Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Not too excited about the Super Bowl?

There's no shame in that, (even some sports fans are yawning) and you can attend the Super Bowl Sunday Show and Library Friends Book Sale at the Center Building in Woodbridge instead.

The Tanglewood Marionettes perform "The Dragon King" at 2 p.m. Feb 1 in the Center Gym
With colorful sea creatures, an exciting adventure based on Chinese folklore, and all the visual splendor that audiences have come to expect from a Tanglewood Marionettes production, organizers said, adding "The Dragon King" is a heart-warming tale that will thrill young and old alike.

The Friends of the Woodbridge Library will sell canvas book bags and gently used books at the program.

It is free and open to the public and all are welcome, organizer said. For more information, call 389-3439.

Monday, January 26, 2009

No blarney here

NEW HAVEN — Food and international wines will be served at a benefit for the 2009 Greater New Haven St. Patrick’s Day Parade from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Jan. 30 at Anthony’s Ocean View, 450 Lighthouse Road.
The event is sponsored by Anthony’s and Grand Vin Wine & Spirits. Host will be Sonia Baghdady, WTNH news anchor.
Tickets are $45 and are available by contacting Bernadette Smyth Lafrance at 843-7062 and lafranceb@comcast.net or Briana Conway at Briway101@aol.com. To purchase tickets online, or for ongoing information about parade events, visit http://www.stpatricksdayparade.org/

In photo: 2009 parade Grand Marshal, Brian Enright, stand with News Channel 8 anchor Sonia Baghdady, and 2008 St. Patrick’s Day Parade Queen, Briana Conway.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Construction trade opportunities

NEW HAVEN — Alderman Charles Blango, D-20, is encouraging all city residents to take advantage of construction trade job opportunities and reminds residents that the Construction Workforce Initiative 2 program will accept applications for construction trade-related jobs for both adults, 18 and older; and youths, ages 16 to 23, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 26-28, 2009 and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 29-30.
All residents interested in construction work opportunities are encouraged to apply at New Haven Hall of Records, ground floor hearing room, G-2, 200 Orange St. The city wide opportunity is sponsored by the New Haven Commission on Equal Opportunities. For more information, call 946-8160.

It's Dirty Business

But someone had to do it.

NEW HAVEN - The New Haven Public Library will act as host to two talks by the author of the Dirty Business mystery series.
A hit with mystery lovers and gardening fans nationwide, "Pushing Up Daisies" introduced Paula Holliday, ex-NYC media executive- turned-Connecticut gardener, in Rosemary Harris's series debut, libary organizers said.

Now in the just-released "The Big Dirt Nap," 2009, St. Martin's Minotaur, Paula is back.

"Cozy mystery lovers will relish Rosemary Harris's exceptionally engaging new voice," Julia Spencer-Fleming, Edgar finalist, author of I Shall Not Want. said in a statement released by the library.

For more information about the Dirty Business series, visit http://www.rosemaryharris.com/.
The public is invited to meet the author, shown, in a special Writers Live event from 6 to 7 p.m. Feb. 18, at the New Haven Public Library, 133 Elm St.

Books will be available for sale and signing, and Atticus coffee will be provided.
Harris and her husband, Bruce Harris, former president of sales and marketing for Random House, will return to the library at 6 p.m. March 18 to discuss how authors can maximize chances of success of their books by strategic marketing.

Participants at both events will have an opportunity to win a Dirty Business garden basket. Registration is requested at www.guidezilla.com/nhfpl or call the library at 946-8835. There is no charge for either event, and free parking is available.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

An historic day

Elm City residents enjoyed Tuesday, when President Barack Obama was sworn in. Above, patrons gathered at the New Haven Public Library on Elm Street to watch the ceremony. Below, a man in the Green shows his feelings.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Mayor bumps into a few people

By John DeStefano Jr.

