River Arts Writing Lab

$5 suggested donation

The River Arts Writing Lab is designed to support a range of writing experience, goals, and genres. The emphasis is on providing a means for the participants to share their work, and to give and receive constructive, well-thought-out feedback.

A webpage is provided for those writers who are ready to have their work critiqued (the work can be at any stage of development). Posting manuscripts prior to the meetings will allow more time for careful consideration and productive discussion. Together we’ll develop guidelines for providing respectful and useful feedback.

A period of less structured time for reading, writing, or sharing will also be a part of the meetings.

The aim of the Writing Lab is to support each other by giving and receiving helpful commentary. It’s a cooperative effort. The group welcomes ideas for other activities that encourage and expand our writing skills.

If you are interested in joining this group, send us an email at [email protected].

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Open Studio Figure Drawing

$10/session; punchcards available - $90/10 classes (save $10)

Open Studio Figure Drawing meets every 1st & 3rd Tuesday of the month in the beautiful Robert C. Folley Performance Hall, located on the second floor of the River Arts Center. The group, which gathers from 3:00-5:30 p.m. invites and accommodates all levels of drawing/painting/sculpture backgrounds and expertise. The sessions feature a variety of approaches to working from the figure. The open studio is open to the public for a fee of $10 per session, and we encourage anyone interested in working from the figure to join us for a fun and creative evening. Easels and tables available.
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River Arts Photo Co-op

$5 Suggested donation

The River Arts Photo Co-op provides photography enthusiasts with a way to gather, promote and share their experience and knowledge of photography in an atmosphere of camaraderie and fun. No experience necessary – just a love of photography and a desire for discovery, building skills, and connecting with others with a similar passion!  Our goal is to promote the sharing of ideas, techniques and creativity through membership participation in workshops, competitions and monthly social gatherings.   image4  
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Poetry Clinic

$5 Suggested donation

For those of you who use writing classes as a way to set aside special time for your writing practice: Here is an irresistible gift … a clinic to keep your pen and mind in motion. The first hour of the clinic will be devoted to generative poetry writing exercises; the second hour will be devoted to respectful critiques of work you bring to or make in class.   River Arts hosts workshops, readings, and clinics devoted to supporting the myriad voices living within the community and surrounding areas. Read on to see what’s been going on, about to happen, and join us!  

River Arts Review: Voices from Northern Vermont Volume 3 – Our third collection of poetry – take a look, or purchase  online!    

Click here to view River Arts Review: Voices from Northern Vermont Volume 2  

Click here to view River Arts Review: Voices from Northern Vermont Volume 1
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Sip n’ Slurry – Pottery Friday Nights


$20 per session or $50 for series + cash bar

River Arts pottery instructors host a Sip n' Slurry creative experience - the pottery twist on Paint n' Sip! We will walk you through a specific handbuilding project - from mugs, candle holders, planters, plates, vases, and more, all while unwinding with a glass of wine or locally brewed beer. Handbuilidng is a great introductory method of working with clay, no prior experience is required (pottery wheel not used in this class as it requires more than one class to complete work). Couples and groups encouraged, bring some friends and make it a party!

Each participant will make 1 piece during the evening. We know it is tempting to make extra pieces, but to be able to keep firing, glazing, and costs low for participants, each person must follow guided project to complete one piece!

Price includes materials, pieces will be available to pickup after glazing and firing approximately 3 weeks later.

Special thank you to Rock Art Brewery for sponsoring the series!

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Beveled Glass Snowflakes – Stained Glass

$55 - materials included


Instructor: Dayna Sabatino of Day Breaks Glass

Create beautiful hanging snowflakes using beveled glass and wintry glass gems while learning the basic steps of the stained glass process. Participants will learn about and the copper foil method for making stained glass. No experience necessary, all levels welcome!

Instructor Bio: Dayna Sabatino studied stained glass in the Bay Area of California where she worked in all aspects of the industry. Building artworks one piece of beautiful glass at a time was a natural fit for her. Over the years there, she taught courses in many techniques of stained glass and mosaic art, built commissioned works on her own and for other artists, and performed restorations, from small lampshades to large church windows.

