Nantucket Cultural Council Seeks Applicants

Does your organization propagate the arts? Can your organization create communityArt impact in the arts for a specific audience? Does your organization need support to help realize your next project?

The Nantucket Cultural Council is accepting proposals for community-oriented arts, humanities, and science projects are until October 15, 2014.   This year, thanks to the efforts of State Representative Tim Madden, the Nantucket Cultural Council will distribute about $6,163.00 in grants.

According to Council spokesperson Jordana Fleischut, these grants can support a variety of artistic projects and activities in Nantucket, including exhibits, festivals, short-term artist residencies or performances in schools, workshops, and lectures. “We are looking for organizations to make an impact in the arts on the community of Nantucket. The strongest candidates will create the biggest exposure while also breaking down financial barriers that inhibit audiences.”

The Nantucket Cultural Council will also entertain funding proposals from schools and youth groups through the PASS Program, which provides subsidies for school-age children to attend cultural field trips.

The Nantucket Cultural Council is part of a network of 329 Local Cultural Councils serving all 351 cities and towns in the Commonwealth. The LCC Program is the largest grassroots cultural funding network in the nation, supporting thousands of community-based projects in the arts, sciences and humanities every year. The state legislature provides an annual appropriation to the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, which then allocates funds to each community.

Previously funded organizations on Nantucket include Maria Mitchell Association, the Nantucket Athenaeum, The Artist Association, The Nantucket Arts Council, The Nantucket Dreamland Foundation, Nantucket Community Music Center, The Nantucket Boys and Girls Club, Spoken Word Nantucket, The White Heron Theatre Company, Small Friends, Nantucket Skating Club,The Screen Writer’s Colony, The Children’s House, Friends of the Nantucket Public Schools, and The Salt Marsh Senior Center.

For specific guidelines on the Nantucket Cultural Council, contact Jordana Fleischut at jordana.ack@comcast.net or any other of Nantucket council members: John Belash, David Billings, Amy Jenness, John J McDermott, and John Wagley.

Application forms for Cultural Council grants are available at Nantucket Town Hall, at the Athenaeum front desk. For specific funding guidelines visit www.mass-culture.org/Nantucket

Fun in the Field: Island Fair

Nantucket Island Fair | Nantucket | MAThe Nantucket Island Fair brings together many of the best parts of Nantucket: family, friends, community spirit, the fruits of islanders’ summer of labor. And, of course, a beautiful shoreline. This annual family event has all the trimmings of a traditional country fair, with a little island flair thrown in. Head on out to the seaside Tom Nevers Field for the Nantucket Island Fair, taking place this year on Saturday, September 13 and Sunday, September 14.

If you like making things with your hands–edible or not–or growing food in your garden, you’ll love Gertrude’s Harvest Exhibition. There, you can showcase pretty much anything that you have made or grown by hand, whether it is a painting, a pie, a piece of pottery, pickles, or a pumpkin. Register your goodies on-site under the Community Tent any time from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday for the 2 p.m. judging.

Think you’ve really got “some pig?” Family favorite Ray’s Barn Yard welcomes all animals from chickens and cows to star-nosed moles and pink fairy armadillos. If you love them and want to show them off, now is your chance. You may pre-register at www.nantucketislandfair.com or on-site under the Information Tent any time before 1 p.m. on Saturday.

Nantucket Island Fair | Nantucket | MAThere are a number of events that are brand new this year. Parents will be delighted by the Kiddie Corral, a supervised play area for children ages five and under. This will be available from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Games Field on both days of the fair.

Creative kids will love the fairy house competition. There will be a large area landscaped with natural materials, ready for each entrant to put their pre-made fairy house down on their own 15″x15″ square. Kids can spend an hour on Saturday adorning their houses with the natural materials provided. Judging will take place on Sunday, and prizes will be awarded.

