Shacksbury Cider gets a loan from Vergennes

VERGENNES — The Vergennes City Council on Oct. 23 agreed to lend $50,000 from a city revolving loan fund to Shacksbury Cider, funds city officials said company owners want to use as part of a larger loan package.
That financing package, according to city officials, will help fund expansion of Shacksbury’s production capacity on North Main Street.
Shacksbury has had, since 2016, a lease agreement to rent the wooden-framed north end of the Kennedy Brothers complex. In May Shacksbury struck a deal to rent about 5,700 square feet of the former 14 North Main St. home of Denecker Chevrolet.
Shacksbury has the same landlords for both sites. Their second Vergennes lease deal came after the owners of Kennedy Brothers, Robert and Lillian Feuerstein, contracted to lease for four years, with an option to buy, the former auto dealership.
The Vergennes loan, if all goes smoothly, will come from the Maynard Building Revolving Loan Fund. That money came from a Community Development Block Grant in the 1990s to renovate a Main Street property. Once the loan made from the grant was repaid, the city had the discretion to loan the funds out to enhance its business climate. Former loan recipients include Main Street salon Shear Cuts.
The council placed conditions on the loan, most notably that Shacksbury obtain the other loans in its financing package.
Shacksbury co-founders Colin Davis and David Dolginow said this summer demand for the company’s specialty ciders has grown since they signed their lease to move into Kennedy Brothers two years ago. They are also renovating the second story of Kennedy Brothers’ northern, wood-framed wing to allow expansion of its operations within the North Main Street landmark. In all, they rent almost 6,000 feet in the building.
They also said this summer their company, which they founded in Shoreham, needed more production space to meet that growing demand, and that they could foresee 14 Main St. as a potential site for production.
Andy Kirkaldy may be reached at [email protected].

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