Twenty Eight Years Ago Today
January 2, 2013 - 28 years ago today I took over at the Hotel Coolidge. What
a trip this has been! The details can be very interesting (and telling) and
they can also become about as much fun as watching "the slides of someone
else's vacation" so I will spare you those.
What I would like to express is this: The community in which we live has
indeed become "The Upper Valley". Although the term was coined in 1952 via
the arrival and promotion of the Valley News by our own Walter Paine it was
not fully engaged by 1985. However the label has inevitably become
instituted and I think it works. Sometimes with an outsider we have to
expand it by saying "The Upper Connecticut River Valley" much as people say
"the Twin Cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis", but overall Upper Valley
feels comfortable and we prosper as we routinely cross the lines for mutual
In the case of White River Junction it has come to a place where we have
truly re-invented ourselves. The bustling commercial/industrial district we
were when I was a kid in the 40's, 50's and 60's faded in the 70'2, 80's and
90's. Today it remains a natural center of activity but now based on a
"creative economy". I am pleased to have been a part of this. One
particularly rewarding aspect is how comprehensive the involvement of Upper
Valley folk have been in this successful transition period. From Tupelo to
Tip Top, from River City Arts to Northern Stage to the Center for Cartoon
Studies, from Listen to The Haven, and from Junction Frame to Lampscapes to
Revolution to Scavenger and so on, the fabric of "WRJ" is a wonderful tartan
of the values of the Upper Connecticut River Valley community.
The central vision at the Hotel Coolidge has been merged with this all along
and yet, at times, the fact that we are an actual hotel has often been lost.
Our 30 guest rooms present as typical Vermont country inn rooms insofar as
they are all distinctive. Appointed within that ambiance while providing
privates baths, free wifi, and cable TV, the convenient village location
brings with it a value we claim "even Calvin Coolidge appreciated"; just as
his father did before him.
Please come and see our guest rooms. They can serve you well with your
out-of town visitors whether they be family or business travelers. Although
most of you have been to an event or a conference or a wedding or for
Thanksgiving, not so many of you have actually stayed with us.
The Hotel Coolidge role is confirmed by its lodging facilities and this year
our focus will finally be on that. I came back to my hometown to be an
innkeeper and finally it seems as though we can confirm that goal. I invite
you to keep us in mind as a village inn in the New England tradition. We are
a Place of Hospitality (since 1849).
Hotel Coolidge Innkeeper since 1985