back to the historic village of yellow springs

Today I went back to Historic Yellow Springs. First up was the herb sale in the big field held by the Philadelphia Unit of the Herb Society of America.

The herb sale had not been held since before COVID19 invaded our lives. The sale was a rousing success and they basically had sold out but just a little after 11 AM! The tables were picked clean like locusts had descended upon the field!

After putting my plants in the car, I went onto the Yellow Springs Art Show. I had also not been there since before COVID19. The show was glorious, but some of the artists’ pricing were eyebrow raising.

One of the things I noticed the most was how alive the village was today. That doesn’t happen often enough. The Historic Yellow Springs Executive Director did not seem to be around and I was there for a few hours. I do not wish to be critical of the woman, but today was the kind of day that you get opportune moments. You never know where your next donation is going to come from and two seconds of conversation with visitors to the village means people come back to the village. I also know of people who have wanted to volunteer that somehow are never chosen to volunteer. And I’m not referring to myself because they don’t want a mouthy blogger volunteering there, and I know that.

For this amazing and living and breathing piece of history to remain viable into the future they have to be less insular. Their volunteers are amazing and helpful and nice, but the people that actually run the show (board and others) need to be more visible.

Becoming a member of Historic Yellow Springs is fun. I belong. You can join here.

While I was walking the village today I thought of an event that Meg Veno does at Life’s Patina. As part of Life’s Patina’s holiday events she does a German Market. It’s hugely popular as most German Markets during the holidays are. So I got to thinking since Life’s Patina/Meg Veno has breathed new life into the Jenny Lind House, and is nearing completion of an extensive and expensive restoration (and boy do I hope West Pikeland and Historic Yellow Springs are appreciative, don’t you?), why not pick you one of THE most creative brains in all of Chester County and take full advantage of the fabulousness coming to an amazing historic village?

What am I talking about? It’s simple: when I was walking the village today and I did it a couple of times first with plants and then going to the art show and buying some art it occurred to me that this life that was in the village today is so important for her survival. And I thought as I stood in front of the Jenny Lind house about how much I enjoy what Meg does every holiday season. And I thought that Yellow Springs should really pick her brain about doing a German Christmas village THERE.

Historic Yellow Springs is extra lovely on the outside during the holidays, so why not capitalize on new blood and fresh energy? Today in my mind’s eye I could see a German Christmas village up and down Yellow Springs Village. Christmas carolers and musicians strolling back-and-forth, a cart selling warm chestnuts and brown paper sacks, a vendor selling gingerbread fresh from the oven, and more. Couldn’t you just see someone with a beautiful little booth outside selling hand-painted German Christmas ornaments and nutcrackers ? It would literally be SO perfect!

I mean I don’t know why their Special Events Director, Executive Director, and board haven’t thought of any of these things. I know they don’t want the village to look like Disneyland, but I’m talking about things that are old-fashioned, historically appropriate,wholesome,pretty, and fun.

Other ideas? Bring back an updated version of the fall antiques show. There are enough dealers and high-end crafts people in Chester County that do such fine work including right in the studios of Yellow Springs that you could do this no problem. Why not make it a version of not what it was, but more of a blend of high-end crafts and art as well as antiques and collectibles?

Other things would be more children’s events like hayrides through the fall and pumpkin carving. Maybe a Halloween parade with old-fashioned Halloween games for kids?

There are more than enough garden clubs in Chester County so why not ask them to do their plant sales all on one weekend in the spring or early summer in the village? Or invite garden groups to do plant swaps in the village?

The possibilities are endless for this beautiful piece of Chester County history. But they need to extend themselves so people know they’re there a little more.

And all of these events should have membership tables with people asking are you a member of Historic Yellow Springs? Would you like to be a member of Historic Yellow Springs?

Today I was also treated to the clop clop of horses hooves as riders rode through the village. There is just something so nice about that sound.

Just my thoughts. If you can catch the art show before it closes at the end of this weekend, I highly recommend it.

Thanks for stopping by.

art makes me happy

I have written about family friend and Philadelphia artist Margery Niblock a few times before. Her art is just something I have loved since I was a child. She was kind of my first artist.

She was a part of my childhood and I remember her home studio and her prints wafting in the breeze pinned to a clothesline with old fashioned wooden clothes pins at the Head House Craft Fair.

Margery also was one of my teachers back in the day. As a child she taught me to do woodblock and linoleum prints. I actually wasn’t that bad at it. It was a very fun process.

So recently, a very nice friend gave me some prints that he and his wife had collected while they lived not too far from where we lived when I was little. Prints I had literally not seen since I was a child! And three were owls! (I love owls!)

