May 27, 2018

PHOTOS: American Kennel Club dog show

July 22, 2010

Observer photos by Marianne Apfelbaum

The Champlain Valley Kennel Club and Green Mountain Dog Club hosted an American Kennel Club dog show at the Champlain Valley Exposition on July 17 and 18.

PHOTOS: S.D. Ireland Legion baseball vs. Burlington

July 22, 2010

Observer photos by Greg Duggan

The S.D. Ireland Legion baseball team beat the Burlington Lynx 13-3 on July 15.

PHOTOS: CVU soccer school

July 22, 2010

Observer photos by Greg Duggan

The 10th Champlain Valley Union High Soccer School took place last week. CVU soccer coaches and players instructed campers, who ranged from kindergarten to ninth grade.

Sportsmanship honor for former CVU athlete

July 22, 2010

Midfielder Kylie deGroot won the Vermont team sportsmanship award as her all-star team of graduated seniors scored a 3-2 victory over New Hampshire Saturday in the girls contest of the Lions Twin State Soccer Cup games at Castleton State College.

deGroot and former CVU teammates Haleigh Smith and Lindsay Kingston were on the winning side as Vermont nipped the Granite State squad 3-2. Brittany Pfaff of Rice Memorial High scored two goals for Vermont.

The boys game wound up in a 3-3 deadlock with ex-CVU defenders Chris Beaton and Andrew Blake on the squad.

New Hampshire leads the overall boys series 16-12-8 and holds a 16-8-4 margin in the girls games.

S.D. Ireland Legion team misses playoffs

July 22, 2010

By Mal Boright
Observer correspondent

S.D Ireland player Curt Echo dives back to first base ahead of a pickoff attempt in Thursday’s game.

There was some solid baseball by the S.D. Ireland American Legion baseball team.

And at times there were what coach Jim Neidlinger called “hiccups.”

When all the regular season was played and done, a few too many hiccups and a rally or two that fell short prevented the Irelands from gaining a berth in the state tournament that opens Friday at Castleton State College.

The final standings of Northern Division games showed mighty Essex on the top rung with an 18-0 mark.

S.D. Ireland third baseman Sean Rugg throws to first during the team’s game against Burlington on Thursday.

(The game of the year was the 1-0 classic duel between the Irelands’ Sean Rugg and Essex’s Sam Spencer, in which each hurler tossed a three-hitter and Essex scored the game’s lone tally in the sixth inning on a sacrifice fly.)

Second place went to 13-5 Addison, third to 12-6 Franklin and the fourth and final berth to 11-7 Colchester.

S.D. Ireland was very much in contention going into the final weekend, having finally achieved an 8-8 league mark. But losses to Knights of Columbus, South Burlington and Orleans-Essex-Caledonia County Saturday and Sunday, while painful, were moot since Colchester had enough wins to grab the playoff slot even had the Clovers won both contests.

The 11-10 drama at South Burlington’s Dorset St. Park, with old yeller high in the sky and in full glare, was a tale of two-for-the-seesaw.

Rugg started for the Irelands and got touched up in the opening frame for two scratch hits and a two-run double by Devon Hathaway despite fanning the side.

After that, the righty was solid even though the Knights pushed over two unearned runs without a hit in the second inning when two force plays on base runners went askew.

That left the Irelands down 4-0 with lefty Zac Poland, who had stymied the Irelands with a sharp relief effort at Champlain Valley Union High earlier in the season, seemingly in control again.

But in the top of the third, the Ireland bats boomed. Shane deLaBreure and Drew Nick doubled home runs while Rugg contributed an RBI single.

In the top of the fifth, the Irelands took the lead. Nick and Rugg singled and Curt Echo drove them in with a two-out double off the fence in left center.

It was looking very good for the Gold and Green, but not for long.

The baseball fates turned on the Irelands with the leprechauns apparently out to lunch.

In the bottom of the fifth, the first four South Burlington batters reached, three of them on slow infield grounders played well in the infield but close calls at first made them scratch hits instead of outs. These came around a hit batter.

