Sunday, May 25, 2008

Summer Travel

The weekend is almost over and the weather has been really lovely. I just noticed that the Peonies have started to bloom and the irises are well on their way. We can't do any planting until this weekend is over, but it is so nice to have the annuals to keep us cheerful.

Summer is just around the bend and it is a great time to visit our part of Vermont. We are hoping that this Summer will bring us all of our friends and guests to visit since we are SUCH AN EASY DRIVE and NOT NEARLY AS EXPENSIVE AS EUROPE! :)

If you are the Outdoors type, there are a ton of activities that we coordinate for our guests when they are here:
Bike Touring
Canoe/Kayak Trips
Hiking/Walking Treks
Swimming Holes
Horseback Riding

If you are the Cultural type, there are a ton of great museums, galleries and theatre in our area:
Theatres: Williamstown, Dorset, Oldcastle, Weston, Salem, Cambridge, West Mountain Inn (!) all have great summer theatre
Museums: Hildene (Lincoln Home), Clark Art, MassMoCA, Bennington Museum, Slate Valley, American Museum of Flyfishing, Park McCullough Estate, Robert Frost House
Galleries: Southern Vermont Art Center, Artists Guild of Manchester, Fiddlehead, Gallery North Star, Norman Rockwell

If you are the Traveling with Kids Type - we love kids and will go out of our way to make sure they have a great time!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Welcome to the West Mountain Inn

Welcome to the West Mountain Inn Blog! I thought this would be a fun way to keep our guests updated on what is new at the inn, what it is like to be an innkeeper and what's happening in Vermont.

So, as far as the Inn goes, we are gearing up for our Summer season, but it is still pretty quiet here this time of year. I'm never quite sure why Spring is so looked down on for travellers, because I really love it. I suppose the weather can be somewhat unpredictable, but it is so beautiful with everything just waking up and all the birds and animals really active.

(A note for this weekend (Memorial Day) - we still do have room at the inn and are doing a third night 1/2 off special for anyone still at loose ends!)

We have had some fun recent animal visitors here - last week a black bear came to the side yard during our Fireside Music Night and everyone here got a great look at him/her. We also had a mother fox and her two kits living under the culvert on the driveway for a while, but she seems to have moved them now.

I have a funny bear story * see below.

There are a couple of exciting things in the works for the next couple of months. Next weekend we are hosting a benefit in our Barn for a local farmer who's barn burned down. There will be 4 bands, barbeque food and beer and wine, it should be great fun.

We are very lucky to have a wonderful playwright living in our area named Ed Weissman. He and his composer/collaborator Mary Feinsinger have written a musical called Ethan Allen And The Green Mountain Boys Invent Vermont and Ed, who is very interested in Outdoor Drama, and is working with the UNC Chapel Hill Institute of Outdoor Drama, wants to do an outdoor dinner theater here on our Stable Lawn! So far we have scheduled performances for July 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 21, 22, 23. I am very excited to be able to use our property for other things and really hope this works - I'll keep you posted.

The other thing that is going on this year is that it is our 30th Anniversary. I have been trying to figure out what to do to celebrate it - but have just been twirling around with ideas that don't seem to settle down. I have definitely blocked off the weekend of October 31 for a party, but I have also been thinking of doing some sort of Summer BBQ. Maybe after next weekend's Barn Benefit I will have jelled on my ideas. If anyone has any suggestions I'd love to hear them.

Well, this seems pretty bloggy for now so I think I'll sign off.

Hope to see you all soon!

*A couple of years ago a church group from New York City came to visit with us for a few days. They arrived by bus and so some of them were planning to bike into Manchester for the day, but not being used to the country, they were worried about bears and other forest animals being out there with them. I, of course, told them there was nothing to worry about, that we hardly ever saw bears, that even if we did they stayed in the woods and mostly ran away. So the cyclists set off, fully reassured that there was no way they would encounter any wildlife. I had agreed to drive another group of non-cyclists into Manchester and so I took them the back way to we could go through the East Arlington Covered Bridge (the same route I had outlined for the cylists). And as you can guess - what did we see right on the side of the road, taking down someones birdfeeder - a BEAR!