December 20, 2014

PHOTOS: Williston backyard

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Aug. 12, 2010

Courtesy photos by Braden Lalancette

Braden Lalancette took these photos around his Williston home on July 31.

PHOTOS: Police officers sworn in

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Aug. 12, 2010

Observer photos by Marianne Apfelbaum

New Williston police officers Karie Tucker and Matthew Cohen were sworn in on Aug. 2, during a ceremony at the Williston Police Station. Tucker and Cohen will go through 18 weeks of training at the Vermont Police Academy, followed by eight to 10 weeks of field training.

PHOTOS: Swim Club places fourth

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Aug. 12, 2010

Courtesy photos

Edge Swim Club, which has members from Williston, competed in the Champlain Valley Swim League Championships July 30-31 in Middlebury. The team placed fourth overall and earned Most Improved Team honors.

Road Watch

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Burlington

Road construction will reduce traffic to one lane at times on the following Burlington streets:

  • South Prospect from Maple Street to Ledge Drive,
  • Jackson Court,
  • Harrington Terrace,
  • Main Street from Battery Street to St. Paul Street,
  • Pine Street from Maple Street to Bank Street,
  • Pine Street from Pearl Street to Cherry Street,
  • St. Paul Street from Bank Street to College Street,
  • St. Paul Street from Pearl Street to Cherry Street,
  • George Street,
  • Peru Street,
  • Loomis Street from North Prospect to North Willard

Colchester

Work on Holy Cross Road will continue until mid-October. Traffic control will be present when required.

Essex

Sidewalk construction on Route 15 eastbound between Sunset Drive to the Price Chopper Plaza entrance will cause lane closures and occasional traffic delays. Traffic control is present, and this project should be completed by Sept. 1.

Essex Junction

Work on Pearl Street between the main gate of the fairgrounds and the intersection with the post office will last through Nov. 1. Most of the work will be between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. with occasional night work possible. Two-way traffic will be maintained at all times with traffic control present.

Beginning Aug. 12, South Summit Street will be CLOSED from Pearl Street to Cherry Street from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. for road construction. Traffic will be detoured and traffic control will be present. To accommodate school traffic beginning Sept. 1, South Summit Street will be open from 7:45 a.m. to 8:15 a.m., and then from 2:45 p.m. to 3:15 p.m. This project is expected to be completed by Oct. 5.

On Aug. 12, Pearl Street will be CLOSED to through traffic from 9 p.m. until 6 a.m. between the Five Corners and West Street for the installation of a water line across Pearl Street. Through traffic will be detoured from West Street to South Street to avoid this area. Detour signs will be in place and traffic control will be present.

Interstate 89

Drivers should be aware of construction activity near the exit 14W northbound ramp.

Work to improve the exit 15 northbound ramp on I-89 in Winooski may cause traffic delays. Motorists are advised to use alternate routes if possible.

Jericho

Sidewalk construction on Route 15 from Lawrence Heights to Griswold Street will cause periodic lane closures through September.

Milton

Construction of West Milton Road near the Lamoille River will reduce traffic to one lane. Traffic control will be present, and this project is expected to last until the end of August.

On Aug. 12, from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., West Milton Road will be closed for culvert repair by the Patterson Dam entrance. Motorists should follow the signs for alternate routes.

Richmond

Work under the deck of the Interstate 89 bridge over U.S. 2 will reduce the overhead clearance on U.S. 2 to 14 feet and 6 inches. Motorists should also be aware of workers at the sides of the road. This project should be completed by Sept. 1.

Work painting the I-89 bridge over Jericho Road near the elementary school will reduce traffic on Jericho Road in that area to one lane for the next two weeks.

Utility companies working in the area of the Checker House Bridge on U.S. 2 may reduce traffic to one lane at times for the next several months.

South Burlington

Motorists should be aware of construction vehicles entering and leaving the main entrance to the Holiday Inn on Williston Road during the day.

Road construction on San Remo Drive will reduce traffic to one lane at times.

Beginning Aug. 13, there will be no parking allowed on Airport Drive in front of the airport to allow for the delivery of large construction materials. This parking restriction is in effect Monday through Friday until Oct. 8.

Underhill

For the remainder of the week, Pleasant Valley Road north of Mountain Road will be closed for reconstruction most of the day with one lane open from 4:30 p.m. to 7 a.m.

