September 25, 2016

Old Lyme Debate Sees Linares, Needleman Disagree Sharply on Some Issues, Agree on Others

Norm Needleman (left) and Art Linares

Essex First Selectman Norm Needleman (left) and Sen. Art Linares answered questions on a variety of topics in last night’s debate.

The candidates vying for the 33rd State Senate District seat met last night in front of a relatively small audience of around 75 in the somewhat rarefied atmosphere of Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS).  Rarefied because not a single resident of Old Lyme can vote for either candidate since Old Lyme is part of the 20th State Senate District currently represented by Republican Paul Formica.

Nevertheless, The Day and the Eastern CT Chamber of Commerce selected LOLHS as the location for the first debate of the season in the high profile 33rd State Senate race.  Two-term incumbent Sen. Art Linares (R) faced off against challenger Norman Needleman (D), who is in his third term as first selectman of Essex, in a gentlemanly debate conducted entirely from seated positions.

Linares was first elected in 2012 to the 33rd State Senate District seat, which was held for two decades by the late former State Senator Eileen Daily of Westbrook. He won a second term in 2014, defeating Democrat Emily Bjornberg of Lyme on a 22,762-17,326 vote. Needleman was first elected as an Essex Selectman in 2003

Linares&Needleman

The Day’s Editorial Page editor Paul Choiniere (center in photo above) moderated the debate assisted by retired Day Deputy Managing  Editor Lisa McGinley and Day Staff Writer Brian Hallenback.

The constant theme of both candidates’ responses was the need for the state to control spending and to increase jobs, but they expressed different routes towards achieving that goal interspersed with regular jabs against their respective opponent.

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Linares, pictured above, opened the latter theme by saying, “Desperate people do desperate things,” when asked about charges from Needleman that he (Linares) had used constituent names and addresses inappropriately.  Linares said, “They [his opponents] want us to focus on desperate things,” rather than the state’s real problems such as, “Every day we have businesses leaving the state,” declaring emphatically, “I am ready to stand up and fight for you.”

A question about whether the candidates supported the Citizen’s Election Program (CEP) drew one of the most heated exchanges with Linares saying candidates should be encouraged to fund their own election campaigns because, “the CEP is running a deficit year after year.”  Needleman responded immediately, “That’s an absurd and ridiculous statement,” adding that the CEP has proved to be a “leveling-field.”

The issue of a third casino in Connecticut also showed a sharp difference in the candidate’s positions with Linares supporting the proposal in order to “intercept tourists on their way to [the new MGM casino in] Massachusetts,” which he predicted would otherwise take potentially up to $100 million out of state.  Needleman said unequivocally, “I would not support the expansion of casinos in Connecticut.”

Responding to a question about Linares’s March 2016 vote against a measure to reduce the state’s budget deficit, Needleman declared, “That vote pushed me over the edge to run,” and that he was “perplexed,” when he had determined that Linares was one of the three senators who had voted against the proposal.  Linares countered that he had, “stood up against that budget because I knew the next day it would be in deficit,” adding, “We didn’t make the kinds of structural change needed,” concluding firmly, “I’m proud that I stood up against Dan Malloy’s budget.”

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Needleman, pictured above, then accused Linares of being something Needleman confessed he had been described as himself when much younger by a teacher, namely, “A master of the obvious.” Needleman agreed, “We all know now we need structural reform,” but argued, “That stand needed to be taken,” long before the actual vote.

The candidates were in relative harmony regarding the recent Connecticut Supreme Court ruling that education funding needs to be more equitable, both agreeing, in Linares’s words, “The legislature must find a fair and concise way to fund education,” and, in Needleman’s, “The judge should not legislate from the bench.”

Similarly, Needleman and Linares found common ground on the subject of how the state should improve its fiscal position with the former saying that the state needed to “control spending and increase jobs,” while the latter added, “… and end wasteful spending.”

Asked which Presidential candidate they were voting for, Needleman mentioned first, “I’ve never seen an election like this one,” then said, “I support Hilary Clinton … albeit at times, reluctantly.” In turn, Linares stated, “I’m voting for Donald Trump,” adding, “I’m voting Republican down the line this year,” commenting, “Our country and our state needs to change direction.”

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The candidates responded to several further questions including ones about the ease with which the state can sell or swap state-owned land, how the state should create jobs and the state’s response to the opioid crisis.

In his closing statement, Linares said his goal was, “to take Connecticut to the top again,” since under six year of Malloy’s leadership, “”I have seen the state move backwards.”  He explained that Connecticut Republicans have a plan to achieve that objective called, “A Confident Future,” and urged the audience to review it.

Taking his turn, Needleman said, “I started as a cab driver in New York – I have paid my dues,” adding, “Relationships mean everything to me. I am always telling the truth and not reverting to scripted talking points.” He concluded, “Glory has no role for me.”

Norm Needleman had a significant crowd of supporters, who stood outside the High School prior to the debate.

Norm Needleman had a significant crowd of supporters, who stood outside the High School prior to the debate.

Editor’s Note: The 33rd State Senate District consists of the Town of Lyme along with the Towns of Chester, Clinton, Colchester, Deep River, East Haddam, East Hampton, Essex, Haddam, Portland, Westbrook, and part of Old Saybrook.

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‘Bound for the Sound’ Road Race Benefits Lyme-Old Lyme Education Foundation

And they're off! Runners participating in last year's 10K start the race.

And they’re off! Runners participating in last year’s 10K take their first steps in the race.

The Lyme–Old Lyme Education Foundation’s (LOLEF) 5th annual Bound for the Sound Road Race takes place next Saturday, Sept. 24, starting at 8 a.m., on Hartford Ave., in the Sound View area of Old Lyme.

Runners can choose between a 10K or 5K course, or a one-mile Fun Run. The course travels through the scenic, easy terrain of South Lyme. All proceeds from the race benefit the Foundation’s educational programs in the Lyme-Old Lyme Public Schools.

