November 28, 2015


Keeps the Bond Spirit Alive

3 & ½ popcorns

By Michael S. Goldberger

Special to the Observer


Director Sam Mendes’s “Spectre,” the twenty-fourth James Bond film produced by Eon Productions, is a snazzy, action-filled hoot…a nearly $300 million extravaganza that pays dutiful homage to the franchise’s past while passionately bringing 007 into the techno-charged present. It is a grand synthesis of all things Bond…a blend of man, machine and moral heroism again sublimely evinced by Daniel Craig.


Perhaps a tad more anticipatory than the two teen-aged boys to my right, I was there not just to be entertained, but to see that right was done by my man…the secret agent every guy wants to be, and every woman wishes to be romanced by, or so I’m told. I mean, I was there for “Goldfinger” (1964), man. Thus I was gratified when the absorbing excitement quelled the kids’ chatter and brought them into the fold. The baton successfully passed, our future is safe.


Gosh knows there’s always work to be done, what with evildoers forever popping up all over the planet, determined to strip us of our inalienable rights. In this particular go-round, Max Denbigh, a.k.a. C, head of Joint Intelligence, seeks to close down the 00 program and merge everything into “Nine Eyes,” an international information sharing hub. You know: Big Brother. It’s a metaphor for what threatens our sovereignty and ails us in the pocket, and as scary an example of outsourcing as our poor, travel-weary chickens going back and forth to China for processing.


But don’t worry, at least not too much, for our James is on the case, even if he’s once again under strict orders by the new M (Ralph Fiennes) to stay put, stop leaving an expensive trail of destruction behind him and quit meddling in world threats his sixth sense perennially foresees. Alas, 007 knows the drill. But first things first, the methodic separating of the good ladies from the treacherous ones. Someone’s got to do it. That accomplished, the noble mission is afoot.

Added to the familiar template of deceit, corruption and derring-do, there’s a personal tie-in. For me to know and you to figure out, supervillain Ernst Blofeld, architect of the global crime syndicate, Spectre, and James have history. Never mind that the malevolent archenemy diverges significantly from previous appearances. Portrayed with notable aplomb by Christoph Waltz, he is the distilled essence of evil, an unfathomable scourge who, if he went to college, doubtless majored in making people’s skin crawl. Put him on the short list of great Bond adversaries.


All these elements, spread across the travelogue-like landscape that is 007’s playground make for an opulent eyeful. But our interest stretches beyond adventure and the mere saving of humanity. You see, while he’s our hero, Daniel Craig’s James is more than ever an enigma wrapped in a paradox. Surely slaying bad guys simply can’t be enough for a man. It’d please our vicarious sense to know he’s found fulfillment in something other than his license to kill.


Okay, so he’s not Sean Connery. Well, I’ll confide I’m still uncertain whether Taffy, the perfectly black-eyed mutt of my childhood, or Muffin, the family’s Yorkie of recent years, was my favorite dog. Both were great. But it’s time we moved on and, truth be told, while Connery’s good looks and élan set the tone, orthodox Bond aficionados will tell you that Mr. Craig more correctly embodies the cloak-and-dagger fellow Ian Fleming conceived. Possessing a rugged handsomeness, he’s a bit angry and, per the script here, we get a peek into why that is.


Christoph Waltz’s villain extraordinaire, in one of those self-justifying soliloquies the classic bad guys inevitably feel a need to deliver, explains his utter loathing for the storied champion of democracy. That the devil-may-care cause of Blofeld’s long-brewing ire couldn’t give a darn about his hateful obsession only angers the bum more. There’ll be no mercy. So, it’s somewhat heartening to know that, in traditional Bond fashion, there’ll be a pretty love interest to help James through some of the more difficult patches.


She is Dr. Madeleine Swann, sweetly evoked by Léa Seydoux. Granted, she’s the daughter of a former enemy. Still, one imagines that James’s mom, may she rest in peace, would be happy to know that her son was seeing a nice doctor. It also doesn’t hurt that the psychologist is a quick study when it comes to learning weaponry and other things that help a fellow plying a hazardous occupation.


