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Waitsfield, Vermont facts for kids

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Waitsfield, Vermont
Downtown Waitsfield, Vermont
Downtown Waitsfield, Vermont
Location in Washington County and the state of Vermont
Location in Washington County and the state of Vermont
Location of Vermont with the U.S.A.
Location of Vermont with the U.S.A.
Country United States
State Vermont
County Washington
Chartered 1782 (Vermont)
 • Total 26.9 sq mi (69.7 km2)
 • Land 26.7 sq mi (69.2 km2)
 • Water 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)
800 ft (306 m)
 • Total 1,844
 • Density 68.52/sq mi (26.456/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 802 Exchanges: 496, 583
FIPS code 50-75325
GNIS feature ID 1462237

Waitsfield is a town in Washington County, Vermont, United States. The population was 1,844 at the 2020 census. It was created by Vermont charter on February 25, 1782. It was granted to militia Generals Benjamin Wait and Roger Enos and others, and named for Wait.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 26.9 square miles (69.7 km2), of which 26.7 square miles (69.2 km2) is land and 0.19 square miles (0.5 km2), or 0.68%, is water.

Waitsfield is located in the valley of the Mad River, between the main range of the Green Mountains to the west and the Northfield Mountains to the east. Vermont Route 100 runs through the valley, connecting Waterbury to the north with Warren and Rochester to the south. Vermont Route 17 leaves Route 100 to the west, heading over the Green Mountains past the Mad River Glen ski area, eventually reaching Bristol.

The primary villages in town are Waitsfield and Irasville, both along Route 100. Waitsfield Common is near the geographic center of the town.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1800 473
1810 647 36.8%
1820 935 44.5%
1830 968 3.5%
1840 1,048 8.3%
1850 1,021 −2.6%
1860 1,005 −1.6%
1870 948 −5.7%
1880 938 −1.1%
1890 815 −13.1%
1900 760 −6.7%
1910 709 −6.7%
1920 682 −3.8%
1930 723 6.0%
1940 706 −2.4%
1950 661 −6.4%
1960 658 −0.5%
1970 837 27.2%
1980 1,300 55.3%
1990 1,422 9.4%
2000 1,659 16.7%
2010 1,719 3.6%
2020 1,844 7.3%
U.S. Decennial Census
Waitsfield VT Town Office
Old Town Office – Waitsfield, Vermont

The 2000 census stated that there were 1,659 people, 734 households, and 485 families residing in the town. The population density was 61.7 people per square mile (23.8/km2). There were 908 housing units at an average density of 33.7 per square mile (13.0/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 97.23% White, 0.96% African American, 0.24% Native American, 0.48% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.30% from other races, and 0.72% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.21% of the population.

There were 734 households, out of which 29.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.2% were married couples living together, 8.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.9% were non-families. 25.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.26 and the average family size was 2.73.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 21.3% under the age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 32.2% from 25 to 44, 27.7% from 45 to 64, and 12.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 96.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.3 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $45,577, and the median income for a family was $54,868. Males had a median income of $31,827 versus $27,260 for females. The per capita income for the town was $24,209. About 3.9% of families and 5.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.1% of those under age 18 and 2.0% of those age 65 or over.


The town's economy is based around two nearby ski resorts, Sugarbush Resort and Mad River Glen. They are popular resorts with a different focus: Mad River Glen is the longest-run skier owned and skier-only resort on the East Coast and is home to the unique Single Chair lift. Sugarbush is a tourist resort and in recent years has grown throughout the town adding several new condominiums and a hotel.

Waitsfield has also become famous for the amazing restaurants it features. Most well known is American Flatbread: a locally owned, locally grown unique restaurant featuring famous wood-fired pizzas with local ingredients. In the parking lot of American Flatbread Declan Lyons was shot dead, notable because of the rarity of violent crime in the area. Additionally, the local favorite Mexican spot the Mad Taco serves meat-smoked on the premises with the local brew beer, a favorite, A new restaurant The Peasant on Bridge Street serving a locally grown taste of France.

After restaurants Waitsfield features a one of a kind movie theater, The Big Picture Theater features both a restaurant and two theaters with love-style seating, and food service to the movie-goer.

During the summer a favorite in Waitsfield is the swimming holes along the Mad River. Lareau Farm and swimming under the hundred-year-old covered bridge are local favorites and often adopted by visitors.

Overall Waitsfield's economy offers the small-town feel with a big-city attitude; featuring many different high-class restaurants and activities. A long-running Christmas-themed commercial for Miller High Life beer was filmed in Waitsfield in 1976.

Notable people

  • Ralph Ellison, American author
  • Bill Parker, artist and inventor
  • Grace Potter, musician of Grace Potter and the Nocturnals
  • Edmund Rice, US congressman from Minnesota
  • Henry Mower Rice, US senator from Minnesota
  • Charles W. Waterman, US senator from Colorado
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