Stone Valley Arts is a 501(c)3 non-profit community arts organization which began in 2013 as a response to community needs as part of the Poultney 2020 revitalization movement. Dedicated residents came together to launch SVA, and in turn received official non-profit status on July 23, 2014.

The purpose of Stone Valley Arts is to provide classes, workshops, presentations, and events in the visual, performing and literary arts for all ages and levels of experience. Our goal is to inspire interest, participation and provide enjoyment, enriching the quality of life in the region by integrating the arts into the fabric of the community.

Stone Valley Arts develops and sponsors art activities and programs in the region around Poultney, Vermont. Our first home, thanks to the generosity of Chuck Colvin, was at the Journal Press Building.

In 2016, we found our second home at Fox Hill (145 E. Main Street, Poultney) thanks to our partnership with the Vermont Preservation Trust. Formerly the Fox Hill Center for the Arts, the building was donated to the Preservation Trust of Vermont by sisters Rita Fuchsberg and Irene Minkoff in late 2015.

and our history

ABOUT us

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Diane Bargiel

"Diane Bargiel received her Bachelor of Music degree in clarinet from the Dana School of Music, a Master of Music in clarinet from Michigan State University, Certification in Music Education from Carnegie Mellon University, and a certificate in Arts Administration from New York University. In 2021, she retired from SUNY Adirondack as the last Humanities division chair and Associate."

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David Mook

"David Mook is author of two collections: EACH LEAF (Poems and Essays on Grief and Loss), and Corn-Pone & Pinions (Political Poems, Essays, and Cartoons) featuring Art by Tom O'Brien. Mook has an MFA in Writing from Vermont College and teaches at Castleton University."

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Burnham Holmes

"Burnham is an award-winning writer of 17 books, taught writing at the School of Visual Arts (15 years) and now at Castleton University (25 years). He has won the Part-Time Faculty Award at Castleton and led a group of Castleton students for a semester in London. He has appeared in twenty plays (his favorite roles are Falstaff, Sir Toby Belch, and Mr. Peachum) and has written twelve plays."

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Russ Layne

Speech Pathology/Speech Arts Major: BA Montclair State College. Urban Ed Major: MA Montclair State College
Speech Pathologist/Arts & Cultural Affair's Coordinator, Paterson, N.J. Public Schools. Speech Pathologist, New Orleans Parish Public Schools. Founder and Executive Director: Sugarloaf, N.Y. Music Series
Program Director: Elizabeth Seton/Iona College Jazz Series, Yonkers, N.Y.

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Donna Ciobanu

"Donna is an ex-Southern California artist that relocated to Vermont a few years ago, favoring landscape and abstract art. Most of her paintings are mixed acrylic/oil. She has shown her paintings in numerous exhibits, art festivals and solo shows in California, Arizona, Vermont and New York. Donna is a web co-manager for Stone Valley Arts."

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Chuck Helfer

"Before retiring to Vermont, Chuck Helfer had a long career as a federal employee.  He worked with national service and volunteer programs such as Americorps, Peace Corps, Vista, Senior Companions, Foster Grandparents and RSVP. He currently works as a nature, landscape and event photographer with several non-profit organizations including The Nature Conservancy, Slate Valley Trails and the Slate Valley Museum."

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Patty McWilliams

"Patricia (Patty) McWilliams is the owner/proprietor of Hermit Hill Books, specializing in used/antiquarian books for 25 years and has had an open shop on the Main Street of Poultney since 2001. She is an active member of the Vermont Antiquarian Booksellers Association. Prior to moving to the Poultney area, McWilliams worked at The New Yorker, GEO Magazine, and the Country Journal. She always has had a deep interest in the arts."

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Sharon Lovett-Graff

"Sharon Lovett-Graff lives in Poultney VT, and joined the board with the hopes of bringing film programming to the mix of events at SVA. She has worked as a public librarian for 25 years in New Haven CT, and she is currently working at the Castleton Free Library since relocating to Vermont. Sharon has a long history of volunteer work in community organizing, neighborhood revitalization and the arts."

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Gary Schmidt

"Gary Schmidt is a pianist/composer. He received his B.A degree from the University of South Florida in piano performance and a Masters degree in music theory/composition from the University of Illinois. He attended the Institute for Advanced Musical Studies, Sion Switzerland as part of his undergraduate studies. His current compositions are in the jazz style. He is also a professional chef of 40 years."

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Martin VanBUren III

Martin is a photographer, videographer, playwright, and actor from Poultney with a B.S. in Communication, Multimedia, and Film Studies. His motivation is to document, craft, and perform captivating and emotionally-moving stories. Whether behind the camera, in front of it, or in his cozy work space, he approaches every project with a deep sense of curiosity and wonder. To be moved, and move others."

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All the way back to the beginning.

A building with some history

grants we've been awarded