Greater Mystic Chamber Member News

Mystic - Noank Library Offer Free Remote Tech Help by Appointment

Now more than ever, it's important to stay connected with friends, family, work, and the world. Ease the stress and frustration of learning how to use new devices, apps, and programs by phoning (or video conferencing) a librarian! Whether you want to learn how to use social media, video conferencing programs, or be guided through the basics of using your smartphone, this free service will help you from feeling isolated while you practice social distancing.

Request an appointment for technology help on your phone, tablet, or laptop by emailing a description of your problem or question to Erik at ecaswell@mysticnoanklibrary.org. You can be coached through your technological woes via phone, email with resources and tutorials, or the user-friendly web conferencing app Zoom.

You can find more resources, technology tutorials, and assistance on the Mystic & Noank Library's YouTube channel, and on our social media platforms.

Visit our web page at www.mysticnoanklibrary.org, or find us at Mystic & Noank Library on Facebook.

Chelsea Groton Bank Fully Operational and Prepared to Serve the Community in Time of Need

GROTON, Conn. – Chelsea Groton Bank’s strength, stability, and advanced technology, as well as forward-thinking planning have allowed the Bank to maintain all operations even as many team members work remotely. All drive-ups are open regular hours, and branch lobbies are accessed by appointment for services that can’t be accomplished at the drive-ups after answering a series of questions to screen for exposure to COVID19. The Bank’s call center is fully functional, and has also established a hotline (860-448-4195) for COVID-19-related banking questions and for scheduling appointments.

All bank services are available; mortgage applications are being taken at record volume. Chelsea Groton has established a set of relief measures for personal and business loan customers as well as all customers who may have special needs and accommodations during this period. Online banking, mobile banking, bank-by-phone, ATMs and all electronic treasury management functions are fully operational. The Chelsea Groton Foundation is also mobilizing to help those most in need.

“We are an incredibly strong and well-capitalized financial institution,” shared Michael Rauh, President and CEO of Chelsea Groton Bank. “We have been serving our customers and communities in this way through famines, storms, pandemics, crashes, wars and more for 165 years and we will continue to be supportive and responsive for however long it takes the community to recover from this. Thanks to our investments in technology, we are able to do all of this while still doing our best to ensure the safety and health of our team members, which continues to be a priority for us.”

Chelsea Groton Bank has also created a resource page on chelseagroton.com which contains information on ways Chelsea Groton and the community are prepared to help, such as the Small Business Administration's disaster relief loans, educational resources for school-aged children, access to meal programs and fresh food, ways to support our area restaurants and shops, utility resources, volunteer opportunities and more.

The Bank continues to offer financial education resources through the Chelsea University e-learning platform, accessible from chelseagroton.com/ChelseaUniversity. Some of the Bank’s in-person education classes have been postponed, while others have been turned into webinars, in order to continue to educate the community during this time of need.

About Chelsea Groton Bank

Based in Groton, Conn., Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1.1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also provides online and mobile banking, 24-hour telephone banking, and nationwide ATM banking for individuals, families and businesses. To learn more, please visit chelseagroton.com. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Media Contact: Barb Curto, VP, Marketing Manager

Phone: (860) 448-4118

VCCA current status of Program Services

NEW LONDON COUNTY, CT (March 21, 2020) – TVCCA remains open to provide the critical human services needed by our community, especially during difficult times like these.

In consideration of both our staff and clients’ health and well-being due to COVID-19, the decision was made to close our office buildings to the public in Norwich and New London effective March 17, 2020. The office staff are working and providing services through various means of technology. Many of the programs, like heating assistance, have received guidance from our funders allowing greater flexibility to provide services. Information and updates can be found on the TVCCA website and Facebook pages. TVCCA phone lines are open and clients can call to inquire about program services.

Senior Nutrition

Meals on Wheels: TVCCA Meals on Wheels provides meals to homebound seniors throughout Eastern Connecticut, covering 1200 miles from the shoreline to the Massachusetts border. Currently there are 600 clients on the program, but more clients are being added daily.

The Nutrition Services office in Bozrah has been fielding calls and enrolling additional Meals on Wheels referrals that have come in as a result of the COVID-19 closure of senior centers. As the current Coronavirus health situation has had many recent developments, the program is focused on assisting these homebound seniors to the best of its ability. To enroll in Meals on Wheels, participants must be age 60 or older and homebound.

Sanitation procedures continue to be followed at the agency’s Bozrah kitchen, with cleaning and disinfection of equipment, surfaces, and work areas and staff practicing social distancing to the best of their ability.

Meals on Wheels are being delivered daily for 85% of routes. For those routes where the regular volunteer or staff person is no longer able to deliver daily, multiple meals are being delivered by a staff person once a week as either a 5- or 7-day drop. The program will be putting together emergency, shelf-stable meal boxes to be delivered in case a “Shelter In Place” directive is issued.

No senior is ever denied a meal due to an inability to pay, but it is important to note that these meals are not fully funded by government funding sources. A $3.00 suggested donation per meal is requested, but often the meal recipients struggle to provide that. Donations from the public are critical to ensure that meals can continue to be delivered to all who may need them.

Congregate: Lunch service at senior centers has been suspended. The program is coordinating with senior center Directors to identify at-risk seniors who may have difficulty accessing other food sources. Specifically, TVCCA has reached out to seniors who attended the senior centers using public and/or senior center transportation to ask if they would want or need frozen meals.

Child Development Preschool

Unfortunately, late Friday 3/13/20, TVCCA made the decision to close their childcare facilities to children. This was a very difficult decision for the agency however it was made in the best interest of the vulnerable infants and young children in their care. TVCCA has been committed to limiting the impact to staff and child development staff has continued working during this time. They have been calling parents, checking on the family needs, and working with the parents to keep the children engaged and learning. Additionally, TVCCA’s childcare programs (Head Start and Little Learners Early Education) have been posting videos to their Facebook pages to engage children in story time and staying active.

Contact numbers for those seeking assistance:

WIC: New London Area: 860-425-6620; Norwich Area: 860-425-6562

ENERGY: 860-425-6681

HEAD START: 860-425-6614

HOUSING: SECTION 8 / RAP 860-425-6520

ALL OTHER HOUSING SERVICES 860-425-6545

LITTLE LEARNERS: 860-425-6521

ALL OTHER INQUIRES / QUESTIONS: New London Area: 860-444-0006; Norwich Area: 860-889-1365

About TVCCA: Thames Valley Council for Community Action, Inc. (TVCCA) is a private, non-profit organization that has been providing social services in southeastern Connecticut since 1965. TVCCA is well recognized as a community leader – and partner – in advocating for and meeting the needs of the region’s economically and otherwise disadvantaged citizens. For more information visit tvcca.org.

Contact Info:

Megan Brown

Senior Director

Marketing & Development

860-425-6514

Megan.brown@tvcca.org

GOVERNOR LAMONT ANNOUNCES CONNECTICUT BUSINESSES APPROVED TO RECEIVE DISASTER ASSISTANCE DUE TO COVID-19

March 17, 2020 (HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont today announced that small businesses and nonprofit organizations in Connecticut that have been negatively impacted by the global COVID-19 outbreak are now eligible for disaster relief loans of up to $2 million from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

On Sunday, the governor submitted a request to the federal agency for expedited approval of the disaster relief to immediately provide aid to businesses in Connecticut. Over the past several days, the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) has been working diligently to survey companies statewide to assess the impact of COVID-19 on the small business community and the local economy.

“Small businesses and nonprofits of all types are experiencing large, sudden drops in revenue while trying to do the right thing and give employees the flexibility they need to take care of themselves and their families,” Governor Lamont said. “One of our priorities is to help them as much we can. SBA disaster relief loans are an important tool that can help Connecticut businesses.”

“The availability of SBA loans is another key piece of a broader set of relief measures the Lamont administration continues to put into place for individuals and our business community,” DECD Commissioner David Lehman said. “Their ability to successfully navigate this health crisis is of vital importance to our economy in the short and long-term. The DECD team will remain proactive and continue to assess the impact of this pandemic and assist small businesses navigate this unprecedented economic climate.”

Small businesses can learn more about the program and apply for financial assistance at www.sba.gov/disaster or call the SBA at 1-800-659-2955.​

Small businesses with questions about this SBA loan program or other assistance provided at the state-level can call 860-500-2333 to speak directly with a DECD representative. Businesses can also stay informed on news and guidance related to COVID-19 and its impact on Connecticut by visiting the state’s dedicated coronavirus website at ct.gov/coronavirus.

SBA announces Connecticut businesses now have access to the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program

Click Here for English Version

Click Here for Spanish Version

Click here for Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to COVID-19

Information for Businesses & Non-Profits Affected by Coronavirus

Loan Assistance: Businesses and non-profits experiencing hardship as a result of COVID-19 can now apply for Small Business Administration (SBA) low-interest loans for working capital of up to $2 million. Log on to https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela to apply and for additional disaster assistance information. For help with applying call the SBA Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955, call the CT DECD Business Hotline at 860-500-2333, or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may call (800) 877-8339.

