February 26, 2020

Lyme Library Presents Rescheduled ‘Backyard Birding,’ Saturday

LYME — Curious as to whom is composing that sweet-sounding trill?

Join the Roger Tory Peterson Estuary Center at the Lyme Public Library to learn how to identify backyard birds by sight and sound this coming Saturday, Feb. 29, at 2 p.m.  Learn who is at the feeder during each season and what their feeding habits are. All are welcome.

Bring your binoculars for some outdoor practice. The presenter will also have some pairs available.

For information and to register, call the library at 860-434-2272.


Talking Transportation: Avoiding Air Turbulence

Jim Cameron

“Buckle up folks.  There’s some bumpy air ahead”, said the pilot on a recent flight.  No need to remind me; my seatbelt is always fastened as “bumpy air”… a euphemism for air turbulence … is my worst fear in flying. It’s the whole “fear of death” thing.

Intellectually I know that modern aircraft can survive all manner of stress from changing or violent winds, but can I?  I’ve been on flights where our aircraft plummeted hundreds of feet without notice, sending passengers, their drinks and laptops flying.  There’s not much you can do in a situation like that except, hang on,  breathe deeply and pray.

Thanks to climate change there are dire predictions that in-flight turbulence is getting worse, increasing by several hundred percent in some areas.  Even today severe air turbulence is thought to cost airlines $200 million a year and is the single biggest cause of passenger injuries.

According to the FAA there were 27 passengers and crew injured by turbulence in 2015.  In 2016 that number was 42.  And with more and more people flying, those numbers will climb.

Only a few years ago, United Airlines offered passengers an in-flight audio channel where they could listen to air traffic control (ATC) handling their and other flights.  That was my favorite channel as I heard our flight being cleared to higher altitudes, warned about other aircraft and being guided across the country. It was reassuring to hear the professionalism of the flight crew and ATC.  But the channel was only available at the pilot’s discretion. And when it was turned off mid-flight, I always knew something nasty was coming our way.

Pilots regularly ask ATC for “ride reports” from other aircraft at the same altitude and flight path, always seeking the smoothest flight.  But sometimes the turbulence is unexpected, the so-called “clear air turbulence.”  You can be cruising along at 35,000 feet when, without notice, you get slammed.

On a Turkish Airlines flight to JFK last March, the 777 jetliner encountered clear air turbulence over Maine that sent everything flying.  The terror lasted about 10 minutes and when the plane finally landed, 30 passengers were taken to hospital.

That’s why you should always keep your seatbelt fastened so if the plane drops, you don’t crash into the ceiling.

Now there’s new technology that may help us all have a smoother flight.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) is testing an automatic tracking and reporting system to warn flights of “bumpy air.”  So far 15 major airlines are sharing data in the test phase of the program.

Their planes are equipped with a black box measuring changes in the flight’s speed and tilt eight times each second.  That data is transmitted to the ground and within 30 seconds, flights in the area can be warned of trouble ahead.

So far the participating airlines are generating 115,000 reports a day to the IATA Turbulence Aware system.  The system will be most valuable on long, overseas routes where there are fewer aircraft flying the same corridor.

The Turbulence Aware system should be fully operational this year when airlines will have installed the gear on most of their planes.  American Airlines alone hopes to have 800 airliners gathering and reporting data in the coming months.

Meantime … buckle up, friends!  There’s bumpy air ahead.

Posted with permission of Hearst CT Media.

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


Essex Winter Series Presents LINÜ Guitar Duo, March 8

LINÜ Guitar Duo comprises Jiji (left in photo above) and Gulli Bjornsson.

DEEP RIVER/ESSEX Essex Winter Series (EWS) presents its Fenton Brown Emerging Artists Concert, featuring LINÜ, a vibrant and talented guitar duo comprised of Gulli Bjornsson and Jiji, on Sunday, March 8 at 3 p.m. at John Winthrop Middle School, Deep River. 

Gulli Bjornsson and Jiji are two aspiring young artists searching for new ways to promote classical music. Both virtuosic and versatile, they have received multiple accolades for their guitar playing and have backgrounds in composition, film, electronic music, visual arts and theater.

Their diverse backgrounds, classical training and contemporary influences all come to fruition as Bjornsson and Jiji present unique programs of classical music, improvisations, arrangements and new compositions on classical and electric guitars. In recital, they have performed in a wide array of venues, including: Le Poisson Rouge, National Sawdust, Dominican Guest Concert Series, Morse Recital Hall, Mengi, Hannesarholt, Yale British Art Gallery, East Meadow Public Library and Yale Cabaret.

Bjornsson and Jiji met at Yale School of Music in 2015 and have been performing together and creating music ever since. Their primary teacher was Benjamin Verdery.

The EWS season will continue on March 29 at Valley Regional High School with BeethovenFest, a celebration of Beethoven’s 250th with seven world-renowned artists: David Shiffrin, clarinet; William Purvis, horn; Marc Goldberg, bassoon; Ida Kavafian, violin; Steven Tenenbom, viola; Peter Wiley, cello; and Timothy Cobb, double bass.

All concerts begin at 3 p.m. and are general admission. For tickets call 860-272-4572 or visit www.essexwinterseries.com.

The 2020 season is generously sponsored by Masonicare at Chester Village with co-sponsors The Clark Group, Essex Meadows, Essex Savings Bank, Jeffrey N. Mehler CFP LLC, Tower Laboratories, and hospitality sponsors Guilford Savings Bank and BrandTech Scientific.


Potapaug Audubon Hosts Shaun Roche on ‘Planting for Pollinators’ at Meeting in Old Lyme, March 5

Shaun Roche, Visitor Services Manager at the Stewart B. McKinney Widlife Refuge, will speak on ‘Planting for Pollinators,’ March 5.

OLD LYME — Potapaug Audubon will hold their next monthly meeting Thursday, March 5, at 7 p.m. at the Old Lyme Memorial Town Hall, 52 Lyme St. All are welcome to this seventh presentation of the season. Come early for cheese and crackers and cider and catch-up conversations.

The guest speaker will be Shaun Roche, who is the Visitor Services Manager at the Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge, where he focuses on education and outreach.  His topic will be, ‘Planting for Pollinators: Using Native Plants to Attract Butterflies and Bees.’

Roche grew up in Waterbury and attended Central Connecticut State University where he earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in public history. He worked for the National Park Service at Sagamore Hill National Historic Site in Oyster Bay, New York for more than six years before transferring to the Fish and Wildlife Service and coming back to Connecticut in 2011.

He lives with his wife and three-year-old twins in Cromwell.

For more information about Potapaug Audubon, visit http://www.potapaugaudubon.com

For more information about the Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge, visit https://www.fws.gov/refuge/stewart_b_mckinney

For more information about the specific topic, visit https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/documents/AttractingPollinatorsV5.pdfAll


Old Lyme Boys Crush Portland 66-49

OLD LYME — Playing Friday night on their home court , the Old Lyme Varsity boy’s basketball team soundly defeated Portland 66-49.
Aedan Using led the Wildcats with 17 points, 11 rebounds, and seven assists while Ray Doll added 14 points and three steals. Jared Ritchie scored 13 points and had two steals, Brady Sheffield had eight assists, and Ty Dean and John Almy added nine points each.
Mason Piersal was the leading scorer for Portland with 14.



