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VPR's coverage of arts and culture in the region.

Vermonters On The U.S.-Cuba Relationship

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David Garten
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David Garten took this photograph in Havana just days before the announcement in December that the U.S. and Cuba would restore relations.

It's been a year of big changes in U.S.-Cuba relations. In December, after intense negotiations, President Obama and President Raul Castro of Cuba announced that the two countries would normalize relations. Just this Wednesday, the announcement came that Cuba and the U.S. are reopening their embassies.

We're talking to Vermonters with ties to Cuba about their experiences, what's changing, and what might come next in the U.S.-Cuba relationship.

Victoria Blewer and David Garten join us, both photographers who have traveled to and done work in Cuba. Former Vermont Education Secretary Armando Vilaseca also joins us. He was born in Cuba and came to the U.S. with his family in 1963. He usually travels to Cuba at least once a year, recently with the Burlington College Cuba for Education program.

Also on the program, out-migration isn't really new. As a matter of fact, once the Erie Canal opened in 1825. wagon trails headed west with New Englanders. We learn about one particular trek that left Addison County in 1836 from Bridport Historical Society Archivist Margaret French Sunderland.

And on Summer School we learn how to make injera. The spongy sour bread is ubiquitous in Eritrean and Ethiopian cuisine. South Burlington resident Mulu Tewelde gives us a lesson in how to make this flat specialty which is simple in theory but fickle in practice. Tewelde and fellow Eritrean native Alganesh Michael host a monthly Ethiopian night at Arts Riot in Burlington. 

Broadcast live on Monday, July 6, 2015 at noon; rebroadcast at 7 p.m.