The Upper Valley and White River Junction, Vermont
Above, covered bridges, nearby hiking trails, Dartmouth College and foliage season are some of the things that make life attractive in the region.
In the mid-sixties, Valley News publisher Walter Paine began referring to the newspaper’s circulation area as the “Upper Valley.” It quickly became the name by which the region identified itself in all its quaint, picturesque, historic, amazing, and funky diversity. Yes, the Upper Valley really does have it all.
The communities that make up the Upper Valley range from rural townships to small growing cities, with some striving to maintain their historic flavor, while others embrace redevelopment and new industry. The Connecticut River preserves the distinct difference between Vermont and New Hampshire without hindering community. As an example, the Dresden School District – a collaboration between college town and historic community – has elementary schools in both Hanover NH and Norwich VT, sharing a high school in Hanover.
Interstate highways 89 and 91 cross in White River Junction, which is, in fact, a village in the town of Hartford VT. It is also home to the Greyhound bus terminal and the Amtrak railroad station. Lebanon Regional Airport lies across the river in West Lebanon NH and Manchester-Boston Regional Airport is a little over and hour south. Burlington VT, Boston MA, and the seacoast region are less than 2-3 hours away and Montreal and New York City are another hour or so further.
A remarkable variety of cultural and recreational activities is available including theater, music, team and outdoor sports, museums, wilderness activities, and celebrations. The Lebanon Opera House and the Hopkins Center at Dartmouth College bring national artists to their stages as well as regional talent. Northern Stage at the Briggs Opera House in White River Junction offers a full season of professional theater. For families, the Montshire Museum in Norwich VT offers interactive science and nature exhibits and Billings Farm has year round activities that demonstrate past and present rural living. Summer brings open-air performances, town fairs, farmer’s markets, and even polo matches. The Appalachian Trail crosses West Hartford VT and there are numerous local trails as well. Golfers and skiers will find courses and hills for all skill levels on both sides of the river, and the clean waters make being on or in the water safe and enjoyable. Area residents benefit from the many recreation department offerings throughout the year.
Those visiting or living in the Upper Valley are fortunate to have a wide variety of health care choices available. Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon NH sets the standard in northern New England offering comprehensive care in a teaching hospital environment. Associated with it is the Veterans Administration Medical Center in White River Junction VT and a network of branch clinics and smaller hospitals in the extended area. Alice Peck Day Memorial Hospital is a private facility providing a wide range of specialties along with an extended care facility. There are also many choices for family practice medicine, dental health, eye care, chiropractic and sports medicine, and alternative medicine. And area veterinarians provide excellent care for the pet population as well!
There is a dining establishment for every taste somewhere in the Upper Valley. Breakfast lovers will appreciate the truck stops and excellent classic diners throughout the region, some of which have been featured in Yankee magazine. There are unexpected ethnic venues, national chains, family restaurants, pubs featuring their own microbreweries, and exquisite fine dining. Norwich, Quechee, and Woodstock VT, and Hanover and Lyme NH all have lovely inns with dining available.
Families relocating to the Upper Valley will have many questions about daily life in the area. Housing is primarily single-family homes and condominiums. Public schools range from good to excellent with a variety of private school options for all ages. Winter can seem long, but the road crews of both states keep travel possible and safe. The retail stretch on Route 12A in West Lebanon NH has several supermarkets, department stores, pharmacies, and specialty retailers. Neighborhood markets and coops offer locally grown produce, and the general store is still alive and well in Vermont, most notably in Norwich where just about anything you could ever need can be found at Dan & Whit’s.
The Upper Valley is a safe, clean, interesting, and friendly place to visit or stay. When you are in the area, we invite you to worship with us at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in White River Junction VT. Our parishioners come from every corner of our beautiful valley. They are educators, tradesmen, retirees, professionals, health care providers, technical specialists, parents, volunteers and active youth, but mostly they are family and friends, and hoping to welcome you to St. Paul’s.
St. Paul’s story begins in the middle of the Civil War when St. James Episcopal Church in Woodstock, Vermont started sending their priest over to White River Junction. Services in private homes grew into a mission church in the back of Glover’s Clothing Store, and in 1874, the original church was built downtown. By 1882 St. Paul’s was able to...
More about our history ≫
How We Worship
Our Eucharist-centered worship reflects our respect for the traditions of the Episcopal Church and our joy in music and prayer. We are fortunate that the sanctuary surrounds the altar in a semi-circle, emphasizing that we worship as the people of God.
At a typical Sunday...
More about worship ≫