RUTLAND CO-OP GROWTH PLANS
Many community eyes focus on the food hub taking shape on the
former Mintzer property on West Street. As volunteers clean up and
ready the site for the winter farmers' market, proponents of
locally grown food also have exciting developments at the Rutland
Area Food Co-op to anticipate.
At its annual meeting, Co-op members created a list of
priorities for the organization's growth. The top priorities were a
deli for take out and eat in, produce department expansion, local
fresh produce increases, community education and outreach,
increased employee benefits, and a café, coffee shop, and bakery.
NEW POLICE CHIEF BAKER
The search committee for Rutland's new police chief did what what
most expected recommending that interim police chief James Baker be
hired. Baker can do more than 'hit the ground running' - he's
already been leading the department since former chief Anthony
Bossi retired at the beginning of the year.
In all, the committee had considered applications from 64
individuals across the nation. The $30,000 that Rutland spent on
the national search was not wasted, they say. Their extensive
search has convinced them that Baker is the best fit for the
They have publicly cited accomplishments Baker already made. He
has made great strides in stabilizing a police department that had
faced charges of police misconduct and racial bias. The department
has created fresh mission and vision statements, and developed a
new approach to overcoming any potential bias. Baker has also
advocated for a opioid addiction treatment center and developed a
strong community presence.
Congratulations to the Rec Department's Rutland Youth Theatre
program and its director Saskia Hagen Groom for receiving the
National Recreation and Park Association's Dorothy Mullen Arts and
Humanities Award. The Mullen award goes to "the most innovative and
effective arts and humanities programs across the nation."
Youth Theatre began in 2002, and has grown consistently; today, it
gives five performances a year, two in the Paramount Theatre. As
many as 50 to 60 young people take part in the larger
Rutland Youth Theatre plans auditions for its fall
production of The Jungle Book on Sunday and Monday, August 26 and
27 at the Godnick Adult Center. Performances will be Friday and
Saturday, October 19 and 20, at Rutland Intermediate School.
FOOD = FAMILY
Family life and values are well represented by the foods you ate as
you grew up, says artist Persi Narvaez; the art he's applying to
the side of The Opera House in downtown Rutland carries that
message. The Chaffee Art Center, sponsoring his mural painting
project, hopes the new art will serve as a pilot for more
building-side art. Call the Chaffee, 775-0356, to help.
HUNGRY FOR PANCAKES?
If no more roadblocks arise, Rutland will soon have a 170-seat IHOP
as the Handy family takes over the Midway Diner at 120 S. Main St.
to remodel and convert as a member of the pancake-oriented
franchise. Midway owners Frank Trombetta and John Valente plan to
sell the long-time restaurant property on 1.5 acres while retaining
1.92 acres of undeveloped property, having successfully divided the
Plans already on file with the city Building and Zoning
Department indicate the Handys plan to spend $212,000 on the
remodeling. Interior reconfiguration will increase seating from 126
to 170 capacity, and parking lot re-striping will increase vehicle
count from 64 to 92.
Congrats too to Fran Veller of Berkley, Veller and Greene Real
Estate for being named Rutland County Realtor of the Year.
And to Serenity House of Wallingford, recent recipient of $95,000
in state grant funds to supplement its normal state and federal
moneys. Serenity House and its parent organization Recovery House
help individuals overcome substance abuse and addiction.
Friday, August 10 - Friday Night Live draws to a close with Drum
Journey of the Earth, the winner of the Downtown Tavern's Battle of
the Bands, and Money Shott. 773-9380.
Saturday and Sunday, August 11-12 - Art in the Park a Vermont
Chamber of Commerce Top 10 Event, fills Main Street Park with
visual, musical, and gustatory treats. It's year number 51 for this
summertime festival benefiting the Chaffee Art Center.
Saturday, August 11 - Southern country singer Travis Tritt tears up
the stage at the Paramount Theatre at 8 p.m. 775-0903.
Tuesday, August 14 - Winter in August celebrates the
importance of the ski industry to the Rutland economy. Vote for
your favorite restaurant's specialty at the event outside the
Chamber of Commerce office on Merchants Row. 773-2747.