Living in the Northeast Kingdom isn’t easy but it does have its pluses. The glory days of the huge hotels and tour boats on Lake Memphremagog are long gone. As late as the 1970’s, Newport was a bustling town with at least a half dozen famous named department stores on Main Street alone. The railroad was one of the best paying jobs in the region and manufacturing offered livable wages to families in the area. Unfortunately, many of these jobs and industries vanished in the early 1980’s resulting in Newport becoming a “sleepy little town with a beautiful lake”. Even the traditionally popular Spring fishing season became extinct over the years.
Yet, Lake Memphremagog remains one of Vermont’s most beautiful lakes and is breathtaking on a sunny day. A new lighthouse mock-up now stands near the former Newport railroad station, as a beacon of hope for the future. There are high hopes that with the recent expansion of nearby Jay Peak, new jobs and a new vitality will return to the Northeast Kingdom, particularly the Newport area. It would be well deserved for a region that has so much to offer.