March 29, 2017

Recycling in Old Lyme: Getting Rid of Mattresses

mattresses
LymeLine.com is pleased to be publishing a series of articles written by Old Lyme’s Solid Waste & Recycling Committee that lay out best recycling practices.  To date, the committee’s articles have covered Old Lyme’s curbside trash and recycling programs; the safe disposal of medications; and paint recycling.  This article covers the recycling of mattresses and box springs.

The International Sleep Products Association (ISPA), which is the trade association for the mattress industry, estimates that 35 to 40 million new mattresses and box springs are sold in the United States every year, and at least 15 to 20 million are discarded.

Unfortunately, mattresses are really hard to throw out; there is just no easy way to dispose of them.  They are difficult to land-fill because they can’t be easily compressed and crushed; they pose challenges for incinerators.

So, disposal of mattresses and box springs at the end of their useful life was difficult for towns to manage. Hartford estimated that mattress disposal cost that city about $400,000 in 2010.  Consequently, they are often illegally dumped and found on vacant lots and roadsides.  As a matter of fact, there was a mattress lawn ornament right here in Old Lyme on Rte. 156. It was only recently removed after gracing our roadside for several months. (Thanks, neighbor!)

Connecticut passed comprehensive mattress stewardship legislation in 2013 (the first state to do so.)  Similar to paint, the law requires mattress manufacturers to establish programs to manage unwanted mattresses and box springs; and, like paint, a fee is assessed at the point of sale to fund the program.  California and Rhode Island have since passed similar mattress stewardship laws.

The Mattress Recycling Council (MRC) was formed by ISPA to operate recycling programs in the states that have such laws. Connecticut’s program launched in May, 2015.  “Bye Bye Mattress” (really!) is the recycling program established by MRC. They provide haulers that pick up and transport mattresses and box springs from drop-off sites to recycling centers. Our local drop-off site is Old Lyme’s transfer station.  There are currently mattress recycling facilities in East Hartford and Bridgeport; ours extends to East Hartford.  Mattresses get recycled through the state’s recycling program regardless of when they were purchased.  Note that most mattress retailers will remove your old mattress on delivery of new.

The industry estimates that nearly 90 percent of used mattress and box springs’ components can be recycled — the metal springs, foam, wood and fibers — and made into new useful products.

Before putting this topic to rest, it’s worthwhile to mention the issue of bed bugs. Infested mattresses require special handling.  If you have concerns regarding bed bugs you can find information and guidance from Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection at http://www.ct.gov/deep/cwp/view.asp?a=2714&q=482160&deepNav_GID=1645%20#BedBugs or the Connecticut Coalition Against Bed Bugs at http://www.ct.gov/caes/cwp/view.asp?a=2826&q=437580.

Our next few articles will cover the proper recycling of electronics, tires, and bulky items like appliances and furniture.

If you have questions or comments, contact Leslie O’Connor at alete1@sbcglobal.net or Tom Gotowka at TDGotowka@aol.com.

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Nancy Larson Foundation Opens Applications for 2016 Education Scholarships

The Nancy Larson Foundation is currently accepting applications from college upperclassmen and graduate students preparing to be elementary school teachers.

The Nancy Larson Foundation, which is headquartered in Old Lyme, is dedicated to helping promising students majoring in elementary education.

Since its inception in 2006, the Foundation has awarded more than 50 scholarships to students across the country.

Eachyear the Foundation awards at least five $1,000 scholarships to deserving college students who excel in the classroom and their communities.

Nancy Larson is the author of two nationally successful curriculum programs: Nancy Larson® Science K–4 and Saxon Math K-4.

She feels that it is critical to support the development of young teachers who shape children’s minds and better position our country to become a leader in science and math.

“We want to provide a helping hand to aspiring teachers who have worked hard to position
themselves for anoutstanding career,’’ said Larson. “The Foundation works to positively affect the quality of education forthousands of students taught over the lifetime of our Nancy Larson Foundation Scholars.” Juniors, seniors, and graduate students who have declared an elementary education major are invited to apply.

They should submit a personal narrative about why they want to teach and what will make them excellent teachers.

Applicants are also asked to include community service activities as well as experiences they have had working with children. Applications are accepted from Oct.1 through Nov. 15, 2016. Applications must be completed in full and postmarked by Nov. 15 to be considered.

Scholarship recipients will be notified by Dec. 31, 2016.

Larson, a former teacher and curriculum director, has dedicated her life to advancing elementary education. Her original Saxon Math K–4 program  was developed because teachers needed a classroom-­tested math program that would prepare children for advanced math classes. In recent years, Nancy has used the same approach to develop Nancy Larson Science for kindergarten through fourth grade students.

The program was written to provide in ­depth science content in an easy-to-­teach format.

To learn more about the Nancy Larson Foundation and this scholarship opportunity, visit http://nancylarsonfoundation.org.

The Nancy Larson Foundation, founded in Old Lyme, CT, has a history of 10 years awarding prospectiveelementary educators scholarships to encourage and support their education. The Nancy Larson Foundation awards scholarships to the top entries.

For entry deadlines and requirements, or more information on the Foundation, visit http://nancylarsonfoundation.org.

