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Vermont Farmhouse Chowder
This winter, six Vermont ski resorts (and more to come) are offering something really special on their menus: a hearty Farmhouse Chowder, featuring products locally grown by Vermont farmers. How it was conceived and developed is truly a fascinating story, but more importantly to all of you skiers, it is delicious!
We had the opportunity to taste it ourselves at the Statehouse cafeteria last week. The chowder has a really nice smoky taste and is truly the kind of hearty food all skiers want to have when they come into the lodge for lunch, after a few hours of skiing.
With this chowder, Sugarbush Executive Chef Gerry Nooney created something truly distinctive for Vermont. The soup is made with Peaslee’s Potatoes, Cold Hollow Apple Cider, Vermont Smoke and Cure sausage and of course, fresh Vermont cream, all local Vermont products. And it does have a very distinctive taste!
And at $6.50 for a bowl at Sugarbush, it costs the same as other prepared soups… but it’s Vermont-made and always fresh…never frozen!
In addition to Sugarbush, the Vermont Farmhouse Chowder is also available at Mount Snow, Bromley, Stratton, Stowe and Smugglers’ Notch Resort, and we’re being told that more ski resorts could join soon. And non-skiers will be happy to know that they can also buy it in a number of delis and local markets or make it at home (see recipe).
Finally… for those of you who are interested in the story of how it came about: it started with a simple idea of promoting local produce, similarly to the Vermont Ski Burger last year.
Chef Gerry Noonley worked hard to develop the recipe. Ski Vermont and the Vermont Agency of Agriculture worked together, along with some private businesses such as Cold Hollow Cider, Vermont Smoke and Cure, and Black River Produce (the distributor) to make it happen! “It is a remarkable example of what Vermont small community can achieve when working together” says Chef Gerry Noonley… Indeed… and the success is there to prove it: the chowder has already been produced in volumes that are twice the team’s initial expectations.

Note: The Vermont Ski Burger is available at Okemo Mountain, Stowe, Burke Mountain, Stratton and Mount Snow. It is made of Vermont-raised all-natural beef from Boyden Farm, and cheese from Cabot Creamery, with some “personalized touches” by the various ski resorts.
Ski Vermont Ale, made by Long Trail Brewery, is another Ski Vermont initiative that you can try at Stratton.

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Brookfield floating bridge in winter Photo: Courtesy of John Hughes, photographer.

Post-event note: It is 1 pm as I am writing this and would like to alert readers that the event has ended early, as the ice was not safe for competitions today…
Saturday January 31 – 10:30 am to 2 pm – It’s ice harvesting in Brookfield, Vermont. It is the 30th year that this traditional event takes place and it is one of the last ice harvest festivals in New England. It is also one of the Top Ten Winter 2008/09 Events, according to the Vermont Chamber of Commerce. There will be demonstrations and competitions, ice cutting, ice sculpting, dog sledding, food and more. We are trying to get more information on the exact timing of the various events. Stay Posted! And for more details, you can read the 2001 The Herald article which describes nicely how the ice is prepared for harvesting for several weeks and how it is carried to the ice house.
We had lots of fresh snow in the past couple of days, so the scenery should be spectacular, but dress warm because it is going to be on the chilly side (14F; 0F with the wind chill factor). We’ll definitely be there with our camera!
Note: If you are interested in the history of ice harvesting, don’t miss the ice house at the Justin Morrill Homestead, a Vermont historic site in Strafford, and its exhibit on ice harvesting, including some interesting old photographs. The site is not open in the winter though.

Related article: Brookfield: its Unique Floating Bridge
More information on Brookfield Ice Harvest Festival
at:
802-276-3959

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Dog sledding in Vermont
Photo: Courtesy of Eden Dogsledding.

Dog sledding is a great way to be close to nature. Several companies, who all seem to be great dog lovers, are offering dog sled tours this season. We have not tried any of them ourselves, but we hope to do it soon.

Peace Pups Dogsledding – Lake Elmore, Northern Vermont – They are offering day tours at Lake Elmore with their teams of Siberian Huskies during week-ends (Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, at 10 am, noon and 2 pm) and night tours at Stowe Mountain Resort during the week (Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, at 5 pm, 6 pm and 7 pm). They are advising to make reservations in advance, because they have a small kennel.
More information at: Peace Pups Dogsledding
Where are they located? Lake Elmore, VT
Watch a video on Peace Pups Dogsledding, produced by Seven Days Magazine.

