Friday, July 30, 2010

American Warriors fundraiser is Sunday

HAMDEN — A fundraiser for the nonprofit American Warriors will take place from 4 to 7 p.m. Aug. Sunday at the Elks Lodge, 175 School St.
American Warriors is a nonprofit organization that sends World War II veterans to Washington, D.C., to see war monuments for free.
The event will be sponsored by American Legion Post 88, the 2nd Company Governor’s Foot Guard and the Hamden Elks #22.
There is a $10 per person donation for the pasta and meatball dinner. Children younger than 8 will be admitted for free.
For tickets or to make a donation, call Don Tozzo at 203-288-0455, Fred McCarthy at 203-980-5123 or e-mail

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Look what Tilcon did

Tilcon Little League, that is

Underdog Tilcon swept to through the playoffs to win the championship in the majors division of the North Branford Little League.
In what turned out to be a heavyweight fight to rival Hagler Hearns, Tilcon scored 7 unanswered runs in the top of the 6th inning, capped off by a 3 run home run by Chris Russo. The key blow was a two-out, two-run double by Sean Meehan in the gap to tie the score at 9.
Justin Krawec got the scoring started with a first inning grand slam and Matt Chamberlain followed with a solo shot in the second. Tilcon got timely hitting from Cam Reshotnik, Lou Distaisio, Dustin Phabmixay, Steve McGovern, Christian Diaz, Peter Murphy and Derek Grzebisz throughout the game in this seesaw battle. With gritty starting pitching from Justin Krawec, Tilcon got strong relief pitching from Chris Russo, Cam Reshotnik and Matt Chamberlain to preserve a 12-9 victory and a 4 game sweep of the playoffs!
In the photo are, from left to right:
Front row Christian Diaz, Chris Russo, Peter Murphy, Matt Chamberlain, Derek Grzebisz
Back row Cameron Reshotnik, Steve McGovern, Louie DiStasio, Sean Meehan, Dustin Phabmixay, and Justin Krawec
Coaches John Reshotnik, Dave Krawec, Steve McGovern and the Manager Tony Russo

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Early childhood the focus of recent forum

The deputy assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently joined 120 community leaders, child care providers and teachers, legislators, school superintendents, child advocates, parents, philanthropic leaders and concerned citizens at Central Connecticut State University to discuss early childhood, according to a statement.
Joan Lombardi, show with Elaine Zimmerman, spoke at a forum entitled “Healthy, Safe and Ready to Learn,” the statement said.
Three "Discovery" communities, Torrington, New Haven and New Britain, showcased their completed early childhood blueprints, the statement said.
"Discovery, an initiative of the Graustein Memorial Fund, aims to impact community change and policy reform that will create an early childhood system ensuring early learning success for all children," the statement said. "Discovery communities are creating comprehensive birth-to-eight local action plans. These plans enable communities to focus and measure their progress toward school success for every child."
The CT Early Childhood Alliance and Graustein Fund were hosts of the event.
The communities, of which nearly half of state’s children from birth to 17 live in, are among those identified by the state Department of Education as priority districts or other districts qualifying for school readiness funding, the statement said.
While New Haven faces its challenges, the Elm City presenter noted the community’s many blessings, the statement said.
Jennifer Heath, vice president for community leadership for United Way of Greater New Haven and co-chairwoman of the New Haven Early Childhood Council, spoke of the successes in the city, such as receiving grants to add 41 new spaces for infant and toddler care and education, a huge need in New Haven, but often inaccessible; the Child FIRST replication process to expand mental health services for children and a line item in the city budget they held onto in a tough budget year, the statement said.
“We were really pleased…we were able to hold that line item,” Heath said in the statement.
Heath credits the relationship that has been formed with the city and the credibility the early childhood council has gained as two of the reasons, the statement said. The early childhood council, she said, has authority over how those dollars are spent within that budget line item.
Lombardi applauded the communities for helping turn the tide for the state’s youngest citizens.
“What happens in the early years [impacts] health and learning,” Lombardi said in the statement.
Lombardi expressed the importance of creating common standards across programs, learning standards and data collection. She also noted the move toward a quality rating and improvement system (QRIS) for quality assurance and making sure school systems are ready for children.
Lombardi’s presentation was followed by a panel discussion, moderated by Elaine Zimmerman, executive director of the Commission on Children; Georgia Goldburn, of Hope for New Haven, Inc.; Marlo Greponne, director of planning and programs, Human Resources Agency of New Britain; Richard Sussman, director of the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving’s Brighter Futures Initiative and state Rep. John Geragosian, D-New Britain, the co-chairman of the General Assembly's Appropriations Committee, the statement said.