He just can’t help himself. Bill Clinton, I mean.
He spoke to some 200 of us mayors Monday morning at the U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting that began Saturday. Listening to him reminds you of all the reasons you first liked him. He talks to you, not at you. He explains. And he’s really smart. He keeps you looking forward, not backward.
Mostly he talked to us mayors about energy. About "green" jobs and about the economy as well as the opportunities and need to become energy independent and why all the banks still aren’t lending. He also had a good piece of advice for all of us: that we focus not so much on the size of the stimulus package, but on the "how." How will these investments create jobs? How will we get the banks back to work? How, Clinton says, is the most important questions for us Americans right now.
And then there was the important stuff. I mean the concert. That was the concert Sunday in front of the Lincoln Memorial. You know: Stevie Wonder, Sheryl Crow, Beyonce, John Legend, U2, Springsteen. There was a security perimeter around the Reflecting Pool, just after the new World War II Memorial. We pushed through a crowd that looked mostly like our kids. Then on through security and on to the area around the Reflecting Pool.
And the crowd was up and it was happy. It also was very polite. Bump into someone and they apologize to you. Anyway, who do we see, but more Westville neighbors, Jack and Michelle Paulishen. Jack teaches history at Hillhouse High School and Michelle third grade at Edgewood School. And of course they had their son, Jackson, with them. So we hung out with them through the concert.
I have to confess I was glad no one else from New Haven was there when Kathy and I began singing along with Garth Brooks to the words of "American Pie." I thought Stevie Wonder singing "Higher Ground" was the best. Kathy liked "Shout," which also was done by Brooks. U2 doing "In the Name of Love," the Martin Luther King tribute, also was very cool. The crowd was huge. When we left the concert and saw the size of the crowd around the Washington Monument, I swore I’d never complain about the size of some of the crowds at the concerts on the New Haven Green again.
Anyway, back to Bill and Jack. Clinton said that the last election was not about moving left or right in our politics. Rather, he said, it was about moving forward. And I thought he got that right. Jack Paulishen said it another way.
Jack said that he, Michele and Jackson went to Mass at St. Leo’s Saturday in Washington. He said that the last song in the service was "Lift Every Voice and Sing," the "Black National Anthem." Jack said very few knew the words, but that the whole church got it. They got what this whole week is about, how we do things together, and not to one another.
I think that’s right. America’s got it.

New Haven Mayor John DeStefano Jr. is in Washington, D.C., for the inauguration of Barack Obama. While many from the Elm City also made the trek to see history unfold, for those who did not, DeStefano will provide commentary on what he sees and hears. Check out his videos and more inaugural coverage at www.nhregister.com.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Witness history through the mayor's eyes

By John DeStefano Jr.

Do not get stuck behind the president-elect’s train. Trust me, his has the right of way.
Kathy DeStefano and I left Union Station in New Haven Saturday morning for Washington, D.C., without knowing that.
But more on that later.
The first thing you notice about all this are the crowds, and that started right in New Haven. There was nationally known Yale Child Study Center advocate Dr. Jim Comer with his bag, and Westville neighbors Mary and Fred Ginzburg. Once on the train, we met the kids who left college to work on the campaign; they were delaying the start of the semester to attend the inaugural. They would tell stories that all seemed to end with the exclamation, "It was nuts, but it was great."
Then there was the woman who had not expected to go, had never won a lottery, but did win tickets from (U.S. Sen.) Chris Dodd. So she got her train tickets and headed down. By the time the train left Penn Station in New York, it was all Obama, all the time.
That’s when the delays began. We discovered that Amtrak Train 195 was the caboose to the Obama-Biden train marking the passage that President-elect Lincoln took to Washington in 1861. So we stopped outside Philadelphia as the president-elect boarded the train. And we stopped outside Wilmington as the train picked up Vice President-elect Biden. And we stopped outside Baltimore, where we ultimately passed Obama’s train and headed into Washington.
The most interesting thing on the train was the number of young people traveling to the inaugural. They were mostly college age, and lots of parents taking their kids to be part of something historic. That was great to see.
Union Station in Washington was not great to see. It’s already set up for the Eastern States Inaugural Ball, which includes Connecticut, being held Tuesday from 10 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. the next day. That was fine. However, there were a lot of people and not an equal number of ways to get them out of Union Station. But we all did.
In my 15 years as mayor, I have now seen two great changes in Washington, D.C. The first was after 9/11. Then the city seemed to move into lockdown. Streets and sidewalks closed. Troops in battle dress carried automatic weapons. Entry into public buildings became extraordinarily difficult. All necessary, but not what we want in the national capital of the world’s oldest democracy.
The second change I witnessed these last few days. People from all over the country coming together to witness this next step in our amazing journey as a nation. And like the train we took on Saturday, we may have taken a little longer than we expected to get to where we were going. But we got there. Americans always seem to.
And that’s a pretty good thing to celebrate.
John DeStefano Jr. is mayor of New Haven. He and his wife, Kathy, will attend the inauguration of Barack Obama. As readers might have guessed, the mayor does not work for the New Haven Register. But for the next few days, he’s got a bird’s-eye view of history. And he will tell the Elm City what he sees and hears, so stay tuned.

