June 26, 2017

End of an Era for Eno: More than 100 Turn Out to Say Farewell to Lyme’s First Selectman

From left to right, retiring Lyme First Selectman Ralph Eno stands with fellow selectmen Parker Lord and Steve Mattson. In honor of Eno’s long service as first selectman to the Town of Lyme, the new Transfer Station on Brush Hill Rd. is to be named after Eno. Photo by H. Tyler.

More than one hundred people came out Sunday afternoon to Ashlawn Farm on Bill Hill Rd. to celebrate the retirement of Lyme First Selectman Ralph Eno. Those gathered included people Eno had worked with in groups including the Council of Small Towns, the Materials Innovation and Recycling Authority and the Transit District, Town of Lyme employees, and heads of town boards and commissions. 

Retiring Lyme First Selectman Ralph Eno and Lyme First Selectdog Rosie share a moment together at Sunday’s celebration.

To honor Eno’s long and dedicated service to the Town of Lyme, it was announced that the new transfer station will be named after him.  It was a project Eno worked hard to complete and of which he was extremely proud.

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Hear Lampos, Pearson Talk About Their Fascinating Book, “Revolution in the Lymes,” Tomorrow at OL Library

Tomorrow evening at 7 p.m., local authors and historians Jim Lampos and Michaelle Pearson will be speaking about their most recent book, “Revolution in the Lymes,” at the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library. All are welcome and admission is free to this fascinating presentation.

The Revolutionary War in the Lymes started as a rebellion of ideas. From its origins in the Cromwellian Saybrook Colony, Lyme (today’s Lyme, Old Lyme, East Lyme and Salem) prospered under the free hand of self-governance and spurned King George III’s efforts to rein in the wayward colonies.

In 1765, Reverend Stephen Johnson wrote incendiary missives against the Stamp Act, declaring on Nov. 1, 1765, “My dear distressed country! For you I have wrote; for you I daily mourn, and to save your invaluable Rights and Freedom, I would willingly die.”

A few years later, the town hosted its own Tea Party, burning one hundred pounds of British tea near the town green. When the alarm came from Lexington in 1775, Lyme’s citizens were among the first to answer.

Lampos and Pearson will explore how local Patriots shaped an epic revolt.

Asked what lasting impact she hoped the book will have, Pearson replied, “We hope this book will bring a renewed interest, rediscovery and appreciation of the forgotten patriots of Lyme, such as Major General Samuel Holden Parsons, Governor Matthew Griswold, Reverend Stephen Johnson and John McCurdy. All were figures of wealth and stature before the Revolution, who sacrificed their treasure, and imperiled their lives for the cause of freedom.”

She continued, “They were dedicated patriots from the outset, and their actions and writings helped shape the ideological ground upon which the Revolutionary War was fought.”

Pearson added, “We also hope to initiate and encourage a line of historical inquiry that focuses on tracing the roots of the American Revolution back to the Cromwellian cause in the English Civil War of the 1640’s. The connections between the Cromwellians of 1640 and the Lyme revolutionaries of 1776 were direct, and Lyme’s patriots knowingly used the Cromwellians’ opposition to King Charles I, and Lyme’s subsequent history of self-government, as the basis for their own opposition to King George III.”

Michaelle Pearson and Jim Lampos will give an author talk on their book, “Revolution in the Lymes,” Tuesday evening at the Old Lyme-PGN Library. Photo by Angela Chicoski Photography.

Michaelle Pearson holds a B.A. in Journalism and Photography from Creighton University, and a J.D. from New York Law School. She was Director of Copy at Arnell Group, and continues to work as a freelance writer and editor. Pearson sits on the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library Board and is a Trustee of the Old Lyme Historical Society. She has written articles of local and historic interest for newsletters and magazines including River and Sound, Events, and the OLPGN newsletter. Pearson is also a member of the New York Genealogical & Biographical Society and the Connecticut Society of Genealogists.

