Secret Valley Services Part 2

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Valley Secrets Part II – Arts, Eats and Hiking Treats

 

There are many treasures buried just beneath the surface of the Deerfield Valley, 

some so obvious that the locals won’t even think to mention because they’re part of 

the everyday DNA of the place.  It seems that talent comes out of the woodwork 

here.  Gallery Wright and the McGrath Gallery are run by people with serious 

personal practices and different ways of representing their interest in the natural 

world.  Ellie Roden or Nicki Steele will send you home with a little piece of Vermont 

in flower or photo form, framed or in a card to chronicle your vacation.  If you’ve not 

yet come across Lorraine and Skip Morrow, their weekly set at The Roadhouse is 

well worth it and Peter Miles (with or without his band) is a great backyard party 

addition. 

 

Quaigh designs is worth the wait—Lilias Hart’s well curated collection of gifts and 

art is open by appointment or chance (but for sure during the Marlboro Music 

Festival—check out their concerts during the season).  Hop on the opportunity for 

the “seconds sale” at the Vermont Bowl Company on summer holiday weekends. 

Further down the line on Route 9, the good folks at Austin’s Antiquarian Books can 

instruct in the art of fly fishing from their enormous collection (best browsed in 

person, though also available online).  They’ve got a few secret fishing spots up their 

sleeves, too, if you can demonstrate you’re a serious angler.   

Oh and Farms and Food!  If you find the Wheeler syrup shack on Rt. 100 you just 

might get a taste-test to help you figure out if you’re a “Fancy” or “Grade D” kind of 

gal.  Then head straight for the maple flavor at the Creemee Stand.  Continuing up 

that stretch, www.boydfamilyfarm.com has you covered with a choose-your-own CSA which you 

can apply to summer blueberries, holiday wreaths, or just about anything that 

comes out of the ground.  Adams Family Farm (in addition to paintball and a petting 

zoo) does a meat CSA with everything from chicken to Emu.  They’ll also process 

livestock, which I learned from Jack Snow whilst he was wood-roasting a pig in his 

converted oil-tank oven.  This makes for a great summer barbeque, wedding or 

special event.   

 

There’s a CSA pickup from Full Plate Farm on Friday afternoons in Marlboro and 

Wilmington throughout the summer.  Make the full circuit on Friday and hit up the 

Jacksonville Farmer’s Market for some wood fired pizza, lemonade and vendors of 

all stripes. For daily needs, you can find just about anything from nature’s bounty at 

Blue Mountain Produce.  The River Valley Market has a great selection of English 

sweets if you’re hankering for a Hob Knob (trust us).   Other offerings that only 

come around so often include the full-scale monthly Vegetarian Buffet at the 

Austrian Haus (again…trust us).   Pick up a copy of the Deerfield Valley News for 

more seasonal and special offers, this local rag has been covering the valley for 

decades and is one of the last local newspapers standing. 

 

We’ve been totally delighted by Spoonwood Cabin Creamery and their jewelbox 

storefront stocked with a diverse wine selection and totally scrumptious cheeses.  

You can get them at many local spots, one of our favorites is The Room at the 

Nutmeg—open only two nights a week, you don’t want to miss these tapas-style 

plates that pack a big punch.  The e-news from the Fromagerie is a fun way to learn 

about what they’re cultivating down in Jacksonville, and it is always tempting in the 

summertime to grab a sandwich and a bottle for an impromptu sunset picnic on 

Lake Whitingham.   Easy parking at Ward’s Cove abounds as the boaters are coming 

in for the evening and the sun slides over the horizon.

 

Speaking of scenery, we like the view from White’s Road just about any time of day, 

along with the spring fields of lupine that grow up on that hill.  If you’re really lucky, 

you’ll find your way up Haystack in the company of Jake White, who climbs faster 

and more frequently than those half his age, earning him the title “Mr. Haystack”.   

 

The Chamber hear is happy to point you in the right direction if you’ve got an 

inkling of your hiking level.  Step out the door onto the Hoot Toot and Whistle Trail, 

named for the railway that came through town this 4 mile roundtrip makes for a 

great easy walk along the water’s edge with picnic tables and swimming at the 

turnaround point.  Beginner outings to uphill climbs abound on the Valley Trail, be 

prepared to take the scenic route and expect that the detour is part of the adventure.

 

Posted By: Anonymous Author from Wilmington, Vermont

 

Blog Series funded by the Bi-Town Marketing Committee through grants from the Town of Dover & Wilmington 1% Funds