Essex, Vermont Area Guide

Essex, Vermont
Area Guide

Essex, Vermont is located between Vermont’s Green Mountains and Lake Champlain, minutes northeast of major urban hub city Burlington. Colchester is 45 miles south of the United States-Canadian border and 95 miles from Montreal, Quebec. Essex’s southwest neighbor, the City of Burlington, is the central hub of the Burlington-South Burlington metropolitan area. The Town of Essex (which is inclusive of the village of Essex Junction), is highly rated for its new urbanism, smart growth, easy living standards and mixed-use development, along with one of the lowest crime rates in the country and one of the best air-quality measures nationwide. Essex and Essex Junction are progressive in attitude and forward-thinking in terms of ecological awareness and expansion and are proud of their small-town values and cosmopolitan attractions, making Essex one of the most highly sought-after places to live in the United States. To learn more about life in Essex, Essex Junction, Chittenden County or the state of Vermont, please visit:

Town of Essex
www.essex.org/

Village of Essex Junction
essexjunction.org/

State of Vermont Tourism
http://www.vermontvacation.com/

Vermont Find and Go Seek
http://www.findandgoseek.net/


History

By the late 1700’s, the 300,000 acres of land that would become the state of Vermont were co-owned by Revolutionary War hero Ethan Allen, as part of the New Hampshire land grants. The Town of Essex was chartered at the same time as Burlington, one of 9 charters grated to communities of the Lake Champlain area in 1763. The state of Vermont was admitted into the Union of States in 1791. Burlington’s position on Lake Champlain helped both the city and the area develop into a center of trade and point of entry. The wharves allowed steamboat access, connecting freight and passengers with the Vermont Central Railroad and the Rutland & Burlington Railroad rail systems, bringing industry, commerce, manufacturing and new residents to Burlington. By 1860, the communities of the Burlington area had already flourished into major northern lumbering ports and manufacturing centers. The historic districts of Essex have been well-preserved, bearing testament to the Victorian prosperity of Vermont’s past To learn more about the history of the Town of Essex, The Village of Essex JunctionChittenden County or Vermont, please visit:

Essex Community Historical Society
http://www.essex.org
Chittenden County Historical Society
cchsvt.org

Vermont Historical Society
http://www.vermonthistory.org/

Vermont Division for Historic Preservation
http://www.historicvermont.org/

Vermont History Museum
http://www.vermonthistory.org/index.php/museum/museum-overview.html

Ethan Allen Homestead Museum
http://www.ethanallenhomestead.org/

Vermont in the Civil War
http://vermontcivilwar.org/index.php


Parks and Recreation

Rudyard Kipling wrote that Lake Champlain was one of the most spectacular places in the world to view a sunset; our residents and visitors could not agree more. Essex, situated between the Green Mountains and Lake Champlain’s shoreline, is equally accessible to the Winooski River, providing guests with all manner of seasonal water sports available for enjoyment. From hiking, biking and rock climbing to fishing, swimming, sailing, kayaking and canoeing, there’s an adventure awaiting you by land or by water. Equestrian activities, camping, nature watching and picnicking are available at most national and parks; no matter what your preference, there’s a place to enjoy it in Chittenden County. The municipal parks of our communities are meticulously maintained and offer a variety of amenities to enjoy year round: public gardens, bike paths, public ice skating facilities, playgrounds and community gyms and spaces are just a few of the unique features of our local and community parks. In addition to our wealth of state, national and municipal parks, nature enthusiasts will not want to miss a visit to the waterfront ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center, which is located in Vermont's first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certified Green Building. To learn more about enjoying the forests, mountains, rivers and lakes of Vermont’s great outdoors during your time in Essex, please visit:

