Saturday July 20, 2013

THORNS to the two men who have been linked to the recent burglaries of CAT-TV and several other Bennington establishments including Ramunto's and a number of local dental practices. Bennington police said the pair were well-organized using tools and gloves, with one serving as a lookout while the other broke in. ROSES to Bennington Police for their quick work of apprehending these suspects and recovering some of the stolen items.

ROSES to students of the Summer Sonatina piano camp in Bennington who, on Wednesday, orchestrated an impromptu performance downtown. The "flash mob" of 44 students, ages 7 to 16, and 12 Sonatina Enterprises staff members gathered at noon in front of the Green Mountain Christian Center on Main Street to sing a Bennington-focused version of the 1964 hit "Downtown." Verses of the song were creatively revised to include mentions of downtown businesses including Evans' News, Madison Brewing Co., South Street Caféand Jay's Art Shop. What fun.

ROSES to the proponents of the hydroelectric project at the former Vermont Tissue Mill along the Walloomsac River in Bennington. Mill owners Bill and Maria Scully have been approved for a $683,278 loan from the Vermont Economic Development Authority. The loan will help cover part of the $1.


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7 million project to reopen a 375-kilowatt hydroelectric facility there. The project will produce power equivalent to what is used in 211 homes and will reduce carbon emissions into the atmosphere by 685 tons. This is an environmentally-forward re-use of a property that was once a Brownfield site.

ROSES to Mount Anthony Union High School wrestlers Jesse Webb, Jack Luciano and Rachel Hale for competing on a national level in the USA Wrestling Junior Freestyle Nationals in Fargo, N.D., this week. Webb finished the first day undefeated in the 285-pound class at 4-0, remaining in line for a national championship. On Wednesday, Hale was part of a squad that was victorious in the USA Wrestling women's Junior Freestyle Duals. Her team topped California, 39-17. Hale won the women's freestyle crown individually earlier in the week in the 121-pound weight class. Luciano, competing in the 220-pound class, was knocked out, falling in his first two matches.

ROSES to Better Bennington Corp. and the Bennington Area Chamber of Commerce on another successful Midnight Madness event on Thursday. It was exciting to see Main Street and other parts of town filled with people enjoying the evening and taking advantage of discounts offered at local businesses.

ROSES to the Tutorial Center, which offers a second chance at life through a program that enables adults to obtain high school diplomas or GEDs. The Bennington-based center has served students aged 18 to 81 and offers adult classes in Bennington, Manchester and Pownal. Between its diploma programs and GED recipients, The Tutorial Center boasts the third largest graduating class in Bennington County, with an average of 70 students per year.

~Michelle Karas