June 26, 2017

This Afternoon at 5pm, OL Church Hosts Concert for Community by New Orleans Piano Virtuoso

Tom McDermott

The First Congregational Church of Old Lyme (FCCOL) has announced that Tom McDermott, the New Orleans piano virtuoso, will perform a concert for area residents at 5 p.m., Saturday, March 25, in the Sheffield Auditorium at the church.  A donation of $10 at the door is suggested.  Doors for the concert will open at 4:30 p.m. and seating will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

McDermott’s music has been heard frequently on NPR, the Showtime series “The Knick,” and the HBO series “Treme” (10 of his songs were included throughout the show.)  During his accomplished career, he has recorded more than a dozen albums, including 75 original tunes.  McDermott was a member of the Dukes of Dixieland for several years, as well as a founding member of the New Orleans Nightcrawlers. 

His concert will consist of both original works and timeless classics, and reflect his musical expertise in ragtime, jazz, funk, blues and choro (a Brazilian musical form with similarities to ragtime and jazz). The “New York Times” once said of him in a review, “Whatever direction he moves in, Mr. McDermott is a very skillful pianist.”

In announcing the performance, FCCOL Senior Minister Steve Jungkeit said, “Tom’s work reminds us of the power of music to lift the human spirit. In times of great social injustices such as the one we currently live in, we need the musicians – and the novelists, and the poets and the filmmakers – to remind us of our need for beauty and art … not only to speak to our social struggles but also to help us transcend them. Tom is an amazing artist who can help us do just that. This is a concert not to be missed.”

At the First Congregational Church of Old Lyme, music is a vital element of communal life – sacred, secular, classical, jazz, barrelhouse blues. 

For more information, visit the church’s website at www.fccol.org and/or Tom McDermott’s website at www.mcdermottmusic.com.

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High Hopes Hosts Chili Open House Today, 11am-1pm

High_Hopes_Chili_Open_HouseLooking to get involved, make new friends and make a difference?

Join High Hopes Therapeutic Riding for their Chili Open House on Saturday, March 25, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at their facility in Old Lyme.  The event is open to members of the community to give them an opportunity to learn about one of the top therapeutic riding centers in the nation, while enjoying chili with all the fixings.  Bring a buddy and meet High Hopes’  “Buddy”, the horse.

This open house is informal, child-friendly, and your visit can be as long, or short, as your schedule allows.

Those looking to make a difference in the lives of High Hopes’ participants can learn about volunteer opportunities. There are frequent openings for sidewalkers, office help, barn assistance, special event planning and more..

It’s not too early to think about summer and camp staff will be on hand to talk about the High Hopes range of 2017 summer camp programs, which start in July.

High Hopes is located at 36 Town Woods Road in Old Lyme.  RSVP to 860-434-1974 to help us in chili-making planning.

For more information and directions call 860-434-1974 or visit www.highhopestr.org.

High Hopes is one of the oldest and largest therapeutic riding centers in the United States, operating since 1974 and accredited by PATH Intl. (formerly the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association) since 1979.

Annually, High Hopes serves over 1,700 individuals. Assisted by over 675 volunteers and a herd of 27 horses specifically trained for therapeutic riding, High Hopes is committed to providing the highest quality of services to the community. Of the more than 800 programs that are members of PATH Intl., High Hopes is one of only six centers in the United States approved by PATH Intl. to provide their training courses in therapeutic riding instruction and has trained instructors from all over the world.

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LYSB Hosts ‘The Bizz’ Tonight, Proceeds Benefit Youth Programs

This year’s performers take a well-deserved brief break while rehearsing the finale

Lymes’ Youth Services Bureau (LYSB) presents the 20th annual performance of The Bizz tonight, Friday, March 24, at 6:30 p.m. in the Lyme-Old Lyme High School auditorium. The show celebrates the talent that abounds in the youth of our community and the venue offers increased seating over the middle school auditorium.

The show features more than 20 acts, which include singing, dancing, instrumental and bands, all performed by talented Lyme-Old Lyme youth.

LYSB Director Mary Seidner told LymeLine that possibly a record number of acts auditioned this year, noting,”Unfortunately we didn’t have room for all of them.  We saw many talented performers and we congratulate everyone on their creativity and energy.”


The show has sold out several times in recent years, so early arrival is recommended.

Doors open at 6 p.m. and tickets are $8 at the door.

