Old Dog, New Trips

Labor Day Adventures


Our beloved dog Cody turned twelve this past week.  He is no longer able to do the 2 and a half hour walks in the woods, but still has plenty of energy for road trips. In honor of his elder statesman status, we found a few new places in Vermont that allowed us all to get some walking in, but didn’t tax his abilities in the least.

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Looking through our dog friendly guide book to New England, we found a spot that wasn’t too far away, that we were interested in seeing.  The Hubbardton Battlefield just outside of Castleton Vermont was our first stop.  During the Revolutionary War, this was the only battle that was actually fought on Vermont soil.  There is a small museum, that includes artifacts from the battle, and a helpful diorama that shows the various skirmishes that took place.  Depending on who is working in the museum, you may find that your dog can accompany you.  Once you have familiarized yourself with the history, head outside and take the half-mile loop around the battlefield.  The site is ringed by the Green Mountains and has lovely wildflowers throughout the path.  Each year as close to July 7th as possible, there is a reenactment of the battle, which I hope to attend next year. 

Heading out of the area, we decided to head to Middlebury, a favorite Vermont town with lots to offer.  After parking we walked throughout town, stopping at Otter Creek Used Books to browse.  Although Cody was invited inside, we chose to take turns browsing, while one of us stayed on a bench just outside the store and waited.  After a bit more meandering down by the falls we decided to head to Otter Creek Brewery for a late lunch.  With their outdoor tables there are plenty of dogs who accompany their families to this great establishment.

This being a three-day weekend, the 2nd part of our adventure began on Labor day.  Our son suggested a visit to a museum in Glover Vermont that we had never heard of.  The Museum of Everyday Life is just that, a place that celebrates everyday items.

Toothbrushes, bells, penny whistles and dust are all celebrated. Housed in a barn with a sign that politely requests you turn off the lights when you leave, this Vermont treasure is a must see.

Continuing through the Northeast Kingdom we stopped in Hardwick for lunch.  The Buffalo Mountain Food Cooperative and Café was a terrific discovery with fresh salads and pastries we could eat outside at a picnic table overlooking the river.  And of course we had to stop in Galaxy Bookshop, another terrific independent bookstore with a very good selection.

Our final destination of the day, was to a place that has been on all our bucket lists for some time.  Dog Mountain, the home of  the Stephen Huneck gallery is quite simply heaven, for dogs and their families.  Just outside of downtown St. Johnsbury, this destination offers beautiful views, whimsical sculpture, plenty of hiking trails, and a gallery hosted by several dogs, who welcome you and your four-legged friend.   The chapel is a very moving experience, filled with notes and photos of people’s remembrances of their animals.   They also host a summer music series, with the last concert happening this Sunday.  And mark your calendars, there is a fall dog party on October 7th.

Consider bringing your dog on your next adventure, perhaps you will all find a new favorite destination, to visit in the years to come.


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