If your sweet tooth is as fast as it is sweet, then you should enter the new cupcake-eating contest. Nantucket Bake Shop will donate some of their delicious cupcakes to be devoured by contestants, who will be sitting with their hands tied behind their backs as they see who can down their cupcake the fastest.

Instead of dunking for apples, people will be peeling them. Using only a paring knife, contestants will vie for longest peel and fastest peel.

This year’s dog show has undergone some revisions. Rather than being formatted like a traditional dog show, volunteer coordinator Campbell Sutton says fair organizers are aiming for a more fun-based show. Categories will include Waggiest Tail, Cutest Mug, and Best Dressed.

Nantucket Island Fair | Nantucket | MAOf course, Island Fair doesn’t happen automatically. Plenty of volunteers pour their heart and soul into its production, and have a darned good time doing it. From contest judges to face painters, people with a variety of skill sets are needed to make Island Fair a success. Join in the fun by filling out the volunteer form at www.nantucketislandfair.com. All volunteers get free parking.

Tom Nevers Field is located at the end for Tom Nevers Road. Parking is $12 per car or pay the $6 entry fee if you bike or walk. Further details, including a full schedule of events, can be found at www.nantucketislandfair.com.

Nantucket Cottage Hospital Needs Your Votes!

Nantucket Cottage Hospital has entered the 2014 Pink Glove Dance competition to bring together island caregivers, cancer patients and survivors, and the entire Nantucket community to raise breast cancer awareness and funds for the Marla Ceely Lamb Cancer Travel Fund.

The Pink Glove Dance is an international competition in which hospitals and health care facilities from around the world organize and produce music videos – featuring, of course, pink-colored exam gloves – to raise breast cancer awareness and prevention.

Voting in the competition begins today and the winners in each category (Healthcare System, Standalone Healthcare Provider, or Non-Healthcare Organization) will receive $10,000 toward the breast cancer charity of their choice. To vote for Nantucket Cottage Hospital’s video, please follow this link. Voting is tied to an e-mail address, so each registered e-mail address can vote once per day for a specific video. Votes can be submitted every day through September 23rd, and the winner will be announced October 2nd.

The Nantucket Cottage Hospital Pink Glove Dance video was produced by Lisa Frey of Nantucket Event Media, and features NCH staff, cancer patients and survivors, as well as community members dancing to “Best Day of My Life” by American Authors next to some of the island’s iconic landmarks, and symbolically waving cancer goodbye.

“As we danced around the island with our pink gloves, it wasn’t about the dancing ability of the dancers as much as it was about the unity of purpose in this project,” said Betsey Minihan, the NCH Nursing Department administrative assistant, who choreographed the video. “You never know who you are standing next to: the woman who lost her 30-year-old-daughter, the co-worker who you have known for 35 years or the newly diagnosed – we are all touched by breast cancer in one way or another. If our video spreads awareness in any way, we will have accomplished what we set out to do.”

Knowing Your Pinot

by Jenny Benzie, Advanced Sommelier & Proprietress of Épernay Wine & Spirits

GrapesHot temperatures are fading as the end of summer approaches, but our taste buds are alive and ready for the Indian Summer bounty that awaits us here on Nantucket. The island isn’t quite as crowded; you can sit on the beach without hearing the conversation of the people next to you and you can walk into a restaurant for dinner without a reservation. But what do you do when you cozy up to the bar, order a glass of Pinot and the bartender asks, “Grigio, Gris, Blanc, or Noir?” What?

There is more than one Pinot in the wine world, and it doesn’t help that there are aliases for the ones that you do know. Keeping the following tips in mind will help you to easily decipher between the different Pinots and confidently order exactly what you are looking for.

Everyone has some sort of image that comes to mind about Pinot Grigio, but think outside that box of wine (pun intended). Pinot Grigio and Pinot Gris are actually the same grape. Their names reference the gray, slightly red color of the grape skin when the grapes are harvested. The resulting wine is white, although it may sometimes have the slightly bronzed color of onion skin if the grape skin is left in contact with the juice for a longer period of time during processing. Think of it as a ‘Grey Lady’ kind of wine where these words mean ‘gray’ in their respective languages. Grigio is the Italian name, while Gris is French. Same thing, different language, right? Even with this in common, however, the wines can be a little stylistically different.