All proceeds from the show benefit LYSB programs.

For more information, call 860-434-7208.

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Old Lyme Land Trust Hosts Annual Meeting This Afternoon; Includes ‘CT River Tidal Marshes’ Talk, ‘Volunteer of the Year’ Award

This photograph by Hank Golet, of Old Lyme, won the top award at the 2016 Land Trusts Photo Contest, jointly sponsored by OLLT and the land trusts of Lyme, Essex, East Haddam, and Salem. It is of a juvenile yellow-crowned night heron, fishing at the edge of a tidal creek in Old Lyme.

The Old Lyme Land Trust will host its 51st Annual Meeting on Sunday March 19, at the Lymes’ Senior Center, Town Woods Rd., Old Lyme.  The meeting will begin at 3 p.m. with refreshments, and the public is invited.

The Trust will also present the 2017 annual Volunteer of the Year Award at the meeting. This award is given annually to recognize extraordinary volunteer service to the Trust, and by extension, to the Town of Old Lyme. All residents of Old Lyme and neighboring towns can enjoy the 14 preserves and over 1,100 acres maintained by Old Lyme Land Trust.

The 2016 recipient was Rob Evans of Old Lyme for his work in building and maintaining walking trails in the Hatchett’s Hill Preserve. Evans’ work included construction of two bridges in the preserve.

The featured guest speaker at the meeting will be Dr. R. Scott Warren, an internationally recognized authority on the ecology of tidal wetlands. Dr. Warren recently retired from a distinguished career at Connecticut College and stays active in the field. He is currently serving as Sr. Scientific Adviser to the Coastal Waters Consortium of the Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium. His current focus is research on the effects of the Deep Water Horizon oil spill.

In 1971 representatives of seven nations met in Ramsar, Iran, to sign the first-ever intergovernmental treaty for global conservation.  Its purpose was, and is, the conservation and sustainable use of wetlands. Sites selected for their critical importance are designated “Wetlands of International Importance”.

Today 90 percent of the United Nations member states, 169 countries, have signed the Ramsar Convention, and there are 2,231 Ramsar Wetlands worldwide.  Only 38 are in the United States, and only one is in New England – the “Connecticut River Estuary and Tidal Wetlands Complex”, most of which is in Old Lyme.

Dr. Warren’s talk, “Connecticut River Tidal Marshes: Ecology and Significance,” will cover their basic ecology, how sea level is affecting marshes, and why they are such important ecosystems. An engaging and animated speaker, Dr. Warren will use photographs, maps, and other props to illustrate his points.  This is a great opportunity to come learn about these vitally important and very delicate natural systems.

The John Lohmann Connecticut River Preserve is one of the 13 preserves in Old Lyme owned and managed by the Old Lyme Land Trust.

The OLLT is an all-volunteer, non-profit organization and several hundred of the acres it protects are wetlands, both tidal and freshwater.   All 14 OLLT preserves are open to the public, with walking trails that lead to wonderful places. 

You can gaze across the Connecticut River, including some of those Ramsar Wetlands, from the shore at Whaleback Rock, or climb rocky ridges covered with Mountain Laurel and tall pines.  There are trails through large, unbroken tracts where rare birds hide, and a guided trail for children at the Mile Creek Preserve. 

Chances are that if you live in Old Lyme, you’re not far from an OLLT preserve.  The Trust will also announce the recent acquisition of additional acreage and plans for continuing to grow preserved lands in Old Lyme.

The OLLT is a private nonprofit corporation not affiliated with the town government. Membership is open to all.

Join the OLTT for an entertaining and informative afternoon on March 19, and learn more about your local land trust.  The meeting is from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Lymes’ Senior Center, 126 Town Woods Rd., Old Lyme.  All are welcome and admission is free.

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LYSB’s 32nd Annual ‘Youth Art Show’ on Show at Lyme Academy Through March 26

“Asparagus and Cupcakes” by Lyme-Old Lyme High School junior Claudia Mergy is the signature painting of the 2017 Youth Art Show.

The opening reception for the 32nd Annual Youth Art Show will be held tomorrow from 4 to 7 p.m. in the Sill House Gallery at Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts located at 84 Lyme Street. All are welcome.

Sponsored by Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau (LYSB), the show features work by more than 150 students in Lyme-Old Lyme Schools from Kindergarten through Grade 12, including many pieces that have recently won impressive awards in state and local competitions.

