Chamber & 
Community News 




The Brandon Area Chamber of Commerce is pleased to be an exhibitor at the upcoming Businses Show to be held next Tuesday, March 12, at the Holiday Inn in Rutland. The show will be held from 4 - 7:30 pm. The Brandon Chamber has exhibited in Rutland for many years, finding our county-wide neighbors to be a receptive audience for our message. The theme of this year's exhibit is Rediscover Downtown Brandon and we will showcase our many merchants, restaurants, and other downtown friends. If you have a business in the downtown and have not yet sent the Chamber your photos, please don't wait! Contact the Chamber for more info. If you are interested in attending the show, you won't be disappointed. Its great fun, tasty, and always a good idea to learn about our general business community.  






There is still time to register to our cooking classes!


Here is the remaining winter schedule (the Spring schedule will be out soon).


 Monday March 11 - 2:30pm to 5pm:

Vegetable quiche and quiche Lorraine

Broccoli flan with a roasted red bell pepper sauce

Creme caramel with orange sauce


Thursday March 14 - 5:30pm - 8pm - Cooking class/dinner: 

Baked seafood bisque in Carta falta

Filet of Scrod with crispy potatoes and lentil stew

Crepe suzette and orange caramel sauce


Monday March 18 - 5:30pm to 8pm

Broccoli salad with honey mustard dressing

Cafe Provence seafood stew with saffron risotto

Grand Marnier Souffle


Monday March 18 - 2:30pm to 5pm

Baking/pastry class at Gourmet Provence:


Chocolate bomb

Decorate mini cupcakes for Easter

Pecan cranberry currant bread  



Monday April 8 - 5:30pm to 8pm

Blue cheese souffle

Stuffed pork tenderloin with spicy stuffing and Dijon mustard sauce

Floating island with vanilla creme Anglaise


Monday April 15 - 2:30pm to 5pm

Minestrone soup w/ andouille sausage

Corn chowder w/ sweet potato puree

Lobster bisque with saffron aioli


Thursday April 18 - 5:30pm to 8pm

Thai food w/ Chef Tondao Toner:  Dinner/cooking class  $60 - Menu to follow


Monday April 22 - 5:30pm to 8pm

Corn chowder w/ sweet potato puree - Baked barley risotto w/ spring vegetables in filo, basil pesto sauce - Raspberry mousse in chocolate cup, raspberry coulis


Monday May 6 - 5:30pm to 8pm: PIZZAS!


Call 802-247-9997 for more information or for reservations






The McKernon Group Receives HBRA Award for Commercial Renovation


The McKernon Group of Brandon Vermont was recently named first place in the category of "Commercial Renovation" by the Home Builders and Remodelers Association of Southern Vermont. Known locally and state-wide for their residential and light commercial projects, they were honored at the annual February awards banquet for their renovation work at the Lake Placid Pub and Brewery in Lake Placid New York.


A popular spot located in the Adirondacks, this growing company chose to upgrade and renovate, giving their building a face-lift and maximizing the restaurant and brewery space. Once an old hospital, it was sandwiched into limited space.


The tower in front has been raised one full floor and gives staircase access to the second level of the restaurant. The antique stained glass window was removed and installed in a new frame. The rear of the building that housed the brewery and old apartments was torn down and in its place is a new foundation, the commercial kitchen, brewing space, a cold room and an elevator. On the second floor is additional seating for the restaurant.  


Taking 8 months to complete, this was accomplished in snow country with exceptionally cold weather. McKernon Project Manager, Rob Ekstrom, reported that the Pub and Brewery was able to carry on their business with few interruptions during the construction process. The building is now handicap accessible and with the use of spray foam insulation, they have cut their heating bills.


The project was evaluated for its construction practices, craftsmanship, energy saving design and materials.




ServSafeŽ Manager Certification Classes includes Examination

One Day, Multiple Days, Evenings or Weekends Sessions


Foodhandlers Certificate of Achievement classes

Three hour sessions Morning or Afternoons

Training to Excel

Norm Milot

Certified ServSafeŽ Instructor and Proctor

Call 802.247.0098







2013 SUMMER CSA: It's CSA time, folks! We're now accepting memberships for our Summer CSA. Different from most CSA programs out there in that you purchase credit at our farm stand and use it as you like throughout the season on anything you want, including plants! NO BOXED SHARES. And to make it easier this year, you can pay via Paypal! Sign up by March 31st and get free pick-your-own strawberry time in our fields. Check it out and spread the word---anyone can become a member.






