Birds, Bees, and Butterflies: Creating their Home at Stonehurst

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After this long, harsh Vermont winter–the small joys of springtime, like gardening, are cherished. Nina has been outside all morning planting Cosmos for our butterfly garden. Cosmos are annuals that are known for their showy, colorful flowers. They are treasures to look at but we adore them for another reason, because they attract birds, bees, and butterflies. We are trying to create a natural landscape that is both beautiful and wildlife friendly, as our showroom sits on more than one hundred acres of woodland and meadow; Land that many species call home.

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Liz, our company green thumb, wanted in on some of the planting and came down to assist Nina. While most of the time Liz is on the phone or computer chatting with our customers, there are some days where we just have to make time to get out in the radiant Vermont sunshine. Today is one of those days. Fotor0610132621

While the garden is just getting started, there is still a lot of beauty to be seen at Stonehurst. We’d love to invite you to visit our charming country showroom where the forest serves as the backdrop to some of Vermont’s finest natural wood furniture.

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See you soon! 🙂

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Stonehurst Renovations: Making Space for Guests, Butterflies, and Sunflowers Pt 1!

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One of my favorite things to do around Stonehurst is to find interesting spots & perspectives. When you allow yourself to slow down a bit and really take in your surroundings, it’s easy to find beautiful scenes in unexpected places. I liked this view of our little Polywood circle & firepit!

The Green Team is hard at work clearing space to make a sunflower garden and a butterfly garden behind our showroom. With all of this land, we want to make it as beautiful and as inhabitable as possible for our friends in the forest. 

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Here is Dennis being extra careful to make sure no critters are injured in the making of this garden!
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Nina, our photographer extraordinaire, jumped at the opportunity to get outside and rake the weeds… Any excuse to get outside in this beautiful Vermont weather, right? 🙂
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Landscaping…more fun than it looks!

To make Stonehurst more visitor friendly, we’re also making new paths for hiking & walking around the property. Our Stonehurst renovations will provide a more pleasing experience for our guests who want to see more than just the inside of the showroom.

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We’d love for you to stop by and visit us. The back of the building is a work in progress, but it’s still as beautiful as ever! See our exquisite Vermont handcrafted furniture and explore the lush woodlands right in our backyard.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Memories of Pine Top, Southern Vermont’s Lost Ski Area

Last updated on March 12th, 2014 at 09:22 am

For all you Pine Top alumni out there, here is a fun email I received from Sally Byrnes Magin who shares her memories of skiing here in the 1950s:

Pine Top Ski Area | Memories from Sally
Memories of Pine Top from Sally Byrnes Magin:  I love the pictures of the ladies sitting on the front porch and the one of Laddie, Elsie and Romey’s dog.

Dear Peggy,

By chance, when googling “Pine Top” for sentimental reasons, I came across the Vermont Woods Studios and Stonehurst website.  After spending many winter vacations as a child at Pine Top, I was so excited to see that you are keeping the memories alive!  My family and our friends, from northern NJ, spent almost every President’s Week in February (from about 1950 until 1958) at Pine Top, learning to ski and having a wonderful time together. In fact, one of the trails that led from the top of the “Tobey” rope tow was named “Stoddard Run” after our friends the Stoddard family.

Eventually, as our skiing skills improved, we branched out to other Vermont ski areas. It was a magical time spent with Elsie and Romey (Racine), Laddie their dog, the kitchen staff, and the local ski instructors at Pine Top.  Our group took over the entire house for a week, and expanded into the “new annex” when it was built.

Some memories that I have of Pine Top are: skiing down the Pelley and Tobey slopes, struggling with those rope tows, the Tiny Tot hill, eating “sugar on snow” in the old warming hut, being excited when the “new” warning hut was built, visiting the farm and cows up the road, the bell that signaled breakfast and dinner, playing board games in front of the fireplace at night, going into Brattleboro to see ski jumping competitions, and how cold the rooms upstairs were in the mornings before the heat came up through the grates. Also, walking back from the warming hut on a cold Vermont night with every star in the sky visible.

Memories of Pine Top | Now Stonehurst Fine Furniture Gallery
The kids always ate first, and I guess we were celebrating someone’s birthday at dinner.   I must have been sitting at the other end of the dining room table (so am not in the picture).