Runners of all ages are welcome, including those in strollers. Register for the race at http://lolef.org or in person before the race. Registration is $35 for adults, $10 for high school students and younger, with faculty and staff of the Region 18 Schools receiving a $10 discount off the registration fee.

Mary Stone, LOLEF President, commented, “We draw a great crowd each year, especially for the 10K. It’s one of the few 10K races in the region: the course is beautiful and runners really love it.” LOLEF race organizer Chris Staab added, “It’s a great community event that supports public education while promoting health and wellness.”

The LOLEF is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, charitable organization, governed by a volunteer board of directors from the towns of Lyme and Old Lyme.

The LOLEF’s mission is to create, continue, and enhance the valuable educational programs above and beyond those traditionally provided by the Lyme-Old Lyme Public Schools. The Foundation aligns its work with the District’s strategic planning process to encourage innovative and effective learning opportunities for students of all ages. It raises and distributes funds to enhance enrichment programs, support innovative teaching and learning, and build educational partnerships between Lyme-Old Lyme students and the community.

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Letter From Paris – No, Now It’s Essex!  A Brave, New Museum Opens in DC Today

Nicole Prevost Logan

Nicole Prevost Logan

Editor’s Note:  Our popular writer from Paris, Nicole Prevost Logan, is back in Essex, CT, for the winter.  She does not normally write for us from Essex, but this year, she is making an exception and will be continuing to contribute articles to ValleyNewsNow.com and LymeLine.com during the winter months.  Here is her inaugural column from Essex about the opening of  a very special museum in Washington DC.

The Grand Opening of the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) will take place in Washington DC this coming Saturday, Sept. 24.  The NMAAHC, the 19th and newest of the Smithsonian museums, was established by a bi-partisan Act of Congress in 2003.

The Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture, Nov. 6, 2015. (Photo by Michael Barnes from http://newsdesk.si.edu/photos)

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, Nov. 6, 2015. (Photo by Michael Barnes / Smithsonian Institution.)

The massive structure occupies a prime location next to the Washington Monument and contrasts with the 555 ft. slender obelisk.  The dark bronze-colored metal lattice that covers the ‘Corona” also stands out from the white marble classical architecture of most of the other museums standing on the National Mall.

It has been a long struggle for the supporters, such as Congressman John Lewis (D-Georgia), to make the project a reality.  They needed to overcome the resistance from several senators who advocated another location. The final approval  was more than a triumph — it might be considered a miracle.  It succeeded in making a strong statement as to the importance of Black history and culture in the American nation.

The lead designer was David Adjaye, son of a Ghanaian diplomat and the lead architect Philip Freehon, who died in 2009.  Founding Director Lonnie B. Bunch III is the visionary and driving force of the project.  During some of the many interviews he gave to the press and to a variety of audiences, including select ones like the Aspen institute, he explains the building process and his objective with a very contagious enthusiasm.

The NMAAHC is not intended to be a Holocaust museum, he explains . Its mission is to show the pain but also the joy and the creativity of African-Americans.  A daunting fund-raising goal of 450,000 million dollars had to be reached.

The three-tier effect of the construction incorporates elements from African culture, such as the Yoruban crowns from Nigeria.  Inside the building, high tech designs and the enormity of the space will make it possible to be versatile in organizing several exhibits simultaneously.

The collections had to be created from zero.  It required a treasure hunt into the attics, trunks and basements of the population.  To date 35,000 artifacts have been collected.  A segregated train from outside Chattanooga (TN) was lowered by crane and the museum built around it.  All traffic stopped on Constitution Ave. when an oversized truck delivered the control tower from a federal prison.

Artifacts showing the terrible fate of the slaves are very moving.  Such is an amulet created by the Lombi tribe in the form of a shackle.  More tragic still were the shackles for children.

But fun and the world of entertainment are also present in the displays , such as Louis Armstrong and his trumpet, Lena Horne or Marianne Andersen . The film archives will be essential to build up history, from Harriet Tubman to the human rights movements of the 1950s and 1960s.

According to Washington insiders , the opening of the new museum is the hottest event in a decade.  More than 150,000 special tickets have been distributed to dignitaries while long lines of visitors gather at the entrances of the building to purchase tickets for general admission after the opening.

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Are You Hardwired to Vote for Clinton or Trump? Take a Survey to Help a Researcher Find Out …

Paul D. Tieger, an author and internationally recognized expert on Personality Type and voting behavior, has launched a unique survey, which looks at the 2016 presidential race in an entirely new light  —  how our innate Personality Type may be the stealth factor that determines the next leader of the free world.
 
Why are so many people  —  on the left and the right  —  terrified about the election results? Tieger says he hopes his research will answer this question, among others.
 
This survey only takes about five to six minutes. Results will be published in about two weeks.
 
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Donation Drop-off for Lyme Church Rummage Sale Starts Monday

The First Congregational Church of Lyme, 1 Sterling City Rd., Lyme, will hold its Annual Fall Rummage Sale on Saturday, Oct. 1, from 9 a.m.to 1 p.m.

Donations will be gratefully accepted from Monday, Sept. 26, to Thursday, Sept. 29, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

For more information, call 860-434-0220.

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CT Fund for the Environment Annual Meeting to be Held Sunday in Hartford

Engaging and educating communities for preservation of the Long Island Sound tidal estuary

save_the_sound_logoSave the Sound is celebrating National Estuaries Week Sept. 17 – 24 with a series of interactive and educational events throughout the Long Island Sound region. This annual celebration of estuaries—the vital coastal zones where freshwater rivers meet salty seas—is sponsored by Restore America’s Estuaries and its member organizations including Save the Sound.

This year’s events call attention to the many benefits of thriving coastal ecosystems, including how estuary conservation efforts support our quality of life and economic well-being.

“The Long Island Sound estuary is not only where freshwater rivers meet the saltwater Atlantic, but where wildlife habitat meets beaches and boating, and where modern industry meets traditional oystering,” said Curt Johnson, executive director of Save the Sound, which is a bi-state program of Connecticut Fund for the Environment (CFE).

