October 30, 2014

Savvy Senior: What to consider when choosing a walk-in bathtub


By Jim Miller

Dear Savvy Senior,

I’m interested in getting a walk-in bathtub for my wife that’s easy for her to get into and out of, but could use some assistance. Can you offer any consumer tips? 

—Need Help [Read more...]




Rita Goodrich

Rita Goodrich

Rita C. Goodrich, 87, of Williston passed away late Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014. Born Feb. 2, 1927 in Canada, she later married Herbert C. Goodrich and they remained together for 60 years. Rita has a life-long commitment to serving her local community and church. Funeral services were held on Oct. 18, 2014, and Rita was laid to rest in East Cemetery. Rita is survived by her husband Herbert, her daughters Karol, Joyce and Linda, as well as her seven grandchildren and several great-grandchildren. The family would like to send a special note of thanks to Father Lance Harlow, the Williston Fire Department and members of the Immaculate Heart of Mary parish for their generosity during this time. [Read more...]

Living Green: Wood options let Vermonters ‘heat local’

Vermont Wood Pellet Company's premium wood pellets are made using pulp-grade pine logs that might otherwise go to waste.

Vermont Wood Pellet Company’s premium wood pellets are made using pulp-grade pine logs that might otherwise go to waste.

By Stephanie Choate

Observer staff

To Vermonters gearing up for the big fat bills that come with heating their homes in the winter, it comes as no surprise that heating accounts for 50 percent of a Vermont home’s energy use.

Wood-powered heat can help defray heating costs, add coziness to the long winters and keep heating dollars in state. [Read more...]

CVU gains second seed in hockey playoffs


A 9-3-1 regular season record was good enough for the Champlain Valley Union High’s field hockey team to pick off second seed in the Division 1 postseason playoffs, which began this week.

Coach Kate McDonald’s Redhawks will swing into action Friday.

Due to wet field conditions at CVU, the Redhawks will move their home quarterfinal playoff game to Middlebury College Friday with a 5 p.m. start time. Middlebury has a turf playing surface.

The team will meet seventh-seeded Mount Mansfield Union (5-6-2) after Mount Mansfield defeated Colchester High 1-0 in a Tuesday playoff. Mount Mansfield is seventh seed with 6-6-1 record.

During the season, CVU divided two contests with Mount Mansfield.

The Redhawks’ final game of the regular season last Thursday at Middlebury Union was canceled due to weather.

—Mal Boright, Observer correspondent

State meet next for CVU harriers


The Champlain Valley Union High girls cross country team will be out to defend its Vermont state crown Saturday and the boys will be out to move into contention during the ups and downs of the familiar five-kilometer course at Thetford.

Last Saturday, in the northern districts at Missisquoi Valley Union High in Swanton, CVU runners earned victories in both the girls and boys divisions. The girls team took a solid triumph, and the boys grabbed third behind winner South Burlington High and runner-up Essex High.

The girls finished with 31 points, compared to 61 for second place Essex. The third place boys came in with 52 points with South Burlington taking first with 29 to Essex’s 43.

Sophia Gorman won the girls’ event in 18 minutes and 47.7 seconds over second place Caroline O’Shea of St. Johnsbury Academy. Her time was 19:07.8.

The Redhawks’ Tyler Marshall’s winning time of 16:20.1 was four seconds better than that of runner-up Sean MacDonald of South Burlington.

CVU’s runners in the top 10 behind Gorman included Carly Neeld (third), Meara Heininger (seventh) and Emma Putre (ninth).

Calvin McClellan took seventh behind Marshall in the boys’ race.

—Mal Boright, Observer correspondent

CVU boys in soccer playoffs as fifth seed


To gain another shot at the Division 1 Championship game, the 10-3-1 Champlain Valley Union High boys soccer team will have to come roaring out of the fifth seed in the Vermont Principals’ Association playoff rankings.

The Redhawks opened the title quest Wednesday (Observer press time) on the home pitch against visiting 12th-seeded Burlington High. The Redhawks nipped the Seahorses at home early in the campaign and then played to a scoreless deadlock on the BHS turf later. [Read more...]

Grid playoff round takes CVU to Tigertown


By Mal Boright

Observer correspondent

Its foes have not lost a football game since the 2012 season, but the Champlain Valley Union High football team hopes to end that string Friday night when it travels to Middlebury to meet the top-seeded, 8-0 Middlebury Union High Tigers in an opening round playoff.

The eighth-seeded Redhawks, edged 41-34 by Bellows Free Academy in St. Albans last Friday night, finished the regular season with a 3-5 mark. [Read more...]

Unbeaten CVU soccer girls have quarterfinal Friday on Middlebury turf

Sierra Morton outplays a Mount Mansfield opponent during an Oct. 17 game, which the Redhawks won 3-0. (Observer photos by Al Frey(

Sierra Morton outplays a Mount Mansfield opponent during an Oct. 17 game, which the Redhawks won 3-0. (Observer photos by Al Frey(

By Mal Boright

Observer correspondent

High school soccer playoffs can be very tricky for the higher seeded teams.

But then, at times the higher seeded teams will dominate, as the second-seeded, three-time defending Division 1 champion Champlain Valley Union High girls soccer team did Tuesday, bopping 15th seeded Rutland High 11-0 on a wet and cool afternoon in the hills of Hinesburg. [Read more...]

Vermont International Film Festival opens Friday

A still from the Vermont International Film Festival's opening film, 'We Are the Best!'

A still from the Vermont International Film Festival’s opening film, ‘We Are the Best!’

The 2014 Vermont International Film Festival, held Oct. 24 through Nov. 2 in downtown Burlington, features more than 90 screenings, special events, receptions and filmmaker events. Events take place at Main Street Landing Performing Arts Center in the Film House and Black Box Theater. Lunchtime screenings are at The BCA Center on Church Street and additional screenings and events will happen at Skinny Pancake, ArtsRiot and Signal Kitchen. Full information about all film and events can be found at www.vtiff.org. [Read more...]

Little Details: Secrets revealed


By Katherine Bielawa Stamper

Greenough Hall is a freshman dormitory located just outside Harvard Yard in Cambridge, Mass. The brick with ivory—not ivy—trim residence is named for Chester Noyes Greenough (1874-1938). Greenough served as a professor of English and dean at what remains one of our nation’s most prestigious institutions of higher education.

Greenough’s lesser-known role was as convener of a “Secret Court” at Harvard, the aim of which was to investigate and root out alleged homosexuals on campus. Directed by then-president A. Lawrence Lowell, Greenough’s tribunal spent two weeks in the spring of 1920 conducting 30 secretive interviews, acting as master inquisitors.   [Read more...]