See the mayor's video here:

Friday, January 16, 2009

Faith film series

NEW HAVEN — New Haven’s Center Church on the Green, a congregation of the United Church of Christ, will kick off the year with a series dubbed "Faith & Film," movie nights.
"These are films that raise faith and or ethical questions," said Center Church’s pastor, the Rev. Sandra Olsen. "We will combine film and fellowship and explore together what faith has to do with film."
The series, which is free and open to the public and will be begin at 6:30 p.m. on select Wednesdays, will be shown at the Parish House Chapel at 311 Temple St.
Dates are: Jan. 14: Crash, a film about race relations; Jan. 21: Walking Across Egypt, the story of an older Christian woman, whose heart is stretched by her relationship with a young juvenile delinquent; Feb. 11: A Trip to Bountiful, about an elderly woman who wants to go visit the town she grew up in; Feb. 18: Tender Mercies, a story of redemption and hope about a washed up country singer, redeemed by the love of a woman and a boy.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Caring contest

The Connecticut Humane Society hopes to garner votes in a nationwide contest that, if it were to win, would bring in $10,000 towards the expansion of its Waterford shelter.
The America’s favorite animal shelter contest is sponsored by Care2.com.
The project includes a complete renovation of the Waterford shelter and infrastructure, additional sanctuary cottages for the Companion Animal Sanctuary, establishment of a second Fox Memorial Clinic, a quarantine facility, pet cemetery, and a nature trail, society officials said in a release.
The Connecticut Humane Society "continues to be dedicated to a mission that has remained unchanged since it’s founding; to promote the kindness and humanity toward people, animals and the environment" the statement said. The progressive improvements its makes to the organization as well as the creation of vanguard programs such as the Companion Animal Sanctuary and the Fox Memorial Clinic, are all designed to serve the neediest members of the population, pets that have no other place to go, the statement said.
Go to www.cthumane.org/vote, to vote for CT Humane’s Waterford shelter. The contest deadline is Jan. 31.

KIWI president featured speaker in Milford

The Happiness Club of Greater Milford will feature Stacey Krone Battat, a co-founder and president of KIWI Publishing, as the speaker at its monthly meeting at 6 p.m. Feb. 12 at Golden Hill Health Care Center, 2028 Bridgeport Ave., Milford.
Battat is the inspiration behind the Thin Threads® story collection, for which KIWI Publishing has received thousands of stories since 2005, and is about to publish the first in the Thin Threads® book series – The Classic Edition.
Thin Threads® - Stories of Life Changing Moments – is about the moments that change the course of lives for the better and open new possibilities.
Battat for the past 10 years has created family education programs at non-profit organizations, including the Jewish Federation of Greater New Haven, for students in grades 8 through 11, and their parents. Her topics range from social action and community involvement to Internet safety and self esteem.
Through her background in counseling and journalism Battat worked for cable and satellite television programming in New York and Israel, as a reporter and field producer. Through public speaking at seminars on balancing family life, Battat has helped hundreds of parents improve family communication skills while working with their spouses. Her mission has and continues to be about helping people tell their stories. She hopes to be a catalyst for helping others find new pathways to a better life.
“We are all surrounded by the simple yet miraculous stories that shape our lives. “Thin Thread Stories” will inspire readers to capture these moments, enabling us, as readers, to realize our own opportunities when we live in the moment… and become more aware of shaping our own destiny," she said.
The Happiness Club of Greater Milford is the local chapter of the international Happiness Club organization founded by Fairfield resident Lionel Ketchian. Monthly community socials for the Milford Chapter will be held the second Thursday of each month throughout 2009. In February, parking is available behind the Golden Hill Health Care Center and in the upper parking lot at the far rear lot behind Milford Hospital.
All ages are invited, and admission is free. Visitors should bring a food item to share, such as appetizer, munchie, or dessert. Coffee, water, and ice are provided, and BYOB is OK.
Attendees receive a free drawing ticket for door prizes, and various exhibitors will offer interesting displays.
For more information on the Happiness Club of Greater Milford, contact Priscilla Lynn at (203) 767-3582, email to plynn_135@hotmail.com, and also visit http://www.happinessclubmilford.ning.com/ or http://www.happinessclub.com/. The next March Happiness Club social will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. March 12.
For more information on Kiwi Publishing, contact Battat at stacey@kiwipublishing.com, (203) 915-5208, or visit http://www.kiwipublishing.com/.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

