July 21, 2019

Pieper-Lococo paces CVU at state track meet

Athletes heading to Conn. for New England meet

By Mal Boright
Observer correspondent

Observer photo by Shane Bufano Champlain Valley Union High’s Summer Spillane competes in the pole vault in the State Track and Field Meet. She placed sixth in the event.

The girls finished sixth and the boys seventh in Saturday’s Division 1 State Track and Field Meet at Burlington High School, leaving Champlain Valley Union High coach Eli Enman pleased and looking ahead to next season.

Before that, however, as many as 10 athletes will participate in the New England meet this weekend in Connecticut after qualifying at the Essex Invitational.

Enman said there were good performances by his athletes Saturday, which resulted in one first and two second place finishes. There were 18 sixth or better places for the Redhawks.

The victory went to James Pieper-Lococo in the 110 hurdles with a time of 15.96 seconds.

Pieper-Lococo was closing in on a possible win in the 300 hurdles when he crashed into the final hurdle and had to be rushed to the hospital with a fractured arm.

Observer photo by Shane Bufano James Pieper-Lococo (far left) of Champlain Valley Union High competes in the hurdles at the Division 1 State Track and Field Meet at Burlington High School on Saturday.

“He (Pieper-Lococo) had come from behind with a 100 percent effort. A hurdler next to him fell and he went down also,” Enman said.

The coach said he saw Pieper-Lococo in the hospital after the injury was operated on and said, “He was in good spirits.”

Before the spill, the CVU runner had a great day going. Along with his win in the 100 hurdles, he was sixth in the 100 dash and anchored a fourth place finish for the 100 relay team.

A second place finish in the pole vault was claimed by Sam Chevalier with a height of 12 feet even. It was the same as winner Edward Simon of Bellows Free Academy of St. Albans but Chevalier had more misses in earlier tries.

Third place in the vault went to Redhawk Josh Campagna.

Anthony Jordick was prominent with a fifth in the 400 run plus roles in the fourth place marks by the 100 and 400 relay teams.

Best finish among the girls was by Haleigh Smith with a second in the triple jump. She also captured a fourth in the long jump and anchored the 100 relay team’s fifth place.

It was also a busy day for Summer Spillane, who ran to fourth place finishes in the 1,500 and 3,000 tours, led a sixth place effort by the 800 relay team and notched a sixth in the pole vault.

The numbers going to the New Englands would be nine or 10 depending on whether Enman will be allowed to name a replacement for the injured Pieper-Lococo on the relay team, which was qualified for the trip.

Enman said several members of his relatively youthful team were close to qualifying for the finals and, while a few solid performers will be lost to graduation, the overall prospects for next year look very good.

CVU tennis team out to defend title

Mal Boright
Observer correspondent

Only third-seeded Burlington High (15-1) and Vermont individual champion Madison Hartley of Charlotte stand between the Champlain Valley Union High girls tennis team and a second straight Division 1 championship.

The Redhawks and Seahorses will meet to decide the issue at 3 p.m. Thursday on the courts in Shelburne.

CVU earned the appearance in the finals Tuesday with a home victory over fifth-seeded South Burlington High, 5-2. Burlington popped seventh-seeded Rice Memorial High, 6-1 at Leddy Park.

The Redhawks’ number one player, senior Kylie deGroot, set the stage for the defeat of South Burlington with a tough 4-6, 7-5, 6-1 victory over the Rebels’ Samantha Wulfson.

CVU’s AnnaClare Smith breezed to 6-0 and 6-1 sets over South Burlington’s Anna Young while Colleen McCarthy and Andrea Joseph also earned wins for the Redhawks.

The duo of Kristen Donalson and Christina Parker triumphed in doubles.

CVU’s boys team was knocked out of its Division 1 tournament last Thursday, 6-1, by South Burlington. Liam Kelley had the Redhawks’ lone win.

Sports notes

CVU girls lax team one goal short in playoff loss

As usual, the Champlain Valley Union High girls lacrosse squad gave a team with a better record all sorts of trouble.

