It’s Back – The Winter Farmers Market Has Begun

photo of fall vegetables on display

Saturdays 10am – 12pm in the First Street Community Center Gymnasium

Bring your kids, your friends, and a stray neighbor or two! We have a variety of vendors and a plethora of delicious items from which to choose. Stock the cupboards and fill the pantry, it is time for the Mt. Vernon Winter Farmers Market!

Beautiful vegetables, delicious artisan breads, jams and jellies. We have several different varieties of local, grass-fed meats as well as farm fresh eggs available. Gluten-free products and tasty treats are here, along with honey, shag-bark hickory nuts, walnuts and dry herbs.

Hand-dipped chocolates, exquisite hats, scarves and baby items. Handcrafted jewelry is a must-see, perfect for gifts. Dried beans, fresh ground cornmeal, popcorn, and meat seasoning mixes! Be sure to stop by and see us!

Everything at our market is produced and raised here in Iowa, by the vendor selling directly to you! We are proud to be local!

If you have any questions, please Call (319) 560-1391 or Email mtvernonfm@yahoo.com.

Be sure to stop inside the First Street Community Center to check out all the fantastic shops as well!

Holiday Jingle & Mingle Shopping Event

This Saturday, November 10th from 10 am – 2 pm come join us for a holiday shopping event!  All vendors and crafters are together under one big roof – inside the First Street Community Center’s Gymnasium.

Free Admission!

NOTE:  Please bring a non-perishable food donation for the Linn County VA Food Pantry.

Vendors and Crafters

Perfectly Posh
Usborne Books
Damsel in Defense
Color Street
Pure Romance
R & K Crafts and Printing
New Door Designs
Joyful Essentials Jewelry with Young Living
TK Kreations
The Craft Table
Tastefully Simple
Crafts by Lisa

R & K Crafts and Printing

New Door Designs

The Craft Table

Meet Me Where They Play the Blues – Eddie Piccard Jazz and The Busch Brothers

poster for Eddie Piccard Jazz concert

“Meet Me Where They Play the Blues!” That is the invitation from jazz musician Eddie Piccard.

The Eddie Piccard Quartet and the Busch Brothers will once again join forces at the First Street Community Center in Mount Vernon on Saturday, November 10, at 7:30 pm.

The program will likely include “Pete Kelly’s Blues,” “The St. Louis Blues,” “The Salt Lake City Blues,” and many other blues songs and traditional jazz numbers.

“The blues is quintessentially American,” Eddie says. “The music grew out of the songs of Afro-American slaves and field hands in the South. The blues contains so many emotions, including joy, sorrow, and determination. The words may at first sound down, but the music always brings you up.

We love playing for the audience that comes to the Mount Vernon events, and we know people will love hearing this music. It’s classic.”

Tickets for the performance are $15 and can be purchased at Bauman’s Clothing Store in Mount Vernon (319) 895-8692. They can also be bought at the performance.  Patrons are welcome to bring a favorite beverage and purchase a Community Center cup or bring a clean Community Center cup from home to use in the Theatre space.

Eddie Piccard Jazz plays hot traditional favorites and cool Shearing melodies, as well as warm Latin tunes.  Eddie will be on piano and vocals, Craig Dove on bass, Jon Wilson on drums, Rich Martin on vibes, and Dave Richter on guitar.

For this show they will be joined by the Busch Boys–Marty on trombone, Larry on trumpet, and Luke on clarinet.

The “Busch Boys”  are very happy to join the Eddie Piccard Quintet for this evening of music.  Larry Busch is a veteran of the Guy Lombardo, Wayne King, and the Al Pierson Orchestras.  He has been leading his own big band for many years and is currently the leader of the Dixieland Allstars.  Trombonist Marty has toured with Al Cobine, Johnny Mathis, Dick Jurgens, The American Vintage Orchestra, and the Larry Busch Big Band. Luke  has played with the Dixieland Allstars, the Mad City Funk, and his own SKA band.

