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Help available for utility customers to pay their bills

COLCHESTER — If you’ve fallen behind on your utility bills, a new state grant program can help get you back on track. Many Vermonters are facing financial hardships due to the COVID-19 economic slowdown and have growing balances.

Green Mountain Power customers can qualify for this new free funding, available only until Nov. 20.

The Vermont Department of Public Service runs the Vermont COVID-19 Arrearage Assistance Program, which can help you pay in full utility bills that are more than 60 days overdue.

The program is funded with money from the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund, and it can help pay balances for telephone, water, electric, and natural gas service.

The Legislature approved $8 million for the program. Grants are awarded on a first-come-first-served basis.

You can get started on your application by visiting or by contacting the Vermont Department of Public Service at 800-622-4496 or

Evening Star Grange chicken pie supper on Sept. 19

DUMMERSTON — Evening Star Grange in Dummerston Center will be doing a “take-out only” version of its chicken pie supper on Saturday, Sept. 19, with pick-up times between 4:30 and 6 p.m.

Reservations are requested for the $10 dinner, whose menu will include old-fashioned chicken pie, mashed potatoes and gravy, corn pudding, Harvard beets, and apple crisp.

Call the Grange at 802-254-1138 and leave your name, phone number, and the number of meals you would like.

Please wear a mask and practice social distancing outside while waiting.

Proceeds benefit the Grange heat fund.

Family Center plans online raffle

CHESTER — A raffle to benefit the Chester-Andover Family Center will feature a set of handcrafted knitting needles from Tom and Linda Diak at DyakCraft.

Tom Diak’s award-winning knitting needles and fiber art tools were voted Best Knitting Needles by the knitting community at the former web portal and awarded top honors from the Crochet Guild of America.

Hand crafted in Chester, the hooks and needles are in demand by knitters and crochet enthusiasts worldwide.

The raffle will take place over three days beginning Sunday, Sept. 20 at 12:01 a.m. and ending on Tuesday, Sept. 22 at 11:59 p.m.. You can enter the raffle at

Visit for a description of the prize, valued at $700.

Proceeds will support the purchase and installation of a generator.

Voter registration day at the Co-op

BRATTLEBORO — On Tuesday, Sept. 22, National Voter Registration Day will feature a massive cross-country effort to register voters in advance of Election Day on Tuesday, Nov. 3.

According to, National Voter Registration Day is “a nonpartisan civic holiday celebrating our democracy.” Since its first observation in 2012, nearly 3 million voters have registered to vote on the holiday, celebrated on the fourth Tuesday of September.

National Voter Registration Day has been endorsed by the National Association of Secretaries of State, the National Association of State Election Directors, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, and the National Association of Election Officials.

Thousands of national, state, and local organizations and volunteers will be the driving force behind National Voter Registration Day 2020. Partner organizations will coordinate hundreds of National Voter Registration Day events online and offline nationwide, and leverage #NationalVoterRegistrationDay in all social media platforms to drive attention to voter registration.

Brattleboro Food Co-op is a National Voter Registration Day partner and will have a voter registration table near its entryway that day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For information, contact Jon Megas-Russell at 802-246-2813 or

UVM Extension offers online nutrition guidance

BRATTLEBORO — “Eat Smart Move More” is a free online nutrition course with personal sessions with a UVM Extension nutrition educator.

This certificate course comes with a nutrition reference book to support you and your family in being healthier and more food secure with practical shopping, cooking, fitness, and wellness strategies.

The course is free to any Windham County resident at least 17 years old. Contact Windham County Nutrition Educator Bonny White at to reserve your spot, or visit for more information.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #579 (Wednesday, September 16, 2020). This story appeared on page A6.

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