Johnson continued, “All over the country, estuaries are the lifeblood of coastal economies. From serving as natural buffers to protect our coastlines from storms to providing unique habitat for countless birds, fish, and wildlife, estuaries deserve our protection and our thanks.”

Save the Sound is celebrating estuaries with a number of events this week, including the release of a new video, a presentation on Plum Island at the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library and the CFE/Save the Sound annual meeting:

Thursday, Sept. 22

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

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

Chris Cryder, Special Projects Coordinator for Save the Sound and Outreach Coordinator for the Preserve Plum Island Coalition, will host Preserving Plum Island for Future Generations, a special presentation on the importance of conserving the wildlife habitats and historic buildings of Plum Island, New York.

Plum Island flanks Plum Gut in the Long Island Sound estuary’s eastern end, where fast-moving tides create highly productive fishing grounds. The talk is part of a multi-week series featuring photographs and paintings of Plum Island, and lectures on its ecology, geology, and history.

  • Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library, 2 Library Lane, Old Lyme, Connecticut
  • 7 to 8 p.m.
  • Register by calling the library at 860-434-1684.

Sunday, Sept. 25

The Annual Meeting of Connecticut Fund for the Environment and its bi-state program Save the Sound will take place in the Planet Earth exhibit at the Connecticut Science Center. The event is open to the public with registration, and will feature a keynote address from Curt Spalding, administrator of EPA’s New England Region. Spalding is a leader in combatting nitrogen pollution and in climate change resilience planning efforts for New England.

To celebrate the contributions of volunteers to restoring the Long Island Sound estuary, Save the Sound has released a new video of a habitat restoration planting at Hyde Pond in Mystic. Following removal of the old Hyde Pond dam and opening 4.1 miles of stream habitat for migratory fish last winter (see time lapse video here), in May about 30 volunteers planted native vegetation along the Whitford Brook stream bank, under the direction of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, CT DEEP’s Fisheries division, and Save the Sound staff.

Find more information on the project’s benefits and funders here.

Look for the planting video on Save the Sound’s website, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter accounts.

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Recycling in Old Lyme: Dealing With Left-Over Paint

paint_cansOld Lyme’s Solid Waste & Recycling Committee is publishing several articles that lay out best recycling practices. The committee has covered the town’s current curbside program, and the safe disposal of prescription and over-the counter medications in previous articles. This article covers paint recycling.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that about 10 percent of all paint purchased in the United States is left-over – around 64 million gallons annually. This left-over and unused paint can cause pollution when disposed of improperly and, in the past, was costly for municipalities to manage. 

So, Connecticut enacted a paint stewardship law in 2011, which required that paint manufacturers assume the costs of managing unwanted latex and oil-based paints, including collection, recycling, and/or disposal of unwanted paint products. Connecticut was the third state in the country to pass paint legislation, following Oregon and California.

As a result of the paint stewardship law, a non-profit program was rolled out in 2012 by the American Coatings Association, which is a trade group of paint manufacturers. The program is funded by a fee paid by the consumer at the time of purchase.

“PaintCare” has resulted in a network of drop-off locations for that left-over paint (now 142 sites in the state.) Locations near Old Lyme include Sherwin Williams in Old Saybrook, True Value Hardware in East Lyme, and Rings End Lumber in Niantic. PaintCare now operates in the nine states that have enacted paint stewardship laws. There is no charge at the drop-off site. As noted, the program is wholly funded by fees assessed at the point of sale.

PaintCare drop-off sites accept latex and oil-based house paints, primers, stains, sealers, and clear coatings like shellac and varnish. All of these must be in the original container (no larger than five gallons) with the original printed label and a secured lid (i.e., no open or leaking containers.)  They do not accept aerosols, paint thinners, mineral spirits, and solvents.

You should review the PaintCare website (http://www.paintcare.org) before loading your trunk with your left-over paint.  The site has a complete list of accepted and non-accepted paint products and any drop-off limits.

What happens to the excess paint after drop-off?  PaintCare’s haulers move the paint from the drop-off sites to their facility for sorting. Their goal is to then recycle as much as possible according to a policy of “highest, best use”.

Most of the oil-based paint is taken to a plant where it is processed into a fuel and then burned to recover the energy value.

Clean latex paint (i.e., not rusty, dirty, molding or spoiled) is sent to recycling facilities and reprocessed into “new” paint; most latex paint that doesn’t contain mercury or foreign contaminants can be processed into recycled-content paint.

There are two types of recycled paint: re-blended and re-processed. Re-blended paint contains a much higher percentage of recycled paint than re-processed paint (which mixes old paint with new paint and other new materials).

Paint that is nearly new and in good condition is given to charitable organizations for re-sale. Habitat for Humanity’s ReStores also accept clean surplus paints.

According to the PaintCare 2014 Annual Report, 240,798 gallons of used paint were collected in the first year of the program; 81 percent of the latex paint was recycled into recycled-content paint, 4 percent ended as a landfill cover product, 6 percent was fuel-blended, and 9 percent was unrecyclable and sent to landfill as solids. All of the oil-based paint was used for fuel.

Our next article covers the recycling of mattresses.

If you have questions or comments related to this article or recycling in general, contact Leslie O’Connor at alete1@sbcglobal.net or Tom Gotowka at TDGotowka@aol.com.

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LAA Hosts Delicious, Art-Filled Fundraiser, Oct. 20; Tickets on Sale Now

Palate to Palette Image

Enjoy a sumptuous offering of fine food by the area’s top restaurants and caterers, plus a variety of local beer and wine at Palate to Palette, a delicious and art-filled fundraiser for the Lyme Art Association (LAA). This event, which takes place, Thursday, Oct. 20, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. includes a silent auction featuring specially created works of art plus a live auction, entertainment … and a surprise appearance by a famous artist of old!

“What’s more fun than a fall night, celebrating great art by wonderful artists, fabulous food from local establishments and live music, all in support of our local Art Association. The LAA supports and showcases fine representational art and holds dear the rich history in which we were founded.  In support of this great organization, please join us for this wonderful event,” comments the Palette to Palate Chair.