Editor's note: The information in this post was provided.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

History can be fun for kids

The state Judicial Branch, in collaboration with the League of Women Voters and the Museum of Connecticut History, is sponsoring “Day Trips with Kids,” on July 28 and Aug. 5, the agency said in a statement
The days are intended to be "an opportunity for children to have fun while learning about state government at the same time," the statememtn said.
Tours of the Connecticut Supreme Court, State Capitol and Museum of Connecticut History will be included, the statement said.
occur on Wednesday, July 28, and Thursday, Aug. 5.
Activities also will include: A scavenger hunt in the museum, where exhibits trace the growth of the state and its role in the development of the nation; a visit to the Capitol, where families will have the opportunity to learn about the legislative process and also see the Hall of Flags, which displays flags Connecticut soldiers have carried into battle; helping the Judicial Branch celebrate the upcoming 100th anniversary of the historic Connecticut Supreme Court courtroom by visiting and learning about the room where the state’s most important legal rulings have occurred, the statement said.
“We are very excited about this program, which is fun, free and family-friendly,”
Chief Justice Chase T. Rogers said, also in the statement. “I also am very grateful to the League of Women Voters and the State Librarian, who oversees the Museum of Connecticut History, for their help.”
The program is recommended for children age 8 and older. A schedule for both days, tour times and other information is available through the Judicial Branch’s website, at, or by calling the External Affairs Division at 860-757-2270.

Editor's note: This information was wholly provided by the state Judicial Branch

Homeless helped by 5K run

Columbus House is one of the winnners in the second annual BlumShapiro 5K for Charity at the Travelers Championship.
More than 500 people, including runners, walkers and children, participated in the recent event in Cromwell, which raised $10,000 in donations and nearly $8,000 in food donations for five agnencies.
In addition to Columbus House, proceeds and food donations from the BlumShapiro 5K for Charity help provide meals, shelter and other services to those in need at East Hartford Homeless Shelter, Manchester Area Conferences of Churches, Thomas Merton House in Bridgeport and St. Vincent de Paul Society of Waterbury, BlumShapiro said in a statement.
“These five non-profit organizations make our state a better place to live – and your participation today – whether as a runner, walker, volunteer, supporter or sponsor – makes the BlumShapiro 5K for Charity at the Travelers Championship a resounding success," Tom DeVitto, BlumShapiro Chief Marketing Officer said at the event, according to the statement.
David McKay of Rocky Hill was the overall winner of the 5K, and set a new course record with a time of 16:06, the statement said.
Kaelin Baker, 13, of Farmington won the female division with a time of 20:28, the statement said.
A Kids Fun Run also was held for the first time at the annual event.

BlumShapiro is based in Connecticut with offices in West Hartford, Shelton, Westport and Waterbury.

In the photo, from left, Tom DeVitto, chief marketing officer of BlumShapiro; David McKay of Rocky Hill, overall winner of the BlumShapiro 5K for Charity, and Carl Johnson, managing partner of BlumShapiro.

