Weathersfield Weekly Blog, May 1 Edition

Mount Ascutney on a Spring Day, before the rain came

May 1, 8:20 a.m.
Little Ascutney Road in Weathersfield is closed due to flooding between VT Route 106 and Lottery Lane.

Mark Your Calendars

Annual Green-up day May 6, 2023, meet at the Dan Foster house at 9 a.m. Feel free to call Steve Aikenhead 802-263-5439 or email with any questions. 

Green-up bags are available at the Town Office.

Community Contra Dance Saturday, May 6, 6:30-9 p.m.

Community Contra Dance & Social in the Weathersfield Center Historic District
Saturday, May 6, 7–9 pm Doors open at 6:30; Beginner session at 6:40
Weathersfield Center Meetinghouse, 2579 Weathersfield Center Road, Weathersfield, VT
Parking in the field across the road.

No special clothing, footwear, or experience required. You’re welcome to dance, listen, sit or chat and enjoy that cold beverage you brought along.

Caller Steve Zakon-Anderson teaching and guiding everyone through the dances.

Wonderful live music provided by Naomi Morse, fiddle & Amy Englesberg, piano.

Contra Dancing is a traditional New England folk dance style in which couples dance in two facing lines, following the instructions of a caller.

Potluck snacks at the break. Feel free to bring simple finger food to share. Bring a beer, a wine, water, or whatever you fancy.
Adults: $10, Children: $5, Families: $20
Masks welcome but not required

Herricks Cove Wildlife Festival Sunday, May 7 10 a.m-4 p.m.
With an early morning Bird Walk at 7 a.m.

Presented by Ascutney Mountain Audubon Society, Vermont Fish and Wildlife, and Great River Hydro

The following programs are scheduled
  • 7:00 am – Bird Walk with Don Clark and Ken Cox
  • 10:00 am – Exhibits and programs open
  • 10:15 am – Butterfly Program by Jerry Schneider
  • 10:30 am – VINS Raptors Encounters
  • 10:30 am – Turtle Walk with Jim Andrews
  • 11:30 am – Lindsay and her Puppet Pals
  • 11:30 am – Bug Walk with Michael Sabourin of the Vermont Entomological Society
  • 12:00 – Canine search and rescue demonstration by Vermont Fish & Wildlife
  • 1:00 pm – Mike Clough of the Southern VT Natural History Museum - Live animals up close
  • 1:00 pm – Audubon Vermont - Kids bird walk
  • 1:00 pm – Invasive Plant Identification with Southeast Vermont Cooperative Invasive Species Management Association (CISMA)
  • 2:00 pm – Bats Program by Jerry Schneider
  • 2:00 pm – Squam Lake Science Center - Live animals up close
  • 2:00 pm – Turtle Walk with Jim Andrews
  • 3:00 pm – Bear Conflicts Program by Vermont Fish & Wildlife
  • 3:00 pm – Plant Walk with Lynn Levine
(Click here for printable Schedule of Events)

Plus on-going events, exhibits, activities, and demonstrations by:
  • T-shirt painting with Jerry Schneider
  • Wunderle’s Big Top Adventures: Interactive Circus Activities
  • Vermont Fish & Wildlife - Bears, Bats, Fish, Canine Unit, Skins and Skulls, and more
  • Southern VT Natural History Museum
  • Wildlife Encounters - Live animals
  • Nature Museum (Grafton, VT)
  • Black River Action Team
  • Ascutney Mountain Audubon Society
  • NH Audubon Society
  • Audubon Vermont
  • Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation - Composting demonstration, aquatic invasive plant identification, and more
  • Vermont Center for EcoStudies
  • Rich Earth Institute - Urine Diversion to make fertilizer
  • USDA National Resources Conservation Service - Walk through the Soil Tunnel
  • Windham County Natural Resources Conservation District - Water Flume
  • Connecticut River Conservancy
  • HB Energy - Solar Power
  • Putney Mountain Association
  • Sapsucker Books
  • Children’s tent with activities and face painting and more!
  • Food by Jamaican Jewelz
  • Ice Cream by Lisa Moir
  • FinAllie Ferments

The exhibits and programs will start at 10 am and close at 4 pm. 
The suggested donation for entrance is $2 per person and $5 per family.