Eddie Piccard Jazz and the Busch Brothers

logo for eddie piccard jazz

Eddie Piccard grew up in eastern Iowa, and began playing music on his grandmother’s piano. He left for larger venues in Chicago, Florida and on the west coast. But he came back to Iowa in the 1980s and has become a jazz icon in eastern Iowa since returning to his home state. Iowans remember fondly the jazz club Eddie and his wife Dallis opened on Mount Vernon Road in the 1990s. But Iowans weren’t the only ones to frequent Eddie’s place. Travelers from other states came to this club for the chic décor and the unforgettable nights of music. Jazz musicians stopped by, too, after finishing up a gig in the area. The club was forced to close because of road widening. Eddie now plays regularly all over eastern Iowa, as well as in the Chicago area and the Twin Cities.

Rich Martin’s career began in college where he was a drummer and a vibist. He took an extended break from performing to teach at Cornell College. But the music called him back and he began sitting in with Eddie’s trio fifteen years ago, while still teaching. He is now a full-time member of the group.

Dave Richter comes from Dubuque to perform in Meet Me in New Orleans. He is well-known in northeast Iowa as an accomplished guitarist, bassist, and banjo player. He performs in Iowa, Wisconsin, and the Chicago area.

Tim Crumley performs frequently with the Eddie Piccard Jazz Quartet, as well as a number of regional ensembles, including Ashanti, The Rusty Johnson Group, and the John Shultz Trio. Tim is a lyrical and sensitive drummer who is always engaged and engaging.

Try Yoga at First Street Community Center!

Top left, Devon Olberding, left, Jen Zimmerman Bronder, center, Carol Daly, right, Ann Fleckensteing – Photo by Lisa Lewis from Envisage studios

Did you know you could take Yoga classes at the First Street Community Center?  Elliott’s Uptown Fitness offers Yoga classes in our building and is starting a new session next week.

What sets Yoga at First Street Community Center apart from Yoga at other studios?  The answer is the Elliott’s Uptown Fitness Yoga teachers!

Collectively their teachers, Jen Zimmerman-Bronder, Ann Fleckenstein, Devon Olberding, and Carol Daly, have over 1300 teacher training hours, 10 years of teaching yoga, and experience teaching at local Yoga studios in Iowa City, Solon, North Liberty, and Cedar Rapids and nationally/internationally at Yoga retreats in Colorado, Costa Rica, and Indonesia.

Yoga classes at First Street Community Center range from Kids Yoga to Gentle Yoga to Hatha Yoga for all ability levels. The setting at First Street Community Center is spacious with room for up to a dozen or more students to fit comfortably. Yoga mats and props are provided on site as well.

Click Here For Yoga Class Info

Devon Olberding

Devon Olberding – Photo by Lisa Lewis from Envisage Studios

Devon has been a spinning instructor at Elliott’s Uptown Fitness for over five years. She has also taught fitness and dance classes for several years in the Mount Vernon area.

As a mother of four active kids, she is passionate about mindfulness at a young age. Her kids yoga classes focus on movements, postures, and breathing that integrate mind and body in a fun and engaging way. She is certified in KAY Kids Yoga, TRX, and is also nearing completion of her Holistic Nutrition and Health Coach Certification.

Devon loves inspiring people of all ages to live happier, healthier lives.

Jen Zimmerman Bronder, RYT-200

Jen Zimmerman Bronder- Photo by Lisa Lewis from Envisage Studios

Jen teaches Hatha yoga which is influenced by two trainings, one in the Anusara Yoga style and the other in the Para Yoga style.

Her classes blend the physical poses with breath work and meditation. She continues to expand her knowledge by attending workshops and trainings that focus on the healing, therapeutic aspects of yoga.

Ann Fleckenstein, RYT-200

Ann Fleckenstein – Photo by Lisa Lewis from Envisage Studios

Ann specializes in Hatha yoga which focuses on physical exercise for flexibility, strength, balance, concentration and relaxation. Breathing techniques and meditation are also part of her class offerings.

Ann is a registered yoga teacher and completed her yoga instruction through the California based Cloud Nine Yoga Teacher Training (RYT-200). In addition to the practice of hatha yoga, Ann also brings insight and instruction into Patanjali’s eight limb path of yoga which offers guidelines for “yoga as an entire lifestyle”.

Ann enjoys teaching and learning, and being able to bring yoga to the community in a way that makes yoga attainable for all levels of students.

