This famed 270-mile footpath travels the entire length of Vermont, from Massachusetts to the Canadian border. The Green Mountain Club, which maintains the trail, lists 175 miles of side trails, and nearly 70 primitive shelters. Hike the whole thing, or just a few choice stretches.
Barre proudly calls itself “the Granite Capital of the World” — a slight exaggeration, perhaps, but not much. The city’s quarries produced the world-famous “Barre Gray” granite steps on the east side the U.S. Capitol. But gravestones are Barre’s niche. The personalized memorials the workers made for each other — and many other people — are all over the city’s most remarkable cemetery. Look for the life-sized armchair, big soccer ball, race car and airplane, all with accompanying sad stories. PHOTO: ALICE LEVITT
Artisan glassblower Glenn Ziemke does daily demos in his Waterbury studio.
Quarry country has its own unique beauty. Explore it the “hard” way at Millstone Hill, a bed-and breakfast located in East Barre. The proprietors have developed a 50-plus-mile network of bike trails — both challenging singletrack and more moderate ones — that brings you alongside dozens of old quarries and “grout” pile lookouts. One hundred years ago, it was the site of a small, independent quarry operation, one of more than 75 in the area. Millstone offers camping, too, and indoor accommodations start at $95. The whole lodge rents for $490. PHOTO: JEB WALLACE-BRODEUR
Nothing says summer in Vermont like high-brow theater performed in a barn. The 2008 season at Unadilla includes an opera series.
This professional theater company stages its shows at Montpelier City Hall. Click on the website above for information about education and outreach programs, and for their current schedule.
The four-hour hike is considered “advanced” by the Green Mountain Club. The reward — on a clear day — is stunning views of the Green and White mountains. The most popular approach is from the Waterbury side, but you can also get there from Middlesex. Looking for trail mix? You’re in luck. Central Vermont is the granola capital of the world.
How do the people of modern-day Barre blow off steam? If it’s summer, they go to the Thunder Road Speed Bowl, atop Quarry Hill. Every Thursday night and Sunday afternoon, thousands make the trek to “the nation’s site of excitement” to watch mostly local drivers compete in street-stock and late-model races. There’s even a state senator — Phil Scott — tearing around the track.
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