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Separation Anxiety

How Vermonters are coping with being apart 38 BY CHE LSE A EDG AR, PAG E


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Douglas Kilburn in the hospital after the altercation

Family Files Wrongful Death Suit Against Burlington, City Police COURTESY OF BURLINGTON POLICE DEPARTMENT

The family of Douglas Kilburn sued the City of Burlington, ambulance bay. He was found dead at home a few days later. the mayor and police over his death last year following Attorney General T.J. Donovan elected not to prosecute an altercation with a city cop outside the University of Campbell on the grounds that Kilburn had seemed to Vermont Medical Center. throw the first punch. He faulted the cop for antagonizThe civil complaint, filed last week in federal court, acing the 54-year-old Kilburn, who was in poor physical and cuses Officer Cory Campbell of using excessive force when mental health at the time. he punched Kilburn in the face, breaking The case became a political flashbones. The officer’s actions in March 2019 point after Seven Days and VTDigger.org ultimately caused Kilburn’s “unjustified published emails showing that del Pozo death,” his family asserts. and Weinberger had tried to persuade top The suit also targets former police state officials not to release the medical chief Brandon del Pozo and Mayor Miro examiner’s finding that the manner of Weinberger, claiming they tried to Kilburn’s death was homicide. Their arguconceal Campbell’s conduct by seeking ments, made to Vermont Department of to change the state medical examiner’s Health officials and Gov. Phil Scott’s office, conclusion in the case. Kilburn had been seeking to visit his were unsuccessful. wife, Cheryl, who was a patient, when Activists continue to call for Campbell Officer Cory Campbell private security guards called police for to be fired. The city currently faces two other civil backup. The hospital wouldn’t let him rights cases related to officers’ use of force. see her, and Kilburn was irate. Campbell helped resolve the dispute and escorted Kilburn to his A suit brought last year by brothers Jérémie, Charlie and Albin Meli is headed toward trial after multiple mediation wife’s bedside. attempts failed. Campbell is named in that suit, as well. Later, as Campbell was exiting the hospital, he came upon Kilburn arguing again with a security guard from The Brattleboro law firm Chadwick & Spensley has the driver’s seat of his SUV. This time, Campbell yelled represented the plaintiffs, including Kilburn’s wife and at the man to “shut the fuck up and leave,” triggering a stepson, in each of the recent cases. Read Derek Brouwer’s full report at sevendaysvt.com. physical confrontation that left Kilburn bloodied in the

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That’s how many people have died on Vermont roadways this year. Police ask motorists to be careful during the holidays.


Barre will fly 22 different flags in a city park over the next two years to appease opponents of a plan to raise a Black Lives Matter flag. Diluting the message, it appears.




Weeks after a cyberattack, the UVM Medical Center was able to restore access to its electronic medical records system. The recovery is ongoing.


The AFL-CIO of Vermont voted for a general strike in January if President Donald Trump refuses to leave office. Power to the people.


The Vermont State Police has begun giving all 200 of its troopers body cameras to wear. Welcome to the 21st century!

1. “Drought Disaster Declared for 10 Vermont Counties” by Kevin McCallum. The decision allows farmers who lost crops to apply for disaster aid. 2. “More Than 35,000 Vermont Workers Will Get Hazard Pay” by Matthew Roy. The latest round will aid workers in retail, childcare and other industries. 3. “Media Note: VTDigger Announces Staff Departures” by Kevin McCallum. Longtime political columnist Jon Margolis and managing editor Colin Meyn are leaving the news organization. 4. “A Personal Tragedy Inspires Starksboro Couple to Help Others” by Sasha Goldstein. In memory of their stillborn child, a family raises funds to buy winter clothes for local schoolchildren. 5. “Kilburn Family Files Wrongful Death Claim Against Burlington” by Derek Brouwer. Douglas Kilburn died last year after an altercation with a Burlington police officer.

tweet of the week @beerlington It’s not even 9am and the sun is already going down. FOLLOW US ON TWITTER @SEVENDAYSVT OUR TWEEPLE: SEVENDAYSVT.COM/TWITTER



Elizabeth Billings doing a tree rubbing at the LaPlatte River Marsh Natural Area

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An anonymous benefactor is funding an artist who will create natural, interactive artworks at three Vermont preserves owned by the Nature Conservancy. Elizabeth Billings of Tunbridge will serve as artist-in-residence, spending the next several months constructing the works, which will be displayed at the Equinox Highlands Natural Area in Manchester, Raven Ridge Natural Area in Monkton and LaPlatte River Marsh Natural Area in Shelburne. Since September, Billings has visited the sites frequently to observe the changing seasons, angles of light and weather. “Spending time getting to know them, looking at patterns in nature — it’s been great!” she said.

Billings is keeping visual journals of her experiences that she’ll release on the Nature Conservancy website in the months leading up to installment of the pieces, which will likely occur sometime in May. “There are a lot of ideas swirling around,” Billings said. “They’re not ready to be tossed around yet — outside of my own head and heart.” The installations are part 60th birthday celebration for the Nature Conservancy’s Vermont chapter and part tribute to those who have visited the organization’s 58 natural areas, encompassing more than 30,000 acres across the state, according to the nonprofit’s communications director, Eve Frankel. Trail usage has spiked this year during the pandemic. Raven Ridge, for instance, is on a

record-setting pace for visitors, probably because “the natural area is welcoming to folks of all abilities, has opportunity for solitude and connection, and provides a rich showcase of natural diversity right in our backyard,” Jack Markoski, the conservancy’s stewardship and volunteer coordinator, wrote in an email. Frankel said the nonprofit has emphasized creating places that are accessible for all. Raven Ridge has a long section of boardwalk, and the outdoor org’s future projects will install more of the same at different areas, Frankel said. “We assume that there’s access to nature everywhere, but sometimes it’s more challenging,” she said. “We have found how much we need it during this time.” SASHA GOLDSTEIN



Fa la la la



founders/Coeditors Pamela Polston, Paula Routly publisher Paula Routly deputy publisher Cathy Resmer AssoCiAte publishers

Don Eggert, Pamela Polston, Colby Roberts

NEWS & POLITICS editor Matthew Roy deputy editor Sasha Goldstein Consulting editor Candace Page stAff writers Derek Brouwer, Colin Flanders,

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ARTS & LIFE editor Pamela Polston AssoCiAte editor Margot Harrison AssistAnt editors Dan Bolles, Elizabeth M. Seyler MusiC editor Jordan Adams CAlendAr writer Kristen Ravin speCiAlty publiCAtions MAnAger Carolyn Fox stAff writers Jordan Barry, Chelsea Edgar,

Margaret Grayson, Melissa Pasanen, Ken Picard, Sally Pollak proofreAders Carolyn Fox, Elizabeth M. Seyler AssistAnt proofreAder Katherine Isaacs D I G I TA L & V I D E O dAtA editor Andrea Suozzo digitAl produCtion speCiAlist Bryan Parmelee senior MultiMediA produCer Eva Sollberger MultiMediA journAlist James Buck DESIGN CreAtive direCtor Don Eggert Art direCtor Rev. Diane Sullivan produCtion MAnAger John James designers Jeff Baron, Kirsten Thompson SALES & MARKETING direCtor of sAles Colby Roberts senior ACCount exeCutive Michael Bradshaw ACCount exeCutives Robyn Birgisson,

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P.S. I love Seven Days. I haven’t missed an issue in years. Keep up the great work! Bill Perta



[Re Off Message: “Drought Disaster Declared for 10 Vermont Counties,” November 17]: I have lived in Shaftsbury for 30 years now. There is an artesian well on Route 7A in Shaftsbury, across from the former Iron Kettle Motel. For the first time in 30 years, that well has run dry. I guess this is an indication of the drought. Kirke McVay



In “Weathering the Storm” [November 11], the writer used the word “bespoke.” I’ve been seeing this word a lot lately, so I did a little research. The Oxford English Dictionary tells us that “bespoke” means made-to-order, applied especially to clothing. Given that, the word is frequently misused. I remember a New York Times article in which the writer mentions attending a wedding where the caterer advertised “bespoke cocktails” — meaning you could choose from two offerings they were promoting. Hardly made-to-order. If this is an acceptable use of the word, then we’re on a slippery slope. How about bespoke firewood? The logger says, “You order the wood; I buck it up, split it and deliver it to you. I made this cord for you. It’s bespoke wood.” You see where this is going. Or where it’s gone. It’s another case of semantic drift, in which a word moves from its original meaning to something associated but different. Years from now, when bespoke is up there with locavore, artisanal, terroir, free-range, cave-aged, etc., we can say we remember when the word was used so infrequently it was almost extinct. Let’s slow down with the use of the word “bespoke” and think for a moment before we use it. Is this really the right word, or am I using it because it looks trendy? The Seven Days writer used the word to describe “the bespoke plexiglassand-wood dividers between tables.” By that measure, one enters the restaurant through a bespoke door, with bespoke windows opening onto the street, bespoke flooring underfoot and a bespoke ventilation system overhead. Bespoke plumbing. Bespoke wiring. Really?

Editor’s note: Seven Days’ dictionary of choice is Merriam-Webster. In an article titled “What Is the New Meaning of ‘Bespoke’?” the dictionary details the word’s evolution since the late 15th century, noting that “the new meaning of the word (‘custom made’) is not very new at all. We’ve just begun to extend it beyond clothing, which was not its sole province to begin with.” “Bespoke” has been used to refer to specially made items since the Industrial Revolution, and, unlike in “bespoke firewood,” we think the word was used appropriately in the context of custom-built dining dividers.


As [“Downhill Battle,” November 11] states, resort owners face difficulty in being sure that guests are following the rules for COVID-19 quarantine. Unless steps are taken, this will still be true after a vaccine arrives. Some people may misrepresent their vaccination status. To reopen the economy after a vaccine becomes available, we should know who has received the vaccine. One possible method would be to produce a “vaccination certificate,” which individuals could carry or display. Possibly something like a driver’s license, with a photo, name, date of vaccination and vaccine batch number. If the vaccine requires two shots a few weeks apart, a photo could be taken at the first visit and the card delivered at the second. Once the vaccine is widely and freely available, such a card would allow ski resorts, schools, bars, restaurants, concerts, weddings, athletic contests and other gatherings to proceed without the risk of spreading the virus, simply by “carding” participants. If we can “card” to stop underage drinking, surely we can “card” to stop a pandemic. Taylor Buckner SOUTH HERO


Thank you for your continued coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic. I take issue, however, with remarks made in [“Coronavirus Rekindles,” November 18]. Peter Henne and Rebecca Hartman Huenink claim that the governor has banned their children from playing outside with friends or taking a walk

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with friends. This is not correct. Gov. Phil Scott has banned multi-household indoor gatherings. Please check the facts when quoting fellow residents. I have found the governor’s and his administration’s care and concern for all of us to be fair and balanced. Let us support their efforts to continue to keep our caseload low and save lives. Joanne Giannino


Editor’s note: On Friday, November 13, Gov. Scott prohibited indoor and outdoor multi-household gatherings. The next week he clarified that mandate to say it was OK for a maximum of two people from different households to walk outside together, with appropriate masking and social distancing.


I was struck by and appreciative of two articles in your October 28 issue. Dan Bolles’ sprawling examination of Joe Citro’s work [“In the Shadows”] reminded me of certain things that are essential about the state of Vermont. Among those things are the mysteries that abound in these intriguing woods. Whether or not one believes in ghosts, lake monsters and Bigfoot, there must be some acknowledgment that the mysteries are substantial, even though many will never be resolved. Some things are not meant to be resolved. Citro himself remains crucial to those mysteries as he continues to offer them for our own personal investigations. As he moves deeper and deeper into the realm of being a cultural icon,

Seven Days editors were astute in recognizing him and paying homage. Although Sally Pollak’s article on the transition of Major Jackson [“Major Move”] was briefer, it was no less profound for me. In fact, his time as a professor and an artistic presence here in Vermont has been incomparable. I would go even further and call him a visionary. I offer, as just one example, his poem “Bum Rush,” which draws a haunting connection between Tessie Hutchinson, of Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery,” and all the George Floyds that have ever existed and will exist in the future. Bobby Braddock’s haunting tune “Time Marches On” still reverberates in my mind as I recall how the speaker in “Bum Rush” sits innocently in the appropriately named Time Cafe, is assaulted, and conjures up the image of his deceased mother for some peace and stability as he shakes “this mortal coil.”

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contents NOVEMBER 25-DECEMBER 2, 2020 VOL.26 NO.9




32 49 54 56 58 85

23 48 54 58 60 63

Filling the Pantry

WTF Side Dishes Soundbites Album Reviews Movie Review Ask the Reverend


Separation Anxiety

Life Lines Food + Drink Music + Nightlife Movies Classes Classifieds + Puzzles 80 Fun Stuff 84 Personals

Northeast Kingdom towns rally to address food insecurity PAGE 48

Grape Expectations A master sommelier puts down roots in a Vermont vineyard

How Vermonters are coping with being apart







From the Art

Stay in Norman Rockwell’s studio


Bright Lights, Big City


Holiday shopping in Burlington

Across the Universe Finding hope in the starry night

Online Now









From the Publisher

First to Market

Warm and Fuzzy

Good Trip

Business Class

Words in the Marrow

Missing Vermont

Race On

After a tough term, can Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger again win reelection?

COVID Calling

Vermont bolsters contact-tracing ranks to keep up with the surge

Holiday art and craft shows transition for the pandemic era Vermont-made film Light Years has a startlingly real performance at its center Book review: Field Music, Alexandria Hall

Vermont Flannel caters to a need for comfort in the time of COVID-19 In Office, author Sheila Liming examines changes in where and how we work

Tom Verner and Janet Fredericks have performed magic tricks in 45 countries through their organization, Magicians Without Borders. Instead of traveling, the Lincoln couple is now focused on teaching the next generation closer to home.

We have

Find a new job in the classifieds section on page 71 and online at sevendaysvt.com/jobs.

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Plan C

Paula Routly


I always look forward to Thanksgiving. Simplistic historical narrative aside, the sentiment and the food — which are served up without the burdens of religion and gift giving — make it the perfect nondenominational holiday. Also, for as long as I’ve been an adult, the day has been more about friends than blood relatives. I enjoy gathering with the people I love, as well as the occasional “orphan,” to feel the warm embrace of surrogate family. Of course, things rarely go as planned. While I eagerly anticipate the fourth Thursday in November, I almost always overdo it — issuing too many invitations, ordering up an excess of side dishes, and harboring unrealistic expectations about the long walks and deep conversations we’re all going to have. When I host, worrying over meat thermometers and gravy, I often feel like I’ve missed the whole thing. My partner and I were well on our way down that path at the end of October. Between the two of us, we had offered our place as a fallback option for three “orphans”— a legislator, our next-door neighbor and a friend who was single at the time but now has a boyfriend we’ve never met. Then two of my dearest friends — each with a husband and collegeage daughter — proposed celebrating Thanksgiving together. We did it as a group last year, at my place, and one of them offered to host this time to take the pressure off. That’s when I had to explain we’d already invited three — possibly four — other people who might or might not come … and if any of them did, they would probably feel weird going to someone else’s house. For a fleeting moment our table was set for 10 — the maximum allowable indoor capacity at the end of October — before my dear friends both canceled. Then, on November 13, Gov. Phil Scott disinvited everyone else when he announced a prohibition on multi-household gatherings. The only company we are counting on now is the 15-pound turkey I ordered two hours before the governor’s decree. As with so many things that have been downsized or canceled this year, I feel a mixture of sadness and, honestly, relief. With or without guests, I’m grateful for all the love and support readers of Seven Days have extended since the start of the pandemic, in the Interested in becoming a Super Reader? form of notes, emails and donations. Even Look for the “Give Now” buttons at the top of at the darkest time of the year, after months of sevendaysvt.com. Or send a check with your losses, our community lights the way. address and contact info to: At our table on Thursday, we’ll be getting SEVEN DAYS, C/O SUPER READERS back to basics: giving thanks for the land, the P.O. BOX 1164 BURLINGTON, VT 05402-1164 food our farmers grow on it, good health and the roof over our heads. As this public health crisis For more information on making a financial has underscored: These things should never be contribution to Seven Days, please contact taken for granted. Corey Grenier: VOICEMAIL: 802-865-1020, EXT. 36 EMAIL: SUPERREADERS@SEVENDAYSVT.COM










ZAFA Wines Ordered to Stop Raising Funds From Investors


B Y S A L LY P O L L A K sally@sevendaysvt.com

Race On


After a tough term, can Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger again win reelection? B Y COUR T NEY L A MDIN • courtney@sevendaysvt.com


urlington Mayor Miro Weinberger’s current term in office has been his toughest yet. Last winter, the Democrat lost two police chiefs to a social media scandal that made national headlines. Then came the coronavirus pandemic, which swept through the state, taking lives, hurting local businesses and shrinking city revenues. This summer, the national reckoning over racial justice landed quite literally on Weinberger’s doorstep as protesters staged a die-in in front of his home to demand the firing of three city cops accused of using excessive force. And in the midst of it all, the well-financed developer of the infamous CityPlace Burlington project announced it was backing out. The year is ending with another surge in COVID-19 cases that could derail the city’s attempts at a recovery from the pandemic. Weinberger, though, isn’t throwing in the towel. On November 10, he announced that he will run for a fourth three-year 12

term in March, telling supporters in an email that “serving as mayor has been the honor of my life.” “I have worked hard every day for the community. I still have that intensity and drive,” Weinberger told Seven Days in a



recent interview. “If I didn’t have that, I wouldn’t be running again. I still wake up every morning with the hunger to take on these challenges.” Nevertheless, Weinberger may find this his toughest run. In more than a dozen recent interviews, his supporters


and critics agreed that the mayor has been a steady leader during the pandemic and that his financial acumen could guide the city’s recovery. But they also said the issues that have plagued Weinberger’s current term — plus the presence of strong opponents in the race — could threaten his chances of keeping the job he’s held for nearly nine years. “The longer you serve, you get a chance to build a legacy and get things done. You also create more opportunities for people to be critical,” said Peter Clavelle, a Progressive who served as Burlington’s mayor for 15 years. He previously has supported Weinberger, but he has yet to endorse a candidate this year. “It’s gonna be a real race,” Clavelle said. Perhaps sensing an opening, four others have already declared their candidacy, including three city councilors: Progressives Brian Pine (Ward 3) and Max Tracy (Ward 2) and independent Ali Dieng RACE ON

» P.14

The State of Vermont has ordered Burlington winemaker ZAFA Wines to stop raising money for the business. The Department of Financial Regulation issued the order on November 20 because ZAFA Wines was seeking investors while operating without required licenses. Last week, the state Division of Liquor Control barred ZAFA from the manufacture, sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages for lack of licenses. “Simply put, Zafa has been operating without the fundamental regulatory approvals required to conduct its core business, and it has not disclosed this material risk to investors,” the order states. Krista Scruggs founded ZAFA Wines in March 2018. The company made its initial security offering in September 2019 and had raised $300,000 by September 2020, according to the state. The company has four investors, all from out of state. “When there’s a great harm to the investing public, we have to take action,” Financial Regulation Commissioner Michael Pieciak told Seven Days. In its offering, the company “failed to disclose specifically Zafa’s need for multiple liquor control and related state and federal licenses in order to legally manufacture, bottle, sell and distribute wine,” the state wrote in its order. According to the state, the relevant material says that “‘as a manufacturer of wine, the Company will be subject to extensive government regulation’ but ‘the Company does not expect that compliance with existing laws and regulations will have a material adverse effect upon its operating results.’” Based on this statement, “a reasonable investor could assume they have the necessary licenses to operate the business they’re in,” Pieciak said. ZAFA Wines has 30 days to respond to the state’s order, Pieciak said, after which the order will become permanent. Meanwhile, the state will continue its investigation. “We’ve asked for financial documents, and we haven’t received them yet,” Pieciak said. “So we don’t know what they’ve done with [the money]. That’s going to be part of our ongoing investigation.” Scruggs could not be reached for comment on Monday afternoon. 



COVID Calling

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Vermont bolsters contact-tracing ranks to keep up with the surge BY COLIN FL AN DERS • colin@sevendaysvt.com


ermont was so successful in suppressing the coronavirus pandemic this summer that, on most days, the state was employing many more contact tracers than there were cases to investigate. But now, a surge of infections threatens to overwhelm this vital public health effort when it’s needed most. COVID-19-positive people interviewed by contract tracers are reporting more and more close contacts — indicating that Vermonters are spending more time in one another’s presence. That leads to complex webs of potentially exposed people. Further, the virus has become so



prevalent that contact tracers are finding it difficult to pinpoint where people may have become infected. The end result: Fewer and fewer people are being interviewed within 24 hours of their COVID-19 diagnosis. That key indicator of the program’s effectiveness has been slipping as the number of coronavirus-positive Vermonters rises. “We’re up against the ropes here,” Daniel Daltry, one of the Vermont Department of Health’s lead contact tracers, told Seven Days last week. “We are fighting hard. But this virus doesn’t care if we work eight hours, 10 hours, 12 hours, 14 hours a day. It just keeps coming. It’s relentless.” Vermont is far from alone in its struggle. Contact-tracing efforts have largely failed in the United States due to the virus’ pervasiveness and major lags

in testing. Some states have even started scaling back efforts: In New Hampshire, for example, health officials recently decided they would no longer investigate each case but would focus on high-risk populations such as health care workers, communities of color and people in group living spaces. The announcement came as the state was averaging 200 cases a day — around the same time that Vermont, which has about half as many people as New Hampshire, reached a weekly average of 100. Vermont leaders say they have no intention of retreating. They have called in the state’s “reserve” contact-tracing workforce and say they plan to continue deploying reinforcements in the coming weeks. The National Guard has lent more than 30 members to the effort. Ten more are arriving from the state Department of Public Safety. By December 7, the contact-tracing staff should be more than 100 strong, four times what it was when the month began. “We’re in pretty good shape, and we’re getting in better shape as time goes on,” Gov. Phil Scott said on Tuesday. Still, Vermont’s containment strategy could soon face its biggest test yet: A national survey from the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center earlier this month found that two in five Americans are planning to attend large Thanksgiving gatherings. If two in five Vermonters were to do so, officials say, the state could see up to 3,800 new infections in the days ahead — as many as during the entire pandemic thus far.  State leaders are confident such doomsday predictions won’t come true. And if they did? “We would be in far more trouble than just our contact-tracing workforce,” Vermont Health Commissioner Mark Levine said on Tuesday.



» P.18

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news Burlington Council Votes to Divest From Fossil Fuel Companies B Y COUR T NEY L A MDIN courtney@sevendaysvt.com Burlington city councilors voted unanimously on Monday to divest the city’s pension funds from fossil fuel companies and invest in more sustainable industries. Spearheaded by Councilor Jane Stromberg (P-Ward 8), the resolution asks that the city consider creating a “Burlington Green New Deal Investment Fund” to support the city’s goal of becoming a net-zero community by 2030. Stromberg said the move combats the climate crisis and sets an example for other cities and towns. “We need to step up, and we need to be brave,” she said. “For some, this is long-awaited and overdue, and for others, this may be a new priority. But the point is, we have an incredible opportunity to lead the way.” Some Vermont institutions have already committed to divestment. Earlier this year, the University of Vermont pledged to end its investments in fossil fuel companies by July 2023. The industry currently comprises 6.7 percent of UVM’s $536 million endowment portfolio. Middlebury College agreed in January 2019 to phase out its investments over the next 15 years. Councilor Karen Paul (D-Ward 6), who collaborated with Stromberg on the resolution, said Burlington is at a “critical juncture” in recognizing the reality of climate science. Paul said the city can explore investing in greener, more stable industries that will produce a good return for its retirees. The resolution asks the Burlington Employees’ Retirement System to account for the fossil fuel investments in its portfolio and to come up with a timeline for divestment by the end of April 2021. Later in the meeting, councilors postponed a vote on whether to place an item banning no-cause evictions on the March 2021 ballot. Currently, landlords can evict tenants for no reason at all. Led by Councilor Brian Pine (P-Ward 3), the proposal would require that landlords have a “just cause” to evict a tenant. If voters approved the charter change, the item would go to the state legislature and governor for review. The city would then enshrine the ban in a new city ordinance. On Monday night, however, councilors couldn’t decide just how the charter language should spell out exemptions to “just cause” evictions. A subcommittee will discuss it further before the full council resumes its debate at a December 7 meeting. m


Race On « P.12 (Ward 7). Still others could emerge before the Progressives and Democrats hold their caucuses in early December. A crowded field could benefit Weinberger. He won reelection in 2018 by garnering 48 percent of the vote in a threeway race. Weinberger, a housing developer who’d never before held elected office, had a much easier time when he won his first race in 2012 with close to 58 percent of the vote. That victory made him the city’s first Democratic mayor in three decades. Some Burlingtonians saw Weinberger’s win as a rejection of the man he defeated, former mayor Bob Kiss, a two-term Progressive who diverted city cash to keep the struggling Burlington Telecom utility afloat. The move tanked the city’s credit rating to near junk bond status, forcing it to rely on short-term loans for daily operating expenses. Its unassigned fund balance — the city’s rainy-day fund — was $16.8 million in the red. Since then, the Weinberger administration has boosted the city’s credit rating by six steps, back to the Aa3 status it held before the Burlington Telecom fiasco. Last year, Weinberger tied the bow on extremely fraught debates over the city’s sale of the utility to Indiana-based Schurz Communications. When the coronavirus hit, Weinberger had built up $16 million in reserves, which helped the city replace lost revenues and avoid employee layoffs. Weinberger allocated $1 million of those dollars in March to set up the Resource and Recovery Center to assist residents and business owners with pandemicrelated needs. Earlier this month, the city again tapped emergency funds to open three pop-up COVID-19 testing sites to confront another virus surge, though the state may reimburse the city’s expenses. “We were well positioned for a crisis,” Weinberger said. “We certainly didn’t imagine anything on this order of magnitude, but because we have rebuilt the finances and planned for a storm, we’ve been able to withstand it.” Burlington resident Erik Hoekstra has supported Weinberger in every election and said he will again this time. Hoekstra, a managing partner of development firm Redstone, said he hasn’t always agreed with the mayor’s policies but thinks the city needs Weinberger’s financial knowhow to weather the COVID-19 crisis. “We need the guy that figured out how to get us out of the Burlington Telecom mess in the mayor’s office to make sure that we can manage our way through this mess,” Hoekstra said. “It’s gonna be a yearslong process of recovery.”






Hoekstra said Weinberger’s management during the pandemic may earn him the same broad-based support that helped Republican Gov. Phil Scott garner 67 percent of the vote to secure a third term earlier this month. But Hoekstra also recognized that CityPlace is bound to become a central campaign issue. First proposed in 2014, the long-stalled downtown project hit another snag in July when former majority owner Brookfield Asset Management told the city it was selling its shares to Don Sinex, the developer who first hatched the proposal. Weinberger sued the developers in September, alleging that they breached the project’s development agreement with the city by not building it on an agreed timeline. The lawsuit was a sharp — and public — rebuke of a project that Weinberger had heralded as transformative for the city. Instead, the site remains an empty pit, the butt of many a joke. Jane Knodell, a former Progressive city council president who supported

the project, thinks the suit is unproductive and possibly even political posturing — a way for Weinberger to show that he’s not the “developer’s mayor,” as some have mockingly labeled him. Knodell, who hasn’t yet endorsed a candidate, thinks the development could weigh Weinberger down. “People are gonna want to know: What’s the plan? How does this lawsuit get us to a better place?” Knodell said. “I don’t think there’s a good answer to that.” Shannon Jackson, a former staffer for Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-Vt.) presidential campaign who is running Pine’s mayoral bid, called CityPlace “the biggest blemish on Miro’s record” — one that other candidates can leverage. “It’s been poorly managed,” he said. “In the middle of town is a giant, gaping hole that, for years now, we have not had progress on.” Weinberger will also have to defend his record on policing issues after a summer of protests. Starting in August, activists occupied Battery Park for more than a month to demand that the city terminate three officers accused of using excessive force. Weinberger’s handling of those incidents has been repeatedly called into question. In April 2019, Weinberger and former police chief Brandon del Pozo attempted to influence a medical

examiner’s finding that the death of a man who had been punched by a cop was a homicide. In May 2019, lawsuits revealed publicly that two officers had knocked two Black men unconscious during unrelated arrests the previous fall. In December 2019, Seven Days reported that del Pozo had used an anonymous Twitter account to troll a critic — and that Weinberger had known for months and kept quiet. The chief resigned in the ensuing uproar, and his replacement, Jan Wright, was put on leave when she admitted to similar behavior. She resigned in February. Annie Schneider, cochair of Burlington’s Progressive Party, said Weinberger’s actions show he cares more about cops than the city’s most vulnerable residents. The hundreds of protesters who marched to Weinberger’s home won’t forget it, she said. “People are seeing a clear need for leadership that represents them and for a leader who listens to them,” she said. Ed Adrian, a former city councilor and Democrat, defended Weinberger, saying that it takes time to reform policing, despite activists’ call for immediate changes. He called the del Pozo Twitter scandal “a minor hiccup” in Weinberger’s nine-year tenure. “The city isn’t all about the police department and the hole in the ground,” Adrian said, referring to the CityPlace project. Weinberger has kept city services running through the pandemic, Adrian said, and should be rewarded with another three years. “It’s really that simple,” he said. Weinberger acknowledges that racial justice and police reform are top of mind for many voters, and he thinks his administration has made progress on those fronts. In February, the city hired Tyeastia Green, its first-ever director of racial equity, inclusion and belonging. In July, the city declared racism a public health emergency and in November formed a reparations task force to examine the city’s role in slavery. Weinberger also appointed a temporary director of police transformation to assess the department’s operations. But City Councilor Zoraya Hightower (P-Ward 1) said activists have had to push Weinberger to hold cops accountable. Hightower — who is serving as Tracy’s campaign treasurer — said Weinberger’s team was intransigent during talks about the protesters’ demands to fire three cops, refusing to take action because the city had already investigated and disciplined the officers. Eventually, in September, after

hearing hours of public testimony, the city offered the most senior officer a $300,000 buyout. “There’s some frustration and some hope for more systemic change,” Hightower said of her constituents. “I think [which side] people fall more on will depend on the candidates.” Even Weinberger’s supporters agree that he faces a credible challenge from any of the three councilors. First elected in 2017, Dieng has a strong following and is unabashedly vocal in pointing out what he sees as Weinberger’s shortcomings. Tracy has served since 2012 and is popular among the young, leftmostleaning Progs who are most unimpressed with Weinberger’s policies. And Pine, who has been in Burlington politics for more than 30 years, could appeal to voters who want a more progressive mayor than Weinberger but one more moderate and experienced than Tracy. Knodell said she thinks Weinberger would outpoll a Progressive in the more conservative New North End. But she also expects that Dieng, who lives in the neighborhood, could siphon off some of those votes. A four-way race involving Weinberger, the Progressive nominee, Dieng and Patrick White, a South End man running as an independent, could even force a runoff: To win the mayoral election, a candidate must earn at least 40 percent of the vote. Another straw in the wind: The city council has moved noticeably leftward since Weinberger last ran. Progressives made big gains in the 2019 and 2020 elections by locking down wards and districts with significant student populations. In March, they nearly took Ward 5, a Democrat stronghold. Progs now hold a majority on the council for the first time during Weinberger’s tenure. Former Ward 1 councilor Sharon Bushor knows about that shift firsthand. After serving 32 years as a leftleaning independent, she lost her seat to Hightower in March. Bushor said Progressives may have alienated moderate voters during debates over policing this summer. Progs have been successful in council races, but to win a citywide race, Bushor said, the party’s nominee needs to appeal to centrists, as well. At the same time, Bushor thinks some Burlingtonians may be looking for a change. “I think there is a disappointment with Miro,” Bushor said. “There are different constituencies who have axes to grind,” she continued. “That just comes with the turf of being around for a while.” m

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Democratic Vermont senators on Sunday chose women for key leadership posts for the upcoming legislative session, a historic shift that was celebrated by senators and tempered by the daunting task before them. During a caucus vote Sunday morning, Sen. Becca Balint (D-Windham) won the nomination to be Senate president pro tempore. If confirmed in January, the mother of two from Brattleboro would be the first woman and the first openly gay lawmaker to hold the post. Balint, 47, said little about those firsts and instead focused on the challenges ahead, for which she said she and her colleagues will need to “bring our A games” to address the “Herculean task” ahead. “Our top priority this session will be to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, while also trying to shift the system and policies to better address Vermonters’ needs going forward,” Balint said. Another woman is poised to take the reins of the House. Majority Leader Jill Krowinski (D-Burlington) emerged last Friday as the Democrats’ pick after a recount confirmed that Speaker Mitzi Johnson (D-South Hero) had lost her seat.

State Employees’ Health Plans Will Move to OneCare Amid System ‘Reboot’ B Y CO UR T NEY L A M DIN courtney@sevendaysvt.com Vermont is moving state employees’ health plans to OneCare Vermont amid a planned reboot of its all-payer system aimed at increasing participation among patients and providers. Effective January 1, the shift affects about 9,000 members of the Vermont State Employees’ Association and Vermont Troopers’ Association, according to state Human Resources Commissioner Beth Fastiggi. About 6,000 retired state workers are already enrolled in the system through a Medicare plan, she said. “The more participants in the plan, the more effective it can be in helping the effort to stop the increasing costs of health care,” Fastiggi said. OneCare is Vermont’s only accountable care organization and manages the state’s all-payer health care system. Through a federal-state partnership, OneCare collects money from Medicare, Medicaid and private insurers to pay health care providers for each


patient they treat instead of for each test, visit and procedure, which experts say drives up the cost of care. Ditching the traditional fee-for-service system has taken longer than expected. Since OneCare launched in 2017, the state has fallen short of federal benchmarks called “scale targets” that dictate how many Vermonters should participate each year. The goal is for 70 percent of residents to be included by 2022. By the end of this year, the target is 58 percent of Vermonters, but it’s likely that only 42 percent will be enrolled, according to Ena Backus, the state’s director of health care reform. In September, the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services issued the state a warning letter for falling short of expectations. Including state employees in OneCare is an attempt to address those concerns, Backus said. The shift will not change employees’ benefits, including premiums or co-pays, according to Fastiggi. “Most employees really may not notice any difference whatsoever,” she said, noting that doctors may end up calling their patients more regularly to check in. “The goal is for [patients] to receive better quality care … and that’s why I completely support this move.” VSEA executive director Steve Howard said the union’s bargaining teams will review the change to determine whether it impacts workers’ benefits. If they find it does, the union would demand a bargaining session, Howard said. “The union is going to be very vigorous about making sure we protect the benefits


Sasha Goldstein and Courtney Lamdin contributed reporting.