The schedule of programs and walks and on-going demonstrations and activities are listed on the festival webpage at:

Volunteers are always needed the afternoon before the festival and on the day of the festival. Point of contact: Ellen Allman of AMAS (

The festival is funded by Great River Hydro, Ben and Jerry's, HB Energy Solutions, and Mascoma Bank

Herricks Cove is located off Exit 6 of I-91. Take 103 east to Rt. 5 north. After crossing the Williams River, turn right on the Herricks Cove Road and follow the signs for parking. Overflow parking will be at the Exit 6 park-and-ride and a shuttle bus will provide transportation to the festival.

Mother's Day Plant Sale, Saturday May 13

AVFD Annual Mothers Day Flower Sale at Ascutney Village Farmers Market Saturday May 13, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

Ascutney Village Farmers Market is hosting their annual Mother's Day Plant sale to benefit the Ascutney Volunteer Fire Department on Saturday, May 13. The Market is located at  5585 Rt 5, Ascutney VT 05030.
Lots and lots of hanging flower baskets, patio pots, box annuals and more

Children's Fishing Derby June 10th 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Lace up for Laura Saturday, June 24th. 8:30 A.M. kids race, 9:00 5k run/walk-Registration is OPEN

The Annual Lace Up for Laura Memorial 5k Walk/Run and kids fun run has been announced and race registration is now open.

The race is held in memory of Laura Cody McNaughton who died in a tragic car accident on June 28, 2018 and raise funds for the scholarship fund in her name.

Energy at this event is fun, supportive and full of smiles as individuals and families participate in something Laura loved to do all for a meaningful cause.

The event will consist of two races held on Saturday, June 24, 2023: an approximately 1/3 mile kids 12 and under fun run starting at 8:30 A.M. followed by a 3.1 mile (5km) race starting at 9:00 A.M for all ages and abilities.

The starts for both races will be located near the intersection of the Plains and Reservoir Roads. The 3.1 mile race will be an out and back race on the scenic dirt road known for its lack of change in elevation.

Plenty of post-race snacks and swag will be offered!
(Contact them if you'd like to become a sponsor or make a donation to the raffle).

Proceeds from the event benefit the Laura Cody McNaughton Memorial Fund and its annual scholarship which will be awarded to a graduating senior who exemplifies Laura’s leadership and giving spirit, and, is pursuing further education and training in a field where these principles may be put into practice.

Race Co-Chairs: Ethan McNaughton and Lisa Gleeson. 
Media contacts, please visit our website to get in touch.

More photos from the 2022 race: CLICK HERE

May is National Bike Month, promoted by the League of American Bicyclists and celebrated in communities from coast to coast. Established in 1956, National Bike Month is a chance to showcase the many benefits of bicycling — and encourage more folks to giving biking a try.

In 2023, we'll be celebrating ways to #BikeThere during National Bike Month and National Ride A Bike Day on May 7, 2023. 

There are so many ways to celebrate Bike Month and to #BikeThere: during Bike to Work Week (and Day!), biking to coffee or around the block, and riding on May 7 for #BikeDay.


Vermont's report card: CLICK HERE

Springfield Library Events

43 Main Street - Springfield, VT 05156
Tickets and Info: CLICK HERE

Individual Computer Assistance Sessions
Mon, May 1, 8 and 22nd 2:30 PM

Ask Our Town Manager: A Community Conversation

Mon, Jun 5, 6:00 PM

The Household Hazardous Waste Depot opens on May 2 for the season. 

Before you make an appointment with us, ask your family, friends, and neighbors if they would like your items. Otherwise, bring them to the Depot. It is a convenient way to dispose of bathroom cleaners, nail polish remover, paint, insecticides, chemical fertilizers, etc.

We will be open Tuesday and Thursday mornings through the end of September.

Call Mary T. O'Brien at 802-674-9235 for an appointment and directions to the Depot. You drive in, we unload your vehicle, you pay $10 in cash or by check, and you drive away - all in less than 5 minutes (unless you stay to chat). It's easy. (Confirmed by more than one customer.)

SWWCSWMD residents only
$10/car for up to 10 gallons of HHW (no charge for paint)
Visit for a list of what we accept and don't accept.

