The Mountain Times

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FEMA Sets Up Shop in Ludlow

Representatives from FEMA and the SBA have setup temporary regional headquarters in the Okemo Marketplace in Ludlow to deal with requests for assistance by those who suffered losses as a result of Tropical Storm Irene. Earlier they had met with area property owners in the Cool Moose Café, next to their current location, to discuss the types of support they offer and how to apply for aid. Designed for both individuals and businesses, it is open from 8-6, seven days a week. Some of the services provided include: guidance regarding disaster recovery; clarification of any written correspondence received; Housing Assistance and Rental Resource information; answers to questions, resolution to problems and referrals to agencies that may provide further assistance; status of applications being processed by FEMA; and SBA program information. Local resource information will also be available at the Center.

On a much sadder note, Irene indirectly took another life in the Black River area. Master Sgt. Shawn Stocker, 46, who lived in West Rutland and was a veteran of the war in Iraq, had a heart attack as his unit prepared to set out from Proctorsville to assist in the road reconstruction efforts in the area. Stocker, who had served in the Marine Corp, joined the National Guard in 1988 and saw service all over the world, service that included a deployment in Iraq in 2006.

Like Ludlow before it, Cavendish is preparing for its 250th anniversary as a town in mid-October. A number of events have already taken place and many are still in the offering. For information about these up-coming events, call 802-226-7736. Cavendish also received some good news about its water supply system. The "boil water" order has been lifted. The town still faces long term problems repairing its sewage system; however, even here, they have made considerable progress in restoring the integrity of the system. The disruption of Route 131 traffic will still require detours well into the winter.

It's rumored that Ludlow, following the success of its 250th anniversary bash, may be thinking about creating an annual "Ludlow Day." At the same time, Ludlow and the surrounding Black River area is letting everyone know that it's open for business again, especially as it approaches the foliage season.

Gypsy Reel will be returning to the Ludlow Town Hall Auditorium on Saturday, October 1 at 7 PM for a concert sponsored by FOLA (Friends of Ludlow Auditorium). Tickets for the event are $10 and may be purchased in Ludlow at the Book Nook, Wine and Cheese Depot, Peoples United Bank, and, on the night of the concert, at the door. For information, call 228-7239.

FOLA is also preparing for its special concert to honor Ludlow's 150th anniversary of its participation in the Civil War with a special piano concert on Sunday, October 9 at 6:30 PM in the Ludlow Auditorium. The concert, jointly sponsored with Black River Academy Museum and the Town of Ludlow, will feature renowned pianist Jacqueline Schwab playing music of the Civil War and Mark Twain era. She has been highlighted in a number of Ken Burn's award-winning documentaries on PBS, including the Civil War and Mark Twain. The event is free. For further information, call 228-7239.

FOLA's "1st Thursday" movie, on October 6 at 7 PM in the Ludlow Auditorium will be the highly-acclaimed "Close Encounters of the Third Kind." Following FOLA's policy, the movies are free; donations are appreciated to help offset the cost of the film.

The Ludlow Area Rotary will be conducting its annual "Chili Cook-Off" on Saturday, October 8 in Ludlow. The area at the intersection of Depot Street and Main Street will be covered by a tent to ensure that the various chili offerings are not diluted by water. Individuals interested in entering their chili concoctions should contact Glenn Heitsmith for an entry form. A flood victim himself, Heitsmith advises those interested in making chili to contact him via email for an entry form at: The fee to enter is $10 and participants are asked to mix up a 3-5 gallon batch of chili, delivering it hot on the day of the event. Rotary provides bowls and spoons and volunteers to serve the chili starting at 11am. Awards will be handed out in three judged categories: "Best," "Spiciest" and "Team Spirit." The public gets to vote for their favorite chili, garnering the winner $100 and a nifty plaque from the Rotary Club. Second place pays $50 and $25 goes to the third-place chef. Net proceeds from this year's cook-off will benefit the charities of the Ludlow Rotary Club. Sounds like it should be a "hot time" in Ludlow, regardless of the temperature.

The Red Cross blood donation group will be in Ludlow on October 3. They will setup shop in the Ludlow Community Center from 12:30 to 5:30 PM. A special note about this donation tour: those donating blood will be entered into a contest to win a cruise for two to Bermuda.

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