“It’s really a new day, and a new form of leadership,” Pollina said. I’m really looking forward to being part of a Senate and a legislature that is primarily directed by women.” On Monday, Republicans announced their own Senate leaders in the next biennium. Sen. Randy Brock (R/DFranklin) will serve as Senate minority leader. He succeeds Sen. Joe Benning (R-Caledonia) in the role. Sen. Brian Collamore (R-Rutland) will stay on as assistant minority leader. Benning, who nominated Brock, called his colleague “one of the sharpest minds in the Statehouse.” Currently the chair of the Senate Institutions Committee, Benning said he relinquished his role in deference to caucus “tradition” that prohibits a member from holding a chairmanship and a position in leadership. Brock said his goal in the position is “to continue having our voices be part of the debate. “One of the beauties of the Senate in Vermont is that we talk, and we listen to each other,” Brock continued. “We don’t always agree, but we’re never disagreeable. And I think that is really a testament to how the body works. We do in fact deliberate, and ideas from all sides are typically welcomed.” m

Clarkson said after her unanimous selection. “Together we can accomplish great things.” Sen. Dick McCormack (D-Windsor) praised Clarkson’s organizational Sen. Becca Balint skills, natural leadership and relentless energy, likening her to the “Energizer bunny.” “Alison is a very present personality,” McCormack said. “In any room where she is, eyes turn to Alison.” The third woman chosen Sunday for a leadership post was Sen. Cheryl Hooker (D/P-Rutland), who was named whip. Sen. Ruth Hardy (D-Addison) recalled with awe how Hooker, 70, traveled to Montpelier in a blizzard after helping her husband through a medical crisis. “Having someone who is calm and fair and good-humored as our assistant majority leader, I think, is incredibly important,” she said. Senators also opted to preserve some institutional knowledge by leaving Sen. Dick Mazza (D-Grand Isle) in a key leadership role on the Committee on Committees. The influential three-member panel makes committee assignments. The two other members will be the pro tem, Balint, and the new lieutenant governor, Democrat Molly Gray. Sen. Anthony Pollina (P/D-Washington), noting that House Democrats had selected Krowinski to serve as speaker, hailed the changes.


Women Secure Top Roles for Next Legislative Session

Krowinski, who was elected to the house in 2012 and has been majority leader for four years, said she’s ready to lead during the coronavirus crisis. “It’s going to mean working together,” she said. “I’m prepared to work together and to do everything we can to make sure, no matter what your zip code is, you have a fair shot at a strong future and recovery.” Krowinski will be formally nominated at the party’s caucus on December 5, and the full House will vote on her appointment when the chamber reconvenes on January 6. In the Senate, Balint will succeed President Pro Tempore Tim Ashe (D/PChittenden), who did not seek reelection to the Senate and ran unsuccessfully for lieutenant governor. Her nomination had been assured for weeks. Sen. Phil Baruth (D/P-Chittenden) said Balint was “absolutely the best candidate for the job,” praising her “warmth, energy and strategic intelligence.” Balint’s bid for pro tem opened up her job as Senate majority leader, a position that often is an indicator of upward political mobility. Support coalesced around Sen. Alison Clarkson (D-Windsor). The Harvard University-educated mother of two and former Broadway theater producer urged her colleagues on Sunday to think of the nation’s motto, e pluribus unum — “out of many, one” — as the “formula for our success” in state government. “My job will be listening to each of you, your needs and priorities, to coordinate those with our work to help our caucus advance our policy priorities and shared vision,”



that have been negotiated, the fiscal health of the plan,” he said. “State employees are not paid a lot of money. We don’t want to see any potential increases in costs to them.” Howard said a number of members have voiced concerns about OneCare, but the union has reassured them that they still have health insurance. The state has also offered to meet with union representatives to discuss the change, he said. Vermont is currently in year three of a five-year experiment with all-payer and OneCare. Its underperformance has caused some groups, including the Vermont Workers’ Center and Vermont Health Care for All, to call on Gov. Phil Scott to dump OneCare in favor of a universal, single-payer health care system. But state officials say they want to reboot the model, not can it. The state released a report last Thursday that outlines several steps to get the program on track — including working

with the feds to determine whether the benchmarks “are indeed achievable,” Backus said. The report includes recommendations for every player in the all-payer game: the Agency of Human Services, Green Mountain Care Board and OneCare itself. “We need to take some ownership of this and lead on this to make it work,” said Scott spokesperson Ethan Latour, adding, “The amount of value the accountable care organization is adding to the reform efforts is mixed, depending on who you ask.” Backus said the state wants OneCare to step up its recruitment to attract more providers to the model. It also needs to support providers who have already signed on, she said. Green Mountain Care Board chair Kevin Mullin agreed that every player needs to be “rowing in the same direction” for all-payer to succeed. For the care board, that means better marketing the model to hospitals and doctors, some of whom remain skeptical even as federal regulators have shown a desire to move away from fee-for-service. Mullin said some health care workers also aren’t convinced that the Scott administration is behind all-payer. The report — and Human Services Secretary Mike Smith’s full-throated endorsement of all-payer in recent months — should change their minds, he said. “Secretary Smith made it very, very clear that the state of Vermont not only supports a move away from volume to value [of care] but is going to take an active role in making sure we get there,” Mullin said. “I think it’s very encouraging.” m


A Traveler Says Quarantine Info Is in Short Supply at BTV





B Y K E N P I C ARD • ken@sevendaysvt.com

Before returning to Vermont from California, Bari and Peter Dreissigacker scheduled coronavirus tests for seven days after their November 17 flight home. All Vermonters returning from out-of-state trips must complete either a 14-day quarantine or a seven-day quarantine followed by a negative COVID-19 test. But upon their arrival at Burlington International Airport, Bari Dreissigacker said, she was “astonished” to find that no one was greeting arriving passengers at the gate to inform them of the travel restrictions, nor did she notice flyers or signage to that effect. She had even printed the paperwork about the couple’s COVID-19 test scheduled for November 24, expecting that someone in the airport would ask for it. No one did. “There was no information in the airport [about the quarantine]. Zero,” Dreissigacker said. “Isn’t that surprising?” The only sign she noticed that referred to the mandate was a flashing highway sign as they drove off the airport grounds. That sign reads, “If you enter Vermont to stay / self-isolate 14 days.” Dreissigacker, 70, said that the apparent dearth of information wasn’t reflective of her out-of-state travel experiences up to that point. The Stowe couple, who’d flown to the San Francisco Bay Area 10 days earlier to visit their daughter and grandchild, had both received texts from United Airlines in the days leading up to their return flight home, advising them to check Vermont’s travel guidelines. On their connecting flight from Chicago to Burlington, she added, everyone on board wore masks. That said, she was surprised to learn that a young man traveling from Central America was planning to hike Vermont’s Long Trail immediately upon his arrival, which apparently would violate the policy. “How many people have flown into Vermont without [receiving] the mandatory quarantine information?” Dreissigacker asked. But Gene Richards, director of aviation at BTV, pushed back against the suggestion that the airport isn’t adequately conveying information to travelers about the state quarantine requirement. “She’s not accurate at all,” Richards said. “I don’t know how she missed it. Right from day one, every screen at the airport has had [that information] on it. It doesn’t get any more in your face.” As Richards pointed out, there are numerous spots throughout the airport where travelers are advised of the policy. They include six electronic billboards, including three in the baggage claim area, which display state-provided language about the governor’s executive order. Additionally, he noted, before every arriving passenger exits the restricted security area, they must first pass through a thermal scanner, which measures body temperature. If a traveler has a fever, an alarm will sound

Free masks at the airport

and an airport employee will provide them with additional information from the Vermont Department of Health. But when a reporter visited the airport last week, it wasn’t hard to see how a traveler might miss any reference to the state guidelines. Although the electronic billboards display messages about when and how to quarantine, those messages are interspersed with conventional advertising. And because the Dreissigackers didn’t check their luggage, they didn’t pass through the baggage claim area; they walked directly back to their car. Along that route, there is signage on the sliding glass doors about Vermont’s indoor mask mandate, as well as free mask stations posted throughout the concourse. However, signage about the mandatory 14-day isolation period is more difficult to spot. There is none, for example in the restrooms, elevators, pedestrian walkways or parking lot stairwells. Also, the airport’s car rental agents aren’t required to inform travelers of the policy, and three employees interviewed said they normally don’t mention it to customers unless they’re asked. The same was true of cabdrivers waiting for fares. The City of Burlington’s airport information counter, which wasn’t staffed in the evening, offered free masks and other city travel information but no flyers or signage about the governor’s quarantine mandate or how to abide by it. When asked whether the airport plans to add more messaging, Richards explained that BTV had requested copies of COVID-19related handouts that Vermont state troopers distribute to out-of-state travelers whenever they make traffic stops. Richards said those flyers will be available in brochure racks at every gate — assuming, that is, a disembarking passenger chooses to take one. “I’m sorry she missed [the signs], but that’s the first complaint I’ve had about it,” Richards added. “At some point we’re going to overstimulate people with signage, to the point where they don’t look at any of it … Certainly, we can do more, but I don’t know how good it would be.” m






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news The goal of contact tracing is to identify people who have spent more than 15 minutes within six feet of an infected person and ask them to quarantine at home for 14 days. If those people themselves end up testing positive, the process begins anew: Tracers reach out to their close contacts, and so on. Outbreaks can quickly snowball — health experts estimate that each coronavirus patient infects two or three others on average — which is why one of the key indicators of a contact-tracing program’s success is the percentage of patients interviewed within 24 hours of diagnosis. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says successful programs are those that interview at least 65 percent of patients overall. Vermont has easily surpassed that benchmark, posting biweekly 24-hour rates well above 90 percent for months — sometimes going weeks without missing that goal in a single case. The success continued even as positive tests ticked up in early fall: Over a twoweek period ending October 31, contact tracers interviewed 97 percent of the more than 250 new patients within 24 hours. Two weeks later, the success rate had fallen amid a flood of new diagnoses. For the two-week period ending November 14, during which Vermont reported its first-ever triple-digit daily case count, the 24-hour rate dipped to 83 percent. Data for the current period won’t be available until November 27, but the downward trend is expected to continue. Contact tracers always run into some resistance when making inquiries. Some people don’t answer the phone or return voicemails. Others even provide false information. But Daltry does not attribute Vermont’s recent struggles to such behavior. Rather, he blames the “sheer numbers” of new infections. Last week, Vermont’s sevenday average surpassed 100, and one twoday period alone brought nearly 300 cases. By contrast, the state reported about 330 in the months of May and June combined. “We’re not hitting the same benchmarks [because] it is not feasible with the workforce that we have and the number of people being impacted,” he said. Adding to the challenge, tracers need to contact not only infected patients but also the people they may have exposed, who might otherwise be unaware of their own risk of infecting others. Say 300 newly diagnosed people each averaged three close contacts. Even if a third of those overlap one another, that still leaves 600 people to be found and interviewed. 18


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With such a heavy workload, Daltry said, the health department has recently had days when it was unable to assign every new case on the same day it arrived. And each new day brings yet another wave. Health experts have warned for months that states would need to beef up their contact-tracing teams to keep pace with the projected surge in the winter months. But while the state began staffing up earlier this month once its models predicted a surge, nobody anticipated “this trajectory that we’re currently on,” Daltry said.  “I didn’t think it was going to get to this level — that we were going to see these numbers,” Daltry said. “And yet here we are. It’s very daunting.”  State leaders on Tuesday acknowledged that Vermont’s contact tracers have struggled this month. But they said they were confident current staffing levels would be enough to withstand the weeks ahead.


“Can we continue to practice containment at the current levels of virus?” Health Commissioner Levine said. “Our answer is … definitely yes.” The state has nevertheless tried to lessen the burden on its contacttracing team by off-loading some of its responsibilities. The Agency of Education announced earlier this month that school districts were assuming responsibility for reaching out to staff and families should a positive case force an entire classroom to quarantine. The agency explained in a memo that the change would allow state contact tracers to focus on more complex cases while ensuring that the quarantine messages reached people as quickly as possible, since schools have ready means to communicate with families. Some school leaders were frustrated with the decision, saying it imposed yet more work on their already overstretched

employees. But others appreciated having more control over the process. “I know my families. I know their personalities. I know where to call them. I know what they do,” said Jocelyn Bouyea, lead nurse for the Champlain Valley School District, where members of an elementary class were forced to quarantine after a positive case last week. When the health department was handling the process, “You were left wondering if it was done exactly how you would do it,” she said.  The health department has created a two-page template to guide districts on how to best share the bad news. After Bouyea’s district tweaked the message to fit its situation, one of her colleagues made the 30 or so calls to affected families — a process that took about two hours overall, Bouyea said.  “We got a positive Wednesday evening, and all the contacts were pretty much

called by Thursday around noon,” she said. “That’s a pretty good turnaround.” As the state works to make the process more efficient, at least one private company is hoping to pitch in. Richard Whitehead, CEO and president of Burlington-based CSL Software Solutions, said his company is aiming to test an app that would help restaurants keep a log of diners should customers need to be notified of a potential exposure. Diners would simply sign up, plug in their contact information and allow participating restaurants to scan a bar code on their phone.  The restaurant could then send that information to the health department if there were a positive case.

“It’s minimal hassle,” Whitehead said. The service’s website, dinesafevt.co, went live on Tuesday night, and Whitehead is seeking several Burlington restaurants to try it out in the coming weeks. It’s unclear whether the idea would pique state leaders’ interest: So far, Vermont has been more reluctant than other states to embrace the emerging digital technologies aimed at making contact tracing easier. While Vermont uses a web-based, voluntary monitoring tool called Sara Alert to stay in touch with out-of-state arrivals, as well as those with confirmed or suspected infections, it has not joined a growing number of states in embracing proximity-based technology that can detect

nearby phones and notify people if they have spent time near someone who later tested positive for the virus. At least 10 states have enabled their residents to use one such technology from Apple and Google. Few eligible people have signed up, however, and Vermont leaders have said they are not convinced the effort is worth it.  Instead, Vermont will continue contact tracing the old-fashioned way. State leaders have started asking Vermonters to keep a log of their own contacts in case they might need to recite them to a tracer. They are encouraging people to adhere to Scott’s latest restrictions — most notably, a ban on multi-household gatherings. And they are pleading with the public to

answer the phone and cooperate if the health department calls. With more than a decade’s worth of experience in contact tracing, Daltry recognizes that Vermont is facing its greatest challenge so far in this crisis. At the same time, he says he believes that it is not too late for Vermont to right the ship — as long as Vermonters band together. Daltry’s mother lives in an assistedliving facility. She called him the other day and asked, “‘Danny, are we in trouble? Do I have to worry?’” Asked for his response, Daltry laughed and said, “Come on, man. You can’t lie to your mother. I said, ‘Mom, there is still hope. We are in this together, and there is still hope.’” m

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any potential symptoms. As St. Mike’s students, they are all tested weekly for COVID-19, and Keating said that to his knowledge no rescue volunteers have tested positive. Those most at risk from COVID-19 would be next in line for the vaccine. The state has begun working with longterm-care homes on plans to inoculate residents.


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Vermont could receive limited doses of a vaccine for COVID-19 by early December, Health Commissioner Mark Levine said last Friday. It would likely take months longer for the general public to get access to the vaccine, however, and as the virus continues to spread, officials urged Vermonters to keep taking steps to slow transmission. That includes avoiding gatherings with members of other households, practicing social distancing and avoiding nonessential travel. Pfizer, the first company to complete Phase 3 trials for its vaccine candidate, said last Friday that it had submitted its application for an emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration. That announcement came just days after it announced preliminary findings from its trial data showing that its vaccine is 95 percent effective at preventing symptomatic COVID-19 infections. A second vaccine, manufactured by Moderna, may not be far behind. Both companies have started to manufacture their vaccines so they can distribute doses upon receiving FDA approval. It will likely take months longer to produce enough to vaccinate the entire American public. But state officials last Friday said the progress offers hope just eight months after the first case of COVID-19 was discovered in Vermont. “Perhaps the earliest Vermont could see a vaccine on its doorsteps, for a limited number of doses, would be in the range of December 10,” said Levine. The state’s draft distribution plan prioritizes the first doses for health care workers and first responders who are at a high risk of interacting with COVID-19 patients. Though Levine noted that the plan may still change, depending on recommendations from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the state has already begun outreach to determine how many people are in that first-priority group. John Keating, the rescue chief for Saint Michael’s Fire and Rescue, said state officials recently asked for current rosters of students who volunteer in both the fire and rescue services. St. Mike’s Fire and Rescue serves not only the campus but the greater area. “I was shocked,” Keating said of hearing that vaccine doses could arrive in Vermont next month. He was sure squad members would welcome the news. They use personal protective gear when transporting patients, he said. Contact tracers have informed the squad that some of those patients turned out to be COVID-19 positive. In those instances, the volunteers have had to monitor themselves for



BY AND R E A S UO ZZO • andrea@sevendaysvt.com


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Levine has estimated that, if a vaccine were to receive a rapid approval, the state might receive 20,000 doses by the end of the year. That would not be enough to vaccinate everyone in those two highpriority groups, he noted. Kelly Dougherty, deputy commissioner at the Vermont Department of Health, said the state is planning for different scenarios: getting 5,000 doses, 10,000 doses, and more. “We’ve done a lot of number crunching as far as: How many health care workers do we have in different settings?” she said. The state’s COVID-19 Vaccine Implementation Advisory Committee is helping, she said. Once the highest-priority groups were vaccinated, the state would next offer vaccinations to school staff, workers in critical industries who are at risk of exposure, people with underlying conditions that put them at moderate risk of complications, and those in group living situations where an outbreak could spread quickly, such as prisons and homeless shelters. The third-tier priority group includes children, young adults and other workers who may be at increased risk of exposure to COVID-19 through their jobs. And once there is ample supply of the vaccine, the state will make it available to the general public. In each phase, said Dougherty, health officials will use an “equity lens” to make sure the vaccine is reaching populations in minority communities that have health disparities. m Matthew Roy contributed reporting.


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APRIL 28, 1951-SEPTEMBER 28, 2020 PLEASANT VALLEY, N.Y. The great philosopher Rumi said, “When we are dead, seek not our tomb in the earth, but find it in the hearts of men.” For those of us who have shared some part of our lives with him, whether briefly or over the course of many years, Ken Abramson indeed lives on in our hearts as we mourn his untimely passing on September 28, 2020. The beloved son of the late Edward and Selma Abramson and brother of Gary, who survives him, Ken was born on April 28, 1951, in Philadelphia and spent his childhood years living in suburban Glenside, Pa. At the age of 6, he asked his mother to take him to a German expressionist film festival he’d read about in the Philadelphia Inquirer. Though somewhat perplexed by the request and the films, she quickly understood that Ken was no ordinary kid. He was reading fluently before he entered kindergarten, and over time his bedroom began to resemble a library. He took joy in less cerebral aspects of life, as well — playing baseball in the backyard, ping-pong in the basement, and creating hilarious, whimsical radio dramas with his buddies. By age 12, he was the synagogue choir lead singer and developed a talent as a budding raconteur, telling funny and complex stories to his friends. These talents stayed with him throughout his life. When it was time to go to college, Ken first selected New York University film school but soon transferred to Franconia College, a small experimental liberal arts institution housed in what was once a historic hotel in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. There, he fell in with a small circle of friends with whom he maintained close ties throughout his life. By then, his cultural and intellectual pursuits were so eclectic and wide-ranging that they far exceeded the modest constraints of the Franconia curriculum. His dorm room became a combination library, literary salon, listening room, all-night party zone and crash pad. Rather than fulfilling the requirements of being a student, Ken was instead a teacher, introducing friends,

visitors and curiosity seekers to a dizzying array of music, poetry, literature and film. He also distinguished himself as the reigning college ping-pong and trivia champion. Upon leaving Franconia, Ken spent the better part of a year traveling and hitchhiking with friends around Europe. He returned to Pennsylvania and eventually moved into a house in Philadelphia’s storied South Side with some of his Franconia friends. This is where he began his career as a bookseller. Working behind the counter at the Meridian Bookstore on South Street, he continued his role as educator and adviser, introducing his customers to a wide range of literature and poetry. He later served a similar role for music lovers at Third Street Jazz and Rock. Throughout his life, Ken continued to expand the cultural horizons of his loyal customers in bookstores throughout the Northeast. He moved to Vermont in 1980, where he worked for 15 years in the Wit and Wisdom and Chapters Bookstores in South Burlington and Shelburne. He ultimately moved on to book distribution and publishing and retired in 2008. In 2009, Ken was hospitalized for nine months with a serious condition that almost took his life. He was able to pull through but had to deal with the aftermath of this illness until his death. Upon release from the hospital, Ken returned to his home in Pleasant Valley, N.Y. Every day for breakfast, he would walk the long steep hill from his apartment to the Village Restaurant, where he was known and welcomed

as a local character. True to his nature, his apartment was a temple of culture, with books, records and CDs lining bookshelves and teetering precariously in a profusion of randomly placed piles. Indeed, his apartment was better stocked than most bookstores and record shops. Those who visited him can look back on afternoons and evenings sitting on his couch as Ken would sample selections of recordings from every conceivable era, geographical location, musical style and cultural origin. But Ken was not just a collector. His library was also in his head. He read voraciously and developed an encyclopedic knowledge covering a wide range of literature and nonfiction. A truly remarkable and unique person, with sharp wit and intellect, he was also a great conversationalist. When you talked to Ken, you were simultaneously impressed not just by his understanding of the subject matter, but also by the sense that nothing was more important at that moment than what you had to say, and that he truly cared about you and wished you well. Ken was also a talented poet and sang with a clear and beautiful voice. In his humility, he was shy about these talents and only rarely shared them with others. When he was together with his friends, there was always great joy and laughter. He was as humble and kind and hilarious and generous of spirit as he was erudite and articulate. He had wisdom without being a wise guy. He enriched the lives of those who knew him by virtue of his loving nature and enthusiasm for all things cultural. Gentle and without malice or hatred — that’s what those who knew him think when they recall Ken. Ken was deeply loved by his family and friends, and we all felt his love and generosity for as long as he was in our lives. He will live on in our hearts. A celebration of life will be held next summer/fall, when COVID-19 restrictions have improved. Donations in Ken’s memory may be made to PEN America, which protects free expression in the United States and worldwide. For further information, contact erhardm@burlingtontelecom.net.

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Edward Clifford Haggerty MARCH 26, 1933OCTOBER 26, 2020 MIDDLEBURY, VT.

Edward “Ed” Clifford Haggerty died peacefully amid loved ones on October 26, 2020, in Bridgeport, Conn. He was 87 years old and predeceased by his wife of 56 years, Margaret “Marti” Kerr Haggerty. An international public relations specialist and advertising executive, Ed worked on five continents during a 45-year career. Ed was born in Newark, N.J., in 1933 to Anna and Earl C. Haggerty. He attended Seton Hall Preparatory School in South Orange, N.J., and in 2010 was inducted into the Seton Hall Prep Hall of Fame as part of its illustrious football team of 1949. Ed went on to attend the University of Virginia’s Woodrow Wilson School of Foreign Affairs and was a member of the Delta Upsilon fraternity. He later did graduate work at New York University. In 1955, Ed married the love of his life, Marti Kerr. He served in Korea as a company commander in the U.S. Army’s 51st Signal Battalion. Upon returning to civilian life, Ed embarked on his public relations career, spending 18 years with W.R. Grace & Co. in New York City and Baltimore as a director of advertising and PR. After Grace, Ed was head of PR and spokesperson for St. Vincent’s Hospital in Greenwich Village and later became head of U.S. operations for the Swiss-based communications firm Sydney Morrell & Co., where his clients included the Australian State of Victoria. In 1982, Ed established Edward C. Haggerty &

Associates in New York City and Summit, N.J. The firm represented paper, financial, insurance and chemical businesses for more than 20 years. Ed resided in Summit and Sea Girt, N.J., for 33 years, during which time Marti and he raised a family of five. He was active in the Summit community as press director for several mayoral and city council elections. He served as a board member for the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, Family Services, Inc. and the Summit Minibus Development Committee. In his lifetime, Ed was also president of the Chemical Industry Association of New York, a member of various corporate advisory boards, and belonged to the Beacon Hill Club in Summit and Farmington Country Club in Charlottesville, Va. Upon retirement, Ed and Marti built a house in Weybridge, Vt., before moving to a cottage at the Lodge (now the Residence) at Otter Creek in Middlebury. In addition to his wife, Marti, Ed was predeceased by his sister, Marie Haggerty Johnston, and his son-inlaw, William W. Keshishian. He leaves behind a loving family, whom Ed has imbued with his warm spirit and gracious heart, including his children, Richard K. Haggerty of Winooski, Vt.; Gwenne (James) Dawson of Richmond, Va.; Elizabeth (Gregg) Beldock of Charlotte, Vt.; Carol (James) Reardon of Orr’s Island, Maine; and Moira (Billy) Keshishian of Bozeman, Mont.; and Ed’s grandchildren, Kate, Meg, Sarah, Geordie, Amory, Sydney, Liam and Sam. A service of remembrance will be scheduled for a future date yet to be determined.



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Lorraine Elizabeth (Bushey) Johnson

JULY 6, 1930NOVEMBER 8, 2020 SOUTH BURLINGTON, VT. On November 8, 2020, Lorraine Elizabeth (Bushey) Johnson passed away peacefully in her sleep at the McClure Miller Respite House in Colchester, Vt. Her passing brought to a close the remarkable 90-year journey of a woman who, through her quiet acts of kindness, helped to make the world a better place. A devoted wife, a beloved mother and grandmother, and a friend to all who knew her, Lorraine will be forever missed but never forgotten. “Rainy” Bushey came into the world on July 6, 1930, at the Fanny Allen Hospital in Colchester, Vt. Her parents, Perley and Charlotte (St. John) Bushey, soon brought her home to their house on Cherry Street in Milton, and Lorraine flourished in the bustling household, joining her sister, Marg, and her brothers Paul, Ken, Arnie and (later) Phil on countless fun-filled adventures. Even at the height of the Depression, Lorraine never wanted for anything, for her family raised their own pigs and chickens and kept their kitchen shelves well-stocked with the bounty from their garden. Lorraine’s love of gardening took root during these formative years, as did her love of learning. Her inquiring mind and willingness to work hard helped her excel in her studies at Milton High School, and she graduated as valedictorian of the small but proud class of 1947, remaining lifelong friends with many of her classmates and fellow teammates on the MHS basketball team. Marriage and motherhood were the next milestones that Lorraine encountered. Shortly after she began studying political science at the University of Vermont, she met the love of her life, Allen Johnson, while out with friends in downtown Burlington. The two married on January 6, 1950,

and became parents a year later with the birth of their first daughter, Kathryn. That May, Allen and baby Kathy watched with pride as Lorraine graduated from UVM and received her pin from the Phi Beta Kappa Society. Following the birth of their second daughter, Patricia, the Johnsons purchased a house on North Avenue in Burlington, where Lorraine would live for the next 60 years. It wasn’t long before the Johnson household resembled Lorraine’s childhood home: On any given day, one could hear the laughter and play of six children rumbling through the house; the squawk of a radio or the hum of the lathe as Allen tinkered in the basement; and the quiet scratch of a rake and trowel as Lorraine tended to her garden in the backyard. A horticulturalist ahead of her time, Lorraine gardened organically long before the practice became popular in Vermont, keeping her own compost pile, ambushing cutworms at night by flashlight, and lavishing her North Avenue garden and a nearby community garden plot with kelp gathered on family trips to Maine. She encouraged her children to garden and gave them their own plots to tend in the backyard. They (and, later, their children) reciprocated the gesture by helping her reap harvests of raspberries, cucumbers, zucchini and tomatoes, much of which Lorraine gave away to relatives, neighbors and local food shelves. A friendly vegetable-growing competition soon sprang up between her and her brother, Phil, and Lorraine’s children quickly joined in on the fun, exchanging snapshots with

one another of the best fruits of their labor. The well-being of a husband, six children, two gardens, and several cats and rabbits rested on Lorraine’s shoulders, yet she bore this responsibility with a smile and never once complained. As tight as the household finances were, she never refused her children’s request for books when the latest Arrow Book Club flyers came in the mail. As busy as she was, she always made time for her children, listening to their troubles, rejoicing in their triumphs, encouraging them in their studies and kneeling beside them every night to pray with them before bed. In every conversation, no matter the subject, she listened thoughtfully and compassionately, internalizing everything she heard so completely that she could recall previous conversations (sometimes from years before) in impressive detail. In these ways, she made everyone in her life feel important and showed them how important they, their friendship and their happiness were to her. Gardening and meaningful conversations with loved ones were just two of the many things in life that brought Lorraine joy. She was a loyal fan of the New York Yankees and tuned in to John Sterling’s broadcasts whenever she could to cheer on “Mo” and “the Captain.” She always had a book going (usually several) and read across the genres, deriving as much pleasure from reading the latest Grisham thriller as she did from rereading Dr. Seuss’ Sneetches. Her “love” of lawn flamingos was well-known among her relatives, and a flamingo in some shape or form never failed to make an appearance at her birthdays. More than anything, though, Lorraine

enjoyed spending time with her family, whose birthdays she never forgot; whose academic, religious and musical functions she never failed to attend; and whose day-to-day lives were always of interest to her. Her family will never forget that final gathering at Allen Harbor in March, when they shared a meal with Lorraine and set up the slide projector to show her old family photographs of her raising her kids, tending to her gardens, going on family vacations and spending her retirement years with her husband. Lorraine’s reactions to these photographs — her smiles, her laughter, her comments about every picture that passed across the screen — showed how fondly she recalled those moments and how close she held those happy, fun-filled memories to her heart. Lorraine was predeceased by her parents, Perley and Charlotte Bushey; her sister, Marguerite Lyons; her brothers Paul, Kenneth and Arnold Bushey; and her husband, Allen Johnson. She is survived by her brother Philip Bushey and his wife, Aline; her sister-in-law, Nanette Bushey; her three daughters and their spouses, Kathryn and Gordon Cooper, Patricia and Robert Bryant, and Mary and Michael Reardon; her three sons and their spouses, Thomas Johnson and Susan Cooper, Jeffrey and Deborah Johnson, and Jonathan and Meredith Johnson; her grandchildren, Kelly, Laura, Jeremy, Molly, Elliott, Emily, Hannah, Chris, Diana, Jonny, Guthrie, Fiona, Wren and Aidan; her greatgrandchildren, Jaron, Emily, Abigail, Zachary, Charlie, Jackson, Mackenzie, Grace, Ruth, Reagan, Josh, Lydia and Eleanor; one great-greatgrandson, Brelin; and many nieces, nephews and cousins. Funeral arrangements for Lorraine have been handled by Boucher and Pritchard Funeral Home. Memorial services will be held at a later point in time. The family wishes to thank Dr. Karen Sokol, the staff at Allen Harbor and the McClure Miller Respite House for the wonderful care they provided Lorraine during the final years of her life.

Betsy J.G. Van Liew JUNE 13, 1940-NOVEMBER 3, 2020 BURLINGTON, VT.

