EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

December 20, 2012

Editor's Picks

The Eagle-Tribune

---- — ‘50 under 50’ at

Loading Dock Gallery

Art lovers are invited to immerse themselves in an exploration that promises to delight the senses and please the wallet at the “50 under 50” exhibit. The work by 50 artists priced at less that $50 will be on display at the Loading Dock Gallery at Western Avenue Studios in Lowell from Jan. 2 through Jan. 27, 2013.

This exhibit is a collaborative 50 artists presenting hidden gems of work at affordable prices. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, Jan. 5, from 5 to 7 p.m., where artists will chat with guests mingling with a like-minded community of people who appreciate all things handmade.

The Loading Dock Gallery is located in a Soho-cool renovated mill building with exposed brick, beams and wood floors.

Art in the “50 Under 50” exhibit includes functional and whimsical pottery from Muddy Girls, Glenn Szegedy’s small, one-of-a-kind ceramics and sculpture, and Taja Cockell’s hand-woven table runners created from colorful cotton and paper yarn.

Bruce Woods’ reanimated computer mice creatures and polymer clay jewelry with embedded vintage objects add a bit of whimsy. And Linda Dunn will have small textile collages; images and colors revolving around text and mounted on a cradled board for easy display.

Original paintings in acrylic, oil, or watercolor will be hung in the gallery from artists including Jean Curley, Nita Leger Casey, Tracy Levesque, JJ Long, Denise Rainis and Paula Mingolelli. In addition, fiber artist Ann Lee offers two small embroidered and embellished art quilts created as part of a series in which she challenged herself to use the complementary color scheme of blue and orange in work that incorporates layers of very diverse fabrics and hand embroidery. And Jeanne Osborne, a milliner and fiber artist who designs and creates one-of-a-kind hats, handbags and wraps and restyles vintage and “found” pieces, will showcase her popular neck ruffles and organic jewelry in this exhibit.

The Loading Dock Gallery is located at Western Avenue Studios, 122 Western Ave., 2nd floor, in the A Mill. The exhibit runs from from Wednesday, Jan.2, until Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For information about the exhibit, visit www.theloadingdockgallery.com or call 978-656-1687.

Celebrate the Winter Solstice

Mark the beginning of growing light while recognizing the shortest day of the year at the 3rd Annual Winter Solstice Celebration at Serio’s Grove on Lowell Junction Road in Andover.

This event organized by The Shawsheen River Watershed Association involves a short walk through the woods to a pavilion where a presentation on the astronomy, history, and folklore of the winter solstice will be held. Entertainment by local musicians will emanate into the night and participants are encouraged to bring bells to ring as the Holly King Banner is retired and the Oak King Banner is raised to symbolize lengthening days.

A campfire will be lit for roasting marshmallows and s’mores. People should bring their own goodies and beverages, but be aware that no alcohol is allowed.

The group will park in the field about 6 p.m. and at 6:30 begin their walk to the pavilion. For directions, visit www.andovertrails.org. For furhter information, email bob_otter@comcast.net. The event is free and open to the public.

North Andover students collecting Coats for Kids

In an effort to make sure that every child has a warm coat this winter, students at the Annie Sargent Elementary, Atkinson School, Franklin School, Kittredge Elementary, New England Montessori School, Saint Michael School, and Thomson Elementary School, all in North Andover, are participating in Anton’s Cleaners 18th annual Coats for Kids drive. The effort runs through Jan. 12, 2013.

Throughout eastern Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire, more than 200 schools are collecting coats for children.

“The dedication of our students has always been one of the keys to the success of Coats for Kids,” says Charles A. Anton, president of Anton’s Cleaners, which organizes the drive. “Their commitment stems from the knowing that some of their own neighbors may well be in need of a warm coat. And they work very hard to make sure no one has to be cold this winter.”

Since its inception in 1995, Coats for Kids distributed more than 744,000 coats.

Registered schools in the drive are eligible to compete in the School Rewards Program, which awards valuable prizes to the three elementary and three middle schools that collect the most coats based per student.

Once collected, coats are cleaned by Anton’s and distributed through the Coats for Kids Distribution Partners network, which includes organizations such as Massachusetts Community Action Programs, the Salvation Army, Boston University Medical Center Outreach Van Project, The Wish Project, Community Giving Tree, Catholic Charities, Community Teamwork Inc, and Rosie’s Place, to name just a few.

Donors are encouraged to drop off coats at participating schools and can get more information by calling Stephanie Littlefield at 978-851-3721, or emailing at stephanie@antons.com.