August 30, 2015

Chester/Deep River Boy Scout Peter Jones Attains Eagle Scout Rank

Chester/Deep River Boy Scout Troop 13 newest Eagle Scout Peter Jones. Photo by Michael Rutty.

Chester/Deep River Boy Scout Troop 13 newest Eagle Scout Peter Jones. Photo by Michael Rutty.

CHESTER & DEEP RIVER — Peter Jones of Deep River, a member of Chester/Deep River’s Troop 13, has earned Scouting’s highest rank and an Eagle Scout Court of Honor was held for him on Sunday Aug. 16, at the Deep River Town Hall Auditorium.

To become an Eagle Scout, Peter earned 38 merit badges and advanced through the seven scout ranks by learning Scout and Life skills while simultaneously providing leadership to his Troop and service to his community.  One of the final requirements for the Eagle Rank is to show leadership in and complete a service project that benefits the boy’s community, school, or religious institution.

Peter’s project was to reconstruct a 20 foot long stone wall to enhance the corner of The Deep River Congregational Church’s cemetery along Platt Ln. and Essex St.  The original wall had fallen into disrepair over the years from erosion.  The completed wall complements the existing front wall of the cemetery and new plantings were added to the accent and beautify the area.

Completing this project entailed meeting with the church to determine they stone they preferred, securing donations for supplies, designing and overseeing volunteers through the construction and installation of the wall and plantings.  The completed project provides an important service to the residents of Deep River and members of Deep River Congregational Church by improving the look of the area.

Congratulations, Peter!

Troop 13 Boy Scouts serves the boys ages 11-18 of Chester and Deep River. The purpose of the Boy Scouts of America is to help young men develop their character and life skills all while having fun.

There is much emphasis placed on assisting these young men to develop into strong healthy citizens who will lead our communities and country in the years ahead. The Boy Scout methods help to promote these ideals through the challenge of putting them into practice with the Troop Program. This is done in a way that is both challenging and fun.

To learn more information about joining Troop 13 please contact our Scoutmaster, Steven Merola @ 860-526-9262

Local Author James R. Benn Talks About His New Book, “The White Ghost,” Sept. 24

whiteghostESSEX — The Essex Library welcomes local author James R. Benn on Thursday, Sept. 24, at 7 p.m. for a talk celebrating the release of “The White Ghost,” Benn’s tenth volume in the popular Billy Boyle World War II mystery series.

Booklist gave the book a starred review and said, “Working with recently declassified documents about the Solomon Islands Campaign, Benn spins an absolute corker of a war story.”

The Historical Novel Society praises the book saying, “Replete with riveting and beautiful descriptions of the customs, rituals, and geography of these beautiful islands, this makes for great historical fiction for readers who crave a good mystery as well as a good war story.”

Crime novelist Lee Child declared, “Billy Boyle gets better and better. This is a must-read series.”

James Benn

James Benn

Benn, a resident of Hadlyme, Conn., worked in the library and information technology field for more than 35 years before he started writing full-time. One lesson he says that’s helped him greatly as an author is a quote from Oscar Wilde, “The art of writing is the art of applying the seat of one’s pants to a chair.” Copies of his books will be available for sale and signing.

The event is free and open to the public.

The Essex Library is located at 33 West Ave. in downtown Essex.

For further information or to reserve a seat, call the Library at 860-767-1560

‘Shoreline Chefs’ to Offer Small Plates in Afternoon ‘Estuary’ Fundraiser

OLD SAYBROOK –   Shoreline Chefs, a fundraising event featuring local professional and home chefs and notable locals cooking up a storm in small plate tastings for fun and fun competition, will be held on Sunday, Sept. 20,  from 3 to 6 p.m. on the Old Saybrook Town Green. Tickets at $35 are available now at The Estuary Council of Seniors, which is sponsoring this first-time event.

Restauranteurs, caterers, gifted home cooks, and neighborhood notables are providing food and their cooking talent for an afternoon and evening of small plate tastings. Fun loving friends and patrons who purchase a ticket, will have the privilege of tasting delicious recipes. The event includes a silent auction and entertainment.

The list of Shoreline Chefs currently includes: Dagmar’s Desserts, Apple Rehab, The Estuary, The Town of Old Saybrook, Porky Pete’s BBQ, Old Saybrook Fire Department, The Tea Kettle, Guilford Savings Bank, Mirsina’s Restaurant, Homeworks, the Pursuit of Pastry and The Town of Old Lyme.

Join this event for an afternoon of food, fun and fundraising to support the services of the Estuary Council of Seniors. Throughout the nine town Estuary region, one out of every four individuals is now using one of the Estuary Council of Senior’s vital programs.

Last year, the Estuary provided 70,000 hot, nutritious meals to individuals in our nine town district.   The Estuary also provide medical outpatient transportation, social and educational programs and numerous trips and activities. The organization’s challenge is to keepup with the increased need and the cost of providing services.

If you are interested in being a Chef, or a sponsor of this event, call 860.388.1611 x 211

Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony Slated for Sept. 17 to Celebrate Ivoryton Village Streetscape Project

ESSEX — On Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015 at 5 p.m., the Town of Essex will celebrate the culmination of the Ivoryton Village Streetscape Project with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The ceremony will take place at the Ivoryton Village Green on Main Street in Ivoryton.

The project was funded through a $435,000 Main Street Investment Fund grant administered by the State of Connecticut – Department of Housing.

“These improvements create a sense of community” stated First Selectman Norman Needleman, “and the impressive results have come about through the efforts of many stakeholders, with special thanks to Selectman Stacia R. Libby and the members of the Ivoryton Alliance.”

The ceremony will include remarks from the First Selectman as well as other local government officials and will be followed by refreshments.  The event is open to the public.

For more information, visit www.essexct.gov,  or call the office at 860-767-4340 x112.

Tickets on Sale Now for Chester Rotary’s 45th Annual Lobster Festival

Loving lobster! Happy LobsterFest-goers savor the feast in 2014.

Loving lobster! Happy LobsterFest-goers savor the 2014 feast.

CHESTER — The Rotary Club of Chester will host its 45th Annual Lobster Festival at the Chester Fairgrounds on Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015. Tickets are on sale now and going fast, so prompt purchase is encouraged.

The event is highlighted by classic double entree dinners featuring Twin Lobster, Twin Steak, or Surf and Turf and single entrée Lobster or Steak dinners. Traditional sides include corn on the cob, baked potato, coleslaw and rolls.

The gates will open at 4 p.m. for table decorating and general admission.  Dinners will be served from 5 p.m. and continue until 7 p.m.   Soft drinks, bottled water, draft beer and wine are available for sale throughout the night.

Live music for your dancing and listening pleasure will be provided by Four Barrel Billy with the Bottom of the Barrel Singers until closing at 10 p.m.

Admission tickets for twin lobster or twin steak or surf and turf dinner tickets are $40 in advance, $45 for remaining tickets at the gate. Single lobster or steak dinner tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the gate.  Access to the Lobster Festival is restricted to dinner ticket holders. Seating is limited.

Visit http://www.ChesterRotary.org for more information and to purchase tickets on-line. Tickets can also be purchased at CENTURY 21 Heritage Company, Chester Package Store, Chester Package Store, Chrisholm Marina and Lark, from any Chester Rotarian, or call Susan Wright at (860) 526-3294.

Chester Rotarians are dedicated to providing funding and service to local, national and international charitable organizations. All proceeds from this event support these local and global humanitarian causes of Chester Rotary & Rotary International.

“The Preserve” Advocate Suellen Kozy McCuin Passes Away After Unexpected, Brief Illness: Service Today

ESSEX — Suellen Kozey McCuin, 49, of Essex, beloved wife of J. Scott McCuin, passed away Friday, Aug. 21, with her family and friends at her side after an unexpected and brief illness.  Her obituary states, “She was an outstanding leader in the fight to protect the 1,000 acre forest now known as “The Preserve” located in her childhood town of Old Saybrook and her current home in Essex.”

Her obituary also notes, “She graduated from Old Saybrook High School and received her Bachelor’s Degree from Central Connecticut State University. She was a parishioner at Our Lady of Sorrows Church in Essex, CT.  Suellen enjoyed a successful career in government affairs and was most recently Executive Director for the Connecticut Council of Soil and Water Conservation Districts.”

State Representative Philip Miller (D-36th) described her passing as, “A loss for everyone.  One of the very best people I have ever known.”

He continued, “Of all of us who helped save the thousand acres, she is the only one of us who was indispensable.  We could have never succeeded without her.  Over the years, we had hundreds of phone calls and dozens of coffee conversations.”

Miller added, “She was an original, a deeply genuine, kind hearted person of great dignity.  My heart aches for her family, especially Scott, Maddy, and little Owen.  So many of us will miss our dear friend.  She walks in the spirit world now.  Gone but never to be forgotten.”

Calling hours for celebrating Ms. Kozey McCuin and her life will be at the Swan Funeral Home, 1224 Boston Post Rd., Old Saybrook on Friday, Aug. 28 from 6 to 9 p.m.  A mass service and reception will be held on Saturday, Aug. 29, at 10 a.m. in the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows, 14 Prospect St., Essex.  In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Kozey McCuin Children Education Fund, c/o Essex Savings Bank, PO Box 950, Essex, CT 06426, or The Old Saybrook Land Trust.

 

Deep River HS Presents ‘C.D. Batchelor & The Golden Age of Editorial Cartooning’ with Bob Englehart, Sept. 26

Bob Englehart

Bob Englehart

DEEP RIVER — If you missed the Deep River Historical Society’s well-received summer exhibition of their collection of C.D. Batchelor memorabilia, this presentation on Sept. 26, at 7 p.m. at the Carriage House will feature original cartoons from the exhibit and a discussion of the evolution of this genre over time by his colleague, Bob Englehart.  Admission is free.

Most people know Englehart as the full time Editorial Cartoonist for the Hartford Courant for 35 years (whose cartoons get us thinking each morning).   What many don’t know is that his career began due to an unusual event: one day, in a composing room error, his weekly cartoon ran large at the top of the editorial page (instead of the one for the lead cartoonist) – and a career was born.  A Midwesterner, like Batchelor, he was educated in Chicago at the American Academy of Art.

