Short Break

Apologies for the recent lack of content: things have been keeping us all busy on our end, and while we haven’t abandoned the site, it’s just not been a huge priority at the moment. Hopefully, we’ll have some more time opening up in the near future that will allow for more regular features / updates. Spotted and Geek Things posts are still going to be around, though, never fear!

Nightmare Vermont : Halloween in July!

We’ve heard about Nightmare Vermont before, but we were reminded via e-mail (Thanks, Douglas!) that they’ve got an upcoming event at the Higher Ground later this month, on the 16th:

Drag out your best costumes, even the ones that are too skimpy to wear in October, because Halloween now comes twice a year. Nightmare Vermont invites you to boogie down at their Halloween themed dance party, featuring music by DJ Llu, clips from Nightmares past, costume contests, performances by the Nightmare troupe and a host of wicked guests.

The show will be at 8pm, with tickets going for $10 in advance and $12 at the door. As Halloween is GeekMtnState’s favorite holiday, we wholeheartedly approve and wish that we could make it!

Here’s the scoop on Nightmare Vermont from their website:

Nightmare Vermont is a thrilling, interactive haunted house that has run in underground spaces, and as part of other events since 2004. It has garnered a reputation for cinema-level visual effects, engaging characters, and wild Halloween fun. Come see scrappy evil geniuses team up with community leaders to bring you Vermont’s most exciting and unique event.

Nightmare Vermont works very closely with the South Burlington Rotary, a collection of business leaders who come together for the good of the community. The Rotary has helped fulfill Nightmare Vermont’s purpose of being a creative outlet for the weird and unusual in our community since our 2009 show. Proceeds from Nightmare Vermont go directly back towards helping our community through the Rotary Charities.

Back by popular demand is the Dark Arts Gallery! This gallery space not only provides patrons of our event with a place to mingle indoors while waiting to enter the show, but enables local artists to show off their wonderfully gruesome and dark artwork to the community. So really, everyone wins!

To find out more about specific events going on before the show, or ways you can get involved look us up on Facebook or Twitter! There are always things going on in preparation for the new season!

Visit their website:

Norwich In Miniature

Norwich University’s alumni magazine, the Record, has an interesting focus on one of their alumni who is a hobby toy-soldier creator, with some excellent images. Visitors to the Kreitzburg Library will come across a small table with a glass top: underneath is a formation of Norwich Cadets: the corps in miniature. I’ve always wondered what the story was behind it.

On the eve of Norwich’s 175th anniversary, Roger realized, “Nobody does miniatures of Norwich cadets.” As a proud alumnus, he felt it was imperative to remedy the situation.
“I went up there for Homecoming and took pictures of everything I could—individual cadets, the color guard, even the glockenspiel player in the band.” Roger plastered the walls of his workshop with the photos. “It became my studio,” he says.

Read the rest of the account here.


Something that we’ve been thinking about doing since the origins of this blog was to gather geeks together into a common place for something particularly Geeky. With a number of events coming up this summer, we wanted to open up and see what Vermont Geeks were interested in, and potentially hold an informal gathering to chat, say high to familiar twitter / facebook and blog followers: this is what the site and our purpose is: network within the state to help solidify a strong Geek culture here in Vermont.

So far, there’s been a couple of events that we’re thrown out there for a good, solid meetup:

  • July 30 or 31, at SciFi July at the Savoy Theater in Montpelier.
  • Date Unknown as of yet, Marian Call Concert, location TBD.
  • September 11, at the They Might Be Giants / Jonathan Coulton concert at the Upper Valley Events Center in Norwich.

We’d like to gauge interest amongst the group + followers. We’ve talked amongst ourselves online for a little while now, and we’d love to talk in person: Let us know via twitter / facebook and the comments here!


A manager of a housing complex in Lebanon is annoyed that her tenants aren’t cleaning up after their dogs. Her solution? DNA test the dogs, to definitively prove who’s pooch is the one causing problems:

So manager Debbie Violette is going to use commercially available DNA sampling kits to check the DNA of dog leavings.

She says residents are being told Friday they must submit samples from their dogs so DNA profiles can be put on file.

Violette says she hasn’t decided what to do if she catches a pet owner not cleaning up after their dog. But they’ll probably be fined.

Interesting way to solve the problem, although I suspect that banning pets at the complex would also do the same thing. Or you know, responsible ownership.

Thanks to Jen for the tip.

Big Picture at 5 years

Claudia Becker

Seven Days has a fantastic article on the Big Picture Theater and its community focus:

Picture this: Two scientists from the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory are sitting on a red couch on a stage and talking casually about the human race’s options for a new planet when the sun inevitably becomes a red giant and swallows the Earth … in about five billion years. The roughly 100 people watching them are rapt.

“We never should have demoted Pluto,” jokes one of the scientists, Margaret Geller, and everybody laughs. Outside the theater, kids are playing in the lobby, gleefully banging on an old piano. In the nearby bar, a young couple orders chocolate cake while singles sip beers. It’s just another Thursday night at the Big Picture Theater & Café in Waitsfield.