What kind of rotten person does this?

NEW HAVEN — Police are searching for a specially equipment Toyota Scion that belongs to the disabled director of the city’s Disability Services Department.
The black 2006 vehicle belongs to Michelle Duprey, who heads the city department that promotes the coordination of resources for persons with disabilities, responds to the needs of persons with disabilities and monitors and takes appropriate actions to ensure compliance with relevant federal, state and local regulations, according to the city Web site.
She is disabled and the car is equipped with a ramp that allows her to enter the vehicle through the rear. The vehicle has special emblem on the side that reads "BRAUN RAMPVAN" and has extensive equipment installed in it to accommodate the owner’s wheelchair and short stature. Anyone with any information on the whereabouts of this vehicle is asked to call New Haven police at 946-6316.
Read more about this story in Thursday’s New Haven Register and here at nhregister.com

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

"Jewish Movers & Shakers"

The Connecticut Jewish Ledger newspaper has announced its annual Connecticut’s "Jewish Movers & Shakers for 2008 List" and two Greater New Haven residents are on it.
In all, a group of 14 talented, accomplished and dedicated business professionals and community leaders were recognized for their leadership roles and the impact they made in the Jewish community in Connecticut during the past year, the Ledger said.
"We’ve identified these 14 community leaders because of their hard work, generosity and commitment to the community during this past year...the individuals on this year’s movers and shakers list have definitely improved the lives of the people around them as well as all Connecticut residents," said Richard Greenfield, publisher, Connecticut Jewish Ledger.

Named were David Beckerman, of Woodbridge, who received the 2008 ADL Greater New Haven Torch of Liberty Award in May and Rabbi Richard Eisenberg, also of Woodbridge, who formerly was the longtime rabbi at at Congregation B’nai Jacob in Woodbridge.

Beckerman, a New Haven businessman, is former coach of the Hamden Hall Country Day School Basketball team, which he led to win eight New England Championships and five Fairchester League Titles and also coached the Jewish Community Center Basketball team to the JWB National Basketball Championship and served as coach of the U.S. Maccabiah Basketball Team in Mexico City.
A former president of the Jewish Community Center of Greater New Haven, Beckerman is the founder and chairman of Community One, which benefits the seven constituent agencies of the New Haven Jewish Federation, and he serves on several other boards.

Eisenberg, who spent 25 years as a full-time pulpit rabbi, most of that time at Congregation B’nai Jacob, two years ago chose to start a new career – as a drug and alcohol recovery counselor. With a goal of starting a practice focusing on recovery from chemical dependency and alcoholism addiction in the Jewish community, Eisenberg recently completed studies toward a degree in drug counseling while serving part-time as interim rabbi at Beth El in Torrington. He completed the certificate program in drug and alcohol recovery counseling at Gateway Community College, which included a year-long internship at the APT Foundation, an out-patient substance-abuse treatment program in New Haven. He recently became a full-time counselor there.
In alphabetical order, the other people named are: Nora Raleigh Baskin, Weston; Rabbi Simcha Berger, Bridgeport; Barry Blau, Westport; Linda Cohn, Southbury; Steve Friedlander, Westport; Rabbi Ilana Garber, West Hartford; Jerry Gordon, Pensacola, Fla.; Ira Henowitz and Samuel Kassow, both of West Hartford; Zach Levins, also Westport; Sarah Darer Littman, Stamford; Daniel Papermaster, also of West Hartford.
The Connecticut Jewish Ledger weekly is dedicated to furthering Jewish life in the region and serving the community.