Unemployment Assistance: Employers who are furloughing workers can use the Department of Labor’s shared work program, which allows businesses to reduce working hours and have those wages supplemented with unemployment insurance. For more information click https://www.ctdol.state.ct.us/DOLCOVIDFAQ.PDF

CT Filing Extensions: The Department of Revenue Services has extended deadlines for filing and payments associated with certain state business tax returns. Details are at https://portal.ct.gov/drs

Company Opens Xfinity WiFi Network Nationally for Free, Offers Unlimited Data for Free, Confirms Its Commitment to Connecting Low-Income Families

On the heels of offering new, low-income Internet Essentials customers two months of free internet and raising the speed of that program’s service to 25/3 Mbps, Comcast today announced additional steps to help ensure people stay connected to the Internet as more schools suspend classes and companies encourage employees to work from home due to the Coronavirus.

“During this extraordinary time, it is vital that as many Americans as possible stay connected to the internet – for education, work, and personal health reasons,” said Dave Watson, Comcast Cable Chief Executive Officer. “Our employees also live and work in virtually every community we serve, and we all share the same belief that it’s our Company’s responsibility to step up and help out.”

Comcast is taking steps to implement the following new policies for the next 60 days, and other important initiatives:

  • Xfinity WiFi Free For Everyone: Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the country will be available to anyone who needs them for free – including non-Xfinity Internet subscribers. For a map of Xfinity WiFi hotspots, visit www.xfinity.com/wifi. Once at a hotspot, consumers should select the “xfinitywifi” network name in the list of available hotspots and then launch a browser.
  • Pausing Our Data Plan: With so many people working and educating from home, we want our customers to access the internet without thinking about data plans. While the vast majority of our customers do not come close to using 1TB of data in a month, we are pausing our data plans for 60 days giving all customers Unlimited data for no additional charge.
  • No Disconnects or Late Fees: We will not disconnect a customer’s internet service or assess late fees if they contact us and let us know that they can’t pay their bills during this period. Our care teams will be available to offer flexible payment options and can help find other solutions.
  • Internet Essentials Free to New Customers: As announced yesterday, it’s even easier for low-income families who live in a Comcast service area to sign-up for Internet Essentials, the nation’s largest and most comprehensive broadband adoption program. New customers will receive 60 days of complimentary Internet Essentials service, which is normally available to all qualified low-income households for $9.95/month. Additionally, for all new and existing Internet Essentials customers, the speed of the program’s Internet service was increased to 25 Mbps downstream and 3 Mbps upstream. That increase will go into effect for no additional fee and it will become the new base speed for the program going forward.
  • News, Information and Educational Content on X1: For those with school-age students at home, we’ve created new educational collections for all grade levels in partnership with Common Sense Media. Just say “education” into your X1 or Flex voice remote. To help keep customers informed, we also have created a collection of the most current news and information on Coronavirus. Just say “Coronavirus” into your X1 or Flex voice remote.
  • 24x7 Network Monitoring: Underpinning all of these efforts, Comcast’s technology and engineering teams will continue to work tirelessly to support our network operations. We engineer our network capacity to handle spikes and shifts in usage patterns, and continuously test, monitor and enhance our systems and network to ensure they are ready to support customer usage. Our engineers and technicians staff our network operations centers 24/7 to ensure network performance and reliability. We are monitoring network usage and watching the load on the network both nationally and locally, and to date it is performing well.

SBA Offers Disaster Assistance to Connecticut Small Businesses Economically Impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Atlanta – The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to Connecticut small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced today. SBA acted under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, to declare a disaster following a request received from Gov. Ned Lamont on March 15, 2020.

The disaster declaration makes SBA assistance available in the entire state of Connecticut; and the contiguous counties of Berkshire, Hampden, and Worcester in Massachusetts; and Dutchess, Putnam and Westchester in New York; and Kent, Providence and Washington in Rhode Island.

“SBA is strongly committed to providing the most effective and customer-focused response possible to assist Connecticut small businesses with federal disaster loans. We will be swift in our efforts to help these small businesses recover from the financial impacts of the Coronavirus (COVID-19),” said Administrator Carranza.

SBA Customer Service Representatives will be available to answer questions about SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program and explain the application process.

“Small businesses, private non-profit organizations of any size, small agricultural cooperatives and small aquaculture enterprises that have been financially impacted as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) since Jan. 31, 2020, may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred,” said Carranza.

“These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. Disaster loans can provide vital economic assistance to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing,” Carranza added.

Eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans is based on the financial impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The interest rate is 3.75 percent for small businesses. The interest rate for private non- profit organizations is 2.75 percent. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years and are available to entities without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 16, 2020. For more information about Coronavirus, please visit: Coronavirus.gov. For more information about available SBA resources and services, please visit: SBA.gov/coronavirus.

About the U.S. Small Business Administration The U.S. Small Business Administration makes the American dream of business ownership a reality. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.

Contact: Michael Lampton (404) 331-0333

Michael.Lampton@sba.gov Release Number: 20-267, CT 16335

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Blogs & Instagram

Dear Members,

DPNC is a community organization with one of our values being Public Health. In order to do our part for the community, to protect our staff, volunteers, and visitors, and to help contain the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus we will be closing to the public effective today. All programs will be rescheduled as possible. We are following all State and Local protocols and hope to reopen at the end of the month once the threat from the virus has passed. Please stay safe throughout this time, together we will weather this storm.

This an evolving situation, please watch our website and social media for updates.

Sincerely,

Davnet Conway Schaffer

Executive Director

Mystic Seaport Museum to Close Temporarily March 13

Mystic, Conn. (March 12, 2020) — Mystic Seaport Museum announced today it is temporarily closing to the public beginning tomorrow, March 13, to support the State of Connecticut’s efforts to stem the outbreak of COVID-19. All programs, classes, and events during that period are also cancelled. The Museum anticipates reopening March 30, subject to further evaluation of the situation.

Steve White, president of the Museum, stated: “Out of an abundance of caution we are taking this preemptive move to close to the public to protect the health of our community and of our employees and volunteers. We have been following the precautionary measures recommended by federal and local health authorities to ensure the cleanest environment possible. While we do not know of any exposure to COVID-19 connected with the Museum, we believe a temporary closure is the proper course of action in line with Gov. Ned Lamont’s request to minimize public gatherings and encourage employees to work from home to help stop the spread of this deadly virus. We look forward to welcoming visitors back to the Museum at the conclusion of this period.”

Individuals or groups with program reservations during this time will be contacted to reschedule or process refunds.

The Museum is implementing its emergency operations protocol, and will continue to monitor the situation and take appropriate additional action as necessary.

About Mystic Seaport Museum

Mystic Seaport Museum, founded in 1929, is the nation’s leading maritime museum. In addition to providing a multitude of immersive experiences, the Museum also houses a collection of more than two million artifacts that include more than 500 historic vessels and one of the largest collections of maritime photography. Mystic Seaport Museum is located one mile south of Exit 90 off I-95 in Mystic, CT. For more information, please visit www.mysticseaport.org and follow Mystic Seaport Museum on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.

The Chelsea Groton Foundation Now Accepting Grant Applications Through Online Portal

GROTON, Conn. – The Chelsea Groton Foundation will be accepting applications for the spring grant cycle through the Foundation’s online application portal until Friday, April 17, 2020. Local and regional charitable organizations in the areas of Animal Welfare, Arts and Culture, Economic Development, Education, Environment, Health and Human Services, Housing, and Youth Activities, should visit www.chelseagroton.com/CGFoundation to access the online application portal and more details on specific requirements.

The Foundation accepts grant applications two times per year. Formed in June 1998 as a Section 501(c)(3) organization, the Foundation has, to date, awarded over $3.6 million in grants to hundreds of organizations located within the Bank’s market area. Each year, Chelsea Groton Bank and the Chelsea Groton Foundation support more than 300 local organizations through monetary gifts, grants, sponsorships, scholarships and employee volunteerism. More information, including a list of last fall’s grant recipients, is available at chelseagroton.com.

About the Chelsea Groton Foundation

The Chelsea Groton Foundation was formed in June 1998 as a Section 501(c)(3) organization. Initially endowed with a $2 million donation from Chelsea Groton Bank, and recently gifted an additional $5 million from the Bank, the Foundation has, to date, awarded over $3.6 million in grants to hundreds of scientific, educational and charitable organizations located within the Bank’s market area. To learn more, visit www.chelseagroton.com/CGFoundation.

About Chelsea Groton Bank

Based in Groton, Conn., Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1.1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also provides online and mobile banking, 24-hour telephone banking, and nationwide ATM banking for individuals, families and businesses. To learn more, please visit chelseagroton.com. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Media Contact: Barb Curto, VP, Marketing Manager

Phone: (860) 448-4118

Email: bcurto@chelseagroton.com

2020 Mystic Irish Parade Postponed

The Mystic Irish Parade Foundation, in collaboration with the Town of Stonington Police Chief, Town of Groton Police Chief, and Ledge Light health district has decided that the best course of action is to postpone the 17th Annual Mystic Irish Parade, which was scheduled for Sunday March 22. This decision was made out of an abundance of caution due to the COVID-19 virus.

“The decision to postpone the 17th Annual Mystic Irish Parade was not taken lightly, but we collectively feel it is in the community’s best interest at this time” said Neil Ryan, Vice President of the Mystic Irish Parade Foundation. “The parade is an amazing, local event and the board has worked hard to secure a postponement date for the local businesses and sponsors who support it and the families who enjoy it every year… We’ll all have our day in green soon enough!”

The annual parade, which has never been postponed before, typically has over 2,000 participants and is enjoyed by more than 30,000 spectators, taking its dedicated supporters more than a year to plan. “It’s unfortunate to have to cancel an event of this size that takes so much time and effort to produce. This decision did not come without great debate and a heavy heart but in the end the health and safety of our community and citizens must come first,” Ryan said.

