Lawson’s Finest Liquids accepting applications for Super Sessions mini grant program
Lawson’s Finest Liquids is accepting applications for its Super Sessions mini grant program. As one of the pillars of the company’s Social Impact Program (SIP), the Super Sessions initiative was created to motivate people across the northeast region make a positive impact in their communities through pint-sized grants.
Named after the brewery’s Super Session single-hop IPA series, Lawson’s Finest created the initiative to encourage their fans to become more active in their communities. The Lawson’s Finest employee-led Super Sessions selection squad chooses individuals or groups to receive funds that help bring their Super Sessions idea to fruition. One recent Super Sessions recipient was Andrew Wild, a Winooski (Vermont) High School teacher who was passionate about obtaining an outdoor rock-climbing certification so that he could form a club for his students.
“I greatly appreciated Lawson's Finest’s help with completing my outdoor climbing instruction class with the American Mountain Guide Association,” Wild said. “The class will help me take Winooski High School students on outdoor rock-climbing excursions, increasing access to an amazing activity across so many beautiful locations in Vermont.”
The Super Sessions mini grant program is one of six SIP initiatives at Lawson’s Finest. The Social Impact Program also includes the Sunshine Fund, which benefits a rotating list of Vermont-based nonprofit organizations and has raised over $681,000 since its inception. Great Place to Work, Good Brews for a Cause, Green is Grand and Sip of Support are also part of SIP.
Individuals and organizations looking to submit a 2022 Super Sessions application must be located within Lawson’s Finest’s nine-state distribution area (VT, CT, MA, ME, NH, NJ, NY, PA, RI). The application can be found at https://www.lawsonsfinest.com/sip/super-sessions/ and must be received by October 31 at 5pm. For more information on the Super Sessions initiatives or Lawson’s Finest in general, visit www.LawsonsFinest.com.
Waitsfield Telecom is a partner in NEK fiber-optic broadband build out.
A major step toward bringing fast internet to all addresses connected to the electrical grid in the region was accomplished during the NEK Broadband board meeting on September 9.
The Communications Union District (CUD), made up of 45 member towns, approved a joint partnership with Mission Broadband, the National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative (NRTC), and Waitsfield and Champlain Valley Telecom (WCVT). This strategic partnership will bring high-speed fiber-optic internet service to unserved and underserved addresses (with access to less than 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload internet speeds) in Essex, Caledonia and Orleans counties.
NEK Broadband plans to build a fiber-optic network that can deliver internet service speeds up to a gigabit per second to approximately
20,000 underserved households. This requires construction of more than
2,500 miles of fiber-optic cable. Although the goal is to complete the project in five years, there are many variables, such as availability of materials and skilled labor, that are beyond local control, and it could take up to seven years to complete. New service is expected to be available in some areas by the end of 2022. The partners will leverage state and federal grant funding available to communication union districts for internet improvement projects.
Eric Haskin, president and CEO of Waitsfield and Champlain Valley Telecom, stated, “We recognize the importance of this project. Our decades-long experience bringing fiber-optic internet to our own customers in Vermont will enable NEK Broadband to activate service to customers more quickly than would otherwise be possible.”
NEK Broadband is currently working through the details of planning, design and engineering for various stages of the project. Building a fiber-optic network won’t happen overnight and takes a great deal of capital.
The organization is actively applying for state and federal grants having recently been awarded $276,000 for preconstruction work.