Westford

Roadwork in Westford Village proceeding to the intersection of Vermont routes 128 and 104 will cause lane closures and short traffic delays. Traffic flow will be maintained with traffic control present. Motorists should use extreme caution while traveling through the work zone. This project is expected to be completed by Sept. 12.

Through Aug. 24, a section of Route 128 will be closed due to a culvert replacement north of the Westford Village “Greens.” Traffic will be detoured onto Cambridge Road, Westford/Toot Road, Fairfax to Route 104 and back onto Route 128. In addition, paving in Westford Village proceeding to the intersection of Vermont routes 128 and 104 will cause lane closures and short traffic delays. Traffic control will be present, and motorists should use extreme caution while traveling through the work zone. This project is expected to be completed by Sept. 12.

Winooski

Crews will be working along the eastbound shoulder of Route 15 near exit 15 throughout the week.

County-wide

Motorists should be alert for bridge washing and mowing along all county roads. Minor traffic delays should be expected.

For additional information, contact Administrative Advantage at 802-872-9757. More information on current activities at the Chittenden County Metropolitan Planning Organization is available online at www.ccmpo.org.

Volunteers

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The listings below are a small sample of needs from more than 200 agencies, available by going online to www.unitedwaycc.org and clicking on “Volunteer.” If you do not have computer access, or would like more information about the volunteer opportunities, call 860-1677 Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

GET ON BOARD

Vermont Kin As Parents seeks board members to serve on the board, be active on a committee and participate in fund-raising events. The board meets the second Friday of each month, 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in Winooski. Board members are asked to provide about 10 hours of service per month to this organization that supports grandparents and other relatives who are caregivers for their young relatives.

SPRUCE UP

HowardCenter needs a group of volunteers to paint and spruce up the hallways and some rooms in their school space. Painters should be able to crouch low and use ladders to reach spots and should be able to paint well. Approximately five volunteers needed for seven hours on one day before Aug. 20.

EDUCATOR

ECHO Lake Aquarium & Science Center needs volunteer Education Interpreters to help educate the public about the animals, culture and history of the Lake Champlain Basin. Interpreters bring the exhibits alive for visitors and occasionally present live animal demonstrations. Must enjoy working with visitors of all ages. Training is provided. Volunteers serve at least eight hours per month and one four-hour shift per week is preferred.

MENTORS NEEDED

Mentors are needed in several programs, all of which require the volunteer to be at least 18 years of age and require background checks:

>Franklin County Caring Communities seeks volunteers to be helpful friends to children. Volunteer mentors will meet weekly with children and younger teens for about two hours per week in Franklin County. A one-year commitment is expected.

> Sara Holbrook Center seeks mentors for Creating Connections, which matches youths in kindergarten through grades 12 with adult members to develop positive relationships and foster healthy lifestyle choices. Mentors and mentees are matched based on similar interests and meet weekly for two to four hours for a full calendar year.

> Mercy Connections and Vermont Works for Women need mentors to support adult women transitioning from correctional facilities to Chittenden County communities. Mentors help women overcome barriers in finding housing and employment and support them as they rebuild their lives. A commitment of two hours per week is needed and a 12-hour training program is required. The next training programs start in October.

OVERNIGHT VOLUNTEERS

The Ronald McDonald House seeks volunteer Overnight Relief Managers to staff the house for weekends and holidays. Volunteers provide support to guest families, take referrals, handle registration and answer the phone, act as a resource person, sleep on site and manage day-to-day operations during their shift. Shifts run from Friday at 9 p.m. to Saturday at 6 p.m., or from Saturday at 6 p.m. to Sunday at noon. Volunteers are asked to do three or four shifts per year and receive training as in-house volunteers prior to serving an overnight shift.

YOUTH VOLUNTEERS

The Peace & Justice Center has many ways that young volunteers, (age 13 and older) can help including doing data entry, staffing information tables and postering. Training is provided where needed.

GLEANING

The Interval Center seeks volunteer gleaners to help harvest excess fruits and vegetables from Intervale Farms. The food is distributed to local social service organizations serving people in need. May through November, two- to three-hour shifts on a flexible schedule. Must call to schedule a shift.

This Week’s Popcorn

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‘Salt’ leaves us thirsting for a better movie

By Michael S. Goldberger
Special to the Observer

Back in the day, before the Women’s Lib movement officially began, a cynic shared a fear. He — I think it was a he — fretted that after the ladies finally won equality under the law, they’d proceed to develop the same bad habits usually thought the domain of their male counterparts. They might even play leads in formulaic action movies like “Salt.”