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Buy a Pie! Lyme-Old Lyme Class of 2017 Parents Host Safe Grad Pie Sale

pie-clip-art-pie_cherry_desserts_2929pxParents of theLyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) Class of 2017 are now taking orders for fresh pies, tea breads and cookie dough from Bishop’s Orchards in Guilford, Connecticut.

Deadline for orders is Nov. 8 for Nov. 18 delivery — just in time for the holidays!  Check out the Safe Grad website which has a link to the order form

There is a great tradition in Lyme-Old Lyme that for many years, parents of the LOLHS senior class have hosted an all-night “Safe Graduation Party” for the senior class. The goal is to provide a safe, substance free party in a “secret location” where students have the opportunity to share food, music, entertainment and memories with their classmates. For as long as these parties have been provided for our seniors, the community has enjoyed trouble-free graduation nights.

While the party is hosted entirely by parents of seniors, it takes a community effort to help our children remain safe and supervised while celebrating this wonderful milestone. Funding for the party comes entirely from fundraisers, donations from local businesses, organizations, parent and individual contributions.

Although LOLHS and the Regional School District 18 Board of Education support this event, they do not contribute any financial support. The parent organizers rely on fundraisers and donations from parents of seniors and the community to make this event a success.

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Groundbreaking Ceremony Celebrates Start of Long-Anticipated Sound View Improvement Project

From left to right, Sound View Improvement Committee members Bonnie Reemsnyder, Frank Pappalardo, Jim Lampos, and MaryJo Nosal dig a ceremonial shovel in the sand at the groundbreaking on Hartford Ave. held Oct. 3.

From left to right, Sound View Improvement Committee members Old Lyme First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder, Sound View Commission Chairman and SVIC member Frank Pappalardo, SVIC members Angelo Faenza, Jim Lampos and Rob Haramut (from RiverCOG), and Old Lyme Selectmen Mary Jo Nosal and Skip Sibley dig a ceremonial shovel in the sand at the groundbreaking on Hartford Ave. held Oct. 3.

The sun shone brightly as town officials, Sound View Improvements Committee (SVIC) members, design and construction personnel and a handful of Sound View residents cheerfully gathered at the flagpole at the foot of Hartford Ave. for a groundbreaking ceremony to celebrate the start of construction on the long-awaited project to upgrade the street.

Old Lyme residents originally approved $877,000 for the project back in July of this year but this past Tuesday (Sept. 27) increased the amount approved to $911,100 to allow for the bids having come in higher than expected. The improvements comprise the reinstatement of horizontal parking on Hartford Avenue, sidewalks expanded from 3 ft. to 6 ft., lighting, plantings, bike racks and the addition of curbs and bump-outs.

A view up Hartford Ave. looking north prior to the start of the project.

A view up Hartford Ave. looking north prior to the start of the project.

The town expects to receive 80 percent reimbursement on the current project and is still exploring ways to fund the reinstatement of a park (named Sound View Green) and upgraded restrooms, which were originally included in the plan but have both now been removed due to budget overruns.

Construction is scheduled to start Monday, Oct. 10.

Construction is scheduled to start Monday, Oct. 10.

Asked how she felt now that the start of construction is finally imminent, Old Lyme First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder, who also served on the SVIC, responded enthusiastically, “I’m delighted and can’t wait to see everything accomplished.  It’s going to be wonderful and also a great place to walk.”  She commented, “People have been talking about this since I became a Selectwoman in 2003,” adding, “For decades, we’ve talked about this [Sound View] being a ‘diamond in the rough.’ People are tired of talking about it – they want to see some action.”

The theme that the groundbreaking represented the culmination of years of work by many people was echoed repeatedly with Sound View Commission Chairman and SVIC member Frank Pappalardo saying, “It’s been a long time coming … it’s tremendous that we’re actually starting the project.”  He noted that the project represented, “A lot of hard work by a lot of dedicated people.”

From left to right,Ken Golden from B&W Paving and Landscaping, Sound View Commission Chairman and SVIC member Frank Pappalardo, Old Lyme Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal, Kurt Prochorena Principal and Civil Engineer from the engineering design firm The BSC Group, Stuart Greacen and Ed Steward from WMC-the project inspection firm.

The design and construction project personnel gathered for a photo, from left to right,Ken Golden from B&W Paving and Landscaping, Old Lyme Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal, Kurt Prochorena, Principal and Civil Engineer from the engineering design BSC Group, and Stuart Greacen and Ed Steward from WMC, the project inspection firm.

The project’s designer was the BSC Group of Glastonbury, Conn., and its principal Kurt Prochorena, a civil engineer, also noted the evolution of the project had taken a long time but pointed out, “It’s going to really improve the character of the area.”

Recalling that the eight-member SVIC had started meeting every two weeks back in 2014, SVIC Chairman and Old Lyme Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal said, “I am extremely gratified by all the efforts of the [SVIC] committee, the Sound View Commission, residents, town officials and the BSC Group, who have brought this project to fruition. It’s hopefully the start of other great things in this area.”

Sound View residents (from left to right) Frank and Patty Pappalardo, Shirley Annunziata and Joann Lishing are all smiles at the conclusion of the groundbreaking ceremony.

Sound View residents (from left to right) Frank and Patty Pappalardo, Shirley Annunziata and Joann Lishing are all smiles at the conclusion of the groundbreaking ceremony.

