Jazz brings Newport waterfront to life

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Someone has to hit the floor first, and a single small dancer was the one Saturday night soon after Mimi and the Podd Brothers took the stage.  The quartet composed of Owen Broder on saxophone, Adam Podd on bass, vocalist Mimi Hillaire, and keyboard player Matt Podd was up from their base in Brooklyn, New York, to play at the Newport, Vermont, Jazz Festival, but for the brothers it was a return home.  They played twice during a weekend that brought music and the city’s waterfront to life.  For more about the festival, please see page twelve.  Photo by Joseph Gresser

Someone has to hit the floor first, and a single small dancer was the one Saturday night soon after Mimi and the Podd Brothers took the stage. The quartet composed of Owen Broder on saxophone, Adam Podd on bass, vocalist Mimi Hillaire, and keyboard player Matt Podd was up from their base in Brooklyn, New York, to play at the Newport, Vermont, Jazz Festival, but for the brothers it was a return home. They played twice during a weekend that brought music and the city’s waterfront to life. Photo by Joseph Gresser

copyright the Chronicle August 12, 2015

by Joseph Gresser

NEWPORT — Everyone who’s spent time in Newport realizes the city’s greatest asset is its location on the shore of the spectacularly beautiful Lake Memphremagog. Nevertheless, generations of builders have put up structures that turn their backs on the water, and valiant efforts to draw people to the waterfront have met with mixed success.

That changed in at least a small way Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, when the Newport, Vermont, Jazz Festival held its first season. The promise of live music drew a broad cross section of people to the Gateway Center and…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Remembering the last log drive on the Connecticut

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Where else but a log drive would a team of horses be rafted down a river?  Photo from Bill Gove’s book Log Drives on the Connecticut River

Where else but a log drive would a team of horses be rafted down a river? Photo from Bill Gove’s book Log Drives on the Connecticut River

copyright the Chronicle August 12, 2015

by Paul Lefebvre

The Northeast Kingdom has often been called the state’s last frontier, but where do we turn to find the bigger than life characters or the tall tales that go into making up a frontier? There are still people alive who remember individual heroics either in the mills or on the railroad tracks, but what is it about the Kingdom that fires a schoolboy’s imagination when he reads about its past?

When anyone mentions frontier, it’s usually the West that readily comes to mind. We know its famous characters from Wyatt Earp and Billy the Kid to the more legendary Stagger Lee or Frankie and Johnny. Cowboys and cattle, lawmen and…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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A blessedly sweltering road trip in Tennessee

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In 1811 and 1812, a series of violent earthquakes caused the Mississippi River to flow backwards for a time, creating Reelfoot Lake, which is shallow but encompasses 15,000 acres.  The area is now a state park.  Cyprus trees are the prettiest things there.  The water itself is home to such unwelcoming creatures as snapping turtles, alligator gar, and water moccasins.  We stayed at the Blue Bank Resort, which is right on the water.  Boardwalks and bridges provide a way for people to get around.  Photo by Tena Starr

In 1811 and 1812, a series of violent earthquakes caused the Mississippi River to flow backwards for a time, creating Reelfoot Lake, which is shallow but encompasses 15,000 acres. The area is now a state park. Cyprus trees are the prettiest things there. The water itself is home to such unwelcoming creatures as snapping turtles, alligator gar, and water moccasins. We stayed at the Blue Bank Resort, which is right on the water. Boardwalks and bridges provide a way for people to get around. Photo by Tena Starr

copyright the Chronicle August 5, 2015

by Tena Starr

For quite some time I’ve had an itch, and this year’s cool, rainy summer has done nothing to scratch it. After a bitter winter, I craved warm — no, hot weather, and I wanted a road trip.

Some people like to have a destination, entertainment and amenities when they travel — Disney World, a resort, beaches, one stop shopping, so to speak. I like road trips. That means setting a general destination and time frame, and that’s about it. What happens between departure and arrival is unscheduled. The point is to see the country and its people. The destination itself can be vague.

In this case, it was the Mississippi River.

