April 30, 2017

Join Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber’s ‘Business After Hours’ at Old Lyme Library Tonight, All Welcome

The Lyme-Old Lyme (LOL) Chamber of Commerce is hosting Business After Hours at the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library, Library Lane, Old Lyme, on Wednesday, April 19, from 7 to 830 p.m. 

Join Chamber members to network with other local businesses and hear the engaging, innovative new Library Director Katie Huffman speak about her 21st century vision for the institution and how she sees the Chamber and the broader community developing an effective working relationship with the library to mutual benefit.

Huffman will also discuss volunteer opportunities at the library and some of the new programs that she will be implementing.

Prospective Chamber members are especially welcome — this is a great opportunity to see the Chamber in action and evaluate whether you wish to join.

Appetizers, wine and soft drinks will be served. There is no charge to attend but an RSVP to email@lolcc.com would be helpful for planning purposes.

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Egyptian Affairs Expert Explains, ‘How the Muslim Brotherhood Lost Egypt;’ Hosted by SECWAC Tonight

Mark Trager of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

The Southeast Connecticut World Affairs Council (SECWAC) hosts Mark Trager – a distinguished fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy and noted expert on Egyptian politics – on Wednesday, April 19, at Connecticut College. Trager will present an address entitled “How the Muslim Brotherhood Lost Egypt”

Trager is the author of “Arab Fall: How the Muslim Brotherhood Won and Lost Egypt in 891 Days,” a recent book that chronicles the precipitous rise to power of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood and its sudden demise just a year later. In the book, Trager assesses the current state of Egyptian politics and prospects for the Brotherhood’s reemergence.  Signed copies will be available for sale at the end of the presentation.

Tickets for his presentation are $20 for the general public, and free for area students; tickets can be obtained at info@secwac.org. (Ticket cost can subsequently be applied towards a SECWAC membership.)  The address starts at 6 p.m. at Blaustein Hall at Connecticut College and will be preceded by a 5:30 p.m. reception.

Trager – currently the Esther K. Wagner Fellow at the institute – was in Egypt during the anti-Mubarak revolts and returns frequently to interview leaders in Egypt’s government, military and media. His writings have appeared in the “New York Times,” “Wall Street Journal,” “Foreign Affairs” and “New Republic,” among other publications.

Trager graduated from Harvard University with a degree in government and language citations in Arabic and Hebrew; and subsequently studied at the American University in Cairo as an Islamic Civilizations Fulbright fellow – receiving  his M.A. in Arabic studies with a concentration in Islamic studies. He served as an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania where his doctoral research focused on Egyptian opposition parties.

The presentation is a part of the SECWAC Speaker Series.  SECWAC is a regional, nonprofit, membership organization affiliated with the World Affairs Councils of America.  Its mission is to foster an understanding of issues related to foreign policy and international affairs through study, debate and educational programming.  Through its annual Speaker Series, SECWAC arranges up to 10 presentations a year that provide a public forum for dialogue between its members and experts on foreign relations.

Membership information is available at www.secwac.org.

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With Final Decision on NEC Future Near, CT Trust Pushes CT DOT for Clear Statement on Elimination of Rail Bypasses

With just weeks remaining before the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) completes a five-year NEC Future planning process, finalizing a ‘once-in-a-generation’ blueprint for rail travel and investment along the Northeast Corridor, advocates of historic, cultural and environmental resources in Connecticut are responding warily to recent statements from Connecticut DOT and FRA officials.

“Connecticut DOT now refers to ‘aspirational recommendations’ for the high-speed rail corridor in Connecticut,” noted Daniel Mackay, Executive Director of the Connecticut Trust. “As this process nears completion, it is critical that the public and municipal officials realize that any language in the Record of Decision which references proposed bypasses in New London and Fairfield counties, as well as in Rhode Island, leaves the door open for these projects in the next stages of planning. It is imperative that FRA and Connecticut DOT permanently bar the door against these destructive bypass proposals.”

