Sara Lepkoff

A place for people with disabilities, and their buddies

Nonprofit leader works to create ‘inclusion center’

Residents may have a new place to gather, thanks to the work of several committed community members.

Julie Tamler, founder of Brattleboro Center for People with Disabilities, a recently established nonprofit, hopes to create what she's calling “an inclusion center,” a safe and accessible environment for all members of the community.

Tamler says she sees the space as a drop-in center for those with and without disabilities to gather, take classes, and host community events.

In the next few months, the group aims to find a steady space, secure grants and build out staff, and collaborate with fellow community members.

Read More

Farmers launch effort to purchase 169-acre tract

Bunker Farm will need to raise $110,00 for farm, education center

A 169-acre plot formerly owned by Dummerston residents Larry and Lynn Cassidy will become the site for Bunker Farm, LLC, through a proposal selected by Vermont Land Trust's Farmland Access program. The property, located on Bunker Road and now owned by the Vermont Land Trust, will be operated by...

Read More

From the lab to the library

Vermont author Rebecca Rupp started out in science, and ended up as an acclaimed childrens’ writer

Author Rebecca Rupp has a doctorate in biochemistry and a passion for the written word. With interests as varied as biology, home-school education, and gardening, she doesn't lack for inspiration. “My problem as a writer is that practically everything interests me,” Rupp told The Commons recently in an interview...

Read More


Forest Moon closes, but its work goes on

Forest Moon of Brattleboro, a nonprofit organization providing therapeutic programs and workshops for cancer survivors and their families since 2004, announced its closure on July 22, citing an inability to keep up with funding demands. Meanwhile, like-minded area nonprofits, such as the New England Center for Circus Arts (NECCA) of Brattleboro, and Cancer Connection ( of Northampton, Mass., have pledged to continue facilitating several of Forest Moon's programs with the help of former Forest Moon staff, volunteers, and partners. Anne...

Read More

Take a zuke, leave a zuke

Residents here have another option for overflow vegetables besides the compost pile. For the second consecutive year, “Save Our Surplus,” an initiative by Transition Towns Dummerston, is setting up self-service collection stands around town for residents to donate or take vegetables. All are encouraged to stop by. The collected produce is free. Non-perishables are also welcome. The stands will be set up each Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through September at the KOA campground on Route 5, across...

Read More

Hands-on learning

Children jostle to share freshly picked blueberries, measure cups of flour, or investigate a written recipe. Two teachers are alongside to help. It may look like a simple cooking activity, but it's really teaching key math and reading skills. It's all part of “Food for Thought,” a week-long day camp funded by the Vermont Humanities Council's “Humanities Camp” program. It was held recently at Brattleboro Area Middle School. As implied by the camp's name, area youth, ages 11-14, went on...

Read More

Rabid grey fox killed in Jamaica

Residents are concerned about a possible rabies outbreak after a grey fox attacked two people at a Jamaica residence last month. According to Selectboard member Andy Coyne, who is also the town health officer, the attack happened on June 29. After being in contact with state veterinarian Robert Johnson, Coyne said he is aware of “who went to the hospital and who was treated.” Greg Eckhardt, a warden with the Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife, said he responded to...

Read More

‘All eyes are on Vermont’

In May, the Vermont House voted 99-42 in favor of what would have been the nation's first GMO labeling bill. H.112 would require labeling products sold within the state that are produced with or contain genetically modified ingredients. The bill exempts labeling animal products regardless of whether animals were fed or treated with GMOs. The Senate version of the bill, S.89, is expected to be taken up in January when the Legislature returns to the Statehouse, and the Vermont Public...

Read More