With one run in, a single, sacrifice fly and ground out produced three more tallies and gave the Knights an 8-5 lead.

Hathaway (four hits, 5 RBI) socked a two-run double in the sixth and South Burlington added another run in the bottom of the eighth for an 11-5 advantage.

But the Irelands fought back in the ninth. With one out, deLaBreure, Collin Teator and Nick all laced singles, Nick’s driving home deLaBreure. Rugg stroked a sacrifice fly for another run and the second out.

Nicky Elderton and Echo drew walks, setting the table for Evan Healy, who unloaded a double to clear the bases and get the Irelands to within 11-10. But then a hiccup, this time a pickoff to end the contest.

The season finale was Sunday at Lyndon State College in the Northeast Kingdom, where the O.E.C. Kings prevailed 8-7 after the Irelands surrendered an early 6-0 lead. Elderton swatted a three-run homer and had two other hits for the Clovers.

Everyday Gourmet

Worth its salt

July 22, 2010

By Kim Dannies

If kosher salt is the traffic cop of food flavoring, then Maldon Sea Salt is a Navy Seal. Not as coarse as conventional sea salt — you can actually crush it with your fingers — Maldon gives cooks exceptional control and nuance when creating complex flavors. Maldon’s hand harvested, pyramid-shaped crystals have a mild, briny, sweet (or smoky) flavor, and the crumbly flakes of salt melt onto food in glorious prisms.

Chloride and sodium ions create salt and are necessary for sustaining life. While salt regulates the fluid content of the body, too much salt increases the risk of health problems. Since dietary sodium is a no-no, it makes sense to choose the best salt to enhance the natural flavor of food. Adults who eat a whole-food, mostly unprocessed diet need 1 heaping teaspoon (5 grams) of salt a day to remain healthy.

I use this marvelous salt more as a finish, so that I can actually taste it on fresh produce, meats and salads. As a result, I use far less salt. You’ll find Maldon Sea Salt at local health food and gourmet shops. While this salt isn’t cheap, it really isn’t that expensive, either — definitely worth its salt.

Sea Salt Roasted Green Beans

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Clean and trim 2 pounds freshly picked green beans; clean a bunch (4) of local onions and cut into quarters; peel 6 small garlic cloves.

Toss the onion and garlic together with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Scatter veggies on baking sheet and sprinkle with a large pinch of smoked Maldon Sea Salt and freshly ground pepper. Repeat process with green beans on the second sheet. Place in a hot oven and roast 15 minutes. Remove bean pan. Continue roasting onions until they blister, about 15 minutes more.

In a prep bowl add the zest of 1 lemon, the juice of 1 lemon, 2 tablespoons of fresh thyme leaves and 1/4 cup of toasted pine nuts. Add roasted veggies and toss well. Pour onto a serving platter; garnish with a pinch of Maldon Smoked Sea Salt. Serves 8.

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

Little Details

Landscape reclaimed

July 22, 2010

By Katherine Bielawa Stamper

Four days. Fifty-eight miles. We lived to tell the tale. Far from Paris’ sweltering heat and frenetic pace, my family strapped on backpacks and eased into hiking boots, traversing a path near France’s border with Germany. Blisters, sunburn and exotic bug bites were our price of admission to stunning ridgelines, historic battlefields and curious cows with runny noses.

Alsace, annexed to the German Empire at the end of the Franco-Prussian War in 1871, returned to France per the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. Germany invaded the region during World War II. It was restored to French hands via help from American forces. Shifting languages and cultures — French, German, Alsatian — left an indelible mark on this beautiful patch of land. We came to learn its stories while ascending the majestic Vosges Mountains.

Our path started in Sainte Amarin, concluding in Riquewihr, with sleep stops in Le Markstein, Col de la Schlucht and a small village near Le Bonhomme. We hiked eight to nine hours each day, carrying all that we packed for two weeks in France.