The show is on view daily except for Sunday, March 19, through Saturday, March 26.  Sill House Gallery is open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday.  Admission is free. All are welcome.  For more information, contact Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau at 860-434-7208 or visit www.lysb.org

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“Plum Island Plunge for Plovers” to be Held in Old Saybrook This Morning

Fundraiser and press conference will bring together conservationists, students, elected officials

Aerial view of Plum Island lighthouse. (From Preserve Plum Island website)

Students from Old Saybrook High School’s Ecology and Interact Clubs, and a regional environmental organization are joining forces this Saturday, March 11, to raise awareness and support for protecting rare bird habitat on Long Island Sound.

Connecticut Fund for the Environment (CFE) and its bi-state program Save the Sound will devote the proceeds of the “polar plunge”-style fundraiser towards the organization’s multi-year battle to save Plum Island from sale and private development.

The event takes place at 10 a.m. on Old Saybrook Town Beach at Great Hammock Rd. (Rte. 154), Old Saybrook.

A piping plover ready to plunge! Image from CFE website.

Plum Island, an 840-acre, federally-owned island in the eastern end of Long Island Sound, is home to threatened and endangered birds like the piping plover and roseate tern, as well as other rare species. Seventy Connecticut and New York organizations work together as the Preserve Plum Island Coalition, partnering with grassroots activists and champions in Congress to halt sale of the island. CFE/Save the Sound has also brought an action in federal court claiming that the government’s decision to sell the island violates numerous federal environmental laws.

A press conference featuring local, state, and likely federal elected officials will kick off the event at Old Saybrook Town Beach, followed by a dash into the frigid Long Island Sound.  Senator Richard Blumenthal (schedule permitting), State Representative Devin Carney (R-23rd) and Old Saybrook First Selectman Carl Fortuna are all expected to be present.

Prizes will be awarded for the most funds raised and “Best Costume.”

“Plum Island Plunge for Plovers” is open to the public. Members of the public are encouraged to register and set up their own fundraising pages at www.bit.ly/plum-plunge, or support the students’ efforts at this page.

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Two Roads Closed in Old Lyme This Afternoon

Broken tree limbs, downed wires, and brush fires have closed two roads in Old Lyme this afternoon until 6 p.m. or later.

Emergency crews are on the scene.

Mile Creek Road is closed from Somerset to Flat Rock.

Whippoorwill Road is closed from Jadon Drive to the I-95 overpass.

Residents will be able to reach their homes, but no through traffic will be permitted for safety reasons.

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Visgilio of Old Lyme Wins Silver, Bronze Medals in Vermont Special Olympics

Evan Visgilio of Old Lyme stands on the podium proudly wearing the silver medal that he won in the Vermont Special Olympics.

Evan Visgilio of Old Lyme returned from the Vermont Special Olympic Winter Games held this past weekend (March 3-6) in Woodstock, Vt., with a fourth place ribbon, along with a Bronze and a Silver Medal.

Suicide Six located in Woodstock, Vt., hosted the Vermont Special Olympics Winter and Visgilio, who was a member of the Hermitage at Haystack Team, participated in his first ever Slalom, Giant Slalom and Super G events. By the end of the competition, Visgilio had won an impressive collection of awards taking fourth place in Slalom, and winning a Bronze Medal in the Giant Slalom and a Silver Medal in the Super G.

Evan, who is 13-years-old, lives in Old Lyme with his parents John and Wendy Visgilio, along with his siblings Brenna, Will and John. Evan attends Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School where he is in  seventh Grade.

Evan was born with Down Syndrome and has been skiing for seven years. This was Evan’s first year competing in the Vermont Special Olympics. He trains at The Hermitage Club at Haystack Mountain in Wilmington, Vt., with his coaches Scott Serota, Corey Robinson and Kate Riley.

Many congratulations to our friend and neighbor, Evan, from all of us at LymeLine.com!

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Lyme Library Presents ‘Up Close with Raptors,’ March 25

Blue Moon Raptors is an organization geared to rehabilitate ill, injured, and orphaned birds of prey in order to return them back to their natural habitat when possible. Rose Cresi, founder of Blue Moon Raptors, will give a presentation at Lyme Public Library, Saturday, March 25, at 2 p.m. at which she will have several live birds with her – two kestrels (who have been brought to her from Maine for rehabilitation), a barn owl and two other birds of prey. She will discuss the birds, rehabilitation of the birds and in addition, talk about the important role the birds have in our ecosystem.