Editor's note: Information and photo provided by BlumShapiro

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

DeLauro announces scholarship awards

NEW HAVEN — U.S. Rep. Rosa L. DeLauro, D-3, has announced the names of students in her district who have been awarded $1,000 to use for college costs through the Ted DeLauro and Maria Baez Perez scholarship programs.
The two programs are funded by DeLauro from her congressional salary.
Recipients are:
Ted DeLauro Scholarship, Hill Regional Career Magnet High School, Robert Arel III; West Haven High School, Klaritza Armenta; Woodland Regional High School, Vanessa Baumann; Shelton High School, Justin Belden; Sheehan High School, Mary Bemis; Amity Regional High School, Nkenge Blue; and Emmett O’Brien Technical High School, Samantha Bomba.
Also, Lyman Hall High School, Joseph Bonito; Vinal Technical High School, Lauren Bradley; Platt Technical High School, Daniel Candelaria Jr.; High School in the Community, Sonia Castelan-Ramires; Ansonia High School, Jodi Cegelka; Stratford High School, Adrienne Cuffley; Notre Dame High School, Michael DiCenso; and Wilbur Cross High School, Risa Duff.
Also, Cooperative Arts & Humanities Magnet High School, Anita Dyer; Mercy High School, Megan Freemantle; Foran High School, Corinne Fucci; Hamden Hall Country Day School, Nicholas Ginsberg; Branford High School, Ashley Gotto; Choate Rosemary Hall, Anna Graham; Sound School, Yael Grazier-Zerbarini; Hopkins School, Rasa Guarnaccia; Derby High School, Mary Hyde; Eli Whitney Tech High School, Gloria Juarez; Berean Christian Academy, David Kisly; Sacred Heart Academy, Jenna LaRiverie; Hamden High School, Emily Lynn; North Branford High School, Heena Mavani.
North Haven High School, Tess McKeon; Guilford High School, Simi Parikb; Jonathan Law High School, Sabine Quetant; Seymour High School, Jennifer Ricaurte; Hillhouse High School, Capri Ritter; Lauralton Hall, Kaylee Staffieri; Bunnell High School, Julia Tranquillo; New Haven Academy, Eduardo Vergara; Hyde Leadership School, Montel Walcott; East Haven High School, Catherine Wheeler.
Maria Baez Perez 2010 Scholarship: Ansonia High School, Javier Arguello; Platt Technical High School, Bruno Chima; Hill Regional Career High School, Elizabeth Garcia; Hopkins School, Alexandra Kearson; Foran High School, Hannah Lin; Emmett O’Brien Technical High School, Andre Santos; Hillhouse High School, Yanique Shand.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Wags & Whiskers fundraiser is tonight

Wags & Whiskers Animal Welfare group will be part of a a fundraiser from 5 to 9 p.m. tonight, Monday, July 19, at the Texas Roadhouse at 524 Sawmill Rd., West Haven.

Texas Roadhouse will donate 10 percent of total food purchase to Wags & Whiskers, organizers said in a statement.

For more information, contact Jim at 203-937-3642 or

Sunday, July 18, 2010

No hard-knock life here

Just the talent of the St. Thomas's Players

NEW HAVEN - St. Thomas's Episcopal Church will stage the American musical classic "Annie" on July 23, 24, 25, 29, 30, and 31, according to a statement.
"Based on the comic strip Little Orphan Annie, which only last month ended an 85-year run in newspapers, the musical Annie premiered on Broadway in 1977 and ran for nearly six years," the statement said.
"The plot tells the story of Little Orphan Annie's 1933 journey from a home where she and her fellow orphans sing of the "Hard-Knock Life" to the care of billionaire Oliver Warbucks. Along the way, she serenades President Franklin D. Roosevelt with her rendition of the show's most famous song, "Tomorrow," inspiring him to lift the economically depressed nation's spirits. Conceived during the economic crisis of the 1970s, Annie may be just the lift we need in 2010."

The show is the third annual production of the St. Thomas's Players, the statement said. Any proceeds from ticket sales after expenses will go to aid orphanages in Haiti and St. Francis Home for Children in New Haven, the statement said.

The show will run for six performances, all but one at 7 p.m. at St. Thomas's Episcopal Church, 830 Whitney Ave. Suggested donation is $15 for adults and $12 for children. A matinee performance on July 25, will be at 2 p.m., with a suggested donation of $10 for adults and $8 for children.
Tickets are available at the door or at

"Founded in 1848, St. Thomas's Episcopal Church is committed to welcoming all of God's people, whatever their race, sexual orientation, gender, age, health status, physical ability, marital status, or stage of spiritual journeying," the statement said. Among its missions is St. Thomas's Day School, which offers education from Pre-K to sixth grade.

