Category Archives: Vermont

FPF Must Raise $150,000 by Wednesday

Posted on Sunday, April 25, 2021 by No comments yet

Vermonters have put Front Porch Forum to work the past year like we’ve never seen before.  New members have joined in record numbers.  Posting quantity is way up.  Public officials and nonprofit leaders have shared critical information frequently.  Local businesses have leveraged their local Forums to find customers.  And neighbor-helping-neighbor stories are piling up faster than ever.

To continue working on our community-building mission and providing our essential civic service to every town we serve, we need to raise $150,000 statewide from our members by this Wednesday, April 28.  Please donate today.

If you are in the position to contribute to FPF now, please do.  We’re eager to keep FPF going strong and vital.  We need your help to get there.

Please give today:  https://frontporchforum.com/supporting-members

Thank you,

Front Porch Forum’s growing staff

Aaron, Ariel, Emily, Emily, Gisele, Hilary, Jason, Jodi, Jonna, Linda, Lynn, Matt, Michael, Natanya, Nina, Noah, Renee, Sarah, Suzie, Valerie, Wendy, and Zach

FPF is a Public Benefit Corporation and not a charity. Contributions are not tax deductible. Ad sales to local businesses cover most of our expenses, and your Supporting Member contribution helps close the gap.

While we prefer online donations by credit card or PayPal, we also accept payment by check, with gratitude, at:

Front Porch Forum
PO Box 73
Westford, VT 05494-0073

Keep FPF Working During Challenging Times

Posted on Tuesday, April 20, 2021 by No comments yet

Today we are launching Front Porch Forum’s annual Spring Supporting Member Campaign. If you are able, please support FPF by donating now: https://frontporchforum.com/supporting-members

With the pandemic and other challenges, more people are using FPF than ever before to stay informed, reach out to neighbors, and get involved.  Our workload has expanded considerably since before the pandemic, and our costs and staff have grown accordingly.

We know that many of our members are not in a position financially to make a contribution at this time.  If that’s your case, please do not donate, but DO keep using your local FPF.  Your engagement makes a big difference — in fact, it is more important than ever for all of us to build community among neighbors.

If you value FPF, please support our work by participating and by donating today by credit card, PayPal or check.

Thank you.

FPF is a Public Benefit Corporation and not a charity. Contributions are not tax deductible. Ad sales to local businesses cover most of our expenses, and your Supporting Member contribution helps close the gap.

While we prefer online donations, we also gratefully accept payment by check at:

Front Porch Forum
PO Box 73
Westford, VT 05494-0073

The highest “stump” for our communities

Posted on Monday, March 1, 2021 by No comments yet

Town Meeting Day brings out conversation between neighbors on FPF.

“Thank you FPF Member Support for your clarification and endorsement of political discussion. I have no ‘dog in this fight’ but think the Reading election discussion is totally fascinating. I have enjoyed reading all the posts and if I didn’t, I simply wouldn’t. I almost can’t wait for the next installment. You all are exerting your democratic rights of free speech. And, what a great place we all have for doing that very thing – Front Porch Forum. FPF the highest “stump” for our communities and available for all to express their views on most issues. CHEERS to all the contributors on all sides of the discussion and thank you FPF for being there.” • Neil in Brownsville

It looks like it is that time of year again, when we start seeing/reading heated discussions here on FPF. As your neighbor I would like to stress , as I have in the past, we are in this together. We all need to take a few minutes, calm our thoughts, and remember that most people want to do the right thing. We also should remember that we all make mistakes, no one ever learns anything without them. The key is to understand what went wrong, learn from it, and become a better person. I love living on this Island, and it is not only the location that I love, its also the community that is around me. It’s time to be respectful to one another, because “We are in this together.”  • Matthew in Grand Isle

“I wanted to write and thank FPF for moderating our town bulletin board. The world seems like it has changed so much over the past few years…but I guess there have always been tough conversations to have about how certain people share in public. It must be incredibly challenging for you all to make decisions on what content to ban. Your platform has brought towns together in such a lovely way, and I appreciate the way it connects us in rural Vermont.” • Mary in Underhill

Welcome to Vermont

Posted on Friday, February 26, 2021 by No comments yet

From maple creemee tours to swimming holes, farmers markets to local writers, there’s plenty of hidden gems that any new Vermont resident simply must check out. One perfect example is the locally grown VPR podcast, Brave Little State; it will tell you all you need to know about making your home in the Green Mountain State! We think their tip about joining FPF is especially good 🙂

Peak foliage inspires staycation adventures

Posted on Monday, October 5, 2020 by No comments yet
Have you taken time to soak in the beautiful scenery or take a tour de creemee to sample fall flavor offerings? Front Porch Forum members share some ideas!

“Seeking recommendations on your favorite fall foliage drives, apple orchards and other fall activities/spots you enjoy?”  • Rebecca in Stowe

“You probably notice that the color is popping out on the Maples around Montpelier. We drove to Burlington today and it is gorgeous! We plan to head up RT 12 to Morrisville and Stowe and loop back around to Montpelier on I-89 this weekend. We encourage you to get out there and enjoy it as soon as possible!” • Johanna in Montpelier
“Thanks to all the Aficionados who sent me suggestions for their favorite Maple Creemee. Plenty of choices to keep “us” busy (at a respectable social distance) while driving through our beautiful state, supporting small VT businesses and be sweetly rewarded in the end!”  • Julie in Stowe

“Now that the Island Line Trail’s bike ferry is back in operation, you might want to consider a mini-vacation in the islands. It’s a fairly level 30-mile bike ride from Charlotte to South Hero. My friends there at Health Hero Farm have two campsites that can be booked through https://hipcamp.com/vermont/islands-base-camp. They have a stretch of private beach on Lake Champlain that you might enjoy. Once on the island, you have numerous cycling opportunities — many of them on back roads past apple orchards, vineyards, mini-castles, and creemee stands. Here’s a link to our friends’ trail suggestions: http://cycletheislands.com . You can even rent a bike from https://www.localmotion.org/, if you don’t own one already.” • Wolfger, Charlotte

Share your staycation adventures and tips on FPF to inspire neighbors and help show some love for local businesses in our beloved small towns!