The Trust released a copy of a Feb. 10 email to Richard Andreski, Bureau Chief for Public Transportation, calling for state and federal agencies to remove all references to the proposed Old Saybrook to Kenyon (RI) from the forthcoming NEC Future Record of Decision. The Trust also asked for a commitment from both FRA and CT DOT that the Old Saybrook to Kenyon bypass not be reconsidered or reintroduced as planning for NEC Future moves forward. The Trust further warned that the proposed New Rochelle (NY) to Greens Farms bypass in Fairfield County requires a separate Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), which should only be amended to NEC Future if warranted following more careful consideration.

In an April 12 letter to FRA Acting Administrator Patrick Warren, Senator Richard Blumenthal drew attention to fresh public concerns regarding previously-overlooked plans by FRA to double to four tracks the existing rail footprint between Branford and Guilford, east of New Haven. Senator Richard Blumenthal urged the agency to “engage in thorough discussions and dialogue” with impacted residents, warning that “it is imperative that these concerns be addressed immediately” given the expected release of the NEC Future Record of Decision.

Following a pattern repeated in other communities in Connecticut and Rhode Island, the proposed Branford to Guilford rail expansion came to the attention of residents in the region, only after the release of finalized maps of the FRA’s ‘Preferred Route’ on Dec. 16, 2016. In recent weeks, six preservation and environmental groups have written to the FRA to express concern, including the Branford Historical Society, Branford Land Trust, Stony Creek Association, Guilford Preservation Alliance, Guilford Land Conservation Trust, and Hyland House.

Despite these concerns, Gregory Stroud, Director of Special Projects at the Connecticut Trust, made clear that he is hopeful for a positive outcome after nearly 16 months of advocacy on the issue. “On the merits, we believe we’ve made a compelling case that FRA delivered a terrifically flawed plan, with too many impacts, and too few benefits for Connecticut.” Stroud pointed to strong bipartisan support from representatives at the local, state, and federal levels, in both Rhode Island and Connecticut, for dropping planned bypasses, and for investments in the existing Northeast Corridor.

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See ‘Letter from Italy, 1944: A New American Oratorio’ at Noon Today at Old Lyme Library

Lyme resident, Sarah Meneely-Kyder, a Grammy-nominated composer, will present a screening of “Letter from Italy, 1944: A New American Oratorio,” a one-hour documentary created by Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Karyl Evans and narrated by Academy Award winner Meryl Streep, on Tuesday, April 18 at 12:30 p.m. in the Community Room of the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library in Old Lyme. Following the screening, Meneely-Kyder will answer questions.

Meneely-Kyder, together with her sister Nancy Meneely, a noted poet, and in collaboration with Joseph D’Eugenio, artistic director of the Greater Middletown Chorale, wrote “Letter From Italy, 1944,” a compelling two-hour American musical drama based on their father’s wartime experiences which he shared through his letters home to his family. The documentary takes viewers behind the scenes of the creation and staging of this original oratorio about Dr. John Meneely, who served as a World War II regimental surgeon with the elite 10th Mountain Division.

During his wartime service, he was called upon to witness and provide aid in many difficult and painful situations. While “Letter from Italy, 1944” focuses on the life of the Yale-trained doctor during and following World War II, the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder story that it details still resonates today.

This program is sponsored by Exencial Wealth Advisors of Old Lyme, CT, and will be held in the Community Room of the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library, 2 Library Lane, Old Lyme, CT, on Tuesday, April 18, 2017, from 12:30 – 2:30 p.m.

The event is free and open to the public; refreshments will be served. To ensure that sufficient seating and food are available, reservations may be made by calling 860.434.5999.

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Potapaug Sponsors Hike in Nehantic State Forest, May 7

Potapaug Audubon is sponsoring a “Hike at Nehantic State Forest” on Sunday, May 7, with leader Leader Fran Zygmont from Litchfield Hills Audubon Society. This is a follow up to his Bird Migration program at Old Lyme Town Hall.

Meet at commuter parking lot at Exit 70 off I-95 on Rte. 156 in Old Lyme between 7  and 7:15 a.m. to carpool. Groups leave promptly for Nehantic at 7:15 a.m. to start the walk at 7:30 a.m. 

Zygmont will demonstrate a few of his amazing bird song imitations.