Steve was taken aback when I said… To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Youngsters get a look at Abenaki culture

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Summer reading program participants gathered around the fire they made to cook bannock bread on sticks.  Pictured here, from left to right, are Kayleigh Cole, Isabella Cole, Cienna Bishop, Owen Sheltra, Brielle Rancourt, and Trevor Sanville.  Directly behind Owen are Chase Sheltra who is looking at his dough-covered stick, and Dale Guisinger, who is digging into a Tupperware for more dough to hand out.  Photo by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

Summer reading program participants gathered around the fire they made to cook bannock bread on sticks. Pictured here, from left to right, are Kayleigh Cole, Isabella Cole, Cienna Bishop, Owen Sheltra, Brielle Rancourt, and Trevor Sanville. Directly behind Owen are Chase Sheltra who is looking at his dough-covered stick, and Dale Guisinger, who is digging into a Tupperware for more dough to hand out. Photo by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

copyright the Chronicle August 5, 2015

by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

ISLAND POND — Archery, kayaking, circus arts, and bread-making are just a few of the activities organized by the Island Pond Public Library as part of its summer reading program.

The books the kids read are associated with an activity so they can experience the book hands-on, Library Director John Zuppa said.

On Friday, about 15 kids discovered a book about bears then joined their counselor on the shore of Island Pond to learn how to make a fire and cook bannock bread the way Abenakis did.

“That really gets through to them in a real way,” Mr. Zuppa said about linking a book to an activity.

The idea is to get the kids excited about reading, he said.

And it worked. During Friday’s activity, the children’s attention span was…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Newport hosts lively Aquafest

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Rainbow arcs through the air toward the finish line and a $50 prize for the frog’s young coach, Anna Kate Costo.  Anna Kate found that blowing on Rainbow was an excellent way to stimulate the amphibian’s competitive instincts.  The frog-jumping contest was only one of many events at Newport’s Aquafest on Saturday.  To find out more about the event and about Shredfest, which took place nearby, please see page sixteen.  Photo by Joseph Gresser

Rainbow arcs through the air toward the finish line and a $50 prize for the frog’s young coach, Anna Kate Costo. Anna Kate found that blowing on Rainbow was an excellent way to stimulate the amphibian’s competitive instincts. The frog-jumping contest was only one of many events at Newport’s Aquafest on Saturday. To find out more about the event and about Shredfest, which took place nearby, please see page sixteen. Photo by Joseph Gresser

copyright the Chronicle August 5, 2015

by Joseph Gresser

NEWPORT — Early Saturday morning it looked as if Aquafest might be a cruel joke, with the water its title celebrates raining down from the sky. As it turned out, only a couple of brief showers marred what was, for this summer, a beautiful day.

Sadly, it appeared that many of those who might otherwise have thronged to Newport’s Main Street in search of community fun held back due to fear of gray skies. Their caution caused them to miss an enjoyable street fair.

The day began with a demonstration of gravity-powered vehicles — Soap Box Derby race cars. Cars driven by current drivers and stars of the past made repeated runs down Main Street under the watchful eye of Dr. Fred Turcotte, who…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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On pulling rabbits out of hats – adventures with balsamic vinegar

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Twenty years ago people were lucky to find balsamic vinegar on the grocery shelf.  Now trendy tasting bars offer dozens of different balsamics.  Customers can taste samples in small cups or on squares of French bread, then choose the size bottle they want.  Even supermarkets now offer an assortment of grades and prices.  Photo by Elizabeth Trail

Twenty years ago people were lucky to find balsamic vinegar on the grocery shelf. Now trendy tasting bars offer dozens of different balsamics. Customers can taste samples in small cups or on squares of French bread, then choose the size bottle they want. Even supermarkets now offer an assortment of grades and prices. Photo by Elizabeth Trail

copyright the Chronicle July 29, 2015

by Elizabeth Trail

“Try this, you won’t believe it,” said my mother, pushing a small bowl of thinly sliced strawberries toward me. She had the look on her face of someone about to pull a rabbit out of a hat.

I plop food on a plate; my mother creates edible art. I eyed the berries skeptically. These were in a footed glass bowl, garnished with a sprig of mint. The fruit looked dark and glossy, but the lighter inner parts were slightly orange, and there was undeniably a brown liquid in the bottom of the bowl. Not a color I usually associate with summer fruit salad, however elegantly presented.

Mom couldn’t hold the secret for long.”

“It’s balsamic vinegar,” she said triumphantly. “It makes the strawberries taste incredible.

This sounded entirely too much like…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Melissa Mount and Steffie head to the Nationals

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In mid-July, Steffie took reserve champion in Open Training Level Dressage at the Arabian Horse Association Regional Horse Show in Springfield, Massachusetts.  She also placed in the top five in the amateur division.   Photo courtesy of Melissa Mount

In mid-July, Steffie took reserve champion in Open Training Level Dressage at the Arabian Horse Association Regional Horse Show in Springfield, Massachusetts. She also placed in the top five in the amateur division. Photo courtesy of Melissa Mount

copyright the Chronicle July 29, 2015

by Tena Starr  

NEWPORT — Melissa Mount of Westfield got her first pony when she was three years old. It was a Shetland, a small pony, which is the reason parents tend to buy them for children — despite the fact that they have anything but a cooperative nature.