Your palate will be pleased with fine food from A Thyme to Cook, Ashlawn Farm, Cloud Nine Catering, Coffees Country Market, Fromage Fine Foods & Coffee, Gourmet Galley, Lillian’s Café, Moxie Bar & Restaurant, Old Lyme Inn, and The Public House Restaurant.

This special evening includes live music by Buffalo Jr. Band as well as an appearance of a famous artist of old by Back Stage Players.

Reservations for Palate to Palette are $50 per person ($45 for LAA members).

For additional information on Palate to Palette and to make a reservation, visit www.LymeArtAssociation.org or contact LAA’s Director of Development Gary Parrington at gary@lymeartassociation.org.

The Lyme Art Association was founded in 1914 by the American Impressionists and continues the tradition of exhibiting and selling representational artwork by its members and invited artists, as well as offering art instruction and lectures to the community. The Association is located at 90 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, CT, in a building designed by Charles Adams Platt and located within the town’s historic district.

Admission is free with contributions appreciated. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday, 12 to 5 pm, or by appointment.

For more information on exhibitions, purchase of art, art classes, or becoming a member, call 860-434-7802 or visit www.lymeartassociation.org.

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Lyme Fire Company Hosts 60th Annual Steak Dinner, Oct. 15: All Welcome

Lyme Fire Company (LFC) will hold its 60th Annual Steak Dinner on Saturday, Oct. 15 from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at the Hamburg Station, 213 Hamburg Rd. (Rte. 156), in Lyme, CT.

Tickets are $25 for adults and $8 for children and can be purchased at the door.

This is LFC’s major fundraising event of the year.  A new permanent outdoor grill was built in time for this year’s dinner.

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Old Lyme Historical Society Hosts Fall Dinner at Fox Hopyard, Oct. 23; All Welcome

The Old Lyme Historical Society will be sponsoring their annual Fall Dinner at ‘On The Rocks’ at Fox Hopyard in East Haddam, on Sunday, Oct. 23, with dinner starting at 5 p.m.

A limited number of tickets are available at Webster Bank, or from the Society’s website at www.olhsi.org.

Fox Hopyard is off the Hopyard Road, off Rte. 82.

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750+ Volunteers Clean Beaches from Norwalk to New London Including Griswold Point in Old Lyme

Kendall Perkins displays a skull she found during Save The Sound's Coastal Clean-up Day held yesterday at White Sand Beach.

Kendall Perkins displays a skull she found during Save The Sound‘s Coastal Clean-up Day held yesterday at White Sand Beach.

Save the Sound, a bi-state program of Connecticut Fund for the environment, organized 31 cleanups across Connecticut’s shoreline this weekend. The efforts are part of International Coastal Cleanup, which brings together hundreds of thousands of people each year to remove plastic bags, broken glass, cigarette butts, and other trash from the world’s shores and waterways. One of the areas included in the cleanup effort was from White Sand Beach to the tip of Griswold Point in Old Lyme.

The event was founded by Ocean Conservancy in 1985, and Save the Sound has served as the official Connecticut coordinator for the last 14 years.

save_the_sound_logo“We didn’t plan it this way, but I can’t imagine a better way to celebrate the 31st anniversary of International Coastal Cleanup Day than with 31 cleanups!” said Chris Cryder, special projects coordinator for Save the Sound. “The cleanup just keeps growing, in Connecticut and worldwide. We have some terrific new and returning partners this year, including the SECONN Divers, folks from the U.S. District Court, multiple National Charity League chapters, and many more.”

Cryder continued, “The diversity of the groups involved really reflects the truth that ocean health affects all of us. Clean beaches and oceans are safer for beachgoers and boaters, they’re healthier for wildlife that aren’t eating plastic or getting tangled up in trash, and they’re economic powerhouses for the fishing and tourism industries.”

The cleanups are co-hosted by a wide array of local partners including high schools, youth groups, and scout troops; churches; boaters and divers; watershed associations, park stewards, and land trusts. Twenty-eight cleanups will be held Saturday, with three more on Sunday and others through mid-October, for a total of 70 cleanups statewide.

Based on the estimates of cleanup captains, between 750 and 900 volunteers were expected to pitch in on Saturday alone. Last year, a total of 1,512 volunteers participated in Save the Sound cleanups throughout the fall. They collected more than three tons of litter and debris from 58 sites on Connecticut beaches, marshes, and riverbanks.

Over the event’s three-decade history, 11.5 million volunteers have collected 210 million pounds of trash worldwide. Every piece of trash volunteers find is tracked, reported to Save the Sound, and included in Ocean Conservancy’s annual index of global marine debris. The data is used to track trends in litter and devise policies to stop it at its source.

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Are You Ready For Some Football? 1pm Kick-Off at Lyme-Old Lyme HS for OL/Valley Warriors v. Saybrook Rams

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Action from last year’s game at Old Lyme.

This afternoon the Valley-Old Lyme Warriors meet the Saybrook Rams in the only game to be played in Old Lyme this season.  The Warriors regular home field is at Valley Regional High School.

Kick-off is at 1 p.m. on the Lyme-Old Lyme High School varsity field.

The Warriors come into today’s game with an unbeaten record having defeated Ellington 14-7 in the only game of the season to date.

We may not traditionally be a football town, but let’s turn out a huge crowd to support our boys!

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OL Library & St. Ann’s Host Art Show, Lecture Series on Plum Island

This signature painting for the 'Natural Beauty of Plum Island' exhibition is by John Sargent.

This signature painting for the ‘Natural Beauty of Plum Island’ exhibition is by John Sargent.

The Old Lyme–Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library and St. Ann’s Church announce their collaborative program series,The Natural Beauty of Plum Island: Sea, Seals  Sunsets and More beginning in September. The partnership will hold concurrent art exhibits and a lecture series.

The first art opening reception at the OLPGN Library will be held on Friday, September 16 from 5 to 7 p.m.  St. Ann’s will host an art opening luncheon reception at 11:45 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 18 following services.

