We have some hardy souls here in Essex. Last Saturday, Rachel Bedoian, Alex Comeau and Ben Breckenridge participated in the Penguin Plunge in Burlington. This dip in the lake was a fund raiser for the Special Olympics. Hats off to Trish and John Walker of the Essex Inn who provided a special discount on rooms for the crew putting up the scaffolding in the Essex Community Church sanctuary. This is a big help in keeping this unexpected expense just a bit lower. Your friendly local assessors remind you that all exemption applications must be presented at the Town Hall by March 1st. Last Sunday David and I motored to North Hero to take in a presentation on Nordic skating. We even got to try some and I was very frustrated. It looked easy but was a learning curve that I hadnt anticipated. Nordic skates clip on your cross country ski boots and are especially designed for a longer glide and better handling on outdoor ice. Im pleased to report that Wes Vanderhorst returned home on Tuesday. We wish him a continued and speedy return to good health. Its nice to hear that, in spite of her resignation as director of ECHO, Jan Eakins and her husband, John Ferry, will remain in Essex and continue to renovate their newly purchased brick house.