We now begin the new year with a blank page and the season of resolution has begun. What shall we write? What do we expect, anticipate and strive for? For me I wish to get outside and play more. I live in a winter playground and wish to share my country paradise with, not only my wonderful repeat guests, but also new guests from places near and far. I wish all guests could experience a Vermont winter with its fresh air, starlit skies and twirling, swirling magical snowflakes that fall from the heavens. I wish for them to enjoy the pure, white glistening snow and make a snowball. I hope they will take time and stroll the sidewalks of our quaint villages and towns, adorned with white-steeple churches. I hope they will enjoy a chat with our friendly locals. I hope they get to enjoy sunny days of deep blue skies, frosty mornings and crisp air.
And why? Well, because it's simply January in Vermont and a beautiful time to visit! There are so many reasons to visit Vermont anytime that we can’t list them all … but here are a few -
Reason #10 Harvest Markets - Vermont has more farmers markets per capita than any other state
Reason #9 Worlds Best Cheddar - Vermont has more cheesemakers per capita than any other state
Reason #8 Good Beer - Vermont has more microbreweries per capita than any other state
Reason #7 Views - Our views go on forever
Reason #6 Scenery - No billboards allowed
Reason #5 Meditative - A place for reflective moments
Reason #4 Peaceful - Because (according to the song) it's "Moonlight in Vermont"
Reason #3 Picturesque - White steeples rise from churches, surrounded by quaint villages and towns
Reason #2 World-Class Photo Opportunities - Vermont has more than 100 covered bridges
Reason #1 It's All About the Trees - Three quarters of Vermont is forested. The other quarter is just as beautiful
Winter is to be enjoyed by all our senses. Come visit and enjoy the beauty of a Quechee-Woodstock Vermont January and February!
Life is good. Everyone and everything is electric!
Here's a quick look at just some of the past, present, future events and happenings in our area:
"FLY ME TO THE MOON"
(1954 Artist Frank Sinatra, Composer Bart Howard)
A BACKYARD LIFT-OFF WITH BALLOONS OF VERMONT
With the Gorge located directly behind our property, it provides the ultimate location for a spectacular flight. Under the supervision of our pilot, Darrek, ground spectators and passengers helped inflate the envelope (fabric). Once fully inflated with passengers on-board, spectators watched in amazement as the massive balloon gracefully ascended and floated sky-bound. The balloon soared above the Gorge and then slowly descended to its bottom. Darrek maneuvered the basket onto large, boulders as the crystal clear river trickled underneath. It then popped up and continued its journey over ponds, fields, pastures, finally setting down near the ski trails at Killington Mountain. The chase crew arrived soon thereafter and passengers enjoyed a "celebration" with pilot and crew. All were treated to delicious hors d'oeuvres and their choice of champagne or sparkling cider, followed by the Balloonist's Prayer. Recommendation: put this thrilling experience on the top of your bucket-list - you'll be talking about this and reliving memories for a long, long time...and remember, our pilot flies year round - yes, even in winter!
"SHE THINKS MY TRACTOR'S SEXY"
( 1999 Artist Kenny Chesney, Composed by Jim Collins and Paul Overstreet)
Gateway To Vermont’s Rural Heritage - Billings Farm
Billings Farm & Museum is just a scenic stroll from the village center of Woodstock, Vermont, and is regarded as one of the finest outdoor history museums in the country. Combining a fully-operating Jersey dairy farm with educational exhibitsand interactive programs and events, Billings Farm & Museum is committed to providing education and enjoyment to visitors of all ages.
From meeting our award-winning Jersey dairy cows, draft horses, and sheep, to exploring the carefully restored 1890 Farm House, sampling Billings Farm cheddar, and taking part in hands-on activities, there really is something for everyone.
Billings Farm History
Billings Farm was established in 1871 by Frederick Billings, a native Vermonter known for his work as a lawyer, railroad builder, and pioneer in scientific farm management and reforestation. Billings set out to make his 270-acre farm a model dairy operation for farmers in the region, founded on the principles of efficiency, sustainability, and responsible land use.
In 1884 Frederick Billings hired George Aitken, an innovative and successful professional farm manager to oversee his Woodstock operation. Aitken imported cows from the Isle of Jersey, hundreds of Southdown sheep, Berkshire hogs, and other livestock. By 1890, the year that Frederick Billings died, the Billings Farm had grown to nearly 1,000 acres and was widely acknowledged for the superior genetics of its premier Jersey herd as well as an extensive butter-making operation that produced 5,000 pounds of high-quality butter annually. Three years later, at the World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, cows from the Billings herd took top honors in the dairy division, with Lily Garfield designated “Champion Heifer of the World.”