Old Lyme Land Trust Board Issues Statement on Black Hall Pond/Beaver Activity

OLD LYME — Yesterday evening, we received the following statement from the Old Lyme Land Trust Board of Trustees regarding Black Hall Pond/Beaver Activity.

Members of the Old Lyme Land Trust and its Board investigated the claim made by Mr. Berggren, certain Town of Old Lyme officials, and others, that one or more animal obstructions on the Jericho Preserve have restricted the water flow from Black Hall Pond and caused the water level to rise by as much as two feet within the Pond. 

Several weeks ago, one beaver dam was located on the Jericho Preserve approximately two thousand feet south of Black Hall Pond; this dam, when breached, lowered the water level at Mr. Berggren’s dock by approximately six and one-quarter inches. 

On Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2020, Old Lyme Land Trust volunteers forded Bucky Brook from Whippoorwill Road to Black Hall Pond and found no significant animal obstructions on the Jericho Preserve, or any other parcel between the Preserve and Black Hall Pond, that would impede water flow or raise the waters of Black Hall Pond to the level claimed by Mr. Berggren and others. 

The current water level in Black Hall Pond is not the result of any animal obstructions on the Jericho Preserve. 

This information was shared with Mr. Berggren on Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020.


LYSB Conducts Survey on Youth, Alcohol, Drugs: Asks Community Members to Take Three Minutes to Help

LYME-OLD LYME — Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau (LYSB) is conducting a Community Survey about Youth, Alcohol and Drugs and is seeking for help from  LymeLine readers. Since we fully support the mission and work of LYSB, we are therefore asking all our readers to share their thoughts about youth substance use by completing the survey.

All students in grades 6 through 12 were already given the survey about substances and now the community at large is being asked for input. The survey is anonymous and confidential, and takes less than three minutes to complete. It includes questions related to your opinions on:

  • Marijuana
  • Teens and alcohol
  • Family rules

Click on this link to take the survey — it will be available until Feb. 29.

This survey will give LYSB the community information they need to plan their prevention work in Lyme and Old Lyme. The results of the survey will be shared at a community forum in the spring.

For further information or any questions, contact LYSB at 860-434-7208.



Eversource Conducts Statewide Infrared Helicopter Inspections Through Feb. 28

LYME — Rights of way in Lyme are included on the list of towns over which Eversource is currently conducting aerial inspections of high-voltage electrical equipment. This semiannual inspection, which takes place at locations throughout Connecticut, is an important part of the company’s ongoing commitment to providing reliable electric service.

The work involves the use of a helicopter (pictured above) equipped with heat-sensing, infrared scanning technology, which can detect potential equipment issues before they occur.

Inspecting images taken from the Eversource helicopter and looking for potential equipment issues.

The aerial inspections continue through Feb. 28. Weather permitting, flights will take place between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m.


Reading Uncertainly? ‘The Goodness Paradox’ by Richard Wrangham

My goodness … we are indeed a strange species!

Dr. Wrangham, a Harvard anthropologist, tackles his subtitle, “The Strange Relationship Between Virtue and Violence in Human Evolution,” by going on to suggest, “We can be the nastiest of species and also the nicest.”

But, he offers, “The key fact about humans is that within our social communities we have a low propensity to fight. Compared to most wild mammals we are very tolerant.” One possible reason for this is “the domestication syndrome,” a process that started over 300,000 years ago, and, incidentally, is also found among some species of dogs and sheep.

Are we going to continue to evolve towards more pacifism, as Steven Pinker also suggests in his The Better Angels of Our Nature (2011), or might we regress?

Will our “progress’ continue or might we revert to once prevalent habits?

Wrangham notes that in 17th century New England, ‘”You could be executed for witchcraft, idolatry, blasphemy, rape, adultery, bestiality, sodomy, and, in New Haven, masturbation.”

Our altruism has continued to evolve within Homo sapiens, as we have delighted in “the sheer cosmological fascination of understanding where we come from,” and recognized that altruism is inherently more successful.

Edward O. Wilson also proposed this idea in Genesis* (2019): groups of altruists always beat aggressive groups. Wrangham also offers the idea that “docility … seems likely to be a vital precondition for advanced cooperation and social learning.” Chimpanzees lack this “docility,” while bonobos (pygmy chimpanzees), who are much closer to we humans in their development, seem to have it.

How will our genes move us in the future?

Might our natural “evolution” towards pacifism stall, and might other creatures move faster in that direction, adopting and encompassing altruism and docility, and therefore survive?

Dr. Wrangham challenges us to think seriously about these questions.

Editor’s Note: ‘The Goodness Paradox’ by Richard Wrangham is published by Pantheon Books, New York 2019.

*Read Felix Kloman’s review of ‘Genesis’ by Edward O. Wilson at this link.

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, a subject which 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 Farm Coffee, where he may be seen on Friday mornings. His late wife, Ann, was also a writer, but of mystery novels, all of which begin in a village in midcoast Maine, strangely reminiscent of the town she and her husband visited every summer.


Letter From Paris: France is Embroiled in a Pension Reform Crisis, But Seems to be Doing Fine … or is it?

Nicole Prévost Logan

Reform of the retirement system was at the core of French President Emmanuel Macron’s 2016 campaign. He wanted to simplify the system and make it universal. The reform is so highly sensitive – one might even say explosive – that several prime ministers have fallen in similar attempts (1986, 1995, 2008.) Although close to 60 percent of public opinion is favorable to the reforms, the opposition is orchestrated into an angry movement by the unions and the Left.  

In a nutshell, the objective of the reform is two-fold: first, to prevent the system from being in the red in the 2020s and second to achieve social justice. This latter aim is being sought by suppressing the 42 régimes spéciaux (special systems), which grant privileges to certain groups of the population, such as civil servants, train workers (SNCF) bus and subway employees (RATP), personnel of the Paris Opera, members of the two legislative assemblies, etc. Some of these benefits include calculating the amount of retirement after the last six months of employment rather than the last 25 years.  And not surprisingly, these régimes spéciaux cost the French government billions every year.

The pension system in France is based on “repartition,” meaning that the active population pays for the retired one.  The problem is that in 1950, there were four working people for each retiree. Demography will soon reduce the ratio to 1 to 1.  In the US, the retirement system is based on “capitalization,” that is, individuals are free to invest their accumulated capital in a pension fund or other types of investment as they wish.  The Scandinavian countries use both systems – “capitalization” and “repartition”- simultaneously. 

For an American reader, it must be hard to comprehend the over-regulated retirement system in France, which applies not only to the 5.6 million civil servants  but also to the private sector.  A special dispensation is even required for retirees to be allowed to work.

The Macron plan is based on a points system.  Throughout one’s professional life, each hour’s work is translated into “points.” Variables – such as the political or economic environment – may impact the points’ value.  Employers and unions will determine together the value of each point.  Hence the anxiety of the people regarding this unfamiliar system.

France has the most generous retirement pension in Europe but it’s costing the country dearly. Photo by Hans Ripa on Unsplash.