Sound View residents Shirley Annunziata and Joann Lishing, who have both lived in Sound View for many years, were on hand to enjoy the celebrations.  Annunziata mentioned that her family has owned in property in Sound View for some 95 years and was the first of Italian descent to buy in the area. Lishing repeated the much used phrase of the day, “This has been a long time coming,” before noting with a broad smile, “I’m so excited. It’s going to be beautiful!”

 

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Old Lyme’s Shelley Gregory Walks for 10th Year in Terri Brodeur Breast Cancer Foundation’s ‘Walk Across SE CT’

Shelley Gregory takes a well-deserved break from her training for today's 26.2 mile TBBCF walk.

Shelley Gregory takes a well-deserved break from her training for today’s 26.2 mile TBBCF walk.

On Oct. 1, Shelley Gregory of Old Lyme is walking in the 11th annual Terri Brodeur Breast Cancer Foundation’s (TBBCF) ‘Walk Across Southeastern Connecticut.’  Not only is this the 10th year that Shelley will have completed the full 26.2 mile TBBCF walk, but — on a personal basis — it is also her 8th year cancer-free!

If you would like to contribute to Shelley’s fund-raising goal for this year, then click here.  Shelley was honored this past spring by the TBBCF for her incredible fund-raising efforts over the past 10 years.

Congratulations … and Go, Shelley, Go!

The Terri Brodeur Breast Cancer Foundation has funded over $3M in breast cancer research (30 grants of $100,000 each), while raising funds, hopes and dreams for a breast cancer-free future.

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

Shelley Gregory (right) is often joined by friends on her fundraising walk -- and will be again this year. Julie Edmundsen stand to Shelley's left after completing the walk last year.

Shelley Gregory (right) is often joined by friends on her fundraising walk — and will be again this year. Julie Edmundson stand to Shelley’s left after completing the walk last year.

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

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

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

It is estimated that there will be more than 3,000 cases of breast cancer diagnosed in Connecticut in 2015 and that almost 500 will die from the disease. By walking in the 11th Anniversary Walk Across Southeastern Connecticut, funding of breast cancer research will increase bringing with it with hopes for earlier detection, better treatments and ultimately prevention of this disease.

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

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

The 11th Anniversary Walk provides a marathon option to suit everyone’s level of ability.

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

TBBCF_walk_logo_203This walk follows a scenic route along the shoreline through Old Saybrook, Old Lyme, East Lyme and Waterford. The half marathon walk starts at Capitol Drive, East Lyme at 10 a.m. and the super quarter marathon walk starts at the Niantic Baptist Church, Niantic at 1 p.m. All walks end at the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, Waterford with closing ceremonies.

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

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

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

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Recycling in Old Lyme: Dealing With Left-Over Paint

paint_cansLymeLine.com is pleased to be publishing a series of articles written by Old Lyme’s Solid Waste & Recycling Committee that lay out best recycling practices.  To date, the committee’s articles have 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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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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9/11: We Will Remember Them

Twenty none hundred and sevent seven flags stand in front of Old Saybrook Town Hall in memory of the 2,977 lives lost on this day 15 years ago at the World Trade Center in New York Center.

Twenty nine hundred and seventy seven flags funded by an anonymous donor stand in front of Old Saybrook Town Hall in memory of the 2,977 lives lost on Sept. 11, 2001, at the World Trade Center in New York City. We remember and honor those who perished on that tragic day …

billboard

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Recycling in Old Lyme: How to Dispose of Medications

disposaldrugsOld Lyme’s Solid Waste & Recycling Committee is exploring ways to improve recycling in Old Lyme. We are publishing several articles that lay out best practices.

Our first article reviewed Old Lyme’s current curbside program. This article covers the safe disposal of prescription and over-the counter medications. Note that we sometimes refer to “DEEP” (The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection)as a source of information.

First, never flush your unwanted medications down the sink or toilet; they pass through septic systems and sewage treatment plants essentially unprocessed. Flushed medications can get into our lakes, rivers and streams. Of real concern, a nationwide study done in 1999 and 2000 by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) found low levels of antibiotics, hormones, contraceptives and steroids in 80 percent of the rivers and streams tested; further, research has shown that such continuous exposure to low levels of medications has altered the behavior and physiology of fish and other aquatic organisms.

Old Lyme residents have several options for safely disposing of medications but in all of these, keep the medications in their original container, but take care to protect your private information by either removing the label from the container or concealing it with a permanent marker.  The options are:

  • Occasional drug collection events sponsored by the Town or community organization.
  • Locally, watch for the Annual Drug Take Back Day sponsored by Lyme’s Youth Services Bureau.
  • Some police stations have a drop box drug disposal program where residents can anonymously discard unwanted or unused medications. Both the Clinton and Waterford Police Departments participate in the drop box program. A complete list of locations can be found at this link.
  • Some chain pharmacies (e.g., CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid) have disposal envelopes for prescription and over the counter drugs available for purchase; check with your pharmacy for details.
  • If the above doesn’t work for you, Connecticut’s Department of Consumer Protection suggests that you dispose of drugs in your household trash (where it will ultimately be incinerated) as follows: add hot water to dissolve the contents, or cover the contents with some noxious or undesirable substance; re-cover and place it all inside another larger container to ensure that the contents cannot be seen, and tape it shut.
  • unwanted pet medications should also be disposed as described above.
  • disposal of sharps: residents who are required to use injectable medications (e.g., insulin) can safely dispose of used needles and lancets by placing them in a puncture-proof, hard plastic container with a screw-on cap (like a bleach or detergent bottle). Tightly seal the container with the original lid and wrap with duct tape. Discard in a bag in your trash. Do not mix sharps with prescription drugs.
  • Some medications (e.g., chemotherapy drugs) require special handling; DEEP’s website provides more detail on disposing of such drugs and other medical supplies at this link.