Equally stellar supporting players extend across the thespic spectrum, from Ralph Fiennes as the steadfast M, to Ben Whisaw as the appropriately quirky Q, to Naomie Harris’s ever-loyal Eve Moneypenny, and right down to Dave Bautista as Blofeld’s chief goon enforcer, Mr. Hinx. The gang’s all here and in fine fettle, fully credentialed to grant “Spectre” its license to entertain.

“Spectre,” rated PG-13, is a Columbia Pictures release directed by Sam Mendes and stars Daniel Craig, Christoph Waltz and Léa Seydoux. Running time: 148 minutes




How to guard against deadly aortic aneurysms

By Jim Miller

Dear Savvy Senior,

My father died several years ago, at the age of 76, from a stomach aneurysm, which now has me wondering. What are my risk factors of getting this, and what can I do to protect myself, as I get older?

—Just Turned 60

Dear 60,

Stomach aneurysms, also known as “abdominal aortic aneurysms,” are very dangerous and the third leading cause of death in men over 60. They also tend to run in families, so having had a parent with this condition makes you much more vulnerable yourself. [Read more…]

What’s Cooking?

By Lucy McCullough

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is just a few days away. The turkey is the guest of honor and every family has their own traditions. We choose a fresh, organic turkey that is not only healthier, but tastes so much better than the commercially grown and processed birds. Our family looks forward to the leftovers in turkey sandwiches. Turkey pie is almost always on the menu in the following days. The question of whether I should call this a turkey potpie or if it is indeed a turkey pie came to me recently. While some think if it has only a top crust, it is a potpie but if it has a top and bottom crust it is considered a pie. Upon Googling this, I found many differing opinions, but came to the conclusion it can be called either. Since this recipe has a bottom crust and a lattice top crust, I will call it a turkey dinner pie.

Turkey Dinner Pie (6 servings)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.


Two crust pie pastry

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, chopped

1 to 2 small celery ribs cut crosswise 1/4-inch thick

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

1 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1/8 teaspoon thyme

1/2 cup chicken broth

1/2 cup light cream or half-and-half

1 to 2 tablespoons sherry (optional)

2 cups cubed cooked turkey

1 package of frozen peas and carrots, cooked and drained

In a saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions and celery; cook until tender. Transfer to a large bowl along with the turkey; set aside. Heat butter over low heat. Blend in flour, salt, pepper and thyme. Cook, stirring until mixture is smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat. Stir in chicken broth and cream. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly for 1 minute until thickened. Remove from heat and add sherry (if desired). Stir in turkey and vegetables. Pour into pastry-lined pie plate. Place lattice type-top (see below). Bake 30 to 40 minutes or until browned.

For lattice top: Trim bottom crust just beyond rim. Cut top crust into strips 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch wide, by 12 inches long. Lay strips at 1-inch intervals. Fold back alternate strips to weave strips over and under. Trim and crimp crust.

“Let’s Eat!”

Lucy McCullough and her husband, Jim, started Catamount Outdoor Family Center on the family farm in 1978.

New group collecting pet gifts

Observer staff report

Locals can help make life a little better for the hundreds of animals awaiting adoption in Vermont animal shelters.

“Just like children, these animals have Christmas lists too, filled with wishes that caring community members can help fulfill by donating pet-related items to Claus for Paws,” according to a Nov. 13 press release from newly formed nonprofit.

Claus for Paws boxes have been placed in various local businesses in the area, including Guys Farm and Yard, Healthy Living, Pet Advantage, Essex Agway, Orchard Veterinary, Vermont Lamp & Shade, Small Dog Electronics, Doggie Styles and Passion For Pets, along with several others.

“The simplest wishes—cleaning supplies, bedding, food, collars, leashes and toys—often go unfulfilled or add up to a substantial expense,” the press release states. “But with the community’s help, local shelters, rescue groups and other animal refuges will be gifted with the wish-list items they so desperately need to provide the best love and quality of life for the animals in their care.”

For a complete list of suggested donation items and drop-off locations, visit

Food shelves need donations

Turkeys and other items saught

Observer staff report

In a Nov. 17 press release, Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf officials said the organization is in urgent need of turkeys, food and monetary donations. The food shelf served hundreds of people Monday for meals, groceries and turkeys, more than it has ever served in a single day.

