LEWISTON — At The Vault on Lisbon Street, a half-dozen people were standing around a table covered by an impressive array of bottles. Some swirled wine in glasses, others brooded over their choices.

“This,” Katie Lauze told them, “is a white blend from Portugal. It has quite a bit of kick for a white wine.”

A man in a cable sweater and a Red Sox cap took the glass. He gave the wine a swirl, took a small sip and rolled it over his tongue.

“Mmm,” he said. “Very nice. Not too tart.”

Others nodded, stroked their chins and pontificated about other vintages.

Who says liquor isn’t art?

It wasn’t the most heavily attended art walk, but a few dozen people did come out. They walked up and down Lisbon Street through the slush, blowing on cold hands. 

Organizers said there would be art walks on the last Friday of each month and, by golly, they meant it.

“It won’t be the busiest night,” said Tammy Grieshaber, curator of Lyceum Gallery. “But hopefully a few people will come out.”

A minute later, two people came through the door. They were followed by two others and three more after that.

At Lyceum, the scene was similar to that at The Vault — only the discussions were about art rather than wine. Men in scarves and women in fuzzy hats roamed around the room, taking in art on walls or gleaming from glass cases. Some were waiting for Maxwell Mogensen, author of “Legendary Locals of Androscoggin County.”

While they waited, they talked about art, the weather or world events, just like similar groups huddled in The Bread Shack, Forage Market, Kimball Street Studios and a half-dozen other venues.

At Downtown Handmade & Vintage, above Forage, Sheri Withers wasn’t bothered at all by the smaller-than-usual turnout. It was her last night in the building as she prepares to make the short move to a different location on Lisbon Street. And anyway, it was two nights after the madness of Christmas — in Withers’ view, the folks of Lewiston-Auburn had every right to spend their Friday night at home.

“People are hunkered down,” she said. “You can’t blame them.”

The Winter Art Walk was mostly a Lisbon Street thing, but there was plenty going on a few blocks away, as well.

She Doesn’t Like Guthrie’s, on Middle Street, was hosting work from Creative Trails, a community support program for adults with intellectual disabilities. They were also hosting The Juke Joint Devils with their “mix of West Coast and Chicago Blues, with a bit of spice from New Orleans and elsewhere.”


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