Business briefs

Local real estate agents honored

BRATTLEBORO - Better Homes & Gardens The Masiello Group recently held its Annual Awards Reception for 2015 at Labelle Winery in Amherst, N.H. The top real estate agents from all of Masiello's 32 offices throughout Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Maine were recognized for their exceptional service representing buyers and sellers this past year.

Two agents in the Brattleboro office were among those receiving top honors.

Out of more than 600 agents company-wide, Darlene Conca received the President's Circle Award for $6,385,694 in sales volume and 36 closed transactions, and Chris Long received The President's Circle Award for $4,740,000 in sales volume and 19 closed transactions.

Conca also achieved the honor of No. 1 Agent for dollar volume and No. 1 Agent for closed transactions, while Long received the honor of No. 2 Agent for dollar volume in the Brattleboro office for 2015.

Better Homes & Gardens The Masiello Group is the largest real estate company in Northern New England with more than 7,000 closed transactions in 2015 resulting in more than $1.3 billion in sales volume company-wide. To contact the agents in the Brattleboro office, stop in at 218 Main St., or call 802-257-1111.

Four Columns expands hours after loss of Newfane Creamery

NEWFANE- The Four Columns Inn at 21 West St. has expanded its restaurant hours to cover lunchtime, a decision that Asher Schlusselberg, the inn's guest experience manager, hopes will help the town adjust to the loss of another local eatery and gathering place.

The Newfane Creamery, on Route 30, burned down in early March, a great loss for the community both as an eatery and as a place for familiar faces. “The residents of our neighborhood need a place to meet and eat, and we are really happy to provide that place,” Schlusselberg says.

Current owner Charles Mallory reopened the inn last summer. It had been closed since 2013.

Mallory's company, the Greenwich Hospitality Group of Greenwich, Conn., purchased the inn - one of a number of historic hospitality venues the company owns - with an eye to preserving its history while revitalizing it as a modern Vermont country inn. The inn's art all comes from local artists, and its restaurant - which uses locally produced food - has been made more laid-back and accessible, Schlusselberg says.

Live music on Wednesday nights includes performances from Donald Saaf's Bluebird Orchestra and jazz guitarist Draa Hobbs.

Schlusselberg says the inn seeks to be both a centerpiece for the community and, for tourists, “a billboard for southern Vermont.”

Martial arts enterprise changes hands

BRATTLEBORO- The Brattleboro School of Budo has changed hands after 20 years, with the owner, Patrick Donahue, citing personal reasons for the transition.

Matthew Butler, who runs White Crane Martial Arts, assumed ownership in February, according to his website,

The school offers instruction in traditional Okinawan karate and kobudo (weapons) as well as Japanese aiki budo (aikido, ju jutsu, etc.) in what the website describes as a “very welcoming, family-based atmosphere.”

“Matthew has been training with me in martial arts for approximately 17 years,” Donahue said.

Butler has trained in Okinawa and has taught martial arts at a number of area schools and colleges. He also practices massage therapy.

For more information, call 802-251-5108 or email Butler at [email protected].

Employers sought for River Valley Job Fair

SPRINGFIELD, Vt.-Employers with open positions are encouraged to join the 2016 River Valley Employment Fair on Wednesday, April 27, from 2 to 5 p.m., at the Riverside Middle School, 13 Fairground Rd.

The event is aimed at connecting local job seekers with seasonal and permanent jobs in the area and to showcase resources and training programs that will help job seekers obtain employment.

This year marks the fair's fifth anniversary. Each year, the number of vendors and job seekers has grown; last year, more than 40 employers and 200 job seekers attended.

Tables are still available to employers in the region. Contact Employment Fair coordinator Suzanne Groenewold at 802-885-8310 or at [email protected] to register. You can also visit the Employment Fair link on and download the registration form. There is no fee for job seekers to participate in the fair.

The fair is a joint effort between the River Valley Workforce Investment Board (WIB), the Vermont Department of Labor, Creative Workforce Solutions, Springfield Regional Development Corporation, Springfield Medical Care Systems, and the River Valley Technical Center.

The WIB serves the towns of Andover, Baltimore, Cavendish, Chester, Grafton, Landgrove, Londonderry, Ludlow, Plymouth, Reading, Rockingham, Springfield, Weathersfield, West Windsor, Weston, Windsor, Windham, and surrounding communities.

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