Join in the festivities at the Sheldon Museum and celebrate the 200th birthday of the Sheldon Museum’s founder Henry Sheldon on Sunday August 15 from 11 am to 2 pm. Henry’s Birthday Bash will be fun for all ages and will take place in the Sheldon’s garden and Cannon Park, and Park Street will be closed to allow for lots of open space. The event is free and open to the public.


Middlebury portrait painter Katie Runde will demonstrate her exquisite sidewalk chalk drawing skills and encourage everyone to try their hand by drawing on the sidewalks surrounding the Sheldon Museum and Cannon Park. Images from the Sheldon’s collection will serve as inspiration. Lauren LaBerge Taddeo will offer beautiful face painting and there will be a birthday hat making station. A fun scavenger hunt will take families through the Museum in search of interesting and curious objects in the collection.


Music will be provided by two local groups: Back Porch Jazz made up of Middlebury Union High School students will keep you moving with their tenor sax, keyboard and drums when they play from 11 am – 1 pm followed by the lively music of the saxophone quartet Dead Creek Reeds playing from 1 – 2 pm.


A variety of culinary treats will be available for sale during the event from The Poutine Cart, lu•lu ice cream, Pratt’s Store, and a lemonade stand. Cash is recommended for purchasing food.


Henry Sheldon was born on August 15, 1821 and opened his Museum in 1884, one of the  oldest community-based museums in the country. The Sheldon Museum will be open on August 15 from 11 am – 2 pm with free admission.


Currently on view are three special exhibits: Henry at 200: Collector, Museum Founder & More celebrating Henry Sheldon’s collecting passions with historical documents, photographs, scrapbooks, autographs, diaries, music ephemera, relics, and even a lock of Napoleon’s hair; Faces of Addison County: A Trent Campbell Retrospective features 24 photographs by Campbell who was staff photographer for the Addison Independent for over two decades; and Kate Pond from the Heart: A Sculptor’s Process includes maquettes for Pond’s large-scale metal sculptures and artist journals. Three of Pond’s sculptures are located in the Sheldon’s garden.


During the Birthday Bash, tickets may be purchased for the Sheldon’s raffle of six stunning baskets painted by local artists Ashley Wolff of Leicester, Nancie Dunn of Middlebury, Danielle Rougeau of Orwell, Kathy Mitchell of Panton, Hannah Sessions of Leicester and Phoebe Stone of Middlebury.  Raffle tickets are currently on sale on the Sheldon’s website, one for $10, 7 for $40 or in person at the Museum.


The Sheldon Museum is located at One Park Street in downtown Middlebury across from the Ilsley Library.  Regular Museum and Museum Store hours: Tues-Fri 11 am – 4 pm and Sat 10 am – 4 pm. Research Center hours: Thurs and Fri 1-4 pm by appointment only. For more information, visit or call 802-388-2117.