May 22, 2015

Old Lyme’s Memorial Day Parade Takes Place Monday

The parade heads down McCurdy towards the cemetery.

Last year’s parade heads down McCurdy towards the cemetery.

Old Lyme’s Annual Memorial Day observance will be held on Monday, May 25, with Bill Appleby, Commander of American Legion Post 41 as Master of Ceremonies.Ceremonies.

A grand parade will start promptly at 11 a.m. at the Lyme Street Fire Station and proceed via Lyme Street and McCurdy Road to the Duck River Cemetery for a memorial service.

Invocation and Benediction will be offered by Chaplain Mervin F. Roberts, Chaplain of Old Lyme Fire Department.

Following the program, the parade will re-form and return to the fire station where refreshments will be available to all parade participants.

The winners of an essay contest on “What Memorial Day Means to Me” will read their essays as part of the cemetery program.  The Lyme-Old Lyme High School Band, New London Firefighters Pipes and Drums and a Rifle Squad from the Connecticut Army National Guard will also participate in the ceremony.

Returning for this year’s celebration are the Lyme and Old Lyme Fire Departments, a contingent from the Connecticut National Guard and music provided by the Lyme-Old Lyme High School and Middle School Bands along with Deep River Senior Drum Corps and the New London Firefighters Pipes and Drums.  A number of marching units representing local civic groups from Lyme, Old Lyme and Old Saybrook will also participate.

Parade participants are asked to report to the fire station not later than 10:30 a.m. for assignment to positions in the line of march which will form on the access road behind the fire station.

For youngsters who wish to march but do not have a group with whom to march, Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau invites them to join their contingent with a decorated bike, scooter, stroller … whatever!  If the mode of transport mentions LYSB, you will win a prize!

The Memorial Day observance is sponsored by the Old Lyme Fire Department with financial support from the Town of Old Lyme.  In the event of rain, the parade will be canceled and an appropriate ceremony will be conducted at the Middle School Auditorium at 11 a.m. followed by refreshments at the Lyme Street Fire Station.

For more information contact:

Anthony Hendriks, Parade Organizer
71 Lyme Street, P.O. Box 965
Old Lyme, CT 06371
Tel (H) 860-434-9891, (O) 860-434-5201, (FAX) 860-434-8989, (C) 860-391-2947


Tony Vallombroso
69 Lyme Street
Old Lyme, CT 06371


Lyme-Old Lyme HS Boys and Girls Rowing Teams Win Gold Medals, Qualify for Nationals

The Spoils of Victory:  The boy's varsity 1st four (from left to right) Harry Godfrey Fogg, Jeremy Newton, Tom Crisp, Liam Corrigan (stroke) and Josh Swanski.

The Spoils of Victory: The boy’s varsity 1st four (from left to right) Harry Godfrey Fogg, Jeremy Newton, Tom Crisp, Liam Corrigan (stroke) and Josh Swanski.

Last Sunday, four Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) crew teams not only won gold medals in the Founders Day regatta on Lake Waramug, but also the state championship for both boy’s and the girl’s varsity 1st and varsity 2nd boats. These four boats all qualified for the national championships on the Occoquan River in Virginia for the second year in a row.

The girl’s varsity 2nd “B” team and the boy’s varsity 3rd team also each won bronze in their class.

The boys varsity 1st won in a time of 5.12.4, well ahead of Avon in the silver position, who came in with a time of 5.28.7, and Lewis Mills in the bronze berth with a time of 5.35.0.

Boys Varsity 1st four power through: (r-L) Liam Corrigan (stroke), Jeremy Newton, Harry Godfrey Fogg, Josh Swanski, and coxswain Tom Crisp.

The boy’s varsity 1st four, (from right to left) Liam Corrigan (stroke), Jeremy Newton, Harry Godfrey Fogg, Josh Swanski, and coxswain Tom Crisp, power through the water.

The varsity teams focused on coxed fours, with the novice teams racing eights against 11 other public school teams from Simsbury, Farmington, Stonington, Guilford, Glastonbury, EO Smith, Litchfield, Middletown, East Lyme, Avon, and Lewis Mills from Burlington.  This is the fourth year that the LOLHS high school crew team has brought home a state championship; their winning run started in 2012 when the boy’s varsity 1st four won gold.

The Girl's Varsity 1st team (from right to left) Christiana Congdon (stoke), Hannah Paynter, Alison Murphy and Maria Boyle with coxswain Claudia Mergy show their strngth.

The girl’s varsity 1st four, (from right to left) Christiana Congdon (stoke), Hannah Paynter, Alison Murphy and Maria Boyle with coxswain Claudia Mergy, show their strength.

The girl’s varsity 1st team won in a time of 5.59.03 ahead of Avon in the silver spot at 6.14.0 and Litchfield in bronze position in a time of 6.19.9.  As well as four state championship cups, the team brought home the Perry Trophy, awarded to the school with the highest number of points gained across all races.  This was a major achievement considering that the only ‘eights’ the team fielded were in the novice classes.

The LOLHS girl’s varsity 2nd “A” team won in a time of 6.25.9, just three seconds ahead of Avon with the LOLHS girl’s varsity 2nd “B” coming in for bronze in a time of 7.04.8.

