Au Revoir….Woodstock Early Bird Flying the Coop!

Arjuna GoodbyeHere is it September 1st and we notice that even the “Closing” sign has come down from Arjuna. There is no sign now. Just an empty storefront. Even the hanging Arjuna sign has come down. On a beautiful, steamy, misty September 1st morning we bid adieu to Toni as we walked by (although she wasn’t there)  and her lovely shop which really, really did shut down yesterday (despite one previous “false closing”) after more than 20 years in business on Central Street in Woodstock. She will still be “around” although not as much “on the street.”

Reid LangonaIt seems to be a time for new directions as the Labor Day weekend winds its way down. We also bid adieu to our wonderful young neighbor Reid Langona, who is off to Emmanuel College in Boston for a little fun and some study into sports management. He has already contributed to the Woodstock community in many ways, as a member of the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps, as a hanging basket planter, as a member of Change the World Kids and as an athlete at Woodstock Union High School. We also noticed another talented young person from the street was packing up the van to head back to college as well.

Despite the steamy tropical climate in place at the moment, there is the wistfulness of Fall in the air, a yellowing of the leaves, the cicadas buzzing and the last flocks of kids of ending their vacations…which brings us to Woodstock Early Bird herself:

jc glacier bay

It is also time for Woodstock Early Bird to bid a fond adieu, to fly the coop away from this project and onto new endeavors. We have enjoyed writing, reporting, opining and observing on all matters Woodstock (and even some issues non-Woodstock). But, now, after two years, looking at the reality of our finances, we cannot continue to provide this service, even on a part-time basis. It is time to shut ‘er down. And so,  your Woodstock Early Bird “marquee” is going dark.

We have had the support of all of you – over 1,000 subscribers (!) —   and the hard-nosed  financial backing of some fabulous 100 local individuals and businesses. These are all people who actually said, “I will write a check. I will support this news and opinion offering as an outlet for independent reporting and the exchange of ideas.”

These folks, your neighbors, who wrote checks in the amount of $20 to $250, understood that they didn’t need to agree with all or any of Woodstock Early Bird’s opinions in order to say “yes” to the idea of Woodstock Early Bird, thus showing their clear – one might say even patriotic — support of “freedom of speech.” We personally thank them. They get it. They got it. On the more controversial issue points raised by Woodstock Early Bird, we admire them for their continued backing. Quite admirable, when the winds might have been blowing against them, we would say!

As to accomplishments, we are proud of having brought news coverage of municipal meetings back to the front-burner and of having worked with police to improve information-sharing via timely press releases to the public.

We are particularly grateful to many Woodstock Early Bird “tipsters” who shared with us their information and their points-of-view. There’s nothing like a good little chit-chat to start the ball rolling for some serious change.

We had thought of continuing Woodstock Early Bird into the future, perhaps under a different but like-minded journalist, under a different owner and with a different form of financial backing.

For now, though, it is best to say a clean and formal adieu, a simple: Thanks everyone for playing in the sandbox!

If you want to thank anyone for Woodstock Early Bird, please thank the advertisers listed below:

(We won’t list individual donors , but if you know one, thank them! Their support made an enormous difference!)












We also appreciated local discounts given to Woodstock Early Bird by Sudie’s and 47 Central Street! 

Many of you love statistics, so here you go, the final numbers for Woodstock Early Bird!

815,000 Views: It’s all YOU, baby, all YOU! 

Sept 1, 2013 Woodstock Early Bird Stats

  • You might be interested to know that we will also being saying adieu to our “top” commentors on Woodstock Early Bird. We know!  It will be so sad to leave behind the likes of Bill Boardman, Hunter Melville, Lance Webster, Peggy Kannestine, Molly McDermott, Bob Pear, Careen Little, Diana Brown, Corwin Sharp, Stephen Thomas (THAT GUY!) and so many other fine writer/citizens!  We will miss you! (You, too Vinnie!)

43 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by barbarajsammon on September 1, 2013 at 16:00

    so so so so sad… will be missed julia!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! please stay in touch!!!!!!!!!!!!! xoxoxo


  2. Posted by Corwin Sharp on September 1, 2013 at 16:05

    Bye, Bye, Birdie! Safe travels…


  3. Posted by Diana Brown on September 1, 2013 at 16:17

    Oh dear, what will we do? Woodstock Early Bird is unique. A true marketplace of ideas, forceful whimsical language, left and right, and up and down opinions. I could go on and on! Points raised by you, Julia, have raised consciousness, individual as well as that of the body politic. Route 4will be safer in the future, I know, because of the ongoing WEB conversation. This town weathered Irene with better and more organized response because you worked tirelessly to get the news out to us- remember many of us only had internet!(And we could not leave our neighborhoods, because we were cut off). Most importantly hearts truly touched hearts through your blog, in healing and helpful ways. What a gift. Thank you and Godspeed.


