Orleans County is unhealthiest in Vermont

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copyright the Chronicle March 23, 2016

by Joseph Gresser

NEWPORT – When Julie Raboin stood up at Monday’s city council meeting and talked about a recent study showing Orleans County at the bottom of the state’s health rankings, Newport resident Brian McNeal had a question.

He noted reports of another study that ranked the state as second healthiest in the nation, behind Hawaii, and asked about the incidence of cancer.

Ms. Raboin, who is a substance abuse prevention consultant working at the Vermont Department of Health’s Newport office, explained that the study, prepared by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation of Princeton, New Jersey, bases its rankings on a different set of factors.

On Tuesday, Ms. Raboin offered a visitor to the Department of Health a guided tour of the study’s findings, explaining how the foundation’s examination of counties across…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Newport City Council: Wilson passed over for council president

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copyright the Chronicle March 9, 2016

by Joseph Gresser

NEWPORT – The first council meeting after Newport’s annual meeting usually begins with a drowsy run of reappointments to a wide variety of city offices.  That pattern was broken Monday when Alderman Steven Vincent passed over the incumbent, Alderman John Wilson, to nominate Alderman Neil Morrissette as president of the council.

Alderman Jacques Roberge seconded the nomination, and Mr. Wilson was effectively removed from the position, which he’s held since Paul Monette was elected Mayor in 2009.

City council president is largely an honorary title except when the mayor is absent…To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Dogs keep up the spirit at the Bel-Aire

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Resident Evelyn Jenne enjoys some lap time with Shadow, a tiny three-year-old shih tzu.  Photo by Elizabeth Trail

Resident Evelyn Jenne enjoys some lap time with Shadow, a tiny three-year-old shih tzu. Photo by Elizabeth Trail

copyright the Chronicle January 6, 2016

by Elizabeth Trail

NEWPORT — When tiny Shadow, a three-year-old shih tzu, can’t be found, everyone at the Bel-Aire Quality Care Center in Newport knows where to look for him.

Shadow has a favorite person among the residents and can usually be found on her bed. In fact, he’s a little bit protective of her.

Dogs are everywhere at the Bel-Aire. Or at least it seems that way. Dogs are carrying their toys through the halls, greeting visitors, and getting hugs from seniors in wheelchairs.

The four dogs that are there during the day — dogs who belong to Bel-Aire employees — are an integral part of everyday life.

“I love the dogs. We always had dogs at home,” resident Evelyn Jenne said. Ms. Jenne is legally blind, so she can’t see the dogs clearly, but she enjoys petting and holding them.

Many people are familiar with the idea of therapy dogs coming to visit at hospitals and nursing homes.

Official therapy dogs have to… To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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An eclectic new bookstore comes to Newport

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Local poet Larry Bradley adjusts part of his window decor in the new Nevermore Bookstore in Newport. The store is named for the famous poem “The Raven,” by Edgar Allen Poe. Photo by Elizabeth Trail

Local poet Larry Bradley adjusts part of his window decor in the new Nevermore Bookstore in Newport. The store is named for the famous poem “The Raven,” by Edgar Allen Poe. Photo by Elizabeth Trail

copyright the Chronicle December 22, 2015

by Elizabeth Trail

NEWPORT — If the secret to business success is location, location, location, the Nevermore Bookstore in Newport has a tough road ahead. It’s out of sight on East Main Street, behind Buzzy’s Beverage and Redemption Store. It’s not going to get foot traffic, and not many people are going to just accidentally stumble on the place.

But proprietor Larry Bradley hopes that book lovers in Newport will be willing to go the extra mile to find his shop.

In spirit, the Nevermore Bookstore is a lot like Rivendell books in Montpelier used to be, or the Crow Bookstore in Burlington — an eclectic mix of new and used books, arranged to invite browsing and discovery.

Offerings range from poetry and fiction through biography, travel, spiritual, nonfiction, and memoir. In fact, there’s something for just about everyone, including children… To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Veterans remember Pearl Harbor

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Inspired by Charles Lindbergh’s historic transatlantic flight, Lindy Palin dreamed of flying ever since he was a boy.  As part of the Eighth Air Force, Mr. Palin flew bombing missions over Europe from a base in England, one of the few pilots to survive his 35 missions unscathed, although he ended up in a prisoner of war camp after a forced landing.  He wears the Army Air Corps hat in memory of a friend.  Photos by Elizabeth Trail

Inspired by Charles Lindbergh’s historic transatlantic flight, Lindy Palin dreamed of flying ever since he was a boy. As part of the Eighth Air Force, Mr. Palin flew bombing missions over Europe from a base in England, one of the few pilots to survive his 35 missions unscathed, although he ended up in a prisoner of war camp after a forced landing. He wears the Army Air Corps hat in memory of a friend. Photos by Elizabeth Trail

copyright the Chronicle December 9, 2015

by Elizabeth Trail

NEWPORT — As the years pass, fewer and fewer people are alive who remember what they were doing when they heard the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.

On Monday morning, 74 years later, Army Sergeant Major Retired John Wilson of Newport had to stop and remind several local businesses that Pearl Harbor Day is one of the handful of days of the year when flags must be flown at half-mast.

Mr. Wilson is a Vietnam combat veteran. He wasn’t even born on that long ago morning when Japanese bombers struck an American base in Hawaii, killing over 2,500 Americans. It was the event that brought the United States into World War II.

