Otter Valley

Tammi Blanchard will coach girls’ soccer at Otter Valley Union High School this fall.
BRANDON — Otter Valley Union High School has hired new coaches to lead two varsity girls’ programs this fall, both with coaching experience at the school, according to Athletic Director Steven Keith. Jodie Keith will lead the OV field hockey team, and Tammi Blanchard is taking over the girls’ soccer program, according to press releases Steven Keith sent out on Tuesday.  According to the OV AD, for the past four years Jodie Keith has coached multiple sports at multiple levels at OV and has a “vision for how the entire 7-12 program can run” at the school. “Her time as a 7th- and 8th-grade...

NEWLY MINTED OTTER Valley graduate Alia Edmuns gives a shout out from the family vehicle after OV’s socially distance graduation on Saturday. Independent photo/Lee J. Kahrs
BRANDON — It’s amazing what we can get used to.  For decades each June, graduating seniors and their families, teachers and school officials packed Otter Valley’s gymnasium for the area’s biggest coming-of-age event of the year, high school graduation. It was usually very warm and close in OV’s House of Noise, but that never seemed to dampen the enthusiasm for the day. Then came 2020, the year of an unprecedented coronavirus pandemic that forced the closure of school buildings three months ago and ushered in a “new normal” of face masks and social distancing. As a society, we have adapted,...
The Otter Valley Union High School administration, faculty and staff took to social media in the days leading up to graduation and left the following messages for the Class of 2020: This year’s senior class, the Otter Valley Class of 2020, showed us how resilient and strong they are as individuals and as a combined group. They have weathered many storms — from 9/11 to COVID-19. Throughout all, they have made learning and their community a priority. They have looked out for one another throughout every obstacle and cheered each other on with every success. They are to be commended for their...

A CREW OF volunteers made up of parents and firefighters from the Pittsford and Brandon got up early on Sunday to hang banners featuring OV graduating seniors along Route 7 from Pittsford to Leicester.
BRANDON — It will take longer, and there won’t be any hugging or handshaking as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, but Otter Valley Union High School seniors will have a graduation this year. It took some collaboration and creativity to get here, but Rutland Northeast Supervisory Union Superintendent Jeanne Collins said graduating seniors at OV were motivated to create a graduation plan that would work. The goal: To graduate together in a pandemic and still adhere to state health and safety guidelines. “The kids worked very well with the administration in designing what they felt was a...
ADDISON COUNTY — Voters in Addison County and the Brandon area expressed strong support for 2020-2021 fiscal year school district budgets on Tuesday, including in two districts where in 2019 budgets passed by slender margins. The outlier was the Slate Valley Unified Union School District, which is centered in Fair Haven and serves the Addison County town of Orwell. SVUUSD voters rejected their school spending proposal and a $59.5 million bond proposal (see story). Elsewhere in the area, voters were more accepting of school budget proposals. The $31,399,182 Mount Abraham Unified School...
ADDISON COUNTY — The No. 9 Otter Valley Union School girls’ basketball team defeated host No. 8 White River Valley on Tuesday, in a Division III first-round playoff game. Also in D-III on Tuesday, No. 7 Vergennes hosted No. 10 Fairfax; see separate story. In D-II on Wednesday No. 6 Mount Abraham defeated No. 10 Lamoille, 52-30, while No. 13 Middlebury fell to host No. 4 Enosburg, 58-33.   Details of the Otters’ game at White River on Tuesday were not available. OV improved to 10-11, while White River, which played a less challenging schedule, finished at 13-8. The Otters will take on No. 1...
ADDISON COUNTY — As the regular season wrapped up late last week for local high school girls’ basketball teams, Vergennes and Otter Valley extended winning streaks, Mount Abraham saw a winning run halted, and Middlebury lost on the road. The Vermont Principals’ Association announced playoff pairings on Monday morning, and first-round games will be played on Tuesday or Wednesday. COMMODORES On Thursday the Commodores defeated Division I host Colchester, 37-23, improving their winning streak to five games and their record to 12-8. They earned the No. 7 seed in D-III and will apparently host No...

Independent photo/Steve James
THE VERGENNES AND Otter Valley union high school cheer teams did not come away with top-three finishes at Saturday’s state championships at VUHS, but displayed plenty of energy, enthusiasm and coordination in their routines. The members of the Commodore team are Jenna Howlett, Ryleigh Dieterle, Alexis Emmons, Keira Lacey, Skyelynne Thayer, Shelby Paquin, Natalie Bergeron, Brianna Cram, Arielle Dumont, Heather Dwire, Madison Laberge, Madison Perkins and Kassidy Quinlan. OV’s cheerleaders are Paige Bessette, Kellette Boynton, Erika Chapin, Madison Colburn, Emily Hutchins, Maggie Loyzelle, Zoe...
BRANDON — The Otter Valley Unified Union school district board last week approved a proposed $20,377,427 fiscal year 2021 budget that would increase spending over the current year by 2.22%. Board members call it a modest increase as the district handles the ever-shifting demographics that influence staffing at each school, student population numbers, and the individual needs of those students. The state doles out education funding money based on the number of students a school educates, and OVUU is seeing positive trends in enrollment that are keeping costs in check. Education spending per...
NORTH CLARENDON — The Otter Valley Union High School girls’ basketball team on Monday outscored host Mill River, 57-51. The Otters bolted to an early 19-6 lead and then weathered an MRU rally that saw the host Minutemen take a 25-24 lead. OV’s Alia Edmunds hit consecutive three-pointers to erase that deficit, and the Otters never trailed again. Post player Livia Bernhardt led the Otters with 18 points, and Edmunds sank four threes and finished with 12. Leah Pinkowski (10), Alice Keith (nine) and Mallory Lufkin (seven) also contributed in the scoring column for OV. The Otters improved to 3-4...


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Addison County Independent

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Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100