The girl's varsity 2 boat comprises (from right to left) Hannah Wilcewski (stroke), Caeli O’Neil, Alexis Kolar and Lauren Dolishny with coxswain Francesca Melluzo.

The girl’s varsity 2 boat comprises (from right to left) Hannah Wilczewski (stroke), Caleigh O’Neil, Alexis Kolar and Lauren Dolishny with coxswain Francesca Melluzzo.

Through bringing home gold, the four boats have qualified for the second year in a row for the USA National Scholastic Championship, which is being held the weekend of June 6 in Virginia, where three boats medaled for the school last year.

Prior to that, the team will compete in the NEIRA Championship this coming weekend.  These sprint races take place on Lake Quinsigamond in Worcester, Mass.

The boys 2nd varsity four pose for a photo wearing their medals with coxswain, from left to right are Jacob Olsen, Peter Fuchs, Bo Green and Adam Drummond holding coxswain Julia Morrison.

The boys 2nd varsity four pose for a photo wearing their medals, from left to right, Jacob Olsen, Peter Fuchs, Bo Green and Adam Drummond hold coxswain Julia Morrison.

The growth and success of this small-town rowing program are really beginning to bear fruit.  In addition to the varsity 1st and 2nd girl’s and boy’s boats qualifying for nationals, the girl’s varsity 2nd “B” won a bronze medal at the state championship and the varsity 3rd boy’s crew also won a bronze and has qualified for the first time for the NEIRA championship. Qualification for NEIRA is based on consistency across the spring season using a combination of wins and average times.

The team of 25 rowers and coxswains will compete on Saturday against 47 of the best public and elite private high school teams from across the New England region.

The boys varsity 3rd, with David Foster at Stroke, Hunter Friel, Ethan Koproski and Max Conley with coxswain Cole Dushin power through the finish to claim bronze in their class.

The boys varsity 3rd four, with David Foster at stroke, Hunter Friel, Ethan Koproski and Max Conley with coxswain Cole Dushin, power through the finish to claim bronze in their class.

Three rowers in the team have transferred to Lyme-Old Lyme High School in order to row with the LOLHS team and with their sister team, the Blood Street Sculls, under whose banner the team competes in the summer and fall.

Coached by Louis Zubek and Steve Baranoski of Lyme-Old Lyme High School, this small public school gained attention last year when the boys fourof Liam Corrigan (stroke), Harry Godfrey, Jeremy Newton, Josh Swanski and coxswain Tom Crisp medaled at the Head of the Charles, the largest international regatta in the world.

Two of the boy’s 2nd varsity four, Peter Fuchs and Brandon Greene, also competed at the Charles event in a double with coach Paul Fuchs of Old Lyme, a former Olympic coach and still a record holder at the Head of the Charles.

In an exceptional accomplishment for a small, public school, several of the high school rowers including Liam Corrigan, Jeremy Newton and Maria Boyle, have been invited to Team USA identification camps to help select oarsmen for the 2015 Junior National Team that will compete Aug. 5-9, 2015, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Success is written all over this team's faces!

Success is written all over the faces of the girl’s second varsity four!

Team parents and rowers asked LymeLine to express their appreciation to Region 18 Public Schools, the Towns of Lyme and Old Lyme and, in particular, their coaches — Zubeck, Baranoski and Ed McCusker — for their dedication to and support of the rowing program.


Lyme-Old Lyme Lions Host Antique Car Show at Lyme Academy, Monday


Lyme-Old Lyme Lions will host their 11th Annual Antique Car Show at Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts on Memorial Day, Monday, May 25, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.  There is a 250 car maximum.  The awards will be presented at 2 p.m.  There is no rain date for this event.

All proceeds will benefit Lion charities.

-To register online for the Car Show, click here.
(NOTE: All online registrations must be in by 12pm on May 22)
-If you do not wish to register online, you may fill out the registration form and present it upon arrival.  Download the registration form here.
You may also register at All-Pro Automotive, 147 Boston Post Rd., Old Lyme, CT
- Registration cost is $10 (Payable upon arrival)
– Checks to be made out to Lyme – Old Lyme Charities, Inc.

– All winning cars are voted on by car show attendees.
– Dash Plaques will be awarded to the first 150 cars that register.
– Trophies will be awarded to the best cars in their class.  The various car classes are listed at the bottom of this page.
– Specialty trophies will also be awarded.

Schedule of Events:
9am – 2pm – Antique Car Show and Flea Market.
9am – 10am – Plaques will be given out to the first 150 cars.
11am – Memorial Day Parade on Lyme Street. (25 cars may participate)
12:30pm – All ballots are due at the registration booth.
1pm – Awards

LYSB Community Booth Area:
The Lyme-Old Lyme Lions Club will again be running the Memorial Day Antiques Car Show this year on the grounds of  Lyme Academy College.   Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau (LYSB) is organizing the community booths area of the show.  Does your group or organization want to have a booth or activity at the Show?  Call LYSB to discuss at 860-434-7208 or visit their website.

Flea Market Information:
Vendor lot sizes are 20′ x 20′ and will cost $40 to register your spot.  Space is limited, be sure to register soon.  For more information, call Jim Graybill at the number listed at at 860-434-3530.

