On November 15, 2023

Woodstock looks to replace star


By Katy Savage

The 80-year-old illuminated star that shines above the Woodstock Village in the winter from top of Mt. Tom is getting replaced next spring. 

The Woodstock Rotary Club is raising $120,000 to turn the wood structure into a galvanized steel structure, ensuring the beacon will continue for generations. 

“We decided this summer we need to look at doing a new renovation,” said Norm Frates, a rotary club member who’s been involved with the star for 10 years.

About 140 people attended a fundraiser at the Woodstock Inn Nov. 5 and raised $78,000 through a silent auction and donations.  

“We’re well on our way to achieving that $120,000,” Frates said. 

Frates said the rotary club will likely have the fundraising secured by the end of the year, earlier than the projected February timeline.

The current wooden structure was placed at the top of the mountain by a telephone company  to welcome soldiers home from World War II during the holiday season. 

While some the star is a symbol of  peace and hope, it has also been the subject of controversy. For decades, the star was lit as a cross for the few days near Easter. but about six years ago that stopped amid outrage from the public about the representation of a religious symbol in the village.

Around the same time, the Woodstock Rotary Club changed the previous incandescent lighting to LED lights, which dropped the electric bill from $450 a month to $27 a month.  The star, which was lit from Dec. 15 to Jan. 15, now stays on the entirety of Eastern Standard Time, from Nov. 5. to March 12, this year. 

The new star will be made of galvanized steel and will have 100 lights. It will be constructed by Erik Tobiason of Colby & Tobiason in Woodstock. The new star will be the same size and be placed by a crane next May. 

Woodstock Rotary is offering donors the opportunity to purchase lights at several donation levels, ranging from $500 to $5,000. Donors will be listed on plaques near the star. 

For more information, email woodstockrotary@woodstockvt.com.

Do you want to submit feedback to the editor?

Send Us An Email!

Related Posts

Two blasts a day likely this week on Killington Road

June 19, 2024
“With the second drill on site, expect two blasts a day,” wrote Markowski Excavating, Inc. in a news release before the week began. “First one will be around 10:30-12 noon and the second will be around 1:30-3 p.m.”  Traffic will be stopped on Route 4 during the blasts. Markowski will continue to haul blasted rock…

Lawmakers override veto of annual property tax legislation

June 19, 2024
The legislation funds Vermont’s schools, increasing the average property tax bill by 13.8% By Ethan Weinstein/VTDigger The Vermont Legislature overrode Gov. Phil Scott’s veto of the annual property tax legislation that funds the state’s public school districts, solidifying an average projected property tax increase of 13.8%. The vote passed 103-42 in the House, and 22-7 in…

With veto override, Act 250 reform bill becomes law

June 19, 2024
Bill is hailed as a compromise between advocatesfor housing and environmentalists By Carly Berlin Lawmakers have voted to override Gov. Phil Scott’s veto of a marquee housing and land-use bill that makes broad reforms to Act 250, Vermont’s signature development review law.  That means H.687, a bill that seeks to balance promoting housing growth and environmental conservation,…

Legislature overrides six vetoes, a new record

June 19, 2024
By Shaun Robinson and Sarah Mearhoff/VTDigger Of Gov. Phil Scott’s seven vetoes only a sweeping data privacy bill was sustained by the Senate. The six vetoes set a new record for the Vermont Legislature, beating the record they set last year with five vetos  in a single day. But Scott made his own record, since he took office…