In addition to the art exhibitions, a lecture series to educate the public about the island’s history, habitat and its preservation will be presented. The public is invited to attend the events and experience an amazing breadth of images of Plum Island in acrylics and pastels by painter John Sargent and photographs by Robert Lorenz.  The two exhibits will run until Nov. 23.

Experience the unprecedented access given to Sargent and Lorenz that allowed them to create works depicting beaches, rocky shorelines and coves, wildlife and the occasional visitors who come by boat and ferries. Sargent is a retired art teacher with a studio at his Quaker Hill home and Lorenz a retired commercial photographer, who divides his time between Old Saybrook and New York City.

The lecture series offers four distinct perspectives on the island by experts who will share their insights and knowledge of its importance to our region.  All programs begin at 7 p.m. and are free and open to the public. Note the location for each lecture.

Thursday, Sept 22 at OLPGN Library:

Preserving Plum Island for Future Generations” by Chris Cryder, Special Projects Coordinator for Save The Sound and Outreach Coordinator for the

Thursday, Oct 6 at Saint Ann’s Church:

Survey of the History of Plum Island” by Amy Folk, Collections Manager Southold Historical Society and co-author of the book “A World Unto Itself, The Remarkable History of Plum Island, New York”.

Thursday, Oct 27 at OLPGN Library:

Plum Island’s Place in the Geological History of Southern New England” by Ralph Lewis  Connecticut State Geologist Emeritus, and currently part-time Officiate of The Long Island Sound Resource Center  at the University of Connecticut- Avery Point   and a professor in residence in the Marine Studies Department  at UCONN- Avery Point.

Thursday, Nov. 10 at Saint Ann’s Church:

Plum Island’s Biodiversity, Birds, Bats, Bugs, and Basking Seals” by Matthew D. Schlesinger, PhD, Chief Zoologist New York Natural Heritage Program and Adjunct Assistant Professor, SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry.

Registration is expected for all lectures.

For programs at the Library, visit www.oldlyme.lioninc.orgfor the online calendar of events or call 860-434-1684 and ask for the Reference Desk. To register at St. Ann’s Church, call 860-434-1621 or email office@saintannsoldlyme.org.

The Library is located at 2 Library Lane, off Lyme Street in Old Lyme. Hours are Monday and Wednesday, 10am to 7pm; Tuesday and Thursday, 10am to 6pm; Friday, 10am to 5pm and Saturday, 10am to 4pm.

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Old Lyme’s O’Hanlon Named a ‘Mentor of the Year’ by Robinson+Cole Law Firm

Edward (Ted) O'Hanlan

Edward (Ted) O’Hanlan

Robinson+Cole recently recognized eight lawyers for pro bono work, community service, mentoring, and promoting an inclusive work environment. Included among them was Edward (Ted) V. O’Hanlan of Old Lyme, who was one of three lawyers to be presented with the Robinson+Cole Mentor of the Year Award.

This award recognizes and honors lawyers throughout the firm for their outstanding guidance, support, and encouragement of fellow lawyers in their pursuit of professional growth. The other two lawyers receiving the award were Nuala E. Droney and John B. Lynch Jr.

Robinson+Cole is a service mark of Robinson & Cole LLP, an Am Law 200 firm with 200 lawyers in nine offices serving regional, national, and international clients, from start-ups to Fortune 500 companies. For more information, please visit www.rc.com.

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Webster Bank Selected as NEDA’s Business of the Year

Webster Bank has announced it has been chosen as the Business of Year by the Northeastern Economic Developers Association (NEDA). The award was presented Sept. 12 during NEDA’s annual conference in New Haven, Connecticut.

John Guy, executive vice president and director of business banking, accepted the award on Webster’s behalf and spoke at the conference. “Over the years, our vision has grown, our mission has evolved, but our core values have remained the same – helping businesses and consumers achieve their financial goals,” said Guy. “This is about making communities where we live and work safer, stronger, and more vibrant through strong business relationships; and as they prosper, so will we.”

The award is given each year to a regional for-profit company that has shown outstanding and continued commitment to the economic well-being of the communities it serves. It also recognizes initiatives related to labor/workforce development, entrepreneurship, and overall understanding and support of local economic development issues.

Based in Liverpool, New York, NEDA was founded in 1956 as the Northeastern Industrial Developers Association. As a professional resource for economic developers, it has promoted professional economic and industrial development throughout the Northeast and has championed effective, innovative economic development practices for the past 60 years.

Webster Bank is a leading regional bank serving businesses and consumers in the northeast and celebrating its 80th anniversary.

Webster Financial Corporation is the holding company for Webster Bank, National Association. With $25.1 billion in assets, Webster provides business and consumer banking, mortgage, financial planning, trust, and investment services through 176 banking centers and 347 ATMs. Webster also provides telephone banking, mobile banking, and Internet banking.

Webster Bank owns the asset-based lending firm Webster Business Credit Corporation; the equipment finance firm Webster Capital Finance Corporation; and HSA Bank, a division of Webster Bank, which provides health savings account trustee and administrative services. Webster Bank is a member of the FDIC and an equal housing lender. For more information abou

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Stonewell Farm Hosts Two-Day Workshop on Dry Stone Wall Building, Sept. 24, 25

Andrew Pighill’s work includes outdoor kitchens, wine cellars, fire-pits, fireplaces and garden features that include follies and other whimsical structures in stone.

Andrew Pighill’s work includes outdoor kitchens, wine cellars, fire-pits, fireplaces and garden features that include follies and other whimsical structures in stone.

KILLINGWORTH — On Sept. 24 and 25, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily,  Andrew Pighills, master stone mason, will teach a two-day, weekend long workshop on the art of dry stone wall building at Stonewell Farm in Killingworth, CT.

Participants will learn the basic principles of wall building, from establishing foundations, to the methods of dry laid (sometimes called dry-stacked) construction and ‘hearting’ the wall. This hands-on workshop will address not only the structure and principles behind wall building but also the aesthetic considerations of balance and proportion.

