July 19, 2018

Follow the ‘Vision Box’ Trail This Summer! Opening Reception for Project This Evening at Lyme Academy


Through the balance of the summer, the public can follow the trail of Vision Boxes installed at four sites throughout Old Lyme. The boxes are up for three months — at the end of the project, the boxes will be auctioned. Resulting funds will be contributed to programs that bring urban youth to visit wilderness parks or refuges in the local area and give them the opportunity to draw in the field.

Working in collaboration with non-profit land trusts, the Open Space Commission, individual stewards and local artists, Ana Flores designed the Vision Box project.

Flores is the first Schumann Foundation Visiting Artist at the University of New Haven’s Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts. She is an award-winning “ecological artist” probing the relationships between the human and natural history in different geographies. One of her goals as an artist is to encourage the public’s awareness of their local landscapes, deepening their connections to place because if we don’t care about something we will not help protect it.

This spring she has been teaching Environmental Art, introducing students to ecological artists and having them create projects that involve ecology, community engagement, and activism. She has also been exploring the unique environment of Old Lyme in preparation for a public art project. The Old Lyme landscape, with its conjunction of river, marshes, fields, and forests served as the inspiration for the American Impressionist movement in the early 20th century. For over three decades, well known painters traveled here to document the estuary landscape with its particular quality of light.

Flores believes there is a connection between the sustained gaze of these artists and the extraordinary efforts in conservation in the area. She says, “The artists gave the land value for its irreplaceable natural beauty and since the mid 1960’s Old Lyme citizens have been working hard to preserve some of the habitat that lured artists here. The Vision Box project reminds us that we cannot take for granted open space, mature trees, or a clean river – they exist only because of visionary stewardship and in the case of Old Lyme, inspiration from artists’ vision.”

There will be an Opening Reception for the Vision Box project Thursday, July 19, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts, 84 Lyme Street, in Old Lyme.  All are welcome.

The Vision Boxes can be found at these locations:

  1. Ferry Landing Park:
    Walk to end of boardwalk, box on viewing platform.
  2. Watch Rock Preserve:
    Entrance at end of Joel Road, take Yellow trail 0.4 mile, box faces West over water.
  3. Lyme Art Association:
    Box faces stream, located near back parking area.
  4. Champlain North:
    Turn on Wyckford Road, go to end. Open space trails are not private. Take Red trail, bear right, 0.4 mile to Barbizon Oak and box.

The project is made possible with support and funding from the Robert F. Schumann Foundation and Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts of the University of New Haven.

Special thanks for their support of the project are given  to:

  • Patricia Shippee,
  • Deborah Quinn-Munson,
  • Sara Drought Nabel,
  • Rosamund Christison

Partners include:

  • Old Lyme Open Space Commission
  • Old Lyme Land Trust
  • CT Dept. of Energy and Environmental

Share

Lymes’ Senior Center’s ‘Summer Sounds’ Series Continues Tonight with ‘The Cartells’

Come and enjoy a summer evening at the Lymes’ Senior Center at 26 Town Woods Road, Old Lyme for “Summer Sounds,” a four-week musical concert series.  The series continues with a performance tomorrow by Doo-Wop Deville, described as, “New England’s Premier Doo-Wop Show Band,” starting at 7 p.m.

All ages are welcome.

Bring your chairs, blankets, dinner, etc. as the performances will be held out on the lawn (weather permitting) or inside if the weather is inclement.

All concerts start at 7 p.m. on Thursday evenings and are followed by a free ice cream social.

The concert schedule continues as follows:

July 19 – The Cartells — “Premier Dance and Vocal Group on the East Coast”

For the past 31 years, the Cartells have been one of the premier dance and vocal groups on the East Coast.

Jazz, swing, Motown, R&B, rock and roll, popular music of all styles are equally represented in their impressive repertoire, and their dedication to defining and fulfilling the wants and needs of their audience results in every appearance being a concert to remember.

The LOL Lions Club will also be at the Lymes’ Senior Center before this concert at 5:30 p.m. selling hot dogs, hamburgers, and other dinner foods.

 

July 26 – The United States 102nd Army Pop Band

Enjoy an evening of patriotic and popular music, performed by the 102nd Army Band- Pop Ensemble

Concert Series Sponsors   

Gold Sponsor: Reynolds’ Subaru & Reynolds’ Boats   

Silver Sponsor:  All Pro Automotive in Old Lyme CT

Ice Cream Sponsors: Old Lyme Republican Town Committee (two concerts), Old Lyme Democratic Town Committee, Atria Crossroads Place in Waterford

Special thanks to Salem Valley Farms Ice Cream

Share

Affordable Housing Public Hearing Deadline Extended Again, This Time to Sept. 10


Around 270 people showed up at Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School last night for the Public Hearing held by the Old Lyme Zoning Commission on the  37-unit Affordable Housing development on Neck Rd. proposed by HOPE and the Women’s Institute.  At the end of the almost three-hour meeting, the Commission voted at the applicant’s request to continue the Public Hearing to their next regular meeting on Sept. 10.

More on this story to follow.

Links to our stories on previous meetings regarding this Affordable Housing proposal are respectively at Boisterous Crowd Packs Middle School Auditorium to Listen to, Give Opinions on HOPE’s Affordable Housing Proposal published June 8, and At HOPE’s Request, Old Lyme Zoning Extends Affordable Housing Hearing Deadline to July 17 published June 13.

