COVID-19 discussion

PUTNEY — The Spring 2021 Landmark College Academic Speaker Series continues at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 23, with an online panel discussion, “Dying and Death in the Age of COVID-19.” Visit for complete bios of all the presenters, as well as a link to access the online session. This event is free and open to the public.


Dharma Neil, of Killington and Ashley Sarnowski, of Rutland were named to the fall 2020 dean’s list at Simmons University in Boston.


Robotics contest

On March 13, 30 teams of middle and high school-age students will compete in the Vermont FIRST Tech Challenge Championship. The public is invited to watch portions of the event at beginning with the opening ceremony at 12:30 p.m.

FIRST, which stands for “For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology,” is a program for young people, ages 5-18. Participants learn how to design, build and program robots using science, mathematics and technology. The program also helps them hone their communications, problem-solving, team-building, conflict resolution and other important life skills.

Of the 30 teams scheduled to compete, 26 hail from Vermont, including two representing University of Vermont (UVM) Extension 4-H clubs. Other teams are from Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island.

A number of awards will be presented, including for best design, ingenuity, innovative thinking and teamwork. The winner of the Inspire Award, given to the team that epitomizes all the FIRST Tech Challenge program represents, will advance to the world championships, tentatively scheduled for Houston in mid-July and Detroit in early August.

Mook poetry contest

March 31 is the postmark deadline for entries to the Sarah Mook Poetry Contest for Students in Grades K-12. Winners will be announced in late May. Mail entries to: Sarah Mook Poetry Prize, 896 Ferncliff Road, Poultney, VT 05764. Visit to view winning poems from previous years with judge’s comments.

VFW singing contest

The Vermont VFW Auxiliary reminds everyone the deadline for the new national anthem singing contest — Getting Excited for the Red, White, and Blue — open to youth ages 6-16 is March 31. Contestants must submit a video of their solo performance of “The Star Spangled Banner” recorded between July 1, 2020, and March 31. Contestants do not have to be related to a VFW or auxiliary member.

Contestants begin competing at the local VFW level. The first-place winner from each auxiliary will advance to district competition (if applicable) with district winners advancing to the state competition. State first place winners will advance to the National Auxiliary Program Division competition. National Auxiliary Program Division winners will each receive a $100 Visa gift card. One national winner will be selected from the 10 National Auxiliary Program Division winners and will receive an additional $1,000 Visa gift card. Winners will be notified the week of Aug. 9, via the email address provided on winner’s entry form.

Visit for more information.

4-H poetry contest

To celebrate the power of youth in changing the future, Military Kids Vermont (MKVT) and University of Vermont Extension 4-H have teamed up to sponsor a poetry contest for kids, ages 5-18. The contest is being held in conjunction with April is the Month of the Military Child, an annual recognition of the sacrifices and bravery of military kids when a parent or guardian is deployed.

Entries must be emailed or postmarked by April 2. They may be submitted by email to or by mail to Allison Smith, Attn: MOMC Poetry Contest, UVM Extension 4-H, 140 Kennedy Drive, Suite 201, South Burlington, VT 0540.3

Visit for more information.

Green Up Day contests

MONTPELIER — Green Up Day this year will be held on its traditional first Saturday in May — May 1 — with all safety protocols, and contest winners will be announced. Each winner will receive a cash prize, and their work is shared on the Green Up Vermont website.

The 2021 overall poster art winner is Jiya Sekar, a third-grader from Union Elementary in Montpelier. Other art winners are: K-Grade 4, Elliot Kendall, of Ryegate; Grades 5-8, Ian Bernier, of Andover; and Grades 9–12, Jose Rodriguez, of Pittsfield.

The writing category winner is fourth-grader Casey Kendall, of Ryegate.

In addition to the poster art and writing contests, Green Up has expanded to offer a jingle contest, a video contest and a graphic-arts contest to reach an array of talent in our youth and get more students to participate on Green Up Day and in community volunteerism.

4-H Bovine Bonanza

BURLINGTON — 4-H club members statewide tested their knowledge of all things bovine in the annual Bovine Bonanza, held virtually this year. The University of Vermont (UVM) Extension 4-H competition, divided by age group, was open to 4-H’ers enrolled in the dairy, beef and working steer projects. It consisted of several age-appropriate questions in four categories: animal health, types and production of cheese, commercial crops and parts of a cow.

Individual rankings were as follows:

8- and 9-year-olds: Regan Howrigan, of Highgate (first); Leah Whittemore, of Orleans (second); Gracelynn Barber, of Shoreham (third); Gracie Bromley, of Wallingford (fourth); Thomas Williams, of Randolph Center (fifth); Tenley Chittenden, Shoreham (sixth).

10- and 11-year-olds: Austin Washburn, Bethel (first); Dawson Michaud, East Hardwick (second); Brody Werner, Stannard (third); Caroline Allen, Ferrisburgh (fourth); Natalia Tarbell, Middletown Springs (fifth); Danyka Moulton, North Troy (sixth).

12- and 13-year-olds: Tristin Warner, Granville, New York (first); Wyatt Chambers, Tunbridge (second); Steven Werner, Stannard (third); Elizabeth Waterman, Thetford Center (fourth); Max Demaine, West Glover (fifth); Morgan Michaud, East Hardwick (sixth); Holden Marcelino, Johnson (seventh); Amy Vaughan, Newbury (eighth); Wyatt Tarbell, Middletown Springs (ninth); Christin Haynes, Worcester (10th); Isabella Lamonda, Orleans (11th); Bianca Davis, Orleans (12th); Erin Whipple, Bridport (13th).

14- to 18-year-olds: Courtney Curler, Bridport (first); Whitney Dunklee, Vernon (second); Michael Plouffe, Bridport (third); Elisabeth Crawford, Whiting (fourth); Erica Goodhue, Fairfield (fifth); Rosa Kehoe, Middlebury (sixth); Lena Ashooh, Shelburne (seventh); Amanda Ferris, Braintree (eighth); Rose Tarbell, Middletown Springs (ninth); Morgan White, Whiting (10th); Brennan Vaughan, East Thetford (11th); Brailey Livingston, New Haven (12th); Keenan Thygesen, Tunbridge (13th); Ellie Ramirez-Richer, Shelburne (14th); Dezirae Brault, Lowell (15th); Joey Ferris, Braintree (16th); Paige Ainsworth, Stannard (17th); Abby Reen, Lincoln (18th); Cassidy Dunphy, Franklin (19th); Donovan Noyes, Calais (20th); Lincoln Michaud, East Hardwick (21st); Elizabeth Vaughan, Newbury (22nd); Gabriel Michaud, East Hardwick (23rd); Charlie Haynes, Worcester (24th); Karissa Livingston, New Haven (25th); Tyler Slack, Bethel (26th); Katherine Whipple, Bridport (27th); Brendan Gebo, Bristol (28th); Lorryn Trujillo, North Clarendon (29th); Ben Boutin, Williston (30th).


Warden of the Year

Vermont State Game Warden Sergeant Travis Buttle of Shaftsbury is Vermont’s Game Warden of the Year. A game warden since 1996, Buttle was nominated by his peers and received the award in recognition of his excellent service. His district includes the towns of Shaftsbury, Glastenbury, Bennington, Woodford, Pownal and Stamford.

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