Englehart has awards from the Overseas Press Club, John Fischetti Contest, Planned Parenthood, and Free Press Association and was the finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 1979. His cartoons have appeared in USA Today, Time, Newsweek, Sports Illustrated, the New York Times, the London Times, and, also, Playboy and Hustler. His cartoons are in the collections of the Thomas Dodd Research Center at the University of Connecticut and the Connecticut Historical Society.

Englehart has appeared in a political comedy review on Broadway, had cartoon shows on ESPN and Connecticut Public Television, illustrated a children’s book, drew a daily and Sunday comic strip and has written many articles for The Courant’s op-ed page and Northeast magazine, now called NE.  His hobbies are golf and writing novels.  He describes his political philosophy as “moderately confused.”

This presentation is funded by a grant from CT Humanities.

Old Saybrook Land Trust Hosts Fundraising ‘Swallow Watch’ Cruise, Oct. 2

The nightly wonder of the tree swallows.

The nightly wonder of the swarming tree swallows.

Come witness the annual swarming swallow phenomenon aboard the RiverQuest with the Old Saybrook Land Trust Friday, Oct. 2, from 4:30 to 8 p.m.

The RiverQuest boat offers a perfect viewing spot to see the swallows in action.

The RiverQuest boat offers a perfect viewing spot to see the swallows in action.

RiverQuest Captains, Mark and Mindy Yuknat, are the pioneers of sunset tree swallow watching by boat.  For the past 12 years they have taken passengers to a special spot on the Connecticut River to witness hundreds of thousands of tree swallows perform aerial ballets in an amazing display of art, coordination and cooperation.

The Old Saybrook Land Trust (OSLT) offers this opportunity as a fundraiser for their annual OSLT Scholarship award. The boat will leave promptly at 4:30 p.m. from Eagle Landing State Park, Haddam for the 3 to 3.5 hour adventure. Bring along a picnic basket and your favorite beverage to enjoy on the cruise.  The OSLT will provide hors d’oeuvres.

The swallows swarm over Goat Island.

The swallows swarm over Goat Island.

Binoculars are recommended, bring your own, or borrow a pair from RiverQuest.

Tickets are $45 per person. Send an email to oldsaybrooklandtrust@oslt.org for reservations and other information.

Ivoryton Congregational Church Hosts Roast Beef, Pork Dinner, Oct. 3

The Ivoryton Congregational Church at 57 Main St., Ivoryton, will hold a roast beef and roast pork dinner on Saturday, Oct.  3, from 5:30 to 7 p.m.
The cost is $15 for adults, $8 for children ages 6-12, and free for children ages 5 and under.
Tickets are limited to 100.  Advance reservations are requested.  Call ahead for take-out.
Call Isobel at 860-767-8167 for tickets and more information.

Tri-Town Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition to Hold First Meeting of New School Year, Sept. 9

The Tri-Town Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition will hold its first meeting of the new school year at Tri-Town Youth Services at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 9, with guest speaker, John Daviau.

The Tri-Town Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition is a grassroots organization whose membership is open to all who live or work in the tri-town area who are concerned about substance abuse and committed to its prevention.  Many “sectors” of the community are represented on this council: schools, youth serving organizations, law enforcement, government, civic groups, parents, students, the faith community and health care to name a few.

At the September meeting, prevention programming already in place will be discussed as well as ways of strengthening the coalition.  Future meeting dates for this year are Nov. 18; Jan. 20, 2016; March 9, 2016; May 18, 2016.

Tri-Town Youth Services supports and advances the families, youth and communities of Chester, Deep River and Essex.  The organization coordinates and provides resources needed to make positive choices, reduce substance abuse, and strengthen the relationships that matter most.  Discover programs and information for families, as well as opportunities for community collaboration at www.tritownys.org

For further information, call Tri-Town at 860-526-3600.

Essex Corinthian Yacht Club Hosts 2015 Cross Sound Challenge Sailboat Race, Sept. 26

Screen Shot 2015-08-27 at 8.00.09 AMThe Essex Corinthian Yacht Club will host the 2015 Cross Sound Challenge Sailboat Race to be held on Saturday, Sept. 26.

The Cross Sound Challenge is open to all Performance Handicap Racing Fleet (PHRF) rated cruising/racing boats 23.5 feet or longer with a valid PHRF certificate.  Racing classes will include both non-spinnaker and spinnaker.

The Race Committee intends to set a course starting west of the Saybrook Outer Light, through a gate formed by the buoys Bell 8 and the east end of Long Sand Shoal, to a turning mark off Truman Beach on the North Fork of Long Island, then a return to the finish line near the Outer Light.  First warning will be at 11 a.m.

The Cross Sound Challenge is a sanctioned Eastern Connecticut Sailing Association “points” race.

For more information including the Notice of Race, Sailing Instructions, and an entry form, visit: www.essexcorinthian.org/ecyc-cross-sound-challenge.html

Leif Nilsson Hosts ‘Arrowhead String Band’ at Tonight’s ‘Concert in the Garden’

The Arrowhead String Band will play a Concert in the Garden, Aug. 27

The Arrowhead String Band will play a Concert in the Garden, Aug. 27

CHESTER — Leif Nilsson hosts another ‘Concert in the Garden’ this evening, Thursday, Aug. 27, from 7 to 9 p.m., this time featuring the Arrowhead String Band at the Spring Street Studio and Gallery at 1 Spring St, Chester Center. This monthly concert series highlights eclectic international singer/songwriter artists from cool jazz to blue grass.

Gates open half hour before the show — first come first seated. Seating is Bistro Style in the amphitheater. The concert will be moved indoors in the event of inclement weather.

Sorry, no pets allowed.

A $10 donation is appreciated. The event is BYOB – pack a picnic and buy your own wine or beer at the Chester Package Store across the street.

Dr. Paul Spitzer to Give Osprey Talk at Essex Library, Saturday

'Osprey' by Kristopher Rowe.

‘Osprey.’ Photo by Kristopher Rowe.

On Saturday, Aug. 29, the Connecticut River Watershed Council (CRWC) will host Dr. Paul Spitzer, a renowned Osprey researcher, for a ‘Fish Hawk Talk.’ The free event will be held at the Essex Library, 33 West Ave., Essex, from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.

Spitzer will discuss his work in the Connecticut River Estuary and focus on the relationship between Atlantic Menhaden fish populations and Ospreys. Menhaden (commonly known as bunker) are a forage fish in the same family as herring and shad.

Connecticut’s Long Island Sound (LIS) waters and the Connecticut River Estuary (CRE) are Menhaden sanctuaries. For East Coast ecology and the Osprey, Menhaden restoration is the most important paradigm shift since the banning of DDT in 1972.

For more information, contact CRWC River Steward, Alicea Charamut at acharamut@ctriver.org or 860-704-0057.

The CRWC works to protect the watershed from source to sea. As stewards of this heritage, they celebrate the four-state treasure and collaborate, educate, organize, restore and intervene to preserve its health for generations to come. Their work informs a vision of economic and ecological abundance.

To learn more about CRWC, or to join the effort and help protect our rivers, visit www.ctriver.org.

Sidewalk Sales Slated in Chester, Saturday

“Busy Bees” by Michael Centrella of Cheshire is just one of the numerous unframed original art pieces at Maple & Main Gallery’s Sidewalk Sale event on Aug. 29.

“Busy Bees” by Michael Centrella of Cheshire is just one of the numerous unframed original art pieces at Maple & Main Gallery’s Sidewalk Sale event on Aug. 29.

At Red Pepper, you’ll find clothing, hats, handbags, scarves, handblown glass, ceramics at 20-50% off during Chester’s Sidewalk Sale Day.

At Red Pepper, you’ll find clothing, hats, handbags, scarves, handblown glass, ceramics at 20-50% off during Chester’s Sidewalk Sale Day.

The Chester Squirrel is on the run again – this time carrying a Sidewalk Sale banner for Chester’s first annual town-wide End-of-Summer Sidewalk Sale Day on Saturday, Aug. 29.

Beginning at 9 a.m. on the last Saturday of August, start exploring Chester Center shops and galleries for Sidewalk Sale specials. You’ll find unique unframed art at Maple & Main Gallery, antiques at Chester Americana Antiques & Gallery, vintage pieces at Ceramica, apparel at Compass Rose, purses at Lark, and much much more in every shop in Chester. Specials may be indoors or on the sidewalk.

Unique unframed art will be offered at Maple and Main Gallery during the Sidewalk Sale from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Out on the porch and set up inside the gallery, look for art for less because it’s not yet framed.  There will be works by the gallery’s 44 artists on paper, canvas and board; from abstract to traditional; from provocative to playful.

Custom-made frames add a considerable expense to a painting and can restrict buyers from choosing frames that better match their own taste and, of course, some people prefer no frames at all.

While you’re at the gallery, visit the summer show of over 250 works by the gallery artists.

Maple and Main Gallery, One Maple Street, is open Wednesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information, visit mapleandmaingallery.com or the gallery’s Facebook page or Instagram account  or call 860-526-6065.

When you get tired of shopping, find a Sidewalk Sale Special at one of Chester’s restaurants — and then head over to the Chester Fair for more small-town fun.

More details at FindItInChesterCT.wordpress.com or by calling 860-322-4047.

Start the fall with one of these purses found at Lark’s Sidewalk Sale.

Start the fall with one of these purses found at Lark’s Sidewalk Sale.

‘Abstract Imaginings’ on View at Maple & Main from Sept. 2; Opening Reception, Sept.12

'Metalling in Nature' by Ashby Carlisle.

‘Metalling in Nature’ by Ashby Carlisle.

CHESTER — Ashby Carlisle of Old Lyme, a sculptor, and Victoria Sivigny of Meriden, an abstract painter, are award-winning artists exhibiting major bodies of work during the month of September in Maple and Main’s Stone Gallery in Chester, Connecticut.  The works of each artist invite close, careful, deep seeing and reward the viewer’s energy and time.

The public is invited to attend the opening reception of ‘Abstract Imaginings’ on Saturday, Sept. 12, from 5 to 8 p.m with live music by The Jazz Circle.  The show runs from Sept. 2 to Sept. 30.