My husband led the way, map in hand and compass in pocket. Our daughter frequently surged ahead, noting markers. We carried a trail guide that, for the most part, clearly detailed distances, times and vertical rise. Some directions were more cryptic, requiring us at one point to hunt for a lone crucifix amid tall trees. The cross marked where a man named Johannes was buried more than a century ago. We felt disoriented if the path didn’t quite match our guidebook, forcing us to navigate by intuition. Each morning we ventured into woods; each afternoon we emerged, miraculously, in “civilization” (i.e., a small town or an abandoned German bunker with a primitive sign pointing to our lodgings).

Trail talk was punctuated by mud, slugs and poison ivy “alerts.” We marched past legions of armor-clad beetles in black, green and gold. We slipped, sweated and stumbled a few times. I walked rhythmically to the silent chant, “light as a feather,” lifting trail-weary boots to ascend yet another peak. I faltered … just once … on the steepest of hillsides.

We encountered deer, mice, silver snakes, hares and enormous anthills, 3 feet in diameter. Cows and sheep announced their presence with bells of varying chimes clinging to their necks, creating a cacophonous symphony amid wild grasses.

Up and down in rain and sun, we greeted fellow hikers with a breathy bonjour. Summer sun illuminated untamed versions of hollyhocks, pansies, buttercups and lupines in shades of pink, purple, yellow and white. Beech, pine, poplar and chestnut trees offered soothing canopies, shielding us from rays bearing down the backs of our necks and kneecaps. We passed what appeared to be bilberries, but didn’t sample a taste — just in case.

Traversing World War I battlefields, accessible solely on foot, proved the most powerful aspect of our journey. Climbing hilltop after hilltop fought and died over revealed remnants of war. Bullet-ridden steel lay in gullies, endless rows of trenches — speckled with wildflowers — and bombed-out craters and bunkers dotted the landscape. Walking along a former military road, we encountered twisted remnants of a seeming rail system with bunches of rusted fencing and barbed wire — detritus from “No Man’s Land” — tucked beneath tree branches.

We diverged slightly from our path to visit the Cimitière Duchesne, a World War I military cemetery of simple crosses shaded by tall, slender conifers. It contained a mass grave as well as individual burial plots for French soldiers “lucky” enough to have their remains identified. We walked along moss-covered earth touching the markers and reading names of the dead soldiers aloud: Henri Ambrose, 3-12-1914, Mort pour la France; Marius Emile Aloncle, 18-12-1915, Mort pour la France; Alexandre Galaup, 26-8-1914, Mort pour la France.

It seemed important to make this pilgrimage, to acknowledge lives lost. As the United States remains enmeshed in wars on multiple fronts, I wonder when we will figure out a better way to resolve conflict.

I’ll end with a poem, one of several we read amid this stunning landscape, reclaimed from death by nature’s awesome beauty.

“Attack” by Siegfried Sassoon (1896-1967)

At dawn the ridge emerges massed and dun

In the wild purple of the glowering sun,

Smouldering through spouts of drifting smoke that shroud

The menacing scarred slope; and, one by one,

Tanks creep and topple forward to the wire.

The barrage roars and lifts. Then, clumsily bowed

With bombs and guns and shovels and battle-gear,

Men jostle and climb to meet the bristling fire.

Lines of grey, muttering faces, masked with fear,

They leave their trenches, going over the top,

While time ticks blank and busy on their wrists,

And hope, with furtive eyes and grappling fists,

Flounders in mud. O Jesu, make it stop!

Katherine Bielawa Stamper lives in Williston. Reader comments are welcome at or

Letters to the Editor

July 22, 2010


Vermont’s primary elections will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 24. Please note the Observer will not run any Letters to the Editor pertaining to the vote on Aug. 19, the edition prior to the election.

All Letters to the Editor written in regards to the election MUST be received by 5 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 9, and will appear in the Observer on Aug. 12.

Please be aware that normal guidelines will apply, including a 300-word limit for all letters.

E-mail letters to

Who gets our money?