“The supplies needed to provide over 5,000 food insecure families with a Thanksgiving meal are critically low and there are no turkeys on-site.”

The food shelf is asking the community to make a monetary donation or drop off a food donation as soon as possible. A donation of only $10 can provide a family with a turkey and a donation of $20 can provide a turkey and all the fixings.

Donors can make donations online at or drop off donations at 228 North Winooski Avenue in Burlington. The food shelf is also asking community members to donate food items, including turkey fixings of mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, corn and green beans.

Hours for turkey donation drop-offs are Mondays through Fridays 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. On Nov. 19 and 20, hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Nov. 21 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. A community Thanksgiving dinner at the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf is set for Nov. 25 at 1 p.m.

Williston shelf also seeks donations

The Williston Community Food Shelf is also seeking Thanksgiving donations of turkeys. It will host a Turkey Day Nov. 21 from 8:30 to 11 a.m. to collect and distribute turkeys. Residents or groups can drop off turkeys at the food shelf, located at 300 Cornerstone Drive. Residents can also purchase a gift card to a local supermarket so families can buy their own turkey. Gift cards or monetary donations can be dropped off at the food shelf or sent to P.O. Box 1605, Williston, VT 05495.

Observer partners with Socks for Seniors

The Williston Observer is partnering with the non profit Socks for Seniors to help bring holiday cheer and winter warmth to long-term residents of two nursing homes, Burlington Health and Rehab and Starr Farm Nursing Center, by collecting 175 pairs of donated soft, warm socks.

The Williston Observer is partnering with the non profit Socks for Seniors to help bring holiday cheer and winter warmth to long-term residents of two nursing homes, Burlington Health and Rehab and Starr Farm Nursing Center, by collecting 175 pairs of donated soft, warm socks.

Observer staff report

The Williston Observer is partnering with Socks for Seniors to help bring holiday cheer and winter warmth to local seniors.

Socks for Seniors is a non-profit community service project that organizes, collects and distributes new socks for seniors in communities all over the country.

Marianne Apfelbaum, Williston Observer co-owner, also publishes Vermont Maturity magazine.

“We’ve worked with the senior population for more than 20 years, and we try to support seniors in any way we can,” she said. “We thought this was a fantastic idea and we’re thrilled to help.”

The holidays can be a depressing time of year for lonely and financially challenged seniors who get lost in the shuffle, according to Jamie Coyne, Socks for Seniors founder.

Some seniors are widows or widowers, others are away from family.

Coyne said he started Socks for Seniors 15 years ago in Ohio, after visiting a senior community and talking to a woman who told him and his wife that her feet were freezing.

“Her socks were in bad shape. They were worn out and had holes in them. The solution seemed simple and my wife then left only to return a few minutes later with a brand new pair of socks,” Coyne wrote in a press release. “Not only did it serve its purpose but it made the lady’s day.”

The program grew over the years, spreading across the country. This is the first Socks for Seniors initiative in Vermont.

New socks can be brought to the Williston Observer offices, located at 330 Cornerstone Drive, Suite 330. Socks will also be collected at Williston Federated Church.

The Observer’s goal is to collect 175 pairs of soft, warm socks, which will be donated to long-term residents of two nursing homes, Burlington Health and Rehab and Starr Farm Nursing Center. If more socks are donated, the Observer will add Green Mountain Nursing Home to the list of recipients.

V-ball victors

Team Otter Creek Brewery Champions Essex Power 2015 BolibaObserver courtesy photo

Williston resident Jeff Boliba was among the members of the winning volleyball team in the Essex Power Sixes Volleyball League’s final tournament, topping the 18 teams in the league. Boliba said the league is the premier volleyball league in the state, and his team was short two members for the tournament. The team included (from left) Charles Dinklage,  Boliba, Aaron Fournier, Dave Rapuano and Erik Felt.

CVU runner leads Vt. in New England meet

Observer courtesy photo by Dan Grossman Sophia Gorman was the top Vermont finisher at the New England Interscholastic Cross Country Championships last weekend.

Observer courtesy photo by Dan Grossman
Sophia Gorman was the top Vermont finisher at the New England Interscholastic Cross Country Championships last weekend.