The herd’s performance in Chicago was the victorious culmination of Billings Farm’s early years. Following George Aitken’s sudden death in 1910, the farm experienced several periods of change, including a successful commercial dairy operation beginning in the 1948. In the mid-1970s, the farm resumed breeding championship-caliber Jersey cows. A string of regional show winnings throughout the 1970s and ’80s culminated when Billings Top Rosanne won top honors in both American and Canadian competitions, designating her the finest Jersey in North America.
Owned and operated by The Woodstock Foundation, Inc., a non-profit educational institution founded by Laurance and Mary Rockefeller in 1968, the Billings Farm & Museum was established in 1983 to preserve the historic Billings Farm as well as the character and heritage of rural Vermont.
(1961 Artist Ricky Nelson, Composer Jerry Fuller)
OTHER NOTABLES TO CHECK OUT
Plymouth Cheese in Plymouth, Simon Pearce Glass in Windsor, Silver Lake and the Barnard General Store in Barnard, Quechee Gorge Village in Quechee, Saint-Gaudens Gardens and National Historical Park in Cornish, NH, The Vermont Country Store in Weston, VT, Manchester VT and it's retail outlets, Rock of Ages Granite Quarry in Graniteville VT, Ben & Jerry's in Waterbury, Route 100 the most scenic road in Vermont, Lake Willoughby in Westmore, Cabot Cheese in Cabot and Quechee, More than 100 Covered Bridges, Calvin Coolidge State Historic Park in Plymouth, Vermont Spirits in Quechee Gorge Village, Harpoon Brewery and the Silo Distillery in Windsor, Shelburne Farms in Shelburne, Wilson Castle in Proctor, Morgan Horse Farm in Middlebury, Visit the Top Ten Vermont Waterfalls, Visit the Trapp Family Lodge and drive the "Notch" Smugglers Notch Road in Stowe, Swim in Lake St. Catherine in Poultney, Drive to the summit of Mt. Equinox in Manchester, Hike Camel's Hump in Duxbury/Huntington, Bike along the Burlington Bike Path, Take a day cruise on Lake Champlain (keep your eyes open for "Champ", the legendary Lake Monster, possibly a giant Garfish or extinct Tanystropheus}, Visit the Cold Hollow Cider Mill in Waterbury, Visit the Lincoln Family Home "Hildene" in Manchester, Some of the best mountain biking is found on the Kingdom Trails in East Burke - and if you still have some time and the energy, don't forget to visit some of our great maple sugaring farms....ENJOY!
C'MON BABY, "LIGHT MY FIRE"...
(1966 Artist The Doors, Composer Jim Morrison, Robby Krueger, John Densmore)
The Torchlight Parade and Fireworks 2022 - Presidents' Day Weekend February 19 and 20
Suicide Six Ski Mountain - The mountain will be ablaze with glowing red torches and the skiers will impress us as they slowly venture down the mountain - then onto the chairlift for a second run. Spectators will also be able to enjoy a second torchlight parade and fireworks at the Quechee Club the following night. Be sure to join us for these two fun events.
Suicide Six - Pomfret, VT and the Quechee Club - Quechee, VT
BRIGHT ARE THE STARS THAT SHINE - DARK IS THE SKY - I KNOW THIS LOVE OF MINE - WILL NEVER DIE "AND I LOVE HER" (or HIM)
(1964 Artist The Beatles, Composer Paul McCartney)
VALENTINE'S DAY AND PRESIDENTS' DAY at our INN - join us February 2022
This Valentine’s Day you probably either sent or received a valentine from someone. More than a billion were expected to be given away in the United States alone. But just like many of our holidays, there’s a lot more behind it than just cards and gifts. There’s a true-life story. It’s a story that teaches us a lot about love, sacrifice, and commitment—the true meaning of Valentine’s Day.
In the third century, the Roman Empire was ruled by Emperor Claudius II Gothicus. He was nicknamed Claudius the Cruel because of his harsh leadership and his tendency for getting into wars and abusing his people. In fact, he was getting into so many wars during the third century that he was having a difficult time recruiting enough soldiers.
Claudius believed that recruitment for the army was down because Roman men did not want to leave their loves or families behind, so he canceled all marriages and engagements in Rome. Thousands of couples saw their hopes of matrimony dashed by the single act of a tyrant. And no one seemed interested in standing up to the emperor.
But a simple Christian priest named Valentine did come forward and stood up for love. He began to secretly marry soldiers before they went off to war, despite the emperor’s orders. In 269 A.D., Emperor Claudius found out about the secret ceremonies. He had Valentine thrown into prison and deemed that he would be put to death.