With the debt piling up to an estimated $13 trillion and unfunded entitlement obligations ranging from $60 trillion to $100 trillion, it seems that almost everyone is laying a claim of entitlement to taxpayer money except the taxpayers who actually earned the money. With foreign nations like China underwriting our debt, they are even staking out a claim to an entitlement of the American taxpayers’ money. It is long past time that we started to ask just how much we as taxpayers are entitled to of our own money.

I recently put this question to Sens. Patrick Leahy and Bernie Sanders, as well as Rep. Peter Welch. I have not yet heard a reply from either Sen. Leahy or Sen. Sanders, but did get a form letter reply from Rep. Welch. While I appreciate the fact that he at least replied, the reply totally ignored my question. It was an exercise in finger pointing over who was to blame for our debt crisis and an assurance that he was working to solve the problem.

My question was not about debt itself but the fact that a growing number of interests are laying claim to an entitlement to the American taxpayers’ money. I sent back a reply to Rep. Welch asking the question again, “How much of our own money are we entitled to?” and have yet to get another response.

Perhaps if enough of Vermont’s voters pressed this question to our elected officials and candidates for office, we may yet get an answer.

Robert Maynard, Williston

Walking for Dubie

I don’t normally do this, write a letter to the editor, but I guess when you feel strong enough, its time to say something. You see, I normally watch parades from the sidewalk, but this year I walked with Brian Dubie in Williston’s Fourth of July parade. My 3-year-old daughter Katelyn was thrilled at the idea of being in a parade. She does not know the importance of choosing our next governor, but I do.

I wanted to walk with Brian to show my support for him as governor. We both want a state that has a strong enough economy to ensure the safe streets, good schools and the clean environment we value here. Brian Dubie is the best candidate to lead Vermont — for our future and for Kate’s.

Paul Fontaine, South Burlington

Another vote for Dubie

I’m supporting Brian Dubie for governor of Vermont based on three perspectives — as an educator, businessman and volunteer with the Boy Scouts of America.

I knew Brian as a boy, and I could not be more proud of the man he became. I first knew Brian as a student. I met him in 1974 at Essex High School, where I was vice principal. Even as a freshman, he would always look people in the eye and listen. This made him popular and respected among his peers and teachers, and he was voted student council president. Brian’s leadership skills were apparent even then.

Brian’s work ethic continued as he earned a degree in mechanical engineering and later worked as an engineer, pilot and emergency responder. Brian has served his country in the armed services, earning respect and praise for service above and beyond the call to duty.

Besides my experience in education, I was sales manager for three financial services companies. I know the challenges businesses face in Vermont. Brian is focused on restoring jobs and improving the business climate, which will protect the financial security of all Vermonters. As lieutenant governor, Brian has worked to address Vermont’s economic challenges and promote Vermont products in local, national and international markets. He opposes higher taxes, excessive regulations and restrictions to liberties — all impediments to economic growth. As governor, Brian will continue to work to find common ground and bring people together. This always brings success, in business and in government.

Most importantly, I believe good character is essential. I have long supported the Boy Scouts because of the values it presents — honesty, duty and service to country. I always look for these values in political candidates, and I see them in Brian Dubie. He is simply the best leader for Vermont.

Don Messier, Jericho

From the Senate

One of my priorities when I was elected to the Senate was supporting Vermont’s promising local food economy. I’m glad to say in an otherwise difficult year in Montpelier, we made progress in this area.

The Legislature made the second of two $100,000 investments in the Farm-to-Plate initiative. This has included thousands of Vermonters in the agricultural sector in building a 10-year strategic plan for the state’s agricultural economy. With a near monopoly setting unfairly low dairy prices for farmers, it’s critical Vermont continue to nurture farms that are diversifying, whether it be to livestock, produce or conversion to organic.

For the short-term, I co-authored legislation that will invest a modest portion of the stimulus dollars that came to Vermont in aggregation and distribution infrastructure so groups of farmers can sell their produce to Vermont’s hospitals, colleges and large businesses. Many farms are too small to create vendor relationships with, say, Fletcher Allen. Shared facilities will open up new markets for local farmers.

