hill country observerThe independent newspaper of eastern New York, southwestern Vermont and the Berkshires

May 2019 Facebook linkHill Country Observer TwitterHill Country Instagram page NEWS ARCHIVE



Changing rules for immigrant driver’s licenses?

Immigration advocates in New York and Massachusetts are pushing to allow driver’s licenses to be issued to undocumented immigrants -- a practice already allowed in Vermont and 11 other states. Supporters of the change are highlighting the challenges faced by the many immigrants who work at area farms, and some farmers are speaking out in favor of the idea. But polls show strong public opposition, and many of the region’s elected officials are opposed. read more



German delight, made in Vermont

Quest for gluten-free spatzle leads to specialty food business.
read more


Plan for controlling geese sparks controversy

A plan to reduce the population of Canada geese at Richmond Pond in the Berkshires is drawing a backlash from some residents who say the proposal goes too far. Proponents say they’re attempting to use techniques that are humane and safe, but others have doubts about the effort, which involves blocking the development of goose eggs and using barking dogs to scare away the birds. Public support for the plan could be tested on May 15, when voters at Richmond’s annual town meeting decide whether to contribute $1,200 to the project. read more


MoCA show explores shifting views of what’s real

In “Suffering from Realness,” a new show at Mass MoCA, 16 artists are searching for firm ground in a world that can feel more and more fake and absurd. The artists are finding reality in the places they live and with those they love -- and in the pain they have lived through.

read more


Oldcastle Theatre gears up for transitional season

Oldcastle Theatre Co. is preparing to open its 48th professional season on June 7, just as a major downtown redevelopment project is set to kick off around it -- and just as the theater company is on the cusp of taking title to its permanent home in downtown Bennington.

read more
















Belcher Hollow Forge, Handforged iron