Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Jewish Learning Institute to present "Soul Quest" class

Relationship of the soul and the body part of course

GUILFORD - Rabbi Yossi Yaffe will teach the course "Soul Quest: The Journey, Through Life, Death, and Beyond" for six upcoming Tuesdays beginning Nov. 10 at the Nathanial B. Greene Community Center, 32 Church St.
Through it, partcipants will "discover the ancient Jewish traditions about the relationship of the soul and the body, life and death, Heaven and Hell, and reincarnation and resurrection," organizers said.
The course, produced by the Jewish Learning Institute, is designed for people of all levels of Jewish knowledge. Lessons will examine a range of classic Jewish sources, drawing extensively from the Talmud and Kabbalah, organizers said.
The instructor, Rabbi Yaffe is of Chabad of the Shoreline.
The cost of the course is $50 and includes textbooks. Scholarships are available upon request. No one will be turned away for lack of funds. To register or for more information, call (203) 453-5580, email or visit

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

New Haven extends its flu clinics

Health Department also will supply vaccines to homeless and those in need

NEW HAVEN — The city Health Department has extended its seasonal flu clinic for four weeks as a result of high demand for the vaccine, according to city officials.
The vaccines are available to residents for $15 per person, officials said in a statement. Health officials caution the elderly and other high risk individuals to visit their primary care doctor or local clinics for a vaccine or one of the city-sponsored clinics, the statement said. Residents who are able to show a valid Medicare Part B membership card will not be charged for the vaccine, the statement said.
The Health Department also will supply 200 doses of seasonal vaccine that Yale medical students will administer at St. James and St. Paul’s food pantry, at Olive and Chapel streets and on Nov. 1 will supply 200 doses through a health fair at Trinity Church on the Green for homeless and other needy populations, the statement said.
Health Department clinics to will be held at 54 Meadow St., from 9 a.m. to noon, on Nov. 3, 10, 17 and 24, the statement said.

Operation Home for the Holidays

Gov. M. Jodi Rell is getting some help for her “Operation Home for the Holidays” initiative to bring 700 Connecticut’s National Guard service men and women home for December break and the effort needs your help too.

CT TweetCrawl, Fathom and Lisa Davenport’s Home Gallery will help Rell raise $200,000 by acting as hosts for a Nov. 14 fundraiser at Home Gallery warehouse in Marlborough, organizers said.

“We wanted to host an event at the warehouse and had several great causes in mind. Once the governor announced Operation Home for the Holidays, we knew we had our cause,” Ed Richman, co-owner of Lisa Davenport’s Home Gallery, said in a statement.

The Warehouse Party event hopes to raise at least $25,000 through a dinner fundraiser to be held 6 to 7:30 p.m., with food provided by Hartford-based Agave, and a dance party from 7:30 p.m. to midnight.

Corporate sponsors will pay for the dinner; the dance party will be open to the public for $40 per person. Raffles donated by area businesses will help raise the bulk of the donations, organizers said.

T-shirts will also be sold after the event to continue raising money.

Tickets to the dance party can be purchased online at: The group has formed a Facebook event and the Twitter tag “#ophome.”

“There is a lot of power in word-of-mouth, whether it’s Twitter, Facebook or good old face-to-face. We are asking everyone to use those powers for good and help us bring Connecticut’s own home,” Suzi Craig, director of marketing and engagement for Fathom and founder of CT TweetCrawl, said in the statement.
Ann Nyberg, co-anchor for Ch. 8 WTNH, is emcee for the dinner and Damon Scott of 96.5 WTIC will lead the dance party portion of the evening, organizers said. Local celebrities and Connecticut National Guard families will join the festivities.
Connecticut Army National Guard troops from two units, the 1st Battalion of the 102nd Infantry Regiment and the 250th Engineering Company, will be bused in from their “mobilization stations” in Indiana and Wisconsin, respectively, where they will be completing preparations for deploying to Afghanistan.