Car Classes:
Class A: Pre 1930
Class B: 1931 – 1942
Class C: 1945 – 1954
Class D: 1955 – 1962
Class E: 1963 – 1972
Class F: 1973 – 1987
Class G: Imports through 1987
Class H: Exotics (All years are valid)
Class I: Mustang & Thunderbirds through 1987
Class J: Corvettes through 1987
Class K: Hot Rods & Modified (All years are valid)
Class L: Others / Trucks / Specialty Vehicles through 1987
Class M: Tuners (All years are valid)

For more information about the car show and flea market, contact Phil Parcak at 860.434. 9044 or Jim Graybill at 860-434-3530.


Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber Meeting Tonight Features Conn. College  President, All Welcome

Katherine Bergeron

Katherine Bergeron

A “native daughter” of Old Lyme will be returning to her home town to reflect on current trends in higher education which will guide the next generation of “thinkers, doers, and leaders.”

President Katherine Bergeron of Connecticut College will be the speaker at the monthly dinner meeting of the Lyme-Old Lyme Chamber of Commerce. The Wednesday, May 20 gathering will begin at 6 p.m. at the Old Lyme Inn and is open to members and friends.

Bergeron’s talk is on “The Liberal Arts College in the 21st Century.”

President Bergeron is a 1976 graduate of Old Lyme High School. Her life in the town was the precursor to a distinguished academic career at Wesleyan and and Cornell, followed by faculty posts at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Tufts University, the University of California at Berkeley, and then at Brown University, where she later was appointed dean of the college and led numerous curricular innovations.

Since becoming president of Connecticut College on Jan. 1, 2014, she has worked to advance the design of “a new liberal arts curriculum,” designed to “produce a new generation of thinkers, doers, and leaders, prepared for the challenges of an ever more complex and dynamic future.”

Editor’s Note: To reserve dinner seating at $25 per person, contact or  All are welcome to attend this special event — it is not limited to Chamber members.


Old Lyme to Hold Annual Budget Meeting Tonight

The Old Lyme Board of Selectmen has announced that the Town’s Annual Budget meeting will be held next Monday, May 18, at 7:30 p.m. in the Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School auditorium.

The agenda includes the following items, on each of which a hand or voice vote will likely be held:

  1. To establish a Road Improvement Fund as part of the annual budget, as recommended by the Board of Finance.
  2. To establish a Town Building Improvement Fund as part of the annual budget, and to initially fund the same with the $178,700 remaining in the Town Hall Improvement Fund, as recommended by the Board of Finance.
  3. To adopt the Budget for the fiscal year July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016, as recommended by the Board of Finance.
  4. To adopt a proposal that taxes in the Town of Old Lyme on Real Estate and Personal Property shall be paid in two (2) semi-annual installments, the first payment being due on July 1, 2015 and the second payment on January 1, 2016.  Any tax in these categories under $100.00 will be due in full in one payment in July, 2015, as are vehicles on the Supplemental List due in January, 2016 in one payment.
  5. To appropriate the additional sum of $37,500 for the Town’s Emergency Management Account in connection with the Blizzard of 2015, as recommended by the Board of Finance. Such appropriation may be funded in part by federal monies under FEMA.
  6. To approve an amount not to exceed $148,000 for completion of the Water Pollution Control Authority’s Coastal Wastewater Facilities Plan, with anticipated reimbursement of $114,400 through the Clean Water Funds.

‘A Year in Connecticut’ Photo Exhibit on View at Old Lyme Library

The signature photograph of the, "A Year in Connecticut" exhibition by Steve Nadler, which opens Sunday afternoon.

The signature photograph for the, “A Year in Connecticut” exhibition by Steve Nadler, which opens Sunday afternoon.

A new exhibition and sale of landscape photographs by Steve Nadler is on view at the Old Lyme Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library.

The exhibition titled, “A Year in Connecticut,” is Nadler’s photo essay on the natural beauty that exists in southeastern Connecticut.

Nadler explains, “My year is not 12 consecutive months but rather the four seasons that represent one full year.  As you walk through the exhibit area, my hope is that you experience the feeling of the changing seasons in all their glory.”

He continues, “My intent is for you to understand that it is not what you see in these images but more importantly, how you feel when you see them.”

Nadler will speak more about his work in a short gallery talk at 2:30 p.m.

The show runs through June 30, and the library will benefit from a portion of the sales of the photographs.

For more information, visit the library’s website or call 860-434-1684.  The library is located at 2 Library Ln. in Old Lyme, CT 06371.


Audubon Society’s CT River Lecture Series Starts This Afternoon

The Connecticut River Estuary Lecture Series hosted by the Connecticut Audubon Society begins this afternoon with a presentation on conservation education at Essex Meadows starting at 4 p.m.

Michelle Eckman, director of education at Connecticut Audubon Society, will discuss her efforts to advance science-based inquiry through Science in Nature, Connecticut Audubon’s award-winning environmental education program. She will be joined by a science teacher from Essex Elementary School, which is participating in Science in Nature, as well as Dr. Paul Spitzer, nationally known Osprey researcher, who will discuss the Osprey’s return from near-extinction.