Jim Lampos received his B.A. in Sociology (Summa Cum Laude) from Brandeis University, where he was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. He completed the General Course at the London School of Economics and was awarded a Kaplan Fellowship to attend the New School for Social Research, where he received his M.A. in Urban Affairs and Policy Analysis. Lampos is a published poet and musician who has released eight CDs, toured nationally and has been featured on network television. He and his wife, Michaelle Pearson, have previously co-authored Rumrunners, Governors, Beachcombers and Socialists – A History of Old Lyme Beaches, and Remarkable Women of Old Lyme.

Lampos and Pearson live in Old Lyme.

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Lyme Ambulance Association Hosts Square Dance, BBQ, July 7

Mark your calendar to dance the night away on Friday, July 7!

Lyme Ambulance Association, Inc. is hosting a Square Dance & BBQ from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. that evening at the Hamburg Firehouse, 213 Hamburg Rd., Lyme.

The family-friendly Square Dance & BBQ will feature live music by The Reel Thing with caller Bob Livingston.

Ticket prices are $20 for adults with children under 12  free.

For ticket information, visit lymeambulance.org or call 860.434.5667.

All proceeds benefit the Lyme Ambulance Association.

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Cappella Cantorum Presents ‘Music From Around the World’ at ‘the Kate,’ July 5

Cappella Cantorum Men’s Chorus will present Music From Around the World on June 25, 3 p.m. at St.Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Madison.

‘Music From Around the World’ sung by the Cappella Cantorum Men’s Chorus will fill the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center , the Kate, at 300 Main St., Old Saybrook on Sunday, July 5, at 7:30 p.m. The Chorus will present an extraordinary evening of great male choral music under the direction of Barry B. Asch with accompanist Deborah Lyon.

Featured selection along with their country of origin include: Sweden-Brothers, Sing On!; Wales-All Through the Night; Hebrew-Bashana Haba’ah; France-Cantique de Jean Racine; Germany-Brahms Lullaby; France-Viva L’Amour; and America: Climbin’ up the Mountain Children; Ezekiel Saw de Wheel; Johnny Cash Medley and Hallelujah, Leonard Cohen. 

Tickets are $20 at the door or www.CappellaCantorum.org

An additional concert will be held as follows:.

Sunday, July 9,
3 p.m.

Trinity Lutheran Church, 109 Main St., Centerbrook,
This performance will be followed by a reception.
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Lyme DTC to Interview Candidates for Probate Court Judge Tonight

Lyme Town Hall

In preparation for a special election to be held this November, the Lyme Democratic Town Committee has announced it will be interviewing four Democratic candidates for the soon-to-be-vacant position of probate court judge on Thursday, June 22, at 8 p.m. in the Lyme Town Hall, during the committee’s regularly scheduled monthly meeting.

The public is invited to attend the meeting and listen to the candidates’ presentations and responses. The four probate judge candidates, who will speak at the meeting are James Carey, Sean Donlan, Jeannine Lewis and Steven Sheehan. Each will deliver a five-minute presentation on their qualifications, then respond to questions from members of the Town Committee during a brief Q & A period.

Probate judges handle such important matters as estates, trusts, adoptions, name changes, and the termination of parental rights and conservatorships, among others.  All candidates for the position must be members of the Connecticut bar. The probate court for the district in which Lyme falls is located in Old Saybrook and, in addition to Lyme, serves the towns of Chester, Clinton, Deep River, Essex, Haddam, Killingworth, Old Saybrook and Westbrook.

Terrance Lomme, the current probate judge for the district, is retiring on July 18, 2017.

The four candidates have made – or will be making – similar appearances before other Democratic Town Committees in the district.  Each committee will send delegates to a nominating convention to vote for the candidate of their committee’s choice.  At this convention, the official candidate of the Democratic party will be selected and announced.  The candidate from the nominating convention will go on to compete in a primary on September 12 – if there are other Democratic contenders for the position (who may enter the election by collecting signatures in a petition drive).  The winner of the Democratic primary will then go on to face Republican and other challengers in the special election.

The special election for the probate judge seat will be held Tuesday, November 7.  Whoever wins the election will serve the remainder of Judge Lomme’s term, which ends Jan. 9, 2019.