The rain date for the  walk is May 13.

For more information, call 860-710-5811.

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Old Lyme Town Budget Hearing Tonight in Town Hall

The Old Lyme Board of Finance will conduct a public hearing on the proposed town budget for the 2017-18 financial year this evening, Monday, April 17, at 7:30 p.m. in the Meeting Hall of the Old Lyme Memorial Town Hall, 52 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, CT.

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Shining a Light on a Humble Hero: Success of Stroud’s Grassroots Efforts Against High Speed Train Proposal Highlighted

Greg Stroud

The CT Mirror has published an article today by veteran journalist Ana Radelat, titled His grassroots rebellion stops a federal railroad plan in its tracks, which looks at Greg Stroud of Old Lyme as an individual and the impact of his campaign regarding the northeastern section of the proposed high-speed railroad route from Washington DC to Boston — an impact that is looking increasingly likely to result in the removal of the Old Saybrook-Kenyon bypass from the proposed route.

In response to Radelat’s question in the article, “It seems the Federal Railroad Administration is going to change its plan. Are you confident you have won this battle over the bypass?” Stroud responds, “I’m cautiously optimistic and increasingly confident about the Kenyon to Old Saybrook bypass.”

Keep everything crossed at this point, dear readers!

Read Radelat’s full article at this link.

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Old Lyme Congregational Church Hosts Easter Sunrise Service, All Welcome; Later Services at 9, 11am

Photo by Aaron Burden courtesy of Unsplash.com.

The First Congregational Church of Old Lyme’s Easter Sunday schedule includes the following services:

Apr 16, Easter Sunday

  • Ecumenical Sunrise Service at 6 a.m. at Griswold Point — if you need directions, call the church
  • Worship services at 9 and 11 a.m.

For more information, visit this link or www.fccol.org

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Rockfall Foundation Announces 12 Grants for Environmental Projects, Recipients Include Lyme Land Conservation Trust

The Board of Directors and Grants Committee of the Rockfall Foundation are pleased to announce that twelve environmental programs throughout the Lower Connecticut River Valley received grants in the latest funding cycle. More than $28,000 was awarded to support environmental education and conservation efforts that will have a combined benefit for nearly 2,000 students and many more adults and families in the region.

“These grants, awarded through a competitive process, support the wonderful work being done in the area of environmental education and conservation throughout our region,” said Marilyn Ozols, President of the Foundation. “We are grateful that the generosity of our donors makes it possible for us to support so many worthwhile programs.”

Environmental education is a priority area for the Foundation and programs that serve and engage children and youth represent the several of those receiving grants. Public schools and non-profit organizations will provide hands-on environmental education programs in Middletown, Durham, Lyme, Old Saybrook, and Westbrook. Additionally, several conservation projects and public events will present residents throughout the Lower Connecticut River Valley with information on urban farming, removal of invasives, and tree identification, as well as provide volunteer opportunities.

Grantees include:

Indian Hill Cemetery Association – “A Celebration of the Trees of Indian Hill Cemetery” will encourage visitors to utilize Indian Hill Cemetery as a place where they can learn about trees, be inspired by trees, enjoy the view and walk quietly. Tree identification activities, school programs, and the addition of signs will support this effort. $1,000

Van Buren Moody Elementary School – “Moody School Courtyard Nature Enrichment Programs” will train teachers to use the school’s courtyard gardens for education enrichment, thereby increasing the amount of time students spend outside learning about the environment. The program will also involve students and families in maintaining and managing the gardens to create a sense of ownership and connection to the courtyards and the natural world. $1,030

Regional School District 13 Elementary Schools – “Taking the Next Generation Science Standards Outside” will encourage elementary students to engage in the Science and Engineering Practices emphasized in the Next Generation Science Standards, while exploring the nature trails near their schools and noting problems that could be investigated and addressed. $1,100

Connecticut River Coastal Conservation District – “Urban Farm-Based Education Programs at Forest City Farms: A Farm Days Pilot Project” will promote an ongoing urban agriculture initiative in Middletown focused on improving urban farming conservation practices, building community interest and engagement in farming, developing farming/gardening knowledge and skills, and helping address food insecurity. Hands-on activities will take place at Forest City Farms. $1,500

