Stuck in Vermont: Peter Harrigan Collected 600 Barbie Dolls in 30 Years, With Support From His Husband, Stan Baker, Who Collects Ken Dolls | Stuck in Vermont | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

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Stuck in Vermont: Peter Harrigan Collected 600 Barbie Dolls in 30 Years, With Support From His Husband, Stan Baker, Who Collects Ken Dolls 

Episode 695

Published July 27, 2023 at 7:30 a.m.

Peter Harrigan grew up playing with his sister’s Barbie dolls. As an adult, he put away his doll playtime until 1993, when his partner, Stan Baker, gifted him a Costume Ball Barbie for his birthday. Thirty years and 600 Barbie dolls later, the rest is history.

Harrigan is a theater professor at Saint Michael’s College in Colchester and Baker is a psychotherapist. In 1997, the pair were part of a lawsuit to legalize marriage equality that resulted in civil unions for same-sex couples in Vermont. The state legalized gay marriage in 2009, and the couple wed in 2010. They share a townhome in Shelburne with their dog, Ginger, and a lower level — nobody puts Barbie in a basement! — full of 11.5-inch-tall dolls.

Harrigan is the main collector in the family, and he creates intricate dioramas displaying the dolls in a variety of settings, including some Ken-only spaces. He keeps perfectly organized shelves of shoes, jewelry, clothing, furniture and miniature items that he has collected over the years from many sources. Baker collects Ken dolls, and the two have attended a variety of Barbie conventions together over the years.

Seven Days senior multimedia producer Eva Sollberger visited with Harrigan and Baker at their home in early July. They met up again on July 20 at Palace 9 Cinemas in South Burlington to see the Barbie film — with Barbie and Ken dolls from the movie in tow.

Filming dates: 7/6/23 & 7/20/23

This episode of Stuck in Vermont was supported by New England Federal Credit Union.


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About The Author

Eva Sollberger

Eva Sollberger


Seven Days senior multimedia producer Eva Sollberger launched her award-winning "Stuck in Vermont" web video series in 2007. Her videos have been viewed by millions. She appears every other Friday on WCAX at 6:30pm.

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