After a seesaw battle last Wednesday in Brattleboro, the 10th-seeded Redhawks bowed to the Colonels 8-7 on two goals in the final eight minutes of the game.

The Colonels’ Kelsey Guarino scored two of her five goals late in the game to pull her team from behind.

Michaela Kiley and Amanda Kinneston scored two goals each for the Redhawks, while Devan Wilkins, Abby Owens and Erika Gobeille also notched tallies.

Goalie Sophia Steinhoff had eight stops in the CVU cage.

The Redhawks closed out the season with a 3-11 mark. Brattleboro moved into the quarterfinals with an 11-5-1 record, where it lost Friday to second-seeded Middlebury Union High.

Redhawks close softball season with 6-11 record

A tense pitchers’ duel was the finale for the Champlain Valley Union High softball season last Wednesday.

The 11th-seeded Redhawks got nipped 2-0 on June 2 by the sixth-seeded Rutland High Red Raiders at the Raiders’ diamond in an opening playoff round. CVU finished 6-11 while Rutland advanced to the quarterfinals with a 12-5 mark.

CVU got a solid pitching performance from junior Cayla McCarthy, who limited the winners to four hits while striking out five and allowing only one walk.

The Redhawks, while reaching Rutland’s Taylor Kresconko for six hits, had 11 batters go down on strikes. Kresconko did not give up a walk.

The Redhawks lose six seniors including Emily Himberg, Cassidy Maglaris, Heather McLaughlin, Melissa Miller, Sarah Patten and Anna Supple.

Far Post notches tournament wins

Vermont’s Far Post Soccer Club had multiple teams compete in the Needham (Mass.) Memorial Day tournament late last month, with three teams winning in the top divisions of each age group.

The Far Post U13 Boys Premier team won its division with a 2-0 victory in the championship, helped by Williston players Patrick McCue, Chris Reiss and Christian Sakshaug.

The Far Post U15 Girls Premier team competed in the College Showcase bracket, which it won 1-0 in the division’s title game. Ferne Arsenault and Anne Spector of Williston play on the team.

The Far Post U16 Boys Premier team posted the third win, going undefeated and un-tied over the weekend in the U16 Boys College Showcase and capping off the run with a 1-0 win in the championship. Williston players include Parker Cornbrooks, Bennett Hadley, Elliot Schneider and Jonathan Slimovitch.

CVU lax squad advances to championship

By Mal Boright
Observer correspondent

Observer photo by Greg Duggan Champlain Valley Union High co-captain Cully Milikin (left) defends a Spaulding High player during the Redhawks’ 14-4 win on Friday. With another playoff victory on Tuesday, CVU earned a trip to the Division 1 title game.

“We try to get better with every game.”

Those were the words of Champlain Valley Union High boys lacrosse head coach Dave Trevithick after his Redhawks rolled past fourth-seeded Rutland High 13-1 Tuesday afternoon in a Division 1 semifinal contest in Hinesburg.

Trevithick’s focus on each game rather than the journey’s end is working.

After taking out eighth-seeded Spaulding High of Barre 14-4 last Friday, the Redhawks have outscored two playoff foes by a 27-5 margin in storming their way to the 2010 championship on Burlington High’s artificial turf either Friday or Saturday.

(The Vermont Principals Association was to determine title game time on Wednesday, after press deadline.)

The foe would be either third-seeded Essex High (15-2) or seventh-seeded South Burlington High (11-6). The two met in a semifinal Wednesday at Essex.

Essex handed the 17-1 Redhawks their lone loss of the season two weeks ago in the Junction Town; CVU scored an early season overtime win over the Hornets in Hinesburg. Both games were decided by a single goal.

Rutland left town with a 14-4 mark and perhaps wondering what was that red and white lacrosse tornado that came across its path.

It took little time for CVU to lay down its first marker. Jake Marston won the opening face off and just 43 seconds later Lawrence Dee scampered from behind the Raider net and fired the initial score.

A little more than two minutes later, with 9:01 left in the period, Robbie Dobrowski took a pass from Nick Hart and made it 2-0.