Middlesex Land Trust and Everyone Outside – “Middlesex Land Trust Preserves: Great Places to Spend Time Outside” will revive and foster an interest in nature by connecting children and families with their local environment through field trips and public trail walks, helping them gain an understanding and appreciation of nature in order to become future stewards of the environment. $1,500

Snow Elementary School – “Outdoor Explorations at Snow Elementary School” will provide students and teachers with hands-on science and nature programs, including teacher training, mentoring and curriculum development leading to greater interest in science and stewardship of the natural world. $1,900

Lyme Land Conservation Trust – “The Diana and Parker Lord Nature and Science Center” to support the planning and development of educationally-focused content that is directed to all ages and will engage school-age children, and to support a unique and interactive interpretive trail within the Banningwood Preserve. $2,000

Valley Shore YMCA – “Farm to Table Specialty Camp,” an innovative new program that will teach children the important life skills of gardening, harvesting produce for themselves and others, and environmental sustainability. $2,225

Macdonough Elementary School – “Macdonough School Takes the Classroom Outside” will provide hands-on science education for K through 5th grade students, including an understanding of the natural world and the local ecosystem, to enhance students’ connection with nature. $2,570

Connecticut River Watershed Council – “European Water Chestnut Strategy for the Connecticut River Watershed” will directly educate more than 250 individuals on how to identify, manage and report European Water Chestnuts; educate thousands of residents about the plant and its threat to our waterways; and involve volunteers in hand removal of documented infestations. $3,500

Connecticut Forest and Park – “Highlawn Forest Invasive Removal and Education Program,” part of a strategic Forest Management Plan, to use the property as a recreation and education asset through careful timbering and an invasive removal process. The program will be a model for environmental planning and will offer a unique opportunity for hands-on environmental education for landowners and municipalities. $4,000

SoundWaters – “Coastal Explorers: A Bridge for Sustainability for Watershed Exploration for Middle School Students” will provide students from Middlesex County with hands-on science education focused on their local estuarine habitats and watershed to encourage a deeper understanding of the natural world via a combination of study and stewardship activities. $6,000

Founded in 1935 by Middletown philanthropist Clarence S. Wadsworth, the Rockfall Foundation is named for the large waterfall in Wadsworth Falls State Park. In addition to its grants, the Foundation sponsors educational programs and owns and maintains the deKoven House Community Center. The Rockfall Foundation awards grants annually through a competitive process that is open to non-profit organizations and municipalities located in the Lower Connecticut River Valley. For additional information or to make a tax-deductible contribution, please visit www.rockfallfoundation.org  or call 860-347-0340.

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Town Hall, Transfer Station, Trash & Recycling Schedules for the Easter Weekend

Old Lyme Town Hall offices and the Transfer Station will be closed today, Friday, April 14.

The Transfer Station will be open tomorrow, Saturday, April 15.

There is no change to the Friday trash or recycling pick-up schedules.

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The Very Latest … and Most Important … News to Date on the Proposed High Speed Train Route

Amtrak’s ‘Acela’ passes through Rocky Neck State Park on a recent morning.

In a major news story published today in the CT Mirror, veteran journalist Ana Radelat summarizes the significant impact that opposition in Connecticut to the proposed high-speed rail route has already had — and is continuing to have.  Radelat quotes Old Lyme’s Greg Stroud, founder of SECoast and now director of special projects for the Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, who has been at the forefront of this opposition, as saying, “Opposition is growing along the entire shoreline.”

Read Radelat’s story titled, CT rebellion against federal rail plan grows — and may have impact, at this link.

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Con Brio’s Gala 20th Anniversary Spring Concert to be Held in Old Lyme, April 23

Con Brio Celebrates 20 years!

The acclaimed shoreline chorus, directed by Dr. Stephen Bruce, will be joined Sunday, April 23, at 4 p.m. by soloists Patricia Schuman, soprano, Clea Huston, mezzo-soprano, Steven Humes, tenor, Matthew Cossack, bass and Associate Music Director Susan Saltus, organ, with the recently augmented Con Brio Festival Orchestra. Con Brio will offer the “best of the best,” — the most beloved pieces from its twenty-year repertoire.  Don’t miss this one!