October Siberians Sled Dog Adventures – Hinesburg, Central Vermont – They are offering 2-hour tours during the day on week-ends (Saturdays and Sundays) and night tours (5 pm and 7:30 pm) on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Their primary location is Little River State Park in Waterbury, VT, a convenient location for people staying at Stowe, Bolton or Sugarbush ski resorts. They also participate to Hinesburg Winter Carnival and Shelburne Farms Winter Carnival.
More information at: October Siberians Sled Dog Adventures
Where are they located? Little River State Park, VT

 – Eden Dogsledding and Dogsledding-On-Wheels! – Eden Mills, Northeast Kingdom – Located an easy, scenic drive from Stowe, Jay Peak and Smugglers’ Notch ski resorts, they offer dog sled tours with their gorgeous Alaskan Huskies. In the winter, you’ll enjoy their woodstove, hot chocolate and cookies too! They even have lodging on site.
More information at: Eden Dogsledding
Where are they located? Eden Mills, VT

Husky Works Mushing Company – West Wardsboro – Located at the intersection of the Stratton-Arlington Road and Route 100, near Stratton Mountain and Mount Snow, in the Green Mountains of Southern Vermont, they offer dog sled tours with their Siberian Huskies.
More information at: Husky Works Mushing Company
Where are they located? West Wardsboro

Note that Atii Sled Dogs, in Moretown, Central Vermont are not offering dog sled tours this season (2008-2009). More information at: Atii Sled Dogs

They are a few more places offering dog sledding in Vermont, and which don’t seem to have websites. At this time, we have not contacted them for more information but they can be reached at the following phone numbers:
Hardscrabble Mountain Sled Dog Tours – Sheffield, Northeast Kingdom – 802-626-9895
Vermont Dog Sledding – Shoreham – 802-897-2311
For general information of dog sled tours and dog sledding, you can also visit the dog sledding page at:
Vermont Outdoor Guide Association

And last but not least, if you want to see 99 teams for the US and Canada, racing in a great sled dog dash, don’t miss the 3rd annual event at Burke Mountain on February 28 to March 1, 2009.
More information at: Burke Mountain Sled Dog Dash

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Cross-country skiing and horse-led sleigh at Mountain Top InnPhoto: Courtesy of Mountain Top Inn.
The 14th annual Winter Trails (Saturday January 10) is the occasion to snowshoe and cross-country ski for free in some Vermont ski resorts! It is actually a North-American event (100 locations in the US and Canada), to encourage people to try the sports, but in some of the resorts, everyone gets the opportunity to ski or snowshoe for free.
Here is the list of participating ski resorts and their activities:

Blueberry Hill Inn & Cross Country Ski Center, Goshen – January 10 – 10 am to 4 pm – Cross-country skiing is from 11 am to 1 pm and from 2 pm to 4 pm. First-time skiers can rent the equipment, take a group lesson and try the trails – all for free. Snowshoeing is from 10 am to noon and from 1 pm to 3 pm. People new to the sport can rent the equipment, have an introduction and hike in the woods for free.
More information at: Blueberry hill Inn Cross Country Ski Center

Bolton Valley Nordic Center, Bolton Valley – January 11 – 10 am to 2 pm – First-time skiers get free rental and free ski pass.
Careful: it’s Sunday January 11 at Bolton, not January 10!
More information at: Bolton Valley Events

Catamount Outdoor Family Center, Williston – January 10 – 10 am to 3 pm with a moon light snowshoe tour ($10, only adults) at 8 pm followed by hot chocolate and cookies! Free trail passes and sledding, free ski and snowshoe rentals for everyone all day… and raffle for Darn Tough socks.
More information at: Catamount Outdoor
Full schedule at: Catamount Outdoor Winter Trails schedule

Craftsbury Outdoor Center, Craftsbury – January 10 – 9 am to 4 pm – Rentals and trail passes are free for everyone all day, both for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. There is an introductory cross-country group lesson at 1:30 pm.
More information on Craftsbury Outdoor Center at: Craftsbury Outdoor Center