  4. Posted by Peggy Kannenstine on September 1, 2013 at 16:24

    Hope you
    will change your mind. And, if not, that another “bird” will feed the flock.
    Bye for now 🙂


  5. Posted by Shannon Wheadon on September 1, 2013 at 16:32

    Oh no!! Thank you for the fantastic blog. I just started following a few months ago and have been so thankful for the great information that you provide. Up until my subscription I had been telling my husband that it’s too bad there isn’t a source for news in Woodstock. Then I stumbled upon you!

    Thanks again and I hope to see something similar in the future!

    Date: Sun, 1 Sep 2013 19:57:17 +0000 To:


  6. Posted by Deb Kalanges on September 1, 2013 at 16:34

    I will miss getting your updates in my email since I’m not here full time in Woodstock. I may not always share your views but have certainly enjoyed reading all of your updates and thank you for keeping me informed in happenings in and around the Village.. Good luck on all of your future endeavors. Woodstock Early Bird will be missed!!!


  7. Posted by Barbara Baker on September 1, 2013 at 17:00


    Sent from my iPhone


  8. Posted by Barbara Baker on September 1, 2013 at 17:01

    Thank you

    Sent from my iPhone


  9. Posted by Steven Thomas on September 1, 2013 at 17:03

    Wow, now I fully realize how used to and dependent I am on WEB! Cold Turkey is here without warning! Thank you, Julia, for giving us this experience of hot news, well written and with opinion. I’m sorry it couldn’t have been sustaining for you but wish you all the best in your future endeavors. If you ever choose to fly south again, there will always be many roosts for you. Adieu!


  10. Posted by Careen on September 1, 2013 at 17:04

    I wish you all good things Bird! I owe you a personal thanks for your help with our sad situation with our dog , Gus. You offered us an opportunity to see the kindness and empathy in our community, and for that we will be forever grateful….I will miss your candid points of view and your courage to stand up for what you believe in . xoxoxo


  11. Posted by Edie Janisse on September 1, 2013 at 17:13

    oh, no!! Say it isn’t so!!! We will miss you. We always said, “Oh, we’ll find out what happened on The Early Bird.!!” What will we do now???? Don’t go. . . .
    We love you,
    Edie & Chuck @
    October Country Inn


  12. Posted by Annie macDonald on September 1, 2013 at 17:33

    Bye sweet Julia, at this moment I have tears in my eyes. Ha, remember the night I called first responders for my husband, I will always chuckle at that memory. Keep in touch because I do get out west once or twice a year. Annie


  13. Posted by William Boardman on September 1, 2013 at 17:43

    Bon voyage, Julia ;-)))


  14. Posted by michelle on September 1, 2013 at 18:13

    Thank you! You’ll be missed!


  15. Posted by Carole Gaudet on September 1, 2013 at 18:54

    I’ll miss WEB very much. Thanks so much for two great years. I wish you all the best.


  16. Posted by A. E. Norton on September 1, 2013 at 19:04

    Very sorry to read of this. You’ve been what in days of yore was called the town crier.– a vital service. It’s been a valuable and enjoyable post, and you will be missed. I hope someone else decides to step up. Good luck in all future endeavors.


  17. Posted by Donna on September 1, 2013 at 19:29

    I am really going to miss your blog, it was how I started and ended my day. I wish you good luck and happy days ahead.


  18. Posted by Bill Caudell on September 1, 2013 at 19:48

    I did not always agree with your political stances but then my tend to change from time- to- time anyway so maybe my timing was just off- and anyway, it was your blog not mine. Your publication has been a real treat- so informative of the ‘goings on’ and local color in Woodstock while I am in Houston missing the town and Village that feels so much like home. Yours is the first emails I open.
    Thank you, and thank you for helping us get through the Hurricane (and power outages, and water outages, and road outages, and , and, and!
    Best of good fortune to you on your next journey.
    Bill Caudell


    • Thanks Bill I particularly appreciate the words from someone who wasn’t “on board” with everything but still understood what Woodstock Early Bird was about. I learned much from reader input and may even have been educated so that my own views changed! Thanks for reading!


  19. Posted by Thea J. on September 1, 2013 at 19:50

    I’ll be missing the Early Bird. I got hooked when I was trying to find out about family and friends in Woodstock during the Irene flooding 2 years ago. Then I stayed hooked, even though I’m not a Woodstock resident. You’ve provided a hugely valuable service- and a well written and entertaining one. Thank you.


  20. Posted by Deb Gravel on September 1, 2013 at 20:08

    I just started reading your blog this year and got hooked. There are so many times I don’t sit long enough to read the whole VN or VT Standard so it was nice to keep up with what was going on around me. Many thanks and best of luck.


  21. Posted by Don on September 1, 2013 at 20:12

    Bird stay well and safe in your next flight thank you


  22. Posted by Joan & Elliot Rubin on September 1, 2013 at 20:23

    We’ll miss the Woodstock Early Bird, especially the warm-hearted glimpses into the doings of our favorite home away from home.

