Ghost of Midnight

… about neighbors, community and Front Porch Forum

In Awe of the Solar Eclipse

Posted on Wednesday, April 10, 2024 by 3 comments

Jean from Cambridge wrote a lovely encapsulation on Front Porch Forum about Monday’s eclipse, “I think my favorite part (of too many to count!) was: no matter one’s race, creed, gender, political persuasion, or anything else, it was something we all came together on, in our shared sense of wonder and awe.”

Thank you so much to the neighbors, businesses, and town officials who shared their plans leading up to April 8. To date, Front Porch Forum members posted 1,437 eclipse-oriented messages, 230 calendar items, 47 announcements about where to recycle eclipse glasses, and dozens of heartfelt accolades to event planners (Food trucks! Bagpipes! Telescopes! School bands!). 

Vermont showed its best self to each other and those from out of town. And, as we re-settle back into our routines, we wanted to share an important sentiment from Carissa in Enosburg Falls who wrote, “In the coming days there will be folks visiting our town that will never see the true value of what it is to be here. They will watch the eclipse and leave, hopefully with a sense of awe, but I cannot help feeling heavy-hearted that they may not truly understand the real uniqueness of where they are… That is ok, because we do. Where else can you have an atmosphere of such communal authenticity with such a self-defined unique definition of what it is to be abundant?”

Sourdough Starting Fresh Connections

Posted on Wednesday, March 27, 2024 by 2 comments

Neighbors are expressing gratitude on Front Porch Forum this month! From folks providing secret snow removal to dropping off mis-delivered packages, community members are really stepping up for each other. This FPF member reached out to their community as they wanted to try their hand at some bread baking:

“I got more than 15 offers for sourdough and ended up connecting with a neighbor I hadn’t yet met! Thank you everyone for the generous offers. Making my first loaf next weekend!”
• Madeline, Cornwall Forum

Need motivation to get out of the house? Check your Front Porch Forum Community Calendar

Posted on Thursday, March 21, 2024 by No comments yet

Across the state, each Front Porch Forum Community Calendar is home to yard sales, toddler play groups, grange suppers, and little league opening days. Local events are a great way to meet neighbors, learn something new, get active, and have fun! Studies show that social connection is important and your Community Calendar might be just the place to get inspired. We love to read about the creative get-togethers — like these examples listed below — hosted by community members, businesses, libraries, municipalities, and cultural organizations:

Wild Game Dinner, March 23, Bolton
Lake Champlain Longbeards annual wild game dinner. Enjoy wild game in some of our favorite recipes. Venison, Moose, Bear, Rabbit…

Lily’s Pad Ribbit Review, April 3, Burlington
The Ribbit Review is part house-party, part song circle/open-mic that showcases performers of all levels from seasoned singer/songwriters, to those who are just starting out and just looking to connect with other artists and hone their skills.

Solar Eclipse Yoga, April 8, Enosburgh
Yoga class on the green! Bring a mat to roll out on the grass and check the weather to wear appropriate layers… we are planning to have our savasana coincide with the complete darkness of the eclipse.

Alburgh Adult Volleyball, April 10, Alburgh
Volleyball in Alburgh at the school gym is changing the start time to 7 pm. Come join us on Wednesdays for a couple hours of fun!

Eagles Auxiliary Friday Night Bingo, April 26, Jeffersonville
We thank you for supporting our Auxiliary Bingo that supports our many charities, donations, and scholarships, we make in our community throughout each year. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. Bingo refreshments available

Don’t you just feel excited to join in? Check out your local and regional Community Calendar and spread the word that Front Porch Forum is both a great place for planners to post events and for community members to find engaging activities.

Meet Your Community Calendar on Front Porch Forum

Posted on Wednesday, March 13, 2024 by No comments yet

Did you know that every town on Front Porch Forum has its own Community Calendar, full of events submitted by neighbors, businesses, and local organizations? 

Any member can submit an event to their local Community Calendar. It can be something informal such as a neighborhood garage sale or walking group; or can be more structured such as a toddler playtime at your library or trivia night at a local restaurant.

How do I create a Calendar Event?

