Life in Stowe
Learn more about living in Stowe Vermont by selecting one of the area information pages below. View information about the community, schools, and other fast facts. If you're interested in buying a home in Stowe VT, contact Meg Kauffman.
I always laugh when people ask me, “Is there enough to do here?” There’s too much to do! I’ve lived in some great cities — London, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston — and I’m continually amazed at the cultural and recreational opportunities that exist right outside my front door. You can be as involved or as uninvolved in community life in Stowe as you want. I meet people all the time who want to move to Vermont to escape their frenzied lifestyle, to slow down and hide away for a bit. Others come here anxious to dig in and become active members of the community with organizations like The Stowe Land Trust, The Helen Day Art Center, or any of the Town of Stowe Commissions. Stowe really can be all things to all people. But regardless of how deeply you choose to entrench yourself in the community, you will feel the positive effects of living in a place where people share similar small-town values and are invested in their town and community for the long haul.
As summer is approaching there are myriad events planned in the Stowe area, throughout the season. So, come enjoy! And, if in the meantime you are considering properties in the area, you can easily search properties here.
Open the Stowe Reporter, our town’s weekly newspaper, any week of the year, and you’ll be amazed at all that’s going on. You would have to be in two or three places at once to be able to squeeze it all in.
Here's what you can look forward to:
Lectures and talks every night of the week, courtesy of the local colleges, art galleries, and town libraries. The Osher Lifelong Learning program, run through UVM, offers weekly noontime lectures throughout the fall, winter, and spring right here in Stowe.
A music scene that rivals many metropolitan areas. Between the active nightlife at our local restaurants and the more serious musical offerings at Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center and Trapp Family Lodge, you needn’t look far for musical entertainment. But if you don’t mind driving 20 minutes to an hour away, you’ll have your pick of venues, from acoustic musicians at local bars and restaurants to big names and off-Broadway shows at venues like the Flynn Center for the Performing Arts in Burlington.
Art exhibit openings and gallery open houses are always going on. You could spend an entire day touring the art galleries in Stowe, alone. But when it comes to art in Stowe, the Helen Day Art Center is the town’s crown jewel. The arts center is located just above the library on Pond Street, and hosts some of the most exciting, cutting-edge exhibits in the state.
Local theater is one of the best surprises people discover when they move here. A theater performance is always on tap somewhere nearby, including by our own Stowe Theatre Guild, which puts on a few shows every year in the Town Hall theater on Main Street.
Many people choose to live in Stowe because they want direct access to a variety of recreational options. Every time I hop in the car to pick up my kids at the mountain or sneak in a quick mid-day cross-country ski or a weekend run on the Stowe Recreation Path, I’m amazed at how easy it is to get out and enjoy the great outdoors. Everything’s right here, whether you’re a skier, hockey player, runner, cyclist, fisherman, tennis player, or hiking enthusiast.
Stowe Mountain Resort: If you’re a skier or snowboarder, Stowe Mountain Resort (link to http://www.stowe.com) is going to be your new favorite place to hang out. Consistently ranked as one of the top ski resorts in the East, the resort is a pretty cool place to call your “home ski hill.”
The Stowe Rec Path: This is where you can do it all, without having to worry about cars. The 5.5-mile Stowe Rec Path winds from Stowe village alongside Mountain Road toward the resort. People walk, run, rollerblade, and bike on the path during the warm-weather months, and cross-country ski and snowshoe when the snow flies.
Jackson Ice Arena: The construction of a new, $6.5 million ice arena is currently under way. The new arena will replace the former open-air ice rink and will offer a year-round skating facility in the heart of Stowe.
The Stowe Land Trust: The land trust is responsible for conserving over 3,500 acres of land in Stowe. The 29 conserved properties are accessible to hikers, trail runners, and skiers. Trail maps are available at stowelandtrust.org.
Tennis: It may seem hard to believe, but there are 50 tennis courts in Stowe. During the summer, the Stowe Tennis Club on Barrows Road is a favorite hangout for local families, with its courtside pool and tennis camps. Topnotch Resort & Spa arguably has the glitziest tennis facilities in town, with several indoor courts for winter or rainy day use.
