November 21, 2014

How to improve your balance as you age


By Jim Miller

Dear Savvy Senior,
I’ve always been a walker, but when I fell last month my doctor suggested I start doing some balance exercises. Is this really something I need to practice? What can you tell me?
—Avid Walker

Dear Walker,
Most people don’t think much about practicing their balance, but you should, the same way that you walk to strengthen your heart, lungs and overall health, or you stretch to keep your body limber.
As we age, our balance declines—if it isn’t practiced—and can cause falls. Every year, more than one in three people age 65 years or older fall and the risk increases with age. A simple fall can cause a serious fracture of the hip, pelvis, spine, arm, hand or ankle, which can lead to hospital stays, disability, loss of independence and even death. [Read more...]

Saving for health care costs in retirement


New AARP tool helps users calculate costs, make savings plan
Observer staff report
AARP released a recent survey saying that 55 percent of working Americans over age 50 don’t think they’ll have enough money for health care as they reach the age they expect to retire. While Medicare only covers about half of health costs, four in 10 (38 percent) say they haven’t saved anything at all for such expenses, even though multiple studies show that these costs often reach more than $200,000 for a retired couple. AARP also found that among workers age 50 and older, most (57 percent) say they plan to work past the age of 65. [Read more...]

Police Notes


Multiple charges
Dale Irish, 39, of Williston was cited on charges of driving under the influence and cruelty to a child under age 10 on Oct. 28, according to police reports. He was cited to appear in court. No other information was released.
Chad C. Lamb, 35 of Middlebury was taken into custody by Vermont State Police on Nov. 8 on an active arrest warrant for escape and driving with a suspended license-criminal (third offense) and subsequently cited on a charge of driving with a suspended license–criminal (fourth offense). He was lodged at Chittenden County Correctional Facility and cited to appear in court on Dec. 23. [Read more...]

Woman pleads guilty to wire fraud


Prosecuters say woman embezzled $84,000 from Williston business
Observer staff report
Billie Preston, 41, of Monkton, pleaded guilty on Oct. 29 in United States District Court in Burlington to a charge of wire fraud, according to The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont.
Chief U.S. District Judge Christina Reiss released Preston on conditions pending sentencing, which has been set for Feb. 27.
According to court records, between approximately November 2011 and late April 2014, Preston was employed as a bookkeeper by Endyne, Inc., an environmental testing laboratory located in Williston. Preston handled the company’s payroll and accounts receivables and payables. [Read more...]

CVU girls take fifth in New England cross country meet


It was regional competition and plenty of it Saturday as the Champlain Union High girls took fifth place and the boys 17th at the annual New England Interscholastic Cross Country Championships in Manchester, Conn.
The top Redhawk was sophomore Sophia Gorman, who hoofed it to a 15th place finish in the girls’ event.
“She is the top finishing sophomore I have ever coached,” said CVU mentor Scott Bliss in an email to the Observer.
The races covered 5,000 meters (3.1 miles) and included the top six teams and best 25 runners from five New England States. Massachusetts does not participate.
CVU senior Carly Neeld, who finished in 190th spot a year ago, came up to 37th this time around.
The CVU boys were paced by Tyler Marshall’s 46th place.
Bliss said his boys team, which was runner-up in the Vermont Division 1 championships, returns all seven top runners next year, while the state champion girls have four of seven scheduled to be back.
—Mal Boright, Observer correspondent



Knight, Stephen 1

Stephen C. Knight Jr.
Stephen C. Knight Jr. passed away peacefully at The Arbors in Shelburne on Monday, Nov. 10, 2014.
Born in Biddeford, Maine on Nov. 18, 1924, he was the son of Stephen Cecil and Mildred (Barrows) Knight. Stephen was predeceased by his wife, Beverly Knight and his brother Fred Knight of Scarborough, Maine. He is survived by his son Stephen E. Knight and his wife Linda of South Burlington; three granddaughters, Christine Allaire and her husband John, Sarah Knight, Kim Kuhlmeier and her husband Matthew; and four great-grandchildren, Jacob, Emma, Hannah and Addison.
Stephen attended high school in Waterville, Maine and was married to Beverly Gilman in 1947. He and his family moved to Vermont in the early ‘50s. Steve enjoyed gardening, beekeeping, spending time at his camp on Lake Champlain and with his family and great grandchildren. He traveled often to Maine to visit family. [Read more...]

Williston residents help bring laughter in Lyric Theatre’s ‘The Producers’

Williston residents (from left) Kristina McSalis, Kerry Whalen Powell, Kelley Lane and Kaity McSalis will help with ‘The Producers.’

Williston residents (from left) Kristina McSalis, Kerry Whalen Powell, Kelley Lane and Kaity McSalis will help with ‘The Producers.’

Observer staff report
Williston residents are among the Lyric Theatre Company cast and crew set to present Mel Brooks’ “The Producers.” Based on the classic cult comedy film, the musical sets the standard for modern, outrageous, in-your-face humor. The show is about two types of people—those who want to be in the game and those who want to stay in show business.
“The Producers” will be presented on the MainStage of Burlington’s Flynn Center for the Performing Arts for five performances Nov. 13 through 16. [Read more...]

Local writers featured in collection



Observer staff report

Young Writers Project recently released “Anthology 6,” its latest collection of best recent writing and photography from Vermont and New Hampshire youths.
Eighty pieces of writing and 34 pieces of art were chosen for the book by a team of YWP staff, students and interns from more than 14,000 submissions. Among local students who are published in “Anthology 6” are Champlain Valley Union High School students or recent graduates Erin Bundock, Autumn Eastman, Noa Urbaitel, Lydia Moreman and Simone Edgar Holmes, Williston resident Olivia Pintair and Avery McLean of St. George.
“Anthology 6,” published by Queen City Printers, is on sale for $10 at the event and at select bookstores, including Phoenix Books in Burlington and Essex. For more information, go to

Library Notes


Does your employer offer directed giving or a matching gift program? The library is fund- raising for a new bookmobile. Your donation is tax-deductible. Contact Marti Fiske at the library if you need more information.

Youth News
Toddler Yoga and Stories
Friday, Nov. 14, 10:30 a.m. Books and simple yoga for children ages 1-3. Pre-register. Presented by Karen Allen.
Friday, Nov. 14, 3 p.m. A singing puppet troupe’s frog leader is mistaken for an international criminal. Rated PG, 112 minutes. Grades 1 and up. Free popcorn. [Read more...]

Volunteer opportunities


Choose one of the options below or go to to check out more than 300 other volunteer options from local nonprofits, schools and public partners or call the United Way at 860-1677.
The Shelburne Museum needs volunteers to welcome visitors to the museum’s Pizzagalli Center for Art and Education this winter. Three shifts available January through April. Training provided. Contact Pam Nuovo at 985-3346 or email [email protected]
Ethan Allen Residence needs volunteer dishwashers to join the kitchen crew any evening from 5-6:30 p.m. It also needs a group to help with fall garden cleanup. Contact Carolyn Stevens at 658-1573 or email [email protected] [Read more...]