July 5, 2015

Old Lyme Youth Program Featured at Washington DC Juvenile Justice Conference

From left to right, Missy Garvin, Youth Programs Coordinator at Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau,  Lyme-Old Lyme High School seniors Julia Strycharz and Taylor Hamparian, and Old Lyme Police Officer Martin Lane at the annual conference of the Coalition for Juvenile Justice in Washington, DC.

From left to right, Missy Garvin, Youth Programs Coordinator at Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau, stands with Lyme-Old Lyme High School seniors Julia Strycharz and Taylor Hamparian, and Old Lyme Police Officer Martin Lane at the annual conference of the Coalition for Juvenile Justice in Washington, DC.

On June 11, members of the Old Lyme Youth and Police group known as ‘Cop Club’ highlighted their four-year-old program at the Coalition for Juvenile Justice 2015 Annual Conference in Washington DC.

Old Lyme Police Officer Martin Lane and Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) senior Julia Strycharz were panelists during the presentation titled, “Increasing Positive Relations between Police and Youth.”  This presentation was included in the conference’s Welcome and General Session, which highlighted the importance of positive relations between police and young people.

Lane and Strycharz described the local efforts in Connecticut that bring law enforcement and youth together around jointly planned projects.

A collaborative project between the Old Lyme Police and the Lyme’s Youth Service Bureau (LYSB), was awarded $10,000 in grants administered by the Connecticut Juvenile Justice Advisory Committee in 2011, 2012 and 2013 to establish a youth and police program.  The youth programs are required to provide leadership roles for the youth and non-authoritarian roles for police officers.

Julia Strycharz presents at the conference.

Julia Strycharz presents at the conference.


Initially called ‘Operation LOL,’ LOLHS students and police collaborated in the writing of the grant.  The program has a goal of creating opportunities for youth and police to get to know each other through a series of monthly planned activities. These activities promote positive youth development, strengthen relationships between youth and police, and also help the community through a group service project.

Since being awarded the grant, youth and police have jointly planned fun monthly activities, including trips to New York City, Mount Monadnock,  a trampoline park, go-kart racing, snow tubing, bowling and an annual table tennis tournament held at LYSB.  Officer Lane said “Nothing builds friendships better than sharing ice cream together after getting beaten by the youth in a game of ping pong.”

Over 60 Lyme and Old Lyme youth have participated in ‘Cop Club’ since its inception.  The Connecticut Youth and Police grant permitted a maximum of three years funding for any one program.  Due to this, in 2014 the Town of Old Lyme decided to continue their commitment and fund this successful program.  The Old Lyme Police Union has also contributed monthly to ‘Cop Club’ for the past four years.

One of the requirements for Old Lyme Police Officers to participate in “Cop Club” was to attend a mandatory training in ‘Effective Police Interaction with Youth.’  This training provides patrol officers with information to understand youth behaviors better and provides practical strategies for interaction with young people in positive ways.

Officer Lane (left) and Julia Strycharz (right) were participants in a panel discussion at the 2015 Coalition for Juvenile Justice in Washington DC.

Officer Lane (left) and Julia Strycharz (right) were participants in a panel discussion at the 2015 Coalition for Juvenile Justice in Washington DC.


From this training, officers became better equipped to communicate effectively with young people they encountered and increased the likelihood that interactions with youth would result in positive outcomes.  Old Lyme Police Officers learned about the problem of inequitable treatment of minority and white youth in the juvenile justice system.

They discussed approaches for collaborating with youth officers and identified the benefits of taking a more supportive approach to dealing with youth.   Eventually, two thirds of the Old Lyme Police received this training and actively participated in the youth and police program.

In his remarks Officer Lane added, “Within my first year in Old Lyme, I realized that the Old Lyme Police Department had little to no involvement with the community’s youth and I began to develop this program with LYSB.  As for the experience being rewarding, the transformation of attitudes toward youth by police officers, who had previously little contact with this age group, was immediately visible.”

Getting to know other conference delegates over meals was an especially enjoyable part of the conference.

Getting to know other conference delegates over meals was an especially enjoyable part of the conference.

Strycharz commented, “I was a little nervous to be speaking to an audience of 300 people, mostly juvenile justice professionals.  I told them how our relationships and friendships are invaluable. Not only did the youth develop a new-found-opinion of the policemen of this town, but as the word spread about the club, the new attitude about the policemen also spread too.”

She continued, “The ‘Cop Club’ has changed the culture school-wide.  The youth of our town are not afraid of the policemen anymore. If they happen to be in the school, or at a sporting event, students aren’t afraid to approach them and say hello, ask them a question, or casually talk to them.”


Joining Lane and Strycharz at the conference were LYSB Programs Coordinator Missy Garvin and LOLHS senior Taylor Hamparian.    Garvin said “We are very proud of the success of our program in Old Lyme and it’s an honor for us to be highlighted at this national juvenile justice conference in Washington.  LYSB and the Old Lyme Police have created a valuable partnership, which will benefit both our youth and the police in our town for years to come.”

She added enthusiastically, “I can’t wait to start planning our next group to start in the fall.”



Acton Library Hosts Three Job Search Boot Camp Sessions; First on Interview Questions, June 29

CTWORKS Job Search Boot Camp will be held at Acton Public Library in Old Saybrook on three dates this summer as follows:

  • Monday, June 29: to discuss interview questions
  • Monday, July 27 :to discuss job search tools
  • Monday, Aug. 31: to discuss questions to ask employers during the interview

Boot Camp brings area people together who are unemployed or in career transition. These programs are free and presented by CTWORKS.