The Postponement date has been set for Sunday October 25th and parade groups need not re apply. Future correspondence will be sent to all participants to confirm they still wish to be in the parade. The Grand Marshal will still be Alexis Ann to lead the parade on Sunday October 25th at 1:00pm!

Additional information will be shared with media outlets and on our website regarding rescheduling the parade and we will be in touch with all participants, local effected businesses and our sponsors directly. For more information, please visit www.mysticirishparade.org and our Facebook page, @mysticirishparade.

About the Mystic Irish Parade

This festive celebration, as well as many other annual area events, are planned and supported by the Mystic Irish Parade Foundation. The Mystic Irish Parade Foundation is 100% volunteer driven, supported by team members dedicated to promoting Irish heritage and organizing a spectacular parade for the community. The MIPF is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization and all donations are tax deductible and directly help fund local charities, as well as the annual parade. Excess funds raised are donated to local nonprofit organizations. Please mark your calendars and we look forward to seeing you at these local events!

CHARTER OAK DONATES FUNDING FOR RAYMOND LIBRARY PROJECT

Credit Union Donation Assists With Important Improvements To Children’s Department

Waterford, CT ­– March 10, 2020 Charter Oak Federal Credit Union has provided a significant donation to the Raymond Library in Oakdale to assist with improvements to the library’s Children’s Department that will include new waterproof vinyl floor covering.

Charter Oak provided $7,000 in funding to the library to allow for the new floor covering in the Children’s Department, which has suffered from frequent water problems that damaged the existing carpet. With Charter Oak’s funding, combined with funding from the Friends of the Raymond Library and the Raymond Library Company, the new vinyl floor covering project will be completed soon without the need for additional funding or donations.

“We’re glad to provide funding to help the Raymond Library complete this project and make these water issues a thing of the past for all of the children using the library,” said Brian A. Orenstein, Charter Oak’s President and Chief Executive Officer. Paul McGlinchey, who serves as the Treasurer of Charter Oak’s seven-member Board of Directors is also actively involved with the Friends of the Raymond Library as its Treasurer. McGlinchey was instrumental in securing funding from Charter Oak for this important improvement at the library.

The Raymond Library was built in 1884 from an endowment from the Raymond family. The library, located at 832 Raymond Hill Road, still operates on the generous investment proceeds from that endowment, along with a yearly donation from the town of Montville. The Friends of the Raymond Library was formed in 2015 and is an active group that supports the library and has made major donations since its formation five years ago.

“We are very grateful to Charter Oak and its members for this significant donation to our library,” said Library Director Joanne Westkamper. “This new waterproof flooring will be a great improvement to our Children’s Department and will create a welcome environment for the many children who regularly use the children's resources at our library,” she said.

Charter Oak is eastern Connecticut’s largest credit union with assets of nearly $1.2 billion as of December 31, 2019. Charter Oak has an expansive and convenient network of 16 branches serving New London and Windham counties, providing the largest and most convenient branch network of any financial institution in eastern Connecticut. Federally insured by NCUA. Equal Housing Lender.

Charter Oak Federal Credit Union is like a bank, just better! We've been proudly serving eastern Connecticut since 1939 and we offer great checking, deposit, lending, insurance and investment products. And because we're a credit union, we're owned by our members, not by shareholders. So we can offer lower rates on loans and higher rates on deposits. It's easy to become a Charter Oak member: simply live, work, worship, learn, or volunteer in New London or Windham counties. So join today and see why Members Bank Better at Charter Oak!

Contact:

Anthony Cronin

AVP-Director of Marketing

860.446.3254 or acronin@cofcu.com

ALWAYS HOME ANNOUNCES EXCITING BOARD CHANGES

Mystic, CT (March 10, 2020) - Always Home’s Board of Directors welcomes Attorney Eric Lindh Foster as its newest member and Annemarie Seifert, Ph.D. as Board President. Seifert replaces Bill Smith who served on the Board for the past 6 years where he oversaw the rebranding of the organization and tremendous growth in the number of client families being served.

Always Home’s mission is Preventing Family Homelessness. In the past eight months, Always Home has already served 265 families, a more than 50% increase over the number of families served this same time last year. By combining case management support, short-term financial assistance, and creative homelessness prevention services, Always Home helps families find immediate solutions to their housing crisis and create a path forward.

Foster, a resident of Old Lyme, is Managing Partner and Attorney at Law at Eric Lindh Foster Law, LLC in Old Saybrook, CT. He has over 28 years of legal experience including years as a banking and securities attorney on Wall Street and in Washington D.C. With expertise in business and consumer rights litigation, he currently focuses on representing Connecticut small business owners and consumers. Foster looks forward to bringing legal knowledge and a different perspective to the Board.

Seifert resides in Mystic and is the University of Connecticut’s Avery Point Campus Director. She has served on Always Home’s Board for over a year where she has demonstrated significant management experience, community building skills and collaborative expertise. She is enthusiastic about advancing Always Home’s growth and leadership role in addressing the issue of family homelessness.

About Always Home

Always Home is a private 501(C)3) non-profit formed in 1998 to address the needs of Eastern Connecticut's homeless, imminently homeless and at-risk families. Formerly known as Mystic Area Shelter & Hospitality, Inc. (MASH), the agency continues to pursue its mission of Preventing Family Homelessness. As a key player in the Eastern Coordinated Access Network (ECAN), Always Home works closely with the other service providers in the Eastern Connecticut regional network to ensure that at-risk families receive the services they need to attain housing stability.

For more information about Always Home, go to www.alwayshome.org

Gerson DaSilva Joins Chelsea Groton Bank As VP, Commercial Loan Officer

GROTON, Conn. – Gerson DaSilva recently joined Chelsea Groton Bank as Vice President and Commercial Loan Officer. Gerson, who is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish, and English, will work to develop commercial loan and commercial mortgage relationships with centers of influence across the Bank’s market areas.

“With over a decade of banking experience, Gerson is skilled at finding creative, unique ways to help clients reach their financial goals,” said Carolyn Welch, Senior Vice President, Commercial Lending Manager at Chelsea Groton Bank. “He has a keen understanding of not only the commercial lending product that will best serve a customer, but the supporting treasury management suite of products that will help a business grow. We are excited to welcome Gerson to the Chelsea Groton team.”

Most recently, Gerson was VP, Senior Associate Relationship Manager at Webster Bank in Glastonbury, CT, where he grew new and existing business relationships.

Gerson lives in Glastonbury, CT with his family. He is an active member of the Rotary Club of Glastonbury.

About Chelsea Groton Bank

Based in Groton, Conn., Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1.1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also

Mystic - Noank Library: Coronavirus Informational Session with Ledge Light Health District on Wednesday, March 11 at 5:00 - 6:00

Join us in the Sanctuary of Union Baptist Church, 119 High Street (next door to the Library) for an informational session with Kristin Magnussen, Communicable Disease Prevention Supervisor, and Stephen Mansfield, Director of Health, from Ledge Light Health District to learn more about the coronavirus outbreak. This information session will advise community members on how to "Prepare, not panic" as major news outlets report on Coronavirus 19 (COVID-19).

30 minutes will be dedicated to learning what Coronavirus 19 is, what your local health department is doing to prepare communities, and what you can do individually to prepare. The remaining 30 minutes will be dedicated to answering questions from community members.

Registration is preferred but not required to attend this program. Those interested in registering to attend may do so online at https://tinyurl.com/mnl-covid or by calling the Library at 860-536-7721.

The Mystic & Noank Library is located at 40 Library Street in Mystic, CT and has an extensive collection of books and media for children, teens, and adults.

Library hours are from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm Monday through Wednesday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Thursday through Saturday.

Visit our web page at www.mysticnoanklibrary.org, or find us at Mystic & Noank Library on Facebook.

Duncklee Inc. receives Top Performer Award from Connecticut Green Bank for the second year in a row for 2018 & 2019

Duncklee Cooling & Heating, Inc. received Top Performer award from Connecticut Green Bank for the second year in a row.

Out of more than 400 contractors who participated in the in the program, Jonathan Duncklee, President of Duncklee Cooling & Heating Inc. received a Top Performer award from Connecticut Green Bank in February 2020 in Rocky Hill, CT at their Headquarters. Duncklee and the CT Green bank teamed up with Core Plus Credit Union and Capital for Change to offer consumers super-efficient heating and cooling systems with extremely low interest financing.

Top Performers helped over 300 Connecticut families make home energy improvements – allowing them to save money, reduce their carbon footprint, and live more comfortably in their homes.

This alliance helps the State of Connecticut work towards meeting its climate change plan, which focuses on three mitigation wedges: decarbonizing electricity generation, decarbonizing transportation, and decarbonizing buildings.

Connecticut Green Bank is the nation’s first green bank, whose focus is to “achieve cleaner, less expensive, and more reliable sources of energy while creating jobs and supporting local economic development”. Founded in 2011, Connecticut Green Bank has deployed over $1.6 billion dollars in capital for clean energy projects across Connecticut.

In keeping with the Connecticut Green Bank philosophy of providing Connecticut with clean energy, Duncklee Cooling & Heating has delivered dependable, super-efficient, and high quality cooling and heating products for more than forty-five years. Duncklee Cooling & Heating has been servicing the Eastern Connecticut and Western Rhode Island area since 1973, offering custom system design, installation and total service. Duncklee’s commitment to comfort, quality and value has allowed them to become the area’s leader in heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) technology and service.

