South Hero Meeting House Blog

Meeting House Awarded Bruhn Grant

January, 2022

The Preservation Trust of Vermont announced that the Town of South Hero will receive a Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization grant of $100,000 for foundation and wall repairs of the South Hero Meeting House in South Hero, VT.

Built by community members in 1816, the historic South Hero Meeting House on US Route 2 has served as a church, town hall, school, and more recently as home to the Granny’s Attic Benefit Store and the Town Fire Department. The $100,000 Bruhn Grant will support replacement of the foundation and stabilization of the east wall of the Meeting House.

Long-term goals for the Meeting House include weatherization, adding basic infrastructure (water and septic) and an elevator on the rear to make it fully accessible year-round. Revitalizing this building will preserve a part of South Hero’s rural history for future generations and provide a vibrant, flexible space for a wide range of community and tourist activities, including retaining the 70-year-old Granny’s Attic Benefit Shop, which raises as much as $34,000 each year to support local non-profit causes that range from library books for kids, to meals for children and older Vermonters.

“This grant will help us begin the restoration of this important iconic building which will become the center of cultural and economic activity for South Hero village for decades to come,” said Select Board Chair David Carter. “The economic impact will be tremendous once the restoration of the Meeting House is complete.”

“The Preservation Trust of Vermont, in partnership with the National Parks Service, is excited to support projects that will help preserve and revitalize Vermont’s rural communities,” said Ben Doyle, PTV President. “We congratulate the community champions who are leading this work and thank the congressional delegation, Senator Leahy in particular, for his work in establishing this important national program.”

The Bruhn Revitalization Grant program supports the preservation and restoration of buildings and community gathering spaces of economic and social significance in rural communities with fewer than 7500 residents. Other projects receiving 2022 Bruhn Revitalization grants include: the mid-century Arlington Common building in Arlington, VT ($100,000 for facade restoration); the Union Meeting Hall in Ferrisburgh, VT ($100,000 for structural and restoration work); the Sanborn Covered Bridge in Lyndon, VT ($100,000 for structural work); the Haskell Free Library and Opera House in Derby Line, VT ($75,000 for slate roof restoration); and the Hale-Brodne House/Orange County Restorative Justice Center in Chelsea, VT ($50,000 for rehabilitation).The Preservation Trust of Vermont is a state-wide nonprofit organization that helps communities save and use historic places. The Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grant Program is administered by the National Park Service, Department of the Interior. Congress appropriates funding for the program through the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF). The HPF uses revenue from federal oil leases on the Outer Continental Shelf, providing assistance for a broad range of preservation projects without expending tax dollars.