Hart (from Dee) hiked the lead to 3-0 before the end of the period and the Redhawks went on for a 6-0 edge at halftime, getting a slick score with six seconds to go in the half after defenseman Ben Teasdale intercepted a Rutland pass in the CVU zone.

After a timeout to organize a late offensive effort, Nick Spencer blitzed his way into the offensive zone and connected with a well-positioned Nathan Gingras in front of the Rutland net. Gingras flicked the ball into the cage for the score.

Gingras led CVU scorers with four goals and three assists. Nathaniel Wells pocketed three scores while Dee and Marston each notched a pair of tallies, Dee adding an assist.

Rutland’s lone goal came with 5:07 left in the third quarter and CVU up 8-0. Raider midfielder David Krauss unloaded a bouncer from 25 feet out on the right side that slipped into the net past Redhawks goalie Eric Palmer, who was solid with 11 saves. Sean Keenan took over midway through the fourth reel and had one stop.

“The team has really come together and is playing well now,” said Palmer, who also praised the defense and the work of the offense, which kept Rutland defending at its end of the field most of the afternoon.

Deep defenders Teasdale and Cully Milikin made life difficult for Rutland attackers, who had difficulty negotiating into position for open shots at Palmer.

“We talk to each other a lot,” said Teasdale, who along with Milikin and sophomore Christian Williford had several takeaways and conversions to offense from around the CVU cage.

Once again, a sizeable crowd was looking on from Happy Hawk Hill alongside the road that runs past the CVU lacrosse foundry.

Offense and defense click in quarterfinal victory

Spaulding had proven to be a problem for the Redhawks in their two regular season meetings; a 12-8 win at the Hinesburg field and a 10-9 squeaker in mid-May in Barre.

But CVU had its game together at both ends of the field Friday and laid that 14-4 licking on the Crimson Tide.

On the offense, seven players scored, led by midfielder Hart with four goals and two assists and Gingras with four scores and a helper. Wells chipped in with two goals plus an assist, while Dobrowski, Justin Beaudry, Spencer and Quinn Kropf also potted tallies.

Dee was his usual pass master self with four assists.

Hart and Gingras made sure the Redhawks were not wanting for early scores. Each got four goals in the first half as CVU bolted to a 9-1 advantage by halftime.

Gingras, with Dee assisting, scored with just over 1:30 gone in the first quarter. Hart made it 2-0 less than a minute later and the Hawks were winging.

Spaulding has firepower of its own, but on this day the CVU defense was a steady presence in front of goalies Palmer (13 stops) and Keenan (3).

“Everybody on defense played well today,” said co-captain Milikin, who was outstanding along the back line along with Teasdale.

CVU’s foxy coaching staff also put in a wrinkle that blunted Spaulding from mounting the kind of late game comeback that had caused some anxious moments in previous meetings.

The Tide’s primary offensive threat, speedy Tory Chouinard, found himself sharing space with the Redhawks’ Konnor Fleming for much of the afternoon. Chouinard popped five goals in Spaulding’s previous appearance here and Trevithick wanted to keep the swiftie under control.

Fleming, with occasional relief from Dobrowski, was up to the task. Chouinard got just one goal, a long shot off a loose ball in the second period and perhaps no more than two half-decent shots on the CVU cage.

“I think I got into his head a little,” Fleming said after shadowing the Spaulding star.

The visitors’ only rally came in the third quarter. With CVU up 10-1, junior Torrey Kelty scored at 8:43 on a long sidewinder shot and again at 3:47 to get Spaulding within seven points.

With 46 second left in the period, however, Dobrowski scored on an assist from Dee.

Beaudry then added his goal with less than two minutes gone in the final reel to put the Redhawks up 12-3 and pretty much chill Crimson Tide comeback hopes.

Guest column – Learning from the oil spill

By Stewart Cohen

It is hard to not react to the current catastrophe in the Gulf with a desire to reject all future offshore oil drilling. However, I believe that we have learned two critical things from this event that will enable us to proceed more capably in the future.