Fitness centers and spas: If you’re into yoga or like to work out in a gym, no problem. Yoga studios and spas are well represented in Stowe, and there are several fitness centers to choose from.
Fishing: Take your pick. There are more lakes, rivers, and streams in the nearby vicinity than you could possibly visit in a summer.
Hiking: Stowe is located in the heart of the Green Mountains. The Long Trail crosses the top of Mount Mansfield, and the Green Mountain Club (the organization that oversees the Long Trail) headquarters is located just south of town. Aside from that, there are so many hiking opportunities in the area, it’ll be awhile before you ever have to hike the same trail twice — although you may want to.
Biking: If you’re biking with kids, the Stowe Rec Path is the way to go. But for adults, the options are limitless, whether you prefer trails or meandering country roads. Maps of public trails in Stowe are available on the Stowe Mountain Bike Club website. Trapp Family Lodge’s outdoor center also offers some great mountain biking options.
Stowe schools are ranked tops in the state, with students consistently scoring above average on performance tests. Stowe High School was ranked the number one high school in Vermont in U.S. News and World Report’s “Best High Schools Ranking 2012.” Nationally, the school ranked 285 out of 21,776 schools. The graduation rate is 90 percent, which is one of the highest in the country. The ranking is based on standardized test results, AP offerings, and the percentage of students taking AP courses and their test results.
The Stowe elementary and middle school always land in the top tier of statewide school rankings based on student-teacher ratios, the number of full-time teachers, and standardized test results.
Teachers, parents, community
Academically, our schools are hard to beat. Our schools are small, intimate, inviting, and stimulating. The teachers, administrative staff, and coaches work together to encourage growth on all levels, helping our kids reach their full potential as students, athletes, and community members.
If you’ve been in town for a decade or so, you’ll notice that there’s virtually no teacher turnover. The teachers seem to enjoy coming to school every day as much as the students. It’s just a fun, inspiring place to be.
From the elementary school to the high school level, students have the opportunity to participate in a wide range of extracurricular activities, clubs, and year-round sports programs.
Parental involvement and community support of our schools is another big “stand out” component of our successful school program. Education is a huge priority for families and the community as a whole. There is never a shortage of parent volunteers, both in the classroom and on the sports fields.
Athletics also play a big role in the overall school experience. At the elementary school, students are invited to take part in Friday Program, which gives kids a chance to spend the afternoon skiing or snowboarding at the mountain, ice-skating, Nordic skiing, snowshoeing, or swimming. Third and fourth graders cross-country ski during their mid-winter gym classes. And if you show up during recess, you’ll find kids outside playing pick-up soccer (or snow soccer during the winter), basketball, and street hockey.
Most of the organized sports programs for elementary-age children are managed by community organizations, such as the Stowe Rec Department, Stowe Soccer Club, and Stowe Youth Hockey.
At the middle- and high-school levels, most kids play at least two sports, sometimes three. Being active, making healthy choices, and taking advantage of our natural resources is a big part of growing up in Stowe, primarily because these values are supported and modeled in the greater community.
Although known for its rich ski heritage, the Stowe area is a vibrant, year-round community with great schools, family-owned shops and restaurants, and really great people.
Here are some fast facts:
Location: Stowe is located in Lamoille County in northern Vermont, 10 miles off I-89 and 45 minutes to Burlington. We’re a three-and a-half hour drive to Boston, just under four hours to Hartford, Ct., and six hours to New York City.
Geography: 72 square miles, making it the second-largest town, by area, in the state. The town lies in a valley with Mount Mansfield (the highest peak in Vermont) to the west and the rolling Worcester Mountains to the east, with rivers and streams running in every direction in between.
History: Stowe was founded in 1763 by Oliver Luce and his family. Early on, farming and logging were the primary industries. Stowe Mountain Resort opened in 1937 with its first rope tow; the first chairlift went up in 1940. More on Stowe history.
Population: Approximately 4,300 year-round residents.
Weather: January is the coldest month of the year, with an average low of 2 degrees and a high of 25 degrees. An average of 220 inches of snow falls each winter. The average high in the summer months (June to August) is in the mid to upper-70s, with lows at night in the low to mid-50s.