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Artists’ miniature Christmas trees to be raffled at Sheldon Museum

MIDDLEBURY — Twelve colorful, decorative miniature  Christmas Trees are on display at the Henry Sheldon Museum in Middlebury, each decorated by accomplished local Addison County artists. The trees will be on display through Dec. 20, when they will be raffled off to support the education and exhibit programs of the museum. 
Folk artist Warren Kimble of Brandon has hung over 36 small wooden “Alphabet Blocks” on his tree, while children’s author and illustrator Ashley Wolfe of Lake Dunmore has adorned her “Come Out and Play” tree with lively air-dried clay ornaments of dogs, skates, caps, scarves and boots. The mother and daughter team of Gerry and Grace Tolles of New Haven has produced the “Quilling Xmas” tree filled with ornaments fashioned by rolling narrow strips of paper into coils or scrolls, and arranging them to form filigree figures. The Tolles’ tree also includes a two-day radon test by Addison County Home Inspections, the company owned by Doug Tolles.  
Cornwall artist Sarah Stahl decorated her “One for the Rook, One for the Crow, One to Die and One to Grow” with detailed crows of needlepoint or cross stitch, while  Middlebury paper and  fabric artist Sarah Pope heralds the season with her “Felt in Our Stars” tree, a symphony of stars and garlands from recycled sweaters. Gayl Braisted’s Middlebury Landmarks tree showcases architectural gems of the village using “Shrinky Dinks” from a kit consisting of large flexible sheets which, when heated in an oven, shrink to small hard plates without altering their color or shape.  The miniature exact replicas include the Sheldon Museum, the new Middlebury Town Offices, the Community House, Painter House, the Post Office, the Town Hall Theater, and the Gazebo. Melonie Bushey of Brandon has adorned her “Bird Houses” tree with red cardinals from hand-sewn and colored fabric together with snow covered homes and churches.
Other tree offerings were created by: Bobbie Brooker and Deb Wilkinson (“Bobbie’s Christmas Swan Song”), a collage of blue and silver ornaments and garlands; Nancie Dunn of Sweet Cecily (“Horsing Around”) where horses made of brushes are corralled; Greg Alexander and Sammy Barnes of Middlebury’s Otter Creek Kitchen Ware and Electronics (“Chef’s Tree”), filled with miniature kitchen utensils; Shoreham landscape artist Deb Holmes (“Vermont Scenes”), nestled among the tree limbs are framed miniature copies of her favorite paintings; and Waterfall Day Spa at the Middlebury Inn (“Surprise Packages”), the contents of which will delight the raffle winner.
The Henry Sheldon Museum’s trains will run through Jan. 14, 2017. Volunteer engineers will run the trains Tuesday-Friday from 1-4 p.m.; Saturdays 11 a.m.-2 p.m.; and Sunday, Dec. 18, 1-3 p.m. Check their website for up-to-date info, www.henrysheldonmuseum.org, or call 388-2117. Regular admission to the museum is $5 adults; $3 youth (6-18); $4.50 seniors; $12 family.

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