Editor's note: The information in this post was submitted.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Calling the Wilbur Cross class of '85

The Wilbur Cross High School class of 1985 will hold its 25th Class Reunion August 6 at Anthony’s Ocean View, 450 Lighthouse Road.
Tickets are $75 per person and includes a dinner dance and open bar.
Checks should be sent to: Wilbur L. Cross Class Of 1985 P.O. Box 26844, New Haven, 06516
For more information, call Committee Chairwoman Denise Atkins at 203-530-8144. All payments must be received 2 weeks prior to the event.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Look at LEAP!

The Annual LEAP Read-In Day, was held Friday morning throughout New Haven, Lisa Scrofani, development associate at Leadership, Education, and Athletics in Partnership, Inc. (LEAP), said in a statement.

Shown in top photo is paralegal Jackie MontClair reading to a group at the Church Street South site.

The photo below is of children reading at the Dwight/Kensington Site.

Pilates at the library

By Alexandra Quinones

NEW HAVEN - Balance the body, support your spine, and increase awareness of the mind/body connection with Pilates at the New Haven Free Public Library.
Pilates will be offered from 1 to 2 p.m. July 14 and 28, at the library, 133 Elm St.
Drop-ins are welcome. $5 will be collected before each class. For more information call 203-946-8835. Instructor Kristy Powell will lead the class.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Summer Reading with book groups at New Haven Public Library

By Monayzia Taylor

NEW HAVEN - Picture living a life amid extreme cultural misunderstanding.

That is the circumstance Anne Fadiman recounts in her book, “The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of Two Cultures.”

Area residents have a chance to come and engage in a powerful conversation and discussion on the book at 6 p.m. July 21 at the New Haven Public Library, 133 Elm St.

The book recounts a “medical catastrophe” that occurs as a result of the cultural misunderstanding, library organizer said in a statement.
The book discussion is sponsored by The Elm Street Book Group.

Next, on August 18, there will be a discussion on the book, “Dust Tracks on Roads,” Zora Neale Hurston’s “funny and poignant account of her rise from childhood poverty in the rural south to a prominent place among the leading artist and intellectuals of the Harlem Renaissance,” library organizer said in the statement.

The Elm Street Book Group meets the third Wednesday of the month at New Haven Public Library, 133 Elm St. New readers are always welcome.

Free parking is available and books are provided for checkout by the CT Humanities Council.
Free Blue State Coffee is available for those who register for the book discussion.
For more information call the library at 203-946-8835.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Conn. DEP to hold meeting on bird hunting

The state Department of Environmental Protection will hold a meeting on Migratory Bird Hunting Regulations 7 to 9 p.m. July 30 in the rear conference room at the DEP Marine Headquarters, 333 Ferry Road, Old Lyme, the agency said in a statement.
The meeting is intended to provide interested parties "an opportunity to comment on the proposed hunting season regulations for the 2010-11 migratory bird seasons," the statement said.
"The DEP will present proposed regulations and take all public comments. Final hunting season dates will be formulated shortly after the comments are compiled and evaluated.

Strings, guitars, brass, woodwind and percussion

That's what Horns for Kids needs

Anyone who might have "a gently used musical instrument" that’s gathering dust somewhere can consider donating it to "a deserving Connecticut school by contacting Horns For Kids."
Organization officials said in a statement that Horns For Kids will have the instrument repaired and cleaned, then award it to a deserving school, based on need.
Instruments are posted on the Horns For Kids website. Music teachers and administrators can download the simple application, the statement said. All instruments awarded are clean, playable, and in excellent condition, the statement said.
Horns For Kids is a non-profit organization that supports music education in Connecticut schools and awards donated instruments to deserving school music programs throughout the state, the statement said.
Since 2003, more than 300 Connecticut schools have received instrument awards, the statement said.
To donate an instrument not presently being used, contact Horns For Kids by calling 203- 288-9771 weekdays, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
All instruments are needed: bowed strings, guitars, brass, woodwind and percussion, the statement said.
Well-kept acoustic and electric pianos in good condition also are needed.
All instrument donations are tax-deductible, the statement said.
Horns For Kids is the charitable arm of The Great CT Traditional Jazz Festival and is a registered 501c3 non-profit corporation, the statement said. It receives generous financial support from Ronald McDonald House Charities of CT and Western Massachusetts.

