ROSES to Marc Brandmeyer, the Mount Anthony Union High School graduate who was recently named The Banner's 2012-13 Student Athlete of the Year. Brandmeyer, a 2013 MAUHS graduate, ran in the school's cross country team in the fall and track in the spring. He is the school's first individual cross-country champ and holds seven school records, including the 3,000 and the 1,500 (indoor and outdoor), the outdoor 3,200 and both 4x800 relays. We wish the best of luck to the very talented and disciplined Brandmeyer, who started basic training for the Army Reserves this month, and will continue his running career at Colby-Sawyer College.
ROSES to the Banner's new clean-looking website that launched on Thursday. Have you seen it? Check out our new online digs at Benningtonbanner.com.
THORNS to those who drop off unwanted cats at places like Willowbrook Apartments in Bennington and contribute to a stray cat overpopulation in the area. ROSES to Second Chance Animal Shelter in Shaftsbury for spaying and neutering almost 500 stray and feral cats from the community within the last year to help control the cat population.
ROSES to Boy Scouts from Arlington and Bennington who are in West Virginia for the organization's National Jamboree. The 10-day event brings together up to 40,000 Scouts from across the country and provides educational and recreational opportunities for Scouts and involves them in a community service project.
ROSES to the crew from the nonprofit Vermont Youth Conservation Corps that is working to remove plastic, insulation, metal, processed wood, and other debris from the Roaring Branch in Sunderland. When entire houses were washed into the river during Irene in 2011, a lot of the contents of the buildings were deposited in the waterways. This crew of eight 16- to 19-year-olds and their two leaders has the ability to remove items that other entities would not have the time or the manpower to tackle. The VYCC partners with the Vermont Department of Forest, Parks, and Recreation and receives state support as well as from private donors. ROSES to the Batten Kill Watershed Alliance for paying for the cost of debris removal.
ROSES to Mount Anthony Union High School's Zach Bahan, who was named the 2013 All-Banner baseball player of the year. "He's one of the best in the state, hands down," said Mount Anthony coach Walt Parmenter. The three-year varsity starter batted .590 (23-for-39), with nine RBI, five doubles, a triple and two homers. Out of 54 total plate appearances, Bahan failed to reach base only 13 times the entire season, an on-base percentage of nearly .700. He also made the first-team for the Marble Valley League.
ROSES to the Southwestern Vermont Regional Cancer Center, which has recently completed an expansion and equipment acquisition that will enable the facility to double its capacity to be able to serve more patients. Additionally, the cancer center recently hired a new radiation oncologist and plans to add at least one other medical provider in the near future. As the Bennington County population ages, the cancer rates increase as does the need for cancer treatment. This expansion and staff additions will help the center to serve more patients from the outlying areas who might once have traveled to other towns for treatments.