The romance with horses ends for many kids as they become adolescent, but not for Melissa Mount. Somewhere in her youth, she got hooked on dressage, and now she and her eight-year-old Arabian mare are headed for the national championships in North Carolina, to be held in September.

The pair has qualified, which puts them among a small number of Vermonters who have done well enough at that demanding sport to get to the nationals.

On July 11, Ms. Mount and Steffie (registered name Profit’s Sweet Steps) took reserve champion in…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Merrick dies from injuries related to crash

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Addison Merrick (left) and his longtime friend Seymour Leven were captured together in a video made last year.  Photo by Catherine Dunbar

Addison Merrick (left) and his longtime friend Seymour Leven were captured together in a video made last year. Photo by Catherine Dunbar

copyright the Chronicle July 29, 2015

by Joseph Gresser

Addison Merrick of Craftsbury died at the University of Vermont Medical Center on Tuesday, July 21, from the effects of a traffic accident a few days earlier.

According to a press release from State Trooper Steven Fauteux, Mr. Merrick was headed north on Route 14 in Craftsbury around 5:15 p.m. He attempted a left turn onto the Wild Branch Road, but turned into oncoming traffic.

Mr. Merrick’s 2000 Subaru Legacy collided head on with a Honda truck driven by Scott Smith, 57, of Hardwick. His car was totaled, while Mr. Smith’s truck sustained front-end damage.

No injuries to Mr. Smith were reported by Trooper Fauteux, but Mr. Merrick was transported to Copley Hospital in Morrisville, and then to Burlington.

Mr. Merrick was 91 years old, and a well-respected member of the Craftsbury community where he often taught classes on…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Lake Willoughby is deeper than previously thought

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Arthur Brooks at his home on Lake Willoughby.  Mr. Brooks has spent three or four summers measuring the lake and discovered that it’s at least 337 feet deep, although the state map says it’s 308 feet at its deepest point.  Photos by Tena Starr

Arthur Brooks at his home on Lake Willoughby. Mr. Brooks has spent three or four summers measuring the lake and discovered that it’s at least 337 feet deep, although the state map says it’s 308 feet at its deepest point. Photos by Tena Starr

copyright the Chronicle July 29, 2015

by Tena Starr  

WESTMORE — Lake Willoughby is deep, but until recently just how deep it is has been questionable. State watershed maps say it’s 308 feet at its deepest point.

Arthur Brooks differs. For three or four summers, Mr. Brooks has been traversing Willoughby in his boat taking depth measurements, and has found its deepest point to be 337 feet, making it the deepest lake entirely in Vermont. Lake Champlain is deeper, but part of it is in New York.

Mr. Brooks and his wife, Ann, spend their summers on Lake Willoughby, and he is currently president of the Westmore Association. He’s retired now, but for about 40 years the couple lived…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Local history buffs present work

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Pictured from left, Joan Alexander of the Glover Historical Society, writer Dolores E. Chamberlain, and Earl Randall of the Crystal Lake Falls Historical Association were the presenters on Monday night at a meeting on local history at the Barton library.  Photo by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

Pictured from left, Joan Alexander of the Glover Historical Society, writer Dolores E. Chamberlain, and Earl Randall of the Crystal Lake Falls Historical Association were the presenters on Monday night at a meeting on local history at the Barton library. Photo by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

copyright the Chronicle July 22, 2015

by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

BARTON — The area here changed drastically in the last century. Where Barton was a hub of activity, now the industry is gone and once-busy factory buildings are crumbling.

This was part of the focus of Earl Randall’s presentation on Barton’s history, which he gave at the library here on Monday. About ten people came to the meeting, to hear from different presenters about the stories, people, and general history of the area.

Mr. Randall, of the Crystal Lake Falls Historical Association, Joan Alexander of the Glover Historical Society, and writer Dolores E. Chamberlain presented the work they’ve done on the area to keep memories alive.

Mr. Randall brought old pictures of Barton and used a pointer to bring attention to different businesses that were once here, what happened to them, and what replaced them.

What made Barton the economic and social center of Orleans County were…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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