Want to play at Do Good Fest 2023?  Last week to sign up

Enter our Beats for Good contest for a chance to perform at Do Good Fest 2023!

We're looking for Vermont's most talented high school musicians to complete our biggest Do Good Fest lineup yet. This is your opportunity to gain exposure, meet other local and national acts, and show off your skills for up to 10,000 people!

Here's how it works...

Step 1. Make Sure You're Eligible

Beats for Good is open to any current Vermont high school student and their classmates. Musical acts of all sizes and genres are welcome! Whether you’re a school band or chorus, four friends rocking out in a garage, or a solo acoustic performer, we want to hear from you.

Step 2. Submit Your Act

Click the button below to complete the submission form by 11:59 PM on May 5th. Before starting, make sure you have:
  • A short Youtube or Vimeo video (no more than 5 minutes) showing us what you've got. No foul language, and one video per act.
  • Your music teacher or advisor's contact info so we can confirm your eligibility
  • Your parent/guardian's permission
  • A commitment to play at Do Good Fest in Montpelier on July 15th if selected
Once your submission has been approved, you'll be notified via email.
Submit Your Act

Step 3. Help Us Select Our Winner

Our panel of Vermont music educators and professionals will narrow down the submissions to their top ten, and then it'll be up to you to select our winner! Voting will open to the public on June 9th, so gather your friends, family, and community members to vote, vote, vote, for their favorite musical act. The top three acts who receive the most votes will perform at Do Good Fest, meet this year's headliners, and win cash awards for their school!

For FAQs, voting info, and more, check out the Beats for Good website.

Learn More

Zilly Zonka and the Chocolate Factory, Wednesday, May 10 at 5:30 PM

The Zack's Place Theatre Guild presents "Zilly Zonka and the Chocolate Factory", Wednesday, May 10 at 5:30 p.m. The performance is FREE but donations are gladly accepted.

If you haven't been to a Zack's Place performance, you'll want to attend this one. The shows are always well done and are a great community resource.

Here are some photos from previous performances: Zack's Place Theatre Guild

Weathersfield Historical Society Announces
the return of the Frippery this August!

The event will be held on 
August 18th and 19th.  Start putting aside those items for this special occasion.  Details to follow.
Questions please call Maureen at 603.252.0936.

Bird Walks hosted by Ascutney Mountain Audubon Society.

Saturday, May 13, 2023 Philbrick-Cricenti Bog Trail, New London, NH
Bird walk at 7 a.m. 
The Bog Trail parking area is on the south side of Rt 11 / Newport Road opposite the entrance to the Great Pines development and 3 miles west of the Hannaford Supermarket. The trail is approximately 1 mile round trip with boardwalk sections spanning the bog
To register Contact Marie Caduto at or 802-384-5621. 
Carpooling will be from the Park and Ride in Ascutney, VT, leaving at 6:30 a.m.
For the latest bird sightings see:

Saturday, May 20, 2023 Caper Hill Woods and Field Walk, New England Forestry Foundation, Reading VT
Bird walk at 7 a.m. 
The walk is an easy 1-mile loop, plus side trails. Meet at the pull-off on Route 106 across from the turn to Caper Hill Rd. at 7:00 a.m. Directions: 1) From Springfield take a right onto RT 106 North/Main St. Continue to the junction of RT 10 and RT 106. Turn right staying on RT 106 for 20 miles. Caper Hill Rd is on the right and the pull-off is on the left. 2) From Bellows Falls take 91 to Exit 8/Ascutney. Go left onto RT 131 West then right onto RT 106 North. Caper Hill is 15 miles up. 3) To the birding site, go up Caper Hill Rd to the first intersection, one mile up. Turn left and go to the end past the big red barn. 
To register Contact: Marie Caduto, or 802-384-5621.

Saturday, June 3, 2023 Windsor Grassland Wildlife Management Area, Windsor, VT

Bird walk at 7 a.m. 
Walk will run from 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Attendees should meet at the pump house parking area on Marton Rd. Directions: Coming from the south, take RT 5 into Windsor, turn west onto State St., continue straight onto Hunt Rd. for 2.2 miles, turn right onto Marton Rd. and continue until the pump house. If coming form the north, take County Rd. south, turn right onto Weeden Hill Rd, turn right onto Marton Rd. In both cases park at the pump house parking area near the intersection with State Farm Rd. 
Point of Contact: Ken Cox,

For the latest bird sightings see:

News You Can Use
ICYMI (In case You Missed It)

Town/School News

West Weathersfield Fire Department Banquet Recognizes Volunteers for years of service

West Weathersfield Fire Department Banquet was held on April 22. The event thanked our first responders for their service. 