After returning to the East Coast, she landed in Vermont where she married her husband and became a mother. Currently, when not busy working on their homestead, Dayna is creating one of a kind works of glass art, taking commissions, and teaching workshops around New England. Find her online here and on FaceBook.
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Drawing Essentials 101


6 sessions

Instructor: Michelle Saffran

Tuition: $120, financial assistance available

Learn to draw in this fun and informative 6-week class in which you will be introduced to a variety of materials and learn and practice core drawing skills. This workshop will help you feel comfortable with a variety of drawing materials and give you confidence to explore new ways of mark making. This is an introductory drawing course that is intended to help develop basic observational and perceptual drawing skills as well as increase personal expression through creative investigation.In this class for beginning and intermediate students, you will practice observation, experimentation, and invention, becoming acquainted with a variety of drawing media and approaches. Students will investigate the properties of line, value, shape, texture, and the representation of space, focusing on methods and techniques to represent the illusion of the three-dimensional world on a two-dimensional surface. Additionally, drawing will be explored as a fundamental element of visual thinking, and as a language to communicate and express ideas. You will receive individual attention in a relaxed and friendly setting.
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Waitlist: Adult Beginner Wheel

Contact [email protected] to be put on the waitlist!

6 Sessions

$135 includes materials and firing costs

Instructor: Lisa Wolfgang

This class is an introduction to wheel thrown pottery. Learn the basics of throwing, forming, handles, and finishing pieces trimming and glazing. Create several functional pieces. Beginners welcome! Tuition includes materials and firing costs, as well as open studio access during the weeks of your class. Additional clay is sold separately at $30/25lb bag.

  Instructor Bio: Lisa Wolfgang is an interdisciplinary artist who has been living and working in Vermont since 2016 since graduating from Alfred University with a BFA in Sculpture and Expanded Media. Her background includes work as an instructor of sculpture and ceramics at Helen Day Arts Center, a ceramics instructor and studio technician at Interlochen Center for the Arts, as an outdoor educator at the Battle Creek Outdoor Education Center. Lisa joined the clay studio this past fall and is looking forward to making more positive connections through teaching ceramics classes.
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T’ai Chi


$65 - 6 session series

10-11am Intro Class, 11am-12noon Advanced

T'ai Chi Chu’an is a sequence of precise body movements done slowly and without effort that balance the flow of energy within the body. Developed in China where it has been practiced regularly by millions for a millenia, T'ai Chi requires no special clothes or equipment, keeps you on your feet, takes only a few minutes a day, can be learned at any age, and builds internal health.

If you find it difficult to concentrate, can't find time for sports or regular exercise, or feel that your life is wearing you out and making you tense, then perhaps you should discover T'ai Chi Ch'uan. It can improve your balance, and introduce you to the basics of selfdefense, while coordinating your mind and body. T’ai Chi is ideal for individuals with sedentary or repetitive jobs. It frees the body of tension rewarding its practitioners with energy and focus.

Intro classes to T'ai Chi last an hour and run for 6 weeks, each building on the one before. T'ai Chi is a sequence of precise movements, 108 in all, divided into 3 sets. The intro class teaches the first of the 3 sets. Students who find T'ai Chi appealing usually take the intro class 1-4 times. From 11-12pm will follow a more advanced class immediately after the intro class, tailoring it to the specific needs of the group.

Instructor Bio: Alan Erdossy began studying this moving yoga of China in 1970 and has taught at businesses, movement studios, and art centers throughout the Northeast. Mr. Erdossy earned an MFA from California Institute of the Arts in 1972 and while in LA studied T'ai Chi with master Marshall Ho'o. Marshall is a member of Black Belt magazine's Hall of Fame, was chairman of the National T'ai Chi Ch'uan Association, and founder of the Aspen Academy of Martial Arts. Alan also runs fly fishing schools in Northern NH.and Vermont, and has taught T’ai Chi locally at GMCR, River Arts, One Studio, and Ballet Woilcott

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West African Drum & Dance

Drop-in every Monday night! 

6pm Drumming

6:30-7:30 Dance

$12/session paid to instructor

Join Chimie Bangoura to learn traditional rhythms and techniques of West African hand drumming (djembe). Chimie is a brilliant and energetic master drummer and studio musician from Guinea, West Africa. He is originally from Matam, which is the epicenter of drum and dance in Conakry, Guinea. He studied djembe and doundoun with Tonton Soriba Sylla for eight years, while directing and teaching drum classes for visiting European students. He moved to Vermont in 2007 and is eager to share his passion and talent.
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Intuitive Painting

$45 tuition


One-Day Workshop

In this class you'll learn a new approach to painting developed at River Gallery School in Brattleboro, by Ric Campman. Sequencing is a hands-on, intuitive approach that allows beginners and more experienced artists to enter the process of painting without the common feelings of self-doubt, technical inadequacy, or uncertainty.