This article covers methods for safe disposal of prescription and over-the-counter medications.  Our next article will cover the recycling of paint.

 Old Lyme’s Solid Waste & Recycling Committee meets monthly. If you have questions or comments, contact: Leslie O’Connor or TDGotowka@aol.com.

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Old Lyme Library Thanks Summer Reading Program Sponsors

Barbara Crowley, owner of The Chocolate Shell (left) stands with OL-PGN Children's Librarian Julie Bartley after Bartley has presented Crowley with a certificate in appreciation of her support of the Summer Reading Program.

Barbara Crowley, owner of The Chocolate Shell (left) stands with OL-PGN Children’s Librarian Julie Bartley after Bartley has presented Crowley with a certificate in appreciation of her support of the Summer Reading Program.

Celebrate the end of Summer Reading at the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes’s Masquerade-Themed Finale Party on Thursday, Sept. 1.  This event is for for teens in grades 6-12.

Create a masquerade mask at the library, or wear your own from home. Or…dress up as a character from one of your favorite books you read this summer!

The Old Lyme Ice Cream Shoppe receives its Certificate of Appreciation from the Children's Library for supporting the Summer Reading program.

The Old Lyme Ice Cream Shoppe receives its Certificate of Appreciation from the Children’s Library for supporting the Summer Reading Program.

This is the last chance to submit your reading logs for raffle entries into the grand prize drawing. All entries must be submitted by 3:30 p.m. and the drawing will take place at 4 p.m.

The Children’s Librarian Julie Bartley is delighted to announce that at the half-way point of this program more than 50,000 minutes had been read. She also wishes to acknowledge the support of The Chocolate Shell and The Old Lyme Ice Cream Shoppe, who donated prizes for the participants.

DaVinci Pizza receives its Certificate of Appreciation from the Old Lyme PGN Library Children's Librarian.

DaVinci Pizza receives its Certificate of Appreciation from the Old Lyme PGN Library Children’s Librarian.

Celebrate the end of summer reading at our Finish Line Fun Pizza Party on Friday, Sept. 2. Dress as your favorite sports star or as a character from a book that you read this summer.  This event is for youngsters in grades K-5

This is the last chance to submit your reading log for entries into the grand prize raffle. The prize drawing will be held at 4:45 p.m.  Registration is required.

Craousel Shop owners Dee and Jerry stand in front of their business proudly displaying their Certificate of Appreciation from the OL Library.

Craousel Shop owners Dee and Jerry stand in front of their business proudly displaying their Certificate of Appreciation from the OL Library.

The Children’s Librarian Julie Bartley is delighted to announce that at the half-way point of this program more than 30,000 minutes had been read. She also wishes to acknowledge the support of Da Vinci Pizza and the Old Lyme Carousel & Shop, who donated prizes for the participants.

All the businesses that received certificates have said they will hang them up in their place of business for all to see.

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Both I-95 Southbound Ramps at Exit 71 Closed for Two Weeks Starting 8/8, Detours in Place

Old Lyme Police patrol the currently closed entrance to the I-95 south bound on-ramp at Exit 71 on Four Mile River Rd.

Old Lyme Police patrol the currently closed entrance to the I-95 south bound on-ramp at Exit 71 on Four Mile River Rd. in Old Lyme.

Updated information from State Rep. Devin Carney:

The closure of Exit 71 on and off ramps for Four Mile River Road (Exit 71) will begin 12 a.m., Aug. 8, and is expected to be completed by Aug. 22.

The reconstruction of the southbound Exit 71 on and off ramps will involve full depth pavement replacement.

Lane Closure/Detour Information

Motorists on I-95 can expect temporary lane shifts and/or closures during the evening between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.

Motorists utilizing the Exit 71 southbound off ramp to access Four Mile River Rd. should use the off ramp for Exit 72 (Rocky Neck Connector) to Rte. 156 and Four Mile River Rd.

Motorists intending to access I-95 southbound should use Four Mile River Rd. to Rte. 156 to the Rocky Neck Connector and access I-95 Southbound via the Exit 72 on-ramp or use Rte. 1 or Rte. 156 to the Exit 70 on-ramp onto the Baldwin Bridge.

Motorists are encouraged to follow detour signs or use alternate routes.

Motorists are urged to obey the posted speed limit and proceed with caution when driving in this area.

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Midsummer Memories of a Magnificent Day … and Night

Old Lyme’s Midsummer Festival 2016 began Friday evening when the sun came out after torrential rain earlier in the day …

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Concert-goers gathered on the grounds on the Florence Griswold Museum to picnic, visit and await the performance by ‘The Voice’ finalist Braiden Sunshine …

Watching_concert_from_Lieutenant_River

Some decided the Lieutenant River was the perfect spot to listen the music …

Braiden_Sunshine

The aptly-named Braiden Sunshine and his band gave a terrific performance …

Hawaii_5.0_start_of_race

And then it was on to Saturday, which kicked off with the Hawaii-5.0 road race. Almost 300 runners competed in the 5K event, despite the intense heat and humidity …

weavers_on_large_loom

All along Lyme Street, there were things to see —  including these weavers at the Old Lyme Historical Society, Inc.