New Haven extends open swim hours

NEW HAVEN - The New Haven Parks and Recreation has extended open swim hours at four pool facilities in the city in "an effort to help residents cool off from high temperatures this week," a city statement said.
Open swim will run from 5 to 8 p.m. through Friday and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, the statement said.

The extended hours apply to the pools at: Hillhouse High School, Wilbur Cross High School, John Martinez School and Conte School, the statement said.

For regular pool hours, see page 13 of the City's Summer Camp brochure available at:

Splashpads also are open citywide from 10 a.m. until 9 p.m. daily. For splashpad locations, visit here.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Community Foundation awards grants

NEW HAVEN - The Community Fund for Women & Girls, a component fund of The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, announced that it has awarded $76,954 in grants this year to 16 agencies that offer programs and services to improve the quality of life for women and girls in the region.

“The grants process was highly competitive again this year as both the number of applications for funding and the total amount of dollars requested exceeded the number of requests we received last year,” Helene Robbins, chairwoman of the Community Fund for Women & Girls’ Advisory Committee, said in a statement. “One of the greatest pleasures for us was to be able to award the Fund’s first advocacy grant, which was done in collaboration with the Fund for Women and Girls at the Fairfield County Community Foundation. The grant provided general operating support for the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women, which informs the Connecticut legislature about matters affecting women.”

The Community Fund for Women & Girls is celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2010, the statement said.
"The mission of the fund is to promote social and economic advancement for women and girls through strategic philanthropy, grants, advocacy and collaboration. Grants are primarily distributed for projects that address the core issues of economic security, health, violence and political participation as they affect women and girls in Greater New Haven," the statement said.
Over the past 15 years, the fund has made 146 grants totaling more than $437,000, the statement said.
"The Fund launched a Giving Women Campaign in 2009 to increase the size of the endowment to $2 million. With a goal of inspiring and encouraging women’s philanthropy, donors who pledge $10,000 or more are able to create a permanent fund, whose grant distributions will be used to support the activities of the Community Fund for Women & Girls in perpetuity," the statement said.
Just under $400,000 has been committed and 12 funds have been created toward reaching the $2 million goal.
For more information on how to support the Giving Women Campaign, call Sharon Cappetta at 203-777-7071. To make a donation online, visit or make check payable to: The Community Fund for Women & Girls c/o The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, 70 Audubon Street, New Haven, 06510.
Visit the Community Fund for Women & Girls’ page on

Since 1928, donors to The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven have built the community's endowment currently valued at more than $280 million. In 2009, The Foundation’s Board of Directors distributed more than $14 million in grants from over 700 different named charitable funds supporting a wide range of programs and projects.

Editor's note: The information in this poast was wholly provided by The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven

Fire and Ice at Old Sturbridge Village

STURBRIDGE, Mass. – Firefighters will get half-price admission to the third annual “Fire and Ice” old-fashioned fireman’s muster on July 17 at Old Sturbridge Village food historians will demonstrate 18th- and 19th-century ice cream making methods using popular “receipts” or recipes of those periods, the statement said.
"According to OSV historians, ice cream has a long history. Before refrigeration, ice cream was reserved for the rich and the royal because ice was so rare and expensive. The Romans made “sweet snow” and Europeans favored “water ice” in the 1660s and added cream to the recipe. Ice cream in America dates to 1744, and became more popular with the masses after the hand-crank ice cream machine was patented by Nancy Johnson in 1846," the statement said.

Old Sturbridge Village celebrates New England life in the 1830s and is open daily 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. seven days a week.

Parking is free and visitors get a free second-day return visit within 10 days. Admission: $20; seniors $18; children 3-17, $7; children under 3, free.

