Here you'll find our latest collection of Caledonian-Record reports on the coronavirus outbreak and local response, from the beginning of May.

April Coverage: 

https://www.caledonianrecord.com/news/local/coronavirus-coverage-april/collection_c56580a8-7f7c-11ea-b0cd-732a2e7b3384.html

January, February and March Coverage:

https://www.caledonianrecord.com/news/local/our-coronavirus-coverage/collection_5885178c-692e-11ea-ba07-b775f5139ff9.html

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A little bit of normalcy returned to the Caledonia County Courthouse in St. Johnsbury when three defendants appeared in person to participate in what used to be routine Monday morning arraignments.

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Peacham residents who are experiencing financial stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic are encouraged to apply for assistance to the Peacham COVID-19 Relief Fund. Applications are available on the Town website or on the table outside of the Town Clerk’s Office. Applications are due by June 15, with grant decisions being made by June 20. All applications are confidential.

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On Monday the Vermont Health Department reported three new cases of coronavirus in Orleans County, which represents the largest daily jump in cases for the Northeast Kingdom since the pandemic first hit Vermont.

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LYNDON CENTER — Family and friends, as well as faculty and staff from Lyndon Institute turned out in droves to cheer on the Class of 2020 from Lyndon Institute in a parade preceding graduation Sunday morning.

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He had all the elements he needed to sell it – white dress shirt, beard, and body leaning into the pulpit before him. The sight was so familiar to the Fuller Hall crowd that many began laughing before he even spoke. He talked about Ubuntu, prime numbers, and butterflies breaking from their cocoon. The speech became more bizarre the more he went on. The crowd roared with laughter.

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The Burklyn Arts Council is informing the community that the decision has been made to cancel its 50th anniversary summer fair, which would have been on Independence Day in the Bandstand Park in Lyndonville. The difficult decision to cancel was made as the situation with SARS-COVID-19 remains unresolved with questions, both of the wisdom and the legality of holding mass gatherings. After monitoring the state guidelines, it has become clear that BAC can not host the summer fair this year.

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LYNDONVILLE — Shear Sensations, a salon at the corner of Depot and Broad streets, was given permission by the Lyndonville Village Trustees this week to set out four chairs, six feet apart, on the sidewalk in front of the shop to allow patrons to wait for appointments at safe social distancing.

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LYNDON CENTER — Trustees of the Vermont State Colleges System’s Board (VSCS) on Monday heard from Northern Vermont University (NVU) President Elaine Collins about plans to get the university “humming” with partnerships with local businesses to create internships and local workforce training opportunities.

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COVENTRY - The Vermont National Guard will be at Northeast Kingdom International Airport on Tuesday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., distributing non-perishable food boxes, along with produce, chicken and dairy products provided by the Abbey Group while supplies last.

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MONTPELIER — Today, June 1, courts will begin a gradual expansion of operations to include the hearing of non-emergency matters. The expansion of operations across units and divisions will occur at different rates. This is due to a variety of factors, including the time and other resources needed to outfit and arrange courthouses and courtrooms in a way that promotes social distancing and is consistent with other applicable public health guidelines.

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Louise Whipple, of Newport Hair Trends and Day Spa, says she is ready to go back to work, with the governor’s reopening decision for hair salons. “I am calm, at ease and focused. It will be great to interact and create again.” (Courtesy Photo)

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The state is backing off its effort to keep a Rutland gym closed since an official loosening of COVID-19 restrictions against such businesses is expected to be announced today, but the gym’s owner and his attorney from Walden are taking the conflict in a new direction.

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Time is nearly up to nominate a local non-profit in the annual Red Sox Foundation “IMPACT” Awards contest. The program gives Red Sox fans a chance to vote for their favorite local non-profit. Top vote-getters win grant money. Two years ago, St. Johnsbury Academy took second place in Vermont.

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DANVILLE — Graduation ceremonies for most of the seven public schools within the Caledonia Central Supervisory Union are being announced this week - including a plan for seniors in Danville to graduate in an in-person, very carefully monitored ceremony and for Cabot School seniors to participate in a by-invitation-only yearbook signing.

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Hardwick companies are collaborating to manufacture and distribute hand sanitizer. The hand sanitizer, produced according to the World Health Organization’s (WHO) approved formulation, will be made available to area businesses, essential workers, first responders, and any resident in need.

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Catamount Arts and Northern Vermont University are partnering to offer drive-in entertainment this summer. With COVID-19 safety concerns still looming large, artists and arts organizations must develop responsible programming strategies that reduce risks to live audiences. Catamount Arts plans to host drive-in movies and concerts this summer at both NVU campuses, an innovation they hope will keep patrons safe while offering opportunities to get out and enjoy both live and large-screen entertainment.

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Hundreds of cars line up for a mobile food pantry in the former Hitchiner Manufacturing parking lot on Saturday, May 23 in Littleton, N.H. A team of 23 guardsmen assisted the NH Food Bank with the distribution of more than 15,383 meals to 350 families.

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For two centuries, as it grew to include members in neighboring towns and adapted to meet the needs of the times, the Willing Workers Society of Sugar Hill hasn’t strayed from its mission — to foster a spirit of helpfulness throughout the community.

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ST. JOHNSBURY — Demand for more than double the usual amount of Meals on Wheels deliveries continues — and the Northeast Kingdom Council on Aging has been able to meet the need thanks to many community partners who have stepped up to take care of home-bound seniors and others who rely on the program.