Scout_at_community_sculpture

… things to do … Scout Cushman posed delightfully in front of the community sculpture at Studio 80, on which people were adding their own designs …

Lemonade_stand_at_Gil_Boro

… and things to eat and drink — the lemonade stand at Studio 80 + Sculpture Grounds was a happy family affair.

LOL_Chamber_vendors

A new feature at the Festival this 30th anniversary year was the more than 30 vendors and a stage on which numerous youth musicians played in the field across from Lyme Academy College.  The vendors and performances were hosted by the Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce.

Veggies_at_FGM

The en plein air market at the Florence Griswold Museum was full of everything you can imagine, from flowers and fruit …

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… to jewels and jewelry.

Reggae_at_LACFA

Reggae music was the order of the day outside the John Sill House at Lyme Academy College …

Fence_artists

And down on the lawn in front of Center School, the fence artists displayed their work and drew customers galore.

Dancers_on_Gils_sculptures

Back at Studio 80, another new two-part event happened, first a fashion show by designers Susan Hickman and Anna Lucas followed by an incredible dance/acrobatic display by The Magnaterrestrials.

fireworks_500x346

And this very special day in the Old Lyme calendar ended with a bang when — despite the threat of rain —  the Town hosted another spectacular fireworks display for all to enjoy!

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Old Lyme Woman Takes a Personal Adventure to Row Irish in Ireland in Preparation for Currach Regatta in New London, Saturday

Curach rower Maureen Plumleigh stands in front of Old Lyme's Congregational Church wearing one of her delightful, signature hats.

Curach rower Maureen Plumleigh stands in front of Old Lyme’s Congregational Church wearing one of her delightful, signature hats.

During the month of June, I had a personal adventure.

In past summers, I typically have been a member of a team in New London, which rows a currach.  This is a traditional Irish fishing boat, and teams in the Northeast region compete during the summer months.  New London Currach Rowers will host its annual regatta for currach rowing teams throughout the Northeast Region on Saturday, July 30 at the Custom House pier in New London.

For the past six years, I have rowed regularly in the summer in order to make an acceptable showing against teams in the North American Currach Association (NACA) from Albany, Annapolis, Philadelphia, Boston, and Pittsburgh.

A currach is a traditional Irish boat, used both for transporting goods and animals to islands as well as for fishing on rough and stormy seas, now used in competitive Irish events.

A currach is a traditional Irish boat, used both for transporting goods and animals to islands as well as for fishing on rough and stormy seas, now used in competitive Irish events.

I row reasonably well, but anecdotes from the Albany team about participating in an event in Ireland consistently captured my attention   Each year, it was one of those things I longed to try, but always had a good reason to let the event go past.

This year, however, I talked back to the tsk-ing voices, which tossed very good reasons at me of why I should not go.  Why spend the money?  Why go alone?  What if I can’t make the distance?  I couldn’t possibly prepare my body when our New London team had not yet even begun to row for the summer!

But, ultimately, I admitted, I simply wanted it. So, I had to face, and then overcome the resisting voices in my head.  “I’m too old!” was one voice in my head that I couldn’t silence, so I chose to fight back.  Joining a gym and working a tailored plan daily for the month preceding the race taught me that my attitude was more of a problem than my body!

In “three-hand” currach as member of Kildysart Team of Ireland, Plumleigh rows center seat in Ocean to City Festival in early June in Cork, Ireland.

In “three-hand” currach as member of Kildysart Team of Ireland, Plumleigh rows center seat in the ‘Ocean to City’ Festival in early June in Cork, Ireland.

So I went alone, and rowed with a team from Ireland, in the ‘Ocean to City’ Regatta of Cork, Ireland’s river festival on the southern coast of the country.  Our event was a seven nautical mile distance, up the river to its conclusion in Cork’s downtown area.  Many friends and family of the rowers lined the beautiful paths along the river.  Many tourists joined the cheers and shouts of support.

Taking this trip gave me opportunities to learn more about my Irish heritage, to test my energy and my endurance, but, most of all, to simply admit to, and then fulfill, a dream.  This challenge had been on my “Bucket List” for about four years, so I felt a great deal of satisfaction in my successful trip.

Now I’m focused on rowing my best in Saturday’s Regatta of the New London Currach Rowers!  

For more information about rowing, contact Plumleigh at row.currach.nl@gmail.com, or visit Facebook.com/New-London-Currach-Rowers-220649084637574.

Editor’s Note: Boats will launch in Saturday’s Currach Regatta from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in various combinations of rowers from the Custom House Pier on New London’s Waterfront Park. We plan to do a follow-up story with Maureen after this Saturday’s event to find out how she fared in the regatta.  Good luck, Maureen!

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The Blue Oar: Enjoy a Tropical Feel at River Eatery in Haddam

Looking across the vibrant patio of 'The Blue Oar' towards the Connecticut River.

