Author: Madeline Clark

Annual Fresh Air program returns to Vermont

A bus full of children and teens traded in the bustling streets and towering skyscrapers of New York City for a week where the green mountains rise and the rivers run. The soft rain that fell on Veterans’ Memorial Park on June 28 ensured their first breath of fresh air would bear notes of green grass and dampened trees. It was exactly what Nadirah Mitchell, 12, of the Bronx, was looking forward to on her fourth visit. “It smells like trees up here,” said the Bronx native as she took in her surroundings. She quickly added, “That’s not a...

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District offers discounted tuition to help Grand Isle District schools

Grand Isle School District middle-schoolers will have the opportunity to attend Colchester schools next school year, the school board decided last week. The board voted unanimously at its June 19 meeting to allow Grand Isle seventh-graders to attend Colchester Middle School in 2018-19 for a reduced tuition rate of $4,000 – a $10,000 discount. The agreement is for one year only, and each student who applies must be approved by Grand Isle and then accepted by Colchester. “Shopping and choosing your next school … that’s a really big choice, and it’s really stressful,” Colchester superintendent Amy Minor said. “If...

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With summer’s arrival, Vermonters brace for tick season

Summer has finally arrived in the Green Mountain State. Boats are sailing across Vermont’s scenic lakes, cyclists have taken to the streets and trails again and hikers are reaching for summits. Unfortunately, with warmer weather and long days outdoors comes tick season. Tick-related visits to emergency rooms and urgent care facilities in the month of May were above the 2004-17 historic average, according to the Vermont Department of Health. Added to this year’s season is the threat of lone star ticks, a more aggressive parasite that track down hosts by following the trail of the air they breathe out,...

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Maple makers simmer over FDA proposal

Chris Kasper of Essex Jct. is a State Farm agent who moonlights as a maple syrup producer. Sugaring was passed down to him from his grandparents’ and parents’ operations. This was his first year going solo, and he hopes to continue. “It went great. I got six gallons my first year … just [for] family and friends,” he said, and next year, he hopes to sell his product to local restaurants. But a rough week in the world of maple, with new regulations proposed by both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and Canada, have left Kasper concerned. On...

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Court reviews Enviro Tech case

A Colchester septic service operator signed an agreement last month to begin paying the $58,550 he owes the Vt. Agency of Natural Resources, a combination of penalties and fees for unlawfully managing septic waste for over a decade. The agreement was a step forward in a struggle between Enviro Tech of Vermont owner Randy Duval and the state agency. Duval said ANR is working with him to lessen the impact of the penalties and fees on his small business. “My company would have gone bankrupt before,” he said, reflecting on the original cost of the penalty. According to ANR...

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