The Lyme Democratic Committee’s mission is to support and strengthen the Democratic Party in the Town of Lyme and the State of Connecticut.  The committee meets on the third Thursday of every month at 7:30 p.m. in the Lyme Town Hall. These meetings are open to the public and all registered Democrats are encouraged to attend.

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Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber to Present Scholarships to Local Students at Annual Dinner Meeting Tonight

The Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce hosts its annual meeting this Wednesday, June 21, at the Old Lyme Country Club.  Cocktails (self-pay) start at 6 p.m. and the dinner at 7 p.m.  All are welcome.

The Chamber will present its Business Leadership Scholarship award during the evening and also honor all the students who have won the Lyme-Old Lyme High School Rutherford Sheffield “Business Student of the Month” award during the school year.

The Chamber will also review its achievements over the past year and look forward to the new year with the appointment of new officers. There will also be plenty of opportunity for business networking.

Admission to the meeting, which includes a three-course dinner, is $25.00 in advance or $27.50 at the door.  Register at this link.

 

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Old Lyme Historical Society Honors Special Member, Retiring Board Members; Presents Scholarship

The Grange Hall on Lyme Street is home to the Old Lyme Historical Society.

The Old Lyme Historical Society, Inc., (OLHSI) at its annual meeting on June 12, recognized the following people:  departing Board members:  Julia Griswold, Dolores Green, Sheila Wertheimer, Martha Hansen, Jennifer Hillhouse and Tim Griswold.

Martha Hansen was recognized for her many years of service to the Board as secretary and webmaster.

Jennifer Hillhouse and Tim Griswold, founding members of the Society, were honored for their 12 years of service to the Board, Griswold having served as Co-Chairman for five years during which time he spearheaded the campaign to purchase and fund the former Grange building on Lyme Street.

The Old Lyme Historical Society Annual Meeting was held on June 12, 2017 at 55 Lyme Street. The Society elected its 2017-2018 officers (shown from left): Mark Lander, Co-Chairman, Andi Williams, Secretary, Ned Farman, Co-Chairman and Ann Marie Jewett, Treasurer.

New Board members were welcomed: Sandy Downing, Andi Williams, Nick Westbrook, Matt LaConti, John Pote and Mark Terwilliger. Officers for the upcoming year were announced: Co-Chairmen: Ned Farman and Mark Lander, Secretary: Andi Williams and Treasurer: Ann Marie Jewett.

This years OLHSI Carol Noyes Winters Scholarship recipient was Lyme- Old Lyme High School senior Rose Datum. Shown with recipient Rose Datum are her parents Michael and Jennifer Datum, Rose’s sister Chloe and OLHSI Scholarship Committee member Kevin Cole.

The Carol Noyes Winters Scholarship was awarded to Lyme-Old Lyme High School Senior Rose Datum, who will attend UConn.

This years OLHSI James Brewster Noyes Award recipient was Architect Stephen Joncus. This award honors a Society member who goes “above and beyond” in time and effort to support the Society. Shown from left are Architect Stephen Joncus and board members Martha Hansen and Mark Lander.

The James Brewster Noyes (Chairmen’s) Award was given to Society member Steve Joncus is recognition of his efforts on behalf of the remodeling of the Society Building and his work with the Tuesday Morning Work Crew.

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Lyme-Old Lyme Graduates Told, “Go Off … Save the World,’ But Know, ‘Old Lyme Will Forever Welcome You Home’

The traditional cap toss rounded off a special evening celebrating the Class of 2017.

It was a truly beautiful June evening last Thursday as 118 students received their high school diplomas along with the privilege of calling themselves alumni of Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS.) Principal James Wygonik, class advisor Brett Eckhart, and four empowering students reflected in different ways on the class’s past four years at LOLHS.

Lyme-Old Lyme High School Principle Jim Wygonik told the Class of 2017 they had made the school “An even better place.”

