Stick with love, and other Valentine suggestions
Art, love songs with Cupid option, and sweets
Valentine’s Day is on the horizon. Never been one to say no to chocolate and flowers, but sometimes a change is nice.
Start with AVA Gallery’s current small-in-scale but mighty-in-sentiment exhibition, Stick With Love. Of all of the quotes by the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., this may be my favorite: “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.” 18 artists have contributed works that focus on compassion and social justice; the theme covers loving your neighbor, expansively defined, but there’s a smidge of romance as well, is there not, in Matthew Peake’s “Bearing Fruit #28?” (above). On view until February 18. In the main galleries is the 14th Annual High School Exhibition, on view until February 25.)
Opera North will bring you an afternoon of unabashed “Love Songs” in a virtual concert on February 13 at 2:00 p.m (or at your leisure.) It’s the first installment of a series of concerts, Always ON Sunday 2022, by Opera North this February and March. Via Zoom, join Opera North’s General Director Evans Haile, who will be bringing you this program from his own New York City apartment. (!) Special guests will include ON’s Artistic Director Louis Burkot and cast members from upcoming Summerfest 2022 productions. Newsflash: Opera North stands ready to be your Cupid by sending a “virtual valentine” to someone you love, that is, a link to the virtual concert along with a special Valentine’s Day greeting. (Click here for more information, tickets, and how to choose the Cupid option.)
Finally, as sweet treats should not be ignored, here’s a suggestion for a more adult version of a childhood snack—small-batch marshmallows. Muncha’s Marshmallows are made right here in the Upper Valley, and are available at the Co-ops and other local stores. (Click the hyperlink for a complete list and more information.) They come in many flavors, including a special one for Valentine’s Day—Chocolate Dipped Strawberry—and they present their plump rectangular selves in a tidy white paper bag. Definitely s’more-able, but as for me, floating one in a couple of shots of espresso or a steaming latte is the way to go. Try serving that on a breakfast tray for someone you love, or sip one yourself. It’s winter’s kryptonite.
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And in case you are wondering . . . Susan B. Apel shuttered a lifelong career as a law professor to continue an interest (since kindergarten) in writing. Her freelance business, The Next Word, includes literary and feature writing; her work has appeared in a variety of lit mags and other publications including Art New England, The Woven Tale Press, The Arts Fuse, and Persimmon Tree. She connects with her neighbors through Artful, her blog about arts and culture in the Upper Valley. She’s in love with the written word.