Editor's note: this information was provided by the Connecticut Jewish Ledger

Service to honor slain civil rights leader

NEW HAVEN — An interfaith service honoring Martin Luther King Jr. will be held at noon on Jan. 19, at Immanuel Baptist Church, 1324 Chapel St.
The featured speakers include: the Rev. Dr. Samuel Slie, associate pastor emeritus, Church of Christ in Yale; Rev. Jason Turner, pastor of the Community Baptist Church; Rabbi Alison Adler, associate rabbi of Congregation Mishkan Israel, Hamden.
The theme of the service, which is open to the public, is "Voices of Hope."

Monday, January 12, 2009

It's a big day

Another place to watch the inauguration; city libraries also will provide a venue

NEW HAVEN — The Aldermanic Chamber in City Hall will be available to the public for viewing the historic inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th president of the United States, Board of Aldermen President Carl Goldfield, D-29, announced Monday.
The event is free and open to public. The swearing in is scheduled to occur at noon Tuesday but the chamber will available from 11 a.m.
For more information call the Office of Legislative Services At (203) 946-8371. City Hall is at 165 Church St.

The art of Portnoy

WOODBRIDGE - The Woodbridge Town Library will present the art of Herb Portnoy on display during the month of January.

A native of Boston, Portnoy graduated from the Vesper George Art School in Boston, library officials said in a statement.

Upon his graduation, he was employed as Advertising Manager for Stop & Shop Supermarkets at their Connecticut, Western Massachusetts, and New Jersey Divisions, the statement said. After 17 years with them, he started his own Advertising Agency in New Haven.

Portnoy is semi-retired, has four daughters and seven grandchildren. Portnoy studied watercolor and acrylics under well-known artist Lenny Moskowitz, and is a member of the Arts Council of New Haven.

Portnoy's specialty is portraits from photos.

"My passion is to execute on canvas, the colors (light and darks) I see, and create those colors on my pallet," Portnoy said in the statement, "there's nothing more satisfying, than a piece of art that the artist is pleased with."

The public is invited to attend a reception from 1 to 4 p.m. Jan. 24 at the library. Refreshments will be served. This exhibit is free and open to the public. All are welcome to visit.

Friday, January 9, 2009

An historic day

NEW HAVEN — The public is invited to experience inauguration day at all branches of the New Haven Public Library, beginning at 10 a.m. Jan. 20 with televised events to be projected onto large screens at branches throughout the city. Check www.nhbulletin.blogspot.com for locations.
Also, the film "The Democratic Promise: Saul Alinsky and his Legacy" will be shown at 6 p.m. at the Main Library, 133 Elm St. An early influence on many of current political leaders, including Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, Alinsky is credited with the slogan "Think globally, act locally," library organizers said. Commentary will be provided by Melissa Canham-Clyne, author of a forthcoming article on community organizing; Kia Levy, of Empower New Haven; and Seth Godfrey, a classmate of Obama at Columbia College. The programs are free and free parking is available at all branches, including after 4 p.m. at main branch. For more information call 946-8835.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

At the General Assembly

New Haven's own new House member, Gary Holder Winfield, D-94, was congratulated by his wife, Natalie Holder-Winfield, after being sworn at the State Capitol in the Hall of the House of Representatives during the start of the 2009 legislative session.