Several firefighters were recognized for their years of service, including Travis Comp, Jordyn Bagalio, and Dave Picknell for 5 years of service, Ben Waters and Tracy Dauphin for 10 years of service, Mike Wiltshire and Mychael Spaulding for 15 years of service, Josh Dauphin for 20 years of service, and Ray Stapleton for 25 years of service. 

The Firefighter of the year award went to Dave Picknell.  This award is chosen by the group and reflects their mission statement and core values. The department also recognized Ray Stapleton for his time as Chief and leadership in other roles. 

Brownsville Butcher and Pantry catered the event and Erik Boedtker and Johnny O performed. 

ARPA Update (from the Select Board Packet for tonight's meeting)

"The ARPA meeting took place on Wednesday, April 26, 2023, at 6:30pm. The meeting was held at the 1879 Schoolhouse. We organized chairs in a large circle and laid ground rules, which included holding a round table discussion so that each person that attended had the opportunity to share their ideas. Everyone shared at least 1 idea and all of these ideas were logged into an excel spreadsheet. 

I will be holding another public input meeting in mid-May and will be advertising this again. We welcome any resident in Town that wishes to share an idea on how to best use the remaining funds. 

I anticipate submitted a recommendation based on the community input we receive at the first Selectboard meeting in June, and that recommendation will not only include the expenditures for our ARPA funds, but also a system to match these funds with state grant programs." Brandon Gulnick, Town Manager.

Town Volunteer Vacancies
There were no appointments made at the April 17th meeting but Selectboard Chair Mike Todd read the available vacancies  
a. Budget Committee (5 Vacancies) 
b. Conservation Commission (2 Vacancies) 
c. Energy Coordinator (1 Vacancy) 
d. Green Up Coordinator (1 Vacancy) 
e. Lister (1 Vacancy) f. Parks and Recreation (2 Vacancies) 
g. Veterans Memorial Committee (4 Vacancies) 
h. Zoning Board of Adjustment (2 Vacancies)

Anyone interested in serving should contact the Town manager Brandon Gulnick at 802-674-2626

Select Board

All regular meetings are broadcasted live on Comcast channel 1087, VTEL Channel 161, and on Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m.

Selectboard Members  and Term 
Mike Todd Chair 2024
Paul Tillman Vice Chair 2026
David Fuller Member 2025
Kelly O'Brien Clerk 2025
Wendy Smith Member 2024
Select Board Meets 1st and 3rd Mondays of the Month 6:30 p.m.  

*Vermont Open Meeting Law
Minute posting: Minutes of all public meetings shall be matters of public record, shall be kept by the clerk or secretary of the public body, and shall be available for inspection by any person and for purchase of copies at cost upon request after five calendar days from the date of any meetingMeeting minutes shall be posted no later than five calendar days from the date of the meeting to a website, if one exists, that the public body maintains or has designated as the official website of the body. Except for draft minutes that have been substituted with updated minutes, posted minutes shall not be removed from the website sooner than one year from the date of the meeting for which the minutes were taken.

Weathersfield Police Blotter

Weathersfield School

Weekly Newsletter: April 7

Save the Dates
April 26- Spring Pictures (Optional for Purchase)
April 28- Kindergarten Screening
May 2-19 VTCAP Testing Grades 3-8

Graduation Dates Across the SU
Here are the upcoming graduation dates and times across the Supervisory Union. 
WINDSOR 12TH: June 2nd 6:00 p.m. 
ABS 6TH: 6/15 during day 9:00 a.m. 
HARTLAND 8TH: 6/13 4:00 p.m. 
WEATHERSFIELD 8TH: 6/14 6:00 p.m. 
WINDSOR 8TH: 6/15 6:00 p.m.