Jonathan Duncklee is proud to be selected for the top performer award for outstanding performance, providing his customers with Smart-E loans, saving his customers money and helping the environment with qualified cooling and heating systems. For more information about Duncklee go to www.dunckleeinc.com.

ACCESS HEALTH CT SMALL BUSINESS ANNOUNCES 2019 ENROLLMENT GROWTH

Double-digit enrollment growth results, increased broker engagement, and big jump in stand-alone dental coverage

2019 group health insurance grew in excess of 20 percent year over year

  • 89 percent of group health insurance plans selected with the help of broker engagement; 10 percent were from new broker relationships
  • The membership for Stand-Alone Dental Plans doubled year over year

HARTFORD, Connecticut—February 27, 2020—Access Health CT (AHCT) Small Business reports a 2019 growth rate in excess of 20 percent. Broker engagements within the small group community contributed to driving these results (89 percent of plans selected were chosen with the help of a broker). Of the 89 percent, 10 percent were completed with new broker relationships. In addition, AHCT has seen their Stand-Alone Dental Plan membership nearly double compared to last year.

"This has been a pivotal year for Access Health CT Small Business,” said Small Business and Product Development Director, John Carbone, “and we will carry this momentum with us as we grow. We will continue to optimize our business plan, increase our outreach and presence within the communities we serve, and communicate opportunities that make coverage possible for Connecticut’s workforce.”

This success comes the same year Access Health CT Small Business made several strategic shifts within the business unit, including the appointment of Small Business and Product Development Director, John Carbone, the development of a new business plan to drive growth, a targeted marketing and communications effort, and the addition of new support staff to assist brokers and small business owners in communities around the state.

It is important for small business owners and brokers to be aware of the benefits offered by Access Health CT Small Business, which include having among the lowest cost group health plans in the marketplace, flexibility to start coverage any month, a variety of plan options with different insurance carriers, a choice of health and dental plans, and prescription drug coverage included in all plans.

“At Access Health CT, our overarching mission is to reduce the rate of the uninsured,” said James Michel, Chief Executive Officer of Access Health CT. “It guides everything we do. John and his team are helping us to achieve our mission, one small business at a time and often one employee at a time.”

About Access Health CT

Access Health CT (AHCT), Connecticut’s official health insurance marketplace established in 2011, is a place where individuals, families and businesses can shop, compare and enroll in quality healthcare plans from brand-name insurance companies. It is the only place where people could qualify for financial help to lower costs. AHCT supports health reform efforts at the state and national level and provides Connecticut residents with resources for better health, and an enhanced and more coordinated healthcare experience, resulting in healthier people, healthier communities and a healthier Connecticut. AHCT’s mission is to increase the number of insured residents in Connecticut, promote health, lower costs and eliminate health disparities. Connecticut residents and small business owners can compare and enroll in healthcare coverage and apply for tax credits for individuals through AHCT. AHCT (or the Marketplace) also partners with the Dept. of Social Services for eligibility and enrollment with state Medicaid Insurance and Children’s Health Insurance Programs. For more information about individual plans, visit www.AccessHealthCT.com. For more information about small business plans, visit https://accesshealthctsmallbiz.com/. Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/AccessHealthCT and follow us on Twitter @AccessHealthCT.

Contact: Kathleen Tallarita, Kathleen.tallarita@ct.gov, 860.757.5339

Amtrak Offers Additional Service in Mystic, CT and Westerly, RI with New, Modified Schedules

Chelsea Groton Bank Offers Free Women’s Series

4-Weeks of Networking and Discussion for Women at Various Life Stages

GROTON, Conn. – In honor of Women’s History Month, Chelsea Groton has developed a women’s series aimed at bringing like-minded women together for networking, support and to share resources and advice, for various life stages and interests. Events and topic discussions include women in business, preparing for a wedding, family planning and aging.

Events will be held on Wednesdays in March from 5 – 7 PM at Chelsea Groton Bank’s Center Groton location, 1319 Gold Star Highway, Groton.

Getting Down to Business - Her Way on Wednesday, March 4th, 5-7 PM:

If you’re an aspiring woman entrepreneur, join us for this 2-hour event. You’ll have the opportunity to hear from female business owners about their struggles and successes. We’ll also exchange business ideas, empower and support each other, and help build local connections that you can lean on as you work to grow your business.

Rings to Renaming: Navigating “YES” Through “I DO” And Beyond on Wednesday, March 11th, 5-7 PM:

Our panel of experts will help you navigate everything from finding the right rings, to keeping on budget as you plan, to filing paperwork after the wedding. The first 10 brides to register for the event will receive a Wedding Planning Notebook, which includes timelines and budgeting tools.

The Journey to Family on Wednesday, March 18th, 5-7 PM:

Sometimes the journey to family is a difficult one. Let our panel of experts walk you through personal and financial considerations to make prior to becoming pregnant, as you navigate fertility issues, and as you embark on adoption.

Fitfully Aging on Wednesday, March 25th, 5-7 PM:

Join our team of panelists for a discussion on women’s fitness and nutrition, living on a fixed income, and how to plan for care as we age.

To learn more and to register, visit ChelseaGroton.com/ChelseaUniversity.

About Chelsea Groton Bank

Based in Groton, Conn., Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also provides online and mobile banking, 24-hour telephone banking, and nationwide ATM banking for individuals, families and businesses. To learn more, please visit chelseagroton.com. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Contact: Barb Curto, VP, Marketing Manager

Phone: (860) 448-4118

Email: bcurto@chelseagroton.com

It’s Pancakes and Preschoolers Time!

The COMO presents its sixth annual preschool open house!

“The curriculum is more than I could have asked for. My kids learn the basic intro to school education plus a wide range of outside the box creative, imaginative education. They learned about the world around them and how to look at it, care for it and search for it in other locations. They have become adventurous and eager to show/tell me all they have learned.” - Preschool Parent

Interested in learning more about the COMO’s preschool program? Come to our Pancakes & Preschoolers open house on Friday, March 20, 6-7 p.m.! You’ll meet our dedicated teachers, staff members and current families, tour our campus and classrooms, and learn about our NAEYC-accredited program. Did we mention the delicious pancake dinner? Registration is not required.

The Stonington Community Center (COMO) is located at 28 Cutler Street in Stonington, CT. For more information, call the COMO at 860-535-2476, email our Education Director Priscilla Rouquayrol at p.rouquayrol@thecomo.org, or visit our website at thecomo.org

About The Stonington Community Center

The Stonington Community Center, fondly known as the COMO, was founded in 1946, as a nonprofit with the goals of strengthening families and community. Over the years, the COMO’s 16-acre campus has grown to include its own classrooms, Thrift Shop, four decoTurf tennis courts, art and pottery studio, paddle tennis facility, and soccer fields. The COMO provides a wide range of educational, enrichment, athletic, family, and community partnership programs throughout the year. Located at 28 Cutler Street, the COMO has become an irreplaceable part of the Stonington community, serving countless children and families of the surrounding areas, regardless of financial need. For more information, visit www.thecomo.org.

Call for Artists: The Art of Movement

Mystic, CT — Hartford HealthCare's Chase Family Movement Disorders Center will host "The Art of Movement," an exhibit of creative works by people living with Parkinson's Disease, in May in its new Mystic location. The exhibit is seeking works by people who have Parkinson's.

The exhibit is seeking all types of creative works, including painting, sculpting, creative writing, dance, photography, music, quilting and other crafts.

Interested artists should contact Susan Lather at the Chase Family Movement Disorders Center: 860-696-5503 or susan.lather@hhchealth.org

The exhibit will be open to the public Saturday, May 9, from 1-3 p.m., at Hartford HealthCare Mystic, 100 Perkins Farm Drive, Mystic. Artists will be able to display and offer their work for sale to benefit the Chase Center.

In addition to the displays, there will be remarks by Drs. J. Antonelle de Marcaida, Medical Director, Chase Family Movement Disorders Center; Marisa Moro-de-Casillas, and Elena Bortan. Poet Jean Gustafson will read some of her work, and painter Melissa Barbieri will talk about her Parkinson’s journey and how her art and her family have kept her strong.

The idea of having the exhibit grew out of Dr. DeMarcaida's long fascination with and appreciation of the creativity of her patients.

Drs. Bortan and Moro-de-Casillas will staff the Chase Family Movement Disorders Center in the Mystic building, joined by a full complement of staff including advanced practitioners, a neuropsychologist, social worker, nurses, medical assistants, patient service coordinators and practice manager.

The Wellness programs at the Chase Family Movement Disorders Center are offered free of charge for patients with Parkinson’s disease. Exercise can be disease-modifying for people with Parkinson’s. Donations support the Boxing, Tai Chi, Yoga and additional classes offered in the Vernon, Cheshire and Mystic facilities.

Mystic - Noank Library Upcoming Events

Free Depression Management Seminar

Saturday, March 21 at 3:00 - 4:30 pm

Join us for a seminar on depression and dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) with Noank resident and Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Francine Figueroa. Ms. Figueroa will begin with a presentation about her experiences with nearly a decade working in the field. She has specialized training treating and supporting the healing of people with mood disorders, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, trauma, PTSD, addiction, and more.

The seminar will begin with information about the prevalence of depression and mood disorder in people of all ages. Then Ms. Figueroa will guide participants through an interactive workshop focusing on depression intervention tools for oneself, and some strategies for supporting others. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions to an expert, share their own experiences, and learn applicable depression management skills that can then be practiced individually by anyone.

