September 24, 2017

Chester Village West Hosts Blood Drive Today, 1:30 to 6:30pm

CHESTER – Chester Village West, an independent senior living community, will host a Red Cross Blood Drive on Friday, Aug. 18 from 1:30 to 6:30 p.m.  Chester Village West is located at 317 W. Main St., Chester, Conn. 06412.

To schedule your appointment, call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Chester Village West employees regularly participate in the blood drive. Old Saybrook resident Richard Mulvihill, one of the community’s security guards, has donated more than two gallons (16 units) of blood over the past 18 years. According to the American Red Cross, Mulvihill’s blood donations have helped to save the lives of more than 48 people. A donor since age 18, Richard has been giving valuable ‘double red cell’ donations three times per year since 1999, when he joined the Old Saybrook Fire Department as a volunteer fireman.

“I feel great about helping people this way,” said Mulvihill, who is Type O Positive. According to the American Red Cross, double red cell donations from Type O donors and donors with Rh-negative blood types play a very important role in maintaining blood supply levels. Double red cell donation is done with the help of an apheresis machine, which collects the red cells but returns most of the plasma and platelets to the donor. “Because I get my platelets and plasma back, I don’t feel as drained afterwards,” he added.

Other Chester Village West employees who regularly donate blood include Marketing Director and Westbrook resident Sara Philpott, Director of Operations and Deep River resident Jim Jake, Marketing Assistant and Deep River resident Brenda Kollmer, Transportation Coordinator and Killingworth resident Priscilla Soucy and Debra Millspaugh, Accounting Manager and Deep River resident.

“My father’s life was saved by a blood transfusion,” Philpott said. “Most of us don’t think about the importance of maintaining the blood bank until we have a personal crisis. Our blood banks are always in need of more donors. It’s such a small thing to do that can literally save the life of another. It makes me feel good to know that my donation can help someone when they need it most.”

Editor’s Note: Located in historic Chester, Connecticut, Chester Village West gives independent-minded people a new way to experience retirement and live their lives to the fullest. Since the community was founded more than 25 years ago, Chester Village West residents have directed and embraced active learning. Within a small community of private residences that offer convenience, companionship, service and security, Chester Village West enriches lives with a comprehensive program that enhances fitness, nutrition, active life, health and well-being. Find out more atchestervillagewestlcs.com; visit the community on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ChesterVillageWest.

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Courtney Holds Town Hall Meeting This Evening at VRHS

Representative Joe Courtney

DEEP RIVER  — Rep. Joe Courtney will hold a town hall meeting for constituents of the Second Congressional District at 6 p.m. this evening at Valley Regional High School, 256 Kelsey Hill Rd., Deep River.

All are welcome. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.

There will be a wide ranging discussion on issues such as the successful effort to stop the ‘Kenyon Bypass’ passenger rail tracks, higher education affordability, the future of Social Security and Medicare, and the thriving manufacturing economy in eastern Connecticut.

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Essex Park & Rec. Host Summer Concert Series, ‘Blues on the Rocks’ on Stage Tonight

‘Blues on the Rocks’ conclude the Essex Park & Rec.Concert series.

ESSEX — Essex Park and Recreation is excited to be able to offer another great set of bands this year for their 2017 Summer Concert Series.  Hosted on alternating Tuesdays at The Ivoryton Green and Wednesdays at The Essex Main Street Park, concerts take place at 6:30 p.m. from June 27 through Aug. 16.

Admission is free to all.

The concert series concludes with a performance from Blues on the Rocks, bringing their dynamic and enthusiastic mix of Blues, R&B, Motown, and Rock sure to get you up and dancing to Essex Main Street Park on Aug. 16.

For more information on the Summer Concert Series or Park and Rec. programs, visit https://www.facebook.com/SXParkandRec. You may also contact Park & Rec. by email at recreation@essexct.gov or call the office at 860-767-4340 x148.

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Shoreline Bus Schedule Change Announced Effective Aug. 14

OLD SAYBROOK — 9 Town Transit is planning schedule changes to its Rte. 1 bus service between Old Saybrook and Madison.  The changes, which reduce the number of daily trips by two, begin Monday, Aug. 14.

The district began a public comment process in March in response to reductions in subsidies from the Connecticut Department of Transportation.  Through the process, 9 Town Transit was able to identify trips that impacted the least amount of people.  Still, as many as 50 people’s daily travel will be impacted by these changes.

“We understand the impact these changes have on our community,” says Joseph Comerford, Executive Director of 9 Town Transit, “but when our subsidies are reduced, we must cut back service to remain financially stable.”

Comerford says the district pushed off the changes as long as possible, while they worked with the Department of Transportation (DOT) and legislators in an attempt to secure the necessary funding.  With a new fiscal year beginning, the district felt it could no longer delay the changes.

Additional information and schedules are available at www.9towntransit.com or by calling 860-510-0429.

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Old Saybrook Library Announces Fall Movie Series, See ‘Jackie,’ Oct. 13

Photo by Felix Mooneeram on Unsplash

OLD SAYBROOK — Lights. Camera. ACTON!

The Acton Public Library in Old Saybrook presents a Leading Legends Series this fall on second and fourth Fridays in September and October and on the second Friday only in November and December at 1 p.m. upstairs in the Grady Thomas Room. The film series will feature legendary actors and actresses in rich and legendary stories. There will be free popcorn, and an informal introduction and discussion following the films.

The line-up is as follows:

Sept. 8: The Heiress starring Olivia de Havilland;

Sept. 22: The Great Gatsby starring Leonardo DiCaprio;

Oct. 13: Jackie starring Natalie Portman; on

Oct. 27: The Grapes of Wrath starring Henry Fonda; on November 10th, Sully starring Tom Hanks;

Dec. 8: Florence Foster Jenkins starring Meryl Streep.

For more information, call The Acton Library at 860-395-3184, or visit the library during regular hours: Monday through Thursday 10am – 8:00pm, Friday and Saturday 10am – 5pm or visit on-line at www.actonlibrary.org .

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CT River Museum Hosts ‘Conquer the Current’ Regatta Today; Benefits Museum’s Scholarship Fund

Calling all paddlers! Conquer the Current challenges you to row from Haddam to Essex in support of education scholarship programs at the Connecticut River Museum. Photo by Tom Walsh, Shoreline Aerial Photography, Connecticut River Museum Collection.

ESSEX — The Connecticut River Museum’s first downriver paddle regatta to benefit the Museum’s education scholarship fund will take place Sunday, Aug. 13, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The Regatta is open to all paddle craft- canoes, kayaks, stand up paddleboards and rowboats.

The nine-mile race will start at Eagle Landing State Park in Haddam and finish in front of the Connecticut River Museum in Essex. Paddlers will haul out at the Essex town boat launch and transportation will be provided back up to Eagle Landing State Park.

There will also be activities on the Museum lawn throughout the day, including stand-up paddle board demonstrations by Paddleworks of Clinton and a family fun paddle parade in Essex Harbor at 12 p.m. Refreshments will be available from Porky Pete’s, Deep River Snacks, and Cannoli’s on the Run.

Pre-registration is $30 per paddler with an additional $70 fundraising goal or $110 registration fee day of event. Prizes will be awarded for race winners and top individual and team fundraisers. All proceeds from the event will go directly toward supporting the Museum’s education scholarship fund.  

Connecticut River Museum’s first annual ‘Conquer the Current’ Regatta takes place Aug. 13.

During the 2016/17 school year, 4,000 school children from across the state of Connecticut received invaluable hands-on history and environmentally-based programs at the Museum and in their classrooms.  The scholarship program allowed for nearly 1,000 of these students to receive free or reduced admission, creating invaluable opportunities for students who might not otherwise have this experience.   

For more information about this program, visit ctrivermuseum.org or contact the Connecticut River Museum at 860.767.8269 or via email at esistare@ctrivermuseum.org. The Connecticut River Museum is located at 67 Main Street, Essex and is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $7 for seniors, $5 for children age 6-12, free for children under 6.  This year a recreation of Adriaen Block’s the ONRUST is at the Museum’s docks and providing special programs and public cruises.

Conquer the Current is generously sponsored by: Denali, Essex Marine Group, Family Legacy Partners, Ivory Wealth Management, Lawrence & Memorial Hospital, The Sound Runner and Deep River Snacks.

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Hike Turtle Creek Preserve This Morning with Essex Land Trust


One of the coolest places to hike on a warm summer day, is the 92-forested-acres known as Turtle Creek, owned by The Nature Conservancy. Readers have a chance to experience the hike on Saturday, Aug. 12, starting at 9 a.m.

The creek winds through extensive wetlands to the south to a narrow strip of beach along the Connecticut River. Higher ground to the north borders South Cove in Essex. This easy to moderate hike will be led by Essex resident and naturalist Phil Miller.

Turtle Creek goes back a long way; Native Americans drew water from the spring off the main trail. Later, Hayden Point, named for a prominent 19th-century Essex family, was used as grazing land. The pond was created for ice production.

The bulk of the preserve was donated to the Nature Conservancy by ex-Governor Chester Bowles.

Leashed dogs are welcome on this hike. Access is off Watrous Point Rd. (Rte.154), Old Saybrook. Bad weather cancels.

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Estuary Center Offers Guided Paddling Tour of Whalebone Cove This Morning

The Roger Tory Peterson Estuary Center is offering a guided paddling tour of Whalebone Cove this coming Saturday, Aug. 12.

Led by the Estuary Center’s aquatic ecologist Jim Arrigoni, the tour will explore the maze of channels in Whalebone Cove, one of the most placid and wildlife-filled habitats in the lower Connecticut River.

Whalebone Cove is a tidal, freshwater marsh that is habitat for foraging ospreys, egrets, herons, swans, and marsh wrens, as well as basking turtles and blooming lilies.

It has been described by The Nature Conservancy as “one of the least disturbed freshwater tidal marshes in all of New England.” Because Whalebone Cove has one of the largest stands of wild rice in New England, it is a favorite stop for many species of migratory ducks.

Enjoy the natural beauty of Whalebone Cove from the calm of your kayak.

With help from a crew of summer interns researching submerged aquatic vegetation and invasive species in the Cove, Arrigoni will point out wildlife and plants and explain their role in the Connecticut River estuary.

He will also address management challenges posed to the Cove by invasive species and unregulated recreation and development.

This paddling trip is part of the Estuary Center’s year-long Estuary Explorations program which seeks to connect biologists and other experts with the public to increase ecological knowledge of and appreciation for our land and waterscapes. The tour is being sponsored in conjunction with Friends of Whalebone Cove.