The first is that there is plenty of oil if we look for it. The second is that the real cost of an accident like this is almost incomprehensible and therefore one must never happen again. It is not enough to point out how little these accidents have happened; there have been others and we simply cannot allow more. Just as the Exxon-Valdez grounding forced the move to double hulled tankers (and we still haven’t finished cleaning up that mess), it would seem that this fiasco points to several options that can ensure our safety.

I like the fact that the Mineral Management Service is now being broken up to separate regulation and inspection from contracts and leases. It is a good first step. However, we also need to implement and enforce very strict standards for the production, operation, retirement, replacement or recertification of all critical operating parts involved in the drilling and extraction process. It is already clear that shortcuts were taken by BP in operations that contributed to the sequence of events in this disaster. Given that the ultimate solution for the leak is completing a relief well (which will take a total of three months to finish), I would propose the following idea: All offshore drilling from now on will include the simultaneous construction of primary and secondary wells into each oil source. Current offshore wells should be supplemented with secondary relief sites to offer the immediate potential to “relieve” any accident.

These kinds of fail-safes may actually offer up more security than statistics do and will indeed cost boatloads of money. The oil profits are there to support this, but let’s face it — this will raise the price of oil extraction and gas at the pump. The benefits of this will be true security about the safety of oil extraction as well as stepping up the drive to increase fuel efficiency and the availability of non-combustive energy sources, which will ultimately improve our energy independence and environment.

This is not a political or partisan issue; these are things we as Americans need to urge our government to do for us to keep us safe here at home.

Stewart Cohen lives in Williston.

Letters to the Editor

Dogs on town-owned land

Now that summer has arrived, the Williston Conservation Commission hopes you have had the chance to take advantage of Williston’s parks and trails network. During this time of year, the Conservation Commission would like to remind you of the town’s dog leash rules.

According to the town of Williston’s dog leash rules, dogs must be on a leash at all trail head parking areas, along all public roads and on hiking trails that cut through private property. Dogs must be under voice control when within town-owned parkland. The police may impound any dogs not under control, according to the town’s Dog Control Ordinance. This applies to all parks including Five Tree Hill Country Park, Oak View Hill Country Park, Mud Pond Conservation Area and Mud Pond Country Park. If you are not sure what trails are located on public or private property, please contact the Williston Planning Office at 878-6704.

As always, your continued cooperation makes public use of Williston’s parks and trails network possible and helps ensure everyone has equal enjoyment of the trail systems.

Williston Conservation Commission

Delicious fare at Reading Restaurant

Have you ever ordered from the menu of The Reading Restaurant? It’s a Calliope House tradition at Allen Brook School.

Tyler Skaflestad, taught by Ms. Schoolcraft, invited me to the second seating May 19; he remembered that grandparents were welcome.

Students selected four pieces of writing from their yearly portfolio. They offered these in a menu of appetizers, sandwiches, entrees and desserts for our reading selection. Patrons tipped the students by writing a comment about each piece they read.

A lot of work went into this event: balloons, tables for diners, student staff organization — maitre d’, line cooks, a manager and servers to guarantee a fine experience.

And there were a couple of tasty treats as well.

I learned a lot, as Tyler thought I would, more than that Jackie Robinson was also a fine football player. I was reminded how special it is to be a grandparent and how much fun school is today!

Michael Kiey
South Burlington

The importance of fair trade

In the normal market, you may buy a $2 cappuccino. The farmer of the coffee that goes into this, at best, will get 2 cents. Fair Trade guarantees a better deal for those third world producers.

Our power as consumers is huge. By buying fair trade products you directly impact the lives of these people by supporting their trade. Local companies like Green Mountain Coffee have just released a new fair trade certified coffee from Rwanda. Fair trade is more than just food, it supports equal trade of various things like clothing, arts and jewelry. The fair trade movement wants to build a sense of community as well as teach the farmers business skills so they become more independent and are able to tap into the world’s economy.

