Archives for August 2012

Ulla Lund Turns 105 years old.

 

Lexington resident Ulla Lund recently turned 105 years old. Lund, who has lived for decades on Farmcrest Road in Lexington, is loved and admired by generations of friends and neighbors. Each year, family, friends and neighbors celebrate Ulla’s birthday in the neighborhood by getting together to present her a cake.

 

With 105 candles, someone should have alerted the Lexington Fire Department.

Happy birthday to you Ulla. You clearly bring lots of joy into so many lives.

 

 

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Lexington’s Ulla Lund celebrates her 105th birthday

 

Lexington resident Ulla Lund recently turned 105 years old. Lund, who has lived for decades on Farmcrest Road in Lexington, is loved and admired by generationsof friends and neighbors. Each year, family, friends and neighbors celebrate Ulla’s birthday in the neighborhood by gettintogether to present her a cake. With 105 candles, someone should have alerted the Lexington Fire Department. Happy birthday to you Ulla. You clearly bring lots of joy into so many lives.

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LACS Fall Classes & Events

Join our local and nationally known, expert art instructors as they guide everyone from the novice to the advanced in enhancing your skills and enriching your artistic experience. Select a class in drawing, painting, ceramics, create jewelry, carve a bird, learn the dynamics of color, weave, take a photography class or explore the possibilities of Decorative painting. .

Art Teachers: the Society is an approved venue to award Professional Development Points (PDP’s) to teachers for Mass. DOE certification.

Classes fill up quickly so stop by the Society Office, call 781 862 9696 or visit LACSma.org for more information.

12th Biennial Art-A-Blooming

September 21, 22, 23

Gallery Hours Daily: 11AM – 4PM

130 Waltham Street

Free admission and parking

A Collaborative Event of the Lexington Arts & Crafts Society (LACS) and the Lexington Field & Garden Club (LFGC) during the opening Lexington’s 300th Anniversary.

If you have ever been to Art-in-Bloom at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, then you know just how impressive floral interpretations of artwork can be. Under the collaborative leadership of Shirley King of LACS and of Harriet Hathaway and Kate Gill of LFGC, we have our own local version of Art-in-Bloom.

View 34 unique floral interpretations arranged by Lexington Field & Garden Club designers of a variety of beautiful works of art created by Lexington Arts & Crafts Society members.

Bring your family and friends to marvel at the art works and their inventive floral interpretations.

For more information call 781-862-9696 or visit www.LACSma.org.

The Lexington Arts and Crafts Society is a non-profit 501 (C) (3) organization established in 1935. and celebrating our 75th Anniversary dedicated to preserving and educating the community in the arts and crafts.

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LexMedia Fall TV Production Classes

Editing class at LexMedia

LexMedia Fall TV Production Classes

Orientation

Sept 4, Oct 2, Nov 6, Dec 4

7PM

In this 90-minute class you will learn all about LexMedia.  We’ll start with a thorough tour of the facilities then we’ll talk about our rules, regulations and procedures and how LexMedia is organized and funded.  You’ll also learn about our current productions and what’s possible. This class is a prerequisite for all other classes offered by LexMedia.

Field Production Part 1

Sept 11, Oct 9, Nov 13, Dec 11

7PM

During this two-hour course you will receive hands on instruction with our Sony NX70U HD cameras. The class teaches the basic skills of field production including camera operation, camera movement, tripod use, working with talent, aesthetics of production and more.  The completion of this class enables the new LexMedia members to take the Field Production part 2 class.

Field Production Part 2

Sept 18, Oct 16, Nov 20, Dec 18

7PM

In this class we will set up a typical interview scenario.  We’ll then light it with classic 3 point lighting and set up and adjust the audio recording system.  By experimenting with the lighting and trying various microphones you’ll learn what works best and why.  This class certifies the LexMedia member to use our portable production equipment.

Intro To Editing

Sept. 19, Oct 17, Nov 7, Dec 12

7PM

Learn about video editing in a modern computer lab.  We offer basic intro classes in both Premier Pro (Mac & PC) and Final Cut Pro X (Mac). You must be a LexMedia member and have taken the Orientation class.

Sept 19, Nov 7: Premier Pro

Oct 17, Dec 12 Final Cut Pro X.

