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Nancy Heydinger, left, and Fred Ross of Vernon, both members of the Red Clover Rovers running club, stand near the finish line of this year’s rainy Boston Marathon.


Local runners brave elements in Boston Marathon

April 16 was one of the worst weather days in the 122 year history of the Boston Marathon — rainy, windy, and bitterly cold. Despite temperatures in the mid-30s, slightly more than 95 percent of the people who started the race finished.

“It tells you about the people that are passionate about this race and determined to run under any condition and finish,” race director Dave McGillivray said in his post-race news conference on April 17.

There were 27,042 runners who started the race, and 25,822 finished. Only 2,795 runners needed medical treatment, and only 91 needed hospitalization.

While many of the top runners from Kenya and Ethiopia decided to quit to live and race another day, the American runners hung in there to take six of the top 10 spots in the men’s race, and seven of the top 10 spots in the women’s race, including Desiree Linden, the first U.S. women’s winner in more than three decades.

There were 10 runners from southeast Vermont who can say they survived the 2018 Boston Marathon.

Hope Phelan, 29, of West Halifax, was the fastest local female in 3 hours, 18 minutes, and 43 seconds. Tim Copeland, 48, of Brattleboro, running for the United Way of Windham County, was the fastest local male in 3:35:49.

Other area runners who finished included Crystal Morey, 41, of Bellows Falls (3:41:56); Megan Paugh, 39, of Brattleboro (3:44:58); Donna Smyth, 58, of Vernon (3:52:56); Lois Sparks, 59, of Vernon (4:12:25); Maxine Stent, 54, of Brattleboro (4:15:42); Nancy Heydinger, 57, of Vernon (4:18:51); Jan Rancatti of Readsboro (4:30:32); and Fred Ross, 71, of Vernon (4:34:08).

Smyth, Ross, Heydinger, Paugh, Sparks, and Stent are all members of the Red Clover Rovers, the local running club that has done so much to keep the sport alive in Windham County.

Conditions were equally awful for the wheelchair and hand-cycle racers, but one local competitor did well. Alicia Dana, 49, of Putney, finished first in the women’s division and was fourth-fastest overall in the hand-cycle race in 1:40:22.


• The Brattleboro boys were feeling pretty good about themselves after a 13-1 beatdown of Monson, Mass., on April 11. But the three-game win streak that opened the Colonels’ season ended with a 15-2 rout at the hands of Burr & Burton on April 13.

In the Monson game, Charles Burroughs and Calvin Stebbins each scored three goals for the Colonels. Durin Hoyer and Ryan Tyler both added two goals apiece. Against Burr & Burton, Tyler and Elliott Bauer were the only goal scorers.

• The Brattleboro girls finished off Woodstock, 16-9, on April 12. Liz Day (five goals), Tobin Lonergan (four goals), Meg Ayotte (four goals and three assists), and Sam Cragin (three goals) filled up the stat sheet for the Colonels.

On April 18, Brattleboro defeated Northampton, Mass., 11-10 in overtime. It was the first time the Colonel girls had ever beaten a Northampton lacrosse team.

Liv Romo got the game-winner in OT when she intercepted a clearing pass, outraced a defender, and buried her shot. Ayotte and Lonergan each scored three goals, while Day and Cragin each scored two goals for the 4-0 Colonel girls.


• Leland & Gray opened the season with a 15-7 road win over Springfield on April 13. Patrick McDonald had two hits, drew three walks, and drove in three runs to lead the Rebels, while Christian Thomsen added two hits and a pair of RBIs.

Luc DuGrenier and Thomsen split the pitching duties for the 1-0 Rebels.

• After nearly two weeks of inactivity due to rain-outs, snow-outs, and spring vacation, Brattleboro finally played its second game of the season on April 21 and pulled out a 9-8 win over St. Johnsbury at Tenney Field.

A two-run single in the bottom of the eighth inning by Kam Pelkey was the game-winning hit for the 2-0 Colonels. Leif Bigelow went 3-for-3, Kris Carroll had two hits and three RBIs, and Dan Petrie had two hits and drove in two runs. Ben Nelson-Betz earned the win in relief for Brattleboro.


• The Brattleboro softball team also faced a two-week layoff, but showed no signs of rust with a 16-2 win over St. Johnsbury on April 21 at Sawyer Field.

Hailey Derosia went 3-for-3, including a homer, and drove in three runs to lead the Colonels’ 10-hit attack. Mariah Powers and Lauren McKenney each had two hits, while Jamie Mahoney, Kathryn Wocell and Mya McAuliffe all had one hit. McKenney and Wocell both drove in two runs.

Derosia also pitched her first complete varsity game, going the full seven innings. She gave up six hits with nine strikeouts and five walks as the Colonels improved to 2-0.

Senior bowling roundup

• The top of the standings are getting bunched up with one week to go in the fall-winter season of the Brattleboro Senior Bowling League, Team 10 (48-27) is still in first place, but an 0-5 week opened the door for Team 2 and Team 4, now tied for second at 45-30 and just three games behind.

Team 5 and Team 8 (both 44-31) are now tied for third, followed by Team 7 and Team 3 (both 40-35), Team 6 (35.5-39.5), Team 9 (35-40), Team 1 (32.5-42.5), and Team 11 (27-43).

Doris Lake had the women’s high handicap game (235), while Nancy Daizell had the high handicap series (682). Warren Corriveau Sr. had the men’s high handicap game (256) and series (683). Team 3 had the high team handicap game (909), while Team 4 had the high handicap series (2,551).