Fair trade feeds off of support and the education of people like us. Fair trade benefits our world in more than one way. Fair trade helps with equality in the global market, works to be environmentally sustainable and empowers the producers to be able to tap into today’s global market and economy. With about 2 billion people living in poverty within this world, fair trade makes it a goal to lift these people from their impoverished lives. Fair trade is not through charity, but a way to become independent and build community within the world.

Rose Friedlander

Champlain Valley Union High School freshman

Blockade serves a purpose

The United States made their best efforts to blockade Germany in both World Wars. These actions were both legal and necessary to reduce combatant’s ability to wage war. In 1962, JFK ordered our Navy to blockade some peace loving Caribbean nation when several dozen 1 megaton H-bombs strapped to ICBM’s were discovered 90 miles off Florida.

Hamas in Gaza has announced to the world their intentions of waging war and the destruction of Israel. The 4,000 or so rockets recently fired at Israeli civilians from Palestine prove that this is not just a war of words or some defensive measure.

Israel permits the transport of over 10,000 tons of food and supplies per week (also known as humanitarian relief) by ship to Gaza. Why then were the Vermont Communist groups protesting recently on the Church Street Marketplace in support of peace ships containing terrorists running the Gaza blockade? The protesters have the same sympathies as Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who called on the United Nations Security Council to adopt a resolution that would “cut off” Israel’s hands, thus preventing it from committing more “crimes.”

The Israeli navy intercepted several ships loaded with Iranian mortars, RPGs, rockets and other heavy weapons shipped from Iran to Hamas and Hezbollah in Gaza ostensibly to create peace by exploding even more Jews. The thinking that arming belligerents is peaceful is pretty darned bizarre.

Attorney General Eric Holder has banned using the terms “jihad” and “terrorist.” When did we start letting the government ban words? Killing people is the same no matter what you call it. What pleasant name could we use to describe the Palestinian who killed and maimed all those young soldiers in Texas?

Shelley Palmer

Little Details

Start here, go anywhere
By Katherine Bielawa Stamper

Motivated young people are like those baby spiders in E.B. White’s “Charlotte’s Web.” They are born, linger among us for a while, and then take off with the wind.

As Champlain Valley Union High School prepares to graduate its Class of 2010, I am reminded of two young Willistonians featured in this column several years ago. As members of CVU’s Class of 2005, Mairead Harris enrolled in Middlebury College while Emily Bickford packed up for New York City to study at Barnard College. It was clear these ambitious women were going places. Both have since earned undergraduate degrees. I offer this update.

Mairead is living in Hangzhou, China, teaching English at a private language school. Hangzhou is a large city about one hour south of Shanghai. Her colleagues hail from England, Australia and the United States. Average class size is about 18 students, a welcome change from the 60 she encountered on an earlier teaching assignment in Hunan Province.

“China may well be the number one destination in the world if you are looking for cultural differences,” Mairead writes. “I am constantly confronted with new challenges to my world view. The Chinese education system is set up completely differently from ours. In the US, we try to teach students to think critically and analytically about any topic, and we encourage them to pursue their interests. In other words, we try to ‘give them tools’ to be successful in their own way. In China, a country with over a billion people, this type of education is seen as frivolous and a waste of time and money. Students don’t need to be equipped to think critically about anything, but rather, they need to have a specific skill or major that will directly translate to a job when they graduate university. People here scratch their heads in confusion when I explain that my father majored in biology but is now an attorney.”

I invited Mairead to reflect on what, if anything, she carries with her from Vermont as she pursues her travels.

“I carry with me a snobbery towards fake maple syrup and a terrible sensitivity to air pollution. What can I say? I was spoiled,” Mairead observes. “I am coming to appreciate more and more the beauty, the stillness, the lack of crowds, and the central heating that Vermont offers. I also miss being around people who are so ready to try new things. Vermont is full of people who are always thinking and, for its small population, is a very alive place.”

Mairead comments that her stint in China — she returns to the United States in the spring of 2011 — has its ups and downs but it is certainly never boring. Applying an American mindset to a communist — albeit with capitalist tendencies — system surely raises many “aha” moments. She is grateful for the experience and the wonderful friends she’s made.

