Say Hello To The Twitter Voices Behind @GoStowe

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Every Thursday, Say Hello To America Stowe in Summer will be showcasing the voices behind official Twitter accounts of destinations all across the United States and the city they represent. This week, say hello to the voices from @GoStowe. Susan Rousselle, Jasmine Bigelow McLean, Dean Burnell, Tom Thamm, Kelsey Bourne, and Matt Brunelle make up the team that handles the social media networks for Stowe Area Association. Collectively they have represented Stowe for over 38 years!

1. What time of the year is best to travel to Stowe?

Dean: If you’re a skier, come to Stowe in March – typically there’s still lots of great snow but not large crowds! Slightly warmer daytime temps, too!
Tom & Susan: Summer in Stowe is a great way to escape the heat and everything is so green and all the flowers are in bloom. You can bike and hike, and swim in the swimming holes!
Matt & Kelsey: The fall is the best time, with so many events and breathtaking views of foliage. It’s a great to hike, pick apples, drink hot cider and eat cider doughnuts! Yum!
Jasmine: Honestly, any time of year could be the best time to travel to Stowe – it depends on what you want to do when you get here. We have very distinct seasons, and the landscape and activities change with them!

Fall Foliage

2. How would you describe the people of Stowe?

Dean: Friendly; welcoming; lucky!
Matt: You won’t meet nicer people than the people of Stowe, they are always welcoming and accommodating whether you are a local or from anywhere else around the world.
Kelsey: The people of Stowe are very friendly. They are down to earth and enjoy Stowe as much as visitors do.
Jasmine: Friendly, laid-back, and fun-loving – it’s a contagious way-of-life you get living in a town that people come to for vacation!

3. What is your favorite and least favorite thing about Stowe?

Susan: My most favorite thing about Stowe is having an outdoor hot tub with a view of the mountain.
Matt: My favorite thing about Stowe is its variety. There are so many different restaurants to satisfy whatever you are craving. And, there are so many activities to keep you active. The quaint town… the happening Mountain Road… and the mountain itself-it’s all great here!
Jasmine: My favorite thing about Stowe is that it has the amenities of much larger cities. Restaurants, shops, theatre, galleries…all intertwined in the landscape of mountains, meadows, and lakes. It satisfies my desire to live in both urban and rural environments!

Least favorite
Susan: There are so many good restaurants, it’s impossible to choose which one to go to. I always have to let someone else pick!
Matt: There isn’t snow year round! With such incredible skiing and riding I’m always sad to see the mountain close for the season.
Jasmine: Hmmmmmmm…

Trapp Family Lodge Stables

Trapp Family Lodge Stables

4. What is Stowe’s most famous landmark or attraction?

Dean: Mt. Mansfield – its Vermont’s highest peak and home to Stowe Mountain Resort!
Tom: Smuggler’s Notch – the long winding pass that gets you to the other side of the mountain, and has an intriguing history of… smuggling.
Susan: Trapp Family Lodge (owned by the von Trapp family of “Sound of Music” fame) is the most common thing guests ask us about.

5. Name one “secret” location that a traveler must visit.

Dean: In the early spring, visit any of the local waterfalls – it is when they are at their most spectacular (with all the water from the melted snow)!
Tom: Sunset Rock.
Matt: The Smuggler’s Notch caves are always a blast to climb through! They are just off the road and don’t require a hike to see them, so everyone can enjoy.
Jasmine: The mountain biking trail system in Stowe is one of the best (and most secret) in the country. There are miles and miles of quality trails built and maintained by local enthusiasts – trails for beginners to experts.

Stowe in Winter

Stowe in Winter

6. What is the best/easiest mode of transportation to get around the city?

Dean: On foot!
Tom: Car – there is free parking everywhere.
Susan: Around the village it’s walking. Biking on the Rec Path is a great way to reach everything from along the first 5 miles of the Mountain Road.
Matt: During the winter there is a free shuttle the runs throughout Stowe.
Jasmine: To sum it up…it totally depends on where you want to go and what time of the year you are here, but some good options are: walk, bike, ski, snowshoe, drive, or ride the free shuttle!

7. Is there any festival or event in Stowe that a traveler should specifically plan a trip around?

Dean & Tom: The “British Invasion” antique car show is a great kick-off to the Foliage Season.
Kelsey: The ice sculpting competition (nationally sanctioned) at Winter Carnival in January. The sculptors that come into town create these beautiful and intricate ice sculptures, so that the village all the way up to the mountain is lined with different ice sculptures reflecting on different aspects of Stowe’s businesses. The competition lasts several days, culminating with a 1-day judged event at the mountain.
Jasmine: We are so excited that in 2014, Stowe hosts the Junior National X-C Ski Championships! Other great events are the foliage Art & Craft Show (in Stowe for almost 30 years!), and the annual Antique Car Show (in Stowe for over 55 years!).

Mount Mansfield Peak

Mount Mansfield Peak

8. What are the best family-friendly attractions that Stowe has to offer?

Dean: The Stowe Recreation Path (a 5.5 mile paved path through the woods, open meadows, and along the river) is great for families!
Tom: In the winter, take the kids skiing, snowboarding, X-C skiing, and snowshoeing. In the summer, take them to the alpine slide, zipline rides, or biking.
Matt: The mountain year round, numerous activities for families no matter the season.
Jasmine: Get outside! Hike, bike, ski with the entire family!

9. What is Stowe’s signature food that every visitor has to try?

Dean: For Nordic skiers: you have to ski up to the Trapp Family Lodge’s cabin and have whatever’s on the menu that day for lunch! The ski up to the cabin gives you a great appetite, and the food tastes all the better for the ski you just had!
Matt: Fondue at the Stowehof – it’s very alpine!
Jasmine: Apres ski! Here, that could mean sliders, wings, tacos, fried pickles or avocado, pizza, nachos, sushi – remember, we have almost 50 restaurants, and most of them cater to the après ski crowd! So, you decide. Just be sure to order a local brew, Vermont wine, or craft spirit to go with your appetizers!

Mount Mansfield Trails

Mount Mansfield Trails

10. If I only had one day to explore Stowe, what MUST I see or do?

Dean: One day in the spring: go to any of Stowe’s Maple Sugarhouses. One day in the summer: hike or bike any of the local trails. One day in the fall: a scenic drive to any of the area’s covered bridges. One day in the winter: alpine ski, Nordic ski or snowshoe!
Tom: Drive through Smuggler’s Notch (but note, it’s closed in the winter!).
Kelsey: Get as much of a taste-of-Vermont as you can! Visit the Ben & Jerry’s factory, Cold Hollow Cider Mill, and the Cabot Cheese Annex. Go shopping in the village and along the Mountain Road, and grab some lunch. Then, take a scenic drive though the Notch, with a quick stop first at Bingham Falls (a short and easy 10 minute hike to a beautiful waterfall!
Susan: You have to see the view from the top of Mt Mansfield. It’s awesome any time of year, and you can get there by hiking and/or taking the gondola!

Stowe, Vermont

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Twitter: @GoStowe
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