Monday, November 23, 2009

Slimy? Hurray!

NEW HAVEN - Yale Peabody Museum's Gregory Watkins-Colwell will present "Hot Cocoa/Cool Science: Monitoring Toads, Frogs and Salamanders in Connecticut," from 6 to 7 p.m. Dec. 1 at New Haven Public Library, 133 Elm St.
The all-ages program will examine the species diversity and distributions of the state's amphibians.

Live critters will be part of the program, and hot cocoa will be served.

Watkins-Colwell is senior museum assistant for Vertebrate Zoology at the Peabody Museum. In his research about the ecology and evolutionary biology of lizards, he has pursued field work in New Caledonia and China as well as in several states. Watkins-Colwell helps to coordinate the Connecticut Amphibian Monitoring Project, a 15-year study of species diversity and distributions of our state's amphibians. The Hot Cocoa/Cool Science series is a joint project of the Library and Yale University to bring cutting edge science to the general public.

The program and parking are free. Register at or call (203) 946-8835.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Hillhouse celebrates students

NEW HAVEN - James Hillhouse High School recently celebrated its Top Ten Females and Top Ten Males at a luncheon at Brazis restaurant. They were joined by the Superintendent of Schools Reginald Mayo and Principal Lonnie Garris, Jr. The celebration included special recognition of the class valedictorian, Shayna Smith along with the celebration of the Top Ten Females and Top Ten Males of the 2010 graduating class.
In the photo, seated, l to r, Ebony Dorsey, Jameel James, Shayna Smith, valedictorian, Racquel Malcolm, Mario Tecpa and Yanique Shand. Second row, l to r, Timothy Cash, Corey Dunbar, Raheem Johnson, Durrell Snow, Assistan Principal Shirley Love Joyner, Principal Lonnie Garris, Jr., Khamille Turnage, Shereen Moore, Nilofar Abdul Jamil and Ashley Maebry. Third row, l to r, Ronald Green, Quashawn Jinwright, Ronald Huggins, Haley Vincent, Julian Pearsall and Fatoumata Kourouma

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Cards made by kids help Tommy Fund

Young artists share a message

NEW HAVEN - The annual holiday card sale to benefit Tommy Fund for Childhood Cancer has begun.

The cards, part of a regional fundraising effort to meet the educational, recreational and treatment needs of children with cancer, are designed by young artists receiving treatment at Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital, officials said in a statement.

Over the past 22 years, holiday card sales have generated more than $300,000 for the Tommy Fund for Childhood Cancer, the statement said.

Proceeds give direct and indirect financial assistance to patients who are treated at the children's hospital and have helped fund a pediatric oncology research nurse, nursing education and research fellowships at Yale School of Medicine for physicians in pediatric oncology.

The Tommy Fund also provides recreational and diversional activities for patients, including family outings and such items as TV monitors, headphones, games and toys for patients, the statement said.

Tommy Fund holiday cards are on sale at the hospital Atrium Gift Shop, all southern Connecticut AAA motor clubs, and through the Tommy Fund Web site,

Cards are sold in packets of 12 for $12. For more information about the Tommy Fund or the holiday card sale, contact the Tommy Fund for Childhood Cancer at (800) 974.5559.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Just a short drive to a Christmas tree

And it's for a good cause

WOODBRIDGE — Scout Troop 63’s annual Christmas Tree Sale begins at 9 a.m. Nov. 28 in the back of the Woodbridge Fire House at the corner of Center and Newton roads.
Parking for the sale of fresh balsam trees is available in the Senior Center parking lot. The sale is held 3 to 8 p.m., weeknights and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., weekends, organizers said. Free delivery is available.
Wreaths, created locally, also are available for $18 each. Each 16 inch wreath is individually distinctive, decorated with pinecones and a festive red all-weather ribbon. Plain or decorative 48 inch wreaths will be available for $65.
Our Lady of the Assumption Church on Center Road also will allow Troop 63 to sell Christmas wreaths at the chapel and rectory, starting at 9:30 a.m., Dec. 6, 13 and 20. All proceeds will benefit the Boy Scouts of Troop 63.
Inquiries for volume discounts, special circumstances or size requirements can be made to Troop 63 Committee Chairman Charles Whiting, at (203) 387-5678.