Kayaking is a great way to experience the wonder of Whalebone Cove.

The tour embarks from the boat launch next to the Hadlyme Ferry Landing on Rte. 148 (Ferry Rd., Lyme). Please have your canoe or kayak ready to go at 9 a.m.

This will be a relatively easy paddle. There will be a short leg down the main stem of the Connecticut River to the entrance to the Cove, hugging the eastern shoreline and paddling with a slack tide. The same route upstream on return will be with a rising tide astern. Tides in the Cove will be rising gently.

Life jackets are required. Binoculars, sun screen and insect repellent are recommended. After returning to the boat launch at noon, stay for a bag lunch (bring your own) and recap at the Gillette Castle State Park picnic area next to the Hadlyme Ferry Landing. Bag lunches can be purchased prior to launch at the Hadlyme Country Market at the intersection of Rte. 82 and Rte. 148 (Ferry Rd.) about a mile east of the Ferry Landing.

Rain date is Saturday, Aug. 19.

Fee Structure: $30 per adult;  $25 per student.  Space is limited. Pre-registration is required. For more info & registration: http://www.ctaudubon.org/2017/07/guided-ecology-paddle/#st

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Community Music School & ‘Savour’ Present Summer Concert Tonight; All Welcome

CENTERBROOK – Bring your blanket or lawn chair and enjoy a summer evening concert presented by Community Music School (CMS) in partnership with Savour Café & Bakery. The concert will be held Friday, Aug. 11, from 5 to 8 p.m. outside CMS and Savour at Spencer’s Corner, and will benefit CMS music therapy programs, scholarships, and community outreach. It will also provide exposure for young artists.

Be sure to stop into Savour during the concert to get a bite to eat.

Any musician under the age of 22 is encouraged to sign up to perform, whether involved at CMS or not. All genres and types of groups and solos are welcome.

To register to perform, email info@community-music-school.org with your name, age, phone number, and pieces you would like to perform. There is a limit of two pieces per performer. All acts must be approved by CMS.

There is a $5 sign up fee for performers, and the concert will be free of charge and open to the public. At-will donations are gratefully accepted.

For additional information, visit https://www.facebook.com/events/256253234861296/ or call CMS at 860-767-0026.

Editor’s Note: Community Music School offers innovative music programming for infants through adults, building on a 34 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 they can enjoy playing and listening for their entire lives.  Learn more at www.community-music-school.org or call (860)767-0026.

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Op-Ed: Educational Advocate Sandmann is Excellent Choice for Region 4 BOE, Offers Hope for Future

Returning from vacation, I was ecstatic to find a long-time Region 4 volunteer running for a seat on the Region 4 Board of Education (BOE).  For the past 13 years I have known Kate (Kathryn) Sandmann as a tireless advocate and a steadfast agent to build and enrich the educational experience for our community children.  Kate has served on the PTO/Parent Council for Essex Elementary School (EES), John Winthrop Middle School (JW), and Valley Regional High School (VRHS).  Kate is not a politician she is an educational advocate.  Not only does her candidacy give me hope for the future of Region 4, it gives me personally, a reason to reconsider sending my youngest to VRHS rather than a private school.  Not to mention Kate has always counseled me to keep my children in the Region 4 system based on her strong belief in our staff and potential outcome for all students in Region 4.

Kate has a vision of how public education can best meet the needs of our diverse population of learners.  Also, having two children who graduated from VRHS, she has knowledge of the complete Region 4 experience.  As the parent of any High School student knows, it is a much different experience than at the elementary school.  The value of speaking with articulate teens (and their families) about their educational experience makes Kate an invaluable candidate; one with insights to the strengths and challenges of a public education in a small town(s).  Kate has had the value of speaking to hundreds of students who were in the musical, sports, National Honor Society, etc.  She has had her finger on the pulse of our children’s educational experience for the past 15 years.  Some of her experience at the High School has helped move from a block schedule, which often put our students at a disadvantage with standardized testing necessary for college entrance.  She was also a parent volunteer that helped VRHS through a successful NEASC recertification.

As a professional who serves children with disabilities in a school system, I have first-hand knowledge about Kate’s commitment to this population.  Under her leadership as PTO President at Essex Elementary School a new playground, accessible to students of all abilities, was built by the PTO through fundraising.  Kate was also a vocal supporter of the pre-school move to Essex Elementary School.

Not every student will be college-bound, and Kate knows programs for these students need nurturing as well.  Programs like School-to-Work, and vocational training are also an important part of the educational experience at VRHS.

Kate also understands the challenge of meeting the educational needs of our gifted students.  Meeting the needs of these students is not mandated by law, but is a moral obligation that benefits our community as a whole.  Why do many of our students move on to private school after JW?  Losing these students does not strengthen Region 4.  It is necessary to infuse our BOE with leaders that understand the importance of strengthening and growing our programs for our gifted students.

It is a tricky time for education.  It is a time for fresh thinking and creative solutions.  Declining enrollment and budgetary constraints are challenges that make it necessary to think out of the box.  Kate’s experience with fundraising and budgeting for enrichment through PTO programs gives her the advantage of creativity in finding solutions.  Her experience with attending monthly Superintendent meetings for Region 4 has given her depth of insight into the challenges Region 4 faces in the coming years.  The leadership of Region 4 has expressed confidence in Kate’s decision making by including her in committees to hire the JW Principal, Region 4 Assistant Superintendent and the VRHS Vice Principal.

As a registered Republican, I will definitely be crossing party lines for a candidate I am confident has the benefit of every student as her number one priority.  A candidate who had the time, energy and enthusiasm our children need.  I will cast my vote for Kate Sandmann.

 

Sincerely,

 

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Rockfall Foundation Presents a Night at Ivoryton Playhouse to Benefit Environmental Programs, Aug. 17

IVORYTON — The Rockfall Foundation presents the 2nd annual Night at the Ivoryton Playhouse on Thursday, Aug. 17, at 6 p.m. The 1970s brought us the Clean Water Act and the Clean Air Act and it’s also the decade that brought us disco! It’s been 40 years since the release of the film Saturday Night Fever – the inspiration for this electrifying musical – and the Foundation invites you to celebrate this milestone while supporting essential environmental programs.

Enjoy a pre-show reception with hearty hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar on the tent-covered patio at the Ivoryton Playhousebeginning at 6 p.m.  Then, get ready for the nostalgic songs of the Bee Gees that defined the disco generation! Can’t stay for the show? Join the Foundation for networking at the reception – a limited number of tickets are available for the reception only.

Tickets are $60 for the reception and performance. There are a limited number of $20 tickets for the reception only available. Proceeds support environmental education programs and grants. To purchase tickets, visit www.rockallfoundation.org or call 860-347-0340.

The Rockfall Foundation is a private, non-profit foundation that supports environmental education, conservation programs and planning initiatives in the Lower Connecticut River Valley. Established in 1935, it is one of Connecticut’s oldest environmental organizations. The Foundation annually awards environmental grants to other non-profits and sponsors education programs and symposia.

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Old Saybrook’s Gengras Honored with Lifetime Achievement Award

Skip Gengras. Photo credit: J. Fiereck Photography.

OLD SAYBROOK — Skip Gengras of Gengras Motor Cars of Old Saybrook, a member of the Greater Hartford community, was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Awards in recognition of his longtime contributions to business and community. Three other people were similarly honored.

“Each of these individuals has made a significant impact on our region,” Joe Zwiebel, president and publisher, Hartford Business Journal, said. “We commend this year’s honorees on their achievements. They are wonderful examples of how one person can drive change, inspire achievement and help an organization to reach new levels of success.”

Apart from Gengras, the 2017 Lifetime Achievement Award winners are:

  • Andy Bessette, Travelers

  • Cheryl Chase, Chase Enterprises

  • Margaret Lawson, independent consultant

During the awards breakfast honorees participated in a panel discussion moderated by Richard Sugarman, President, Hartford Promise, during which they shared lessons, highlights and wisdom gleaned from their careers.

The 2017 Lifetime Achievement Awards were presented by Hartford Business Journal with the support of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care (presenting sponsor); UConn School of Business (education leadership sponsor); and, The Pita Group (event sponsor). Event partners include: Bond Ballroom, Rider Productions, Merritt Graphics, J. Fiereck Photography, The Perfect Promotion and Co-Communications Marketing and Public Relations.

Hartford Business Journal is the only audited weekly, subscription-based business publication in Connecticut. Whether it’s market trends, the latest merger news or an update on state government, this award-winning weekly is the “must read” for area business leaders. Hartford Business Journal has a total readership of 31,000 affluent and educated business decision makers in the 61 towns that make up Metro Hartford. For more information, visit www.hartfordbusiness.com or call 860.236.9998.

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Leif Nilsson Hosts Johnny Martorelli in Next ‘Concert in the Garden,’ Oct. 8

Johnny Martorelli plays a Concert in the Garden, Oct. 8.

CHESTER — Leif Nilsson hosts a Sunday evening ‘Concert in the Garden,’ Oct. 8, from 4 to 6 p.m.,  featuring guitarist, singer and songwriter Johnny Martorelli at the Spring Street Studio and Gallery at 1 Spring St, Chester Center.  Martorelli will perform classic covers and original works

This Chester native has had a passion for music ever since he can remember. Born and raised by a drummer and singer, music was never too far out of reach. Alfonso, Johnny’s father, played drums with his band at the Cove Road Inn with former Mayor, Bob Blair. After the gig, you would often find them flipping burgers for their patrons at the Al-a-Bob in Chester center.

In his teens, Johnny showcased his talents on guitar fronting bands such as Rush Hour, Wired for Sound and Velocity.

Making a name for himself locally, he found himself in New York City. He soon joined the John McEnroe band touring the world with this tennis legend. You may still see a gig or two from this band annually.

Back in the River Valley, Johnny tours the shoreline playing gigs (with UHF, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, or solo) at venues such as Chamard Vineyards, Bill’s Seafood, Donahue’s, Water’s Edge, Cuckoo’s Nest, and a variety of private affairs. Johnny also makes time for younger talents, teaching lessons out of his home in Chester.

For more information on upcoming gigs or lessons, contact Johnny at johnnystrings@comcast.net or www.reverbnation.com/johnmartorelli

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.

A $20 donation is appreciated. The event is BYOB – pack a picnic and bring your own wine or beer or buy it across the street at the Chester Package Store.

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Deep River Public Library Presents Paranormal Researcher, Dustin Pari, Oct. 6

DEEP RIVER — An internationally known paranormal researcher, Dustin Pari presents Documenting the Dead at Deep River Public Library, Friday, Oct. 6, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. This program takes a look at conduct paranormal investigation. Pari will discuss his own experiences, including some of the earliest spirit communication techniques.