Receiving these prints was so exciting! They had literally never seen the light of day since they were purchased.

I took them over to Framers Market Gallery in Malvern to be framed. (Jayne and Dave the owners do all of my framing and re-framing at this point.) Jayne and I spent a good part of an afternoon about a month ago choosing the framing and mats. The store is so much fun because they have so many beautiful choices.

So here we are! The finished product!

Art makes me happy. And it doesn’t have to be outrageously expensive to have value to you. Buy what you like and hang what you like. Check thrift shops and flea markets and fairs and local art shows. Find your artist and enjoy them.

Thanks for stopping by!

it’s about the mural

I have always been a big believer in mural arts projects because I think they are just so cool. Literally art in unexpected places.

We drove past this on our way home from my COVID shot #2. I think it’s beautiful and I will have to go back at some point with a regular camera to take better photos.

Thank you West Chester. With all the bleak and bleary of the last year, this was literally kind of joyful to see. And as a woman, the subject matter was awesome.

Happy Friday. (And yes, COVID shot #2 is less fun, but it’s done and I am distracting myself with things like this.)

rose valley’s beloved hedgerow theatre company is turning 95 march 23!

Not about Chester County, but a neighbor.  The arts are such an important thing in our lives, and The Hedgerow Theatre Company in Rose Valley (adjacent to Media) is America’s longest serving professional resident theater founded in 1923 by Jasper Deeter as a haven for cutting edge artists of the early 20th century. And Hedgerow is turning 95!!! Join them for their Belle of the Ball benefit on March 23rd!

Hedgerow quickly gained a national and international reputation as a proving ground for era defining artists such as Susan Glaspell, Eugene O’Neill, Countee Cullen, Henrik Ibsen, George Bernard Shaw, Theodore Dreiser and Wharton Esherick.  Today, the company consists of seven resident actors and an extended company of 10. Hedgerow Theatre seeks to connect and enrich the lives of company, patrons, and community in the shared experience of ensemble theatre, through performance and theatre education of the highest quality.

Hedgerow is inextricably entwined with the legacy of the Rose Valley Arts and Craft Movement. A movement that defines itself by independent thinkers resisting the wave of industrialization rushing over society. Founding Artistic Director, Jasper Deeter, recognized in this movement a kindred spirit after visiting his sister and watching her perform at what was Guild Hall. He saw here was the place to create an independent theater and transformed Guild Hall into Hedgerow Theatre.

Beginning in 1923, Hedgerow launched the first resident repertory theatre that, over its 94 years, has become a magnet for many national theatre personalities, from Richard Basehart to Edward Albee; from Ann Harding to Susan Glaspell; to—more recently—Keanu Reeves and Austin Pendleton.

Hedgerow Theatre Company, America’s oldest professional resident theater company is celebrating its 95th Anniversary with a benefit honoring Penelope Reed for her lifetime of work.  Reed is not only the 2017 Barrymore Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient, but she is also the heart and soul of Hedgerow and its Director Emeritus.

Hedgerow Theatre Company’s Belle of the Ball Benefit will be co-chaired by Board Members Jane McNeil, Hedegrow and Richard Taxin and will be held Friday March 23rd from 6:30-10:00 pm at the Old Mill, 9 Old Mill Lane, Rose Valley, PA 19063.  Tickets start at $95 per person and include an open bar and buffet dinner.  The Benefit will start with a cocktail hour from 6:30-7:30.  At 7:30 pm, students from the Hedgerow Theater School will invite guests into dinner and the presentation through song.  All monies raised at the event will be dedicated to The Penelope Reed Education Fund to preserve the theatre’s educational programming for underserved youth and The Jewel Box Theatre Campaign dedicated to the refurbishing and preservation of Hegerow’s theatre dating from 1840.

The evening’s honoree, Penelope Reed, is known throughout the theater community as a visionary leader.  Her work has been a vital part of not only the Philadelphia theatre community but nationally.  Her work and dedication to the world of repertoire theater has made the community richer and she has, through her performances and her leadership, influenced generations of artists, audiences and companies.

Please consider this wonderful event.  You can purchase tickets by following this hyperlink to Hedgerow’s website

Again, Hedgerow is located outside Philadelphia at 64 Rose Valley Road in Rose Valley, PA (near Media). For more information on Hedgerow Theatre and its current company and productions visit www.hedgerowtheatre.org.    For more information on The Belle of The Ball contact Patrick Derrickson, Director of Development at  pderrickson@hedgerowtheatre.org