Last updated: March 21. 2013 7:09PM - 746 Views
By - mbiebel@civitasmedia.com - (570) 991-6109



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“Sometimes in our lives, we all have pain. We all have sorrow.


But, if we are wise, we know that there’s always tomorrow.


Lean on me, when you’re not strong. And I’ll be your friend. I’ll help you carry on. For, it won’t be long, ‘til I’m gonna need somebody to lean on.”


Calling themselves the “Verve Vertunes,” several artists from the Verve Vertu studio swayed to guitar music, rattled homemade maracas and sang infectiously about what friends do for each other.


“I’m her best friend,” Lauren Jones, 39, of White Haven said afterward, smiling at Jennifer Carey, 29, of Plains Township.


In preparation for a fund-raiser called “Celebrating Community,” which is set for 6 tonight at the Downtown Arts Building in downtown Wilkes-Barre, the singers rehearsed, step-dancer Victoria Brown practiced her steps, and other artists worked on projects that ranged from block printing to making wallets.


“I use felt. It comes from wool,” Pamela Gregory, 49, of Trucksville said early this week as she added a floral design to her latest little purse.


“They’re Easter colors,” Michael Hungarter, 33, of Kingston said, explaining why he chose pink and yellow when he created a “Lean-On-Me” T-shirt design for the Vertunes.


If you visit the Downtown Arts Building on North Franklin Street tonight, you’ll see live performances by reggae musician George Wesley, pianist Ed Zebrowski, the Verve Vertune singers, a dulcimer player, the Without Walls dance company and the Dance Theatre of Wilkes-Barre. Brown will do her step dancing, which she studies with local teacher Linda Sipple.


“You should have seen her hula last year,” Verve Vertu instructor Gwen Harleman said. “It was terrific.”


There will also be lots of visual arts on display, some of it for sale.


Proceeds will benefit the Verve Vertu Art Studio, which gives developmentally disabled adults a chance to express themselves through art, as well as the Fine Arts Fiesta.

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