Complete with historical stories, documentation, and some “would-be” evidence, Pari provides a respectful retrospective piece on contacting the other side.  Filled with anecdotal talks from his travels and evidence from his investigations, this lecture is just the right mix of educational, fun, and creepy.  Space is limited. Registration is required. Visit the Deep River Library website, Facebook Event page or call for more details.

For more information, go to website at http://deepriverlibrary.accountsupport.com and click on our monthly calendar, or call the library at 860-526-6039 during service hours: Monday 1 – 8pm; Tuesday 10 am – 6 pm; Wednesday 12:30 – 8 pm; Thursday and Friday 10 am – 6 pm; and Saturday 10 am – 5 pm.

Registration link: Register for Dustin Pari

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Essex Steam Train Offers ‘Three B’s’ (Beer, Bratwurst, Beautiful Fall Foliage) Cruise, Oct. 5

ESSEX — It’s the “Three B” cruise! Beer, Bratwurst, and Beautiful fall foliage on the Connecticut River. A great night is in store for you from the minute you smell the brats sizzling on the grill to the last sip of beer as you glide into dock after the last rays of a stunning sunset.

This unique evening on Thursday, Oct. 5 runs from 5:15 to 8:30 p.m. Arrive 5:15 p.m. in Essex for departure at 5:30 p.m. for a two-hour cruise on the Becky Thatcher Riverboat. Return to Essex at 8:30 p.m.

The evening offers:

•    tastings of several carefully selected craft beers provided by Cellar Fine Wines and 30 Mile Brewing Company
•    a buffet of brats and all the fixin’s
•    gift bag including an engraved beer glass as a memento

Note this event is for adults 21+.  Ticket prices are $60 in advance/ $70 Walk-up (pending availability.)

Visit EssexSteamTrain.com for tickets & more information.

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Take a Folklore Talk, Hike This Morning in Devil’s Hopyard With UMass Amherst Professor

Chapman Falls in Devil’s Hopyard will be included in Prof. Gencarella’s hike.

ESSEX — The Devil’s Hopyard State Park in East Haddam is one of the most intriguing places for folklore in the entire state of Connecticut. As a follow-up to the Essex Library’s folklore program on Thursday, Aug. 3, Professor Stephen Gencarella (UMass Amherst and the resident folklorist at the CT River Museum) will lead a hike throughout the park on Saturday, Aug. 5. at 9 a.m.

Gencarella will tell the copious stories about this unique location; among these are tales about the indigenous people’s culture heroes, a literary work about a wayward son, and the numerous explanations for the park’s unusual name, including the tradition of witches brewing potions in the potholes near Chapman Falls. The hike will offer a view of the valley from a cliff and hikers will have an opportunity to visit a cave along the way.

Gencarella is a professor of folklore studies at UMass Amherst and is the resident folklorist at the Connecticut River Museum. He was featured in the June 2017 Connecticut Magazine in an article entitled “The Moodus Noises” (pg. 35), and is also developing a series on Connecticut folklore for iCRV.

This program is free and open to the public. Call the Essex Library at 860-767-1560 for more information and to register. The hike will begin at 9 a.m. at the Devil’s Hopyard State Park main parking lot at 366 Hopyard Rd. in East Haddam.

Caption:
A free, folklore talk and hike in Devil’s Hopyard State Park presented by UMass Professor Stephen Gencarella at 9 a.m. Aug. 5 at Devil’s Hopyard State Park, 366 Hopyard Rd. East Haddam. Gencarella will focus on the indigenous people’s culture heroes, a literary work about a wayward son, and the numerous explanations for the park’s unusual name. Hosted by the Essex Library. RSVP: 860-767-1560.

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See Broadway Star’s Laiona Michelle Tonight in Benefit Concert

New England native and Broadway start Laiona Michelle will give a one-woman show at Spring Street Gallery, Aug. 5. The show will benefit the Bingham Camp Theatre Retreat.

CHESTER — Broadway’s Laiona Michelle comes to the Leif Nilsson Spring Street Studio & Gallery in Chester, CT, on Saturday, Aug. 5, to star in a benefit concert called Little Girl Blue, the words and music of Nina Simone.

Little Girl Blue is Laiona Michelle’s one woman show inspired by her idol, the legendary jazz singer, songwriter and civil rights activist Nina Simone.   With personal stories and plenty of songs, all performed in Laiona’s exuberant, raw and crowd-pleasing style, Little Girl Blue is an evening that will reach deep into your soul.
Laiona Michelle is an actress and singer who has graced stages across the USA, performing in musicals, contemporary plays and Shakespeare in addition to appearing in film and on television in shows such as Law and Order.   Recently seen on Broadway in Amazing Grace and on tour in The Book of Mormon, Laiona grew up in Springfield, Mass., where she is the creator of Shakers Performing Arts Camp, which teaches Shakespeare in a “hip” fun way to inner city youth.
All proceeds from the concert will benefit the Bingham Camp Theatre Retreat (BCTR), a non-profit theatrical organization which develops new work for the stage that promotes and celebrates diversity.  Its mission is to create musicals and plays that give voice to under-represented communities onstage and promote inter-cultural dialogue and understanding.  It is located at an historic property in Salem, Conn., more than 100 years old, where theatre artists from around the country take residence each September.
Little Girl Blue direction is by BCTR’s Artistic Director Devanand Janki and musical direction is by Mark Fifer.
The performance takes place at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 5, at The Leif Nilsson Spring Street Studio & Gallery, 1 Spring Street, Chester, CT 06412. Concert tickets are $20 and available at the door and on sale now online at www.binghamcamptheatreretreat.org
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Enjoy a ‘A Little Night Music’ at ‘First Friday’ in Chester Tonight, 5-8pm!

Arrowhead will play on the porch of the Spring Street Gallery & Studio during ‘First Friday in Chester tonight

CHESTER –  A Little Night Music will greet visitors to First Friday, Aug.4, when singers, bands, modern dancers and even a bagpiper will play outdoors in the downtown while shops, restaurants and galleries stay open late with art openings, new jewelry lines and summer sales.

Leif Nilsson’s band Arrowsmith will play from 5 to 8 p.m. on the porch at Leif Nilsson’s Spring Street Studio and Gallery; inside, Leif’s latest paintings will be on display.

At Maple and Main Gallery, Dan Nichols, one of the gallery artists, will be wearing his kilt and playing his bagpipes on the porch. The opening party for “Earth and Air,” a show of Michael DiGiorgio’s bird paintings and Betsy Himmelman’s ceramic vessels will be from 6 to 8  p.m.in Maple and Main’s Stone Gallery.

Dancers from the River Valley Dance Project will perform at ‘Lark’ this evening.

The Gusto Dance Project collaborating with River Valley Dance Project will be performing on the lawn outside Lark; if the mood suits them they may dance through town as well. Lark is featuring painted signs by Jennifer Burr and necklaces from Kenya.

Performing in front of The Perfect Pear beginning at 6 p.m., Connecticut College senior and Deep River native Julia Tackett will be playing the guitar and singing. The Perfect Pear is also introducing its “Back to School” specials Friday and serving samples of  lavender lemonade.

And, at The Pattaconk, the rock band, The Instagaters  will play from 7 to 10 p.m.

‘Stingray’ by Clare Gustafson is one of the featured pieces of the artist’s work on show at Lori Warner Gallery.

Friday will kick off the opening of Weekend of Diamonds with Mandy Carroll-Leiva as well as new glass by Carrie Gustafson and a new series of monotypes by Lori Warner at Lori Warner Gallery.

Chester’s Finders Marketplace, a new enterprise on Rte. 154 across from the entrance to Main Street, will be joining first Friday with light cocktails and snacks.

Blackkate is featuring fine jewelry artist Nick Dedo

At C&G the start of the shop’s 40 percent off August sale of summer hats, sandals and select apparel will begin Friday evening. Sales items on the porch Friday are an additional 10 per cent off.

Dina Varano Gallery will be presenting new jewelry designs by Dina and nature-inspired tabletop designs by Michael Aram. The gallery will also be offering a refreshing beverage in celebration of this town-wide festive evening.

The French Hen will be serving guests spiked lemonade and sales on summer décor.

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Asch Retires from Cappella Cantorum After 47 Years, Holt Appointed New Music Director

Barry Asch is retiring after 47 years at the helm of Cappella Cantorum.

AREAWIDE — Co-founder, music director, and conductor of Cappella Cantorum, Barry B. Asch, has announced his retirement from the Cappella Cantorum MasterWorks Chorus.  Asch has conducted the MasterWorks Chorus for 47 years during which time over 65 major choral works have been performed. 

The inaugural performance was March 1970 with Schubert’s Mass in E Flat.  Asch formed the popular Cappella Cantorum Men’s Chorus in 1977, and the SummerSings series in 1987.  Both events still continue.

The Eighth Annual Messiah Sing or Listen in 2016 at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center was nearly filled to capacity.  This favorite holiday tradition was conducted and organized by Asch.  ‘The Kate’ will host the ninth annual event on Sunday, Dec. 17, 2017.

Group sessions and vocal classes have been offered to Cappella members with renowned soprano Patricia Schuman and tenor Brian Cheney.

Asch began Cappella Cantorum’s European Concert Tours in 1981.  The tours are currently organized by member Patricia Hill of Madison.

Simon Holt has been named the new Musical Director of Cappella Cantorum.

A highlight of Cappella Cantorum was performing five concerts at Carnegie Hall, New York City with Mid-America Productions.  This opportunity was initiated by Asch.

Cappella Cantorum has represented 20 communities throughout southeastern Connecticut.

Simon Holt, artistic director of Salt Marsh Opera and director of music at The First Congregational Church of Old Lyme will be the new music director of the Cappella Cantorum MasterWorks Chorus.

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9 Town Transit to Reduce Shoreline Shuttle Service from Aug. 14

OLD SAYBROOK — After extensive review of public comments and ridership data, 9 Town Transit is planning to reduce service on the Shoreline Shuttle beginning Aug. 14. The reduction was made necessary by a reduction in state funding.

9 Town Transit has worked very closely with legislators and CTDOT in an attempt to restore funding, but to date has been unsuccessful.

Beginning Aug. 14, the 12:30 and 3:30 p.m. trips from Old Saybrook to Madison, and the 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. trips from Madison to Old Saybrook will be discontinued.

New schedules will be available on buses. Plan to adjust your travel accordingly.