Sivigny works in acrylic paint on large canvases, often 36″x 36″, in a palette of neutral tones, and her mark-making varies from the extremely subtle to the grand gesture, from something so slight as to seem like a dried teardrop, to circles, grids, or pseudo grids, and other marks of time and wear.  The artist prints, scratches, paints, stamps, embeds, collages, tears, etches, pours, rakes, drips, and throws; with no end to the verbs one might use when imagining how her highly-textured marks are made.

'Point of Departure No. 3' by Victoria Sivigny.

‘Point of Departure No. 3’ by Victoria Sivigny.

There are, in some of Sivigny’s paintings, word-like inscriptions, either decorative script, or Cyrillic and Arabic letters, but the suggestion is that language is just one more graphic element, not a factor of greater signifying power than any other mark.

Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of encountering a Sivigny work, is alchemical: the whole is more mysterious than the sum of its parts.  One senses an artist who begins in control and ends in abandon, having tossed-up the fundamental elements of art, then stepped back as they fell into place.  Like an oxymoron, each of Sivigny’s paintings embodies an intriguing paradox: one is strangely familiar; another, naturally uncanny; or randomly ordered; or disparately harmonious.

Through the combination of a muted palette, a seesawing of delicate and bold mark-making, patterns repeated with variations, as well as recurrent or unique gestures, Sivigny’s work is both aesthetically satisfying and intellectually challenging.

Ashby Carlisle is a sculptor whose foundational materials are fiber in the form of hand-dyed and printed paper, pages from books and magazines, metal and clay which she forms into wall sculptures contained in thin wooden boxes. Within these boxes she assembles tattered layers of papers limned with gold suggestive of sky, clouds, horizon and land.  Where the horizon separates sky from ground, Carlisle has secured a clay plate through which twisty vines penetrate the lower and upper divisions: earth and sky.  She uses the organic to suggest the supra-natural, and the natural to create objects that might be organic, but are not.

At times in her work, Carlisle inscribes the marks of culture, specifically writing and other forms of symbolizing. Sometimes the lettering is superimposed on other lettering as if to say not only are land and sky entirely a cultural construct, they are a jumble, a cacophony of inscriptions, so over-written by “signs’ as to be imperceivable as they truly are. In several of Carlisle’s works, a representation of the natural world is completely written-over, seeing itself entirely codified.  Such work acknowledges the inescapable distortion of culturally-inscribed perception.

Carlisle and Sivigny are both members of GalleryOne, a cooperative of mid-career artists who exhibit along the Connecticut shoreline, and each has exhibited work in numerous local, regional and national exhibitions.  Among other opportunities, both artists have exhibited work at the John Slade Ely House Center for Contemporary Art in New Haven, Spectrum Gallery in Centerbrook, Guilford Art Center, Golden Thread Gallery in West Hartford, and the Valentine H. Zahn Community Gallery in Westbrook.

Carlisle’s work has been on view in The Cooley, Sill House, and Studio 80 Sculpture Galleries in Old Lyme.  Sivigny has also exhibited her work at The Slater Memorial Museum in Norwich, the New Britain Museum of American Art, and West Hartford’s Art League Saltbox and Clubhouse Galleries.

Sivigny holds elected memberships with the New Haven Paint and Clay Club, West Hartford Art League, and Connecticut Women Artists.  She was awarded second prize for “Temple of the Soul” at the New Britain Museum of Art Annual Members’ Exhibition.

For additional information, visit www.ashbycarlisle.comwww.victoriasivigny.com,

Essex Library Hosts Karpinski Art Exhibit During September

Marsh Study by Chris Karpinski.

Marsh Study by Chris Karpinski.

The Essex Library will host an art exhibit by painter Chris Karpinski during the month of September.

After studies at the Rhode Island School of Design and Lyme Academy of Fine Art followed by years of plein-air painting, Karpinski’s works have become meditative, non-objective allusions to places or feelings remembered.

Created in the moment, with diverse methods of paint application, each mark leads to the next, and the process takes over.  There is much scraping and sanding, with unintended results and surprises.

Through color, light, texture, and the inspiration of nature’s beauty, Karpinski hopes to generate a sense of serenity and contemplation.

'From the Deep' by Chris Karpiski is part of the artist's exhibition on show at Essex Library during September.

‘From the Deep’ by Chris Karpiski is part of the artist’s exhibition on show at Essex Library during September.

Her paintings may be found at the Essex and Lyme Art Associations, Artisan Framing and Gallery in Niantic, and in numerous private and corporate collections here and abroad.

The Essex Library is located at 33 West Ave. in Essex.

Call 860-767-1560 for more information about the exhibit and sale.

River COG Announces ‘GrowSMART’ Project to Develop Lower CT River Valley’s Economic Growth Strategy

growsmart logo

AREAWIDE — Have you heard of RiverCOG?

It’s an acronym for the Lower Connecticut River Valley Council of Governments, which is an association of 17 towns with each represented by its chief elected official.  Its mission involves facilitating solutions and planning between the 17 towns, the State of Connecticut, federal agencies, and nonprofits for land use, transportation, agriculture, emergency management, conservation, and economic development.

One of its key goals is to encourage a safe and open venue to discuss shared regional options and projects.  Fulfilling this mission had led RiverCOG to launch a new and exciting project titled, GrowSMART.  The purpose of GrowSMART is to research how the region can collaborate to attract workers, and retain and grow businesses while also conserving the natural resources that are so vital to the region’s infrastructure, housing values, and tourism industry.

factory_signAs you drive, walk, or bike around the region in September and October, you will start to notice signs, posters and banners around town such as the one shown to the left or see an advertisements while reading a local newspaper or local online news.  The signs or advertisements may ask a question, such as:  “Why can’t you find qualified help?” or “Who is going to buy your house”?

Why is RiverCOG asking these questions?

The answer is that its Regional Strategic Economic Growth Committee is working with Ninigret Partners to create a regional economic growth strategy and is seeking your input.  RiverCOG invites you to visit the project website at www.GrowSMARTregion.org to learn about its travelling mobile workshop and note dates of the upcoming public forums to which all are welcome

There is also an opportunity at the www.GrowSMARTregion.org website to submit your ideas directly.

Essex Civic Campus Project Recognized as First STEAP Grant Success Story

Photos of the Essex Civic Campus reproduced from the Office and Policy of Management page on the State of CT website.

Photos of the Essex Civic Campus reproduced from the Office of Policy and Management page on the State of CT website at www.ct.gov/opm.

ESSEX — The Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) has announced that its first STEAP Grant Success Story is the Town of Essex Civic Campus Enhancement Project.

Essex was awarded a Small Town Economic Assistance Program (STEAP) in the amount of $471,500 in 2013 for the Essex Civic Campus Enhancement Project which funded the expansion, repair, and improvements to the “Essex Civic Campus” located at 29 West Ave.  The Civic Campus is a gateway to Essex and a center of municipal activity, including the Town Hall, Police Station, Essex Community Library, and Grove Street Park.

The project included the installation and replacement of the Grove Street Park Playscape to improve compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act standards; the renovation and expansion of the Town Hall parking area; renovations to the Town tennis courts, and improved pedestrian connectivity between the Town Hall and Library.

Essex First Selectman, Norman Needleman

Essex First Selectman, Norman Needleman

This grant provided much-needed improvements to ensure that the Essex Civic Campus is a vibrant and welcoming center of community activity, whether for recreation, public meetings, conducting business, or visiting the library.

A delighted Essex First Selectman Norm Needleman commented, “The people of the Town of Essex are deeply grateful to Governor Malloy, Senator Linares, Representative Miller, and our partners at DECD, for the investments that the state has made, via STEAP grants, in our community. The Town continually strives to be a friendlier and more welcoming place to live, work, learn, and play. The State’s investment of STEAP funds helps us get to that next level.”

Essex Land Trust Hosts First Family Outing in ‘The Preserve,’ Today

An idyllic scene of the newly acquired 'Preserve,' where the Essex Land Trust will lead a Family Outing, Aug. 22.

An idyllic scene of ‘The Preserve,’ where the Essex Land Trust will lead a Family Outing, Aug. 22.

The Essex Land Trust is hosting a Family Outing in The Preserve on Saturday, Aug. 22, starting at 9 a.m. Be among the first to explore The Preserve in a hike and exploration from the Essex access to this unique forest.

The Preserve is the recently purchased 1,000-acre forest that resides in the towns of Essex, Old Saybrook and Westbrook. This property is probably the most significant addition to Connecticut’s open space in many years. It has numerous trails, 114 acres of wetlands, including 38 vernal pools, 3,000 feet of watercourses, and a 30-acre swamp. A mature coastal forest with three rocky ridge formations, it is home to a significant and diverse population of animals and plants.

Bring the family and join Chris Cryder of the Connecticut Fund for the Environment and Steven Trojan, Director of the Bushy Hill Nature Center, in exploring the critters, plants, and ponds of the new Thousand Acre Preserve.

Another view of 'The Preserve.'

Another view of ‘The Preserve.’

This outing will walk some easy trails and share adventures, followed by refreshments.  Rain cancels.  All ages are welcome.

Parking and access are off Ingham Hill Rd., which is off Rte. 153, Plains Rd., Essex.

For any questions, contact Judy Saunders at judith.saunders@comcast.net

 

Join a Historic Waterfront Tour in Deep River, Summer Saturdays

Deep River Historical Society will explain the history of the town's waterfront during walking tours this summer.

Deep River Historical Society will explain the history of the town’s waterfront during walking tours this summer.

DEEP RIVER — Deep River’s commercial connection to the rest of the world started at the end of Kirtland and River Streets in the early 1800’s. What is now known as the Town Landing, was a shipyard and dock, which collectively, were the linchpin to Deep River’s mercantile success. The shipbuilding provided the vessels and the dock provided the point of delivery of raw materials and the shipment of end products, that made Deep River an economic success.

A lecture and tour of Deep River’s Historic Waterfront will be offered every second and fourth Saturday morning, this June, July, August and September. Tours are sponsored by the Deep River Historical  Society. The tour will start at the home of sea captain and ship builder, Calvin Williams, at 131 Kirtland Street, (immediately left of the Mt. Saint John entrance pillars), starting at 10 a.m. SHARP, each tour day. Each tour is expected to be about 1 1/2 hour duration and will start punctually at 10 a.m.

