Posts Tagged ‘waitsfield’

Gaelic McTigue, at All Things Bright and Beautiful in Waitsfield, Vermont, fills orders from around the world to create painted wooden ornaments. Here she is in her shop. Below is a bear ornament that she signed for two of our grandkids. (We got a Swedish elf ornament for our Swedish-American grandson’s tree.)

I’ve included a couple other seasonal photos: the Hampton Falls, New Hampshire, tree at Macy’s, the brass band starting to warm up at the craft market.

For a nice Advent carol, check out composer Jeff Fuhrer’s “What Are We Waiting For?” on http://www.soundcloud.com. I tried to upload the MP3 he sent but couldn’t figure out how. Catchy tune.





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Photo: http://www.knollfarm.org/
Knoll Farm’s Icelandic sheep.

We stayed in a perfect little ski house — fitted up with everything you could imagine needing on a weekend, including toys for the grandkids. Our son and daughter-in-law rented it through Vacation Rental by Owner.

The drive up the steep road featured gorgeous mountain and farm views.

One farm had a sign out that sent us straight to our laptops once we got settled: “Knoll Farm, Center for Whole Communities.”

According to the Whole Communities site, “The Center for Whole Communities (CWC) fosters inclusive communities that are strongly rooted in place and where all people – regardless of income, race, or background – have access to and a healthy relationship with the natural world. …

“Through our programs and ongoing support we network more than 1,200 leaders working in 500 organizations and communities in 47 states.” More.

One of the center’s videos, below, explains the process community members in Waitsfield, Vermont, went through to reconnect “with the sun and the land” by getting off the grid and using only renewable energy sources.

A separate, related site describes the farm products: “We still have some gorgeous purebred Icelandic 2013 ewe and ram lambs, as well as mature ewes and rams for sale. Check out our Icelandic Breedstock pages for more information.

“Order whole and half shares of lamb for the holidays and winter supply anytime until November 4th. After that we will be selling cuts here at the farm and farmer’s markets.  Read more.

“Our farmstand has our grass-fed lamb and frozen organic blueberries in stock through the winter, or until we sell out. New hours: Open 8 am-6 pm every Saturday and Sunday. We also have our home-made blueberry jam, as well as free-range eggs, blankets and sheepskins.

“New Product: Heirloom quality pure wool blankets woven from our own Icelandic fleeces. Learn how to custom order your own Knoll Farm blanket.”

More here.

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Two incredibly photogenic states.

We got a special kick out of the sheep and chickens of my husband’s cousin, a dentist. He and his wife really know how to get the most out of the rural life.










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Photograph: http://americanflatbread.com/lareau-farm. Lareau Farm is home to American Flatbread in Waitsfield, Vermont.


A few of my readers will see “Waitsfield, Vermont” and think “skiing.” That’s because they were skiing there a couple weeks ago.

But this post is about the man who launched American Flatbread in Waitsfield in 1985, franchising his restaurant concept in other states and using his business success as a platform to advocate for the environment and other causes.

“In the fall of 1979,” writes Mike Ives for the Christian Science Monitor, “George Schenk stuffed all his worldly possessions into his pickup truck and moved from upstate New York to central Vermont. After settling in the sleepy ski town of Waitsfield, he began working as a dishwasher, freelance photographer, and live-in baby sitter.

“He also apprenticed at local restaurants and learned from chefs who were cooking in ways that emphasized local and regional ingredients. By 1985, Mr. Schenk was selling his own ‘flatbread,’ a variation on the brick oven-style pizza he’d eaten as a teenager, topped with Vermont produce.

“Serving nutritious food, he realized, was a good way to promote the kind of community values he’d absorbed in his Connecticut childhood and the ecological principles he’d embraced in his previous careers as a farmer and forester. …

” ‘I felt as though the environmental dimension of food needed a voice,’ Schenk recalls.

“Today, American Flatbread operates three popular Vermont locations, exports frozen pizzas nationwide, and is franchising its restaurant concept in other states.

“But profit isn’t Schenk’s only priority: For more than two decades he has donated thousands of his flatbreads to the poor and sick. He’s also held an average of eight benefit bakes each year to raise money for those in need.”

Although his political views and “civil disobedience” actions have often raised hackles, the people who know him best defend him.

“They insist his commitment to his employees and community is sincere and unwavering,” writes Ives. ” ‘I don’t always agree with George, but I always appreciate him,’ says Amy Shollenberger, former executive director of Rural Vermont, a nonprofit farm advocacy group. ‘He loves everybody, wears his heart on his sleeve — and walks his talk.’ ”

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Brian Mohr/EmberPhoto
George Schenk founded American Flatbread pizza as a way to showcase local produce and advocate for both community and global causes.

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