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NORTHEAST KINGDOM — One of the many sectors of the economy dealt a major blow by the Coronavirus pandemic has been lodging establishments — which were essentially shuttered in mid-March when the governor declared a State of Emergency across Vermont.

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NORTHEAST KINGDOM — A 10-second aerial show drew a crowd Friday outside Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital as four F35A Lighting II fighter jets flew in formation overhead as a show of support for hospital workers.

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Each Memorial Day people are encouraged to gather and honor the memory of military men and women who fought for the country, but this year the perceived threat of a pandemic has government officials directing people to avoid gathering together.

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NORTHEAST KINGDOM — The skies above Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital and North Country will rumble with a military salute today as the 158th Fighter Wing of the Vermont Air National Guard honors front line COVID-19 responders and essential workers with a flyover.

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Amid continued outcry from Waterford School parents over the reduction of a second-grade teaching position, the Caledonia Cooperative School District (CCSD) Board on Wednesday night approved a reduced Fiscal Year 2021 budget of $11,877,933, a 7.20 percent increase in education spending per equalized pupil.

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The pandemic has inspired a variety of responses across the Northeast Kingdom from the creation of volunteer teams, food donations and public displays of support for health care workers, but in Peacham a community effort was launched to provide direct financial assistance to those affected by the pandemic.

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LYNDON CENTER — On Sunday, Northern Vermont University (NVU) - with campuses in Lyndon Center and Johnson - celebrated its 2020 graduating class with two virtual celebrations and a personalized website for the Class of 2020.

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LYNDONVILLE — Staff at Faith In Action, a nonprofit organization, took over the kitchen in the basement of the Lyndonville First Congregational Church on Friday morning, where they made a homemade lunch for about 30 employees of the locally-owned White Market stores.

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WATERFORD — A number of parents at Waterford School aren’t happy but the Caledonia Cooperative School District (CCSD) on Thursday night moved forward with plans to present a reduced Fiscal Year 2021 budget on June 30 to voters in the towns of Barnet, Walden and Waterford, which make up the unified PreK-8 district.

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ST. JOHNSBURY — The Fairbanks Inn on Western Avenue is being used temporarily to house homeless people during the Coronavirus pandemic crisis by the State of Vermont’s Economic Services Division, and local police have been called to the motel multiple times in recent weeks, said St. Johnsbury Police Chief Tim Page.

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This week marked the latest step in the slow reopening of the region’s economy with New Hampshire’s non-essential retail stores reopening Monday and the announcement that Vermont’s non-essential shops can open next Monday.

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NORTHEAST KINGDOM — Local community, business and organization leaders had an opportunity to outline concerns and hear about possible federal initiatives during a virtual meeting between the Northeast Kingdom Collaborative and Congressman Peter Welch Friday morning.

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LITTLETON — As the coronavirus pandemic continues and social distancing remains in place, the Littleton Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 816 has decided to cancel its annual Memorial Day procession, one of the area’s largest Memorial Day events that includes school bands and youth, many community members, and scores of area veterans.

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Many Vermonters are in some degree of isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but for segments of the population who endure isolation even in the best of times, the recent dramatic cessation of social contact comes with particular risks, ranging from loneliness and depression, to hunger and unmet physical needs that could result in negative health care outcomes.

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Moms across the world are pitching in extra duty right now, whether on the front lines as health care workers, in retail jobs, and, importantly, as volunteers in their community during the pandemic.

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Hiking is a great way to enjoy a spring day, but the Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department and Audubon Vermont recommend people check to see if the area they are planning to hike or climb is open. In addition to the many trails that are currently closed to limit the spread of the Coronavirus, several cliff areas are closed to protect nesting peregrine falcons.

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A special meeting of the Vermont State Colleges System (VSCS) Board of Trustees on Wednesday evening was held as a follow-up to recent weeks of major upset related to a now-rescinded proposal to close Northern Vermont University (NVU) and the Randolph campus of the Vermont Technical College (VTC).

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LYNDON — A discussion of whether or not to hold this year’s Stars and Stripes Festival and Parade due to Covid-19 was held at the Lyndon Area Chamber of Commerce’s April 27 meeting. Sarah Lafferty, Steve Nichols, Cindy Karasinski, Christina Cotnoir, Abby Long, Leah Hollanberger, Sandy Amadon, Amy South, Heather Tanner, Cheryl McMahon and Annie Mclean were in attendance at the zoom-format meeting.

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On Wednesday, Gov. Phil Scott announced Vermont officials were loosening restrictions a bit on social and business activities and will now allow more outdoor recreation activities, like golf, hiking, tennis and biking.

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ST. JOHNSBURY - Northeastern Vermont Regional Hospital restarted elective and time sensitive surgeries last week for the first time in more than a month.

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The coronavirus pandemic has upended almost every aspect of life and while the consequences of business shutdowns are expected to be tough on town governments, nobody knows just how bad things could get and what help there may be for local officials trying to grapple with the problem.

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CABOT — Two symbols of inclusion, tolerance and celebration of diversity were raised outside the small PreK-12 Cabot School on Sunday afternoon in a small, closed ceremony by invitation only due to the coronavirus pandemic crisis.

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LITTLETON - Until now, COVID-19 testing at Littleton Regional Healthcare, challenged by limited resources, has been for a limited population - first responders, police and health care workers and their household members, and long-term care residents and those whose job is to interact with large groups of people.

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