Intro To Studio Production

Date And Time To Be Determined

Learn how to produce a studio based program.  You’ll get hands on experience with all production positions from directing to audio mixing to camera operation, graphics creation and more. Occasionally this class will be held during a real TV production in the LexMedia studio.  After this two- hour class you are encouraged to take part in ongoing studio productions and/or start your own.

All classes are free and open to people who live, work or attend school in Lexington.  For more information visit Lexmedia.org or contact mark@lexmedia.org.

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Christmas Every Day

Kathryn Benjamin

By Ashley Rooney  |  Kathryn Benjamin, Director of Development for the Cary Library Memorial Foundation since September 2005, has announced that she will be leaving the Foundation to serve as the Director of Development for the Somerville Homeless Coalition, starting September 17. A Lexington resident, Kathryn has two children in the high school.

During her tenure, Kathryn has helped the Foundation grow into a mature development operation, comprising appeal mailings, planned giving, and events, as well as supporting the board through its own growth. Additionally, she participated in conversations with the library trustees, the Foundation and the Friends of the Library to help develop their vision of themselves as a three-legged stool supporting the library. She feels herself fortunate to have worked with Kerry Brandon, Janet Tiampo and Jeanne Krieger, presidents of the Foundation, as well as Connie Rawson and Koren Stembridge, the Library Directors.

The need for the Foundation and the Annual Fund is great. The library is a municipal entity supported by tax dollars, but once Proposition 2 ½ took effect in 1982, most of the library’s budget went toward salaries and operating costs—not collections and programs. Up until 2004, the endowment played a role in filling the gap in the materials budget. But between spending $1 million of the $2 million endowment for the building campaign and the increased demand for materials, the endowment was no longer sufficient to fill the budget gap. Since 2004, the Library has needed an additional source of revenue.

The Cary Memorial Library Foundation was ready to fill that gap, having just successfully completed a $4.2 million capital campaign for the building renovations. The quality of Cary Memorial Library’s collection depends on the generous gifts of donors. Charitable contributions make up some 40% of the annual budget for books and other materials in the main collection. According to Kathryn, “The Foundation provides over $160,000 each year for materials, programming, and other needs. Lexington residents are such voracious readers that although hundreds of new materials that are added to the collection each year, they fly off the shelves.”

During Kathryn’s first year, she focused on the annual appeal, which raised $84,892 from 519 people her first year. This past year, the annual fund raised $214,000 from 1,181 people. By her third year, thanks in a large part to the initiative of then Foundation board member Claude Brenner, the Foundation developed the Maria Hastings Cary Legacy Society to receive planned gifts. Since its inception, 19 people have included the Foundation in their estate plans. Kathryn says, “We now receive at least one planned gift a year, and more people are being intentional about giving to the library.”

The next component to add to the development operation was events, with a focus on improving the Foundation’s stewardship and cultivation efforts. The Cary Library Art Sale and Soiree (CLASS), a large-scale juried art show and silent auction was launched in 2009, followed by Grape Expectations, a wine tasting event. These first two events opened up a new way for people to experience Cary Library as a place to celebrate as a community. Last year, the Foundation hosted the fun and festive Cary’s Cupids, which will be held again on February 9, 2013.

Kathryn emphasizes that the Foundation would not be able to achieve the results it has without the many volunteers who donate hundreds of hours. Volunteers range from board members, to committee members, to those who work on the phonathons and mailings. She points out that phonathons can be the most daunting volunteer task. Her first one was held soon after the new building was completed in April 2004. Not everyone was enamored with the new library: people complained about the amount of space and the empty shelves! Phonathon callers would listen patiently to the negative comments. For example, one citizen didn’t want to contribute until the library lights were turned off at night. The volunteer told the library staff; the timers for the lights were adjusted. The following year the caller was able to tell the complainer that the lights were fixed. He retorted, “I know that, and I will give you a donation this year.”

Eighty percent of Lexington citizens have library cards. “We all benefit from the library,” Kathryn comments, adding that “Lexington residents are so generous. Their love for this library has made this job a joy. I feel like it’s Christmas every day around here when I open the mail.”

Through Kathryn’s guidance and the hard work of the volunteers, the Foundation has been able to fill the gap that occurred after the building campaign and help make this great library an extraordinary library.

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Making Art & Making a Living

Nina and Kerry Brandin

By Laurie Atwater  |  It’s a bright day at the Lexington Farmer’s Market. I’ve just come off the highway—five hours from northern Maine to Lexington and I remember that I want to make a stop at the Farmer’s market to see Nina Brandin’s jewelry. I know that she is there because supportive mom, Kerry Brandin has sent an email letting friends know. Love that!