This event is free and open to the public; no registration is required.

The Mystic & Noank Library is located at 40 Library Street in Mystic, CT and has an extensive collection of books and media for children, teens, and adults.

Library hours are from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm Monday through Wednesday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Thursday through Saturday.

Visit our web page at www.mysticnoanklibrary.org, or find us at Mystic & Noank Library on Facebook.

AARP Driver Safety Classes at the Mystic & Noank Library!

Various Dates and Times

The AARP Smart Driver Course, offered by AARP Driver Safety, is designed especially for drivers age 50 and older. The classroom course costs only $15 for AARP members and $20 for nonmembers. Attendees must bring their Driver's License to class. Both prices will increase by $5 after July 1, 2020, to $20 for AARP members and $25 for nonmembers.

Each class will be 4 hours, with one scheduled break; participants should bring their own snacks or drinks. Patrons may choose one of the four following dates:

Saturday, March 14, 10 am - 2 pm

Monday, June 15, 5 pm - 9 pm

Saturday, September 19, 10 am - 2 pm

Monday, November 16, 5 pm - 9 pm

Registration is required; please sign up via the library website or call for assistance.

Visit our web page at www.mysticnoanklibrary.org, or find us at Mystic & Noank Library on Facebook.

Upcycling & Mending Meetup

Tuesday, March 3 at 4:00 - 5:30 pm | Tuesday, April 7 at 4:00 - 5:30 pm | Tuesday, May 5 at 4:00 - 5:30 pm

Looking for ways to be creative for free? Come join us once per month to brainstorm and create new fashion from the clothes in your closet, extend the life of your clothes with mending and enhancements, trade garment parts, and help the environment by keeping textiles out of the landfill. All ages welcome. No sewing skills required. Bring an existing project or start a new one!

Contact hazel.e.levine@gmail.com with any questions.

This event is free and open to the public; no registration is required.

The Mystic & Noank Library is located at 40 Library Street in Mystic, CT and has an extensive collection of books and media for children, teens, and adults.

Library hours are from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm Monday through Wednesday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Thursday through Saturday.

Visit our web page at www.mysticnoanklibrary.org, or find us at Mystic & Noank Library on Facebook.

Census 2020 Information Session

Saturday, March 7 at 10:30 - 12:00 pm

Join us with members of Groton's Complete Count Committee to learn all about this year's census and have all your questions answered. This month you'll be receiving your letter in the mail at your rental, home, or property requesting you to complete your 2020 census. At this session, learn all about the different ways you can complete it, how that information is protected, what it's used for, the importance of completing it, and speak to others in the community about getting a complete count in your community.

Registration is required on our website to attend.

The Mystic & Noank Library is located at 40 Library Street in Mystic, CT and has an extensive collection of books and media for children, teens, and adults.

Library hours are from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm Monday through Wednesday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Thursday through Saturday.

Visit our web page at www.mysticnoanklibrary.org, or find us at Mystic & Noank Library on Facebook.

Meet Your State Civil Rights Agency

Thursday, March 5 at 6:00-7:00

Join us for an informational session presented by the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities to learn about important civil rights work the agency performs. Learn your rights in employment, housing, public accommodations, and education.

The mission of the Commission is to eliminate discrimination through civil and human rights law enforcement and to establish equal opportunity and justice for all persons within the state through advocacy and education. The Commission, as it has for the past seventy-five years, continues to break new ground in pursuit of their goals. You can visit the CT CHRO for more information at ct.gov/chro/site/default.asp.

This event is free and open to the public; no registration is required.

The Mystic & Noank Library is located at 40 Library Street in Mystic, CT and has an extensive collection of books and media for children, teens, and adults.

Library hours are from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm Monday through Wednesday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Thursday through Saturday.

Visit our web page at www.mysticnoanklibrary.org, or find us at Mystic & Noank Library on Facebook.

Chelsea Groton Bank Accepting Summer Intern Applications Through March 13

GROTON, Conn. – Chelsea Groton Bank’s Internship Program is designed to provide valuable work experience for undergraduate students considering careers in accounting, marketing, human resources, learning and development, finance, banking, and more. Interested applicants are encouraged to apply online at chelseagroton.com by Friday, March 13, 2020.

“Through our internship program, we’re focused on attracting and developing our future generation of financial service stewards and providing professional development experiences,” shared Anne Wilkinson, SVP, Director of Human Resources at Chelsea Groton Bank. “We recruit interns from a diverse pool of candidates who are currently enrolled in an undergraduate program. We try to provide them with knowledge and skills that will serve them in a future career either at Chelsea Groton Bank, or elsewhere in the industry.”

Chelsea Groton’s program provides the intern with experiential learning, mentoring and networking opportunities. All interns are paid and may be eligible for academic credit based on the college’s eligibility requirements. Upon successful completion of the internship and graduation from their applicable college, there is the potential of offering permanent employment to the trained and qualified intern.

In order to be eligible for the internship program, candidates must be a student in good standing with their college, maintain a GPA of 3.0 or higher and have a sincere interest in learning more about the banking industry and providing outstanding customer service. To learn more about additional requirements and available summer internship positions, visit www.chelseagroton.com/careers.

About Chelsea Groton Bank

Based in Groton, Conn., Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also provides online and mobile banking, 24-hour telephone banking, and nationwide ATM banking for individuals, families and businesses. To learn more, please visit chelseagroton.com. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

WCCU donates $2,438.40 to Local High Schools’ Sports Boosters

The Westerly Community Credit Union showed support for local athletes, sports programs and schools as they donated 100% of the proceeds from the 36th Annual Holiday Basketball Tournament to Chariho, Stonington, South Kingstown and Westerly High School Sports’ Boosters. Each school received a check for $2,438.40 for their basketball teams’ hard work, determination, and participation in the tournament.

The 2019 tournament, which was held Dec. 26th, 27th, 28th & 30th raised a total of $9,753.61. The Westerly Community Credit Union is the sole sponsor of the tournament allowing 100% of the gate receipts to be divided between the Sports’ Boosters of the participating schools. This popular event has now raised $242,577.31 since the 1st tournament took place in 1984.

“WCCU has always been a very community-oriented institution,” stated Steve White, WCCU President & CEO. “We couldn’t be happier being the sole sponsor of this event for the past 36 years and raising money to help our communities’ young adults.”

The Westerly Community Credit Union is proud to sponsor this event yearly and wishes to thank all who participated: the boys & girls, JV & Varsity basketball teams, the coaches, and of course the fans.

About Westerly Community Credit Union:

Established in 1948, Westerly Community Credit Union is a local, full–service financial institution, focused not on profits, but on helping its members achieve financial success. It currently serves over 19,000 members with lending and deposit products through their convenient locations in Wakefield, Richmond, Westerly, as well as online via www.westerlyccu.com. Recent WCCU awards: #1 Best Bank in the Westerly Sun’s 2016, 2017, 2019 Readers’ Choice Awards, Best Employer (2018) and “Spreadin’ the Love” (2019) community service awards by the Southern RI Chamber of Commerce, as well as PBN Providence Business News Best Places to Work 2018-2019.

Original Songwriter’s Night is March 5, 2020 from 7-10 pm With NOAH FELDMAN

Water Street Tavern, 15 Water St., Mystic, CT, 06355

Noah Feldman is a singer/songwriter and performer who hails from Southeastern Connecticut. He has been writing and performing for over a decade, and has grown into an accomplished multi-instrumentalist, playing guitar, bass, keyboards, percussion, and a number of other stringed instruments, as well as developing a unique vocal style that leans heavily into old-school soul in the vein of Wilson Pickett and Sam & Dave, balanced with a more sensitive, almost conversational approach.

Feldman has played in a number of bands, including the original lineup of No Mind, before starting school at Western Connecticut State University as a Bachelor's of Music student with emphasis in Audio & Music Production and classical voice. He currently is involved in a number of projects, including a lasting collaboration with WCSU alum Brendan James Fox, a role as regular keyboardist for New London area band Fleet (whose debut album he produced and contributed a variety of instruments to), and regular appearances at Strange Brew Pub in a variety of house bands, Album Tribute Night shows, and many other roles.

He can frequently be found performing solo acoustic shows that combine a unique brand of covers with original music and instrumental improvisations. In support of his debut album, "Shelter From the Storm", he can be found performing throughout New England both solo and with a band.

Original Songwriters Night was created by Linda Bonadies and Scott Parry and takes place on the first Thursday of most months at Water Street Tavern (12 Water Street, Mystic, CT). Serving excellent food and drink; this event is open to the public. There is a $10 cover which goes to the featured performer.

The featured performer goes on at 8pm, open mic starts at 7pm. There are seven slots available for local singer/songwriters. PA, Mics and Piano Provided.

Sign up for open mic in advance; email: linda@lindabonadies.com

For more information, visit: www.facebook.com/originalsongwritersmystic

Groton Utilities Supports the Community Through Neighborhood Assistance Act Program

This past December Groton Utilities and Bozrah Light and Power were able to “give back to the community” by use of the popular State of Connecticut Neighborhood Assistance Act (NAA) Tax Credit Program. Through this program Groton Utilities and Bozrah Light and Power were able to make the following contributions to local non-profit organizations:

$145,714.24 to Sacred Heart School (Groton Utilities)

$56,733.35 to Town of Groton (Bozrah Light and Power)

$34,971.42 to Riverfront Children’s Center (Bozrah Light and Power)

According to the State of Connecticut Department of Revenue Services website “The Connecticut Neighborhood Assistance Act (NAA) Tax Credit Program is designed to provide funding for municipal and tax exempt organizations by providing a corporation business tax credit for businesses who make cash contributions to these entities.”