In addition, Cresi will cover what we can do to preserve the environment so raptors may continue to enrich our planet.

All are welcome at the Library, 482 Hamburg Rd./Rte. 156, Lyme.

Call 860-434-2272 for more information and to register.

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Letter to the Editor: Old Saybrook Town Officials Says First Priority is Re-Employment of Fortune Plastics Employees

To the Editor:

The announcement by Fortune Plastics of their intended closure in April has left the Old Saybrook and Shoreline Community concerned and disappointed.  Our concern is first and foremost for the over 90 employees of the company who will be losing their employment.  It is also disheartening to see what was once a locally-owned family business leave the State.

Upon hearing the news, our offices began marshaling state and regional resources to work with the company in finding new employment for the workers.  Within a week, the Connecticut Department of Labor Rapid Response Unit organized a Job Fair at Fortune Plastics on March 4.  We also contacted local and regional manufacturers, many with positions to fill.  We will continue to partner with Fortune Plastics to make available any and all human resources in the coming months. 

Fortune Plastic’s 75,000 sf manufacturing facility will also be available for repurpose.  The Town and the Economic Development Commission plan to market the availability of this and other industrial properties so they will be put to back into full and productive use. 

While this is indeed difficult news for all affected employees and the Town, we will continue to be a town that seeks out new business opportunities to benefit workers and residents.

Carl P. Fortuna, Jr. and Susie Beckman
Old Saybrook.

Editor’s Note:  The writers are respectively the First Selectman of Town of Old Saybrook and the
Economic Development Director of the Town of Old Saybrook.

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FRA High Speed Train Route Proposal Update: Two Important Letters Released; One From Malloy, Second From All State DOT Heads in Northeast

Governor Dannel Malloy

In what SECoast.org accurately describes as “a flurry of news in the last 24 hours,” a host of letters and newspaper articles has been published regarding the Federal Rail Administration (FRA)’s proposed high speed rail route, which, in combination, offer some reason to be cautiously optimistic about where things are going.

Governor Dannel Malloy has written a four-page letter to the FRA asking, among many other requests, for the Old Saybrook to Kenyon bypass to be removed from consideration saying, “No specific alignments of of the the existing Connecticut NEC right of way should appear in the ROD” (NEC is the North East Corridor and the ROD is the Record of Decision, which was originally due March 1, but is now expected later in the month). Malloy continues firmly, “Connecticut elected officials and citizens have been very clear about this throughout the EIS process.” (The EIS is the Environmental Impact Statement.)

A second letter  to the FRA signed by the head of every state Department of Transportation in the Northeast (Conn., Del., Maine, DC, Md., Mass., Pa., RI, Vt., and NJ), except New York, which includes the same request regarding the bypass as Malloy’s letter, has also been published .

SECoast.org has published a comprehensive summary, which includes the two letters mentioned above as well as all the remaining press activity, at this link.  We urge our readers to take a look at this extremely informative article.

 

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Help Old Lyme Land Trust Celebrate 50 Years at Their Annual Meeting, April 3

With warm weather’s return, it’s a great time to get out and take a walk!

The John Lohmann Connecticut River Preserve is one of the 13 preserves in Old Lyme owned and managed by the Old Lyme Land Trust, where the public can walk and explore nature.

Thanks to the Old Lyme Land Trust (OLTT), you can do that at any of 13 preserves right here in town. Check out breathtaking views of the water from the shorefront ledges at the Karter Watch Rock Preserve, or stroll through the fields to see the river from Whaleback Rock in the Lohmann Connecticut River Preserve. Look for ladyslipper orchids or listen for frogs – just pick a nearby preserve and you really can’t lose.

Since 1966, OLLT has preserved over 1,000 acres of Old Lyme, and more than 500 of them have marked trails, open to the public. The land trust is a non-profit organization, independent of town government, so it is the people of Old Lyme who have really saved these spaces, through their generous donations of land, time, and money.

The Old Lyme Land Trust invites you to join them as they kick off celebrating 50 years of local conservation, by joining members and friends at the Old Lyme Land Trust Annual Meeting. The event is from 3 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, April 3, at the Lymes’ Senior Center, at 126 Town Woods Road, in Old Lyme. Photographs from the annual land trusts’ photo contest will be on display and refreshments provided.