Highland Lodge Nordic Center, Greensboro – January 10 – 1 pm to closing – Free snowshoeing and skiing trail passes and rentals for first-timers. There is also a Full Moon Snowshoe Walk at 9 pm free, with free hot chocolate after the walk. Just call ahead to sign up. (802) 533-2647.
More information at: Highland Lodge Nordic Center Events

Mountain Top Inn & Resort Nordic Ski & Snowshoe Center, Chittenden, Rutland County – January 10 – 10 am to 2 pm – Children and adults new to the sports of cross-country skiing and snowshoeing receive a complimentary trail pass and free rentals for the day. And if you’ve read our article on “the best ski resorts are in Vermont”, you know that Mountain Top Inn has been voted one of the Top 10 ski resorts for romantic cross-country skiers in North-America by MSNBC in 2006!
More information at: Mountain Top Inn Events

Ole’s Cross Country Ski Center, Warren – January 10 – 1 pm to closing – Beginners who mention the Winter Trails event get a 1-hour trail pass, ski rental and ½ hour “try-it” lesson (at 2 pm) – all for free.
More information at: Ole’s Cross Country Ski Center Events

Sleepy Hollow Inn, Ski & Bike Center, Huntington – January 10 – 9 am to 4 pm – People new to the sports of cross-country skiing and snowshoeing receive a free trail pass and free rental.
More on the Ski Center: Sleepy Hollow Inn

Smugglers’ Notch Resort Nordic Ski and Snowshoe Adventure Center, Smugglers’ Notch – January 10 – Noon to 4 pm – Free rentals and short instructional sessions for first-time snowshoers and cross country skiers. Smugglers’ Adventure Center has 34 kilometers of cross-country trails and 24 kilometers of dedicated snowshoe trails!
More information at: Smugglers’ Notch winter events

Woodstock Inn & Resort, Woodstock – January 10 – 1 pm to 3 pm – Free passes, free rentals and a 15-minute instructional session for first-time snowshoers and cross country skiers. More information at: Woodstock Inn & Resort Nordic Center, 802-457-6674

We hope you all get out and try! Snow should be great, with the new snow we are getting today.

Post-scriptum: Ski Vermont is also organizing an event for first-time skiers and riders this week (January 4-11). Free lessons, rentals and limited-beginner lift tickers are offered in over a dozen Vermont ski resorts. More information and to sign up: Ski Vermont learn to ski

 

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Winter season in VermontFoliage is absolutely beautiful right now… but ski lovers should already think “ski” because there are only a few days left to get a pre-season deal on ski season passes in most of Vermont ski resorts!
So, here at Travel-Vermont.net, we’d like to make your life really simple.

Below is the complete list of Vermont ski resorts, with link to their websites (season passes) and the deadline for the pre-season discounts. You can see where they are all located on this map of Vermont ski resorts.

Ascutney Mountain Resort – Deadline: October 13
Bear Creek – Private resort
Bolton Valley – Cut-off date was September 22 – oups, sorry
Bromley – Deadline: October 15
Burke Mountain – Deadline: No date
Jay Peak Resort – Deadline: October 13
Killington – Deadline: October 15
Mad River Glenn – Deadline: October 15
Magic Mountain – Cut-off date was September 30 – oups, sorry
Cochran’s Ski Area – Deadline: December 1
Middlebury College Snow Bowl – Deadline: End of October
Mount Snow – Deadline: October 13
Okemon Mountain – Deadline: October 13
Pico Mountain – Deadline: October 15
Smugglers’ Notch Resort – Deadline: By Halloween!
Stowe – Deadline: October 24
Stratton – Deadline: October 13
Sugarbush – Deadline: November 9 on college passes
Suicide Six at Woodstock Inn – Deadline: No date

Don’t hesitate to send us your comments and come back to read our articles and watch the ski reports!