Ravenna Michaelson to perform at New Haven Library

Event is free and open to the public

NEW HAVEN - To mark the 10th anniversary of the Dalai Lama’s Nobel Peace Prize, Buddhist-inspired singer-songwriter Ravenna Michaelson will perform from 6 to 7 p.m. Dec. 10 at the New Haven Library, 133 Elm St.

Michalsen, shown, studied at Neighborhood Music School and at Yale. Her CDs include Bloom (2006) and Dharmasong (2007).

Samples of her music are available at

The event is free and for all-ages. Free parking is available.

Reservations are suggested at or call the library at (203) 946-8835.

Visit for regional events and information.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

You can help bring troops home for the holidays

The event is open to the public

An open house to raise money for "Operation Home for the Holidays" will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. Nov. 14, at Home Gallery Warehouse, 9 Austin Drive, Marlborough.
"Operation Home for the Holidays," an initiative of Gov. M. Jodi Rell, aims to raise $200,000 for travel expenses to bring 700 of Connecticut’s National Guard service men and women home for December break. The troops from the 1st Battalion of the 102nd Infantry Regiment and the 250th Engineering Company will be bused in from "mobilization stations" in Indiana and Wisconsin, respectively, where they now are completing preparations for deploying to Afghanistan, organizers said.
The event, which is free and open to the public, will raise money through raffle prizes, T-shirt sales and cash donations. Complimentary lunch will be provided by Agave from 1t o 3 p.m.
Businesses Fathom, Lisa Davenport’s Home Gallery and Agave, along with social media enthusiasts from CT TweetCrawl and the Marlborough Business Association are acting as hosts for the event.
The event will include entertainment for children, such as face painting, a craft table to make gifts for the troops and opportunities to meet local celebrities.
Raffle tickets will be sold for prizes ranging from spa days to a $6,000 Tibetan rug (courtesy of Lisa Davenport’s Home Gallery). Businesses wishing to make cash donations will have the opportunity to join local celebrities in the classic "big check" photo opportunity. To RSVP, go to the Facebook event page or follow 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," said Suzi Craig, director of Marketing and Engagement for Fathom and Founder of CT TweetCrawl.
For in-kind and cash donations for the event, e-mail Enza Dandeneau of the Marlborough Business Association; or call (860) 652-4575. For information on the event, e-mail Suzi Craig of Fathom:, or call (860) 384-4480.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Marshals' association gives back

The New Haven County Marshals Association, Local 2193 of Council 4 AFSCME, recently contributed $4,500 to several causes in Greater New Haven, including an agency that works to end domestic violence.
The Marshals Association presented the donations during a recognition ceremony held at John J. Sullivan’s Restaurant in Ansonia.
"New Haven County Marshals are dedicated, hard-working and reputable individuals. Our members are peace officers who are deeply rooted in the communities where they live and work. This is our way of giving back," Richard Krueger, president of the New Haven County Marshals Association, said in a statement.
Organizations that received donations are: The Umbrella (Ansonia), $500; Ansonia Senior Center, $500; Naugatuck YMCA, $500; Prospect Senior Center, $500; Donate Life (Oxford), $500; Friends of Oxford Library, $500; Shakesperience Productions (Waterbury), $500; and Amity Animal Rescue Fund, $500.
"Marshals put their lives on the line every day to protect the public," Susan DeLeon, director of The Umbrella, said in the statement. "We appreciate their efforts and we are grateful for their continued generosity."
The Umbrella helps women and children affected by domestic violence.
Local 2193 Treasurer Mark D’Angelis said the New Haven County Marshals have made charitable contributions to area communities for 10 years. "I am proud our members for their caring and for their generosity," he said in the statement.
Local 2193 is affiliated with Council 4 of the American Federation of State, County & Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO, which represents 35,000 employees in Connecticut. Council 4 is Connecticut’s largest AFL-CIO, the statement said.
In the photo, from left: New Haven County Marshals Association President Richard Conroy; state Rep. Theresa Conroy, D-Seymour. and Umbrella Executive Director Susan DeLeon.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Olivier and Garson at the library

It's Jane Austen's birthday!