Emily Bickford recently returned from a six-month gig in Birmingham, England. She rented a “flat” across the road from a cricket field, enjoying the convenience of being able to hop a bus to get to the “city centre” (downtown) for shops and museums.

Emily, a dance major at Barnard, was afforded the opportunity to choreograph Columbia University’s 114th Annual Varsity Show — kind of like Harvard’s “Hasty Pudding.” This follows her experience choreographing shows at Williston Central School and CVU. The student-run performance involves creating a full-length musical satire. Oscar Hammerstein ranks among alumni who’ve worked on the production.

While tapping into England’s dance scene — attending classes and even some auditions — Emily launched her own business. EmmyBo Originals (www.emmybooriginals.co.uk) features greeting cards designed by hand. Creating product, marketing and processing orders kept her busy amid endless cups of tea. It seems that the British really do drink tea all the time.

Asked about cultural differences, Emily offers the following:

“As a dancer, I was really interested to see all of the similarities straight away between dance in England and America. It’s brought to my attention the wonderful universality of dance — an aspect of the art that I’ve always found particularly intriguing, and have often focused on as a choreographer.”

Emily notes that the global spread of American culture results in fewer cultural distinctions. Re-runs of the popular show “Friends” appeared on the “telly” most evenings and yet, according to Emily, “Cars are smaller, homes are smaller, food portions are smaller, it’s commonplace to bring reusable bags when grocery shopping ….” She points out that the notion of paying (directly) for a doctor visit is “unfathomable and even laughable” to some of her British friends. Emily moves to New York City in August, where she’s accepted a teaching position at Brearley, an all-girls private school.

Time will tell where Mairead and Emily land. Endless noodles, cups of tea, foreign political systems, iconic monarchs, the streets of Manhattan — these experiences meld with homegrown Vermont roots to guide these women on a path they define.

It’s my wish that each member of the Class of 2010 recognizes that starting here, you can go anywhere.

Katherine Bielawa Stamper lives in Williston. Reader comments are welcome at LittleDetailsCol@yahoo.com or editor@willistonobserver.com.

Everyday Gourmet

Snappy shortcuts
By Kim Dannies

Summer is a double-edged sword for cooks who go nuts for glorious local produce even though bounty-excess holds them hostage in a hot kitchen. To prevent this trap, my mantra for warm weather meals is ”snappy casual:” the food must be super fresh, colorful and easy. Here are a few shortcuts to make your summer cooking a snap.

1. Grilled Potato Salad – Zap baby red potatoes in the microwave for 5 to 8 minutes. Lightly coat with olive oil and place in a veggie grill basket. Brown the potatoes on medium-high, gently shaking the basket until spuds blister, 5 to 8 minutes. Add to a prep bowl along with lots of local spring peas, chopped spring onion and fresh mint. Coat salad with local crème fraiche; season with sea salt.

2. Naam Bread – This delicious, Indian-style flatbread is available at supermarkets and is super for grilled pizzas. Lightly coat both sides with olive oil. On medium heat, toast each side 1 to 2 minutes, then load one side with slices of local mozzarella, lightly steamed baby spinach or kale and sliced tomatoes. Turn off grill and close the cover; set 5 minutes.

3. Asian Cole Slaw – Always keep Napa cabbage and carrots on hand. Shred desired amount of veggies and place in a prep bowl.

Dressing: In a small processor chop three quarter-sized slices of fresh ginger with 2 garlic cloves. Add 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, 1 scant tablespoon of mustard seeds and 1 cup of Marie’s Cole Slaw dressing. Blend 30 seconds.

Coat veggies with desired amount of dressing. Lightly crush 1 packet of ramen noodles and fold into the mix. Top with 1/2 cup chopped peanuts and cilantro.

4. Stock up on essentials that you cannot make faster, better or cheaper. For example, Tapenade, the delicious and versatile olive paste, is great right out of a jar. Use it to flavor-jack sandwiches and pizzas and as a Crostini base for spontaneous hors d’oeuvres. For something extra-special on greens with local feta cheese, add a tablespoon of Tapenade to an olive oil/vinegar salad dressing.