Vermont State Parks
www.vtstateparks.com/

Vermont National Parks Service
http://www.nps.gov/state/vt/index.htm

Vermont Outdoor Guide Association
http://www.voga.org/nature.htm

Appalachian National Scenic Trail
http://www.nps.gov/appa/index.htm

ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center
www.echovermont.org/

Town of Essex Parks and Recreation
http://www.essex.org

Essex Junction Recreation and Parks
http://www.ejrp.org/


Attractions and Entertainment

Essex is a town of duality—on one hand, it is a bedroom community of a college town, on the other, it is a progressive, cosmopolitan New England “micro-city”. Nearby City of Burlington has, on more than one occasion, been likened to the streets of Paris. The Church Street Marketplace is the Burlington area’s social and commercial center, a thriving shopping and dining district that is home to many community festivals throughout the year for all of the communities of the region. Art lovers can explore the independent galleries of the Church Street Marketplace, attend one of the annual art festivals put on in downtown Essex, or catch the rotating exhibits at the nearby Shelburne Museum. Sports fans have much to choose from in the Burlington area—from University of Vermont’s athletic teams to minor league baseball, basketball, hockey, rugby and roller derby, there’s a team for everyone to cheer for. In terms of leisure, there’s no shortage of things to do and places to explore or relax in—there are multiple highly ranked golf courses, spas, shops and museums for residents and guests to enjoy during their downtime. For a taste of Vermont, take a tour and tasting of one of the local breweries, wineries or cideries—or for the sweeter side that Vermont is known for, take a tour of one of sugarhouses, and learn how maple syrup goes from tree to table. Essex is also home to some of the most unique dining in Vermont—everything from authentic ethnic cuisine to local favorites like Handy’s Lunch, local franchise American Flatbread, or honor two local Vermont favorites with a Ben & Jerry’s cone of Phish Food. To learn more about the attractions and activities of Essex, please visit:

Theatre, Culture and the Arts

Robert Hull Fleming Museum at University of Vermont
www.uvm.edu

Shelburne Museum
http://shelburnemuseum.org/

Flynn Center for the Performing Arts
www.flynncenter.org/

Vermont Art Galleries
www.artseenvt.com

Sports and Activities

Vermont Golf Courses
http://www.golflink.com/golf-courses/state.aspx?state=VT

Vermont Lake Monsters Baseball
http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/index.jsp?sid=t462

University of Vermont Athletics Catamounts
http://uvmathletics.com/

Burlington RFC Rugby
http://www.burlingtonrugby.org/

Burlington Bombers Roller Derby
burlingtonbombers.com/

Shopping, Dining, Leisure and Attractions

Church Street Marketplace
http://www.churchstmarketplace.com/

Burlington Town Center
http://www.burlingtontowncenter.com/

Essex Shoppes and Cinemas
http://www.essexshoppes.com/Welcome.asp?Key=1

University Mall
http://www.umallvt.com/

The Vermont Gift Barn & Gallery
http://www.vermontgiftbarn.com/

Vermont Sugarhouses
http://www.vtliving.com/sugarhouses/burl.shtml

Vermont Breweries, Wineries and Cideries Guide
http://www.vermontagriculture.com

Hungry Vermont Diner’s Index
http://hungryvt.com/

Ben & Jerry’s, Burlington
http://scoopshops.benjerry.com/scoopshops/burlington/default.aspx

American Flatbread
http://americanflatbread.com/restaurants/burlington-vt/

Handy’s Lunch
http://www.handyslunch.com/


Events

Geologically, culturally, civically and historically rich, Essex is a forward-thinking, progressive community that honors its small town values and idealism while embracing its cosmopolitan outlook. Chittenden County’s Town of Essex and its neighboring communities have a broad range of activities, parks, events and attractions to offer residents and visitors. In the Lake Champlain area, calendars are always scheduled to the brim. The annual Burlington City Arts Festival of Fools, the Giant Pumpkin Regatta and Festival and the Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival are area favorites that are not to be missed. To find out what sporting, historic, cultural or ecological events are happening during your time in Essex, please visit these sites:

Vermont Brewers Festival
http://www.vermontbrewers.com/

Giant Pumpkin Regatta and Festival
www.vermont.org/pumpkin/

The Lake Champlain Dragon Boat Festival
www.ridethedragon.org/

Vermont International Film Festival
www.vtiff.org/

RunVermont, Vermont City Marathon
http://www.runvermont.org/page.php?pid=1&pname=home

Burlington City Arts Festival of Fools
www.burlingtoncityarts.org/Festival_of_Fools/

Church Street Marketplace Events Guide
http://www.churchstmarketplace.com/events/sponsored/

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