    Joan & Elliot Rubin


  23. Posted by Bob Pear on September 1, 2013 at 20:55

    Julia, You did so much more since, but one of your early unrecognized moments was Post-Irene. I remember teaming with you on the water updates- it was critical to get the word out “real time” on the need to conserve our water supply in the village and you helped make it happen. It was great to work with you during those difficult times and I recognize and applaud the service you provided to our community, then and since! Sometimes you caught me by surprise and I felt a bit of sting, but I always found your writing creative and well done, and always quite civil, ( can’t say as much for some of your other commentors). Thank you and I still hope to see you in the ‘hood and on the Green, even if it is only on occasion!


  24. Posted by Patricia on September 1, 2013 at 20:55

    Thanks for providing a great service. I, too, started reading during Irene and became a regular reader. Best to you!


  25. Posted by Alison on September 1, 2013 at 21:44

    How bittersweet that we just talked last week about the wonderful service you provided to Woodstock and the surrounding communities. I only wish I had forced myself out more often to visit with you on the sidewalk, when I saw you walking. I will miss you and what you have given the readers. Flap those wings until we meet again 😦


  26. Posted by Margaret Nielsen on September 1, 2013 at 22:10

    So sorry , o will miss your news. Good luck in what your pursue. Hopefully, you can come back with some sponsorship . Margaret Nielsen

    Sent from my iPad


  27. Posted by jennifer on September 1, 2013 at 23:20

    Oh no! This is truly the only news I read. What will I do? Surely life will go on for your readers but it’s a bittersweet ending. You did a fabulous job. Thanks for all your hard work and time. Best to you in all your endeavors.


  28. Posted by Jeanne on September 1, 2013 at 23:38

    Julia, I am nearly speechless and oh SO SAD! Totally unprepared to say goodbye.

    I’ve learned to rely on your reporting … And always look forward to hearing your views. The service you’ve provided to our community has been a priceless gift. Thank you! Most of all, though, I will miss you and Juno!

    I just can’t say goodbye. You’ve gone away before … And returned. So I can only hope this will be a brief respite … That your travels will be fun and rewarding … And that soon we’ll have you back “home” again! Take good care!

    Your friend,


  29. Posted by Andrea Elliott on September 1, 2013 at 23:45

    I’ve enjoyed your WEB blog for two years now. My hubby and I visit Woodstock every year and have for the last nine years. I was fortunate enough to find your blog during Irene — you kept us up-to-date especially since we were staying at The Woodstock Inn. We are from Houston and know what devastation a storm like Irene can do to a community. Hope you very well on your next take-off! Maybe we’ll meet some day on the streets during our yearly visits in October.


  30. Posted by Andrea T. on September 2, 2013 at 01:10

    I’d like to think you’ll be back – like a homing pigeon.


  31. Posted by Marcia on September 2, 2013 at 02:36

    Julia. What a wonderful gift you have given us with this column. We will miss your news. Am hoping that your going out of town is a usual winter hibernation and not a permanent move. Thanks for the WEB


  32. Posted by Suzanne Bertram on September 2, 2013 at 02:52

    SNIFFFFFFFF ……….I’m a Woodstock girl but have been living in France for 45 years – the Early Bird re-sensitized me to the day to day life in my home town. THANK YOU VERY MUCH


  33. Posted by Jim McHugh on September 2, 2013 at 07:50

    Best wishes to you and thanks for your entertaining, informative and enormously valuable blog. All of us will be the poorer for its disappearance.


  34. Posted by Mimi Baird on September 2, 2013 at 08:14

    Julia, your gracious exit from your superior service to our community is an example to us all. Your voice will be enormously missed. Lucky the town who next gets your talents. Thank you for your caring, style and integrity. Godspeed.


  35. Posted by Peggy Merrill on September 2, 2013 at 08:47

    Julia, I will miss your blog tremendously. What joy, what timeliness, what vital information. Thank you, thank you for making Early Birds of us all. Safe flights!


  36. Posted by Nancy Hoblin on September 2, 2013 at 09:03

    Oh no! How you will be missed. Fly safe and keep us in your thoughts as we will you.


  37. Posted by Chris Balcer on September 2, 2013 at 09:21

    Thank you ever so much for your time investment towards keeping us up to date, in and around Woodstock. Your blog will be sorely missed. Good luck to you in your coming life’s journey.


  38. Posted by Natalie Billings on September 2, 2013 at 10:49

    I second all the above comments and join everyone in their sadness to see you go.
    Best of luck in your future endeavors, Julia. We appreciate all of your efforts these past few years….

    Natalie Billings


  39. Posted by Gay Travers on September 2, 2013 at 12:33

    Julia, you will be leaving a huge hole in our community. Woodstock will be the poorer with your absence. Thank you for everything.


  40. Posted by xavier baldwin & janice krattiger on September 7, 2013 at 03:23


    We can’t thank you enough for the service you have provided. During and after the dark days when we lost our little piece of Vermont to Irene, you kept us informed way out here in California. We were devastated to lose our mobile home in Riverside Park where we had a great spot on the bend of the river. We could not lose a place in Vermont, our second home and a place we love. So we got another mobile home in Quechee.

    We love Woodstock and you kept us feeling part of it. Best of luck in all your future endeavors. Find happiness…

    Job well done and can’t express how much you will be missed.


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