Through this program non-profit organizations can apply for funding from Groton Utilities or Bozrah Light and Power to help pay for specific projects via the state tax credit. An organization can receive a maximum of $150,000 in a single year through the program and the applications are judged and then approved or denied by the state. The total amount for the program according to the State of Connecticut is five million dollars. Projects defined as meeting energy conservation criteria can receive up to a 100% credit through this program.

Each tax credit reward is designed to help fund a specific project. Energy conservation projects may be given tax credits of up to 100% of the total cost of the project while other project types can receive a maximum of 60% of the project cost. Sacred Heart School, which previously had no air-conditioning in its school, installed nineteen combination heat/air conditioning units (mini-splits) throughout its building. Sacred Heart School is now able to provide a comfortable learning environment no matter the outdoor temperature in a cost-effective manner.

"The Connecticut Neighborhood Assistance Act enables organizations to take advantage of this initiative to conserve energy,” said Dr. Gail Kingston, Principal of Sacred Heart School, “and to purchase energy efficient equipment that otherwise an organization may not be able to afford within their budgetary constraints while giving businesses a 100 percent tax credit."

Riverfront Children’s Center used the funding to replace aging, drafty windows with new energy efficient windows. New windows help reduce heat loss and hence lower monthly heating bills. Finally, the Town of Groton applied for and received funding to help pay for the conversion of their lighting at the Groton Community Center to LED fixtures. LED lighting is much more energy efficient and longer lasting than previous lighting solutions and will therefore lower their energy bills and not require replacement as frequently.

For more information regarding the Connecticut Neighborhood Assistance Act Tax Credit Program you may visit the Department of Revenue Services website page on the subject.

To apply for funding each municipal agency or tax-exempt organization must complete in its entirety Form NAA-01, the program proposal application, and submit it to a participating municipality for approval.

To view a list of all businesses to receive funding in 2019 through the Connecticut Neighborhood Assistance Act Tax Credit Program click here.

The COMO's 2020 College Scholarship Application Period Opens

The COMO is now accepting applications for scholarships for Stonington youth

The Stonington Community Center (COMO) is proud to administer, without fee, six college scholarship funds to support Stonington youth pursuing a higher education.

Stonington residents, both college-bound and current college students, are encouraged to apply. Available funds include: the Whitman Award Scholarship; the Josh Piver Memorial Scholarship Fund; the Mary H. Boatwright Endowment Fund; the Francis Drake Endowment Fund; the Robert and Doris Ramsbotham Scholarship Endowment Fund; and the Frank Turek Scholarship Endowment Fund. An average of $30,000 is annually awarded to Stonington youth.

For applications and more information about the scholarship opportunities and eligibility requirements, students should visit www.thecomo.org/scholarships. The deadline for submission is Friday, April 17, 2020.

About The Stonington Community Center

The Stonington Community Center, fondly known as the COMO, was founded in 1946, as a nonprofit with the goals of strengthening families and community. Over the years, the COMO’s 16-acre campus has grown to include its own classrooms, Thrift Shop, four decoTurf tennis courts, art and pottery studio, paddle tennis facility, and soccer fields. The COMO provides a wide range of educational, enrichment, athletic, family, and community partnership programs throughout the year. Located at 28 Cutler Street, the COMO has become an irreplaceable part of the Stonington community, serving countless children and families of the surrounding areas, regardless of financial need. For more information, visit www.thecomo.org.

GROTON ROTARY CLUB ANNOUNCES SCHOLAR AWARDS AVAILABILITY

GROTON - The Rotary Club of Groton has announced that it will present scholar awards to students from three Groton community high schools. The $2,000 awards are jointly sponsored by the Groton Rotary Club and local businesses. The high schools are Robert E. Fitch High School, the Ella T. Grasso Southeastern Technical High School, and the Marine Science Magnet High School.

The one-year scholar awards are intended to assist students starting an education at an accredited college, university or technical institute in 2020. A $2,000 check will be paid

to the educational institution for deposit in an awardee’s financial account upon confirmation that the awardee has enrolled at the institution in 2020.

Scholar awardees will be selected on the basis of scholastic achievements, school and club leadership activities, and community service to others.

Consideration will also be given for financial need and educational ambitions.

Students can obtain scholar award application forms from their high school guidance counselors or directly from the Rotary Club of Groton website at grotonrotary.org. The deadline for submitting completed forms is Friday, April 17. The forms can be submitted to the high schools guidance office or mailed to the Groton Rotarian noted on the application form. Interviews may be held in May. The three scholar awardees will be announced shortly after the interviews.

Chelsea Groton Bank Offers Free Business Seminars for Local Entrepreneurs

8-Week Series To Provide Current and Prospective Business Owners a Toolkit for Success

GROTON, Conn. – Starting this month, Chelsea Groton kicks off their third FREE small business series for aspiring and established entrepreneurs. The series, “Cultivating Great Business”, is offered through the Bank’s financial education program, Chelsea University. Participants will walk away with a wealth of knowledge and a well-organized business plan to pitch to a panel of community experts at the end of the series.

“Chelsea Groton Bank is passionate about helping turn dreams into realities for businesses of all types. In addition to providing custom financial solutions, we proudly offer informational programs throughout the year to arm business owners with the tools they will need to be successful,” explained Lori Dufficy, EVP, Director of Sales & Service. “It is always inspiring to hear the ideas for new ventures and gratifying to assist individuals in reaching their goals. What is especially exciting for us is when participants begin to collaborate, and share ideas and advice with each other.”

The instructor-led curriculum was developed jointly by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Each class will be delivered by Chelsea Groton Bank team members and local professionals to new or operating small business owners—with or without formal business training—to provide a practical introduction to aspects of starting and managing a business.

Classes meet on Tuesdays from 6-8 PM at Foundry 66 in Norwich:

· February 25: 6-7 pm - Is Owning a Business Right for You?; 7-8 pm - Planning for a Healthy Business

· March 3: 6-7 pm - Time Management; 7-8 pm - Public Speaking

· March 10: 6-7 pm - Banking Services; 7-8 pm - Credit

· March 17: 6-7 pm - Financial Management; 7-8 pm - Cash Flow

· March 24: 6-7 pm - Risk Management; 7-8 pm - Insurance

· March 31: 6-7 pm - Tax Planning and Reporting; 7-8 pm - Succession Planning

· April 7: 6-7 pm - Organizational Types; 7-8 pm - Record Keeping

· April 14: 6-8 pm - Pitch Night

“Participants are welcome to pick and choose the seminar topics that appeal to them, however, to get the most out of the program, we recommend attending all of the classes,” shared Miria Gray, AS, Community Education Officer at Chelsea Groton.

To learn more and to register, visit ChelseaGroton.com/ChelseaUniversity or email Miria Gray at mgray@chelseagroton.com.

About Chelsea Groton Bank

Based in Groton, Conn., Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also provides online and mobile banking, 24-hour telephone banking, and nationwide ATM banking for individuals, families and businesses. To learn more, please visit chelseagroton.com. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Contact: Barb Curto, VP, Marketing Manager

Phone: (860) 448-4118

Email: bcurto@chelseagroton.com

CHARTER OAK IS NO. 1 MORTGAGE LENDER FOR 10 CONSECUTIVE YEARS

Credit Union Has Originated Over $1.2 Billion in Eastern CT Mortgages Since 2010

Waterford, CT ­– February 10, 2020 Charter Oak Federal Credit Union is the Number 1 residential mortgage lender in eastern Connecticut for the 10th straight year, originating over 800 mortgages in New London and Windham counties combined during 2019 with a total value exceeding $101 million.

Since 2010, when Charter Oak first became the top residential lender in eastern Connecticut, the credit union has originated nearly 10,000 mortgages in both counties combined with a total value of more than $1.25 billion, based on annual data compiled by The Warren Group’s Residential Mortgage Marketshare Report.

“This is a very impressive achievement for Charter Oak, and particularly for our lending team which has maintained top mortgage lender honors for all of eastern Connecticut for an entire decade,” said Brian A. Orenstein, Charter Oak’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “We've worked very hard to offer the best mortgage products and service available in our marketplace, and it’s evident by our Number 1 ranking 10 years in a row that homebuyers across eastern Connecticut strongly agree,” he said.

Over the course of 2019, Charter Oak originated 803 residential mortgages in New London and Windham counties combined with a total value of $101.6 million, which exceeded all of the other local and national banks and credit unions serving the two counties, based on The Warren Group's data. The next closest competitor to Charter Oak originated 467 mortgages in New London and Windham counties combined during 2019.

In addition to earning the top ranking for the number of residential mortgages originated in New London and Windham counties combined in 2019, Charter Oak also ranked first in the number of residential mortgages in New London County by originating 602 mortgages with a total value of more than $81 million. Charter Oak also took top honors in Windham County, ranking first in the number of residential mortgages by originating 201 mortgages with a value of nearly $20 million.

The Warren Group’s Residential Mortgage Marketshare Report includes all residential mortgages in New London and Windham counties with a value between $1.00 and $25 million. The Mass.-based Warren Group (www.thewarrengroup.com) collects and compiles data on real estate sales and ownership and publishes The Commercial Record and the Banker & Tradesman publications.