Click on over to our Help Center to follow the steps to submit an event to your Community Calendar. 

What’s the best way to get people to show up?

People are more likely to attend an event where they know what to expect. Clue folks in as to your target audience (Great for kids! Or, young professionals welcome!) and the activities involved (Hear a compelling lecture. Or, get ready to dance the night away.) Finally, is there a ticket price and way to RSVP? Think about who, what, where, when, and why before you hit “submit.” If your gathering is weeks or months in the future, consider posting in your Forum a message with a short note to encourage attendance closer to the date. 

Success! Am I done now?

Congratulations! You’re one step closer to helping neighbors connect. Thanks for making the Community Calendar a part of your event planning.

Random Neighbor and Home Movie of Mom’s Sweet 16

Posted on Monday, March 4, 2024 by No comments yet

Front Porch Forum is full of wonderful stories of neighbors helping neighbors, sometimes in surprising ways. Here’s a note of appreciation from FPF member Sheryl to her Montpelier Forum last week…

A kind, patient someone who saw my FPF posting walked me through converting DVDs of old home movies on my PC. It took some doing, but the videos are now successfully on YouTube, and I can share them with my family! Never could I have imagined a connection between a Montpelier community member and my mom’s 16th birthday party. Wondrous!

Valentine’s Day Love on FPF

Posted on Thursday, February 22, 2024 by No comments yet

Thank you to the hundreds of Front Porch Forum members who posted love letters, appreciations, and notes of gratitude about their town during the week of Valentine’s Day, 2024.

It was a gift to read these celebrations of people and places across the state. There were messages describing community highlights such as a favorite car mechanic in Brattleboro to a librarian in Chelsea, from flood recovery volunteers in Glover to trivia night hosted in St. Johnsbury, from the Colchester Causeway to the Ridgeline trails of Randolph, and from the holiday lights of Springfield to the welcome for refugees in Rutland.

As always, members make Front Porch Forum a bright spot of community connection.

From the Mouths of Babes

Posted on Thursday, January 11, 2024 by No comments yet

Front Porch Forum aims to be a platform where people from all different stages of life can express themselves and share their thoughts with members of the community, but it’s not often that we hear from our youngest neighbors. We loved seeing this recent post from Vanessa of Essex:

“My kiddo lost her lamb stuffy the other day. Today we discovered it on the fire hydrant on the corner of sage cir and hickory lane. She wanted me to send a note out to our community to say thank you to whoever found her lamb and placed it where we could find it!”

Thank you for sharing, Vanessa. We’re so glad your little girl was reunited with her lamb!

Sharing Kindness

Posted on Tuesday, December 12, 2023 by No comments yet

Recently, Ruth shared a heartwarming story with her neighbors in the Montpelier Forum about a kind stranger who not only helped change her flat tire, but went out of his way to purchase and install four new winter tires for the car. The stranger wouldn’t accept reimbursement, and said that he tries to do something particularly kind like this once every few years. Ruth ended the post by expressing her appreciation, and telling her neighbors that she plans to “pay it forward.”

Later that day, she posted again to the Forum:

“I received an outpouring of emails thanking me for posting my experience yesterday. Some people said they cried and all thanked me. After receiving all those messages I realized something… I was trying to figure out how to ‘Pay it Forward’ and maybe sharing what happened is giving people HOPE. Showing them there is still kindness and goodness in peoples’ hearts.

Thank you, Ruth, for telling your story and reminding us that both being kind and sharing kindness with those around you goes such a long way.

Friends and More Through FPF

Posted on Thursday, November 9, 2023 by No comments yet

Front Porch Forum’s goal is to foster connection among neighbors. Catharine, a Brandon FPF member, shares just how possible that is!

I was looking for about 10 hangers and received more than double that number of responses! I was able to get them from a kind friend and neighbor who saw my request. I’m so sorry I couldn’t keep up with responding to people, so here is a BIG THANK YOU TO EVERYONE!

I am so grateful that I found this forum when I moved here. I’ve had the opportunity to travel into neighborhoods and streets that are off my beaten path… a nice excuse to explore my little town. But most importantly: I’ve made a few friends through FPF and for that alone I am forever grateful.