AO Glass Lights Up the South End, and the Holiday Hop | Arts News | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Seven Days needs your financial support!

AO Glass Lights Up the South End, and the Holiday Hop 

State of the Arts

AO Glass
  • AO Glass

The last time Seven Days wrote about AO Glass, more than a year ago, the Burlington glassblowers had just moved into a new Pine Street workshop and were about to launch a brand-new community-supported business model. But they hit a huge roadblock: It took Tove Ohlander and Rich Arentzen more than 10 months to get city approval for their furnaces, and so they had to put everything on hold.

Well, the fires are burning again at last — just in time for the seasonal shopping crunch and this weekend’s South End Holiday Hop. Ohlander and Arentzen will give a glassblowing demonstration on Saturday, showing off tricks such as brewing coffee on molten glass.

“The first three weeks [the furnaces were up and running], it was so hard to fathom that we could get up in the morning and go to work,” says Ohlander. “We’d been living in limbo.”

The problem with the furnaces, the couple explains, had to do with the fact that none of AO’s glass equipment is factory made. “A lot of it we built ourselves,” says Arentzen, so plumbing and mechanical inspectors, as well as the fire marshal, had to come in and approve everything.

“We were really hit with a situation that we had not expected at all from the city,” says Ohlander. “We were almost not able to continue.”

What kept them going? The support of family and friends, says Ohlander. But also, “the belief that Burlington is the right place for us to be, the inspiration we get from all the small businesses that are successful around us in the South End,” she adds.

Those arty entrepreneurs are hoping for an extra boost this weekend. AO Glass and 30 other local venues will be participating in the Hop, organized by the South End Arts and Business Association. Time to knock off a few people on your holiday shopping list.

South End Holiday Hop in various locations throughout Burlington’s South End Arts District. Friday, December 9, 5-8 p.m.; Saturday, December 10, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; and Sunday, December 11, noon-4 p.m. Info, 859-9222. seaba.com, aoglass.com

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

More By This Author

About The Author

Megan James

Megan James

Bio:
Megan James began writing for Seven Days in 2010, first as Associate Arts Editor. She later became an editor for Seven Days' monthly parenting magazine, Kids VT, and is currently a freelance contributor.

Comments


Comments are closed.

Since 2014, Seven Days has allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we’ve appreciated the suggestions and insights, the time has come to shut them down — at least temporarily.

While we champion free speech, facts are a matter of life and death during the coronavirus pandemic, and right now Seven Days is prioritizing the production of responsible journalism over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor. Or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative
newsletters:

All content © 2020 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401  |  Contact Us
Website powered by Foundation