9 Town Transit sincerely apologizes for the inconvenience this will cause to our customers.

9 Town Transit understands the importance of this route to the many people who use it, but must operate within the budget provided.

9 Town Transit stresses it is not too late to contact your state legislators at 800-842-1421 (state senator) and 800-842-1423 (state representative) to voice your concerns about these service cut-backs.

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Next ‘Lifelong Learning’ Lecture at Chester Village West Features Health Care, Oct. 3

CHESTER — Chester Village West, an independent senior living community, continues its Lifelong Learning Program with six free-and-open-to-the-public lectures in September, October and November. The program, in its fourth season, is in partnership with the Wesleyan Institute for Lifelong Learning and Middlesex Hospital. A Q&A and reception with light refreshments will be held after each program.

Registration is required. To register for one or more programs, call 860.322.6455, email ChesterVillageWest@LCSnet.com or visit https://www.chestervillagewestlcs.com/lifestyle/calendar-of-events/.

Chester Village West is located at 317 W. Main St., Chester, CT 06412.

The fall schedule of lectures continues as follows:

 

Tuesday, October 3, 4 p.m.

What is Most Important to You When It Comes to Health Care?

 Melanie Cama, MSN, RN, Middlesex Hospital Director of Palliative Care Services

Play “Go Wish,” an interactive game that will help uncover your health care wishes. Throughout your life you have hopes, dreams and wishes. Melanie Cama will help you identify your wants and needs and determine how you can make your health care wishes come true—even as you face challenges.

Friday, October 20, 4 p.m.

The Origins of Modern Art, Part 2:

The Influence of French Impressionism on American Art

Richard J. Friswell, M.Ed., M.Phil.

Associate Director, Wesleyan Institute for Lifelong Learning

The word ‘Impressionism’ continues to strike a chord with art enthusiasts, even decades after the last impressionist painting was created. What few have a full appreciation for is the unusual and surprising ways in which impressionist techniques gained a foothold in France, and how that message was carried back to the U.S. in the earliest years of the 20th century. This lecture will examine the global dynamics that unfolded in the mid-1800s, impacting on artistic styling in France; and, by extension, how those “new ways of seeing” were eventually exported to America—and Connecticut in particular.

Monday, November 6, 4 p.m.

The Women’s Playwright Initiative in Connecticut

Laura Copland, Director of Play Development, the Ivoryton Playhouse

Laura Copland’s talk will provide an overview of the Women Playwrights’ Initiative she founded, now in its second season. The Initiative develops new one-act plays by and about women and the issues that shape their lives. It provides a safe, nurturing environment for play development, and culminates in a staged reading festival. In February/March 2018 the festival Passion, Power, Prose: Women Playwrights’ Initiative will once again feature interactive talkbacks with the playwrights, directors, actors, and audience. The presentation will cover some recurring themes of this year’s submissions. Using two of the plays from last year, the residents will read scenes and discuss acting approaches.

Monday, November 13, 4 p.m.

Some Paradoxes of Wellbeing

Karl Scheibe, Ph.D., B.S.

Professor of Psychology, Emeritus, Wesleyan University

Director Emeritus, Wasch Center for Retired Faculty, Wesleyan University

Wellbeing has recently moved to center state of psychologists’ field of attention. This is in part a reaction to the traditional focus of psychology on problems of human suffering. But research on this topic has turned up some fascinating contradictions. Pleasure and pain do not accumulate in the same way, revealing a curious asymmetry in our emotional lives. Paradoxes of wellbeing are conspicuous, not the least of which is the observation that older people manifest an unexpected level of satisfaction with their lives.

Editor’s Note: Located in historic Chester, Connecticut, Chester Village West gives independent-minded people a new way to experience retirement and live their lives to the fullest. Since the independent seniors community was founded more than 25 years ago, Chester Village West residents have directed and embraced active learning. Within a small community of private residences that offer convenience, companionship, service and security, Chester Village West enriches lives with a comprehensive program that enhances fitness, nutrition, active life, health and well-being. Find out more at chestervillagewestlcs.com; visit the community on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ChesterVillageWest.

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Jim Benn Presents His Latest Billy Boyle Mystery at Essex Library, Oct. 3

ESSEX — The Essex Library welcomes back James Benn in celebration of the release of his 12th Billy Boyle mystery.

The Devouring has earned a starred review from Publishers Weekly and Booklist wrote in their review of the book, ​”Benn​ ​molds an entertaining story out of Billy and his cohorts’ encounters with odious Swiss bankers and a cadre​ of ​Gestapo agents stationed in Bern to protect the loot. Great history here.” Benn’s series is very popular with historical fiction fans, mystery readers, and military buffs.

Benn’s latest Billy Boyle WWII mystery addresses the beginning of the end of the war and the U.S. government’s concerns that looted Nazi gold might be successfully laundered through Swiss banks and used to begin a new German Reich. On Tuesday, Oct. 3 at 7 p.m. at the Essex Library,

Benn will describe fascinating details from the actual events that he researched for the book’s plotlines and more about the upcoming books in the Billy Boyle series.

James Benn

Benn, a new resident of Essex, CT, 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 purchase and signing.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information or to register, call the Essex Library at (860) 767-1560.

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

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Hear All About New England’s Clam, Lobster Shacks at Essex Library,Thursday

Mike Urban will discuss his books on lobster and clam shacks at Essex Library.

ESSEX — Ask any seafood lover and they’ll tell you that there is nothing like New England’s fish and shellfish, especially the lobsters. Moreover, the seafood from New England makes up the basis for one of the region’s authentic cuisines.

Think of chowder, lobster rolls, and fried clams. Still need to get your summer seafood fix?

Join us at the Essex Library on Thursday, Aug. 10, at 7 p.m. to hear local author Mike Urban talk about the best clam shacks and lobster shacks on New England’s coast from Connecticut to the Canadian border. His illustrated talk will be followed by a book signing with copies of his books available for purchase.

Urban is an award-winning food and travel writer and a regular contributor to Yankee Magazine. He is the author of four books: Lobster Shacks, Clam Shacks, The New England Seafood Markets Cookbook, and The New England Diner Cookbook. He lives in Old Saybrook, Connecticut. He and his wife have four grown children.

This program is free and open to the public. Call the Essex Library at (860) 767-1560 for more information or to register. The Essex Library is located at 33 West Avenue in Essex.

Calendar listing:
AUTHOR TALK: CLAM SHACKS AND LOBSTER SHACKS OF NEW ENGLAND
Essex: Old Saybrook resident and author Mike Urban, free, illustrated talk on New England clam shacks and lobster shacks, 7 p.m. Aug 10, Essex Library, 33 West Ave. focus on a guide to New England’s best clam and lobster joints. RSVP: 860-767-1560.

Caption:
A free, illustrated talk on New England clam shacks and lobster shacks will be presented by Old Saybrook author Mike Urban at 7 p.m. Aug. 10 at the Essex Library, 33 West Ave. Urban will focus on a guide to New England’s best clam and lobster joints. RSVP: 860-767-1560.

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Essex Historical Society Expands Popular “Walking Weekend” Program, Offers Four Tours This Weekend

EHS’s Brien Reidell leads a walking tour up Main Street, Essex.  Courtesy of Essex Historical Society.

Community Foundation of Middlesex County Funds New Centerbrook Tour 

 

Combining the outdoors and history, Essex Historical Society (EHS) expands its popular outdoor program, “Walking Weekend,” on July 28, 29 and 30.  The event features four different walking tours within the Town of Essex as follows:

Friday, July 28, 2017, 7 p.m.; Saturday, July 29, 2017, 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.; Sunday, July 30, 7 p.m.

Pratt House, 19 West Avenue, Essex (July 28)

Ivoryton Library, 106 Main Street, Ivoryton (July 29)

Essex Elementary School, 108 Main Street, Centerbrook (July 29)

Foot of Main Street, Essex, (July 30)

During the tours, attendees enjoy an easy stroll along the Town’s historic streets learning about the major industries, structures and personalities that shaped the area. Essex Historical Society’s trained, knowledgeable guides will lead an hour+ long tour over fairly level, paved terrain, covering three centuries of history.

For the first time, this year’s Walking Weekend will feature a guided walking tour of Centerbrook Village, led by renowned Essex historian Brenda Milkofsky.  The walk is funded in part through a grant from the Community Foundation of Middlesex County.   New guides are welcome to join us and learn the tour.

An early view of Connecticut Valley Manufacturing, now Centerbrook Architects.  Courtesy of Essex Historical Society.

On July 28  at 7 p.m., the first tour will meet at the Pratt House, 19 West Avenue, Essex, for a trip down West Ave. and Prospect Street to explore the histories behind the structures of “Pound Hill” including several 19th century churches, Hills Academy, the Old Firehouse and more.

On July 29, at 10 a.m., the second tour will meet at Ivoryton Library, 106 Main Street, Ivoryton, for an in-depth look at this historic village, from its beginnings as a company town surrounding the Comstock-Cheney Co., the stories of 19th century immigration, the striking examples of Victorian architecture and its unique cultural attractions that continue to this day.  The tour will be led by historian and author Chris Pagliuco.

On July 29, at 1 p.m., the third tour will meet at Essex Elementary School, 108 Main Street, Centerbrook, for our newest walk featuring Essex’s oldest village.  Learn about Centerbrook’s transition from its early farming days as “Center Saybrook” to its later manufacturing development powered by the Falls River.  This walk will be developed and led by Brenda Milkofsky.


All spiritual, social and business matters in early “Center Saybrook” revolved around the Centerbrook Meeting House.    Courtesy of Essex Historical Society

Interested in being a guide for later walks of Centerbrook?   Contact the EHS offices to learn more, 860-767-0681, or ehs@essexhistory.org.  No experience is necessary and all training is provided.

On July 30, at 7 p.m., the final tour will meet at the Foot of Main Street, Essex, for a trip down Main Street in Essex Village to capture the rich maritime history of 18th century “Potapaug,” its working waterfront and ship-building prominence in the early 19th century as well as its development as a beautiful visitor destination of today.  The tour will be led by EHS’s knowledgeable guides Brien Reidell and Mary Ann Pleva.

Each walk is a separate event and you are welcome to attend all four or select your favorites.

Essex Historical Society is committed to fulfilling its mission of engaging and inspiring the community in the three villages of Centerbrook, Essex and Ivoryton.  Each tour is $5 per person and is open to the general public; free to members of EHS.  Admission helps support the educational and cultural programming of Essex Historical Society.

Essex Historical Society expresses its gratitude to the Community Foundation of Middlesex County for funding the new Centerbrook tour.  For more information, visit www.essexhistory.org or call (860) 767-0681.