The Lexington Farmer’s Market features an eclectic mix of food artisans, farmers and craftspeople. Nina’s corner is populated with fellow craftspeople hoping to catch the eye of a buyer or two. As I make my way over, I am reminded of how tough it can be tough to make a living as an artist or artisan, but that it’s possible, too if you have talent, the right temperament, resilience and a capacity for risk-taking—not to mention luck, perseverance and a couple of supportive parents!

Hearing Nina’s story, it is clear that her parents, Kerry and Jan Brandin had a lot to do with her success. From an early age, Kerry took Nina with her to craft shows around the area exposing her to the beauty of handcrafted work and the dazzle of pretty beads and shiny metals! “At bead shows she would appease me by saying, ‘if you’re really good, I’ll buy you a couple of beads,’” Nina recalls. “All day I’d be planning which beads I wanted!”

When Nina was in middle school her mom signed her up for a silversmithing class at Minuteman Tech. “It was an after school program and we made a knot ring,” she recalls. After that there were classes at the Munroe School for the Arts and the Lexington Arts and Crafts Society where she studied with award-winning jewelry designer and metalsmith Munya Upin.

“From a very early age Nina was just good at working with her hands,” her mother Kerry says. She even loved woodworking!” Indeed, Nina remembers “Wood with Mr. Wood” at Clarke Middle School!

Her other great love is music. “I started playing bass [upright bass] in fourth grade through the Lexington Public Schools,” Nina says. Nina took private lessons, but the experiences that really nurtured her love of music came from playing at Lexington High School with Jeff Leonard. “I was a busy kid at Lexington High School,” she recalls with laughter. “I played in all of the groups—jazz combo, orchestra, honors orchestra—I even played in the pit orchestra for the plays and a couple of times I did pep band for football games!” Nina remembers going to Europe with the jazz ensemble, performing at the Berkeley School of Music and competing in the Winton Marsalis/Duke Ellington competition at Lincoln Center! She has a vivid recollection of a workshop at LHS with bass virtuoso Christian McBride and Joshua Redman. “The training I got in Lexington has really given me the opportunity to teach and give back,” Nina says, “because the education was so great.”

Nina, who now lives in Boulder, Colorado, performs with the Broomfield Symphony in her free time. She is section-leader on acoustic bass and is serving a third season on their Board. She also takes every opportunity to play jazz and big band music.

Another love of hers with a Lexington connection is her passion for photography. According to Nina, she is very seldom without a camera. “I loved photography with Mr. Z [Jack Zichitella] she says, “I love taking pictures and I learned how to do it with him! I learned about composition and spatial awareness going from 3-D to 2-D—and about angles and light. It sort of shaped my sense of jewelry design in a way,” she reflects.

Nina’s unique sand dollar necklace embellished with multi-colored beads.

What taught her the nuts and bolts jewelry making was her time at the North Bennett Street School (NBSS) in the North End. After a couple of years in mechanical engineering at UMass Amherst, Nina decided that it wasn’t for her. She took some time off to reflect, went to Maine for a season to teach snowboarding (a skill she acquired through the Nashoba Valley after school program at LHS) and was ready to come back to Boston when her mom directed her to the program at NBSS. It was instantly attractive to Nina. “It’s a fifteen month bench jewelry program,” she explains. “Every day you are working hands-on and solving problems. Mistakes are not allowed—you fix your mistakes along the way,” she laughs. The strength of the program is that it gave her technical mastery first and foremost. Mom Kerry Brandin saw it as the perfect program for her daughter. The curriculum combined Nina’s mechanical ability with her aesthetic side and allowed

Custom Wedding bands and engagement ring.

her to be hands-on. “Most jewelry designers come from an art school background,” Kerry says. “They have to learn the technical skills later. Nina has the skills to make anything she designs.” Her mastery has allowed her to be a virtuoso jewelry designer making everything by hand. “I make my own clasps and some of my own chains and ear wires,” she says. “Everything is made by hand—I’m not casting or reproducing anything. Each piece is an original—made from scratch,” Nina says.

Recently Nina has designed a unique safety clasp that she makes from scratch. “It’s basically a hook,” she says, “but then I make a ball that’s flattened on the end so the hook has to fit exactly into the slot and it can’t just jiggle out.” It’s a great marriage of her mechanical engineering skills and her artistry! “I just have a knack for making things fit together,” she laughs.