Photograph by Peter Hvizdak

Community Foundation grant deadlines approach

NEW HAVEN — The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven is accepting grant applications for several of its grants cycles, opportunities that are made possible through one or more of the foundation’s 700 funds.
Deadlines vary and applications and guidelines are available on-line at the foundation’s grants page on its Web site www.cfgnh.org. Paper copies of applications are also available at the foundation’s offices at 70 Audubon St. New Haven, 06510.
Grant for which deadlines approach are: the Community Fund for Women and Girls, the Quinnipiac River Fund and the Neighborhood Small Grants Program for the Lower Naugatuck Valley and New Haven.
The Community Fund for Women & Girls, created in 1995 by a woman to provide ongoing support for services important to women and girls in Greater New Haven and the Lower Naugatuck Valley, has distributed more than $280,000 since 1996 and inspired more than 600 women to participate as donors and volunteers, officials said. Grant applications are due by 5 p.m. Jan. 16. The fund seeks to make grants to projects that: Create and support opportunities for the economic, educational, physical, emotional, social, artistic, and personal growth of women and girls; meet special needs of women and girls and the diverse populations of women in the region, encourage advancement and full participation of women and girls in the community and in philanthropy, advance the status of women and girls in core areas of economic security, health, violence, education and political participation.
The Quinnipiac River Fund was established in 1990 by a court settlement of litigation between the Connecticut Fund for the Environment, the Natural Resource Defense Council and the Upjohn Co. concerning wastewater discharges from Upjohn’s plant in New Haven, fund officials said. The settling parties agreed net income, and in extenuating circumstances, principal of the fund, was to be used to, "improve the environmental quality of the Quinnipiac River and the New Haven Harbor and watersheds of these waterbodies, and otherwise to benefit the environment of these resources." Grant applications also are due by 5 p.m. on Jan. 16, 2009. The fund give preference to prospective grant proposals that address: Effects of the oyster industry and how it can help reduce or remediate pollution on the organisms of the Quinnipiac River, research methods of reducing pollution, or otherwise improving the Quinnipiac River’s environmental health, means of reducing non-point and point sources of pollution to the river, researching the permitting process and looking at the permits themselves, environmental advocacy, except litigation, studying ecology of the river and harbor, providing public education about the river and its watershed, and purchasing land on the river for conservation purposes, or to reduce pollution and improve public access to the river.
The Neighborhood Small Grants Program, one of the foundation’s longest running grant opportunities for civic groups, is a tool through which the foundation and its affiliate, the Valley Community Foundation, work to promote civic participation and to strengthen civic infrastructure within the neighborhoods of New Haven and five towns in the Lower Naugatuck Valley: Ansonia, Derby, Seymour, Shelton and Oxford. Funding is provided to enable civic groups including, but not limited to, neighborhood groups and associations, parent groups, youth groups and faith-based organizations to carryout their civic agenda. Grants range from $100 to $3,000 and are awarded from The Foundation’s discretionary unrestricted funds and the Gates Fund that was established in the 1950s by two brothers, Ross Fletcher Gates and Frank Hegeman Gates, to benefit broad charitable purposes with consideration that a portion of the income benefit residents of Derby and vicinity. The application deadline for the Lower Naugatuck Valley Neighborhood Small Grant Program is 5 p.m. on Jan. 20. Application deadline for the New Haven Neighborhood Small Grant Program is 5 p.m. Feb. 12.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Update on breast cancer treatment

NEW HAVEN - Yale-New Haven Hospital and Yale Cancer Center will present a free health talk dubbed, "Breast Cancer Treatment Update" at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 14 in YNHH's East Pavilion cafeteria. The lecture is part of the ongoing Understanding Cancer Lecture Series for patients and families living with cancer.

Dr. Maysa Abu-Khalaf, assistant professor of medical oncology, Dr. Carla Christy, surgical instructor, and Dr. Joanne Weidhaas, assistant professor of therapeutic radiology, will review the newest treatment options for women with breast cancer. At the end of the presentation, guests will have time to ask questions.
A light supper will be served at 6p.m.; the lecture begins promptly at 6:30 p.m. The lecture is free and validated parking is available. Call (203) 688-2000 to make reservations and for directions to park in the Air Rights Garage

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Alan Veingrad to talk about being Jewish

ORANGE — Former NFL offensive lineman (1986-1992) and member of the 1992 Superbowl Champs, the Dallas Cowboys, Alan Veingrad will speak about how he maintained his Jewish identity and pride while he was the only Jew on his team at 7 p.m. Jan. 29 at Chabad of Orange/Woodbridge, 261 Derby Ave.
A project of Chabad of Orange/ Woodbridge, the event is $10 for adults and $8 for children younger than 13. For more information or to make reservations, contact Rabbi Adam Haston at (203) 589-4783 or rabbiadam@chabadOW.org.