Wygonik recalled the Class of 2017 as one never to be put down nor to sidestep a challenge. He described how, when told that public prom proposals would no longer be permitted this year as in some cases they could be upsetting, the class dutifully complied on the personal level, but, on the group level, took matters into their own hands. In a very public event, a large group of class members proceeded to invite him to the prom!  Wygonik said that inspired response demonstrated, “The culture you have fostered,” and as a result, that day, “Our school became an even better place.”

Class of 2017 Adviser Brett Eckart proudly wears the Class of 2017 pin with which he displaced the one for the Class of 2005.

Brett Eckart, who served as Class of 2017 Adviser and is a social studies teacher at the high school, used a multiplicity of props to enhance his speech to the class.  He confessed that he knew this class was tired of hearing about the “Great Class of 2005,” which he had always regarded as the ultimate class in terms of their character and achievements.  He duly placed a large 2005 pin on his gown to remind them of that fact one last time.

Lauren Quaratella stands with a fellow graduate, whom she first met at Lad & Lassie Pre-School.

But by the end of his speech, after describing some of the many memorable times he had shared with the Class of 2017, he reached down into the podium, pulled out something and then proceeded to stick an even larger 2017 pin over the 2005 one to indicate how this class has now risen to prominence in his mind over that of 2005.  Eckart also reminded the class not always to focus on their destination but to savor the journey along the route.

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent ian Neviaser, Board of Education Chairman Mimi Roche and Board of Education member Nancy Edson share a smile after the ceremony.

Class President Callie Kotzan opened the ceremony by saying goodbye to all things about high school that will be missed, both important and unimportant. She formally gave her last goodbye to the Class of 2017 and encouraged her classmates to hold on to that inner child, despite all of the changing that comes with growing up, saying, “As we go off into the rest of our lives I encourage you to find the beauty, and although we are growing up it does not mean we must lose our passion and excitement for life.”

Twins Maggie and Abbie Berger celebrate their graduation.

Honor Essayist Rachel Hayward used the children’s book, Oh the Places You’ll Go, by Doctor Seuss to highlight the accomplishments she and her classmates have made, and the endless opportunity that awaits the class in the future. Quoting Seuss’s famous words, she told her classmates, “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose,”  …  and the direction Hayward has chosen for herself in the autumn is Lafayette College, Pa.

Salutatorian Laura Wayland steps down from the podium after giving her speech.

Salutatorian Laura Wayland, who is headed to Yale University in the fall, compared the hard work, pain and accomplishments she had experienced as a dancer, to those she had endured and achieved as a student. She encouraged her fellow classmates never to forget the hard work needed to find blissful happiness in life, advising them to, “Let those passions guide you, and ground you, in the complex dance that is life, and then noting optimistically, “As long as you continue to follow your passions, and follow your dreams, you will be able to accomplish anything.”

Valedictorian Natalie Rugg smiles after giving an emotional, stirring speech.

Valedictorian Natalie Rugg opened her speech by thanking her family, friends and teachers, “who have supported and inspired me through the past 18 years,” saying, “I would not be the person I am today without you all.” Then she addressed her classmates, declaring, “We all have bright futures ahead of us. With the unmatched education that Region 18 and Lyme-Old Lyme High School have offered us, we have a breadth of tools at our disposal.”

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Board of Education members, administrators, faculty and seniors file into the Thursday evening’s graduation ceremony led by the Class Marshals.

Rugg continued by recognizing the beauty and intimacy of the town of Old Lyme and encouraged her peers never to forget the town from which they came.  As the daughter of a career submariner, Rugg commented, “My hometown could have been anywhere: Guam, Hawaii, California. But I ended up growing up here in Old Lyme.” Noting that, “The beaches may not be as beautiful as those in Guam,” and “the weather isn’t as predictable as California,” she stated proudly, “Out of all the places in the world, I would not have rather grown up anywhere else than in Old Lyme.”

Celebrating a certain graduate with a special sound.