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Antiques Shows - VermontOctober 4th and 5th is a big week-end for antiques fans in Vermont this year. If you are one of those, you will definitely be delighted to know that there are actually three antiques shows taking place this week-end:

– The Lake Champlain Antiques Show – Sheraton Exhibition Center, Burlington – Exit 14 – Saturday October 4th from 10 am to 5 pm and on Sunday October 5th from 10 am to 4 pm. It is said to be Lake Champlain region largest antique show.
More information at: Antiquing Vermont

– The Vermont Antique and Expo Sale – Champlain Valley Expo, Essex Junction – Saturday October 4th from 8:30 am to 5 pm and on Sunday October 5th from 8:30 am to 4 pm. It will showcase antiques dealers and also offer seminars on antique furniture and other subjects.
More information at: Champlain Valley Expo

31st Annual Antiques Show – Bromley Mountain Thrill Zone, Route 11, Peru – Saturday October 4th and Sunday October 5th from 10:30 am to 5 pm.
More information at: Bromley Mountain

Quite an opportunity to drive around, admire the foliage at its peak, and discover the antique hidden gem you have dreamt of!

And for the music lovers:
– the Made in Vermont Music Festival with the Vermont Symphony Orchestra – Chandler Music Hall, Randolph – Saturday October 4th, 7:30 pm– One of the last concerts of this festival, it will play music by Vivaldi, Grieg and Gerswhin – Conductor and soloist Jaime Laredo.
More information at: Chandler Arts

And for the hikers fond of history:
11th Annual Mount Zion Hike – Hubbardton Battlefield Historic Site – Sunday October 5th, from 2 pm to 5 pm.
What a wonderful way to admire the breathtaking fall mountain views! The Mount Zion hike is an easy to moderate climb, offering spectacular views of the Taconics, lower Green Mountain range, and Adirondacks, and is the only vantage point from which the entire battlefield can be seen. Historic site interpreter Carl Fuller will accompany the hike and discuss the famous July 7, 1777, Revolutionary War Battle of Hubbardton, the role Mount Zion played in the battle, and what you can see from the summit. Bring sturdy shoes and enjoy!
More information at: Hubbardton Battlefield Historic Site
Related post and photos: Battle of Hubbardton reenactment

You can also enjoy the usual… and unusual activities that Vermont has to offer for its wonderful foliage season. Read our previous article: Enjoy Vermont Foliage… Differently

Enjoy this wonderful week-end and don’t miss our next week-end article… there are exciting events taking place in Vermont on October 11-12 week-end.

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Golden mums
We’ll tell you about the scenic drives and the places to go apple picking, but what about doing something different:

  • Canoeing the Missisquoi river: It is part of the 740-mile Northern Forest Canoe Trail, and has some of the best flat-water paddling in Vermont. And it is bordered by a large silver maple forest. Actually, it is so scenic that there is a bill at the Senate right now to have the Missisquoi and the Trout Rivers become “wild and scenic rivers” which will allow their protection and development as a wonderful natural resource.
    More information at: The Northern Forest Canoe Trail
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  • Follow the cheese trail: There is nothing better than having a good excuse to drive all around Vermont. The cheese makers of Vermont are famous (they get world recognition!) and their cheeses are delicious, so why not discover Vermont cheeses and enjoy the scenery – all at the same time. The Vermont Cheese Council offers you a map of all the places you can visit (check the little flags on the map).
    More information at: Map of the Vermont Cheese Trail
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  • Enjoy a train ride: This summer I had the opportunity to visit a few of the Vermont towns which saw their economic development boosted in the mid-1800s because the railroad came through their villages. The tracks are still there and believe me, they are always taking you through scenic valleys surrounded by forested mountains. Amtrak can take you from Washington DC all the way to St. Albans on the Vermonter, from New York City to Rutland on the Ethan Allen Express, and from Boston to Springfield, MA and then to Montpelier. The Green Mountain Railroad also offers some rides. They have a Fall Foliage Dinner Train leaving Burlington from 3pm to 9pm on September 27 – $75.00. We cannot wait to take such a trip ourselves!
    More information at:
    Green Mountain Railroad Fall Foliage Dinner Train 
    Amtrak route guides – The Vermonter and the Ethan Allen Express
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  • Take a cruise on Lake Champlain: Seeing foliage from the lake is a very popular fall activity. Take a 1 ½ hour cruise with Carillon Cruises (his dock is across from Fort Ticonderoga) and the captain will delight you with historic tales of the region. For an overnight mid-week (Lake Discovery Cruise) or a week-end (Vermonter) cruise, choose the Moonlight Lady. I hear food is great and they can accommodate 16 people overnight.
    More information at:
    Vermont Discovery Cruises
    Carillon Cruises
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  • Visit wineries: We’ll have to try this ourselves, and see if the scenery is worth the drive… It may not look as bucolic as the Napa Valley’s hills covered with vineyards. But if you are intrigued to discover if Vermont has nice wines to offer, this is another excuse to drive around. One vineyard, Shelburne Vineyard did win some awards for its organically and sustainably grown wines. For you to discover.
    More information at:
    Map of Vermont wineries
    Shelburne Vineyard
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  • Take the Vermont Brewery Challenge: From wine to beers! We have talked in a past article about this fun way to visit some of the 18 Vermont micro-breweries. You can get the official passport, get a stamp when you visit one of the breweries and win prizes!
    More information at:
    Map of Vermont breweries and pubs
    Vermont Brewery Challenge Passport
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  • Join the 251 Club and visit all 251 towns and villages in the State of Vermont. Record everyone you visit on the map until you have completed it all! I know, it’s a little crazy, but a great excuse to take roads you would not normally take. We have discovered beautiful barns or waterfalls this way!
    More information at: 251 Club

