Cool Running in The Valley

Everything You Need To Know About This Year’s Community Arts Project 


Each year the Southern Vermont Deerfield Valley Chamber of Commerce holds a community wide art project featuring local artists. This year, the Chamber gathered 15 talented individuals from New England to design and paint 15 six-foot toboggans and 3 three-foot toboggans. The toboggans were manufactured by American Traders of Brattleboro and steamed at Sawyer Bentwood. The completed toboggans will be auctioned off on November 26 at Mount Snow. The 'Vermont Hooters', will be raffled off on the same day; raffle tickets are available for $10 at the Southern Vermont Deerfield Valley Chamber. A portion of all proceeds will be donated to the Deerfield Valley Community Cares Heating Assistance, The Deerfield Valley Food Pantry, and Make-A-Wish Vermont.


Artists from left to right: Mark Lowe, Jessica Parsons, Marileen Waddell, Jim McGrath, and Mary Proctor


Meet the Artists


Mark Lowe is a self-taught artist who lives in Readsboro. His art can be seen in California as well as locally, including the Bright Lights Festival Show in Wilmington!

Robin Truelove Stronk aka ‘the artist formally known as veterinarian’- In between her busy veterinary career she took classes at The River Gallery School in Brattleboro. She has had the honor of having her artwork featured as the cover art for the Journal of American Veterinary Medical Association. She has also received Judges Awards at the International Exhibition on Animals in Art. 


Artist: Robin Truelove Stronk (this toboggan will not be for sale)


Marileen Waddell is a local interior designer and owner of a B&B in Whitingham. She lives a life full of harmony in color, scale, mood, and quality. 

Ann Coleman’s art career started at a young age, she was doing commissioned portraits by the time she graduated high school. Ann is now an accomplished watercolorist and photographer. Her passion for vibrant color shows up in her landscape paintings. In 2011, when Tropical Storm Irene hit, it damaged 44 of Ann’s original pieces that were on display at her gallery in Wilmington. Her work can still be seen at various locations in the Southern Vermont Deerfield Valley. You can follow her on Instagram @AnnColemmanArt or on Facebook @AnnColemanGallery

Suzanne Little-Stefanik has been painting since the age of 13, and the passion has never gone astray. She works from her in home study and adorns anything from greeting cards to lamps to fiberglass animals (which can be seen around Wilmington). 

Artist: Suzanne Little-Stefanik


Tim Wood is a self-taught water media artist from Southern Vermont. His work focuses on capturing the New England landscapes by highlighting the history and passage of time present in all of his subjects. His work will be shown throughout November and December at Bartleby's Books in Wilmington.  You can also follow him on Facebook @TimWoodArt

Melinda Coombs works in a multitude of mediums from watercolor to fabrics. Her love of beauty, nature, and the Deerfield Valley can be seen through her art. Her toboggan was inspired by the elements of earth, wind, fire, and spirit.

Artist: Melinda Coombs


Kayla Pronovost enjoys doing realistic 3D drawings, spending time with her 4-year-old son, and staying active in the community. She has participated in two previous Southern Vermont Deerfield Valley Community art projects.


Artist: Kayla Pronovost

William Matusezeki aka B Mat worked for 33 years of Federal Service in environmental programs, the last 10 being the Director of the Chesapeake Bay Program. Since retiring he has painted with his wife in Cuba, Honduras, Italy, Greece, and many other places. Even through all his travels he still says Vermont is his favorite place to paint.

Mikhaela Quinn focuses her art on figures in their natural state, and how one is a constant mediator between dream and reality.  When creating a work of art she looks to nature to gain inspiration in hopes to recreate the essence of natural beauty and mystery we are all surrounded by.


Artist: Mikhaela Quinn


Jim McGrath is the artist responsible for the ‘Moonlit Falls’ toboggan which shows that here in Vermont you don’t have to travel very far to enjoy the quiet beauty of nature. You can see all of Jim’s art at his gallery in Wilmington and by checking out his website

Jessica Parsons is an artist, photographer, and mother. She enjoys spending time with her husband, son, and two dogs and also spending hours outside taking photos, and spreading out all of her art supplies to work on a project!

Mary Procter loves the colorful chaos of the Vermont woods, especially in the fall. Mary enjoys travelling and painting landscapes with her husband Bill who has travelled around Europe and Latin America.

Bill Beattie enjoys painting landscapes. Through his work he attempts to be alone on a personal journey to evoke a spiritual relationship with the landscape and focuses on natural and unblemished views.


We are so excited to have these 15 artists supporting our community through a creative outlet. Don’t forget all the toboggans will be auctioned off at Mount Snow (in front of Cuzzins Bar & Grill) on November 26 at 6:45, directly after the Fireworks and Torch light parade! We will be accepting phone-in bids this year, if interested please contact the Chamber at 802-464-8092.  
*Sales tax will be on top of the auction bid 



Artists: top Ann Coleman; bottom: Bill Matusezeki


Artists: top: Tim Wood; bottom: Bill Beattie


Written by: Nicole Reed