Observer staff report

A Champlain Valley Union High runner led the Vermont pack in last weekend’s New England Interscholastic Cross Country Championships, which brought the fastest runners in New England to Thetford.

Redhawk Sophia Gorman finished eighth out of 250 harriers, the first Vermont runner to cross the finish line. Gorman was approximately one minute and three seconds behind first place runner Hannah Debalsi of Connecticut.

Redhawk Jennifer Ireland was the third Vermont runner to finish, and 46th overall. Meara Heininger came in 56th, Ella Whitman 120th, Rosalie Lacroix 131st, Haley Harder 147th and Willow Bertrand 162nd.

The girls team was seventh out of 30 teams, and the top Vermont team.

The CVU boys team finished 10th overall, also the top Vermont team.

Rhode Island’s La Salle Academy took the top team spot on the boys and girls side.

CVU runner Tyler Marshall took the second Vermont spot and was 15th overall. Rhode Island runner David Principe Jr. was first, 56 seconds ahead of Marshall. Montpelier’s Matt Hynes finished in the top Vermont spot.

Redhawk Calvin McClelland was 84th and the fifth Vermonter to cross the finish line. Elliot Eastman was 112th, Baxter Bishop 121st, Harken Spillane 147th, Tyler Wong 155th and Jared Leonard 170th.

HUB Happenings

Leah Skinner

Leah Skinner

Leah Skinner

Skinner joins Davis & Hodgdon

Leah Skinner has joined Davis & Hodgdon Associates CPAs as an associate accountant, according to a Nov. 9 announcement.

Skinner graduated from the University of Vermont with a Master’s degree in accounting and from Wagner College with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration. Skinner’s prior experience includes internships in both corporate and individual accounting for a large and diverse group of clients at firms in New York City as well as with National Life Group in Montpelier. She is currently sitting for the CPA exam.

Skinner will be operating from the firm’s Williston location and servicing the firm’s clients throughout Vermont.

Whole Health Nutrition welcomes new registered dietitian

Williston-based Whole Health Nutrition announced on Nov. 13 that registered dietician Jacob Magnan has joined the firm. In addition to his degree in dietetics, Magnan holds a degree in exercise science. In addition, Magnan coaches competitive swimmers and tri-athletes.

Rick’s Towing & Repair’s tow truck second in national contest.

Rick’s Towing & Repair’s tow truck second in national contest.

Rick’s Towing & Repair’s tow truck second in national contest.

Williston company takes second-place prize

Rick’s Towing & Repair of Williston captured the second place award for Car Carrier in the national Shine ‘n Star Tow Truck Photo Beauty Contest, hosted by Tow Times magazine.

The winning truck is a 2015 Ford F-550 4×4 with a 20-foot Jerr-Dan chassis and side puller. It sports a custom wrap design of yellow, red, blue, white and silver. On the hood is a Vermont fall scene with the truck nestled within. The car carrier was chosen out of over 500 entries submitted in five categories this year from around the country and Canada.

In existence since 1991, the Shine ‘n Star Tow Truck Photo Beauty Contest offers 16 cash prizes. In addition, a photo of Rick’s Towing’s winning truck is featured in the November issue of Tow Times.

Debra Royce

Debra Royce

AllEarth Renewables hires Royce as CFO

AllEarth Renewables on Nov. 16 announced the hiring of Debra Royce as its chief financial officer.

Royce joins AllEarth’s management team with more than 25 years experience in corporate finance.

Royce, of Williston, comes to the solar manufacturer from Draker, having previously served as CFO for defense contractor Revision Military, as Financial Controller and Tax Manager for Ben & Jerry’s, and Assistant Corporate Controller for Blodgett.

An active community leader, she serves on the board of directors for the Lake Champlain Chamber of Commerce and is the Treasurer for Committee on Temporary Shelter (COTS).

Local American Cancer Society volunteer retires after 26 years

Peg Allen was honored by the American Cancer Society for 26 years of service as a state coordinator and facilitator for the Chittenden County Look Good Feel Better program, which helps women with cancer learn makeup and skin care techniques to overcome the appearance-related effects of chemotherapy and radiation. Allen helped bring the program to Vermont in 1989. “When we feel attractive, we feel powerful,” Allen said. “Taking time and engaging in self-care activates and accentuates your attractiveness and overall wellness. It has been a privilege and honor to be of service to the American Cancer Society.”