Reservations are recommended and tickets may be acquired at the door, or in advance, from the program’s director: James Hogan, by calling 860-391-2354, or at two convenient store locations: Celebrations, 161 Main Street, Deep River and Old Saybrook Antiques Center, 756 Middlesex Turnpike, Old Saybrook.

The costs for tickets is $20 per family; $10 adults; $5 students and senior citizens. 100% of all donations will benefit the Deep River Historical Society. All donations are tax deductable. Program is “rain or shine”.

For more information, call James J. Hogan III  at: 860-391-2354

Tour Dates are:
June: 13 and 27
July: 11 and 25
August: 8 and 22
September: 12 and 26

Lori Warner Gallery Hosts Ann Lightfoot Jewelry Summer Sale Today

AnnLightfootSALE15_hands

A plethora of jewelry by Ann Lightfoot. Photo courtesy of Ann Lightfoot Jewelry

CHESTER — In appreciation of their customers’ loyal support and enthusiasm, Lori Warner and Ann Lightfoot have teamed up to host the Ann Lightfoot Jewelry Summer Studio Sale on Saturday, Aug. 22, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, Aug. 23, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

AnnLightfootSale15_earrings

Earrings by Ann Lightfoot. Photo courtesy of Ann Lightfoot Jewelry

Find a curated mix of samples, one-offs, past seasons’ pieces, as well as many designs offered exclusively at this event, all at deeply reduced prices.

A portion of all sales will help fund the art programs in local public schools through the Lori Warner Gallery Scholarship Fund.

The Lori Warner Studio/Gallery is a unique source for artwork and objects that make a lasting impression. The gallery exhibits a small number of exclusive and award winning work and regularly hosts informal events featuring their represented artists and designers.

The gallery is located at 21 Main Street in Chester, Connecticut.  For more information, visit www.loriwarner.com or call  (860) 322-4265.

‘The Story of My Life’ Continues Tonight, Sunday at Deep River Town Hall

star in 'The Story of My Life'

John Costa and Michael P. Cartwright star in “The Story of My Life”, presented by MiLo Productions. Photo by Robert Hughes.

DEEP RIVER — MiLo Productions has announced that the intimate musical comedy The Story of My Life, by Drama Desk
Award-nominees Neil Bartram and Brian Hill, will be their first stage production, running this coming Friday Aug. 21 through Sunday, Aug. 23, at Deep River Town Hall Auditorium.

Do you remember the day you met your best friend? The Story of My Life tells the story of two childhood friends and how their friendship profoundly defined their lives. Thomas Weaver is a best-selling, award-winning author. Alvin Kelby was his best friend for 30 years. But time can test the bonds of friendship, and when it does, Thomas calls on the only resource he has — his stories of Alvin — to learn where things went wrong.

A richly melodic musical, The Story of My Life is a soaring tribute to the power of friendship and the people who change our lives forever. BroadwayWorld said “See if you don’t find yourself moved to Google the name of some long-lost friend with whom you simply lost touch. The Story of My Life inspires us to reconnect with those who were part of the earliest chapters of our own life stories.”

Guilford resident Michael P. Cartwright will play Thomas. Cartwright is familiar to local audiences through his appearances at several area theatres. He portrayed the green-tinged title character in Warner Theatre’s Shrek. At West Hartford Community Theatre, he has appeared as Max Bialystock in The Producers and Javert in Les Misérables. He has been seen at Goodspeed Musicals in 1776, and in productions with Summer Theatre of New Canaan, River Rep, Ivoryton Playhouse, and Newington Mainstage, as well as Arden Theatre Company in Philadelphia and Delaware Theatre Company.

The mental health issues addressed in The Story of My Life resonate closely for Cartwright, a clinical social worker for over 25 years, who currently works at Yale-New Haven Hospital.

The role of Alvin will be played by John Costa of New Bedford, Mass. Costa comes to Connecticut directly from the Festival Theatre production of Mary Poppins, where he was featured as Admiral Boom. His regional credits include Goodspeed Musicals (1776), The Huntington Theatre (Pirates!), American Repertory Theatre, NewRep (Ragtime), Lyric Stage Co. of Boston (1776, Big River), and The SpeakEasy Stage Co. (Carrie the musical).

Other credits include Herr Schulz (Cabaret), Cogsworth (Disney’s Beauty and the Beast), Max Detweiller (The Sound of Music), and Amos Hart (Chicago) with New Bedford Festival Theatre; as well as performances with Salem Summer Theatre, Star Players, Little Theatre of Fall River, Sweet Apple, and Big Star Productions.

The Story of My Life features music and lyrics by Neil Bartram and book by Brian Hill. It was produced at The Norma Terris Theatre in Chester, Conn. before making the trip to Broadway in 2009, where it was nominated for four Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Musical, and won a Barrymore Award for Outstanding Ensemble.

Bartram and Hill were commissioned to write The Theory of Relativity by Sheridan College in Toronto as a new show specifically for college-age students. It had its London, UK premiere in May of 2014 and its regional theatre premiere at The Norma Terris Theatre in 2015. Bartram and Hill’s musical Not Wanted On The Voyage received a developmental production at Northwestern University’s Barber Theatre as part of the American Music Theatre Project. The pair are currently developing musical adaptations of Disney’s famous Bedknobs and Broomsticks and Ray Bradbury’s cult classic Something Wicked This Way Comes for the stage.

Performances are Friday, Aug. 21 and Saturday, Aug. 22, at 8 p.m., and Sunday, Aug. 23, at 2 p.m. at the Deep River Town Hall Auditorium, located at 174 Main Street. Tickets are $25 for general admission seating and are available at www.milo-productions.com.

The Story of My Life is produced by the Guilford-based MiLo Productions, which also produces the popular local Victorian holiday singing group Connecticut Yuletide Carolers and the Shoreline Cabaret Series.

Middlesex Habitat for Humanity Hosts ‘Happy Hour’ Tonight at Saybrook Pavilion

OLD SAYBROOK — The Middlesex Habitat for Humanity Special Events Committee, staff and board of directors will be hosting Happy Hour at the Old Saybrook Pavilion Aug. 22, from 6 to 9 p.m. There will be wine and beer, hors d’oeuvres donated by Cloud Nine Catering and Catering by Selene, NoRA cupcakes, music and raffles to raise money to help us dig and pour the foundation on Summer Street in Portland, CT.

This event is part of  the Foundation’s larger campaign, $60k in 60 days  (#60kin60days) which ends Sept. 6.

Tickets are $36; to purchase, visit http://www.habitatmiddlesex.org/about_us/news/260

Former Illustrator Newton Debuts as Sculptor at CBSRZ Exhibition Opening, Sept. 6

Richard Newton sculptureCHESTER — Richard Newton, formerly an illustrator nationally known for his iconic Time, Newsweek, Businessweek, National Wildlife and Fortune magazine covers, will make his sculpture debut at  Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek’s (CBSRZ) Art Gallery on Sunday, Sept 6, from 4 to 7 p.m.  The artist will speak at 5:30p.m. and take questions.

The Sept. 6 opening will feature a wine and cheese reception with live music.  There is no charge and all art lovers are welcome.

Newton has been a professional artist for over 35 years and has mounted advertising campaigns for the U.S. Postal Service, Sprint, General Electric and Pfizer Pharmaceutical.  His exhibit will continue through Nov. 15, and will be open and free to the public Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to  3 p.m.

The artist will make a generous contribution to CBSRZ for all work sold.

Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek is located at 55 East Kings Highway in Chester.  For more information call the CBSRZ office 860-526-8920

Community Music School Hosts Open House Week, Sept. 14-18

CMS Solstice Singers

CMS Solstice Singers

CENTERBROOK – Community Music School (CMS), located in the Spencer’s Corner professional complex at 90 Main St. in Centerbrook, welcomes the general public to visit during Open House Week Sept. 14 through 18.  Children and adults can tour the School’s studios, meet teachers and staff and enjoy a free preview lesson.

Attendees can also learn about a vast array of programs for all ages including private and group lessons, clarinet, jazz, and string ensembles, music therapy services, the Solstice Singers youth choir, and the Kindermusik early childhood program.

Community Music School is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday to Thursday, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Fridays. Those interested in a 15-minute preview lesson are requested to call 860-767-0026 for scheduling.

Community Music School offers innovative music programming for infants through adults, building on a 30 year tradition of providing quality music instruction to residents of shoreline communities. CMS programs cultivate musical ability and creativity and provide students with a thorough understanding of music so that they can enjoy playing and listening for their entire lives.

 

For additional information visit www.community-music-school.org or call 860-767-0026.

Save the Date for Eastern CT Ballet’s “Spooktacular,” Oct. 17 & 18

DancerOLD SAYBROOK — Treat children of all ages to family-friendly Halloween fun with Eastern Connecticut Ballet’s “Ballet Spooktacular” on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 17 and 18, at 11:30 am and 3:30 pm.

Special effects and bewitching costumes set the stage for spirited performances of The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, Dancing Bones, and Halloween Waltz at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center, ‘The Kate,’ in Old Saybrook.

Children are invited to wear their costumes to parade on stage, trick-or-treat throughout the decorated theater and pose for spellbinding photos with the dancers.

Tickets to Ballet Spooktacular are $18 for adults and $12 for children (age 12 and under) and are available through ‘The Kate’ box office at 877-503-1286.

Essex Historical Society Celebrates 60th Anniversary with Series of Events in 2015-16

The Pratt House in Essex is the town’s only historic house museum.

The Pratt House is home to the Essex Historical Society.

ESSEX — The Essex Historical Society (EHS), a private, non-profit organization boasting 250 members and dedicated volunteer corps, is celebrating its 60th anniversary year throughout 2015 and early 2016 with a variety of special events and programs.  Of special note is the Dickinson Initiative aimed at increasing awareness of the impact of the E. E. Dickinson Witch Hazel business on Essex.

