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The site of where a new mall is set to be built in downtown Burlington.
Liam Elder-Connors / VPR

The Hole Story: What's Going On With The Downtown Burlington Mall?

If you’ve been in downtown Burlington this year, you’ve probably seen a big empty lot. It's right where a new mall is supposed to be built. A mall with lots of space for new stores and offices, plus 288 apartments — and at 14 stories, it would be the tallest building in the city. But construction on the big project hasn’t started, and city officials are frustrated by the lack of progress and communication from the developers.

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Antoinette and Clint Hunt, co-founders of Abracadabra Coffee Co. in Woodstock, stand in front of their coffee roaster.
Angela Evancie / VPR

What Does It Take To Start And Run A Successful Small Business In Vermont?

What do you do when you want to start something new, but you don’t know exactly how?

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Researchers at UVM and 20 other sites across the country are studying more than 11,800 children to learn how brain development relates to behavior, achievement, mental health outcomes and more.

Live call-in discussion: Nearly 12,000 children aged nine and ten are now taking part in a decade-long, nationwide study looking at how young brains develop. And 577 of them are right here in Vermont.

We're talking with investigators leading the research at UVM about this landmark study and what they're learning about this pivotal stage in the development of young brains. 

We're talking about the best ways to feed birds and keep them safe.
Jason Grey / flickr

The bears are mostly in bed for the winter, so it's safe to bring out your birdfeeders. But what's the best way to attract birds to your yard—what kind of food should you use? How can you take steps to keep your avian visitors safe? And how do you choose bird food based on what birds you might want to see?

The Mexican government's mobile consulate in Middlebury in early December. People sit at a table with computers and others fill out paperwork.
John Dillon / VPR

A little bit of Mexico came to Middlebury last weekend. Officials from the Mexican government were in town to help its citizens renew passports or obtain other documents.

Bayla Metzger / VPR

A Chinese scientist set off a firestorm last week when he claimed he'd created the world's first gene-edited babies. He Jiankui says he altered the genes of twin girls while they were embryos, to protect them from the HIV virus. Dr. Leah Burke, a pediatric geneticist and professor at the University of Vermont, said she was appalled by the news.

Vermont is the country's top slate producer. But re-opening and expanding old quarries has caused worry in neighboring communities.
ricsiv / iStock

Live call-in discussion: From a tiny area along the New York border called the Slate Valley, Vermont is the leading producer of slate in the country. And as old quarries are reopened or expanded, the rub between quarry owners and neighboring homeowners has gotten tense. We'll take a look at today's slate industry in Vermont.

Lawmakers unveiled the much-anticipated farm bill compromise Monday night, ending the months-long impasse over whether a critical piece of legislation that provides subsidies to farmers and helps needy Americans buy groceries could pass before the lame-duck session concludes at the end of the year.

We're talking about weatherizing your home for the winter.
aetb / iStock

We're talking weatherization: how to keep your home warm for less and address other health and comfort issues at the same time. Plus, when to go do-it-yourself and when to bring in the professionals.

Male sage grouse, pictured in Colorado in April 2014, in a snowy field.
David Zalubowski / Associated Press File

The Trump administration announced plans last week to open millions of acres of land to drilling and mining by removing protections for the sage grouse, an imperiled ground-nesting bird that resides in the American West.

Bill Gardner survived the toughest challenge of his more than four decades as New Hampshire's Secretary of State.
Allegra Boverman / NHPR

Bill Gardner has served as New Hampshire’s Secretary of State for more than 40 years, and last week, New Hampshire legislators—not voters—elected him to his 22nd term in office.

But his re-election was no sure thing, and victory came only after a contentious and unprecedented day in the legislature. Tied up in Gardener’s reappointment are questions about election reforms, the state’s first-in-the-nation presidential primary and even President Donald Trump.

A statue of George Frideric Handel is pictured here at night in Halle, Germany.
IgorGeiger / iStockphoto.com

The season for George Frideric Handel's Messiah is upon us! Although it was actually first performed around Easter, in our time it has become a December holiday tradition.

This year, VPR is again rounding up performances and sing-alongs of Handel's beloved oratio in our area. 


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The Latest From But Why: A Podcast For Curious Kids


Why Do We Poop And Fart?

How does your body make poop? How many germs are in an ounce of poop? Why do people fart and why are farts stinky? Look, everybody does it, so today we're going to tackle one of the areas kids seem to find fascinating: why and how we poop! Plus, we get some help from Chicago public radio station WBEZ's Curious City to learn about what happens after you flush the toilet. Loading... Let's zero in on the very impressive and efficient system our body uses to take in food, use what it needs, and...

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