In scratch scoring, Corriveau (656), Robert Rigby (653), and Marty Adams (607) all had a 600-plus series. Corriveau had a 225 and 247 game, while Rigby had a 208 and 248, and Adams had a 204 and 208.

Daizell (517) was the lone woman with a 500-plus series. Men in the 500 club included Wayne Randall (530), Peter Cross (507), Gary Montgomery (560), Jerry Dunham (573), Richard Dowley (516), and Fred Ashworth (511).

It’s still mud season on the the trails

• A rough winter, followed by a wet early spring, has left hiking trails around Vermont vulnerable to erosion. The Green Mountain Club (GMC) is reminding trail users to stay off the trails, particularly those at higher elevations, until things dry out.

Snowmelt and rain causes trails to remain wet, muddy, and prone to erosion, according to the GMC, and hikers walking on saturated soils or on the sides of trails cause damage to surrounding vegetation, widen trails, and inhibit natural drainage.

Fixing the damage caused by hikers and mountain bikers on muddy trails usually means the GMC and the state Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation have fewer resources to devote to other major projects on Vermont’s trails.

That’s why the GMC recommends that, until the end of May, you should consider hiking on south facing slopes and lower elevations where the sun can dry out the trails sooner.

Dry trails at lower elevations, dirt roads, and recreation paths provide excellent opportunities for spring outdoor activities. A weekly trail update with the latest conditions and a list of alternative hikes will be posted on the Vermont State Parks website at

Go take a hike!

• The Manchester Section of the Green Mountain Club, plans three hikes along the West River this spring.

The hikes will be held on Sundays starting at 1 p.m. On April 29, Hamilton Falls is the destination. A May 6 hike will go to Angel Falls, and the series concludes on May 13 with a hike to the Winhall Campground.

These are moderate hikes of from 5 to 7 miles, with a lot of each hike on flat, wide trails that follow the former West River Railroad track bed that winds alongside the river. For more information and to RSVP, contact Joe Ninesling at 802-289-2801 or

Annual Tulip Trot set for May 5

• The sixth annual Green Street School Tulip Trot 5K Run/Walk and half-mile Sprout Run will be held, rain or shine, on Saturday, May 5, at 10 a.m.

Last year, more than 300 participants enjoyed this family-friendly run and fitness walk that starts and ends at Green Street School in Brattleboro.

The route covers 3.1 miles of road and wooded trails that wind through neighborhood streets before entering the scenic Retreat Trails at the base of the Harris Hill ski jump. Younger children can enjoy a half-mile “Sprout” fun-run around the school’s campus.

If you choose not to run or walk, you are encouraged to cheer on the runners (no dogs, please). After the race, runners and spectators can enjoy music and refreshments.

The 5K event is run by the Green Street School Parent-Teacher organization, and is the culminating event to an eight-week long running and fitness program designed to promote healthy habits and encourage kids to get out, exercise and maintain a fun and healthy fitness routine.

All proceeds go directly to the school’s Winter Sports program and other PTO enrichment programs. To register, donate, volunteer, or be a race sponsor, call 802-254-3737 or visit

Saxtons River Rec to hold fishing derby

• The Saxtons River Recreation Area will hold its annual fishing derby on Saturday, May 5 at the derby pond 1.3 miles north of the rec area on Pleasant Valley Road.

Registration begins at 8 a.m., with fish hooks in the water at 8:30 a.m.

The derby is open to youth four to 14 years old, with prizes donated by J & H Hardware in different age categories. Registration is free, but donations are appreciated.

A 50/50 raffle and bake sale will be held to raise funds for the Rec. Anyone who can volunteer or donate baked goods is asked to contact Samantha Fletcher at 802-869-1407 or

Go paddling with the BOC

• The Brattleboro Outing Club is again sponsoring paddle trips this season, starting Sunday, April 29, in the Hinsdale, N.H., setbacks, a major birding area along the Connecticut River. Meet at 11 a.m. in the Wal-Mart parking lot off Route 119 in Hinsdale, N.H.

Trips planned for May include Lowell Lake in Londonderry on May 13 and a Putney to Brattleboro paddle down the Connecticut River on May 16.

These paddle trips are free and open to the public; just show up with your boat. Lifejackets are required.

Details of each trip, including meeting time and location, are at (click on Summer Paddling); or email

Walk/run for clean water in Chester

• Walk, run, or push a stroller at the World Vision Global 6K for Water on May 19 in Chester host site. Each registration will provide lasting clean water to a family in need.

Why is this a 6K race, instead of the typical 5K? Six kilometers (approximately 3.7 miles) is the average distance people — usually women and girls — walk to fetch water for their families and homes in the developing world. Often, the walk is dangerous, children miss school, and the water is dirty.

Each day, nearly 1,000 children die due to lack of clean water and sanitation.

Every registration in the Global 6K for Water provides clean water to one person. Clean water frees children from deadly diseases, liberates women and children from a life spent gathering dirty water, and opens the door to education, a promising future, and a full life.

World Vision (a non-profit organization) is the largest non-governmental provider of clean water in the developing world, and in 2017 provided access to clean water to 3.2 million people.

This is a kid-friendly walk/run and is a not officially timed; you are encouraged to time yourself with an app or stopwatch The event will be held at 9 a.m. at Chester Baptist Church, opposite “the green” on Main Street in downtown Chester. You are encouraged to arrive early to park and get ready before the start.

To register or find out more about the Global 6K for Water, go to During the registration process use the Join a Team option to join the Chester VT Area 6K for Water team. Alternatively, find the event on FaceBook (Chester VT Area 6K for Water) and use the Ticket link to go to the team page and register from there.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #456 (Wednesday, April 25, 2018). This story appeared on page D1.

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