The Brandon Town Players are pleased to announce the formation of The Brandon Youth Theater for students in grades 4 through 8 . Our first production, "Live A Little At The Hollywood Hoedown ", will take place in the Brandon Town Hall on June 7th, 8th & 9th . This will be the first student production in the Town Hall in over 30 years. Director Dennis Marden and Assistant Kathy Mathis have many years of experience with Community Theater and student productions. Music Director Julia Varian, the music teacher at Neshobe, and accompianist Kristen Carr-Perlow are also veteran theater performers. Auditions will be held at the Neshobe School on Thursday, March 7th at 6:30 pm, Saturday, March, 9th at 10:00 am and Sunday, March 10th at 1:00 pm. We are looking for approximately 40-50 students with speaking roles for everyone, chorus members and a number of solos. Major roles include a singing trio, a Rock Star, a gangster, talent agent, valley girl, an engineer, a mountain girl and a mountain witch. There are also many minor roles and 7 chorus numbers. Students will be asked to sing in a group format and if they want to be considered for a major role they will have to sing by themselves. They will also have the opportunity to read from a script and show off their talents for the two dance numbers. We will provide the scripts for the reading and will teach everyone the song at the auditions. Parents/guardians MUST attend the auditions with their children so we can get the required signatures. We will also provide a rehearsal schedule and will ask students to write down any conflicts. Unfortunately our rehearsal schedule is set according to the availablity of the Directors and rehearsal space and difficult choices might have to be made. The majority of rehearsals will be on Wednesday's ( 4:00-6:00 pm), Thursday's (6:00-8:00 pm) and Sunday's (4:00-6:00 pm). All rehearsals will be held at the Neshobe School, the Brandon Senior Center or the Brandon Town Hall. These are open auditions for all students in Rutland and Addison County. For more information call Dennis at 247-5420 or e-mail at Thanks, Dennis W. Marden





Thanks to Jackson Whelan, web designer, the Brandon Chamber website has been undergoing an overhaul.  Please note there are still corrections needed, photographs being worked on, and some organization being re-arranged.


We are ready for our members to send us your info. We have a page for each and every member and can add photos (up to 4 each) and a descriptive paragraph. Take some time and look through the entire website or cut right to our Members page. Send your corrections, photos and blurb to:






The Brandon Area Chamber of Commerce is pleased to announce it is now accepting scholarship application forms from graduating OVUHS students pursuing a course of study in business or business-related major. The Chamber Scholarship will be presented to a student who is well-rounded, has participated in school and outside activities, who is pursuing higher education, and is planning on a career in business or aspires to be entrepreneurial. Interested students should contact the Guidance Office for applications. The deadline for applying is Wednesday, May 1, 2013. For more information, you may also call the Chamber at 247-6401.




Please join BIDCC and Friends this Friday night, March 8, from 4 - 7 pm, at the Congregational Church's Fellowship Hall for a delicious Spaghetti Supper. Reasonably priced and benefits a great cause -- the Parade and Fireworks we all love!


An Evening of Otter Nonsense 
March 29 
Save The Date 




Were you ever a "Flower Girl" in the Brandon Memorial Day Parade? One of the first grade girls from the Seminary Hill or Neshobe School wearing a white dress, who marched in the parade and laid flowers at the Civil War Monument? Its been a Brandon tradition for more than 100 years! Looking for girls and women for a Flower Girl Reunion Marching Unit in this year's Independence Day Parade (July 6). Contact Ellen Knapp at Neshobe School if you 247-3721 if you want to march!

March 18, 2013 from 2:30-4:30 p.m.

Organized by The Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing

Hear the latest from the Vermont Tourism Team and learn:

  • The value of the tourism industry to Vermont's economy and how you can support tourism initiatives
  • New tourism research, and trends to be part of
  • Statewide tourism organizations (from mountain biking to inns and weddings) that you can partner with to grow your base
  • VDTM's multi-platform print and media marketing efforts, and tips for incorporating best practices and VDTM successes into your marketing efforts
  • VDTM's media relations, social media and communications, and tips for incorporating best practices and VDTM successes into your marketing efforts
  • Opportunities to be included in the State's national and international sales missions
  • Cultural Heritage Tourism and why now is a better time than ever for this tourism sector, and how you can be involved
  • and the Vermont Travel Planner - getting the most out of this free tourism engine

Bonus: All participants will be entered to win one of four free entries to the 30th annual Vermont Travel Industry Conference (VTIC), valued at $200, at the Stoweflake Resort on April 3-4, 2013.





