Kristen Avens received the 2020 scholarship from the Venice College Club at the group’s latest meeting.

Three cheers for Kristen who wants to be a teacher. She is a Venice High graduate currently enrolled at the State College of Florida with plans to continue at the University of South Florida.

The College Club is a small group of women who meet for lunch and lectures on the second Tuesday of the month. Call Lisa Pfohl for membership information at 309-635-3058.

The Venice Art Center recently held an exhibit featuring the work of Julia Hyman, Linda Laresch and in the side gallery the work of Steve Preleski.

Venice Art Center

The Art Center opened in July following CDC Guidelines. Classes are smaller. Some are held in person, outside and virtually. The summer program for students was held on line. Students were able to receive recognition and awards. These days Zoom classes and lectures are offered.

Visit for information or call 941-485-7136. The next exhibit “Let It Be” runs Jan 15 thru Feb 3.

The Art Center Café is now open for lunch.

Save the date

On Friday, Jan. 15 check out local nonprofits at an event in the Venice Area Chamber of Commerce parking lot. There will be food trucks.

One of our best

The special person of this week is Michelle Lamond who has been actively involved in Venice for about 30 years. In the beginning she worked for the Venice Area Chamber of Commerce and helped launch the Shark’s Tooth Festival. She experienced the joy of working the event in rain and in shine and in everything in between.

Over the years Michelle always kept her hand in serving this community. Recently she said she realized it was time to step up and take on a leadership role with the Venice Art Center.

Thanks to her determination and leadership the center followed CDC guidelines and opened offering enrichment opportunities for the residents of Venice.

Michelle is one of the small business owners in town. Her Nellie’s Notecards and Wilson’s Whimsies is located in the Brickyard. She enjoys her family and her newest adventure is her grandson.

Michelle is fun and organized and one of the most down to earth people in Venice. She is a great friend and a hard worker. She is one of those people who warms the heart.

Michelle Lamond makes Venice a great place to live.

Fran Valencic is the social columnist for the Venice Gondolier Sun. She welcomes your tips and ideas. Contact her at


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