Charter Oak features an extensive line of mortgage products, including conventional 10, 15, 20 and 30-year terms as well as popular Accelerator 8-year or 12-year mortgages. In addition, Charter Oak offers first-time homebuyer mortgages and has VA, FHA, USDA, and CHFA mortgages available as well as 1, 3, 5, 7 and 10-year adjustable rate mortgages. Charter Oak also provides lower-rate mortgages geared toward police officers, teachers, members of the military, and disabled individuals.

To learn more about Charter Oak’s mortgage products, including our refinancing options, home equity loans and lines of credit, stop by any branch, visit CharterOak.org, or call our mortgage originators at 860.446.3047 or 800.962.3237, extension 3047. Federally insured by NCUA. Equal Housing Lender.

Charter Oak Federal Credit Union is like a bank, just better! We've been proudly serving eastern Connecticut since 1939 and we offer great checking, deposit, lending, insurance and investment products. And because we're a credit union, we're owned by our members, not by shareholders. So we can offer lower rates on loans and higher rates on deposits. It's easy to become a Charter Oak member: simply live, work, worship, learn, or volunteer in New London or Windham counties. So join today and see why Members Bank Better at Charter Oak!

Contact:

Anthony Cronin

AVP-Director of Marketing

860.446.3254 or acronin@cofcu.com

Farmers, Chefs, Historians, and Activists Come Together in Upcoming Dandelion Series at the Yellow Farmhouse Education Center

On February 8th, the Yellow Farmhouse Education Center kicked off the first annual Dandelion Series, a collection of workshops and lectures designed to explore the culinary heritage and imagine the food future of southeastern Connecticut. The dandelion, Yellow Farmhouse's logo, is a plant that offers a metaphor for how we can reframe the way we think about food. It is often thought of as a weed, something to be fought, sprayed, and eradicated. But, in fact, the flower is one of the first sources of nectar for bees in the spring. Its sturdy tap root helps break up the soil and its leaves and roots have been used for culinary and medicinal purposes for generations. Finally, there is the iconic seed head that many of us recall wishing on as children. Through the Dandelion Series, we aim to share stories and information that will shift how our community values and thinks about our local food system.

The six week series will feature farmers, chefs, historians, and food activists with diverse perspectives on our local food system, including:

    • Lecture: Why American women stopped baking bread & why we should care, Maria Trumpler, Senior Lecturer at Yale University in Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies: Saturday, February 8, 12-1:30 pm
    • Workshop: Baking with Whole Grains, Dave Vacca, Head Baker at 85th Day Food Community: Saturday, February 8, 2-4 pm
    • Workshop: Mohegan Food, Rachel-Beth Sayet, Indigenous Educator: Tuesday, February 11, 6-7:30 pm
    • Lecture: Representation & Realities in New England Fisheries, Matthew McKenzie, Professor of History at UCONN: Tuesday, February 18, 6-7:30 pm
    • Workshop: Regenerative Garden Planning, Andy Meek, Head Farmer at Stone Acres Farm, Noreen Kepple, Master Gardener: Saturday, February 22, 2-4 pm
    • Workshop: Cooking with Kelp & Oysters, Suzie Flores, Stonington Kelp Company, Steve Malinowski, Fishers Island Oysters: Saturday, March 7, 2-4 pm
    • Lecture: The Power of Food to Build a Community, Karen Washington, Founder of Rise & Root Farm: Sunday, March 15, 2:30-4pm

All programs are free for farmers, chefs, and teachers and $20-$50 for the general public. Visit www.yellowfarmhouse.org to register.

The Yellow Farmhouse Education Center, located on Stone Acres Farm in Stonington, CT, connects people to each other and to where their food comes from through culinary and farm-based education. Our school programs, teacher professional development, and cooking classes for kids and adults help cultivate a shared commitment to supporting a local, sustainable food system accessible and affordable to all.

NESS FOUNDER SPIKE LOBDELL RECEIVES US SAILING'S MARTIN LURAY AWARD

"The Marty," as it is known, is the highest community sailing honor bestowed by US Sailing.

Stonington, CT - The New England Science & Sailing Foundation is proud to announce that CEO and Founder of NESS, Michael "Spike" Lobdell, has been awarded the prestigious US Sailing Martin A. Luray Award. The award recognizes Lobdell's outstanding and unselfish contributions to further public access sailing. Known popularly as "The Marty," the award is the highest honor bestowed by US Sailing, the sport's governing body, for community sailing programs.

According to US Sailing, Lobdell, "has been responsible for guiding NESS's vision, directing the execution of its strategy, organizing its governance, overseeing its staffing, managing the facility, directing community relations, and driving growth." They add, "Lobdell has shared his wealth of knowledge, his program resources, and his support with countless sailing centers and individuals across the country, and has grown community sailing immensely. These efforts, along with his direct work with NESS, reflect Lobdell's vision, leadership, and, importantly, belief in water as a platform for learning."

Lobdell founded NESS in 2002 and has been energetically working to build the nonprofit's capacity to provide access to sailing and the water for all-especially underserved youth and persons with disabilities. "It's a great honor to receive this recognition and the award is truly a reflection of the work of our dedicated NESS team who, day after day, represent NESS's four core values of Inclusiveness, Experiential Learning, Personal Growth, and Stewardship," says Lobdell.

In 2106 Lobdell received the National Recreation Foundation's Robert W. Crawford Achievement Prize-an award that recognizes the individual that has done the most to advance the lives of inner-city youth through recreation. The same year, he was previously recognized by US Sailing as the Outstanding Organizational Leader of a sailing organization.

New England Science & Sailing Foundation, Inc. (NESS), is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) ocean adventure education organization that engages students in experiential learning to build confidence, teamwork, and leadership skills. Marine sciences, adventure sports, powerboating, and sailing are platforms for inquiry-based learning, personal discovery, teaching respect and responsibility for the sea, and creating connections with the community. NESS operates year-round with families, schools, and organizations to provide high-quality programs that blend an innovative curriculum with exciting ocean adventure activities. For more information, visit www.nessf.org.

Contact:

Todd Vorenkamp

Associate Director of Communications and Public Relations

860-535-9362

tvorenkamp@nessf.org

CHARTER OAK WILL AWARD $90,000 IN COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIPS

Credit Union Offers $2,000 Scholarship Opportunities to 45 Students

Waterford, CT – February 7, 2020 – Charter Oak Federal Credit Union is now accepting scholarship applications for its annual $90,000 scholarship giveaway.

Applications can be completed electronically now through Monday, March 16th, and can be found online at CharterOak.org/content/scholarship. This opportunity is only available for new and existing credit union members; membership is free for students. Visit any branch location or call 860.446.8085 to inquire about membership. Products such as the Bright Futures Savings Accounts are popular among college-bound students and offer competitive rates that will help students’ jumpstart their savings.

The credit union has been offering expanded scholarship opportunities to its members for six consecutive years via its $90,000 scholarship giveaway. The program has garnered the attention of students, administrators, and other members of the local community for its guarantee to award one $2,000 college scholarship to one college-bound senior at each high school within New London and Windham counties with an attendance of at least 100 students. Additional scholarships will be awarded to students already enrolled in college.

Through Charter Oak’s Community Giving Program, the credit union has made it a priority to give back to the communities it serves. Consequently, the credit union selects scholarship recipients based on their academic excellence and volunteer efforts.

The credit union previously awarded 221 college scholarships totaling $442,000 over the past five years.

Charter Oak is eastern Connecticut’s largest credit union with assets of $1.2 billion as of December 31, 2019. Charter Oak has an expansive and convenient network of 16 branches serving New London and Windham counties, providing the largest and most convenient branch network of any local financial institution serving eastern Connecticut. For more information about Charter Oak’s broad range of products and services, please visit any of our convenient branches, or visit our website at CharterOak.org, or call our Contact Center at 860.446.8085 or 800.962.3237. Federally insured by NCUA. Equal Housing Lender.

Charter Oak Federal Credit Union is like a bank, just better! We’ve been proudly serving eastern Connecticut since 1939 and we offer great checking, deposit, lending, insurance and investment products. And because we’re a credit union, we’re owned by our members, not by shareholders. So we can offer lower rates on loans and higher rates on deposits. It’s easy to become a Charter Oak member: simply live, work, worship, learn, or volunteer in New London or Windham counties. So join today and see why Members Bank Better at Charter Oak!

Contact:

Shaun M. Formica, Community Relations Manager

860.446.3238

sformica@cofcu.com

City of Groton Cabaret 2020 Concert Series Continues with Azalea Drive

As we get deeper into the winter the City of Groton Cabaret 2020 Concert Series is going full-throttle with its third band of the series – Azalea Drive. Azalea Drive is one of the most popular bands in the region, playing at all sorts of venues throughout the area over the years. And now we have the distinct pleasure of having them play for us on Sunday, February 9th in the City of Groton Auditorium beginning at 3:00 p.m.

This is the trimmed down and mellowed up version of the popular full band Azalea Drive. Kym and Ron use their magical musical chemistry to bewitch audiences with the best of the last several decades, including Hall and Oates, Stevie Wonder, Bruno Mars and much more.

The City Cabaret concert series is co-sponsored and co-produced by Groton Utilities and the City of Groton Parks and Recreation Department.

All City Cabaret 2020 concerts are free and held in the City of Groton Municipal Auditorium at 295 Meridian Street in the City of Groton on selected Sundays at 3:00 p.m. Take Exit 87 off I-95. Then turn right at the first light.

