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Celebrations Begin Even Before the 4th

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This coming weekend, the State of Vermont will display the talents of its first peoples, the Abenaki. The state's history started 12,900 years ago when people called the Paleo-Indians first moved into this land and split into four Abenaki groups.

The first Vermonters will be celebrted at the Abenaki Heritage Weekend on June 28 and 29 at the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum in Vergennes. The four tribes will convene to share their heritage and culture. See beadwork, quillwork, basketry, pottery, woodworking, and demonstrations and performances of songs, drumming, dancing, games, food preparation, and other life skills. There will be wampum readings and "Seeds of Renewal," an illustrated program that describes the search for and preservation of heirloom plants and associated ceremonies and traditions. Visit www.vermontvacation.com/Abenaki for more information on these summertime events and others later in September.

On Independence Day Vermont will hold 95 events celebrating the Fourth of July. On July 3, Barre's Thunder Road Speedway fill present a races and fireworks show.

The only American Revolution battle fought on Vermont soil returns to life July 5 and 6 at the Hubbardton Battlefield Historic Site. It is a full scale lhistory pageant that pays tribute to the July 7, 1777, Revolutionary War battle, and is a Top Ten Summer Chamber of Commerce event.

Stowe's Independence Day celebration includes Seven Miles of Sales, a town-wide sale at more than 60 locally owned boutiques, galleries and one-of-a-kind specialty sotres, from July 4 to 6.

The Warren Fourth of July parade is revered for its witty skits and floats, costuming and political satire.

Lyndonville's Baandstand Park is the setting for the Annual Burklyn Arts Summer Craft Fair on July 5.

The Butties, an all-Beatles tribute band, will perform at Okemo Mountain Resort on July 4 and Magic Mountain on July 5.

Dorset hosts the Vermont Summer Festival Horse Show from July 2 through 6.

The Vermont Symphony Orchestra presents "Let's Dance!" at five locations over the holiday weekend: Riley Rink in Manchester on July 2, Grafton Ponds Outdoor Center on July 3, Shelburne Farms on July 4, Three Stallion Inn in Randolph on July 5, and Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe on July 6.

On July 6, the Saint Albans Great Race XXXV Triathlon/Duathlon gives you a chance to compete solo or as a team on a three-mile run, 12-mile bike ride and three-mile paddle. The post-race gathering includes dining and live entertainment.

After the holiday weekend, come down to Boston and head out to Georges Island right out of Boston Harbor, where Berklee College of Music's Summer Concerts take place Saturdays, July 12 and 26, and August 9, 23 and 30. Each concert features three artists performing back to back. You can purchase tickets at the Boston Harbor Islands Pavilion on the Rose Kennedy Greenway across from the Long Wharf Marriott and take the ferry from Boston's Long Wharf north, next to Christopher Columbus Park.

On July 12, singer/songwriter Meredith Snyder sings folk and jazz at 1 p.m.; Cat and the Moon present Celtic and bluegrass music at 2, and Nikolas Metaxas, said to sound a bit like Nick Drake or Freddie Mercury, will sing at 3 p.m.

On July 26, Miriam Elhajili sings with sounds of Joan Baez and Buffy Saint-Marie with a touch of Delta blues at 1 p.m. Tim Reynolds Band of pop, soul and R&B, play at 2. Zoya sings confessional songs influenced by her native India at 3.

On August 9, Damn Tall Buildings plays acoustic bluegrass and blues at 1 p.m. El Feeloing, a folk band with Colombian roots, plays at 2. Chorobop, traditional Brazilian choro sounds, performs at 3.

On August 23 Bailey Taylor sings at 1. The Georgie English Band sings at 2. Wambura Mitaru's music is featured at 3.

On August 30, Ludovica Burtone, an Italian violinist, composer and arranger, plays in her string quartet at 2 p.m.

For a full schedule of the Berklee island concerts, go to berklee.edu/events/summer.

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