The 2020 CROP Hunger Walk organizing committee: Patty Hallam, Beth Stanway, Frankie Dunleavy, Priscilla Baker, Laurie Jordan and Ellen McKay.
Every October, participants in Addison County’s CROP Hunger Walk raise awareness and money to relieve food insecurity in our community and around the world. The need grows ever greater as the coronavirus pandemic puts increasing financial pressure on families. Despite COVID-19, organizers ramped up efforts in Addison County to provide nutritional resources for food shelves and programs. While the pandemic prohibited the usual format of a large community walk on a single day, this year’s CROP Hunger Walk was reimagined so that individual walkers and small pods created their own walks under the...

STONE RESTORATION EXPERT Francis Miller stands on a mechanical lift to reach 40 feet up to the top of the Silas Wright Monument on Weybridge Hill last week as he sprays a biocide onto the marble to clean the 170-year-old memorial. Marsha Rooney and her mother, Millicent Rooney, worked for years to get the monument cleaned and restored. Independent photo/Alexa Lapiner
WEYBRIDGE — Exactly 170 years ago today, on Aug. 27, 1850, a gathering of Vermont and national luminaries spoke to between 4,000 and 6,000 spectators assembled on Weybridge Hill. Marsha Rooney, who grew up nearby but now resides in Washington state, has studied the event and reason for the unusually large crowd in rural Vermont a decade before the Civil War. In talking about it she wonders aloud about all the wagons and carts needed to bring the throng to this country setting. “Imagine all of these carriages, all the colors, and the ex-president speaking,” Rooney says, her voice filled with...
WEYBRIDGE — The Lemon Fair Insect Control District (LFICD) that monitors mosquito abundance and activity in Weybridge, Cornwall and Bridport has collected less than 20% of what it saw last year by this time in its CDC Light Traps. This is likely due to the lack of a second flood event of the Lemon Fair River, the first caused by snowmelt and spring rainfall. Since then, there have been few significant rain events to prompt hatchings, which means that the mosquitoes in circulation now hatch either from permanent bodies of standing water like marshes, or from artificial containers that fill up...

Doug Wilhelm’s novel “Street of Storytellers” won the 2020 gold medal for young adult fiction from the Independent Press Awards.
WEYBRIDGE — Honors for published books are hard-won — and it’s rarer still to win three national awards in a single day, then a fourth a few weeks later. Yet that’s what happened last month to Weybridge author Doug Wilhelm. On Tuesday, May 5, Wilhelm’s novel “Street of Storytellers” won the 2020 gold medal for young adult fiction from the Independent Press Awards, an international competition for books issued by presses outside the corporate publishing establishment. The same competition’s gold medal for autobiography went to “China in Another Time,” a memoir by the late Claire Lintilhac of...

SWAP THOSE SEEDS that never made it into the ground at the Weybridge Seed Swap this Saturday, May 23, from 10-11:30 a.m., on the lawn at the Weybridge Congregational Church, 12790 Weybridge Road. Social distancing protocols will be practiced. Photo/Sarah Pope
WEYBRIDGE — Home gardening is currently experiencing a big uptick in Addison County and many folks are looking for ways to plant a first garden, or to expand their existing gardens. Just in time for planting, two Weybridge residents are planning a community seed swap on Saturday, May 23, from 10 to 11:30 a.m., on the lawn at the Weybridge Congregational Church, 12790 Weybridge Road. Tom Adelman dreamed up the idea for the first seed swap three years ago and now he is joining with Fran Putnam to offer a second Seed Swap. Anyone from any town can participate, whether or not they have seeds to...
Inspired by Addison Independent reporter John Flowers’ story about his dog Roxie in last Thursday’s Arts + Leisure section, here is the story of Alfie. Santa brought me a red cockapoo puppy this Christmas. At six months old, Alfie has never had a haircut. We have no idea what he looks like under his dreadlocks! I keep asking Paul, “Do you think he’s getting fat?” We’re hoping he’s like Roxie under it all. He has his first haircut appointment scheduled at Comfort Hill on the 27th, so we’ll find out then. I’m doing consulting work from home, and the look he has in this picture is the one I get...

WEYBRIDGE — Doug Wilhelm, 67, has often had to deal with the frustration and discomfort that comes with respiratory ailments. So when the Vermont Department of Health began telling folks in mid-March they should take precautions to avoid contracting COVID-19, he took it very seriously. As a freelance writer, Wilhelm works from his home. So he was largely able to limit his outside trips to the grocery store and the drug store during the early phase of the pandemic. “When I did (go out), I had my hand sanitizer in the car,” he said during a Monday phone interview. “At that point, I wasn’t...

WEYBRIDGE NATIVE MOLLY SMITH has been spending most of her waking hours making face masks for donation and for sale during the COVID-19 pandemic. Photo courtesy of Molly Smith
WEYBRIDGE — Molly Smith has learned firsthand that if you give, you can receive a lot in return. The talented clothing designer and maker decided to produce and donate face masks around a month ago, when the COVID-19 pandemic took the starch out of her family’s online clothing business, Mary Lynn O’Shea Studio, named for her mom. Smith is still making free masks for the health care industry, but has also seen her own line of snazzier masks take off and provide her with a much-needed income during the pandemic. Smith, now 30, was just a child when she began accompanying her mom to craft and...
WEYBRIDGE — Weybridge has a cure for coronavirus cabin fever — its Third Annual Haiku Contest.   “We need to be nurturing our spirits as well as our bodies in this difficult time,” explains Julia Alvarez, the town’s co-poet laureate and founder of the three-year-old contest. “You don’t have to write directly about this strange and surreal time because you are living it. It will get in your haikus if you open your hearts and imaginations,” says the poet and novelist of the “haiku cure.”  “In times like this, when many of us are quarantined, cooped up, and spending a lot more time in nature, we...

THESE HORSES ARE cared for at the Morgan Horse Farm in Weybridge, which promotes the Morgan breed. The public will have a chance to weigh in on a future facilities master plan at some point after the coronavirus scare is passed. Independent file photo/Trent Campbell
WEYBRIDGE — Area residents will get a chance to help shape the future of the University of Vermont Morgan Horse Farm, a beautiful, Weybridge facility that celebrates one of the most acclaimed animal breeds of the Green Mountain State. Officials at the farm had hoped to host the public on campus this Friday, March 20, but postponed that event until sometime in the future after fears of the spread of coronavirus have settled down. The scheduled event was a community design workshop aimed at giving the Morgan Horse Farm input for its new master plan — a blueprint for how the historic facility...


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