Betsy J.G. Van Liew of Burlington, Vt., died peacefully surrounded by her daughters on November 3, 2020, following a short illness. Betsy was born on June 13, 1940, in New Brunswick, N.J., to Willis E. Van Liew and Hazel J. Petty Van Liew. She grew up in East Brunswick next to the family apple orchard and graduated from New Brunswick High School in 1958. She earned an associate of arts degree from Vermont College in 1960. She worked as a nursery school teacher and daycare provider and was a stay-at-home mother when her daughters were young. Also known as Oma, she loved all children and pets and was always excited to give her grandchildren and grand-dogs toys whenever she had the opportunity. Oma was happiest when she could sit on the floor with a child in her lap to play games and make-believe. She was also a collector of anything eclectic or antique, and yard-saleing was one of her favorite hobbies. In her home, she artfully displayed her many baskets, footstools, dolls, ornate picture frames, wooden Fischer Price people, Dutch shoes and glass figurines. She especially loved turtle decorations and searching for blue sea glass. After college, she lived in Charleston, S.C.; Boston, Mass.; Taunton, Mass.; and then settled in Scituate, Mass., for 35 years. She enjoyed the excitement of ocean storms and listening to crashing waves in the distance. After retirement, she moved to Colchester, Vt., to be near her granddaughters. She would laugh about how her nose would freeze like it did many years before, when she was in college. Wherever she lived, she identified herself as a “Jersey girl,” and her Jersey accent was always prominent. She loved her “coooffee” and “dooogs.” So it is fitting that she will be buried with her parents back in New Jersey. She is survived by her daughters, Grace Kyle of Montpelier, Vt., and Jacci Winchester and her husband, Mark Winchester, of Colchester, Vt. She also leaves her granddaughters, Alyse Winchester and her fiancé, Jordan Staley, of Denver, Colo.; and Kristen Winchester, Leanne Winchester and Meili Winchester, all of Colchester, Vt. Other survivors include her brother, Dale Van Liew, and his wife, Sue Van Liew, of Clayton, N.Y.; nieces and nephews; former husband Peter Kyle of Riverdale, N.Y.; the Sweeney family; many dear friends; and two parakeets. She was predeceased by her former husband Robert Sweeney of Cohasset, Mass. After the pandemic is over, a service will be held at Old Tennent Churchyard in Tennent, N.J. Those who wish may make memorial contributions to the National Save the Sea Turtle Foundation at savetheseaturtle.org. Arrangements are in the care of the Cremation Society of Chittenden County, a division of the Ready Funeral Home, 261 Shelburne Rd., in Burlington. Please visit cremationsocietycc.com to place online condolences. SEVEN DAYS NOVEMBER 25-DECEMBER 2, 2020


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First to Market Holiday art and craft shows transition for the pandemic era B Y M ARG A RET G RAYSON • margaret@sevendaysvt.com

how people react to it. “That really builds a connection [between] you and your viewer,” she said. But holiday markets, like everything else, are going to look different this year. It’s Laxar’s first year directing the





and she decided back in April that the event, which typically takes over all three floors of Burlington City Hall, would be virtual. That gave her time to work with artists to develop a virtual storefront, a site that showcases more than 80 local artists and provides links to their websites, Etsy pages or email addresses for purchasing. “In our market, [for] a lot of these women makers and artists, this is their biggest show,” Laxar said. “During the holidays, that’s where they make the Goat by Nikki Laxar bulk of their income for the year, and that’s what allows or artists and craftspeople, holithem to buy supplies, rent day markets are a huge source their spaces and continue to support of income and involve a lot of themselves.” work. “We call it ‘the schlep,’” While some artists already have a said visual artist NIKKI LAXAR, describing thriving online sales system, others the process of waking up early, loading might barely use Facebook. Laxar wanted and unloading her wares, setting up a everyone to be able to join the virtual booth, and spending hours tending it. festival, even if it meant simply listing Add to that the actual creation of the contact info. work and the mental calculus of decid“For this particular showcase, I wanted ing how much to make, and the season is to offer many possibilities for exposure, no typically pretty exhausting. But it brings matter what your online presence was,” a lot of joy, too. she said. The site will offer special promo“It’s a juggle, but it’s an exciting juggle,” tions through December 18. Laxar said. She described shows and In central Vermont, MEG SCHULTZ has markets as a chance to have in-depth had to make similar calculations for the conversations about her work and find out MORETOWN ARTISANS’ SALE, which takes place

F 26


spend comes back to your community,” she said. Like Laxar, Schultz chose to build a directory that links to separate sales websites or contact forms. She pointed out that while sites such as Etsy make it easy for artists and makers to sell their products, it’s not so simple for consumers to search for Vermont-made items. Etsy does have that option, but it’s buried in the search filters. When Schultz Earrings by Make More Whimsy surveyed the local community about COURTESY OF THE WOMEN’S FESTIVAL OF CRAFTS whether they’d be interested in an online sale, she found that people were excited about the prospect. “The overwhelming problem people seemed to have [was], they just didn’t know what was available,” she said. ME G S C H ULTZ In that way, Schultz thinks the web directory she’s built annually in the Moretown Elementary will be relevant even after the holiday School gym and features live music and rush is over, and she plans to keep it up pictures with Santa. “It’s a long-running indefinitely. show, and I would also argue that we Some makers have resisted the urge have a huge [amount of ] repeat busi- to lean into social media, even during ness,” said Schultz, the event coordina- the pandemic era. BEKI AUCLAIR makes and tor. “It’s the kind of thing you circle on sells fermented foods through her busiyour calendar.” ness, VERMONT FERMENTATION ADVENTURES. Schultz runs an event-planning She has a Facebook page that she rarely business, but she said that creating a updates and a website that’s been broken virtual sale was “daunting.” But she was for a while. Her aversion to the online determined. “The stuff we have locally is world is due to her belief that the large made by your neighbors, and it’s impor- companies running social media have tant to make sure that the money you done more harm than good in American






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society, especially since the 2016 presidential election. “I’ve been waiting for the companies, or the owners of these platforms, to have the safety and the well-being of their users at the heart of their business,” Auclair said. She aims to be socially responsible in all aspects of her work and “to engage with a business that I think can be so harmful to its users really seems to run right smack into the face of that.” But even Auclair has found a happy medium in the pandemic era. To accept preorders at this summer’s WAITSFIELD FARMERS MARKET , she made a simple Google form for customers, and she plans to use it again to participate in the Moretown sale. Some in-person sales are still taking place, albeit with restrictions. BURLINGTON CITY ARTS is holding its HOLIDAY ARTIST MARKET outdoors in City Hall Park on December 5 and 6. And in Middlebury, KELLY HICKEY has organized socially distanced pop-up events through the summer and hopes to continue them indoors, if possible. Hickey is a textile artist who runs Bundle, a grant-funded “creative-led revitalization” to fill empty

spaces in downtown Middlebury during the rail and bridge construction. “We had a lot of things on our schedule that had to be canceled,” Hickey said. But she was able to host small groups of artists in sidewalk markets, on patios and in parks. “For the artists that I work with, it’s been difficult to sell online, because online is so flooded with noise,” Hickey said. “Any opportunity that they can get to be able to sell … they want to come and they still want to connect with their customers one-on-one.” Hickey’s business, EDIE & GLO, has had surprising success during the pandemic. She attributes this to the fact that she makes comfortable, colorful clothes that appeal to the work-from-home set. Still, the holiday season is pivotal. “I think half my sales happen between October and the end of December,” Hickey said. “And I think that’s pretty typical for most of us.” m

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11/23/20 10:20 AM


arts news

Colin Thompson (left) and Andrew Briggs in June 2001

Good Trip

Vermont-made film Light Years has a startlingly real performance at its center


B Y JOR D AN A D AMS • jordan@sevendaysvt.com


irector COLIN THOMPSON’s third feature film, Light Years, did not turn out as planned. The Shelburne-based filmmaker originally set out to shoot a straightforward buddy comedy based on his experiences growing up in Vermont in the late ’90s. Most importantly, Thompson was adamant that he would not appear in the picture. He’d had enough on-screen time after starring in his previous features, 2016 relationship dramedy It’s Us and 2014 coming-of-age story Loser’s Crown. But fate had other plans. After a number of high-profile actors dropped out of the project and financing woes took their toll, Thompson, 37, figured out a way to rework the story under the new constraints: He would play almost all of the parts himself. It’s not as weird as it sounds. In the revised script, Thompson plays a character — essentially himself — who magically visits his past via the power of drugs. Through the haze of psilocybin mushrooms, he relives a night of partying and self-discovery spent with his best friend, Briggs, portrayed by up-and-coming actor Russell Posner. As the story and the trip progress, Thompson literally starts seeing himself in the face of everyone he encounters, except Briggs. “I wanted the story to be about best friends at that age … a love story between two heterosexual teenage dudes, [with] 28

nobody else in the world,” Thompson said during a recent video chat with Posner and Seven Days. Briggs is based on Thompson’s real-life best friend, Andrew Briggs, who died of a drug overdose in 2001. Though Posner’s only exposure to Briggs was through photographs and stories of people who knew him, the 23-year-old actor delivered a stunningly accurate and detailed portrayal. I know this because — full disclosure — I was in Briggs’ homeroom at Champlain Valley Union High School. (Twist! You’re reading a first-person piece.) I wasn’t exactly friends with Briggs in high school, or with Thompson, for that matter. Social stratification meant that my theater friends and I were probably partying in the next field over from the Thompson-Briggs crew. Since I was insecure outside my thespian bubble, I spent a lot of time quietly observing the people around me. And spending about 20 minutes a day with Briggs for four years of high school gave me ample time for observation. Briggs died a few months after graduation. Though I casually reflected on him over the decades, I didn’t think much about his idiosyncracies, such as his exaggerated phrasing and grandiose lexicon. But in 2019, as I marveled at Posner’s performance during the local premiere of Light Years, the memories came flooding


back. In every wide-eyed, shit-eating grin, every twitch, every utterance of the phrase “So sick,” I saw pure truth. It was astonishing.



“As soon as I read the material, I was like, ‘I need to be this kid,’” Posner said. Thompson knew as soon as he watched Posner’s audition tape that he was the one. He said it was crucial to get some extra time with the actor in Vermont before the rest of the cast and crew assembled for shooting, which took place entirely in the state. He especially wanted Posner to soak up some memories from Thompson’s dad, LARRY, who is played in the film by Vermont resident RYAN MILLER of indie-rock band Guster. “We developed our own kind of language,” Thompson said. “It was a good excuse to act like a teenager again.” And what better way for two adult actors to get to know each other, especially ones who are about to play drugged-out teenagers, than to do some drugs? Before the start of shooting, Thompson and Posner munched a few caps and headed out for a hike. “We hardly spoke for two hours,” Thompson said. “I abandoned all of my

reservations and insecurities. I’m sounding cheesy, but we got each other’s vibration that day.” When Posner first read the Light Years script, he didn’t know that the Briggs character was based on a real person, let alone one who never made it to adulthood. “There were definitely a couple times — especially when I met [Briggs’] mom — I was like, ‘OK, lay low and don’t insult any part of his being,’” Posner said. “I trusted that [Thompson] wasn’t going to let me fuck it up.” Part of that assuredness came from the intensity of Thompson’s direction. “You know you have Colin’s trust when he’s kicking the shit out of you,” Posner said. Though he hasn’t been in the biz long, the actor has worked with heavy-hitting directors (ahem, M. Night Shyamalan) and appeared on high-profile TV shows such as “The Deuce” and “The Politician.” He noted a drastic difference between Thompson’s directorial style and that of some of the other directors with whom he’s worked. “He’s not gonna be like, ‘Maybe try it this way,’” Posner said in a mock-pretentious tone. “[Thompson’s style] is very honest, and I really appreciated it.” Briggs’ mother, Joan, who still lives in the area, moved out of her condo for three days so the crew could shoot a few crucial scenes there. Later, she attended the local premiere. “I really went into the premiere pretty cold,” she said by phone. “But I trust Colin implicitly.” I can’t imagine the strange, overwhelming feelings she must have had that night. Joan Briggs ended up not only loving the film, she said, but also approving of Posner’s version of her son. “I thought he was very good,” she said. “He is an amazing actor.” More than a vehicle to conjure Briggs, Thompson’s script revived the real-life pair’s “je ne sais quoi,” as Joan put it. “What it made me think of were all the times Colin came over to retrieve Andrew, and me trying to make Colin walk around and look at my plants,” she reminisced. “Andrew would be going, ‘Let’s bounce, let’s go.’ It was just — it was Colin and Andrew. What can I say?” While the film reveals Posner’s and Thompson’s talents as actor and director, respectively, I found myself thinking in more metaphysical terms after watching the premiere. If Thompson can perfectly relay Briggs’ essence to someone who’s never even seen a video of him, then, in a way, Briggs isn’t dead. He lives inside Thompson and the other people who loved him. Now I’m the one sounding cheesy. 

INFO Light Years is available for digital rental and purchase on Amazon Prime Video and iTunes.




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Words in the Marrow Book review: Field Music, Alexandria Hall B Y B E NJA M I N AL ESHIRE




ight out of the gate, Alexandria Hall’s astonishing debut Field Music, winner of the $10,000 National Poetry Series, announces itself as a whole new kind of Vermont poetry. “Dad says he can sing like a Kawasaki. He says / he’s got some good idears,” Hall’s narrator tells us in the title poem. A few lines later: “I know about sex. It’s a not a cardinal / flying into the wrong window.” The poem ends: “Dad hit / Grandpa till the state troopers strobed / the kitchen, staining my sweater. Grandma says / creek like crick and I wait for the violins. // If you keep kicking somebody, music / will come out eventually.” Hall’s song is an unflinch- Alexandria Hall ing and exquisitely lyrical depiction of growing up in working-class, rural Vermont. Absent are the pastoral clichés that have calcified over the past half-century, the flatlander gaze, the cardinal bearing a pat metaphor in its beak. Instead, Hall shows us a contemporary Vermont that’s instantly recognizable to those who’ve grown up here: going muddin’, virginity lost in cornfields, the kick of a .22, ticks, fertilizer runoff, and spitting dip. These images come alive in part because of Hall’s deft code-switching between poetic diction and rural Vermont syntax. “On Beauty,” a prose poem, begins: “He run out of propane and the cold licked the trailer like a dog with a hurt paw. Pa, my brother would have called him, if I’d had a brother, if I’d a been him, had he been at all.” Later on, this same voice splices Rainer Maria Rilke quotes with pop-music lyrics, all while flitting in and out of her grandmother’s idiom and her own. Hall uses startlingly fresh language to convey a complex range of emotions that travel far beyond the borders of a small town. Illnesses and accidents haunt the book, as do yearning, vulnerability and self-discovery. At one point the narrator admits, “I left home like a tick / leaves the tall grass”; several poems travel to Spain, Peru, Germany, and Brooklyn.


DEPICTION OF GROWING UP IN WORKING-CLASS, RURAL VERMONT. In “Travel Narrative” Hall writes, “Remember I wanted to go home, / which was a shadow, so I didn’t.” This narrator constantly circles back, searching for more precise means of expression. Often it is cryptic, but gorgeously so: “There was too much moon over the night in Middlebury / so I put a man’s face in front of it, and then I loved / that man.” Sometimes Hall’s search manifests in creating whole new forms, as in “Practice Test for Insatiable Loneliness” (one of several superbly original titles, along with “I Contain Myself Needfully” and “Something Important Put Clumsily Away”). Written in the form of an SAT exam, it begins:



1. Absence a) makes the heart grow in vines up the latticework. b) makes dinner and leaves the dishes. c) makes change like the man at the laundromat, carefully on the wooden counter. d) makes love cruelly. Though never heavy-handed, certain poems in Field Music are acutely aware of class: “I used to hear it as, making ends meat.” Halfway through the book, Hall’s narrator says, “At the lake house I was strange, surrounded / by nice things, trying on fancy clothes or posing / nude before the grand bay windows.” When she says, “Home is where the mail goes,” it means something very different from the problems of owning two or three houses. These moments of class perspective heighten everything that surrounds them, adding an element of authenticity that’s refreshingly free of masculine asceticism. Hall grew up in Addison County. A first-generation college student, she studied with Major Jackson at the University of Vermont. Music scene cognoscenti will likely remember her not as a poet but as “Burlington’s queen of woozy soul,” as this paper put it in a 2010 feature, performing her original electronic music as tooth ache. and later as Beth Head. Father/Daughter Records released a 7-inch vinyl of her music, and Hall even filmed a music video at the legendary

Shenanigans bowling alley/strip club in White River Junction. For now, literature seems to be winning out in vying for Hall’s creative energy. After UVM, she won a lucrative Beinecke Scholarship to attend New York University’s master’s program in poetry. Currently, she’s pursuing a PhD in creative writing and literature at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. In Hall’s closing piece, “People Fall All the Time,” the strands of pain and intimacy that weave throughout the book are braided together, transmitting a vernacular music. The final stanza ends, “He said Manual labor. He said The fall / as something you can take. He suffered / a break in a lonely way. Lo hello high hay, / the words in the marrow, the sow and the mare, Oh— / what stays are the song and the crash / of the tractor, the trash compactor, the machines / full of love and the fields full of breaking, / the fields where the light slips out.” In Field Music, a meteoric young writer shrugs off decades of stale narrative tradition and subject matter. In its place come dazzling lyricism and innovation, and a glimpse of Vermont that has long deserved to have its story told in its own voice. 

MY MOTHER THE ASTRONOMER My mother the astronomer is sick. They’ve sifted through the test results and found nothing. She’s seen the charts and diagrams, the judgment on the doctor’s face, when tired, desperate, she maintains: In the beginning there was so much pain. A drooping planet rolled over in the night. It was my mother the astronomer, who dreamed of pushing a word, a wave, through the thickest layers of darkness, who cast me like a fragment, just a rock, before the whole Earth. I rise and glide into the silent, black water with my pants rolled to my knees, and I pan and I pan for her impossible sign.

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Did St. Albans Unwittingly Host an X-Rated Movie Shoot in the 1970s?



intelligence,” Presner said. “To this day, I have no idea who they were, but they were certainly a presence.” One possible explanation: In 1970, Bellevue Hill, about three miles from the courthouse, was home to three radar domes, or radomes, that were part of the U.S. military’s advance warning system for detecting inbound Soviet bombers. Dozens of U.S. Air Force personnel were stationed there. Never mind that the movie shoot, with its cast and crew of about 75, already had been cleared with city officials, Presner said. The newcomers temporarily stopped the filming, threatening to cost the filmmakers thousands. “We were bringing in a bunch of money. Why would they be after us?” he asked. Presner later speculated that the intervention was related to the movie release earlier that year of M*A*S*H, Robert Altman’s antiestablishment black comedy that was ostensibly about the Korean War but actually a commentary on U.S. military involvement in Vietnam. “They figured, ‘Canadians? Québec? They’re out to disgrace America!’” Presner said of the G-men. “It was OK if Americans dissed America. But you couldn’t have Canadians dissing America.” The delay was brief, however, and the shooting wrapped two days later. Looking back, Presner insisted that the crew never intended to hoodwink the locals. “We weren’t hiding anything,” he said. “We were making a movie called Loving and Laughing. How could they not know?” Evidently, they didn’t. In a September 25, 2000, Burlington Free Press story about the 30th anniversary of the filming of Loving and Laughing, which screened that year at the St. Albans Drive-In, former mayor Mervin “Ken” Kaye recalled attending the 1971 premiere. He, his wife and other Vermont dignitaries had been guests of honor in a motorcycleescorted parade down Montréal’s St. Catherine Street. Only after their driver translated the French title did they realize what kind of movie they were about to see. Kaye told Free Press reporter Erica Jacobson that, as he watched the limo scene on-screen, “I couldn’t control myself any longer, and I just burst out laughing. Gee whiz! If all of those poor ladies only knew what was going on in the back seat of that car.” Kaye died in 2018. But for years he wore his media nickname proudly: “the X-rated mayor.” If only all American politicians had such a healthy sense of humor. m COURTESY OF CINÉPIX PRODUCTIONS

ome stories seem too good to be 1971 movie poster for true. This one involves naked Loving and Laughing hippies, a yellow Ferrari, intimidating G-men and the 1970 Bellows Free Academy St. Albans marching band. The fact that all these elements featured in a film in a cinematic genre known as “maple syrup porn” makes it even sweeter. A brief post on the trivia website onlyin yourstate.com describes an X-rated movie that was filmed in St. Albans in the ’70s. It alleges that city officials weren’t aware of the movie’s bawdy content until they attended its Montréal premiere. Mon Dieu! Archival digging unearthed the truth behind this titillating tidbit: In the 1970s, the Canadian B-movie company Cinépix Productions earned a reputation for pushing the envelope on sex and nudity in Québec cinema by releasing playful, Russ Meyeresque sex romps. Variety dubbed them “maple syrup porn.” In 1971, Cinépix released a 96-minute English-language flesh farce called Loving and Laughing. Directed by John Sone, the movie was later distributed under alternate titles, including The Importance of Being Sexy, Hippie Girls (in the UK) and Getting High (a recut U.S. version). The promotional poster declared it “the sexiest, funniest, wildest, bawdiest, happiest, hottest, and most outrageous comedy in the country today!” Did the Canadian filmmakers inform the locals, some 60 of whom were hired as extras, that they’d appear in a porn flick? Seven Days tracked down someone intimately familiar with the production: Bob Presner, a longtime film producer and former president of Film Finances Canada, which bankrolls many Canadian television and movie productions. Now 76, Presner has hundreds of film credits to his name. He scored his first in September 1970, when, just one year out of college, he was hired as the location manager on Loving and Laughing. In September 1970, a Cinépix crew spent three days filmIn a phone interview from Toronto, Presner described ing in St. Albans. One notable scene was shot outside the the movie, with tongue somewhat in cheek, as “a fine Franklin County Courthouse, which doubled as city hall. It piece of motion picture making. It wasn’t really porn. If involved a stretch limousine containing the American vice anything, it was soft-core,” he clarified. “On HBO you’re president, escorted by army jeeps and military police. Back in the studio, Presner explained, filmmakers going to see more.” Loving and Laughing — which, unfortunately, isn’t avail- shot the scene inside the limo, which features the veep able for streaming — is essentially a skin-flick version of getting busy with a lady friend. In the exterior shot, he Mark Twain’s classic The Prince and the Pauper. In it, a high- steps out of the limo, whereupon city officials greet him falutin Railroad City rich kid swaps identities with a hippie with applause and members of the BFA marching band play a John Philip Sousa march. Casanova in a commune on Québec’s Gaspé Peninsula. Presner explained that the movie’s French title, Y’a The production attracted some unwanted attention Plus de Trou à Percer, is a double entendre. It can translate that day, Presner said. The crew’s use of military vehicles, as “There’s no more hole in the Percé Rock,” a reference actors in army uniforms and, oddly, the yellow Ferrari to the massive natural limestone arch in the Gulf of St. with Québec plates set off someone’s alarm bells. Lawrence. But francophones will recognize its raunchier “Some people showed up. I call them ‘people’ because reference: “There are no more holes to drill.” I can’t tell you whether they were CIA or FBI or army

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grow into Baker’s million-dollar idea. The company now has five retail stores and about 40 employees. Baker and his wife, Linda, co-own the business. “All it takes to be successful is working 90 hours a week for 30 years,” he said with a laugh during an interview at Vermont Flannel’s store in East Barre. Baker’s business card identifies him as the CIO — chief idea originator. He brings a sense of humor to his work of selling thick, super-soft clothing in classic plaid patterns, though he’s switched from irreverent sayings to earnest marketing mottoes. For the 2020 holiday season, Baker came up with “Give Vermont Flannel Hugs.” It’s well suited to a nation craving consolation and calm during a pandemic. “At this time of COVID,” he said, “there’s nothing more important than to feel comfortable, to be cozy when people have to work from home, for them to get a feeling of cuddling up in Vermont Flannel.” If customers have that comfort in mind for holiday gifts, they may want to hurry. Facing a volatile economy, Baker cut production earlier this year and has yet to ramp it back up to normal levels. He was worried about ending up with inventory he couldn’t sell. “The problem with this is, we are going to run out of product,” Baker said. “Without knowing what was going to happen, we couldn’t gamble. We weren’t really into making a lot of our regular product line.” That means some of Vermont Flannel’s vibrant plaid color options won’t be

available in its popular stadium blankets, lounge pants or classic button-down shirts. “We should have some of everything,” Baker said. “It’s just that we may not have as many of the choices we normally would have after Thanksgiving.” Shoppers shouldn’t wait until the last minute to send their gifts, either, Baker cautioned. As they implement coronavirusrelated safety measures, shipping companies have cut staff, and delivery times are “extraordinarily longer,” he said. “We’ve heard horror stories of products being kind of basically lost in distribution centers for weeks.” Baker is promoting Vermont Flannel gift cards for convenience and guaranteed arrival. “We can email them worldwide in seconds,” he said. “We’re faster than Santa.” Baker made his first T-shirts for the 1976 bicentennial celebration of the American Revolution in Boston. He and his wife founded Ad Art America to focus on wholesale textile screen-printing and marketing, mostly for the ski industry and other corporate customers. One of Baker’s slope-related favorites read “No guts, no glory. No falls, no balls.” The Bakers’ increasingly frequent sales trips to Vermont, where they squeezed in a little skiing, eventually inspired them to make the Green Mountain State their home. In 1986, the couple set up their business in a historic building on Mill Street in East Barre — now Vermont Flannel’s headquarters. Baker takes credit for inventing the flannel lounge pant. Early in the business’

history, he convinced L.L.Bean — which rarely sold clothing not bearing its own label — to take on his flannel line. Within a year, Vermont Flannel expanded from three employees to 63. “We did big, giant orders for six months at L.L.Bean,” until the company began making its own versions, he said. In the mid-1990s, China expanded its role in worldwide manufacturing. The country’s cheap labor enabled its factories to make American products for half the price. Baker acknowledged that the competition nearly drove Vermont Flannel out of business. In response, the Bakers decided to open their own direct-to-consumer retail stores and concentrate on the domestic market. At one point, Vermont Flannel had nine stores, including two in New Hampshire. Now it operates the five in Vermont: East Barre, Woodstock, Burlington, Ferrisburgh and Johnson. Vermont Flannel closed its stores for almost four months this year during the state’s emergency shutdown to stem the spread of the coronavirus. Overall, company sales are down about 20 percent from the prior year, Baker said. Luckily, the company received a loan through the federal Paycheck Protection Program. Most of Vermont Flannel’s sales take place between August and Christmas, however. And online sales this fall have already surpassed those of fall 2019, Baker noted. Until about five years ago, the company didn’t do much e-commerce, opting to stay out of the fray of cheap, Chinese-made flannels available online. “It was going to be hard to compete,” Baker said. “Now there’s a real strong resurgence in buying quality, made-in-America products.” Vermont Flannel does most of its manufacturing in Johnson, with a bit in East Barre. The product line stays relatively static, though a new plaid color scheme usually comes out for the holiday season. This year, the company added face masks, made not from flannel but from another all-cotton fabric. The retail outlets carry a few other Vermont-made products, such as spirits from local distilleries and maple syrup. But the focus is on flannel everything: shirts, hoodies, blankets, backpacks, lanyard key chains, caps, robes, shorts, scarves. They even sell a flannel thong, or Vong, described cheekily as “Vermont’s Secret.” Baker may still have a bit of that T-shirt attitude. m

The rate’s great. (But please don’t carry a balance on this credit card.)

0000 0000 0000 0000 0000 VALID THRU


It hasn’t been an easy year. Paychecks dried up. Businesses

struggled. The pandemic has affected us all and created an uncertain future for many. And now that the holidays are here, it may be tempting to leverage your credit and say good-bye to 2020 with some serotonin-boosting retail therapy. But before you do, please take this to heart: If ever there was a time to embrace the spirit of the season and live within your means, it’s now. If you routinely pay off your credit card balance each month, this message probably isn’t for you. You’ve mastered the use of your card as a money management tool, and cash in your rewards regularly for extra value. You might also be the person who only uses a credit card for emergencies, or to carefully build a positive credit history. If so, you enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have access to credit when you need it, without the expense of snowballing interest. But if you find yourself reaching for your credit card for holiday gift-giving because your budget is already tight, please be cautious. Although credit cards are an important piece of our product offerings, your financial well-being is always our greater goal. 2020 has been a difficult year for many. Let’s start off 2021 on the right foot, and with a commitment to measure our self-value through what we do for others instead of what can be purchased from a store.

Happy holidays, from all of us at NorthCountry

Contact: shapiro@sevendaysvt.com

INFO Vermont Flannel, 128 Mill St., East Barre, 476-5226, vermontflannel.com.

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11/23/20 9:55 AM

P R O D U C E D B Y 7 D B R A N D S T U D I O — P A I D F O R B Y P O M E R L E A U R E A L E S TAT E


he rise in COVID-19 case numbers over the past few weeks isn’t the only disturbing pandemic-related trend. Here’s another: Record numbers of Vermonters are seeking help from food shelves, buying cheaper, less nutritious food or skipping meals to stretch their budgets.

Vermont Foodbank distribution in Winooski



IN 2020

Preparing food for distribution



Survey results released Monday number only captures calls through from researchers at the University the end of October. of Vermont detailed this rise in food Both Sayles and Bridges pointed out insecurity. It found that 30 percent that this isn’t a scarcity issue — there’s of respondents were food insecure plenty of food on grocery store between March and September shelves. The problem is that people of 2020. That’s up from one in 10 can’t afford to buy it. The government pre-pandemic. program best designed to address John Sayles, CEO of the Vermont this need — 3Squares VT, aka food Foodbank — the state’s largest hunger- stamps — provides funds to purchase relief organization — confirms this groceries, and it’s a huge help to trend. “We’ve seen a huge increase in families facing challenges with food people needing some kind of help to access. But it hasn’t been adequately get by,” he said. expanded by Congress to address the The Foodbank distributes nutriincreased need. As a result, said Sayles, tious food through a vast network of “We’re doing the most we can with the 300 community partners, from food resources that are available.” shelves to hospitals, senior centers to after-school programs, all across ON THE FRONT LINES the state. It has also distributed part of Here’s what that looked like at the its $4.7 million in federal CARES Act Foodbank’s largest distribution site, funding to many of them. Burlington’s food access center Sayles reported that these “frontline Feeding Chittenden, a week before partners” are reporting Thanksgiving: A line of increased demand for masked people standing services, often from six feet apart wrapped GET FOOD people who haven’t around the building at Find out more sought help before. 228 North Winooski about accessing Many recipients have Avenue. assistance at jobs that don’t pay During a normal year, vtfoodbank.org or enough, he said. Others these people would hungerfreevt.org, are unemployed or have walked inside to or call 2-1-1. under-employed, have select grocery items from the shelves, but the had their wages cut, doors were locked. They are homebound and wore winter coats and hats to stay at greater risk because of the virus, or warm as they waited for a turn to talk have been forced to quit their jobs to with the staff inside via intercom. care for their kids. On the other side of the wall, a busy Sayles warned that this spike in team of masked staff and volunteers need has serious consequences for filled Chiquita banana boxes with all Vermonters. People who aren’t perishables — a carton of eggs, a loaf getting enough to eat aren’t thinking of bread, a bag of onions, a bunch of about excelling at their job or on their bananas — then lined them up on a schoolwork, he said. “They’re thinking table for distribution. about how they’re going to feed their “Can I have your birthday?” Bob family.” Petterson asked a man over the Sayles isn’t the only one sounding intercom. “Have you ever been here the alarm. Jesse Bridges, CEO of the before?” United Way of Northwest Vermont, Petterson recorded the man’s info echoes his concerns. All of Vermont’s on his computer and lifted one of United Way organizations fund and support Vermont 2-1-1, the state’s help the boxes to the counter behind the window before pushing it through. line. Bridges said food-assistanceThen Petterson turned around, related requests are up 487 percent grabbed a turkey and a bulging bag of this year over last — and that 2020


Gleaning locally grown kale to distribute

14.3 million pounds:


That’s the total weight of food distributed by the Vermont Foodbank between March and September 2020 — more than double the 6.7 million pounds distributed during the same period last year.

30% That’s roughly the number of Vermonters who have experienced food insecurity since March — nearly triple 2018 levels. canned goods, and passed those through, as well. “All set!” he said. “Happy holidays!” The tall, thin volunteer wore a T-shirt showing a drawing of an atom and the words “Stay Positive.” That can be difficult to do right now. Grocery distribution coordinator Edi Abeneto said that, in the summer and fall, Feeding Chittendent had been distributing roughly 100 to 120 of these boxes a week. Now? “350,” he said. Feeding Chittenden director Rob Meehan pointed out that there’s always a bit of a spike in need during November as it gets darker and colder. “It’s just a hard time for people,” he said. “And you add in children, and hunger, and now add in a pandemic. Wow.”

WINTER IS COMING The situation could actually worsen on December 31, when crucial federal coronavirus relief programs are scheduled to end. Despite hopeful reports of coming vaccines, Sayles worries that it could be another year or two before his organization returns to pre-pandemic demand. “I don’t see this slowing down,” Sayles said. And, as with past downturns, he added, “the people who are most vulnerable are the first to lose their jobs and the last ones to get them back.” He urged Vermonters who want to help to contribute to the Foodbank or to its community partners. Bridges added that flexible philanthropic dollars are so important to

meet the evolving need. In other words, the fewer strings attached to the funding, the better. It seems that Vermonters are hearing the call. The UVM survey also found that 40 percent of respondents had delivered food to someone in their community during the pandemic. Sayles noted that his organization has already received a “tremendous” number of contributions since March. “The support has been overwhelming and humbling,” Sayles said.  THIS ARTICLE WAS COMMISSIONED AND PAID FOR BY:


The increase in the number of food-assistance calls to Vermont 2-1-1 from 2019 through October 2020.

68% The increase in the use of food pantries in Vermont between March and June 2020.

1 in 4

HERE’S HOW TO HELP Donate to the organizations listed in this article: • The Vermont Foodbank, vtfoodbank.org or call 1-800-585-2265

• Feeding Chittenden, feedingchittenden.org or call 658-7939

• Give to Hunger Free Vermont, hungerfreevt.org

• United Way of Northwestern Vermont, unitedwaynwvt.org or call 864-7541

• Give to a Vermont Foodbank partner in your area. Find one at vtfoodbank.org/ agency-locator

• Learn about other ways to give — including volunteer opportunities, corporate food donations and virtual food drives — at vtfoodbank.org

• Give to your local food shelf

That’s the number of respondents to a UVM survey who are eating fewer servings of fruits and vegetables, suggesting a decrease in diet quality. Sources: Vermont Foodbank, United Way of Northwestern Vermont, UVM COVID-19 impact survey.



How Vermonters are coping with being apart B Y CHEL SEA ED GAR • chelsea@sevendaysvt.com




Separation Anxiety


ermonters have entered a lonely season. After a summer of cautious optimism that the state’s diligent public health measures had contained the spread of COVID-19, the fall brought a depressing reality check. Over the last month, Vermont has logged 45 percent of its 3,762 total confirmed cases; the average number of new infections each week has climbed 423 percent since the beginning of November. After 99 days without a COVID-19 death, the state has recorded six within the past three weeks. In an attempt to control the surge, Gov. Phil Scott has effectively banned all social gatherings, indoors and out, with some provisions for people who live alone or need to leave an unsafe housing situation. But for the most part, we’ve returned to the bleakly familiar territory of hunkering down with whomever we happened to be cohabitating when the music stopped. “In Vermont, we had this illusion of being protected, and I think that people are shocked about what this means for them,” said psychologist Cath Burns, the clinical consultant for COVID Support VT, a mental health program that launched this summer. In a pandemic, our relationships are both lifelines and sources of risk, a contradiction too bizarre to fully assimilate. What’s even harder to grasp is how these last eight months have rewired us as social animals, and whether the behaviors we deemed “normal” in the Before Times will ever seem completely normal again. As we enter the holiday season, the loss of normalcy feels acutely painful, even if the internet is awash with chipper guides to making our virtual feasts feel less dystopian. Perhaps more usefully, in October, COVID Support VT embedded three crisis counselors in the state’s 2-1-1 helpline service. In the past month and a half, Burns said, the line has been getting steadily busier; each counselor is now fielding an average of 20 calls a day. “A lot of callers are talking about being depressed and lonely about not being able to be around their friends and family for the holidays,” she said. “People are feeling incredibly isolated and far away from the people they care about.”