There are also numerous Letters to the Editor on the subject in our Letters section and opinions in our Op-Ed’s section.

The articles themselves also stimulated a wide variety of comments.

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber Hosts ‘Business After Hours’ This Evening at Lyme Art Association, All Welcome

The historic Lyme Art Association hosts the Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce’s Business After Hours on Wednesday.

The Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce hosts Business After Hours this Wednesday, July 18, at the Lyme Art Association (LAA) in Old Lyme from 5:30 to 7 p.m. All are welcome to join Chamber members at this event when the hosts will be the staff of the LAA.  Admission is $5 payable in advance or at the door.

The LAA has recently completed a major renovation and staff members will be explaining the changes to attendees.

Come see the renovated facility while enjoying delicious refreshments and networking with other business professionals.  Hear all the latest news from the Chamber and share news from your own business.

Please register at this link or send an email to email@lolcc.com for refreshment planning purposes.

Share

Old Lyme Zoning Commission Hosts Public Hearing on Affordable Housing Proposal Tonight, Final Opportunity for Public to Comment

The Old Lyme Zoning Commission hosts the continuation of the Public Hearing on the proposed 37-unit Affordable Housing development on Neck Rd. this evening at 7:30 p.m. at Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School.  It is anticipated that this will be the final opportunity for the public to comment on the proposal.

The first Public Hearing drew over 500 people and the second over 300.

Links to our stories on these meetings are respectively at Boisterous Crowd Packs Middle School Auditorium to Listen to, Give Opinions on HOPE’s Affordable Housing Proposal published June 8, and At HOPE’s Request, Old Lyme Zoning Extends Affordable Housing Hearing Deadline to July 17 published June 13.

There are also numerous Letters to the Editor on the subject in our Letters section and opinions in our Op-Ed’s section.

The articles themselves also stimulated a wide variety of comments.

Share

Special Old Lyme Town Meeting Announced for July 23, Vote on Town Contribution of $1.75M for OL-PGN Library Upgrades Planned

A vote on the Town of Old Lyme’s contribution of $1.75 million for renovations and upgrades to the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library is planned for July 23, at a Special Town Meeting.

A Special Town Meeting has been announced by the Old Lyme Board of Selectmen on Monday, July 23, at 7:30 p.m. in the Meeting Hall of the Old Lyme Town Hall at 52 Lyme St., Old Lyme to consider a proposal to appropriate $1.75 million towards the cost of the capital construction project being undertaken at the Library by the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library Association, Inc.  It is anticipated that a vote will be taken on the proposal at the meeting.

More to follow in a separate story on the library’s renovation proposals.

Also, a proposed ordinance to amend the Town’s Harbor Management Plan to create a procedure for the Harbor Management Commission to recommend variances from the Harbor Use Zone Standards of the Plan to a state or local permitting authority acting on an application to conduct activities affecting the waters of Old Lyme.

A copy of the proposed ordinance is posted on the Town’s website and paper copies are available for review in the office of the Town Clerk.  

If approved by the Town Meeting, this ordinance will be effective 15 days after its publication in a newspaper having a circulation in the Town of Old Lyme.

Share

Community Meeting to Discuss Master Plan for Halls Rd. Improvements Announced, July 25

Aerial view of Halls Rd. and Old Lyme.

Believing that community involvement is key to the future success of Old Lyme, the Old Lyme Board of Selectmen and the Halls Road Improvements Committee have announced a Community Meeting to discuss ‘Improvements for Halls Rd.’ on Wednesday, July 25, at 6:30 p.m. at Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School.

Feedback at community meetings over the past two years has made it clear that developments along Halls Rd. need to be looked at in an integrated, long-term context. At the recommendation of the Halls Road Improvements Committee, Old Lyme has retained the Yale Urban Design Workshop (YUDW) to help develop a proposed master plan for the area along Halls Rd.

In addition, the Connecticut Economic Resource Center (CERC), which is a non-profit government/business joint effort, has offered to help collect economic and market data in support of the planning process.

The meeting will introduce YUDW and CERC to the public. Group break-out sessions will follow to allow discussion among attendees and presenters. The presenters are attending the meeting both to describe what they can do and also to ask the residents of Old Lyme what they hope to accomplish.

 

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Lions Hosts Classic Car Show During Old Lyme’s Midsummer Festival, July 28

This year’s Classic Car Show sponsored by the Lyme-Old Lyme Lions will be held on the grounds of the Bee and Thistle Inn on Saturday, July 28.

The Lyme-Old Lyme Lions Classic Car Show will be held on Saturday, July 28, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., on the grounds of the Bee & Thistle Inn, Lyme St, Old Lyme, next to the Florence Griswold Museum, between I-95 Exits 70 and 71.

There will be 14 classes shown as well as a ‘People’s Choice’ award.

Admission is $5 for spectators and $10 for show car registration (includes admission for driver and one passenger).  

The Lions will serve their usual fare, including bacon cheeseburgers, hot dogs, and fries.  All proceeds benefit Lions charities.

To pre-register your car for the event, visit the Car Show Registration at this link. Your $10 registration fee is not due til the day of the show.

The Car Show is now part of the Old Lyme Midsummer Festival, where you will find art exhibitions, music and dance, family fun, and wonderful artisan cheeses and breads.

