The New York Times carried a piece on Chester, Vermont, recently. This small quaint town, like a number of small quaint towns in Vermont, is fighting a “Dollar Store” going in — because they’re worried about changing the character of the town. Our travels have taken us to Brattleboro, Vermont, and Plattville, Wisconsin, both small towns that have robustly undertaken downtown revitilization projects. (Plattville even has ongoing forums to educate the public about why it’s important to shop locally and support the local “Mom & Pop” businesses.) In addition, some of the store owners in Plattville have moved into apartments above their shops so Main St., in essence, has become their “front yard.” This makes them even that much more invested in fixing up the downtown. It’s a throw back to the “old days,” when a lot of storeowners lived above their shops.