Admission to the lecture is free but RSVP’s are required. To RSVP, contact Allison Bryant at the Connecticut Audubon Society at or 203 259-0416 x106.  A reception follows each lecture.

The second lecture focuses on the ecology of the estuary (May 24) presented by Dr. Wayne (Rocky) Geyer, senior scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute, and Dr. Gail Kineke, associate professor at Boston College and a Woods Hole scientist.

The final lecture will look at the role of the estuary in painting and writing (June 4) and be presented by Jeffrey Cooley, founder and owner of The Cooley Gallery in Old Lyme.

Each lecture starts at 4 p.m. at Essex Meadows.

For more information on the lecture series, visit

These lectures are one of the initial projects  of a new regional board formed by the Connecticut Audubon Society to focus on the lower Connecticut River valley and southeastern Connecticut.

The new board will work in conjunction with Connecticut Audubon Society staff and state Board of Directors to provide direction and support to the organization’s conservation and education work in Old Lyme, Lyme, Essex, Old Saybrook, and other communities in southeastern Connecticut.

The board’s other seminal projects include the introduction of Connecticut Audubon’s award-winning Science in Nature outdoor education program at Essex Elementary School and an effort to expand Osprey Nation, Connecticut Audubon’s citizen science Osprey monitoring program.

For decades Connecticut Audubon Society has maintained nature sanctuaries in Montville, Haddam, East Haddam, Stonington and Middletown. In addition to being a key component of the region’s native habitat, the sanctuaries serve as portals of opportunity into nature for children and families in the region.

The chair of the new Regional Board is Herman Blanke of Old Lyme. Other members are Patsy McCook (secretary) of Old Lyme; Emily Bjornberg of Lyme; Elsie Childs of Old Lyme; Jim Denham of Essex; Margarita Emerson of Niantic; Eleanor Robinson of Old Lyme; Dr. Ted Vanitallie of Old Lyme; and Claudia Weicker of Old Lyme.

Herman Blanke and Jim Denham are also members of Connecticut Audubon Society’s Board of Directors.

In addition, Old Lyme resident John Forbis and Old Lyme First Selectwoman Bonnie Reemsnyder have provided essential support to this effort.

“Having had the fortune to live in Essex for 15 years, I have always appreciated the values of the Connecticut River; its incredible aesthetic beauty, its ecological contributions, and its great historical legacy to the people of this nation., said Alexander Brash, president of Connecticut Audubon Society.

He continued, “In keeping with the great tradition of conservationists of the area, we are looking to work with its citizens and school children in order to highlight and protect the area’s birds, unique biodiversity and habitats, and leverage such interactions for greater awareness of conservation issues across the state.”

“There is a great conservation tradition to uphold in this region,” said Herman Blanke. “Roger Tory Peterson of Old Lyme helped make birding the popular pastime that it is and also drew the connection between birds and conservation. A century ago, the painters of Old Lyme turned this beautiful landscape into art. We view it as our goal and our responsibility to carry on that tradition of conservation and appreciation for the beauty of the natural world.”

Jim Denham said, “From its inception, Connecticut Audubon Society has made conservation education the foundation of its work. Each generation is responsible for helping the next generation understand how the natural world works and why conservation is important, and for making sure the wonders of nature don’t get lost amid all the distractions of the modern world. That’s what we are trying to accomplish at Essex Elementary School, and we intend for it to be a stepping stone to collaborations with other schools as well.”

Science in Nature, which provides curriculum-based outdoor science education to students in elementary and high schools, recently completed its first session at Essex Elementary, with a field trip to Chatfield Hollow State Park in Killingworth. The second session is set for May 28 at Hammonasset Beach State Park in Madison.

Science in Nature teaches the principles of conservation science in local outdoor settings, focusing on climate and weather, rocks and soils, ecological adaptations, and wetland ecology. The goal is to increase environmental literacy among elementary, middle and high school students so they will understand basic environmental science principles and be more likely to participate in finding solutions to environmental issues within their communities.

In October it was named the best outdoor conservation program in the region by the New England Environmental Education Alliance. Schools from almost 50 communities in Connecticut have participated in Science in Nature, although Essex Elementary is the first in southeastern Connecticut to take part.

Osprey Nation uses volunteer citizen scientists, working under the direction of Connecticut Audubon’s conservation staff, to find and monitor nests of the state’s resurgent Osprey population.

More than 400 Osprey nests have been identified and plotted on a map. The greatest concentration in the state is on Great Island in Old Lyme. Connecticut Audubon is hoping that increased awareness of the project will propt more local residents to volunteer to as Osprey stewards in Old Lyme and elsewhere throughout the southeastern part of the state.

Founded in 1898, Connecticut Audubon Society is the state’s original and still independent Audubon Society. The Society manages four nature centers, two museums, and 19 sanctuaries across the state. It uses the charismatic nature of birds to inspire the next generation of conservationists, and to work with the current generation to protect and improve the state’s natural habitats for the betterment of state residents, birds and other wildlife.

Connecticut Audubon Society’s headquarters are at Birdcraft Sanctuary in Fairfield. It has regional centers and associated boards in Fairfield, Pomfret, Glastonbury and Milford.