Speaking of marriage and fit, Nina loves to make custom engagement rings. “I’ll sit down with a customer and hear their story—how they met, where they’re from, what they love to do together and what they are looking for in a piece of jewelry,” she says. “Then I find a way to relate their story subtly to the custom piece that I build.”

Recently she has been creating “stackers,” rings that can be combined in many different ways to tell a unique story. The stackers are popular she says because they aren’t as expensive and you can collect them over time. “People just love the rings.”

Stacking rings in gold and precious stones.

Struggling artists, take heart! Making art and making a living are often incompatible, but Nina has found a way to make it work. She sells direct through her website (www.ninasjewelry.com) and at craft fairs and art shows. “I sell direct because it’s less expensive for the customer than selling through a gallery.” Her customers love her pieces because they are American made and they are finely made.Back at the Lexington Farmer’s Market Nina sells a beautiful band in oxidized silver to Valerie Richkin of Lexington who was looking for a unique gift for her husband. If you have missed Nina at the Farmer’s Market, you can check her out online or next month at the 300th celebration.

Although she loves her life in Boulder for its slower pace, great weather and snowboarding, she never forgets Lexington and appreciates the incredible start that she got here. “It’s pretty amazing the opportunities and experiences I had in Lexington,” she says. “I was crazy-lucky!”

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Author Martha Ackmann Takes You Inside her New Book Curveball

Meet Martha Ackmann, author of the Curveball: The Remarkable Story of Toni Stone, the First Woman to Play Professional Baseball. This is the fascinating story of the “best baseball player you’ve never heard of” … a woman who faced incredible odds in pursuit of her dream.

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Thursday, August 23

7PM

Cary Memorial Library

Free

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Toni Stone wanted to play professional baseball more than anything in the world. Since women’s leagues refused her eligibility due to the color of her skin, she ended up playing with men in the Negro League. (from 1932 until 1954) , alongside such greats as Satchel Paige, Ernie Banks, Willie Mays, and Hank Aaron.  Curveball is not only the story of the talent and achievements of this amazing woman, it is also the story of the sexism and racism that she endured. Chronicling both Stone’s struggles and victories, the author reveals how far passion, pride, and determination can take one person.

Martha Ackmann is a journalist, author, and editor who writes about women who have changed America. A much sought after public speaker, she addresses government agencies, corporate and business groups, professional organizations, and has spoken at colleges and universities across America. Her talks have been described as “moving” “dynamic” “eloquent” “unforgettable” and full of hope.

She has been featured on the “Today Show”, CNN, National Public Radio, the BBC, and many other radio and television outlets around the country. Her columns, articles, and op-eds have been published in major metropolitan newspapers including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, and the Houston Chronicle. In addition to writing and public speaking, Dr. Ackmann is also a member of the faculty at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts.

This program will be held in the Large Meeting Room at Cary Library. The program is free, and open to all ages. Space is limited.

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Lexington Symphony Celebrates 300th Anniversary at September Concert

 The September concert, which will kick of the orchestra’s celebration of Lexington’s 300th anniversary, features music dedicated to the love of place and of city. The program consists of Ralph Vaughan Williams’ second symphony, known as the “London” symphony, and recent compositions by two living female composers, Jennifer Higdon and Sky Macklay.

Sky Macklay

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Sunday

September 23

3PM

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The orchestra will perform the world premiere of Dissolving Bands by young composer Sky Macklay. Macklay was selected through a process of collaboration with the Walden School in New Hampshire, a summer music school and festival that offers programs that emphasize creative application, specifically through music improvisation and composition. A jury consisting of Lexington Symphony Music Director Jonathan McPhee and Walden school leadership selected Macklay to be the recipient of a commission by the Lexington Symphony. The composer was asked to reflect on the possible meanings of the town’s 300th anniversary in musical language.

Macklay describes the resulting work, Dissolving Bands, as inspired by the first sentence in the Declaration of Independence which begins, ‘When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another.’” She writes, “Musically, I channeled the emotions that the Massachusetts colonists may have felt before the eruption of the Revolutionary war, beginning with rapidly changing instrumental choirs ascending in staccato clusters of unpredictable turbulence and ever-mounting tension. Later sections express uncertainty, fortitude, and the calm, open space of unknown future possibilities.”