Get those shovels out

NEW HAVEN — The city Tuesday issued a reminder to property owners that clearing snow on the sidewalks around homes and businesses is their responsibility.
The rule applies to commercial and residential property owners and requires that sidewalks be cleared within 24 hours of the end of a storm, the city said in a statement.
"If the city receives a complaint or if we come upon a sidewalk that has not been cleared within 24 hours of the end of a storm we will notify the property owner and issue a warning that requires them to comply within 24 hours," Andrew Rizzo, executive director of the Livable City Initiative said in the statement. "Should the property owner not comply they will receive a citation that carries a $100 per day fine."
The city also encourages residents to check the city’s Web site or call 203-946-SNOW for information on parking bans, service changes and other weather emergency messages. The city uses the 3N Emergency Notification System to share emergency information and all land-line phone numbers listed in the White Pages in New Haven receive phone calls during weather and other emergencies that make residents aware of bans, changes to services and other important information. Residents whose phone numbers are unlisted and those who have chosen to place their phone numbers on the national Do Not Call List, do not receive the calls.
To opt in visit http://www.cityofnewhaven.com/EmergencyInfo/optin.asp

Monday, January 5, 2009

El Dia De Los Reyes Magos

Story and photos by Amanda May

At right: New Haven Police Lt. Luiz Casanova hands out gifts to Fair Haven K-8 students as part of their “Three Kings Day Celebration.” This was the first annual at the Grand Avenue school and was sponsored by the Latino Officer’s Society.

FAIR HAVEN – Three wise men made an appearance in a Fair Haven school Monday afternoon and drew attention from the educational staff, students, and the local media and government, including police.
But these weren’t just any wise men.
They were Melchor, Gaspar and Baltasar; the three kings from the biblical story of the birth of Jesus.
At this, the first annual Three Kings Day Celebration at Fair Haven K-8 School, they were played by Superintendent of Schools Dr. Reginald Mayo, Police Lt. Luiz Casanova and Alderman Joe Rodriguez.
As is the custom in Latino culture, the “three kings” or “tres reyes” bring presents to children the night of Jan. 5 each year. The children from the third grade at acted out the tradition of placing boxes of cut grass beneath their beds, (a gift for the camels that the three ride and the equivalent of milk and cookies for Santa) while police Officer Yesnia Ortiz narrated.
The event was sponsored by the Latino Officer’s Society of New Haven, which provided a gift for each student from kindergarten to the fourth grade at the Grand Avenue School.
After the “magical” pre-enactment of tonight’s hoped visit by the “tres reyes,” Rodriguez sat in front of the giant paper mache camel made by the school's art teachers. He gave out the presents to the eager lines of little girls and boys.
“This is the true definition of community,” Rodriguez. “We have leaders, the police, staff, educators, and community members all coming together to celebrate and share our cultures and traditions.”
“I’ve never had the pleasure of being a king for an hour,” Mayo said. “It’s a great occasion and I loved seeing the excitement on the faces of the children.”
As far as his face, it itched. “I’ve got to go take this beard off,” Mayo said with a deep laugh while exiting the stage.

Magic in the air. At right, students from kindergarten to the fourth grade participate in the “Three Kings Day Celebration” at the school’s afternoon assembly.
NOTE: Tuesday, Jan. 6 is a holiday and a day off for New Haven public school students, with classes resuming Wednesday.

Looking for a hero

NEW HAVEN – Do you know a person who has performed an extraordinary act of courage to save someone’s life?
Maybe you know someone who commits countless hours to a special cause?
The Red Cross wants to honor and celebrate these individuals at the 9th Annual Heroes of South Central Connecticut Awards Breakfast on March 25 at the Omni New Haven Hotel at Yale.
Awards will be given in eight categories including: Fire Fighter, Law Enforcement, Medical, 911 Dispatch, Adult Good Samaritan, Youth Good Samaritan, Military and Animal Rescue.
To nominate a hero, call the South Central Connecticut Chapter at (203) 787-6721, or nominate online at www.arcsct.org.
All nominations must be received by or before Feb. 1 to be eligible.