Rell's fund-raising effort is part of Operation ELF, or Embracing Lonely Families. For sponsorship opportunities, in-kind donations for the event’s raffle or more information, call Craig at (860) 384-4480 or e-mail

For direct donations, make checks payable to “CTNGFI” and send to: Connecticut National Guard Foundation, Inc., 360 Broad St., Hartford, 06105-3706

Monday, October 26, 2009

Ted Kennedy Jr. is guest speaker for Read to Grow

Son of the late United States senator will talk about his dad

NEW HAVEN — Ted Kennedy Jr. will be the guest speaker at Read to Grow’s annual luncheon fundraiser at noon Nov. 13 at the Omni New Haven Hotel at Yale, 155 Temple St.
The event, for which Jonathan and Josephine Bush are honorary co-chairmen, is sponsored by Citizens Bank, a long-time supporter of the statewide literacy nonprofit, organizers said.
Kennedy, a Greater New Haven resident and son of the late U.S. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, will talk about his father’s autobiography, "True Compass," organizers said.
Read to Grow works to build literacy for all Connecticut children. Last year, it distributed more than 110,000 new and gently used books to youngsters across the state, organizers said.
Tickets start at $100 and include lunch and a copy of the elder Kennedy’s book. Corporate and group tables are available. Read to Grow is offering a $150 seat that includes a $50 donation towards a ticket for an area high school student who otherwise would not be able to attend. For more information, call Read to Grow at (203) 488-6800 or register online at

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Architecture matters at the New Haven Public Library

Book Lover's Luncheon features Pulitzer Prize winning author

NEW HAVEN - Paul Goldberger, architecture critic for The New Yorker magazine’s “SkyLine” column and author of the newly published “Why Architecture Matters,” will be the featured guest at the Patrons of the New Haven Public Library’s Book Lover’s Luncheon at 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 28.

The 2nd annual fundraising luncheon benefiting the public library will be held at Union League Café.

Robert A. M. Stern, dean and J.M. Hoppin Professor, Yale School of Architecture, will facilitate the luncheon discussion on architecture.

For more information and to purchase tickets, call Barbara Segaloff, Library Development Office at (203) 946-8130 ext. 314 or e-mail

The library also will present Goldberger in a civic conversation focused on Public Architecture at 6 p.m. Oct. 28in the Ives (Main)Branch, 133 Elm St.
Goldberger will be joined by Hartford Courant Columnist Tom Condon. The program is free and open to the public.

Goldberger began his career at The New York Times where his architectural criticism was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Distinguished Criticism in 1984. Author of several books, including his chronicle of the Ground Zero rebuilding process, “Up From Zero: Politics, Architecture and the Rebuilding of New York,” Goldberger’s newest work “Why Architecture Matters” is a handbook on how to look at buildings and view them in their contexts of environment and history.
He is a graduate of Yale University, holds the Joseph Urban Chair in Design at The New School in New York City, and lectures widely on architecture, design, historic preservation and cities.

Finding your sea legs

NEW HAVEN — The New Haven Power Squadron is offering a seamanship class to anyone who holds a boater’s license and would like to further their skills and boating knowledge.
Classes will be held at The Foote Building of The Sound School, 17 Sea St., beginning Oct. 28 at 6:30 p.m. For more information call Art Andrea at (203) 468-1210

Spanish Civil War topic of library talk

NEW HAVEN - The public is invited to a discussion with historian Frank DeFina, who will present a talk, "The Wound in the Heart: American Neutrality in the Spanish Civil War 1936-39," at 4:30 p.m. Nov. 12 at the New Haven Public Library, 133 Elm St.
DeFina will explore the effect of America's neutrality in the Spanish Civil War on events leading to World War II, the library said.
DeFina has hada varied academic, professional and personal life studying, teaching and traveling in many countries. He earned a bachelor's degree in Education & English from SUNY, a Master's in history from the University of New Mexico, and a doctorate in Spanish-American History from the University of Madrid.
DeFina has taught at all levels here and abroad and served as Study Abroad Director in Seville and Madrid for various American universities and studied and taught at the universities of Madrid, Granda, and Seville, where he was a Fulbright Lecturer.
He also taught English and American Studies at various Chinese universities in Shangahi, Nanjing, Chengdu, and Tianjin. Currently an adjunct professor at Gateway Community College, DeFina is an avid reader and traveler, especially to Spain, whose history and culture continue to intrigue him.
Please register to attend at or call the library at (203) 946-8835.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

New Haven police Citizens' Academy seeks applicants

NEW HAVEN — The Police Department is seeking applicants for its Citizens’ Academy that will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. for eight consecutive Wednesdays, beginning on Oct. 28, at the Police Academy, 710 Sherman Parkway.
The program is designed to improve communication and understanding between police and residents, city officials said in a statement. It will give about 35 people an opportunity to work with officers and "get a behind the scenes look at a progressive, community-minded police department," the statement said.
Applications are available from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays at the Police Academy, Forms a also are available at police substations, the main desk at police headquarters at 1 Union Ave., area libraries and at:
Completed applications should be dropped off at the Police Academy by Friday. Citizens’ Academy staff will hold extended hours from 4 to 7 p.m. Wednesday through Friday at the academy to answer questions and review applications.
Applicants must be at least 18 by the first day of classes, have no major felony convictions and no convictions involving domestic violence.
Applications will be processed by the Police Department and potential candidates will be subject to a basic criminal history check. Each application will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Participants are required to commit to actively participating in all eight sessions.
For more information, call the Police Academy at (203)-946-6119 or e-mail

Friday, October 16, 2009

Are we scared yet?