Our alienation from one another is both individual and systemic. Beyond the unifying calls to collective action — we’re in this together! — there is no single reality of the pandemic. Those lucky enough to work remotely Zoom and bake and binge-watch Netflix, while essential workers literally cannot afford to stay home. We exist in different socioeconomic, political and informational ecosystems; we are all susceptible to COVID19, but we are not equally vulnerable to it. While the shrinking of personal worlds has widened the distances between people, it seems to have collapsed others — most uncomfortably, the distance between ourselves and ourselves. Erica Heilman, creator of the podcast “Rumble Strip,” lives with her 17-year-old son in St. Johnsbury; lately, she’s been contemplating what this intense period of hermitage means for our species. “There’s a haziness to the experience of living with myself, and myself, and

as it turns out, humans are intrinsically bad at recalibrating their lives around an invisible threat. No electric buzzer lets us know that we’ve exhaled too hard in the wrong direction, or that the last person we hugged had been exposed to the coronavirus minutes before.

Our relationships are both lifelines and sources of risk, a contradiction too bizarre to fully assimilate. myself, so much of myself. My kid goes to school twice a week, and then he’s with himself and himself and himself, which is not what a 17-year-old should be doing,” she said. “How much of ourselves can we manage?” At first, those of us who were dutifully self-isolating thought in terms of distinct and separate pods: walking friends, picnic friends, car friends, indoor masked friends, indoor unmasked friends. But,

“Our mental equipment does not do a great job of thinking statistically, probabilistically,” said Lee Rosen, an assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Vermont’s Larner College of Medicine. “I think the experience of being in Vermont has given people this greater sense of freedom — this idea that ‘I have behaved well, and I’m pretty sure that the people I’m going to see have behaved well,

so therefore I can see them,” he said. “The desire to connect pulls us to not see what we don’t want to see.” As Human Services Secretary Mike Smith recently put it to Seven Days: “Some Vermonters started believing in their own magic.” Since October 1, 71 percent of new COVID-19 cases in Vermont have been associated with private gatherings — backyard barbecues, dinner parties — where people likely thought of one another as safe and trustworthy. But interpersonal trust can also lead us to mistake comfort for safety; the current surge has made it devastatingly clear that we are worst at assessing risk when we’re in familiar situations with people we know well. The drive for social acceptance, Rosen explained, can be powerful enough to keep people from speaking up when they feel that their family and friends aren’t exercising good judgment. The same impulse can also motivate us to conceal our own risk factors from our close contacts. “If one of my teenagers were exposed to COVID at school, and then I became exposed, it would be deeply uncomfortable for me to inform my students, my colleagues and anybody who’s been around me,” Rosen admitted. “But a healthy coping strategy involves addressing those difficult feelings. “The reward for doing the right thing doesn’t lie in our own gratification,” he added, “but in the feeling of protecting our community.” Caring as an act of denial — skipping a family gathering, not hugging your grandmother — feels unnatural, and yet a public health crisis demands that we override our flawed instincts. “I think it’s still hard, but I think the incentive is probably more natural now, because people literally see the rising numbers,” said Vermont Deputy Health Commissioner Tracy Dolan. “They’re

more likely to know people who are either a contact or a case.” Dolan, who has done HIV prevention work in Canada and sub-Saharan Africa, sees similarities between the cyclical resurgence of HIV within a community and the trajectory of coronavirus infection rates. “In HIV prevention, we normalize new, safer behaviors, but over years, as people stop seeing it within their communities, they start to relax, and that leads to new outbreaks,” she explained. “We’re seeing that with COVID, where people were very concerned in March and April and doing a really great job. Then, when the numbers didn’t go up over the summer and even into the early fall, they started relaxing a bit.” Dolan’s biggest fear right now is what will happen during the first week of December, post-Thanksgiving. “We are so worried that we’re going to see a surge,” she said. “These measures might feel extreme right now, but we need to go this far. We desperately need to stop this in its tracks.”


The moratorium on multi-household socializing somehow feels worse now than it did in March, perhaps because Vermonters had a summer of slight respite. We made very good use of camp chairs; we entertained various schemes to stay warm while hanging out outside. Some people, like Lauren MacKillop, the coordinator of UVM’s Early Childhood PreK-3 and Early Childhood Special Education programs, had high hopes for their backyard fire pits. At the beginning of November, MacKillop, who lives in Shelburne, was thinking of acquiring some extra sleeping bags. “I thought that we can suit up like California raisins around the fire,” she said. She and her friends had been discussing possibilities for hot cocktails — “steeping lots of different herbs, getting super witchy about it.” Last month her 29-year-old stepdaughter, Amara MacKillop, who works at a nonprofit community health center in SEPARATION ANXIETY


» P.40 39

Separation Anxiety « P.39



wasn’t planning on being with his mother for the holiday, Dugan and her husband realized that having Howe over was a bad idea. Dugan’s husband broke the news to Howe in person, standing outside and six feet away from her. “She cried a little,” Dugan said. “But she understood that it was the right thing to do.” Instead, Dugan and her college-age daughters will bring Howe a to-go container of Thanksgiving dinner, then Howe will join the family feast via Zoom. “My family takes very good care of me. I may be alone, but I’m not lonesome,” Howe said. “And you know what else? I’m not bored, either. I can knit.” One thing she knows she’ll miss, though, is eating potato soup on Christmas Eve with Dugan and her family after the evening church service. “Oh, that soup,” she said. “I just love that soup.”

a coin and bumping into each other constantly. The parents immediately pulled the plug on the outing. White’s daughter, age 7, started to cry, thinking she was being punished. “She kept saying, ‘I didn’t know we would be so close!’” White said. White, an associate at Vermont Energy Investment Corporation, has wanted to keep the rules as consistent as possible for her kids. “I’m a scientist, and I’m definitely a rule follower,” she said. But on certain occasions, she’s doubted herself. One day, she was picking up her daughter at a friend’s house, and her daughter asked if she could hug her friend goodbye. “In the moment, I said yes, because I saw how happy it made her,” White recalled. “But then, when we were in the car, I told her that she shouldn’t do that again.” Her daughter asked why she’d said yes in the first place; White did her best to

Christine White, who lives in Burlington’s New North End, has watched her two children, ages 7 and 10, struggle to make sense of the new boundaries. Early in the pandemic, she and another family took their kids to an empty parking lot for a bike-riding play date, figuring that would allow for social distancing. Within 10 minutes, she said, the kids had invented a game in which they were chasing around

explain that grown-ups don’t always make perfect judgment calls. “This whole year has kind of sucked,” she said. Her in-laws live in Seattle, and they haven’t seen their grandchildren in so long that they almost don’t want to look at recent photos of them. “It’s too painful,” White said. “There’s this weird psychological stuff coming out right now.” Sometimes, this psychological stuff boils over into major conflict. In April, Tara, a thirtysomething Colchester woman, had a baby. (Because of her fraught situation, Tara requested anonymity.) The baby was colicky and immunocompromised, and the pediatrician advised that no one other than her parents be allowed to hold her. Tara and her husband both work in health care; since the beginning of the pandemic, she said, they’ve taken more stringent precautions than most people they know. Tara’s in-laws, who live in the Burlington area, were initially supportive of their decision to maintain a strict bubble. But gradually, she said, they became pushier. “They would compare us to other parents they knew who were less restrictive about letting the grandparents interact with their kids,” she said. “They kept saying, ‘This isn’t right, we’re family — you’re pushing us away.’ They made us feel guilty, like we were depriving them of their grandchild.” In July, with the pediatrician’s blessing, Tara and her husband told her in-laws that they could come over and hold their granddaughter, provided they completed a two-week quarantine first. “We even went so far as to craft an email outlining our expectations, which were really pretty basic,” Tara said. They asked the in-laws to refrain from seeing anyone else during their isolation period, but when her husband’s brother visited from out of state, Tara’s father-in-law hugged him. “He said, ‘I guess that means we can’t come over now,’ and he was really unhappy,” Tara said. Meanwhile, Tara’s mother had flown in to help her with the baby. She quarantined for a week in the basement — “We didn’t hug. We didn’t touch. We left her food in front of the garage door,” said Tara, choking up. Only after her mother had a negative COVID-19 test was she allowed to meet her granddaughter. According to Tara, her father-in-law took it as a personal affront that another ILLUSTRATIONS: ANNELISE CAPOSELLA

Burlington, went so far as to give a PowerPoint presentation over Zoom to everyone in her family pod, outlining the expectations for getting together safely. Now, there will be no getting together at all. To stay sane in the meantime, Lauren MacKillop plans to gather with her friends on Zoom for something called “stitch and bitch,” or bemoaning the state of the world while making samplers that say things like “Don’t worry, dishes, no one is doing me either.” Kae Burdo, a 31-year-old writer and activist who works in digital marketing, said that being in polyamorous relationships has provided good practice for negotiating COVID-19 boundaries. “I definitely entered this situation with the emotional resiliency to hear answers I didn’t like,” said Burdo, who uses they/them pronouns. Burdo and their wife choose to live separately in Burlington. Since the pandemic began, the two have seen each other just three times — Burdo’s mother-in-law is in a vulnerable age category, and for a time, Burdo was living with another partner who worked a high-risk job. But that relationship recently ended; now, Burdo is not particularly stoked about living alone. “I would say, in general, that cohabitation isn’t really my thing, and I’m not a hypersexual person,” said Burdo. “But in a situation like this, you’re not having physical contact with anybody, because you’re not able to see anybody. I think the hardest part about all of this is that there’s no such thing as casual touch anymore.” Heilman said she can count on one hand the number of people she’s touched within the last nine months. “I dream about touching people,” she said. Jim Duval, a tattoo artist in Essex Junction, hears about this all the time from his clients. “I work through people’s stuff while I’m hurting them all day, and I can’t tell you how many of them say they miss being touched,” he said. (Tattooing, arguably an extreme form of touch, has been in high demand lately; since Duval reopened his studio in May, he’s been booked out months in advance.) For the elderly who live alone, the pandemic has been especially difficult. “Loneliness was a public health crisis for seniors even before COVID hit,” said Molly Dugan, director of Support and Services

at Home, which assists the elderly and adults with special needs who live independently. “What they’re experiencing now is dehumanizing.” Dugan’s mother-in-law, 82-year-old Dee Howe, lives by herself in an apartment at Kelley’s Field, a senior housing facility in Hinesburg. For Thanksgiving, Dugan and her family had planned to invite Howe to their home in Richmond, as is the family’s annual tradition. But when the governor announced recently that he


member of the family had been granted visiting privileges. His reaction made Tara feel even worse. “It all seemed so contrived, as if our baby were a commodity,” she said. “It was gross.” A blowout argument over the phone ensued between Tara and her husband’s parents. There has been no reconciliation yet.

Shortly after the sweeping lockdown went into effect, Heilman started a podcast miniseries called “Our Show.” She asked “Rumble Strip” listeners to send her recordings of their pandemic musings; for a month and a half, she was swamped with tape. Then, abruptly, the audio stopped coming in. “It was like we were all podmates together, and then there was this seismic shift, and no one had anything to say anymore,” she said. Within her own friend bubble, the same thing happened. “For a while, we were watching all these movies together online and it was really fun, until abruptly, it wasn’t,” she said. “Suddenly, it felt empty. There was something vaguely depressing and irritating about it.” Over the summer, when she got together with her friends outdoors, Heilman noticed that her threshold for other people’s company also had changed. “I think I’m so used to doing exactly what I want, when I want to, in my own solitude, that I can’t sustain a social circumstance for as long as I used to,” she said. “I have been out with people I love, in their backyards around a bonfire, and stood up very prematurely and said, ‘I’m leaving now.’ And they say, ‘That’s great, because we don’t have anything more to say.’ There’s just less to report. I have less to report.” And yet, Heilman said, there’s something unexpectedly pleasant about knowing that everyone’s life is, to some extent, on hold. All of us are in the slipstream, making things up as we go along, giving each other permission to be a little unhinged. “When this is all over, I think I’ll miss being able to call my friend Tobin and say, ‘I am just letting you know that I’m going to take a nap. It’s 11:30 a.m., and I think I might be done for the day,’” she said. “And he’ll say, ‘You do that. I’m going to take a nap in an hour. I’m right there with you.’” 


I dream about touching people. E R I C A HEI L MAN

“This year has been so hard,” Tara said. “To feel abandoned by the people who are supposed to be your champions is a massive, massive blow.” She looks for reassurance in the pediatrician’s affirmation that these rigorous protocols are still necessary. It helps, if only briefly, to take the edge off her loneliness. “Every time I go in, I ask, ‘Am I doing the right thing? Is this still the best thing?’”


When Gov. Scott issued his “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order in March, the strangeness of the situation gave people something to process together. The world felt precarious in new ways; everyone had a story about what was happening to them.

BE KNOWN. DO NORTH. gonorthernvermont.com

INFO Learn more about mental health resources at covidsupportvt.org. 2v-NVU112520 1



11/23/20 9:51 AM

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Business Class

In Office, author Sheila Liming examines changes in where and how we work B Y M ARG A RET G RAYSON • margaret@sevendaysvt.com

SEVEN DAYS: This book was clearly finished before the pandemic struck, and now many of your predictions about the devolution of offices



ong before many people abruptly shifted from working in an office to working from home at the onset of the pandemic, Sheila Liming was thinking hard about offices — specifically, their decline. While COVID-19 might prove to be a death knell, the office as we know it had been on its way out for a while. In her recently published book, Office, the Champlain College associate professor and recent Vermont transplant explores the history and culture of the office, the impact it’s had on white-collar work culture, and the future of that work. Liming takes the reader from secretary pools and desktop ashtrays to ultramodern, performative work spaces, including the Spheres in Seattle, Amazon’s biodomelike structure where, she notes, very little work actually gets done. Liming acknowledges how smartphones, laptops and readily available Wi-Fi have brought about a rise in telecommuting. But even before that, developments such as Microsoft Office, which debuted in 1990, replaced many of an office’s physical necessities — typewriters, adding machines, graphic design tools — with software on individual computers. Office, which is part of the Object Lessons series by the Atlantic and Bloomsbury Publishing, is actually Liming’s second book of 2020. The first, What a Library Means to a Woman: Edith Wharton and the Will to Collect Books, came out in April. She became interested in objects and their significance when studying for her PhD in literary and cultural studies in a Carnegie Mellon University program that emphasized material culture. “I was starting to see the growth of these really lavish fancy offices, especially in the tech sector. Then, on the other hand, a lot of my colleagues and I [were] mostly working in Starbucks,” Liming said. “It was interesting to see that divide happening around me, especially in the early 2000s, and then following the financial crisis in 2008.” Next up, Liming is editing a new edition of the Edith Wharton novel The Age of Innocence. Seven Days spoke with her about her office research and what the pandemic might mean for our working lives.




seem to be coming true. Does this timing feel like a lucky coup or a total nightmare? SHEILA LIMING: It’s a little bit of both. In some ways, I think the topic is never more relevant. A lot of people now are renegotiating their relationships with their offices, especially if they’re not actually allowed to access them at the moment. What we’re also seeing is, a lot of people are being forced to create their own offices, on their own terms, in their own homes. In that way, the timing was great. On the other side of things, everybody started talking about offices and, unfortunately, I feel like the book might now get a little bit lost in the shuffle, because we’ve been talking about them for the past six months. SD: If you could write another chapter today, what would you want to discuss, or what would your thesis be? SL: I would talk about the home office and creating offices for yourself. I end the book by talking about the end of the office and how that’s basically something that’s going

to be coming if we continue to divest these communal spaces where we work. But I don’t really get into detail about what is involved in creating a home office and how that has to happen. I was very interested to see that [a] company that goes by the name Dwellito sells these premade offices that come in shipping containers that can be stored in your backyard. It’s, like, $36,000 to buy one of these things. And they come with a crane, and they drop it in your backyard — if you have one. It’s all decorated, with rugs and chairs and everything. That, to me, suggests that some people out there are pretty desperate for office facilities, to have a space apart from their families and their domestic rooms. SD: For me and a lot of people prepandemic, “working from home” actually involved working from a lot of places that weren’t home, especially coffee shops. Now that I’m actually working from home, it’s been really hard to maintain any sense of boundaries. Do you see this as a long-term

trend, this continual erosion of separation between work life and personal life? SL: I do. It’s one that’s been a while in coming, basically since we started to have tools that were previously used within communal office spaces that became personal to us, through our personal computers. It’s just gotten more and more pronounced over the past several decades. If all your tools are stored in your laptop or your smartphone, then when do you ever stop working? When do you cut off communications with your colleagues and cease to work? For most people, that’s never. SD: You wrote about offices that exist “not to facilitate actual work, but to exert a company’s right to take up space.” Do you think that’s going to continue after the pandemic? SL: I think it is going to continue, but it’s not going to continue unilaterally, or for everyone. Once again, that’s a BUSINESS CLASS


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Business Class « P.43 continuation of a process we’ve already seen happening. Offices have started to serve as advertising, as billboards in themselves. I talked about the Amazon Spheres in the final chapter as being kind of a billboard for what Amazon is as a company. They have built a physical structure that they call an office but which nobody actually works in. You want to bring people into it to show off the company and what the company is capable of doing in terms of taking up space and also, of course, pumping capital into the space. SD: So do you think it’s just going to become more of a status thing, where companies that can afford to have offices will do so as a display of power or wealth? SL: Exactly. Offices for the upper crust of employees in order to enforce the status of the company. It’s just the majority of workers who now will no longer have access to that office. SD: Another discussion in the book that I found particularly interesting was how the aesthetics of the office influenced the expectations for employees’ appearances. You quote a secretarial handbook that says, “Typewriters are streamlined; secretaries must be too.” How do you think the changing nature of our workplaces is influencing expectations around fashion and work wear? SL: I wish I had a whole chapter on office fashion, because that would be fun. It always seems symbolic to me that a show like “Mad Men” — which launched in 2007 and is sort of obsessed with the aesthetics of the office, including fashion — came in a moment when offices are becoming less and less the norm. Even those who do have access to them are less frequently going to be seen by other people in the course of their job, because they’re going to be doing a lot of their job remotely. I think it’s interesting that we see this doubling down in some of those cultural texts of “Oh, remember the glory days of the office when everybody was so nicely dressed?” which is presented as kind of a romantic image. Yet I think, with the transition to more remote work or more scattered and atomized work, we are going to see changes in fashion. SD: A debate throughout the pandemic has been whether people are less efficient when they’re working from home in their pajamas and

less effective at their work. What do you think about that? SL: These are two separate questions: efficiency and effectivity. I think we all can probably understand the effectivity part, because computers are everything to us. They’re sources of entertainment; they’re sources of education; they’re sources of work. Which means that every time you log on to one, you’re exposed to all of those things simultaneously. And that does sometimes make us less effective workers. But in terms of efficiency, I think what we get is actually longer working hours spread out over more time, as opposed to these concrete blocks of time where you would have been focused on a task, within boundaries that were set for you by the natural workday. Now I can answer my email at three in the morning or on weekends or whatever. So I think, in the end, you’re getting more work out of people under those conditions, not less. SD: But do you buy into the notion that the decline of work wear will affect people’s productivity? SL: No. I don’t think that you’re going to be working less efficiently if you’re wearing your pajamas. SD: Are there any anecdotes you’d like to share about this book and your work? SL: I got to do a lot of weird research for this book. One of the weirdest experiences I had was looking at the typewriter archive at the Milwaukee Public Museum, the first successful patent models of a typewriter that was developed by a couple of guys out of Milwaukee and was later sold to Remington. Remington made the first successful typewriter for the market, and Remington also made guns. This archive is made up of guns and typewriters. What’s fascinating is that I learned that they use the same machinery to make both of them, because they already had the assembly line in place for the making of the guns. It was only small differences in the process to make the typewriter. SD: That is just ripe for some kind of “The pen is mightier than the sword” metaphor. SL: I know. They’re manufacturing two different kinds of weaponry at the same time. m This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity and length.

INFO Office by Sheila Liming, Bloomsbury Academic, 152 pages. $14.95.



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10/29/20 4:51 PM

Missing Vermont Get ready for the flatlanders — or maybe not B Y J O SH A. SPEERT




idtown Manhattan couldn’t be more opposite of Vermont. It’s the busiest section of the most populated city in the nation. Who would be crazy enough to work there? A much younger and naïve me. I was a magazine editor in the early 2000s. My building was between Penn Station and Macy’s Herald Square — the meat in a tourism sandwich. One day during the peak of the holiday season, the sidewalks were so congested with people from all over the globe that pedestrian traffic crawled. As I returned late to work from my lunch break, it was evident the pressure finally broke me. “F*#%ing tourists!” I exclaimed as I plopped down at my desk. My coworker calmed me down with words of wisdom that I’ll never forget. “Those ‘f*#%ing tourists’ are the reason why our city bounced back from 9/11,” he said. “Without them, this would still be a ghost town, and we might not have jobs right now.” Although Vermont will thankfully never have the population density of Midtown Manhattan, the roads inevitably get busier with out-ofstate vehicles at certain times of year. Please don’t hold it against me, but I’m one of those people with the ubiquitous beige-and-black New Jersey license plates. Wait! Please stay with me on this! There is a point to this story. According to the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, “Visitors spend more than $2.5 billion in Vermont each year, and the tourism industry employs more than 32,000 Vermonters.” With the pandemic expected to reach a crescendo this winter, COVID19 could be the terrorist in Vermont’s economic 9/11. I sincerely hope I’m wrong about this prediction. I’m happy to hear that Vermont’s hospitality industry is receiving $75 million in additional relief, but officials believe that it may not be enough. I understand their concern, as I’m about to share with you the inside story from a visitor’s perspective. As a member of a ski club that has owned a house in Vermont since the 1950s, I enjoy visiting on a regular basis, all year round. In my opinion, you are the champions of craft beer and have the most respectful citizens and the greatest scenery in the East. However, the 2020-21 season will most





I WON’T BE SKIING IN THE GREEN MOUNTAIN STATE. likely be the first in 15 years that I won’t be skiing in the Green Mountain State, or anywhere else. Aside from the impossible 14-day quarantine, it’s just too risky to be in close quarters with other people. My beloved lodge was built for an armybarracks-style sleeping arrangement, with beds in side-by-side and bunk-bed formation. Up to 46 people per night share bathrooms, a kitchen, a dining room and a few hangout rooms. It’s not glamorous, but it gives us middle-class skiers and snowboarders who can’t afford our own vacation homes a place to crash after a long day on the slopes and a long night of drinking Lawson’s Finest Liquids. This year will be much, much different. The lodge has been completely revamped to meet the latest strict health regulations. Only 10 members per night are currently allowed to sleep there this season. Plastic partitions and hand-sanitizer


dispensers are everywhere. Face masks are mandatory inside the continuously disinfected house. Our roughly 175-member ski club will certainly take a financial hit this season, as it did in the last one when we abruptly shut down in mid-March. Because my wife works in a nursing home, we cannot gamble the possibility of bringing the deadly virus home, even in the safest environments. Therefore, we’re not taking that risk. Furthering the economic impact, my ski club is just one of about 40 in a statewide organization. That’s a lot of people from ski clubs in my area alone that will have many fewer members traveling to Vermont this season. This doesn’t include school trips, family vacations, random groups of friends, etc., that will also keep their money in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut or wherever they’re from. I’m not trying to impose fear. As Vermont

is my home away from home, I stay attuned to your local happenings through news media and message boards. Recent activity on Reddit gave me the idea to write this article. Here’s why: Every year around this time, I view memes and read posts poking fun at “flatlanders” like myself and our inevitable return for the winter season. It’s mostly about how we clog up the roads with traffic because, apparently, we haven’t figured out how to drive in the snow. Wait, this sounds familiar. I’ve now become one of those “f*#%ing tourists” that I used to complain about! I can’t blame you for the ribbing, though. Indeed, there is a certain breed of New Jerseyans that keep the negative stereotypes alive. When you have some 9 million people living in a tiny state, the odds are great that a small fraction will either be obnoxious or fail to grasp the concept of driving in snow. Or both. That’s why I avoid Killington. Just kidding! Killington is a beautiful mountain, and I love the artistic gondolas, but I prefer the less-crowded mountains farther north. It’s nothing personal. The point is that tourism is a two-way street. We flatlanders rely on Vermont to help maintain our sanity. In return, we keep your economy growing by pumping our hard-earned money into your restaurants, breweries and art galleries. The same goes for visitors to my state. Although the Jersey Shore has returned from an economic battering courtesy of Superstorm Sandy, it once again has been afflicted — this time through the pandemic. And although Manhattan made the seemingly impossible return after 9/11, it too will rely on visitors to crowd the sidewalks after this nightmare ends. I truly hope Vermont and its businesses endure the pandemic, as well. When the dust settles, we flatlanders will be back to support you. To say that I miss Vermont is an understatement. So, when you see out-of-state plates this winter season, please keep an open mind. Most of us are visiting Vermont to escape a bad scene, not create one. After all, Sen. Bernie Sanders and Phish’s Trey Anastasio were originally visitors from New York and New Jersey, respectively. Being fellow Americans, we’ll help each other out and survive this together — as we should. m


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Filling the Pantry Northeast Kingdom towns rally to address food insecurity B Y S A LLY POL L AK • sally@sevendaysvt.com



astor Jim Casavant was thinking about the sermon he would deliver on November 22 at the First Congregational Church in East Hardwick. It would focus on Thanksgiving and things people could still appreciate in the grip of a deadly pandemic. “We’re thankful for living in Vermont,” Casavant said, previewing his address for a reporter. “It’s a beautiful state. And the pandemic isn’t as bad as some of the other places in the country or the world.” From the pulpit and in the church bulletin, the lay minister also talks about giving to the community. In particular, the church encourages its congregation of eight to 10 people to donate to the Hardwick Area Food Pantry. In nonpandemic years, when the church hosts its annual harvest supper and holiday bazaar, proceeds from the gatherings go to that nonprofit. “That’s been our biggest charity that we’ve given to over the years,” said Casavant, 62, a lifelong resident of Hardwick and East Hardwick who works at HearthStone in Morrisville. On a chilly, drizzly Monday in midNovember, as a steady stream of people arrived for an allotment of food from the pantry, Casavant’s wife, Donna, came by with a contribution. She brought four bags of groceries — including stuffing mix, piecrust and cranberry jelly — and a $100 check for the nonprofit. She also dropped off scarves, hats and mittens that she’d knitted or purchased for food-pantry clients. “Someday maybe we might need it, who knows,” Donna Casavant, 72, said. “And I’d want people to give so we can have food.” The need for food assistance is on the rise in Hardwick and across Vermont, according to hunger-relief experts and advocates. A study released on November 23 by the University of Vermont reports that nearly 30 percent of respondents have experienced food insecurity since the start of the pandemic, roughly triple

LauraLee Sweeney working at the Hardwick Area Food Pantry

the percentage in 2018. About one-third of the respondents received food assistance during that time, such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits or groceries from a food pantry. The Vermont findings, based on a representative sample of more than 600 Vermonters, are part of national research studying the impact of COVID-19 on food security and access. “The response needed is larger than Vermont can handle as a state,” said John Sayles, CEO of the Vermont Foodbank. He’s looking ahead to 2021, when federal resources are slated to end, including





relief funding from the CARES Act (the food bank got $4.7 million) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture-funded Farmers to Families Food Box Program. “People aren’t going to stop being impacted by COVID at the end of December,” Sayles said. “But the federal funding does stop unless Congress takes action in the next month or so.” As one of roughly 300 community food shelves and meal sites that partner with the Vermont Foodbank, the Hardwick Area Food Pantry is on the front lines of addressing a spread-out rural



community’s growing need for food assistance. Staff and volunteers have stepped up to strengthen the pantry’s partnerships with local organizations and add services. They are working to establish permanent satellite pantries in the smaller towns of Craftsbury and Albany. The nonprofit is housed in St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church, a white clapboard building in the center of town. Since the pandemic put services on hold, the sanctuary has been used to store food.



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Rockers Is Rolling FAMILY-FRIENDLY PIZZA PLACE OPENS IN VERGENNES ROCKERS PIZZERIA had a busy first week in Vergennes. Owners ARIELLE LIU and JON ZIMMERS had prepped enough dough to make 100 pizzas for their opening day on Monday, November 16. They sold out in an hour and a half. “We didn’t expect that at all,” Zimmers told Seven Days. “It was like the whole town was calling.” The couple met at MANHATTAN PIZZA & PUB


in Burlington 11 years ago and has lived in Ferrisburgh for six years, both commuting to jobs

in the Burlington area — Liu as a pizza cook and Zimmers as a mechanic. They considered the idea of opening a restaurant in Vergennes for a year and a half before working out a deal to lease the former Luigi’s Italian Specialties space at 191 Main Street, which they then fully renovated. “We wanted to be more of a part of our community and to make a fun, affordable family restaurant for the town,” Zimmers said. The menu features traditional round New Yorkstyle pizzas. Specialty pies that fit the vintage rock theme include the Jonny Rocker, topped with caramelized onions, roasted red peppers, fresh

mozzarella, basil, garlic and a balsamic glaze. The restaurant also offers appetizers, salads, sandwiches, burgers, pasta dishes and a full kids’ menu. Rockers is open for takeout, curbside pickup and local delivery Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. “People think it’s a franchise,” Zimmers said with a laugh. “There’s only one location. We’re local people, and we want this to be like a mom-and-pop pizza shop.” m

CONNECT Follow us for the latest food gossip! On Twitter: Sally Pollak: @vtpollak. On Instagram: @7deatsvt.

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John Tuthill bringing a box of perishables to a customer’s car at the Hardwick Area Food Pantry

The number of households served by the Hardwick Area Food Pantry has increased by 25 percent since the start of the pandemic, according to director LauraLee Sweeney. Other measures, including an increase in monthly visits, confirm the growing need. Sweeney, 34, grew up on a farm in Albany, Vt. “As I got older, I could tell that people were not living equal lives,” she said. Sweeney has worked in social services for 10 years, including 15 months as director of the Hardwick Area Food Pantry. Last spring, a group of volunteers started running weekly pop-up pantries in Craftsbury and Albany, which are in the food pantry’s service area. “We imagined doing it until people got their first unemployment checks,” said Kris Coville, a Craftsbury farmer who helped organize the effort. “But people kept donating money, and people kept showing up for food, and we kept going.” The two pop-up sites — at the United Church of Craftsbury and the town hall in Albany — provide food to about 140 households a week. To stock them, the pantry purchases grocery items and bulk dry goods such as flour, rice and oats at cost through the Craftsbury General Store. Every week, Coville hears from people who confront the choice of paying their bills or buying food, she said.


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“Will you be here next week?” they ask her. Satellite food pantries in small, outlying towns serve a particular need in rural Vermont, where lack of transportation can be a barrier to accessing food, Sweeney said. She’s worked to address the transportation issue by another means: starting a volunteer-run delivery service to bring food to people who face challenges getting to Hardwick. That need became apparent in March, when Sweeney saw people hitchhiking to the food pantry. She approached one woman who’d hitchhiked and apologized

to her for the unsafe situation in which she’d had to put herself to get food. “She started crying and showed me [a pocket knife] she was using for protection,” Sweeney recounted. “And she said she was just sick of being hungry.” Sweeney immediately started calling people, mobilizing a team of volunteers who could make deliveries. “I just made it happen,” she said. “I didn’t go through the board. I said, ‘This is what we need to do.’” Today, the delivery service operates twice a week and serves about 30 households, Sweeney said. For clients who access food in Hard-

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food+drink wick, the pantry is open three days a week for two-hour intervals. Boxes of produce and racks of miscellaneous groceries and baking supplies are set on the church walkway, where people can help themselves. But the main allotment of groceries — bread, chicken, pasta, tuna fish, milk — is packed in bags and boxes inside the church and delivered to people who wait outside, due to pandemic restrictions. Volunteer John Tuthill, who serves on the board of the nonprofit, has the job of carrying out the boxes of food. His wife, Terry Tuthill, also a volunteer, checks people in at a desk in the vestibule and takes their orders for perishable food.

pantry received this year from the Vermont Foodbank. At Pete’s Greens, an organic produce farm in Craftsbury, volunteers glean the fields every week to help supply the local food pantries, Coville said. Pete’s also provides storage space. “It’s like a blessing to have him next door,” Coville said of founder Pete Johnson. Last week, Coville picked up bags of lentils at High Mowing Organic Seeds in Wolcott and 150 pieces of Jasper Hill Farm cheese at the Center for an Agricultural Economy in Hardwick. The center serves as a site for Vermont Everyone Eats, a state program



The couple moved from Virginia to Hardwick in the summer of 2019 to retire in northern New England. They started volunteering at the food pantry several months before the coronavirus struck, and they stayed on as part of a core group continuing the work in these unprecedented circumstances. “The majority of people are very grateful for what we are providing,” John Tuthill, 58, said. “I think that would be the overall sentiment.” Donna Ferland was among the clients who received food at the pantry on the day Seven Days visited. The Hardwick resident lost her housekeeping job in the summer and is still trying to collect unemployment benefits, she said. She shares the food from the pantry with her grown daughter. “It’s helped us so we don’t have to worry about going hungry sometimes,” Ferland said. Karen Baldwin, a retired nurse, also came for groceries that day. Her parttime job in eldercare ended with the coronavirus. Her husband works part-time at Hardwick’s Buffalo Mountain Food Co-op. The Baldwins’ two teenage grandchildren live with them in East Hardwick. “I’m really thankful that the Hardwick food bank has such good-quality food available,” Baldwin, 71, said, adding that the service is an “immense help.” A former volunteer at the Hardwick Area Food Pantry, Baldwin said she canned, preserved and froze food from her garden this year to feed her family. “This is a really great example of Vermonters taking care of each other,” Baldwin said. “People are very welcoming. It’s only here to help. There’s no stigma.” The network of help includes local food producers, whose donations supplement the 50,000 pounds of food the

that makes free restaurant meals available once a week. (Barring a new round of funding, that program will end with 2020, according to organizers.) This week, center staff expect more than 200 people to pick up a free Thanksgiving meal prepared by the Scale House restaurant in Hardwick. Through its Just Cut program, the Center for an Agricultural Economy provides Vermont produce — peeled, cut and bagged — to the Hardwick Area Food Pantry. The center has also given out 580 $50 food vouchers to community members, reaching people in need through its partnership with the food pantries. “This is a moment to acknowledge that all of the work and all of the input in the local food system is playing out now in terms of how it’s supporting communities,” said Jon Ramsay, executive director of the center. “We are one of many organizations that are doing a lot of work,” Ramsay continued. “People are digging deep to get that work done. It’s not easy logistically. It’s also very important work, and that is what’s keeping everyone going and motivated. It’s having a real impact.” In the area served by the Hardwick food pantry, the proof is in the pudding — or in the pie. In late October, the community put out a plea for pies, asking for Thanksgiving desserts for the 140 families who get groceries each week at the pop-up pantries. People offered to bake a pie or two, sometimes three or four. “All 140 got donated,” Coville said, “one pie at a time.” m

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David Keck in the vineyard at Boyden Valley Winery in Cambridge

A master sommelier puts down roots in a Vermont vineyard B Y KIM MACQUEEN


nly 269 individuals in the world have earned the globally established title of master sommelier. One hundred seventy-two of them are American, and only one is a Vermont native: David Keck. In January of this year, Keck came to Hotel Vermont in Burlington to teach the Court of Master Sommeliers introductory course. The grand-sounding two-day class — the lowest rung on the wine world’s education ladder — was being offered in the state for the first time. Students who pass the intro exam are eligible to sit for the certified and advanced sommelier examinations in preparation for the master’s level. But being a wine professional wasn’t Keck’s first pursuit. A natural performer, he grew up in West Newbury and left to train as an opera singer at Columbia University and the Juilliard School; he earned a master’s in operatic performance from Rice University.