Kim Dannies is a graduate of La Varenne Cooking School in France. She lives in Williston with her husband, Jeff; they have three college-aged daughters who come and go. For archived Everyday Gourmet columns go to kimdannies.com.

CY seeks response to survey for CVU parents

Stephanie Choate, Observer staff

The local organization Connecting Youth is looking for responses to a survey it sent to parents of eighth through 12th grade students last week.

The electronic survey, sent with the Champlain Valley Union High School e-mail newsletter, is part of Connecting Youth’s campaign to educate parents in order to prevent underage drinking.

The Vermont Department of Health has partnered with Connecting Youth, or CY, and nearly 30 other community coalitions to help parents learn how and when to talk to teens about drinking.

CY, which works to create a safe environment for young people, also sent a survey to parents last fall.

“The first one was to gauge where everyone was, and we crafted our campaign after that,” said Kate Wheeler, interim program coordinator for CY. “Now, we’re doing a post-campaign survey to see if it was effective or not.”

The survey asks questions like how often parents talk to their kids about alcohol, whether they let them go to parties where alcohol will be present and whether they think European teens binge drink less than American teens.

The answers are completely anonymous. There will also be a separately entered raffle for several gas cards to thank participants for their time.

The survey is available at www.surveymonkey.com/s/SXZLCVG.

Town obtains funding for new trail

Hill Trail will link to existing network

By Greg Duggan
Observer staff

Courtesy image The map above shows the proposed path of the Hill Trail. The town recently received nearly $20,000 from the state for the construction of the trail.

Nearly $20,000 from the state will help Williston extend a hiking trail system from Vermont 2A to Mud Pond Country Park off South Road.

Last week, the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation announced that Williston would receive $19,725 for the construction of the Hill Trail. Town Planner Jessica Andreoletti said the money will help fund a trailhead and parking area on Vermont 2A, slightly north of Butternut Road, as well as the construction of the actual trail.

An engineering study will determine a design for a bridge to cross Sucker Brook, Andreoletti explained. Then the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps will build the trail next year, and the town will apply for another grant for the actual construction of the bridge. Andreoletti hopes the bridge and trailhead will be complete by the fall of 2011, though she said sometime in 2012 is more likely.

Once finished, the Hill Trail will connect to a trail on the Boomhower property, which links to Five Tree Hill Country Park and eventually to Mud Pond Conservation Area. The entire network makes up a primitive trail system that Andreoletti said the town laid out about five years ago.

Williston is one of 19 recipients to receive grant money through Vermont’s Recreation Trails Program. More than $531,000 was awarded through the grant program this year.

Sherrie Winnie, Recreation Trails Program administrator, did not return phone calls prior to press deadline. A press release from Winnie announcing the grants said, “Vermont’s (Recreation Trails Program) is a matching grant program of the Federal Highway Administration for the acquisition, development, rehabilitation and maintenance of trails, trailhead facilities, trailside amenities, and trail-related educational projects for non-motorized, motorized, and multiple compatible recreational use.”

Andreoletti and Dan Boomhower, who owns the land adjacent to the Hill property, said the Hill Trail will pass through geologically and historically interesting terrain. The nearly 20 acres of rocky, hilly land contain big ledges and Sucker Brook.

“It’s very complicated terrain,” Andreoletti said.

Boomhower said the Hill property had been in his family since 1911, yet he said the modern history of the property extends back to the late 1700s, when the Downer family purchased the land from Ira Allen. Stone walls from the 1790s, which Boomhower said are 4 feet tall, remain on the land. The land previously held several buildings, including a home and a sawmill that benefitted from a waterfall on Sucker Brook.

After purchasing the land from his uncle, Robert Hill, Boomhower sold a portion to the town of Williston in 2004; the Vermont Land Trust obtained development rights over the parcel.

“It was a great deal, and the town was incredibly helpful,” Boomhower said.

Now, with the grant from the state, Williston is one step closer to completing its vision for the property.