To register, call the Library 860-395-3184 or email TSells.ctwbs@ct.gov or for more information visit the library online at www.actonpubliclibrary.org.


Registration Open for Fundraising Valley Shore Y Golf Tournament to be Held July 20

East-Lyme-AS-EnrichmentThe 24th annual Valley Shore Y Golf Classic will be held Monday, July 20, at the Clinton Country Club.

The 24th annual Valley Shore Y Golf Classic will be held Monday, July 20, at the Clinton Country Club.

The event helps raise funds for the YMCA’s Annual Campaign supporting the Y’s scholarships and community health initiatives, which truly impact families in our community. The goal of the tournament is to raise enough funds to ensure no one is turned away from any Y program for the inability to pay.

The foursome entry fee is $1,000 and individual fee is $250. Each entry includes:

  • 18 holes of golf, with a cart for four
  • Buffet lunch
  • Dinner
  • On Course Beverages
  • Prizes and Awards such as Hot Ball Raffle and Hole in One for a car
  • Individual and team prizes
  • Putting Contest

Golfers may find registration information at http://vsymca.org/golf-classic/. Sponsorship opportunities are still available.

For additional information, contact Tony Sharillo at tsharillo@vsymca.org or 860.399.9622 ext. 107.


Old Lyme’s Woman’s Exchange Donates $3,000 to Local Charities

Ali Brinkman (President, Simply Sharing), Cathy Zall  (New London Homeless Hospitality Center), Mary Crist (Treasurer, Woman's Exchange), Dale Malcarne (President, Woman’s Exchange) and Laverne Alexander (Grant Chairwoman)

Woman’s Exchange grant givers and presenters gather for a photo, from left to right, Ali Brinkman (President, Simply Sharing), Cathy Zall (New London Homeless Hospitality Center), Mary Crist (Treasurer, Woman’s Exchange), Dale Malcarne (President, Woman’s Exchange) and Laverne Alexander (Grant Chairwoman)

Grants totaling $2,000 were presented by The Lyme Tree Woman’s Exchange of Old Lyme to two local non-profit organizations at the store in the Old Lyme Marketplace on Monday, June 15.  Organizations receiving the grants included the New London Homeless Hospitality Center, Inc. and the Simply Sharing of Essex.

The Woman’s Exchange also made a donation of $1,000 to the Shoreline Soup Kitchens & Pantries to purchase food for distribution to those in need along the Connecticut shoreline.

The Women’s Exchange is located in the Old Lyme Marketplace and is a wonderful place to shop for unique gifts, jewelry and decorative items.  Many of the items are consigned to the shop for sale by crafters and all profits, after expenses, are donated to charity.


Lyme-Old Lyme HS 1st Boy’s Four in US National Final Today, Varsity Four Boats Sweep National School’s Championship

06/14 Update: The Lyme-Old Lyme High School Boy’s Varsity Four boat has qualified for the US Rowing National Youth Championship final today at Sarasota, Fla., at 1:01 p.m. The boat’s crew is Liam Corrigan (stroke), Josh Swanski, Jeremy “Remy” Newton and Harry Godfrey-Fogg with Thomas Crisp (cox). The race will be broadcast live on US Rowing’s YouTube channel.


An extraordinary feat -- every Lyme-Old Lyme HS rower who went to the National regatta won a gold medal.

An extraordinary feat — every Lyme-Old Lyme HS rower who went to the National School’s Championship Regatta won a gold medal.

It was not only a perfect day on June 7 in terms of the weather when the crews of the Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) men’s and women’s 1st and 2nd varsity four boats competed in the National School’s Championship Regatta — but the result were perfect too.  In an extraordinary result for undoubtedly the smallest school competing — and a public one at that – all four boats won gold medals.

The crew of the girl's second boat celebrate their win.

The crew of the girl’s second boat celebrate their win.

The regatta, held in Fairfax County, Va., on the Occoquan River, is for school rowing programs that qualify from various regional and state competitions to race for a national scholastic title.  Clubs representing 13 states qualified and competed this year.

The boy's second boat in action.

The boy’s second boat in action.

Four LOLHS crews (20 athletes) qualified to represent Connecticut based on their State Championship at the Connecticut Public Schools Regatta in May.

The girls 2nd boat pose with their coach Steve Baranoski and their medals. From left to right, Lauren Dolishny,  Alexis Kolar, Caleigh O'Neil, Hannah Wilczewski and Francesca Melluzzo (cox).

The girls 2nd boat pose with their coach Steve Baranoski and their medals. From left to right, Lauren Dolishny, Alexis Kolar, Caleigh O’Neil, Hannah Wilczewski and Francesca Melluzzo (cox).

The girls 2nd boat, stroked by Hannah Wilczewski, defeated winning crews from Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Kentucky in the finals to take the gold with a time of 5:39.1 for the 1500m course.

The boys second boat stand with their coach Louis Zubek and their medals. From left to right, Peter Fuchs, Adam Drummond, Julia Morrison (cox) Brandon Green and Jacob Olson.

The boys second boat stand with their coach Louis Zubek and their medals. From left to right, Peter Fuchs, Adam Drummond, Julia Morrison (cox) Brandon Green and Jacob Olson.

The girl’s win was followed with the boy’s 2nd boat, stroked by Peter Fuchs, who were victors over crews from Massachusetts, Virginia, New Hampshire, and Pennsylvania in the finals to take the gold with a time of 5:01.6.

The girl’s first boat (at rear in photo) taste victory at the winning line.