Since then, there have been all sorts of gal secret agents, police detectives and other defenders of the commonweal bearing deadly arms. But in most cases there has been a feminine hook, a dramatic point made, even if ever so slight, that this one-person killing machine was different by one chromosome. Here, <ITALICS>la difference<ITALICS> makes no difference.

Except for her appearance, there is nothing about CIA agent Evelyn Salt in either modus operandi or manner that bespeaks gender. ‘Tis we who bring preconceptions to the party. When she leapfrogs from the roof of a semi on a bridge to a truck on the span below, we’re much more impressed than we’d be if Daniel Craig’s 007 made the same jump.

Calculated or not, it’s the reverse discriminatory built in wow factor. Whether in party dress or jeans, this young lady is as striking as the first pretty tomboy you ever met. But she has come to play. And if that means skinning her knee on the sidewalk, suffering an Indian burn or even a bloody nose, what’s it to us? Make a fuss of it and you’ll be sorry.

As such, it’s a more complicated performance than the copycat first impression might imply. Powerful and single-minded, Salt is a force to be contended with all right. But there’s something else going on inside, a secret about her we’re going to have to uncover. And therein lies the so-so twist upon which director Phillip Noyce hangs his hat.

Sour grapes, you say, because I didn’t figure it out any earlier than the director thought it might take the average dolt? Hey, by the time there was enough info to make an educated guess, one too many convolutions had sent me drifting … to dinner, to next week’s film, to how there seemed to be a lot less Jujyfruits™ stuck to movie house floors these days.

Not that Miss Jolie or her superb co-star, Liev Schreiber, as Salt’s boss, agent Ted Winter, is to blame. They’re the strong points. But save for the title character impressing with her unique variation on a type, at the end of the day it’s the same old, same old. Scratch the interpretation and it’s 85 percent special effects, 12 percent acting and 3 percent script.

The cat and mouser starts off with the potential to be a poor man’s “Charade” (1963), albeit without the lofty wit and Mancini’s great score. Leaving work one night, late for an important date with her bug expert spouse (August Diehl), Salt is called back when Russian agent Orlov (Daniel Olbrychski) drops in to defect. Her expertise is needed.

But what’s this? During the interrogation, old Orlov, who was in charge of infiltrating U.S. intelligence with homegrown plants, suggests, for all behind the one-way glass to know, that Ms. Salt is really a Russian mole. Folks start running every which way; steel doors descend; guns start blazing. She’s gone. Well, just another day at the office.

It’s the proverbial spy left out in the cold routine. Now, apparently nobody likes her, except maybe her husband who, alas, has gone missing. In search of him and her destiny, on the run from mysterious loyalties, Jolie’s Salt makes like Mata Hari via Loretta Young, resplendent with costume and hair color changes at every turn. It’s dizzying.

Still, sans a better-finessed screenplay by Kurt Wimmer, the chase scenes eventually run into each other, with all things ultimately hinging on the one trick pony of a plot and its big secret. Dialogue is sultry, quippish or cynical, yet never Bogie and Astor-like. The chemistry between Jolie and Schreiber is OK, but hardly able to save the day.

The story’s biggest flaw is its lack of soul. If it’s the filmmaker’s intention to inform that all this spy business is a big, uncaring, bureaucratic dance, then he has managed it without artistic panache. However, if that isn’t his goal, then he has left us with a rather nightmarish and hollow escapade through the archives of action film clichés.

Which leaves us only to assess how this reflects on that most vaunted of gossip rag icons, La Jolie. While Angelina doesn’t outdo Uma Thurman in the fatal femme department, just as sure as she will adopt another kid, fans and finances will guarantee a sequel. But separating the blabber from substance, entertainment-wise “Salt” just isn’t worth its salt.

“Salt,” rated PG-13, is a Columbia Pictures release directed by Phillip Noyce and stars Angelina Jolie, Liev Schreiber and Chiwetel Ejiofor. Running time: 100 minutes.

CVU football practice to begin Monday

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Aug. 12, 2010

Champlain Valley Union High head football coach Jim Provost is looking for between 80 and 90 candidates when hopefuls report to practice Monday at 1 p.m. for the initial workout of the new season.