The E. E. Dickinson Witch Hazel Company was an important part of Essex for much of the 20th century.  The EHS and the Valley Railroad Company have partnered to refurbish the original Birch Mill /Yellow Label building that sits on the southern end of the railroad depot property.  As part of the project, EHS will refurbish the Yellow Label signs and install Dickinson exhibit panels in the newly repaired space.

A pre-construction kick-off took place on May 15, 2015.  The dedication and unveiling of the refurbished building is targeted for one year later on May 15, 2016.

Upcoming Events 

An Afternoon Stroll Through Dickinson History 

Sunday, Sept. 13 from 4 to 7 p.m.  A self-guided tour of private properties along North Main Street in Essex village and formerly owned by members of the Dickinson family. Tickets are $60 per person with proceeds to benefit the Essex Historical Society. Includes a commemorative book and refreshments.

Essex Historical Society Antique Car Rally 

Sunday, Oct. 18 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.  The 5th Annual Fall Foliage Antique Auto Show and Tour with a Purpose:  Dickinson business and family sites. Co-sponsored with the Belltown Antique Car Club.

EHS Program 

A special program Creating the E. E. Dickinson National Brand will be presented by EHS and held at 31 North Main St., Essex, the Dickinson corporate office, now the Wells Fargo office building.

Yellow Label Building Dedication 

Sunday, May 15, 2016. Dedication of the refurbished Yellow Label Building and tour of the Dickinson Witch Hazel Plant.  Co-sponsored with the Valley Railroad Company.  Details to be announced at a later date.

Essex Historical Society: Three Villages, Two Rivers, One History 

The EHS strives to be the center of excellence for collecting and sharing historic resources for Essex and the surrounding area, and to be the facilitator among other organizations focused on the history of the area, so that we may inspire future generations.  Our mission statement reflects this vision: Engaging and Inspiring the Community. Essex.  Ivoryton.  Centerbrook.

History of the Essex Historical Society

The Essex Historical Society was formed and incorporated in 1955. According to news reports at the time, the Town of Essex was about to announce its intention to sell Hills Academy located on Prospect Street. It was no longer useful to the Town for classroom space and had been rented to various tenants for many years.

A concerned group sprung into action and the first unofficial meeting of the Board of Directors was held at Essex Town Hall on Friday, Dec. 10, 1954. The newly formed Essex Historical Society purchased the Hills Academy building from the Town for one dollar.

From 1955 to 1985, Hills Academy served as the Society’s meeting house, as home to its growing collection of Essex memorabilia, and as exhibit space depicting the story of Essex history. Then in 1985, the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities (known then as S.P.N.E.A. and now renamed Historic New England) deeded the Pratt House Museum on West Avenue to the Society and the focus of activity shifted to the Pratt family narrative.

Today, Pratt House continues to interpret 18th century farm life in Essex and the nine generations of Pratt Smithies, many of whom lived in the house. The barn houses a set of panels depicting a time line of Essex history and an early loom that is worked on by an award-winning group of weavers.

The beautiful meadow to the rear of the property is the site of the Community Garden and often the scene of antique car shows and old fashioned summer fairs. Hills Academy provides additional meeting and exhibit space on the first floor and storage and office space on the second floor for the collection and archival files.

The EHS serves the three villages of Essex — Centerbrook, Essex and Ivoryton.

Essex Art Association Hosts Summer Exhibition of ‘Memories,’ on Display Through Sept. 12

'Irish Splendor' is a featured painting in the upcoming Essex Art Association’s Summer Open Exhibition

‘Irish Splendor’ is a featured painting in the upcoming Essex Art Association’s Summer Open Exhibition

ESSEX — Dr. Seuss said, “Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory,” and “Memories” is the theme for the Essex Art Association’s (EAA) 2015 Summer Open Exhibition. This open exhibition is juried for awards only.

Juror David T Wenzel is an illustrator and children’s book artist living in Durham, Conn. He is best known for his visualization of J.R.R.Tolkien’s “The Hobbit”, illustrated in graphic novel format. Award money totaling $1,800 will be given to artists for their work in various media.

'Marshes of the Connecticut River' is a featured painting in the upcoming Essex Art Association’s Summer Open Exhibition.

‘Marshes of the Connecticut River’ is a featured painting in the upcoming Essex Art Association’s Summer Open Exhibition.

Additionally, each season five EAA artists are selected by a juror to show their work in our small “Exit Gallery” — (labeled such because the EXIT sign for the gallery is located directly above the entrance to that small gallery!) The Exit Gallery artist during this exhibition is Jill Beecher Matthew.

She is an oil painter who uses palette knives to create her works of art, enabling her to bring texture, vibrant color, and light into her paintings. Working both en plein air and in the studio, Beecher Matthew especially enjoys painting the landscapes of New England and Florida. Recently she also savored an opportunity to paint on retreat along the northwest coast of Ireland.

Beecher Matthew has mentored with accomplished Connecticut artists and has studied the methods of Henri Hensche at the Cape School of Art in Provincetown, Mass. Her works are displayed and sold in galleries in Connecticut and Florida. To view more of Beecher Matthew’s art, visit: www.jillbeechermatthew.com

'Catmint on the Wall' is a featured painting in the upcoming Essex Art Association’s Summer Open Exhibition

‘Catmint on the Wall’ is a featured painting in the upcoming Essex Art Association’s Summer Open Exhibition

The exhibition opening will be held Friday, Aug. 21, from 6 to 8 p.m. These exhibits are open at no charge to the public Aug. 22 – Sept. 12 at the Essex Art Association Gallery located in the sunny yellow building in the center of Essex at 10 North Main Street, Essex, Connecticut. Gallery hours are 1 to 5 p.m. daily, closed Tuesdays.

For more information, call 860-767-8996.

Bartlett Tree Experts Donate Maple Tree to Town of Essex

Donated_tree_to Essex_by_Bartlett_Tree _ExpertsESSEX — Dan Estey (left) donated a Red Sunset Maple (Acer rubrum ‘Franksred’) on behalf of Bartlett Tree Experts to the Town of Essex.

He is pictured with Augie Pampel, Essex Tree Warden, who selected the location at 147 Dennison Rd.

Press release and photo submitted by the Essex Tree Committee

‘Longsplice’ Perform Tonight ‘On the Dock’ at CT River Museum

'Longsplice' perform Thursday, Aug. 20 "On the Dock" at the Connecticut River Museum.

‘Longsplice’ perform Thursday, Aug. 20 “On the Dock” at the Connecticut River Museum.

ESSEX — Now in its sixth year at the Connecticut River Museum (CRM), ‘Thursday’s on the Dock’ have for many become the unofficial start to the summer weekend.  This year, thanks to lead sponsor the Essex Wellness Center, the event features a different Connecticut band each night.  ‘Longsplice’ will perform this coming Thursday, Aug. 20.

Rick Spencer and Joseph Morneault join traditions of the past with contemporary arrangements to form a musical “long splice” influenced by songs and tunes from England, Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, Canada and the U.S.  Their presentations feature carefully crafted a capella harmonies, dance tunes, sea chanteys, drinking songs, an occasional modern composition and accompaniment on a variety of instruments.

‘Thursday’s on the Dock’ take place every Thursday from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., through Aug. 27, on the museum’s historic steamboat dock and grounds.  Phyllis Stillman, CRM Development Manager, comments, “We are fortunate to have received more sponsorship this year that is allowing us to bring in a broad range of musical acts that will appeal to a diverse audience.”

Upcoming performers are:

  • Aug. 20 – Longsplice
  • Aug. 27 – Small Pond All Stars

Museum Director Christopher Dobbs notes that patrons will, “… hear the sounds of Dixieland jazz, classic rock, and folk.” Performances include noted Irish folk musicians Ringrose & Freeman, the Small Pond All Stars Band, and Longsplice.

Essex-Wellness-Logo-for-CRM-e1430663844569Heidi Kunzli, owner of the Essex Wellness Center and leading sponsor, said that she has always enjoyed coming down to the museum for these events, “There’s nothing quite like a relaxing evening by the harbor taking in the music and the view … it’s a wonderful experience!”

In addition to the lively music, craft beers, local wines and light snacks will be served.  The Museum’s main floor galleries and gift shop will also be open for a bit of waterfront and local history. The cover for the event that includes the live music, galleries, and views is $5 per person (members are always free).

For more information, call 860-767-8269 or visit www.ctrivermuseum.org.

The Connecticut River Museum is located on the Essex waterfront at 67 Main St. and is a membership-supported educational organization. Membership is open to all.

Registration Open for Terri Brodeur Breast Cancer Foundation’s 10th Anniversary Walk Across SE Connecticut

Participants take to the streets in the 2014 Walk Across SE CT.

Participants take to the streets in the 2014 Walk Across SE CT.

AREAWIDE — The Terri Brodeur Breast Cancer Foundation (TBBCF) is celebrating the 10th anniversary of its Walk Across Southeastern Connecticut on Saturday, Oct. 3, having funded over $3M in breast cancer research (30 grants of $100,000 each), while raising funds, hopes and dreams for a breast cancer-free future.

TBBCF_walk_logo_203The TBBCF is a local non-profit dedicated to providing critical funding to breast cancer research. Their pledge is that 100 percent of gross fundraising dollars goes directly to breast cancer research in the scientific pursuit of medicines and techniques that mitigate cancer treatment and promote disease eradication. Administrative costs are sponsor-supported or volunteer-provided.

The organization’s name was chosen to honor the beautiful life and fighting spirit of Terri Brodeur, a local Old Saybrook mother of three young children and victim of breast cancer. The Foundation was established by two friends, Norma Logan and Sandy Maniscalco, who realized the need for a new kind of fundraising organization. After a two-year battle with breast cancer, Brodeur succumbed to the disease in 2005, as did Logan six months later.

It is estimated that there will be more than 3,000 cases of breast cancer diagnosed in Connecticut in 2015 and that almost 500 will die from the disease. By walking in the 10th Anniversary Walk Across Southeastern Connecticut you will increase funding of breast cancer research with hopes for earlier detection, better treatments and ultimately prevention of this disease.

Friends often form a team in the walk Across SE CT.

Friends often form a team in the TBBCF’s Walk Across SE CT.

