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VPR's coverage of arts and culture in the region.

Woodstock Weekly Won't Let A Fire Stop Publication

It’s no surprise that the lead story in this week’s Vermont Standard will be about the fire in downtown Woodstock Monday.

What may be surprising is that the local paper is publishing an issue at all. That’s because the building that burned contained the Standard’s offices.  

“We’re going to publish this week," says the paper’s owner, Phillip Camp. "That’s all there is to it.” 

The Vermont Standard shared videos of the fire on its Facebook page:

Camp said in its 165-year history, the Standard has been hit with three fires and two floods — most recently Tropical Storm Irene in 2011.

After Irene, the paper started backing up its computers and storing the backups in a fireproof safe. That safe was recovered by firefighters this week, along with the office computers. That will help the paper recover in time to put out an issue this week.

“[It’s] better than the situation when the flood wiped us out and flushed us down the Ottaquechee River," Camp said. "We have some stuff to start with.” 

The Standard has set up temporary offices at the nearby Norman Williams Public Library in Woodstock. The paper is printed at a different location.

Monday’s fire also destroyed the Pi Brick Oven Trattoria, displaced a family and caused extensive smoke damage to Collective, an artisan’s gallery.

Authorities are still investigating the cause of the fire.

Steve has been with VPR since 1994, first serving as host of VPR’s public affairs program and then as a reporter, based in Central Vermont. Many VPR listeners recognize Steve for his special reports from Iran, providing a glimpse of this country that is usually hidden from the rest of the world. Prior to working with VPR, Steve served as program director for WNCS for 17 years, and also worked as news director for WCVR in Randolph. A graduate of Northern Arizona University, Steve also worked for stations in Phoenix and Tucson before moving to Vermont in 1972. Steve has been honored multiple times with national and regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for his VPR reporting, including a 2011 win for best documentary for his report, Afghanistan's Other War.
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