Pond Mountain Inn

A Vermont Bed and Breakfast Complete with Dramatic Mountain Views


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Our Guests Love Visiting Baird Farm!


Maple Tree tap that connects to a complex network of vacuum tubing…  

Our Vermont Organic Maple Syrup comes from Baird Farm… But, that’s just part of the story.

One morning this past summer, like every summer morning, we chat with our guests during breakfast and learn about their discoveries from the previous day. But this day was different, they discovered something new—Baird Farm, and met Jenna, the young owner and her husband. This winter, many of our guests visited Baird Farm, and enjoyed the spectacular drive, and the last few miles to the farm was just incredible, even with most of the leaves down.

Baird Farm sits on 560 acres and has been in the Baird family for four generations. They have over 14,000 trees tapped, with over 80 miles of tubing that connects all the trees in their sugarbush. When the weather is right, the sap flows directly from the trees into the tubing system straight to the sugarhouse where it’s boiled down into maple syrup. A maple tree will yield about 25 gallons of sap in an average season. On a good day, they collect about 2,000 gallons per hour—the volume into the sugarhouse is like rushing river! And, it takes about 50 gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrup. Standing on a platform overlooking two 9,000-gallon tanks watching sap from 14,000 trees stream into the tanks is unbelievable—nobody would believe sap could flow so rapidly!  

This was a fascinating visit—the best time to visit is during March and April. 

“You guys do the best stuff at Pond Mountain Inn”


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Stunning Beauty of Historic Crown Point


Soldiers’ Barracks, Officers’ Quarters and Lake Champlain

We hadn’t planned on visiting Crown Point on this beautiful spring-like day in Vermont; we were just out for a drive with our guests. Then, the Lake Champlain Bridge appeared in the distance—a modest, yet impressive bridge traversing Lake Champlain between Crown Point, New York and Chimney Point, Vermont that we had to cross. On the other side we discovered the Crown Point Historic Site located on stunning grounds that strategically overlook Lake Champlain—perfect for an afternoon picnic! The ruins of two standing barracks uniquely illustrate the differences between the officers and the soldiers they commanded. Equally as impressive are the remains of earthworks—earthworks are artificial changes in land level, typically made from piles of artificially placed or rocks and soil. The mounded walls encircle the fort reaching heights of fifty feet or more!

In season, visitors can explore the preserved ruins of the fort, tour the museum, the historic Crown Point Pier, the Champlain Memorial Lighthouse and the walking paths on either side of the Lake Champlain Bridge offer incredible views of Lake Champlain. The photograph was taken at the at the highest elevation of the fort.

Crown Point is just over an hour from Pond Mountain Inn. Within a very short drive from Crown Point is Fort Ticonderoga / Mount Defiance and Mount Independence on the Vermont side of the lake. This is an incredible day trip – for more, see our Fort Ticonderoga / Middlebury Day Trip Itinerary.


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A Must Visit – The Norman Williams Public Library Woodstock Vermont

Woodstock, Vermont is one of our favorite destinations. The Norman Williams Public Library on the Woodstock green was established 1883 is on our list of places to visit. It is a beautiful pink sandstone building with stunning architecture and rich history. They promote the love of reading, lifelong learning and serves as a gathering place for all ages. This is a must see especially after a $5M restoration!

Check out other fascinating places to visit in Woodstock! See our Woodstock / Quechee • Day Trip: Itinerary


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The Silver Fork Restaurant Continues to Wow Our Guests!

I was recently asked, what makes Silver Fork special? It’s undoubtedly, one of the most important restaurants in the area. The effortless and relaxed, but flawlessly charming style of service is a perfect fit for the setting. Their new Manchester location, inside the old Mark Skinner Library in the heart of Manchester Village is absolutely stunning—mid-century décor with comfortable space that’s aglow in natural light. Beyond expansive windows, the upstairs bar pictured above has a long dining bar that offers intimate dining possibilities.

Silver Fork is a fine-dining restaurant with extraordinary attention to detail. Through the sharply focused culinary lens of award-winning Chef Mark French lies his remarkable ability to coax out the intrinsic natural flavors of local and seasonal ingredients. Mark’s dishes draw on global influences that blend beautifully with this quintessential New England town of Manchester.