Rugg elaborated noting, “Yes, Old Lyme is small, but it’s also a beautiful, tight-knit community,” adding, “I realized that this place, this is my hometown.” and stating unequivocally, “When I’m in Providence next year {Rugg will be attending Brown University in the fall], I’ll introduce myself as growing up in Old Lyme, and one day I’ll bring my children here and show them around, just as my parents did for me.”

The LOLHS Chorus sang ‘Unwritten’ under the direction of Chorus Director Kristine Pekar.

Looking out over the “sea of seniors,” an emotional Rugg gathered her composure and said firmly, “And, my classmates, this is your hometown, too. Even when we’re taking on the world, we’ll still have Old Lyme to keep us together.” Fighting back tears, Rugg took another long pause and then concluded, “Though we will soon be going off to save the world, remember that Old Lyme will forever welcome you home. Reserve this one day to revel together and embrace the place that has made you the brilliant person you are now.” 

Mildred Sanford Outstanding Educator Award winner Jon Goss chats with a graduate after the ceremony.

Continuing a privilege afforded to the senior graduating class, officers of the Class of 2017 then presented the Outstanding Educator Award in memory of Mildred Sanford to the faculty member selected by their class, Technical Education teacher Jonathan Goss.

Jay Wilson conducts the LOLHS band playing Elgar’s ‘Pomp and Circumstance.’

After the distribution of diplomas, the newly-pronounced alumni threw their caps high into the air in the traditional, celebratory hat toss, the band struck up the Sine Nomine Ceremonial March in a British Style by Ralph Vaughn-Williams and the graduates marched out into the arms of awaiting friends and family to celebrate their success.  

The LOLHS Chorus led the singing of the school’s Alma Mater.

Congratulations to the Class of 2017!

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CT Historic Preservation Office Seeks Public Input at Meeting on Statewide Plan, June 27 in Saybrook

The Connecticut State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) is working on a Comprehensive Statewide Historic Preservation Plan to be completed by the end of the year.

The plan will be a planning document at an intensive level, addressing the treatment of historic and cultural resources across the state. It will serve as a guide for planning and decision making by the SHPO, Towns, agencies, non-profit organizations, and others who may affect these resources.

For southeast Connecticut, there will be a meeting at The Pavilion at Saybrook Point Park, 154 College St., at Saybrook Point, Old Saybrook, CT on Tuesday, June 27, from 7 to 9 p.m.

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Lyme-Old Lyme HS Class of 2017 Celebrates its Graduation in Style

The Class of 2017 toss their hats high into the air to celebrate their graduation from Lyme-Old Lyme High School Thursday evening.

It was a perfect evening Thursday for a graduation ceremony and Lyme-Old Lyme High School hit the jackpot by choosing it to celebrate the Class of 2017’s last day.  The event was seamless in its organization and went off with all the appropriate pomp, ceremony, music, singing and speeches.

We will have a full story and many more photos coming by Monday at the latest.

Meanwhile, congratulations to the Class of 2017!

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Friends of Lyme Library Host Summer Book Sale Today, Saturday

Lyme_Library_Logo_632x447

Calling all booklovers!

The Friends of Lyme Library have announced that they will hold a book sale again this year on Friday and Saturday, June 16 and 17, in the library’s community room.

The sale will be open on Friday from 3 to  7 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be a large selection of books, both fiction and nonfiction, for sale. Most of the books for sale are hard cover along with a good selection of trade paperbacks, children’s books, DVD’s, and CD’s.

Credit cards will be accepted for purchases over $20. Stop by and find some treasures to add to your home collection.

The library is located on Rte. 156 in the new town complex shared with the Lyme Town Hall and Lyme Consolidated School.

 

The Friends appreciate your support and generous donations. They look forward to seeing you at the the Friends’ Summer Book Sale.

For library hours and directions, visit www.lymepl.org.

For more information, contact Deb Giaconia at giaconiajw@comcast.net

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‘Art in the Barn 2017’ Continues Today, Saturday in Lyme

‘Old Lyme Fish Market’ by Angie Falstrom.

On Thursday, June 15, the barn at 11 Sterling City Rd. in Lyme will open its doors to friends of local artists and artisans.

Birdhouse by Ben Kegley.

