60) Best ski/snowboard shop
1. Pinnacle Ski & Sports/Skiessentials.com
2. AJ’s Ski & Sports
Nominees: MountainOps, Power Play Sports, Stowe Mountain Resort/Front Four, Today’s Edge, Triple Diamond Ski & Sport/No School Snowboard Shop, Waterbury Sports.
The competition is fierce, but Pinnacle continues to Just Do It. Right.
61) Best ski or snowboard instructor
1. Mike Tasi
Mr. Tasi is in a class by himself.
62) Best bike shop
1. Chuck’s Bikes
2. AJ’s Ski & Sports
3. Waterbury Sports
Nominees: Bicycle Express, Bootlegger Bikes, iRide, Mansfield Cycles, Mountain Ops, Pinnacle Ski and Sports, Power Play Sports.
This Chuck guy is a legend. (PS: His name is Hank.) Last year, after he took the category for the umpteenth time, we wrote: “Shouldn’t we rename this shop Hank’s Place already?” But then it wouldn’t be Chuck’s.
63) Best mountain bike trails
1. Perry Hill
2. Cady Hill
3. Trapp Family Lodge
Wow. The Perry trails beat the Cady trails.
64) Best road bike route
1. Notch loop
2. Randolph Road, Elmore
Now is this the Stowe/Jeffersonville/Morrisville loop? Or the Stowe/Jeffersonville/Underhill/Jericho/Richmond/ Waterbury loop? Does it matter? You still have to bike up the Notch! But, you also get to ride down.
65) Best cross-country skiing
1. Trapp Family Lodge
2. Craftsbury Outdoor Center
3. Stowe Mountain Resort Cross-Country Center
Nominee: Wiessner Woods.
66) Best place to hike or run
1. Stowe Pinnacle
2. Lamoille Valley Rail Trail
3. Stowe Recreation Path
Nominees: Camel’s Hump, Cotton Brook, Elmore Mountain, Little River State Park, Mount Mansfield, Smugglers Notch.
The top three vote-getters in this category offer potential outdoor enthusiasts a good cross…
67) Best place to paddle
1. Waterbury Reservoir
2. Green River Reservoir
3. Lake Elmore
Nominees: Gihon River, Lamoille River.
Hmmm. No offense 4393 voters, and no offense to the Waterbury Reservoir (no angry letters please; it’s a favorite place in Vermont), but for paddling, the non-motorized Green River Reservoir is pretty darn, um, quiet and, um, wake-free!
68) Best place to play golf (public course/club)
1. Stowe Country Club
2. Country Club of Vermont
3. Ryder Brook Golf Club
Nominees: Blush Hill Country Club, Copley Country Club.
Any golfers here? The Stowe Country Club drove in 30 percent of the vote, but the next four teed off quite nicely, pretty evenly splicing together the other 70.
69) Best local race or sporting event
1. Stowe Derby
2. Leaf Peepers Half Marathon
3. Craft Brew Races
Nominees: B3 Fest, Gravel Grinder, Kids Adventure Games, Leaf Blower Fall Classic, Race To The Top of Vermont, Ski Bum Race Series, Stowe 8-Miler, Sugar Slalom.
70) Best veterinary services
1. Stowe Veterinary Clinic
2. Waterbury Veterinary Hospital
3. Sequist Animal Hospital
Nominee: Lamoille Valley Veterinary Services.
Spot and Cat can’t go wrong with any of these pros, but Dr. Gregg notches another win in this category.
71) Best yoga studio
1. Zenbarn Studio
2. Kula Center for Yoga and Meditation
3. Yoga Barn
Nominees: Bikram Yoga Stowe, Blackbird Wellness, Stepping Stone Yoga, Stowe Yoga Center, Stoweflake Resort & Spa, The Barn, Topnotch Resort & Spa.
Just the name, Zenbarn, conjures images of health, well-being, centeredness — yoga is zen.
72) Best trainer/fitness instructor
1. Joanna Graves, Ride Stowe/JoMotion
2. Chad Couto, Stoweflake
3. Kyle Smith, The Forge
Nominees: Charlotte Brynn, Swimming Hole; Ernie Roick, PHIT Performance; Hector Ortiz, PHIT Performance; Jeff Rutledge, Snap Fitness; Julie Roick, PHIT Performance; Mary Regele, Topnotch.
If first-place 4393 Award wins come in cycles, it’s only fair Joanna Graves scooped one this…
73) Best fitness venue (indoors)
1. The Swimming Hole
2. PHIT Performance
3. The Forge Gym
Nominees: Cambridge Community Center, CrossFit Waterbury, Curves Morrisville, Dave’s Community Fitness, Green Mountain CrossFit, Ride Stowe, Snap Fitness, Stoweflake Resort & Spa, Studio 108, Studio Zenith, The Barn, Topnotch Resort & Spa, Zenbarn Studio.
The gift that keeps on giving. Remember Stowe BSH*? Neither do we.
(* Before Swimming Hole)
74) Best rainy day activity
1. Stowe Bowl
2. Stowe Cinema
3. Stowe Free Library
Nominees: Bijou Cineplex 4, The Adventure Center at Stowe Mountain Resort, The Swimming Hole.
A perfect 300! This sleek, modern alley with the fun vibe is not your granddaddy’s Bowling Emporium. Why, it’s not even your daddy’s. And it’s fun on sunny days too. Oh, and at night.
76) Best local musician or band
1. Seth Yacovone
2. Eames Brothers
3. Chad Hollister
Nominees: Allen Church, Beg, Steal or Borrow, CopOuts, Cropduster, DJ Rekkon, The Full Cleveland, George Petit, John Wilson, Lesley Grant, Meat Milk, Sugar Daddies, The Shady Trees, TURNmusic.
In these here parts, Mr. Yacovone both sings the blues and he rocks. And, in an informal office poll, he’s also the hardest working musician in Vermont.
77) Best local theater/performance group
1. Stowe Theatre Guild
2. Lamoille County Players
3. TRIP Dance Co.
Nominees: Moxie Productions, Peoples Academy Stage Company, Waterbury Festival Playhouse.
Well, you missed “Gypsy,” but there’s still time to catch “The Bridges of Madison County, “The Odd Couple (Female Version” or “Heathers.” The show must go on.
78) Best local artist
1. Jess Graham
2. Craig Mooney
3. Eric Tobin
Nominees: Ella Skye, Evan Chismark, Jen Hubbard, Jeremy Ayers, Lisa Beach, Mickey Myers, Rachel Laundon, Sarah-Lee Terrat.
“I believe in art that makes you happy,” says Jess Graham, whose art and design have become synonymous with The Alchemist brewery. She wins; her art makes us happy.