Equipment will be passed out at the school on Sunday, starting at 1 p.m.

The first week of sessions will be comprised of two-a-day practices going from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and then 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. There will be a single 3 p.m. workout scheduled for Friday.

The annual Red and White scrimmage is set for Saturday starting at 10 a.m. with the public invited to look on.

“We are looking for returning sophomores, juniors and seniors to number in the mid-60s with another 20 to 25 freshmen coming out,” Provost said, adding that a number of upperclassmen might be trying the sport for the first time.

Provost said the first two Redhawks to make the Vermont Shrine football team for graduated seniors played well last Saturday in the Vermont team’s 34-20 loss to New Hampshire.

He said Matt Long played almost the entire game at defensive end and Nathan Mills played many minutes on the offensive line at a guard slot.

“They represented the school and the state very well,” the coach said.

— Mal Boright, Observer correspondent

deGroot nominated as Athlete of Month

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Aug. 12, 2010

File photo

Champlain Valley Union High’s Kylie deGroot returns a shot during a match against Colchester High in May.

Kylie deGroot, who led the Champlain Valley Union High girls tennis team to a second straight Division 1 title and an undefeated season this spring, is one of 12 nominees for the June Vermont Girls Athlete of the Month.

The monthly award for boy and girl athletes is sponsored by the Vermont Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association, whose members nominate and select winners.

deGroot, in a meeting of the teams’ number one players, defeated Burlington High ace Madison Hartley 6-0 and 6-2 in pacing the Redhawks to a 5-2 triumph over the Seahorses in the championship matches. Hartley had recently captured Vermont’s individual girls crown.

Among 12 nominees with deGroot are Rice Memorial High track star Brittany Pfaff, Mollie Gibbon of South Burlington High track and Essex High softball pitching ace Alexis Perry.

McMannon recognized by Principals Association

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Aug. 12, 2010

Champlain Valley Union High School Principal Sean McMannon was honored by the Vermont Principals Association earlier this month.

Champlain Valley Union High School Principal Sean McMannon was one of seven school administrators to be recognized as distinguished principals by the Vermont Principals Association earlier this month.

McMannon was chosen as the Robert F. Pierce secondary principal of the year. Each winner was nominated by peers and selected by a committee of VPA staff and past winners for outstanding educational leadership, according to a VPA press release.

McMannon was surprised to receive the award, but said it was “nice that there were some of my colleagues from Chittenden County and other principals who had nominated me.”

“It was really good to be recognized, because I think I, and principals across the state, work really hard, and we’re in some challenging times right now,” he said.

McMannon said the award was a “reflection of the continued support of the community,” and CVU’s teachers and administration.

“People consider Sean a really visionary leader,” VPA Executive Director Ken Page said. “He’s taken a great school and made it even better … in particular his work with technology has really been exemplary.”

McMannon, who lives in Colchester, has been CVU’s principal for six years. He said the school is “part of a community that puts students first and makes it a real pleasure to lead the work at CVU. People are so focused on doing what’s best for students.”

—Stephanie Choate, Observer staff

Police Notes

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Multiple charges

On Aug. 3, police responded to the parking lot of Toys “R” Us for a reported fight between a mother and a child. When officers arrived on scene, it was discovered that the mother was highly intoxicated, according to police reports. Upon further investigation, police learned that Nancy Contois, 40, of South Burlington had driven her two children from South Burlington to the Williston Toys “R” Us, where she hit a parked car, causing minor damage, according to the report. Contois was subsequently taken into custody and cited on charges of driving under the influence-fourth offense, reckless endangerment, cruelty to a child under 10, domestic assault and resisting arrest, according to police. Contois’s blood alcohol test registered .267, the report notes. She was cited to appear in court.

Theft

· The lower “outdrive” of an OMC Cobra motor, valued at $5,000, was stolen from a boat at Vermont Home and Marine between July 24 and 26, according to police reports. The boat was parked on a trailer at the business, located on Industrial Avenue. Anyone with information is asked to call Williston Police at 878-6611.

· A General Altimax Arctic tire valued at $100 and an Alphalock tire boot valued at $150 were stolen from a van at Anytime Towing on July 26, according to police reports. Anyone with information is asked to call Williston Police at 878-6611.

· About $370 worth of belongings, including an iPod, gym bag and prescription drugs, were stolen from a vehicle parked in a driveway on Hanon Drive on July 26, according to police reports. The vehicle was unlocked, the report notes.

