More than 20 years ago, on a cool November day in Vergennes, Vermont, the students of Northlands Job Corps Academy (then called Northlands Job Corps Center) did something extraordinary. They baked a loaf of bread.
Big deal, you may be thinking. And you’d be right. For this was no ordinary loaf of bread. This was the king of all loafs up to that point in human history – the world’s longest loaf of bread, measuring a staggering 2,357 feet and 10 inches.
“The students had dug a trench along a hill,” recalls Security Supervisor Mike Mills. “The trench snaked up and down the hill and curved all over the place. It was filled with coal and then lined with aluminum foil. The students would bring in balls of dough gradually filling up the trench, baking it as they went.”
On hand to certify the achievement was then-Lieutenant Governor Howard Dean, who went on to become Vermont’s governor and later a presidential candidate.
Perhaps even more staggering than the monumental achievement of the world’s longest loaf (which was later surpassed by bakers in Italy) was the fact that a piece of the loaf still exists in the desk of Records Supervisor Sue Hobday. “I save everything that I’ve gotten from Job Corps over the past 31 years,” she says.
That petrified piece may no longer be edible, but it still stands as a monument to one incredible (and certainly unusual) accomplishment by the center’s students and staff.
What’s next, Northlands?