Beethoven’s Mass in C, sung by Con Brio at Carnegie Hall during its very first year, opens the program.  Composed in 1807, Beethoven was already suffering hearing problems.  And yet he produced a masterpiece, fresh, innovative. Robert Schumann wrote that this Mass, “…still exercises its power over all ages, just as those great phenomena of nature that, no matter how often they occur, fill us with awe and wonder.  This will go on centuries hence, as long as the world, and the world’s music, endures.”

Patricia Schuman, soprano.

Opening the second part of the program is a piece that will stun with its majesty:  the Coronation Anthem of Handel, Zadok the Priest. Then, in a more reflective style, Con Brio presents Brahms’ Trõste mich wieder —one of the most beloved a cappella pieces of all time, showcasing Brahms’ mastery of choral writing.

Mendelssohn’s Heilig and Lotti’s Crucifixus, other well-known motets, will be performed in the round, as has become Con Brio’s custom in the wonderful sanctuary of Christ the King Church. Et in Saecula Saeculorum, from Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus, is an exemplary fugue, even more amazing for having been discovered only in 2005.

Mascagni’s Easter Hymn, the renowned chorus from the Cavalleria Rusticana, is a world-wide, as well as a Con Brio, favorite; internationally acclaimed soprano Patricia Schuman will perform in the magnificent role of Santuzza.

In a lighter vein, Con Brio offers the Ward Swingle arrangement of Bach’s G minor organ fugue, as well as Arlen’s version of Over the Rainbow —an audience favorite since 1939, and When I Fall in Love, by Victor Young, made famous by Doris Day and Natalie Cole recordings.

Matthew Cossack, bass.

Bernstein’s Make Our Garden Grow, the radiant finale from the operetta Candide, is one of his great ensemble numbers, scored for soprano (Cunegonde) and tenor (Candide) soloists, chorus and orchestra.  Celebrating imperfect people who try to do the best they know, the piece has been sung by performers such as June Anderson, Renée Fleming, Jerry Hadley, Barbra Streisand and Judy Collins.

Over two decades, virtually every Con Brio concert has featured audience participation.  Maintaining this tradition, Dr. Bruce will ask the audience to join with Con Brio, in Hairston’s arrangement of the great African-American spiritual, In Dat Great Gittin’ Up Mornin’. Dr. Bruce has taught this to audiences all over Europe; with Con Brio featuring this ever-popular piece in all its six concert tours to Europe — and doubtless again, in its 2018 concert tour to Croatia and Slovenia.

Ticketsare $30 adult, $15 student and available online at www.conbrio.org, from any Con Brio member, or by calling 860 526-5399. Christ the King Church, 1 McCurdy Road, Old Lyme, CT.

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The Country School Hosts Secondary School Fair Tonight

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Area families are invited to join The Country School on Wednesday, April 12, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. for the 15th Annual Secondary School Fair. This is a great opportunity to speak with representatives from a range of high schools, both boarding and day, and learn what their schools have to offer.

Previous participants have included:

Avon Old Farms, Berkshire, Canterbury, Cheshire Academy, Choate Rosemary Hall, Cushing Academy, Dana Hall, Deerfield Academy, Emma Willard, Ethel Walker, Fairfield Prep, Gunnery, Hamden Hall, Hopkins, Hotchkiss, Kent, Kimball Union, Kingswood Oxford, Lauralton Hall, Loomis Chaffee, Lyme-Old Lyme High School, The Master’s School, Marvelwood, Mercy, Millbrook, Miss Hall’s, Miss Porter’s, Northfield Mt. Hermon, Phillips Academy Andover, Phillips Exeter Academy, Pomfret, Portsmouth Abbey, Sacred Heart, Salisbury, Stoneleigh Burnham, Suffield Academy, Tabor Academy, Taft, Trinity Pawling, Vermont Academy, Westminster, Westover, The Williams School, Williston Northampton, Xavier and more.