Studio time will begin with quiet meditation after which you'll move into your work at your own pace with a spirit of simplicity and a beginner's mind along with guidance and support from certified Sequencing Instructor Kristen M. Watson. Sequencing values process over outcome and the focus is on awareness of and joy in color, light, and the physical encounter with the paint. This workshop is particularly suited to new artists and those who want to let go of habits that do not serve them in favor of more joyful and childlike art making.
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Birch Bark Ornaments

$65 tuition


One-Day Workshop

Enjoy the simple pleasure of creating a decoration or gift from materials responsibly harvested on instructor Penny Hewitt's Northeast Kingdom farm. Utilizing techniques common to the Scandinavian and Russian style of basketry, you will craft birds and stars using strips of inner bark from the paper birch in this four hour workshop. You will also learn how these materials are harvested and prepared.

Instructor Bio: A craftsperson, teacher, homesteader, and homeschooling mom, Penny Hewitt lives with her family on a diversified farm in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. Through the curiosity of her sons, she became fascinated with and then passionate about preserving and passing on traditional skills, particularly in the forms of black ash and birch bark basketry. Working with responsibly harvested and hand-processed materials from the forest surrounding her home, Penny seeks to create objects of beauty that are useful in everyday life. She is inspired by traditions of other cultures, and grateful for the opportunities of connection to people, place, nature, and self that her craft cultivates. Her experience with weaving includes teaching workshops, leading homeschool groups, and crafting for income.
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Fall Figure Drawing Marathon

$40 for one day, $75 for two days


The Open Studio Figure Drawing Group is hosting it’s Annual Fall Marathon! Two days of drawing from the figure…it doesn’t get much better….

  Artists and art lovers with all levels of experience are invited to spend one or two full days drawing, painting or sculpting, with a diversity of models for inspiration. The doors at RA open at 9 a.m. There will be free coffee, tea, and bagels available both Saturday and Sunday. We will begin artwork at 9:30 a.m. sharp in the gallery space upstairs. Please set up your work space keeping in mind that space is limited and others will be working closely around you. A lunch break will take place from 12: 30 - 1:30 p.m.

The Marathon will feature nude and clothed sessions.


Sat. 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Traditional nude session, start with short poses and end with one long (45 min) pose

12:30 - 1:30pm. Lunch break

Sat. 1:30 - 4:30 p.m. Long, clothed session

Sun. 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Long, nude session

12:30-1:30 p.m. Lunch break

Sun. 1:30 - 4:30 p.m. Long, clothed session

The Sunday afternoon session will close with a wine and cheese reception and a friendly sharing of artwork created during the marathon.

Register Soon! Space is limited!

For more information please call or e-mail River Arts at: 802.888.1261, [email protected]

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Fascinator Workshop

$25 includes materials + cash wine bar


Grab your friends and join this fun mini-millinery workshop! Create a beautiful piece of wearable art to show off at Viva Las Artes or your next special occasion. Prepare for this fall's annual fundraiser Viva Las Artes, where attendees are encouraged to accessorize to the nines and will feature international food stations and awards given out for best hats, fascinators, neck-ties, and accessories. A wonderful array of trimmings and materials provided, but feel free to bring along any feathers, flowers, fabric, or ribbons you might like to incorporate into your unique design. Come ready to have fun and bring ideas you may have to complete!

No experience needed, and you do not need to attend Viva to attend the workshop

More about our annual fall fundraiser Viva Las Artes, November 1st, online here!
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In Change: Writing for Healing Workshop



Explore with a group the dynamics of change for those shifting their lives either through loss, changes of work, partner, home, way of being in the world. We will explore what holds us back, what helps to leap us forward through the creative process. There will be in-class exercises and sharing in a supportive lively environment. No writing experience necessary. You will gain insight, writing tools to keep focused, to let go and to process life's transitions.

Laurie McMillan Instructor Bio, RN, M.Ed, Writer

Laurie is a published writer and has been leading writing groups for 17 years using writing to encourage new possibilities and create a conversation about life issues among workshop participants. She began this journey with clients with cancer in an outpatient chemotherapy setting where she worked as a RN and experienced how writing enhanced the client’s integration of painful and disconnected feelings and gain a sense of well being. Inspired by the process, she continues to lead writing groups in libraries, community education centers, art galleries, senior centers, nature centers, schools and homeless shelters. She has found through her groups, and individual work with clients, that writing and discussion inspires hope for participants and fosters an increased ability to meet life’s challenges. Simultaneously, Laurie works as a RN and has done so for almost 34 years. She just moved to VT and loves it.
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Intro to Flash Photography




Photographers have found the need to supplement natural light since the dawn of the

photographic era. Options abound in our generation, but electronic flash remains one

of the best solutions, from brightening scenes on the go to sculpting light in the studio.

This series will concentrate on hands-on, creative use of the portable accessory flash

(indoors and outdoors, both on and off camera). We will include a history of flash

technology, flash use in close-up work, and a demonstration of high powered strobes in

the studio. Examples will be shown, assignments given, and student photos shared

with the class.