 

Captions for each photo should read:

 

 

 

 

 

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Last Chance to See ‘West Side Story’ at Ivoryton Playhouse This Afternoon

Arianne Meneses (Consuelo) and Jason Daniel Rath* (Pepe) rehearse a scene from West Side Story.

IVORYTON – Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is transported to modern-day New York City in the breathtaking musical, West Side Story, which opens at the Ivoryton Playhouse on July 5. With book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein, and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, the original 1957 Broadway production ran for over 700 performances before going on tour, and garnered six Tony nominations.

Mia Pinero makes her debut at Ivoryton as Maria in ‘West Side Story.’

The story is set in the Upper West Side of New York City in the mid-1950s and explores the rivalry between the Jets and the Sharks, two teenage street gangs of different ethnic backgrounds. When, Tony, a Jet, falls in love with Maria, a Shark, the young lovers struggle to keep their love alive in a world of hate, violence and prejudice.

The dark theme, sophisticated music, extended dance scenes, and focus on social problems marked a turning point in American musical theatre when it was first produced; West Side Story remains one of the most innovative, heart-wrenching and relevant musical dramas of our time.

The film version starring Natalie Wood, Russ Tamblyn, Richard Beymer and Rita Moreno won 10 Academy Awards and in 2009, Karen Olivo won a Tony for her portrayal of Anita in the Broadway revival.

Stephen Mir* plays Tony in the Ivoryton Playhouse production of ‘West Side Story’ opening July 5.

Stephen Mir* returns to Ivoryton to play the role of Tony and Mia Pinero* makes her Ivoryton debut in the role of Maria.

The production is directed and choreographed by Todd Underwood and musical directed by Mike Morris, with set design by Dan Nischan, lighting design by Marcus Abbott and costume design by Elizabeth Cipollina. Executive Producers are Michael A. Dattilo and Frank Perrotti

Tonight, Tonight, won’t be just any night!  Don’t miss the experience of this show live on stage at the Ivoryton Playhouse.

West Side Story opens at the Ivoryton Playhouse on Wednesday, July 5, and runs through Sunday, July 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.

Tickets are $50 for adults; $45 for seniors; $22 for students and $17 for children and are available by calling the Playhouse box office at 860-767-7318 or by visiting our website at www.ivorytonplayhouse.org

Pictures by Ivoryton Playhouse

Group rates are available by calling the box office for information. The Playhouse is located at 103 Main St. in Ivoryton.

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Deep River Public Library Hosts a ‘Mad Hatter’s Garden Party’ Tonight

Will a hat like this win the contest?

DEEP RIVER — The Deep River Public Library and the Deep River Garden Club would like to let you in on a secret … all the best people are simply MAD about Garden Parties! Join the fun on Friday, July 28, from 6 to 9 p.m. for the library’s third annual Mad Hatter Garden Party.

Tickets are on sale now at the library for $25 each. Join us for hors d’oeuvres, drink, live music, good conversation and a teacup raffle. Prizes will be awarded for the top two favorite hats. All funds benefit the beautification of the library garden and grounds.

Don’t be late for this very important date! Stop in the library and buy your ticket today.

For more information, visit http://deepriverlibrary.accountsupport.com and click on the monthly calendar, or call the library at 860-526-6039 during service hours: Monday 1 – 8pm; Tuesday 10 am – 6 pm; Wednesday 12:30 – 8 pm; Thursday and Friday 10 am – 6 pm; and Saturday 10 am – 5 pm.

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Book Discussion at Deep River Library Focuses on 20th Century Tyranny, Sept. 28

DEEP RIVER — Join a discussion at Deep River Public Library on Thursday, Sept. 28, at 6:30 p.m. for a discussion of On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons From the Twentieth Century, by Timothy Snyder. This is an engaging, short read, regardless of your political perspective. Bring your best critical mind to discuss Snyder’s points.

Light refreshments will be served.

This event is co-sponsored by The Valley Stands Up and will be facilitated by Dr. Rick Hornung from Eastern CT State University.

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Montessori School Holds Informational Curriculum Night, Sept. 28

OLD SAYBROOK — The Children’s Tree Montessori School (CTMS), 96 Essex Road, Old Saybrook, will hold a curriculum night on Thursday, Sept. 28, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. The Montessori certified teachers will take attendees on a step-by-step journey through the Montessori Math Curriculum to gain a better understanding of how a Montessori student spends their day.

By touring each classroom,  visitors can see the continuum of the material’s progression through the levels, from a Montessori toddler through a 6th grade Montessori elementary student. This free workshop is open to the public. Optional dinner and childcare is offered for $10 per family.

The mathematical mind begins to develop at a very young age through patterns, music, and visual discrimination. By recognizing and developing a continuum of materials to explain concepts using all of the senses – through, scientific method, Maria Montessori created a math program, which has not been changed in over a 100 years.

See how four-year-olds are exposed to multiplication and why Montessori students can sometimes answer Common Core questions simply because they have learned and understand the concepts concretely before working in the abstract.

The Children’s Tree offers authentic Montessori education and was founded in 1995 to provide an alternative to traditional educational programs. The Children’s Tree is the only Montessori school in the area to offer programs for students 1-12 years old.

For more information and to register for the workshop, call 860.388.3536 or visit www.childrenstree.org.

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Essex Cub Scout Pack 4 Hosts Recruitment Night, Sept. 28

ESSEX — Essex Cub Scout Pack 4 Recruitment Night will be held Sept. 28, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Essex Elementary School Cafe.  Boys from kindergarten through 5th grade are welcome to register.

For further information, visit www.essexcubspk4.com or email essecubspk4@aol.com

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Essex Republicans Endorse Candidates for Municipal Election

Bruce Glowac (left) stands with Vin Pacileo after their endorsement by the Essex RTC as candidates for Essex Selectman and First Selectman respectively.

ESSEX — At their Tuesday, July 25, caucus Essex Republicans endorsed the following candidates for this fall’s municipal election:

  • First Selectman – Vincent Pacileo
  • Selectman – Bruce Glowac
  • Town Clerk – Joel Marzi
  • Town Treasurer – Bruce MacMillian
  • Tax Collector – Megan Haskins
  • Board of Finance – Keith Crehan
  • Board of Finance – Phil Beckman
  • Essex Board of Education – Judie McCann
  • Region 4 Board of Education – DG Fitton

“We have a very strong slate of experienced candidates,” said Bruce MacMillian, Chairman of the Essex Republican Town Committee. “Our goal is to make Essex thrive as a safe, business friendly, and educationally minded town. This slate will accomplish that goal.”

The Essex Republican Town Committee (ERTC) meets at 7 p.m. on the second Wednesday of the month in Room A at the Town Hall. All Republicans are welcome to attend.

The municipal election will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017.

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Chester Republicans Endorse Linn, Grzybowski for Chester’s Top Seats in November

CHESTER — The Chester Republican Town Committee has announced the endorsement of Selectwoman Carolyn Linn for First Selectman and James Grzybowski for Selectman in November’s election. Both Linn and Grzybowski received unanimous endorsement at the Town Committee Caucus held July 24, when the complete slate of Republican candidates was also endorsed.

Both candidates come with solid backgrounds of service to the community and beyond. Linn currently serves on the Chester Board of Selectmen, is actively involved in the Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce, and is a long-time member of the Chester Merchant’s Association. Linn chaired the 2017 Winter Carnivale, working with the Shoreline Soup Kitchen, EMT for the Chester Ambulance Association and one of the three members of the VRHS Touch Down Club, which spearheaded the addition of lights, field house and snack shack to Friday Night Football.

 

James Grzybowski is following in the footsteps of his dad (former selectman) Edward Grzybowski and his godfather (former selectman – among other roles) Joseph Bergonzi, so serving the Town is, truly, “in his blood”.

He is currently Facilities Manager for the Chester Elementary School, sits on the Town’s Retirement Board; is one of the Town’s representatives to the Valley Shore Communication Board and has served in many capacities for 27 years in the Chester Hose Company, including as Chief.

With two sons who are active in local sports, Grzybowski coached his sons’ teams, and recognizing, first hand, the effects of concussions, he pushed for concussion training for all youth coaches and in 2013 was appointed by the State legislature to serve on its Youth Concussion Task Force, which is charged with making recommendations to enact statutes to better protect against the effects in youth and increase awareness of that danger. Many of the recommendations are in effect today.

 

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Essex Attorney Selected as Official Democratic Candidate for District 33 Probate Court Judge

Attorney Jeannine Lewis

AREAWIDE — On Thursday, July 20, delegates representing nine towns within the 33rd State Senate District selected Jeannine Lewis, an attorney at Hudson and Kilby, as the Democratic candidate for the upcoming vacancy of District 33 probate court judge.  Connecticut’s 33rd Probate Court District includes the Town of Lyme as well as Chester, Clinton, Deep River, Essex, Haddam, Killingworth, Old Saybrook and Westbrook.  The probate court for District 33 is located in Old Saybrook.

In announcing her selection, the District 33 Democratic Town Committee delegates commended Lewis for her extensive experience and expertise in Connecticut probate law; her deep understanding of the issues and responsibilities involved; and her personal and professional commitment to protecting the rights of – and serving the needs of – area residents who require the assistance of the probate court.  The delegates also thanked the other three individuals who had been vying for this nomination – attorneys James Carey, Sean Donlan and Stephen Sheehan. 

Probate judges typically handle estates, trusts, adoptions, name changes, and the termination of parental rights and conservatorships, among other important matters. All candidates for the position must be members of the Connecticut bar. 

Upon receiving the nomination, Lewis said, “Since I first applied to law school, it has been a dream of mine to serve my community as judge of probate.  If elected to this position in November, I plan to dedicate my time outside of the  court’s daily duties to mentoring new attorneys, and to providing assurances that our elderly and disabled community members are properly cared for and protected.”

Lewis, in addition to her law practice – which is focused on probate matters, estate planning and elder law – is the Chair of the Continuing Legal Education Committee of the Connecticut Bar Association’s (CBA’s) Elder Law Section, and serves on the Integrity of the Practice/Pro Bono Committee of the CBA’s Estates and Probate Section.  She is a board member of the Shoreline Soup Kitchens and Pantries, and provides pro bono legal counsel to Sister Cities Essex Haiti, a local charity that helps residents of the town of Deschapelles, Haiti.

Lewis will face Republican and other challengers in the Tuesday, Nov. 7, special election later this year.

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Essex Art Association Hosts “Weather, Whether” Juried Show

‘Cloud Formation’ by Pam Carlson.