Long Wharf beach clean is Saturday

NEW HAVEN - Saying they were "Encouraged by singer Jack Johnson’s environmental support," Save the Sound, a program of Connecticut Fund for the Environment, Radio 104.1’s Green Team, and Live Nation will hold a beach cleanup at Long Wharf.
The clean up is 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday July 3.
Giveaways include tickets to the Jack Johnson concert on July 9, Save the Siund said in a statement.
More than 2,700 Save the Sound volunteers collected 21,518 pounds of trash from 63 miles of Connecticut coastline last year, the statement said.
Look for Save the Sound volunteer coordinator Kierran Broatch.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Library’s new resources broadens database

NEW HAVEN — The New Haven Public Library has added NEWSBANK to its collection of database resources available to its card holders, from home or one of the library branches.
This new resource opens up the full text of the New Haven Register back to 1988, searchable and printable. In addition, NEWSBANK offers almost 60 Connecticut newspapers and hundreds of papers from other states.
Also included are America’s Historical Newspapers with searchable images from the Register from Oct. 23, 1878, to Dec. 31, 1900, and America’s News Magazines, from the last two decades.
For more information about the library’s free database resources, visit and click on databases, or call the library at 203-946-8130.

Can art ever be awful?

Absolutely, according to these folks and there are prizes!

CLINTON — The Henry Carter Hull Library will be holding an “Awful Art contest” at 2 p.m. July 17.
Librarian David Boudinot will show images from the Museum of Bad Art near Boston and Claudia Mathison of the Guilford Art Center will provide instruction and materials to create hideous artwork. From pipe cleaner sculpture and recycled art, to horrific collages, participants will create and then vote on the worst art piece in each category. Prizes for group favorites will be awarded.
Participants must be at least 18; no artistic experience is necessary, but registration for is required by calling 860-669-2342.

Mystic Aquarium experts to talk about BP spill

MYSTIC – Sea Research Foundation has been working collaboratively since May with key institutions in the Gulf region to assist with oil spill efforts and will hold a live Web panel from 6 to 7 p.m. on July 7 to offer up-to-date information on the oil spill from Sea Research staff.
Accessible through, the roundtable will include Public Conservation Programs Manager MaryEllen Mateleska; Stranding Coordinator Janelle Schuh; and Staff Veterinarian and Director of Animal Care Dr. Allison Tuttle, the foundation said in a statement.
Vice President of Education Kelly Matis will serve as moderator and the group will provide an overview of the oil spill and Sea Research Foundation's involvement in Mystic and Louisiana, as well as show how oil affects various marine animals and coastal habitats, the statement said. Viewers will have an opportunity to submit questions before and during the discussion, the statement said.
Mateleska and Tuttle recently traveled to Louisiana to participate in the Consortium for Ocean Leadership, the statement said. During the consortium, they joined approximately 200 scientists to hear what had been learned about the spill the statement said.
After the consortium, Tuttle traveled to New Orleans to assist the Audubon Nature Institute in rehabilitating oiled sea turtles, the statement said. For three days, Tuttle helped stabilize about 30 turtles after the oil was removed, primarily monitoring blood parameters and food intake, administering fluids to keep them hydrated and helping flush out their gastrointestinal tracts, the statement said.
“We are committed to assisting with the Gulf situation in whatever way we can,” Dr. Stephen M. Coan, president and CEO of Sea Research Foundation, said in the statement. “Dr. Tuttle made direct contributions through her work, and Dr. Robert Ballard has been consulted regularly on efforts to cap the well. But whatever we are doing pales in comparison to the incredible efforts being undertaken by the Coast Guard and NOAA personnel, as well as our colleagues from Gulf Coast institutions who are on the scene daily. We remain ready to relieve and augment their efforts."
President Barack Obama appointed Terry Garcia, Sea Research Foundation trustee and executive vice president for mission programs at National Geographic Society, to the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling Commission, the statement said.
Information on the Gulf Coast, the effect of oil on marine animals and how people can help protect oceans is available at, the statement said. At Immersion Learning’s Web site ( and Facebook page, kids can find up-to-the-minute news coverage on the oil spill.

Mystic Aquarium, Institute for Exploration and Immersion Learning are divisions of Sea Research Foundation, Inc., a private, non-profit 501(c)3 organization. The mission of Sea Research is to inspire people to care for and protect our ocean planet through education, research and exploration, the statement said.

Editor's note: the information in this post was wholly provided by Mystic Aquarium

Wild about flowers!

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