Questions? Contact Deborah Williams: deborah.williams@thecountryschool.org or call 203-421-3113, ext. 137. The Secondary School Fair will take place in the school’s DeFrancis Gymnasium at 341 Opening Hill Road, Madison, CT.

In addition to the Secondary School Fair, The Country School is offering a series of workshops during the week of April 10. All workshops, ranging from Robotics to Art, are free and open to the public. There will also be an author/illustrator event with John Fixx and Abby Carter, author and illustrator of the new book, The Curious Guide to Things That Aren’t. Learn more and register at www.thecountryschool.org/april.

The Country School is a coeducational, independent day school serving students in PreSchool-Grade 8 on its 23-acre campus. The Country School is committed to active, hands-on learning and a vigorous curriculum that engages the whole child. Signature programs such as Elmore Leadership, Public Speaking, STEAM, and Outdoor Education help prepare students for success in high school and beyond.

Learn more at www.thecountryschool.org.

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DeMeo, Korsmeyer Honored in Zahn Gallery Art Exhibition at Shoreline Medical Center

The w inning artists of the Zahn Gallery’s current exhibition gather for a photo after presentation of their awards. The Old Lyme artists honored are Kathleen DeMeo (back row, first from right) and Renni Ridegway-Korsmeyer (back row, second from left.)

Two artists from Old Lyme have received major awards in the Valentine H. Zahn Gallery’s Local Vision II exhibition.  Kathleen DeMeo took top honors winning ‘Best in Show’ with ‘Water’s Edge’ while Renni Ridgeway-Korsmeyer won a Juror’s Choice award for ‘Ephemeral.’

The exhibition opened March 23 and highlights the work of 38 local artists from 22 Connecticut cities and towns. It remains on display until May 20. The Gallery is located at the Middlesex Hospital Shoreline Medical Center, 250 Flat Rock Place in Westbrook.

Other  winners are:
First Place: Maryanne Rupp (seated, center)of Killingworth for Day’s End.
Second Place: Judy Perry (back row, first from left) of Old Saybrook for Breakthrough.
Third Place: Diane Brown (seated, right) of Pawcatuck for Going Steady.
Juror’s Choice: Diane Aldi DePaola (seated, left) of Old Saybrook for Where the River Meets The Sound.
Juror’s Choice: Nile Barrett (back row, third from left) of Westbrook for Storm Fence, Hammonasset.

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Robert Tougias, ‘Day’ Columnist, Birding Expert to Speak at Lyme Public Hall, April 23

On Sunday, April 23, at  2 p.m. the Lyme Public Hall Association will present a program on Wild Birds of Connecticut-Natural History and Conservation with  New London Day columnist Robert Tougias.

Tougias syndicates nature articles in newspapers throughout New England and writes birding columns for newpapers in Connecticut. His articles on wildlife have appeared in many nature/outdoors magazines.

He began birding at the age of seven and has been presenting his artwork in juried shows since age eleven. His books include Birding Western Massachusetts: A Habitat Guide to 26 Great Birding Sites from the Berkshires to the Quabbin.

The program is free and open to the public.

The Lyme Public Hall is located at 249 Hamburg Road (Route 156) in Lyme, Connecticut.  For  more information go to www.lymepublichall.org, or call 860 526-8886.

The Lyme Public Hall Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to the appreciation of Lyme’s history, culture, and community through the preservation and use of the historic hall, its archives and historical programs.

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Cappella Cantorum Men’s Chorus Gives Next Concert, June 11

Music Director/Conductor and co-founder of Cappella Cantorum, Barry B. Asch

Cappella Cantorum Men’s Chorus will give their next concert Sunday, June 11, 3 p.m. at St. Paul Lutheran Church. 56 Great Hammock Rd. Old Saybrook, CT.

Music includes: Wade in the Water, Psalm 84, Brothers Sing On. Hallelujah-Cohen, Spiritual and Broadway. $40.00 Registration, including Music at rehearsal.

Contact Barry Asch at (860) 388-2871 for more information.