The 10th Anniversary Walk provides a marathon option to suit everyone’s level of ability. Registration is now open and the time to start training for your chosen marathon walk is approaching.

Walks include a seven-mile super quarter marathon, a 13.1 mile half marathon and our signature 26.2 mile full marathon. The full marathon walk begins with 6:30 a.m. opening ceremonies at Saybrook Point, Old Saybrook, with feet on the pavement at 7 a.m.

This walk follows a scenic route along the shoreline through Old Saybrook, Old Lyme, East Lyme and Waterford. The half marathon walk starts at Capitol Drive, East Lyme at 10 a.m. and the super quarter marathon walk starts at the Niantic Baptist Church, Niantic at 1 p.m. All walks end at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, Waterford with closing ceremonies.

The Walk goal is to raise funds for research through walker fundraising commitments. Youth walkers must raise $100 to walk any marathon option. Adult walkers must raise $200 for a super quarter marathon, $250 for a half marathon and $500 for a full marathon.

Team-up with friends, family or co-workers to walk in honor or memory of someone special. Enjoy the benefits of working as a team to meet the fundraising commitment. There are Youth Walk Team options for 12 to 18-year-olds.

Gather five or more youth with a Youth Walk Coach and the coach only pays registration with no fundraising requirement. Walkers are provided with training and fundraising support.

To register to walk or volunteer, or to contribute to a registered walker, visit www.tbbcf.org, call 860-437-1400 or email info@tbbcf.org.

Funding has assisted researchers at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, Yale Cancer Center, the Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, and NYU School of Medicine.

Tickets on Sale for Essex Historical Society’s Self-Guided Stroll of Five Dickinson Houses

Pat Thompson, Event Chairman for An Afternoon Stroll Through Dickinson History, walks past the former Dickinson family home, one of five private properties that will be opened for public touring on September 13 to benefit the Essex Historical Society.

Pat Thompson, Event Chairman for An Afternoon Stroll Through Dickinson History, walks past the former Dickinson family home, one of five private properties that will be opened for public touring on Sept. 13 to benefit the Essex Historical Society.

ESSEX – On Sunday, Sept. 13, the Essex Historical Society’s 60th anniversary celebration continues with An Afternoon Stroll Through Dickinson History, a self-guided tour through five private properties formerly owned by members of the Dickinson family, founders and manufacturer’s of E.E. Dickinson Witch Hazel. The benefit event will provide a peek into the Dickinson past and will take place from 4 to 7 p.m. along the North Main and Prospect Street section of Essex village.

The White House in Essex.

The White House in Essex.

On view will be the iconic family home, the stately, columned “White House” located at 21 North Main Street; the Dickinson office building at 31 North Main now home to Wells Fargo Advisors; the adjacent Dickinson carriage house; the 1750’s Samuel Lay homestead located at 17 North Main St., which was the former home of the top sales executive for Dickinson Witch Hazel; and the once cow barn now private home just a few steps south. Dickinson family members will be onsite to lend a personal perspective.

The Carriage House

The Carriage House

Stroll guests can enjoy drinks and hors d’oeuvres and a quiet respite in Dickinson Park, a small swath of grassy green across from the main home. Period cars will also be on display and each attendee will receive a commemorative book documenting the Dickinson legacy.

Office building

The Dickinson office building at 31 North Main now home to Wells Fargo Advisors.

According to event chairperson Pat Thompson, “This is a house tour like no other, so steeped in history and one family’s impact on a community. We are very grateful for the current owners’ willingness to open up their homes and for the Dickinson family members who have graciously shared their memories to help us celebrate Essex’s rich heritage.”

Dickinson Stroll_CowBarn_web

The once cow barn now private home just a few steps south of 17 North Main St.

Tickets for An Afternoon Stroll Through Dickinson History are $60 per person, with children under the age of 18 admitted at no charge. All proceeds will benefit the Essex Historical Society.

The Samuel Lay House.

The Samuel Lay House.

Parking is available along North Main St. and Prospect St., at Hills Academy and Our Lady of Sorrows located at 21 Prospect St., and at Essex Town Hall. Handicap parking can be found at the Welcome Tent to be located at Wells Fargo Advisors, 31 North Main Street.

Tickets can be purchased in advance online at essexhistory.org or by calling 860-767-0681, or at the Welcome Tent on the day of the event.

Madhatters Hosts Auditions for Christmas Comedy, Saturday

AREAWIDE — Madhatters Theatre Company is currently scheduling audition appointments for their December musical comedy production of ‘Best Christmas Pageant Ever’ at Chester Meeting House.  Auditions will be held on Saturday, Aug. 29, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau, 59 Lyme St. in Old Lyme by appointment only.

To schedule an appointment, call (860) 395-1861 or e-mail madhattersctc@aol.com.

For further information, visit ctkidsonstage.com/madhatterstheatrecompany

Acclaimed Nature Photographer Slonina to Speak at CT Valley Camera Club, Aug. 31

A stunning vista of the Grand Tetons by John Slonina.

A stunning vista of the Grand Tetons by John Slonina.

John Slonina, an award-winning professional nature photographer, tour leader and writer devoted to the conservation of wild places and wild things, will be the guest speaker at the Connecticut Valley Camera Club’s monthly meeting on Monday, Aug. 31, at 7 p.m.  All are welcome at the meeting, which will be held in the lower level of the Deep River Library, 150 Main St., Deep River.

Slonina’s  goal is to use his photographs and writings to educate and inform as many people as possible about nature and environmental issues.  He hopes to introduce others to places and animals that they may never have the opportunity to see. His photographs are held in private collections and galleries throughout the world.

Bear cub by John Slonina.

Bear cub by John Slonina.

As a leader of photo tours to some of North America’s most beautiful and wild places, Slonina teaches participants how to create award winning images and shoot like a professional. He also hosts workshops and presentations.

For further information, visit his website at www.sphotography.com

The Connecticut Valley Camera Club meets on the last Monday of every month at 7 p.m. (except December and July) in the lower level of the Deep River Library, 150 Main St., Deep River.  Meetings are open to the public.

For more information about the Connecticut Valley Camera Club, visit their website.

 

Final Hours for Deep River Congregational Church Flea Market This Morning

Tag Sale (800x600)

DEEP RIVER — The Deep River Congregational Church, 1 Church St., hosts its Annual Flea Market and Rummage Sale this weekend on Marvin Field and on the grounds around the church with over 80 vendors, who bring a wide variety of items to sell, from antiques to hand crafted pieces.

The Flea Market ended yesterday but this morning, Sunday, Aug. 16, from 9:15  to 11 a.m., you may fill a large trash bag with items still remaining from the Rummage Sale for a donation of your choice.

 

Deep River Congregational Church Tag Sale (800x557)

For further information, contact the church office at 860-526-5045 or office.drcc@snet.net or visit the church web site at www.deeprivercc.org.

Auditions for Community Music School Jazz Ensemble, Sept. 12

Auditions for the CMS Jazz Ensemble will be held Sept. 12.

Auditions for the CMS Jazz Ensemble will be held Sept. 12. 

CENTERBROOK –- Auditions for the Community Music School (CMS) Jazz Ensemble will be held on Saturday, Sept. 12, beginning at 9:30 a.m. at the School, located at 90 Main St. in Centerbrook.

Directed by Tom Briggs, the ensemble is for students ages 13 to 18 with a strong interest in jazz performance and learning more about improvisation. Instrumental students on trumpet, trombone, flute, clarinet, saxophone, and guitar are encouraged to audition.

Call CMS at 860-767-0026 to schedule a 20-minute audition timeslot. The regular Jazz Ensemble rehearsal schedule begins on Saturday, Sept. 19, at 10 a.m.

The CMS offers innovative music programming for infants through adults, building on a 30 year tradition of providing quality music instruction to residents of shoreline communities. Community Music School programs cultivate musical ability and creativity, and provide students with a thorough understanding of music so that they can enjoy playing and listening for their entire lives.

For additional information about the Jazz Ensemble and other CMS programs, visit www.community-music-school.org

Malloy to Attend ‘The Preserve’ Opening Ceremony Today; Miller to Lead Post-Ceremony Hike

Governor Dannel Malloy

Governor Dannel Malloy

State Representative Phil Miller

State Representative Phil Miller

AREAWIDE — State Representative Philip Miller (D-36th) will participate in an event on Thursday, Aug. 13, celebrating the permanent protection of “The Preserve,” the 1,000 acre coastal woodland.

Miller will be joining Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy and other state and local officials at the reception and ribbon-cutting ceremony on Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m. at Great Cedars (West) Conservation Area, 155 Ingham Hill Rd., Old Saybrook.

Miller is inviting attendees to join him in a hike he will be leading at “The Preserve” following the opening ceremony.

Miller notes,“This is going to be a wonderful ceremonial event to celebrate the protection of this coastal land that will remain a treasured open space for everyone to enjoy,” adding, “Looking forward to welcoming as many people as possible who can attend.”

From Blues to Classical Guitar: Four Collomore Concerts at Chester Meeting House This Fall 

Robbie Collomore SeriesCHESTER — For its 42nd season, the Robbie Collomore Music Series will offer all four of its concerts in the fall, between Sept. 27 and Nov. 29. As always, the Collomore Committee, chaired by Martin Nadel, has chosen a mix of music genres for the season. All four concerts will be on Sundays at 5 p.m. in the Chester Meeting House.

Beginning the season, on Sept. 27, is the Barbara and Edmund Delaney Young Artists Concert. Cellist Julia Bruskin debuted with the Boston Symphony at age 17 and now performs as a member of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and internationally as a soloist. She will perform in Chester with her husband, Aaron Wunsch, an internationally known pianist and a member of the Juilliard piano faculty.

Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton takes center stage on Oct. 18.  According to the Wall Street Journal, Paxton, age 26, is “virtually the only music-maker of his generation—playing guitar, banjo, piano and violin, among other implements—to fully assimilate the blues idiom of the 1920s and ‘30s.”

The Hot Club of Detroit, a jazz ensemble specializing in the Gypsy jazz sound made famous by guitarist Django Reinhardt, performs on Nov. 8, followed on Nov. 29 by classical guitarist Jorge Caballero. He is the youngest musician and the only guitarist to win the Naumburg International Competition, one of the most prestigious and coveted awards given to performers of any instrument.

