January 6, 2016

Short takes

Quechee/Pine Valley KOA Holiday wins awards
The Quechee/Pine Valley KOA Holiday has earned the prestigious 2016 KOA President’s and Founder’s Awards from Kampgrounds of America Inc., the world’s largest system of family-friendly, open-to-the-public campgrounds.
The awards were presented in November at KOA’s Annual International Convention in Daytona Beach, Florida. KOA celebrated its 53rd Anniversary in 2015.
The KOA President’s Awards are presented annually to campgrounds that receive high scores in customer service from their campers and high scores in KOA’s annual Campground Quality Review.
The KOA Founder’s Award is named in honor of Dave Drum, who founded KOA on the banks of the Yellowstone River in Billings, Montana in 1962. It is given to those KOA campgrounds that attained the very top scores in both customer service and the KOA Quality Review.
To find out more, visit www.KOA.com.
Series features innovations
by Vermont companies
A series of “Climate Innovator Stories” organized by the Vermont Council on Rural Development, or VCRD, is highlighting recent innovations by Vermont companies.
Examples range from manufacturers of super-insulated panels for new buildings to engineers that are designing ways to warm greenhouses using heat generated from on-farm compost piles.
The series will continue throughout the winter and is online at www.vtrural.org.
This series is part of the Climate Change Economy Initiative that VCRD started earlier this year. The group is hosting “Ideas to Action,” the second Summit on Vermont’s Climate Change Economy, on Feb. 22 at Vermont Technical College in Randolph.
Vermont State Parks
receives award
AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps, a federal community service program, recently named Vermont State Parks as its “Project Sponsor of the Year.”
To be selected, the nominated project sponsors must go beyond the norm to create a healthy and safe environment for the program’s teams and develop a solid project.
The 10-member project team sponsored by Vermont State Parks spent six weeks living at the campground at Mt. Ascutney State Park while doing service projects at three different locations.
Mobius announces
mentoring grants
Mobius recently awarded 27 grants to support adult-to-youth mentoring programs throughout the state, as part of the Vermont Mentoring Grants initiative. The grants totaled $327,715.
Eight of this year’s grants, which totaled more than $150,000, will support mentoring agencies and programs serving youth in southern Vermont. These included a $45,000 grant to Everybody Wins! Vermont; a $26,000 grant to The DREAM Program; a $25,475 grant to The Mentor Connector; a $18,300 grant to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Bennington County/United Counseling Service; a $15,500 grant to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Windham County/Youth Services; a $12,250 grant to Windsor County Partners; a $6,500 grant to the Ottaquechee Community Partnership; and a $2,600 grant to The Collaborative.
Statewide, this grant funding from Mobius will support 106 new and existing program sites, and nearly 1,900 adult-to-youth mentor pairs in communities across Vermont.
For more information: www.mobiusmentors.org.
HCRS honors local employers for support
Health Care and Rehabilitation Services, or HCRS, recently hosted an employer appreciation luncheon in the Upper Valley.
This event was an opportunity for HCRS to recognize employers within the community who provide a meaningful, supportive and safe working experience for clients with developmental disabilities.
Appreciation awards were presented to Allard’s Furniture, Cantore’s Pizza, Chili’s, Dan and Whit’s Country Store, Dartmouth College Childcare Center, Dartmouth Dining Services, Howe’s All State Cleaning and Maintenance, Kendal of Hanover, King Arthur Flour, Price Chopper, Todd Moses Construction, Wendy’s and The Woodstock Inn & Resort.
Publications recognize
Okemo Mountain Resort
Okemo Mountain Resort recently received media accolades from some of the nation’s top publications.
Okemo was ranked ninth among the East’s Top Ten in SKI Magazine’s highly anticipated Resort Guide issue. The magazine also gave Okemo a first-place ranking in lifts.
In its November 2015 issue, TransWorld SNOWboarding listed Okemo among its East Coast Top Five list of the best terrain parks.
Holocaust Center
receives regional award
The Carolyn and Leonard Miller Center for Holocaust Studies at the University of Vermont is the winner of the 2016 Robert J. McKenna Award for Program Achievement, an annual award from the New England Board of Higher Education, or NEBHE.
The award will be presented at NEBHE’s 2016 New England Higher Education Excellence Awards Dinner in Boston on March 4.
Four hundred higher-education, government and business leaders from the region are expected to attend. v

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