After a whirlwind month preparing the old Jonesville Country Store to re-open in May as the Long Trail Community Market (LTCM), I wanted an opportunity to reflect on the project thus far. It's been a really positive experience learning about the business and meeting new friends in a place that has inspired me to dream big.
The first week was a bittersweet experience. One of my initials finds happened to be a petition to keep the Jonesville bridge open as it faced imminent and extended closure some years ago. The irony and impact did not escape me as I reviewed the 18 pages of names.
Week 2 & 3 brought the garage sale, and with it, droves of inquisitive locals excited to see the doors open again. The Times Ink! and The Burlington Free Press both published outstanding articles about the project. I answered hundreds of emails, each one expressing interest and support. Some came in from hikers and former residents who read the articles.
Week 4 & 5 were completely dominated by a variety of cleaning projects. Family, friends and neighbors dropped in to lend support. I was also excited to see our latest Seven Days article hit stands this week. The store's beer and wine license was approved over the objections of Isaac Cowan, who owns the structures behind the store. If anyone has interest in reading his complaint, they should be able to find it at the town office. Similarly, he can also be viewed on the local access channel delivering his complaint to the Richmond Select Board.
As week 6 begins, I look forward to the RABA mixer at On The Rise. I'll be getting a sneak peak at LTCM's new logo and finishing up an article which will be featured in the Vermont Commons: Voices of Independence news journal.