“What Vermont and Its History Might Teach the Nation About Handling the Coronavirus”

Posted on Wednesday, July 29, 2020 by No comments yet

Vermont has the lowest number of cases of COVID-19 in the United States and it begs the question “why?” In Bill McKibben’s July 28 article in The New Yorker, he explains the state of Vermont’s unique history and social structures that likely pay a big part in preventing the virus’s spread throughout the Green Mountains.

In addition to Phil Scott acting quickly when the first few cases appeared, McKibben credits much of the spread slow-down to neighborliness and social trust:

“Vermonters entered the pandemic with remarkably high levels of social trust. Only thirty-eight per cent of Americans say they mostly or completely trust their neighbors, but a 2018 Vermont survey found that seventy-eight per cent of residents think that “people in my neighborhood trust each other to be good neighbors”; sixty-nine per cent of Vermonters said that they knew most of their neighbors, compared with twenty-six per cent of Americans in general…

…All that is a reminder of how social trust has been squandered across so much of our nation as we’ve divided into red and blue teams, concentrated on individual advancement, and had our worst instincts yanked at by social media. In this case, Vermont is extremely lucky to be living a little in the past. The governor didn’t immediately mandate mask-wearing because almost everyone mandated it for themselves…”

Read Bill McKibben’s full article in the New Yorker here.

Apply now for economic recovery grants!

Posted on Friday, July 10, 2020 by No comments yet

As a result of the federal CARES act, the State of Vermont has recently made available new Economic Recovery Grants for minority and women-owned businesses with 0-5 employees.  There’s also special funding for nonprofit arts and cultural organizations as part of a special allocation of funding through the Vermont Arts Council.

Learn more and apply for the economic recovery grants for Vermont small businesses owned by minorities and women.  $2.5 million has been set aside for women-owned businesses and $2.5 million for minority-owned businesses with 0-5 employees.

Vermont nonprofit arts and cultural organizations should use the same portal to apply for these grants. To learn more about what it means for Vermont’s creative sector check here.

It is a lovely day in Vermont

Posted on Monday, June 8, 2020 by No comments yet

We couldn’t agree more with one of our state representatives who shared words of hope on FPF:

Looking east over Missisquoi Bay, I see a panorama that includes Jay Peak, Camel’s Hump and Mt. Mansfield, big gray bumps in a blue horizon. To my left is Chapman Bay and a green strip of Canada. A northeasterly breeze creates a chop with occasional whitecaps on the water. In the distance a white-hulled fishing boat creates its own whitecaps with its spreading wake.

The thermometer reads 72º, but the breeze coming off the water feels cooler.

This morning I threw a line in the water and caught a fish on the second cast. Lucky.

The crabapple tree in the yard has flowered. All over the area flowering trees and bushes provide bright splashes of white, purple and pink against the spring-fresh green of new leaves.

Four pairs of Canada geese swim past, each couple with babies, 11 goslings in all.

It is a lovely day in Vermont.

It’s nice to be reminded that natural rhythms go on with little regard for the turmoil we create among ourselves. It’s also a reminder of a major reason why we choose to live here.

We need to take care of this state and its people.”  • Tommy, State Representative, Washington-3, Barre

Front Porch Forum on WCAX’s Across the Fence

Posted on Wednesday, April 22, 2020 by No comments yet

As the world adjusts and adapts to social distancing and self isolation, communities in Vermont are looking to connect with and help their neighbors safely. They’re doing so on FPF.

Listen to Front Porch Forum’s co-founder, Michael Wood-Lewis, share how the service is being used across the state (and in parts of Upstate NY) during the COVID-19 crisis.  He joins Fran Stoddard for an interview, below, on Across the Fence, the country’s longest-running locally produced program.

 

Learn more about how Front Porch Forum is being used during this time here.

Signs of Spring Arrival

Posted on Monday, April 13, 2020 by No comments yet

The days are getting longer, crocuses and bluets are springing up from the ground, and birds are returning to the Northeast from their winter vacations: signs of spring! Neighbors are sharing their observations. Have you seen any signs of spring? These FPF members have:

I’m so grateful to be a part of this community in this time. Thanks to you all. Also! I really love spring, and I miss the spring arrivals board at Sterling College. So…I have a poster board at the Genny up for us all to document our observations of spring (bring your own pen). I also created a google doc that I think should be accessible to all to add observations.

Let’s not let the craziness of this spring allow us to miss this gorgeous and amazing time of year!”  • Hannah in Craftsbury, Vt.

Sunrise.

Late-spring snowfall, inspired ways to keep the kids busy, crocuses, and random acts of beauty and neighborly kindness.

Home schooling, long walks.

A creative home desk made from–wait, is that an ironing board?

That’s what Middlesex looks like this spring as we all hunker down to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Check out these creative shots of our community taken by your Middlesex neighbors, at:

https://www.whatsnextmiddlesex.org/calendar–pictures.html

Enjoy!”   • Susan in Middlesex, Vt.

Share your spring sightings and observations on your Front Porch Forum today!