As Valentine was awaiting execution, he fell in love with a blind girl who happened to be the jailer’s daughter. On the eve of his execution, with no writing instruments available, Valentine is said to have written her a sonnet in ink that he squeezed from violets. Legend has it that his words made the blind woman see again. It was a brief romance because the next day Valentine was clubbed to death by Roman executioners.
St. Valentine gave his life so that young couples could be bonded together in holy matrimony. They may have killed the man, but not his spirit. Even centuries after his death, the story of Valentine’s self-sacrificing commitment to love was legendary in Rome. Eventually, he was granted sainthood and the Catholic Church decided to create a feast in his honor. They picked February 14 as the day of celebration because of the ancient belief that birds (particularly lovebirds, but also owls and doves) began to mate on that very day.
And so, on the next Valentine's Day 2022, what are you doing to keep the love-light burning? Well - The Inn at Clearwater Pond is just the place to celebrate and we know how to do it up just right. Think ROMANCE and give us a call or send us an email and we'll reserve a room for you - February 14, 2022
Daisy, Daisy give me your answer true. I'm half crazy over the love of you. It won't be a stylish marriage. I can't afford a carriage. But you'll look sweet upon the seat of a
"Bicycle Built For Two"
(1963 Artist Nat King Cole, Composed by Harry Dacre in 1892)
FAT TIRE BIKING and then some....
Fat tire biking is a relatively newer sport that has taken cold weather areas of the country by storm as a winter sport, but it’s not just for the colder months.
You might have seen these bikes on the local trails or roads. Equipped with wide tires between 4” and 5”, fat tire bikes make an impression (most mountain bike tires are in the 2” range). Unlike a regular mountain bike, the low tire pressure allows them to float on surfaces, like snow, where a normal bike would sink.
Interested in trying it? Be prepared for a challenging workout. According to an article from bicyling.com, you can burn up to 1500 calories an hour doing it, and it will test both your balance and core strength.
While the sport is a game changer for avid cyclists, who can now get their workout in outdoors rather than being stuck on a stationary bike, it has also seen many converts from Nordic skiing, particularly here in New England where good snow conditions aren't always guaranteed. If there isn’t enough snow for cross-country skiing, it will still be excellent conditions for a fat tire bike ride. Snow isn’t a requirement for fat biking. With the fat tire bike you can ride a wider range of terrain - from snow covered groomed trails to muddy river crossings or even paved roads.
So instead of hitting the bike at the gym to break a sweat, breathe in the fresh air and go for a scenic ride outdoors. Here in Woodstock, the Woodstock Inn’s Tubbs Snowshoes & Nordic Adventure Center offers fat tire bike rentals and 25km of groomed trails on Mt. Peg. Open daily from 9 am - 4 pm through April 1st. Try this biking adventure winter of 2022
"FROSTY THE SNOWMAN" was a jolly, happy soul with a corncob pipe and a button nose and two eyes made out of coal...
(1950 Gene Autry, Composer Walter Rollins, Steve Nelson)
JIM CANTORE VISITS WOODSTOCK/QUECHEE VERMONT 2019
During the 2019 winter storm Harper, The Weather Channel's, Meteorologist Jim Cantore, spent two days with us here in Woodstock. Jim is originally from our area and along with his brother, owns our best local pizza restaurant; named, of course, Cantore's. It was obvious that Jim holds a special place in his heart for our beautiful town. His camera man followed him to several places in Woodstock while Jim shared some of his fondest boyhood memories for all local Weather Channel viewers to enjoy. Our resident hot-air balloon pilot, Darrek, is not only an excellent pilot but also a clown at heart. It didn't take Darrek long to figure out that a visit to Woodstock and Jim would be just the thing to do during the snowy weather. Never owning up to an ounce of shyness, Darrek drove into Woodstock and introduced himself to Jim and the two became "buds" - just gotta love our local boys.....
SLEIGH BELLS RING, ARE YOU LISTENING? IN THE LANE SNOW IS GLISTENING. A BEAUTIFUL SIGHT, WE'RE HAPPY TONIGHT, WALKING IN A "WINTER WONDERLAND"
(1958 Artist Johnny Mathis, Composer 1934 Richard B. Smith)
All of Vermont =
Serious Skiing, X-Country Skiing, Snowshoeing, Ice Fishing, Ice Skating, Dog-Sledding, Horse-drawn Sleigh Rides, Over 5000 miles of Snowmobiling Trails!
