White River Takeover Alert!
Long River Gallery & Gifts Under New Ownership
A takeover in White River Junction has just taken the art world by surprise. "Just," as in two months ago, but it's still new news to most. Long River Gallery & Gifts was sold to Rachel Obbard of Hartland, VT. Blue hair and all, Rachel has made a considerable career shift from teaching engineering students at Dartmouth's Thayer School of Engineering to overseeing a gallery space representing some 200 local-area artists and their unique works of fine art and fine craft in White River Junction.
Rachel took over the reins of the Gallery on June 1, and she's made great strides since then by incorporating a new look and feel to the gallery space that holds prime real estate at 49 South Main Street with a direct hallway connect to the iconic Hotel Coolidge lobby. Rachel has added new furniture made by Scott Duffy of Rockledge Farm Woodworks in Reading, VT. Other changes include a freshening up of the overall atmosphere to cater to local residents and visitors to WRJ. She is also getting the gallery involved in more events, including an upcoming festive group event this First Friday, August 3rd from 5 - 8 pm which includes several businesses throwing a party of live music, local food, and more in the parking lot behind the Coolidge.
One of Rockledge Farm Woodworks occasional tables of live-edge maple burl and walnut.
For a PhD in engineering with a specialty in Arctic and Antarctic ice, Rachel seems to have found a great new home working with artists and helping them represent their work to the public. Long River Gallery & Gifts remains committed to showing work that's local to the Upper Valley, as it has for the past 26 years.
Former owner (and the writer of this piece) Dave Celone, has been helping Rachel come up to speed, answering questions, and slowly backing away from his work as Long River's gallerist of the past four-plus years. He's excited to let Rachel take the Gallery wherever she wants, and knows the transition will be a positive step for the local artist community. One thing that excites Dave the most is that this transition allowed for a change of ownership in a downtown WRJ business storefront seamlessly and without the space going dark. That, he knows, is a powerful and positive barometer for White River's evolution to an artist colony and livable downtown community of significance in Vermont and New England.
Rachel (left) in the main gallery space with a friend and customer!
Dave Celone writes for the dailyuv.com under the moniker Poetic Licence. Tune into his posts (for free!) by Clicking Here or by visiting this link: http://dailyuv.us11.listmanage.com/subscribeu=3b0a3ea19ca8d7b499b2203de&id=8d286dabb7. Thanks!