This workshop expresses Pighill’s  commitment to preserve New England’s heritage and promote and cultivate the dry stone wall building skills that will ensure the preservation of our vernacular landscape.

This workshop is open to participants, 18 years of age or older, of all levels of experience. Note the workshop is limited to 16 participants, and spaces fill up quickly.

You must pre-register to attend the workshop.  The price for the workshop is  $350 per person. Stonewell Farm is located at 39 Beckwith Rd., Killingworth CT 06419

If you have any questions or to register for the workshop, contact the Workshop Administrator Michelle Becker at 860-322-0060 or mb@mbeckerco.com

At the end of the day on Saturday you’ll be hungry, tired and ready for some rest and relaxation, so the wood-fired Stone pizza oven will be fired up and beer, wine and Pizza Rustica will be served.

About the instructor: 

 Born in Yorkshire, England, Andrew Pighills is an accomplished stone artisan, gardener and horticulturist. He received his formal horticulture training with The Royal Horticultural Society and has spent 40+ years creating gardens and building dry stone walls in his native England in and around the spectacular Yorkshire Dales and the English Lake District.

Today, Pighills is one of a small, but dedicated group of US-based, certified, professional members of The Dry Stone Walling Association (DSWA) of Great Britain. Having moved to the United States more than 10 years ago, he now continues this venerable craft here in the US, building dry stone walls, stone structures and creating gardens throughout New England and beyond.

His particular technique of building walls adheres to the ancient methods of generations of dry stone wallers in his native Yorkshire Dales. Pighills’ commitment to preserving the integrity and endurance of this traditional building art has earned him a devoted list of private and public clients here and abroad including the English National Trust, the English National Parks, and the Duke of Devonshire estates.

His stone work has been featured on British and American television, in Charles McCraven’s book The Stone Primer, and Jeffrey Matz’s Midcentury Houses Today, A study of residential modernism in New Canaan Connecticut. He has featured  in the N Y Times, on Martha Stewart Living radio, and in the Graham Deneen film short  “Dry Stone”, as well as various media outlets both here and in the UK, including an article in the Jan/Feb 2015 issue of Yankee Magazine.

Pighills is a DSWA fully qualified dry stone walling instructor. In addition to building in stone and creating gardens, Pighills teaches dry stone wall building workshops in and around New England.

He is a frequent lecturer on the art of dry stone walling, and how traditional UK walling styles compare to those found in New England. His blog, Heave and Hoe; A Day in the Life of a Dry Stone Waller and Gardener, provides more information about Pighills.

For more information, visit www.englishgardensandlandscaping.com

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Potapaug Audubon Hosts Program on Horseshoe Crabs, Oct. 6

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Potapaug Audubon presents “Horseshoe Crabs, Long Island Sound’s Living Fossils” on Thursday, Oct. 6, at 7 p.m. at the Old Lyme Town Hall, 52 Lyme St. The guest speaker will be Penny Howell, Senior Biologist with the DEEP.

The event is free. All are welcome.

For more information, call 860-710-5811.

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Old Lyme Inn Owners Offer Unique Opportunity to an Experienced Chef/General Manager

Ken and Chris Kitchings are ready to welcome guests to the Inn's celebratory weekend.

Old Lyme Inn owners Ken and Chris Kitchings are looking for someone to take on the restaurant side of the business. (File photo.)

SIDE DOOR JAZZ CLUB AND INN REMAIN FULLY OPERATIONAL WHILE RESTAURANT OPERATIONS ARE RECONFIGURED 

Almost on a whim, Ken and Chris Kitchings purchased the long-neglected Old Lyme Inn in 2011 and then spent a full year renovating the exterior of the main building while also updating and upgrading all systems and décor.  In April of 2012, they opened the restaurant and eight of the 13 rooms and the following year, they opened the remaining five rooms and The Side Door jazz club.

The property is significant covering almost two acres and, apart from the elegant rooms and the extremely popular jazz club, it also features a variety of dining areas. These include a beautiful patio shaded by a large maple tree (40 seats), a bar room (38 seats), a main dining room primarily used for special events (60+ seats) and a small private room (18 seats).

The Side Door is a 75-seat intimate space that includes a full-service bar and showcases world-class jazz musicians every Friday and Saturday night.  Having rapidly established a national reputation, it was a tremendous honor when Downbeat magazine recognized the club in February 2016 as one of the premier jazz clubs in the world.

The Old Lyme Inn is located just seconds away from the I-95 Exit 70 off-ramp.

The Old Lyme Inn is located just seconds away from the I-95 Exit 70 off-ramp.

The Inn enjoys a prime location  moments away from the foot of the I-95 Exit 70 off-ramp, placing it exactly two hours from both Boston and New York. The 13 guest rooms are sold out most weekends with wedding guests in the warm months and attendees of The Side Door jazz club during the remaining months.

With the club, restaurant and guest rooms — not to mention the outstanding central location — there is unquestionably vast potential in the property.  Moreover, the Inn is located directly across the street from the Florence Griswold Museum, which is recognized as the birthplace of American Impressionism.

This past August Ken and Chris were obliged to curtail restaurant service due to a lack of kitchen staff. Both The Side Door and the Inn remain fully operational — special events are being executed as planned, utilizing a skeleton crew of loyal staff.

Chris notes, “Ceasing normal restaurant operations was a very difficult but very necessary decision.”  She comments, “‘Google’ chef shortage and you will see that Connecticut and Southern New England are not alone in the current chef shortage dilemma. Restaurants here and abroad are experiencing difficulty in staffing their kitchens.”

Explaining how she and Ken are hoping to resolve the current situation, Chris says, “We are actively looking for a chef/general manager to take over management of the property. This could be an ideal opportunity for a chef/ manager from New York, Boston or any metropolitan area who would like to establish him or herself (with family) in a wonderful small community.”