Lyme-Old Lyme HS Alum’s Play at Yale University School of Drama This Afternoon, Tomorrow

Emily Zemba

Emily Zemba

Four performances of ‘Deer and the Lovers’ by Emily Zemba are scheduled in the Iseman Theatre at Yale University May 8, 11 and 14, all at 8 p.m., and May 13 at 2 p.m. The play is part of the 10th Annual Carlotta Festival of New Plays.

Zemba, who graduated as a member of the Lyme-Old Lyme High School Class of 2006, is a third-year MFA candidate at Yale School of Drama.

Her plays include ‘Uninviting Margaret; Have You Been There?'; ‘But If the Train Comes to Her'; ‘I’m Sorry I Brought up God (Yale School of Drama)'; ‘We Know Edie La Minx Had a Gun  and Look Up, Speak Nicely, and Don’t Twiddle Your Fingers all the Time (Yale Cabaret)’. This year at Yale Cabaret, she co-produced and co-hosted the Third Annual Yale School of Drag.

She is a founding member of “Guided Tour,” a collective which devises and performs site-specific, fairly ridiculous, participatory theatrical tours. Zemba’s work has been developed with The Middle Voice (Rattlestick Theater’s Apprentice Company), Labyrinth Theater Company (One-Act Experiment, 2014), and the Theater Masters National MFA Playwright’s Festival. She is currently a Core Apprentice with The Playwrights’ Center in Minneapolis.

Zemba has mentored with the Yale Co-Op Eugene O’Neill Playwriting Program and MCC Theater’s Freshplay Festival, and taught playwriting at Wesleyan University. A recipient of The Shubert Scholarship, she holds a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College. She describes ‘Deer and the Lovers’ as a comedy about being lost in love, lost in the woods, and searching for one’s purpose when life veers off track.


The 10th Annual Carlotta Festival of New Plays runs from May 8 through May 15. Tickets are available through the Yale University School of Drama website.



Buttrick Breaks Lyme-Old Lyme High School’s Long-Standing Long Jump Record

Brian Buttrick

Brian Buttrick leaps to a new school long jump record!

Lyme-Old Lyme High School senior Brian Buttrick jumped 21 feet 1 inch in the long jump at the Coginchaug High School athletics meet held May 5.

The deservedly happy LOLHS long jump record holder!

The deservedly happy LOLHS long jump record holder!

Buttrick’s jump broke the school record by three full inches.

Buttrick lands in the sand after crushing the previous school record.

Buttrick lands in the sand after crushing the previous school record.















Brian Buttrick

Brian Buttrick lands in the sand after crushing the previous school record.


Taste Tapas, Wine at Old Lyme Inn, Benefits Old Lyme Historical Society,Wednesday

Spain-tapas1Unwind mid-week with wine tasting and tapas at the Old Lyme Inn this Wednesday, May 13,  from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Old Lyme Inn at 85 Lyme St. in Old Lyme.

Sponsored by the Old Lyme Historical Society, tickets are $25 per person and can be purchased at the Webster Bank in Old Lyme, the Old Lyme Historical Society office at the Phoebe Griffin Noyes Library or online at

Support the Old Lyme Historical Society’s mission to collect, preserve, and interpret the rich history of Old Lyme by attending this fun event.


Duck River Garden Club Hosts ‘The Iris Lady’ Tonight

Duck River Garden Club hosts Ruth Bennett, “The Iris Lady,” Monday, May 11, at 7 p.m. at Lymes’ Senior Center, Town Woods Rd., Old Lyme.

Bennett will present a program titled, ‘In the Garden – Dividing Iris.’  She is the Treasurer of the Connecticut Iris Society and a Master Judge for the American Iris Society.

Bennett will share her knowledge of irises grown in Connecticut with a focus on those irises bred by hybridizers here in New England.  Learn when and how to divide iris plants.

Bennett grows more than 150 iris varieties at her East Haddam home.


Final Day of Duck River Garden Club Plant Sale Today

Geraniums and more will be on sale tomorrow and Saturday at the Duck River Garden Club's Annual Plant Sale.

Geraniums and more will be on sale tomorrow and Saturday at the Duck River Garden Club’s Annual Plant Sale.

Enjoy a weekend of flowers, plants and more!

The annual fundraising plant sale, sponsored by the Duck River Garden Club of Old Lyme, will be held Friday, May 8, from noon to 7:00 p.m. and Saturday, May 9, from 9 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. at the Old Lyme Shopping Center field on Hall’s Road (near Hideaway Restaurant.)

Pick out that special gift for Mom. Or browse our selection of heirloom tomatoes, annuals, and vegetables, herbs, hanging baskets, geraniums, perennials and shrubs that will be available.

If you are a gardening bargain hunter, Member’s Plants and “The Shed” offer wonderful “pickings”. Check out the new Shrubs, Trees and Knockout Rose Table this year.

And to top things off, “Delectable Edibles” has special treats for all to enjoy.

All proceeds from the sale go to ongoing civic projects, which include scholarships, senior’s garden therapy program, holiday wreaths for public buildings, baskets for families in need, and maintenance of plants at town locations. The Duck River Garden Club members look forward to seeing you and can help with any questions.