‘Rose Hips’ by Jodi Muench.

Works for sale will include Seana Bill’s handmade, one-of-a-kind wood furniture and accessories, Jodi Muench’s botanical watercolors, Ben Kegley’s rustic, whimsical cedar birdhouses, and Angie Falstrom’s miniature watercolors of local scenes.

Oak and steel coffee table by Seana Bill.

Logo for the Barn Show (copyright Angie Falstrom).

The show opens June 15, from 5 to 7:30 p.m., and continues on Friday and Saturday, June 16 and 17, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both days.

No parking is available on site.  Visitors to the show are asked to park on Sterling City Rd. or on the lawn of the First Congregational Church of Lyme.
For further information, call 860-434-3194.
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Fun in the Sun! Lyme School Students Celebrate School Year End with Refreshing Field Day

Students and staff of Lyme Consolidated cool off with the help of the Lyme Fire Department at the school’s field day.  All photos by Jacob Ballachino.

The students and staff of Lyme Consolidated School couldn’t have asked for nicer weather for the school’s annual field day held this past Monday. An afternoon of fun was a great way to bring the academic year to a close and spend some time getting away from the classroom and enjoying the weather.

Students skidded through the water as they made their pass through the water.

Under clear blue skies and a hot June sun, students enjoyed fun sports, games, races and more. A majority of the students found refuge from the unforgiving sun in a one area designated for water games. Others who were able to withstand the heat long enough played soccer, kickball or on the playground.

As the school year comes to a close, the fifth graders enjoyed their last field day before moving on to the middle school.

Around 2:30 p.m., the Lyme Fire Department arrived as the students lined up by grade and waited expectantly for what was undoubtedly the highlight of the afternoon. As the firetruck launched a massive stream of icy cold water, the children jumped with excitement. The students sprinted out into the cold power of the hose after Lyme School Principal James Cavalieri called for their line to do so.

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Lyme-Old Lyme High School Hosts Graduation Ceremony Tonight

Hats high by Kim 500

Lyme-Old Lyme High School will hold its Commencement Ceremony for all 123 members of the Class of 2017 this evening on the field between the middle and high schools starting at 6 p.m.

Entry to the field is open and the public is welcome to attend the event.

Congratulations to the Class of 2017!

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Volunteers Needed to Control Invasive Plant in Local Rivers, Reserve an Informational Talk at Your Club/Organization

Water chestnut is an invasive plant that is easy for volunteers to remove & keep under control. Join CRC for upcoming volunteer events to learn about & remove this invasive plant.

There is an emerging threat to the Connecticut River and the waters within its basin that any boater, paddler, angler or property manager can help control. European water chestnut (Trapa natans) is an aquatic invasive plant that spreads rapidly, covering bodies of water with dense foliage impeding recreational activities such as boating, fishing, and swimming.

The Connecticut River Conservancy (CRC), formerly Connecticut River Watershed Council, is hosting a variety of opportunities this summer for residents to learn more and help remove this threat.

Quick and thorough action must be taken to prevent this plant from taking over because water chestnut reproduces exponentially. “The good news is that this plant is easy to identify, it reproduces only by seed, and pulls up easily,” notes Alicea Charamut, River Steward for the Connecticut River Conservancy.

She continues, “It can be managed by trained volunteers. For small to moderate infestations, no chemicals or equipment are needed other than willing volunteers in canoes, kayaks, and shallow draft boats. This work offers an opportunity for those of us who love our rivers, lakes and ponds to give back to them in a fun and easy way.”

There are two opportunities to learn to identify and report the plants. CRC hosted an information session at the Connecticut River Museum in Essex on Tuesday, June 13, and will do so again at LL Bean at Evergreen Walk in South Windsor on Friday, June 19. Both events are at 6:30 p.m. There will be a brief presentation, live plants on display, and plenty of time for questions.

Charamut is also available to give talks to groups within the Connecticut River watershed, who want to bring this information to their organization or club.