It is recommended that students be familiar with the basics of digital photography and

their own equipment, and have an interest in the applied use of electronic flashes. They

will be required to bring their own digital camera with a “hot shoe” or other flash

connection, a battery-operated flash, and a tripod. The instructor can make

recommendations for the purchase of an inexpensive flash in case the student does not

own one.


PAUL ROGERS is a native of Stowe and a full time photographer. He earned an

Associate of Science in Photographic Illustration and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in

Photography as a Fine Art from the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences at

Rochester Institute of Technology. He specializes in commercial, documentary, travel,

and fine art photography, photography for artists, and photographic education. He is

best known for his photography of entertainer Rusty DeWees and for his Vermont

documentary project, Stick Season. www.paulrogersphotography.com

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Oldtime Beginner Banjo with Dana Robinson


Pre-Registration Required


  Introduction to Oldtime Banjo with Dana Robinson

In this class we’ll learn the basics of Southern oldtime-style banjo. We’ll get started on clawhammer frailing, basic chords in the key of G and D, and teach a handful of tunes and songs. We’ll reference chord charts and videos to help you become self guided. We’ll also cover jam session etiquette and how the banjo fits into the setting of an oldtime string band.

  Instructor Bio:

Dana Robinson has been a professional musician for more than 30 years. As a multi-instrumentalist (Fiddle, Guitar, Mandolin and Banjo) and singer-songwriter, Dana has released 12 CD’s and toured over a million miles across the United States, Canada, and Europe. His original compositions have been featured on a half-dozen films including two Ken Burns’ documentaries, "The National Parks, America’s Best Idea" and "The Dust Bowl.” Dana resides in Cabot, VT and is currently the Executive Director of Summit School of Traditional Music and Culture. www.robinsongs.com
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Ongoing Mixed-Level Classes

Access through Punchcard System


Adult (ages 18+)

Every Sunday, 10am-12noon

Instructor: Lisa Wolfgang


All Ages

Every Thursday, 6-8pm

Instructor: Heidi Bielenberg


Instructor will assist you in your learning from beginning throwing, honing your skills, trimming, hand building, and glazing. Classes do not have a set start and end date, come when able! Reserve a space in advance recommended, drop-ins welcome based on availability. Sign-up in the studio, by calling the office at (802) 888-1261, or emailing [email protected]
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Mixed Media Collage Workshop


Pre-registation Required


Constructing a mixed media collage is a fun and creative project that anyone can do! The process is simple. A variety of papers are glued down and layered onto a substrate in a visually interesting way. The piece is further embellished using paints, pens, etc. Collage pieces can be completely abstract or reflect a scene, object, or chosen theme.

The paper used can be from magazines, junk mail, old catalogues, wrapping paper, tissue paper, old cards, sheet music, old books, etc. The more variety, the more interest it adds.

In addition to paper, mixed media collage uses other medium such as paints, stamps, pens, markers, ink, watercolors and even small objects such as buttons, string, bottle caps and lace – all are layered and adhered with either glue and/or a gel medium. The possibilities are endless!

A host of collage techniques can take your works even further such as tinting to create a vintage look, adding a splattered layer of paint with a toothbrush, using sandpaper for a distressed effect, and more! Display your finished piece on the wall, with or without a frame, as a journal cover, or a decorative box top. There are no rules!

All materials provided, however, please bring any special materials you want to include such as personal photos and mementos.

Instructor Bio: Toni Flynn is a self-taught artist with a deep interest in fabric, paper, and mixed media collage. With roots in the Boston area, her passion for creating art began at a young age with drawing, woodworking, painting and mixed media. Focusing most recently on mixed media and paper collage, her works range from abstract to everyday scenes of rural life. Recycled fabrics are used for fabric/mixed media collages and her paper collages often include hand-printed paper, which incorporates more intentional patterns and colors.
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Zen of Watercolor


Pre-Registration Required. Register Here!

Anyone who wants the joy and challenges of watercolor painting will enjoy and benefit from ‘no-fail’ watercolor painting lessons that lead to self-expression, confidence and the ‘zen’ that painting has to offer.

Lessons on painting wet-into-wet, simple landscapes, and the importance of learning to see and paint negative spaces are a few examples of the way the student artists will engage with pigment, shape and composition.

Instructors Rosalie desGroseilliers and Patti Warren are sisters. Both are former art educators, school administrators and cancer survivors who paint and teach together often. Rosalie and Patti believe that painting with watercolors is an opportunity to have fun, be creative and learn to ‘go with the flow’.

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