Carol Daly, DPT, RYT-200

Carol Daly – Photo by Lisa Lewis from Envisage Studios

Carol grew up in a home where her mom practiced yoga and meditation. Those early experiences influenced her own personal practice of yoga and established yoga as a life-time strategy for health and well-being.

As a licensed physical therapist, Carol has combined her understanding of movement science with the ancient teachings of yoga to help her clients learn and relearn how to move again. Carol completed yoga teacher training with Fannie Hungerford in 2015 and is a registered yoga teacher (RYT-200). She will complete an additional 300 hours of teacher training and receive her RYT-500 designation at the Himalayan Institute in October.

Carol’s yoga teacher training draws from traditional yoga theory and contemporary knowledge of the mind and body to encompass the complete scope of yoga. Carol’s strongest held belief is that yoga is accessible to all who are interested in giving it a try.

Beaker Brothers’ Halloween Concert

Doors open at the Uptown Theatre Friday, October 26th at 7:00 pm to mix and mingle with your friends and other costumed party goers.  The actual concert will start at 8:00 pm.

Yes you guessed it, costumes are strongly encouraged!  Help spread the word, let your friends know of this great way to enjoy Halloween with some live music.

BYOB if you use an Uptown Theatre cup – Each cup costs only $5.00.   Rumor has it that there will be free popcorn too!

Tickets are $15.

From their Facebook page:

We’re stoked to get back to the First Street Community Center.

This is a great venue for a party.

It’s short notice, we know, so help us spread the word. Costumes encouraged. BYOB, just pour it into a Community Center cup, ($5), and drink right in the theater!

Last time, it turned into a dance party with Beakers Freakers boogying on the stage with us. Fun!

For more info see the Beakers Brothers Band Facebook event page.

2018 Uptown Theatre Honors – Gala Celebrating the Arts

Collage of Johnny Krob, Mickey Woods, James & Catherine Kennedy, Beryl O’Connor and Damon Cole
Johnny Krob, Mickey Woods, James & Catherine Kennedy, Beryl O’Connor and Damon Cole

The A-Go-Gos, a Mount Vernon Volunteer Organization, proudly present the 2018 Uptown Theatre Honors – An Evening Gala Celebrating the Arts on Saturday, October 20, 2018 starting with a 6:30 pm cocktail hour and 7:30 pm for the show.

This year’s honorees are Johnny Krob, Mickey Woods, James & Catherine Kennedy, Beryl O’Connor and Damon Cole.

Tickets are $20 and an be purchased ahead of time at Bauman’s in Mount Vernon, or you call the Reservation Line (319) 895-8060. Tickets are also available at the door.

Come join us to celebrate these wonderful people and their contributions to the arts!

Starmites – A Rock Musical – performing in the Uptown Theatre

MVLCT's Poster for Starmites

Starmites is a delightfully over the top sci-fi 80’s rock musical that uses a fantasy world to drive home poignant lessons about the awkwardness of growing up when you don’t quite fit in.

Outsider, Eleanor Fairchild has built an imaginary world around the sci-fi comic books she collects. On the same day her Mom convinces her to give up her fantasy of becoming a superhero, Eleanor instead finds herself mysteriously thrust into the world of her favorite comic book, Starmites. She lands in the middle of the battle between evil villain Shak Graa, and the Starmites, guardians of Inner Space. She and the Starmites team up on a quest to keep power out of Shak Graa’s greedy hands.

Along the way they meet a colorful assortment of Bowie-esque villains including the flamboyant Diva, Queen of Inner Space and her Banshee warriors – Destiny’s Childish sirens.

Starmites’ music and lyrics are by Barry Keating.  It was first presented in 1980.  It opened off-Broadway in 1987 and on-Broadway on April 27, 1989, where it ran for 60 performances. It received six Tony Award nominations, including Best Musical.

According to the Starmites website:

With the timeless appeal of THE WIZARD OF OZ and LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS, yet unique, STARMITES is exciting, touching, and great fun for the entire family.

Show Dates:

With multiple show dates you can pick the day and time that best fits your busy schedule:

  • Friday Oct. 5th at 7:30 pm
  • Saturday Oct. 6th at 7:30 pm
  • Sunday Oct. 7th at 2 pm
  • Friday Oct. 12th at 7:30 pm
  • Saturday Oct. 13th at 7:30 pm
  • Sunday Oct. 14th at 2 pm

Come see your favorite local actors!