COME EXPERIENCE A THRILLING WINTER ADVENTURE IN 2022
It’s a special time to be in Vermont. With 20 alpine ski resorts, 30 cross-country touring centers and 7,300 acres of alpine terrain, this is a skier’s paradise. Even if you don’t ski or ride, there’s plenty to do to keep the family together and having fun.
Snowshoeing is a perfect substitute for enjoying the outdoors while getting in a good work-out. Find a Vermont State Park that meets your needs. For you thrillseekers, try snowmobiling. For those that are new to this recreational form of transportation, there is nothing like the adrenaline you get from maneuvering a 600-pound machine through turns, around trees, and over the terrain.
Ice fishing is another hot activity during the cold months. Fishing over frozen bodies of water gives the angler a unique advantage of fishing off-shore without a boat. With many of Vermont's waters open for ice fishing season, the choices are abundant.
If winter is not your favorite season for being outside, that’s ok. You’re not alone. Add some warmth to your winter with music, theater, and dance performances or treat yourself at one of Vermont’s award-winning spas. You deserve this.
No matter which activity you choose to take part in this winter, warm your soul and clear your thoughts by connecting with the natural world around you in Vermont.
Can't decide what to choose? Give us a call or send us an email and we'll help you plan for next year 2022!
802-295-0606 or email@example.com
COME ON, IT'S LOVELY WEATHER FOR A "SLEIGH RIDE" TOGETHER WITH YOU...
(1948 Artist Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops, Composer Leroy Anderson)
Winter At The Farm - Billings Farm - Woodstock, Vermont - 2022
Visit the farmhouse and the dairy farm for interactive programs. Don’t miss a winter visit to the farm
Horse-drawn sleigh or Wagon rides
69 Old River Road, Woodstock
Sleigh rides also available Sugarbush Farm
(1969 Artist The Archies, Composer Andy Kim, Jeff Barry)
MAPLE OPEN HOUSE WEEKEND
Vermont's sugar makers welcome you March 2022
Maple Open House Weekend is Vermont’s most anticipated spring event and a celebration of the current season’s crop. When visiting sugar houses in March, visitors can expect warm welcomes from their sugar maker hosts, eager to educate and share with the public the process of making maple syrup from sap – an inside look at the hard work that goes into producing each jug of syrup. Traditional Open House activities include sampling syrup; tours of the woods; pancake breakfasts; horse-drawn sleigh rides; sugar-on-snow parties; and plenty of maple products to taste including maple donuts, maple cotton candy and maple creemees.
Locally, we have two farms in very close proximity to our Inn - Sugarbush Farm and the King Farm
Sugarbush Farm - 591 Sugarbush Farm Road, Woodstock and The King Farm - 128 King Farm Road, Woodstock
Event weekend visitors can also expect to be impressed by the diversity of maple as an ingredient as showcased by our Maple Partner businesses. Each Partner capitalizes on the flavor qualities of maple as a key component of recipes and menu items appearing throughout the weekend. As visitors tour the state, they'll be treated to unique maple experiences around every corner, including a hard cider, the "Tree Tapper", made with maple syrup; a distillery featuring a full line-up of distilled spirits, all made using local Vermont maple syrup; a brewery serving up their Ale Maple Ice Cream Floats made with Lake Champlain Chocolate's vanilla ice cream and a maple syrup drizzle; and a Vermont brewery that always has their Maple Breakfast Stout on tap. For a full menu of maple, visitors can dine at partner restaurants who are featuring special maple appetizers, entrees, desserts and beverages.
Visitors are encouraged to travel the state to see how widely maple is produced and discover how maple has expanded its traditional uses as a breakfast topper to become the natural sweetener and flavor of choice as demonstrated by partnering businesses such as the Inn at Clearwater Pond in Quechee, Vermont.
Come join us in 2022
Maple! It's in our roots....
When the nights are cold and the days are warm, Vermont maple producers across the state know sugaring season is upon us. Vermont is the nation’s leading producer of maple syrup. Producing nearly 2 million gallons of syrup in 2020, Vermont generates 47 percent of the country’s maple syrup. Some are thinking, “Wow, that’s a lot for such a small state!” but keep in mind, that’s coming from more than 1,500 sugar-houses statewide. In addition to sugaring season, March brought back what November took away - yes, daylight savings time! So, as the amount of daylight slowly increases with each day and our spring birds hungrily fly back and forth to the feeder, we know that spring weather is a-comin'.
The Inn at Clearwater Pond makes our own maple syrup. Come stay with us and enjoy this delicious syrup with your breakfasts. We bottle as well, so be sure to take some home with you!