Directions: From the north, take I-95, exit 71, right onto Four Mile River Road, left onto Route 1 South, which becomes Lyme Street.  You will find the Bee & Thistle Inn on your right. From the south, take I-95, exit 70, go left onto Route 156, take a right onto Halls Road, then a left onto Lyme Street (Route 1, Boston Post Road). the Bee & Thistle Inn will be on your left.

Rain Date: Sunday, July 29.
 
Car owners: arrive by 9 a.m. Flea Market vendors: set up before 9 a.m. 

Share

Final Chance to Explore White Elephant Sale This Morning, Most Items Half Price

Crowds anxiously await the first strike of 9 a.m. when the White Elephant Sale begins.

The perennially popular White Elephant Sale (WES) hosted by the Ladies Benevolent Society of the First Congregational Church of Old Lyme opens this morning with the first stroke of nine on the church clock.  That’s when the crowds, who will have started gathering hours earlier behind the yellow tape marking off the church lawns, will rush for their first bargains.

And they’re off! The annual White Elephant Sale starts tomorrow on the first strike of 9 a.m.

For those new to the town or folk who have never participated, this 81st annual sale is one of the main events on both the town and church calendars.  It all starts with the intake period when you can drop off unwanted items at the church from your house — perhaps your basement, attic or closets — or yard.

The Sports Department offers a treasure trove of sporting ‘stuff.’

Garage, tag and rummage sales may be everyday affairs, but few, if any, can match the size and color of this one.  The sale items are organized into some 20 departments that fill the church buildings as well as every available space on the lawn.  The WES has grown so large that it has become a true “community event” since many of the donations are from non-church members and quite a number of volunteers are also from outside the church.

The sale raises a significant amount of money for missions and good works both locally and throughout the world.  Some of the beneficiaries include food pantries, health organizations, family support centers, children’s programs, literacy volunteers, affordable housing, and disaster relief worldwide.

Mark your calendars now for the dates of this year’s sale.  Intake begins on Thursday, June 28, and runs daily from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. through Saturday, June 30.  Then there is a break for the July 4th holiday and then intake restarts Thursday, July 5, and continues through Saturday, July 7.   There will also be no evening intake sessions this year and also no large furniture pick-up.

For a full list of items that can be donated and those which cannot, visit this link.

The sale itself will be held on Friday, July 13, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Saturday, July 14, from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.  Most departments offer items at half-price on the second day.

For more information about the sale or if you would like to volunteer to help in any capacity, whether with intake, the sale itself, or clean-up, call the church office at 860.434.8686 and/or visit this link.

See you at The Sale!

Share

Sound View Beach Association Hosts Bingo Every Wednesday

Sound View Beach Association hosts Bingo on Wednesdays through Sept. 5, at the Shoreline Community Center, 39 Hartford Avenue, Old Lyme. The doors open at 6 p.m. and the game starts at 7 p.m.

Come for a fun evening and win some money!

Admission is $12 per person.

For information, call Bob at 860-434-3745 or 860-225-9458.

Share

Chestnut Hill Presents Four Chamber Music Concerts in August at the Kate 


Now in its 49th season,Chestnut Hill Concerts will present four programs of chamber music this August at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center in Old Saybrook. The prestigious series is highly-regarded, not only for its programming, but also for the world-class musicians that artistic director Ronald Thomas invites for the performances.

The concerts will take place August 3, 10, 17, and 24, all Friday evenings at 8 p.m. Cellist and artistic director Ronald Thomas will host and perform in each concert.

The Aug. 3 concert features Ronald Thomas performing the 5th Bach Cello Suite. The rest of the concert presents John Novacek’s Rags for Violin and Piano, and the Brahms Piano Quartet in  G minor, Op. 25. In addition to Ronald Thomas, artists include Steve Copes, violin; Matthew Sinno, viola; and Randall Hodgkinson, piano.

On Aug. 10, Chestnut Hill presents two string sextets and a string quartet. Chestnut Hill welcomes the Amernet String Quartet, whose members include Misha Vitenson, violin; Franz Felkl, violin; Michael Klotz, viola; and Jason Calloway, cello. The quartet will perform Schubert’s String Quartet in E-flat major, Op. 125, No. 1. The quartet will be joined by Vivek Kamath, viola and Ronald Thomas, cello to perform two string sextets: Richard Strauss’ String Sextet from Capriccio, Op. 85 and Tchaikovsky’s String Sextet Souvenir de Florence, Op. 70

The program on Aug. 17 presents music by Debussy, Kodály, and Dvořák. Ronald Thomas and Mihae Lee will perform Debussy’s Sonata for Cello and Piano; Catherine Cho, violin, Tien-Hsin Cindy Wu, violin, and Todd Phillips, viola will perform Kodály’s Serenade for Two Violins and Viola, Op. 12; and the ensemble will perform Dvořák’s Piano Quintet in A major, Op. 81.

The season finale on Aug. 25 explores the music of Mozart, Mendelssohn, and Schumann, including the rarely-heard Horn Quintet in E-flat by Mozart, K. 407, written for one violin and two violas. The concert also includes Mendelssohn’s Piano Trio in D minor, Op. 49 and Schumann’s Piano Quartet in E-flat major, Op. 47. This performance introduces Frank Huang, concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic, to the Chestnut Hill audience, and brings back some of its favorite performers: William Purvis, horn; Tien-Hsin Cindy Wu, violin and viola, Cynthia Phelps, viola; Ronald Thomas, cello; and Mihae Lee, piano.

