By the way for Oct. 11

The Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department last week released a list of certified leashed tracking dog owners who volunteer during the hunting seasons to help hunters locate deer, bear or moose that have been shot during hunting season but not yet recovered. Two of the 34 trackers are in Addison County. The leashed tracking dog owners must pass an extensive exam administered by Fish & Wildlife in order to be certified and licensed to provide their services. The local volunteers are Cody Barnum of New Haven (802-458-7070) and Matt Bourgeois of Whiting (802-989-2213). See the full list of trackers online at tinyurl.com/y9gxbq4p.
The Helping Overcome Poverty’s Effects (HOPE) food shelf is still quite bare in spite of recent donation appeals by the nonprofit agency. The food shelf is in particular need of such items as canned beans (black, kidney, refried), canned vegetables and fruits, fruit juice, flavored rice and baking mixes. Folks can bring their donations to HOPE’s headquarters at 282 Boardman St. in Middlebury, or drop items in the food shelf bins at Hannaford and Shaw’s supermarkets. For more information, call HOPE at 388-3608.
There’s been a venue change for Gov. Madeline Kunin’s visit to Middlebury on Tuesday, Oct. 23. The presentation on her recently published memoir will now take place at 7 p.m. in Room 229 at the Axinn Center at Middlebury College.
The Charter House Coalition will hold an open house this Saturday, Oct. 13, from 9:30-11:30 a.m. It’ll be at the big white Charter House building at 27 North Pleasant St., across the street from the Congregational Church of Middlebury. The Charter House provides overnight stays, nutritious meals and guidance to homeless people. The shelter’s newly renovated kitchen prepares around 35,000 meals a year, thanks to the efforts of its many volunteers. It houses up to five families with kids and up to 24 adult men and women during the cold months. The Oct. 13 open house will include snacks, a guided tour and information on how to get involved.
Potato Hill Park at the Lincoln Community School will celebrate its opening this Sunday, Oct. 14, from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Everyone is invited to join the celebration and enjoy this new public park. Attendees can bring along a picnic lunch. Ribbon cutting is slated for 1:15 p.m. Come play on the new climbing structures, walk (or wheelchair) the perimeter path along the New Haven River, join a soccer game, and explore the new timber-frame pavilion, circular seating and garden beds. The event will be postponed to Oct. 28 in the event of rain.
Do you have broken costume jewelry, orphaned earrings, unused bits and shiny baubles? If so, the puppet-making unit at Mary Hogan School needs your donations by Oct. 20. If you have time to clean out your jewelry box and are willing to donate your unused or broken costume jewelry, the young puppeteers would love to up-cycle them. Donations can be dropped off at the school.
The Salisbury Volunteer Fire Department recently received a donation of four new sets of state-of-the-art turnout gear from Globe by MSA, and Dupont Protection Solutions. The fire department was one of only two such volunteer organizations to receive the donation. Prior to this donation, Salisbury firefighters had only half the amount of gear needed for its 20 volunteers, and that gear is 10 years old — unsafe according to national safety standards. With such a small budget allocated mostly to insurance, fuel and maintenance, this donation has been a big boost to the department’s efforts to improve operations.
The Samara Fund, part of the Middlebury-based Vermont Community Foundation, recently awarded $35,556 in grants and scholarships in its seventh annual competitive grant round. Fourteen nonprofit organizations received grants totaling $32,056, and seven high school seniors each received a $500 scholarship. Locally, Common Ground Center of Starksboro received $3,000 to support the eighth summer of its Camp Outright. This week-long residential program for LGBTQ youth (ages 13-17) creates an environment of healthy affirmation for all participants, and for some campers is the first or only opportunity they’ve had to be their true selves while in community.
Vermont State Game Wardens are appealing for help in curtailing poaching activities. They are asking for people who witness or believe they have knowledge of poaching to contact them quickly and anonymously at 1-800-75ALERT (1-800-752-5378. The quickest way to reach a warden is by calling your nearest state police office so the radio dispatcher can give the information to a warden in the area. Rewards are paid for information leading to arrests.

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