Bye Bye Fringe, Hello Art of Lawyering

The Fringe festival is coming to a close and as we say goodbye to a week of spectacular performances and excellent films, we should not say goodbye to art. It is incredibly important to keep culture alive and awake in our Rochester community. If you’re looking for an excellent event to attend, Village Gate will be the venue for the Volunteer Legal Services Project (VLSP) Art of Lawyering fundraiser on Oct 7 from 5:30-8:30 p.m. This is my first year attending the event, auction and exhibition of art and I cannot wait!



All of the net proceeds directly benefit VLSP’s low income clients by funding litigation costs such as subpoenas, transcript and translation fees for pending cases. Many of the pending cases are civil legal problems such as loss of housing or employment, bankruptcy, divorce, HIV health-related problems and transgender legal issues. Yes, that is correct, they have successfully amounted an array of issues that cut across every MCBA committee.

Last year, 4,275 individuals benefited from direct civil legal representation and VLSP volunteers completed 1,845 cases and donated 6,706 hours totaling a value of more than $1 million. Take the time to read that previous sentence again and really think about how many lives can be impacted by this event. 6,706 hours equates to 279.41 DAYS of nonstop work. For all the legal travelers out there, you could fly to Naples, Italy 635 times in that amount of volunteer hours.

art of lawyer 001

Anyhow, getting back to the event, there is still time to donate art to the fundraiser. A simple form requiring your name, address and description of the proposed donation can be accessed from under the “Donate tab,” select “Art of Lawyering,” then scroll down to see the “Art Donor” link. Questions about donations should be directed to VLSP staff members Brittany Belknap ( or Bryan Babcock (

As in prior years, the emphasis is on art created by members of the legal community but this year, other talented artists have expanded to include photographers, Robert Harris, Cordell Cordaro and Barbara Fox.

Nicole Black Jewelry

Please keep in mind that you’ll not only be bidding or viewing paintings on a wall but sculptures, jewelry, embroidered materials, photography, woodcrafts and more. I am a terrible artist but I love to interpret and view art. And, don’t forget about all of the food that is available at the event! For those of you who have read this blog before, I am a huge proponent of food as well.

Tickets are $15 in advanced and $20 at the door. There will also be a silent auction and chances to win tickets to venues like Geva Theatre, Hunt Hollow Ski Club and more. Mark your calendars and join me October 7 at the Village Gate (274 Goodman St N, Rochester, NY 14607). See you there!

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