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Save the Date for Half Price BookCellar Sale, Local Author Book Discussion at OL Library, April 29

There are two exciting events being held at the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library on Saturday, April 29.  Kicking things off from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. is the Phoebe’s BookCellar Half-Price Sale and then at 1 p.m., join a book discussion with a local author.

If you have never been to the BookCellar — or haven’t been recently — now is your chance to get some incredible bargains on books, DVDs, CDs and audio books.  The BookCellar is a volunteer-run, used bookstore operating on the lower level of the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library.  With over 10,000 books in all genres, including History & Biography, Fiction & Mystery, Children’s, Fine Art and Rare & Collectible books.  All proceeds from the BookCellar benefit the Library.

Cynthia Parzych

Plan your visit to the BookCellar so that you can enjoy the local author book discussion, which the library is hosting at 1 p.m.

Cynthia Parzych presents a program in which she will discuss her latest book titled, “Connecticut Made”, which is a new guidebook extolling the virtues of homegrown products by Connecticut craftsmen, artisans and purveyors. 

Connecticut Made is a unique guidebook and local resource full of hundreds of things to find and buy, crafts to discover, factories to explore, and history to uncover––all made in Connecticut. Organized by product type, categories include ceramics/pottery, clothing/accessories, furnishings/furniture, glassware, home décor, jewelry, specialty foods, toys/games, and so much more. Together, these homegrown establishments help make up the identity of the Nutmeg State and are part of the larger fabric of what is distinctively New England.

Born and educated in Connecticut, Parzych is a writer, book publisher, editor and professional chef. She lives in Glastonbury where she runs her publishing company and a food business. She utilizes the produce grown on her property and sourced locally to make sauces, soups, pesto, pickles, vinegars, jams and marmalades all sold from her house and farm stand. 

Autographed copies of Connecticut Made will be available for purchase at a discount following the talk.

The Library is located at 2 Library Lane, off Lyme Street. Spring hours are Monday and Wednesday, 10 AM to 7 PM; Tuesday and Thursday, 10 AM to 6 PM; Friday, 10 AM to 5 PM, and Saturday, 10 AM to 4 PM. For more information, call 860-434-1684 or visitwww.oldlyme.lioninc.org.

If the Library’s parking lot is full, additional spaces are available on Lyme Street. There is also a parking lot behind the Old Lyme Memorial Town Hall across the street from the Librar

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Letter From Paris: Thoughts on the First Few Days of Brexit

Nicole Prévost Logan

This was a very good editorial,  civilized and  compassionate.  It avoided throwing oil on the fire, playing the blame game or making doomsday predictions.

On March 30, in le Monde, an editorial appeared under the following title: “An Appeal to London and the 27.”  Actually it was a collective message published simultaneously by The Guardian, Le Monde, La Vanguardia and Gazeta Wyborcza.

One cannot undo 44 years of social, economic and human ties with just a strike of a pen — that was  the four newspapers’ message.   The collateral damage will be felt on both sides of the English Channel.  Three million Europeans live in the UK and more than two million British expats live on the continent. The fate of those five million people is at stake.  

The authors of the editorial suggested the Brexit process should be started on a positive note and tend to the status of the expatriate nationals right away, before starting the negotiation process.

But the day after Donald Tusk, president of the European Council, parted emotionally with the Euroskeptic David Davis British envoy,  the head-on confrontational negotiations started in earnest.

Like a chess player, Theresa May decided that attack was the best strategy and she put the central demands of the UK on the table: first, treat simultaneously the details of the “divorce” and the future of commercial relations between the UK and the European Union (EU); second, organize the future of security cooperation. 

Europe shot back in no uncertain terms.  Angela Merkel said Germany wanted to tackle other matters first and so did Francois Holland,  Donald Tusk and Michel Barnier, the chief negotiator for Europe.  The basic position of the Europeans is that no negotiations on free trade should start until the UK has left the EU totally and become a third-party country. 

The European Union (EU) wants discussions to proceed “per phases,” starting with “reciprocal and non discriminatory” guarantees as to the status of the Europeans living the UK and the 60 billion Euros already obligated by the UK to the budget of Europe. An extremely sensitive point will be for the UK to abide by the decisions taken by the European Court of Justice located in Luxembourg.

