Northeast Kingdom

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Bag Balm, that yellowish salve made in the Northeast Kingdom, was developed 115 years ago for farmers who wanted to soften their cows’ teats before milking.

Herb Swanson / swanpix.com

It's hard to imagine a worse disease than amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS. The muscle-wasting affliction strikes about 5,600 patients each year. Thirty thousand people are living with it in the United States. The vast majority of those cases are not inherited.

But for families that do carry the gene, it is especially heartbreaking. One of those families lives in Vermont, and they are helping to advance medical research.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Vermont’s new school consolidation law is raising concerns about school choice. Currently, students who live in towns that do not operate schools may take their state tuition dollars elsewhere, even to private academies.

But there is confusion about whether — and how — districts can hold onto choice as they combine under the new law.

Hilary Niles for VPR

State officials today will celebrate a Northeast Kingdom airport’s new and improved runway — a project several years and many million dollars in the making. Now, private developers are on the hook to deliver other improvements. And there’s some concern about delays in the developer’s timetable.

File photo/Charlotte Albright / VPR

A big hotel and conference center under construction on Burke Mountain has narrowly escaped a work stoppage that could have killed the project. But the contractor and developer must still hash out disagreements with state regulators.

Jane Lindholm / VPR

Vermont has only one operational landfill in the entire state. The Coventry Landfill takes more than two-thirds of the 600,000 tons of waste thrown away every year — but most Vermonters have never seen it.

Lyndon State College

The term “animation” might conjure up images of The Simpsons or video games or Disney and Pixar films or even Japanese anime — and while it is all these things, a professor at Lyndon State College wants to show that animation can be more than just entertainment.

Jane Lindholm / VPR

In one photo, apples, crispy bacon, shredded cheddar cheese and a couple of sprigs of fresh sage rest on a weathered wooden cutting board, ready to be made into savory scones.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

News hounds living near the Canadian border in northeastern Vermont are flocking to a hyper-local online site called Newport Dispatch News. In two short years, it’s garnered a surprisingly international following. 

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Vaudeville, that old-time brew of slapstick humor and outlandish stunts, is making quite a comeback in Vermont.

Vermont Vaudeville, a troupe based in Hardwick will be juggling, joking, singing and dancing this weekend in a restored theater beside the railroad tracks that used to host traveling vaudeville shows at the turn of the century.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

There’s a brisk debate in St. Johnsbury over whether to open an emergency warming shelter this winter. Several sites have been proposed and rejected. So the fate of about 40 homeless families is still unclear.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Northeast Kingdom residents like to boast that Lake Willoughby is one of the clearest, cleanest, deepest lakes in Vermont. Now there’s proof. 

Charlotte Albright / VPR

There’s a proposal to build a 16-bed mental health care facility in Essex County. A non-profit agency serving the Northeast Kingdom wants to partner with the state to add more psychiatric beds.

Supporters say such services are sorely needed, but not everyone agrees on where and how they should be provided.

Charlotte Albright / VPR

A proposal to erect two commercial wind turbines in Irasburg is drawing local opposition. But the developer, David Blittersdorf, says the project would benefit the entire state.

Freeman/French/Freeman

Northeast Kingdom developer Bill Stenger has unveiled the design for a new airport terminal to be built at the state airport in Coventry.

Patti Daniels / VPR

Linda Michniewicz runs her hands over a Thai lemon basil plant and admires the lettuce that’s growing in the garden at her office in Barton, where she’s the program director for Northeast Kingdom Community Action Head Start and Early Head Start. Their central office is on a residential street, and the backyard of their building gives the eight-person staff enough space to try out gardening at work.

Charlotte Albright / VPR file

There’s a hiring spree going on in the ski resort town of Burke in the Northeast Kingdom. A new hotel and conference center due to open in December will need as many as 200 workers. The rush is on to find them as construction moves ahead.

stalkerstudent / iStock

It appears a troubled broadband service provider is still operating in Vermont, but officials say there’s a great deal of confusion over who’s operating it.

Herb Swanson / swanpix.com

A young man from the Northeast Kingdom village of Wheelock is making history at Dartmouth College. He’s only the ninth Wheelock resident since 1830 to benefit from a remarkable fact. 

Charlotte Albright / VPR

Three communities — Newport, Rutland and Barre — are facing big budget cuts for services aimed at helping at-risk youth. Federal funds for a grant program called Youth In Transition have been reduced, so the state is making some tough decisions about how to spend what remains of the grant.

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