But what makes this a unique opportunity for the right person is the “package” that Chris and Ken are offering.  Ken notes, “We are open to suggestions and creative concepts for utilizing this beautiful property. Ultimately, the Old Lyme Inn might become an establishment that is more than a restaurant and inn. The possibilities are limited only by the imagination.”

He concludes, “Our goal remains the same as when we purchased the property — to utilize and operate the entire property to the benefit of the community. We would like to think that the opportunity and support we can offer someone who is willing to work hard is greater than if they were to start a hospitality business from scratch on their own.”

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Lyme-Old Lyme HS’s Bocian Joins Statewide Student Program to Increase Literacy Rates

Connecticut Voice's Executive Board gathers for a photo, From left to right (back row), Kelley Gifford, Haoyi Wang, Hannah Lamb, Priya Mistri, KaltenReese Hasankolli, Izzy King, Hailey Jimenez, Gary Bocian from Lyme-Old Lyme High School, Alexandra Chitwood, Evani Dalal; (front row), Isha Dalal (founder) and Stephen Armstrong (advisor).

Connecticut Voice’s Executive Board gathers for a photo. From left to right (back row), Kelley Gifford, Haoyi Wang, Hannah Lamb, Priya Mistri, Kalten Reese Hasankolli, Izzy King, Hailey Jimenez, Gary Bocian from Lyme-Old Lyme High School, Alexandra Chitwood, Evani Dalal; (front row), Isha Dalal (founder) and Stephen Armstrong (advisor).

Gary Bocian of Old Lyme, a sophomore at Lyme-Old Lyme High School, has been named a member of the executive board of a new, statewide, student organization called Connecticut Voice.  Katie Reid from LOLHS is also participating in the program.

A kick-off event to launch the program will be held in Hartford at the Capitol Building on Wednesday, Sept. 14. Secretary of the State Denise Merrill, Literacy Director for the State Department of Education Dr. Melissa Hickey, and Governor Dannel Malloy are just a few of the featured speakers at the event.

Founded by Trumbull High School senior, Isha Dalal, Connecticut Voice is an innovative program to give students in the state of Connecticut an opportunity to directly impact their community. More than 60 students from across the state are part of the program.

The goal of the program is for students to pass a law at the state level. This year, the program will focus on literacy rates to help close the education gap within Connecticut. At the event on Wednesday, students will be able to ask questions and learn more about why it is so important to give back to the community.

Not only is the group going to work towards passing legislation, but members will also start new community initiatives as well. For example, they will be holding a statewide book drive.

Dalal started this program while volunteering for New Haven Reads. After realizing that a large population of students exists, who are not afforded the same educational opportunities she has enjoyed, she was motivated to try and change that situation.

With interests ranging from legislation to neuroscience, Dalal created Connecticut Voice, a program that could encompass both. “To understand how to increase literacy rates, it is important to understand the brain as well as the community aspect. Before one can solve a problem, he or she must understand it first,” Isha stated when describing the program.

Working closely with Stephen Armstrong, the Social Studies Consultant for the State Department of Education, and with organizations such as the Trumbull Business-Education Initiative and the Trumbull ACE Foundation, Dalal was able to create this program. She met with the Secretary of the State’s Office, members of the State Board of Education, her superintendent, and the Commissioner of Education to garner support and create a solid foundation for Connecticut Voice

When asked why she created this program, Dalal said, “I want every student to know that they can make a difference despite their age, their background, or their interests. “

“The unique aspect of our program is that it is for students, by students. If someone has an idea and they are willing to work hard, they can do whatever they set their mind to. After reaching out to different leaders, I realized that there are so many people that care just as much as I do and, together, we can create a better world and help improve the lives of hundreds of people.”

Bocian is eagerly anticipating the launch of the program on Wednesday.  When asked in an email by LymeLine what he is most excited about with regard to the program, he responded, “Being involved with Connecticut Voice, I most look forward to making a difference in the community,” and “through our focus of illiteracy rates in Connecticut,” to help as many as students as possible.

Bocian continued, “Through Connecticut Voice, I hope to learn more about working with others on a shared goal. Even at the [first] Executive Board meeting, I was able to work with students from across Connecticut. I heard different perspectives from students because of where they are from. It really brings students ideas together. I also hope to improve on my leadership skills as this is a new opportunity to become involved in my community.”

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Final Week to View “The Artist’s Garden” at Florence Griswold Museum

Exterior view of the Florence Griswold Museum, which hosts a Free Day for New London residents on Sunday.

Exterior view of the Florence Griswold Museum on Lyme Street.

This is the final week for the exhibition, The Artist’s Garden: American Impressionism and the Garden Movement, 1887–1920. The exhibition is on view through Sept. 18, and its presentation at this museum is supported by a grant from Connecticut Humanities.

Organized by the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, The Artist’s Garden tells the story of American Impressionists and the growing popularity of gardening as a leisure pursuit at the turn of the 20th century. Paintings and stained glass from the Pennsylvania Academy are blended with paintings, sculpture, prints, books, and photographs from the Florence Griswold Museum’s permanent collection, as well as selected private loans. Drawing on new scholarship, The Artist’s Garden considers the role of artists and designers in defining a cultivated landscape in an era of new attitudes toward leisure, labor, and a burgeoning environmentalism.

The Artist’s Garden is the first exhibition to situate discussions of the growth of the Garden Movement within the politics of the Progressive era, with which it overlapped at the turn of the twentieth century. The Progressive era was marked by intense political and social change. Along with the surge of nationalism and patriotic optimism came growing concerns over mass immigration, women’s suffrage, and urbanization. The Garden Movement proposed that the creation of public parks and the hobby of gardening could provide beauty and balance within this fast-changing world.

The American Impressionist works in this exhibition demonstrate the profound impact of theGarden Movement on the American culture. “Not only is the Florence Griswold Museum an ideal venue for this exhibition because of its history as a boardinghouse for artists and its restored gardens, but also because Connecticut women like Old Lyme’s Katharine Ludington played an important part in Progressive-era causes such as women’s suffrage while also tending a much loved garden,” said Curator Amy Kurtz Lansing.   