The 2018 season of Chestnut Hill Concerts is made possible with support from the Connecticut DECD Office of the Arts.

All concerts are Friday nights at 8 p.m. at the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center (The Kate), 300 Main Street in Old Saybrook, Connecticut. Subscriptions to the four concerts are $140 (orchestra) and $120 (balcony). Single tickets are $40 for orchestra seats and $35 for the balcony. Kids and teens come free. To purchase tickets, contact The Kate’s box office at 860-510-0453, or visit www.thekate.org.

Share

Sound View Summer Concert Series Continues Thursday, July 26

‘Four Barrel Billy’ will perform at Sound View tomorrow evening.

Free outdoor concerts sponsored by the Sound View Commission and the Town of Old Lymwill be held on Hartford Avenue at the flagpole on Thursdays from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Bring your lawn chair and enjoy a great family evening of music.

The remaining schedule of concerts is as follows:

Four Barrel Billy – July 12

Your favorite songs from the 50s, 60s & more. Doo-wop, Rock-a-billy, surf, blues and good old rock & roll. These guys look like greasers, but sing like angels. One of the top acts on the Connecticut shoreline for dancing and good times. FourBarrelBilly.com

Rivergods – July 26

With original roots/folk/alt.country/ the Rivergods hailing from southern New England, are known for their poignant songwriting, stellar harmonies and moving live performances. The Rivergods have enjoyed 20 years together as a band, and have been profiled/reviewed in~No Depression, Blurt Online, Connecticut Magazine, Soundwaves, Boston Soundcheck~and more. “One of the area’s finest and best-loved bands.”~—Rick Koster, New London Day

Red Satin Band – Aug. 9**

Swing, Jazz, Big Band along with some R&B, Classic Rock, and Funk. The best of 8 decades of great music. Featuring vocalist Valerie Rogers. The 12 piece Red Satin band has played to rave reviews throughout the northeast; “Amazing performance…Great Show…Stunning Vocals” nominated in the CTNow Best of Hartford 2018 for the best Jazz band. The unique blend of personality and great music is delight for audiences of all ages, Red Satin will get you dancing or just sit back and enjoy. www.redsatinband.com

Mark Nomad Band – Aug. 23 **

“A big thumbs up!”– Blue Suede News “One of the hottest up and coming commodities”– House of Blues Your favorite songs from Blues to 60’s -70’s rock & more. MARK NOMAD’S music has been heard on radio stations all over the world and has been used in commercials and in film. Sharing the stage with many of the biggest names in show business he was co- founder of the original Little Village. Their debut album is considered a collector’s item and the band is legendary in the Northeast.~

**Rain location: Shoreline Community Center, 39 Hartford Ave.

Share

Catherine Christiano Exhibits Paintings of Old Lyme Beach Cottages in Chelsea, NYC

Catherine Christiano, Twilight, Miami Beach, Old Lyme, 2018, Oil on Panel, 4 1/4 x 6 inches. Photo credit: Catherine Christiano.

A collection of small paintings by Old Lyme resident Catherine Christiano that feature the cottages of Old Lyme’s beach communities will be exhibited at George Billis Gallery in Chelsea, New York location. The Summer Group Show will run from July 10 through Aug. 4.

The opening reception for the public will be held tomorrow evening, Thursday, July 12, at the George Billis Gallery located at 525 West 26th Street between 10th and 11th Avenues from 6 to 8 p.m. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

This latest series of paintings was created this past winter in a temporary studio at Hawk’s Nest Beach in Old Lyme.

Catherine Christiano, Twilight, Miami Beach, Old Lyme, 2018, Oil on Panel, 4 1/4 x 6 inches. Photo credit: Catherine Christiano.

Ever drawn to the character of the homes and the pictorial possibilities presented by these structures and their interplay with light, Christiano has returned numerous times to Old Lyme’s seasonal beach communities perched on the edge of the Long Island Sound.

Most of the paintings are an intimate 4 ¼ x 6 inches, the size of a standard postcard. While the paintings are small, each is a carefully painted arrangement of design elements that also convey a sense of the inner life of the place.

Christiano notes that while working from the Hawk’s Nest studio, “I was able to observe the ever shifting light day after day, sunrises to sunsets, and finally understood first-hand its qualities that drew the Impressionists to Old Lyme so many years ago.”

A painter known for creating detailed representational works, Christiano has been a studio artist based in Old Lyme for over 20 years. She was classically trained at the Lyme Academy of Fine Arts during the time that it was an intensive program focused on working from nature and the human figure.

Catherine Christiano, Summer Rentals, Hawk’s Nest , 2018, Oil on Panel, 4 1/4 x 6 inches. Photo credit: Catherine Christiano.

Past local projects include the illustrations for the Old Lyme Historical Society’s memoir Poverty Island and the seal for the Town of Old Lyme.

The George Billis Gallery marks its 23rd year in the Chelsea Art District and opened a second gallery in the burgeoning gallery district of Culver City in Los Angeles.