Call Agnes O’Connor to pre-order your geraniums at 860-434-9094

For more information about membership in Duck River Garden Club call Kathy Burton at 860-434-8024 or president, Barbara Rayel at 860-434-2354


Eastern Connecticut Ballet to Perform ‘The Magic Toy Shoppe’ This Weekend in Old Lyme

Ellie Weise of Old Lyme

Ellie Wiese of Old Lyme stars as a Bird in ‘The Magic Toy Shoppe.’

On Saturday and Sunday, May 9 and 10, which is Mother’s Day weekend, Eastern Connecticut Ballet (ECB) will stage two matinee performances of “The Magic Toy Shoppe,” a playful, vibrant ballet that will delight all ages.

Matinees will be held at 3 p.m. on both days in the Lyme-Old Lyme High School auditorium.  Each audience member who donates a new toy to the Spring Toy Drive (coordinated by Lymes’ Youth Service Bureau benefiting area children’s hospitals and shelters) will earn a chance to win an American Girl Doll or a prize from the event sponsor, The Bowerbird.

The ballet’s story unfolds in a small shop where, each night after closing time, toys from around the world come to life.  The characters include two classic French clowns, dancing Scottish girls, Cossack ponies, a tarantella dancer from Italy, a bevy of fairies and the Blue Fairy from Pinocchio. Dancers also portray ballerina dolls.

Gloria Govrin, artistic director of ECB, coordinates all of this creativity onstage.  A soloist with New York City Ballet, who studied with the legendary George Balanchine, she is known for her own imaginative choreography.  Where does she turn for inspiration?  Govrin says that it all begins with simple listening.

“Whatever I hear in the music is what we’ll do,” she says.  She creates each piece to fit the talents and level of each individual dancer or group.

As Govrin explains, a ballet such as The Magic Toy Shoppe is never performed the same way twice.  It changes and evolves each time it comes to the stage.  Originating as “La Boutique Fantasque,” The Magic Toy Shoppe had its world premiere in London in 1919.

At that time, the dancing of Sergei Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes, choreography by Léonide Massine, melodies by Rossini adapted by Respighi, and colorful sets and costumes by the artist André Derain all combined to give the one-act ballet its charm.  According to The Times of London, the audience was “sent off its head with delight” after the first performance. The work continues to captivate audiences today.

After the Old Lyme performances, children are invited onstage to take photos with the dancers, and each will receive a special toy to take home.

Eastern Connecticut Ballet, a school for classical ballet, based in East Lyme, attracts students from more than 40 towns throughout eastern Connecticut.  Known for its annual production of The Nutcracker in New London, ECB brings other original works to the stage throughout the year and performs with local orchestras as well.

Advance tickets for The Magic Toy Shoppe are $12 for children and $18 for adults and may be purchased at ECB’s studio, 435 Boston Post Rd. in East Lyme, or The Bowerbird Gift Shop in the Old Lyme Marketplace.  Tickets at the door are $14 for children, $20 for adults.  Children aged three and under are free if sitting on a parent’s lap.

For more information, call 860-739-7899  or visit


Marietta College Concert Choir to Perform at Old Lyme’s Christ the King Church Tonight

Marietta College Concert Choir

Marietta College Concert Choir

Christ the King Church in Old Lyme welcomes the Concert Choir from Marietta College, a four-year liberal-arts college in Marietta, Ohio, for a stop on its spring tour. The choir will perform a concert at the church on Thursday, May 7, at 7 p.m.

The Marietta College Concert Choir, one of five choral ensembles at the college, is an auditioned group of male and female undergraduates from various majors and departments.  The ensemble performs annually throughout the United States, and embarks on occasional tours overseas, including Great Britain in 2013 and China in 2006.

Old Lyme resident and Lyme-Old Lyme High School alumna Lucy Welles (Class of 2013) is a member of the 2015 Concert Choir.

The concert program will include classical and contemporary choral pieces, ranging from J.S. Bach and William Byrd to René Clausen and Joshua Rist.

Admission to the concert is free and open to the public.  A free-will offering will be taken to help defray the choir’s travel expenses.

Christ the King Church is located at 1 McCurdy Rd. in Old Lyme, Conn.


Vitality Holds a ‘Spa for Safegrad’ Event This Evening

Spa for SafegradVitality Spa in Old Lyme is raising funds for the Lyme-Old Lyme High School (LOLHS) Class of 2015 Safegrad Party with a Spa for Safegrad event, which is being held next Thursday, May 7.

Lindsay Eisensmith, owner of Vitality Spa, explains the reasons why she is hosting the event in these words,“The Class of 2015 is a small class, but venues charge almost the same amount as for a larger class, so students, parents and friends are working hard to raise funds.”

She adds, “Many of the senior class are clients of ours and we felt that sponsoring this event with all of the proceeds going to Safegrad was a nice way to contribute to their wellness and safety.  At the same time, we’re also thanking them and their parents for being valued clients.”

The proceeds from the event, which will take place from 5.30 to 9 p.m., will be raised through ticket sales at $25 per person.  Tickets are limited and must be purchased in advance at or by calling the Spa at 860.434.1792.