This year’s keynote speaker is Glenn Dreyer, Director of the Connecticut College Arboretum. His talk will be on “Invasive Species: Issues and Management”. The Nature Conservancy has stated that the threat of invasive species to global ecosystems rivals that of climate change, yet many folks remain unaware. Most invasive plants are very attractive, but the damage they do to ecosystems is devastating. Prof. Dreyer will discuss the issue and explain what can be done to help stem this increasing problem.

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‘Essex Meadows’ Named One of Best Retirement Homes in Nation by US News & World Report

ESSEX – Essex Meadows Health Center, part of the continuum of Essex Meadows Life Care Community, is celebrating an 8th consecutive year of being rated as one of the top health services and skilled nursing providers in the nation by U.S. News and World Report.

Essex Meadows Health Center scored a 5-Star rating on all points of the survey, one of the most trusted in the country. Based on the scoring criteria, the center rated in the top 13 percent of skilled nursing and senior health care providers across the nation.

“We’re extremely humbled and honored by this distinction,” said associate executive director Kathleen Dess. “Our residents can go on knowing they live in one of the best retirement environments nationwide, and our team members can enjoy some well-deserved recognition for the work they do each day.”

The work Dess refers to has included Essex Meadows Health Center leading the way on an innovative program known as Reading 2 Connect, which has shown proven results in the area of helping those with various forms of dementia continue to enjoy a passion for reading.

Additionally, the community has been involved in programs like the Audubon’s Bird Tales, allowing them to make use of the nearly 1,000-acre preserve located nearby, and the Music and Memory program for seniors with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

“The 5-Star rating is really about getting things right for our residents in every aspect of quality living,” said Dess. “From providing unparalleled food quality in our dining room to the short-term rehab we offer, our team members are truly among the best in the field of senior living.”

The U.S. News and World Report ratings are based on information from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Editor’s Note: Since 1988, Essex Meadows has provided a lifestyle of dignity, freedom, independence and security to older adults from Connecticut and beyond. A community offering full life care, Essex Meadows, located conveniently on the Connecticut River near the mouth of Long Island Sound, prides itself on a financially responsible and caring atmosphere. Essex Meadows is managed by Life Care Services®™, a leading provider in life care, retirement living. For more information on Essex Meadows, visit the community’s website or call 860-767-7201.

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Nature, Landscape Photographer Speaks at CT Valley Camera Club Meeting

‘Chena River ice’ is an example of Paul Nguyen’s photography. He is the speaker at the next CVCC meeting on March 6.

The March 6 meeting of the Connecticut Valley Camera Club (CVCC) will feature a presentation by Paul Nguyen, a Fine Art Nature and Landscape Photographer from Hanson, Mass.  The meeting will be held at 7 p.m. at the Lymes’ Senior Center, 26 Town Woods Rd., Old Lyme, CT.

This is how the photographer describes his presentation: “When the sun goes down, skilled photographers know the fun is just beginning. Long exposures in low light conditions reveal a whole new world of color, texture, and artistry previously hidden to the naked eye, and advances in sensor technology are making it easier to make great night images with every generation of camera.”

Join New England-based professional photographer Paul Nguyen to learn about the principles and camera settings behind several kinds of low light photography: Long exposures of landscapes at twilight; night images of the starry sky; and “star trail” exposures.”

To see more of Nguyen’s work, visit his website at: www.paulnguyenphoto.com

CVCC meeting dates, speakers / topics and other notices are published on the club’s Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/CTValleyCameraClubPage/.

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Auditions for ‘The Bizz’ to be Held Today

It’s your time to shine!

Auditions for LYSB’s Youth Talent Show, The Bizz, will be held Monday, March 6, from 4 to 6 p.m. and Tuesday, March 7, from 4 to 7 p.m.

Auditions are open to all musicians, singers, dancers, rappers, bands, comedians, magicians, etc.

Book your audition online at this link or call 860.434.7208.  Click here for full details and audition rules

The Bizz will be held Friday, March 24, at 7 p.m. at Lyme-Old Lyme High School.

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Last Night to See Musical-Comedy-Whodunit ‘Curtains’ at Lyme-Old Lyme HS, Final Performance Tomorrow 2pm

The cast of the show-within-the-show mourns the loss of their leading lady. All photos by Ellen Cole.

