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A matter of choice

At 94 and in failing health, Don Hazelton felt it was time to die. Vermont state law gave him the option to do so on his own terms.

Don Hazelton's mind was in fine working order. But his body was failing him.

"I'm not happy with what is going on inside my body," said Hazelton early in March, a couple months shy of his 94th birthday.

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Brattleboro resident crowned Miss Vermont

BRATTLEBORO-Just a few days after she turned 24, Meara Seery of Brattleboro has been crowned Miss Vermont. "It is really special to feel all the support coming from all over the country," Seery said after her win, adding that friends all around the country watched the pageant unfold via livestream and her family was there in person. "It almost felt overwhelming how much love and support I've been receiving in the last few days," she continued. "My heartfelt thanks for...

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BFUHS will turn focus on student mental health

BELLOWS FALLS-This month, Bellows Falls Union High School will begin a partnership with the Jed Foundation, a national nonprofit, for a three-year program aimed at improving and safeguarding the emotional and mental health of students and preventing teen and young adult suicide. The Jed Foundation was established by Phil and Donna Satow following the death of their youngest son, Jed, by suicide in 1998, when he was in college. BFUHS and the Jed Foundation will collaborate on implementing a comprehensive...

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A lifetime helping animals

DUMMERSTON-Clyde Johnson, best known as a veterinarian who retired from the Vermont–New Hampshire Veterinary Clinic, says that, although he was born in Pennsylvania, he came into the world mysteriously as a Vermonter. When asked how he came to live in the state, he shows his understated sense of humor by responding in sensible Vermont fashion. "In a car," he says. The Dummerston Historical Society has invited Johnson to speak on Sunday, April 21, at 2 p.m. about his years practicing...

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What’s next for beer in Brattleboro?

BRATTLEBORO-When I wrote in the Dec. 10, 2014, edition of The Commons that "Brattleboro, Vermont, now has three operating breweries," it was with an excitement that bordered on effusive. The then-recent opening of Hermit Thrush Brewery on High Street really put the town on an enviable map of craft beer brewing locations. Three breweries in a relatively small town? What could be better? Now there are none. Luckily, this is true only for the moment. The Whetstone Beer Company was...

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Forum to discuss multiple dimensions of homelessness in Vt.

BRATTLEBORO-The Commons invites the community to a panel discussion about Vermont's homelessness crisis and how it affects us all. Systemic problems (like lack of affordable housing, low wages, and cost of labor) and personal circumstances (like life-altering events) can cause anyone to become homeless. The discussion will center around a better understanding of what it means to be unhoused and how as a community we can come together to make change. The event, part of the newspaper's Voices Live! forum...

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Spring water main flushing begins April 19

BRATTLEBORO-Friday, April 19 - Night: Marlboro Road area and Western Avenue from the Chelsea Royal Diner on Marlboro Road to Melrose Street and Stockwell Drive. Water will be off for several hours on Carriage Hill, Yorkshire Circle, and Hampshire Circle. Saturday, April 20 - Night: Western Avenue from Edward Heights to I-91. Water will be off for several hours on Signal Hill, Hillcrest Terrace, Carriage Hill, Hampshire Circle, Yorkshire Circle, Greenleaf Street, Country Hill, Green Meadow, South Street, Thayer Ridge,

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Joy factory

BRATTLEBORO-In 1999, when her daughters were young, Nancy Heydinger says she "wanted to find a way to ensure that they would grow up loving themselves, feeling complete." "I wanted them to celebrate and embrace their natural gifts, to know that what they communicated was of value, and to believe that they could make an important impact in their communities and in our world," the Vernon resident told The Commons. So Heydinger looked at opportunities for her daughters and found that...

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‘Nobody needs a 7,000 square foot house anymore’

BRATTLEBORO-A state pandemic-era program aimed at encouraging "mom-and-pop landlords" to create affordable housing is set to launch a second round of grant funding this spring. With millions of dollars to be awarded statewide, the Vermont Housing Improvement Program (VHIP) provides these local housing developers up to $50,000 per unit for the rehabilitation and construction of rental apartments. VHIP was launched in 2022 to address the state's declining quality of rental units and to provide suitable housing for Vermonters experiencing homelessness.

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