I hope to visit Stonehurst some time in the future and perhaps walk around the property to revisit old memories.             …..Sally Byrnes Magin Township of Washington, NJ

Sally Byrnes Magin | Memories of Skiing at Pine Top
Here’s a picture of me in early 1950’s ski gear, lace up boots, and cable bindings. Those were the days!  By the way, one of those ski instructor’s last name may have been “Herbert”…he taught us all how to ski, and I am still going strong at age 70! … Sally Byrnes Magin

Well, thank you so much Sally for generously sharing your wonderful memories of skiing at Pine Top.  We hope you’ll come up to visit us soon. I think you’ll enjoy the property and all the improvements we’ve made while transforming it into Stonehurst (a showcase for Vermont’s fine furniture and home decor).

Does anyone else out there have Pine Top memories to share?  Send them along!  We’ve got an online compilation of Pine Top stories and yours should be part of it.

This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios.  Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

From Lost Ski Area to Showroom for Green Home Decor

Last updated on October 26th, 2017 at 08:31 pm

Michelle and I are the only ones who’ve made it in to work today.  Snow is falling ever so gently, but it’s persistent!  We’ve got about 6″ and the forecast is for 6 more.  So I thought it would a good time to reprint this article that was recently published on Sotheby’s Vermont Country Properties blog.  We are grateful to President and Principal Broker Lisa Coneeny and Office Manager Melissa Olson for posting it.

Pine Top Ski Area Resort in Vernon, Vermont Circa 1960 | Now Stonehurst Fine Furniture Showroom
This is how Pine Top looked in 1960.  If the rope tows were still here, Michelle and I would be out there skiing today!

What to Do with a Lost Ski Area?

Jeremy Davis, author of “Lost Ski Areas of Southern Vermont” estimates there were 119 ski areas in the Green Mountain state during the mid 20th century.  It seems that 2/3 of Vermont’s towns had their own ski area!  Of course they were a far cry from today’s luxury resorts like Mount Snow, Stratton, Killington and Stowe.  But back in the day, they were the center of winter activity in the communities they served.  Now what has become of them?

A group of local enthusiasts at Vermont Woods Studios has recently transformed the former Pine Top ski area in Vernon, Vermont into a showcase for Vermont’s handcrafted, fine furniture and home décor products.  The 220 year old farmhouse that used to welcome Nordic and alpine skiers has been lovingly restored.  Known as “Stonehurst” since c1870 when it was sold to Lucretia Kendall for a sum of $2000, it is now home to a high end interior design gallery.

Stonehurst Today | A Fine Furniture Showroom and Luxury Home Decor Gallery
Here’s the same scene today.  Pine Top, the little lost ski area in Vermont is beckoning Michelle and me to bring our sleds out and play.  On days like this the mountain longs for the good old days of the 1940s, 50s and 60s when skiers packed the slopes.

“With all it’s rich history we thought Stonehurst would be the perfect place to showcase the high quality home décor products coming out of Vermont”, said Peggy Farabaugh, new owner of the property.  “The homestead is situated on a hundred acre wood with beautiful views of the mountains, forests and Connecticut River Valley.  Customers can look out our windows and see Vermont’s sustainable working lands in action.  Stonehurst gives us a way to show and tell the story of Vermont’s high quality, handcrafted products:  where they come from and how they’re made.”

The lovely view at Stonehurst | Fine Furniture and Home Decor Gallery
Here’s what Pine Top looks like today.  The farmhouse that’s been know as Stonehurst for over 2 centuries has been lovingly restored.  It now houses the finest handmade furniture America has to offer along with many luxury brands of home decor.  And everything here is made in Vermont.  Come visit us before the snow melts!

The gallery features a revolving selection of fine furniture from Vermont’s iconic brands including Copeland, Lyndon and many custom and specialty furniture makers.   Original artwork by Linda Marcille, Susan Osgood, Donna Scully, Georgie Runkle and other local artists accents the furniture and is offered for sale.

“We’re adding new products daily and hope to soon have a consummate collection of Vermont home goods with glassware by Simon Pearce, lighting by Hubbardton Forge, kitchen accessories by JK Adams, pottery by Laura Zindel and a creative selection of specialty handmade items from the area’s top craftspeople,” said Farabaugh.

Visitors are warmly welcomed at Stonehurst.  Hours of operation are 9am-5pm, Mon-Sat.  Details and directions to the gallery on Huckle Hill Road in Vernon can be found on our website.  Be sure to bring your sled, skis or snowshoes!

For more Stonehurst photos, visit our Pinterest board.

