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Brave Little State

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

Weekly hand curated podcast episodes for learning

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How Has The Geology Of Vermont Affected Its Character?

If you've lived in a state for a long time, or grew up there, you probably have this feeling - when you drive into or out of it, you feel like you can tell the difference. For many people, this is very true for crossings in and out of Vermont.

27mins

8 Sep 2017

Rank #1

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Why Is Vermont So Overwhelmingly White?

The history of Vermont's whiteness - both racial and cultural - and stories from people of color about what it's like to live here.Fan of the show? Sign up for the BLS newsletter, submit a question about Vermont and/or make a gift to support people-powered journalism.

30mins

3 Mar 2017

Rank #2

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How Can Vermonters Drive Less?

For a state that calls itself green, Vermont sure has a lot of drivers. So what can be done?That's what Eve Jacobs-Carnahan of Montpelier wants to know. Eve's question about public transportation forces us to confront some difficult truths about life — and travel — in Vermont.Check out our web feature to see photos from our reporting and much more. And here's our related episode on Vermont's housing crunch.Love Brave Little State? Sign up for the BLS newsletter, submit a question about Vermont and/or make a gift to support people-powered journalism. And remember: Be brave. Ask questions.

34mins

6 Dec 2019

Rank #3

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Why Does Vermont Have So Many Dollar Generals?

There are 37 Dollar General stores in Vermont. And what Danielle Drogalis of Swanton wants to know is: How did that happen? Love Brave Little State? Support Vermont Public Radio. And check out our web feature to see photos from our reporting and a map of all of D.G.'s Vermont locations.And remember: Be brave. Ask questions. Submit your question about Vermont at bravelittlestate.org, and vote on the question you want us to tackle next.If you liked this episode, may we recommend another one from our archives: What Does It Take To Start And Run A Successful Small Business In Vermont?

29mins

3 Jan 2020

Rank #4

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Your Vermont History Fix, From Gold Mines To Witch Windows

This month, we're doing things a little differently. Instead of taking on one of your questions about Vermont, we're taking on three. We've got a question about those crooked windows you see on Vermont farmhouses, a question about Vermont's defunct gold mines and one about the history of Burlington's Church Street.

21mins

7 Jul 2017

Rank #5

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What Is The Status Of The Abenaki Native Americans In Vermont Today?

A question about the descendants of this region's first residents. Love the show? Sign up for the BLS newsletter, submit a question about Vermont and/or make a gift to support people-powered journalism. And remember: Be brave. Ask questions.

25mins

4 Nov 2016

Rank #6

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A Tribute To Vermont's Old, Falling-Down Barns

This month on "Brave Little State," a question about the many barns in Vermont that are left in a suspended state of disrepair.

25mins

7 Apr 2017

Rank #7

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What Do Vermont Constables Do, Anyway?

What's the history and function of town constables in Vermont? That's what Richard Dumughn wants to know.Check out our web feature to see photos of Constable Silas Loomis and his cruiser full of constable essentials. Related episode: Who Oversees Vermont's Elected Sheriffs?Love Brave Little State? Support Vermont Public Radio.And remember: Be brave. Ask questions. Submit your question about Vermont at bravelittlestate.org, and vote on the question you want us to tackle next.

12mins

20 Dec 2019

Rank #8

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Your Vermont Ghost Stories: A Halloween Special From 'Brave Little State'

In this Halloween special from "Brave Little State," a terrifying compendium of spine-tingling Vermont ghost stories, as told to us by ... you.

23mins

21 Oct 2016

Rank #9

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Almost 100,000 Vermonters Voted For Donald Trump. Why?

On Election Day, nearly one in three Vermont voters cast ballots for Donald J. Trump - and VPR reporters teamed up with "Brave Little State" to hear from a few of them.

25mins

3 Dec 2016

Rank #10

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What Would It Look Like If Vermont Seceded?

We aren't endorsing it, but ... if Vermont did manage to secede from the United States, how would we fare?

27mins

3 Nov 2017

Rank #11

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What's It Like To Be A Migrant Worker In Vermont?

If you drink Vermont milk, or eat Vermont apples or vegetables, it's likely that you have foreign workers to thank. But do you know any? This month, we spend time with some of the members of the work force that keeps many of Vermont's farms running.

33mins

9 Jun 2017

Rank #12

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As Colleges Close, How Will Vermont Schools Survive?

Low enrollment and financial troubles have caused a slew of Vermont’s small, independent colleges to shut their doors. What’s causing the problem — and is there a solution?Love Brave Little State? Support Vermont Public Radio with a $5/month sustaining membership. We can't do this work without you! And remember: Be brave. Ask questions. Submit your question about Vermont at bravelittlestate.org, and vote on the question you want us to tackle next.

32mins

7 Feb 2020

Rank #13

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Vermont Hustle: What It's Like To Work 3 Jobs

There's a joke about the employment scene in Vermont: "What do you call a Vermonter with two jobs? Lazy." In other words, it can take three or more jobs to make a living in Vermont.

31mins

8 Dec 2017

Rank #14

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Are Utility Bills 'So High' In Vermont? It's (Really) Complicated

This month on "Brave Little State," a question about utility bills in Vermont - and a small sampling of Vermont ghost stories.

32mins

7 Oct 2016

Rank #15

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Vermont's 'Brand' Helps These Businesses. Do They Help Vermont?

Tanya Ocker of Burlington wonders about businesses that emphasize Vermont's "brand." Do they help our economy?Check out our web feature to see photos from our reporting. And if you liked this episode, may we recommend:Vermont's A Hard Place To Do Business? Darn Tough CEO Calls BSWhat Does It Take To Start And Run A Successful Small Business In Vermont?Love Brave Little State? Sign up for the BLS newsletter, submit a question about Vermont and/or make a gift to support people-powered journalism. And remember: Be brave. Ask questions.

13mins

17 Jan 2020

Rank #16

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What Can Be Done About Vermont's Aging Sewer Systems?

This month on "Brave Little State," a subterranean question about wastewater treatment in Vermont.

28mins

5 May 2017

Rank #17

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Goodbye, Ollie: Remembering Vermont's Favorite Camel

A question about a popular camel won in one of our recent public voting rounds. Sadly, our reporting did not go as planned.Fan of the show? Sign up for the BLS newsletter, submit a question about Vermont and/or make a gift to support people-powered journalism.

3mins

13 Mar 2020

Rank #18

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Is Town Meeting Outdated? (And More)

It's "Ask Bob" on Brave Little State! VPR's senior political reporter Bob Kinzel takes on your questions about Town Meeting, the location of Vermont's capital, the limited functions of our county governments and more.Fan of the show? Sign up for the BLS newsletter, submit a question about Vermont and/or make a gift to support people-powered journalism.

35mins

28 Feb 2020

Rank #19

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Why Has Vermont Never Sent A Woman To Congress?

Vermont is the only state in the country that's never sent a woman to D.C. We dig into the disparity, and poll Vermonters on whether they think it's a problem.Fan of the show? Sign up for the BLS newsletter, submit a question about Vermont and/or make a gift to support people-powered journalism.

18mins

21 Feb 2020

Rank #20