For more information on Look Good Feel Better, visit or call 1-800-227-2345.

Stern Center president co-authors award winner

Tech & Learning Magazine, the leading publication in the education technology market, has named Mindplay’s Teacher Companion product as a recipient of the Tech & Learning Award of Excellence in the category of New Products. The Teacher Companion is co-authored by Dr. Nancy Mather, professor at the University of Arizona’s College of Education, Dr. Blanche Podhajski, president of the Stern Center for Language and Learning, Marilyn Varracchio, founder of Portals to Learning and Dr. Janice Sammons, psychologist and adjunct professor at University of Arizona.

Released in January, the MindPlay Teacher Companion is an eight module online professional development course for K-12 educators designed to extend teacher knowledge of research-based best practices in the area of reading instruction.

Business People–Vermont hires Niquette

Rebecca Awodey, vice president and general manager of Business People–Vermont magazine, recently announced that Christine Niquette has joined the staff as advertising administrative assistant. Niquette has 15 years of sales and marketing experience, including work with Accent Travel/American Express and Northern Benefits of Vermont.

Niquette, a Williston resident, is working on her degree in business administration.

Armistead honors caregivers

Armistead Senior Care commemorated its sixteenth anniversary on Nov. 5 at the Catamount Country Club in Williston with a Sweet Sixteen Celebration honoring its caregivers. The Rachel Lee Cummings Award for Excellence was awarded to Sherry Russell of New Hampshire, Sandra Hennessey was named Vermont Caregiver of the Year and Ann Howard was named New Hampshire Caregiver of the Year. Caregivers with three or more years of service were presented with special gifts and the Longevity Award was presented to Shirley Weaver for 16 years of service.

Skirack named one of America’s Best Bike Shops

Skirack of Burlington has been named one of America’s Best Bike Shops for 2015 by the National Bicycle Dealers Association (NBDA).

There are approximately 4,000 bike shops in the United States, and fewer than 300 were chosen to be named “America’s Best.”

The shops were asked to fill out a detailed application describing what sets them apart from the average retailer. Mystery shoppers then evaluated the business in more detail by visiting the store, reviewing their website and contacting the shop by phone to assess the performance from a consumer’s perspective.

The program is designed to help consumers find great stores in their areas that will provide the expertise and professionalism they need to get the most benefit from cycling.

Mason Associates hires new consultant

Mason Associates, an independent educational consulting organization based in Charlotte, announces the appointment of Allison Dillon Kimmerle to its consulting staff. Kimmerle’s appointment will enable families interested in junior and secondary boarding schools to explore appropriate school options for their children.

“Allison brings 15 years of boarding school admission experience to her position with us,” said Ben Mason, founding consultant at Mason Associates. “She has been on the other side of the admissions desk in her positions at an all-girls’, an all-boys’, and a co-ed school.”

Moody recognized

Attorney Thomas H. Moody has been recognized by the Vermont Bar Association for his leadership in updating Vermont’s business laws. Moody was presented with the VBA’s President’s Award at the organization’s annual meeting on Sept. 25 at the Stoweflake Resort and Conference Center in Stowe. The award recognizes Moody’s work as chairman of the Business Association Section of the VBA and chairman of the committee that drafted and presented to the legislature a comprehensive revision of Vermont’s Limited Liability Company statute.

Andreson elected to The American Law Institute

Dinse, Knapp & McAndrew recently announce that Nicole Andreson has been elected to The American Law Institute (ALI). Andreson is one of 72 newly elected judges, lawyers and law professors from around the country. ALI is the leading independent organization in the United States producing scholarly work to clarify, modernize and improve the law.

Andreson’s practice is focused on the representation of physicians and hospitals in professional malpractice actions in both federal and state courts.


Each year, Northfield Savings Bank hosts a dinner to celebrate employees’ tenure milestones with the bank and honor them for their contributions. Having reached the ten-year milestone, 74 active employees are now members of the Ten Den Club.

