CHRIS AND SAMANTHA MORRISSEY, owners of Cool Motion Outdoor Sports, are putting the final touches on their 900-square-foot bike and ski shop, which is located in the Rockydale neighborhood of Bristol, just east of Hogback Mountain Brewery. In addition to providing rental and repair services, the couple hope to create a community-focused outdoor adventure center. Independent photo/Christopher Ross
BRISTOL — Growing up in Bristol, Chris Morrissey got into BMX culture — ramps, half pipes — and tinkering with bikes. “We used to order parts from BMX magazines,” Morrissey told the Independent. “And we would get really excited when we saw the UPS truck driving around.” He bought his first mountain bike at age 13 and would “ooh” and “ah” when the Vermont Bike Tours (VBT) van passed by, he said. Knowing he eventually wanted to work with bikes and skis, he spent his high school Senior Career Day at Middlebury Bike & Ski (now Frog Hollow Bikes). Eventually, Morrissey landed a job in VBT’s...
BRISTOL — Because of the pandemic, Bristol will not be holding its annual Harvest Fest this year, but it will host a Harvest Sidewalk Sale on Saturday, Sept. 26, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Participating Bristol businesses will be offering great buys, end-of-season sales and previews of early fall and holiday merchandise, according to the event’s Facebook page. There will be various surprises from Main Street businesses, so shoppers are encouraged to check tables on both sides of the street. In accordance with state-mandated public health precautions, shoppers are asked to wear face masks while...

MOUNT ABRAHAM UNION High School is the youngest building in the Bristol-area school district, but it is also the one in the most need of repair.
BRISTOL — Even as it celebrates recent successes — well-received community engagement last fall, Essential Persons Child Care and Meals on the Bus this spring, a high school graduation ceremony for the ages, and the reopening of schools this week — the Mount Abraham Unified School District is facing some tough decisions about its future, which will require robust conversations throughout its five member towns. Like many school districts around the state, MAUSD has experienced a steady enrollment decline and sharp increases in health care and other costs. As of Aug. 11, MAUSD projected it...
BRISTOL — With the COVID-19 pandemic, parents still don’t know what trick or treating will look like this year, so an outdoor event may be just the thing for the community.  The Brendon P. Cousino Med47 Foundation is planning a haunted forest in Bristol this Halloween. Organizers Garry and Cindy Cousino have a chunk of woods off Route 116 that will fit the bill. They’re hosting a planning meeting about the proposed haunted forest on Sept. 18 at 6 p.m.  Tentative plans call for the haunted forest to be held Oct. 23-25, 30 and 31, with pre-packaged candy handed out from 4-6 p.m. for the younger...
BRISTOL — School starts next week in the Mount Abraham Unified School District, as elsewhere in Vermont, and by now students and families know it’s going to be different from anything anyone’s ever seen before. Then it will change, and change again. Which is why it’s hard for educators to respond to questions like “What will my child’s school day look like?” At this time, in the middle of a deadly global pandemic, the answer is going to be some version of “It depends.” But “It depends” does not mean “I don’t know,” MAUSD officials say. Far from it. For the past several months, MAUSD officials...
BRISTOL — The band Old Bones will perform on Saturday, Sept. 12, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on the Bristol town green for their 12th and final annual Country and Gospel music concert to benefit Village2Village Project’s orphans, needy children and their caretakers in Uganda. Due to COVID-19 there is an even greater need than previous years.  Old Bones has raised thousands of dollars over the years for Village2Village Project, a charity born in the local First Baptist Church of Bristol. V2VProject now supports more than 134 orphaned and needy children and HIV guardians in northeastern Uganda....
BRISTOL — The Sodbusters Horseshoe Club in Bristol hosted the Vermont State Championship Doubles Horseshoe Tournament at their home courts near the Bristol Recreation Fields on Sunday, Aug. 30.  The team of Georgia McCormick and Jennifer Bessette won the Class A competition with a 7-0 record; they scored ringers on 40.48% of their pitches. Fourty-five pitchers competed.  The results, including win-loss record and ringer percentage, were: Class A: 1., McCormick/Bessette, 7-0, 40.48; 2., Gonvay/Santor, 4-3, 34.05; 3., Cassidy/Martin, 3.5-3.5, 32.38; 4., Greene/Cross, 3.5-3.5, 30.48; 5.,Simmons/...

MOUNT ABRAHAM UNION High School students Abby Johnson, left, Anna Doucet, Olivia Campbell and Evalin Pachman were among several dozen people outside the Bristol Post Office on Saturday protesting changes at the United States Postal Service that have resulted in slower mail. Photo courtesy of Mary Adams-Smith
ADDISON COUNTY AND BRANDON — Anger over the precipitous decline in the quality of mail delivery from the U.S. Postal Service showed itself this past Saturday when protests popped up in front of at least three local post offices. Slogans on placards and posters were varied, but the message was the same: USPS must restore its previous level of service to enable businesses to serve their customers, empower citizens to communicate unfettered and ensure that votes are delivered in a timely fashion for the November election. “It is unbelievable that America could sink so low that the president is...

BRETT LAROSE, WHO has been chief of the Bristol Fire Department for seven years, is the force pushing for continuous education, training and testing that ensures the fire company is prepared for all emergencies. Photo courtesy of Mark Bouvier
BRISTOL — The Bristol Fire Department that Brett LaRose leads today is quite a bit different from the one he joined 25 years ago. “Back then it was a unique culture here, more of a club mentality,” LaRose told the Independent during a recent Zoom interview. “There was a waiting list to get in, and members did the voting on who could and could not become a member. If you weren’t well-liked by someone you weren’t going to get into the organization. It was a popularity vote.” Fire departments used to perform hazing activities, he said. “I’m not saying it happened regularly but those processes...
ADDISON COUNTY — The Marble Works Pharmacies in Middlebury, Vergennes and Bristol will all close their doors on Aug. 31, according to a brief notification sent to its business partners on Monday, Aug. 24. The pharmacies are transferring customer prescriptions to the Walgreens Pharmacies located in each of the three communities. Local employees were told about the move on Monday, Aug. 24. “Middlebury Marble Works Pharmacy, a retail pharmacy located at 99 Maple St., Middlebury, Vt., 05753, will close its doors and cease all operations on 8/31/2020,” reads an email from the South Carolina-based...


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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100