Keck left music behind in 2010, when he sat for the sommeliers’ intro course and, he said, “was immediately hooked.” He quickly made a name for himself in Houston, achieving the master sommelier title in 2016. As 2020 began, Keck was a partner at Goodnight Hospitality, a restaurant group he’d cofounded in Houston. The group had opened two new restaurants and a wine-and-cheese shop in the previous year. Keck also had helped to create the Houston Sommelier Association and had just won the StarChefs Houston Rising Stars Award for Restaurateur. Brittany Galbraith, director and wine bar manager at Dedalus Wine Shop, Market & Wine Bar — and a certified sommelier working toward advanced certification — collaborated with Keck to bring the introductory course to Vermont. Matt Canning, Hotel Vermont’s beer concierge, arranged to host

the two-day event. Keck presented with fellow master sommeliers Pascaline Lepeltier of France and Max Kast of Montana. Keck was dapper in a tailored suit as he encouraged students — including teams from Hotel Vermont and Dedalus, as well as this reporter — to call out tricky pronunciations of French, German and Italian wine terms. The 33 students in the course enjoyed a 100 percent pass rate on the exam. Keck then returned to Houston — but not for long. By March, as COVID-19 was hitting the American restaurant landscape, he and partner Lauren Droege had realized how much they missed the Northeast. They’d long talked about putting some vines in the ground back in Vermont. So they packed up the car and headed north. Though Keck had no prospects in Vermont initially, he quickly found his footing. He touched base with winemaking


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friends, including Ethan Joseph of Iapetus wines at Shelburne Vineyard and Deirdre Heekin and Caleb Barber of La Garagista Farm + Winery in Bethel. He leased eight acres of frontenac noir, frontenac blanc and marquette, some of the oldest vines in the state, at Boyden Valley Winery in Cambridge. By June, Keck was working in the vineyard, pruning and prepping for his first fall harvest. But there were several catches. “These weren’t standard Vitis vinifera vines in a standard growing region like California,” Keck said. Rather, they were hybrid vines that should have been pruned two months before he arrived in order to produce usable fruit. They’d been left to languish due to COVID-19 — there weren’t enough personnel around to do the work. Keck immediately was in a race against time, and he almost didn’t make it. “I was buying a tractor, I was buying a sprayer … all of the elements that are necessary for managing a vineyard,” Keck recalled. “I didn’t have any of it.” Bringing together the equipment and people he needed “aren’t easy things to do in the middle of a pandemic,” he observed. In addition, Keck knew he wanted to convert the vines to organic farming, but he wasn’t sure how. “We made that decision before even starting — it’s 100 percent part of the Vermont ethos and, despite having its own challenges, it’s the way the world is going,” Keck said. Heekin proved to be an invaluable help. Nearly every day, Keck said, “I would text Deirdre a picture of a vine and ask, “Should it really look like this?” While spending the summer learning to be a winemaker, Keck was teaching about the process online — the Court of Master Sommeliers suspended all in-person teaching in March. In June, students could enroll in Class 1: Fundamentals of Grape Growing, which Keck taught virtually, while literally standing in his vineyard, with fellow master


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food+drink sommelier Chris Miller of Seabold Cellars in Marina, Calif. “I was on a side of the business I’d never really been in experientially, and I was wildly out of my depth,” Keck said. “Once you’re holding a pair of pruning shears in your hand and staring at a vine, you have a wildly different appreciation for the importance of what’s happening than you do sitting at home, looking at a computer screen showing you images of what it should look like.” Keck and Droege got up to speed in the vineyard in the summer and early fall, while Keck went to work with Vermont Beer Shepherd to build out the Duxburybased distribution company’s new wine program. They leased winery space in Vergennes with Shacksbury Cider and developed their concept: Stella XIV Wines, named for the copper coin minted in Vermont with the motto DAVID Stella Quarta Decima in the late 1700s. Stella quarta decima fulgeat, or “May the 14th star shine bright,” became the state’s official Latin motto in 2015. The Cambridge vineyard and the Vergennes winery are an hour apart by car, but it seemed workable. Keck felt moderately ready for harvest. Then came the earliest frost in nearly 30 years. The harvest schedule, originally planned to last about four weeks starting in late September, turned into a mad dash of about 10 days. Droege, a geologist, jumped in to help, as did Keck’s mother, Carolyn, who lives in West Newbury. Keck’s sisters, Annie, Susan and Jenny, came from New Jersey, Chicago and New Hampshire, respectively; they quarantined and then showed up in the vineyard to work. Teams from Dedalus and Vermont Beer Shepherd came; the latter lent their vehicles, too. “My entire career has been largely computer work, sitting at a desk Monday through Friday, and it has been a real treat getting outside, working the vineyard this summer and fall, seeing the seasons change and our work progress,” Droege said. Keck added: “We were in the vineyard by seven o’clock prepping all of our sorting and harvesting equipment up in Cambridge, harvesting grapes all morning, having lunch in the vineyard, harvesting grapes all afternoon, then loading up a ton of grapes into my truck and driving it to Vergennes and potentially stemming and crushing grapes all night — and then doing it again the next day.” Meantime, as the Stella XIV team labored throughout the summer and fall, the Court of Master Sommeliers was

criticized in the media for its failure to adequately respond to charges of racial insensitivity and implicit bias toward its relatively few members of color. Then, on October 29, the New York Times published a story titled “The Wine World’s Most Elite Circle Has a Sexual Harassment Problem.” The court’s active female membership issued a joint statement a few days later in support of the 21 female members who spoke to the Times. Lepeltier, who taught the intro course in Vermont with Keck, is one of four high-profile female master sommeliers who have resigned from the organization in protest of what many term its dysfunctional culture. As this Seven Days story went to press, court chair Devon Broglie was suspended, and Geoff Kruth, head of the court’s education arm GuildSomm, resigned his position. Multiple female court members KE CK had charged both men with sexual harassment. The court is “actively working to react to the challenges facing it right now, with new board of directors elections and numerous changes to our bylaws and infrastructure,” Keck said. “I think we are all saddened and challenged by this situation, as [the court] is supposed to be an organization built on integrity and respect,” he continued. “I sincerely hope that we can come out of this stronger and more able to continue in the mission of building the hospitality industry — something that will be desperately needed in a post-COVID world.” When it does, Stella XIV will be ready. Three different wines are now bottled and waiting in Vergennes for release in 2021: Wild Child Rosé, a blend of frontenac and marquette; Uncle Mark’ette Nouveau, a slightly sparkling red in the tradition of Beaujolais nouveau; and an as-yet-unnamed Pét Nat, or natural sparkling wine. While COVID-19 continues to cast a pall over all things food-and-wine related for the time being, Keck is confident, if modest, about the future. “I’ve been teaching sommelier courses for years,” he said, “but I’m kind of just realizing right now how a huge part of being a master sommelier is this constant experience of being humbled by how much more there is to learn.” m



INFO On Instagram, follow Stella XIV Wines at @stella14wines and David Keck at @yrmom_safoodie.


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Barbacoa playing a May pop-up show in the Old North End

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News and views on the local music + nightlife scene BY J O R D A N A D A MS

Many Thanks

In past years, the Seven Days music editor has used the column preceding Thanksgiving to express gratitude for all of the wonderful things in the local music community. I’m not usually one for excessive sentimentality, so I haven’t done that every year I’ve held this title. But the events of 2020 behoove 3:52 PM me to suck it up and get a little tenderhearted on your asses. Think you can handle it? I hope I can. The first thing I’m thankful for is pretty basic: I’m thankful to Vermont’s music community for soldiering on in uncertain times, especially without a robust live scene. When the pandemic first came crashing down back in March, the avalanche of breaking news in the arts centered on how it

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Time to Move Things Inside

Kat Wright performing in June at Higher Ground’s Drive-In Experience at the Champlain Valley Exposition fairgrounds

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affected live events. Such activities are not only the lifeblood of local artists and business owners, but also of this section in Seven Days. I’d be lying if I said it hasn’t been a real nail-biter figuring out how to continue with dynamic coverage week after week, considering the dearth of shows to write about. But throughout the past eight months, I’ve seen ingenuity, perseverance, and a SHIRLEY TEMPLE-like positivity and resilience from bands and artists statewide. Turns out, there’s been no shortage of things to write about. That wouldn’t have been possible without all of Vermont’s hardworking musicians, venue workers, talent bookers, sound techs, recording engineers and record store owners. So I thank you for not crumbling under the weight of the current reality.


S UNDbites


Speaking of record stores, how lucky are we to have so many independently operated vinyl outposts in the Green Mountains? Um, really damn lucky. This fall, I started checking in with some of them in this column, and I’ve been reminded of how these shops are not just retail outlets but informationand culture-sharing hubs. Shopkeepers and clients forge enriching, long-lasting relationships, and that’s a really special thing. (Don’t worry if your favorite shop hasn’t been featured here yet. I’ll be starting up that series again real soon. That’s my intention, at least. Did I mention it’s hard to predict coverage during a pandemic?) I’m thankful to surf-rock band BARBACOA for breaking the seal on our collective abstention from live music earlier this year. (Disclosure: Members of Barbacoa are Seven Days employees.) As far as I know, they were the first band to test the waters to see if the good people of Burlington could safely handle a small, impromptu gathering and demonstrate the social-distancing measures we’d been reading about for months. (News flash: We could.) At the time, Barbacoa’s May 23 popup set in the Old North End was the first truly fun outing I’d experienced in more than two months. Like, for real. I hadn’t seen or talked to many people in person for the entire spring, and the show put a real … jaunt in my step. (Even I’m too good for that obvious pun.) I’m thankful for Higher Ground’s efforts to raise more than $17,000 for the Vermont Arts Council through its series of summer drive-in shows at the Champlain Valley Exposition fairgrounds in Essex Junction. With sound transmitted over radio waves and live video projected onto a gigantic screen, the format was an experiment that pleased throngs of ravenous concertgoers week after week. The series provided an outlet for local musicians and also brought in some top-notch nonlocal (and formerly local) talent. I’m thankful for the bands and solo artists who went ahead and released their albums during the pandemic, even if they weren’t the album rollouts originally planned. No shade to those who chose to push back their releases — it obviously wasn’t the right time for everyone. But having a steady stream of new music to absorb (not to mention review) has made the past eight months more tolerable. And big props to those who conceived of and executed their new

Listening In If I were a superhero, my superpower would be the ability to get songs stuck in other people’s heads. Here are five songs that have been stuck in my head this week. May they also get stuck in yours. HIS NAME IS ALIVE, “Universal Frequencies” POLYDRIVE, “Need You to Want Me” I DON’T KNOW HOW BUT THEY FOUND ME, “Leave Me Alone” BARK BARK DISCO & JOON, “Another

Play” UNLOVED, “Why Not”

music entirely in quarantine. That’s not an easy task, given the intimacy the recording process requires. I’m grateful for to-go alcohol! OK, this is not directly related to the music scene, but it is tied to the bar/club scene. I hope this excellent policy isn’t repealed once the pandemic is over. Since there isn’t a tangible end in sight, I hope that we’ll be able to walk our margaritas back to our front stoops for a good while longer. Not that we’ll be hanging out on our stoops for the foreseeable future, unless we really bundle up. At this point, I’ll try just about anything to maintain a social life, even when social distancing. You might not think so, but I’m thankful for reader feedback. I’ve gotten tons of warm regards for pieces I’ve written this year, and it’s given me a big boost more than a few times. Much more frequently, though, journalists hear from readers when something is wrong. And believe it or not, I’m thankful for that feedback, too. I wouldn’t want to live in a world in which people felt like they couldn’t approach local media with their thoughts and concerns. And, on an extremely personal note, I’m thankful that I found a working karaoke machine for $3 at a tag sale in Underhill. Karaoke will likely be one of the last nightlife activities to return, because of shared microphones among dozens of people. To quote Brian from “Gilmore Girls,” “I’m just saying, at the end of the night, who cleans them?” Karaoke is my fave, and I’m psyched to have some specialized equipment to practice on while awaiting its return. 


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Thomas Nöla, Night of the Umbrella

directly from his website and Bandcamp rather than through what he called the “outdated” label construct. Nöla described his modus operandi for Night of the Umbrella, and most of his recordings, as “claustrophobic, completely solo and lo-fi, though with hifi concepts.” Musicians aren’t always the

best at talking about their own work, but that’s a spot-on description. Nöla released the album in tandem with Maple Moon, a less mysterious yet equally entrancing EP of, for lack of a better term, folk-rock. Again, Nöla is an odd fellow. Night of the Umbrella will scratch the itch that has plagued adventurous listeners this fall. The 10-track album is eclectic. Avantgarde instrumentals — some the sonic equivalent of pastoral, impressionist paintings — are woven together with collage-like soundscapes and gothic rock. Nöla’s lyrics sometimes read like Cold War-era coded transmissions: “Kite faction repealed / And no entrance to the shadow dome,” he gasps at the outset of “Kite Faction,” a noisy, metallic invocation. Instrumental opener “Six Years of Silence” and the following, wordless “Ladybug Wallpaper” both demonstrate the breadth of Nöla’s experimental aims. The former is a slow-motion waterfall,

its synths pouring sound in an eternal flow. The latter is more textured, with tensile bursts unloading over a jagged foundation. An unsettling, broken quality permeates “Lily Night Mirror,” the album’s first vocal entry. Unstable tones descend on Nöla’s restrained vocals as he sings of familial terror. Throughout Night of the Umbrella, Nöla seems hell-bent on provoking listeners out of their comfort zones. On “Dolphins of Venice” he deploys haunting pipe organs. On “Innermap,” free-associative ramblings, delivered in a detached tone, populate an alien world. Just before the closing title track, “Moon Ration” evokes a suffocating vacuum. Whatever his method, Nöla primes listeners to be on edge, yet fully enraptured. Night of the Umbrella is available at tnola.bandcamp.com.

heavy times. But as its title suggests — amanecer is Spanish for “sunrise” — it is also a deeply optimistic one. The record leads off with the title track, a lovely, low-key folk guitar number that comes off like a bilingual Nick Drake song, slowly building to a big finish. From there, the album kicks into a different gear. “Winter” is a timeless, straightforward rock song, catchy and lushly produced. Hernandez is a talented

writer, cutting crisp phrases that evoke rich feelings. There’s also a chorus that’s far too funny to spoil here. The album’s middle act sounds like an extended suite, upon repeated listens. “Quiet” is a calming piece built around piano and shuffling percussion that leaves room for Hernandez to stretch out on vocals. Back-to-back Spanish cuts follow: Sparse, almost classical guitar movements guide “Mi Canción,” while “Tiempo” is a salsa shuffle with a smoking session band. Amanecer closes with two exquisite standouts. “Evolution” is a flat-out beautiful ballad that’s almost entirely piano and vocals. “We were Brooklyn rooftops, innocent smiles,” Hernandez sings. “We were hallelujahs running wild.” Then there’s “Light a Torch,” which is the lead single, and for good reason. A killer funk pocket grabs you from the jump, and then switches into a tight guajeo break for the chorus. The song is a bittersweet meditation on the American dream, drawing from the

famous Emma Lazarus poem “The New Colossus.” Hernandez knows all too well that poetry is not policy. To seal the deal, the song wraps up with a bravura trumpet solo from local jazz and salsa giant Ray Vega. Engineer and coproducer Dan Davine recorded the songs to tape, adding lushness to Hernandez’s already warm, dynamic material. (Fittingly, the album is also available on a limited-edition vinyl run.) The instrumentation and arrangements are excellent throughout — never crowded, always adventurous. Amanecer is a mature and impressive debut, the official arrival of a serious talent. There are no rookie mistakes here, no kinks to work out on future releases. Hernandez is capable and comfortable in a variety of styles and makes them all her own. This lean, remarkable album is strongly recommended for fans of music, period. Amanecer by Marcie Hernandez is available at marciehernandez. bandcamp.com.


You never know what you’re going to find when you surf the “Vermont” tag on Bandcamp. There’s always a lot to sift through at the online music store and streaming platform. (If you’re unfamiliar, go to bandcamp.com, search “Vermont,” then click on the hyperlink that says, “music tagged with ‘vermont.’” You’ll be glad you did.) Recently, during one such virtual excursion, I came across Thomas Nöla’s Night of the Umbrella. Nöla was new to me, but he’s lived in Brattleboro for about six years. After connecting via email, he explained that he operated a label called Disques de Lapin in his former city of Boston. In fact, he revealed, just a few weeks earlier he had put the imprint to rest after 14 years, choosing to release music

Marcie Hernandez, Amanecer (SELF-RELEASED, DIGITAL, VINYL)

It’s such a welcome surprise when a debut kicks you directly in the head — figuratively, of course. Such is the case with Amanecer, the first LP from Marcie Hernandez. The local singersongwriter and certified music therapist has spent years building a network of collaborators and fans in Burlington. That includes three years working on her first full-length album, which is all the better for it Despite a modest seven-song track list, this project covers a lot of ground and straddles myriad genres. Yet Amanecer could hardly be called eclectic. This is a cohesive record whose polished songs make for a formidable journey. Along the way, Hernandez grapples with both personal and political turmoil, reflected through the lens of her Puerto Rican heritage. Amanecer is a heavy album for






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National Adoption Month ational Adoption Month National Adoption Month Every child needs a forever family

ery child needs a forever family family Every child needs a forever National Adoption Month Every child needs a forever family

Makayla, young adult formerly in foster care. Mary Metevier, mother of Michelle Colburn, DCF kayla, young adult formerly in foster care. Mary Metevier, mother of Michelle Colburn, DCF Resource Coordinator. For Makayla, learning to cope with in the traumacare. of her past is seven adopted mother children.of Makayla, adult Mary Metevier, Michelle Colburn, DCF Resource Coordinator. Makayla, learning toyoung cope with theformerly trauma of herfoster past is seven adopted children. “Unconditional love and Makayla, young adult formerly in foster care. Mary Metevier, mother of Michelle Colburn, DCF part of her “story.” Now 22 and happily married, she recalls Resource Coordinator. seven adopted children. Makayla, learning to cope with the is “Our son came to us when he “Unconditional love and of her For “story.” Now 22 and happily married, shetrauma recalls of her past “Our sonResource came to us when he structure — that’s what comes Coordinator. 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The andof we21,” adopted her at the compassion. “I’ve developed a profound passion to advocate thriving, and has held onto a kind of resilience born out of of 21,”child built from “When our there.” son was 17 age she says. child and wesays. adopted her at the relationship passion.thriving, “I’ve developed aheld profound passion to advocateborn out and has onto a kind of resilience of relationship built from there.” age of 21,” she was 17 didn’t for youth like medeveloped who’ve been throughpassion similartosituations.” compassion. “I’ve a profound advocate “Now, she is 33 and she’s “When our heson realized “When our son he was 17 want age of 21,” she says. youth like me who’ve been through similar situations.” “Now, she is 33 and she’s compassion. “I’ve profound passion to advocate he realized hetodidn’t want for youth like me developed who’ve beena through similar situations.” doing she wonderful. “Now, is 33 andShe’s she’sa very “When ourthe son was 17 age of system he realized heout didn’t want doing wonderful. She’s a very “EVERY CHILD IN THE FOSTER CARE SYSTEM HAS A for youth like me who’ve been through similar situations.” “Now, sheShe’s is 33a and she’s to age out of the system doing wonderful. very hard worker, serves in the he he didn’t to agewithout outrealized of the system a family, so hewant ERY CHILD IN THE FOSTER CARE SYSTEM HAS A hard worker, serves in serves the “EVERY IN THE FOSTER CARE SYSTEM HAS A STORY.CHILD YOU MAY NEVER KNOW THE WHOLE TRUTH without without a family, so he doing wonderful. She’s a very hard worker, theworks National Guard inand a family, so he to age out of the asked Ken and mesystem if we ORY. YOU MAY NEVER KNOW THE WHOLE TRUTH National Guard and works “EVERY CHILD IN THE FOSTER CARE SYSTEM HAS A STORY. YOU MAY NEVER KNOW THE WHOLE TRUTH National Guard and worksbeautiful and meand ifadopt we hard worker, serves in the asked Ken full time with three OF WHAT SOME OF US HAVE BEEN THROUGH.” asked would Ken mefamily, ifhim.” we so he without a full time with three beautiful WHAT SOME OFYOU USSOME HAVE BEEN THROUGH.” full National time with three OF WHAT US HAVE BEEN THROUGH.” STORY. MAYOF NEVER KNOW THE WHOLE TRUTH Guard and works would adopt children. She’s beautiful a wonderful wouldhim.” adopt him.” asked and mefor if we “HeKen advocated himself children. She’s a wonderful Foster Care In Vermont. children. She’s a wonderful mother and works very hard at full time with three beautiful OF WHAT SOME OF US HAVE BEEN THROUGH.” “He advocated for himself would adopt him.” “He advocated for himself ter Care Foster In Vermont. Care In Vermont. and found his own family,” she works very hardin mother and works very hard at From their first day in state care, the goal is to returnmother and relationships family.” children. She’s aatthe wonderful and found own family,” she andhis found his own family,” she m their first day in state care, the goal is to return From their first day in state care, the goal is to return adds“He proudly. advocated for himself relationships in the family.” relationships in the family.” Foster Care In Vermont. children to their parents — safely. When that can’t happen, mother and works very hard at proudly. adds proudly. adds children to their parents — safely. When that can’t happen, dren to their parents — safely. When that can’t happen, and found his own family,” she From day inwho state care, the goal is to return wetheir look first for others can provide permanence. This relationships in the family.” we look forcan others who permanence. can provide permanence. This ook for children others who provide This ►  For more information about foster care and adds proudly. to their parents — friends, safely. When can’tand happen, includes relatives, family fosterthat parents, otherFor more ►  For more information about foster care and ►  information about foster care and includes relatives, family friends, foster parents, and other udes relatives, friends, foster and other we known lookfamily forconnections. others who can parents, provide permanence. This adoption, gohttp://imreadytohelp.vt.gov to http://imreadytohelp.vt.gov . known connections. . adoption, go to wn connections. ►  For more information about foster care and adoption, go to http://imreadytohelp.vt.gov . includes relatives, family friends, foster parents, other There arecurrently currently over 1,100 children andand youth like Read “Foster Care: Every ChildA Story,” Has A Story,” Mary of Collins of There are over 1,100 children and youth like ReadCare: “Foster Care: Every Child Has byCollins MarybyCollins There are currently over 1,100 children and youth like Read “Foster Every Child Has A Story,” by Mary of known connections. . adoption, go to http://imreadytohelp.vt.gov Makaylaininfoster fostercare care Vermont. DCF’s Family Services Division, at sevendaysvt.com/fostering. Makayla in in Vermont. DCF’s Family Services Division, at sevendaysvt.com/fostering. ayla in foster care in Vermont. DCF’s Family Services Division, at sevendaysvt.com/fostering. There are currently over 1,100 children and youth like Read “Foster Care: Every Child Has A Story,” by Mary Collins of Makayla in foster care in Vermont. DCF’s Family Services Division, at sevendaysvt.com/fostering. SEVEN DAYS NOVEMBER 25-DECEMBER 2, 2020



movies The Social Dilemma ★★★★


ur streaming entertainment options are overwhelming — and not always easy to sort through. This week, I watched Netflix’s blistering documentary about social media, The Social Dilemma, which played at the Sundance Film Festival in January. Since the streaming service released it in September, it’s been generating a lot of buzz on — you guessed it — social media.

The deal

Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google, Instagram, Pinterest ... If you think these are marvelous free tools designed to inform, connect and entertain you, think again. “If you’re not paying for the product, you are the product,” warns Tristan Harris, a former Google designer who cofounded the Center for Humane Technology. Director Jeff Orlowski has assembled a cast of talking heads who understand social media networks because they helped build them — former high-ups at Twitter, Apple, Facebook and more. They describe how those networks are designed to be physiologically addictive, delivering dopamine hits like slot machines while selling our attention to the highest bidder. They caution against the “fake, brittle popularity” that social media offer and tie it to the growing rates of self-harm and suicide among teenagers. Finally, the film details the threats that misinformation can pose to democracy when social networks give it viral reach.


With Facebook’s full ban on QAnon content less than two months behind us, and hashtags promoting conspiracy theories about the presidential election still trending, that aspect of the story continues to unfold before our eyes.

Will you like it?

For all its topicality, The Social Dilemma doesn’t break any big news. If you’ve been following what people like Harris and Jaron Lanier (Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now) have been saying for years, nothing here will surprise you. But it’s still powerful and persuasive to see all the arguments summed up in one place. Where Orlowski stumbles is in dramatizing those arguments. Experts sitting in office chairs admittedly aren’t so fun to watch for 94 minutes, but the doc doesn’t gain much from a series of scripted interludes attempting to show how the dynamics of “surveillance capitalism” play out in the real world. We watch as the world’s most generic suburban family argues over its social media use, until hangdog teenager Ben (Skyler Gisondo) succumbs to the siren song of his phone and slips down an alt-right rabbit hole. This playlet does feature amusingly surreal scenes in which Vincent Kartheiser (Pete Campbell on “Mad Men”) plays three personified AIs who scheme to monopolize Ben’s attention like an evil version of the emotions in Inside Out. Overall, though, this tacked-on family drama is reminiscent of the 2014 handwringing-about-the-internet movie Men, Women & Children — that is, terrible.

ANTISOCIAL Orlowski’s documentary explores how connecting online can end up tearing people apart.

The Social Dilemma is a better movie when it sticks with the “boring” experts, many of whom speak eloquently about how social media magnify both the good and the bad in human nature. It’s natural for humans to care what other humans think of them, for instance, Harris reflects. But “Were we evolved to be aware of what 10,000 people think of us?” While they wax alarmist at times, these talking heads aren’t Luddites who expect you to smash your phone and go live in an unwired hut. They, too, are trying to figure out how to navigate what Harris calls “simultaneous utopia and dystopia.” The doc is perhaps at its most compelling when they speak of their own struggles with dependence on particular social feeds or even email. As the credits roll, these witnesses offer some simple pieces of advice — turn off all of your nonessential notifications! — that are no less vital for being obvious. The message that we need to reclaim control of our virtual lives may not be bold or new, but it bears repeating until it takes.

If you like this, try...

• Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected World (2016; YouTube, Tubi, Hulu, rentable): While it may not be the most of-the-moment documentary about internet culture, Werner Herzog’s quirky take on the subject is fascinating. • Terms and Conditions May Apply (2013; rentable): Cullen Hoback’s documentary takes a deep dive into all the ways we surrender our right to privacy every time we click “agree” on a new app. • Eighth Grade (2018; Amazon Prime Video, rentable): What if you poured out your soul on YouTube and nobody clicked? While the dramatic interludes in The Social Dilemma leave something to be desired, this indie drama from Bo Burnham — himself a YouTube star — offers a believable and poignant portrait of a girl coming of age enmeshed in social networks. MARGO T HARRI S O N



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NOW PLAYING AMMONITEHHH1/2 In Victorian England, a pioneering female paleontologist (Kate Winslet) and a society woman (Saoirse Ronan) find love in this period drama from writer-director Francis Lee. (120 min, R; Savoy Theater) BUDDY GAMESH1/2 The Hunger Games for dads? A group of old friends test their bond by entering a wacky competition in this comedy from director, cowriter and star Josh Duhamel, with Dax Shepard and Olivia Munn. (90 min, R; Essex Cinemas) FREAKYHHH1/2 A high schooler (Kathryn Newton) gets body-swapped with a serial killer (Vince Vaughn), and … hilarity ensues? Christopher Landon (Happy Death Day) directed the horror comedy. (101 min, R; Essex Cinemas, Sunset Drive-In) THE GRINCHHH1/2 Dr. Seuss’ tale of a green grouch determined to ruin Christmas gets a new animated rendition with the voices of Benedict Cumberbatch, Rashida Jones, Angela Lansbury and Pharrell Williams. Yarrow Cheney (The Secret Life of Pets) and Scott Mosier directed. (90 min, PG; Sunset Drive-In) HAPPY DEATH DAYHHH In this horror twist on Groundhog Day, a girl must relive the day of her murder until she figures out whodunit. Jessica Rothe and Israel Broussard star. Christopher Landon (Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse) directed. (96 min, PG-13; reviewed by Margot Harrison in 2017; Sunset Drive-In) THE LAST VERMEERHHH Guy Pearce plays an artist accused of collaborating with the Nazis and Claes Bang is the officer investigating him in this postwar period drama from director Dan Friedkin. (117 min, R; Essex Cinemas)

LET HIM GOHHH Diane Lane and Kevin Costner play a retired sheriff and his wife who are determined to find their missing grandson after their son’s death in this crime drama from director Thomas Bezucha (The Family Stone). (114 min, R; Essex Cinemas) SOUND OF METALHHHH Riz Ahmed plays a heavy metal drummer who finds himself losing his hearing in this drama from director Darius Marder (screenwriter of The Place Beyond the Pines). With Olivia Cooke and Paul Raci. (130 min, R; Savoy Theater) VANGUARDHH Jackie Chan stars in this Hong Kong action flick about an accountant who turns to a private security firm for help against a lethal mercenary organization. Stanley Tong directed. (108 min, PG-13; Essex Cinemas) THE WAR WITH GRANDPAHH Forced to share a room with his grandfather (Robert De Niro), a kid (Oakes Fegley) goes on the offensive to get his space back in this family comedy directed by Tim Hill (Hop). With Uma Thurman and Rob Riggle. (94 min, PG; Essex Cinemas) WOLFWALKERS: An apprentice wolf hunter in Ireland discovers a different point of view in this family animation from the makers of The Secret of Kells, featuring the voices of Honor Kneafsey, Eva Whittaker and Sean Bean. (103 min, PG; Savoy Theater)


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Thank you for being a part of our community This holiday season FPF gives thanks to all our members and advertisers. Our communities are stronger, brighter and better because of you. Let’s continue to band together in resilience by supporting our neighbors and local businesses however we can through these challenging times. Stay connected at frontporchforum.com.

ADULT 3-WEEK CLIMBING CLINICS: Join our certified instructors in an inviting and fun atmosphere, meet new people, and build or improve your climbing. Classes range from beginner to intermediate and lead climbing for co-ed and women’s groups. COVID-19 restrictions apply. No experience necessary! Visit petracliffs.com for details & registration information. Tue., Thu. & Fri. nights, starting Dec. 1. Cost: $165 /person for gear, 3 sessions, & either a month of membership or additional punch-card visits, depending on class. Location: Petra Cliffs Climbing Center, 105 Briggs St., Burlington. Info: Andrea Charest, 657-3872, andrea@petracliffs. com, petracliffs.com.

culinary HOLIDAY GIFTS FROM THE KITCHEN: Join Chef Emery online making chocolate mint crackles, citrus and jam birdsnest cookies, and infused herbal teas. Use ingredients from your garden or local source and cook with environmental sustainability in mind! Learn to present and properly ship your homemade gifts. Preregister by December 1 for instructions, recipes and more. Sat., Dec. 5, 2020, 10 a.m.-noon. Cost: $15 /person; $10/member of BF&M. Location: Online via Zoom, presented by Billings Farm & Museum. Info: Billings Farm & Museum, Marge Wakefield, 4572355, mwakefield@ billingsfarm.org, billingsfarm. org/backyardworkshop.