Hats off to UNH grads

WEST HAVEN — The University of New Haven will hold its Winter Commencement at 2 p.m. Jan. 17 in the UNH Athletic Center.
Stanley Aronowitz, distinguished professor of Sociology and Urban Education, Graduate Center, City University of New York is commencement speaker. Aronowitz will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.
Also, Robert M. Lee, a 1978 graduate of UNH and a member of the UNH Board of Governors and executive vice president of The Lee Co. will receive an honorary Doctor of Business degree and Jim Vlock, president and CEO, The Fox Steel Co., will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.
Aronowitz is a critically acclaimed author, columnist, politician, professor and champion of the American worker, UNH officials said. Aronowitz, "a modern intellectual virtuoso who studies labor, social movements, science and technology, education, social theory and cultural studies, is an esteemed social and cultural critic, who has written more than two dozen books including "How Class Works: Power and Social Movement" and his newest, "Against Schooling: For an Education that Matters," UNH said in a statement.
He has written more than 200 published articles and reviews, is founding editor of the journal Social Text, and has served on advisory and editorial boards for numerous journals related to his areas of expertise. A graduate of the New School and the Union Graduate School, he was a steelworker, union organizer, community organizer and associate director for an anti-poverty organization early in his career, and was an anti-war activist during the 1960s. An educational innovator and political activist who has taught at the College of Staten Island, the University of California-Irvine and the Center for Worker Education at City College of the City University of New York, he ran a grassroots campaign for governor of New York on the Green Party ticket in 2002.
Lee is an engineer and successful executive in the Lee Co., a Connecticut firm at the forefront of development of miniature precision control components for aerospace, medical and scientific instrumentation, machine tools and inkjet printing. He was responsible for the formation of the company’s Electro-Fluidic Systems Group in 1984, creating a product line with separate product and engineering facilities whose sales grew to $40 million from $4 million during his tenure. Lee has a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of New Haven. In 2003, he was the recipient of the Distinguished Engineering Alumnus award from the University. He is chairman of the Advancement Committee of the UNH Board of Governors of the University, and is a member of the Student and Academic Affairs Committee and the Career Services Subcommittee.
Vlock is chairman and CEO of the Fox Steel Co. of Orange and president of Vlock Family Realty Inc., and an innovator in development of non-profit housing for low-income older citizens and a contributor to numerous community initiatives in the state. He was a founder and is president and chairman of the board of directors for Tower One and Tower East, in New Haven. He attracted internationally acclaimed architect Cesar Pelli to design Casa Otonal, a highly successful low-income housing facility for Latino seniors in New Haven. He was a founder and serves as a member of the board of directors of the Casa Otonal Housing Corp. Vlock is an associate fellow of Morse College at Yale University, and serves on the advisory board of the Yale Comprehensive Cancer Center. He was a member of the first freshman class at Bronx High School of Science, and a member of the first class of the Cornell School of Business and Public Administration, now the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell. In 2008, a gift from Vlock and his family enabled the creation of the Laurel Vlock Center for Convergent Media at UNH.
He earned a bachelor of arts degree and an M.B.A. from Cornell, and has served on the Cornell University Council and the Executive Council of the Johnson Graduate School of Management.

A home run

Minnesota Twins pitcher and Trumbull resident, Craig Breslow, left, lets Isaias Valentin of Shelton try on Breslow’s World Series ring from the 2007 world champion Red Sox at Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital. Breslow founded the Strike 3 Foundation in 2008 to heighten awareness, mobilize support and raise funds for childhood cancer research. He was at YNHCH to visit oncology patients and deliver gifts, sign autographs and lift the spirits of patients, hospital officials said.

Wild about flowers!

According to a release from Shaun Roche, visitor services manager at the  Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge, "Each spr...