Per Person Double
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Day 1 – Afternoon arrival in the Village of Wilmington, VT. Here you will visit the Norton House and discover “a quilter’s paradise.” This charming New England house is listed on the National Register of Historic Sites and offers an incredible selection of the most beautiful fabrics, books, notions and patterns. You will also have time to visit the adjacent 1836 Country Store, which offers an array of Vermont products and gifts. Enjoy a snack or a late lunch at one of the nearby local eateries.
Then you travel North through the Green Mountains to Burlington where you will be staying the next two nights. Dinner is included tonight at a local restaurant. Afterwards, a local fiber arts expert will provide a lesson, teaching you unique skills and special techniques in their specialty (artist varies) there will be an “Ask the Artist” session immediately following.
Day 2 – This morning, with a local guide you will weave your way into the Vermont Islands for a day of warm and fuzzy fiber fun. The Vermont Quilt Trail winds it way through these Islands from Burlington north to a point very near the Quebec Border. Along the way you will see more than 140 hand-painted wooden quilt blocks dotting the landscape. They are hanging from porches, homes, businesses and barns. Make a game of “I Spy” and see how many blocks you can spot.
Next you travel onto the Champlain Islands, only accessible by three bridges, Vermont’s islands have been able to maintain a uniquely peaceful and artful way of life. Here you may discover a birdhouse forest, driftwood creations (including a dinosaur), and miniature castles that were lovingly constructed from field stone. You also visit the Hero’s Welcome General Store. This was founded in 1788 by the Revolutionary War heroes from Ethan and Ira Allen’s famed Green Mountain Boys. The main store is housed inside the original structure and the property now includes several newer buildings: a bakery, cafe, post office and general store.
Lunch is at the North Hero House Inn and Restaurant, which first opened in 1891. Referred to as a jewel in the crown of Vermont’s islands, this historic property affords breathtaking views of Lake Champlain and the surrounding mountains. Savor the flavors of seasonal Vermont farm-fresh ingredients, including locally and on-site grown produce, locally raised beef and Maine seafood.
Afternoon stops include the Grand Isle Art Works, a beautifully restored 1797 farmhouse showcasing the work of more than 75 Vermont artisans. You’ll have time to explore quirky rooms filled with displays of everything from jewelry to paintings, stained glass to hand-turned bowls and spinning tools. During this visit you will also witness a demonstration on the art of spinning. You watch as wool morphs from shearing to skein. Pay particular attention to the hand-dyed yarns made with that wool harvested from the angora goats and alpacas living on the adjacent Yellow Dog Farm, where you will probably see Luigi the goat, and his goat buddies and alpaca pals frolicking in the fields.
Next, take a tour of Allenholm Farm. The orchards here produce more than 20 apple varieties, including several heirlooms that are being recreated in partnership with the University of Vermont’s Horticultural College. During your visit you climb aboard a wagon for a ride into the orchard, you’ll have opportunity to delight in homemade apple pie with maple creamee or cheddar cheese. Plus, you you will meet more friendly farm animals including a donkey who will eat a peppermint candy stick from you mouth – why it’s a kiss-ass treat!
From Allenholm you travel to Snow Farm Vineyard and Winery for a tasting. This Vineyards location on in the middle of Lake Champlain provides a growing season or microclimate, identical to that of Burgundy, France. Here you learn about “cool climate” varietals and taste their award-winners while learning about the process from grape to glass. After the tasting, follow your host on a tour of the property and hear the story of gardener, Harry Barber and his amazing stone castles. You will see one of the few remaining ones right here on the farm.
Returning to the “mainland” and Burlington, dinner is at a local restaurant and features a very special, private Book Signing with John Churchman, a/k/a Farmer John, the renowned artist, photographer and creative force behind his book “Sweet Pea & Friends; The SheepOver.” The storyline began with one Orphan Lamb’s true journey from recovery to a celebration with friends. A beautiful photo illustrated children’s book for all ages.
Listen to John’s endearing stories about his picture book farm where he resides with wife Jennifer, and daughter Gabrielle. Learn how bottle-fed lambs took over his greenhouse and hosted a Sweet Pea birthday party. Witness the natural instincts of John’s border collies as they both nurture the lambs and herd the flock. Discover how John’s whimsical tales and brilliant images have brought to life the story of an adorable, orphaned lamb and how her spirit, her hay-dos and her party hats have brought smiles to fans of all ages both near and far.
Day 3 – This morning after breakfast, your group will tour the famous Shelburne Museum and see it’s collection of 400 18th and 19th Century American quilts. These quilts form the largest and finest museum collection in the country and are known internationally for their exceptional artistic quality. It has masterpieces from New England, the mid-Atlantic, the Midwest and the South. Styles include album, Amish, appliqué, chintz, crazy, pieced, white work and whole cloth. Also on view is a rotating exhibition of hooked rugs. Most of the pieces were produced in New England in the 20th-Century. The museum’s textile collection also includes a large group of woven coverlets and samplers.
Depart for home.