Apparently the opening couple of nights of ‘Curtains’ have been a huge success, so ticket sales are expected for the two remaining performances are expected to be strong. Don’t miss the chance to see this great production — reserved seats are $15 for adults, $12 for students and seniors. Tickets may be purchased online at http://tinyurl.com/hjvw7yc or at the door.

Songwriting team Georgia (Maria Donato) and Aaron (Dan Cole), along with show investor Oscar (Sean Spina) and producer Carmen (Callie Kotzan) read a review of their show. All photos by Ellen Cole.

The Old Lyme Players’ production of Curtains, a musical comedy whodunit from the creators of Cabaret and Chicago. Curtains plays tonight and tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, March 5, at 2 p.m. at Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) in Old Lyme.

The cast of Curtains features 40 Lyme–Old Lyme High School students, with another 20 involved in the crew, pit orchestra, and production staff.

It’s 1959, and opening night at Boston’s Colonial Theatre for Robbin’ Hood! — the flawed show-within-the-show at the center of Curtains. Robbin’ Hood’s untalented leading lady has been murdered, and the entire company is under suspicion as Boston police detective Frank Cioffi investigates the crime.

Detective Frank Cioffi (Ben Jackson) flirts with ingénue Niki (Lauren Mitchell).

But Cioffi may be more interested in saving the show than finding the murderer! Meanwhile, the body count is rising …

Luc Bolduc, Phil Sweeney, and Liam Clark perform in the big number of the show-within-the-show.

The composers and producers of the show-within-the-show (Sean Spina, Callie Kotzan, Maria Donato, Dan Cole) wonder ‘what kind of man’ could be a theater critic.

Curtains opened on Broadway in 2007, starring David Hyde Pierce (Frasier, Spamalot) as Cioffi, for which he won the Tony Award for best actor in a musical. It ran for more than 500 performances.

The Old Lyme Players’ production is directed by LOLHS teacher James Motes with choreography by Bethany Haslam (director of the Dance Center of Old Lyme), and orchestral direction by LOLHS band teacher Jacob Wilson.

The cast features 38 LOLHS students, with another 20 students involved in the production’s stage crew and pit orchestra.

Lyme–Old Lyme High School is located at 69 Lyme Street, Old Lyme.

The school and auditorium are fully accessible, and there is ample parking.

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Join a ‘Building Bridges for Justice Activism Teach-In’ Today in Hadlyme


It is believed that “knowledge is power,” that facts matter, and that for all of us to be effective activists, we need to enhance our knowledge and build our skills.  Therefore, Together We Rise – Building Bridges for Justice, is hosting an Activism Teach-In on Saturday, March 4, from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in Hadlyme Public Hall.

Experts from across Connecticut will speak from their experience and speak on the following topics:

  • How to Talk to Your Legislator &  Make An Impact- Michele Mudrick
  • The Lives of Undocumented Kids in CT & How to Help- Edwin Colon
  • Demystifying the State Budget & Fight for Children- Derek Thomas
  • Intersectionality 101

Parking will be available on the street near the Hadlyme Public Hall.  No handicap access available.  An ALS interpreter will be present.

A lunch break is scheduled and it is suggested that participants bring a bagged lunch. Bagged lunches may be ordered from the following:  Two Wrasslin’ Cats at (860) 891-8446, Grist Mill Market at (860) 873-3663, and Higher Grounds at (860) 615-6112.  Place your order by March 3 and let these partnering businesses know that you will be attending the Activism Teach-In when you place your order. Coffee, tea, and water will be available during the Teach-In.

To register (space is limited) and for more information, visit: Together We Rise – Building Bridges for Justice at togetherwerisect.com

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‘Bikes for Kids’ Host Fundraising Dinner Tonight

Former Center School teacher David Fowler is now President of Bikes For Kids.

Bikes for Kids, the charity founded by Chuck Graeb of Old Lyme to donate bikes to children in need, hosts a Fundraising Dinner this evening at the Westbrook Elks Lodge from 6 to 11 p.m.

There will be raffles, a silent auction and dancing along with appetizers and a buffet dinner. The dinner includes stuffed sole and chicken.  Live music will feature Buffalo Jr. and Twice 2 Much.

All proceeds will benefit the acquisition of a permanent facility, bikes, helmets, parts and smiles for children in the community.

Tickets are $75 per person and can be reserved by calling 860-388-BIKE ( 2453 ).