Unfortunately, the mistreatment of animals at the Bushways slaughterhouse in Grand Isle made national news, threatening Vermont’s reputation as a producer of high-quality foods. As a result, we put in place new penalties for people who violate humane treatment laws. This includes, at the Secretary of Agriculture’s discretion, the placement of video cameras on the slaughterhouse floor.

I successfully passed language that will re-direct $50,000 in existing training funds to train the employees of Vermont’s seven slaughterhouses in humane treatment of animals. One legislator who raised beef cows told me it’s humanly impossible for a slaughterhouse employee to treat the thousandth cow of the day the same way as the first. Well, our state policy cannot treat those cows differently, or else we risk undermining the Vermont brand.

Feel free to contact me at with any questions.

Sen. Tim Ashe, D/P-Chittenden, Burlington

Guest Column

Opening Williston’s time capsule

July 22, 2010

By Ginger Isham

Can news that is 10 years old be interesting? Yes it can! Especially when it is about hometown celebrities. See if you can guess who they are (here’s a hint: one likes skiing and two like ice cream).

When the Williston Historical Society opened its year 2000 time capsule on July 2, 2010 at the Town Band concert, these were the contents of the box:

1. Copy of the book “Thomas Chittenden’s Town” by Willard Sterne Randall and Nancy Nahra

2. 1999 Williston, Vt. Annual Report

3. Jan. 1, 2000 Time magazine Commemorative Issue

4. First 2000 edition of The Williston Historical Society Bulletin

5. Jan. 6, 2000 edition of the Williston Whistle newspaper

6. Picture of our then president, Bill Clinton

7. Williston Historical Society membership picture as well as the Williston Historical Society officer’s pictures

8. A Burlington Free Press article about the final edition of the “Peanuts” comic strip

9. Williston Town Meeting results for 2000

10. Newspaper articles about Ann Battelle’s skiing accomplishments

11. Sacagawea dollar coin

12. A Census Bureau population forecast for the next 100 years

13. Burlington Free Press articles about Ben & Jerry’s being sold to Unilever

14. Pokémon pencils

15. Williston Central School Year 2000 Yearbook

16. Year 2000 top 10 Vermont news stories, selected by the Burlington Free Press

17. News articles announcing George W. Bush’s election as president of the United States

The round top, trunk-style box used for the time capsule was built as an eighth grade challenge by the following four students at Williston Central School: Ashley Baker, Jenn Dumont, Maribeth Fonda, and Melissa Tatro. It was a pleasure to have Maribeth present for the opening.

We hope to add a few noteworthy items from 2010 to the time capsule and open it again in another 10 years. I wonder who in the Historical Society will be around at that time?

Anyone who wishes to view the contents of the time capsule or offer suggestions for 2010 additions should contact Ginger Isham at 878-4875 or, or Terry Macaig at 878-3872 or

If anyone is interested in purchasing a copy of the Historical Society’s book “Thomas Chittenden’s Town,” which includes an extensive history of Vermont’s first governor and other early families in Williston, contact Isham or Macaig or stop in at the town office. The cost is $10.

By the way, did anyone notice the Thomas Chittenden statue on the green was polished recently and shined for the town’s July Fourth activities?

Other Historical Society news

The Williston Historical Society recently lost of one of its members, a talented, historical figure here in town. We extend our sympathy to his family. His name was Art Tuthill. Art lived on U.S. 2 in the former home of a son of Thomas Chittenden. For one of our past July Fourth parades, Art designed and built (with the help of friends) a small replica of Thomas Chittenden’s first home. The original had burned in 1926. The replica is still sitting in Art’s backyard and I hope someday someone will want to restore it in Art’s memory.

The Historical Society wishes to thank everyone who participated for the success of our Ice Cream Social. The proceeds will go to the Williston Community Food Shelf.

Ginger Isham is on the Williston Historical Society’s Board of Directors.


July 22, 2010

An article in last week’s issue of the Observer, “Williston woman urges support for soldiers,” provided the wrong phone number for Barbara Greck. Her phone number is 288-9644. She can also be reached by e-mail at