Your ticket includes activities going on throughout the evening:  Mini Tension Massages (chair massage), Hand & Arm Massages, Mini Manicures, Mini Make-Overs with Glo-Minerals and more.

Services will be on a first come, first served basis with sign-up on the night.  Refreshments will be available throughout the event.  Come at whatever time your schedule allows.

This night will make a very special Mother-Daughter event as graduation time moves ever closer.  But all are welcome — parents of seniors, friends of the school, clients of Vitality and, of course, prospective clients of Vitality!

In addition, there will be three group classes so you can also Meditate for Safegrad.  Classes require advance sign up at and include an introduction to Qi Gong, a moving meditation class; beginners welcome.  Classes are $15/person and again, proceeds to safegrad.

Vitality will also donate 20 percent of all retail and gift card sales to Safegrad and if you cannot make it to the event, put a note in your calendar to purchase an online gift certificate between 5.30 and 9 p.m. on May 7, and 20 percent of those sales will go to Safegrad too.

You could even do your Mother’s Day shopping and contribute to the Class of 2015 in a one-stop shopping trip!

Nationwide statistics show that on Graduation Night, there is a high rate of alcohol- and substance-related accidents.  Safe Grad was started by a group of LOLHS senior parents many years ago to try and prevent accidents or even tragedy in our community.  Since its onset, the Safe Grad party has fulfilled this goal through the support and generous donations of parents, businesses, service organizations and individuals.

Safe Grad is an all-night, substance-free party.  Over the years it has been a memorable event, hosted and chaperoned by parents.  Buses transport the students to a closely guarded “secret” venue and the event has historically enjoyed a 98 percent participation rate by the graduating class.


Center School Celebrates “80 Years of Change”

view_of_school_with empty_maypole_compressed

school_date_plaque_368x333Center School hosted a program last Friday to celebrate “80 Years of Change.”  The school opened in 1934 as a 1st through 12th grade school but has had many grade iterations since, including its most recent one as a 3rd through 5th grade school, which goes back some 30 years.

The final three grades have been phased out of Center School in the past three years during which time no new grades have entered the school.  The Kindergarten through 5th grade population has thus now been divided between Mile Creek and Lyme Consolidated Schools.

Next year Center School will take on a whole new persona as it becomes both the administrative offices for the District housing the superintendent and his support staff and the home of the District’s Pre-School program.

Friday’s celebrations included a rendering of “Happy Birthday” by the Pre-K students, a speech by former student and teacher Kevin Cole and a maypole demonstration by students from the final four classes at the school.

Alumni of the school were honored with boutonnieres and, along with students, parents and members of the public, they listened to the Lyme-Old Lyme Middle School band play under the direction Ms. Carrie Wind and Mrs. Herel’s class sing the Center School song.

One alumnus, Jim Fafalla (pictured above), who attended the school from 1948 to 1956, told LymeLine he has fond memories of his days at Center School.  When he attended the school it housed  1st through 12th grades and he recalled the best thing about the school being that, “Everyone looked out for each other.”  He also explained that, at that time, the younger grades were on the right hand (south) wing of the building as you walked into the school and the older grades were on the left (north) side.

Fafalla mentioned that six generations of his family have attended Center School and even now, in its swansong era, his granddaughter Lauren Belville is there.


Center School alumni, mother and daughter, Lauren (left) and Michele Dickey. Michele, who graduated from Center in 1963, recalls fondly that she was in the same class as Kevin Cole!

The school’s gymnasium had effectively been converted into a museum by the Celebrate Center Committee with a wonderful display titled, “Through the Decades.”  Display boards filled with photos and information of each decade that the school had operated were on display along with memorabilia and artwork associated with the school.

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The boards and museum exhibits were lovingly planned, designed and built by a dedicated group of eight Center School students who worked weekly, sometimes daily, for months to put together the exhibit.  The members of this club also each spoke at the celebration as did various other teachers, alumni and the school principal, Lori Susi.

Also on view were the 2015 time capsule that has been created, a memory wall, a timeline and a video including memories shared by alumni and former staff members.



Voter Turnout Low So Far in Today’s Region 18 Budget Referendum

It's a quiet day at the polls ... so far.

It’s a quiet day at the polls … so far.

In an exceptionally low turnout to date, less than 200 Old Lyme residents had shown up to vote by 4 p.m. at the Cross Lane Firehouse in a referendum on the Region 18 School District budget.

There is often a flurry of activity at the polls when residents opt to vote on their way home from work.

The polls are open until 8 p.m.

The result will be announced shortly after and will be published on immediately afterwards.


Don’t Forget to Vote! Region 18 Budget Referendum is Today

Today, Tuesday, May 5, the Regional District 18 Board of Education is holding a referendum on its budget request for the fiscal year July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016.

Voting will be held from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the Cross Lane Fire House for Old Lyme residents and the Hamburg Fire House for Lyme residents.

The result will be published on within minutes of its announcement.

In February, the school board voted to present a $32,547,409 budget for the 2015-16 fiscal year, which represents a 1.83 percent increase over the current 2014-15 budget.  In the cover letter to the budget, Superintendent Ian Neviaser and Board of Education Chairman Jim Witkins state, “The 2015-16 budget represents a strong commitment to the development of our young people in the towns of Lyme and Old Lyme balanced with a fiscal responsibility to the local taxpayer.”

