Chester Chatter: Taking in the foliage along the Mohawk Trail

By Ruthie Douglas
©2021 Telegraph Publishing

When my sister Marie and I were young, around this time of year, our father would announce that it was time to head over to the Mohawk Trail. It was a family tradition.

We pointed the car west to Bennington, where we always stopped to see Maude, who was our father’s stepsister. Along the way, the foliage along the Manchester ridgeline was always wonderful.

Then we would head up the hill to the trail, where my sister’s and my favorite gift shop was. We’d jump out of the car and run into the store, eager to spend the allowance money we had in our pockets. We already knew what we wanted to buy. They were the small Indian dolls and, if there was enough money, a headdress. We also stopped by the lookout with the large parking area, where we’d eat our lunch and gaze at the panoramic scenery.

Over the years, my daughter Jeanie has tried to keep these memories alive. But this past Monday, it was difficult to do that because it was pouring rain. Still we decided to make the trip. We decided to take a different route, starting from Colrain, Mass. But first we stopped in Jacksonville to see our old friend Stella Stevens, who used to live in Chester nearby our farm. Her husband Norm was a Green Mountain agricultural teacher and, later, principal.

The foliage was just beautiful, which continued throughout Manchester, Bennington and all the way home. Despite the pouring rain, it still was a wonderful sight.

Once home, I looked up at the night sky and said, “How about that Daddy?”

Scene and heard

Happy birthday to my daughter Donna Douglas.

When I was growing up, we school students looked up to Christopher Columbus, who we considered a hero because we were taught that he founded America.  But now we celebrate Indigenous People’s Day to honor those who were here long before Europeans arrived.

On Saturday, even though the sun did not shine, we still found that the foliage was beautiful and at its peak.

The 14th annual Warm Hands Warm Hearts clothing, coats and blanket drive will take place in Chester from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday Oct. 22 and Saturday, Oct. 23 at the Chester Baptist Church, 162 Main St. Come choose free winter coats, boots, sweaters, blankets etc. for yourself or someone you know who is in need of warm clothing this winter. For more information, click here.


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Filed Under: Chester ChatterCommunity and Arts Life

About the Author: Ruthie Douglas is originally from Springfield but has called Chester her home for 58 years, and has been writing the Chester Chatter column for more than 40 of those years. Ruthie is also a longtime volunteer throughout the community.

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