Cross-posted at Echorev.com
Raw from Canada’s rejection, we ran into the open arms of Vermont and found that the state which brought us Ben and Jerry’s, the only socialist U.S. Senator in history, and the best maple syrup in the country– is, perhaps as to be expected, pretty damn awesome. In a fortuitous turn of events, we were able to secure a rehearsal space at a 19th-century concert hall, The Opera House in Enosburg, Vermont. We owe the honor of using this space to the Opera House manager, Suzanne Hull-Parent, and Ward and Cheryl Heneveld, all of whom are the embodiment of hospitality and generosity.
The Opera House is about three stories high and has a large, wooden stage raised about five feet off the hardwood floors. It has been providing a a great sonic space and the rare opportunity to rehearse the performance in addition to the music. The building has a lower level and is lived-in, with quirky artifacts and props from recent community productions, several pianos, a full kitchen, and a huge lawn that spreads out next to the barn nearby and makes for great break-time lounging.
Conveniently, the Opera House is located in the middle of Enosburg, which has all the amenities you need and some really good, affordable food: we have already hit up Halvy’s, Kit Kat Diner, and Flying Discs, the latter of which is a coffee shop as well as catch-all miscellany shop that sells guitar accessories. We also all have a crush on the waitress at Halvy’s. If you’re reading this, we heart you.
Situated across from the Opera House is also a beautiful trail that spans through a mere sample of the area’s vast scenic attractions: sprawling pastures, a beautiful river, and lush crops that provide stunning accompaniment to runs and hikes. As we drank a six pack of Long Trail Ale last night, a great Vermont ale, it occurred to us that the company’s image of rolling hills, gurgling rivers, and mountains on the packaging indeed reflect the reality of Vermont, at least as we have come to know it over the past several days
Our living space is outside of town, on a dirt road: a one-bedroom cabin perched above a picturesque meadow, which slopes down to the foot of a mountain. We even have our very own pond. Recent stories from locals about leeches in the swimming holes will certainly prevent us from swimming in said pond.
We are playing at least two shows while we are here: The River Fest this Saturday, August 27 in Montgomery, and a fundraising concert for the Opera House on September 2nd. We are looking forward to collaborating with local musicians in throwing the latter show.
Vermont is certainly a welcome departure from the gritty urban environs we’ve been living in. We have two weeks remaining here, and cannot think of a healthier, more ideal atmosphere – both in our living and working spaces – for us to accomplish the task of preparing for our 3-month tour. THANK YOU, VERMONT.