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DJEMBE & TAIKO: JOIN US!: Digital classes! (No classes on-site for now.) Taiko: Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Djembe: Wednesday. Kids and Parents: Tuesday and Wednesday. Private digital conga lessons by appointment. Let’s prepare for a future drum gathering outdoors! Schedule/ register online. Location: Taiko Space, 208 Flynn Ave., Suite 3G, Burlington. Info: 999-4255, burlingtontaiko.org.

language EXPERIENCED NATIVE PROFESSOR OFFERING ONLINE SPANISH CLASSES: Premier native-speaking Spanish professor

Maigualida Rak is giving fun, interactive online lessons to improve comprehension and pronunciation and to achieve fluency. Audio-visual material is used. “I feel proud to say that my students have significantly improved their Spanish with my teaching approach.” -Maigualida Rak. Read reviews on Facebook at facebook.com/spanish onlinevt. Location: Maigualida Rak, Online. Info: Maigualida Rak, spanishtutor.vtfla@gmail.com, facebook.com/spanishonlinevt. SPANISH CLASSES LIVE & ONLINE: Join us for adult Spanish classes this winter, using online video conferencing. Learn from a native speaker via small group classes, individual instruction or student tutoring. You’ll always be participating and speaking. Lesson packages for travelers, lessons for children. Our 15th year. See our website or contact us for details. Beginning week of Jan. 4, 10 weeks. Cost: $270 /10 weekly classes of 90+ min. each. Location: Spanish in Waterbury Center, Waterbury Center. Info: 585-1025, spanish paravos@gmail.com, spanish waterburycenter.com.

martial arts VERMONT BRAZILIAN JIUJITSU: Brazilian jiujitsu is a martial arts combat style based entirely on leverage and technique. Brazilian jiujitsu self-defense curriculum is taught to Navy SEALs, CIA, FBI, military police and special forces. No training experience required. Easy-to-learn techniques that could save your life! Classes for men, women and children. Students will learn realistic bully-proofing and self-defense life skills to avoid becoming victims and help them feel safe and secure. Our sole purpose is to help empower people by giving them realistic martial arts training practices they can carry with them throughout life. IBJJF and CBJJ certified black belt sixth-degree instructor under Carlson Gracie Sr.: teaching in Vermont, born and raised in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. A five-time Brazilian National Champion; International World Masters Champion and IBJJF World Masters Champion. Accept no Iimitations!. Location: Vermont Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, 55 Leroy Rd., Williston. Info: 598-2839, julio@ bjjusa.com, vermontbjj.com.

massage CHINESE MEDICAL MASSAGE: This program teaches two forms of East Asian medical massage: Tui Na and shiatsu. We will explore oriental medicine theory and diagnosis, as well as the body’s meridian system, acupressure points, and yin-yang and five-element theory. Additionally, Western anatomy and physiology are taught. VSAC nondegree grants are available. FSMTB-approved program. Starts Sep. 2021. Cost: $6,000 /625-hour program. Location: Elements of Healing, 21 Essex Way, Suite 109, Essex Jct. Info: Scott Moylan, 2888160, scott@elementsofhealing. net, elementsofhealing.net.

spirituality BLUE HOLIDAY WORKSHOP & RITUAL: Not everyone is cheery for the holidays, especially this year. Some experience illness, isolation, economic uncertainty, hidden grief or loss. This workshop is a safe space of acknowledgment and acceptance. We will include time for conversation, meditation, ritual and sharing coping strategies for getting through the season. All are welcome. Sun., Dec. 6, & Mon., Dec. 14, 7 p.m. Cost: $8, $12 or $16, sliding scale. Location: online, n/a. Info: Rites of Passage, LLC, Kristabeth Atwood, 825-8141, riteso fpassagevt@gmail.com, seven daystickets.com/organizations/ rites-of-passage-llc.

sustainability ZERO WASTE 101: HOLIDAY CHEER: Come learn the basic principles of living zero waste and how to prepare for a zerowaste holiday with Marina McCoy & Alexandra Thompson from Waste Free Earth. In this online workshop, they will empower attendees to reinvent how they produce and consume waste, especially during the holiday season. Wed., Dec. 9, noon. Cost: $25. Location: Online via Zoom. Info: Waste Free Earth, Marina McCoy, 345-5897, marina@ wastefree.earth, sevendays tickets.com/events.

yoga EVOLUTION YOGA: Come as you are and open your heart! Whether you’re new or have practiced for years, find support you need to awaken your practice. Offering livestream and recorded classes. Give the gift of yoga with a gift card on our website. Flexible pricing based on your needs; scholarships avail. Contact yoga@evolutionvt.com. Single class: $0-15. Weekly membership: $10-25. 10-class pass: $140. New student special: $20 for 3 classes. Location: Evolution Yoga, 20 Kilburn St., Burlington. Info: 864-9642, evolutionvt.com.



Thanks, NENPA!

We’re excited to announce that Seven Days was named NEW ENGLAND NEWSPAPER OF THE YEAR last week at a virtual awards ceremony hosted by the New England Newspaper & Press Association! Seven Days competes in the large-circulation weekly category against dozens of other newsweeklies around the region. We’re honored by this recognition.



Seven Days also received two “Publick Occurrences’” awards for:

— Worse for Care —


“WORSE FOR CARE," a joint investigation by Seven Days and Vermont Public Radio that exposed safety violations in Vermont’s stateregulated eldercare facilities. The series was produced at VPR by EMILY CORWIN and MARK DAVIS, and at Seven Days by DEREK BROUWER,

— Newspaper of the Year — “They appear to cover stories that are controversial and that other papers may not cover. Lots of coverage of important local issues but also interesting and thought provoking articles. Extensive coverage of all types of entertainment.”

MATTHEW ROY, CANDACE PAGE, ANDREA SUOZZO and JAMES BUCK. "GUARDED SECRETS," an investigation into Vermont’s prison system written by PAUL HEINTZ.

“CAPTURES THE READERS’ ATTENTION.” “The investigative nature of the articles made for compelling content.”


Salmon busted poacher PAG E 12

COM AYS VT. ER 4-11 , 201 9

VOL .25

NO. 11


“I would read this every week.”

Guar Secredt ed s

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sevendaysvt.com/super-readers. Or send a note (and a check) to: Seven Days c/o Super Readers, P.O. Box 1164, Burlington, VT 05402.



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— Guarded Secrets —


WORSE FOR CA RE WELL VERSED Staffing senior woes at homes PAGE 16

Want to help us keep the presses rolling?

ext. 36 or superreaders@sevendaysvt.com.

, PAG E 30



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The Seven Days team has reinvisioned our weekly Notes On the Weekend newsletter to include creative, constructive and fun ways to spend your time from a safe social distance.

From virtual yoga classes to delicious recipes, movie suggestions and crafting ideas there is something for everyone asking NOW what?

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AGE/SEX: 12-year-old neutered male ARRIVAL DATE: October 9, 2020 REASON HERE: He was found as a stray. SUMMARY: With his unique markings, big eyes and very pettable floof, Topaz is one gem of a cat. This Super Senior is way past the party stage and is looking for a quiet retirement home where he can relax and snuggle with his people. We don’t know much about Topaz’s past, but his future looks bright with a loving family by his side. If you’re looking for a senior cat with a lot of love left to give, schedule a visit with Topaz today! Call 862-0135 or visit hsccvt.org for more info.

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2012 MINI COOPER COUPE Black, 83,803 miles. 6-speed transmission. 38-41 MPG. 2 sets of factory rims, snow tires already mounted for winter. $6,500/OBO. 802-291-4056. 2017 SUBARU CROSSTREK Superior, wellmaintained Crosstrek Limited. Leather heated seats, power tilt moonroof & cargo rails, 4WD. $21,000. Call 802-846-9292.

Route 15, Hardwick 3842 Dorset Ln., Williston


display service ads: $25/$45 homeworks: $45 (40 words, photos, logo) fsbos: $45 (2 weeks, 30 words, photo) jobs: michelle@sevendaysvt.com, 865-1020 x21

WINOOSKI 2-BR 2-BR, 2nd-floor apt. in Winooski. Gas stove, full BA, LR. No pets. Offstreet parking. $1,200/ mo. Call 864-0341.

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FOR RENT AFFORDABLE 2-BR APT. AVAIL. At Keen’s Crossing. 2-BR: $1,266/mo., heat & HW incl. Open floor plan, fully applianced kitchen, fi tness center, pet friendly, garage parking. Income restrictions apply. 802-655-1810, keenscrossing.com. BURLINGTON Single room, Hill Section, on bus line. No cooking. Linens furnished. 862-2389. No pets.

CLASSIFIEDS KEY appt. appointment apt. apartment BA bathroom BR bedroom DR dining room DW dishwasher HDWD hardwood HW hot water LR living room NS no smoking OBO or best offer refs. references sec. dep. security deposit W/D washer & dryer

EQUAL HOUSING OPPORTUNITY All real estate advertising in this newspaper is subject to the Federal Fair Housing Act of 1968 and similar Vermont statutes which make it illegal to advertise any preference, limitations, or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, marital status, handicap, presence of minor children in the family or receipt of public assistance, or an intention to make any such preference, limitation or a discrimination. The newspaper will not knowingly accept any advertising for real estate, which is in violation of the law. Our


We Pick Up & Pay For Junk Automobiles!


CARS/TRUCKS 2012 KIA FORTE, HATCHBACK Clean, 1 owner. Auto., 4-door, 4 cylinders, bronze color. 113,500 miles. Asking $5,500/ OBO. Call Doris at 802-999-9844 or email sageconnection@gmail. com.

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3- OR 4-BR APT. Apt. w/ living area. Upstairs has kitchen, BA + additional room. Gas HW & heat, HDWD floors. $1,700/mo. + utils. Call 864-0341.

KEEN’S CROSSING IS NOW LEASING! 1-BR, $1,054/mo.; 2-BR, $1,266/mo.; 3-BR, $1,397/mo. Spacious interiors, fully applianced kitchen, fi tness center, heat & HW incl. Income restrictions apply. 802-655-1810, keenscrossing.com. PINECREST AT ESSEX Joshua Way, Essex Jct. Independent senior living for those 55+ years. 1-BR avail. now, $1,240/mo. incl. utils. & parking garage. NS/ pets. 802-872-9197 or rae@fullcirclevt.com. TAFT FARM SENIOR LIVING COMMUNITY 10 Tyler Way, Williston, independent senior living. Newly remodeled 1-BR unit on the ground floor, w/ restricted view avail., $1,095/mo. incl. utils. & cable. NS/pets. Must be 55+ years of age. cintry@fullcirclevt. com, 802-879-3333. TAFT FARM SENIOR LIVING COMMUNITY 10 Tyler Way, Williston, independent senior living. Newly remodeled 1-BR unit on the main floor avail., $1,185/ mo. incl. utils. & cable. NS/pets. Must be 55+ years of age. cintry@ fullcirclevt.com or 802-879-3333.

readers are hereby informed that all dwellings advertised in this newspaper are available on an equal opportunity basis. Any home seeker who feels he or she has encountered discrimination should contact: HUD Office of Fair Housing 10 Causeway St., Boston, MA 02222-1092 (617) 565-5309 — OR — Vermont Human Rights Commission 14-16 Baldwin St. Montpelier, VT 05633-0633 1-800-416-2010 hrc@vermont.gov


SMALL ROOM DOWNTOWN, NOW In stylishly Clorox-clean, remodeled house. Respectful living w/ others in this new normal (wash hands prior to entering building; disinfect BA, kitchen & common areas after use). Wi-Fi, cable, W/D on-site, back porch, garden. Tobacco outside only. Inside: 420-friendly. Mo.-tomo., $600/mo. + $100 dep. Incl. all utils. Don Shall: 802-233-1334.


print deadline: Mondays at 4:30 p.m. post ads online 24/7 at: sevendaysvt.com/classifieds questions? classifieds@sevendaysvt.com 865-1020 x10

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OFFICE/RETAIL SPACE AT MAIN STREET LANDING on Burlington’s waterfront. Beautiful, healthy, affordable spaces for your business. Visit mainstreetlanding.com & click on space avail. Melinda, 864-7999.

310 Hurricane Ln., Suite 1, Williston, VT

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APPLIANCES/ TOOLS/PARTS 2 METAL TOOL BOXES 2 metal tool boxes w/ drawers & tray. $25. Many tools also avail. 540-226-4478, texts OK. rcserves@hotmail. com.



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COUPLE HOPING TO ADOPT Kind & fun-loving VT couple can provide a safe & loving home for your baby. If you are pregnant & considering adoption, we would welcome hearing from you. jonandtessa.weebly. com, 802-272-7759.

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11/19/20 2:21 PM


Share apartment with avid sports & music fan in his 50s. No rent in exchange for errands, occas. transportation & evening help w/ meals, etc. Shared BA. No smoking.

BURLINGTON Share home w/ lively woman in her 80s who enjoys the arts & long walks. Seeking housemate to share some meals, conversation & help around the house. $250/mo. Familiarity with memory loss ideal. Private BA.

JOHNSON Share a newer home w/ active, professional couple. $550/mo. plus occas. help with pets. Private BA.

Finding you just the right housemate for over 35 years! Call 863-5625 or visit HomeShareVermont.org for an application. Interview, refs, bg check req. EHO

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11/20/20 3:33 PM


Using the enclosed math operations as a guide, fill the grid using the numbers 1 - 6 only once in each row and column.





numbers 1-9 only once in each row, column and 3 x 3 box.

1 6 6 2

5 6x

2 8 4 9 3



Open 24/7/365.

View and post up to Post & browse ads Complete the following puzzle by using the 6 photos per ad online. at your convenience.

3 3-

3÷ 11+

ShowSudoku and tell.



7 4 8 4 9 3

9 7

Extra! Extra! There’s no limit to ad length online.

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5 4


Difficulty - Hard



No. 664



Difficulty: Medium




Fill the grid using the numbers 1-6, only once in each row and column. The numbers in each heavily outlined “cage” must combine to produce the target number in the top corner, using the mathematical operation indicated. A onebox cage should be filled in with the target number in the top corner. A number can be repeated within a cage as long as it is not the same row or column.

Place a number in the empty boxes in such a way that each row across, each column down and each 9-box square contains all of the numbers one to nine. The same numbers cannot be repeated in a row or column.











1 4 6 2 5 crossword 5
















4 5 8 1 3 2 6 9 7 ANSWERS 1 6ON P.266 8 9 7 3 5 4 H = MODERATE HH = CHALLENGING HHH = HOO, BOY! 3 9 7 5 4 6 2 1 8 7 2 9 3 8 4 1 6 5 6 8 3 2 1 5 7 4 9 DIRECTLY ON TOP ANSWERS ON P. 665» 4 1 6 7 9 8 2 3 9 3 5 7 2 1 4 8 6 2 7 6 4 5 8 9 3 1 8 1 4 9 6 3 5 7 2



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SEVENDAYSVT.COM/DAILY7 8v-daily7-coffee.indd 1

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REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONALS: List your properties here and online for only $45/week. Submit your listings by Mondays at noon to homeworks@sevendaysvt.com or 802-865-1020, x10.


Call or email Katie Hodges today to get started: 865-1020 x10, homeworks@sevendaysvt.com

If you have a disability for which you need accommodation in order to participate in this process (including








4 4 4x 5 1 6 3 9 7 3 ÷2 6 8 5 4 9 3 2 7 8 1


2 6 5 1

8 1 23 ÷ 8 7 5 9 3 315+ 2 1 6 5 7 6 4 4 9 4-

3 9 6x 4 8 1 7 2 5 6

3 2 4 5

1 5 3 6

4 3 6 2

2 6 3-9 7 7 3 5 4 6 2 1 8 43- 1 6 5 548x 7 4-4 9 9 8 2 3 1 4 8 6 8 Difficulty 9 3- Hard 1 3 5 7 2




ACT 250 NOTICE MINOR APPLICATION #4C077515,4C0663-15 10 V.S.A. §§ 6001 - 6093 On October 7, 2020, Vermont Agency of Transportation, 219 North Main Street, Barre, VT 05641 filed




Using the enclosed math operations as a guide, fill the grid using the numbers 1 - 6 only once in each row and column. No. 664



Difficulty: Medium




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REHEARSAL SPACE Safe & sanitary music/ creative spaces avail. by the hour in the heart of the South End art district. Monthly arrangements avail., as well. Tailored for music but can be multipurpose. info@ burlingtonmusicdojo. com, 802-540-0321.

No hearing will be held and a permit may be issued unless, on or before December 9, 2020, a person notifies


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GUITAR INSTRUCTION Berklee graduate w/ 30 years’ teaching experience offers lessons in guitar, music theory, music technology, ear training. Individualized, step-by-step approach. All ages, styles, levels. Rick Belford, 864-7195, rickb@rickbelford.com.


The District 4 Environmental Commission is reviewing this application under


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If you feel that any of the District Commission members listed on the attached Certificate of Service under “For Your Information” may have a conflict of interest, or if there is any other reason a member should be disqualified from sitting on this case, please contact the District Coordinator as soon as possible, and by no later than December 9, 2020.



BASS, GUITAR, DRUMS, VOICE LESSONS & MORE Remote music lessons are an amazing way to spend time at home! Learn guitar, bass, piano, voice, violin, drums, flute, sax, trumpet, production & beyond w/ pro local instructors from the Burlington Music Dojo on Pine St. All levels & styles are welcome, incl. absolute beginners. Come share in the music! burlington musicdojo.com, info@ burlingtonmusicdojo. com.

6/6/16 4:30 PM

status under 10 V.S.A. § 6085(c)(1)(E) must include a petition for party status under the Act 250 Rules. Prior to submitting a request for a hearing, please contact the district coordinator at the telephone number listed below for more information. Prior to convening a hearing, the Commission must determine that substantive issues requiring a hearing have been raised. Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law may not be prepared unless the Commission holds a public hearing.


FREE FURNITURE ITEMS Vintage vanity dresser, 7 drawers, w/ mirror & bench; top surface fair condition, drawers good. Solid wood bed headboard, for 3/4-size bed. 802-879-6206.


the Commission of an issue or issues requiring the presentation of evidence at a hearing, or the Commission sets the matter for a hearing on its own motion. Any person as defined in 10 V.S.A. § 6085(c)(1) may request a hearing. Any hearing request must be in writing to the address below, must state the criteria or sub-criteria at issue, why a hearing is required and what additional evidence will be presented at the hearing. Any hearing request by an adjoining property owner or other person eligible for party




Act 250 Rule 51 - Minor Applications. A copy of the application and proposed permit are available for review at the office listed below. The application and a draft permit may also be viewed on the Natural Resources Board’s web site (http:// nrb.vermont.gov) by clicking on “Act 250 Database” and entering the project number “4C0775-15,4C0663-15.”


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application number 4C0775-15,4C0663-15 for a project generally described as construction of a new bicycle and pedestrian path along Route 2A between Hurricane Lane and the property located at 2777 Saint George Road in Williston, Vermont. The project also includes signage, grading and stormwater improvements. The application was deemed complete on November 12, 2020.


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HARMONICA LESSONS W/ ARI Online harmonica lessons! All ages & skill levels welcome. First lesson just $20. Avail. for workshops, too. Pocketmusic. musicteachershelper. com, 201-565-4793, ari.erlbaum@gmail.com.


846.9551 Krista802RealEstate.com


Krista Lacroix


Sited on 73 acres with vineyard in the countryside of Isle Lamotte, this custom built home features luxurious details throughout. The open floor concept offers a first floor bedroom, office, and open kitchen with vaulted ceilings. Appreciate lake views from the 2nd floor with 2 bedrooms, full bath, large bonus room, & stunning owners suite. A finished basement with game room & wet bar is the perfect place to unwind. Ask for more photos & info. $479,900

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participating in a public hearing, if one is held), please notify us as soon as possible, in order to allow us as much time as possible to accommodate your needs. Parties entitled to participate are the Municipality, the Municipal Planning Commission, the Regional Planning Commission, affected state agencies, and adjoining property owners and other persons to the extent that they have a particularized interest that may be affected by the proposed project under the Act 250 criteria. Non-party participants may also be allowed under 10 V.S.A. Section 6085(c)(5). Dated at Essex Junction, Vermont this 13th day of November, 2020. By: /s/Rachel Lomonaco_ Rachel Lomonaco, District Coordinator 111 West Street Essex Junction, VT 05452 802-879-5658 rachel.lomonaco@ vermont.gov

BURLINGTON DEVELOPMENT REVIEW BOARD Tuesday, December 15th, 2020, 5:00 PM PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE REMOTE MEETING Zoom: https://us02web. zoom.us/j/823079953 95?pwd=emVaSkxUY0 gza2haQ09DQnRoWmV6QT09 Webinar ID: 82307995395 Password: 842557 Telephone: +13017158592 or +13126266799 or +19292056099 or +12532158782 or +13462487799 or +16699006833 1. 21-0358CA/CU/VR; 40 Kingsland Terrace (RL, Ward 6S) Kellen Brumsted and Katie Mensen Remove existing garage; construct new garage with 770 square foot accessory dwelling unit. 2. 21-0226HO; 132 North Champlain Street (RM, Ward 3C) Appellant: Israel Smith Appeal of administrative decision for a home occupation at 132 North Champlain Street. 3. 21-0377CU; 12-22 North Street (NMU, Ward 3C) AJ Rossman and Burlington School District Burlington Tech Center space for educational use

4. 2021 Board Meeting Calendar Review of calendar for Board meetings scheduled in 2021. Development Review Board, Design Advisory Board, Technical Review Committee, and Conservation Board. Plans may be viewed upon request by contacting the Department of Permitting & Inspections between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Participation in the DRB proceeding is a prerequisite to the right to take any subsequent appeal. Please note that ANYTHING submitted to the Zoning office is considered public and cannot be kept confidential. This may not be the final order in which items will be heard. Please view final Agenda, at www. burlingtonvt.gov/dpi/ drb/agendas or the office notice board, one week before the hearing for the order in which items will be heard.

PUBLIC HEARING SCHEDULED ON APPLICATION FOR CERTIFICATE OF APPROVAL SUBMITTED BY HOWARD CENTER FOR THE PROPOSED PURCHASE OF PROPERTY LOCATED AT 180-184 PEARL STREET IN BURLINGTON, VT. The Vermont Departments of Disabilities, Aging, and Independent Living (DAIL) and of Mental Health (DMH) (collectively, Departments) have determined that a Certificate of Approval (COA) application from Howard Center for the purchase of a property located at 180-184 Pearl Street in Burlington, Vermont, is complete. The property, to which the application applies, is the current location of Howard Center’s Act 1 and Bridge programs and includes a commercial space and nine residential units/ apartments. The COA application and related attachments and tables are posted on the DAIL and DMH websites. This application will be the subject of an upcoming public hearing and public comment period. The hearing is scheduled for December 1, 2020, from 10:00am to 11:00am. Those interested in attending may join using the following information: Join Microsoft Teams Meeting: +1802-828-7667 Conference ID: 374522616# The applicant will offer a brief overview of the proposed project, after

which the public will be invited to comment. DAIL and DMH representatives will be in attendance at the hearing. DAIL and DMH will also be accepting written public comment, which must be submitted no later than 4:30 pm on December 8, 2020. Please direct comments to Frank Reed, Director of Mental Health Services, Vermont Department of Mental Health, 280 State Drive, NOB 2 North, Waterbury, VT 05671 - 2010, or electronically to frank. reed@vermont.gov. All public comments received by December 8, 2020, will be reviewed, and DAIL and DMH will make a determination as to whether to grant a Certificate of Approval. Link to Documents: https://dail.vermont. gov/public-notices-andhearings https://mentalhealth. vermont.gov/news/ coa-howard-center108-184-pearl-street


District Court, PO Box 511, Burlington, VT 05402-0511

STATE OF VERMONT PROBATE COURT DISTRICT OF CHITTENDEN SS. DOCKET NO.: 952-8-20 CNPR In re the Estate of Richard T. Jeroloman Late of Burlington, Vermont NOTICE TO CREDITORS To the creditors of the estate of Richard T. Jeroloman late of Burlington, Vermont: I have been appointed personal representative of the above-named estate. All creditors having claims against the estate must present their claims in writing within four (4) months of the date of publication of this Notice. The claim must be presented to me at the address listed below with a copy filed with the register of the Probate Court. The claim will be forever barred if it is not presented as described above within the four (4) month deadline.

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Signed /s/ Albert A. Cicchetti, Exec. Print name: Albert A. Cicchetti Address: c/o Little & Cicchetti, P.C. P.O. Box 907, Burlington, VT 05402-0907 802-862-6511 Name of Publication: Seven Days Publication Date: 11/25/2020 and 12/2/20 Address of Probate Court: Chittenden District Court, PO Box 511, Burlington, VT 05402-0511

Dated November 18, 2020

F36 - District Equity PolicyCopies of the above policies may be obtained for public review at the Office of the Human Resources Dept. in Shelburne, VT.

Name of Publication: Seven Days Publication Date: 11/25/2020 and 12/2/20 Address of Probate Court: Chittenden

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Dated November 18, 2020

To the creditors of the estate of Richard C. Adams late of Hinesburg, Vermont: I have been appointed personal representative of the above-named estate. All creditors having claims against the estate must present their claims in writing within four (4) months of the date of publication of this Notice. The claim must be presented to me at the address listed below with a copy filed with the register of the Probate Court. The claim will be forever barred if it is not presented as described above within the four (4) month deadline.

Signed /s/ David Hamilton Print name: David Hamilton Address: c/o Little & Cicchetti, P.C. P.O. Box 907, Burlington, VT 05402-0907 802-862-6511

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WARNING: POLICY ADOPTION, CHAMPLAIN VALLEY SCHOOL DISTRICT The Board of School Directors gives public notice of its intent to adopt local district policies dealing with the following at its meeting scheduled on December 15, 2020:

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10/20/15 4:32 PM

Map 4.4.5-2 Waterfront RM Height Exemptions 3. through 8. renumbered as 2. through 7., otherwise as written. Sec. 4.4.6

Recreation, Conservation and Open Space Districts

CITY OF BURLINGTON IN THE YEAR TWO THOUSAND TWENTY AN ORDINANCE IN RELATION TO Sec. 4.4.6As Recreation, (a) Purpose written Conservation and Open Space Districts COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – 311 NORTH AVE REZONE, PARKS LOT COVERAGE (a) Purpose As written (b) Dimensional Standards STANDARDS, WRM HEIGHT EXEMPTION ZA #20-09 (b) Dimensional Standardsand andDensity Density The densityand andintensity intensityofof development, dimensions of building lots, the heights of buildings ORDINANCE 6.05 The density development, dimensions of building lots, the heights of buildings and theirand Page their Sponsor: Department of Planning, Planning Commission, Ordinance Com. Public Hearing Dates: 11/09/20 setbacks from property boundary lines, and the3limits on lot coverage be governed by governed the following setbacks from property boundary lines, and the limits on lotshall coverage shall be by the First reading: 08/10/20 standards: An Ordinance instandards: Relation to COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – following Referred to: Ordinance Committee 311 North Rezone, parks lot coverage standards, WRM Height Page Table 4.4.6 -1 Dimensional Standards 3andAve Rules suspended and placed in all stages of passage: Density

An Ordinance in Relation to


District Lot Setbacks Height It is hereby Ordained by the City Council of the City of Burlington as follows: ZA #20-09 311 North Ave Rezone, parks lot coverage standards, WRM Coverage1 That Appendix A, Comprehensive Development Ordinance, of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Exemption Burlington be and hereby is amended by deleting Section 4.4.5(d)(2), Height, amending Map 4.3.1-1, Base Front Side2 Rear2 ZA #20-09 Zoning Districts, Map 4.4.5-1, Residential Zoning Districts, Map Tables 4.4.6-1 and 4.4.6-2, Recreation, RCO-A 5% 15’ 10% 25% 35’ Conservation, Open Space Districts, thereof to read as follows: Page Sec. 4.4.5 Residential Districts 2 RCO-RG 5% 15’ 10% 25% 35’ in 1.See also exceptions to lot coverage, setbacks and maximum height (a) – (c) As written. An Ordinance in Relation to COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – RCO-C 5% 15’ 10% 25% 25’ (d) District Specific Regulations Article 5​. also exceptions to lot coverage, setbacks and maximum height in 1. Setbacks- As Written 311 North Ave Rezone, parks lot coverage standards, WRM1.See Height 2.Percentages figure refers to either a percentage of lot width, 10% in the 2. Height Article 5​. Exemption case of side yard setbacks, or lot depth of 25% in the case of rear yard A. Exceptions in the Waterfront RM District. 2.Percentages figure refers to either a percentage of lot width, 10% in the In order is to preserve vistas of harbor activity within the breakwater area and panoramic views of the ZA #20-09 setbacks. case of side yard setbacks, or lot depth of 25% in the case of rear yard mountain and lake from adjoining areas yet provide for additional development opportunities near the 3.City Parks have specific lot coverage maximums based on use and setbacks. downtown area of the city, the maximum building height which may be permitted by the DRB shall be no location. See table of lot lot coverage coveragemaximums standards based below.on use and more than sixty (60) feet in the area beyond two hundred (200) feet inland from the ordinary high water 3.City Parks have specific mark and below a base elevation of one hundred eighty (180) feet in the Waterfront Residential – Medium location. See table of lot coverage standards below. Density district.


Table 4.4.6 -2 City Park Lot Coverage Maximum Standards Table Standards Park4.4.6 -2 City Park Lot Coverage Maximum Lot Coverage Park Lot 10% Coverage Texaco Beach/Cambrian Rise Texaco 10%15% Baird Beach/Cambrian Rise Baird 15% Battery Park and Extension Battery Park and Extension Calahan Calahan Champlain Street Champlain Street Leddy Leddy NorthBeach Beachand andCampground Campground North Oakledge Oakledge Schmanska Schmanska Smalley Smalley Staff Staff Farm Farm Appletree 20%20% Appletree Lakeside Lakeside Waterfront 25%25% WaterfrontPark Park City 30%30% City Hall HallPark Park Pomeroy Pomeroy Roosevelt Roosevelt Perkins Pier 1​ 1 70% Perkins Pier ​ 70% 1. Perkins Pier is a marina facility. 1. Perkins Pier is a marina facility. (c)


-(c)(d) As written - (d) As written

- (d) As written

**See attached map excerpts identified as Excerpt of Base Zoning Map 4.3.1-1 for Proposed ZA-20-09, Excerpt of Residential Districts Map 4.4.5-1 for Proposed ZA-20-09, Excerpt of Recreation, Conservation, **See attached mapDistricts excerpts identified asProposed Excerpt ZA-20-09, of Base Zoning Map 4.3.1-1 for Proposed ZA-20-09, Open Space Map 4.4.6-1 for changes as indicated in each corresponding legend, consistent with the map4.4.5-1 excerpt. Excerptattached of Residential Districts Map Proposed ZA-20-09, of Recreation, Conservation, **See map excerpts identified as for Excerpt of Base ZoningExcerpt Map 4.3.1-1 for Proposed ZA-20-09, ** Material stricken out deleted. Open Space Districts Map 4.4.6-1 for Proposed ZA-20-09, changes as indicated in each corresponding Excerpt ofMaterials Residential Districts Map 4.4.5-1 for Proposed ZA-20-09, Excerpt of Recreation, Conservation *** Underlined Added

Map 4.4.5-2 Waterfront RM Height Exemptions 3. through 8. renumbered as 2. through 7., otherwise as written.

legend, consistent withMap the map excerpt. Open Space Districts 4.4.6-1 for Proposed ZA-20-09, changes as indicated in each corresponding legend, consistent with the map excerpt.

3. through 8. renumbered as 2. through 7., otherwise as written. VT




7 12



** Material stricken out deleted. Sec. 4.4.6 Recreation, Conservation and Open Space Districts ** Material stricken out deleted. (a) Purpose As written (b) Dimensional Standards and Density The density and intensity of development, dimensions of building lots, the heights of buildings and their setbacks from property boundary lines, and the limits on lot coverage shall be governed by the following standards: RCO-C



Table 4.4.6 -1 Dimensional Standards and Density District Lot Setbacks1 1 Coverage Front Side2 Rear2 RCO-A 5% 15’ 10% 25% RCO-RG 5% 15’ 10% 25% RCO-C 5% 15’ 10% 25% RCORG



Lake Champlain

Base Zoning Districts Downtown Core (FD6)

Downtown Center (FD5)


Lake Champlain



Downtown Waterfront - Public Trust (DW-PT) Neighborhood Mixed Use (NMU)

Neighborhood Activity Center- Cambrian Rise (NAC-CR) Civic Spaces


Enterprise - Agricultural Processing and Energy (E-AE) Enterprise - Light Manufacturing (E-LM)

Enterprise - Agricultural Processing and Energy

35’ 35’ 25’

Institutional (I) Neighborhood Activity Center (NAC) Residential - High Density (RH)


Residential - Medium Density (RM) Waterfront Residential - Medium Density (RM-W) Residential - Low Density (RL)


Waterfront Residential - Low Density (RL-W) Urban Reserve (UR) RCO - Agriculture RCO - Recreation/Greenspace (RCO-RG RCO - Conservation (RCO-C)



Change from WRM to RCO

RCO Districts Residential - High Density (RH)

RCO - Agriculture

Residential - Medium Density (RM)

RCO - Conservation

Waterfront Residential - Medium Density (RM-W)



Burlington Comprehensive Development Ordinance, Map 4.3.1-1 Proposed ZA-20-09


RCO - Recreation/Greenspace

Residential - Low Density (RL) Waterfront Residential - Low Density (RL-W)

Change from WRM to RCO-RG

Change from WRM to RCO

Excerpt of Base Zoning Districts Map CITY OF BURLINGTON


Residential Districts

Excerpt of Residential Districts Map CITY OF BURLINGTON

Burlington Comprehensive Development Ordinance, Map 4.4.5-1 Proposed ZA-20-09

Excerpt of Recreation, Conservation, Open Space Districts Map CITY OF BURLINGTON

Burlington Comprehensive Development Ordinance, Map 4.4.6-1 Proposed ZA-20-09


CITY OF BURLINGTON IN THE YEAR TWO THOUSAND TWENTY AN ORDINANCE IN RELATION TO COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – FRONT YARD PARKING ZA #20-07 ORDINANCE 6.03 Sponsor: Office of City Planning, Planning Commission, Ordinance Committee Public Hearing Dates: 11/09/20 First reading: 08/10/20 Referred to: Ordinance Committee Rules suspended and placed in all stages of passage: _ Date: 11/09/20 Signed by Mayor: 11/10/20 Published: 11/25/20 Effective: 12/16/20 It is hereby Ordained by the City Council of the City of Burlington as follows:


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Page 2 An Ordinance Relation to parking COMPREHENSIVE ORDINANCE – aboveinparagraph, spaces mayDEVELOPMENT be located within a driveway in Front Yard Parking front of garages that have been converted to habitable space. ZA #20-07

That Appendix A, Comprehensive Development Ordinance, of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Burlington be and hereby is amended by amending Sections 8.1.12(c), Front Yard Parking Restricted, and 6.2.2(i), Vehicle Access, thereof to read as follows: Sec. 8.1.12 Limitations, Location, Use of Facilities (a) - (b) As written. (c) Front Yard Parking Restricted and Residential Driveways: Required pParking spaces in all residential zoning districts shall not be located to the side or rear of the principal residential structure. Parking spaces shall not be located within a front yard setback except within a driveway and located to the side or rear of the principal residential structure. in a required front yard setback area abutting a public street, except alleys. This prohibition extends from the edge of the public right-of-way into the required front yard setback for the entire width of the property with the exception of a single access drive no more than eighteen feet (18’) or less in width. Notwithstanding the

Figure 8.1.12-1 (Illustrative purposes only)

It is hereby Ordained by the City Council of the City of Burlington as follows: That Appendix A, Comprehensive Development Ordinance, of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Burlington be and hereby is amended by amending Section 4.4.2(d)(3)(B), Senior Housing, Sec. 4.4.5(d) District Specific Regulations, and Table 4.4.5-5, Senior Housing Bonus, thereof to read as follows: Sec. 4.4.2 Neighborhood Mixed Use Districts (a) – (c) As written. (d) District Specific Regulations 1. – 2. As written. 3. Development Bonuses/Additional Allowances The following exceptions to maximum allowable base building height and FAR in Table 4.4.2-1 above may be approved in any combination subject to the maximum limits set forth in Table 4.4.2-2 below at the discretion of the DRB. The additional FAR allowed shall correspond to the proportion of the additional building height granted to the maximum available. A. Inclusionary Housing As written. B. Senior Housing A maximum of an additional 10-feet of building height, and corresponding FAR, may be permitted at the discretion of the DRB in the NAC and NAC-Riverside districts where no less than twenty-fi ve per cent (25%) of the total number of onsite units are reserved for low-moderate income senior households as defined by state or federal guidelines, including no less than ten percent (10%) reserved for low-income households. The total gross floor area dedicated to the senior housing shall be equivalent to the gross floor area resulting from the additional allowance. Increased lot coverage allowance for senior housing in these districts shall be the same as for inclusionary

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(d) - (h) As written. Sec. 6.2.2 Review Standards (a) – (h) As written. (i) Vehicular Access: Curb cuts shall be arranged and limited in number to reduce congestion and improve traffic safety. A secondary access point from side roads is encouraged where possible to improve traffic flow and safety along major streets. The width and radius of curb cuts should be kept to the minimum width necessary, and sight triangles and sufficient turnarounds for vehicles shall be provided to reduce the potential for accidents at points of egress.