ESSEX — “Weather, Whether” is the second juried show of the Essex Art Association’s (EAA) 2017 season. Gallery visitors will delight in the variety of high quality artwork in this exhibit, which will be juried for entry and awards. Monetary prizes totaling $1900 will be awarded in addition to the prestigious Exit Gallery Award which offers the winning artist a solo exhibit in the Art Association’s Exit Gallery during the next gallery season.

To quote the originators of the show’s theme:  “Weather, whether it’s sunny or cloudy, hot or cold, raining or snowing, windy or calm, there is beauty to be found. Cover your brush with your weather paint and just have fun putting it on your canvas where it will last forever…but do it quickly before it changes.”

The exhibit’s opening reception is Friday, July 28, from 6 to 8 p.m. The show runs July 29  through Aug. 19. The EAA Gallery is located at 10 North Main Street, Essex, CT. Gallery hours: 1-5 pm daily, closed Tuesdays. For more information visit essexartassociation.com or call 860-767-8996.

‘Wave Action’ by Pam Carlson is an acrylic painting on display in the Exit Gallery “Forever” show.

The Exit Gallery show, “Forever,” showcases paintings by Pam Carlson, who was born and raised in Darien, Conn., where she loved art and participated in local school art shows. While attending college she utilized her Art Major skills by working each summer in N.Y. in commercial art within the advertising world. Teaching won her heart and she finished college with a degree in both Fine Art and Education.

Carlson taught in public schools in Connecticut, New York, and Pennsylvania, before becoming a full-time mother, dress designer, and bringing her craft back into her own home studio. She has exhibited her work in local galleries and ‘town green’ art shows up and down the east coast for over twenty years. She is now concentrating on gallery shows.

Carlson is the Vice President of the Essex Art Association. She developed and participates annually in the October invitational exhibit at the EAA gallery, ‘Five Women Painting,” and is a charter member of the Maple and Main Gallery in Chester. Sherecently completed a One Woman Show at Maple and Main’s Stone Gallery, which raised thousands of dollars for the Alzheimer’s Association Connecticut Chapter. In addition to several recent commissions, five of her paintings depicting Connecticut’s Farm animals are hanging in the Congressional Office Building in Washington DC.  www.artmajeur.com/en/artist/pastelpam

Exhibition juror, Lenny Moskowitz, is a Connecticut landscape painter who lives in New Haven with his wife. He graduated with his B.F.A from the Philadelphia College of Art and received his M.F.A. from Michigan’s Cranbrook Academy. He has participated in both group and solo shows at numerous galleries throughout the U.S. and has taught classes and workshops in Connecticut, Block Island, and Nantucket. Presently, he teaches at Quinnipiac University and several community art schools.

Moskowitz has been awarded several artist residencies, including at the Anderson Center in Michigan and at the NISDA Foundation on Nantucket, Mass. In the summer of 2011, he was awarded a residency at Weir Farm in Wilton, Conn.  He makes yearly painting trips to Maine, Nantucket, and frequent sojourns to the surrounding the Connecticut woods to paint the landscapes.

For more information, visit www.lennymoskowitzart.com

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Old Lyme’s Midsummer Festival Opens With Concert Tonight, Fun Continues All Day Tomorrow

Flowers at the Festival: the Florence Griswold Museum hosts a number variety fresh flower, fruit and vegetable vendors.

OLD LYME– A “quintessential New England” weekend, this year’s Old Lyme Midsummer Festival kicks off July 28, with a toe-tapping Friday night concert on the lawn of the Florence Griswold Museum, and continues Saturday, July 29, up and down Lyme Street with new offerings and old favorites throughout the day.

This year’s 31st annual festival again takes place in the heart of Old Lyme’s historic district. The mission of the festival partners is to celebrate the cultural heritage of Old Lyme, with art, music, food and family fun.

Nick and the Shady Creek band will entertain in a free concert on Friday evening, July 28.

The festivities kick-off Friday night featuring the bluegrass sounds of Nick and the Shady Creek with a lawn concert beginning at 7 p.m. This free concert is sponsored by All Pro Automotive and the Graybill Family.  Before the concert the Florence Griswold Museum will host an open house, with free admission to the special exhibition Flora/Fauna: The Naturalist Impulse in American Art from 5 to 7 p.m.

The Saturday Festival continues with arts exhibitions, kid’s activities, music, food and specialty shopping at locations along historic Lyme Street. Many locations also include “hands on” arts activities.

The bulls at the Lyme Art Association are alway a major draw at the Festival.

Shuttle buses will be available for the length of the festival, and take participants from designated parking lots to stops along Lyme Street. Parking lots will be open at the high school campus on Lyme Street, as well as the Old Lyme Marketplace on Halls Road.

Partner activities and events on Saturday include the following (from the north end to south end of Lyme Street):

Old Lyme Lions Club: Annual Antique Car Show, held at the Bee & Thistle. The Lions will also serve hamburgers and hot dogs.

Florence Griswold Museum: a new Bohemian Street Fair, Hands-on/Minds-on Activities, Parading Paws Dog Show, food trucks, Folk Musician Dave Fry, The Shop Super Sale, and reduced admission to historic house and exhibitions

Lyme Art Association: Art sales and exhibitions, savory pies, LAA’s famous Ice Tea and Lemonade, and a fun and interactive “Masterpiece Photo Op”

Old Lyme Inn: Live music and refreshments under the tent, air-conditioned table service inside the historic inn

The “Fence Artists” will be back at the Old Lyme Inn this year.

Fence Artists Show: Now at the Old Lyme Inn, this group of local artists will sell artwork and provide art demonstrations throughout the day.

Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts: Art demonstrations, student/alumni exhibition, live music and refreshments

Chamber of Commerce: A Vendor Fair and youth music tent

The 2017 Summer Sculpture Showcase features exhibits from more than 15 guest sculptors as well as some 80 pieces by owner and sculptor Gil Boro.

Studio 80 + Sculpture Grounds: Summer Sculpture Showcase, fashion show, dance performance, live music and artist talk

Patricia Spratt for the Home: The always-anticipated warehouse sale of specialty linens

Lymes Youth Services Bureau: The Midsummer 5K

See a selection of historic looms in action at the old Lyme Historical Society’s presentation in the former Grange building on Lyme St.

Old Lyme Historical Society: Handweavers’ demonstration and community loom, troubadour Jim Lampos, Historical Society publications for sale.

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools: Learn more about the extracurricular activities of the Lyme-Old Lyme Schools including the High School Crew Team and musical opportunities.

Town of Old Lyme/Senior Center: Music & Movement yoga for families, Magician “Mr. Magic,” caricature drawings, King Arthur Flour Cookie Truck

Old Lyme-PGN Library: Phoebe’s BookCellar Midsummer Sale, hourly story times, Young Adult’s screenprinting, History Press authors, hands-on learning on e-books and more

Most locations will have food options available.

A detailed listing of events and activities is available at www.OldLymeMidsummerFestival.com.

Key sponsors of the Festival include Essex Savings Bank/Essex Financial Services, Pasta Vita, LymeLine.com/ValleyNewsNow.com, and The Day Publishing. Additional financial support comes from Paul Burdick Oil Company, Old Lyme Marketplace, Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts, Florence Griswold Museum, Zelek Electric, and Caliber Computing.

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‘Theater Along the River’ Returns Tomorrow With ‘The Tempest’

2. Flock Theatre will bring Shakespeare to life on the Connecticut River Museum lawn with their performance of The Tempest.

ESSEX — New London’s Flock Theatre Company returns to the Connecticut River Museum on Saturday, July 29, this time bringing their production of Shakespeare’s classic play The Tempest.  This evening of outdoor theater is made possible through the generous support of the Essex Wellness Center.

The Tempest is an exciting story set on a remote island, where the sorcerer Prospero, rightful Duke of Milan, plots to restore his daughter Miranda to her rightful place using illusion and skillful manipulation.  A tempest, shipwreck, marooning, and redemption are all twisted into this classically inspired storyline.

According to director Derron Wood, “We are pleased to return for a fourth year to the Connecticut River Museum.  It offers a spellbinding backdrop for outdoor theater and allows us to reach a new audience.”

The Tempest, a story of shipwreck and magic, is one of Shakespeare’s most musical plays and will be the featured performance for Theater Along the River this July 29 at the Connecticut River Museum. Art by Flock Theatre.

The Connecticut River Museum’s executive director, Christopher Dobbs, said that “Flock Theatre is a master of Shakespeare.  We feel fortunate to offer this level of entertainment at the Museum and hope that the audience enjoys the production and its backdrop – the River.”  Dobbs was quick to note that the Museum is only able to host this event and keep the ticket prices reasonable for all ages to enjoy through the “generosity of the Essex Wellness Center.”

The Museum’s grounds will open at 6 PM for picnickers to layout blankets and chairs.  Museum staff encourage the audience to make the picnic part of the experience.  In fact, there will be a special prize awarded to the “best” picnic arrangement.

Tickets are $18 for the general public, $12 for museum members, and $10 for children (12 and under).  A cash bar serving beer and wine will be available for theatergoers.  No carry-in alcohol is permitted.

Tickets may be bought at www.ctrivermuseum.org or at the door starting at 6 PM the night of the performance. Curtain opens at 7 PM.

Flock Theatre is a professional, not-for-profit theatre company founded in 1989. The theater company is dedicated to creating original, collaborative and educational theater. Perhaps best known for their long-standing summer Shakespeare in the Arboretum, Flock Theatre performs year-round in a variety of venues, including their winter “nest” at the First Congregational Church, on the New London Pier, at the historic Shaw Mansion Museum and throughout New England.

Essex Wellness Center offers a range of holistic-minded health services, including, Fitness on the Water, a beautiful, private workout studio. The Essex Wellness Center experience is focused solely on you and the achievement of your goals, physically, mentally and emotionally.

For more information on the program, contact the Connecticut River Museum at 860.767.8269 or visit the website, ctrivermuseum.org.  The Connecticut River Museum is dedicated to the study, preservation and celebration of the cultural and natural heritage of the Connecticut River and its Valley.  Explore the three floors of exhibits, take a sail on the Onrust or rent a canoe, kayak or SUP to paddle the coves of Essex when you visit.

The Connecticut River Museum is located at 67 Main Street, Essex and is open daily from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm.

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Bingo is Back at the Estuary Council Thursdays, Doors Open 5:30pm


OLD SAYBROOK —
Beginning June 15 and continuing through Nov. 9, Bingo is back at The Estuary Council of Seniors, Inc. (ECSI) and open to all ages. Game play begins at 6:30 p.m. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. The Estuary Council is located at 220 Main Street in Old Saybrook.

