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Charlotte Albright

It’s been a snowy February, and that’s got lots of kids outdoors building forts and snowmen. But what’s in that stuff, and how does it work?  During school vacation week, the Montshire Museum, in Norwich, invited some young scientists to experiment with winter’s chemistry set.

Just outside the back door of the museum, there’s a small snowdrift. It’s also an archeology dig for construction materials.  Montshire science educator Mike Fenzel gives three students, aged 8, 9 and 10, small hand saws, as he excavates layers of snow, then ice.

Wilson Ring / AP

Forget roses. What skiers and snowmobilers always want for Valentine’s Day is snow. And down it came.

Fresh powder piled up on Vermont Association of Snow Traveler trails that had been dangerously icy in spots. VAST Interim Executive Director Matt Tetrault said groomers have been scrambling to pack it down in time to get the most out of the three day weekend, and the school vacation week following Presidents’ Day.

Jim Cole / AP

The winter storm covering a large swath of the Northeast was responsible for one death in Vermont when slick roads led to tragedy on Interstate 91, according to the Vermont State Police.

Robert Trombley, 45, of Lee, Mass. was driving a tractor trailer on I-91 when he hit a guardrail. He got out of the cab and was standing in the road when another vehicle hit him. He was pronounced dead at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, police say.

Nina Keck / VPR

While most children in the state are enjoying a snow day Friday after yesterday's storm blanketed the state, heavy accumulations meant business owners spent much of the morning just getting to work and digging out.

Pittsford resident Larry McDuff fired up his snow blower at 5:30 a.m. 

"We're doing the neighbors and everybody around who we can help out," McDuff reported. "Everybody's snowed in. We got about 15 inches of snow up here."

Robin Turneau/ VPR

A Winter Storm Warning continues to be in effect for all of the state. The National Weather Service is predicting up to 18-inches of snow for areas of southern Vermont through the end of Friday.

The state of Vermont has authorized a reduced workforce for state employees working overnight and the opening of state offices will be delayed until 10:00 a.m. Friday. All essential employees should report to work as required.

Paul Carroll/Flickr

Vermont may have avoided some of the most extreme sub-zero temperatures during the Polar Vortex a few weeks back, but even still, this winter has been a cold one.

Staying safe means more than just wearing an extra sweater. There’s an up tick in residential fires during the winter. The region has been hit with several destructive blazes over the past few months.

Heating systems cause many of them, second only to kitchen fires. There have been at least 30 calls for Red Cross assistance this month alone.

Gov. Peter Shumlin requested federal assistance for Vermont to help pay for damage done in the ice storm that hit the northwest part of the state in late December.

The request, submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), covers Caledonia, Chittenden, Essex, Franklin, Grand Isle, Lamoille and Orleans counties.

AP/ Toby Talbot

The past few weeks of ice and snow have caused power outages, school closures, property damage and dangerous driving conditions for Vermonters.

The ice has also led to a higher number of personal injuries.

John Larabee never expected to hurt himself by falling down. On New Year’s Day he, like many others, was salting and chipping the ice in a driveway, when he unexpectedly took a spill.

“Down I went,” Larabee said. “The snowbanks were frozen. I had put all my weight onto my leg, and shattered my leg.”

Taylor Dobbs / VPR

Heavy rain in some areas combined with overnight freezing rain has made for treacherous roadways Monday, causing multiple accidents as well as some flight delays.

Update 3:25 p.m. - Vermont Emergency Management officials are refreshing their earlier warnings that falling temperatures will cause some roads to freeze during evening rush hour. Scott Rogers, the director of operations for the Vermont Agency of Transportation says drivers should reduce speeds and avoid sudden turns or braking.

VPR

VPR continues to update the power outage situation, with the latest information from utilities, the Red Cross and state agencies. 

Updated De. 30, 9:46 a.m.

Heavy, wet snow and rain that froze overnight caused a new round of outages going into Monday morning, with 3027 outages reported on vtoutages.com, a utility-run website that tracks problems across the state.

Updated Dec. 27, 2:30 p.m.

We asked, you delivered.

In many towns, this weekend's storm lay a thick sheet of ice over everything. Winter berries. Bird feeders. I-89.

But somehow, between the ice-scraping and power-losing and white-knuckled-driving, VPR listeners managed to capture beautiful shots of the ice, in all its destructive glory. Here, we present some of our favorites.

Thank you to everyone who submitted photos! We received hundreds of images from more than 50 people via e-mail and Twitter. 

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