News of the Day


by Craig Altschul

Jacob Thompson, 13, of Williston, changed his definition of the Rossignol Park in Williston as a place to play to a place that needed cleaning up, says the Burlington Free Press. He combined his assessment of the 4.5-acre park site with his Eighth Grade Challenge project. First step was to go to the town manager who was impressed with Jacob’s passion for cleaning up the site. The town had about $20,000 in the budget for the renovation project which was approved by the Williston Selectboard. Next step was to find out from people in the neighborhood – kids and readers of the school newspaper mostly – what they wanted. He received about 50 responses which he is now incorporating into his project, known as Community Connection, which details the plan and how to implement it. He also will help to design the plan and present it to the town’s zoning board when completed. Selectboard member Terry Macaig sums up the feeling of the other members: “It’s wonderful for children to recognize what the community has to offer, and to be able to contribute back to it.” The community will install a new playground structure at the site this summer. “I really wanted to see this happen,” Jacob says.

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About Craig Altschul

Craig Altschul is Editorial Director of He is a veteran snow journalist, having covered the sport for more than 40 years. His syndicated snow sports humor column, Ski Tips, ran in newspapers across the country for 20 years. He was Global Editor-in-Chief for OnTheSnow for 12 years and has written for a variety of magazines and newspapers. Altschul is past president of both the Eastern Ski Writers Association and the North American Snow Journalists Association.

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