This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios.  Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Wintry Scenes from Stonehurst

Winter in Vermont | Stonehurst is Warm and Toasty on the Inside

This is for Sally, Pam, Ellen, Annette, Mo and all our friends from the South and West who have escaped this year’s good old fashioned Vermont winter.  Today’s storm took a break this morning just in time for me to snap this photo of the furniture showroom and art gallery we call Stonehurst.  It was 5F when I got to work today but warm and toasty inside.

The sleds are ready.  But where are the riders?  Snug and warm with no intention of going outside in the 5F weather today.

Plenty of toboggans and sleds are out on the back porch, ready for action.  But where are our young, hearty, adventurous riders?  No need for a membership to Outer Limits this winter, Sean.  Just bring your boots to work and trade your lunch for a couple good runs down the ski slopes.  I’ll go too and we’ll share the prize for biggest loser in the 2014 weight loss challenge.  Any teasing from Liz, Michelle and Loryn will surely cease and desist when we walk in all strong and fit.

The outdoor wood boiler that keeps us warm in the winter

Here’s Ken’s baby.  This Central Boiler Outdoor Wood Furnace from Temple Plumbing and Heating in Putney keeps us warm and toasty all winter long.   A green source of energy, it’s fed by wood from around the grounds at Stonehurst.  The furnace supplies a radiant heating system under the floorboards throughout the furniture showroom.

Shoes are not required at this furniture showroom

So that’s what Stonehurst looks like today.  Stop by and see for yourself.  Sean has hot chocolate and his own homemade cookies waiting for you.  Shoes are not required inside the showroom.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Looking Back at 2013

Last updated on January 2nd, 2014 at 09:31 am

2013 Year in Reivew for Vermont Furniture Store
2013 went by faster than Michelle’s girls sledding down the hill at Pine Top (now the Stonehurst fine furniture showroom and art gallery).

Much has happened to our little Vermont furniture store in 2013.  Most notably, we’re no longer housed at George’s Mill,  adjacent to the Vernon post office.  2013 brought continued growth that gave us enough confidence to expand into a permanent location.

Stonehurst is our new home– a 200 year old farmhouse sited on Pine Top, a former ski area in Southeastern Vermont.  Citing our furniture showroom on a scenic 100 acre forested lot helps us raise awareness about our mission of forest conservation and show customers where their furniture comes from.  It was this concept that the state of Vermont supported through a $100,000 competitively awarded 2013 Working Lands grant that helped us complete Stonehurst renovations 2 years ahead of schedule.

Other progress in 2013 included adding a fine art gallery to our offerings.  In addition to expanding our Vermont made furniture selection, we’re proud to offer original artwork by many important Vermont artists including Susan Osgood, Linda Marcille, Georgie Runkle, Donna Scully and Janet Picard.

Another 2013 showroom (and website) addition was Vermont made home decor.  We now carry handcrafted ceramics by Brattleboro artist Laura Zindel and Vernon potter Bronna Zlochiver, kitchen accessories by JK Adams of Dorset, textiles by Donna Tosi of Vernon and Cricket Radio of Shelburne and hand-turned pens by Micah Ranquist of West Brattleboro.  New artisans are joining us frequently to increase the variety of Vermont made home decor accessories we can make available at Stonehurst.

2013 also brought many important upgrades to our website, thanks to Neville and Martin up in our genius room.  As a new employee in 2013 Martin, was joined by Michelle (in Sales and Customer Service) and Kelsey and Nina (in Marketing).  We feel very lucky to have them join the Vermont Woods Studios family!

After 8 years of building this sustainable furniture business– in 2013 we are finally in a space that’s truly worthy of the beautiful handcrafted furniture Vermont is so famous for.   With customers journeying here from all across the country, we can finally say “Come to Stonehurst.  It’s worth the trip”.

We are immensely grateful to our creative and hard-working staff for making this 2013 progress possible.  Although we’ve come a long way, we know that in many ways our efforts have just begun.  In 2013 we built it.  In 2014 we have to make sure they come.  Please help us spread the word!  Join us on Facebook or in the comments section below.  We’d love to hear your thoughts on Vermont’s sustainable furniture and/or the Stonehurst experience.

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Starting at Stonehurst: A Custom Furniture Customer Review

Last updated on March 27th, 2018 at 09:41 am

Since we’ve made the transition over to Stonehurst, our new headquarters and showroom, we’ve had some of the most wonderful experiences with our customers. It’s been a pleasure for us to meet our guests in person and help them have a comfortable and easy Vermont furniture shopping experience. From helping our guests choose Vermont made decor and artwork for their homes, to assisting in the creation of the perfect custom furniture, or simply giving guidance for furniture upkeep; we love that our guests are excited about their shopping experience with us.