The Middlebury Arts Walk is now in its fifth season. Stores will remain open, becoming galleries displaying the work of dozens of artists. Art will turn up in restaurants, on the town green, and in other exciting and unlikely places. Typically more than 30 venues participate every month. Middlebury Arts Walk is a regular event in downtown Middlebury held during the months of May through October, always on the second Friday of every month.


The steering committee is seeking artists to display their artwork or perform during one of the six Arts Walk dates. A representative from the committee will help determine what the best venue is for your artwork or performance depending on its size, media and display or performance space available at the venue. There is no cost to the artist to participate. It's up to the artist to contact the venue and discuss the logistical arrangements.


You must be available to deliver and set up your artwork at the venue. It is desirable if you can attend that night's event to discuss your art with attendees. Artwork can be left hanging for the remainder of the month (until the next Arts Walk) or it can be one night only. A month-long display is desirable as it gives your work more exposure and allows customers to see art all month long-not just the event date. Those are logistics you need to work out with the venue owner/manager.


The Arts Walk committee promotes Friday night events in the local newspaper (Addison Independent), calendar listings in area publications, radio interviews, webpage ( and Facebook. A brochure is printed prior to each month's Arts Walk listing every participating venue, artist or performer and a brief description of their art.


If you are interested in participating in the 2013 Arts Walk season, please email us at info(at) or call 802-388-7951 x2.




Treasures from the Sheldon exhibit opens at Sheldon Museum


As you may know, the Sheldon Museum in Middlebury is the oldest community history museum in the country.  What you may not know is that the museum's collection is much greater than what you may see on any given visit.  The staff of the Sheldon is pleased to present a spring exhibit representing a sampling of the historic, sensational, unusual, and some provocative, works from the Museum's collection and archives. The exhibit opens on March 9, 2013.


Unique to the exhibit is an early 19th century adult cradle and documents about its Weybridge spinster owners, Misses Charity Bryant (1777-1851) and Sylvia Drake (1784-1868).  Miss Bryant was the aunt of poet, editor, and abolitionist William Cullen Bryant.  Reports indicate that every day after the noon dinner Charity would lie down in the cradle and Sylvia would rock her to sleep so that she could have her afternoon siesta while Sylvia did the housework.  The two are the subjects of a 2012 article by feminist author Rachel Hop Cleves of Canada's University of Victoria ""Miss Bryant Was the Man: A Female Husband in the Early American Republic."


One of the more sculptural, signature pieces on view is a  an 1877 patented  Penny-farthing, high wheel  bicycle by the Pope Manufacturing Company of Hartford, CT, known as "Expert" model with a 52" front wheel.  Rare today, these bikes were so popular in their time that they were termed "ordinaries."   


Of special interest to Vermonters and art enthusiasts is an oil painting, circa 1870, of the former Lake Dunmore Hotel by J. Cady of Brandon, along with two of his period photographs, one of the nearby Falls of Lana and another of a stage coach with passengers departing the Brandon train station destined for the lakeside hotel. The painting is accompanied by archival documents tracing the history of the hotel and its owners, along with a biography of the artist J. Cady.  The hotel later burned, situated on land now owned by the Keewaydin Camps.


That's not all!  Also on view are a distinguished small early 19th century portrait of  Loyal Case with archival diary and family genealogy,  an antique, two-man,  large, wood and iron toothless marble saw, circa 1800, used by Middlebury marble merchants Theodatus Phelps and Charles A. Landon with documentation,  and recently acquired crazy quilt incorporating a political advertisement featuring Vermonter Chester A. Arthur as the successful U.S. Vice Presidential candidate, and a newly gifted historic revolutionary era powder horn.  And for those of you who have fond memories of the notorious yet celebrated 120-year-old Cornwall stuffed cat,  this is your chance to pay him a visit! 


In conjunction with the exhibit, Executive Director Bill Brooks will lead Wednesday gallery talks at noon on March 20, 27 and April 3, 10 and 17.  The tours are included with regular Museum admission; free for museum members.


The exhibit will be on view through April 20, 2013.  The Henry Sheldon Museum is located at 1 Park Street in downtown Middlebury across from the Ilsley Library.  Museum hours: Tues.-Sat. 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Research Center hours: Thurs. and Fri. 1-5 p.m. or by appointment.  Admission to the Museum is $5 Adults; $3 Youth (6-18); $4.50 Seniors; $12 Family; $5 Research Center. For more information call 802/388-2117 or visit our website:





The Brandon Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors will next meet on Monday, March 18, 2013 at 6:30 pm in the Cliver Room at the Stephen A Douglas Birthplace.

Brandon Area Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 267, Brandon, VT 05733
802-247-6401 ~   ~