France is the ‘Etat-providence’ (Welfare State) par excellence and the most generous in Europe.  The retirement age is 62 in France as compared to 65 in the UK.  It can be as low as 52 as in the case of train conductors.  More than 13 percent of the Gross Domestic Product is devoted to funding pensions.

The French government announced its plan to reform pensions on Dec. 5, 2019.  The reaction was immediate:- a general strike of all public transport. That meant no subway in Paris, except for two lines (which are automated), no buses, and very few trains.  That ordeal lasted for weeks without even a respite during the Christmas and New Year vacations.  Life for working people, who had to commute from the suburbs, became a pure nightmare.  Videos showed stampede scenes at stations.

On Jan. 28, 2020  the Gare de Lyon was packed as usual with passengers waiting for TGVs and suburban trains.  Suddenly a deafening sound resonated under the glass and steel structure.  Several explosions followed and pink smoke filled the station.  It turned out that dozens of the men getting off the train, wearing black parkas with yellow stripes, were firefighters on their way to join a demonstration at the Bastille. They were just getting warmed up, using their talents with pyrotechnics to blast powerful fire-crackers. 

After 50 days, the strikes had partially stopped.  The street demonstrations continued and have become a way of life in the city.  The left-wing unions and radical groups keep the momentum going and direct their actions to strategic areas such as blocking the main ports or shutting down oil refineries .

Tens of thousands people in black robes marched near the Bastille on Feb. 3.  They were some of France’s 70,000 lawyers, who have been on strike for five weeks – an absolute first.  The atmosphere was peaceful.  Not a single policeman in sight, no police vans nor water guns. 

I went down to take pictures.  ‘Why are you on strike?’  I asked a young lawyer. ‘We have our own retirement system,’ she answered, ‘which is autonomous and, furthermore, has a surplus.  Now the government has announced that the contributions toward the pension fund will double from 14 to 28 percent.’ Actually, what she said is not entirely accurate — the increase will be gradual: it will not start until the late 2020s and will not apply to all equally. 

French President Emmanuel Macron.

The launching of this crucial pension reform is like stepping into an anthill.  Wherever the government goes, it cuts into well-entrenched benefits, provoking an outpouring of protests.  Every time the government helps one group financially, this assistance has to be paid for by depriving another group.  This in turn feeds the popular mistrust for the government . 

After consultation with all the unions at the Hotel Matignon (seat of the Executive Power), an agreement was reached with the CFDT (Confederation Française Democratique du Travail), the most reformist of the unions.  For Laurent Berger, the CFDT leader,  the “age pivot” (retirement age) of 64 was a “red line” not to be crossed.  The Prime Minister agreed to pull back from it and replace it with a “cocktail of measures” to generate 12 billion Euros in order to balance the pension system. 

A parliamentary commission  of 80 deputies from all parties from the RN (Rassemblement National of Marine LePen) to LFI (La France Insoumise of Jean-Luc Melanchon) was appointed.  The government’s proposal was met with a ridiculous number of 22,000 amendments, (19,000 by LFI alone.)  Their obvious strategy was total obstruction of the process.  A general debate in the Parliament will follow.  If time runs out because of the municipal elections in 36,000 towns on March 15, the Prime Minister may resort to Executive Orders. 

In this crisis, I believe both sides are to blame: the government’s project may not have been prepared well enough and appeared confusing.  The opposition consistently refuses to enter any dialogue.  It is a French cultural trait:- first you flex your muscles then – possibly – you may be willing to come to the negotiating table.  But keep in mind that compromise is a dirty word in France.

The proposed retirement reform has somehow triggered other requests.  Seeing an opportunity, demands for higher wages and benefits are snowballing.  Some teachers in public schools are striking for pay raises.  These school students take their cue from their teachers and march in the street, or block their classrooms to protect their future pension rights — an odd sight indeed for 12- or 13-year olds!

The unrest (accompanied by violence) is dragging on.  There does not seem to be an end to it.

France appears to be functioning on two different levels — on the one hand, there is a France of  angry people, who feel very sorry for themselves. On the other, there is a dynamic France doing rather well, which has become economically attractive to foreign investors thanks primarily to labor market reforms. 

At the same time, Macron has chosen to keep above the in-fighting and focus on his role as the president of the only nuclear power of Europe, strengthening its defense and security while seeking a more integrated European Union.

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

Nicole Prévost Logan

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


Book Review: ‘Last Day’ by Luanne Rice is ‘a Unique Combination of Psychological Thriller, Cozy Murder Mystery’

Editor’s Note: We are delighted to welcome Paulette Zander to LymeLine today as an occasional guest book reviewer. Many readers will remember Paulette from her days running ‘The Happy Carrot Bookshop’ in Old Lyme. An accomplished author herself, Paulette has reviewed the latest work by local resident, the acclaimed author Luanne Rice, whose 34th novel has just been published.

Internationally-known local author, Luanne Rice, has just published her 34th novel, Last Day; her first in the mystery/thriller genre. Last Day is also the first pick of The New London Day’s new regional book club, in partnership with Bank Square Books in Mystic. The new book club is the brainchild of Rick Koster, who is the arts and music reporter for the paper.

Last Day was also chosen for the January “First Reads” selection on Amazon and is also touted by such illustrious authors as Lee Child, Tess Gerritson, Lisa Unger, and Lisa Scottoline.

I will state at the outset for dedicated fans, that although this book is a departure from her other adult fiction, there’s no need to panic. The themes of love, loss, sisterly devotion, betrayals, and family ties are skillfully interwoven. 

The difference with this novel is that all those wonderful, familiar, lyrical elements are interlaced with a murder mystery that is at times gruesome and gritty. That dark aspect is unexpected, but Rice has found the right balance. She juxtaposes the backstories of the victim’s family and friends with disturbing details about the heinous murder, but she doesn’t dwell overly long on the gruesome and the gritty. This makes for a unique combination of psychological thriller and cozy murder mystery.

The story is set on the Connecticut shoreline and is loosely based on the murder of Ellen Sherman in 1985 in Niantic. That real crime took years to solve. The murder in Last Day doesn’t take quite so long to unravel, but it is as baffling as the case it is based on. A secondary mystery involving the theft of a painting called Moonlight compounds the story.

NYT best-selling author Luanne Rice. File photo

Rice is adept at showing the immediacy of pain and betrayal, and there’s plenty of both in this story. The characters are varied and interesting and they all have a plausible motive. Rice provides plenty of red herrings to keep you guessing until the end. The subtle clues are also there, but like any good mystery, many readers will  have to go back to find them.

As always, for local fans, it is fun to guess or recognize the various locales. Rice has featured the village of Black Hall in many of her novels, so fans familiar with her work know that Black Hall is Old Lyme. One assumes the art gallery on Main Street is the Cooley Art Gallery, and the depictions of the flora and fauna conjures familiar images for anyone who has walked, hiked, or boated in the area. Many New London landmarks make an appearance as well.

Interspersed throughout the story are some disturbing elements that are graphically depicted. However, these passages are relieved by Rice’s excellent pacing. She ratchets down the tension by occasionally segueing into tidbits of art and nautical history and other interesting diversions. She provides just enough intriguing detail to make the reader want to learn more, I often stopped reading long enough to jot down notes to Google after I finished the book. 