For additional images and information about Christiano’s works in this exhibition, contact the Gallery via email at gallery@georgebillis.com  or phone at 2120645-2621.

Share

Courtney Joins Armed Services and Foreign Affairs Committee Members in Cautioning President Trump Not to Undo 73 Years of European Stability

Congressman Joe Courtney (D-CT Second Congressional District)

Yesterday, Congressman Joe Courtney (CT-02), ranking member of the Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, joined 43 other members from the House Armed Services and Foreign Affairs Committees in releasing a joint statement regarding President Trump’s attendance at the NATO Summit and his bilateral meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“As I have made clear over the last two years, our committees have been briefed by military and diplomatic personnel, as well as outside experts about the non-stop, focused efforts of the Russian government to disrupt the stable, democratic unity that has prevailed in Europe since the end of the Second World War,” said Courtney.“Whether it is election interference, the illegal annexation of Crimea, or the uncalled-for provocations at sea and in the air in the Baltics, Scandinavia, and the Mediterranean, Russian military and intelligence forces are actively undermining the NATO alliance at every turn. My colleagues and I issued this statement to express our strong desire to the president that he should aggressively challenge President Putin on his government’s intentional violation of international law and norms.”

The 44 members said in their joint statement: “President Trump must not seek to undo the work that generations of American men and women have done to help defend and uphold democratic values throughout the transatlantic region. Europe returned from the devastation of the Second World War to prosperity largely due to the North Atlantic community’s commitments to its shared values and to collective defense. 

“The signals regarding potential outcomes that are coming from this administration in advance of the President’s upcoming trip to Europe are deeply concerning. Without question, in his upcoming meetings with NATO and President Putin, President Trump must continue to affirm America’s commitments to our allies, especially Article V of the Atlantic Treaty. He must not praise, condone, or abet any Russian efforts to undermine the sovereignty or democracy of any of our allies and partners. He must take a genuine stand against Russia’s cyber campaigns and its efforts to interfere in our elections. 

“President Trump must recognize the importance that our forward military presence and joint exercises play in deterring Russia and ensuring military readiness. He must not weaken this posture or suspend or cancel these crucial activities, nor emulate Russian propaganda attempting to discredit them.

“He must stand up for Ukraine’s sovereignty over Crimea and against the illegal occupation of Ukrainian territory and maintain sanctions until the conditions in the law are met. He must follow the law passed every year through the National Defense Authorization Act prohibiting military-to-military cooperation with President Putin. And he must continue to stand by NATO’s open-door policy on the admittance of new members. The substance and symbolism of these upcoming meetings will matter. The future of the Atlantic alliance and the international order, which has helped make the world safer and more prosperous is at stake.”

The other 43 members who signed the statement are:

House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-WA), House Foreign Affairs Committee Ranking Member Eliot Engel (D-NY), Rep. Robert A. Brady (D-PA), Rep. Susan A. Davis (D-CA), Rep. James R. Langevin (D-RI), Rep. Rick Larsen (D-WA), Rep. Jim Cooper (D-TN), Rep. Madeleine Bordallo (D-GU), Rep. Niki Tsongas (D-MA), Rep. John Garamendi (D-CA), Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA), Rep. Marc Veasey (D-TX), Rep. Donald Norcross (D-NJ), Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ), Rep. Seth Moulton, (D-MA), Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D-HI), Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH), Rep. Jacky Rosen (D-NV), Rep. A. Donald McEachin (D-VA), Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-CA), Rep. Anthony Brown (D-MD), Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL), Rep. Tom O’Halleran (D-AZ), Rep. Thomas R. Suozzi (D-NY), and Rep. Jimmy Panetta (D-CA), Rep. Brad Sherman (D-CA), Rep. Gregory W. Meeks (D-NY), Rep. Albio Sires (D-NJ), Rep. Gerald E. Connolly (D-VA), Rep. Theodore E. Deutch (D-FL), Rep.Karen Bass (D-CA), Rep. William R. Keating (D-MA), Rep. David N. Cicilline (D-RI), Rep. Ami Bera (D-CA), Rep. Lois Frankel (D-FL), Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX),Rep. Robin L. Kelly (D-IL), Rep. Brendan F. Boyle (D-PA), Rep. Dina Titus (D-NV), Rep. Norma J. Torres (D-CA), Rep. Bradley S. Schneider (D-IL), Rep. Thomas R. Suozzi (D-NY), Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-NY), and Rep. Ted W. Lieu (D-CA).

Share

Groton-Mystic Local History Roundtable to be Held Aug. 18 at Groton Public Library

The authors of several books on the history of the Groton-Mystic area come together to discuss all things Groton-Mystic on Aug. 18, at the Streeter History Room at the Groton Public Library. This event – the first of its kind – will feature authors representing all nine of the volumes of Groton-Mystic history available from Arcadia Publishing and The History Press.  Copies of each book will be available for the public to purchase.

All are welcome and there is no charge for admission.

The panel contains a distinguished list of local history luminaries, including three college professors, the heads of two historical societies, a former mayor, a town historian, a television show host, and the head of one of the best ghost tours in the area. Members of the panel have also served in the United States Armed Forces and attended such distinguished Ivy League institutions as the University of Pennsylvania, Cornell University, and Yale University.

The event will start at noon. Each panel member will be open to questions from the public, and autographed copies of each volume will be available for public purchase.

