts local author and mycologist Meg Madden for an observation walk around the museum’s property. Learn identification tips and the important roles fungi play in a forest habitat. Registration required and includes a signed copy of Madden’s new book on mushrooms. Note: This is not a foraging program. Read more and register.

Paddling the canoe trail
Thursday, June 29, 6-7 p.m.
Teacher, canoeist and musician Peter Macfarlane presents his story about paddling the Northern Forest Canoe Trail. Program is at Vergennes’ Bixby Library and is free and open to all.

Women in music
Friday, June 30, 6 p.m.
Lincoln Peak Vineyard in New Haven presents a Women in Music series of concerts in June, July and August. Concerts are free but require registration. Food and drinks available for purchase. Sarah King opens the series with her thought-provoking Americana music. Bring blankets and the family; no outside alcohol allowed. Read more and reserve spots.

Celebrate Coolidge and July 4
Tuesday, July 4, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
President Calvin Coolidge is the only U.S. president to be born on Independence Day. The President Calvin Coolidge State Historic Site in Plymouth Notch will host a day of festivities and events on July 4 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Start the day in the Union Christian Church at 9 a.m. for a reading of the Declaration of Independence and at 11:30 a.m. members of the Coolidge family will judge the “Grace Coolidge’s Icebox Cookie Baking Competition” on the porch of the Cilley General Store, listen to an old-time string band, . explore the historic village, see cheesemaking in John Coolidge’s 1890 factory and watch The Coolidge Cup, a national invitational speech and debate tournament. Find more info about the day’s events.

Fredrick Douglass commemoration
Wednesday, July 5, 11 a.m. & 1 p.m.
Rokeby Museum and the Friends of Union Meeting Hall are holding two family-friendly, free events honoring Frederick Douglass. At 11 a.m., Union Meeting Hall will host a morning reflection about Douglass’ legacy and his historic visit to Ferrisburgh in 1843. Rokeby Museum staff will lead a history talk and community reflection on the site where Douglass spoke. Union Meeting Hall will be open for touring. At 1 p.m., Rokeby Museum will hold its annual reading of Douglass’ 1852 speech “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July.” Fredrick Douglass gave this speech at an Independence Day celebration in Rochester, New York, on July 5, 1852. In his speech, Douglass reminded the crowd that not all people celebrated freedom on the Fourth of July: “The blessing in which you, this day, rejoice, are not enjoyed in common.”

Grange on the Green
Thursday, July 6, 5:30-7 p.m.
Patti Casey and Tom MacKenzie are the first performers in the Grange on the Green series of music on the town green. They will be kicking things off on July 6, bringing their original music and everything from French Canadian dance tunes to old time country. On the following Tuesdays in July, Grange on the Green performers will be July 13, Will Patton Quartet; July 20, Nick Carter; and July 27, Minced Oats.

Youth Farm Safety Day
Tuesday, July 11, 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
Kids, ages 10-16, who are interested in learning about farm safety through fun, hands-on activities, may want to check out this free event, which includes lunch, at Newmont Farm, a large Holstein dairy and pumpkin farm in Bradford. It is open to both farm and non-farm kids from Vermont and neighboring states. Workshops will cover safe handling of livestock, proper operation of a fire extinguisher, tractor and farm equipment safety and basic farm first aid. Register here. For more info, call Martha Manning at (802) 656-7621 or email her  by July 3. The Youth Farm Safety Day is sponsored by University of Vermont Extension 4-H.

Charlotte walks
Thursday, July 13, 8:30-9:30 a.m.
Want to get more familiar with Charlotte’s public trails or meet and chat with other Charlotters? Join us for Charlotte Walks this week at Charlotte Park and Wildlife Refuge at 1489 Greenbush Road. Every second Thursday meet at a different trailhead at 8:30 a.m. Walks will generally last about an hour and will be led at an adult walking pace. Note: Dogs are not permitted at the Charlotte Park and Wildlife Refuge.

Grange on the Green: The Will Patton Quartet
Thursday, July 13, 5:30-7 p.m.
The Will Patton Quartet will play gypsy jazz and Brazilian styles as well as straight up bebop and many original compositions. Sponored by Cumbancha Music, ReArch Company and Otter Creek Awnings.

Grange on the Green: Nick Carter
Thursday July 20, 5:30-7pm, Charlotte Town Green
Nick Carter will play original music as well as well-known folk music. Sponsored by ReArch Company and Otter Creek Awnings.

Extended exhibition
Through Friday, July 21
Rokeby Museum in Ferrisburgh is currently exhibiting 15 pictorial hooked rugs that chronicle significant African American women and events. The rugs are reproductions of a 1947 series of linocuts from artist Elizabeth Catlett’s I am the Black Woman series. The exhibition has been extended through July 21. Rokeby is open 10-5 daily.

Grange on the Green: Minced Oats
Thursday July 27, 5:30-7 p.m.
Minced Oats will play neo-traditionalist Americana, bluegrass and folk music on the Charlotte Town Green. Sponsored by Point Bay Marina, ReArch Company and Otter Creek Awnings.

Charlotte walks
Thursday, Aug. 10, 8:30-9:30 a.m.
Join for Thompson’s Point and Whiskey Bay walk at 8:30 a.m. at the parking lot for Whiskey Bay at 1000 North Shore Road (parking lot is on the non-lake side of road … drive slowly, it can be tricky to spot. We’ll have someone standing visibly by the road to help you find us.). We’ll be walking a loop of dirt roads and trails around Thompson’s Point including North Shore Road and Flat Rock Road. The loop is approximately 3 miles. Bring your bathing suit and towel for a dip in the lake afterwards. Whiskey Bay is a free public access to Lake Champlain in Charlotte.

Growing young gardeners
Thursdays through Aug. 17, 10 a.m.-noon
Every Thursday, young people are invited to participate in a free gardening program at the Vermont Garden Park on Dorset Street in South Burlington. A program of the Burlington Garden Club, kids and their accompanying adults learn about different subjects related to gardening. It is not required to attend each week. Best for ages 4-10 with a grown-up (or two). Each session is free; snack time and a craft project is included. Read more and see what to bring, and scroll down a bit.

Vergennes DayVergennes Day
Saturday, Aug. 26, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Head to the Vergennes City Park for the 41st annual Vergennes Day on Saturday, Aug. 26. With over 60 vendor booths in city park, there is fun for all ages. Come check out live music on the bandstand, pancake breakfast and bubble pit at the fire station, horse and wagon rides, Little City Road Race, Lions Club chicken barbecue, merchant sales and more.