The crew of the girl's first boat proudly display their medals. From left to right, Steve Baranoski (coach), Christiana Congdon, Hannah Paynter, Claudia Mergy (cox), Allison Murphy and Maria Boyle.

The crew of the girl’s first boat proudly display their medals. From left to right, Steve Baranoski (coach), Christiana Congdon, Hannah Paynter, Claudia Mergy (cox), Allison Murphy and Maria Boyle.

After winning the qualifying heat in the morning, the girl’s 1st boat, stroked by Christiana Congdon, won with a time of 5:32.1 against crews from Pennsylvania, Maryland, Massachusetts, and Virginia.

The crew of the boy's first boat show their determination to reach the winning line first.

The crew of the boy’s first boat show their determination to reach the winning line first.

Similarly, after advancing through the qualifying heats in the morning, the boy’s 1st boat (borrowed from Glastonbury, as the Old Lyme boat was on a trailer to Florida), stroked by Liam Corrigan, completed the sweep by defeating crews from New Hampshire, New Jersey, Washington (D.C) and Massachusetts, with a winning time of 4:55.4.

The boy's first boat gather for team photo with coach Louis Zubek and their gold medals. From left to right standing are Josh Swanski, Liam Corrigan, Jeremy "Remy" Newton and Harry Godfrey-Fogg with Thomas Crisp (cox) in front row.

The boy’s first boat gather for team photo with coach Louis Zubek and their gold medals. From left to right standing are Josh Swanski, Liam Corrigan, Jeremy “Remy” Newton and Harry Godfrey-Fogg with Thomas Crisp (cox) in front row.

The boys 1st boat has now arrived in Florida to represent LOLHS this weekend at the US Rowing National Youth Championships — the premier sprint race for Under 19s in the country.

Go Wildcats!


Lyme Farmers Market is Open for Summer Season, Saturdays

Fresh vegetables are always one of the big draws of the market.

Fresh vegetables are always one of the big draws of the market.

The perennially popular Lyme Farmers Market at Ashlawn Farm in Lyme opens again Saturday from around 9 a.m. until 12:30 p.m.

But the sad news this year is that the irrepressible, larger-than-life impresario of the market, Chip Dahlke, has announced this will be his last season with the market, “Unless…” and this is Chip’s endearing dry humor rising to the surface, “… a deranged individual or some goody two-shoes organization wants to take on the burden.”

In his ever upbeat, positive spirit, however, Chip urges, “Let’s make this summer one to remember.  The field should be full of vendors and the entertainment the best of what we’ve had for the last 12 years,” adding with his usual sharp wit, “There’s still not going to be eggplant carving contests, erotic vegetable displays, or god forbid poodle parades.”

tentsThe big draw of farmers’ markets is, of course, the fresh, local produce.  What makes the one in Lyme  so special is that it’s held on a real farm.  And since this is the Lyme countryside, it’s as a pretty as a picture.  In fact, Ashlawn Farm is a magnet for local artists who are attracted by its beauty—the old white homestead, the red barns, and the stone walls crisscrossing the pastures. An original member of the Connecticut Farmers Market Trail, Ashlawn Farm is located at 78 Bill Hill Rd. in Lyme.

The farm is celebrating its 126th anniversary this year.  Ray Harding, a dairy farmer, bought Ashlawn in 1909.  Today his grandson Chip lives there with his wife Carol and their three children.  By profession, Chip is a portfolio manager and Carol runs her popular coffee-roasting business in one of the old barns on the property.

As always, Dahlke has lined up a stellar selection of vendors, which includes:

TALK Seafood
Four Root FarmflowersThe vendors change week by week but you can be certain that every Saturday morning from June to October, tents will go up in front of barns and local purveyors will sell vegetables, fruit, breads, cheese, meat, soaps, chicken, fish, fiber, specialty food, crafts, flowers, herbs, eggs, seafood and more.  Music will be played — Dogbite are performing on Opening Day –and Chip will surely spring a few Saturday surprises!Before the Market opens, Ashlawn Farm Yoga will be held at 8 a.m. each Saturday on the grass beyond the parking field for all levels. The class is taught by Lisa Tompkins Nasser. Drop in for only $15, which includes a free Ashlawn Farm cup of Coffee.

Sign up for Chip’s entertaining weekly e-newsletter here

Like Lyme Farmers Market on Facebook hereAnd, most of all, follow Chip’s advice to make it a summer to remember at the Market — see you there!

Editor’s Note:
 Extracts of this article are taken from one written by Linda Ahnert that was originally published on LymeLine.com  in June 2009.

Historic Waterfront Tours Scheduled in Deep River During Summer

Deep River Historical Society will explain the history of the town's waterfront during walking tours this summer.

Deep River Historical Society will explain the history of the town’s waterfront during walking tours this summer.

Deep River’s commercial connection to the rest of the world started at the end of Kirtland and River Streets in the early 1800’s. What is now known as the Town Landing, was a shipyard and dock, which collectively, were the linchpin to Deep River’s mercantile success. The shipbuilding provided the vessels and the dock provided the point of delivery of raw materials and the shipment of end products, that made Deep River an economic success.

A lecture and tour of Deep River’s Historic Waterfront will be offered every second and fourth Saturday morning, this June, July, August and September. Tours are sponsored by the Deep River Historical Society. The tour will start at the home of sea captain and ship builder, Calvin Williams, at 131 Kirtland Street, (immediately left of the Mt. Saint John entrance pillars), starting at 10 a.m. SHARP, each tour day. Each tour is expected to be about 1 1/2 hour duration and will start punctually at 10 a.m.

