September 2, 2015

EEE fall semester to begin

Education Enrichment for Everyone (EEE) will begin its fall series of programs on Friday, Sept. 11.

EEE is a lifelong learning organization presenting 12 weeks of programs each fall and spring, run by volunteers and supported by dues. Membership also entitles you to attend programs at eight OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes) sites throughout Vermont and gives you the discounted member rate for OLLI at UVM programs.

The series is held at the Faith United Methodist Church, located in South Burlington. Each lecture starts at 2 p.m. and lasts one hour. There will be coffee and refreshments between 1:15 and 1:45 p.m. the first session of each month.

Participants can join EEE for $50 for the fall semester and $90 for both the fall and spring semesters, or pay $5 for each lecture at the door.

Lectures include:

Friday, Sept. 11: “The Russian Point of View on the Ukrainian Crisis,” Denise Youngblood, professor of history, University of Vermont

Friday, Sept. 18: “Amelia Earhart,” Nancy Nahra, Champlain College

Monday, Sept. 21: “On Burgoyne’s Trail to Saratoga,” Willard Sterne Randall, Champlain College

Friday, Sept. 25: “Klezmer Music,” Robert Resnik, Vermont musician

Monday, Sept. 28: “Opera for Everyone,” Toni Hill

Friday, Oct. 2: “Ukraine Update: People, Places, Politics,” Jennifer Dickinson, associate professor of anthropology, University of Vermont

Monday, Oct. 5: “Theater as Moral Education: Directing Romeo and Juliet in Rwanda,” Andrew Garrod, Emeritus professor of education, Dartmouth College

Friday, Oct. 9: “Cultural Transformations in Post-Soviet Cuba: Past, Present, and Future,” Benjamin Eastman, assistant professor of anthropology, University of Vermont

Monday, Oct. 12: “Historic Preservation: A Strategy for Sustainability in Cuba” Thomas Visser, Director of Historic Preservation Program, Associate Professor of History, University of Vermont

Friday, Oct. 16: “Climate Change in New England: What’s Happening and What Should We Expect?” Erich Osterberg, assistant professor of earth sciences, Dartmouth College

Monday, Oct. 19: “War on the Home Front: Shelburne Museum’s Colchester Circus Posters,” Kory Rogers, curator of design arts, Shelburne Museum

Friday, Oct. 23: “The Life and Times of Today’s Veterinarian: We Can’t All Be James Herriot,” Millie Armstrong, president, Vermont Veterinary Medical Association

Monday, Oct. 26: “The Green Mountain Care Board: Health Care Regulation and Reform in Vermont,” Al Gobeille, Chair, Green Mountain Care Board

Friday, Oct. 30: “Rich and Tasty Furniture: Craftsmanship and Culture in Early Vermont,” Philip Zea, president, Historic Deerfield; co-curator of Shelburne Museum exhibition on Vermont furniture to 1850

Monday, Nov. 2: Update from the Vermont Legislature,” Shap Smith, Speaker of the Vermont House of Representatives

Friday, Nov. 6: “The State of Education in Vermont,” Secretary Rebecca Holcombe, Vermont Agency of Education

Monday, Nov. 9: “History and Architecture of Burlington’s Hill Section,” Britta Tonn, architectural historian

Friday, Nov. 13: “A War in Harmony: Prokofiev’s 7th Piano Sonata and the Battle of Stalingrad,” James Stewart, Vermont Public Radio Classical host

Monday, Nov. 16: “Our Neighbors to the North: History, Politics and Culture in Québec,” Marc Boucher, Québec Ministry of International Relations, retired

Friday, Nov. 20: “Forecast Scapes: Predicting Light and Sky Conditions for Landscape Photography,” Lawrence Hayes, Meteorologist, Fairbanks Museum and Vermont Public Radio’s “Eye on the Sky”

Monday, Nov. 23: “On His Own Resources: The Indomitable Will of Alexander Twilight, Middlebury College, Class of 1823,” William Hart, associate professor of history, Middlebury College

Monday, Nov. 30: Next Steps in Protecting Lake Champlain,” Brian Shupe, executive director, Vermont Natural Resources Council

Friday, Dec. 4: Winter luncheon and lecture by Charlotte Mehrtens, professor of geology

For more information, call 864-3516.

