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March 20 proclaimed ‘Fresh Air Fund Day’

In recognition of The Fresh Air Fund’s 139th summer of bringing together New York City children and volunteer host families in Vermont, Governor Shumlin has proclaimed March 20 “Fresh Air Fund Day” throughout the state. This summer, The Fresh Air Fund will once again allow thousands of inner-city boys and girls to escape the hot, noisy New York City streets to enjoy the simple joys of summertime fun in the country.

Families who participate in The Fresh Air Fund’s Volunteer Host Family Program open their hearts and homes to New York City children in the summer. “Sharing your home and the surrounding community with a Fresh Air youngster can be the beginning of a worthwhile and meaningful experience – for both the child and your family,” said Jenny Morgenthau, Executive Director of The Fresh Air Fund. “This year, we are looking for new host families in the Champlain Valley area to celebrate our 139th summer and give children a chance to run barefoot through the grass or gaze at the star-filled skies.”

Volunteers simply want to share what they have with city children and introduce them to the joys of suburban or country life. “It helps us to slow down and enjoy the summer a bit more. Fresh Air children enjoy just catching fireflies and watching the stars come out,” said Lisa, a Fresh Air host

Families find hosting so rewarding that more than 65 percent of all Fresh Air children are invited to visit the same host families year after year. First-time Fresh Air visitors are six to 12 years old and all it takes is the willingness to welcome a New York City child to your community.

To learn more visit www.freshair.org.

UVM professor looks at art’s influence on Renaissance politics

Part of First Wednesdays free lecture series at Essex Junction’s Brownell Library

UVM professor Kelley Helmstutler Di Dio will explain how art influenced politics in Renaissance Florence in a talk at Brownell Library in Essex Junction on April 8 at 7 p.m. Her talk, “The Medici Grand Dukes: Art and Politics in Renaissance Florence,” is part of the Vermont Humanities Council’s First Wednesdays lecture series and is free and open to the public. (Note this talk takes place on the second Wednesday.)

Professor Di Dio will consider how, despite scandals and even murder, the Medici Grand Dukes maintained their power for nearly two centuries by giving gifts of art by the great Florentine masters to kings, popes and emperors.

Kelley Helmstutler Di Dio is Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Vermont, and a specialist in Italian and Spanish sculpture of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. In addition to many articles and essays, she has published several books: Leone Leoni and the Status of the Artist at the End of the Renaissance, Sculpture Collections in Early Modern Spain (with Rosario Coppel), Leone Leoni: Faith and Fame (with Rosario Coppel), and Making and Moving Sculptures in Early Modern Italy.  She has lectured in Spain, London, and Italy, as well as at numerous conferences across Europe and North America.

To learn more about Essex Junction First Wednesdays listings visit:

www.vermonthumanities.org/WhatWeDo/FirstWednesdays/FirstWednesdaysBurlington/tabid/164/Default.aspx.