At the most recent Ten Den event, the following employees reached these years-of-service milestones:

35 Years of Service: Donna Gerdes

30 Years of Service: Ian Arnold, Gina Sargent

25 Years of Service: Sherry Doane, Wendy Kellett

20 Years of Service: Peter Goodell, Anne Maxham, Sheila Spencer

15 Years of Service: Julie Concha, Kasey Grout, Maryellen LaPerle, Del’Rae Merrill, Lynn Pilette

10 Years of Service: Doris Bijolle, Norberta Klee, Kendal McMahon, William Tremblay, Ellen Weigel

Seven Days wins fundraising award

The Vermont Foodbank and the Vermont Community Foundation presented Seven Days with the Outstanding Corporation Award, an annual honor awarded by the Association of Fundraising Professionals of Northern New England (AFP-NNE), for its creation of Vermont Restaurant Week.

Vermont Restaurant Week is an annual event where participating restaurants offer special, prix-fixe menus. Ten percent of proceeds from sponsorships and 100 percent of special event admissions benefit the Foodbank.

Kathleen Fleming

Kathleen Fleming

Fleming joins CCV

Kathleen Fleming recently joined the Community College of Vermont as a career consultant in its Winooski Academic Center. She works with students and alumni in areas served by the Winooski, St. Albans, and Middlebury centers to provide personalized career guidance and resources.

Fleming is an educator and consultant with more than 20 years of experience supporting students in reaching their career and educational goals. Most recently, she worked at Vermont Student Assistance Corporation, creating programs and pathways to support first generation and low-income students in career planning and development.

Sargent top Harley salesperson in New England

An enthusiastic salesperson from Wilkins Harley-Davidson in South Barre is ranked number one in New England. Jon Sargent received the award in Laconia, N.H. in late October after competing against the best Harley-Davidson Dealers in New England.

ANEW Place welcomes new residential counselor

ANEW Place recently announced the addition of Micha Loeffler, who joined the team as a residential counselor. As a longtime volunteer and supporter of ANEW Place, Loeffler has been well connected to its guests, mission and holistic four-phase transitional programs for homeless adults.

“I have had a special place for homeless people and the underprivileged for a long time and decided that ANEW Place best aligned with my own Christian beliefs and this is how I ended up here as an evening volunteer,” Loeffler said.

Two join KW Vermont

Michael Jarvis, a real estate sales professional from Colchester, has joined KW Vermont. Prior to selling real estate, Jarvis was in the business of selling insurance.

In addition, Peter Campbell, a real estate agent in the Northeast Kingdom, joined KW Vermont. Campbell brings many years of not only Real Estate sales experience but insurances sales as well.

SymQuest raises $12,000 for HealingWindsVermont

SymQuest Group, Inc. recently donated $12,700 to HealingWindsVermont, a state nonprofit that provides cancer patients and their caregivers opportunities to relieve stress and anxiety through quality time together on the water. The donation was from the proceeds of SymQuest’s 20th annual charitable golf tournament and included a matching donation from Konica Minolta.

$22,790 raised to fight hunger

VT donationOn Saturday, Oct. 24, local shoppers raised more than $22,000 to fight hunger.

During its sixth annual Charity Sale, Lenny’s Shoe & Apparel and its customers collectively raised $22,790 for the Vermont Foodbank and JCEO Plattsburgh Foodshelf.

Last week, Lenny’s owners Mark and Todd McCarthy presented a check for $17,450 to Vermont Foodbank CEO John Sayles and a check for $5,340 to the JCEO Plattsburgh Foodshelf.

“What an incredible donation,” said Sayles. “We are deeply grateful to Lenny’s and their loyal customers for their years of partnership. Together we are ensuring that our neighbors have the food they need during times of great need.”

Lenny’s customers were encouraged to make a $10 donation to the Vermont Foodbank and JCEO Plattsburgh Foodshelf in exchange for 2016 Lenny’s Coupon Calendar. All proceeds from each calendar sold went directly to the non-profit organizations. Lenny’s is continuing to collect $5 donations in exchange for the 2016 Coupon Calendar.

“Our customers have astounded us once again with their generosity,” said McCarthy. “To date, we have now donated $73,945 to these organizations.”