WhiteGrapesPinot Grigio comes mostly from the cool northern parts of Italy. It makes a lean, crisp, light-bodied wine with aromas and flavors of bright citrus and minerals and moderate acidity. It is typically a simple, straightforward, easy sipping wine with no need for serious contemplation. This makes it perfect for uncomplicated, light summer meals. It works well with seafood (think halibut with Massachusetts peach salsa) and simple chicken dishes from your backyard grill.

Pinot Gris, especially from France’s Alsace region, is richer, more lush, and sometimes lightly sweet, with flavors of melons and tropical fruit. It is more full-bodied and makes a great accompaniment to pasta with creamy sauces and heartier fish (local stripped bass) and your Mom’s famous chicken casserole.

Producers in Oregon (Cristom), New Zealand (Mount Beautiful) and beyond usually signal which style they’re going for depending on what name they choose.

Next up is Pinot Blanc. Think of this like writing a ‘Blanc’ check where anything goes, like Nantucket in the summer! Blanc refers to the white color of the grape skin and the end product wine. This grape, along with Pinot Gris, is a color mutation of Pinot Noir. What began as a genetic mutation has since been cultivated into its own type of wine. Today, it is the most rare of the Pinot family. It has aromas of fresh stone fruit and a hint of mineral complexity. Its lengthy mouthfeel and bright finish make it an amazing alternative to Pinot Gris.

When used in blending, Pinot Blanc adds body and complexity to the final wine. It can also be used in sparkling wine production (Cremant d’Alsace) due to its lower alcohol and higher acidity. Not only found in Europe, there are great domestic examples from Oregon (Adelsheim) and California (Robert Foley) as well. It is a very versatile wine and worth your effort to discover if you haven’t already. Check it out as a great way to start a meal paired with zesty crab salad, blue fish paté or carrot hummus with fresh veggies.

Now enter Pinot Noir, the red grape that makes famous wine all over the world. This grape also has a few aliases, Pinot Nero and Blauburgunder, to name a few. Pinot Noir grows best in cool climates, but is a bit temperamental and needs enough time on the vine to fully ripen. Because of this, really excellent wines from this grape tend to be more expensive. This is a thin-skinned grape, which translates to lower tannins and less intensity of color. That makes it more transparent in your glass compared to other thick-skinned grapes, like Syrah.

We have different styles of this wine, but the name here typically stays the same across well-known regions. Region of origin affects Pinot Noir more than any other grape. Selections from the New World tend to be more fruit forward, ranging from bright red cherry and tart cranberry on the Sonoma Coast (Radio-Coteau, check out their ‘La Neblina’) to black cherry and a touch of higher alcohol from the Russian River Valley (Merry Edwards, Paul Hobbs). Red Burgundy from France is always Pinot Noir, showing lots of terroir (the “sense of place” where it is grown) and earthiness, such as dust and mushrooms. However, Pinot Noir that hails from Oregon is a balance of the fruit driven and earthy styles of wine that originate elsewhere. Pinot Noir can usually be found in places where Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, and Pinot Blanc are also grown (think Oregon, Argentina, Italy and New Zealand). Don’t let the light color of the wine fool you. No matter where it comes from, Pinot Noir is full of complex layers, moderate acidity and super flexible when it comes to food pairing. It is the perfect catch with your fresh tuna steak.

If you keep this helpful information in mind, the next time someone offers you a glass of Pinot, you won’t be surprised by the color. You will be able to figure out which style and which grape it is just by smelling and tasting it and not even looking at the color. Your taste buds will be happy and you’ll be able to correctly pair it with your meal no matter which one you’re drinking.