The menu enriches the senses, our favorite first-course dishes—beef tartare, duck eggroll, and lump crab salad are absolutely delicious! The wiener schnitzel is outstanding—our server told us that a couple from Austria said it was “just as good as home.” And, we agree! The rack of lamb, Maryland crab cakes and slow roasted brisket are among our favorites, and our guests too.

Owner, Melody French and Sommelier, Olivia Stoehr have crafted a well-balanced wine list with recent upscale wine selections that complement the always popular regular wine list. Melody and Olivia have adroitly focused on matching tastes and flavors on the menu that share the chef’s palate making wine selection far easier and less intimidating.

Kay joins me in thanking both Melody and Olivia for the special attention shown to all our Pond Mountain Inn guests.


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America’s First Christmas Tree


Vermont’s Calvin Coolidge was the first president to extend a White House Christmas celebration to the American people. During the Coolidge’s first Christmas in 1923, he began the tradition of the National Community Christmas Tree. And, of course, the first Christmas tree came from Vermont as a gift from Middlebury College—a 48-foot Balsam Fir from the heart of the Green Mountains.

At 5:05PM on Christmas Eve, President Coolidge illuminated 3,000 light bulbs on the first National Community Christmas Tree symbolizing the spirit of Christmas and that the celebration of Christmas had begun.

Today, the White House Sends More Than 1 Million Annual Holiday Cards.  President Calvin Coolidge sent out the first official White House Christmas greeting to the nation in 1927, penning a card on White House stationary that was reproduced in newspapers around the country.

“Silent Cal” received his nickname from his stoic and serious demeanor. However, in 1926, after receiving so many heartfelt gifts and Christmas cards from the American people, President Coolidge was so emotionally affected that he gave a gift of a gold coin to all the White House officials and staff members.

The Calvin Coolidge Homestead is less than one hour from Pond Mountain Inn. One of the most scenic drives through the Green Mountains of Vermont that takes you through historic villages, mountains, valleys and along white-water rivers—you’ll pass by farms and meadowlands. Take a look at our Day Trip Itineraries to discover your next adventure!

The abbreviated content above was taken from Mary Evans Seeley’s book, “Season’s Greetings from the White House” (one of our most treasured books, and a Christmas gift from my sister) and the Calvin Coolidge Homestead website.  

 

 

 


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The Fascinating First Protestant Church in Vermont

The Old First Church • Photo Credit: Carol M. Highsmith

The Old First Church • Gathered in 1762 • First Protestant Church in Vermont

Our Fascination with New England Churches; from the perspective of architectural simplicity that’s on display at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in our tiny village of Wells, Vermont; to the grand New England simplicity seen inside The Old First Church in Bennington to the more majestic simplicity of the Old North Church in Boston, Massachusetts.

Overview & Perspective

These remarkable small-town, white buildings and church structures were largely erected by local builders without the benefit of architects. Their designs and inspiration largely came from traditional designs and pattern books, which may have contributed the essence of plainness so common in early church construction. Revered for their beauty, simplicity and elegance – early churches of New England hold a special place in our hearts as we’re all drawn to these remarkable New England towns and villages to experience this unique sense of place that broadly defines our New England character.

More About The Old First Church

The Old First Church was “gathered” on December 3, 1762, the first Protestant congregation in the New Hampshire Grants. The organizers were “Separatists,” influenced by the Great Awakening, from Connecticut and Western Massachusetts, and were proprietors of the new town of Bennington.

The present church, built in 1805 and dedicated January 1, 1806. As a result, the Vermont Legislature, in 1935, designated the church as “Vermont’s Colonial Shrine”.

Robert Frost’s remains are buried in the cemetery adjacent to the church. Although he was not a member of the church, he read his poem, The Black Cottage, at the rededication in 1937. Robert Frost and the house where he lived in Shaftsbury is located just north of Bennington, see the Robert Frost Stone House Museum.

Lavius Fillmore, cousin of the nation’s thirtieth president, and the church architect, built three more churches including the Congregational Church of Middlebury that’s considered Fillmore’s masterpiece, was completed in 1809. See Pond Mountain Inn’s Fort Ticonderoga / Middlebury Day Trip Itinerary for more things to do in the area.