Spend Halloween with the Peabody

We all know snakes and spiders really are not scary - but nature's little pest controllers will play that role from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 31 at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, 170 Whitney Ave.

"The Natural History of Witches and Wizards: A Peabody Halloween," is the Peabody’s annual celebration of the animals and nature-based traditions associated with Halloween and will feature creatures like spiders and snakes as well as some of the strangest-looking specimens from the collections.

There also will be mask-making and other fun educational activities, organizers said. The cost is included with Museum admission of $5-7, no charge for children younger than 3.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Mashantucket Pequot Museum executive director to speak in Woodbridge

WOODBRIDGE - The public is invited to the Friends of the Woodbridge Library Annual Purves Lecture at 7 p.m. Oct. 26.

The featured speaker will be Kimberly Hatcher-White, executive director of the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center.

Born and reared in Willimantic, Hatcher-White is a tribal member descended from the Anna Williams family line, and is the youngest daughter of tribal elder Marion Madeline Harris-Hatcher, organizers said in a statement.

Hatcher-White was named executive director in 2006. She has worked extensively with the museum's collections and exhibits, providing for long term care and preservation of the tribe's cultural heritage, the statement said.

She is a magna cum laude graduate of Eastern Connecticut State University, and is completing the certificate program in Museum Studies at Tufts University.

The lecture is free and open to the public.

The Purves Lecture is an annual event sponsored by Friends of the Woodbridge Library. The series was created by the family of Marjorie Purves, a past Friends member, to memorialize her and to perpetuate her love of books, love of great literature and most importantly, to share that love with the Woodbridge community, the statement said.

Hill Reunion lunch next month

NEW HAVEN - You're definitely not over the hill but if you were part of the Hill neighborhood then this is the event for you.
The annual Hill Reunion will be held from noon to 4 p.m. Nov. 12 at Anthony's Ocean View, 450 Lighthouse Road. The cost is $27 per person and includes a buffet lunch. There will be a cash bar. For reservations, mail a check to Nick DeMatties, 140 Capt. Thomas Blvd., West Haven, 06516. Deadline is Oct. 30.
There will be no table reservations, so arrive early to save available seating. For more information, call DeMatties at (203) 932-1528.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Columbus House a winner in BlumShapiro 5K

NEW HAVEN - Columbus House shelter for the homeless was one the beneficiaries from the first-ever BlumShapiro 5K for Charity this year.

The shelter on Ella Grasso Boulevard was given a check for $2,500 as part of the mission of the 5K race, to raise money and food donations "to help provide meals, shelter, housing support and other outreach services to the homeless in Connecticut," officials said.

BlumShapiro, an accounting, tax and business consulting firm, has offices in Shelton.

“The BlumShapiro 5K for Charity is a fun way for the whole community to join together and help those in need during these tough economic times,” Tom DeVitto, chief marketing officer of BlumShapiro said in a release. “On both an individual and company-wide basis, we have a strong history of giving back, and we’re glad we can expand our reach by partnering with the Travelers Championship and the PGA TOUR to make this event such a remarkable success.”

The BlumShapiro 5K for Charity benefited a total of four Connecticut-based organizations:· Columbus House; East Hartford Homeless Shelter; Thomas Merton House, Bridgeport; and St. Vincent de Paul Society of Waterbury.

BlumShapiro’s 5K for Charity, which drewmore than 300 runners, raised a total of $10,000 and provided each organization with a donation of $2,500, the release said. Jay Sattler, partner at BlumShapiro, was this year’s 5K winner with a time of 17:23.

With continued support of participants, vendor partners and volunteers, BlumShapiro looks forward to helping more charities through next year’s 5K, as well as through charitable acts throughout the year, the release said. Event sponsors included the Travelers Championship, the Hartford Marathon Group, Nature Valley Granola Bars and Coca-Cola.

BlumShapiro also has offices in West Hartford, Waterbury and Westport.

In the photo: Mike Niedermeier, partner-in-charge of BlumShapiro’s Shelton office, presents John Brooks, director of development at Columbus House, with $2,500.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Connecticut Black Expo Nov. 7

Booths still available

NEW HAVEN - The Connecticut Black Expo 2009 is seeking sponsors and exhibitors for this year’s event, which will take place from noon to 8 p.m. Nov. 7 at the Citywide Fieldhouse, 480 Sherman Parkway.