And for the more usual activities

  • Go apple picking and win an iPod: Yes, it’s true. In one of the participating apple orchads in Vermont, you can pick up apples and find a wooden apple in some trees to win an iPod. One good way to have the whole family motivated to come!
    More information at: Vermont apples
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  • Enjoy one of the foliage scenic drives or bike rides: Vermont has so many scenic drives or biking trails. Foliage-Vermont.com and Burlington Free Press are two references we selected for you. You find itineraries and maps there. And if you want to join a group for a biking tour, Bike Vermont offers some fall tours for you.
    More information at:
    Burlington Free Press Foliage Drive
    Foliage-Vermont driving and biking roads  (click on driving tours on the left menu and select one of the tours).
    Bike Vermont
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  • Finally, for mountain biking and hiking, lots of choices again, one choice worth mentioning is the Kingdom Trails in East Burke. It was voted 2006 Editors’ Choice by theYankee Magazine Travel Guide to New England and called the “thrill of a lifetime”!
    More information at:
    Kingdom Trails

Related posts:
Vermont Scenic Drives: Route 17
Brewpubs of Vermont

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Bottle Shock movie - posterWe are really sorry that we “stood you up” last week and did not publish the week-end events. We were redesigning the website to make it more practical for all readers… and we also launched it in French for our Quebec travelers. But we are back today with events for the upcoming week-end, from music, to sports, gastronomy and movies… sometimes even combined into the same event. So, here we go:

New this week!

Wine tasting and movie – A very unique event; when French and Californian wines compete. That’s the subject of this new award-winning movie “Bottle Shock” (based on a 1976 story) and the theme of the wine tasting. And… the producer Todd Harris will be there for a Q&A. Where? Merrill’s Roxy Theater, 222 College Street in Burlington. When? This Friday August 22, at 5 p.m. followed by the movie or at 8:45 p.m. followed by the movie. Sounds like fun. We’ll be there for sure!
More information: Merrill’s Roxy Theater (make sure to scroll down to see the information)

Vermont Festival of the Arts – Mad River Valley – August 1-31. Lots of exhibits and workshops in all art forms, from pottery to photography, watercolor, music, dance, cooking, theater and more during the whole month of August. We have not experienced any of the events yet, but everyone seems to be talking about this festival. Let us know what you think.
More information: Vermont Festival of the Arts

18th Annual Mad River Valley Century Ride – 50 or 100 miles. The biking event organized by the Hyde Away Inn & Restaurant looks like quite a well-organized and well-attended event (500 bikers). Friday night is the “carb-load” with lasagna and pasta buffet. Saturday morning: departure of the 2 races; rest stops along the way and a nice BBQ after the ride. The rides take you through the beautiful region, the quaint villages of Waitsfield and Warren, the State capital Montpelier and along the Dog, White and Mad rivers – nice scenery with great mountain backdrops indeed. We would love to have your feedback on the event if you attend.
More information: Mad River Valley Century Ride

Grace Coolidge Musicale #3 – Sunday, August 24 at 3:00 p.m. A 45-minute program “The Romance of the Violin” with piano and violin followed by afternoon tea at the site’s restaurant, The Wilder House. The organizers recommend making reservations as seating are limited. We enjoy the scenery at President Calvin Coolidge Homestead and the village of Plymouth Notch where President Coolidge was born and raised. So, this event is a nice excuse to enjoy the site. website:
More information: President Calvin Coolidge State Historic Site
Related articles: President Calvin Coolidge House

