To mark the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Irene, this episode of State of the Re:Union explores how people in Vermont reacted and responded to the devastation of the floods of 2011.
Quaint storefronts along Main streets, covered bridges over clear streams, cows from dairy farms dotting green valleys: across the state, these are the iconic images of Vermont. But beyond its pastoral beauty, this is a place that prides itself on its independent spirit. Not only in the ways you might have heard of—first state in the nation to legalize same sex civil unions, say—but in the way Vermonters take on everyday life, and the challenges of it. This is truly a “small town state”—a place where individual communities are self determining, where geographic isolation has forced people to get creative, and take their town’s destiny into their own hands. In this hour, we’ll hear a range of stories of the way Vermont’s “small town state” identity manifests: from finding new ways to treat mental health problems, to a gallery with a surprising monthly ritual to dealing with the most devastating natural disaster the state has ever seen.