Astrid Modern Bedroom Furniture Collection
The ultra modern Astrid Bedroom Furniture Collection brings a dramatic yet relaxed zen style to your space. 

Jeannie and Jeff S., are two of our customers who made a trip out to Stonehurst to see our furniture up close before they made any decisions. Pleased with our showroom and the quality of our designs, they decided to purchase a bedroom set and new dining room furniture. The photos included in this blog were sent in by them, along with this lovely note:

“We had a wonderful experience at Vermont Wood Studios starting with our thoughtful and extensive meeting with Sean at your lovely Brattleboro showroom. Sean gave excellent advice to customize our order and kept in touch while the craftspeople made our bedroom and dining room furniture. It was delivered earlier than expected by the very capable ALB Transport in perfect condition. We are absolutely thrilled by the beauty and uniqueness of the bed, dressers, dining room table and chairs. We are happy to recommend both the furniture and customer oriented values of Vermont Wood Studios! 
With much appreciation,
Jeannie and Jeff S.”

We really appreciate this positive feedback, and are proud to showcase Vermont wood furniture in such a grand location (& with such a great staff!). Our team is here at Stonehurst Monday-Saturday 9-5, and we’d love for you to visit to see for yourself! Visiting Stonehurst before you shop online makes the buying experience that much more comfortable, as you’ll see first hand the luxurious quality of our handcrafted furniture designs in a natural Vermont home setting.

Vermont Modern Pedestal Table, Modern Mission Chairs
This photo features the Vermont Modern Trestle table

 

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Stonehurst: So How Did the Ribbon Cutting Ceremony Go?

Last updated on August 14th, 2018 at 12:18 pm

Stonehurst | Fine Furniture and Art Gallery | Vernon VT | Ribbon Cutting
These are the hard-working people who made Stonehurst possible.  From left:  Loryn Dion, Michelle Rooks, Neville Kerr, me with the scissors, Dennis Shanoff, Ken Farabaugh, Sean Henry and Douglas Fletcher  (Liz Francese, Martin Corbin and Kelsey Eaton were also instrumental but were unable to make the ceremony).  Our thanks also go out to the Vermont Working Lands Initiative for a grant that helped make Stonehurst renovations possible.

Sorry, I know I’m remiss.  It’s been over a week since we officially opened our Stonehurst Fine Furniture Showroom and Art Gallery and you all have been very forgiving about my lapse in coming forward with a record of the event.  Well, finally I’ve recruited Kelsey to help me round up some photos to happily share with you here.  The ribbon cutting ceremony was by all accounts a success.  Granted we never did persuade the governor to attend (I guess he does have other pressing matters) but we did have several VIPs (in our opinion) stop by including family, friends, neighbors, customers, furniture makers, artisans and other well wishers.  Nina Markiw was kind enough to capture much of the activity in the images below so I’ll let them speak for themselves.

We want to thank everyone who participated, especially the good people at the Vermont Working Lands Initiative and our staff who worked so hard to pull the event off.  It was not an easy feat but everything seemed to run like clockwork– even the early November weather.  Let’s hope it’s a sign for the future of Stonehurst.  Thanks Everyone!

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Extreme Furniture Showroom Makeover PT 1

Last updated on March 18th, 2019 at 09:34 am

Now that summer is over and the initial excitement of moving to our new space is winding down, I thought it would be the perfect time to reflect on the progress we have made, and the extreme transformations that have occurred at Stonehurst in the last year!

Stonehurst has been fully transformed from an old farmhouse, to a one of a kind Vermont made furniture and decor showroom–making the perfect place to showcase the true beauty of wood both inside and outside of the showroom.

The photos you will see below document our journey at Stonehurst, with photos from before any renovation, during the construction process, and what it looks like now! I don’t want to say its the “final” look, because we are always transforming the decor and look of the space to highlight the particular furniture and art we are showcasing!

You’ll just have to come see it for yourself!

On the left you’ll see the old apartment before renovations & on the right is during the construction process!
Above is the old apartment after the renovation. The space has been transformed into a part of the main gallery of our beautiful fine furniture showroom.

