Old fashioned Summer fun of the liquid variety.

tubetravelSummer at the October Country Inn is all about natural surroundings. What better way to enjoy nature than to cool off on a hot summer day with a dip in our  pool, a lake, river or stream? Nothing feels as good as a dip in clear, clean water! Vermont’s natural bodies of water & flowing rivers & streams have some of the cleanest, clearest water you’ll find. It’s cool, refreshing & tubegroupthoroughly enjoyable. And what better way to enjoy Vermont than with an old-fashioned relaxing ride on an inner tube down a local river.

Just enough rain has produced excellent tubing conditions–not too deep with the water moving a good speed.  There is also plenty of variety.    In some spots you are just floating along while in Tubeplaceothers you are gently bumping your way through the large smooth river rocks.

You can bring your own inner tube, or rent one from a local tubing company.  There are a couple of different tubing rental companies in nearby Stockbridge (known locally as the Stockbridge Yacht Clubs). For a heat-escaping good time, all you need is a little spare time and an inner tube.  Vermont provides the rest.

 

Some people like to collect stamps, others join Vermont’s 251 Club.

Vermont's 251 towns.

Vermont’s 251 towns.

There is no question but that Vermont is truly unique.  Such uniqueness is manifest so many different ways.  Unique among this uniqueness is the 251 Club.

In a 1954 edition of Vermont Life Magazine, to answer a reader’s question “How can I come to know the real Vermont?” Dr. Arthur Peach invited “the native-born and those born elsewhere but with Vermont in them” to veer from the beaten path “to discover the secret and lovely places that main roads do not reveal.”  To illustrate that every corner of Vermont had attractions, beauty, history, traditions and people of interest, Dr. Peach suggested that readers visit each of Vermont’s  251 towns.  The 251 Club was born.

Old Barn & HayThe response to Dr. Peach’s suggestion was remarkable. A new batch of Vermont maps had to be printed to meet the growing demand while letters from prospective 251 Club members rolled in.  Today there are over 4,000 members of the 251 Club exploring the state.  These folks travel at their own pace, in a season or in a lifetime, by car, motorcycle (this would be my personal choice), or on foot. There are no rules, no records to keep, no requirements. The expectation is that you will be inventive and adventurous in bike251following the road less traveled to Vermont’s little known corners, as well as its more popular destinations. As the National Geographic Traveler has noted, “If you want to see New England as you imagine, go to Vermont. More than any American state, Vermont has worked to preserve those qualities that make it unique, such as scenic countryside, lively small towns, historic streetscapes, and local businesses.”

By the way, where better than the October Country Inn to provide a home base while pursuing your Vermont adventures?

 

 

Garlic crusted chicken for everybody.

chixIn the thirty odd years since October Country Inn’s founders, Pete and Ruth Hall, hit on the idea of serving internationally themed dinners, the Italian Country dinner has been a consistent favorite.  Garlic crusted chicken anchors this meal that is begun with a serving of Summer garden minestrone soup, and complimented with eggplant parmesan (both of these recipes have been previously posted).  Garlic crusted chicken is easy to prepare.  For a serving of six the ingredients are:

  • 6 approximately 8 ounce split chicken breasts with the skin and bone intact
  • 1 cup of seasoned Italian bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 ounces of melted butter
  • 1 clove of minced garlic
  • salt and pepper to taste
All the pieces in place and ready to bread the chicken.

All the pieces in place and ready to bread the chicken.

To prepare this dish, preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Foil line a metal baking pan big enough to hold all six breasts.  To prepare the breading combine the bread crumbs, chopped parsley, grated parmesan cheese, and salt and pepper in a mixing bowl.  Melt the butter in a small, shallow pan and stir in the minced garlic.  Line up the raw breasts, the melted butter, the breading, and the foil lined baking pan.  First coat a breast with melted butter, then coat with the breading mixture before placing in the baking pan.  When done, place the pan in the oven to bake for about 40 minutes.  Check internal temperature with a meat thermometer.  It is done when a minimum internal temperature of 160 degrees is reached.