I want to get drunk, I'm gonna make it real clear, I want
"ONE BOURBON, ONE SCOTCH AND ONE BEER"
(1977 George Thorogood and the Destroyers)
Vermont Brewers Festival at Bear Mountain in Killington VT - March 2022
Enjoy exclusive beers created in collaboration by our Vermont brewers. Over 100 beers offered with 30 exclusive brews created for this festival. Embrace the elements with this all outdoor winter themed festival at the base area of Bear Mountain at Killington Resort. Sit by the fire pits with the brewers who host this event while enjoying the option of a 3, 6, or 9 oz sample of beer.
For the last 25 years, the Association has been running a successful event on the waterfront in Burlington, VT. Now, we have brought a second festival to a picturesque mountain setting
"SLOOP JOHN B"
(1966 Artist The Beach Boys, Composer Brian Wilson)
THE 48th ANNUAL BRIDGEWATER VERMONT RAFT RACE APRIL 2022
Earth-shaking BOOMS from two cannons sent costumed competitors on a mad dash towards the river and onto their themed, decorative rafts. And, so began the 47th Annual Bridgewater Raft Race. Above the river, spectators lined the bridge, then slowly made their way down the road, following these creative and colorful rafts. For decades this popular Bridgewater race has been the traditional kick-off to spring. All rafts must be handmade and self-propelled. The waters of the Ottaquechee River are still icy this time of year but the gutsy rafters don't seem to mind. Their goal is to finish first! The race course sends these rafters on a three-mile journey as spectators cheer them on. Some rafts, lacking enough seaworthiness, fall apart and even sink. This brings on even more whooping and hollering from the crowds. Come join us in 2022!
"ONLY IN AMERICA"
(2001 Artists Brooks & Dunn, Composers Brooks & Dunn, Don Cook, Ronnie Rogers)
Memorial Day Weekend in Woodstock/Quechee, Vermont May 2022
Woodstock's Memorial Day Weekend Celebration, Friday and Saturday!
Sidewalk Sale Days - Friday and Saturday, May 2022 - 9 to 5 pm, with Live Music
Woodstock Garden Club Plant Sale Saturday 8-1pm
Woodstock's Memorial Day Weekend Parade Saturday at 10:30 brings fun and excitement for the whole family
"BORN TO RUN"
(1975 Artist and Composer Bruce Springsteen)
The 30th Annual Covered Bridges Half-Marathon - The Best 13.1 Miles in New England - will take place June 5, 2022
Due to the COVID virus, the 2020 and the 2021 races have been postponed. The next race will be held June 5, 2022. And, for those runners who were entered into this 2021 race, here's the most recent update. You WILL NOT be automatically entered into the 2022 race. However, a Virtual 2021 Race will take place. Run anywhere, anytime between June 6 - June 13, 2021. Please visit their website for all details and to register for this virtual race.
Race Registration Opens Up December 6, 2021
June 5, 2022 8:15 a.m. Suicide Six Ski Area, Pomfret Vermont
And to my 2021 guests with reservations at my Inn, I will hold your room(s) for you for 2022. But please confirm with me that you will be running in the 2022 race. In the meantime, stay safe, stay healthy, keep smiling and keep runnin'!
The Inn at Clearwater Pond hosted 3 runners in 2019. Joe Reilly of Brookline, MA finished in 19th Place in the Male Division, time 1:25:01. Jason Brown of West Roxbury, MA finished in 1:37 and Sarah Reilly of Brookline, MA finished in 2:13:05 in the Female Division. Congratulations to all 1,937 runners and especially to our special 3 - well done!
Also, congratulations to Tanner Cook of Johnson City, TN who finished in #1 in the Male Division at 1:09:23 and Laura Dziana of Wellesley, MA who finished #1 in the Female Division at 1:29:17!
Put this on your travel/to-do list. Our spectacular and very scenic Vermont countryside gives rise to a beautiful course. Along the way, spectators hoot and holler. And much to the delight of the runners, many of our locals sing and play instruments as runners pass by. Our Vermont communities are extremely supportive and encouraging. This is a great day, not only for runners but all onlookers, as well. Whether you're a runner or spectator, don't miss out on 2022!
of year but the gutsy rafters don't seem to mind. Their goal is to finish first! The race course sends these rafters on a three-mile journey as spectators cheer them on. Some rafts, lacking enough seaworthiness, fall apart and even sink. This brings on even more whooping and hollering from the crowds. Come join us in 2022!
"UP, UP AND AWAY..."
(1967 Artist The 5th Dimension, Composer Jimmy Webb)