Community Event Honors Resilience a Year After Irene

From Margo Marrone


Wow, what an amazing event Sunday turned out to be & the weather cooperated nicely! There were probably 50 or so people there for the church service & well over 100 in the tent for the remainder of the activities. Something for everyone!

Thanks to the many people who helped to make the Tender Hearts & Helping Hands Celebration happen. The planning committee of Tina & Bruce Verdrager. Carolyn Scott, Pieter Bowen, Russ Tonkin & myself helped with good ideas & practical preparation. We couldn’t have done it without Laurence Jeffrey providing his lovely tent as the location & Jim Neilson from Hawk providing some great food & paper goods.

Tyson Church made delicious desserts & members, Cheryl Bishop & Denise Dean helped with getting decorations, while Ann Rose helped to get things set-up. The teens & staff from Windsor Youth Services were an immense help & a joy to have around! Melissa Maravell played & sang in the church & a bit in the tent, but the volume of animated conversation made it impossible to hear. She has said she will come another time & do a concert in the church! It was truly a community happening for all ages, with a wide variety of dishes brought to the potluck.

Thanks to all of our speakers, who briefly gave thanks. Laurence provided the welcome & noted how wonderful it is to live in such a caring community. Jonathan Wilson from Farm & Wilderness spoke, as did Russ Tonkin on behalf of the Select Board. Jill Davies spoke for the Resource Center & the Plymouth Memory Tree Fund, while Al Poirier did the same for Incident Command & Emergency Services.

A delightful young man expressed thanks for the support given to Windsor Youth Services as they continue to rebuild their damaged youth home. Laurie Marechaux brought materials about Starting Over Strong VT & also did some face painting. Tom’s mom was sporting a lovely flower on her cheek!

I mentioned the donation received by the church from the National United Church of Christ & other donations that were received from individuals that allowed us to disburse funds within Plymouth, but also out of our borders to those in need. Forgive me if I left anyone out!

A list of possible future community events was encouraged & these were suggested: book club, writing group, Dharma group, town-wide garage sale, sledding party near the cheese factory, bingo & possibly a wild game supper. Some folks posted individual notes of appreciation on the Board, but I imagine there are some more who might want to do so. We will leave it at the church for this Sunday, than take it to the Town Hall, so others can participate!

This was a celebration of the resiliency of the community as we reached out to one another & worked to care for those around us. Al Poirier touched upon preparedness for the future & Todd Menes talked briefly about the environment factors. Both of those issues probably bear further discussion at another time.

Thanks to everyone who joined the party & made it so much fun!

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