Looking across the vibrant patio of ‘The Blue Oar’ towards the Connecticut River.

The soft sunlight of a warm summer evening glistens off the gently flowing river as you sip wine at a pastel-colored picnic table while awaiting your Cajun catfish dinner. No, you’re not in Louisiana; you’re alongside the Connecticut River at the Blue Oar Restaurant in Haddam.

Now enjoying its 20th summer, the Blue Oar resembles more of a summer camp than a restaurant. Built on stilts to protect the kitchen from river floods, the yellow and white wooden structure resembles a children’s treetop playhouse. A trademark of the expansive dining grounds is the colored chairs and tables – pastels of lime green, melon, sky blue, tangerine and creamy yellow.  “It reminds people of the Caribbean or Florida,” says co-owner Jody Reilly. “There’s a relaxed vibe.” 

You can bring your own wine or beer, have a cheeseburger or hot dog with kraut, but your options go far beyond that.  The most popular sandwich is “the chicken, roasted pepper and cheddar,” says Reilly. “They seem to fly out of here. And also the ribs, chowder, and lobster rolls.”

A staple of fixed offerings is supplemented by a number of daily specials. Dinner entrees range from grilled salmon to Jamaican jerk BBQ pork loin. A recent Saturday night featured grilled Cajun catfish with black bean salsa and strips of grilled summer squash. The large fillet was just spicy enough and sat on a generous bed of cool black bean salsa that blended perfectly on the palate. A chilled Italian pinot grigio was the perfect accompaniment.

Appetizers are plentiful and varied. Sautéed mussels, seared scallops and fresh guacamole with house-made tortilla chips are just a few examples. If you’re looking for fried seafood, this isn’t your spot.

A view of 'The Blue Oar' from the Connecticut River.

A view of ‘The Blue Oar’ from the Connecticut River.

With docks along the river, arriving by boat is an option. “We’re a destination,” says Reilly. “A lot of people on boat trips for the day pull in from Sag Harbor or Greenport.”

On a bright, sunny evening, the Blue Oar has a distinct tropical feel. A good weather weekend can bring in up to 600 diners a day, says Reilly. There may be a line, but it moves along and provides conversation and entertainment. As waiters exit the tight kitchen, it resembles a bumper car arcade as they bob and weave through the order line that meanders out the door.

The Blue Oar is open seven days a week from Mother’s Day weekend through September, serving lunch and dinner from 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Water and soda is available but all alcohol is BYOB.

Note: it is cash only. Credit and debit cards are not accepted. The Blue Oar is located off Rte. 154 about a mile-and-a-half north of exit 7 off Rte. 9. Look for the turn sign.

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Lyme’s July 4th Parade — with a High-Tech Twist — Marks Anniversaries of Lyme Ambulance, Camp Claire

Grand Marshal Braiden Sunshine smiles at his admiring followers.

Grand Marshal Braiden Sunshine smiles at his admiring followers. All photos by Lauren Dickey.

The small, personal, home-spun parade that marches proudly over Hamburg Cove each Independence Day has a strong following of adults, kids, and dogs. There are regulars who wouldn’t miss it, making it a part of their annual celebration before moving on to other plans … or not.

Boat

Campers from Camp Claire on top of the hill — many wearing T-shirts announcing the camp’s Centennial, which was celebrated June 11 — make up a good portion of the parade, and some of their families discover it for the first time through them. New residents hear about it, come for the first time and become hooked. Boyfriends and girlfriends come along for the ride and are then regulars.

DroneBut this year there was a bit of a twist. The first three cannon blasts were heard at 10:10 a.m., and movement was sighted at the top of the hill. But … what’s that?

A drone?!

Yes, it rose above the trees – which may have been about all it photographed – followed the road, preceding the marchers, and approached the bridge. Then it seemed to disappear as suddenly as it appeared. But it did make some in the crowd wonder—is there anywhere now that we can’t be watched?

soldiers_leading_parade

As tradition dictates, the parade was led by two soldiers this year, one in Union Army blues, the other in a buckskin-style shirt, tri-corner hat … and shorts? They fired their black-powder rifles at regular intervals to lend excitement to the next car bearing the parade’s Grand Marshal. Who would it be this year? Why, none other than the local high-school student, popular and charming Braiden Sunshine, semi-finalist in NBC’s “The Voice.”  Sunshine waved eagerly to the crowds and seemed to show as much wide-eyed excitement as he did for larger, much more visible venues.

Lyme_Park&Rec

Lyme Park & Recreation came next, followed by a well-crafted sailing ship seemingly afloat on a float; one sailor carried a sign, “In Memory of Doc Irving.” The late, much loved, local resident and pediatrician died last Sept. 15 at age 91; he was a speaker for many years at this parade, dressed in a vintage Naval uniform and throwing teabags into the cove, because, after all, the more famous tea party did not happen in Boston. People in the crowd still miss that speech; perhaps some year soon a new generation will pick up the torch. 

Lyme_Garden_Club

Other marchers included members of the Lyme Garden Club, the Lyme Veteran Memorial Committee, Lyme Fire Department, Lyme Cub Scouts Pack #32, vintage cars, unidentified floats full of kids, and the ever-popular oompah band.

