COVID-19


Dr. Amanda Young, left, confers with Porter Plant Operations staff during the installation of a new tent in the parking lot adjacent to the Porter Hospital Emergency Department on Wednesday.
03/26/2020
UPDATE: On Friday afternoon, the Department of Health announced that the number of COVID-19 cases in Addison County now totaled 13. Of the 2,261 people tested for COVID-19 in Vermong, 184 tested positive and 10 died. MIDDLEBURY — The Vermont Department of Health today, Thursday, March 26, reported that a total of 12 Addison County residents had tested positive for COVID-19, up from the nine confirmed cases yesterday. Statewide, 158 Vermonters have tested positive for the coronavirus thus far. Nine Vermonters have died from the disease. Another 325 patients are being monitored. The Vermont...

PORTER MEDICAL CENTER Director of Environment Services Carol Aines stands next to the first barrel of locally made hand-sanitizer. Three businesses in Middlebury’s industrial park are providing the resources to make sure the county’s hospital has enough hand sanitizer. Photo courtesy of Porter Medical Center
03/26/2020
MIDDLEBURY — What do you do when a global pandemic tightens the market for your product so much that it forces you to pare back on manufacturing? If you’re the leaders of three Middlebury businesses, you plow your resources into making a hand sanitizer, a critical tool for area hospitals to prevent the potential spread of said pandemic, COVID-19. Appalachian Gap Distillery, Aqua ViTea and Vermont Soap have pooled their equipment, raw materials and manpower to make a hand sanitizer that will be distributed, initially in 55-gallon drums, to all hospital affiliates within the University of...
03/26/2020
ADDISON COUNTY — The United Way of Addison County (UWAC) and four anonymous donors have launched a new fundraising push to help the county nonprofit and the agencies it supports aid those in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.  UWAC Executive Director Helena Van Voorst said the donors and UWAC are teaming up on the Addison County Responds initiative in which the donors collectively will match every dollar raised before April 1 up to $50,000.  In an email, Van Voorst said UWAC will put the proceeds toward:  • Providing emergency funds “to individuals who need support beyond what local, state,...
03/26/2020
ADDISON COUNTY — Sanderson Wheeler, co-owner of the Bobcat Cafe in Bristol, is just happy to be in his restaurant’s kitchen. “Being in here and cooking feels great,” he said. “It helps me keep my mind off of things.” These days Wheeler and his partner (and spouse), Erin, like restaurateurs everywhere, have a lot on their minds. After Gov. Phil Scott ordered the March 17 closure of Vermont’s eateries and bars — except for takeout and delivery — the Wheelers had to lay off the Bobcat’s entire staff. Then Sunday night, after the Wheelers had regrouped and restructured the Bobcat’s menu so they...

NORTH BRANCH SCHOOL seventh-grader Finn Myers communicates with his science teacher, Rose McVay (onscreen), and his classmates (in video boxes at the bottom of the screen), from his Middlebury home Friday morning. North Branch suspended on-campus classes March 12. Students and teachers are staying connected to one another, visually, by using Google Hangouts and Zoom. Photo by Caitlin Myers
03/26/2020
RIPTON — The North Branch School may have suspended on-campus classes for a while, but its 28 students, now learning from home, still observe a daily school routine that connects them to their teachers and classmates. “We try to replicate a school day,” said North Branch founder and head teacher Tal Birdsey in a phone interview this past Thursday. “We start at 8:15, have a (meeting), and have work time. Our feeling is kids are going to need some structure.” Located in Ripton, North Branch is an independent school with grades 7–9.  On March 12, in an effort to protect the school and local...

SCHOOLS ARE DELIVERING school lunches and breakfasts to many children in all Addison County school districts because many students rely on school food as an important source of nutrition. A student in the Addison Central School District received this lunch on Monday. Independent photo/Bridget Sullivan
03/26/2020
ADDISON COUNTY — After a couple days of planning late last week, Addison County’s unified school districts went into distance-learning mode on Monday — with an emphasis, at least through the end of next week, on what school officials called maintenance of education. Addison Central, Mount Abraham and Addison Northwest superintendents reported in emails a smooth start for efforts that included delivering meals to many students who rely on school food as an important source of nutrition, as well as creating a new system for educating students. MAUSD eighth-grader Grace Orvis noted the...
03/26/2020
BRISTOL/VERGENNES — Repaving of the main arteries in Addison County’s second and third largest villages, work that had been set to start as soon as next week, has been postponed.  The news came in late afternoon email on Wednesday from Natalie Boyle, spokesperson for resurfacing projects that include most of Routes 17 and 116 in Bristol village and all of Route 22A in Vergennes. It included a statement from the Vermont Agency of Transportation that said now the soonest the projects could start is mid-April. The two projects have the same contractor, J. Hutchins Inc. The statement read: “...
03/26/2020
According to the World Health Organization, one out of three women will experience domestic or sexual violence in their lifetime. But in times of crisis, like natural disasters, wars, or epidemics, the risk of gender-based violence increases. Today’s COVID-19 pandemic is no exception. With millions of people sheltering in place worldwide, the lives of people who are bullied by their spouse or domestic partner are negatively impacted even further. Anita Bhatia, the deputy executive director of the United Nations Women, told Time magazine that “the very technique we are using to protect people...
03/26/2020
This article first appeared in the Middlebury Campus. MIDDLEBURY — Faced with the sudden reality that their semesters would likely be ending, many Middlebury students spent their nights before the mandatory COVID-19-related evacuation earlier this month partying, drinking and vandalizing the campus and town. Damage included broken glass, stolen signs, strewn garbage, smashed furniture and windows, and items thrown into trees.  College Facilities staff spent days cleaning up messes across campus.  Normally, two employees must walk the campus twice a week for two hours to clear the campus of...
03/26/2020
ADDISON COUNTY — While social distancing rules keep the Counseling Service of Addison County from offering most face-to-face encounters between therapists and their clients, the Middlebury-based institution is continuing to serve people via telehealth with video or by telephone.  “We have spent the last two weeks transforming our entire service delivery model so that we can support people remotely,” said CSAC Executive Director Rachel Lee Cummings. “We continue to staff our residential programs and provide some face-to-face supports for essential services. We continue to accept new referrals...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100