Current Employment Opportunities at Weathersfield School
If you or if you know of anyone that has always wanted to work in a school setting, now is the time to apply. 
WS currently has three different opportunities for employment. 
If you are interested, please apply on
World Language Teacher

Meeting Agendas may be found HERE

Weathersfield School Board meets on Tuesdays
In Person at Weathersfield School (135 Schoolhouse Road, Ascutney)

Location: 135 Schoolhouse RD Ascutney 
May 9 Agenda

School Board Meetings
Meeting Minutes
April 18 (not posted at press time 4/24/2023)

Weathersfield Proctor Library
Route 5 (5181 US-5 Ascutney VT 05030)

WPL Drop in Scrabble
Mondays at 1 p.m.

Please call Maureen Bogosian for details
@ 603-252-0936

Weathersfield Historical Society
Follow them on Facebook:

Weathersfield Center Church and Meeting House
Follow them on Facebook:

Local and State News

New Covid-19 booster recommendations roll out in Vermont

Erin Petenko reporting for VT Digger

Last week, the federal government authorized a second Covid-19 bivalent booster shot for two higher-risk populations: people 65 years and older and those who are moderately to severely immunocompromised.

The new recommendations also phase out the original monovalent vaccine that first became available in 2020. All vaccine-seekers going forward will receive the bivalent vaccine, which is more targeted to the strains of Covid currently circulating around the country.

Here’s what you need to know about the latest recommendations and the status of Covid vaccinations in Vermont.
Who is affected by the latest recommendations?

There are two different aspects of the new recommendations that affect different groups. The first is the recommendation that all people receive the bivalent vaccine rather than the monovalent one. That means anyone coming into a doctor’s office or pharmacy for a Covid dose will get the bivalent vaccine — people getting vaccinated for the first time, children who are newly qualified for a vaccine or people getting boosted after their first dose. Only one dose of the bivalent vaccine is recommended, rather than the two-dose primary course of the monovalent vaccine.

In February, the federal government issued revised recommendations for Covid vaccines for young children. Check the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website to find out more about what vaccines are recommended by age group. The recommendation for a second bivalent booster dose applies only to people 65 and older who received their first bivalent booster at least four months ago and immunocompromised people who got that booster at least two months ago.

The bivalent booster dose was introduced in September 2022 as an updated version of the vaccine. Sometimes called the Omicron booster, the bivalent vaccine targets the Omicron strains of the disease to bolster immunity to the now-dominant strain of the disease.
Why should I get the bivalent booster?

The latest recommendations come with a unique phrasing: Eligible people “may” get the second bivalent booster dose, rather than “should” get it.

Mark Levine, commissioner of the Vermont Department of Health, said that’s a reflection of the changing nature of the virus and the vaccine itself.

The federal committee in charge of making recommendations said there was insufficient data for getting a new booster every six months, but it did not want to deny people “the opportunity to get one, knowing what we understand of the concept of waning immunity,” Levine said.


As more incarcerated witnesses detail David Mitchell’s death, advocates plan a Statehouse rally

Ethan Weinstein reporting for VT Digger

A total of five people who were incarcerated near David Mitchell have now described him pleading for medical care before he died at Southern State Correctional Facility. Spurred by his death, prisoners’ rights advocates are planning a protest in front of the Statehouse next week.

The rally, organized by the nonprofit Vermont Just Justice, will also honor other people who have died recently in Vermont’s prisons.

Mitchell was the 12th person to die at the Springfield prison since January 2022, according to official reports. The 46-year-old died on April 17 after he had “difficulty breathing,” Vermont State Police said in a press release that day.

Most of those deaths have been attributed to natural causes, death certificates show. An autopsy to determine Mitchell’s cause of death was still pending on Wednesday, and investigations by the state police, Department of Corrections and Defender General’s Office are ongoing.

The new accounts of Mitchell’s final hours, which Matthew Hewitt, 33, Louis Tobin, 36, and Randy Persad, 46, shared with VTDigger this week, largely align with those previously shared by Preston Lawson, 22, and John White, 35.

In interviews conducted over the phone, as well as using video and messaging apps, all five men described Mitchell begging for help before and after he was briefly seen by medical staff on the morning of his death. All five also said a corrections officer told Mitchell he would be sent to segregation if he didn’t stop complaining.

Four said Mitchell used an oxygen tank and three said he had been removed from buprenorphine, which is commonly used to treat opioid dependency, in the days before his death.

