They’re here — the results of our fifth annual 4393 Awards!

They’re here — the results of our fifth annual 4393 Awards! Readers of our newspapers — the Stowe Reporter, News & Citizen and Waterbury Record — voted for their favorite restaurants, shops, sporting goods, home services, nonprofit organizations and so much more.

In early spring, almost 500 readers nominated all of the people, places and things that made it to the final voting ballot, which hit a contest record of 3,270 votes.

We’ve listed the top three in each category, along with the top nominees. As for those nominees, we didn’t include one-hit wonders, and in most categories cut off the list of nominees if people didn’t at least hit double digits. Nominees are listed in alphabetical order, not by vote totals.

We also included some of the real comments left by survey-takers, from the silly and good-humored (someone nominated Bill Murray for both best real estate agent and fitness instructor) to the touching (best activity: cuddling, best outdoor music venue: around the campfire) to the snarky and scandalous.

And in case you’re wondering — ‘4393’ corresponds to the elevation of Mount Mansfield, Vermont’s highest peak and home to Stowe Mountain Resort. We can’t believe folks ‘round here don’t know that, but perhaps it is because some sources list the elevation at 4,395 feet. However, the U.S. Geological Survey (usgs.gov) uses the 4,393 elevation, and that’s definitive enough for us.

We present this special section to our readers — both locals and visitors — and we hope you will enjoy it and refer to it throughout the year.

Hip, hip, hooray!

2019 Winner Features

When it comes to raising money to support people living with cancer and their families, the Lamoille Area Cancer Network runs laps around other like-minded organizations — quite literally. Every June the hosts a walkathon called LACiNg Up for Cancer, in which hundreds of people and scores of…

The real estate business in Stowe sometimes approaches the level of sport, with one of the state’s largest pools of property constantly in motion, properties going on and off the market to people who live here year-round and those who own their second, third or even fourth home here. If real…

A picture’s worth a thousand words, so we’ll keep it short. Photographer Jesse Schloff, a Vermont native who lives in Stowe with his family, has taken thousands upon thousands of pictures, starting 15 years ago at this very company. This year, readers chose him as their favorite local shutte…

Ryan Romano is no stranger to jumping in wherever the community needs him. This year’s Volunteer of the Year, Romano, who lives in Stowe, can often be found behind a chair holding shears or a razor at Romano’s Barber Shop, the haircutting joint he founded with his father and now owns. When h…

If you look at the state of Vermont as a glass, the region covered by the 4393 Awards is certainly more than half full. We’re lucky to live right on the perfect fill line for some of the country’s best — and best known — craft beers. While others outside the Green Mountain State beg their vi…

You’re more likely to find this year’s Ms. Lamoille in the chicken shed or hanging with goats or pigs than on a red carpet — except when she’s trying to raise money to give those goats, pigs or chickens a happy life. Claudia Stauber founded Happy Heart Sanctuary last year as a shelter for fa…

Evan Chismark has a lot of ideas and the energy and vision to turn a lot of those ideas into action, which earned him the title of Stowe Entrepreneur of the Year. Chismark is an artist and illustrator, with a healthy list of clients. He used to be executive director of the Stowe Trails Partn…

In recent times, the Stowe Derby has been like the Winter Olympics —held once every few years. It’s supposed to be annual, but bad weather has conspired to delay or cancel the Derby several times. The Derby is uniquely Stowe’s — a race from the top of Mount Mansfield to Stowe village, using …

For a menu that features two cocktails named after Phish songs, it makes sense that Black Diamond Barbeque’s chicken wings are both smoked and fried. Wings are as ubiquitous to restaurant menus as Subarus are to Vermont roads, with far less rust. To stand out from the rest of the flock means…

Founded by Morristown’s own Donnie Blake in 1985, Donald P. Blake Jr. Inc. has been named the best builder in the area. Blake, his partner Travis Cutler and their expansive crew edged a host of other local builders for the top honor this year.

Christmas/New Year Deadlines and Office Closures

Issue Dates: December 19 and 26, and January 2

For BOTH the December 19 and 26 issues, ads are due Thursday and Friday, December 12-13, at noon. All editorial materials are due Friday, December 13, at noon. For the January 2 issue, ads are due Thursday and Friday, December 26-27, at noon. All editorial materials are due Friday, December 27, at noon. Our offices will be closed Wednesday, December 25, and Wednesday, January 1.

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