They continue,”Areas [in the budget] showing an increase include debt service, employee contractual obligations, special education and transportation.”  Areas in the budget they identify as decreases include, ” … the operations budget as a result of declining enrollment, reductions in program expenses, reductions in support and administrative services, and savings in facilities and technology operations.”


Musical Masterwork Presents Season Finale Concert This Afternoon

Rieko Aizawa

Rieko Aizawa

Musical Masterworks will present the final concert in its 24th season of chamber music concerts at the First Congregational Church of Old Lyme on Sunday, May 3, at 3 p.m.

The concerts will feature pianist Rieko Aizawa, violinists Hye-Jin Kim and Jesse Mills; violinist/violist Ara Gregorian, and violist Max Mandel.

Musical Masterworks Artistic Director Edward Arron will perform on cello and serve as host for the concerts.

The program will feature Turina’s Scene Andalouse for Solo Viola, Piano and String Quartet; and Mendelssohn’s String Quartet in A Major.

Jesse Mills

Jesse Mills

The program’s finale will be the Concerto for Violin, Piano and String Quartet by French composer Ernest Chausson.

Tickets are $35 with $5 student tickets available at the door. for tickets and information.

The First Congregational Church of Old Lyme is located at 2 Ferry Rd., Old Lyme, CT  06371.


Old Lyme’s Tributary Mill Allows Interns to Experience Environmental Preservation Efforts First-hand 

Gathered for a photo are, from left to right, Tyler Clinton, Ashley Bright, Gray Tripp, Morey Tripp, and Jim Tripp.

Gathered for a photo are, from left to right, Tyler Clinton, Ashley Bright, Gray Tripp, Morey Tripp, and Jim Tripp.

The Tributary Mill has stood strong in the heart of Old Lyme since 1672. Originally used to grind grains such as corn and wheat, the mill often became referred to as Rooks Mill in honor of Edward Rooks, an American impressionist who was enthralled with the mill’s beauty, which has since been the subject of many paintings.

The Tributary Mill in Old Lyme.

The Tributary Mill in Old Lyme.

Purchased by Fran Tripp in 1981, her son Jim and his wife Sandra created the Tributary Mill Conservancy (TMC) that exists today from the original foundation. A nonprofit organization that strives to merge science and art through the conservation of the unique tributary ecosystem, the TMC has serviced its surrounding community in innumerable ways.

The waterfall at the mill.

The waterfall at the mill.

Operated by Jim, a carpenter, and Sandra, a high school chemistry teacher, as well as a variety of additional volunteers of all ages, the TMC works closely with a variety of environmentally oriented organizations such as the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), Mystic Aquarium, and the Quebec-Labrador Foundation.

Smile for the camera! Ashley Bright holds a turtle.

Smile for the camera! Ashley Bright holds a turtle.

During the summer and fall seasons, the TMC focuses its energies on trapping and collecting data from snapping turtles by conducting blood tests,  fecal tests, and collecting the leeches found on the turtles for further testing.

In addition, National Geographic recently donated a large number of cameras to put on the backs of the snapping turtles to further track them.

Ashley and Tyler work on transferring the baby salmon.

Ashley and Tyler work on transferring the baby salmon.

In the winter, the TMC turns its attention to hatching Atlantic salmon eggs given to them and regulated by the DEEP. An endangered species, the Atlantic salmon thrive in the unique ecosystem found at the TMC.

The highly efficient filtration system used by the TMC to hatch the eggs, which was engineered by Jim Tripp himself, has resulted in an 18 percent death rate for the eggs, significantly lower than the average 20 percent death rate. The eggs, once hatched, are then released into the surrounding Connecticut River tributaries.

In the spring, the TMC collects data on glass eels. Estimating the number of eels migrating up the Mill Brook as well as weighing trapped eels gives them valuable data, which they then send to the DEEP.

Eels galore!

Eels galore!

The Conservancy also focuses on educating and involving the community in their work. Along with offering tours for school groups ranging from elementary to high schoolers, the Conservancy also provides hands on learning opportunities for middle schoolers, high schoolers, and college students.

Old Saybrook High School seniors Ashley Bright and Tyler Clinton have been deeply impacted by their time at the preserve, which has inspired both of them to pursue careers in environmental science and engineering.

Ashley, who has been interning at the TMC since September, said, “I never expected to get so much out of a high school internship. I feel like I’ve been part of their family. It’s amazing that I’ve been able to do what I’ve done here as a high school student, and I know this experience is something I’ll always remember.”

Tyler, who has been interning at the TMC for two years, echoed Ashley’s sentiment, saying, “I have a second family here,” before going on to praise the kindness of Jim and Sandra Tripp. “They do this out of the kindness of their hearts. They really care about conserving the ecosystem and helping it thrive.”

Jim Tripp notes, “Our original goal was to make a prototype of a mill that could be emulated throughout the area because our location here on the river is such a great place to do wildlife work.”

For more information about the Tributary Mill Conservancy, visit or email  Donations to the nonprofit can also be made through the TMC website.