But at the Bel Aire Quality Care Nursing Center in Newport, men and women who still remember Pearl Harbor gathered in the common room at 2 p.m. Monday to share their memories of that day, and of the parts they… 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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Aquafest in Newport

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Soldiers Anthony DeGreenia and Justin Roy (left to right) of the Vermont National Guard, had special permission to appear in less than regulation uniform when they competed in the VT105 Challenge race at the 2014 edition of the Aquafest.  As part of the race, they took a selfie at Pick and Shovel in Newport, with an iguana in the background.  Photo by Joseph Gresser

Soldiers Anthony DeGreenia and Justin Roy (left to right) of the Vermont National Guard, had special permission to appear in less than regulation uniform when they competed in the VT105 Challenge race at the 2014 edition of the Aquafest. As part of the race, they took a selfie at Pick and Shovel in Newport, with an iguana in the background. Photo by Joseph Gresser

Newport’s Aquafest 2015, sponsored by Vermont’s North Country Chamber of Commerce and NorthCountry Federal Credit Union, will take place on Saturday, August 1, in Newport.

Events include the Waterfront Festival commencing at 11 a.m. along the boardwalk of Lake Memphremagog. Vendors, family entertainment, and live entertainment.

Chowderfest will be held at the Gateway Center in Newport from noon to 2 p.m. where locals compete in the chowder competition. Buy a spoon for $5 and dig into a variety of chowders entered to win. The VT 105 Amazing Race Challenge is a fun and exciting race that includes challenges such as eating large amounts of food, counting a large number of items, finding an item/items or people, finding a shop or location, carrying items long distances, assembling a difficult structure, or solving riddles in order to get the next clue and protect your balloon at all costs!

A Plein Air Event (French for “open air”) will be presented by the Wooden Horse Arts Guild and artists from anywhere are invited to “paint outdoors in natural light” in and around Newport during Aquafest.

For more information about Aquafest activities, visit www.northcountry.org or call Lynne Bertrand at (802) 334-7782.

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Newport City throws Ward a farewell party

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John Ward and a double stand at a party honoring Newport’s City Manager, who officially retired on July 15.  The 50 or so guests had a hard time telling which was the real John Ward, especially since both candidates were dressed in his clothing.  Perhaps Mr. Ward’s administrative assistant, Laurel Wilson, could have resolved the question, but she was unaccountably absent when the second Mr. Ward strolled into the room.  Photo by Joseph Gresser

John Ward and a double stand at a party honoring Newport’s City Manager, who officially retired on July 15. The 50 or so guests had a hard time telling which was the real John Ward, especially since both candidates were dressed in his clothing. Perhaps Mr. Ward’s administrative assistant, Laurel Wilson, could have resolved the question, but she was unaccountably absent when the second Mr. Ward strolled into the room. Photo by Joseph Gresser

copyright the Chronicle July 15, 2015

by Joseph Gresser

NEWPORT — Wednesday, July 15, is the last day on the job for Newport City Manager John Ward Jr., who is winding up his 16-year run and preparing for retirement.

“I’m grateful for the job, otherwise I probably would have had to leave Newport,” he said in an interview at the Newport Municipal Building July 9.

For a lifetime resident of a city that he clearly loves, that would have been a tough burden to bear, but after the city council’s original choice for the job decided not to accept it, Mr. Ward was tapped. Paul Monette and Richard Baraw, two of the aldermen who voted to make him city manager in March 1999, continued to serve on the council for most of Mr. Ward’s service.

Mr. Monette is now mayor, and Mr. Baraw….To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Ward attends his last city council meeting

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City Manager John Ward (right) offers a suggestion to Newport’s aldermen at his last city council meeting.  To his left sat Alderman Steven Vincent.  Photos by Joseph Gresser

City Manager John Ward (right) offers a suggestion to Newport’s aldermen at his last city council meeting. To his left sat Alderman Steven Vincent. Photos by Joseph Gresser

copyright the Chronicle July 8, 2015

by Joseph Gresser

NEWPORT — As Mayor Paul Monette listed those in attendance at Monday’s city council meeting he noted a milestone.

“For the last time John Ward is sitting as city manager,” Mr. Monette said.

Mr. Ward, who has served as city manager for 15 years, and was an alderman before that, will retire on July 15.

The council chose his replacement, Laura Dolgin, at a special meeting held Wednesday, July 1. She sat at the back of the council’s chambers Monday taking notes.

Mr. Ward’s impending departure was… To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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Cornucopia graduates two

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Pictured here on the left, Renée Swain, executive director of Umbrella, which started the Cornucopia program, spoke at the graduation ceremony for Heidi Massi (right) on Thursday. Photo by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

Pictured here on the left, Renée Swain, executive director of Umbrella, which started the Cornucopia program, spoke at the graduation ceremony for Heidi Massi (right) on Thursday. Photo by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

copyright the Chronicle July 8, 2015

by Nathalie Gagnon-Joseph

 

NEWPORT — Heidi Massi of Barton is one of two students who graduated from the 17-week Cornucopia cooking program on Thursday. Now she can make all kinds of yummy treats, including the focaccia, pizza, and chocolate mousse she made for her graduation party.

Her fellow graduate, Marissa Wheeler, wasn’t available to attend the party.

Cornucopia aims to build marketable skills and confidence in women who are going through a tough transition in their lives.

That could mean almost anything — from leaving an abusive relationship to looking for a career change, said Renée Swain, executive director at Umbrella, the organization that started Cornucopia. Umbrella works with victims of domestic violence.

“Economic independence is a key ingredient for success,” Ms. Swain said.

The program is the culinary equivalent of… To read the rest of this article, and all the Chronicle‘s stories, subscribe:

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