What’s Cooking? Basil Pesto

By Lucy McCullough

Time for basil pesto

Fresh garlic is now available and basil is plentiful. There are so many awesome ways to enjoy pesto. Try it on a fresh tomato still warm from the garden, in salad dressings, appetizers, spread on toast or a grilled cheese sandwich. A little time preparing pesto now will be appreciated well into the winter months. Pesto can be refrigerated for a few days and freezes well. Freezing the pesto in ice cube trays and storing allows for quick thawing. Storing in larger ¼ cup portions in snack size baggies can be used on potatoes, veggies, pasta, pizza and my winter time favorite, pesto calzones.

Most pesto recipes use pine nuts, but I find walnuts to be more economical. Another nut option would be almonds. Parsley, cilantro, spinach, kale, arugula and garlic scapes may also be used to make pesto. Experiment with different options to find the ones you like best. Initially, I purchased a mini food processor with the desire to make pesto. I soon learned a mini wasn’t large enough for the amount of pesto I wanted to prepare. After making several batches to fill our needs, I did finally purchase a larger capacity processor. If you are using a mini food processor, you will need to divide this recipe in half.

Basil Pesto

(makes about 1 ½  cups)

In a food processor, add ½ cup walnuts and pulse five times. Set the nuts aside. Add 4-5 cloves of peeled garlic to the bowl and chop 5 seconds. Scrape the bowl. Add 3 cups of packed fresh basil leaves (washed and dried) and ¼ cup of olive oil. You may need to add half the basil at a time. Pulse a few times, then grind continuously for 15 seconds. Scrape the bowl. With the machine running on grind, drizzle in another ¼ cup of olive oil and grind until you reach a consistency you like. Add ¾ cup of parmesan cheese and the nuts. Pulse to blend. For the best flavors, let the pesto sit for at least 30 minutes before using.

Let’s eat!

Lucy McCullough and her husband, Jim, started Catamount Outdoor Family Center on the family farm in 1978 and have been operating Catamount’s B&B since 1996.


Deb Lentine

Deb Lentine


Debra Schachter Lentine continued her journey on Aug. 24, 2015. She was born Sept. 22, 1960, in New York City to Stanley and Ann Schachter, of Boynton Beach, Fla.

She was the beloved wife of John Lentine, the love of her life. She is also survived by her daughter, Morgan McConnell, step-daughters, Amelia and Devin McConnell, Nicole Lentine, step-son, Andrew Lentine, her parents, Stanley and Ann Schacter, her brother, John Schachter ( Lori Klein), her nephew Sam Schachter, and dozens of loving cousins, aunts and uncles.

Debra attended public and private school in New York and New Jersey. Following two years at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., she received her BA degree in English from the University of Pennsylvania (1982). Her love of nature, novelty and the outdoors brought her to Vermont not long after college. Debra subsequently received her M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Vermont (1988).

Debra taught at Stowe Middle School from 1992 until 2000 then was a beloved member of the faculty at Williston Central School for 15 years, from 2000 until this year. A longtime leader of Verve House and Harbor House, Debra brought her contagious passion for learning and teaching to her classroom every day.

Debra and John married on Sept. 22, 2012, her 52nd birthday. They lived in their Williston home and shared their lives until her death.

Debra’s life was filled with fun facts that, thanks to her humility and modesty, not many friends or family necessarily knew about. She was the first girl to play Little League in Harrington Park, N. J. in the 1970s. She lived in Wyoming and drove back across the country with a moose strapped to her car in the 1980s. She wrote, cast and directed her own middle school play in the 2000s. Always interested in life, Debra enjoyed a variety of hobbies. Her interests spanned the spectrum from reading and literature to progressive politics, from an affinity for the outdoors – whether snowboarding in the winter or vacationing with the family on Martha’s Vineyard in the summer – to a love of music.