For the full article, go here.

Picture from Seven Days.

Seven Days Daisies Poll Now Open!

Seven Days has their annual Daisies awards, which measures the best of the best in local personalities, businesses and events throughout the state of Vermont. I just filled out my ballot, and came across some fun things to vote for when it comes to nerd-categories. Here’s a couple of headings to vote geek for:

31. Best large live-music venue
32. Best small local-music hot spot
42. Best visual artist
43. Best cartoonist
44. Best art gallery
46. Best movie theater
47. Best museum
50. Best fiction writer
51. Best poet
52. Best theater company
53. Best performing arts venue
60. Best print/web journalist
62. Best meteorologist
63. Best local radio DJ (We’re rooting for Mike Luoma)
64. Best radio station
65. Best Vermont blogger (Feel free to put us down! Andrew Liptak / Geek Mountain State)
66. Best Vermont Twitter feed (Also feel free to put us down – GeekMtnState)
79. Best toy store
81. Best record store
82. Best bookstore
88. Best computer store
89. Best place to rent a movie
91. Best web developer
95. Best outdoor outfitter

There’s a lot of selections there, so have fun. Obviously, this isn’t a comprehensive list of headings, nor comprehensive of their geekiness, just what stood out for me. I look forward to seeing what the results are. Go vote here.

Photo by The Common Wanderer.

Bidding Langdon Street Adieu

Langdon Street Cafe, as seen from State Street in Montpelier. Photo by nimariel.

Langdon Street Cafe (upper left corner), as seen from State Street in Montpelier. Photo by nimariel. has a nice write-up on Langdon Street Cafe’s last hurrah this past weekend. It started with a parade and ended with an engagement, which at least one professor I had would claim makes it a comedy. Be sure to click on the picture of Ben and Meg for a whole slideshow of photos from the parade and ensuing circus.

Congratulations to the couple as they embark on the next stage together. Langdon Street Cafe was an exceptional place and it will be missed greatly — especially, speaking as a player of games, for their annual Geek Week celebration and game nights.

Today is the final day of their furnishings and fixtures lawn sale, so swing by and see what you can pick up as a memento of wild, avant garde nights.

Behind the Scenes: Geek Things

Every morning, we try and get a good listing of the geek things that are going on around Vermont. It’s interesting to see what’s going on, and I’m continually surprised and impressed with what we have going on in the Green Mountains.

Where do we get everything? We search 30 + websites to see what events are listed, and occasionally by e-mail when someone lets us know. Here’s where we look:

Seven Days Events:
The World:
East Kingdom of the SCA:
Quarterstaff Games:
UVM Events:
Green Mountain Gamers:
Galaxy Bookshop:
Children’s Literacy Foundation:
Monshire Museum:
ECHO Center:
Flynn Theater:
Bear Pond Books:
Champlain College:
Middlebury College:
Borders (Burlington):
Borders (West Leb):
Barnes and Noble:
Boarder Board Games:
Vermont Astronomical Society:
Langdon Street Cafe:
Center for Cartoon Studies:
Spruce Peak Center for the Performing Arts:
Villiage Square Booksellers:
New England Science Fiction & Fantasy Events:
Mystery on Main Street:
Flight of Fantasy Books and Games:
The Flying Pig Bookstore:
Phoenix Books:
American Precision Museum:
Northshire Bookstore:

Blogging the Flood

Over the past couple of days, I’ve been keeping an eye on ECHO’s blog for their reactions to the flood that’s overtaking Lake Champlain. As the museum that is all about the lake, it seems like the best place to go for coverage. Over the past couple of days:

Flooding Redefines VT’s Green Up Day:

There is garbage mixed in with all of the driftwood. I did a quick inventory while policing ECHO and aside from the random broken flip-flop and old leather shoe, most of the trash was plastic. This is no surprise since plastic floats, it is made into nearly everything and takes forever to break down–almost literally. But where is all of this garbage coming from? Neighborhood streets, yards, parking lots, river banks…you name it. Wherever trash is not thrown in a garbage can or recycled, it gets carried by the rain and snow melt into rivers, streams, creeks and makes it’s way into Lake Champlain. Now with the record shattering flooding, it is coming back to haunt us like ghosts from an earlier time. Unlike watching a scary movie, we can change the ending of this ghost story.

ECHO is getting closer to the Lake

ECHO sits on the shore of the largest bathtub or basin in the region—with a total area of 8,234 square miles—from the tops of the Green Mountains to the east, to the western reaches of the Adirondack Mountains. When rain, snow, sleets or hail falls in the basin, much of the water travels down to Lake Champlain—this year causing record breaking flooding.

There’s some interesting reactions, and pictures on the website, and it’s well worth checking out as the flooding continues onwards.

Photo by Kirpernicus.