Reservations are recommended and tickets may be acquired at the door, or in advance, from the program’s director: James Hogan, by calling 860-391-2354, or at two convenient store locations: Celebrations, 161 Main Street, Deep River and Old Saybrook Antiques Center, 756 Middlesex Turnpike, Old Saybrook.

The costs for tickets is $20 per family; $10 adults; $5 students and senior citizens. 100% of all donations will benefit the Deep River Historical Society. All donations are tax deductable. Program is “rain or shine”.

For more information, call James J. Hogan III at: 860-391-2354

Tour Dates are:
June: 13 and 27
July: 11 and 25
August: 8 and 22
September: 12 and 26


Film on LeWitt’s Landmark Synagogue set for World Premiere at Madison Cinema, Sunday


CHESTER — Complete with a red carpet, the Madison Art Cinemas will host the June 14 world premiere of We Built This House, a one-hour film telling the story of Chester synagogue Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek (CBSRZ)—known as a global art landmark for being the only public building that acclaimed artist Sol LeWitt ever designed.

Film producer-director Jon Joslow, a lifetime member of the Congregation, will discuss the movie and a reception will follow the screening. Tickets are open to the public and may be obtained for a donation of $18 each through the synagogue office, 860 526 8920. The start time is 11 a.m. Paparazzi are welcome.

In a 2013 profile, Town & Country‘s arts editor compared the striking Chester sanctuary with a masterpiece chapel Henri Matisse created in Nice, France. But the synagogue, opened in 2001, started as a napkin sketch. LeWitt first drew a structure inspired by traditional wooden temples of Eastern Europe combined with elements of colonial New England barns.

worshipWe Built This House traces how architect Stephen Lloyd translated LeWitt’s vision into post and beam, and how the Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek community collaborated and improvised—even adapting a design discovered in a medieval English watermill—to give structure to the sanctuary’s wooden dome. LeWitt’s iconic installation on the ark drew national attention when the building opened; it prompted Town & Country to observe “modern art as [the sanctuary’s] focal point.”

LeWitt, a Chester resident who died at 78 in 2007, is recognized as one of the most celebrated artists of the 20th century. The sanctuary has become known as one of the most astonishing, and spiritually welcoming, religious spaces in the world.

True to its roots, Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek has become one of the shoreline’s most vital cultural centers. Its Music & More performances draw hundreds and its art gallery features serial exhibitions from established and breakthrough artists.

Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek—Hebrew for “House of Peace Pursuing Justice”—is marking the 100th year since the founding of one of its two predecessor temples in Moodus. We Built This House is part of yearlong centennial celebrations culminating in an Oct. 3 gala and the inaugural presentation of the synagogue’s new annual Pursuer of Peace and Justice Award. Though it is located in Chester, temple members come from 36 towns, from West Hartford to Westbrook, Norwich to North Branford.

Producer/director Joslow is a crisis/transition leader for private equity who spent a year mining the history of the congregation and its building. Given time limitations in the documentary, which was conceived as a pilot, the synagogue is developing a parallel video archive to capture stories of all congregants who were part of the building’s creation. Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek is also positioning the film to encourage financial contributions to support “Second Century” programming. Supporters can be listed in permanent screen credits as producers.

DVDs of We Built This House are expected to be released later this year. Given the film’s unique insights into art as architecture, and into how a community can join together in creative enterprise, organizers anticipate interest among public television stations, those engaged in architectural and design collaborations, and art museums, in airing it following the premiere.

The Madison Art Cinemas is located at 761 Boston Post Road, Madison CT.

For more information on We Built This House or Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek, see www.cbsrz.org or www.ancientandcool.com. Or contact Temple Administrator Wendy Bayor at wendy@cbsrz.net or 860-526-8920.


Old Lyme Songwriter Lockwood Signs Exclusive Worldwide Publishing Agreement

Seated from left to right are Zach Lockwood and Chris Hunter, Pres. Old Gringo Music. Standing from left to right are Kenneth Wright, Pres. Dis Keef Music and Orville Almon, Jr.,ESQ., Almon & McPike, PLLC.

Seated from left to right are Zach Lockwood and Chris Hunter, Pres. Old Gringo Music. Standing from left to right are Kenneth Wright, Pres. Dis Keef Music and Orville Almon, Jr.,ESQ., Almon & McPike, PLLC.

Songwriter Zach Lockwood, who grew up in Old Lyme and graduated with the Lyme-Old Lyme High School Class of 2007, has signed an exclusive worldwide publishing agreement with Old Gringo/Dis Keef Music.

The 26-year-old has been involved in music his entire life. As a writer and performer since his teens, the Old Lyme native moved to Nashville, Tenn., three years ago and has been working and writing with some of Music City’s brightest talent.

Lockwood says,”Being able to write a song and have people be moved by it in some way is just the best feeling ever. I love being able to do what I do with friends and people who believe in me.”

Old Gringo’s President, Chris Hunter, commented, “It is such a pleasure to be able to work with a kid like Zach. He’s extremely talented as a writer and a player with a strong work ethic and desire to succeed. Music is his being and he continues to impress us on a daily basis.”

Dis Keef’s President, Kenneth Wright, adds, “Zach is a good guy and always brings something to the table. That counts with us.”

Lockwood is an ASCAP writer and will be represented by Old Gringo/ Dis Keef’s new “TEAMGOFORIT” company.

Lockwood’s parents are Dann and Kathleen Lockwood of Old Lyme.