I’ve been reading Rice’s novels since the early 1990s, and I’ve always marveled at her exquisite nature prose. She once again doesn’t disappoint in this novel. If Rice wrote an Eyewitness Travel Guide for Old Lyme, the town would be overrun with tourists eager to meander through this hidden gem.

Another aspect of Rice’s writing I’ve always admired is her depiction of women. She portrays strong, capable, independent women. She doesn’t make them super women, though. They have vulnerabilities and flaws. Her female characters aren’t artificial, which makes them believable. The female characters in Last Day are simultaneously fragile and strong.

If I can find any fault with this story, it is that I was initially disappointed when the killer’s identity was revealed. I questioned whether or not the killer’s motive was strong enough. But, after some thought, I had to concede that I don’t understand any killer’s motives.

I’ve read extensively about Ted Bundy, but I still haven’t figured out how he could have committed such vicious murders. I think that’s true for most of us. We aren’t murderers, and we cannot fathom how or why anyone would take another’s life. All murder is incomprehensible, so why would I expect the motive of a fictional character to make any sense to me? In Last Day, the motive is as mysterious as the murder, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Paulette Zander

About the author: Paulette  Zander is the former owner of ‘The Happy Carrot Bookshop’ in Old Lyme. She earned her MFA in creative writing from Lindenwood University in St. Charles, MO and is currently pursuing her master’s degree in library science at St. John’s University in New York City. Her short fiction has appeared in Flash Fiction World, 62nd Stories, Everyday Fiction, Pearce Publications, The Penman Review, The Longridge Review, and Crack the Spine. She splits her time between Niantic, Connecticut and Taos, New Mexico and is currently writing her second novel, but occasionally dispenses writing advice, random observations, and flash fiction on her blog at Ink to You: Rhetoric for the Masses and on Twitter @InktoYou.


Proposed 2020-21 Budget for Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Shows First Ever Decrease Over Current Year

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser

LYME-OLD LYME — In what Superintendent Ian Neviaser said is a first for the district, the Lyme-Old Lyme Board of Education approved a proposed 2020-21 budget that is less than the current budget but does not cut programming or staff.

The $35,066,107 million budget is $18,651, or 0.05 percent less than the current $35,084,758 spending plan.

Neviaser said the decrease in large part is due to ..

Read the full article by Mary Biekert and published Feb. 10 on TheDay.com at this link. 


Girls’ Basketball: ‘Cats Lose to Morgan But Defeat H-K

LYME-OLD LYME — The Lyme-Old Lyme Varsity girls played what coach Don Bugbee called a, “physically tough” game Saturday (Feb. 8) and came away with a 38-32 loss but it was by no means an embarrassing one. The low score hints at the demanding nature of the contest causing Bugbee to conclude, “We’ll learn from our shortcomings and get better as a result.”

Junior Sam Gray scored eight points and nabbed five rebounds, while fellow Junior Grace Lathrop added six points and five rebounds. Senior Taylor Thompson also scored six pooints with six rebounds and Junior Ellie Zrenda contributed the same number of points and rebounds as Thompson.

Old Lyme’s record stood at 10-6 at the end of that game.

The Junior Varsity girls, who are having an exceptional season, took their record to 14-1 with a resounding 52-16 victory over Morgan. Sophomore Ali Kyle led the team’s scoring with 15 points followed by Freshman Hayley Cann with 12 and Sophomore Marina Saia Lloret with nine points.

Tuesday (Feb. 11) brought the Haddam-Killingworth girls down to Old Lyme but H-K went home with a bitter 34-54 loss allowing the Wildcats to take their record to 11-6.  Bugbee described it as, “A very solid team effort both offensively and defensively throughout the game,” adding, “Contributions in all aspects of the game coming from everyone made us a difficult opponent for sure.”

Junior Sam Gray scored 14 points while fellow Junior Emily DeRoehn also scored 14 with 10 rebounds and three steals. Junior Ellie Zrenda notched nine points, four rebounds and three steals.

The JV team continued their extraordinary march with a 42-24 win over H-K taking their record to a remarkable 15-1.
Freshman Hayley Cann scored 16 points while fellow Freshman Alexis Fenton added 13.

On Friday, Feb. 14, Old Lyme take on Fitch at 5:30 p.m. (JV) and 7 p.m. This home game for Old Lyme will also be Senior Night at which the team’s sole Senior, Taylor Thompson and her parents will be honored.


A View From My Porch: An Appropriate Day to Remember Connecticut Icon William Gillette

Gillette Castle, former home of the iconic movie star and playwright, Connecticut-born William Gillette, who died in 1937.

Editor’s Note: Tom Gotowka sent us this piece last week, but we had always planned to publish it today. By an extraordinary coincidence, we now find — thanks to an article sent to us this morning by our friend and regular correspondent George Ryan — that today is the 90th anniversary of William Gillette’s final performance as Sherlock Holmes, given Feb. 12, 1930 at the popular Parsons Theatre in downtown Hartford.
Timing is everything … so many thanks indeed to George for his gem of information and Tom for his fascinating insight into the life and work of Mr. Gillette.

I am going a few miles upstream in this essay towards East Haddam and its medieval gothic castle to consider William Gillette’s impact on how Sherlock Holmes has been portrayed in movies and television. My goal in these essays is to cover the subject thoroughly enough to either satisfy your curiosity, or to pique your interest to pursue some additional research.

Assuming the editor’s forbearance, I will also review, in a subsequent essay, several of the actors who played Holmes or Watson to judge how true they were to either Gillette’s or Arthur Conan Doyle’s artistic vision.

Gillette was born to a progressive political family in Hartford’s Nook Farm neighborhood where authors Harriet Beecher Stowe, Mark Twain, and Charles Dudley Warner each once resided. His mother was a Hooker, that is a direct descendant of Connecticut Colony co-founder Thomas Hooker. Gillette is most recognized for his on-stage interpretation of Sherlock Holmes. He may have been America’s first matinée idol or to put it another way, the era’s rock star.

The Sherlockian Literature

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. See below for photo credit.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote 56 short stories and four novels between the 1880s and the early 20th century that comprise the “canon” of Sherlock Holmes. The stories were first published in Strand Magazine and two of the novels were serialized in that same periodical. 

Holmes defined himself as the world’s first and only “consulting detective.” He shared rooms at 221B Baker Street in London with Dr. John H. Watson, who was a former army surgeon wounded in the Second Afghan War. 

Holmes referred to Watson as his “Boswell” because he chronicled his life and the investigations that they jointly pursued as did 18th century biographer, James Boswell, of Dr. Samuel Johnson.  Watson was described as a typical Victorian-era gentleman and also served as first-person narrator for nearly all of the stories.

Holmes was known for his incredible skills of observation and deduction, and forensic science and logic, all of which he used when investigating cases for his myriad clients, which often included Scotland Yard. He played the violin well and was an expert singlestick player, boxer, and swordsman. He summarized his investigative skills for Watson this way, “Once you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth,” and, “It is my business to know what other people don’t know.”

