News

MIDDLEBURY — A reckless social media challenge has culminated in damage to bathrooms at three Addison County schools, and area officials are hoping students don’t participate in the latest, so-called “Devious Licks” exhortation to students for October: “Smack a staff member.” The Devious Licks trend began nationwide on the TikTok social media platform as students returned to school in September. In essence, students were encouraged to steal or vandalize school property throughout the month and then post their misdeeds on the platform with the Devious Licks hashtag. TikTok has moved to...

SHEILA SOULE
VERGENNES — Addison Northwest School District Superintendent Sheila Soule has signed a three-year contract to remain as the district’s educational leader, ANWSD Board Chair John Stroup told the Independent late on Tuesday. The board approved her new contract Monday night, Stroup said, and he and Soule signed it Tuesday. Soule joined ANWSD as superintendent on July 1, 2018, after serving for eight years as curriculum director for the Harwood Unified Union School District. At one point Soule had been undecided about staying. She informed the board in late January 2020 she would leave at the end...

AN ARCHITECTURAL SCAVENGER hunt launching this weekend will challenge locals and visitors alike to look at details on buildings and structures in downtown Middlebury, such as these, and answer questions. Those who participate before the end of November are eligible to win a prize. Independent photo/John S. McCright
MIDDLEBURY — Want to have some outside fun in downtown Middlebury, learn some things about Addison County’s shire town and earn the chance to win a prize? AIA Vermont, a Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, has launched a series of Architectural Scavenger Hunts taking place in towns throughout the state, including St. Albans, Brattleboro and Burlington. The fourth in this series will launch in Middlebury this Saturday, Oct. 16. A clues sheet will be available for download at tinyurl.com/MiddScavengerHunt, or copies can be picked up at the Ilsley Public Library. Participants will...

DRUMS AND DIDGERIDOOS echoed in the woods at the Spirit in Nature Trails in Ripton this past weekend as part of a Drum circle organized by visiting musicians from Massachusetts. Photo courtesy of Carolyn Schmidt
RIPTON — More than 20 people spanning multiple generations gathered at Ripton’s Spirit In Nature trails on Sunday, Oct. 10. The group  joined in a Drum Circle organized by visiting musicians from Massachusetts, led by Dan Shea. Shea, a Vietnam Veteran, discovered Spirit In Nature years ago, and felt connected with the place and its purpose when he saw that there was a Buddhist path, along with the Interfaith, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, and Jewish paths, among others  Inspired by Spirit In Nature, for several decades Shea has created different paths with quotations from religious and spiritual...

LINCOLN COMMUNITY SCHOOL children, who will benefit from the outdoor learning place available in Willard’s Woods, are mostly attentive during an Oct. 6 dedication of the land near their school. Photo by Jonathan Blake
LINCOLN — The close of a beautiful fall day last week saw the formal opening of a wonderful woods bathed in seasonal foliage and a stunning view of Mount Abraham. Students from the Lincoln Community School, community members and the namesake donors of “Willard’s Woods” gathered on the 134-acre site off River Road near the school on Oct. 6 for a dedication ceremony. Late last year Cornwall residents Willard and Caroline Jackson donated the land to the town of Lincoln. Bordered by the New Haven River and the Garland Brook, the property’s trails, meadows and forestland have been a recreational...
WINOOSKI — October is the official kickoff of the higher education financial aid season with the new 2022 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) application available as of Oct. 1. Vermont Student Assistance Corp. (VSAC) will air a free, live, online “VSAC Shows You How” Zoom webinar, simulcast to Facebook, on Tuesday, Oct. 26, from 6 to 7 p.m. VSAC outreach counselor Carrie Harlow will walk participants through how to complete a FAFSA step by step. Participants will have an opportunity to ask their own questions of the VSAC experts throughout the webinar. Register at tinyurl.com/...

GOOD COMPANION BAKERY representatives, left to right, baker Sean Lovell, Julien Andrus and Erica Andrus, help a first customer at the Vergennes Farmers Market on Oct. 7. Erica Andrus said the fact vendors have faithfully showed up every week has helped bring back customers. Independent photo/Andy Kirkaldy
VERGENNES — Vendors at the Vergennes Farmers Market were smiling on Oct. 7, and not just because of the sunshine and 70-degree temperature. They were also happy because their booths were set up on the green in the heart of Vergennes, as they had been every Thursday since June 17. The Vergennes Farmers Market returned to its former downtown home this summer, and market co-director Christopher Reck said that location is a major reason why vendors ranging from farmers to mead-makers enjoyed showing up at the market all those Thursdays between 3 and 6:30 p.m. Reck said even with about two-thirds...

VOLUNTEERS STAFF THE crafts tables in Unity Hall at a Holiday Bazaar at the Congregational Church of Middlebury. This year's Bazaar takes place on Saturday Nov. 6 from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Photo/Nancy Merolle
MIDDLEBURY — The Congregational Church of Middlebury is holding its annual Holiday Bazaar on Saturday, Nov. 6, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. This year’s 97th Bazaar features a wide variety of items for sale on the building’s two levels. Shop upstairs for handmade crafts, jewelry, scarves, silk neckties, and a collection of gently used books. Also upstairs, bid on a wide selection of theme baskets that make wonderful gifts for a friend or for yourself. On the lower level of Fellowship Hall is a room with games, puzzles and toys for both children and adults. This year’s Garden Table will have beautiful...

MATTHEW A. ZIDOVSKY & WENDY E. RADCLIFF
MIDDLEBURY — Wendy E. Radcliff and Matthew A. Zidovsky have joined Langrock Sperry & Wool LLP as the Middlebury law firm’s newest associates. Radcliff’s litigation practice encompasses a broad range of areas,  including environmental and land use matters, municipal and non-profit representation, workers’ compensation, education and civil rights, nursing home negligence and other general tort matters. Zidovsky’s practice is primarily focused on litigation in the areas of employment law, real estate law, commercial business law, products liability, insurance law, civil rights and other...
LINCOLN — The annual 5-town fire department food drive will be held on Saturday, Oct. 23, at each of the area fire stations. The Lincoln Volunteer Fire Department will open its doors from 9 a.m. to noon to collect food and non-perishable items. All donations will benefit the Have-A-Heart Food Shelf, which serves the communities of Bristol, Lincoln, Monkton, New Haven and Starksboro. Suggested donation items include spaghetti, spaghetti sauce, soup, canned beans, canned vegetables, canned fruit, canned tuna, peanut butter, macaroni and cheese, cereal, toilet paper, bar soap, toothbrushes and...

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