 

This was the farm house’s kitchen space before renovation (left), on the right you’ll see that we added larger windows so our visitors can experience the magnificent view outside the showroom. Our beautiful handcrafted dining room furniture in addition to the view help create an authentic Vermont Style dining room experience.
Now, this space is a wonderful place to display our fine furniture–the view outside the windows is breathtaking & is a testament to Vermont’s beauty. Through all seasons, the acres of woodland that surround Stonehurst is a sight to be seen!

Like what you see? Keep checking back for part 2 and 3 of our renovation reveal and tell us what you think on Facebook!

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.

Ribbon Cutting Ceremony: Come Celebrate Stonehurst!

Last updated on August 14th, 2018 at 12:18 pm

Stonehurst Ribbon Cutting Ceremony | Vermont Made Furniture | Destination Shopping ExperienceConsider this your official invitation to the Stonehurst Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. 

On Saturday November 9, 2013  we’ll be celebrating the opening of Vermont’s newest fine furniture showroom and art gallery.  We’d love to see you there!  At Vermont Woods Studios, we’ve been working for the last 2 years on acquiring Stonehurst (a 220 year old farmhouse perched on “Pine Top”, a former ski area) and renovating it into a destination shopping experience worthy of showcasing Vermont made furniture.  Now our work is done and we want to share it with you.

Linking Vermont’s Wood Furniture to Sustainable Forestry

Our mission at Stonehurst is to use the beauty of Vermont’s handmade wood furniture to raise awareness about the importance of sustainable forestry.  The Green Mountain State is a leader in educating the public on how sustainable furniture makes the journey from healthy forests to your living room.  Vermont’s furniture makers partner with local land owners, loggers, sawyers, professional foresters, lumber mills and distributors to create eco friendly, wood furniture that homeowners can feel good about.

Like our state’s annual Vermont Fine Furniture and Woodworking Festival in Woodstock, the Stonehurst fine furniture gallery is designed to help customers experience each link in the “Forest to Furniture” chain.   It’s a place to combine your shopping with a hike through our 110 acres of sustainably managed forest.  Or enjoy a relaxing glass of wine while taking in panoramic views of the Green Mountains.  Your experience here just might make you a lifelong advocate for sustainable forestry.  We hope so.

Vermont’s Working Lands Initiative

Today we send our heartfelt thanks out to Vermont taxpayers and everyone behind the Vermont Working Lands Initiative, as their contribution of a $100,000 competitively awarded grant made it possible for us to complete Stonehurst 2 years ahead of schedule.  Learn more about the VT Working Lands Partnership here.

 

Ribbon Cutting Ceremony Details

 

Date and Time

Saturday, November 9 2013.  Open house from 1pm-5pm.  Ceremony at 2pm.

Location

Stonehurst, Vermont Woods Studios, 538 Huckle Hill Road, Vernon, Vermont  05354.  Here’s a map.

Invited VIPs

Completion of Stonehurst is a significant milestone for both furniture and sustainable forestry industries in Vermont.  This is a chance for us to thank the VIPs who put their trust in us through the VT Working Lands grant program.  We have invited a number of them, including:

  • Governor Peter Shumlin
  • US Senator Patrick Leahy
  • US Senator Bernie Sanders
  • US Representative Peter Welch
  • VT Working Lands Enterprise Boards and Administration
  • VT Commissioner of Forests, Parks & Recreation Mike Snyder
  • VT Secretary of Agriculture, Food, and Markets Chuck Ross
  • Secretary of Commerce Lawrence Miller
  • VT Representative Michael Hebert
  • The Vernon Select Board

Please RSVP

It’s not absolutely necessary but it would help us out if you could RSVP on Facebook.

Parking is Limited

We have limited parking at Stonehurst but the Vernon Recreation Center is just a mile down the street at the intersection of Pond Road and Huckle Hill Road.  If Stonehurst parking is full, we ask attendees to gather at the Rec Center and carpool to Stonehurst.

Also Happening in Southern Vermont…

Need something else to make us worth the trip?  Immediately after our Ribbon Cutting Ceremony, the Brattleboro Retreat will be presenting the 2013 Anna Marsh Award to Governor Peter Shumlin at 5:30 pm, a short distance away at The Hermitage in West Dover, Vermont (details online).  Windham County Fans of Gov Shumlin, here’s the photo op you’ve been waiting for!

Top 10 Reasons to Attend our Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

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This blog is written by your friends at Vermont Woods Studios. Check out our Vermont made furniture and home decor online and visit our showroom and art gallery at Stonehurst, the newly restored 1800s farmhouse nestled in the foothills of the Green Mountains.