Corrections Commissioner Nick Deml last week denied any misconduct in Mitchell’s death, saying that an “initial review” did not line up with the account first shared by White. Deml also said Mitchell had a “robust medical history.”

Haley Sommer, a corrections spokesperson, said on Wednesday that the department would have no comment on its investigation.


Amid a housing crisis, will Vermont keep paying people to move here?

Desperate to lure young people into an aging state, the Vermont Senate in 2018 put forward a plan to pay relocation expenses for remote workers willing to move to the Green Mountain State. Gov. Phil Scott eagerly hopped on board, and in 2018, a $500,000 pilot program was signed into law.

The Legislature has reauthorized funding every year since then (save for 2020), for a total of nearly $5 million. And as part of their draft of the state budget for the next fiscal year, which is due to hit the floor Wednesday, Senate budget-writers have again recommended continuing the program, this time with $1 million.

“For me, it represents one tool in a toolbox that needs to have a lot of tools in it to deal with these still 20,000 open jobs in Vermont,” said Senate Majority Leader Alison Clarkson, D-Windsor.

But times have changed since 2018. Vermont’s rental vacancy rates are some of the lowest in the nation, home prices have skyrocketed, and employers frequently say that they can’t fill open jobs because workers can find nowhere to live. Longtime skeptics of the program have seized on the argument that the program has even less merit in this context.

“It doesn't make a lot of sense to us that we try to incent people to move to Vermont when we have a housing crisis going on,” said Rep. Michael Marcotte, R-Coventry, who chairs the House Commerce & Economic Development Committee. “We feel that that money is better spent trying to keep Vermonters here.”

The House agreed to fund the program again in 2022 only as part of a larger compromise. And the House-passed version of the state budget this legislative session again omitted funding for the program entirely.

Whether the incentive has any sort of impact has always been a matter of fierce debate. In 2019, Vermont Auditor Doug Hoffer, a longtime critic of Vermont’s business incentives, released a report arguing that the program’s guardrails were insufficient and that there was no evidence that award recipients wouldn’t have moved to Vermont anyway.

An economic impact report commissioned by lawmakers in 2021 argued that the program likely paid for itself via new tax revenues and that every dollar invested generated $93.88 in economic activity in 2018 and $66.26 in 2019.

But many, including Hoffer, doubted the findings, and a subsequent memo by the Legislature’s Joint Fiscal Office offered a blistering retort. After examining the report’s methodology, legislative staffers noted that consultants who produced the report had never asked grantees point-blank whether they would have moved to Vermont without the award and ignored pandemic-era migratory trends.

Vermont State University reverses course on libraries, athletics

 Peter D'Auria reporting for VT Digger

Vermont State University is reversing course on changes to its libraries and athletics programs, putting an end — for now — to a controversial slate of decisions to transform member campuses.

The changes were announced Monday afternoon by Vermont State University interim president Mike Smith, who took over the institution after the surprise departure of embattled president Parwinder Grewal earlier this month.

The university will rescind layoff notices to library staff and will maintain athletics programs at two Vermont State University campuses for at least three years, Smith said during a meeting of the Vermont State Colleges board of trustees.

“I have not hidden the fact that I think these are distractions,” he said, adding, “This is a way to put these behind us.”

Amid rocky financial prospects, Vermont State University is engaged in an ambitious merger process to unite three public academic institutions — Castleton University, Northern Vermont University and Vermont Technical College — under one name. The university is scheduled to officially debut July 1.

But the upcoming launch has been overshadowed by controversial changes to libraries and athletics programs.

In February, the university announced plans to transition to an “all-digital” library system and downgrade sports programs. Library materials would be made available digitally, Grewal said, and most physical books would be donated. The library spaces themselves would be “repurposed.”

The plan would eliminate seven full-time positions and three part-time ones in campus libraries, officials said.


Former Chester teacher receives 10-year sentence for possessing child sexual abuse materials

Auditi Guha reporting for VT Digger

A former Chester teacher who pleaded guilty last year to possession of child sexual abuse materials was sentenced Monday to 10 years in prison in U.S. District Court in Burlington.

Norman Merrill II, 46, was arrested in May 2022 after a federal grand jury indicted him on three charges of producing and possessing child sexual abuse materials. A search warrant found several devices with electronic recordings of voyeuristic videos made with hidden cameras in various bathrooms at his home and in school, including of an unidentified female minor, according to court documents.