CT River Museum Offers Boat Building Workshop in July, Register By June 12

2.Ernstoff Shipyard – The Ernstoff Shipyard, a father and daughter team in 2014 work on their boat.

The Ernstoff Shipyard, a father and daughter team in 2014 work on their boat.

ESSEX — What floats your boat?

In celebration of the Connecticut River’s rich heritage, the Connecticut River Museum is once again offering the CRM 12, a slightly adapted Bevin’s Skiff kit that is produced in limited quantity. The 12′ skiff is reflective of the traditional boats that were built locally in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. With great versatility, these skiffs were used for fishing, rowing and sailing on the River and in the tidal marshes and tributaries. Simple and beautiful, the museum selected the CRM 12 as a good beginner project to build with the help of knowledgeable instructors.

The museum will offer a three-day Boat Building Workshop July 10 – 12. Participants can either do the workshop as individuals or as a group (up to four people). There is no previous boat building experience required to build one of these kits. However, organizers do expect that participants will have basic woodworking knowledge. By the end of the weekend, each individual or group should have a nearly completed boat that is ready for the water. As Ray Gaulke, museum board member and co-organizer stated, “It’s a marvelous way to learn basic boat building and have a product that you can take home.”

Last year’s successful program had four diverse teams — father/daughter, husband/wife, father/son and a Sea Scout troop — successfully build CRM 12’s. “It was a wonderful sight to see participants with little or no boatbuilding experience on Friday rowing their completed boats on the River Sunday afternoon”, said Chris Dobbs, museum executive director.

The CRM 12 kit comes complete with everything needed to build the boat — high-quality marine plywood, fastenings, adhesives, plans and an easy-to-follow manual. Boat builders only need to bring a few basic woodworking tools. The museum commissioned Paul Kessinger, a local wooden boat builder from Guilford, CT to build the first CRM 12 in 2014. Kessinger said that “This is a perfect activity for adults or families. Best yet, you will get years of enjoyment out of rowing or sailing your skiff.”

Space is extremely limited for the boat building workshop. Participants must be at least 10 years old and all children must be accompanied by an adult. The deadline to register is Friday, June 12. The $1,500 program fee ($1,400 for CRM members) includes all the supplies needed to build the CRM 12, oars, and instruction. By the end of the weekend, participants will have a completed boat, ready to be painted and rowed. For more information, visit www.ctrivermuseum.org or call 860-767-8269.


Roadwork Scheduled in Old Lyme This Weekend

Roadwork is scheduled for the weekend on Buttonball Rd. in Old Lyme. Expect minor delays on the Mile Creek end of Buttonball Rd.  

Community Music School Presents Two Spring Concerts Featuring Three Musical Groups, June 14

The New Horizons band gather for a photo.

The New Horizons band gather for a photo.

The Community Music School (CMS) presents two spring concerts featuring performing ensembles on Sunday, June 14.

Under the direction of Karli Gilbertson, Glee for Grownups presents, “80’s Broadway Extravaganza,” at 1 p.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church in Centerbrook. Accompanied by Sue Sweeney, members will perform solo and ensemble pieces. These vocalists rehearse throughout the semester and never disappoint with a fun and lively concert.

Also, on the same day, the New Horizons Band and Baroque Ensemble perform a Concert in the Park at the Gazebo at Deep River Landing at 4 p.m.

The New Horizons Band is a supportive group for beginners or those who have not played an instrument in years. Directed by Paddy Hurley, the group will perform a varied program of marches, Patriotic music, pop and rock, including performances by their Woodwind Ensemble and Brass Quintet.

The Baroque Ensemble is a 12-piece string group comprised of core members of the CMS String Ensemble and directed by Martha Herrle, and they will be playing works by Vivaldi, Bach and more. The rain location for this concert is the Centerbrook Meetinghouse, 51 Main St., Centerbrook.

Both concerts are free and open to the public. Come and meet the directors and members of each ensemble to find out more about the programs.

The CMS offers innovative music programming for infants through adults, building on a 30-year tradition of providing quality music instruction to residents of shoreline communities. Community Music School programs cultivate musical ability and creativity and provide students with a thorough understanding of music so that they can enjoy playing and listening for their entire lives. Visit www.community-music-school.org or call 860-767-0026 for program information.


‘Town’ Category Added to This Year’s Chester Fair Photo Contest, All Welcome to Enter

What makes a town special? Take a picture.

An appealing category, Town Photo, has been added to the annual Chester Fair Photography Contest for 2015. Photos should capture the spirit and/or beauty of any Connecticut town. First, second and third place ribbons and prizes will be awarded.

As a bonus, Events Magazine will be selecting a photo from this category to appear on the cover of one of its quarterly town-wide publications.

This year’s Chester Fair will be held August 28-30 at the Chester Fairgrounds. Full Chester Fair information, including the complete entry guide, can be found at www.chesterfair.org.