Band

An effective entry was a Model T-style car driven by Uncle Sam and carrying a woman dressed as the Statue of Liberty, holding her torch high. The military half track always driven by Bruce Noyes was there with wife Tammy, but sadly, his father, Jack Senior, was not waving at the crowd this year—we all wish him well.

Ambulance_members

Marching proudly near the end of the parade were Lyme Ambulance members, marking their 40th anniversary! The members were followed by one of their ribbon-bedecked ambulances.

Lyme_Vet_Mem_Committee

After free popsicles at the Hamburg Cove Yacht Club (another great part of this tradition), which we finished by 10:30 a.m., many went to the Lyme Public Hall at the top of the street to enjoy a free, interesting display about the ambulance’s history; many letters gave testimony to the warm nature of this service—the hand-holding and follow-up visits provided. A nice testimony to a cadre of people who participate in training and are on call to volunteer their time 24/7 outside of their “regular” jobs to help their community members.

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Hometown Parade Draws Large Crowd at Sound View to Celebrate the Fourth

Joann Leishing leads the parade waving her flag while also wearing a flag ... and her omnipresent smile.

Joann Leishing proudly leads the parade waving her flag while also wearing a flag … and her omnipresent smile. All photos by N.B. Logan.

It was a fine day for a parade Saturday … and Sound View Beach Association once again pulled off a great one!

Looking_Up_Hartford_Ave

Participants gathered at the north end of Hartford Ave. and then marched south towards Long Island Sound, back up Portland Ave. and across to Swan Ave. The final segment of the parade was the return trip up Hartford Ave. to the Shoreline Community Center.

The Silver Cornet Band played the national anthem at the Hartford Ave. flagpole.

At the foot of Hartford Ave., the Silver Coronet Band struck up a lively rendition of The Star Spangled Banner.

Joann_Leishing_with_flag

Red, white and blue were everywhere … on the flag bearer …

Bikes

…on the wonderfully decorated bikes …

Decorated_truck_with_kids

… on the patriotic trucks …

Fire_engines

… on the fire trucks and other emergency vehicles …

Girl_on_stilts

… even on stilts …

Devin&MJNosal

… and finally on State Representative Devin Carney (R- 23rd) (left of drummer)  and Old Lyme Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal (right of drummer).

What a great time was had by all!

 

 

 

 

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Friends of Old Lyme Library Honor Outgoing Senior Staff, Friends

Stephanie Romano is leaving the Old Lyme Library to take up the position of Chester Library Director.

Stephanie Romano is leaving the Old Lyme Library to take up the position of Chester Library Director.

The Friends of the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes (OL-PGN) Library gathered for their Annual Meeting Wednesday morning. The OL-PGN Library Board President Alan Poirier opened the meeting by thanking the Friends for running The BookCellar, the Bookworm Ball and the Holiday Book Sales.  Leslie Massa, who serves as President of the Friends, then took the floor to pay tribute to some special “Friends.’ firstly, Jenn Hillhouse who has been the treasurer since 1985, and was retiring from that officer position.

Katy Klarnet (right) and Jenn Hillhouse (center) were both honored at the meeting and Steve Ross (left) was welcomed to the Council of the Friends.

Katy Klarnet (right) and Jenn Hillhouse (center) were both honored at the meeting and Steve Ross (left) was welcomed to the Council of the Friends.

Second in terms of being honored by Massa was Katy Klarnet, who was finishing her term as Secretary. Janet Olsen is stepping into that position for the Friends.

The third person on Massa’s list represented a particularly bittersweet moment for the Friends since Access Services Manager Stephanie Romano is leaving to become the Director of the Chester Library.  Her last day is this Friday, June 24, after serving at the OL-PGN Library for nine years.  The community is invited to drop in on the 24th to wish Romano well and enjoy some refreshments courtesy of the Friends. It is planned to be an open house style, low key event.

BookCellar Co-Director Ann de Selding paid tribute to Library Director Mary Fiorelli, who is retiring in September.

BookCellar Co-Director Ann de Selding paid tribute to Library Director Mary Fiorelli, who is retiring in September.

Massa announced that Mary Fiorelli, who has been with the Library since 1997 and Director since 2000, is retiring this September.  The Friends will announce more on her retirement send-off later. On behalf of the Friends, Ann de Selding gave an inspired tribute to Fiorelli’s stellar service to the library.

Ann Roy read a self-composed poem honoring the two outgoing Library directors.

Ann Roy read a self-composed poem honoring the two outgoing Library directors.

Anne Roy then read a delightful poem she had composed for the two outgoing staff members …

The following new Friends were welcomed to the Council: Suzi Bolduc, Jennifer Harvill, Julie O’Brien, Janet Olsen, Steve Ross and Karen Smith.

Best selling author David Handler reviewed the changes over the years in the life of a reference librarian.

Best selling author David Handler reviewed the changes over the years in the life of a reference librarian.

New York Times best-selling author and Old Lyme resident David Handler wrapped up the meeting with his recollections of the Library before the 1995 expansion, mentioning all the wonderful reference librarian personalities that have graced the halls.  He also spoke to the changing technologies remarking how it is often not appreciated how the reference librarian’s job encompasses so much more than a Google search.

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Chester Sunday Market Now Open for the Season

ChesterSundayMarketLogoCHESTER – The Chester Sunday Market opened for the season on Sunday, June 12.  It will now be open on all Sundays through the summer starting at 10 a.m.

