Community News In Brief


Native pollinator walk and talk at Hildene

MANCHESTER -- On Tuesday, July 8, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Hildene hosts a Native Pollinator Walk and Talk: Field Identification and Habitat Enhancement with organic farmer, John Hayden, of The Farm Between. Program participants will explore Hildene’s fields and gardens to discover the local native pollinators, learn about the perils they face and how to enhance their habitats in gardens.

John Hayden has a master’s degree in Agricultural Entomology and 30 years of professional experience in sustainable agriculture as a university educator, researcher, extension agent and consultant. He is committed to stewardship of his family’s farmland and to sharing what he has learned. The Native Pollinator Walk and Talk: Field Identification and Habitat Enhancement is one in a series of six free programs being offered by the "Pollinator Awareness Initiative," a collaboration between Hildene, The Lincoln Family Home; Bonnyvale Environmental Education Center, West Brattleboro; and Southern Vermont Natural History Museum, West Marlboro.

To see the complete list of pollinator programs from June 14 through August 9, contact the participating organizations directly or visit

Hildene’s program on July 8 with John Hayden will take place rain or shine. Pre-registration is strongly recommended. To register call Stephanie at 802-367-7960 or email Battenkill Conservancy float a reminder to keep the river beautiful

CAMBRIDGE, N.Y. -- Battenkill Conservancy’s River Watch "Discovery" Program is proud to have been chosen to receive support from RBC’s Blue Water Project, a historic, wide-ranging, 10-year global commitment to help protect the world’s most precious natural resource, fresh water, by supporting community initiatives and programs focused on watershed protection.

Battenkill Conservancy’s River Watch "Discovery" Program will look to promote and expand outreach efforts within the community to highlight the importance of long-term water quality monitoring. BkC’s River Watch provides valuable and consistent water quality data to the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation and has been doing so for over 10 years. The Discovery Program will look to engage various groups in public education forums as well as provide the opportunity for groups to participate in hands on riverside water monitoring days.

In addition to working with local groups to build knowledge related to water quality improvements including riparian buffers, native species plantings and storm water runoffs, BkC will produce a River Watch Summary Report. The report will review the program findings of the past 10 years, produce a trend analysis of the data and make recommendations as to specific steps and course of action for the future.

David Connors, a financial advisor with RBC, is originally from Hudson Falls and was instrumental in working with Battenkill Conservancy to obtain RBC’s support and provide guidelines for the program. Having grown up in the area and now living with his young family outside of Albany, Dave recognizes the importance of clean water not only for the larger environment but also as a key natural resource vital to everyone’s everyday basic health.

Opera Theatre of Weston receives $2k grant from Vermont Humanities Council

WESTON -- Opera Theatre of Weston is pleased to announce that the company is the recipient of a grant awarded by the Vermont Humanities Council in the amount of $2,000. The grant will help support the cost of "Storybook Opera: The Secret Garden Project."

Storybook Opera is a pre-performance educational project designed to enrich the important lessons offered in the opera "The Secret Garden" by Nolan Gasser, to be performed at the Paramount Theatre, Rutland and the Weston Playhouse in January 2015. Based on the classic novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett, this will be the opera’s East Coast premiere, having debuted at the San Francisco Opera in 2013. Using an interactive format including movement, writing and art, students will engage in activities relevant to the opera. With the cooperation of teachers and other professionals in the local area, OTW choreographer Ashley Hensel-Browning will help the students transform their writings into creative movement responses as an integrative experience, enhancing their appreciation of nature and its healing properties.

Opera Theatre of Weston continues to bring opera to children and children to opera. More than 2,700 school children will attend the performances.

Teachers, students, and parents continue to describe the wonderful impact OTW’s performance and educational programs have on the cultural enrichment of their classes and communities: "Opera Theatre of Weston goes above and beyond expectations for delivering art of the highest quality to students of all ages, abilities and musical interests."

Opera Theatre of Weston, a professional company member of OPERA America, is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. For more information, go to or phone 802-824-3821.

Grand opening of Low Voltage Services LLC

WEST WARDSBORO -- After 33 plus years of experience with Life Safety Systems, George Wilson announces the grand opening of his new business.

Throughout his career, he has been dedicated to providing excellent service and advice as an installer, service technician, service manager, consultant, system designer and salesman. Low Voltage Services LLC will leverage his extensive experience and allow him to offer a variety of services to include: Consulting, System design, Testing, Sales & Service.

The types of systems Low Voltage Services LLC specialize in but are not limited to include: Video Surveillance, Security and Burglar, Access Control, Home automation, Fire Alarm, Carbon Monoxide, Sound and Public address, Intercom, Emergency call, synchronized clocks and other similar technologies. George welcomes the opportunity to serve the needs of your home or business.

Contact him to discuss your requirements and how he can help you solve them at reasonable and competitive rates. The initial consultation is free and without obligation. The company is fully licensed and insured. Low Voltage Services LLC can be reached at 802-417-1464 or

Donald Russell announces candidacy

Donald Russell of Shelburne announces his candidacy for the office of Vermont’s lone representative to Congress on the Republican ticket. Don is a fresh face on the Vermont political scene, the only candidate on the Republican ticket who has not run for the office before. Don served his country in the U.S. Army for more than 20 years before accepting a position in 1986 with the U.S. Department of Justice, Immigration, and Naturalization Service. Don has served as the Director for Information Resources Management within the Eastern Regional Office until his retirement in April 1999.