Chester Opposition Delays Vote on Proposed School District Full Regionalization Plan

REGION 4 — Plans for a three-town referendum vote on a proposed kindergarten-sixth grade regionalization plan have been pushed back after a meeting Monday between district and town leaders brought information about a possible new option for dividing elementary education costs among the three towns, and highlighted opposition to the current regionalization plan from elected officials in Chester.
The special meeting, which included board of education chairpersons and members of the boards of selectmen and finance for the district towns of Chester, Deep River, and Essex, came after the Chester boards of selectmen and finance issued a statement declaring unanimous opposition to the current plan and a related inter-local agreement intended to address cost shifts and other issues arising from full regionalization of the elementary schools. School board members had been planning for a possible Sept. 29 referendum on K-6 regionalization, which must be approved by voters of all three towns.
The Chester statement, drafted at a May 28 meeting of the two boards, contended the proposed plan and agreement would have a “negative financial impact” on Chester. In a reflection of concerns that declining student enrolment and full regionalization could lead to grade moves or even a closure of Chester Elementary school, the statement also calls for local voter approval, by town meeting vote or referendum, of any shifts of grades among the elementary schools.
Chester finance board member Lori Clymas urged school leaders to “slow down” and explore further revisions to the plan. “We want to work it out but we feel; like we’re being rushed.” she said. Chester First Selectman Edmund Meehan said the plan that was developed over the past three months needs further review, while adding, “We don’t have to go back to square one.”
Essex Board of Education Chairman Lon Seidman, a strong supporter of the K-6 regionalization, said new legislation approved last week in the state House of Representatives would give the school district greater flexibility in assessing taxpayers in each town regarding the cost of operating the elementary schools. Current state law requires using student average daily membership (ADM) from each town to divide cost shares in a regional school budget, as has been done with the spending plan for the middle school and high school since the Region 4 school district for grades 7-12 was established in the early 1950s.
Current levels of enrollment and per pupil spending would leave Deep River at a $378,000 financial disadvantage in 2016-2017 under a K-6 grade regionalization and budget split based only on student ADM. To address this and build support in Deep River, a draft inter-local agreement would adjust budget shares, with Chester and Essex paying higher budget shares in amounts projected to range from $201,000 to $173,000 for Chester over the next four years and from $177,000 to $65,000 for Essex through 2019-2020.
Seidman said the legislation pushed by State Rep. Phil Miller (D-36th) would allow the district to develop its own plan for sharing elementary school expenses. He acknowledged a full review of options under the new legislation would require a delay in any votes on the K-6 regionalization. The new legislation still needs approval from the State Senate, with the 2015 legislation session scheduled to end at midnight Wednesday.
The Chester call for a local vote on elementary school grade changes also generated discussion Monday, with school board members urging the Chester officials to be more flexible on the process for approving grade reconfigurations at the elementary schools. Superintendent of Schools Ruth Levy said any major shifts in elementary school grades are unlikely over the next four years, except for a possible move of sixth graders to John Winthrop Middle School, commenting, “We’re getting mired down over control and we need to come together.”
Region 4 Board of Education Chairman Chris Riley said his board, which by law must initiate referenda on further regionalization, would defer any vote on sending the plan to a referendum in September. Riley noted a regionalization referendum on Nov. 3, when the three towns hold municipal elections, is still possible, but far from certain.

Lyme Public Hall Annual Meeting June 11 to Feature William Hosley

William Hosley

William Hosley

The Lyme Public Hall Association will hold its Annual  Meeting and Pot Luck Dinner on  Thursday, June 11, at 6 p.m.

The meeting will feature William Hosley, who will give a presentation titled, “The  Importance of Community Organizations in the Preservation of Local Culture and History.” An outspoken advocate for the preservation of the rich cultural history of Connecticut, Hosley brings more than 30 years of experience in art, antiques and history organizations to his entertaining lectures.

The program is free and open to the public.  Bring a main course, salad or dessert to share (beverages, plates and utensils provided.)

The Lyme Public Hall is located at 249 Hamburg Road (Rte. 156) in Lyme, Conn.

For  more information, visit www.lymepublichall.org or call (860) 526-8886.


Memories of Memorial Day 2015


Photo by N.B. Logan

It was a perfect day for a parade on Monday in Old Lyme and our little town stepped up to the plate yet again to put on a parade full of not only fun and frivolity, but also pride and patriotism.


Old Lyme’s leading politicians strode purposefully down Lyme Street.  First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder (in blue) walks with Selectwoman Mary Jo Nosal (in red), Selectman Skip Sibley ( second from left) and State Representative Devin Carney (R) at left.


Photo by N.B. Logan

Flags were carried …


Photo by N.B. Logan

Bagpipes were blown …


Photo by N.B. Logan

Scouts marched …

... and the band played.

… and the bands played.


Photo by N.B. Logan

The Lyme firemen were dressed for action …


Photo by N.B. Logan

… and Teacher of the Year Mary Bradford from Mile Creek School waved and smiled … and smiled and waved …


Photo by N.B. Logan

The “What Memorial Day Means to Me” essay contest winners traveled in style …


Photo by N.B. Logan

… while this serving army member stood and waved from the top of a camouflage truck.

Photo by Olwen Logan.

The Daisies were delightful …

Photo by Olwen Logan.

Phoebe Griffin Noyes aka Mary Dangremond proudly participated to remind everyone of the Old Lyme Library’s namesake …

Photo by Olwen Logan

This Lyme Cub Scout confidently led his troop …

Photo by Olwen Logan

Tom Risom was at the head of the Old Lyme Fire Department …

Photo by Olwen Logan

And let’s not forget the reason for the season … our veterans.

Photo by John Ward

Photo by John Ward

In honor of the fallen … the Memorial Stone reads: “To all who served and sacrificed so we could enjoy lasting freedom.” Dedicated by American Legion Post 41, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1467, and the People of Old Lyme, the wreath was moved away and then replaced during the ceremony.

Photo by John Ward

Photo by John Ward

Sharing the moment … Before the ceremony, VFW Chapter 1467 member and U.S. Army Air Corps Maj. Edmund H. Wolcott (Ret.) of Old Lyme (left) speaks with Todd Machnik (right) of Old Lyme.

