The Paramount is, errr, paramount …

Tomorrow, Saturday December 3 is the Paramount Theatre’s biggest annual fundraiser/party/auction, the Festival of Trees. The Paramount is the county’s biggest and best arts venue, it’s the economic engine of downtown Rutland (and if you don’t have downtown, you don’t have a community anymore. Hate to break it to Joe Zingale, but it’s a fact.) The live and silent auction lists are out of this world this year. Our donors came together large to provide a huge range of goods, services, vacation opportunities, meals, you name it. Now we need you to come out and bid on really cool stuff. (Katya got the greatest governess bag there last year courtesy of her husband!) You need to be there, trust me.

Second, the Gift of Life blood drive is headed for a national record, again centered around the Paramount this year (although with extra donor sites as there’s no way to get 1,969 donors on and off the stage in one day). They are just over 1,500 appointments out of 2,100 available; sign up and save a slot to donate … it’ll shave a lot of time off.

Third, but by no means least, Art Jones is this — this — close to getting the backing he needs to get “The Blood in This Town,” his fabulous documentary about the blood drive, the Paramount and Rutland’s struggles to audiences in similar communities around the nation:

We aim to share this film with rural and rust-belt communities across the country, and help spark and uncover other remarkable stories of innovation and community-building.

He has a Kickstarter drive going with eight days to go. He needs about $4,000 to make it happen. Art paid it forward for Rutland, putting out a great, professional production that tells a compelling story of struggle and success in our little city. Here’s your chance to pay Art back.

So, three great, worthwhile causes, all intertwined around the Paramount. It’s a great season to remember there’s a lot more to the theater than shows.

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