However, Holmes had shortcomings. He was a very heavy smoker of black shag pipe tobacco, which he kept in the toe of a Persian slipper on the fireplace mantel at 221B. He also smoked cigars and cigarettes. A very difficult problem was called a “three pipe problem.” 

He used cocaine and morphine to provide “stimulation for his overactive brain” during periods when he did not have an interesting case or as an escape from “the dull routine of existence.” This was not really unusual in that period because the sale of opium, laudanum, cocaine, and morphine was legal and often used to self-medicate or for recreation. This habit was worrisome for Dr. Watson, although he once said of Holmes, “He was the best and wisest man whom I have ever known.”

The Holmes stories were immensely popular and Doyle’s last publication in Strand, “The Final Problem,” elicited such public (and Royal Family) outrage, that there were mass subscriber cancellations bringing the magazine to the brink of failure.

William Gillette. See below for photo credit.

Doyle decided to write a stage play about Holmes, set earlier in the detective’s career. He was probably compelled to do so because there already were several Sherlock Holmes on-stage productions, which provided him no income, and were of such poor quality that he felt the need to both protect his character’s legacy and improve his own income stream. 

He drafted the play and shared it with his literary agent, who sent it on to Broadway producer and impresario, Charles Frohman. Frohman reviewed it and said it needed substantial work before anyone would consider production. He suggested that William Gillette be offered the rewriting task. 

At that time, Gillette was already well-known as a talented actor and a successful and prolific playwright. His approach was a significant change from the melodramatic standards in the American theater of the time. He stressed realism in sets, lighting, and sound effects. Holmes Scholar Susan Dahlinger described Gillette’s acting style this way, “He could be thrilling without bombast, or infinitely touching without descending to sentimentality.” 

So, Doyle agreed with Frohman, and Gillette began the project by reading the entire “canon” of Holmes stories and novels. He began drafting the new manuscript while touring in California with the stage production of “Secret Service,” which he had also written.  He exchanged frequent telegrams with Doyle during the process and, with Doyle’s blessing, borrowed some plots and detail from the canon in adapting Doyle’s original manuscript into a four-act play. 

Unfortunately, neither Gillette’s first draft nor Doyle’s original script ever reached stage production. A fire broke out at Gillette’s San Francisco hotel and both manuscripts were lost. So, Gillette began a complete redraft of his lost script, and Doyle was finally able to present a play before the century’s end that he deemed worthy of Sherlock Holmes.

It is worth noting that Frohman perished on the Lusitania in May, 1915, after it had been torpedoed by a German submarine.

In 1899, Gillette was “predictably” cast for the lead role in “Sherlock Holmes A Drama in Four Acts.” Initially presented in previews at the Star Theatre in Buffalo, NY, it opened that November at the Garrick Theatre in New York City, and ran there for more than 260 performances before beginning a tour of the United States and then on to a long run in London, where it received great critical and public acclaim.

He starred in that role for more than 30 years, and about 1,500 productions in the United States and Great Britain. He also starred in the 1916 silent film, “Sherlock Holmes,” which film-historians have called, “the most elaborate of the early movies.”

Playing a role for so many years was not unusual at that time in American Theater. For example, James O’Neill, father of playwright Eugene, played Edmond Dantès, The Count of Monte Cristo, more than 6000 times between 1875 and 1920.

Some Key Elements of Gillette’s Sherlock

Although William Gillette is really no longer a “household name” — except perhaps,here in Southeastern Connecticut, where much of how we imagine Holmes today is still due to his stage portrayal of the great consulting detective. 

Gillette actually bore some resemblance to the Holmes described by Dr. Watson in “A Study in Scarlet.” Watson notes, “His [Holmes’s] very person and appearance were such as to strike the attention of the most casual observer. In height he was rather over six feet, and so excessively lean that he seemed to be considerably taller. His eyes were sharp and piercing, and his thin, hawk-like nose gave his whole expression an air of alertness and decision. His chin, too, had the prominence and squareness which mark the man of determination.” 

Gillette’s Holmes appeared in deerstalker cap and Inverness cape. He smoked a curve-stemmed briar pipe, and carried a magnifying glass.  He crafted a phrase that eventually evolved into one of the most recognized lines in popular culture: “Elementary, my dear Watson.” Gillette’s direct style was said to lend a bit of arrogance to Holmes beyond that which Doyle had depicted —  that arrogance has become a hallmark of Holmes’ portrayal in contemporary movies and television.

And finally, Gillette introduced the page, “Billie,” who had actually been played by a certain 13-year-old Charles Spencer Chaplin during the London engagement. At the end of the run, Chaplin began his career as a Vaudeville comedian, which ultimately took him to the United States and movie stardom as the incomparable Charlie Chaplin. 

Some Final Thoughts

I first learned of William Gillette a few summers ago when I visited his remarkable home, “Gillette Castle” built high above the eastern bank of the Connecticut River. I left that visit impressed with Gillette’s creativity in his design of the doors, light switches, and some of the furniture; wondering about his secret multi-mirror “spying” system, and with the assumption that he was just an eccentric artist who liked trains. 

However, I enjoy the Sherlock Holmes literature; and began reading the “canon” at age twelve. I have certainly re-read many of the stories a few more times. Over the past several years, I began to read several authors who write Sherlock Holmes short stories and novels “in the style of Arthur Conan Doyle.” Some of these “pastiches,” as they are called, are quite accurate in style and continuity of Doyle’s themes. 

In researching this essay, I was surprised with the breadth of scholarly work that is currently available regarding Sherlock and Gillette. There are several national and international literary organizations that have also developed around Doyle’s work.

The Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth offers a “Study of Sherlock” course, wherein students engage in critical reading, thinking, and writing by studying the iconic detective.

Our local expert on Holmes is Danna Mancini of Niantic. He has lectured and conducted seminars on The World of “Sherlock Holmes.” He is active in at least two Holmes literary organizations: The Baker Street Irregulars (NYC) and the Speckled Band of Boston.

Of some note, the Special Operations Executive (SOE) tasked by Winston Churchill to “set Europe ablaze” during World War II, had its headquarters at 64 Baker Street and was often called, “The Baker Street Irregulars.”

So, the ‘consulting detective’ continues to inspire novels, movies, and television.

As noted above, I will review several of the actors who played Holmes or Watson in these media in my next essay, and judge how true they were to either Gillette’s or Arthur Conan Doyle’s artistic vision.

Photo credit for the photo of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is as follows: By Arnold Genthe – PD image from http://www.sru.edu/depts/cisba/compsci/dailey/217students/sgm8660/Final/They got it from: http://www.lib.utexas.edu/photodraw/portraits/,where the source was given as: Current History of the War v.I (December 1914 – March 1915). New York: New York Times Company., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=240887

Photo credit for the photo of William Gillette is as follows: Billy Rose Theatre Division, The New York Public Library. William Gillette Retrieved from http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47de-e15c-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

Tom Gotowka

About the author: Tom Gotowka’s entire adult career has been in healthcare. He’ will sit on the Navy side at the Army/Navy football game. He always sit on the crimson side at any Harvard/Yale contest. He enjoys reading historic speeches and considers himself a scholar of the period from FDR through JFK.