Merrill, who taught language arts at Green Mountain Union High School in Chester, was fired by the school board soon after his arrest.

He pleaded guilty in December to one count of possession of child sexual abuse materials, according to court documents. Two remaining counts were dismissed.

Merrill, who has been incarcerated at the Northwest State Correctional Facility in Swanton since his arrest, appeared in the courtroom Monday and read shakily from a prepared statement. He apologized and said he accepted responsibility for “the immeasurable pain, anger, disappointment and shame” he has caused many people, particularly “the victims of my crime.”

“I have failed my students and colleagues deeply. I committed an incredible breach of trust. I have brought them undue embarrassment and let them down as a role model for our school,” he said. “Words cannot express how much shame, guilt and self-loathing I feel for what I’ve done.”

Judge Christina Reiss commented on the unusual circumstances of the case involving a teacher and a father who does not have a prior record before announcing the 10-year sentence with credit for time served, followed by 10 years of supervision after release.

Reiss observed that Merrill seems to have been a good teacher and a good father but also someone who took a lot of risk to do something that caused irreparable and lifelong harm to others.

“The betrayal of trust is really at the heart of this case,” Reiss said, adding that she believes Merrill is remorseful and has people who can help him. She urged him to allow them to provide that support.

Things to Do In and Around Weathersfield
Get Outdoors, Entertainment, Classes, Workshops 

Lake monitors needed in Windsor County
Do you enjoy being on the water? If you own a small paddle-powered or motor-powered boat and can commit to getting out on your lake or pond once every 10 days between Memorial Day and Labor Day, then being a lake monitor could be for you,

Volunteers from the Black River Action Team will be tackling lakes and ponds around Windsor County, but there are several still in need of a person to take on the role of lake monitor. All training and equipment are provided. All that’s required is your enthusiasm for healthy water and an hour or so every 10 days. Water temperature and clarity data as well as visual observations will be collected during each visit, and samples will be collected and need to be delivered to a prearranged drop site in a timely manner.

The water bodies in need are Knapp Brook Pond Number One and Knapp Brook Pond Number Two in Cavendish/Ascutney, Stoughton Pond in Weathersfield, and Amherst Lake in Plymouth.

To learn more or to volunteer, please contact B.R.A.T. Director Kelly Stettner right away at, or by leaving your contact information at 802-738-0456.
All shows are at 7:30 p.m. unless otherwise stated.

City Center Ballet presents-Alice in Wonderland May 5-7 INFO and Tickets

Silent Film-Safety Last! May 12 TICKETS

Zach Nugent's Dead Set May 19 TICKETS
GA Orchestra Seating and Reserved Balcony Seating

Paul Reiser, Saturday, May 20 TICKETS

Ali Siddiq June 4 6 p.m. TICKETS
Meet and Greet Tickets available, hosted by Hartford Dismas House

Pat Metheny Side-Eye, Wednesday June 7 TICKETS

LOH-Hootenanny June 10: Beecharmer, Cold Chocolate, Jacob Jolliff Band 
4-8:30 p.m. Gates at noon, River Park West, Lebanon NH

LOH PRIDE Picnic  6 p.m. June 16  Learn More
with a Silent Disco 9-11 p.m. HEADPHONES

Cavalcade July 7-9, 2023 TICKETS
Bizet's Carmen July 16-21, 2023 TICKETS
Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel July 27-30, 2023 TICKETS



Whole Roasted Tro

Within Reach Yoga 

at the 1879 Schoolhouse in Perkinsville, VT

You must Register for each class at least a day ahead by emailing Lisa
(Class sizes limited to 7.)

March Classes Mondays and Tuesdays

Candle Glow Gentle Flow
Monday evenings 5:30-6:30 p.m.
May 1, 8, 15, 22, 29  Lynn Beach will substituting for Lisa G. on Mondays in May

Slow Flow, Rest + Restore 
Tuesday Morning 9-10 a.m.
May 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

Walk-ins can register up to 24 hrs. ahead by emailing Lisa and are available on a first-come, first served basis (classes fill early!). 

Please arrive 5-15 minutes early with your own props and mats.

