Upper Valley Dispatch

Judge Excludes ‘Confession’ Letter in Bethel Shooting Case

White River Junction — A Superior Court judge has ruled to not allow into evidence a letter that defense attorneys had said could exonerate Emily Perkins, the South Royalton woman accused in a 2011 Bethel shooting. The handwritten letter, purported to have been written by Perkins’ husband Michael before he died of cancer, took responsibility for the shooting that injured a teenage woman and left a Bethel man dead. In a 13-page decision filed in Windsor Superior Court on Tuesday, Judge Karen Carroll said that

'Valley News' Seeks Freelance Writers

The Valley News occasionally needs freelance writers to cover news and feature stories. If you have reporting experience — or reporting skills, but are in need of experience — and would like to be included on our roster of available writers, please send a resume to: Martin Frank, Editor, Valley News, PO Box 877, White River Junction, Vt. 05001.

Upper Valley’s Core City Is ‘Best Small Town in America’

Lebanon may not be America’s Best Town, but it is the Best Small Town in America. Confused yet? All it means is that, just weeks after being burned in one online competition to identify nice communities, Lebanon has triumphed in another. In the first, hosted by Outside Magazine, Lebanon was ousted by Lake Placid in the first round of a 64-town bracketed competition. (Chattanooga, Tenn., and Port Angeles, Wash., are currently battling it out for bragging rights and a feature spread in the magazine.) But

Flatlander Grateful for a Kind Community

In a letter to the editor published on Wednesday, Paul Sunde, of Wilder, thanked the Norwich Police Department and a good Samaritan for returning his wallet “and everything it contained, truly everything.” This letter struck me as a simple yet accurate depiction of the kindness of the Upper Valley community. Whether it’s someone holding a door open at the store, a clerk spending extra time with a customer, a fellow motorist waving to a passerby or someone returning a lost wallet, this community is full

Meeting Tonight on Gas Project Proposed for Route 120 in Lebanon

West Lebanon — Valley Green Natural Gas, the entity planning to construct a natural gas facility serving the Route 120 corridor, is set to hold a public information session tonight at the Kilton Public Library in West Lebanon. Developer Jay Campion, the president of Valley Green Natural Gas, has previously appeared before Lebanon’s Planning and Zoning boards and Hanover’s Selectboard to describe the project, which is proposed to provide natural gas to area businesses and municipal groups, including Dartmouth College, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Hypertherm and

‘Strong to Severe’ Thunderstorms, Possible Hail Predicted for Upper Valley This Afternoon

The National Weather Service has issued an alert for likely “strong to severe thunderstorms” this afternoon across Vermont and northern New York, including Orange and Windsor counties. “Some thunderstorms may produce locally heavy rainfall, strong gusty winds and small hail, as well as frequent lightning,” the alert stated. A similar but less severe alert was also issued for Grafton and Sullivan counties on the other side of the Connecticut River, warning that “a few (thunderstorms) may be severe with damaging winds and heavy rainfall the

Lanky Jaywalker Caught on Video by Canaan Cop

As he was driving along Route 4 near Potato Road Thursday morning, Canaan Police Sgt. Ryan R. Porter noticed a jaywalker cross in front of traffic in a very, um, amoosing way. Canaan Police posted the video (embedded at the bottom of this page) to Facebook this morning, showing a moose walk across the busy highway and then do a faceplant across the road. “It did a nice recovery ... and probably thought no one noticed,” one person wrote in the comments. Sgt. Porter is

What’s Your Favorite Swimming Hole?

The Upper Valley has the most spectacular summers and no one knows that better than those of us who live here. From ice cream shops to swimming holes, to festivals and outdoor music, the area really does have it all. Nearly every year, in our annual Valley News Summer Guide, we include lists of area swimming holes and hikes. In the past, we have consulted area enthusiasts and organizations, or, in some cases, gone out to find the best spots ourselves. This year, we want

Flatlander Spies Nature’s Green and Gold

The Green Mountain State is living up to its name this spring. All different shades of green are filling in the bare trees and fields on the mountains and hillsides of the Upper Valley. Spring is a season I knew nothing of before moving up north from Florida, where everything is green all of the time and few appreciate the landscape’s rare and awesome bounty. It’s a tad difficult to appreciate your surroundings when all you can see are housing developments or strip malls and

Lebanon Water Tests Negative For Bacteria Friday; Boil Water Order Remains in Effect

Lebanon — The first round of follow-up tests of the city’s water system have come back negative today for any bacteria contaminants, but the boil water order remains in effect as testing continues. The city announced the findings in an alert sent out shortly after noon. The samples were taken Thursday after the city received positive tests for E. coli and Coliform bacteria at four sites in the water system. “The City of Lebanon just received the results of the first round of water test