For the past decade, one of Debra’s passion was her engagement with Dragonheart Vermont, a breast cancer survivor dragon boat team. As an enthusiastic member of the Dragonheart Sisters team, composed entirely of breast cancer survivors, she competed in festivals all over the world, winning (mostly gold) medals with her team throughout the Northeastern United States, as well as gold and silver medals in the International Club Crew World Cup in Hong Kong in 2012; the U.S. National championship in 2013; and the bronze medal in the International Club Crew World Cup in Ravenna, Italy, in 2014. Debra was one of Sisters’ co-captains, and was much beloved, as she embodied the heart and spirit of the Sisters team, sharing her joy, kindness and love of life with each and every member of the team. She is very much missed.

A memorial service will be held at the Williston Central School from 1 to 3 pm on Sunday, Oct. 4. Donations in lieu of cards or flowers may be made to the Debra S. Lentine Memorial Fund c/o New England Federal Credit Union P. O. Box 527 Williston, VT 05495.  This fund will be used to support Debra’s love for education and for activities on Lake Champlain.

Recreation & Parks

Fall Rec Soccer

You haven’t missed it! Fall Rec Soccer registration is now open and we are accepting registration on our website. There are programs for 3-5 year olds, kindergarten and grades 1-8. The season will begin in early September. Parents and volunteers are needed for coaching. If you will have a child in the program this fall and you are interested in coaching, please sign up when you register your child. If not, please contact us at the Recreation Department about volunteering your time as a coach this fall.

Soccer Referees

The Recreation Department is looking for interested people who would enjoy refereeing Rec Youth Soccer this fall. Games are played on Saturdays starting in September. If interested, please contact us at [email protected]

Correction to Open Gym Programs

The men’s and women’s open gym basketball times will be 7-10 p.m. This is a correction from the times in the program guide. Men’s open gym will be on Mondays, beginning Sept. 14, and women’s on Thursdays, beginning Sept. 17. They both will be held at the WCS old gym.

Adult/Senior Programs

Upcoming adult programs starting in September include the following programs with their start dates.  Fall Wreath Workshop, Sept. 2; Bootcamp, Sept. 8; Gentle Yoga, Sept. 9; Master Swim, Sept. 15; Record Fit, Sept. 21; Women’s Self Defense, Sept. 22; Tennis, Sept. 22; Senior Mind & Body Exercise, Sept. 23; Circuit Fit, Sept. 24-25. For details on each of these and to register, visit our website,

Youth Programs

Upcoming youth programs starting in September include the following with their start dates. Swim Lessons, different days and times depending on level, session 1 begins the week of Sept. 8; Horse Lessons, Sept. 19; High & Middle School Performance Training, Sept. 21; Free Style/Ninja, Sept. 21; Tennis, Sept. 22; Soccer Clinic, Sept. 23; Move and Mindfulness, Sept. 30. For details on each of these and to register, visit our website,

To learn more about the Williston Recreation and Parks Department, visit or email [email protected]

Letters to the Editor

Legislative page program

Attention eighth grade students. Are you interested in history, law, politics and meeting new people? Consider applying to be a legislative page. This is a six-week opportunity to get to know legislators and other pages, follow legislation and perform a service for the State of Vermont. You also get paid while doing it! Applications are due to be filed with the Sergeant-at-Arms by Oct. 1. For more information and letters of reference, contact Rep. Terry Macaig at [email protected] or Rep. Jim McCullough at [email protected]

Representatives Jim McCullough and Terry Macaig

Williston’s wildlife

I am not sure if the photos of the family of beavers in the Aug. 20 issue of the Observer were posted to show how cute and industrious nature’s engineers are or an obituary for this family.

From water control structures to exclusionary devices, there are many effective, sustainable and non-lethal solutions that can be used to address damage caused by beaver activity. As with any animal, killing a few will not solve the root of the problem, as another family of beavers will most likely fill the void left by this family’s death.

Compassionate conservation solutions should always be our first option. Beaver activities stabilize stream banks, control sedimentation and provide other ecological benefits to the public at large. Beavers, like most of our wildlife, are an important part of our ecosystem, and we can protect them while protecting our human habitats, too.