Most of the abbreviated content taken directly The Old First Church website.

Thank you for reading our Pond Mountain Inn blog!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Vermont Day Trips From Pond Mountain Inn – Lake George New York

Lake George, nicknamed the Queen of American Lakes, is a long, narrow oligotrophic lake located at the southeast base of the Adirondack Mountains. The lake extends about 32.2 miles on a north-south axis, has depths over 250’. Take the Sightseeing Cruise aboard the Lac du Saint Sacrement, Minne Ha Ha, or the Mohican. Their first steamship started plying the waters in 1817 and travelled to the other end of the lake in about 8 hours, today in less than 3 hours.

Lake George Scenic Drive: Thirty mile drive offering beautiful lake views and a cultural throwback to the great family motels of the 40s, 50s! Follow Route 9 north from the southernmost point of the lake to about Hague, New York.

Get the complete list of the places you can visit on this day trip visit Here.

We have all seven day trip itineraries to choose from Here


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Vermont Day Trips From Pond Mountain Inn To Saratoga Springs New York

Historic Saratoga Springs Race Track was the first organized Thoroughbred horse racing track to open in the United States in 1863 making it the oldest horse racing track, and perhaps the oldest sporting venue in the nation.

Saratoga Springs is one of the Top Ten Summertime Place to visit in the northeast! This historical city is full of fascinating and eclectic shops that are easily enjoyed on foot. Experience the Food Tours, the Saratoga Casino, and the many cultural & historical activities!  Ask to see our top four favorite restaurants!

Get the complete list of the places you can visit on this day trip visit Here.

We have all seven day trip itineraries to choose from Here


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Vermont Day Trips From Pond Mountain Inn – Vergennes Shelburne and Burlington

Pond Mountain Inn Bed and Breakfast Day Trip – Vergennes Shelburne and Burlington Itinerary

Shelburne Museum’s eighty-foot-diameter Round Barn is one of only two dozen built in Vermont. An unparalleled and unique experience of American history, art and design. Visitors will experience the pleasure of discovery and exploration that includes thirty-nine distinct structures on forty-five acres. “Like nothing you have ever experienced!”

Vergennes is the oldest and smallest city; centrally located between Lake Champlain, the Green Mountains, and the City of Burlington. Visit the local shops before heading to the Maritime Museum.

Burlington perennially appears on national rankings that laud its livability, access to nature and recreation (including the best skiing in the northeast), thriving food and music scene retains its status by “Travel + Leisure as America’s #1 College Town”.

Get the complete list of the places you can visit on this day trip visit Here.

We have all seven day trip itineraries to choose from Here

 


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Vermont Day Trips From Pond Mountain Inn – Fort Ticonderoga and Middlebury

We’re excited to share our newest adventures! You can travel the beautiful sights that surround Pond Mountain Inn with many places to visit in just one day.

This day trip itinerary is for the areas in and around Fort Ticonderoga and the town of Middlebury, each with exciting and informational places to visit in Vermont.

Fort Ticonderoga weapons demonstrations and reenactments are fascinating, but don’t miss the King’s Garden, Fort Tours, Mount Defiance (provides one of the most spectacular views in the northeast) and the Battlefield hiking trail. The Town of Ticonderoga is located in New York at the confluence of Lake George and Lake Champlain and only an hour drive from the inn. A destination that’s rich in 18th century history, Ticonderoga’s significant military role in our nation’s early history.

Middlebury, Vermont settled just after the Revolutionary War, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is home to Middlebury College. A can’t miss is Danforth Pewter, established in 1755 in colonial Connecticut and offers magnificent hand-crafted pewter that has been placed in the Smithsonian, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and many other American museums. Just 15 minutes down the road from Middlebury stop by a national historic landmark, The Robert Frost Farm. Robert Frost lived and wrote from his 150 acre farm in the Green Mountains in the summer and fall for 24 years until his death in 1963.

 

Complete list of places to visit for this day trip itinerary Here

We have all seven day trip itineraries to choose from Here