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?