La Boheme, Puccini – at the recently renovated Town Hall Theater, in Middlebury – Aug 22 at 8 p.m., and Aug 24 at 2 p.m. This popular opera will be the largest production of the Opera Company of Middlebury
More information: Town Hall Theater

And for continuing events:

Les Miserables musical is playing in Vermont… from July 31 to August 23 in Weston. We’ll try to go and check this production in the next few weeks and tell you what we thought. We are not expecting the kind of production you can see in New York or London, but we’ll see…
More information at: www.westonplayhouse.org
– And finally, if you really enjoy wine tasting and want to offer yourself a very special treat, there is a very special wine week-end cruise – one-and-half day (Saturday – Sunday) with an overnight – on the beautiful Moonlight Lady, hosted by Dellie Rex, senior Wine Instructor at New England Culinary Institute. The cost is $399 per person.
More information at: www.vtwinecruise.com

Also, don’t hesitate to leave us a comment on one of these events if you have a chance to attend!

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Lake Champlain Bluegrass FestivalPhoto courtesy of Adam Frehm

New this week!

7th Annual Lake Champlain Bluegrass Festival – August 8-10, in Alburgh – If you like bluegrass music, this is your week-end. Pray for good weather so you can enjoy all the outdoors concerts. And if you are not familiar with the event, take a minute and look here on the Vermont Life Magazine website, at this slideshow with music (scroll down the page and be patient, it takes a little while to load) … Looks and sounds like lots of fun.
More information at: www.lakechamplainmusic.com
51st Annual Antique & Classic Car Show – August 8-10, in Stowe – It’s the big and famous antique car event of the summer at Stowe with around 850 antique, classic and collector cars expected.
More information at: www.vtauto.org
– The schooner Lois McClure is coming back home to Burlington – Saturday August 5, Perkins Pier, Lake Champlain, Burlington, 5PM. You may have heard that the Lois McClure has been traveling to Quebec city (and other places on its way down the Saint-Laurent and the Richelieu river) early July to represent Vermont at the 400th anniversary of the founding of Quebec city by Samuel de Champlain. It’s back home and invites you to bring your picnic and enjoy dessert this Saturday early evening.
Bicycle Film Series at the Savoy Theater, Montpelier – For the cyclists discouraged by the rain! Saturday August 9: The Bicycle Thief (Ladri di biciclette) (1948) – director: Vittorio De Sica (view the trailer) and Sunday August 10: Jour de Fête (1949) – writer and director: Jacques Tati. On your way, you can even admire some modern sculptures inspired by cycling, in front of several Montpelier buildings or inns!
– And finally, if you really enjoy wine tasting and want to offer yourself a very special treat, there is a very special wine week-end cruise – one-and-half day with an overnight – on the beautiful Moonlight Lady, hosted by Dellie Rex, senior Wine Instructor at New England Culinary Institute. The cost is $399 per person.
More information at: www.vtwinecruise.com

And for continuing events:
Les Miserables musical is playing in Vermont… from July 31 to August 23 in Weston. We’ll try to go and check this production in the next few weeks and tell you what we thought. We are not expecting the kind of production you can see in New York or London, but we’ll see…
More information at: www.westonplayhouse.org
Vermont Summer Festival Horseshow – 5th week-end of competition at East Dorset; Photographers: remember you can participate to a digital photography contest (see previous posting);
Related post: Vermont Summer Festival Horseshow
– And more chamber music at Marlboro Music, Marlboro College – Friday August 8 and Saturday August 9 at 8:30PM and Sunday afternoon August 10 at 2:30PM. It is worth the drive there and you can find nice romantic inns to stay at, in the area. Time Magazine says it’s “the most exciting chamber music in the U.S.”, the NY Times says “extraordinary rising stars and musical legends play side-by-side”.
More information at: Marlboro Music
Also, don’t hesitate to leave us a comment on one of these events if you have a chance to attend!