Paddlers and boaters can also help CRC manage known infestations. Five hand-pulling events are already scheduled for the floating meadows of the Mattabesset River in Middletown and Keeney Cove in Glastonbury in June and July with more to be scheduled as new infestations are reported. The work is fairly easy, a little dirty and very rewarding. Supplies are provided. Those who wish to attend need only bring their boat and PFD.

In addition, CRC is coordinating a River Sweep of the Connecticut River, its coves and ponds to scout for this invasive plant. “Because the seeds from these plants can last for up to twelve years, knowing where these plants have been found is crucial. In order to effectively control the spread of these plants we must monitor locations where they have been found each year and have as many eyes on the water as possible.” Paddling and boating groups can adopt a section of the river to scout for plants on or around Saturday, June 24.

“It will take a community of those who care coming together to help control this plant,” says Charamut. The Connecticut River Conservancy joins many partners in the effort to control water chestnut in the Connecticut River watershed. The US Fish and Wildlife Service, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Lower Connecticut River Council of Governments, Jonah Center for Earth and Art, Connecticut River Museum, and the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station are all active participants working to help control this aquatic invasive plant.

More groups are encouraged to join the effort. Much of the work in the lower Connecticut River Valley here in Connecticut is possible thanks to a generous grant from the Rockfall Foundation.

For more information about education and volunteer opportunities to help control European water chestnut, visit www.ctriver.org/get-involved or contact Alicea Charamut at acharamut@ctriver.org.

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Learn About the Private Life of an Unloved Bird This Evening at CT River Museum

The Connecticut River Museum in Essex presents, “Vulture: The Private Life of an Unloved Bird,” with author Katie Fallon this evening, Thursday, June 15, from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m.

Join Fallon, author of this fascinating book about vultures, for a reading, book signing, and discussion of the essential roles that vultures play in healthy ecosystems.

This event is free to members of the Museum and $5 for non-members.

Seating is limited; call 860.767.8269 ext.110 to register.

The Museum is located at 67 Main St., Essex, CT 06426.

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Ventola Named New Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School Assistant Principal

The new assistant principal of Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School, Noah Ventola

The Lyme-Old Lyme Schools have announced the appointment of Noah Ventola as the next Assistant Principal of Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School. Ventola will begin his new position on July 1.

Ventola joins the Lyme-Old Lyme Schools after serving the East Haddam Schools as a social studies teacher, assistant principal, and department chair as well as chair of the Curriculum Council. He is a graduate of the University of Vermont and holds advanced degrees from both Eastern Connecticut State University and Southern Connecticut State University.

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser commented, “Noah really impressed the interview committee with his passion for student engagement and learning. His extensive knowledge of curriculum and instruction combined with his even-keeled demeanor and practical approach to problem solving will serve him well in his new role.”  Neviaser continued, “Noah comes highly recommended by his colleagues, and we look forward to the partnership between Noah and our new principal, Mark Ambruso. We are excited to welcome this new team to our district.”

Ventola also has previous experience in the Region #8 Schools as a social studies teacher. He lives in Durham with his wife and children.

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Reading Uncertainly? ‘Being Mortal’ by Atul Gawande

Here is a challenge and a question.

The challenge: “Our decision-making in medicine has failed so spectacularly that we have reached the point of actively inflicting harm on patients rather than confronting the subject of mortality.”

The question: Can the medical profession change from its former “priestly doctor-knows-best” and its current “informative” models to a more jointly-responsible “interpretive” model in which patients and physicians work together to mold priorities and decisions?

Atul Gawande, a professor at Harvard Medical School and one of the most thoughtful and articulate observers of the medical scene today (frequently in The New Yorker), asks us to “ … confront the realities of decline and mortality,” not with fear but with intelligence and realism. Too often “the waning days of our lives are given over to treatments that addle our brains and sap our bodies for a sliver’s chance of benefit.”

It has not always been that way. In the past “elders were cared for in multi-generational systems” when we died much sooner and faster, but now we must endure multiple failures in our bodies during “long retirements. … We are already oddities living well beyond our appointed time.” Institutionalization means loss of privacy and control, too many medications whose combined effects we don’t understand, and too much passive entertainment. Even the advent of the much-heralded “assisted living” mechanism has been watered down and often corrupted.