Join in on the fun for this weekly event.  Admission, including game package, is $12 per player. Cash prizes with the progressive jackpot maximum payout of $1,000 (increases $100 each week.)  

For more information, call 860-388-1611 or visit www.ecsenior.org

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Essex Foundation Completes Second Phase of Gateway Landscape Project

Sullivan Lawn Service crew members install evergreen shrubs and ornamental perennial plants at the intersection of Route 154 and Route 153 in Essex, the second phase of a landscape beautification project funded by The Essex Foundation.

300+ Perennials Planted Along Intersection of Rte. 154 and Rte. 153 in Essex

ESSEX – Just three months after funding the installation of 12 Chanticleer pear trees along Rte. 154 near the intersection of Rte. 153, The Essex Foundation, Inc. has completed the second phase of a multi-phase gateway beautification project.

Over 300 low-growing, low-maintenance evergreen and perennial ornamentals were planted in the southeast corner of state-owned land in the Rte. 9/ Exit 3 underpass area of Essex. The charitable organization hired Matthew Verry Landscape Design for design planning and state approval oversight while Sullivan Lawn Services, LLC was contracted for the installation services. 

Sullivan Lawn Service crew members install evergreen shrubs and ornamental perennial plants at the intersection of Route 154 and Route 153 in Essex, the second phase of a landscape beautification project funded by The Essex Foundation.

With the goal of creating a colorful, year-round visual display that is both drought-tolerant and pest-resistant, The Essex Foundation board of directors opted for a combination of Vibernum, KnockOut Rose,  Black-eyed Susan, Sedum Autumn Joy and Winterberry. Funds for the cost of the planning, plant purchase and installation were provided through a bequest to The Essex Foundation by the late Elizabeth “Diz” Barnes Callender and her predeceased sister Mary Frances Barnes.

The gateway beautification project, which also included funding for the highway bridge painting, is a good example of the types of community efforts supported by The Essex Foundation.  The Foundation’s community projects tend to be unique, require quick action, and have an immediate impact.

The Essex Foundation was founded in 1970. It is a non profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to making a difference in the lives of Essex residents. The foundation is funded through donations from the community and strives to fill needs not met by other organizations or sources. In general, funds are granted for special purposes, including buildings, equipment, land, and programs, but not to recurring expenses. More information can be found at www.theessexfoundation.org.

PHOTO CAPTION: Sullivan Lawn Service crew members install evergreen shrubs and ornamental perennial plants at the intersection of Route 154 and Route 153 in Essex, the second phase of a landscape beautification project funded by The Essex Foundation.    

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Ready for Some Football? Old Saybrook Conditioning Camp Attracts More Than 40 Youngsters

More than 40 students in Grades 2through 8 participated in the four-day football conditioning camp held at Old Saybrook High School.

OLD SAYBROOK — The coaches from Old Saybrook High School and Old Saybrook Westbrook Youth Football & Cheer (OSW) recently partnered with the Town of Saybrook Parks and Recreation Department to host a four-day football conditioning programming for children from 2nd through 8th grade.

Youth from several towns on the shoreline participated in warm-up exercises and performed drills to learn the fundamentals of football and hone their skills.

Intensity and enthusiasm were evident at all times during the camp.

Coach Ryan Percival founded the program to help shoreline youth learn the fundamentals in a safe and non-competitive environment.

Subsequent to the Old Saybrook High School football coaches and staff joining ranks with the OSW coaches, the program swelled this year to more than 40 participants.

Coach Rob Marone summed up the philosophy of the program, “It’s all about the kids.  We teach skills, but we also emphasize safety, listening, teamwork and respect.”

For more information on the upcoming season or to register for football or cheerleading, visit oswyouthfootball.com.

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Estuary Seeks Line Dancing Instructor

OLD SAYBROOK — The Estuary Council at 220 Main St. in Old Saybrook is looking for a line dancing instructor.

Are you looking for a way to give back to the community? Looking for a volunteer opportunity? The Estuary has a fun group of seniors who love to line dance but need an instructor.

For more information, call Deb at 860-388-1611, ext. 204.

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Estuary Hosts “Lunch With Pat,” All Welcome, Sept. 21

The public is invited to attend “Lunch with Pat” on Thursday, Sept. 21, at 12 p.m., at the Estuary Council of Seniors, 220 Main Street, Old Saybrook. This monthly event is hosted by Estuary Board Member Patricia Schneider.

Come for lunch and stay for fun and music with the vocal group “Deep River Chicks.”

Call the Estuary Council of Seniors at 860-388-1611 Ext. 204 to make reservations.  An Ice Cream Social follows at 1:15 p.m.  According to Pat, “Let’s get to know one another …”

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Essex Democrats Endorse Candidates For Municipal Elections

Bipartisan Slate Of Proven Leaders Announced

Incumbent Essex First Selectman Norman Needleman and Selectman Stacia Rice-Libby have been endorsed again for those positions in the November 2017 election by the Essex DTC (File photo by Jerome Wilson)

ESSEX — On Wednesday, July 19, the Essex Democratic Town Committee (EDTC) endorsed 10 candidates for the November municipal elections.  The endorsed candidates included incumbents seeking reelection, new candidates and members of both major politic parties.

“Democrats in Essex endorsed the best candidates to serve our town irrespective of their political party.  What is important is that the candidates are proven leaders in our community and will work to retain the quality of life we all enjoy,” stated Brian Cournoyer, Chairman of the EDTC.

He continued, “By cross-endorsing candidates from the opposing party, the EDTC has rejected the vitriol and damaging rhetoric being played out on the national level,” 

Endorsed Candidates include:

First Selectman: Norm Needleman (D)

Selectwoman:  Stacia Rice-Libby (D)

Town Treasurer:  Jim Francis (D)

Tax Collector: Megan Haskins (D)

Town Clerk: Joel Marzi (R)

Essex Board Of Education: Loretta McCluskey (D)

Region 4 Board of Education: Kate Sandmann (D)

Board of Finance: Keith Crehan (R)

Board of Finance: Ethan Goller (D)

Board of Assessment Appeals: Mark Bombaci (D)

“We believe the endorsed slate of candidates brings the proven experience, knowledge, passion and dedication to best serve the town of Essex and look forward to a spirited and respectful campaign,” said Cournoyer.

Municipal elections will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 7.  Contact Brian Cournoyer at brian_cournoyer@hotmail.com or 781-483-2021 to learn how to become involved in the campaign.

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Senators Formica, Somers and Linares Applaud Governor’s Signing Tribal Casino Expansion Bill

Senator Paul Formica (left) and Art Linares (right). File photo

AREAWIDE — State Senators Paul Formica (R-East Lyme), Heather Somers (R-Groton) and Art Linares (R-Westbrook) applauded the Governor’s ceremonial signing of legislation that will allow for the expansion of southeastern Connecticut’s tribal casinos to support thousands of local jobs.

“I thank the governor for his support of this bill and the bipartisan efforts of many lawmakers. Supporting the tribes is an important piece of a long-term puzzle to enhance tourism, support our community, protect economic development and preserve all that the tribes have accomplished for our region thus far,” said Senator Paul Formica. 

“We have seen firsthand the impact of the tribes on the local economy and on the thousands of casino employees and their families who live in our Senate districts. I applaud the legislature for working together in bipartisanship to make this important piece of legislation a reality,” said Senator Heather Somers.

“From tourism to manufacturing, southeastern Connecticut has seen quality growth thanks to the enormous efforts of the Mohegans and Mashantucket Pequots and the impact of their destination casinos. That’s why it was so important that lawmakers and the governor come together this year to help the tribes protect the thousands of jobs they’ve created,” said Senator Art Linares.

Senator Paul Formica (R-20) represents the communities of Bozrah, East Lyme, a portion of Montville, New London, Old Lyme, a portion of Old Saybrook, Salem, and Waterford.

Senator Heather Somers (R-18) represents the communities of Griswold, Groton, North Stonington, Plainfield, Preston, Sterling, Stonington and Voluntown.

Senator Art Linares (R-33), represents the communities of Chester, Clinton, Colchester, Deep River, East Haddam, East Hampton, Essex, Haddam, Lyme, Old Saybrook, Portland and Westbrook.

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Mr. Gym Comes to Deep River Library This Morning

DEEP RIVER — Get movin’ and groovin’ to the musical stylings of Mr. Gym on Friday, July 21, at 10:30 a.m. Mr. Gym, aka Chris Keithan, is a certified gym/health teacher with 15 years experience in elementary education.

Kids will enjoy his interactive music and parents will love his positive messages about health, fitness and fun. This program is geared for children aged 2 to 8. Free and open to all, no registration required.

Programs are sponsored by the Friends of the Deep River Public Library.

For more information,visit http://deepriverlibrary.accountsupport.com and click on the monthly calendar, email the Children’s Department at drplchildrensdept@gmail.com or call the library at 860-526-6039 during service hours: Monday 1 – 8pm; Tuesday 10 am to 6 pm; Wednesday 12:30 to 8 p.m.; Thursday and Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Saturday 10 a’m. to 5 p.m. *July and August, Saturday 1 a.m to 2 p.m.

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Ride the Riverboat, Fend Off the Pirates in an Evening of Swashbucklin’ Fun, Aug 2 & 3

Yo-ho-ho, where’s that bottle of rum?!

ESSEX — Yo-ho-ho, thar’ be pirates on that thar’ Riverboat!

Will Captain Paul be able to save the passengers on the Becky Thatcher Riverboat from the nefarious band of pirates known as the Saybrook Swashbucklers?

Join the Essex Steam Train folk for an exciting journey on the “high seas” of the Connecticut River on Aug. 2 and 3, from 6 to 8 p.m. to find out!

Your family won’t want to miss this plunderous adventure– packed with pirates, scallywags and sprogs, lads and lassies in distress, sea shanties, gold doubloons, and one heroic captain, who it is to be hoped can save the day … and there’ll be plenty o’grog to be sure for sale at the bar for the grown-ups.

Seats are limited so brush up on your pirate speak and order your tickets today!

X marks the spot at www.essexsteamtrain.com or call 860-767-0103.

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Join Essex Land Trust Tomorrow for a Butterfly Garden Party

A Great Spangled Fritillary butterfly lands on a coneflower.

ESSEX — The Essex Land Trust (ELT) invites the public to join them for an early evening exploration of ELT’s butterfly habitat on Thursday, July 20, starting at 5:30 p.m. at Cross Lots Preserve, 40 West Avenue, Essex. Anne Penniman will speak about this project and how everyone can do their part in promoting butterflies.