As far as the negotiations concerning the future relations between the two parties, some topics promise to be particularly stormy, particularly the “social, fiscal and environmental dumping” or whether to preserve the “financial passport” allowing the City of London to sell financial products on the continent.  The Europeans oppose discussions per economic sector, as wanted by Theresa May, and bi-lateral agreements to be signed between the UK and any of the EU members. 

Donald Tusk, President of the European Council.

On March 31, Donald Tusk, gave a crucial six-page document to the 27 members of the EU laying down the essential principles of the negotiations to come. The text should be formally accepted by them on April 29 at a summit meeting in Brussels.

Obviously the presidential elections in France will have an impact on the negotiations.   Marine Le Pen applauds an event which will make Europe more fragile.  At the opposite end of the political spectrum, Emmanuel Macron (En Marche party) feels the access to the Common Market  has a price and should be balanced by contributions to the European budget.  François Fillon  (Les Republicains or LR ) supports a firm attitude toward the British demands. He thinks that the Le Touquet agreement needs to be modified and the borders moved from Calais to Dover.

The ideal scenario would be to have the parties agree on these first phases so that discussion on the future should be tackled by the beginning of 2018.

The tone of the difficult negotiations has been set.  It will be a roller-coaster ride for months to come.

Editor’s Note: This is the opinion of Nicole Prévost Logan.

Nicole LoganAbout the author: Nicole Prévost Logan divides her time between Essex and Paris, spending summers in the former and winters in the latter. She writes a regular column for us from her Paris home where her topics will include politics, economy, social unrest — mostly in France — but also in other European countries. She also covers a variety of art exhibits and the performing arts in Europe. Logan is the author of ‘Forever on the Road: A Franco-American Family’s Thirty Years in the Foreign Service,’ an autobiography of her life as the wife of an overseas diplomat, who lived in 10 foreign countries on three continents. Her experiences during her foreign service life included being in Lebanon when civil war erupted, excavating a medieval city in Moscow and spending a week under house arrest in Guinea.

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Lyme Public Hall Celebrates Earth Day with Town-Wide Clean Up Through April 23

The Lyme Public Hall Association and the Town of Lyme are sponsoring a town-wide roadside clean-up April 1 through 23 in celebration of Earth Day.  Plastic trash bags will be available free to the public at the Hadlyme Country Store at the corner of Ferry Road and Rte. 82.  Bags can also be obtained at the Reynolds Store at 254 Hamburg Rd. (Rte. 156) in Lyme, the Lyme Public Library, and the Lyme Town Hall.

Residents are invited to collect litter that has accumulated along the roads over the winter months. The Town of Lyme will pick up bags left along the road side. Trash bags will be available after April 1.

For more information call 860 526-8886 or email wdenow@comcast.com.

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Middlesex Hospital to Create Office Building at Vacant Essex Site of Former Shoreline Medical Center

Middlesex Hospital has now announced plans for its medical facility in Essex, pictured above, which was closed on April 28, 2014, and has been vacant ever since. The proposal calls for renovating the property as a medical office building that will offer physical therapy and occupational medicine. Photo by Jerome Wilson.

ESSEX—Middlesex Hospital will turn its vacant building on Westbrook Road into a medical office building that will offer physical therapy and occupational medicine. The building will house a third department to be named at a later date.

The building has been vacant since the Middlesex Hospital Shoreline Medical Center moved to its new facility in Westbrook in 2014. Construction plans call for renovating the Essex facility to maximize service offerings, while also ensuring that each department located there has adequate space and the ability to grow.

The Hospital currently offers physical therapy and occupational medicine services at 192 Westbrook Road. Those departments will move into the new office building, and they have all been involved in the project’s planning process.

As part of the project, the medical office building will get a new roof and existing HVAC units will be replaced or rebuilt. Overgrown shrubbery will be removed, the exterior of the building will be painted, and the building will get new signs.

“We are excited to repurpose this building for the people of Essex and residents of surrounding shoreline communities,” said David Giuffrida, the Hospital’s vice president of operations. “This is an opportunity for the Hospital to further invest in its property and to offer several vital services at one location.”

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