BARRE — There’s a baseball connection here, and we’ll get to it in a minute, but when Earl and Mary Bond, of Barre, founded Bond Auto Parts in 1956 they couldn’t have imagined the family-run business would one day boast 44 stores in four states.
It now does.
What’s more, the Barre-based business, which is still family-owned, hammered a home run this week when the Boston Red Sox announced they had entered into a “comprehensive multiyear partnership agreement” that recognizes Bond Auto Parts as the team’s official auto parts retailer.
Mark Mast, vice president of marketing for Bond Auto, thinks that’s a pretty big deal.
“The Boston Red Sox is one of the world’s most recognized brands and is rich in history within New England,” Mast said. “As a locally owned and operated family business we feel that being associated with the Boston Red Sox and their extensive fan base will enable us to capture more market share and customer enthusiasm.”
According to Mast, the company plans to use the partnership to lure customers to its stores (25 in Vermont, 16 in New Hampshire, two in New York — damn Yankees! — and one in Massachusetts) by doing Red Sox ticket giveaways and other contests and in-store promotions.
But there’s more to being the official auto parts retailer of the Boston Red Sox than that. As an added perk, Bond Auto will be the title sponsor of Vermont and New Hampshire state days at Fenway Park this year. Vermont State Day is Sunday, April 21, and New Hampshire State Day is May 26.
Troup Parkinson, senior vice president of corporate partnerships for the Red Sox, said the team was pleased with the one it just forged with Bond Auto Parts.
“With a shared commitment to customer service and strong roots throughout New England, we share many of the same values,” he said.
Homecoming for Devils
WILLIAMSTOWN — In what might best be described as a case of “the Devils made them do it,” the boys basketball team from Williamstown High School got a hero’s welcome last weekend after taking care of business (again) at the Barre Municipal Auditorium.
Seems the Blue Devils’ second straight Division III championship (that’s three in four years) had folks around town pretty pumped, and members of the Volunteer Fire Department and an Orange County sheriff’s deputy decided to meet the team’s bus in South Barre on Saturday night and escort it into town.
Lights flashing and sirens blaring, they led the bus through town to the Moose Club, where they turned around and headed back to the high school.
It was quite the commotion as folks lined Main Street to wave and hoot and holler as the bus passed, and they even sounded the old alarm at the fire station, proving it still works and prompting some who stayed inside to wonder what was up.
Though the escort was a win-or-lose plan, the Blue Devils’ lopsided victory over second-ranked Thetford in the championship game made their homecoming parade even more festive.
From Montpelier to New Yorker
MONTPELIER — A faculty member at the Vermont College of Fine Arts has had a poem published in The New Yorker.
The poem by Matthew Dickman is titled “Montpelier.” The end of the poem reads:
“I’m in Montpelier, the great
high seat of Vermont, the trees
are all green and the embarrassed
ghost of mosquitoes,
dressed in glittering nail polish,
are coming to take me all the way home.”
See the poem in its entirety in the March 13 edition of The New Yorker.
Spring Fling forward
BARRE — The Aldrich Public Library’s annual Spring Fling isn’t until a week from Saturday, but if you’re planning to attend the March 23 event they’d sure like to hear from you by Friday.
Tickets are $30 a person, and if you’d like to reserve one (or more) for an event that is being billed as “two floors of food and music” just call the library at 476-7550.
The three-hour event will start at 7 p.m. and feature La Vie En Rose Jazz Band on the library’s main floor and an upstairs café that will serve desserts by Delicate Decadence and hors d’oeuvres. There will also be a cash bar with a selection of beer and wine.
It won’t be a formal affair (though the library has hosted those in the past). Dress is casual, everyone is welcome, and if you could RSVP by Friday that would be a huge help.
BARRE — During Monday’s reorganization meeting of the Barre School Board, members re-elected Lucas Herring as their chairman even though he wasn’t there yet.
Herring had a good excuse for being tardy. He was donating blood at the Elks Club and got hung up in rush-hour traffic.
No biggie. Leslie Walz, who was elected vice chairwoman of the board, held down the fort until Herring arrived a few minutes late, down one pint of blood and sporting a sticker that proved he’d just come from Barre’s bimonthly blood drive.MORE IN Central Vermont
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