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Lyme-Old Lyme HS Achieves Second Highest AP Scores in Connecticut

Students hard at work in a Chinese class at Lyme-Old Lyme High School, where recently released results show the school achieved the second highest AP scores in the state.

The College Board released the Class of 2016 Advanced Placement (AP®) Cohort Data, Feb. 22, which showed that Lyme-Old Lyme Schools came in as the school system in Connecticut with the second highest overall performance. No other Middlesex or New London County school system achieved a ranking higher than 20th

Performance is calculated based on the number of students in the Class of 2016 cohort who participated in at least one AP exam at any time during high school and who scored a ‘3’ or higher on at least one of those exams. Neither students nor exams are counted more than once.

In response to this exceptional news, Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser stated, “To be ranked second in the entire state is an incredible achievement and further supports the notion that the Lyme-Old Lyme Schools provide an education which rivals or exceeds both public and private schools throughout the State of Connecticut. This is a credit to the students, staff, and communities of Lyme and Old Lyme to achieve at such a high level in what is a very competitive atmosphere.”

The national AP® report shows an increase in both the participation and passing rates for the high school graduating Class of 2016 showing that equity and excellence can go hand in hand. Neviaser commented, “There is a widespread belief in education that it is impossible to expand access while maintaining high performance. The AP Program tells a different story.”  

This too holds true in Lyme-Old Lyme as the school system ranked 5th in the state in terms of AP® participation. Participation is calculated based on the number students in the Class of 2016 cohort who participated in at least one AP exam at any time during high school. Neither students nor exams are counted more than once.

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools accept students from all communities throughout Connecticut. If you would like to become a part of this high performing school system, visit www.region18.org or contact Ian Neviaser, Superintendent of Schools, at neviaseri@region18.org or 860.434.7238 for more information.

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Obituary: Death Announced of Walter Kaylin, Former 52-Year Resident of Old Lyme

Walter Kaylin 06.28.1921 – 02.15.2017

Walter Kaylin, 95, died peacefully on February 15 at Apple Rehab in Guilford, Ct., after a long period of declining health. His two daughters were by his side.

Walter was born in New York City on June 28, 1921 to Rose and Alexander Kaylin. He grew up on the Grand Concourse in the Bronx and graduated from Dewitt Clinton High School, then the College of William and Mary in Virginia.

He enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1942 and served in the Signal Corps during World War II. Walter’s first love was writing: He was anthologized by the Saturday Evening Post and worked for many years at Magazine Management, writing adventure stories for pulp magazines in a stable of writers that included Mario Puzo, Joseph Heller and Alex Austin. He wrote two novels, Another Time, Another Woman and The Power Forward. Walter enjoyed a late-in-life resurgence of his cult popularity with the 2013 publication of two collections featuring his stories: Weasels Ripped My Flesh and He-Men, Bag Men and Nymphos.

Walter was an avid sports fan since his days of visiting Yankee Stadium as a boy, once sending a pep-talk letter to a slumping Lou Gehrig, who sent a note of thanks in return. Years later, he found another hero in Muhammad Ali from the time he was Cassius Clay, not only for his prowess in the boxing ring but for his role in the Civil Rights Movement and his resistance to the Vietnam War. Walter expressed his own staunch opposition to the war in frequent, impassioned, well-informed letters to the editor of the local paper at a time when he was all but a lone voice.

He was a jazz enthusiast and a record collector; at his beachfront home of 52 years in Old Lyme, Ct., he played the piano at least an hour a day before enjoying a cocktail with his wife, Peggy, while gazing out at the waves and invariably remarking, “It doesn’t get any better than this.” He continued to play jazz piano at Apple Rehab, to the delight of his fellow residents, even when his right hand was contorted by arthritis.

Walter was predeceased by Peggy, both parents and his brother, Edward. He is survived by his two daughters, Jennifer Kaylin (Randall Beach), a writer in the communications office of the Yale School of Public Health; Lucy Kaylin (Kimball Higgs), editor of O, The Oprah Magazine; and four grandchildren: Natalie Beach, Charlotte Beach, Sophie Higgs and Owen Higgs.

Walter Kaylin was a charismatic, sharp, devoted, delightful husband, father, grandfather and friend–a man of boundless curiosity, searching intellect and deep social conscience. His family, who will carry him in their hearts forever, are grateful to the staff at Apple Rehab for their compassionate care. A memorial service will be held at a later date. Donations in Walter’s memory may be made to Doctors Without Borders or the ACLU.

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