Photo by John Ward

Photo by John Ward

Helping with the homily … Old Lyme Fire Department Chaplain Mervin F. Roberts delivers the homily.

Photo by John Ward

Photo by John Ward

Saluting the colors … the Old Lyme Fire Department, including the Color Guard, stands proud.

Photo by John Ward

Photo by John Ward

Rounding off the ceremony, Meyer Goldberg of Lyme, Memorial Day Essay Contest silver medal winner, reads his essay beautifully.

Photo by James Meehan Art & Design, ©2015

Photo by James Meehan Art & Design, ©2015

And finally for all you history buffs out there … (text and photo courtesy of James Meehan) this flag was hanging on the former Masonic Hall Building (now a private residence) on Lyme Street during the parade. The curious child lying at the lower left is counting the flag’s stars to find thirty-four. The 34th star represents the state of Kansas, which was the 34th state to be admitted to the Union on January 29, 1861.

Literacy Volunteers Valley Shore Host Murder Books Promotion During May

“M” is for May…..Murder and Mayhem at Literacy Volunteers Valley Shore (LVVS) Book Sale. Now that warmer weather is finally here after an endless winter, take some time for yourself with a book sitting on the porch or back deck.

Feature titles include James Patterson’s “Cross-Double Cross,” Steve Martini’s “Guardian of Lies” and Dan Brown’s “The Lost Symbol- Inferno” along with many other spine-tingling page turners.

All promotional books are on sale for half price- hard cover books are $1 and paperbacks at $.25. Also, our supply of jigsaw puzzles are clearance priced at $0.50 as well for hours of fun.
The LVVS is gearing up for summer too with a “Paperbacks for the Beach” theme so look for that promotion next month. Stock up for your summer reading pleasures.

Stop in Monday-Thursday between the hours of 8am -2pm. The LVVS bookstore is located on the lower level of the Westbrook Library, 61 Goodspeed Drive. Contact Literacy Volunteers at 860-399-0280.

The LVVS is lways accepting gently used books, including paperbacks, 2005 or newer.


New Management Sets Sights on Placing Phoebe’s BookCellar on Community’s Collective Radar

BookCellar co-managers Paulette Zander (left) and Ann de Selding (right) discuss new plans for "the only bookstore in town" with Friends of the Library President Mary Haymann.

BookCellar co-managers Paulette Zander (left) and Ann de Selding (right) discuss new plans for “the only bookstore in town” with Friends of the Library President Mary Haymann.

If you haven’t been to The BookCellar located in the basement of the Old Lyme-Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library recently, there are more reasons than ever to stop by and visit.  The BookCellar represents a major resource to the community and yet many Old Lyme residents are unaware of its existence.  But now there are more reasons than ever to stop by since the place now has a whole new look with more space for both browsing and sitting, attractive face-out displays and a brand new ’25 cent sale’ section.

The BookCellar management team hard at work.

The BookCellar management team hard at work.

The recently appointed co-managers Paulette Zander and Ann de Selding are well on their way to transforming the BookCellar into one of those delightful little bookshops that have all but disappeared, primarily due the impact of online shopping.  This transformation isn’t really a great surprise when one considers Zander is the former owner of the beloved ‘Happy Carrot’ bookshop in Old Lyme.  Meanwhile, de Selding worked at Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts for more than 12 years as the Director of Alumni and Volunteer Relations, meaning that organizing — and reorganizing — is in her DNA.

Books are The BookCellar's business.

Books are The BookCellar’s business.

An ardent book-lover, who previously turned her passion into her business, Zander comments enthusiastically about her new position, “I’m living vicariously through this — just touching and fondling the books is rewarding.”  De Selding elaborates further on Paulette’s involvement in The BookCellar, saying, “Paulette’s legacy [from The Happy Carrot] to this community — and to these books — has morphed into a wonderful continuity for the town.”

Mary Haymann has some fun in the Children's Corner!

Mary Haymann has some fun in the Children’s Corner!

The BookCellar houses upwards of 7,000 books, which include, but are not limited to titles falling under the following sections: History, Classics, Biographies, Gardening, Cooking, and Children & Young Adults and, of course, an enormous supply of fiction and non-fiction.  There’s no question that there’s something for everyone in the BookCellar so Zander and de Selding hope to make The Cellar a frequent stop for book lovers, as well as one that is affordable to all.

In addition to the basement, The BookCellar offers a selection of very gently used books and DVDs for sale in the main lobby of the Library.  Each month features a different theme and, in a nod to the long-awaited season, April’s theme is appropriately Spring Pursuits.

Lift_doorBuilt in 1995, along with a new addition to the Library, The BookCellar operates under the umbrella of the Friends of the Library, the volunteer fundraising arm of the Library.   It is fully staffed and managed by more than 55 dedicated volunteers, including de Selding and Zander.  Friends of the Library President Mary Haymann is enormously appreciative of all the volunteer efforts, noting that they are helping to support what, “… is now really the only bookstore in town.”  Moreover, she stresses, “When you buy a book in The BookCellar, you are supporting the library.  All proceeds from the Cellar go directly to library.”  Every one of the books, DVDs and CDs is donated by local area residents allowing sales from The BookCellar to contribute around a staggering — and most welcome – $20,000 each year to the Library’s budget.

Vintage and rare books are files together.

Vintage and rare books are filed together.

