Shelburne erupts into 250 celebration

<a href=”″ rel=”attachment wp-att-7975″><img class=”alignleft size-medium wp-image-7975″ alt=”DSC_0197″ src=”×200.jpg” width=”300″ height=”200″ /></a>The town of Shelburne celebrated its 250th in a big way—with a weekend-long bash in near perfect weather! A Shelburne history cruise, a street dance, historic walking tours, a town portrait, a community barbecue, plus much more contributed to the festivities and merriment.

A sold out Cruise into Shelburne’s History’s kicked-off the festivities on Friday night with over 300 community members aboard. Throughout the cruise Shelburne history was delivered by costumed-clad residents Jeffrey Penar and Ellen Gurwitz along with special guest storytellers Marg Aske of Shelburne Shipyard, Don Stevens, Chief, Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk-Abenaki Nation, and Dutch Mill owner Jamie Bissonnette to name a few. Delicious snacks donated by local businesses Breugger’s Bagels, Buono Appetito, Chef Leu’s, Inn at Shelburne Farms, O Bread, Rustic Roots, Shelburne Farms Cheddar, and Shelburne Supermarket fed even the finickiest Shelburnites while a photo gallery of historical images and a dramatic sunset took center stage to end the evening.

Come Saturday morning the Town Hall was filled with residents gawking over the history and daily life of Shelburne exhibits organized by Judy Frazer. Oral history interviews were conducted by Nancy Baker, Laura Gannon-Murakami, and Toby Knox as a legacy to future generations of Shelburne residents. In the afternoon, guided historic walking tours of Shelburne led by David Epstein, Dorothea Penar, and David Webster commenced. For those unable to attend, walking tour booklets are still available for purchase at the town offices for $2. Throughout the day community members found their way over to the Parade Ground where the Shelburne Farmers Market and special activities, a petting zoo, face painting, musical entertainment, a scavenger hunt, and I Spy games for the kids, were in full gear.

The evening concluded with a Street Dance with music provided  by former Shelburne resident Rick Norcross and the Ramblers at the Shelburne Shopping Park. Celebration 250 committee member Rosalyn Graham commented, “Having such a fun event with a local connection was really special. Rick even worked some Shelburne history into some of the lyrics. He was awesome.”

Another celebration of the town’s history, culture, and industry was on display at the Shelburne Museum Sunday afternoon. Creatively organized by David Cranmer, hundreds of Museum visitors enjoyed stepping into Shelburne’s history through interactive historical displays, skits, and activities designed by local residents. At 3 pm the community gathered, approximately 300 strong, at the Parade for a community portrait taken by local photographer Paul O. Boisvert. Following the photograph, Selectboard member Allison Cranmer gave her first proclamation and local leaders read letters from the Earl of Shelburne, Governor Shumlin, Lt. Governor Scott, and Senator Sanders respectively. Town Manager Paul Bohne took the opportunity to announce a 250 Celebration grant from Wake Robin in the amount of $10,000. Raffle prize winners were also announced.Kathy Speedy and Robert Shortsleeves were awarded a print, Okogna Locke and Julia Melish won the Vermont teddy bears, and Trevor Cowan won the scavenger hunt goodie basket. While kids enjoyed old fashioned lawn games, bike decorating, and face painting the celebration culminated with a community barbecue prepared by the Dutch Mill.

Meagan Downey, a 250 committee member, praised the other members of the committee, business sponsors, and in particular Shelburne Town Clerk Colleen Haag. “Colleen kept pushing us [the committee]. Without her tenacity we would not have been able to stay on task or fulfill the vision we had for the event. She was amazing. She deserves all the glory.” Resident and Shelburne Professional Business Association President Tod Whitaker concurs, “Without Colleen’s hard work this celebration would not have been — period.” Haag downplays the accolades, “There were many, many people who were involved that worked equally as hard,” she shared.

The 250 Committee member names bear repeating. They are as follows: Nancy Baker, Sara Blum, Elaine Brand, Carol Casey, Judith Christensen, David Cranmer, Bill Deming, Meagan Downey, Paige A. Feeser, Judy Frazer, Laura Gannon-Murakami, Rosalyn Graham, Ellen Gurwitz, Colleen Haag, Ann L. Hogan, Bill Hogan, Toby Knox, Rep. Joan Lenes, Lisa Mann, Dorothea Penar, Patrick Perry, David Webster, Gwen Webster, Tod Whitaker, and Alice Winn.

Business sponsorships came from a variety of local businesses, including AARP, Acorn Marketing, Almartin Volvo, Alpine Web Media, Ark Veterinary Hospital, Automaster, Barkeaters, Breugger’s Bagels, Buono Appetito, Burlington Foreign Car Parts, Café Shelburne, Chef Leu’s, Cucina Antica, Futura Design, Goebeille Family, Heartworks, Healey Productions, Indigo, Inn at Shelburne Farms, JD Designs, Luxton-Jones Gallery, Northfield Savings Bank, O Bread, Paul O. Boisvert Photography, Picket Fence, Pecor Family, Penar Family, Pizzagalli Properties, Inc., Praximity Consulting, PT 360, Representative Joan Lenes, Rustic Roots, SCHIP’S Treasure Inc, Selin &amp; Selin Architecture, Shelburne Business and Professional Association, Shelburne Farms, Shelburne Farms Cheddar, Shelburne Museum, Shelburne News, Shelburne Shipyard, Shelburne Supermarket, T-Bird Motor Inn., TD Bank, Titus Insurance Co., Transcend Quality Manufacturing, and Vermont Teddy Bear.

<i>The town is currently putting together a commemorative book featuring pictures from the weekend’s festivities and historical photos. Local businesses and families are encouraged to sponsor an ad in the book. As a sponsor, you’ll receive copies of the book in the fall of 2013 and commemorate your place in Shelburne’s history. The deadline is Sept. 15<sup>.</sup> Email for more information.</i>

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