Noticed Around Brattleboro – Winter 2023-2024 Edition

Time again for Noticed, where you add little things you notice. Did you see a bird? How’s the rose bush? What’s that new thing over there?  That sort of stuff.

For me, I’ve noticed that it doesn’t really seem like winter very much. It’s warm, foggy, rainy and we haven’t seen snow in quite a while. Also:

  • No ice on Retreat Meadows.
  • No ice huts on the ice at Retreat Meadows.
  • The “care” business over near the Marina in the old roller rink building seems to be packing up.

Add your observations below in the comments.

Comments | 17

  • Mocha Joe's

    Kate Barry & Bruce Hunt purchase of Mocha Joe’s Café

  • Follow

    iBrattleboro has started a BlueSky account, for those who do that sort of thing:

  • US Cellular

    It appears that US Cellular on Putney Rd is closed.

  • Sports, and promotion

    I think I noticed that the sports store (autographs, photos, etc.) on Main Street is closed, too. A lot of downtown is empty right now.

    Watch the Town spend a fortune on advertising to “tourists” who will somehow come and spend enough downtown to keep the stores open. : ) Put another way, the Town has already spent a small fortune on advertising in recent years and we have more closed stores on Main Street than before they spent the money. The more we spend to attract outsiders, the less of a downtown we have. Maybe try something different, oh people who chase social media clicks?

  • fat squirrels

    I mentioned the girth of the local squirrels sometime in near past on this platform.
    Having just returned from a seek-and-acquire mission in Northampton&Amherst, I found the squirrels there and here are even bulkier but, remarkably, just as quick and jumpy as their thin versions.
    Their singular focus on sustenance while keeping humans at a distance has always been a joy for me to watch during my constitutional walks.

    • squirrel friends

      Were you seeking and acquiring squirrels? : )

      I noticed this year that all of our red squirrels vanished. We used to have 5-6 running around but all moved on. I’m guessing the stray cat in the yard might have made them a bit, uh, squirrelly about living here.

      Gray ones are still here, and very helpful for cleaning up all the black walnuts that fall in the yard. Not sure what I’d do without them.

      • it's been a few weeks since I've since a squirrel

        They may not hibernate but they sure aren’t scavenging this time of year.

        I’m surprised you saw red squirrels at all; the last time I saw one was over 20 years ago in Indiana.
        It’s my understanding that gray squirrels dominate the red ones; importing the gray guys from North America, some Englishman found this out the hard way many many years ago and the authorities wound up putting a bounty on their hides.

        I like squirrels as mankind has clearly decided to let that form of wildlife do what they want however they want. Not a lot of species can make that claim.

  • Squirrels

    I could bring you more grey squirrels. I have heard that squirrels are very smart and can find most of the nuts they bury. Mine can’t. In the first half of each summer I dig up and remove from my garden many sprouting nuts buried by squirrels that are not retrieved. Then they eat my broccoli, chew holes in the winter squash and put bite marks in tomatoes etc. They also spread material from the compost pile around the yard but do have some help with this from others like racoon and skunk. Not unusually to see six squirrels in the yard at the same time. Be happy to trap and deliver squirrels if you will take care of them. 🙂


  • Ice, ice, baby...

    Finally got a coating of ice on Retreat Meadow, though, it looks thin and areas aren’t fully frozen, either. But it is sort-of there now.

  • Ice Shanty

    There was an ice shanty on the meadows Tuesday, early afternoon. It was well out on the ice but I think a tent style so probably removed when the person finished. First I have seen this year.

  • Downtown Chocolates

    Tavernier Chocolates says

    “We had a wonderful experience setting up a holiday pop up shop in a gorgeous empty downtown storefront, we had our busiest holidays yet (much gratitude to our community)! So many people hoped it was permanent that we are setting up shop in a space just down the block in the Brooks House building starting in February to test the waters and see if a more permanent downtown move makes sense for us. Stay tuned for updates, and hope to see you downtown soon!”

  • ice fishing evolution

    Not too many years ago, lots of people had big, heavy ice huts that would be driven to the Retreat meadows on a trailer, then left out all season for ice fishing. Two by fours, plywood, and everything you could hope for in a small cabin experience. : )

    More recently, the heavy, handmade ice huts went away, replaced by lightweight tents that could be grabbed and removed quickly if need be. The ice wasn’t as reliable as in the past.

    Most recently (this week), I see that people have given up on the huts and tents and are simply fishing out on the ice, sitting on stools or standing around. Huts and tents aren’t out there. If things melt too much, you just grab your pole and run for shore.

    Note to newbies in Brattleboro – it’s not that deep out there. Falling through in most places would get you wet up to your waist, maybe neck.

  • Feb 18

    Ski jump successful!

    Artsy ice shanties could not be displayed on ice.

    Z-Pots on Main Street seems to be having a going out of business sale.

    New(ish) mural at Foodworks on Canal Street looks great.

  • skunk on Elliot Street

    Taken ~7.50am looking west with 218 Elliot on the left:
    The animal had just successfully traversed the road and was clearly scavenging for food with little regard for the nearby humans and cars.

    Taken 8.32am by the five-way intersection:
    Having been given a wide berth the photographer as he came down the quasi-bridge that Google calls the end of Elliot Street, the skunk clearly wanted to head uphill having found little to nothing to eat outside the residences near downtown:

  • another loss downtown: Elliot Street Fish & Chips

    It’s been many years since that the last time that space has been empty.

  • Birds

    Mar 12 – I saw my first robin in the yard. Had a flock of 40 or so goldfinches the other day.

  • No more t-shirts with VT jokes...

    Galanes/The Vermont Shop going out of business.

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