Don takes great pride in the fact that he is not a professional politician, nor does he aspire to that particular position. He states that he is running only because he feels that the electorate should have the opportunity to choose a candidate that will serve as an effective alternative to the more than 20 years of Progressive-Democrat political domination that Vermont has endured. He believes that now is the time for a change from the extreme left-wing political culture to a more moderate centrist approach, and is quick to aver that this is the year for political change in the Green Mountain state.

Don supports a flat federal income tax and eventually a flat state income tax that will ease the substantial burden on American taxpayers. He believes in every segment of the Constitution, especially the Second Amendment, which he feels protects the rest of the Constitution with an armed citizenry. Don is for a quality health care system for those who cannot afford to purchase health-insurance, but he stands four square against Obamacare and will vote to rescind the law in its entirety.

In April 1962 at Charlotte, N.C., Don joined the United States Army where he served for more than 20 years, over 12 of which were spent oversees in Vietnam, Thailand, Okinawa and Germany. He and his wife Judy have been married for more than 30 years and they have six children, 15 grandchildren, two great-grandchildren and a large male orange tabby cat who answers sometimes to the name of Baby. Don has authored and published a book entitled, "Ride the Right Hobby Horse," which provides a short history of his life and a detailed description of what he has promised to do to compare with the actions he takes while serving as Vermont’s Congressional Representative. In this way, he will ensure that he is held accountable to the people of Vermont for accomplishing what he has promised to accomplish once elected.

Don has resided in Vermont for almost 30 years, four of which were in Burlington and the remaining 26 in Shelburne. More information is available on Don’s campaign website,

Manchester Designer Outlets presenting sponsor at Vermont Summer Festival

EAST DORSET -- Manchester Designer Outlets and the retail brands it represents will return for the ninth year as title sponsor of the weekly $10,000 Open Welcome Stake Series at the Vermont Summer Festival. Held from July 1 through August 10, riders will go head-to-head during six weeks of equestrian competition at Harold Beebe Farm for their slice of the $750,000 in prize money on offer.

The Vermont Summer Festival’s prize money makes the event the richest sporting event based on purse in the state of Vermont, thanks in part to the generous sponsorship of Manchester Designer Outlets. The company’s commitment represents the largest and broadest local sponsorship in the history of the Vermont Summer Festival.

The $10,000 Open Welcome Stake, presented by Manchester Designer Outlets, will be held in the grand prix ring each Thursday throughout the six-week competition. The winner of each event not only receives their share of the prize money, but also enjoys a gift certificate from that week’s sponsoring brand. Brand sponsors for 2014 include Brooks Brothers, Marimekko, New Balance, Not Your Daughter’s Jeans, Overland Sheepskin Company, and Vineyard Vines.

"It’s an excellent additional incentive for riders," said Ruth Lacey, Marketing Director of the Vermont Summer Festival. "Manchester Designer Outlets has become an integral part of the show, and we greatly appreciate their contribution. The retail brands represented by Manchester Designer Outlets have always been a big attraction for our exhibitors, and it’s wonderful that the company is as invested in the show as many of its customers are."

A stop at the Manchester Designer Outlets is always at the top of the list for riders and spectators during their time in Vermont. Quite literally, thousands of people associated with the Vermont Summer Festival flock to the Manchester Designer Outlets stores to take advantage of the great deals offered across all of its retail brands, including the Vermont Bird Place, Ann Taylor Loft, Coach, J Crew, Kate Spade, Theory, and Michael Kors.

Manchester Designer Outlets is also thrilled to announce the addition of a new building, The Marble Mill, housing retail stores for Eileen Fisher, Eddie Bauer and New Balance.

"The Manchester retail community is getting a new burst of energy with the opening of The Marble Mill, home to 20,000 square feet of shopping and dining," said Lana Hauben, Vice President of Marketing, Manchester Designer Outlets. "This gorgeous new building complex with two stone terraces and a magnificent center stairwell is set to become a center of activities for the town of Manchester. Shoppers are sure to enjoy its spacious terraces and beautiful artisan stone sitting walls."

Manchester Designer Outlets offers designer label fashions for both men and women with savings of up to 70 percent. In addition to offering some of the newest fashion trends, there are also unbeatable deals on luxury home furnishings, gifts and stylish accessories. The combination of culture and style makes for an enjoyable and relaxing shopping experience for those who visit.

For over 20 years, the Vermont Summer Festival has attracted exhibitors and their families to the Manchester region in southern Vermont. Known for its wide variety of area amenities including restaurants, outdoor activities, and lots and lots of shopping, Manchester-area businesses warmly welcome horse show competitors to the area each summer.

SVHC seeks nominations for Health Care Leadership Award

BENNINGTON -- Each September, Southwestern Vermont Health Care publicly presents the annual SVHC Health Care Leadership Award. This award recognizes a physician who demonstrates excellence in medical practice and patient care and whose service is aimed at improving health care in SVHC’s service area. The honoree may be actively practicing or retired, but he or she must currently live in a community served by SVHC.

"Healthcare is changing, and the need for physicians, hospitals, and members of the public to collaborate on shared goals to improve community health is more important than ever before," said Thomas Dee, the health system’s president and CEO. "This award acknowledges a leader among our physicians and honors a commitment to providing quality care to our community."

SVHC is asking the community to assist in selecting the recipient of this year’s award. Members of the public, physicians, SVHC employees, and volunteers are invited to nominate individuals who they believe exemplify the spirit of the Health Care Leadership Award and SVHC’s vision of healthier communities.

To make a nomination go to or call the SVHC Foundation Office at 802-447-5017 for a paper nomination form. The deadline for nominations is July 7.

The 2014 honoree will be announced in July. The award will be presented Sept. 6 at the Fifth Annual SVHC Harvest Ball. The ball is held at the 1768 Hubbell Homestead at Colgate Park.


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