A child of AM Radio, he probably knows the lyrics of every rock and roll or folk song published since 1960. He hopes these experiences give readers a sense of what he believes “qualify” him to write this column.


New ‘estuary’ Magazine Focused on Connecticut River Watershed Launches This Month

OLD LYME — There’s a new magazine in town!

Estuary Ventures Inc. has announced the launch of a new quarterly magazine, titled estuary, about the “Life of the Connecticut River.”  Publisher and Old Lyme resident Dick Shriver tells LymeLine.com that estuary is for those who live in, care about, and are interested in, the Connecticut River watershed.

The magazine, available both online and in print, features stories about the Connecticut River’s science and conservation efforts, history, people, fish and other wildlife, places for recreation, and challenges for the future.

“We want our readers to luxuriate in the stories, photographs and other images,” says Shriver, adding, “With regard to conservation, we believe the more people there are who know what’s happening in the watershed, the more people there will be who will volunteer or otherwise contribute to take better care of it.”

Estuary is the only magazine dedicated to the entire watershed of the Connecticut River, all 410 miles of it.  The source of the River is near the Canadian border in New Hampshire and it then flows down New Hampshire’s border with Vermont, passing through western Massachusetts, and ultimately past Hartford and Essex to its mouth in Connecticut bordered by Old Saybrook on the west and Old Lyme on the east.

Dick Shriver

Sixty years ago, people who travelled along parts of the Connecticut River wore gas masks because of the malodorous and toxic surroundings along the way. Many, who now work on behalf of the River in a variety of ways, are thrilled that the River is once again, in Shriver’s words, “Clean, healthy and full of life,” though he quickly notes, “There is still so much more to improve.” The Connecticut River watershed is also home to many important tributaries such as the Deerfield, Farmington and Ottauquechee Rivers.

The first issue of estuary will be in subscribers’ mailboxes by Feb. 29. Online subscribers will be able to see the magazine sooner; the issues will be archived so that new subscribers will be able to access all back issues. 

Shriver explains the first issue focuses on, “Science and Conservation” and that the themes of the next three issues are respectively: Recreation; Birds, Migration and Wildlife; and History, Waterfowl and Ice. More than two dozen professional story tellers and photographers have contributed stories and visual essays for the first two issues.

It will be possible to obtain copies of back issues in print as long as supplies last. 

The online estuary magazine is available for $20 per year (four issues), and the print plus online combination for $40 per year.  Subscribe for either option at this link.

For more information about the magazine, visit estuarymagazine.com.  

For additional information and/or questions, contact Shriver at pubisher@estuarymagazine.com


A la Carte: Pepperoni Pasta is Easy to Prep, Delicious to Eat

The other Sunday, I drove to the Mystic Marriott to judge the chocolate gala to benefit Fairview in Groton, I used to call rest homes like Fairview old persons’ homes.  Now that I am actually an old person, there are other names that sound nicer, like independent or assisted living. Some years ago a friend told me that when she gets old, she wants to be at Fairview, with its gorgeous view of the Thames River. And when her time comes, she said, she wants someone to wheel her down the rolling green hills right into the river.

These days she might have a different take, since Fairview’s many-acred “campus” is gorgeous and has single houses which people buy long before they need any assisting at all. And among the hundreds of people who paid to get a sugar rush that Sunday, Fairview will fund activities for the very active residents there. 

The chocolate was pretty delicious, gorgeous and, for two of the competitors, mighty edgy. The biggest awards went to Franck Iglesias, executive pastry chef at Foxwoods, and Mark Vecchitto at Octagon, housed at the Mystic Marriott. By the way, we three judges (including The Day’s Rick Koster and Maurice Beebe, who was chef/owner of the late North End Deli) did not know whose chocolate we were eating; the establishments were numbered and only at the end did we know who was whom.

As with most dessert contests, by the end of the day I mostly wanted a hamburger. In truth, I got home and ate a tuna sandwich, because there were no leftovers in my refrigerator. With more weather events ahead, food to be make for a friend after surgery, and some dishes to take for a party coming up, it was time to cook.

This is one of my first ever pasta dishes. My nephew made it for me first, about 30 years ago, from Jeff Smith’s first cookbook. I have adapted it so much that I consider it my own. I will double the recipe for my friends and as leftovers for myself. 

Pepperoni Pasta

Yield: serves 4 to 6

2 to 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium-sized sweet onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 28-ounce can of whole or diced tomatoes
1 or so jigger of vodka (optional)
one-half pound thinly sliced pepperoni (buy the pepperoni sliced at the supermarket’s deli counter)
salt and pepper to taste
one-quarter teaspoon cayenne pepper (more if you like it spicy)
one-quarter cup heavy cream
1 to 2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
lots of freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano cheese
1 pound pasta (I like rigatoni or penne, but any pasta will do)

Photo by sheri silver on Unsplash

Place a big stockpot full of water on the stove and bring to a boil.

In the meantime, in a large skillet, warm oil, then add onion and garlic. Cook over medium-low heat until translucent (try not to brown the herbs.) Add the entire can of tomatoes; while warming, mash tomatoes if you are using whole tomatoes rather than diced tomatoes. When hot, add vodka and cook for about four minutes, at which point most of the liquor will have evaporated. Toss in pepperoni and stir; cook for another few minutes. Add salt and pepper, to taste, and beginning adding cayenne pepper, tasting each for amount of spiciness. 

In the meantime, when water is boiling, add quite a bit of sat (a few tablespoons), then add pasta. Stir until water comes back to a boil, drop heat to medium and cook until al dente (a bit of chewiness).

While pasta is cooking, add heavy cream and stir until a pretty coral color. Turn heat to low and cover. When pasta is al dente, drain but keep half a cup of pasta water to add to sauce if necessary. Add pasta to sauce (or vice versa). Toss well, adding pasta water if you want to thin it a bit. Add fresh basil and cheese; serve immediately, with more cheese so people can add more to their bowls.

About the author: Lee White has been writing about restaurants and cooking since 1976 and has been extensively published in the Worcester (Mass.) Magazine, The Day, Norwich Bulletin, and Hartford Courant.  She currently writes a cooking column called A La Carte for LymeLine.com and also for the Shore Publishing and Times newspapers, both of which are owned by The Day. 


Old Lyme Basketball Girls Claim Another Victory, This Time Over Old Saybrook

OLD LYME — Last Thursday, Feb. 6, saw Don Bugbee’s girls, who were playing on their home court, soundly defeat Shoreline rivals Old Saybrook 49-35, taking the Wildcats’ record for the season to 10-5.

A delighted Bugbee described the critical part of the game as the third quarter when he said that the team gave, “A very strong performance outscoring the Rams 20-9,” noting that was, “The difference in the game for sure.” He added that the Wildcats had offered, “a solid team defense,” noting that, “Scoring 20 points in a quarter is a difficult match-up for any team to overcome.”

Game highlights included junior Sam Gray scoring 19 points with five rebounds and three steals while Junior Emily DeRoehn added nine points, nine rebounds and six steals. Senior Taylor Thompson contributed seven points, nine rebounds and three steals.