The Cast of STARMITES, in order of appearance:

  • S’up S’up Sensaboi: Jasper Rood
  • Diggety Razzledazzle: Melissa Caminneci
  • Ack Ack Hackerax: Willa Martin
  • Starmite Ensemble: Irish Valentine
  • Spacepunk: Mia Huxley
  • Eleanor Fairchild / Bizarbara: Nikki Scheel
  • Eleanor’s Mother / Diva: Kami Zbanek Hill
  • Shak Graa / Trinkulus: John Zbanek Hill
  • Shotzi: Kelli Massey
  • Balbraka: Jenna Woodwick
  • Canibelle: Lisa Smith
  • Hollaback: Mimi Vukelich
  • Banshee Ensemble: Sydney Myers

Tickets are available at the performance and online.  Purchase tickets online here.

MVLCT logo

Your Art Project Paradise – MY Studio – Made by You

My Studio art sign

MY Studio (Made by You Studio) opened for fun creative projects in June 2018.  It is a cozy little space stocked with an extensive variety of art supplies and materials just for you!

MY Studio has already hosted several birthday parties, ladies nights, creative friend gatherings, couple’s art dates, as well as partnered with Cornell College as part of their new student orientation activities. MY Studio has walk in open studio hours on Tuesdays Wednesdays and Saturdays, and can be reserved any other time for private events.

MY Studio started as a dream of Andi Spencer’s.  She wanted to have an intentional creative space to make art that could be shared with others.  But a seed of an idea/dream is just a seed until it’s planted.  Enter Andi’s friend Braden. When asked by Joe Jennison about what her ideal business would be, she said “Andi’s Art Studio idea!”

The two friends began having a more serious conversation about the possibilities of bringing this vision to life and in late 2017 the seed was “planted”.  With encouragement from family and friends and a newly available space opening up in the First Street Community Center, MY Studio was born!

MY Studio is a Make it Yourself arts and crafts studio with all the tools and supplies you need to make your creative vision a reality.

MY Studio is the place for you IF:

  • You are feeling inspired and looking for a designated space with a good, creative vibe
  • You’d like to try a new craft, but don’t want to buy all of the equipment you need to get started
  • You need a place to make that Pintrest project that you got all the stuff for and but haven’t gotten around to making yet
  • You’d like to make a personalized gift
  • You’d like to have an art-inspired gathering: birthday parties, team bonding, family projects, time with friends, date night
  • Come with an idea, Andi & Braden are ready to help you make it happen…AND take care of the clean up!

MY Studio is located on the basement level near Yoga Studio C and is easily accessed via the entrance via the North Parking lot.  For more information phone: (319) 331-6205.

Andi Spencer

Andi Spencer and kids working on an art project at MY Studio

Andi Spencer has lived in Mount Vernon with her husband Jaime and their two children, Connor and Fiona, for 11 years.

Her love of art started at a very early age. She grew up in Grinnell where she took as many art classes as she could while in school and then as a student at Grinnell College and the University of Iowa. She loved to draw and paint and make things with her dad’s wood working tools.

She was also fortunate to have access to a variety of art experiences with artists in Grinnell who opened their studios to her and encouraged her and helped to develop her artistic abilities. The idea for MY Studio really stems from that experience. Andi’s desire to have an intentional space to make art as well as a space that could be shared so that others could have that experience as well.

Braden JP Rood

Braden Rood at MY Studio in Mount Vernon Iowa

Braden JP Rood hails from Mount Vernon. After graduating from MVHS she went to University of Northern Iowa and majored in Theatre Performance. She lived in New York for four years to pursue an acting career.  In 2002 she moved back to Iowa and married her husband, Anton and they settled in Mount Vernon with their three boys: Jasper, Atticus & Chester.

Along with MY Studio, Braden also works at the University of Iowa as a teacher and Standardized Patient. She is heavily involved with Mount Vernon-Lisbon Community Theatre as well as volunteers for various community groups including: MVL CDG, Mount Vernon Schools, Hallmark and MVAAC. She is proud to call Mount Vernon her home and is thrilled with the prospects of MY Studio.