Arcadia Publishing & The History Press creates the largest and most comprehensive publisher of local and regional content in the USA. By empowering local history and culture enthusiasts to write local stories for local audiences, we create exceptional books that are relevant on a local and personal level, enrich lives, and bring readers closer to their community, their neighbors, and their past.

The authors, who will be featured at the event, are:

James L. Streeter is a historian and lifelong resident of Groton. After serving in the United States Army, Streeter returned to Groton, where he served as a police officer, a forensic expert, and member of Groton’s Representative Town Meeting. He served as a member of Town of Groton Council from 2005-2013, and as mayor from 2009-2011. In 2010, he succeeded fellow Arcadia author Carol Kimball as the town historian of Groton, a position he still holds today. He has written or co-written six books about Groton, including three titles by Arcadia Publishing.

M. Earl Smith is a professor of English literature at Harcum College in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. A graduate of Chatfield College in Saint Martin, Ohio, Smith completed his master’s degree in English literature from the University of Pennsylvania in 2017. He is currently pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing in the Solstice MFA program at Pine Manor College in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. He has written eight books, five of which are published by Arcadia Publishing, including Postcard History: Mystic, which was released in 2017. He resides in Philadelphia with his Shetland Sheepdog, Che.

Dr. Leigh Fought is an associate professor of history at Le Moyne College in Syracuse, New York. She completed her doctorate in history at the University of Houston in 2000, as well as a Master of Library Science from Simmons College in Boston. The author of several books, articles, and presentations, Fought has seen her work published by academic presses at institutions such as Yale, Oxford, and the University of Missouri, as well as her volume Mystic, Connecticut: From Pequot Village to Tourist Town, which was released by The History Press in 2006.

Lou Allyn is the current president of the Mystic River Historical Society, which composed Images of America: Mystic for Arcadia Publishing in 2004. The work was done by MRHS members Dorrie Hanna and Judy Hicks. He is a graduate of Yale University with a BChe in Chemical Engineering and a life-long interest in the Great New England Hurricane of 1938.

Lisa Saunders is an award-winning writer and speaker. She was instrumental in getting Connecticut to become the second state in the U.S. to enact a law combatting the leading viral cause of birth defects, congenital cytomegalovirus (CMV). A graduate of Cornell University, she is the author of 10 books, works as a part-time history interpreter at Mystic Seaport, and holds writing and publishing workshops at New London Adult & Continuing Education. A history lover, Lisa scours out-of-print books and long-forgotten letters to shed new light on historic figures and events. She is the co-author of Images of Modern America: Mystic, released by Arcadia Publishing in 2016.

Hali Keeler lives in Groton. She is a past president of the Avery-Copp House Museum Board of Directors, vice-president of the Groton Historic Society and a member of the Groton Bank Historical Association, as well as the president of Friends of Fort Griswold. She has previously worked as the director of the Bill Memorial Library in Groton and is an adjunct professor at Three Rivers Community College. She is a graduate of the University of Rhode Island. She is the author of Ghosts of Groton Bank, released by The History Press in 2016.

Courtney McInvale is the founder of Seaside Shadows Haunted History Tours of Mystic, Connecticut, specializing in the research of paranormal history and local lore. Having grown up in a haunted house investigated by famed ghost hunters, Courtney is able to bring a unique perspective to the world of ghostly occurrences. She is a graduate of Catholic University. She is the author of Haunted Mystic, released by The History Press in 2014.

William J. Tischer is a career firefighter who started as a 17-year-old volunteer in Salem and Montville, finally serving and retiring as Captain of the Groton City Fire Department. He is the co-author of Images of America: Groton-Mystic Emergency Services, released by Arcadia Publishing in 2016.

Jade Huguenin grew up as a “navy brat” in Connecticut, and is an author, non-profit community organizer, youth mentor, as well as a direct descendant of several New England and Acadian founders, including French-Canadian Filles a Marier and Filles du Roi. She studied at UConn, Smith College, Mount Holyoke College, and Connecticut community colleges. Jade co-founded the Matthew Chew Memorial Scholarship for The Arts; worked for the US Coast Guard and the US Navy; and is the co-author of Postcard History: Mystic, published by Arcadia Publishing in 2017. She currently serves as the Vice President of the Sandpoint Literary Collective (SLC) and the Sandpoint Team Leader for Citizens Against Newport Silicon Smelter in Sandpoint, Idaho, where she now lives.

Share

Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce Hosts Annual Dinner, Presents Scholarships, Elects Board Members

The Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce presented Senior Business Leadership Scholarships to Mason Swaney (left) and Amanda Marsh while Brandon Lee (right) was the recipient of the Chamber’s Senior Scholarship for Promise and Achievement in the Arts.

The Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce (LOLCC) held its Annual Dinner at the Old Lyme Country Club Wednesday, June 20.  Fifty-six people were present including state legislators, representatives from the Town of Old Lyme, and scholarship winners from Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS).  It was a memorable evening for all present.

The Senior Business Leadership Scholarship awardees share an amusing moment with  Scholarship Committee Co-Chair Russ Gomes (second from right) and State Senator Paul Formica (R- 20th).

