Arts & Leisure

07/16/2020
It’s been decades since Brandon had its own movie theater, but that’s about to change. The Paramount Theatre has partnered with the town of Brandon and the McKernon Group to build a drive-in movie theater screen in Estabrook Field on the north end of town. The Jack McKernon Drive-In at Estabrook Park could be the beginning of a permanent outdoor entertainment space in Brandon. Since the COVID-19 pandemic has shuttered theaters, concert venues, amusement parks and other public entertainment spaces, the Paramount had to literally think outside the box. Interim Executive Director Eric Mallette...

THE FLOWER HEADS of Tussock grass create a delicate haze among some colorful perennials. Photo by Dick Conrad
07/16/2020
When we think about creating a beautiful garden, most often it is the flowers that we think about first. But great gardens are much more than lots of pretty blossoms! Especially important is the way we incorporate different kinds of contrast into our gardens. Contrast is the secret design ingredient. This starts out with a ground plan that includes a thoughtful mix of sunny areas and shady areas, as well as a compelling interplay of positive spaces (primarily the planted areas but also hardscape) versus negative spaces (primarily the lawn but also woodland or meadow areas).  And we can also...
07/16/2020
Brandon Town Hall has not given up on its 2020 season just yet, but more volunteers could help pull it off despite the coronavirus. Trying to schedule public performances during a pandemic has been challenging to say the least, but Friends of the Brandon Town Hall President Dennis Marden said he is planning the first shows for September. His other challenge is how to bring in the public for performances and keep them safe per Gov. Phil Scott’s latest re-opening directive. Up to 75 people are now allowed at public gatherings — that’s good. But with nine volunteers, some of whom have health...
07/16/2020
(William Morrow)   A remote island with austere rocky cliffs and an impeccably restored inn is the perfect setting for the perfect wedding. And the bride and groom? They are perfection in the flesh. Jules and Will, two balanced halves of a dazzling whole. She’s the smart and gorgeous publisher of a trendy online magazine and he’s the handsome rugged star of a survival television show. But, dear reader, a whiff of rot at the core is quickly exposed in the very first chapter, which ends with a “scream of terror.” But just who will expose it? The fragile, quite possibly mentally unstable young...

IT LOOKS LIKE the deck is not the best place to put your composter. To avoid ursine visitors to your compost, follow the tips in the story. Photo courtesy of Vermont Fish & Wildlife
07/16/2020
Vermont Fish and Wildlife reports that many people are having problems with bears looking for food near their homes, and with the new food scrap ban now in effect the department is providing tips for people who are composting at home so they can avoid attracting hungry bears. “We have been receiving lots of reports of bears on decks, tearing down bird feeders, wrecking beehives, killing chickens, and getting into trash, compost and garbage containers,” said bear biologist Forrest Hammond. “Some folks will be new at composting food waste at home, so we are offering some guidance on how to do...

MEMBERS OF THE trio Pete’s Posse, Pete Sutherland strumming a banjo and Oliver Scanlon bowing a violin, have become much more active on social media since live gigs dried up with the arrival of coronavirus. Other bands have also shifted their performance venues.
07/09/2020
In all the ways that COVID-19 has halted life, musicians have had the especially challenging task of reaching audiences in a world in which people can no longer gather in person to enjoy and support the sounds they love. Five Vermont-based musicians share their unique strategies for staying active during the pandemic, from conquering the technological challenges of online streaming and social media posts, to using the down time for more private creativity.  Pete Sutherland of Pete’s Posse felt confident with the way he and his band members, Tristan Henderson and Oliver Scanlon, handled the...
07/09/2020
(Grove Press) A 2019 National Book Award winner and a New York Times Top 10 Book, Sarah Broome’s “The Yellow House” is the history of a home, the story of a family, a treatise on urban planning, and a deeply personal memoir — all in one extraordinary package. Broome constructs an inviting narrative around the little shotgun house in East New Orleans that her mother purchased in 1963 at the age of nineteen, and where she raised twelve children before it was demolished by the city after Hurricane Katrina. The attributes of the house itself — its structure, site, décor — are a kaleidoscopic lens...
07/09/2020
What better way to safely enjoy summer than to get out on Lake Champlain? Two Vermont authors and Black Dome Press have just released an updated and expanded guide to paddling on the lake called “A Kayakers Guide to Lake Champlain.” Art Cohn, former long-time director of the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum in Ferrisburgh, calls the book “one of the best all-round, multi-faceted orientations to the lake that I have ever read.”  This new edition provides expanded information about the history, geology, people, and ecology of our treasured body of water, including overviews of the Abenaki and...
07/09/2020
During the hot summer months, both large and small animals can suffer unwanted attention from fleas, ticks, biting flies and mosquitoes. Besides the annoyance, pain and itching they cause, they can also transmit disease to your animal. There are many things you can do to help avoid this.  The flies that cause problems with animals are not the typical house flies, but species such as black flies, deer flies, and horse flies. In many cases, the flies (and mosquitoes, too) prefer to “strike” the sensitive and fairly thin skin of the animal’s ears. This has led to the common term “fly strike” as...

BY CAREFUL TIMING and variety selection, gardeners can extend their lettuce season to up to seven months.
07/09/2020
It feels like we wait all year for fresh lettuce, and the window seems to close quickly. How can we maximize lettuce season?  While lettuce is easy to grow, factors like temperature impact how well it does. Understanding timing and varieties can help yield a continuous supply throughout the summer and beyond. Lettuce is generally considered a cool-season crop, meaning that it thrives in temperatures between 60 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. With its heat-sensitivity, once the daytime temperatures exceed this range, lettuce can bolt. Bolting is when the plant puts all of its energy into producing...

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Addison County Independent

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Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100