This 1200 square foot bed created in May 2016 includes 850 plants comprising 22 different varieties of perennials and shrubs. The emphasis is on native plants including hyssops, milkweed, indigo, coneflower, asters and many more.

The area includes good forage plants for the caterpillars that will encourage the butterflies to stay rather than just visit. And the selection of plants is also designed to provide a good sequence of blooms across the seasons. The habitat is located on the field that is beside the stonewall rising from the parking lot.

Bring your favorite beverage. Snacks will be provided. Rain date is Thursday, July 27.

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Essex Foundation Provides Support For Essex Place Furnishings

Bruce Glowac. President of The Essex Foundation, Inc. presents a check to Janice Atkeson, President of Essex Elderly and Affordable Housing, Inc. outside Essex Place, the newly constructed affordable senior housing complex on Main Street in Centerbrook.

Foundation underwrites cost of common area furniture in newly constructed senior housing 

ESSEX — Two weeks before the grand opening of Essex Place, a 22-unit, affordable senior rental housing complex developed by Essex Elderly & Affordable Housing, Inc. and the Women’s Institute of Housing & Economic Development, The Essex Foundation was called upon to help cover the cost of furniture for the common area spaces.

Last minute adjustments to the overall project budget left no available resources for completing the already constructed community room, game room, office, and kitchen.  After a thoughtful presentation by Janice Atkeson and Yolanda Lowe, both representing Essex Elderly & Affordable Housing, Inc., members of The Essex Foundation Board of Directors approved the request for financial assistance.

Funds from The Essex Foundation were used to cover the cost of upholstered furniture, dining tables, game tables, occasional tables, stacking chairs, office furniture, and miscellaneous kitchen items.  Essex Place is located at 26 Main Street in the Centerbrook section of Essex, adjacent to the Essex Court senior apartments.

The common areas are accessible to all residents of Essex Place and Essex Court, and will also be used for general meetings and as a designated emergency shelter. Community members who would like to donate to the project can send a check made out to The Essex Foundation, PO Box 64, Essex, CT 06426, indicating that it is for the Essex Place community room.

The Essex Foundation was founded in 1970. It is a non profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to making a difference in the lives of Essex residents. The foundation is funded through donations from the community and strives to fill needs not met by other organizations or sources. In general, funds are granted for special purposes, including buildings, equipment, land, and programs, but not to recurring expenses. More information can be found at www.theessexfoundation.org.

 

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PHOTO CAPTION: Bruce Glowac. President of The Essex Foundation, Inc. presents a check to Janice Atkeson, President of Essex Elderly and Affordable Housing, Inc. outside Essex Place, the newly constructed affordable senior housing complex on Main Street in Centerbrook.

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Essex Art Association Hosts “Wild and Crazy” Late Summer Show Through Sept. 16

‘Steel Vines’ by Ellen Gaube is the signature work in her upcoming show in the Exit Gallery at Essex Art Association.

ESSEX — “Wild and Crazy” is the last open show of the Essex Art Association’s 2017 season. Open shows tend to have a large variety of art subjects and styles for gallery visitors to enjoy. The show’s theme “Wild and Crazy,” encourages artists to let their imaginations take charge and create art that surprises with its originality and style!

Monetary prizes totaling $1,800 will be awarded in addition to the prestigious Exit Gallery Award which offers the winning artist a solo exhibit in the Art Association’s Exit Gallery during the next gallery season.

The show runs Aug. 26 to Sept. 16. The EAA Gallery is located at 10 North Main Street, Essex, CT. Gallery hours: 1-5 pm daily, closed Tuesdays. For more information visit essexartassociation.com or call 860-767-8996. 

The Exit Gallery show, “Scars, Wounds and Other Insults,” is a display of artwork by Ellen Gaube. Gaube received a BFA with a major in Painting and a minor in Art History from Lyme Academy College of Fine Art. Gaube exhibits regularly in national and international shows and has received awards for her drawings.

Show juror Eileen Eder received her MFA from the New York Academy of Art. Eder has won numerous prizes for her work in competitions both locally and nationally, and exhibits widely. For more information on Eder, visit www.eileeneder.com

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Deep River Parade Kicks Off at 11am Today, Followed by Muster

Screen Shot 2015-07-16 at 8.09.56 PM

Photo credit: Town of Deep River website.

DEEP RIVER — The Deep River Ancient Muster is the oldest and largest gathering of fife and drum participants and enthusiasts in the world and has been referred to as “The Granddaddy of All Musters” and “A Colonial Woodstock.”  The Parade and Muster will be held again this Saturday — the Muster is always held the third Saturday in July — and the Tattoo takes place Friday evening.

The Parade starts at 11 a.m. at the corner of Main and Kirtland Streets and proceeds down Main Street to Devitt’s Field. The host corps is the Deep River Ancient Muster Committee and the Deep River Drum Corps.

The Muster starts immediately following the parade at Devitt’s Field.  Roads will be closed at 10:30 a.m.

The Tattoo starts Friday at 7 p.m. at Devitt’s Field with the host corps being the Deep River Junior Ancients

Parking will be available in several locations along Main Street, Deep River Congregational Church, The Stone House, Deep River Hardware, Deep River Public Library and Rte. 80.

Click here to read an article by Caryn B. Davis about Fife and Drum Corps and published on AmericanProfile.com.

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Old Lyme First Selectwoman Hails FRA ‘Record of Decision’ as a Victory, CT Historic Trust’s Stroud Urges Caution

Old Lyme First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder

AREAWIDE — Almost unable to contain her delight, Old Lyme First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder told LymeLine.com in a phone call Wednesday afternoon that she was absolutely delighted with the Record of Decision (ROD) announced today by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), which takes the proposed Old Saybrook to Kenyon by-pass, “… out of the plan.” “It’s exactly what we asked for,” she said with noticeable emotion in her voice, adding excitedly, “We fought Goliath and we won.”

Reemsnyder acknowledged that the area between New Haven and Providence has been identified by the FRA as a “study area,” but said firmly that the idea of the by-pass has now been “eliminated,” and “… cannot be reinstated.” She added enthusiastically, “This is a great day for Old Lyme!”

Reemsnyder noted she had been concerned all the way through the process as to whether enough had been done by the Town, while also being told unequivocally, “The FRA will not be bullied by a small town.”  In the final analysis, she said, “The plan will be what it should have been from the beginning …” meaning that the Connecticut and Rhode Island DOT’s will work together to find a solution that does not ignore the residents.

Greg Stroud

In a more measured response, Greg Stroud, Executive Director of Special Projects at Connecticut Historic Trust, who has worked tirelessly against the FRA proposal in the northeast — especially in southeastern Connecticut — noted in a telephone conversation yesterday with LymeLine.com that the ROD is “very good news” for southeast Connecticut, but also cautioned, “We can’t declare victory.”  He said that unquestionably the ROD offers “breathing room,” but declared firmly that the work is “far from over.”

Commenting on the major effect of the opposition to the proposal, Stroud said, “The communities of southeast Connecticut have shown a united front against the by-pass.” He added that the unfailing support of Senator Richard Blumenthal and Congressman Joe Courtney had been “key” in achieving the result and would be “very influential in the work ahead to find a better solution.”  Stroud also commended the  significant input of State Rep. Devin Carney and State Senator Paul Formica.

Looking to the future, Stroud said in a post on the SECoast Facebook page, “This Record of Decision does not assure a good solution, nor does it assure a better process, it does however, provide the communities of southeastern Connecticut with a some breathing room. As we move forward SECoastand the Connecticut Trust will continue to engage this issue, and push for a better planning process in the next stage.”

Editor’s Note: Read full details of the FRA’s Record of Decision at this link.

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Saybrook Stage Presents ‘Barefoot in the Park’ at ‘the Kate’ Through Saturday

The cast of ‘Barefoot in the Park’ gather for a photo.

OLD SAYBROOK — The Saybrook Stage Company presents “Barefoot in the Park” by Neil Simon at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center, ‘the Kate,’ July 13 through July 15, at 8 p.m. with matinées July 15, at 2 p.m. and Sunday, July 16, at 3 p.m.

Neil Simon is at his best in this hilarious and touching romantic comedy about a conservative straight-as-an-arrow young lawyer and his free-spirited new bride. They are newlyweds in every sense of the word – still giddy from their over-the-top honeymoon at The Plaza – and now find themselves in a less-than-perfect Greenwich Village fifth-floor walkup in New York City.

The pricey apartment with bad plumbing and in need of a paint job is only the beginning of their rocky happily-ever-after life. The play is clever and funny, filled with snappy dialogue and witty one-liners. – Neil Simon is simply masterful in this 1960’s story of newlywed life.

A rehearsal scene from ‘Barefoot in the Park.’

The comedy unfolds as the couple moves into their new apartment and receives a surprise visit from the bride’s easily-winded, loopy mother and decide to play matchmaker during a dinner with their neighbor in-the-attic – where everything that can go wrong does. The antics just get started as the mother and neighbor surprisingly get along better than anyone expected; while the newlyweds can only argue. The bride thinks the groom is too staid and boring – she wants him to be more spontaneous – and running barefoot in the park would be a nice start!

“Barefoot in the Park” originally opened in 1963 to rave reviews and was nominated for three Tony Awards. The play ran for over 1530 performances making it Neil Simon’s longest running Broadway hit. The New York Times wrote at the time “I don’t think anybody stopped laughing while the curtain was up”.

The Saybrook Stage Company is pleased to return once again to The Kate in Neil Simon’s romantic comedy directed by Jim Hile. This will be their 14th production at The Kate and the second Neil Simon play having performed “Rumors” in July 2014 – the more recent previous plays are Noises Off, Deathtrap, The Wayside Motor Inn, Moon Over Buffalo and this past January, The Farnsworth Invention.

Visit www.thekate.org or call 877.503.1286 and reserve your tickets now. Also, visit www.SaybrookStage.org for more information about The Saybrook Stage Company.

The Saybrook Stage Company was founded as a non-profit organization dedicated to providing quality local theater on the Connecticut Shoreline at the Katherine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center. Saybrook Stage welcomes actors of all levels and abilities – and anyone who genuinely loves the arts – to come together and share in the experience that only live theater can provide.

The actors that have been part of The Saybrook Stage Company to date have varied backgrounds and “day jobs” from teachers, artists and homemakers to lawyers, business people and judges. The Company looks forward to producing many more quality productions at the beautiful venue of The Kate and continuing to thrive in this wonderful, artistic region of Connecticut.

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