The business section of the meeting opened with the Treasurer’s report by Tim Griswold, followed by LOLCC President Olwen Logan giving a review of the 2017-18 Chamber year. She reported that the four main goals of the year had all been met or surpassed;

  1. Increase Chamber Membership – Logan was pleased to announce membership has  risen from 60 in June 2017 to over 110 one year later.
  2. Publish a new “Chamber Member Directory and Visitor’s Guide” – publication of the new full color, 44-page guide was completed in March.  Copies are available in the Old Lyme Town Hall.
  3. Secure space for the Chamber in Old Lyme Town Hall – achieved with assistance from First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder and her Assistant Cathy Frank.  Logan expressed thanks to both on behalf of the Chamber.
  4. Restoration of  the Chamber sponsored sign at the foot of the Exit 70 off-ramp was skillfully and carefully completed by Chamber member Sophie Marsh, who was honored with a bouquet in appreciation of her excellent work.

Logan also highlighted the many events organized throughout the year by the Chamber including Dinner Meetings at local restaurants, Business After Hours at a variety of locations, and Business Breakfasts.  She also mentioned some of the upcoming happenings through the summer, including Business After Hours at Lyme Art Association on July 18 and at the Bee and Thistle Inn on Aug. 15.

State Rep. Devin Carney (R-23rd) reads from the State Citation to the Chamber’s Senior Business Leadership Scholarship recipients. From left to right, Mason Swaney, Amanda Marsh, Scholarship Committee Co-Chair Russ Gomes, State Senator Paul Formica (R-20th) and Carney.

Chamber Scholarships were then presented by State Representative Devin Carney (R-23rd) and State Senator Paul Formica (R-20th).  These were introduced by the Co-Chairs of the Scholarship Committee Russ Gomes and Olwen Logan.

The scholarship winners and their parents gathered together for this photo.

The recipients of LOLCC 2018 Business Leadership Awards were Lyme-Old Lyme High School seniors Mason Swaney and Amanda Marsh. Senior Brandon Lee was awarded the 2018 Scholarship for Promise and Achievement in the Arts. 

The Chamber also honored their Business Students of the Month from the 2017-18 school year at their Annual Dinner. From left to right, State Representative Devin Carney (R-23rd), Aoife Hufford, Ann Cote, Alex Montville, Scholarship Committee Co-Chair Russ Gomes, State Senator Paul Formica (R- 20th) and Olwen Logan, Chamber President and Scholarship Committee Co-Chair. Missing from photo is Patrick Looney.

Also honored at the meeting were the Chamber’s four Lyme-Old Lyme High School Business Students of the Month:

  • Patrick Looney,
  • Alex Montville,
  • Ann Cote
  • Aoife Hufford. 

Brandon Lee, winner of the Chamber’s Senior Scholarship for Promise and Achievement in the Arts glances at this high school art teacher and mentor Will Allik. Others in the photo from left to right are State Rep. Devin Carney, Scholarship Committee Co-Chair Russ Gomes, State Senator Paul Formica, Lee, Allik, Old Lyme Selectwoman MaryJo Nosal

The Chamber was honored that the Co-Chair of the LOLHS Business Department Joanne Hedwall and the Chair of the LOLHS Art Department Will Allik were also able to attend the dinner.

Finally, a new slate of board members was presented and then voted into office unanimously.  The officers for the year starting July 1, 2018 are:
Rich Shriver, President
Joann Lishing, Secretary
Tim Griswold, Treasurer. 

The Board of Directors is:
Gene Chmiel
Heather Gagnon
Dan Henderson
Doug LoPresti
Suzanne Thompson
Jean Wilczynski . 

Incoming President Shriver thanked outgoing President Logan for her leadership and many accomplishments and also thanked Gail Stevens for her contributions during her term on the board of directors.

The Old Lyme Country Club served a delicious meal in the beautiful main dining room and an enjoyable evening was had by all.

Share

Sound View Celebrates its 25th Independence Day Parade

Flag-bearer Joann Lishing proudly leads the Sound View Independence Day Parade down Hartford Ave. in Old Lyme, marching immediately ahead of The Silver Cornet Band.  Photos by Lisa Roderick Knepshield.

It started as a small parade meant just for the residents of Sound View.  Twenty-five years later the Independence Day parade held Saturday morning and organized by the Sound View Beach Association is now a sizable event in terms of numbers and again, as in the vast majority of the previous years, was held under cloudless skies on a perfect day.

Joann Lishing, who has been the flag-bearer at the front of the parade for more years than she can remember, notes, “Families have grandchildren visit specifically to participate in this parade.” She points out, however, that despite its ever-increasing size, “It’s still a family parade.”

Old Lyme Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal (left, rear) marches alongside State Rep. Devin Carney (R-23rd) behind the band.

State Rep. Devin Carney (R- 23rd) joined the throng and cheerfully marched the full length of the parade.  He noted, “The Sound View parade is always a wonderful celebration of our nation’s Independence Day and Old Lyme’s beach community. This year’s parade was no exception and I was honored to participate.”  He added, “The organizers did a remarkable job and it was great seeing so many people marching and enjoying the festivities.”

Judging of the decorated bikes, costumes, and so forth is no easy task.

After the parade had completed its fairly lengthy route of Hartford, Swan, and Portland Avenues, the judging began and then awards were presented for male and female in categories such as best-decorated bike or wagon, most patriotic outfit, best float, funniest outfit, and best-dressed pet.

