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March is roaring in with its leonine grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrruffffffffffness. A dreary winter’s wrapping up and you can practically taste the lanate spring in the air.

Here in the Southshires of Vermont and Williamstown, Massachusetts, the northern tip of the Berkshires, we’re leaping out of winter and into regional celebrations of the Year of the Dragon.

So…let’s kick this off with a bang!

From the Bennington Arts Guild:

During the months of March and April, the Bennington Arts Guild is celebrating the Year of the Dragon with student art. An opening reception for the Student Dragon Art Show, with free refreshments, will be held from 1:00 to 4:00 pm, Sunday, March 11, at the Guild’s Gallery at 103 South Street, Bennington, Vermont. The reception is open to the public.

Dragon hats and hinged paper dragons are now installed in the Gallery’s south window. The display can be enjoyed from outside and inside the gallery. The dragon hats were created by preschoolers at Country Corner Day Care Center. The two-dimensional dragons were created by children attending the School’s Out after-school program.

More student art will be on display during the reception, and in the months of March and April. Other schools participating in the dragon art show include Molly Stark Elementary, Mt. Anthony Middle School, and The School of Sacred Heart.

“On Sunday, March 11th, both the St. Patti’s Day Parade and the opening reception at the Bennington Arts Guild Gallery for the Student Dragon Art Show begin at 1:00 p.m. Many of the dragons marching in the parade will proceed to the reception at the gallery to share in refreshments and good cheer. We hope parade watchers will join us,” said Paula LaPorte, dragon coordinator for the Bennington Arts Guild.

[The St. Patrick’s Parade should be a draconic delight!…S.M.]

In May and June, the Bennington Arts Guild will be hosting a Community Dragon Art Show. All mediums are invited. Contact Paula LaPorte for information at 802.442.4808.

Photos of student dragon creations are available by request at tniernberger@gmail.com.

And then, on a more personal note, for those of you in the area in early April, I invite you to the Milne Library in Williamstown, Massachusetts, April 4th at 7:00.

Join me for a reading/book signing in celebration of the Year of the Dragon. I shall be reading from my book, “The Dragon Keeper’s Handbook,” as well as discussing the relevance of these marvelous creatures in our modern world.

I’ll be sure to mention all these events and more as the year goes on.

Hope to see you with bells on!