‘Quilt’ quibble

MONTPELIER — When is a quilt not a quilt?

From where we sit, when it is made of pieces of paper that are glued together and not patches of fabric that require sewing.

That’s our only quibble with Montpelier Alive’s plans to create a community quilt by asking folks to get their creative juices flowing and create a small piece of what will be a much larger project.

We’d call it a coordinated collage — albeit one that will uses the popular quilting pattern. It’s called “Tumbling Blocks,” and it aptly describes the pattern of cascading cubes that Montpelier Alive is planning to have assembled and placed on public display at the Transit Center in March.

Why March? Because that will mark the one-year anniversary of the pandemic that has changed life in the Capital City and beyond, and because that should provide folks of all ages interested in participating time to contribute their piece of what could be a pretty big quilt-like (that feels better) collage.

How big probably depends on how many people visit www.montpelieralive.org/582/Community-Quilt, download the quilt template and follow the simple directions.

Crayon? Marker? Ink? Pencil? Paint? You choose how to decorate the Tumbling Blocks template, just remember to write your name in pencil on the back, cut it out so it is ready for gluing, and drop it off in the City Hall drop box by Feb. 12.

Montpelier Alive will take it from there and come March the public art project will be unveiled.

‘Soup’ yet?

BARRE — Soup-N-Greens has been shuttered since COVID-19 cases spiked in central Vermont late last year, and while the restaurant’s long-time owners are vowing an early 2021 comeback, it won’t be Friday as previously hoped.

Don’t take our word for it, that’s straight from Soup-N-Greens’ Facebook page.

“Hello to all our loyal customers,” the post states. “We had planned to reopen on the 15th, but with the numbers still high we don’t feel it is safe. We want to reopen when the time is right for our customers to feel comfortable and safe and for the safety of our staff. We are shooting for the beginning of February. Don’t count Soups out yet there is still fight left in us.”

That’s awfully good to hear because if Soup-N-Greens were to close for good it would be more than missed in Barre.

(F)Rose Pelchuk?

CALAIS — Internet appears to be an issue in Rose Pelchuk’s corner of Calais, judging from her on-again-off-again participation in Monday night’s virtual board meeting.

Pelchuk, who serves on the board was present until she wasn’t and even when she was online her image was frequently frozen and what she was saying was often hard to make out.

The clearest example came as the board was approving the Town Meeting Day warning and Chairwoman Denise Wheeler started calling the roll.

Board member Sharon Winn Fannon was clearly an “aye,” and Wheeler said she was “an aye,” as well before calling on Pelchuk, who sounded very much like Charlie Brown’s impossible to understand teacher.

“Wah-wah,” Pelchuk’s frozen image replied.

“I’m sorry I couldn’t understand what you said, Rose,” Wheeler replied.

There was a brief pause, Pelchuk was gone and then back again, and while garbled her slowed speech was at least understandable.

“I keep cutting out so I just want to make sure ...,” she said before disappearing again.

“Rose? We can’t hear you Rose,” Wheeler said even as Pelchuk returned.

“Can you hear me?” she asked.

“Barely, you keep cutting out,” Wheeler replied.

“Can you hear me now?” Pelchuk repeated, sustaining the connection just long enough to ask whether the board was voting to approve the Town Meeting Day warning.

“Yes,” Wheeler said, adding: “Oh, no, she’s gone again.”

While waiting for Pelchuk’s return, Wheeler asked Fannon how her internet was holding up.

“I’m seeming to be OK,” Fannon replied. “Rose is ephemeral tonight.”

Then Pelchuk was back and in a hurry to register her vote even as Wheeler noted she’d experienced similar trouble last week.

“Yeah, I am,” Pelchuk said. “OK, ‘aye.’”

That was enough for Wheeler to move on before Selectman Clif Emmons cut in.

“For the record, I’m an ‘aye,’” he said.

Maybe next year?

EAST MONTPELIER — You can add East Montpelier to the list of central Vermont communities where folks cherish their traditional town meeting, but won’t attend one in 2021.

Maybe next year? This week the Select Board officially pulled the plug on town meeting, opting to vote by Australian ballot instead.

The elections will still be held on Town Meeting Day — that’s March 2 this year — with polls open at East Montpelier Elementary School from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

A virtual public informational meeting will be held at 7:30 p.m. March 1.

East Montpelier’s sister-towns in the Washington Central Unified Union School District have all approved a similar shift. That includes Calais, where the Select Board made the decision Monday night, as well as Berlin, Middlesex and Worcester.

‘Heads up!’

MONTPELIER — A little creativity and some decent camera skills might be all it takes to collect a cash prize in the third annual #802phonesdown!headsup! video public service announcement contest.

Sponsored by the Vermont Highway Safety Alliance, the contest is open to high school students and designed to encourage young drivers and their friends and peers to avoid distracted driving.

The contest kicked off this week, entries (more on them in a moment) are due by March 15 – providing judges time to select the winners before National Distracted Driving Awareness Month rolls around in April.

Did we say “winners?” We did.

A total of $3,000 in cash prizes will be awarded to the creators of five winning video PSAs.

If you’re a Vermont high school student, or live here but attend a cross border school) all you have to do is create a 25-second YouTube video on the dangers of distracted driving and submit it in advance of the deadline to compete for one of the cash prizes.

Don’t get too creative. You can’t break any traffic laws and following the state’s COVID guidelines are a must.

For more information, including some helpful tips and the link to submit your the video once it’s in the can just visit vermonthighwaysafety.org/resourc…/psa-video-contest/

Do you have an item for Talk of the Town? Email it to us at news@timesargus.com. Be sure to include Talk of the Town in the subject line.

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