The event will include health screenings and essential public information, prizes and other giveaways, organizers said.
There also will be special appearances, as well as performances, by Branden "Jus-B" Wilson, and Connecticut’s own ChrisCam International Recording Artist, Earl Whitaker, along with several Gospel soloists and groups.
Admission is $10 for Adults, and $5 for children 12 years of age and younger.

There are about 50 booth spaces still available, and exhibitors are encouraged to make reservations soon. The previous deadline of Oct. 15 has been extended due to the overwhelming response.
Sponsors and exhibitors can call (203) 558-0066, or visit
for forms, additional information and updates.
Volunteers also are urged to call to participate.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Strike 3 makes you a winner at this event

NEW HAVEN — Oakland Athletics player and former Red Sox all-star Nomar Garciaparra is the guest speaker for the Strike 3 Foundation second annual First Pitch Celebrity Gala at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 7 at the Omni New Haven Hotal at Yale, 155 Temple St.
A portion of the evening’s proceeds will be given to Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital to help enhance its Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Program, organizers said in a statement.
"Bone marrow transplant is an area that has transformed the treatment of cancers and diseases that were incurable in the past," Craig Breslow, founder and president of Strike 3 Foundation saind in the statement. "We are looking forward to a wonderful evening of fun and entertainment that will help bring us closer to a day when childhood cancer doesn’t exist."
The Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Program at YNHCH provides care and support to children and their families each year who would otherwise have to travel out-of-state for treatment. Strike 3 has pledged $500,000 to support enhancing the program, the statement said.
"Strike 3’s gift is helping Yale-New Haven Children’s Hospital to further develop its exceptional transplant program. Craig and his foundation are dedicated to raising funds and awareness for children battling cancer," Dr. Gary Kupfer, chief of pediatric hematology and oncology at YNHCH said, also in the statement.
The gala features live entertainment and live and silent auctions. Tickets are $185 per person and include parking at the Omni. For more information or to purchase tickets online, visit or call (203) 502-0007.
Breslow, a Trumbull native and Major League baseball player who pitches for the Oakland A’s, founded Strike 3 in 2008. Breslow’s sister is a survivor of childhood cancer and the foundation aims to heighten awareness, mobilize support and raise funding for childhood cancer research.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Wag your tail for a cause

The Wags & Whiskers Animal Welfare Group will hold a benefit night from 5 to 9 p.m. Oct. 15 at T.G.I. Friday's, 348 Boston Post Raod, Orange. Twenty percent of the evening proceeds (excluding alcohol, tax, and gratuity) will be donated to Wags & Whiskers Animal Welfare.
To help the cause, a benefit night flier must be presented. To obtain the flier or for more information, call Jim at 937-3642 or e-mail

Friday, October 2, 2009

Bach at its best

NEW HAVEN - Masaaki Suzuki, the renowned conductor and Bach scholar, will conduct the Yale Schola Cantorum in a concert of Bach motets and cantatas at 8 p.m. Oct. 24 at St. Mary’s Church, 5 Hillhouse Ave.

The concert, Maestro Suzuki’s first as newly-appointed director of Yale Schola Cantorum, will include Singet dem Herrn BWV 225; Komm, Jesu, komm BWV 229; Jesu, der du meine Seele BWV 78; and Ein Feste Burg BWV 80, organizers said in a statement.
Since founding Bach Collegium Japan in 1990, Masaaki Suzuki has established himself as a leading authority on the works of Bach. He has remained their music director since, taking them regularly to major venues and festivals in Europe and the USA, and building up an outstanding reputation for the expressive refinement and truth of his performances, the statement said.

He now regularly is invited to work together with renowned European soloists and groups, such as Collegium Vocale Gent and the Freiburger Barockorchester, with whom he visited several European capitals, and recently appeared in London with the Britten Sinfonia in a program of Britten, Mozart and Stravinsky, it said.

Forthcoming engagements with other ensembles include the Hong Kong Philharmonic, the Nagoya Philharmonic and the Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic Orchestras.
Suzuki’s impressive discography on the BIS label, featuring Bach’s complete works for harpsichord, and his interpretations of Bach’s major choral works and sacred cantatas with Bach Collegium Japan, of which he has already completed over forty volumes of a project to record the complete series, have brought him many critical plaudits, the statement said.
The free concert is presented by Yale Institute of Sacred Music; no tickets are required. More information is online at or by calling (203) 432-5062.

Wild about flowers!

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