The vendors are all listed on the Market’s website (http://chestersundaymarket.jimdo.com), with links to their websites.  They are:

  • Seven farms bringing produce – Chatfield Hollow Farm, Deep Hollow Farms, Dondero Orchards, Hunts Brook Farm, Sage Hill Farm, Upper Pond Farm and Wellstone Farm.
  • Meat, fish and poultry from Four Mile River Farm, Gourmavian Farms, Maple Breeze Farm and The Local Catch.
  • Beltane Farm bringing cheese & dairy products.
  • Bread from Alforno Restaurant and Howard’s Breads.
  • Plus, flowers and honey and jams and pickles and biscotti from: Hay House, Stonewall Apiary, Little Bird Provision Co. and Biscotti and Beyond.

Live music is lined up for each week, beginning on June 12 with Deep Blue Remedy. The bands play from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

In the words of the organizers: “The philosophy of the Chester Sunday Market is to bring the community together with local products and to have a good time doing it. It is a weekly town-wide farmers’ market that brings our community together. We invite local vendors to sell produce, meats, cheeses, breads and so much more.  Our goal is to stay local so we can help the smaller farmers in the area. Having all these amazing vendors join us in our lovely little town is a great way to promote our community and see each other. Main Street is closed off for the market giving the patrons the freedom to walk about town. Music is provided along with a bistro area so you can sit and have a cup of coffee or a slice of pizza.”

Market hours are 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Because Main Street is closed to traffic between West Main St. (Rte. 148) and Maple St., shoppers are invited to park in the town public parking lots on Maple Street and at 20 Water St. (Rte. 148). Well-behaved dogs are welcome.

Shops and galleries are open during Market hours and often offer special happenings. You can find late breakfast or lunch at the restaurants in Chester Center, or buy some pizza on the street from one of the vendors, Frank Andrews Mobile Kitchen.

More information about the Chester Sunday Market at: Facebook.com/ChesterSundayMarket and http://chestersundaymarket.jimdo.com/. You can also find out more about Chester at Facebook.com/VisitChesterCT and Facebook.com/AlwaysonSundayinChester.

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Social Security Supports Fight Against Cancer in Several Ways

cancer_sirvivorsIn 2016, more than a million people will be diagnosed with cancer around the world. This alarming statistic affects people and families everywhere.

June 5 was National Cancer Survivors Day in the United States and in support of this day, Social Security encourages getting checkups to provide early detection, raise awareness through education, and recognize the survivors who have gone through this battle or are still living with the disease.

Social Security stands strong in support of the fight against cancer. The agency offers services to patients dealing with this disease through its disability and Compassionate Allowances programs. Compassionate Allowances are cases with medical conditions so severe they obviously meet Social Security’s disability standards, allowing cases to be processed quickly with minimal medical information. Many cancers are on our Compassionate Allowance list.

There’s no special application or form you need to submit for Compassionate Allowances. Simply apply for disability benefits using the standard Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) application. Once you are identified as having a Compassionate Allowances condition, they’ll expedite your disability application.

Social Security establishes new Compassionate Allowances conditions using information received at public outreach hearings, from the Social Security and Disability Determination Services communities, from medical and scientific experts, and from data based on our research. For more information about Compassionate Allowances, including the list of eligible conditions, visit www.socialsecurity.gov/compassionateallowances.  

If you think you qualify for disability benefits based on a Compassionate Allowances condition, visit www.socialsecurity.gov to apply for benefits.

Editor’s Note: The author Robert G. Rodriguez is a Social Security Public Affairs Specialist in New Britain , CT

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Lyme Farmers Market Now Open for Season, Saturday Mornings

Fresh vegetables galore will be on sale again at Lyme Farmers Market on June 4.

Fresh vegetables galore will be on sale again at Lyme Farmers Market on June 4.

Contrary to an announcement made last year, the Lyme Farmers Market will re-open for the 2016 season on Saturday, June 4, from 9 a.m. through 12:30 p.m. at Ashlawn Farm in Lyme. It is the only market in New London County to be held on a working farm and its mission is to promote sustainable agriculture with locally-grown and -produced food, crafts, and specialty products.

New_logoOnce again, vendors from the past 14 years will be present, along with several new ones. Market-goers will enjoy high quality organic produce, along with baked goods, seafood, meats, wine, and handcrafts.

Charles Dahlke and Nick Lussier of The Brazen Youth will perform on opening day.

Mark and Alisa Mierzejewski of Burgis Brook Alpacas will serve as Market Masters, scheduling vendors and coordinating the market field with jewelry designer Melissa Punzalan. Alisa Mierzejewski is also producing the market’s website and weekly newsletter.

In March of last year, Ashlawn Farm owner Chip Dahlke announced that after 14 years of operation, 2015 would be the last season. However,

Dagmars Desserts will be tempting us all once more with their delicious pastries.

Dagmars Desserts will be tempting us all once more with their delicious pastries.

vendors and customers expressed so much interest in keeping the market alive that he reconsidered. Dahlke’s next idea was to reorganize the market as a non-profit entity, able to accept contributions and apply for grants to promote sustainable agriculture.

Mary Stone of Old Lyme offered to undertake the work to incorporate the market as a non-profit and other procedures necessary to re-open, including coordinating the market’s business operations.

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