Buy a season subscription and save money, plus you’ll be certain you will have a seat even when the concert is sold out. A subscription to all four concerts is just $72 (that’s four concerts for the price of three). Individual concert tickets cost $24. For students from elementary through graduate school, a subscription is $15. A student ticket for just one concert is $5. Tickets can be purchased online at www.collomoreconcerts.org using PayPal. All ticket-holders are invited to stay for a reception after the concert to meet the performers. For more information, check the website or call 860-526-5162.

Photo: Check your calendars and order your season subscription for this year’s Collomore Concerts! All the info is on the website.

RiverQuest Offers ‘Fishes of Lower CT River’ Sunset Cruise This Evening

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Have you ever wondered what is happening under the surface of the Connecticut River? What fish are there and when?  And what is being done to protect the fish and their habitat?

RiverQuest receives questions like these about the fish that inhabit our part of the Connecticut River on every cruise it runs.  RiverQuest is hosting a Sunset Cruise on Wednesday, Aug. 12, from 6 to 8 p.m. with Fisheries Biologist Steve Gephard, which presents an opportunity to have all these questions answered.

Gephard is a supervising fisheries biologist with the State of Connecticut, Department of Energy and Environmental Protection’s Inland Fisheries Division.  He is in charge of the Division’s Diadromous (fish that migrate between fresh water and salt water) Fish  Program and its Habitat Conservation Program. He has over 35 years of experience with diadromous fish species and fish passage projects.

This will be a relaxing, informational cruise departing from Eagle Landing State Park in Haddam, on which guests are invited to bring a picnic, favorite beverage and any “fishy” questions they have.

RiverQuest will depart from Eagle Landing State Park in Haddam at 6 p.m.  The cost per person is $30. To learn more about this informative cruise and reserve a spot via on-line booking, visit ctriverquest.com or call 860-662-0577.

Donna Scott from IFoundFitness to Join Valley Shore YMCA’s Staff Team

Donna Scott, former owner of IFoundFitness in Deep River, is joining the Y's staff.

Donna Scott, former owner of IFoundFitness in Deep River, is joining the Y’s staff.

AREAWIDE — The Valley Shore YMCA has announced that Donna Scott, owner of the Best of the Shoreline’s Readers Poll IFoundFitness located in Deep River, will join the staff team of the Valley Shore YMCA at the end of August as a Wellness Coordinator.  Earlier in the summer, Scott had decided to close her popular fitness studio and started thinking about the next chapter of her life.

“When I looked at partnerships, there were certain criteria that had to be met;” Scott noted.  “A non-competitive, environment where my members would fit in and feel comfortable, the ability to continue and strengthen great programs like The Slim Down, programs for seniors, and the Couch to 5k program.  I want to be part of an organization that believes in giving back and supporting its members.”

“We are very excited to have Donna join our staff team,” comments Chris Pallatto, Executive Director of the Valley Shore Y, adding, “She has a tremendous reputation and created a very strong following with her professionalism, expertise, and enthusiasm.  She will be a great addition to our staff team.”

In her new role at the Y, Scott will be in charge of personal training, the Y’s Wellness Center, active older adult initiatives as well as running the ever popular Slim Down challenges throughout the year.

Editor’s Note: For further information about the Valley Shore YMCA, visit their website or call 860.399.9622.

OSW Youth Football, Cheerleading Buys Safety Equipment Thanks to Major Sponsors, Westbrook Foundation

Safety Coach Jeff Miller ensures a proper fit of the top-rated Xenith helmet on an 8th grade OSW player. Photo by Michael Yermenson.

Safety Coach Jeff Miller ensures a proper fit of the top-rated Xenith helmet on an 8th grade OSW player. Photo by Michael Yermenson.

OLD SAYBROOK/WESTBROOK — Old Saybrook Westbrook Youth Football and Cheerleading (OSW) has received a special boost to the start of their new season thanks to financial support from their major sponsors for the season coupled with a grant from the Westbrook Foundation.  Funds from these sources have enabled OSW to purchase state-of-the-art safety equipment for the 3rd, 6th and 8th grade football teams.

With the support of Yale New Haven Hospital’s Old Saybrook Medical Clinic, Bridgepoint Mortgage, and a generous grant from The Westbrook Foundation, this year OSW adds Kerr collars and Gyro caps to improve player safety.  The Kerr Collar is a functional transfer energy system worn by the player, which has a demonstrated track record of reducing impact to the neck and head during a collision. Gyro Kevlar supplemental pads further reduce impact severity.

Westbrook personal trainer Jeff Miller has served as the OSW Safety Coach for the past seven years.  He attends coaching clinics across the country to support and implement OSW’s commitment to safety including those held at the University of Alabama, UCONN, FBU (Football University) and USA Football.

Indianapolis-based USA Football is the sport’s national governing body, leading the game’s development for youth, high school and other amateur players. The independent nonprofit partners with leaders in medicine, child advocacy and sport to establish important standards rooted in education.

The purpose of OSW is to teach the fundamentals of football and cheerleading emphasizing a commitment to players and their families to put safety first by ensuring that participants are outfitted with state-of-the-art equipment that has been properly certified, inspected and maintained. All coaches and assistant coaches are Heads Up trained and certified.

In addition to safety, OSW supports an all-inclusive philosophy by not excluding participants based upon athletic ability or financial circumstance.  The Westbrook Foundation grant enables OSW to offer scholarships to those in the community who wish to participate but have limited resources.

Old Saybrook Westbrook Youth Football and Cheerleading promotes good sportsmanship, teamwork, the highest moral and physical standards, as well as the importance of scholarship and academic achievement.

For more information on the 2015 football and cheerleading programs, visit www.oswyouthfootball.com.

New Gift Shop — a Vista Social Enterprise — Opens In Downtown Madison

Creations is located in the heart of downtown Madison at 712 Boston Post Road, next to Tony’s Barber Shop

Creations is located in the heart of downtown Madison at 712 Boston Post Road, next to Tony’s Barber Shop

AREAWIDE — Handcrafted ceramic pottery, children’s toys, specialty jewelry and even blown glass that glows in the dark— these are among the many items one will find at Creations, a unique gift shop, which opened Thursday in the heart of downtown Madison.

Located at 712 Boston Post Rd., Creations showcases the beautiful work of more than 60 artisans from throughout the Northeast. These artists— from the mom who found inspiration in her child or the grandchildren who resurrected their grandparent’s legacy— each have stories that deserve to be shared with the world. They imagined the possibilities and followed their dream of creating gifts that can be used, loved and talked about for many years to come.

Shoppers will find products for men, women, children and the home. The store will also feature a variety of seasonal items.  All proceeds from the store benefit Vista.

Creations is a social enterprise of Vista Vocational & Life Skills Center of Westbrook. Based in Madison and Westbrook, Conn., Vista is a 501©3 nonprofit organization.  Vista’s mission is to provide services and resources to assist individuals with disabilities achieve personal success.

For more information about the store including its opening hours, visit the store’s website.

For more information about Vista, visit www.vistavocational.org

Open Auditions This Afternoon for Tri-Town Youth Services’ Production of ‘What Got Me Through’

AREAWIDE — Tri Town Youth Services, in collaboration with Community Performance International, will be holding local auditions for non-union actors for their original production, ‘What Got Me Through,’ on Monday, Aug. 10 from 3 to 8 p.m. at Chester Meeting House.

‘What Got Me Through’ tells the stories of tri-town’s own residents — their challenges, victories, heartbreaks and resilience — in a one-act play that takes us through the lives of a Vietnam veteran experiencing PTSD, an unwed mother during the tumultuous post-war years of the fifties, survivors of fires — both physical and those that burn from within — as well as the deep, close bonds of friendship and family that hold fast through generations.

What Got Me Through’ is the uplifting tale of Tri-Town’s ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

Auditions are open to actors of all ages, children and adults. Final performances will be at Chester Meeting House on Oct. 2, 3 and 4.

Call Gail or Cate at Tri Town Youth Services, 860-526-3600, for more information.

Essex Savings Bank Donates to Non-Profits

ESSEX — Gregory R. Shook, President & CEO of Essex Savings Bank announced the completion of distribution from the Directors’ portion of the Community Investment Fund. Total distributions for the year will amount to $100,000 and will surpass $4 million since the program’s 1996 inception of distributing 10% of after tax net income. Donations for this portion have been allocated to the following non-profit organizations.

Angel Charities, Inc. * Camp Hazen YMCA * The Chester Historical Society, Inc. * Child & Family Agency of Southeastern Connecticut, Inc. * Community Foundation of Middlesex County * Connecticut River Museum at Steamboat Dock * The Deep River Historical Society * Essex Historical Society * Florence Griswold Museum * The Ivoryton Library Association * Ivoryton Village Alliance * Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center & Theatre * Lawrence & Memorial Hospital * Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts * Lyme Art Association * Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau * MacCurdy Salisbury Educational Foundation, Inc. * Madison Land Conservation Trust * Middlesex Hospital * Middlesex United Way * The Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library Association, Inc. * Rotary Club of Essex Foundation * Tri-Town Youth Service Bureau, Inc. * Valley Shore YMCA * Vista (Vocational Independent Supported Transitional Alternative).

Essex Savings Bank is a FDIC insured, state chartered, mutual savings bank established in 1851. The Bank serves the Connecticut River Valley and shoreline with six offices in Essex (2), Chester, Madison, Old Lyme and Old Saybrook providing a full complement of personal and business banking. Financial, estate, insurance and retirement planning are offered throughout the state by the Bank’s Trust Department and wholly-owned subsidiary, Essex Financial Services, Inc., Member FINRA, SIPC.

Vista Arts Center Hosts “Paint Night” at Madison, Monday

Participants in the upcoming “Paint Night” will paint the view of Tuxis Island from the Madison Surf Club.

Participants in the upcoming “Paint Night” will paint the view of Tuxis Island from the Madison Surf Club.

AREAWIDE — The Vista Arts Center is hosting a special “Paint Night with Vista” at the Madison Surf Club on Monday, Aug. 17, from 6 to 8 p.m.