Jennifer Higdon

Lexington Symphony will also be performing two movements (“Peachtree Street” and “Skyline”) from Jennifer Higdon’s 2004 composition City Scape. Pulitzer-prize winner Jennifer Higdon is one of the most performed living American composers working today. Her list of commissioners range from the Cleveland Orchestra to the Tokyo String Quartet, from The President’s Own Marine Band to Hilary Hahn. Higdon received the 2010 Pulitzer Prize in Music for her Violin Concerto, with the committee citing Higdon’s work as a “deeply engaging piece that combines flowing lyricism with dazzling virtuosity.” She has also received awards from the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Academy of Arts & Letters (two awards), the National Endowment for the Arts, and ASCAP.

Tickets are available online at www.lexingtonsymphony.org, by phone at 781.523.9009, with your check payable to Lexington Symphony, P.O. Box 194, Lexington MA 02420, or in person at The Crafty Yankee at 1838 Mass Ave. in Lexington Center (cash/check only). Ticket prices for the September 23 concert are $50, $40, $30, $20 (student).

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Opening Day Schedule~The 300th

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
9:00am
Opening Ceremony and Pre-Show
Cary Hall and High School

Seating is reserved and tickets for the opening ceremony are sold out.

Tickets must be picked up between September 8 and 13. Please note your assigned seating location when you pick up your tickets.

If you were unable to get tickets, there is a waiting list at the Town Hall–please call the Town Clerk’s Office. If you have tickets that you are not intending to use, please consider turning them in. If you cannot make it to Town Hall to pick up your tickets, please call the Town Clerk’s Office for assistance.

Those without tickets can watch live coverage on LexMedia.

Participants in the Opening Ceremony are invited to parade in a procession to the Country Fair.

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8:00am – 10:00am
Country Fair Blue Ribbon Contest
Hastings Park

Entry forms due on August 31st. Go to the website to print out your entry form.

Participants may enter special categories to compete for ribbons. See details right.

All entries must be delivered to Hastings Park between 8 and 10 AM on September 22nd.

Blue Ribbon Contest Details

 

Are you an up and coming chef? Do you like to experiment in the kitchen? If so, this is your event! To celebrate the 300th anniversary of Lexington, Lexington’s Country Fair will be holding a Blue Ribbon cooking contest on Saturday, September 22nd, at Hastings Park. Children and adults are invited to participate. Food categories include Family Favorite Corn Dish, Quick Breads, and Jams and Jellies. You can enter a homemade jam or jelly, family corn dish, or quick bread in the food contest.

Cooking not your thing? Test your green thumb by competing for the widest sunflower head, tastiest tomato, or oddest vegetable in the garden contest.

If you are 17 and under, you are also eligible for the special youth categories. You can enter chocolate chip cookies, a container garden and more. Do you cook, bake or grow plants? This is your time to shine!

Registration deadline is August 31st.

Go to the website to print out your entry form.

In addition to downloading the Blue Ribbon Contest forms and requirements, you can obtain entry forms and make payment at the Town Clerk’s office, 1625 Massachusetts, Ave., Lexington, between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

 

For more information, contact the Blue Ribbon Contest Committee. There is a $5 fee per entry to help cover fair costs.

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11:00am – 4:00pm
All-Town Country Fair and Picnic
Hastings Park

Visit the tercentennial tent featuring games and activities from the past three hundred years, craft booths and more. (Shuttle bus transportation will be provided to the Country Fair from satellite parking lots around town. Please check www.lexington300.org for the location of a parking lot near you.)

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11:00am – 4:00pm
Complete the 300th Scavenger Hunt
Country Fair, Hospitality Tent

If you have been participating in the ongoing Scavenger Hunt (see website for details), visit the hospitality tent on 9/22 to receive the last clue and complete the hunt! All participants will be rewarded.

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11:45am
Outdoor Opening Celebration
Center Track

If you were not able to get tickets for the indoor Opening Ceremony, join us for a public ceremony at the Country Fair and All-Town Picnic.

12:00 pm (Tentative)

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All-Town Photo
Center Track, Lexington High School

Those who wish to participate in the all-town photo should gather at the Center Track at noon on 9/22.

12:30 pm – 3:30pm

Race Through Time

Start Line at Track

Teams will compete in a race through town.

