MIDDLEBURY — Addison County’s largest employer, Middlebury College, this week began publishing a report on its website that informs the community about the status of COVID-19 on campus. Styled after the Vermont Department of Health’s online dashboard, which shows a variety of COVID-19 statistics for the state, Middlebury College’s COVID-19 Reporting Dashboard presents updated information on testing and cases on the Middlebury campus. The Middlebury dashboard prominently displays the number of new positive cases and the number of active cases of the disease caused by the coronavirus. It also...

Editor’s note: Middlebury College President Laurie Patton has issued this statement reaffirming the return-to-campus decision in response to an Aug. 13 letter in the Independent from 60 current and former college employees and/or Middlebury residents who were not satisfied with the college’s reopening plans in light of COVID-19. ————— There is no perfect solution to the COVID-19 reopening dilemma. In our view, we will get farther if we try not to polarize on this topic. There is an ethics of closing and an ethics of reopening. At Middlebury we know residential education reduces inequities for...
MONTPELIER — Among the $3.2 million in Downtown and Village Center tax credits that Gove. Phil Scott announced this week were earmarks for business and living improvement projects in Vergennes and Middlebury.  In all, the new tax credits will support 30 projects in 27 Vermont communities. As Vermont communities weather the economic hardships brought on by the pandemic, the tax credits will help our towns and cites put themselves in the best position to thrive into the future, Scott said. “I’m proud to see Vermont’s continued commitment to investing in their downtowns during these uncertain...
MIDDLEBURY — Police in Middlebury are investigating more incidents of leaving racist messages in public places, or of stealing anti-racist messages. The latest is a series of posters supporting the “Patriot Front,” a white supremacist group. Citizens found them on posted on a post office box in the Marble Works, on a box behind the National Bank of Middlebury, and on a number of bus stops, some utility poles and the like.  Police Chief Tom Hanley said he believed most were ripped down without being reported, but he wants people to report such incidents. Not only can police gather data to...
The torture and murder of George Floyd by malignant police officers once again shocked and continues to shock the consciousness of the nation and the world. When oppressed, it is only natural and justifiable to rise up against the oppressor. But what about when the oppressors are among us? In recent weeks, there has been an undercurrent of pushback against the truism that Black Lives do in fact Matter and that equality and justice should indeed be for all. We have seen Aryan white supremacy symbols scrawled on our infrastructure; a racist Zoom bombing during a selectboard meeting; the...
While I appreciate the Independent’s effort to highlight the grit on display by downtown Middlebury businesses in John Flowers’s Aug. 6 article, “Middlebury shops tough it out,” I take exception to the statement that, “not all downtown stakeholders have taken a grin-and-bear-it attitude toward the construction,” and, “a few businesses have remained closed rather than try to gut it out amid the project turmoil.” First, let’s name those businesses, as anonymity itself suggests stigma. They are: Sabai Sabai, Kiss the Cook, Main Street Stationery, Danforth Pewter, and — my own — the Vermont Book...
The history of the police may seem like it was a long time ago, and it is tempting to think that we should focus only on the present. However, the history of police is not only a relic. Even the star shape of the police badge, which originated from the first slave patrol badge, upholds that system that was created not so long ago. Another example is the use of dogs to enforce terror during slave catching, during civil rights protests, and today — it has even occurred in town against a Black Middlebury resident this summer. It is exactly this past that has led us to where we are today, making...

THIS SUMMER’S AROUND-THE-CLOCK construction in downtown Middlebury is taking a toll on those who reside and do business there. But most merchants contacted by the Independent this week said they’re getting by thanks to loyal customers, and they’re looking forward to the conclusion of the heaviest work by mid-September. Independent photo/Alexa Lapiner
MIDDLEBURY — Downtown Middlebury is taking some uppercuts during its summer-long battle with a once-in-a-lifetime construction project. But those on the front lines — the downtown merchants, residents and shoppers — continue to pick themselves off the canvass and remain committed to going the full 15 rounds. And prevailing. That’s the general takeaway from a series of interviews with property owners, residents and local officials who are literally living with the cacophony of noise, dust, nighttime lighting, detours and other inconveniences of a $72 million rail tunnel installation project...

AMONG THE WORKS on display this month at Edgewater Gallery at the Falls in Middlebury is “Dear Dairy,” a 30-by-40 inch collage that Betsy Silverman created using cut up magazine pages.
MIDDLEBURY — The Edgewater galleries in downtown Middlebury this month have two new shows opening. Both will also be presented virtually on the galleries’ website, edgewatergallery.co, by mid-August. “Cut It Out!” is a solo exhibition featuring collage artist Betsy Silverman. Silverman works in what she calls “Fragmented realism” and presents familiar Vermont scenes and still life pieces made entirely of recycled paper. Browsing through old magazines, Silverman selects, cuts and glues images to a canvas in order to transform the old pictures and text into unique, multidimensional portraits,...

After nearly three decades selling Chevrolet vehicles out of his own dealership, Tom Denecker on Wednesday closed on the sale of his Route 7 business, which will now be known as Middlebury Chevrolet. Independent file photo/Steve James
MIDDLEBURY — Mackey Auto Group of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., has closed on its purchase of Middlebury car and truck dealership Denecker Chevrolet. The business, which as Denecker Chevrolet called itself Vermont’s largest franchised Chevrolet dealership, will now be known as Middlebury Chevrolet. The 24,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art dealership, which sits on 9.5 acres on Route 7 a quarter mile south of McDonald’s, was built in 2018 by Tom Denecker, who founded the business in nearby Vergennes in 1991. Terms of the deal were not announced. Mackey Auto Group already owned an operated two auto...


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Addison County Independent

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Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100