· On July 28, a cell phone, Canon digital camera and numerous credit cards were stolen from an unlocked vehicle parked at Nadeau’s Playschool, according to police reports. The investigation is ongoing.

· Williston Police are investigating a theft at the former Pine Ridge School on Williston Road that occurred on Aug. 4, according to police reports. A 2003 or 2004 John Deere Gator 6×4 utility vehicle valued at $5,000 to $6000 was stolen, according to the report. Anyone with information is asked to call Williston Police at 878-6611 or Crime Stoppers at 864-6666.

· Police investigating a reported theft at Wal-Mart on Aug. 9 discovered an unidentified woman had “selected nearly a thousand dollars worth of merchandise,” carried it into the garden center and then tossed it over a chain link fence, according to police reports. The woman attempted to recover the merchandise once she was outside of the store, but her plan was “foiled by Wal-Mart Management,” according to the report. Police are asking for the public’s assistance in identifying the woman. Anyone with information regarding this event or the identity of the subject can call the Williston Police Department at 878-6611.

Wanted person

· Sidney A. Sumner Jr., 27, of Burlington was arrested on an outstanding warrant from Addison County and also cited on a charge of petit larceny on Aug. 4, according to police reports. No other information was released.

· Following a traffic stop on Aug. 5, Jordan T. Adams, 27, of Charlotte was cited on an outstanding warrant for failure to appear in court, according to police reports. He was taken to Chittenden County Correctional Center. No other information was released.

Missing purse

A woman was unable to locate her purse after leaving it in a cart outside Home Depot on July 28, according to police reports. The purse contained IDs, cash, passports and other items, the report notes. Anyone with information is asked to call Williston Police at 878-6611.

Careless and negligent driving

Amanda L. Raab, 20, of Fairfax was cited on a charge of careless and negligent driving on July 28 after she was found driving 98 mph on the interstate and passing vehicles “in a reckless manner,” according to police reports.

Driving with suspended license

· Following a motor vehicle stop on July 27, Eric E. St. Cyr, 25, of Hinesburg, was cited on a charge of driving with a suspended license-criminal, according to police reports. He was cited to appear in court.

· Following a motor vehicle stop on July 30, Lawrence G. Ritchie, 38, of Milton was cited on a charge of driving with a suspended license, according to police reports. He was cited to appear in court.

· Following a motor vehicle stop on Aug. 1, Adam L. Watson, 23, of Williston was cited on a charge of driving with a suspended license, according to police reports. He was cited to appear in court.

· Following a motor vehicle stop on Aug. 2, Nathaniel S. Stahl, 32, of Williston was cited on a charge of driving with a suspended license, according to police reports. He was cited to appear in court.

· Following a motor vehicle stop on Aug. 2, Natosha L. Robinson, 21, of Barre was cited on a charge of driving with a suspended license, according to police reports.

· Following a motor vehicle stop on Aug. 4, Thomas Haynes, 19, of Moretown was cited on a charge of driving with a suspended license, according to police reports. He was cited to appear in court on Oct. 4.

· Following a motor vehicle stop for defective equipment on Aug. 6, Mark D. Stevko, 32, of Stratford, Conn. was cited on a charge of driving with a suspended license. He was cited to appear in court.

Driving under the influence

· Following a motor vehicle stop for defective equipment on Aug. 1, Karlyn A. Sizemore, 31, of South Burlington was cited on a charge of driving under the influence, according to police reports. Her blood alcohol test registered .10, according to the report. The legal limit for driving in Vermont is .08. She was cited to appear in court.

· Jason A. Groleau, 37, of Williston was cited on a charge of driving under the influence on Aug. 3, according to police reports. His blood alcohol test registered .119, the report notes.  He was cited to appear in court.

· Margaret V. Sisk, 21, of Montpelier was cited on a charge of driving under the influence on Aug. 7, according to police reports. Her blood alcohol test registered .123, the report notes. She was cited to appear in court.

· Edward P. Poland, 44, of Essex Junction was cited on a charge of driving under the influence on Aug. 7, according to police reports. His blood alcohol test registered .118, the report notes. He was cited to appear in court.

· Robert J. Racine, 29, of Burlington was cited on a charge of driving under the influence on Aug. 8, according to police reports. His blood alcohol test registered .125, the report notes. He was cited to appear in court.