NEW HAVEN - The Elm Street Book Group will celebrate Jane Austen's birthday (whic occurred in 1775) with a screening of the 1940 classic film, "Pride and Prejudice," at 6 p.m. Dec. 16, at the New Haven Public Library, 133 Elm St.
"Fans of Austen's superb novel will have the opportunity to see how well Laurence Olivier and Greer Garson interpret the romance between Mr. Darcy and Miss Elizabeth Bennet," organizers said.
The public is invited and free parking is available. Those who register will be eligible for a free coffee or tea to enjoy during the film, compliments of Blue State Coffee on Wall Street. Register at or call the library at 946-8835.

"Inspired" donation

Yale University and UNITE HERE donate to Hillhouse

NEW HAVEN – The New Haven Public Schools recently received a $25,000 donation from Yale University and its labor unions, UNITE HERE, school officials said in a statement.

The donation, $12,500 from the University and $12, 500 from the labor unions, was "inspired by the expedient and effective completion of the contract negotiations between the two groups earlier this year," the statement said.

"As a symbol of the good will between the two groups, they made the decision to donate to these funds toward new computers at Hillhouse High School," it said.

“Bob Proto, Local 35 president, called to suggest that this be a joint donation, and we thought it was a great idea. The university and Local 35 plan to do more community projects together in the future," Bruce Alexander, Yale vice president and director of New Haven and State Affairs and Campus Development said, also in the statement.

The donation is expected to provide more than 40 desktop computers, including monitors, software for each computer, keyboards and mice.

“We selected Hillhouse High School because we have a good deal of members in the union who have children that attend that school and we focused on computers because we believe access to technology is a very important part of a student’s education these days,” Bob Proto, president UNITE HERE Local 35, said in the statement.

Shown in the photo, l to r, are: Superintendent of Schools Reginald Mayo, Nadine Gannon, Jameel James, Durell Snow, Shanice Johnson, Jengodji Gates, Bruce Alexander, Bob Proto, James Hillhouse High School Principal Lonnie Garris, Nollysha Canteen, Mark Wilson, Aaron Smith, Quontaijah Alexander, Toni Ann Evans, and Amber Moye.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Are you a poet and you know it?

Or, if you simply love poetry, this is an event for you

NEW HAVEN - Poets are invited to participate in an informal Poetry Open Mic from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday (Nov. 4) at the New Haven Public Library, 133 Elm St.
People who want to share their own poetry, a favorite poem, or simply to listen are invited.
New Haven Poet Claire Zoghb will get things rolling with excerpts from her 2009 book of poems, "Small House Breathing," winner of the 2008 Quercus Review Book Award, organizers said. Zoghb’s work has appeared in many magazines and anthologies as well as online at, organizers said.
Twice nominated for the Pushcart Prize and winner of the 2008 Dogwood annual poetry competition, Zoghb is a recipient of two Artist Fellowships from the Connecticut Commission on Culture & Tourism, an Urban Artists Initiative grant, and a residency at the Vermont Studio Center.
The event is free and free parking is available. Participants are encouraged to bring their own coffee if desired. For more information, visit or call (203) 946-8835.

Helping out in Hamden

HAMDEN - The Academy of Kempo Martial Arts is collecting donations to help feed area families in need.

The academy kicked off its annual food drive in September by dropping its first load of contributed food to the local soup kitchen, organizers said in a statement. Students, families and friends of the academy donated more than 13 bags of non-perishable food to date and continue to donate weekly.

The academy is continuing is to accept donations for Saint Ann’s Soup Kitchen and Keefe Center’s Food Bank, the statement said.

The two organizations help many families who have a limited amount of resources available to them due to current economic conditions, the statement said. The academy's goal is to help the organizations to help families enjoy their holidays by holding the food drive, and the hope is that during this season of giving that they can encourage others to help also, the statement said. Organizers said they are grateful to everyone who has helped the effort.
The academy is offering its students a free semi-private lesson for any five non-perishable items they donate and offering two weeks of free lessons to non-students (limited to one give away per person and cannot be combined).

Donation will be accepted through the end of the holiday season, at 1890 Dixwell Ave. For more information, call (203) 288-9990, or visit, including to learn best times to drop off donations.

In the photo, back row, l tor, are Jordan Wieland, Gabriella Rodriguez and Gabriel Ciarleglio, Front – Hailey Ciarleglio.

Wild about flowers!

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