The Junior Varsity team also won the same evening crushing Old Saybrook 48-15 and thus taking their record to a remarkable 13-1. Freshman Hayley Cann scored an outstanding 20 points while fellow Freshman Alexis Fenton notched 13 and Sophomore Maddie Thompson added nine points.

UPDATED 2/6: Lyme-Old Lyme HS, MS Issue Revised Q1 Honor Rolls

Editor’s Note: We received updated versions of the Honor Rolls this morning from the Superintendent’s Office with their apologies. We have therefore re-published the Honor Rolls in their entirety.

Lyme-Old Lyme High School

Q1 Honor Roll 2019-20

High Honors

Grade 12:

William Bartlett, Emma Bass, Audrey Berry, Madison Cann, Faith Caulkins, Emilia Cheesman, Elizabeth Cravinho, Arianna DelMastro, Maria Denya, Raymond Doll, Theodore Enoch, Leah Fouquette, Tanner Griffin, Sophia Griswold, Quinn Hickie, Lauren Huck, Jeffy Joshy, Daniel Kendall, Renate Kuhn, Rachael Larson, Brenna Lewis, Jacqueline Malizia, Thomas McCarthy, Ryan McTigue, Dylan Mulligan, Chandler Munson, Samantha Olson, Carter Popkin, Jared Ritchie, Samuel Roth, Andre Salkin, Jane Scheiber, Brady Sheffield, Colby Sides, Garrett Smith, Emily Speckhals, Alec Speirs, Evan St.Louis, Olivia Stack, Olivia Tetreault, Ryan Tetreault, Taylor Thompson, Lydia Tinnerello, Sydney Trowbridge, Megan VanSteenbergen, Jackson Warren, Theodore Wayland, Trevor Wells, Maggie Wisner, Conner Wyman, Katherine Zelmanow

Grade 11:

Paige Alpha, Colbe Andrews, Sophia Arnold, Juliette Atkinson, Rachel Barretta, Ava Berry, Emma Boardman, Sadie Bowman, Kyuss Buono, Kate Cheney, Emerson Colwell, Jackson Cowell, Megan Cravinho, George Danes, Emily DeRoehn, Francette Donato, Fiona Frederiks, Jackson Goulding, Schuyler Greenho, Emma Griffith, Isabella Hine, Paige Kolesnik, Avery Lacourciere, Grace Lathrop, Owen Macadam, Mackenzie Machnik, Luke Macy, Riley Nelson, Sophia Ortoleva, Connie Pan, Olivia Papanier, Lauren Pitt, Gavin Porter, Jacob Quaratella, Julie Rudd, Tait Sawden, Jesper Silberberg, Tessa St.Germain, Lian Thompson, Lauren Wallace, Kelly Walsh, Alison Ward

Grade 10:

Grace Arnold, Hannah Britt, Evan Clark, John Conley, Caroline Crolius, Elias D’Onofrio, Elizabeth Duddy, Eleanor Dushin, Samantha Geshel, Ethan Goss, Nicolette Hallahan, Austin Halsey, Madison Hubbard, Fiona Hufford, Julia Johnston, Nevin Joshy, Kian Kardestuncer, Owen Kegley, Michael Klier, Felse Kyle, William Larson, Reese Maguire, Abigail Manthous, Stephanie Mauro, Emily Mesham, Jacob Meyers, Elle Myers, Brendan O’Brien, Michael O’Donnell, Bella Orlando, Jacob Ritchie, Margaret Rommel, Alexander Roth, Lloret Sala, Olivia Schaedler, Calvin Scheiber, Abby Speckhals, Drew St.Louis, Nikolai Stephens-Zumbaum, Victoria Stout, Madison Thompson, Aidan Ward, Melanie Warren, Ellie Wells, Paige Winchell, Avery Wyman

Grade 9:

William Barry, Callie Bass, Livie Bass, Jordan Beebe, Cooper Bowman, Gillian Bradley, Ava Brinkerhoff, Jamie Bucior, Gretchen Burgess, Hayley Cann, Liam Celic, Luke Celic, Grace Colwell, William Danes, Anna Davis, John Eichholz, Zachary Eichholz, Clarence Hinckley, Willa Hoerauf, Arber Hoxha, Karissa Huang, Aidan Kerrigan, Celia LaConti, Phoebe Lampos, Theodore Lampos, Jonah Lathrop, Monique Lavoie, Marielle Mather, Madalyn McCulloch, Caden Monte, Cooper Munson, Olivia Powers, Kelsey Pryor, Izzadora Reynolds, Rhyleigh Russell, Eli Ryan, Dylan Sheehan, Anders Silberberg, Alyssa Spooner, Samantha Tan, Tova Toriello, Kaitlyn Ward, Harry Whitten, George Williams


Grade 12:

Anabella Arias, Jean-Luc Bolduc, Martinez Carcamo, Rory Cavicke, Philip Cone, Sarah Conley, Samuel Dushin, Araselys Farrell, Nicholas Fava, Katherine Funaro, Lucy Gilbert, Samuel Guenther, Kamber Hamou, Connor Hogan, Parker Hubbard, Kaitlyn Jacobson, Caroline King, Connor Maguire, Angelina Marinelli, Melissa Mauro, Natalie Meyers, Ryan Mitchell, Jeremy Montazella, Kyle Myers, Cajamarca Pelaez, Haley Stevens, Kiera Ulmer, Katelyn Wells, Clair Wholean

Grade 11:

Kaylee Armenia, Maxwell Bauchmann, Hunter Collins, John Cox, Patrick Dagher, Bianca Dasilva, Corah Engdall, Leslie Farrell, Isabella Flagge, Sadie Frankel, Eveliz Fuentes, Samantha Gray, Lillian Grethel, Regan Kaye, Gabriel Lavoie, Madelyn Maskell, Elle McAraw, Emma McCulloch, Brendan McTigue, Brianna Melillo, Marina Melluzzo, Michael Milazzo, Aidan Powers, Ezra Pyle, Hayden Saunders, Angus Tresnan, Katrina Wallace, Avery Welch, Katelyn Zbierski, Ellery Zrenda

Grade 10:

Nicholas Adeletti, Nihad Bicic, Olivia Catalano, Ryan Clark, John Coffey, Anne Colangelo, Sean Cordock, James Creagan, Lauren Creagan, Henry Cutler-Stamm, Elise DeBernardo, Michael DeGaetano, Liam Fallon, Victoria Gage, Aiden Goiangos, Shawn Grenier, Jackson Harris, Lillian Herrera, Zoe Jensen, Cora Kern, Robyn King, Olivia Lecza, Alex Lee, James Mazzalupo, Evan Morgan, Samuel Mullaney, Lauren Presti, Adeline Riccio, Aidan Russell, Frank Sablone, Abigail Sicuranza, McLean Signora, Meghan Speers, Olivia Turtoro, John Videll, Jerry Zhang

Grade 9:

Olivia Alpha, Elsie Arafeh-Hudson, Whitney Barbour, Jillian Beebe, John Buckley, Sarah Burnham, Alexander Chrysoulakis, Nicholas Cox, Kylie Dishaw, Archer Evans, David Evers, Alexis Fenton, Richard Frascarelli, Matthew Grammatico, Makenna Harms, Dylan Hovey, Owen Ingersoll-Bonsack, Karleigh Landers, Jacob Lopez-Bravo, Ford Macadam, Joseph Montazella, Calvin Monte, Alexander Olsen, Alain Pecher-Kohout, Jacob Rand, Santiago Rodriguez, Benjamin Roth, Joseph Steinmacher, Marco Supersano, Lea Wilson

Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School

Q1 Honor Roll 2019-20

High Honors

Grade 8:

Peighton Andrews, Emma Bayor, Oliver Berry, Alis Bicic, Elliot Bjornberg, Drew Brackley, Natalie Buckley, Jackson Bullock, Sarah Colangelo, Ava Cummins, Ella Curtiss-Reardon, Eric Dagher, Lucas DaSilva, Eva D’Onofrio, Amelia Gage, Ryder Goss, Sydney Goulding, Nyla Goulis, Alexis Grasdock, Justin Green, Douglas Griswold, Katherine Gryk, Nathaniel Heon, Sedona Holland, Agatha Hunt, Beatrice Hunt, Sabina Jungkeit, Emmerson Kaye, Grady Lacourciere, Brodie Lippincott, Anna McAdams, Griffin McGlinchey, Delaney Nelson, Isabelle O’Connor, Grace Phaneuf, Jack Porter, Luisa Raby, Ava Roth, Cailin Ruhling, Haley Shaw, Madeleine Soriano, Hannah Thomas, Keara Ward, Louisa Warlitz, Mason Wells, Summer Wollack

Grade 7:

Christopher Anderson, Emma Arelt, Natalie Barndt, Micah Bass, Gavin Biega, Molly Boardman, Mark Burnham, Chase Calderon, Tabitha Colwell, Gloria Conley, Chloe Datum, Andrea DeBernardo, Autumn Dionne, Zoe Eastman-Grossel, Caeli Edmed, Anna Eichholz, Ella Evans, Grace Ferman, Hoshena Gemme, Ava Gilbert, Henry Griswold, Jonathan Harms, Kaela Hoss, Kyle Ingersoll-Bonsack, Hannah Johnston, Shyla Jones, Simon Karpinski, Olivia Kelly, Ella Kiem, Ada LaConti, James Lahot, Brenden Landry, Elise Leonardo, Evan LeQuire, Andrew Liu, Abigail O’Brien, Kanon Oharu, Filip Pecher-Kohout, Sophie Pennie, Mutia Quarshie, Drea Simler, Nola Slubowski, Audrey Spiegel, Morgan Standish, Kathleen Walsh, Ava Wood-Muller

Grade 6:

Charlotte Antonino, Lucy Bartlett, Zoe Brunza, Alec Butzer, Trevor Buydos, Makayla Calderon, Tyler Cann, Julia Clark, Jack Conroy, Colman Curtiss-Reardon, Christopher Dagher, James Dahlke, Sophia D’Angelo, Braden Dawson, Michael DeFiore, Synthia Diaz, Rose Dimmock, William Donnelly, Alexa Donovan, Gabrielle Field, Arthur Fusscas, Eric Fusscas, Chase Gilbert, Alexander Glaras, Benjamin Goulding, Scarlette Graybill, Anne-Marie Hinckley, Bodie Holland, Christopher Kachur, Thomas Kelly, Katherine King, William Landon, Jade Lawton, Maya LeQuire, Jayden Livesey, Emily Looney, Ian Maeby, Elise Marchant, Yanza, Marin, Yanza, Marin, Samuel Masanz, Bridget McAdams, Carter McGlinchey, Ryan Miller, Eiley Montanaro, Madeline Murphy, Sybil Neary, Nina Nichols, Ryan Olsen, Ryan Ortoleva, Jackson Pannier, Quenten Patz, Isabella Presti, Jacob Prokopets, Taylor Quintin, Jenna Salpietro, Luca Signora, Emma Singleton, Charlotte Spiegel, Addison Spooner, Carson St.Louis, Andrew Taylor, Meredith Thompson, Margaret Thuma, Lucian Tracano, Madeleine Trepanier, John Turick, Connor Vautrain, Eve Videll, Elisabeth Viera, Warren Volles, Edith Williams, Oliver Wyman, Carl Zapatka, Katherine Zhang


Grade 8:

Jedidiah Arico, Henry Boremski, Macklin Cushman, Mulanga Drysile, Alexis Frascarelli, Abby Hale, Leland Hine, Dakota Kotzan, Luke Legein, Matthew Mazzalupo, Lucas McMillan, Matthew Miller, Avra Montazella, Charles Sahadi, Sydney Siefken, Owen Snurkowski, Gabriel Tooker, Kalea VanPelt, Tyler Wells

Grade 7:

Quinn Arico, Oliver Avelange, Justin Bonatti, Dylan Carnaroli, Shane Eastman-Grossel, Marcella Gencarella, Rowan Hovey, Elizabeth Lopez, Colette Marchant, Nathan Morgan, Max Novak, Ysabel Rodriguez, Andrew Sicuranza, Josephine Small, Madeline Supersano, Charlotte Tinniswood, Ava Wilcox

Grade 6:

Joshua Alix, Sebastian Lopez-Bravo, Madeline Power, Tanner Snurkowski, Gabriel Waldo, Julius Wilson


State Sen. Needleman Announces Candidacy for Re-election in 33rd District, Includes Lyme

State Senator Norm Needleman (D-33rd)

ESSEX/LYME — State Senator Norm Needleman (D-Essex) announced his candidacy yesterday for re-election to the 33rd State Senate District. First elected to his seat in 2018, Senator Needleman represents the town of Lyme along with those of Colchester, Chester, Clinton, Essex, Deep River, East Haddam, East Hampton, Haddam, Old Saybrook, Westbrook, and Portland.

“It is an honor to be able to represent the 33rd Senatorial District, and I’m excited to continue serving my constituents,” said Sen. Needleman. “My time in the General Assembly has been an incredible experience, and I truly enjoy fighting for my district to ensure we build a stronger future for them and all the citizens of Connecticut. I humbly ask my constituents for the opportunity to do so for another term.”

Needleman serves as Senate Chair of the Energy and Technology Committee, Vice Chair of the Planning and Development Committee, and is a member of the Finance, Revenue and Bonding, Transportation, and Commerce Committees.


Lyme-Old Lyme Schools to be Closed Nov. 3 to Serve as OL Polling Station for Presidential Election

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser

OLD LYME — The Lyme-Old Lyme (LOL) Schools Board of Education voted at their last (Jan. 8) meeting  to approve a 2020-2021 School Calendar, which includes all schools being closed on Tuesday, Nov. 3, in order for the schools to serve as the Old Lyme Polling Station for the 2020 Presidential Election.

Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser explained to LymeLine that in light of the very high turnout anticipated for the election in November, Old Lyme Registrars Cathy Carter (R) and Marylin Clark (D) have asked to “shift voting to the schools.” This is because there is significantly more space available at the schools than exists at the current polling station location of  the Cross Lane Firehouse.

The LOL Schools Board of Education has now agreed to that request for November 2020, but a permanent change is still under discussion.