Many American artists developed their interest in gardens from their travels overseas. The outdoors became a major subject for Impressionists as they embraced painting outside, or en plein air. Not only does Daniel Garber’s Saint James’s Park, London, 1905 (on loan from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts – PAFA) demonstrate theImpressionists’ careful study of light and quick, loose brushwork, but an attempt to capture the tension within urban life between the realities of development and the desire for pastoral tranquility. Public parks like St. James’s were praised by critics as peaceful oases amid the hectic frenzy of city life.

The Progressive era was a time of important change for women. They became leaders of the Garden Movement who combined their creative interests in art and gardening with a passion for Progressive causes, such as women’s suffrage. By blending art, writing, and gardening in their careers, women like Anna Lea Merritt were at the vanguard of professionalizing women’s work. They used their public platform to engage social issues like environmental conservation and immigration through the metaphor and example of the garden.

Professional artists such as Cecilia Beaux, Violet Oakley, and Jane Peterson participated in these changes by coupling their interest in modern art with a love of the garden. Peterson wrote that she loved painting flowers for their “prismatic hues of therainbow.” In Spring Bouquet, ca. 1912 (on loan from PAFA) the steeply tilted perspective and sense of patterning inthe composition are variations on the stylistic principles of Post-Impressionism. Locally, practitioners like artist, gardener, and suffragist Katherine Ludington exemplified this trend.

The exhibition will include selections from FGM’s Ludington Family Collection that acknowledge the expression of the Garden Movement in Connecticut, as well as around the family’s other home base in Philadelphia, the epicenter of the Garden Movement.

'Crimson Rambler' by Philip Leslie Hale is a signature paintings of the exhibition.

‘Crimson Rambler’ by Philip Leslie Hale is a signature paintings of the exhibition.

Even as women were making inroads towards more equal status and finding personal and professional expression through the venue of the garden, images that presented a sentimental and idealized vision of women posed decoratively in nature were still very popular. Philip Leslie Hale’s The Crimson Rambler, ca. 1908 (on loan from PAFA) embodies this simultaneous tendency to equate women with the beauty of flowers. He pairs a flowering vine with a women by adding touches of rose red to the lady’s hat and sash, and by draping each across the porch or trellis. Hale’s blooms are considerably larger than the flowers actually grow, suggesting that he idealized the fashionable plant as much as the woman beside it.

Hale’s painting also demonstrates his knowledge of gardening. Many artists combined their devotion to painting flowers with the practice of planting and tending gardens. “An artist’s interest in gardening is to produce pictures without brushes,” Anna Lea Merritt observed in her 1908 book An Artist’s Garden Tended, Painted, Described. Artists’ gardens were personal laboratories for Impressionist studies of light and color. They were outdoor classrooms where painters could teach their students about form and composition.

Special emphasis is given in the exhibition to the many ways Miss Florence’s garden served as a space for creative expression, both for her as a gardener and for the artists who painted and taught there. Paint was not the only medium used to translate nature’s vibrancy. Peony Window Panel, 1908-1912 (on loan from a private collection) by Louis Comfort Tiffany shows his appreciation for color and pattern. As a glass designer, his distinctive floral aesthetic defined the era and was perhaps cultivated in his own Long Island garden where he enjoyed painting.

The grounds of the Florence Griswold Museum provide the perfect accompaniment to The Artist’s Garden. After walking through the restored 1910 garden on the Museum’s campus, visitors will see first-hand in the galleries how artists captured nature’s fleeting beauty on canvas. “Miss Florence’s” lovingly tended garden was a favorite subject for many of the artists of the Lyme Art Colony who stayed at her boardinghouse.

One of the paintings on view in the exhibition, William Chadwick’s On the Piazza, ca. 1908 (collection of the Florence Griswold Museum) shows a female model posing on the side porch of the boardinghouse. Chadwick first visited Old Lyme in 1902 and soon became a central figure in this artist colony, along with Childe Hassam, Robert Vonnoh, and other painters who sought the colonial-era architecture and gardens of Old Lyme and their nostalgic suggestions of a simpler, earlier time, far removed from hectic, modern city life. A walk to the Lieutenant River, on the grounds of the Museum, provides further examples of vistas painted by the nature-loving artists.

Visitors can tour the historic boardinghouse – the 1817 Florence Griswold House – where the artists of the Lyme Art Colony lived, played, and worked. Paintings in the home continue the story of the artists’ love of the landscape. A new Guide to the Historic Landscape encourages visitors to walk where the artists created some of their most enduring paintings.

The recipient of a Trip Advisor 2015 Certificate of Excellence, the Florence Griswold Museum has been called a “Giverny in Connecticut” by the Wall Street Journal, and a “must-see” by the Boston Globe. In addition to the restored Florence Griswold House, the Museum features a gallery for changing art exhibitions, education and landscape centers, a restored artist’s studio, thirteen acres along the Lieutenant River, and extensive gardens. TheMuseum is located at 96 Lyme Street, Old Lyme, Connecticut. Visit www.FlorenceGriswoldMuseum.org for more information.

The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme hosts a celebration of the site’s historic gardens featuring special events, displays, demonstrations, and family activities. From June 3 through 12, visitors can enjoy a wide variety of activities for all ages and interests.

The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme hosts a celebration of the site’s historic gardens featuring special events, displays, demonstrations, and family activities. From June 3 through 12, visitors can enjoy a wide variety of activities for all ages and interests.

Garden lovers are invited to enjoy Café Flo Tuesdays and Saturdays from 11:30am-2:30pm and from 1-3:30pm on Sundays. Menu items are garden-fresh and family friendly. Dine on the veranda overlooking the Lieutenant River or pick up a basket and blanket and picnic along the river.

The Museum is located on a 13-acre site in the historic village of Old Lyme at 96 Lyme Street, exit 70 off I-95. Admission is $10 for adults, $9 for seniors, $8 students, and free to children 12 and under. For more information, visit FlorenceGriswoldMuseum.org or call 860-434-5542 x 111.

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