I am asking the Town of Williston to contact me if they would like to discuss more humane ways to deal with Williston’s wildlife.  Surely there is room in our town for everyone to live safely.  Learning how to humanely cohabitate with our wild neighbors is not only in the animals’ best interest, but ours as well.

Patricia Monteferrante-Koolen
Protect Our Wildlife Vermont

Editor’s Note: According to Public Works Director Bruce Hoar, preventative measures are used whenever possible, but when beaver activity threatened public infrastructure—such as the bridge over the Allen Brook and nearby pump station on North Williston Road—a licensed trapper was called. It is against state law to relocate beavers, and a trapper is only called as a last recourse, Hoar said.

A Q&A with new CVU principal Adam Bunting

By members of the
CVU School Board

This year, Champlain Valley Union High is excited to welcome Adam Bunting to the position of principal. A Shelburne native, Bunting graduated from CVU in 1994, and is a graduate of Connecticut College and Harvard University where he majored in English and School Leadership, respectively.

Q: Tell us a little bit about your background. How will it inform your decision-making at CVU?

When I was in fifth grade, my mother had the idea that it would be healthy for her two sons—recently transplanted from Washington D.C. to Vermont—to attend a camp called Flying Cloud. No electricity. No running water. No candy. Moccasins optional. Needless to say, it took time to warm up to what sounded more like a punishment than a summer camp. Twenty-eight years later, I point to that camp as one of the foundational experiences of my life. In Flying Cloud I discovered the feeling of community. I felt what it meant to contribute, to be one part of a larger whole, to be valued—not for my sameness—but for my individual strengths. My work as a principal and as a teacher were born from a question that began to articulate itself in my mind that summer: how do we create communities that honor difference but move in the common rhythm of shared values?

Decision-making in the context of discovering, building and sharing values is one of the most fun (and complex) parts of the job of being a principal. To make value-based decisions forces us to actively listen, try on new perspectives, contemplate beliefs, and remember the ideals that drive our community. When done right, the process becomes as important as the outcome and the larger community feels a sense of ownership of the work.

Q: Regarding your most recent work as principal at Montpelier High School, what are you most proud of? Is there anything from that experience that you would like to bring to CVU?

We did a lot at MHS in a short period of time. We developed graduation standards, created flexible pathways, moved to block scheduling, implemented recess, explored standards-based learning, cleaned up the school and played mucho kickball. I would love to see the CVU community embrace a more nimble and flexible culture. We know that our brains learn best when we manage a balance between focused and playful. I would like to see us maintain that balance here.

Q: What are your priorities for the coming school year?

At the beginning of the summer, I asked our faculty, staff, and administrators to speak to what they valued most about CVU. One clear theme emerged in almost every discussion: the power of relationships. To maximize learning and teaching, we need to trust and to know one another well. The teacher must know a student’s strengths, interests, challenges, personality, learning profiles, etc. A student must know that they are safe, guided purposefully, cared for, valued, etc. The heart of the initiatives we embrace this year will be to improve our ability to accomplish the above.

Q: What do you see as some of the challenges and opportunities that are unique or particularly important to the CVU community?

As with any community, our defining characteristic tends to be both our strength and challenge. CVU has long been associated with a culture of excellence. The upside of this culture is that we have high expectations for all of our students. Students feel valued and rise to these expectations as a result. The downside to this culture only became apparent to me when I became a principal at MHS. I have a vivid memory of watching the school play and noticing that the cast consisted of soccer players, cross country runners and young women from the field hockey team. The students were encouraged to take risks and involve themselves across a breadth of activities. At CVU, students tend to specialize more and to pursue depth in one area. I worry that our culture of excellence can conflict with a culture of healthy risk taking.

Q: CVU’s influence goes beyond those who have daily contact with the school. What message would you like to send out to all residents of the sending towns?

Schools can’t function in isolation of the larger community. Our work—mine and yours—is to develop our future neighbors (and our future workforce). Let us know if you have opportunities for our students to explore.

The CVU School Board Communications Committee includes Lia Cravedi ([email protected]), Susan Grasso ([email protected]) and Kim Schmitt ([email protected]).