The provisions of this subsection shall not be applicable during such The provisions of this shall not be applicable duringtosuch times as20-56 when the times as when thesubsection winter parking ban pursuant Section of winterCode parking pursuant to Section 20-56 of the Code of Ordinances is in effect. outside the ofban Ordinances is in effect. Where parking is provided Where parking is provided outside front partially yard setback, either partially or entirely the front yard setback, but the either orbut entirely between the between the structure principle structure and the street, such shallshall be screened to the extent principle and the street, suchparking parking be screened to practicable from view from the public street. the extent practicable from view from the public street. Residential Residential driveways shall a minimumof of 77 feet feet inin width or consist of two 1.5’ driveways shall be a be minimum width or consist of driveway two strips made of pavement or pervious pavement. The maximum width for single or shared 1.5’ driveway strips made of pavement or pervious pavement. The access driveways shall be 18’ except where a physical barrier taller than 6” (other than a maximum width for single or shared access be 18’ structural column) exists along one side of the parking stall. driveways In such cases, shall the maximum except a physical barrier than 6” exists (other than structural width maywhere be increased by 1’. Where such taller a physical barrier along bothasides of the parking stall,exists the maximum beof increased by 2’. Install. a residential district, column) alongwidth onemay side the parking In such cases, the driveways and width parking may areas shall be set back a minimum of 5’ from sideaand rear property maximum be increased by 1’. Where such physical barrier lines. Driveways that have a slope of 5% or greater (towards the right of way) shall be exists bothincluding sides ofconventional the parking stall,pavers the maximum width may made of aalong solid surface pavement, or pervious pavement. be increased by 2’. In a residential district, driveways and parking areas shall be set back a minimum of 5’ from side and rear property ** Material stricken outBURLINGTON deleted. CITY OF (d) - (h) As written. lines. *** Material underlined added. Page Driveways that have a slope of 5% or greater 2 (towards the right of way) shallinbe made ofto a solid surface including conventional An6.2.2 Ordinance Relation COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – Sec. Review Standards pavement, pavers or pervious pavement. (i) Vehicular Access:

ORDINANCE 6.05 CITY OF BURLINGTON IN THE YEAR TWO THOUSAND TWENTY AN ORDINANCE IN RELATION TO COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE - CONVALESCENT HOME LOT COVERAGE ZA #20-08 ORDINANCE 6.04 Sponsor: Department of Planning, Planning Commission, Ordinance Committee Public Hearing Dates: 11/09/20 First reading: 08/10/20 Referred to: Ordinance Committee Rules suspended and placed in all stages of passage: Second reading: 11/09/20 Action: adopted Date: 11/09/20 Signed by Mayor: 11/10/20 Published: 11/25/20 Effective: 12/16/20

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Residential driveways shall be a minimum of seven (7) feet in width or consist of two (2) two (2) foot driveway strips made of pavement or pervious pavement. The maximum width for single or shared access driveways shall be eighteen (18) feet. In a residential district, driveways and parking areas shall be set back a minimum of fi ve (5) from side and rear property lines. Driveways that have a slope of fi ve (5) percent or greater (towards the right of way) shall be made of a solid surface including conventional pavement, pavers or pervious pavement. Driveways for commercial properties may require a traffic study to identify the impacts of the movement of traffic to and from the property, and design for safe access. Access for service and loading areas should be located behind buildings or otherwise screened from streets or public ways with landscaping or other barriers. Whether commercial or residential, shared driveways are encouraged, where possible and appropriate. (j) – (p) As written.

(a) – (h) As written.


Show and tell.

Convalescent Home Lot Coverage ZA #20-08

ORDINANCE 6.07 Sponsor: Office of City Planning, Planning Commission, Ordinance Committee Public Hearing Dates: 11/09/20

In the Year Two Thousand Twenty _____________________________ Curb cuts shall be Sec. arranged and limited in number to reduce congestion and improve traffic safety. A housing (See 9.1.12). CITY OF BURLINGTON IN THE YEAR TWO THOUSAND TWENTY First reading: 10/19/20 secondary access Bonus point fromAs side roads is encouraged where possible to improve traffic flow and C. Maximum written. AN ORDINANCE IN RELATION TO COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT Referred to: ___________________ Table 4.4.2 -2: Maximum Building with Bonuses As written. safety along major streets. The width and radiusFAR of curband cuts should be keptHeights to the minimum width Table 4.4.2 -2: Maximum FAR and Building Heights with Bonuses ORDINANCETEMPORARY TENTS ZA#21-02 necessary, and sight triangles and sufficient turnarounds for vehicles shall be provided to reduce An the Ordinance in Relation to Rules suspended and placed in all As written. potential for accidents at points of egress. Sec. 4.4.5 Residential Districts stages of passage: ______________ ORDINANCE 6.07 Sec. 4.4.5 Residential Districts SecondOrdinance reading: 11/09/20 Sponsor: Office of City Planning, Planning Commission, (a) (a) – (c)–As (c)written. As written. Action: adopted Committee (d) District Specific Regulations Date: 11/09/20 Public Hearing Dates: 11/09/20 Districtregulations Specific Regulations Signed by Mayor: 11/10/20 The(d) following are district-specific exceptions, bonuses, First reading: 10/19/20 Published: 11/25/20 and standards unique to the residential districts. Th ey are in addition The following regulations are district-specific exceptions, bonuses, and standards unique to the Referred to: ____ Effective: 12/16/20 5 of this to, or may modify, city-wide standards as provided in Art.icle residential districts. They are in addition to, or may modify, city-wide standards as provided in Art.icle Rules suspended and placed in all stages of passage ordinance and district standards as provided above. 5 written. of this ordinance and district standards as provided above. It is hereby Ordained by the City Council of the City of Burlington as follows: 1.- 6. As It is hereby OrdainedDevelopment by the City Councilofofthe the City of Burlington That Appendix A, Comprehensive Ordinance, Code of Ordinances of the as City of 7. Residential Development 1.- 6. As written. Bonuses follows: That Appendix A, Comprehensive Development Ordinance, The following exceptions to maximum allowable residential densityBurlington be and hereby is amended by amending Section 5.1.2(f), Temporary Structures, thereof to read as of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Burlington be and hereby is 7. Residential Development and dimensional standards in TablesBonuses 4.4.5-2 and 4.4.5-3 may be ap-follows: amended by amending Section 5.1.2(f), Temporary Structures, thereof proved in any combination subject to the maximum limits set forth in The following exceptions to maximum allowable residential and standards in to read asdimensional follows: Sec. density 5.1.2 Structures Table 4.4.5-8 at the discretion of the DRB. Any bonuses that are given Sec. 5.1.2to Structures 4.4.5-2 and 4.4.5-3 mayfuture be approved any combination the maximum limits set pursuant toTables this ordinance now or in the shall bein regarded as Exceptsubject as otherwise provided by law or by this ordinance, no structure in any district shall be created, Except asgiven otherwise provided by law or by this ordinance, no forth in Table at the discretion of the DRB. Any bonuses that are to this removed or altered exceptpursuant in conformance with the provisions of this Article and the requirements of the an exception to the limits4.4.5-8 otherwise applicable. structure in any district shall be created, removed or altered except in district which such land or structure is located. ordinance now or in the future shall be regarded as an exception toin the limits otherwise applicable. A. Senior Housing Bonus conformance with the provisions of this Article and the requirements Residential development in excess of the density, lot coverage and A. Senior Housing Bonus (a) -of (e)the As district Written. in which such land or structure is located. building height limits specified in Tables 4.4.5-2 and 4.4.5-3 may (a) - (e) As Written. be permittedResidential by the DRB development for senior housing provided following in excess of thethe density, lot coverage and building height limitsThe administrative officer may approve a (f) Temporary Structures: (f) Temporary Structures: conditions are met: in Tables 4.4.5-2 and 4.4.5-3 may be permitted by the DRB for senior housing specified temporary structure that is incidental accessory to a principal useto a The administrative officer may approve a temporaryand structure that is incidental and accessory (i) No less than twenty-fi (25) per cent of the are total number of units provided thevefollowing conditions met: principal to the following: subjectuse tosubject the following: shall be reserved for low-moderate income households as defined by state or federal including no less(25) thanper ten cent (10) per centtotal number (i)guidelines, No less than twenty-five of the of units shall be reserved for No Review or Permit Site Plan Review: Review as per reserved for low-income households. (Projects taking of or federal low-moderate income households as advantage defined by state guidelines, including noPermit less & COA Required Zoning Underlying Zoning this bonus are exempt from the Inclusionary Zoning requirements of A structure placed up to 10 A structure placed from A structure placed over 31 than ten (10) per cent reserved for low-income households. (Projects taking advantage of consecutive days or 30 11-31 consecutive days or consecutive days or more Article 9, Part 1.); this bonus are exempt from the Inclusionary Zoning requirements of Article 9, Part 1.); days within any 12-month 31-60 days within any 12 within any 12 month (ii) The proposal shall be subject to the design review provisions of period at the same month period at the same period at the same Art. 6; (ii) The proposal shall be subject to the design review provisions of Art. 6; location, is no longer location. location. (iii) A maximum of an additional 10-feet of building height may be Page considered a temporary A maximum height may be permitted in the2 RH permitted in (iii) the RH District; and, of an additional 10-feet of building An Ordinance in Relation to COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – structure. District; and, (iiii) Lot coverage and residential densities shall not exceed the Tents used for recreational Temporary Tents following: camping ZA #21-02 (iv) Lot coverage and residential densities shall not exceednon-commercial the following: purposes.

Table 4.4.5-5: Senior Housing Bonus District Maximum Coverage RL/RL-W 40 44% RM 50 48% RM-W 60 72% RH 80 92%

Tents as defined in Chapter 3 of NFPA 101 for non-residential purposes, as approved by the Burlington Fire Marshal, placed up to 180 days within any 12-month period at the same location.

Maximum Density 20 du/ac 40 du/ac 40 du/ac 80 du/ac

B. – D. As written. ** ***

** Material stricken out deleted. *** Material underlined added.

Material stricken out deleted. Material underlined added.

Say you saw it in...

** ***

Material stricken out deleted. Material underlined added.


lb/KS/Ordinances 2020/Zoning Amendment – ZA #21-02, Temporary Tents, Sec. 5.1.2(f) 10/15/20; 11/5/20





CITY OF BURLINGTON IN THE YEAR TWO THOUSAND TWENTY AN ORDINANCE IN RELATION TO COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – DAYCARE AND PRESCHOOL IN RCO DISTRICT ZA #21-01 ORDINANCE 6.06 Sponsor: Office of City Planning, Planning Commission, Ordinance Committee Public Hearing Dates: 11/09/20 First reading: 10/19/20 Referred to: __ Rules suspended and placed in all stages of passage It is hereby Ordained by the City Council of the City of Burlington as follows: That Appendix A, Comprehensive Development Ordinance, of the Code of Ordinances of the City of Burlington be and hereby is amended by amending Sections 5.4.1, Small and Large Day Care Centers and Small and Large Preschools, Table 8.1.8-1, Minimum Off Street Parking Requirements, Section 13.1.2, Definitions, and Appendix A, Use Table, thereof to read as follows: Sec. 5.4.1 Small and Large Day Care Centers and Small and Large Preschools In addition to the provisions of Art 3, Part 5 for conditional uses, and applicable site and design review standards in Art 6, the following additional regulations shall be applicable to an application involving a small day care center or, large day care center, small preschool, or large preschool where such uses are treated as conditional uses pursuant to Appendix A – Use Table: (a) No playground equipment shall be located within the front yard; (b) [Reserved] Page (c) The site plan review shall insure adequate and safe2drop-off and pickup space is provided and that traffi c problems are created;to An Ordinance innot Relation COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – (d) Any additions, signage, or site improvements shall bePreschool residential in in character; Daycare and RCO District (e) The facility shall be licensed by the State of Vermont; ZA #21-01 (f) No more than one residential unit may be converted for the creation of a single small day care center, large day care center, small preschool, or large preschool. Such a conversion shall be exempt from the requirements of Article 9, Part 2- Housing Replacement; and, (g) The neighborhood is not overburdened with other small day care centers, large day care centers, small Sec. 8.1.8 Minimum Parking Requirements preschools, or large preschools. Sec. A 8.1.8 Minimum Parking minimum numberRequirements of off-street parking spaces for all uses and structures shall be A minimum number of off-street parking spaces for all uses and structures shall be provided in accordance accordance with Table 8.1.8-1 below. with Table 8.1.8-1 below. (a) – (c) As written.

(a) – (c) As written.

Table 8.1.8-1 Minimum Off-Street Parking Requirements Neighborhoo d District

Shared Use District

Multimoda l Mixed-Use District

Per Dwelling Unit except as noted ***


Per Dwelling Unit except as noted *** Per 1,000 square feet of gross floor area (gfa) except as noted *** *** ***

RESIDENTIAL USES—Special *** NON-RESIDENTIAL USES *** Daycare - Large (Over 20 children) (per two (2) employees)

1 plus 1 drop-off per 5 children

1 plus 1 drop-off per 5 children


Daycare - Small (20 children or less) (per two (2) employees)

1 plus 1 drop-off per 5 children

1 plus 1 drop-off per 5 children





School – Preschool Large (over 20 children) (per two (2) employees)

1 plus 1 drop-off per 5 children

1 plus 1 drop-off per 5 children


School – Preschool Small (up to 20 children) (per two (2) employees

1 plus 1 drop-off per 5 children

1 plus 1 drop-off per 5 children



Sec. 13.1.2 Definitions For the purpose of this ordinance certain terms and words are herein defined as follows: Unless defined to the contrary in Section 4303 of the Vermont Planning and Development Act as amended, or defined otherwise in this section, definitions contained in the building code of the City of Burlington, Sections 8-2 and 13-1 of the Code of Ordinances, as amended, incorporating the currently adopted edition of the American Insurance Association's "National Building Code" and the National Fire Protection Association's "National Fire Code" shall prevail. Additional definitions specifi cally pertaining to Art. 14 planBTV: Downtown Code can be found in Sec. 14.8, and shall take precedence without limitation over any duplicative or conflicting definitions of this Article. Day Care Center: (See Article 5 for specific provisions.) (a) Family Day Care Home: For the purposes of this ordinance, family day care home shall have the same meaning as that set forth in 24 V.S.A. sec. 4412 (5). (b) Small Day Care Center: A state licensed daycare facility. serving no more than twenty (20) full- time children in total. (c) Large Day Care Center: A state-licensed facility providing day care services for more than twenty (20) full-time children. School: The academic space and accessory uses for the teaching of children or adults. (a) Primary: elementary school, inclusive of grades Page 4 K-8. (b) Secondary: a high school and/or vocational center for attendance after elementary/primary school, An Ordinance in Relation to COMPREHENSIVE DEVELOPMENT ORDINANCE – granting a high school diploma for levels of education inclusive of grades 9-12. Daycare and Preschool in RCO colleges, District universities, or continuing (c) Post-Secondary: after high school, including colleges, community ZA #21-01 education. (d) Trade or Professional: a school that offers instruction in skilled trades. (e) Small Preschool: a school providing educational services for children from 3 years of age until their (f)first Large Preschool: school providing educational services to children from 3 years of age until admission to grade and thatamay include kindergarten., serving no more than twenty (20) full-time children in total. their admission to first grade and that may include kindergarten, for more than twenty (20) (f) Large Preschool: a school providing educational services to children from 3 years of age until their full-time total.include kindergarten, for more than twenty (20) full- time children in admission to first gradechildren and thatinmay total.


Appendix A-Use Table-All Zoning Districts

provided in

Urban Reserve

Recreation, Conservation & Open Space


Downtown Mixed Usei


Neighborhood Mixed Use




























































*** NAC-C R





























































































































































Daycare-Larg e (Over 20 children) (see Sec. 5.4.1) Daycare-Smal l (Up to 20 children) Day Care Center (see Sec. 5.4.1) Daycare—Fa mily Home ***

School-Presch ool Large (over 20 children) (see Sec. 5.4.1) School—Pres chool Small (up to 20 children) (see Sec. 5.4.1) ***



1. – 7. As written. 8. Small daycareDay Care centers and small preschools in the RCO zones shall only be allowed as part of when a small museums is the principal use. and shall constitute less than 50% of the gross floor area of the museum. 9. - 32. As written


As written.

Legend: As written.

* Material stricken out deleted. ** Material underlined added.

*** Sec. 13.1.2 Definitions


Making it is not :(

For the purpose of this ordinance certain terms and words are herein defined as follows:

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Test Kitchen Associate

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National food magazine seeks full-time recipe tester/developer. 2h-Spectru111120.indd 1 11/9/20 10:43 AM Candidate will demonstrate knowledge of food science, cooking, recipe testing and Request for Proposals development. Must be able Regional Child & Youth Advocacy Project Coordination to shop for ingredients; read and write recipes The Vermont Network Against Domestic and Sexual Violence according to brand style; seeks a contractor to provide leadership and coordination for accurately record testing a regional project that provides supportive services to promote results; present recipes to healing and increase safety and well-being for children and adults impacted by sexual harm or/and intimate partner violence in tasting panel. northeastern Vermont, as well as education and prevention. Find more information and instructions for how to submit a proposal at vtnetwork.org/employment-opportunities.


Join our team of like-minded and diverse adventurers. The Lodge at Spruce Peak is hiring for Ski Valet this winter! • Full-time and part-time positions available. • Must be 16 years or older. Competitive Pay & Benefit Options. • Free Stowe Ski Pass for all employees that work 20+ hours a week. • Enjoy a flexible schedule that lets you to ski during the day! Apply online at SprucePeak.com/Careers. E.O.E.

Apply online at: homeinstead.com/483 Or call: 802.860.4663


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Minimum 5 years’ experience in food preparation and/or culinary science training or comparable experience.

Home Instead Senior Care, a provider of personal care services to seniors in their homes, is seeking friendly and dependable people. CAREGivers assist seniors with daily living activities. P/T & F/T positions available. 12 hours/week minimum, flexible scheduling, currently available. $13-$17.50/hour depending on experience. No heavy lifting.

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2/24/20 1:02 PM

Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital (NVRH) has a variety of Special Consideration openings available, including Priority will be given to proposals from individuals or consulting entities RNs, LNAs, Ultrasound Cover letter & resumes only: owned by individuals who identify as a person of color. BIPOC applicants Technologist, Radiologic foodjobs@eatingwell.com. are encouraged to identify as such in their proposal. We seek a contractor with a demonstrated commitment to anti-oppression work and ending Technologist, Sr. Multi-Modality E.O.E. violence, especially in the lives of children and youth. Technologist and Medical Lab Technician or Medical Technologist. NVRH also has Administrative Positions, Food 3v-EatingWell111820.indd 1 11/17/20 1:50 PM Buyer Service and Environmental Services openings. Shift differentials and per diem rates offered! Select is looking for a talented and experienced order management lead to own the oversight and day-to-day outcomes for key clients on our brandhub™ technology platform that ensures on-time delivery of consumer brand activation assets into market. Responsibilities: manage via brandhub™ application all work flow and production status with suppliers, maintain activity and communication with third party logistics (3PL) partners, and distribute accurate shipping and receiving details to all parties. Qualifications: 3-5 years experience working with third party suppliers and 3PL partners, knowledge of an order lifecycle and product logistics, and user competence of ERP and order management software. Bachelor degree preferred. Apply: careers@selectdesign.com Full Listing: www.selectdesign.com/careers 208 Flynn Ave., Burlington, VT (802) 864.9075

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Full-time, part-time and per diem positions available. Excellent benefits including student loan repayment, wellness reimbursement, low cost health plan choice and more! For information to apply, visit nvrh.org/careers.

The Champlain Valley School District is in need of nurse substitutes for 4t-NVHR112520.indd coverage when regular school nurses are out. Competitive pay commensurate with experience. The ideal candidates will have the following qualifications: • Current, valid Vermont RN license • CPR and First Aid certified • Several years of clinical experience that includes pediatric and community/ family centered nursing Please contact the C.V.S.D. office for a substitute application at 383-1234, or apply online to schoolspring. com, job # 3405199.


11/24/20 11:51 AM


Howard Center is seeking a Shared Living Provider to provide a fulltime home to a social 16-year-old girl who likes animals and dancing. Ideal provider would be an excellent collaborator and have strong observation, interpersonal, and communication skills. This role requires a provider who is able to be engaging and compassionate while being able to establish routine/structure, provide consistent supervision, and follow a detailed support plan. Ideal applicant would have knowledge or experience related to mental health, developmental disabilities, and/or supporting teens. Compensation: $35,000 tax-free annual stipend and access to a generous respite budget. Interested applicants contact patfraser@howardcenter.org or call (802)871-2902.

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11/24/20 12:04 PM





Seeking 2 part-time colleagues to join our faculty in


Having relevant teaching experience, subject matter expertise, and advanced academic credentials and/or substantial practitioner experience in related fields is essential. Sterling encourages applications from candidates who have professionally demonstrated a commitment to interdisciplinary, experiential, outdoor-oriented, hands-on learning through study and work as well as our ecological thinking and action mission, and a commitment to pedagogy that integrates multicultural perspectives in the curriculum and promotes inclusion in the classroom. PO Box 72, 16 Sterling Drive, Craftsbury Common, Vermont 05827 U.S.A. | (802) 586-7711 | sterlingcollege.edu For complete position description & application instructions, visit:


New, local, scamfree jobs posted every day!

Legal Assistant Town Administrator/Manager

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The Town of Hinesburg, Vermont (population 4,600) is seeking candidates for the position of its first town manager pending a vote by Hinesburg voters in March of 2021. If the vote does not support a town manager, the position will remain a Town Administrator. Hinesburg currently has a Town Selectboard/strong Town Administrator form of government, and has a municipal budget of $4.2 million with 23 FT and PT municipal employees. Known for its engaged community, rural character, recreation opportunities, working landscape and green space, waterways (Lake Iroquois, etc.), vibrant village and a mix of industry and commerce, the town has the largest union high school enrollment in Vermont. With a great location in the Green Mountain foothills near Lake Champlain and access to Vermont’s largest city (Burlington, Chittenden County), Hinesburg is poised to grow significantly.

Busy Burlington Law Firm seeks a full-time Legal Assistant to provide support in both transactional and litigation practice areas. A minimum of two years’ experience in a law firm 5:36 PM setting is required. The ideal candidate will be professional and service-oriented, with strong computer and organizational skills. MSK focuses its practice on real estate, commercial transactions, and related litigation. We offer a competitive salary and benefits package, and a family friendly work environment. Please email your resume to Deborah Sabourin, Business Manager at dsabourin@mskvt.com.


The Selectboard is seeking an individual who is a collaborative team player with strong budget and financial management skills, experience developing and managing a team, and general knowledge of HR and collective bargaining, public works and emergency response operations. Candidates should also possess excellent communication, community engagement, organizational and problem-solving skills and have demonstrated leadership ability. Municipal management experience and a degree in public administration or related field are preferred, but candidates with comparable work experience are encouraged to apply. The successful candidate will receive an attractive compensation package including health and retirement plans and a competitive annual salary DOQ.

Howard Center is seeking a Shared Living Provider (SLP) for overnight support (8 pm - 8 am M-F, 4:30pm-8:30am weekends) of a creative adult with Autism Spectrum Disorders, Intellectual Disabilities and co-occurring issues. The provider will serve as a role model and support in the areas of: independent living, social skills, and personal care. Provider will be expected to: exhibit positive and healthy social role modeling, provide oversight of residence, comply with program safety and medication protocols and guidelines, respond to client needs and utilize emergency services as necessary, and collaborate with teammates to design, implement and maintain individual client plans. Provider will live rent-free in a house in downtown Burlington.

Hinesburg is an EOE and values diversity and inclusiveness in the community and workplace. Email resumes to dfrancis@hinesburg.org by January 19, 2021 and position will be open until filled or pending March vote.

Compensation includes annual tax-free stipend of $30,000/year and a generous respite budget. For more information or to request an application, contact Patrick Fraser at patfraser@howardcenter.org or 802-871-2902.

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Conservation Director MANAGING DIRECTOR We are seeking an entrepreneurial professional with organizational advancement chops who will take the Community Engagement Lab to the next level of organizational effectiveness and program impact. The new Managing Director will have a top-level leadership role in helping to execute the Lab’s vision, strengthen the business and fundraising operations, and shape strategies for achieving greater impact. Learn more: communityengagementlab.org/ employment.

Want to be part of a team that works to save wild places? Northeast Wilderness Trust is hiring for a Conservation Director. This full-time position requires land trust experience and has a salary commensurate with experience. Applications are due by December 31, 2020. Visit newildernesstrust.org to learn more and apply.

Full Time Receptionist Seeking a full time receptionist to join our beautiful Naturopathic Care Clinic in South Burlington. 32 to 40 hours a week. Salary depends on experience. Paid Vacation, retirement and heath care benefits offered. Send inquiries, resume and cover letter to: kk@mountainviewnaturalmedicine.com.

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BOOKKEEPER Wells Mountain in Bristol, Vermont is looking for a full time, full-charge bookkeeper to manage a portfolio of for-profit and non-profit entities. Must have experience with payroll, financial statements, bank reconciliation, and general bookkeeping. Associate’s or bachelor's degree in finance, accounting, preferred. Experience with 501c3 audits a plus. Salary commensurate with experience. Pleasant, collegial office working environment. Please submit a cover letter and resume to jobs@wellsmountain.com.

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11/23/20 10:21 AM


Help steward and grow our statewide network of grassroots supporters. The ideal candidate has strong communication skills and is efficient and detail oriented.

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Water Division Chief


Support our elections & government reform work through our Fellowship program, which allows you to make an immediate impact while giving you the training and hands on experience to be a leader in the non-profi t, campaigns, or policy fields. Find more information about both positions and instructions on how to apply at vpirg.org/jobs.

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Sanitation Manager


This is a professional position responsible for the oversite, supervision and coordination of operation, process control, regulatory compliance and strategic planning of the Town’s water system, and related public works activities. Work involves responsibility for organizing, directing, and reviewing the 3:42 PM work of employees engaged in water system maintenance activities. Work is performed under general administrative guidance from the Director of Operations.

Lake Champlain CHOCOLATES®

Are you a go-getter, policy-developer, process-creator, problem-solver, cleanerupper, team-builder, and safety & quality champion? If so, you may be the ideal candidate to develop and manage this critical scope of work at Lake Champlain Chocolates. This hands-on position requires an experienced manager with a proven track-record of effectively developing, leading, and performing all aspects of a sanitation program within a food manufacturing facility. Must have at least two (2) years of management experience and working knowledge of GMP and HAACP, preferred. To learn more, please visit lakechamplainchocolates.com/careers. EEO 5h-LakeChamplainChocolatesSANITATION112520.indd 1

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Educational requirements include a Bachelor of Science degree from an accredited college or university in Engineering, Chemistry, Biology, Environmental Science, or related field. At least five (5) years progressively more responsible experience in public works activities with hands-on working knowledge in a public water system, including supervisory and managerial experience. Any equivalent combination of training, education, and experience that provides the required skills, knowledge, and abilities. Work is performed in accordance with established work priorities, departmental operating procedures, and the Vermont Water Supply Rule. Included in activities of the Water Department will be participation in and supervision of the weekly and weekend, on-call rotation for water system monitoring. Complete job description and application may be obtained on-line at townofmiddlebury.org, at the Dept. of Public Works, or by calling (802) 388-4045. Submit applications to Bill Kernan at the Dept. of Public Works Office, 1020 Route 7 South, Middlebury, VT 05753.





VNRC LEGISLATIVE INTERNSHIP The Vermont Natural Resources Council is seeking a Legislative Intern to assist VNRC and our partners, Vermont Conservation Voters and the Vermont Planners Association, in moving forward-looking environmental legislation in the Vermont State House starting in early 2021. Ideal candidates will have a demonstrated interest in state-level policies and policy making, strong oral and written communication skills, and be diplomatic, curious, and able to take initiative. See VNRC website, vnrc.org, for full job description.

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General Manager The Central Vermont Solid Waste Management District – a nineteen-member union municipality located in Montpelier, Vermont -- is hiring a General Manager. The General Manager oversees nine full-time and five part-time manages an annual budget of $1 million and is responsible for the performance of the District. The primary role includes staff assistance to the Board of Supervisors in formulating and implementing policies, managing personnel and financial resources, and representing the District with municipalities, members of the public and solid waste partners. The General Manager’s duties include coordination of solid waste planning and implementing projects; budget and capital plan preparation and monitoring; human resources administration; oversight of ongoing programming and operations; personnel management; grant administration; compliance with federal and state laws; technical assistance to the Board of Supervisors, local officials, and persons requesting to communicate with the District.

11/16/20 4:04 PM employees,


ESSEX WESTFORD SCHOOL DISTRICT Do you love working with children and have an excellent driving record? The Essex Westford School District is seeking a full-time bus driver to transport special needs students to and from school, and a part-time minivan driver to transport special needs students to and from school, and to transport our high school students to the Burlington Technical Center. These positions will have additional duties related to COVID-19 such as screening students, ensuring students are following COVID safety practices, and assisting with sanitization of vehicles. Bus Driver: This full-time position is approximately 35 to 40 hours/week. Position pays $20.00/hour to drive a bus. Excellent benefits package available including family medical and dental; life insurance; paid sick/family, personal and holiday leaves; and a retirement plan with up to 6% employer contribution after two years of service. Candidates with a CDL class B with Passenger and School Bus endorsements preferred, but we would consider candidates with no CDL who would be willing to drive a minivan while training towards CDL. Training towards CDL available. Minivan Driver: This part-time position pays $18.00/hour and is available for up to 20 hours/week. Candidates must have a VT driver’s license with an acceptable driving record. Individuals with a CDL class B with Passenger and School Bus endorsements desirable to serve as a backup school bus driver. Training towards CDL available for interested applicants.

This is an exempt full-time position. Salary range of $62,000 to $82,000 (negotiated rate), plus generous benefits package. For full details please visit cvswmd.org. To apply, send resume, cover letter, writing sample and 3 references no later than December 11, 2020 to: administration@cvswmd.org. Or: General Manager Search, CVSWMD, 137 Barre Street, Montpelier, VT 05602.

follow us for the newest: twitter.com/ SevenDaysJobs

Bread Loaf Corporation is seeking an Administrative Assistant to provide clerical and administrative support to our Construction Department. Ideal candidates will have experience:  Processing bulletins to subcontractors, distributing specifications, plans and construction documents to subs and vendors.  Processing submittals and executing material contracts and change orders  Completing all project closeout requirements

Work schedule for either position may include a split shifts beginning as early as 6:00 am and ending as late as 5:00 pm. For consideration, please email cover letter and resume to jsmith2@ewsd.org, or email cover letter and resume to the address below. Applicants may also request an electronic or hard-copy application by contacting Jamie Smith at: 857-7037 or jsmith2@ews.org.

Bread Loaf offers a comprehensive benefits package including health/dental/vision insurances, flexible benefit plan, 401(k) with company match, disability and life insurance, paid vacation and a friendly work environment. We thrive on innovative ideas and excellent work.

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Come work for Vermont’s Integrated Company of Architects, Planners and Builders.

Preferred knowledge and experience include:  Proficiency in Microsoft Word and Excel  Knowledge of the construction industry/terminology  Ability to switch gears quickly and handle multiple projects simultaneously.

Essex Westford School District - Attn: Maxine Breuer 51 Park Street, Essex Jct., VT 05452

Find jobs on

Visit our Website, breadloaf.com, for a full description Submit your resume to resumes@breadloaf.com EOE

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SATURDAY DROP-OFF CENTER OPERATOR – FLOATER CSWD is seeking a highly motivated individual to work at various Drop-Off Centers on Saturdays, 7:45am-3:45pm. Must enjoy interacting with the public, have the ability to operate a cash register (training provided), and be able to keep cool under pressure on our busiest day of service. Moderate to strenuous physical effort is required as is the ability to work outdoors year-round. Customer service experience a plus. Self-starters and those with a passion for reducing waste, recycling, and composting, are strongly encouraged to apply. $16.85 per hour. See full job description & download application form at cswd.net/about-cswd/job-openings. Email a cover letter, along with a completed application form or a resume, to Amy Jewell at ajewell@cswd.net. Position is open until filled.

