Brave Little State

Brave Little State

What if you could decide what stories Vermont Public should be covering, before they're even assigned? That's the idea behind Brave Little State.


January 19, 2023 34 min

If you live in Vermont, and you have a terminal illness, where and when you die could be up to you. Charlie Bestard of Hartland asked us about the state’s medical aid in dying law: How many Vermonters have used it, and how does the medical establishment view it?

To see photos of the Fitch sisters, and their parents, Stanley and Elaine, check out our web feature.

Additional listening, from our Vermont Edition colleagues: Connecticut p...

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Paintbrushes and blank canvases helped Burlington artist Liza Phillip love their biracial identity. Now, they paint colorful genderless monsters and sing songs on the ukulele to celebrate life beyond traditional binaries.

Find original artwork related to this episode at

This is the latest installment of Homegoings, a series from Brave Little State that features conversations with Vermont artists of color. Find t...

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Vermont is the only state in the Northeast without a freestanding birth center. We dig into the reasons why, and talk to folks who are pushing for change.

To see the inside of a freestanding birth center, and some super cute baby photos, check out the web feature for this episode.

Special thanks to Scott Fleishman, Gail Zatz, Peter Hirschfeld and all the midwives and birthing peoples who trusted us with their stories.

This episode was...

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Many Vermont restaurants are understaffed and struggling to stay open. Khrista Trerotola of Waitsfield wants to know, “What happened to all the restaurant workers? Where have they gone? And what are they doing now?”

To answer Khrista’s question, Josh Crane tells the story of one restaurant, from the very beginning to the end of an era. Also, he finds out what the people who used to work there are up to now.

To see photos from Josh’s ...

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Vermont has the most breweries per capita. But the more beer they brew, the more they have to deal with their wastewater. 

Caleb Henderson of Winooski asked us this: “Breweries and cideries were in the news a few years ago for the wastewater. How are they mitigating their waste now? Has it improved?”

Reporter Howard Weiss-Tisman learns how breweries — and communities — are grappling with this issue in different ways. And in many resp...

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On Anna Costello’s first visit to Vermont, she was surprised by the large number of Chinese restaurants compared to the seemingly small number of Asian Americans. So, she asked us: "What’s the Asian American experience like in Vermont?"

To find the answer, Myra Flynn learns to make bao, tours an Asian market, and talks to some of the leaders within this quiet but booming community here in Vermont.

Check out lots of photos fro...

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When the federal government banned alcohol in 1920, Vermonters took matters into their own hands. We head to the Northeast Kingdom to collect stories of cross-border bars, liquor hidden in baby bottles and potato cellar robbery.

Thanks to Nathan Bangs for the great question. Check out old photos from Prohibition-era Vermont in our web feature

Want to have a say in which question we tackle in an upcoming episode? Vote here!

Kevin Tre...

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A listener asked us how White River Junction became such a thriving place, “when it used to be so bleak.” We talk to some of the people behind the transformation.

To see photos of White River Junction, check out our web feature. This year’s Gory Daze Halloween Parade is on Saturday, October 29. Find more info here.

Angela Evancie reported and produced this episode, with help and editing from the rest of the Brave Little State team: M...

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September 22, 2022 25 min

“Vermont was the first state to abolish slavery.” That’s the common refrain around here. Except, the history is more complicated. Reporter Lexi Krupp answers a question from Peter Langella about this oft-misunderstood history, and explores how the legacy of slavery is still reverberating in Vermont today.

Check out the web version of this story for photos and additional resources from Lexi’s reporting. And thanks to Peter Langella f...

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September 8, 2022 29 min

Question-asker David Hess was curious about Native stories that speak to the Vermont landscape. Enter Mali Obomsawin’s new album, Sweet Tooth. Across three movements, she blends Wabanaki music with free jazz, and ancient stories with new ones, all of which offers a unique look at the land called Vermont.

Check out the web version of this episode to see photos and music from Mali Obomsawin. And thanks to David Hess for the great ques...

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The sale of the Vermont Lake Monsters in 2021 would bring lots of changes. In some ways, it’s a story of renewal. But the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Reporter Liam Elder-Connors walks us through the changes since the sale, and the traditions that have remained.

Check out the web version of this story for photos from our reporting. And thanks to Emma Ramirez-Richer for the great question.

Liam Elder-Connors reporte...

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August 4, 2022 35 min

We hear from former Vermonters about their love/hate relationship with our state, why they left and what it would take for them to come back.

Check out the web version of this story for photos from our reporting. And thanks to My Le Goel for the great question.

Myra Flynn reported this episode and did the mix and sound design. Editing and additional production from the Brave Little State team: Angela Evancie, Josh Crane and Myra Flyn...

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A question about finding companionship in the Green Mountain State – from wide-eyed hopefuls to frustrated giver-uppers. Plus, a love story.

Thanks to Silas Olsen for the great question. To see photos from this episode, check out our web feature.

This episode was reported by Anna Van Dine and produced by Josh Crane. Mix and sound design by Josh Crane. Editing and additional production by the Brave Little State team: Angela Evancie, M...

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Every summer, we trek across Vermont to uncover the origins of bizarre road names of your choosing. This year’s installment includes Iranistan Road in Burlington, Snipe Island Road in Jericho and … a bit of a wildcard.

Thanks to this year’s question-askers: Ali Jalili, David Boyle, Sam Graulty and Katie Ruffe.

And special thanks to Ken Picard, Carol McGranahan, Gary Irish, Wright Preston, Harriet Riggs, and Amy Tatko.


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Vermont’s first recreational cannabis dispensaries are set to open to the public on October 1, 2022. Reporter Bob Kinzel walks us through how we got here and how the new cannabis marketplace will work.

Check out photos from Bob’s reporting on our web feature.

Bob Kinzel reported this episode. Myra Flynn produced it, and she also did the mix and sound design. Editing and additional production from Josh Crane and Angela Evancie. Ty Gib...

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To answer this question from Eliza Keller, we go deep into the woods — and deep into a hiker hostel in downtown Rutland. We originally released this episode in 2018.
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A chapter of Northeast Kingdom history that is most mysterious. A man whose talent and ambition led him down a perilous path. To answer a question from Eric Lucier of Jay, Henry Epp tells the story of the Space Research Corporation and its founder, Gerald Bull.
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Vermont has been a popular destination for those who’ve relocated during the pandemic. But, how are they doing? We check in with some who made the move to see how they’re adjusting to their new lives.
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Most older Vermonters would rather stay in their homes than move to a nursing home or assisted living facility. We survey the obstacles to — and strategies for — aging in place.
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April 7, 2022 50 min
A question from Sam Leveston about a religion, and a people, who have often been overlooked. An answer in five chapters.
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