Vermont Maple Syrup – 2024!

by | Feb 14, 2024 | 0 comments

It’s Maple Syrup season, and we still love Vermont!

“Got kind of tired packing and unpacking
Town to town and up and down the dial
Maybe you and me were never meant to be
But baby think of me once in awhile
I’m at WKRP in Cincinnati?”

I’m a nomad. Can’t sit still in one place for very long. Just like lots of radio folks used to be. Back in the day, you would start in small towns and try to work your way up to a major market. This story is about that journey, in Vermont.

I was born in Hawaii, in the same facility as Barack Obama, Tripler Army Navy Hospital, Honolulu. My Dad was in the service. After that I grew up in Connecticut, home of Frank Pepe’s Pizza.

I knew I would be in radio at age 5, when I won a radio call in contest on WAVZ, New Haven. And as soon as I was old enough to legally work, it was in broadcasting. I lived and DJ’d in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont. All by age 24.

How is that possible?

Well, it helps if you get fired a few times, including the very first day of my very first radio gig. I didn’t really like the Adult Contemporary music they were playing at WLIS in Old Saybrook, CT. So I brought in some of my own records. I was 16. At another station, WELI, New Haven, CT, I forged the date on my FCC Third Class Radiotelephone License, because it had expired. Buh bye! Don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

If it sounds like I was a bit of a fuck up, you’ve got that right. Seriously. But I drove from town to town just like the song said, and with each failure I’d learn a little.

And then I met Lisa Berdecki. The gorgeous blond who had dated Steven Tyler for 5 years. I was smitten and intimidated. But she saw something in me. And we shared a basement apartment in West Windsor, Vermont. In a village they call Brownsville. From the moment she came into my life, it got better.

“First comes love, then comes marriage, Keith then Andrew in the baby carriage.”

All of the sudden we were in Worcester, MA. I had a beautiful wife and a family. And an insatiable appetite for partying. Isn’t that what all entertainers did back then? Sure. Like Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, John Belushi.

In 1988 we were in Baltimore Maryland. Aerosmith had a new album out called “Permanent Vacation”. Steven Tyler was sober. One day, he and Lisa were talking (They still occasionally kept in touch) and he asked to speak with me. What followed was an enthusiastic story about how amazing he felt being sober.

I remember clearly at that moment, when I thought to myself, “The jig is up. You’re a husband and a father. You’ve got to grow up and be a man.”

And that first step was taken on October 31, 1989, in a treatment program in Issaquah, WA.

The Bob Rivers Show spent 25 years on the radio in Seattle (at KISW, KZOK, and KJR-FM). And our family moved five times in that 2 and a half decades. North Bend was home for 3 of those moves, and at each place we had a recording studio to make Twisted Tunes, and invited big name bands to play Live at Bob’s Garage concerts.

In 2014, it felt like the right time to have a new adventure. I was playing keyboards in Heart By Heart, with Rock and Roll Hall of Famers Steve Fossen and Mike Derosier.

And we travelled. All around the Pacific Northwest. Washington, Idaho, Oregon. And then east to Washington, DC. Delaware. Atlantic City, NJ. A Festival in Baltimore in front of 10,000 people. It was a dream come true to be on stage with the guys I’d been a fan of since 1975. I loved that band. Still do.

“On the road again
Just can’t wait to get on the road again
The life I love is making music with my friends
And I can’t wait to get on the road again”

Which brings us back to Vermont. And now you know why we retired where we started. That’s where Lisa and I met and got married. It literally is where our roots are. How ironic that since 2016 we tap trees, collect sap, and boil it down to make one of the sweetest tastiest products known to man. This year will be our 8th season making maple syrup at Stone Hill Farm.

Right now I’m working from home in Las Vegas with Hank in Vermont. We use high tech cameras and communicate in real time, while I also run the online store. In a few weeks I’ll be out there, boiling, bottling, packing, and shipping.

We’ve plugged-in the inventory count and opened the store to accept Pre-Orders for 2024’s Maple Syrup yield, for a first-week of April shipping date.

After so many years being privileged to be a part of your mornings, it’s a blessing to still have a place at your breakfast table.

Thanks for your support,

Bob Rivers

PS. Now that we live in Vegas, everyone comes to see us! Even the Super Bowl. Hopefully 🤞 we’re finished being nomads.

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