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Barbara Bardin


1951 - 2015 Obituary Condolences Gallery
Barbara Bardin Obituary
Barbara J. Bardin

1951 - 2015 MANCHESTER Barbara J. Bardin (aka: PBear), age 63, died on April 26, 2015 of complications from ovarian cancer, losing a two-and-a-half-year struggle. She did not fade away nor did she go quietly; Barbara loved life and fought to keep hers with unrelenting tenacity and fierceness and the best medical expertise she could find. Barbara was born on May 22, 1951, to Gladys Mae Parry Bardin and Malcolm Stanley Bardin in Granville, New York. Barbara was the oldest of five siblings. She grew up in Manchester, VT, and graduated from Burr and Burton Academy in the class of 1969. She attributed her high school experience - which included her classmates, teachers, and many eventswith providing her with a solid foundation for her journey through life. Barbara organized and catered several high school reunions, including the latest, which was held in the fall of 2014. There she received the Alumni Achievement Award and was inducted into the Hall of Fame. Following her heartfelt and emotional speech, Barbara was very moved by a standing ovation from her classmates and friends. Anyone who was fortunate enough to have met Barbara Bardin and to have spent time with her either professionally or personally knew they were in the presence of a spirited and engaging force of nature. Known to work and play hard, she had high expectations for perfection and took a childlike delight in hardy celebration. No one escaped this force of nature and any shyness or resistance you might have, quickly disappeared as Barbara delightfully encouraged professional excellence and playful creative partying. She was famous for her generosity of spirit, a passion for Veuve Clicquot Champagne and for her love of fine food and outrageous adventure. It's no wonder that Barbara achieved success in her businesses and was beloved by so many friends near and far. Barbara Bardin was the founding owner of Splash! at the Boathouse in Burlington, VT, which opened in 2003. Splash! is Burlington's only restaurant on a floating dock located directly on the magnificent shores of Lake Champlain. Barbara created Splash! on the dock of the newly constructed Community Boathouse and Marina. It was an extraordinary venture. Barbara's catering and restaurant expertise sprung from sheer chutzpah, guts, talent, creativity, brawn, and savvy smarts. Splash! which Barbara built into a successful seasonal restaurant and bar, became known as "the jewel in the crown" of Burlington. It was while Barbara was working as a corsetiere for Janette Racine at Bertha Church, a lingerie shop located in downtown Burlington, that she also began catering part-time, then later started her own catering business, Let's Pretend, with business partner, Paul Bahan. Let's Pretend provided Barbara with a stage for her imagination and creativity, and she produced unforgettable thematic events. Let's Pretend became the go-to caterer for private parties, elegant wedding receptions, and formal corporate and nonprofit events. Surprise elements included themes from Frankenstein to Dickens or medieval to Moroccan, complete with appropriate costumes and props - the more unique the better. Barbara rose to each and every occasion, and her clients raved about her. Barbara's life was an adventure in possibility, serious when appropriate, yet always ready to seize the moment and party the night away. She traveled extensively with family and friends and bought her dream vacation home on the Island of St. John in the US Virgin Islands in 2008, where she reveled in island life: sailing, snorkeling, and loving up the sun. Barbara's zest for life meant jumping on every opportunity to get the most joy possible from every day. If anyone could turn a lemon into lemonade, it was Barbara Bardin. Even through her very difficult struggle to survive cancer, she managed to keep those closest to her laughing, bantering, and thoroughly entertained. Barbara leaves behind a void that is impossible to fill. She will be remembered through all the events she so masterfully helped create, stories that will no doubt be told over and over again by those of us who were lucky enough to have been a part of them. She leaves her business, Splash!, to her business associates, Jenn Sinclair and Barbara Cote, also owners of Barkeaters Restaurant in Shelburne, who will continue Splash! as Splash! Survivors of Barbara's family include her brother, David Bardin and his wife, Dale Bardin; her sister, Betsy Hoag and husband, Andrew Hoag; a brother, Sam Cook and wife, Kim Hoard Cook; her sister, Susan Cook Parry and partner, Jimmy Gliminakis; she was delighted to have recently found another sister, Diane Mercure. She leaves her nieces and nephews; Tyler Bardin, Nicole Bardin, Gabrielle Hoag, Danielle Zanolli, Samantha Cook and Dana Towslee. She also leaves her grandnephew, Camron Zanolli, and grandnieces, Madison Haskell and Harper Towslee. A Special High Five to her medical support team: her chemo nurses, especially , Deb Clark and Kim Spina and all the oncology nurses, and to her gynecologic oncologists, Dr. Cheung Wong and Dr. Unger. Barbara was also enormously grateful for all of the compassionate caregivers, doctors and specialists of the University of Vermont Medical Center and the Vermont Respite House. Their expertise, realistic optimism, and deeply expressive compassion made all the difference. Barbara also leaves behind her special pals to party on: "Our gang! What fun we had! Dinners, D Dock Boating, cocktails, glorious sunsets. How I love you all"!!! A Loving Acknowledgement to Friends along Barbara's Life Journey. Barbara was unable to complete her magnanimous intention to include personal remarks for everyone who inspired, influenced, and supported her along the way. She wanted all to know that she remembered every kindness shown to her and was deeply overwhelmed by the expressions of love she received in the past few weeks. In lieu of flowers, Barbara requested that if you would like to make a donation in her memory please do so to one of the following: The University of Vermont Cancer Center, the Vermont Respite House, Williston, VT., or to a Humane Society of one's choice. If you would like to send a card or a note to the family, please mail to her brother, David Bardin, P.O. Box 74, Manchester Center, Vermont 05255. A celebration of Barbara's life will be held at the Coach Barn at Shelburne Farms, 1611 Harbor Road, Shelburne, VT on June 21, 2015, beginning at 11 am.
Published in Bennington Banner on May 2, 2015
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