REFRAIN FROM: Wearing ice cleats (into the building), shoes, perfume, or cologne in the practice space. Do not come to class if you are feeling ill.

Workshops Online


Vermont Online Workshops

Lots of events and movies online. Contact: AARP Vermont Email: with questions.

Visit Our Local Restaurants

Bistro Midva Midva is open Wednesday-Saturday 4:30-9:30 p.m. (Closed Sunday, Monday and Tuesday) Call (802) 299-1553 or visit their FACEBOOK PAGE for more information.

The Copper Fox 56 Main St., Ste. 1 Springfield, VT 05156 (802) 885-1031
Dinner 5:00pm - 9:00pm  
Sunday Hours 5:00pm - 8:00pm
Wednesday through Sunday (Closed Monday and Tuesday)

Daily Grind Café 
Call ahead for take out (802) 674-9859
93 Pleasant St. Claremont, NH (in the space formerly occupied by Dusty’s Café)
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday 7 a.m.-3 p.m.

Harpoon Beer Garden and Brewery 802-674-5491
336 Ruth Carney Drive
Windsor, VT 05089

Inn at Weathersfield (802) 263-9217 
Dine inside or outside Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, call for a reservation 802-263-9217. 1342 VT Route 106 Perkinsville, VT 05151

Maebellines (802) 591-4311
12 Clinton Street, Springfield, VT Open for breakfast and lunch, daily except Sundays.

Outer Limits Brewing (802)-287-6100
Closed Mondays and Tuesdays;  Wednesdays and Thursdays 3-8 p.m.; Saturdays noon-8 p.m. with LIVE MUSIC; Sundays noon-6 p.m..
60 Village Green, Proctorsville, VT 05153 

Springfield Diner-seating inside/outside daily 7 a.m.-2 p.m. Ice cream shop open Thursday-Sunday 1-7 pm. Daily specials.

Villagers Ice Cream Restaurant-(802) 795-0063 Open for the Season
Tuesdays-Sundays 11:30 a.m. until 9 p.m. (they stop cooking at 7:30 p.m.)
4261 Route 106 in Perkinsville, Downers Four Corners to the locals.
Unicorn Sundae at Villagers Rtes. 131 and 106, Downers Four Corners, in Perkinsville

Food Assistance

Weathersfield Food Shelf in Perkinsville.
The food shelf is open 2:00 pm-4:00 pm on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of each month. 
 The Weathersfield Food Shelf is located in the 1879 Perkinsville Schoolhouse at 1862 Route 106 in Perkinsville. The Food Shelf has lots of good food to offer!

Call the Weathersfield Town Office to be refereed to a volunteer, visit the Weathersfield Food Shelf Facebook page and leave a message, email
Donations of non-perishable food are always welcomed and may be dropped off at the facility during open hours or placed in the collection box at Martin Memorial Hall. For more information, call 802-263-5584 or email

Hartland Food Shelf in Hartland. 4 Corners UU Church Fridays 8-10 a.m., Saturdays 10 a.m-2 p.m.

Reading-West Windsor Food Shelf in Reading. Mondays 2-4 p.m. and Thursday 4-6 p.m. Stone School 3456 Tyson Rd, Reading.

Vermont State Resources and
COVID-19 Response Information

Do it for Yourself, Your Family, Your Community

Vermont Department of Health COVID-19 Information Page.

VT Digger Coronavirus Report: CLICK HERE

Mt. Ascutney Hospital Open for Walk-Ins M-F 1-5 PM
Mt. Ascutney Hospital and Health Center is now offering walk-in service on weekday afternoons for people ages 2 and older, according to a news release.

The visits are available for urgent, but non-emergency medical needs Monday through Friday from 1 to 5 p.m. Patients can check in at the hospital’s central registration, through the main entrance.

Some of the conditions appropriate for care through walk-in services are minor cuts and burns; urinary tract infections; strains and sprains; minor fractures; rashes; and ear, sinus and eye infections. In addition, X-ray and lab services are available on-site.

A nurse will be on hand to determine if a patient’s condition calls for transfer to the emergency department.

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Nancy Nutile-McMenemy is an Upper Valley freelance photographer and writer who loves paddle, hike, attend concerts and local events in and around Weathersfield and the Upper Valley.

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