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Dragon Boat FestivalNew this week!
5th Annual Vermont Lakes Region Cycling Weekend – It’s both Saturday and Sunday and seems like a really nice event for cyclers. They are 13 rides to choose from, from rolling to hilly terrain, and from 19 to 65 miles in length – on paved, scenic, rural roads. The small groups of cyclists gather at Green Mountain College in Poultney. And for all the rides, they are given detailed maps and clues, and are accompanied by an experienced leader. And to make it even more attractive, some rides lead to interesting cultural or historic places, such as the Slate Valley Museum, Fort Ticonderoga (on the NY side) or Hubbardton Battlefield. Accommodations are available.
More information at: www.cyclingvermont.org
Related Post: Battle of Hubbardton Reenactment
3rd Annual Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival – Sunday August 3, in Burlington, at the Waterfront Park, from 7:30 am to 4:30 pm – The traditional Chinese Dragon Boats are competing! Teams of 20 paddlers (and a drummer) in 40-feet boats. Definitely a popular event, as the registration for participants is already full! And it’s a fund-raising event for Breast Cancer. We’ll be there!
More information at: Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival
2008 Pipers’ Gathering, Killington – sounds like a very serious gathering of pipers with workshops and group instructions during the 2 days, but for the general public, those of you who like such music, it’s also the chance to listen to “some of the best pipers” in the world (say the organizers) in 2 concerts Saturday night August 2 and Sunday night August 3 at 7:30PM.
More information at: www.pipersgathering.org
• The President Calvin Coolidge Homestead is always a nice place for a relaxing time, when the weather is nice and they do have some additional attractions on Saturday August 2 (Plymouth Old Home Day, including a chicken BBQ) and Sunday August 3 (piano concerts at 3PM).
Related post: President Calvin Coolidge House 
• At Mount Independence Historic Site, a great place for some day hikes, it’s a “Hike into History” on Sunday August 3, at 2PM, where you can hike the Orange Trail and the Blue Trail and learn from Steve Zeoli what happened there in 1776 and 1777 during the American Revolution. You can also bring a picnic and/or hike the flat, easy Baldwin Trail (green trail) which just won the 2008 Award of Merit from the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) Leadership in History Awards (quite a mouth full!), the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history. And indeed, the signage on the trail is superb!
Related post: Day Hike: Mount Independence
Champlain Valley Folk Festival – August 1-3 – at the Kingsland Bay State Park – celebrating its 25 years – We suspect it is probably a casual event… in the State Park… but there are still an impressive number of artists appearing over the 3 days (35 on the program we saw!)… so if you enjoy folk music, I hope you enjoy it.
More information at: www.cvfest.org
Directions: Take Route 7 to Ferrisburgh. From the center of Ferrisburgh, take Little Chicago Road west toward the lake. Turn right on Hawkins Road and continue for 4 miles to the Festival Entrance.
• And finally, as surprising as it may be, Les Miserables musical is playing in Vermont… from July 31 to August 23 in Weston. We’ll try to go and check this production in the next few weeks and tell you what we thought. We are not expecting the kind of production you can see in New York or London, but we’ll see…
More information at: www.westonplayhouse.org

And for continuing events:
Vermont Mozart Festival. It’s your last chance to attend one of its outdoors concerts in a place with beautiful scenery: Friday night August 1, at Shelburne Farms, and Saturday August 2 and Sunday August 3 the 2 “finale” concerts at Shelburne Farms and Stowe. We are planning to attend one of them… and praying for sunny weather;
And don’t forget the concert for kids at Teddy Bear Company Factory, in Shelburne, on Sunday. See our Event Calendar for the complete schedule.
Related posts:
Grande Isle Magic… and Jazz
Vermont Mozart Festival: Schedule
Vermont Mozart Festival: Grand Opening
Vermont Summer Festival Horseshow – 4th week-end of competition at East Dorset; Photographers: remember you can participate to a digital photography contest (see previous posting);
Related post: Vermont Summer Festival Horseshow
– And more chamber music at Marlboro Music, Marlboro College – Friday August 1 and Saturday August 2 at 8:30PM and Sunday afternoon August 3 at 2:30PM – We were there last week-end and the concert was delightful. It is worth the drive there and you can find nice romantic inns to stay at, in the area. Time Magazine says it’s “the most exciting chamber music in the U.S.”, the NY Times says “extraordinary rising stars and musical legends play side-by-side”.
More information at: Marlboro Music
Also, don’t hesitate to leave us a comment on one of these events if you have a chance to attend!

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