Many of the library volunteers, including Haymann, have made a long-term commitment to the institution.  Haymann has been president of the Friends since 2008, but her involvement with the library goes back much further.  Her father Joseph Dunn was the librarian for 20 years from 1947-67 and her mother, Mae Dunn, followed in his footsteps in the early 70s.

New volunteers are always welcome at The BookCellar and de Selding notes, “The hours are flexible meaning they are as long or short as you choose — and the pay is priceless!”  On a more serious note, she continues, “We would love more folk to join us here – it’s a great work environment.  We never know what the next drop-off of donations will bring, so there are plenty of surprises and treasures in our business.  You can volunteer just a few hours each month and we really have a lot of fun down here.”  If you are interested in volunteering, contact PhoebesBookCellar@yahoo.com or call 860.434.1684 and ask for The Book Cellar for further information.

The Cellar is also able to “pay it forward” by donating thousands of books, which are shipped to Ghana, as well as numerous books to the First Congregational Church of Old Lyme for the annual White Elephant Sale; children’s books to the Soup Kitchen (through the Henderson Project); and age-appropriate books to the Lymes’ Senior Center.  The BookCellar will also be present at the Midsummer Festival at the Library, where a huge number of books will be for sale.

Stacking shelves is all in a (volunteer's) day's work.

Stacking shelves is all in a (volunteer’s) day’s work.

Donations of books are welcome year-round.  If you’re currently doing some spring cleaning and have some books to donate, take them to the Library during operating hours* and place them in the box near the elevator on the lobby level.

Zander and de Selding are also planning to start a twice-yearly collection program in May and December, when they will arrange pick-up of books from resident’s homes.  The program is still in its development phase but watch for more details soon in announcements from the library and published on LymeLine.com.

Operating year round, The BookCellar is open on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.  For a limited period of time, the Cellar will be open Mondays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

*The library is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1- a.m. to 5 p.m. on Fridays and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays.  It is closed on Sundays.




RiverQuest Offers Osprey/Eagle Cruises in April

An osprey, returned from his winter spent in the southern hemisphere, feeds his young on the nest.

An osprey, returned from his winter spent in the southern hemisphere, feeds his young in the nest.

Late March into early April is when the Osprey returns to Connecticut from its southern wintering grounds. It is a wonderful sign that spring is here …

The Osprey is a large bird of prey (raptor) with a wingspan up to 6′ that eats fish, hence, it is sometimes referred to as the fish hawk. Connecticut Ospreys migrate south in late August through late September to areas where their food supply will not be affected by frozen rivers and lakes, sometimes as far south as Argentina. Ospreys of breeding age, at least three-years-old, are returning north now to start a new nest or to re-establish and re-build a nest they may have used in previous years.

Ospreys nest along the edges of the lower Connecticut River, from the mouth of the river in Old Lyme/Old Saybrook up river as far as Middletown. There will be activity on the many man-made nesting platforms at the Roger Tory Peterson Preserve near the mouth of the river in Old Lyme and on several other nesting platforms on the river, in “natural” tree settings and on the top of each of the navigational day markers that indicate the river channel. It is also hoped there will be Ospreys nesting on the new Osprey platform placed on the 101-year-old East Haddam Swing Bridge.

A great way to see this nesting activity is by boat. RiverQuest, an eco-tour vessel located at Eagle Landing State Park in the Tylerville section of Haddam is offering several cruises to the general public throughout April to view and learn about the Osprey and other wildlife that may be spotted, including hawks and another famous raptor, the American Bald Eagle.

After disappearing from Connecticut in 1948, the Bald Eagle has made a return and there are several active eagle nests on the river. It will be possible to view two of these nests from RiverQuest and very possibly, see one or more of the local resident Bald Eagles.

Other areas of interest that will be seen on the cruise include the Goodspeed Opera House, Gillette Castle and the Chester/Hadlyme Ferry. The cruises are about 2.5 hours in length and cost $40 per passenger (no children under 10-years-old.) There will be complimentary coffee and tea and a limited supply of binoculars on loan for the cruise.

To learn more about these informative cruises and/or reserve your spot with the easy on-line booking system, visit ctriverquest.com or phone 860-662-0577.


Join a ‘Discovery Sunday’ at the Florence Griswold Museum

A family enjoys 'Discovery Sunday' at the Florence Griswold Museum.

A family enjoys ‘Discovery Sunday’ at the Florence Griswold Museum.

The Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme invites visitors to shake off any leftover winter blues and celebrate Discovery Sundays each Sunday afternoon through the summer. In addition to the popular “Make-A-Painting” activities, where visitors of all ages use the Museum’s supplies to create their own masterpieces, Discovery Sundays now include a new outdoor Art Cart that guides families to explore the grounds and its connection to the artists, who famously painted there.

Seasonal buildings including the Chadwick Studio and the Rafal Landscape Center are now open for the season.  And with any luck, now you’ll finally find some color in the garden!

The Museum is open every Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. and all activities are included with admission.  Children 12 and under are always free. The Museum is closed Easter Sunday.

The Florence Griswold Museum is known as the Home of American Impressionism. In addition to the restored Florence Griswold House, where the artists of the Lyme Art Colony lived, the Museum features a modern exhibition gallery, education center, landscape center, extensive gardens, and a restored artist’s studio.

The Museum is located at 96 Lyme St., Old Lyme, CT, exit 70 off I-95 and is open year round Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday 1 to 5 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults, $9 for seniors, $8 students, and free to children 12 and under.

For more information, visit the Museum’s website www.FlorenceGriswoldMuseum.org or call 860-434-5542 x 111.