Participants will paint the view of Tuxis Island from the patio of the Surf Club alongside local celebrities Madison First Selectman Fillmore McPherson, architect Duo Dickinson and WTNH newscaster Jim Watkins. At the end of the evening, participants take their works of art home.

A social art class offered by the Vista Arts Center, “Paint Night” is open to community members of all artistic skill levels. No prior painting experience is required. The class will be led by local artist and Vista staff member Samantha Listorti, who will provide step-by-step guidance.

The cost for this special evening is $40 per person. Food will be available for purchase at the Surf Club. Because space is limited, registration is required.

To secure your seat, visit the Vista website or contact Amanda Roberts, Arts Program Manager, at 860-399-8080 or aroberts@vistavocational.org.

The mission of the Vista Arts Center is to provide quality arts programming to a diverse, adult population that promotes self-expression and learning in a nurturing, noncompetitive environment.

Based in Madison and Westbrook, Conn., Vista Vocational & Life Skills Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Vista’s mission is to provide services and resources to assist individuals with disabilities achieve personal success.

For more information about Vista, visit www.vistavocational.org

Acton Library Presents Repro of Infamous Mercer-Williams House Thru Sept. 30

OLD SAYBROOK — For the months of August and September, the Acton Library in Old Saybrook will be hosting a reproduction of the Mercer-Williams House.  The reproduction was painstakingly made by Maribel Girnius.

The house and the infamous crime that occurred in it were the focus of the book and film Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt.

The Acton Library is open from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

Essex Land Trust Sponsors North Cove/Falls River Kayak Trip This Afternoon

Essex Land Trust offers a kayak trip into North Cove, Aug. 6.

Essex Land Trust offers a kayak trip into North Cove, Aug. 6.

ESSEX — The Essex Land Trust invites you to bring your own boat on Saturday, Aug. 6, for this popular summer kayak/canoe trip into peaceful North Cove and Falls River, accompanied by a naturalist. See the abundant wildlife and revisit the history of this waterway where many of Essex’s colonial ships were built.

North Cove
Participants should arrive at 4:30 p.m. to register on-site at Bushnell Street public boat launching site off of North Main St., Essex, and launch their crafts on the rising tide prior to the 5 p.m. departure time.  A safety boat will accompany.

Bad weather cancels. Note: this event was originally scheduled for June 6 but was postponed due to poor weather conditions.

North Cove is a 230-acre body of tidal water between the Falls River and the Connecticut River. The Cove was noted for shipbuilding, and the nearby Williams’ yard turned out sloops and schooners for the commercial trade in the 19th century.

The cove is formed in part by Great Meadow, a 174-acre “pendant bar” or levee along the Connecticut River. Great Meadow has no public access.

Empty now, Great Meadow was once a beehive of activity. Cattle were grazed, salt hay was harvested and duck hunting blinds once lined the shore. The bar was also a base for the local fishing industry and its lucrative seasonal shad run.

 

Community Music School Receives Grant to Fund Scholarships, Pop-Up Kindermusik Days

CMS Kindermusik teacher Nancy Thomas is joined by members of the Community Foundation of Middlesex County grants committee and participants in a Pop-Up Day. Photo courtesy of Community Music School.

CMS Kindermusik teacher Nancy Thomas (front row, kneeling, second from right) is joined by members of the Community Foundation of Middlesex County grants committee and participants in a Pop-Up Day. Photo courtesy of Community Music School.

CENTERBROOK – Community Music School (CMS) has announced receipt of a $2,000 grant from the Community Foundation of Middlesex County to support the award-winning early childhood program, Kindermusik. Community Music School used the funds to present Kindermusik Pop-Up Days throughout the community during the summer and will offer Kindermusik scholarships for its fall semester.

“We are grateful for the support this year,” says Robin Andreoli, CMS Executive Director,” continuing, “More children in our community will benefit from this wonderful early childhood music program thanks to the generosity of the Community Foundation and those who support their efforts.”

The final Pop-Up Day takes place on Wednesday, Aug. 26, at 10 a.m. at CMS, 90 Main St., Centerbrook.  The classes are recommended for ages 18 months to 4 years and offer a fun-filled 45 minutes of singing, dancing, and lots of giggles!

Additionally, interested families can attend a preview Kindermusik class during the School’s Open House on Tuesday, Sept. 15.  Three distinct age-appropriate classes are offered that day: Village Class for 6 to 18-months-old will be at 9 a.m.; Time class for 18 months to 3-years-old will be at 10 a.m.; and Imagine That for 3- and 4-year-olds will take place at 11 a.m.

For more information about Kindermusik, the scholarship program, other Community Music School programs, visit www.community-music-school.org or call 860-767-0026.

The Community Foundation of Middlesex County is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the quality of life for the people of the County, now and in the future, by developing endowments, making grants that have impact and assisting donors in meeting their philanthropic objectives.

Since its founding in 1997, the Community Foundation has awarded 907 grants totaling over $2.8 million for the arts, cultural and heritage programs, educational activities, environmental improvements and for health and human services.

Community Music School is a not-for-profit arts organization that has been serving the music education needs of students for nearly 30 years. Founded in 1983, Community Music School has grown steadily over the years and now occupies 6,000 square feet of space in two buildings with 17 studios and small group performance space.  Today, CMS has nearly 500 students of all ages from Essex and 17 surrounding towns throughout Middlesex, New London and New Haven counties.

The mission of CMS is to provide a full range of the finest possible instruction and musical opportunities to persons of all ages and abilities, to increase appreciation of music and to encourage a sense of joy in learning and performing, thus enriching the life of the community.

Deep River Historical Society Hosts Cartoonist C.D. Batchelor Exhibit Open This Weekend

Self portrait by C.D. Batchelor.

Self portrait by C.D. Batchelor.

DEEP RIVER  — Viewed by millions daily in The New York Daily News and syndicated in 1,000 newspapers across the country, the work of C.D. Batchelor was thought-provoking and challenged the reader to draw his own conclusions.

Batchelor was hired by The New York Daily News in 1931 and his strong, graphic cartoons filled the upper-right columns of the editorial page, seven days a week for the next 25 years. He was the first political cartoonist to win the Pulitzer Prize in 1937 and by 1947 his work was circulated to nearly three million readers.

Funded in part by a grant from the Connecticut Humanities, the Deep River Historical Society invites you to step into his world, view a collection of his work that spanned 40 of the most turbulent years in U.S. history.

The exhibit titled, “Draw Your Own Conclusions: The Political Cartoons of C.D. Batchelor,” will be open at the Stone House of the Deep River Historical Society at 245 Main Street, Deep River on Saturdays and Sundays from 2 to 4 p.m. through the months of July and August.

Also in the Stone House are Victorian furniture, historic paintings, and collections of Deep River businesses and products including Niland cut glass, and ivory products of Pratt, Read & Co.   Visitors may also see the last remaining restored bleach house for piano keys.

All are welcome and admission is free.

One of C.D. Batchelor's famous cartoons.

One of C.D. Batchelor’s famous cartoons.

Editor’s Note: Connecticut Humanities, a nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, supports cultural and historic organizations that tell the state’s stories, build community and enrich lives.

Move to ‘Memphis’ at Ivoryton Playhouse! Show Opens to Rave Reviews

Taavon Gamble*, Michael Sullivan, Teren Carter*, Mya Rose and Kevin Moeti in a recent rehearsal.

Taavon Gamble*, Michael Sullivan, Teren Carter*, Mya Rose and Kevin Moeti in a recent rehearsal.

IVORYTON – After the first two previews and two instantaneous standing ovations, the phones are ringing off the hook at the Ivoryton Playhouse.  Memphis exploded onto the Ivoryton stage yesterday evening and audiences were captivated from the first “fantastical” number.

The Ivoryton Playhouse has now left the sunny tropical shores of the South Pacific and traveled to the sizzling backstreets of ‘50s Memphis. The show is set in the places where rock and roll was born – the seedy, underground dance clubs, radio stations and recording studios in 1950s Memphis, Tenn.

Inspired by true events, this high energy musical tells the story of DJ Huey Calhoun, who falls in love with a beautiful singer and battles cultural divides as he tries to bring her voice to the airwaves of America.

Renee Jackson* and Chawnta Marie Van in rehearsal.

Renee Jackson* and Chawnta Marie Van in rehearsal.

As their careers rise, a revolution erupts when his vision meets her voice and the music changed forever.  With an original score, this musical is filled with heart, soul and energy to burn!  Winner of four 2010 Tony Awards, Memphis was written by Joe DiPietro (I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change, All Shook Up) with electrifying blues, rock, ballads and gospel music created by Bon Jovi’s David Bryan.

Writer Joe DiPietro will be joining the cast on stage for talk back after the performance on opening night, Friday, Aug. 7,  followed by a reception with the cast and crew. Limited tickets are still available for this performance.

Renee Jackson* and Carson Higgins* practice a song.

Renee Jackson* and Carson Higgins* study their parts for Memphis.

The Playhouse production of Memphis is directed and choreographed by Todd Underwood, whose last work was seen at the Ivoryton Playhouse as choreographer for La Cage aux Folles and Dreamgirls.  The show features Carson Higgins* as Huey, Rénee Jackson* as Felicia Farrell, Teren Carter* as Delray, Jamal Shuriah* as Gator.

This musical is directed by Michael Morris, the set is designed by Martin Scott Marchitto, lighting by Doug Harry and costumes by Elizabeth Cipollina.

memphis

Memphis opens at the Ivoryton Playhouse in previews on Wednesday, Aug. 5, (official opening Friday, Aug. 7) and runs through Aug. 30. Performance times are Wednesday and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. Evening performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m.  There will be two additional Saturday matinees on Aug. 22 and 29 at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $42 for adults, $37 for seniors, $20 for students and $15 for children and are available by calling the Playhouse box office at 860.767.7318 or by visiting our website at www.ivorytonplayhouse.org  (Group rates are available by calling the box office for information.) The Playhouse is located at 103 Main Street in Ivoryton.

*denotes member of Actors Equity

This production of ‘Memphis’ is generously sponsored by:  Pasta Vita, First Niagara, Sennheiser and Saybrook Country Barn.