Today the five of us took off to do some touring around the area. Our first stop was breakfast at Dana's by the Gorge. Another great breakfast. We then walked across the street to the Visitor's Center and then went to the Quechee Gorge Overlooks that was just down the street. They call it "Vermont's Grand Canyon". We have seen it before but it is worth seeing again. The view is fantastic.
Next we went to Simon Pearce Glassworks. We had been here on the Fall Foliage Caravan in 2010. They have beautiful glassware that they blow right there. They have anything from shot glasses to lamp bases. Everything is beautiful but very expensive. We went downstairs where you can watch the guys hand blow the glass and they talk to you and encourage you to ask questions. Of course Vermont is known for their covered bridges. This building is right by the Connecticut River with a wooden covered bridge. The year after we were there, August 2011, it rained very hard and several of the wooden bridges were washed out. This was one of the bridges and where they blow glass was flooded in the matter of 15 minutes to the ceiling rafters. Of course they lost everything down there and it took them 9 months to get it up and running again. The rebuilding of the bridge is completed also. I asked the one guy if he knew of Steuben Glass? He said the closing of Steuben has increased their business. Many business and corporations are asking for the specialty items for awards and engraved recognition. I purchased 4 glass ice cubes.
Next we went to the Marsh-Billings-Rockefeller National Historic Park. Doug and I had been there but Clarence and Sandy hadn't. We got our Passport books stamped and took a short tour. A version of this site is that after the American Revolution, settlers coming to Vermont were cutting down all the trees causing severe erosion and flooding. George Marsh had served many years in congress and then was an American diplomat. He traveled to other parts of the world and saw what could happen if this continued to happen in his families farm in Woodstock. In 1869 the Marsh farm was purchased by Frederick Billings. He was a wealthy man and he set out to build a farm to serve future generations and also created the first scientific Forrest Management program. After his death, his plan was carried forward by his wife and his three daughters. One of his granddaughters, Mary French, married Laurence Rockefeller in 1934 that brought together two families with a strong commitment to conservation. Together Mary and Laurence Rockefeller made the gift that established this park as Vermont's first national park. The house and gardens are beautiful and we went into part of the woods where it was explained how the replanting and harvesting the trees was done. The farm across the street from the mansion is a working farm and museum. Another interesting fact is that as you drive through Woodstock, you see no power lines thanks to a grant from the Rockefeller family.
Next we just strolled the streets in Woodstock going in some of their unique shops. Best of all we had wonderful ice cream at the Mountain Creamery.
We then returned to the campground. We pooled our dinner together and afterwards we played our card game again and Uncle Jim WHOMPED us. He said it was the perfect end to the caravan!!!