2017 is rolling to a close and 2018 is upon us. Looking back at 2017, here are a few things we could not have predicted for the year.

A very wet June led to very saturated ground, and heavy rains on July 1 led to flooding as well as damage to Waitsfield’s covered bridge when a large tree hit the bridge and tore a hole in the side of it. The damage was not too severe and the bridge was repaired and reopened in time for the Mad Marathon.

We couldn’t have predicted and were sad when Jerry and Wilma Maynard didn’t open Maynard’s Snack Bar last spring. We understand that they wanted to retire; we’re just sad we didn’t stop by for one more orange freeze or maple milkshake.

We couldn’t have predicted what happened in Warren this fall when a construction error in a new roof at the elementary school led to a flood which led to the discovery of new and old black mold. The bad news was that the cleanup took several weeks; the good news is that Sugarbush made the School House and Valley House available to teachers and staff leading to some great outdoor learning opportunities!

Last year we predicted that Waitsfield’s pocket park would get completed – and it did. So did Warren’s Main Street project. We were wrong when we predicted that Waitsfield’s west side sidewalk would be completed and correct when we predicted that voters would give a thumbs-up to purchasing the Mad River Park fields for local youth athletics.

The Farmer’s Almanac predicts a great winter for snow and playing outside and we agree. Bring it on.

We predict that Lawson’s Finest Liquids’ construction and grand opening will be this fall and it will be huge and there will be great rejoicing throughout the land.

We predict there will be changes in the state’s solid waste laws that allow trash haulers to charge whatever they want to collect compost.

We predict Governor Phil Scott will run for re-election and will win.

We predict that the proposed redesign of the Harwood Unified Union School District, including the possibility of closing two elementary schools and sending all fifth- and sixth-graders to Crossett Brook, will become the major news story of 2018.

See you here next year to compare notes.