NEWS&VIEWS by Jacqueline Bennett

Posts tagged “Vernon Connecticut

Small Exhibit Showcases Big Talent

Posted on May 20, 2014

Write-Up & Photos by Jacqueline Bennett newsandviewsjb 

Navajo Missionary, oil, by Bernard Duffy.

Navajo Missionary, oil, by Bernard Duffy.

A second visit to Vernon Community Arts Center made the point that talent is all around us. My first stop here was earlier this year, a photography show on a cold, snowy day in January.

Underway now, the Third Annual Juried Multimedia Exhibit  is a small exhibit showcasing area talent. It opened May 4 and continues to May 31 in Vernon, Connecticut. Admission is free but a donation of $5 is appreciated.

In her  jurors’ statement Shauna Shane said her criterion in selecting winners was  “first, good design, and second, an effective conceptor idea that results in engagement and emotional impact.” As well, Shane looks for work expressing excellent technical skill and a fresh approach. Juror Laurie Sloan stated she selected winners based on entries she found to be “especially compelling, inventive and original” with “exceptional strengths in content, form and technique.”

Best in Show -Bolton Pond, pastel by Jane Penfield.

Best in Show -Bolton Pond, pastel by Jane Penfield.

That said, a pastel by Jane Penfield titled “Bolton Pond” was awarded Best in Show out of approximately 80 entries. First Place went to an acrylic “Jack-in’the-Pulpit” by Neil Connell, second place to Sharon Chaples for another acrylic “Valley Falls Barn”, third place to Joyce Hausmann for her watercolor “Orchard in Winter”. There were three honorable mentions, “Orange Boat Box” – polymer by Helen Malchow, “Canyon Pot”, terracotta by Susan Gerr and “Phantasia, watercolor by Joyce Benson.

Memories of Japan & Korea - A Tribute to My Dad.

Memories of Japan & Korea – A Tribute to My Dad.

Sun setting on Stonington.

Sun Setting on Stonington.

Second Place "Valley Falls Barn", arylic by Sharon Chaples.

Second Place “Valley Falls Barn”, arylic by Sharon Chaples.

However, a number of other entries were quite eye-catching as well  – for example, Navajo Missionary an oil by Bernard Duffy, Glory of the Morning, colored pencil by Diane Caswell Christian, Sparkling Day at Cob Hill oil by Layne, Sun Setting on Stonington – oil NFS by Mary Leonard (really captured the extraordinary beauty of the quaint, lovely village of Stonington) and Memories of Japan & Korea – Tribute to My Dad, mixed media NFS by Jeff Blazejousky.

Mornin of the Glory.

Glory of the Morning

For anyone such as myself who has ever tried his or her hand at sketching, or other forms of artistic expression, surely there has to be an appreciation for the thought, time and personal passion that is reflected in each entry.











The history of the building where the Vernon Community Center is now located is interesting unto itself. The building originally constructed on this site in 1927, was a school for an orphanage that stood where the police station is presently on Route 30 – called County Home School, according to VCAC. The orphanage was demolished following World War II  and between 1950 to the early 1970s the building was used as a town kindergarden. A grassroots effort resulted in the town of Vernon receiving a grant in July 2010 to renovate the building as an “historic site” and thus the Vernon Community Arts Center was born.

Vernon Community Arts Center

Vernon Community Arts Center




Visit for more information.


Destination: On St. Patrick’s Day A Return Visit To Rein’s (Ryan’s) Deli

Posted on March 17, 2013

Notation: March 17, 2015 Rein’s is offering its traditional St. Patrick’s Day dinner again this year.   Write-Up & Photos by Jacqueline Bennett   A New York style deli may seem to be an unlikely choice for dining out on St. Patrick’s Day but not when it comes to Rein’s Deli in Vernon, Connecticut. Each March 17th and for a few days before the ever popular Rein’s takes to heart the saying that everyone is a little bit Irish this time of year and transforms itself into “Ryan’s Deli” complete with green decorations, some green shirted waistaff and most importantly – a sizable corned beef and cabbage dinner.   For those in search of a traditional St. Patrick’s Day corned beef & cabbage…

Destination: Pancho Loco Restaurant, Vernon, CT

Posted on May 26, 2012

Write-Up & Photos by Jacqueline Bennett newsandviewsjb Have a taste for Mexican food? Well, a terrific spot to try is Pancho Loco in Vernon, Connecticut. Inside, the decor is colorful and fun and includes a tribute wall to singer Jimmy Buffet – famous for the hit tune Margaritaville and his army of Parrothead followers. A complimentary basket of nacho chips and salsa gets the meal started. From there, the menu features traditional Mexican plates such as fajitas – be prepared for the “honk, honk, ring, ring” sound effects that accompany each delivery of sizzling fajitas. As well, there are tacos, burritos and chimichanga. Pancho Loco’s offers combination plates, salads, quesadillas, nachos, wings, enchiladas, steak & ribs selections, chef’s specials, lunch specials, Loco favorites, as well…

Despite Chill in the Air, 2012 Hockanum River Canoe & Kayak Race Held April 1

Posted on April 6, 2012

Write-up & Photos by Jacqueline Bennett newsandviewsjb Despite a chill in the air and cloudy skies, some hardy paddlers turned out April 1 to take part in the 35th annual Hockanum River Canoe & Kayak Race held in central Connecticut. Nonetheless, the weather may have been to blame for keeping others away. Participation was reportedly down to 75 entrants. Ironically, about a week before the area was experiencing record high temperatures which brought tree blossoms out early. Mother nature also created some additional challenges to navigate this year. Although race organizers were said to have made every effort get the course cleared up in the aftermath of storms Irene and Alfred, there were downed branches along the way. As well, a local reservoir was…