Gawande proposes a future in which “geriatrics” will be taught to all physicians who, in turn, will discuss options with us realistically. For example, his illustration is the simple use of living plants, birds, dogs, and cats, plus smaller groupings of the aged to reduce “the plagues of nursing home existence: boredom, loneliness, and helplessness,” so that we can “renew the joy of life.”

But the good doctor seems to equivocate when it comes to the idea of “death with dignity,” or the option of physician-assisted suicide, now permissible to some degree in five states in the U. S. and in The Netherlands. “I am leery of the idea that endings are controllable,” he writes. Must we insist, legally, on palliative care for the terminally ill? Don’t we/they have an inherent right to select our own course of action, not only for terminal physical illnesses where courses of painful (and costly) procedures may give us only a few extra months, but also for forecasts of mental deterioration, such as dementia and Alzheimer’s?

An inability or unwillingness to take our own early action when capable may create enormous costs (mental and financial) to all of us. I am an advocate of considering options early enough, working with our physicians, but retaining the right to final decisions, including death.

(Read, for example, Derek Humphry”s Final Exit, Random House, New York 2002)

Doctor Gawande’s goal makes eminent sense, “The battle of being mortal is the battle to maintain the integrity of one’s life – to avoid becoming so diminished or dissipated or subjugated that who you are becomes disconnected from who you were or who you want to be.”

Editor’s Note: ‘Being Mortal’ by Atul Gawande is published by Henry Holt and Co., New York 2014.

Felix Kloman

About the Author: Felix Kloman is a sailor, rower, husband, father, grandfather, retired management consultant and, above all, a curious reader and writer. He’s explored how we as human beings and organizations respond to ever-present uncertainty in two books, ‘Mumpsimus Revisited’ (2005) and ‘The Fantods of Risk’ (2008). A 20-year resident of Lyme, he now writes book reviews, mostly of non-fiction that explores our minds, our behavior, our politics and our history. But he does throw in a novel here and there. For more than 50 years, he’s put together the 17 syllables that comprise haiku, the traditional Japanese poetry, and now serves as the self-appointed “poet laureate” of Ashlawn Farms Coffee, where he may be seen on Friday mornings. His wife, Ann, is also a writer, but of mystery novels, all of which begin in a bubbling village in midcoast Maine, strangely reminiscent of the town she and her husband visit every summer.

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Lyme Public Hall Association’s Annual Meeting Tonight Features Presentation on Antique Gravestones, Potluck Dinner

Join the Lyme Public Hall Association for its Annual Meeting and Potluck Dinner at 6 p.m. on Thursday, June 8, for a talk on Cherub Stones of Lyme: 1720 – 1805. Jim Beers, Lyme Public Hall board member, will discuss his research into the itinerant stone carvers who decorated the headstones in the town’s graveyards.

The program is free and open to the public.  Everyone is invited to bring a potluck dish to share.

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

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

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No Swimming in Rogers Lake Today Due to Herbicide Treatment

In accordance with the Connecticut DEEP, Pesticide Division notification requirements, Rogers Lake in Old Lyme and Lyme will be chemically treated on Thursday, June 8, with the USEPA/CT DEEP registered aquatic herbicide Clipper (flumioxazin) to control the non-native aquatic plants fanwort and variable watermilfoil.

The designated treatment areas will be closed to swimming on the day of treatment as an extra precaution. Warning posters depicting the treatment areas and the associated water use restrictions will be posted at points of access around the lake. Additionally, use of the lake water for irrigation purposes will be restricted for a period of five days or until June 14, following treatment.

The work is being performed under contract to the Towns of Old Lyme and Lyme, Conn., pursuant to a permit issued by the CT DEEP (Permit # AQUA-2016-352).

Information regarding this treatment may be obtained from the state licensed firm SOLitude Lake Management, where the contact person is Keith Gazaille, Regional Director at (508) 865-1000

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