Looking for rewarding and steady work in these times of uncertainty? Join the Converse Home, an Assisted Living Community, located in the heart of Burlington. We currently have a 40 hour, fully benefited, nightshift position from 10:30pm-7:00am. Now is the time to make a career move into long term care, which is one of the fast-growing industries in Vermont and the world. Furthermore, it is an essential service that carries on during emergencies. Long term care communities house, care for, and feed people no matter what is going on in the world. This position will occasionally be in charge of shift so you must be able to pass our internal medication administration program. • $17.00/Hour for Starting LNA Pay • $4.00/hour Shift Differential • $1.00/hour Pandemic Pay Bump • Plus a $1,000 sign on bonus! All employees at The Converse Home must pass a criminal background check nationally. Please visit conversehome.com to apply online or email your resume to kellie@conversehome.com. 5h-ConverseHome112520.indd 1

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AFTERSCHOOL AND SCHOOL-AGE HUBS ARE HIRING! Do you love working with kids? Want to make a difference with youth in your community? Afterschool and school-age child care hubs across Vermont are hiring. Staff at these programs are a critical part of Vermont’s COVID-19 relief response, giving elementary school students support in a safe space on remote learning days and during the out-of-school time hours.

Lake Champlain

There are a variety of jobs for people who have experience working with youth, and are a great opportunity for those who might be home from college, high school grads taking a gap year, or anyone interested in positive youth development. Programs are especially keen to hire energetic, responsible, creative people who have diverse skills to share. Positions are short-term, full-time or part-time, and you must pass a background check. Jobs are inperson, and employers carefully follow COVID-19 health and safety protocols.

Director of Sales - Wholesale


Visit VermontAfterschool.org/Recruit to easily indicate your interest in applying for an open position near you. 5h-VTAfterschool111120.indd 1

11/9/20 4:53 PM


The Town of Colchester is seeking a Human Resource Director to provide the overall administration, coordination, evaluation and compliance of the Human Resource Department. The ideal candidate will act as a liaison for employee/employer issues and is a resource of all levels of employment, including staff and management. The ideal candidate will also have excellent communication skills and have the ability to provide sound advice on business and policy matters to the Town Manager.

Have a passion for sales, wowing customers, fostering positive relationships, and inspiring a team? Do you thrive in a values-driven company and happen to love chocolate? If so, you might be the dynamic and versatile person to lead, develop and implement B2B sales strategies that drive results, engage the sales team, and sustain Lake Champlain Chocolates’ growth. This new role will shape and guide our sales leadership and management strategy, leveraging the strength of our well-recognized brand, loyal customers, consistent family-ownership, and B-Corp certification. Better still, you will work with collaborative, innovative, and respectful colleagues.

Requirements: Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources, Business Administration, or related field desired, or nine years of experience in the HR field. Hiring range is $68,265 -$78,770 depending on qualifications and experience, plus a competitive benefit package.

We believe in a better way of doing business by focusing on a triple bottom line: people, profits, and planet. The ideal candidate will reflect these shared values, lead with integrity, and have a proven trackrecord of demonstrating sales results with another natural, organic, or specialty food brand.

Submit application, cover letter, resume, and references to Sherry LaBarge, Human Resource Director at: slabarge@colchestervt.gov. For full job description visit: colchestervt.gov/321/ Human-Resources. Application deadline is 12/17/20. E.O.E.

To learn more, please visit lakechamplainchocolates.com/careers. E.E.O.

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11/9/20 12:23 PM









This 6-month position manages project logistics and provides coordination for the motel outreach program. Duties include managing the project budget, ensuring timely communication between ESD and motel teams, arranging for adequate work space for outreach teams at local motels, working closely with Coordinated Entry staff, tracking progress of housing plans and benefit applications, monitoring project budget. BSW or BA in a related field preferred, plus four to six years of relevant experience. Previous experience working with those experiencing homelessness is a plus. This is a full-time position. Submit resume and cover letter to jobs@cotsonline.org. E.O.E.

The Vermont League of Cities & Towns (VLCT) seeks an Accountant III specializing in payroll and benefits administration with a working knowledge of General Ledger, Accounts Receivable and Accounts Payable. VLCT is a statewide association dedicated to serving and strengthening Vermont local government. Reporting to the Chief Financial Officer, this senior-level position provides accounting and compliance support. and includes technical and administrative work in managing general ledger, with a particular focus on payroll and benefits. As part of the Finance team, this position may occasionally provide backup for accounts receivable and accounts payable. REQUIREMENTS • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with major course work in accounting; • Minimum of two years of experience in an accounting position and a payroll and benefits administration position; • Working knowledge of Microsoft Dynamics GP2018 accounting software and strong Excel skills at the intermediate or advanced level are a plus;


• Demonstrated knowledge of and the ability to stay abreast of IRS regulations and all laws and regulations related to payroll and benefits. • High degree of accuracy and analytical skill;

ECHO, Leahy Center for Lake Champlain is a dynamic, nationally acclaimed science and nature center committed to inspiring and engaging families in the joy of scientific discovery, wonder of nature and care of Lake Champlain. ECHO seeks an experienced team player to provide building maintenance expertise and leadership for its unique 36,000 square foot, LEED-certified aquarium and science center. The Facilities/Exhibits Maintenance Coordinator will participate in leading the Facilities & Animal Care Department. This role will oversee facilities and exhibit projects, daily building maintenance, and assist with custodial and animal care work to enhance the visitor experience. This position will be full time, non-exempt and will be scheduled for four, ten-hour days per week, including one weekend day. Occasionally, this position will be required to work full weekends, holidays and overtime. For a full job description please visit: echovermont.org/about-echo/jobs. ECHO is an Equal Opportunity Employer and welcomes candidates for employment who will contribute to our diversity.

• VLCT is willing to consider recent college graduates provided they can demonstrate strong accounting skills and the ability to learn quickly. ALSO DESIRED BUT NOT REQUIRED: • Certified Payroll Professional Certification • Experience working with a Payroll Provider • Knowledge and understanding of GASB guidance • CPA, CPA Candidate, or other accounting certification a plus Salary will be commensurate with experience. A detailed job description is available at vlct.org under classifieds. VLCT offers a quality workplace in downtown Montpelier and an excellent total compensation package. Please email a cover letter, resume, and three professional references to jobsearch@vlct.org with Finance as the subject. Resume review begins immediately. Applications accepted until position filled. E.O.E.

New, local, scam-free jobs posted every day! jobs@sevendaysvt.com

Please submit a cover letter and resume to jobs@echovermont.org with Facilities Coordinator Position in the subject line. Application Deadline: November, 30, 2020

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Making a Holiday Shopping List? CHECK IT TWICE — FOR OPPORTUNITIES TO GIFT LOCAL! We need to support and sustain our local economy, our friends and neighbors. Gifting local keeps folks here in business. So many small businesses have been impacted by COVID-19, I feel that there has never been a better time to buy as local as you can whenever possible! Kat Patterson

For every dollar you spend at a local business,


stays in the local community.

When you gift local, you are supporting your community in more ways than one, and you are purchasing gifts that are thoughtful, unique and well made. Erin Bombard

(SoUrCe: BuSiNeSsWiRe)

Shop smart and shop small — your choices will impact us all. Vermont merchants have faced many challenges this year and need your support — especially this holiday season. Visit shoptheregister.com for all the info on shopkeepers who are selling their products online for local delivery or curbside pickup. Browse by categories ranging from jewelry to electronics, outdoor gear to apparel. Remember, when you buy a gift locally, the recipient isn’t the only one who benefits. The entire community does!

ThE ReGiStEr Is GeNeRoUsLy SuPpOrTeD By:

Check out our...

Holiday Gift Guide for a curated roundup of local gift ideas for your friends and family. sevendaysvt.com/gift-guide-2020



fun stuff








Social Media Marketing for Business in 2020 MON., NOV. 30 VIRTUAL EVENT

Exploring Spirituality MON., NOV. 30 VIRTUAL EVENT

Just Ask Over Dinner Series: Taking Stock & Resetting the Table for Your Business THU., DEC. 3 VIRTUAL EVENT

Life and Loss THU., DEC. 3 VIRTUAL EVENT

Illusions in Art and the Art of Optical Illusions THU., DEC. 3 VIRTUAL EVENT

Vermont International Festival’s Congolese Takeout


“Rudolph! Take that mask off!!”

Vermont International Festival’s Argentinian Takeout



Vermont International Festival’s Filipino Takeout


Blue Holiday Workshop and Ritual SUN., DEC. 6 VIRTUAL EVENT

Share Your Thoughts on the Future of Vermont TUE., DEC. 8 VIRTUAL EVENT

Zero Waste 101: Holiday Cheer THU., DEC. 10 VIRTUAL EVENT



• • • •

• • • •

Fundraisers Festivals Plays & Concerts Sports

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No cost to you Local support Built-in promotion Custom options


Contact: 865-1020, ext. 10 getstarted@sevendaystickets.com



11/24/20 4:38 PM

fun stuff RYAN RIDDLE

Making it is not :(


Keep this newspaper free for all. Join the Seven Days Super Readers at sevendaysvt.com/super-readers or call us at 802-864-5684.

82SR-Comics-filler071520.indd SEVEN DAYS NOVEMBER 25-DECEMBER 2, 2020 1

7/14/20 3:32 PM

Have a deep, dark fear of your own? Submit it to cartoonist Fran Krause at deep-dark-fears.tumblr.com, and you may see your neurosis illustrated in these pages.



“You live best as an appreciator of horizons, whether you reach them or not.” Those words from poet David Whyte would be a perfect motto for you to write out on a piece of paper and tape to your bathroom mirror or your nightstand for the next 30 years. Of all the tribes in the zodiac, you Sagittarians are most likely to thrive by regularly focusing on the big picture. Your ability to achieve small day-by-day successes depends on how well you keep the long-range view in mind. How have you been doing lately with that assignment? In the coming weeks, I suspect you could benefit from hiking to the top of a mountain — or the metaphorical equivalent — so you can enjoy seeing as far as you can see.

ARIES (March 21-April 19): “A little too much is just enough for me,” joked poet and filmmaker Jean Cocteau. I suspect that when he said that he was in a phase similar to the one you’re in now. I bet he was experiencing a flood of creative ideas, pleasurable self-expressions and loving breakthroughs. He was probably right to risk going a bit too far, because he was learning so much from surpassing his previous limitations and exploring the frontiers outside his comfort zone. Now here’s your home-

work, Aries: Identify two actions you could take that fit the profile I’ve described here.

(Caveat: But don’t stop drawing on traditional medicine that has been helping you.)

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Biologists believe that no tree can grow more than 436 feet tall. As much as an individual redwood or spruce or mountain ash might like to sprout so high that it doesn’t have to compete with other trees for sunlight, gravity is simply too strong for it to pump enough water up from the ground to its highest branches. Keep that in mind as a useful metaphor during the next 10 months, Taurus. Your assignment is to grow bigger and taller and stronger than you ever have before — and know when you have reached a healthy level of being bigger and taller and stronger.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): In accordance with astrological rhythms, I’m giving you permission to be extra regal and majestic in the coming weeks. You have poetic license to be a supremely royal version of yourself, even to the point of wearing a jeweled crown and purple silk robe. Would you prefer a gold scepter with pearls or a silver scepter with rubies? Please keep in mind, though, that all of us non-Leos are hoping you will be a noble and benevolent sovereign who provides enlightened leadership and bestows generous blessings. That kind of behavior will earn you the right to enjoy more of these lofty interludes in the future.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): I haven’t felt the

savory jolt of bacon in my mouth since I was 15, when I forever stopped eating pigs. I still remember that flavor with great fondness, however. I’ve always said I’d love to find a loophole that would allow me to enjoy it again. And then today I found out about a kind of seaweed that researchers at Oregon State University say tastes like bacon and is healthier than kale. It’s a new strain of a red marine algae called dulse. If I can track it down online, I’ll have it for breakfast soon. I bring this to your attention, Gemini, because I suspect that you, too, are primed to discover a fine new substitute — something to replace a pleasure or resource that is gone or taboo or impossible. What could it be?

CANCER (June 21-July 22): By age 49, Cancerian author Norman Cousins had been struck with two debilitating diseases. His physicians gave him a one in 500 chance of recovery. He embarked on a series of unconventional attempts to cure himself, including “laugh therapy” and positive self-talk, among others. They worked. He lived lustily for another 26 years and wrote several books about health and healing. So perhaps we should pay attention to his belief that “each patient carries his own doctor inside him” — that at least some of our power to cure ourselves resides in inner sources that are not understood or accredited by traditional medicine. This would be a valuable hypothesis for you to consider and test in the coming weeks, Cancerian.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): In the coming weeks, I will refer to you as the Rememberer. Your task will be to deepen and refine your relationship with the old days and old ways — both your own past and the pasts of people you care about most. I hope you will take advantage of the cosmic rhythms to reinvigorate your love for the important stories that have defined you and yours. I trust you will devote treasured time to reviewing in detail the various historical threads that give such rich meaning to your web of life. LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): “Those who build walls are their own prisoners,” wrote Libran author Ursula K. Le Guin. She continued, “I’m going to fulfill my proper function in the social organism. I’m going to unbuild walls.” I hope that sounds appealing to you, Libra. Unbuilding walls is my first choice for your prime assignment in the coming weeks. I’d love to see you create extra spaciousness and forge fertile connections. I’ll be ecstatic if you foster a rich interplay of diverse influences. If you’re feeling super plucky, you might even help unbuild walls that your allies have used to half-trap themselves. SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): “If you can’t help me grow, there’s no point with you being in my life.” Singer and actress Jill Scott said that. In my view, Scorpios may be the only sign of the zodiac that can assert such a sentiment with total sincerity and authority. For

many of the other tribes, it might seem harsh or unenforceable, but for you it’s exactly right — a robust and courageous truth. In addition to its general rightness, it’s also an especially apt principle for you to wield right now. The coming weeks will be a potent time to catalyze deep learning and interesting transformations in concert with your hearty allies.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): Sensible Capricorn author E.M. Forster (1879-1970) said, “Passion does not blind. No. Passion is sanity.” That’s the opposite of what many poets and novelists have asserted down through the ages, which is that passion isn’t truly passion unless it renders you half-crazy, driven by obsession, and subject to delusion and irrationality. But in offering you counsel in this horoscope, I’m aligning myself with Forster’s view. For you in the coming weeks, Capricorn, passion will help you see clearly and keep you mentally healthy. AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Alpine swifts

are small birds that breed in Europe during the summer and then migrate a long distance to Africa for the winter. Ornithologists were shocked when they discovered that at least some of these creatures fly for more than 200 days without ever once landing on the ground. They’re not always flapping their wings — sometimes they glide — but they manage to do all their eating and drinking and sleeping and mating in mid-air. Metaphorically speaking, I think it’s important for you not to act like the alpine swifts in the coming months, dear Aquarius. Please plan to come all the way down to earth on a regular basis.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): There’s substantial evidence that when people talk to themselves out loud in the midst of doing a task, they improve their chances of succeeding at the task. Have you ever heard athletes giving themselves verbal encouragement during their games and matches? They’re using a trick to heighten their performance. In accordance with astrological omens, I invite you to experiment with this strategy in the coming weeks. Increase your brainpower by regularly offering yourself encouraging, supportive instructions. It’s fine if you just sort of whisper them, but I’d love it if now and then you also bellowed them.


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ALL STARTS WITH HELLO I count myself as an easygoing person, very lucky to have what eyesight I have. Losing your sight is one thing, but losing your vision is a whole different thing. Looking forward to hearing from you. Justmemacjr, 57, seeking: W, l

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FUNNY, ACTIVE ACTIVIST AND ADVENTURIST Recently moved to Vermont from D.C. Would like to meet people for social/ political activism, hiking, hanging out and socializing. Always up for new adventures, like discussing world events. Am compassionate, enjoy outdoor activities. I’m nonjudgmental and appreciate the same in others. I’ve been involved in activism around racial equity, health care and disability rights ... but don’t take myself too seriously! AnnieCA, 67, seeking: M, l HERE’S TO SECOND CHANCES Widowed, fit, fun, financially secure WF with serious BDSM/kinky fantasies that I want/ need to explore. Looking to find 50- to 60-y/o male with experience in the much less vanilla side of sex for dating and/or LTR. bestisyettobe, 53, seeking: M, l INTERESTED Still standing after all these years! WayToGo, 67, seeking: M FEMININE, FIT, FUN-LOVING FOREST WOMAN If the sun is shining, you’ll find me outdoors. If I’m indoors pursuing my artwork or piano, it must be raining. Silent sports, camping and canoeing. Swimming every day. Looking for a fit and active outdoorsman. I’d like to see if we can become best friends and then take it from there. Charley, 68, seeking: M, l CURIOUS OF LIFE AND HUMOR Sometimes I want to be among a lot of people, and sometimes I just want to be alone with my own company. Have always been curious about people and the world around me. Love learning new things, and currently working on how to play music. I have a great sense of humor and enjoy being outdoors all spring, summer and fall. daffodil19, 64, seeking: M, l

MEN seeking... LIFE IS TOO COMPLICATED Nature is the path to peace and salvation. I am tired of game players. If you are one, don’t waste my time. I am kind, and you will find me to be fair and fun to be with. I like adventures, road trips, Maine seacoast. thoreau1, 64, seeking: W ADVENTUROUS, RELIABLE AND CONSIDERATE Average. DoubleNickelVT, 55, seeking: W LIFE IS A BANQUET Hello, world. I’m a father, engineer, musician, handyman, Vermonter. I’m a far better conversationalist than writer. MusicAndPancakes, 45, seeking: W, l NEW TO THIS I have a poetic nature and an adventurous spirit. I’m seeking a woman to share conversation and take walks with. Let’s get together for a cup of tea. Chapter2, 67, seeking: W, l CHAOSFACTORINCARNATE I’m just looking for anything. Strength: making funny. Wekness: spelin. CollyRog, 21, seeking: W

BOND ... JAMES BOND Man of mystery, ethically polyamorous, creative. Nerdy scientist, but not usually the smartest guy in the room. My quietude belies my depth. 1109sm, 58, seeking: W, Cp, l THOUGHTFUL, EVOLVING MAN I am the quintessential optimist, a realist and young at heart. My interests include listening to music, traveling both near and far, reading fiction and nonfiction, cooking, various forms of working out, spending time with a few close friends. I would like to meet someone who enjoys good conversation, who is passionate, playful, sensual and curious. not2complicated, 64, seeking: W, l CUTE, SMART A LOT Looking for a casual relationship that could evolve. Looking for an attractive woman with similar interests and disposition. I’m not too particular on what you do for work, but I would prefer it if you had a job that you were genuinely interested in, though I know things happen. New in town. Really just looking for some interesting experiences! ProgrammingHigh, 29, seeking: W FRIENDLY, INTELLECTUAL, EASYGOING I would not stand out in a crowd. I can be a little boring until we get on the right subject. Mechanic, 67, seeking: W CURIOUS, EMPATHETIC, OPINIONATED I’m a 42-y/o widowed guy in Shelburne who’s looking to start living and having fun again. I’m not here looking for a support system — I have one of those, and it’s fantastic. I’m looking for someone to spend some time with, maybe have a couple drinks and a couple laughs, and make life a little bit more exciting. MissileVolante, 42, seeking: W, l FUN-LOVING, ROMANTIC, AFFECTIONATE MAN Honest businessman now flipping houses. Missing that someone special — last and only love. lovetocuddle, 63, seeking: W, l OUTDOORSY, FUNNY I’m kind, funny, caring, honest, respectful, easygoing, hardworking. I have a high sex drive. I like outdoor activities — kayaking, camping, fishing — and watching a movie. Looking for someone like-minded who enjoys spending time together. Maybe go for a drive to nowhere, go for a moonlit walk or to a beach, cooking a meal together. funoutdoors, 54, seeking: W, l LOYAL, KINDHEARTED AND HONEST I am a 56-y/o man who loves to travel, play music, hike, camp and other activities, as well as travel around to national parks and explore. I’m an easygoing and very laid-back kind of guy. I’m in search of a lady who wants to be my companion and best friend. I enjoy fishing, hiking, having fun. simple_mam_64, 56, seeking: W, l OPEN-MINDED, FRIENDLY BI MAN Moved to Grand Isle this summer. Looking to meet individuals or couples for FWB relationships or more. Open to many scenarios when comfortable. chance2, 55, seeking: M, TW, Cp

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If you’ve been spied, go online to contact your admirer!


LISA ON BURROWS TRAIL SUNDAY We leapfrogged and stumbled down the Burrows Trail. I’m still feeling your warmth. Wondering all sorts of things. Walk in beauty, dear one. When: Sunday, November 22, 2020. Where: Camel’s Hump. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915193

NORTHFIELD SEPTUM RING GIRL You complimented my septum ring, and I think yours is perfect. Maybe we can do the coffee thing outside of me buying it from you? When: Friday, November 20, 2020. Where: Northfield. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915188

THANKS FOR THE SMILE Thanks to the Goodwill worker in Williston who appreciated my mother’s antique lantern. Even small interactions can turn a bad day right around. I really appreciate it! You asked for my name and said it was great meeting me. I wish I had asked for yours. I’ll have to find more things to donate. When: Saturday, November 21, 2020. Where: Goodwill. You: Man. Me: Woman. #915192

COLCHESTER AVE. Kelly, I am sorry. Please forgive me. —David. When: Thursday, November 19, 2020. Where: Burlington. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915187

TO MY MARILYN MONROE To my forever love, MM. Every lifetime we are drawn to each other. I am so grateful to keep finding you. Our connection is everlasting and worth everything to me. This life and the next, I love you always. Your James Dean. When: Sunday, October 9, 2016. Where: Jericho barn. You: Woman. Me: Nonbinary person. #915191 MISSING BEAN-DIP DAYS To the woman who needs fancy leggings and cozy at-home leggings: I miss the carefree days of 2019 when we could sit and laugh right next to each other, even high-five if compelled. Hopefully soon we can study and make an epic bean dip, just like old times; until then, wash your hands, wear your mask and stay home. When: Wednesday, November 20, 2019. Where: buck hunter at Akes. You: Woman. Me: Woman. #915190 GREG, WE MATCHED ON MATCH Not sure how to connect with you. We have a lot in common, and you seem very fun! When: Friday, November 20, 2020. Where: Match. You: Man. Me: Woman. #915189

MIKE B. OF NYC/BUMBLE MISS? Perhaps you were home for a short time, or COVID restrictions made you leave? I saw your match, but my right swipes are rare and can be painstakingly slow. When I finally decided, alas, you were gone. If you return to Colchester sometime soon, try again! Or reach out here. Me: 53, happily independent and active. When: Tuesday, November 10, 2020. Where: Bumble. You: Man. Me: Woman. #915186 HANNAFORD-UPON-ESSEX You were shopping with your daughter, and we made eye contact a couple times. Was it a coincidence or something more? If you would be up for meeting from a distance, I would, too! When: Monday, November 16, 2020. Where: Hannaford, Essex. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915185 KINNEY DRUGS, BARRE-MONTPELIER ROAD We chatted while waiting. You liked my dreads, and I liked your black T shirt that said something about “good people on earth.” We spoke again, but I should have asked for your name. Care to chat again, maybe exchange names? When: Wednesday, November 11, 2020. Where: Kinney Drugs, Barre-Montpelier Road. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915183

SUSAN Saw your profile on Match.com. I found it quite intriguing, to say the least. You are around 70. Let’s chat. Oh, you live in the Burlington area. When: Thursday, November 12, 2020. Where: Match. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915184 STRAWBERRY BREAD BAKER Sorry to have missed you at the flu clinic; it was the highlight of my 2019. Hope that you are doing well, staying healthy and continuing to make your indelible mark on the world. As always, missing you terribly. Happy birthday. When: Wednesday, November 6, 2019. Where: downtown BTV. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915182 BERLIN POND I thought I’d lost my keys (but didn’t). You offered to lend us your car. I appreciate your very kind gesture. It’s people like you who bring light into the world, and it’s my hope our paths will converge again soon. Thank you. When: Monday, November 9, 2020. Where: near Berlin Pond. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915181 CITY MARKET, TWO BEEF STICKS In front of the prepared food cooler, the woman in the silver puffy jacket gesticulated in our direction. At the checkout, I asked, “That’s it?” looking at the two Vermont beef sticks in your hand. I just wanted a snack. You said good night to everyone before driving off in your Bolt, your kindness unmasked. When: Sunday, November 8, 2020. Where: City Market, downtown Burlington. You: Man. Me: Woman. #915180 BREAK LIGHTS, BREAK LIGHTS Break lights near the barn you have spied. It’s too bad it’s still dark out. Be nice to see your smile. When: Friday, November 6, 2020. Where: ???. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915179 LOOKING GOOD IN THOSE JEANS. Looking right. Hella tight. Would love to take you out for a night. As long as you wear those jeans, anything is possible. K, if you’re waiting for a sign, this is it. Just give me the signal, and I will send her to the airport with a one-way ticket to Santa Fe. With us, we could be magic. When: Wednesday, November 4, 2020. Where: Main St. You: Man. Me: Woman. #915177

Ask REVEREND Dear Fido Forlorn, 

Irreverent counsel on life’s conundrums

Dear Reverend,

My 9-year-old dog died unexpectedly last month, and I’m completely heartbroken. My best friend keeps telling me that I should just get over it and get a new dog. I don’t know if I’ll ever be ready for that. How do I make him understand?

Fido Forlorn (MALE, 28)

Here’s what you do. Ask your pal this question: “If I had a child who died, would you tell me to get over it and have a new one?” Hopefully his answer will be no and he’ll get the picture. Your friend may just be one of those unfortunate souls who doesn’t comprehend the bond that can exist between a human and another animal. I’ve never been able to figure out those people, but they do exist. If he continues to bug

HOPEFULHEART You have been spied! Tag, you’re it! When: Tuesday, November 3, 2020. Where: Seven Days. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915178 COLLIN AT COSTCO Saw you this morning in passing while running errands. Curious what’s under the mask. Caught a glimpse of your name badge as you passed by me a second time: Collin. Figured I’d take a shot in the dark here. When: Saturday, October 31, 2020. Where: Costco. You: Man. Me: Woman. #915175 BLUE TOYOTA TACOMA To the Blue Toyota Tacoma: Almost every morning I’m heading south and you are heading north. Would be nice to catch up sometime. You have been spied back. When: Saturday, October 31, 2020. Where: Route ???. You: Man. Me: Woman. #915174 CUTE BIKE PATH DOG DAD You and your cute shepherd passed me, my roommate and our dogs in front of the sailing center. Your pup walked over to say hello, and I wish you had, too. Your smile was to die for. Meet at the dog park one day? When: Tuesday, October 27, 2020. Where: Burlington bike path. You: Man. Me: Man. #915173 BOBBIE I found your profile very interesting, and I am looking for a way to communicate with you. Here works for me. When: Thursday, October 29, 2020. Where: Match. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915172 BIRTHDAY GIRL AT GUILTY PLATE 1:45 p.m. Birthday girl with an amazing smile. You were with a friend with black hair. You smiled when I walked in, and we waved to each other as you drove away in your white Subaru. I would love to see you again. Maybe meet for a coffee? Me: black down jacket. When: Wednesday, October 28, 2020. Where: Guilty Plate restaurant, Colchester. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915171 AMAZING OPTIMIST ON MATCH I like all of your lessons from this year. I’m proud to vote blue. And I think you have an amazing smile. I’m not on Match, but maybe we could start our connection here. Have a great day. When: Monday, October 26, 2020. Where: on Match. com. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915170

you about it, be firm and tell him the subject is not open for discussion. I’ve lost plenty of pets and people in my time, and I can say for certain that the grief is exactly the same. The death of any loved one rips your heart into shreds. You never really “get over” losing

GORGEOUS BLONDE AT M32 You changed my life 12 years ago, and I am so grateful. I couldn’t ask for a better woman to spend my life with. I may have lost sight of what I’ve had, but I never will again. You’re my best friend and the love of my life. I’m more in love with you today than ever. I love you always. When: Sunday, October 25, 2020. Where: Market 32. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915168 ADVENTURE AT SALLY’S I walked in with my good friend. He was carrying Andrew Jr. Upon entering Sally’s, we went toward the hair dye. You came out from behind the scenes. We were discussing which shade of red to get. We were flipping through the options. I said I liked blood; you said you did, too. Would you like to talk sometime? When: Thursday, October 22, 2020. Where: Dorset St. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915167 HNGRMTNCOOPQT You: cute human with rad hair and red-buckle Dr. Martens. First noticed you stocking in produce. You complimented my cherry blossom Docs in the tea aisle. Me: fellow Doc-wearing human complete with a dragonfly mask perusing the co-op on a gray day in October. Maybe we’ll meet again? When: Wednesday, October 21, 2020. Where: Hunger Mountain Co-op. You: Woman. Me: Nonbinary person. #915166 WHITE ACURA To the white Acura almost every morning I’m heading north and you are heading south: Would be nice to catch up sometime. You have been spied. When: Monday, October 19, 2020. Where: Route ???. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915165 HARDWICK GAS STATION, SUNDAY 10/11 You were a lovely blond woman. I asked you if I had cut in front of you in line. You were nice and said “no,” and we smiled outside again outside. I wish I had said more but would like a rain check. You drove off in your Subaru while I leaned up against my car. When: Sunday, October 11, 2020. Where: Hardwick convenience store. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915164 LADY153 ISPYW/MYLTLI We seem to have a lot in common. Please let me know what your thoughts are. I have a few thoughts and ideas. Would love to discuss them with you. When: Sunday, October 4, 2020. Where: Seven Days. You: Woman. Me: Man. #915158

anybody, but time does make it easier to think of them with less sadness. If you need someone to talk to, lots of local and online support groups deal specifically with grieving the loss of a pet. You could ask your vet or local humane society for a recommendation. You obviously loved your dog very much, and so many more out there need a home. Opening your heart to another dog doesn’t mean you’re trying to replace the one you lost. When the time feels right, the best way to honor your buddy’s life is to save another one. Good luck and God bless,

The Reverend What’s your problem?

Send it to asktherev@sevendaysvt.com. SEVEN DAYS NOVEMBER 25-DECEMBER 2, 2020


SWM, 60s, seeking woman around 58 to 68. Handyman. Enjoy skiing, cooking, weekend getaways. Tired of quarantine. Are you? NEK. #L1453 SF, 42, living in Chittenden County seeks SM for potential LTR. I’m a nerdy gamer, morning person, coffee drinker, nonsmoker. Kind, industrious. Seeking similar. The world is our opportunity! #L1452 53-y/o discreet SWM, 5’10, 156 pounds. Brown and blue. Seeking any guys 18 to 60 who like to receive oral and who are a good top. Well hung guys a plus. Chittenden County and around. No computer. Phone only, but can text or call. #L1451 I’m here now, and you knew me as Yourdaddy921, etc. and Boomer2012, etc. Contact me via mail, please. #L1458 49-y/o SWM seeking female for friendship with benefits. I am feminine, fit, mostly vegan. I enjoy yoga, hiking and biking, books, some cooking, and cuddling to a good movie. Seeking romantic lady for friendship. #L1457 I’m a 34-y/o male seeking 18to 45-y/o female. I’m smart, artistic, funny and open-minded. Love music, books, movies and looking at the cosmos. A cat guy, but like all animals. Looking for love and friendship. #L1456

I’m a male (65) seeking a female (50 to 65). Fit, friendly, frolicsome fella favors fanciful female for fabulous fall friendship. I’m vegetarian, healthy, humorous, reflective and highly educated. Interests are hiking, gardening, dogs, creativity, Scrabble and pillow talk. #L1455 I don’t live in Vermont anymore, but I’m here semiregularly. I’m a 39-y/o lady friend seeking men, but anyone for friends to write to, maybe more. Hike, ski, lounge, eat, drink, converse. It’s COVID; I’m bored/lonely. What about you? #L1454

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SWF seeks conservative male age 62 to 72, Addison/ Burlington area only. Turnons: har cut, shave, outdoorsy, hunter, camper. Turn-offs: smoker, drugs, tattoos. Me: 5’8, average build, blue/brown, glasses, enjoy nature, have a Shelty, birds, old Jeep, farm raised. Need phone number, please. #L1450 I’m a bicurious 41-y/o male seeking bicurious married or single men, 18 to 45, for some very discreet fun. Good hygiene, hung and H&W proportional a must. Let’s text discreetly and have some DL NSA fun. #L1449

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Reply to these messages with real, honest-to-goodness letters. DETAILS BELOW. Attractive SWM, 51, living around the Burlington area. Seeking a curvaceous female for some casual fun with no strings attached. All it takes is some good chemistry... #L1447 I’m a mid-aged male seeking a M or F any age or gender. Wonderful youth, caring person. Male, 5’9, 147. Older mid-aged loves long-distance running, writing, literature, poetry, drawing, folk and jazz. Looking for a great friendship for hikes, walks, talks. Best to all. #L1446 I’m a single female, mid60s, seeking a male for companionship and adventure. Retired educator who loves kayaking, swimming, skiing and travel. Well read. Life is short; let’s have fun. #L1445 Staff researcher at UVM on biostatistics. 29-y/o Chinese male. INFJ personality. Seeking a female of similar age for long-term relationship. Love is kind. Love is patient. May we all stay healthy and be happy. #L1444

SWF, 37, seeking M for some casual fun, no strings attached. I just got out of an LTR, and I’ve forgotten how it feels to be physically and sexually alive. Can you remind me? Creative meetups and play a must. #L1443 Very unique lady in early 70s seeks male. I’m a people person and very active. Love to cook, garden, read and watch good movies. Very friendly with a lot of empathy. I love to walk and the outdoors. Looking for someone who enjoys the same. #L1442 I’m a GM looking for guys seeking fun and adventure in mid-Vermont. No text/email. Hope to hear from you. #L1441 I’m 42-y/o looking for someone who can start and show me the way to a new life sexually. Looking to start with someone experienced. #L1440 I’m a petite blonde. Healthy, active SWF seeking a kind, honest SWM for conversation, walks, dinners and short trips. 70 to 80. #L1438

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Know someone who loves and depends on Seven Days? Make a Super Reader contribution on their behalf. Your gift will help to keep Seven Days on the beat and our communities connected during these challenging times.

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11/24/20 6:44 PM

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