Smiles and laughter were the order of the day and everyone seemed to share Lishing’s sentiment that, “This parade really pulls the community together.”

Share

Old Lyme Historic District Commission to Hold Public Hearing This Morning

The Old Lyme Historic District Commission (HDC) will hold a Public Hearing on Monday, July 9, in the upstairs conference room at the Old Lyme Memorial Town Hall, 52 Lyme Street.

The HDC will hear and act on the following Certificate of Appropriateness application at 9:30 a.m.

  • 26 Lyme Street, new sign and awnings. Applicant: Peter Carlson

The public is invited to attend and express its views.

Letters may be sent to the Historic District Commission, 52 Lyme Street, Old Lyme CT 06371.

Supporting material will be available at the Public Hearing.

Share

Blues Meets Pink Charity Benefit to Support the Fight Against Breast Cancer, Aug. 9

The American Cancer Society is encouraging residents throughout New London County to purchase tickets to the upcoming Blues Meets Pink Charity Benefit at Stonington Vineyards on Thursday, Aug. 9, to help support the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk of New London County. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $40 each and must be purchased in advance at www.acsbluesmeetspink.eventbrite.com.

This one of a kind summer evening will feature light fare at no additional cost from local restaurants and vendors including Mystic Oysters from Noank, a cash bar, and a selection of food trucks with food for purchase. Guests of this charity event are encouraged to bring blankets or chairs to enjoy performances from local blue artists on the lawn. Performances include a set from New York and Connecticut Blues Hall of Fame recipient Tom “the suit” Forest and a set from the Chris Leigh and the Latin Essence Jazz Quartet.

Dollars raised from the Blues Meets Pink event will benefit the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk of New London County, which will be held on Sunday, Oct. 21 at Rocky Neck State Park in Niantic. The local Strides walk unites the community to honor those touched by breast cancer and raises awareness and funds to support the American Cancer Society’s mission of eradicating breast cancer.

For more information on the Blues Meets Pink Charity Benefit ticketing, visit https://www.facebook.com/ACSBluesMeetsPink/ or email Margie Elkins at mdelkins23@gmail .com

To learn more about Making Strides Against Breast Cancer of New London County, visit  www.MakingStridesWalk.org/NewLondonCT

Share

Talking Transportation: “The Automotive-Construction Complex”

How did Americans develop their love affair with driving?

Visit the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington and the transportation exhibit, “America on the Move,” will sell you on the commonly-held theory that when Henry Ford made cars affordable, Americans loved them and demanded more and more highways.

Of course, that exhibit is sponsored by General Motors, which donated millions to put its name on the collection.

But University of Virginia history Professor Peter Norton, author of “Fighting Traffic: The Dawn of the Motor Age in American Cities,” says that’s a myth.  Just as outgoing President Eisenhower warned us of the military industrial complex, Norton says an automotive-construction complex took over our country, paving from coast to coast.

Sure, Americans like their cars.  But it was a conspiracy of economic interests that turned us into a car culture.  Where cities once enjoyed a network of cheap, fast streetcars, GM, Firestone and the oil companies bought and wiped them out, replacing them with buses and cars.

“This country destroyed and rebuilt its cities in the 20th century to serve automobiles,” says Norton.  And those same interest groups are alive and well today in Connecticut.

Groups like “Move CT Forward” aren’t pro-transportation as much as they are pro jobs … their jobs, in construction.  And they’ve spent a lot of money lobbying in Hartford to keep their members, the unions and contractors, busy.   While I’m happy they’re promoting transportation, their motives are hardly altruistic.

This is nothing new, says Norton.  The original interstate highways built in the 1950s used Portland Cement because that company lobbied so hard for its product over cheaper asphalt.  And now that rusting rebar and crumbling cement is costing us a fortune.

Another myth from that era was that President Eisenhower built the interstates to move troops quickly for national defense.  That may have been the pitch to Congress, but the real reason for the highways was to evacuate civilians from the big cities in the event of nuclear war.  Lucky we never had to test that idea.

Last August when Hurricane Harvey hit Houston … the most urbanized highway city in the country … authorities didn’t even try to evacuate people because they knew more would die on congested roads than in the storm.

Who pays for all this road building?  You do, in the form of income taxes and, yes, gasoline taxes.  But Norton says gas taxes are hardly a fair way to pay for all this.

Why does the motorist driving on a dirt road pay the same gas tax as one driving I-95?  The costs they place on road maintenance, the environment and our stress levels are grossly different, so why isn’t the cost?

“It would be like having Best Buy selling everything by the pound.  People would flock to the electronics (our crowded interstates) instead of the towels,” he notes (though I’m not sure Best Buy even sells towels, but I take his point.)

He reminds us that before the interstates, the nation’s first “super highways” like the Pennsylvania Turnpike and the New Jersey Turnpike were built – not as freeways – but toll roads, and they still are today.

Driving may seem to be free, but it isn’t.  And until we ask drivers to pay for its real cost, there is no incentive to do anything but drive (and pave) more.

Jim Cameron

About the author: 

Jim Cameron is founder of The Commuter Action Group, and a member of the Darien RTM.  The opinions expressed in this column are only his own.  You can reach him at CommuterActionGroup@gmail.com

For a full collection of “Talking Transportation” columns, visit www.talkingtransportation.blogspot.com

Posted with permission of Hearst CT Media.

Share