Teams must pre-register and spaces are limited. Go to the website to register a team or to register as an individual.

See the website for information on available spaces.

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6:30pm – 10:00pm
Dance Revolution 300
Lexington High School

Join us at a community dance, all ages welcome! The beginning of the evening will feature live music with instructor-led folk dancing, waltzes, and swing (6:30-8pm). Then Saigel Entertainment takes over with a DJ (8-10pm) playing everything from Elvis and the Beatles to Katy Perry and Lady Gaga. Suggested donation of $3 per person.

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Hobbyists Fight Hunger with Crafts for Charity

By Jane Whitehead  |  From bake-sales to bike rides, fund-raising has many faces. One creative spin on the challenge of drumming up dollars for good causes is Crafts For Charity, the brainchild of recently retired Lexington pediatrician Daniel Palant.

Now in its third year, Crafts For Charity will take over the artisans’ tent at the Lexington Farmers’ Market, on Tuesday September 11. Work donated by around a dozen local crafters – including jewelry, rustic furniture, children’s toys and ceramics – will be on sale, and 100 per cent of the proceeds will go directly to the Lexington Food Pantry (www.lexingtonfoodpantry.wordpress.com) and Project Bread (www.projectbread.org).

The Lexington Interfaith Food Pantry, founded in 1990 and based at the Church of Our Redeemer on Meriam St., Lexington, is on the front line fighting hunger locally.

The pantry distributes food to around 60-65 families every week, said long-time volunteer Carolyn Wortman. “Even in Lexington, there are people struggling,” she said, and the pantry also helps qualified people from Winchester and Lincoln, towns with no similar services. Clients must provide a letter of need from their town’s Social Service Department.

The pantry serves single parents trying to feed their families and unemployed and under-employed people, who are often coping with physical or mental illness. The largest group of clients, said Wortman, is elderly people on fixed incomes: the local face of a national epidemic of hidden hunger among the nation’s seniors that was highlighted recently by WBUR’s On Point discussion on Monday, July 30 (http://onpoint.wbur.org/2012/07/30/senior-hunger).

Lynne Fisher Bowl

Project Bread, the group behind the annual Walk For Hunger, is the Commonwealth’s leading anti-hunger organization, and supports 400 emergency food programs in 130 Massachusetts communities.

In 2010, Crafts For Charity made over $2000 to give to the Lexington Food Pantry, Project Bread, Rosie’s Place and the Pine Street Inn. In 2011, pouring rain dampened the takings, but the effort still raised around $1400. Buyers write checks directly to whichever of the designated charities they wish to support. This year, said Palant, in the run-up to the September 11 sale, the group is adding a Silent Auction featuring items donated by Farmers’ Market vendors. These include one-of-a-kind experiences like a visit with a local beekeeper and a guided tour of a local winery.

Whether crafters knit, paint, make pots or take photographs, said Palant, or in his case, make clocks out of recycled tin cans, they do what they do for the sheer love of making things. “Pretty soon they run out of people to give them to!” he said, laughing. Selling the surplus to raise money is his equivalent of collecting sponsorship for a charity walk, he said, and he’s persuaded a group of generous local hobbyists to join him.

Lexington potter Lynne Fisher has given works to CFC every year. “I would love to win the lottery so I could give millions away,” she said, but while waiting for that golden ticket she’s happy to give away her work, “so it can help raise money for others in need.”

Faith Armstrong, a nurse at Lexington Pediatrics, has been crafting for good causes since she was 10. As the daughter of a minister, “I was always involved in church fairs,” she said, and for decades she’s enjoyed textile arts and constructing miniature creatures made from natural objects picked up on walks around Lexington and on Maine beaches.

Armstrong will donate some of her popular “I-Spy Bags” to CFC this year. These are soft fleece bags in the shape of animals, cars and trucks, with a little window for viewing the contents. They’re filled with beads and five “mystery items” that children search for by manipulating the bag and peeping through the window.

“I’m a kind of scavenger,” said Susan Rioff, who for the last two years has contributed items from her “Rustica” line of furniture made from fallen branches and salvaged wood. “There’s no shortage of stuff that people get rid of,” she said, “so my cost is simply my time.” She sees the Crafts For Charity sale as “a wonderful incentive to be generous” that offers buyers a chance to find unique hand-made items while “doing good for somebody else.”

For further information about Crafts For Charity, contact Daniel Palant at dpalant@rcn.com.

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