Concerts begin at 3:00 p.m. and end at roughly 5:00 p.m.

The full schedule of concerts is as follows:

February 9, 2020 – Azalea Drive Duo

This is the trimmed down and mellowed up version of the popular full band Azalea Drive. Kym and Ron use their magical musical chemistry to bewitch audiences with the best of the last several decades, including Hall and Oates, Stevie Wonder, Bruno Mars and much more.

March 8, 2020 - Whiskey Wine and Coke

Whiskey Wine and Coke are a musical trio with a male and female lead singer and acoustic guitarist. The band skillfully covers songs from the 60's, 70's, 80's and 90's and modern country. Through the intimacy of a trio, they engage their audience to experience musical nostalgia while dancing and singing along to timeless favorites!

Dessert, coffee and bottle water will be available for purchase from the Fitch High School Alcohol and Drug Free Party Committee.

The concerts are free. No alcohol is allowed. The concert info line is (860) 446-4129.

Groton-New London Art At the Airport Exhibits Latin American Artists Adrian Meyer, Ivan Huerto and Maria Colombo- Artists in Residence at New London's Expressiones Cultural Center

The Southeastern CT Cultural Coalition is pleased to announce the Art At the Airport program's winter exhibit featuring artwork by three Latin American artists-in-residence hosted by Expressiones Cultural Center opened on January 2 and will be on view through March 31 at the Groton - New London Airport.

The exhibit features works by Uruguay's Adrian Meyer and Peru's Ivan Huerto through February 13 and changes to works by Argentina's Maria Colombo created in collaboration with New London Public School students through March 31. All three artists are part of Expressiones' ArtVenture and artist-in-residency programs.

ArtVenture increases cultural competency, and provides relevant and unique experiences, bilingual arts and educational programming for children in New London Public Schools through artists-in-residence recruited by Expressiones from Latin-America.

Cultural Coalition Executive Director said, "Expressiones is a gem in our region. We are thrilled to be able to help provide an opportunity for residents and community members to see the work of three exciting Latin American contemporary artists and the artistic products reflecting their time and projects with local students."

A reception for the artists, students and community is being planned.

Registration for NESS's Ocean Adventure Summer Camp Opens 2/1

Sailing, marine science, and adventure sports camp for kids 4-17

STONINGTON, CT. New England Science & Sailing Foundation (NESS) will open registration for its 2020 Summer Camp on Saturday, February 1, 2020. NESS summer programs run Monday through Friday for 10 weeks (June 22 - August 28). The half-day and full-day programs are open to students from ages 4-17 and located in Stonington, CT.

NESS, a nationally-recognized and award-winning ocean adventure STEM education nonprofit, provides students of all ages with year-round programming that includes marine science, sailing, powerboating, and adventure sports. NESS's summer programs offer a unique combination of on-the-water and in-the-classroom lessons intended to spark curiosity, enhance learning, and encourage students to step out of their comfort zones. Summer programs include courses in sailing, marine science, adventure sports, and powerboating. This year NESS has brand new themes for all marine science programs, and will continue to offer high quality sailing instruction, and exciting adventure sports programs!

NESS's adventure sports offerings for ages 9-17 include surfing, fishing, powerboating, kayaking, geocaching & navigation, and more. Opportunities for students to experience hybrid adventure sports classes in which there are combinations of different sports within each class will be offered again this summer. NESS will again offer programs including The American Canoe Association (ACA) Kayak and Junior Lifeguarding courses which are offered for older students to learn and practice their on the water skills.

The nonprofit will continue to offer sailing classes for students ages 6-16 with courses that vary in length from one to eight weeks. As with adventure sports courses, there will be combination classes for students to try different types of sailboats during the week-long class. NESS will be offering foiling as a part of the youth sailing options!

NESS also offers a variety of marine science courses for students ages 4-15 with brand new themes this year. NESS will collaborate again this summer with the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center, Project Oceanology, and the Mystic Aquarium on a few courses.

To learn more or register, please visit: www.nessf.org/summercamp. Classes fill fast, so interested families are encouraged to sign up as soon as possible. Financial aid is available to make the ocean accessible to all.

New England Science & Sailing Foundation, Inc. (NESS), is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) ocean adventure education organization that engages students in experiential learning to build confidence, teamwork, and leadership skills. Marine sciences, adventure sports, powerboating, and sailing are platforms for inquiry-based learning, personal discovery, teaching respect and responsibility for the sea, and creating connections with the community. NESS operates year-round with families, schools, and organizations to provide high-quality programs that blend an innovative curriculum with exciting ocean adventure activities. For more information, visit www.nessf.org.

Contact:

Lauren Lyons

Director of Administrative Services

860-535-9362

Lauren@nessf.org

Knights of Columbus Gales Ferry Council Donates Tootsie Roll Drive Funds to The Arc Eastern Connecticut

NORWICH—The Gales Ferry Our Lady’s Shrine Council #7054 of the Knights of Columbus awarded $1,123.36-- the proceeds of its 2019 Tootsie Roll Drive—to The Arc Eastern Connecticut. Thanks to the continued support of the Knights of Columbus, The Arc’s Community Life & Advocacy component is able to provide a variety of community involvement programs, self-advocay groups, and health and fitness activities, including Special Olympics, to over 170 participants with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) from eastern Connecticut. All The Arc’s programs stress equality of opportunity and choice, helping people with IDD live their best lives.

For more information on The Arc ECT’s Community Life & Advocacy program, please contact Denise Tift at (860) 889-4435, ext. 116.

COMO Summer Program Registration Open Feb. 1

COMO’s offering sports, STEAM, Beach Fun, and MORE!

Registration for summer youth programs (ages 3-17) at the Stonington Community Center (COMO) opens February 1. Camp COMO campers, grades K-8, participate in activities throughout the entire COMO campus - acting on the stage, playing on the tennis and paddle courts, swimming at the beach, learning in the Children’s Garden and more! Camp COMO is a state licensed program and runs for 10 weeks during the summer, beginning June 24. Full-day, half-day, and extended day care is available. We also offer summer preschool options, such as traditional-style preschool and camp-style preschool, which runs for eight weeks starting July 1. In addition to day camp, youth have the opportunity to participate in specialized STEAM or athletic camps, clinics and programs throughout the summer.

Athletic camp offerings include sports camp (offering a variety of athletic games), field hockey camp, and basketball camp, as well as tennis and instructional soccer programs. STEAM has some great camps in store for young makers. Maker camp will teach youth to safely use hand tools to create fun projects. Other STEAM camps in the COMO Makerspace include one-week sessions of 3D Printing and Dungeons & Dragons. Youth interested in pottery can take Sculpture Camp in the COMO Pottery Studio. New this year is the Sunshine Makers program held at duBois Beach focusing on using tools to create summer-themed projects. Family access to duBois Beach is included for families with kids in Sunshine Makers. Young teens and high school students looking to develop leadership skills can join the COMO’s Junior Leadership Program.

For more information on Camp COMO, athletic and STEAM enrichment camps, visit www.thecomo.org/summer. For further information, please visit www.thecomo.org, stop by the COMO at 28 Cutler Street, Stonington, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m, or call the COMO at 860-535-2476. --

Emma Legare

Digital Communications Specialist

Stonington Community Center

860-535-2476

www.thecomo.org

Mystic Geriatrics Institute works to reduce the need for hospital admissions & emergency Care for seniors

Mystic Geriatrics Institute (MGI) is working on a project that will help transform the way health care is delivered to elderly citizens, ensuring that they remain vital and vibrant as long as physically possible. The Institute is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that is dedicated to improving the well-being and quality of life for seniors in Southeastern Connecticut. Our goal is to promote the region as a center of geriatric excellence.

We are developing a home-based program of primary care for the elderly To empower and inspire individuals to live a healthier, more active life.

Our hope is that the need for emergency care and hospital admissions will be reduced. It will keep our elderly healthy longer and result in an enormous savings to our healthcare system. According to U.S. Census Bureau projections, the number of Americans age 65 and older is expected to nearly double in the next 40 years – from 52 million in 2018 to 95 million in 2060. Additionally, life expectancies are pushing ahead – average life expectancy has increased from 68 years in 1950 to 78.6 years in 2017. At the risk of using a well-worn cliché, we believe this program is a “win-win” for all parties.

For more info visit mysticgeriatricsinstitute.com or contact (860) 857-2110 or info@mysticgeriatricsinstitute.com

Guest Speaker: Holocaust Survivor Endre (Andy) Sarkany Venue Change

Tuesday, February 4 from 6:00 - 7:30 pm

UConn Avery Point Auditorium

1084 Shennecossett Rd, Groton, CT 06340

**Due to high interest and limited space at the Mystic & Noank Library, this event has been moved to UConn Avery Point Auditorium. Below is the original press release advertising the event, sent on January 16. Please update any listings or calendars for this event to reflect the new location.**

Please join us in welcoming and honoring our guest Endre (Andy Sarkany), a Holocaust survivor, for a talk about his life's experiences. Mr. Sarkany was born in Budapest, Hungary, and the building in which he lived was located inside the Budapest ghetto, where he remained during the Holocaust. He eventually immigrated to the U.S. after WWII, when Hungary became a communist nation under the Soviet regime.

Over the past 10 years, Mr. Sarkany has been speaking to audiences about his personal experiences during the Holocaust, living under the brutality of the Soviet regime in Hungary, and finding a home in the United States. Read more about Endre Sarkany online at the Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center website.

This event is free and open to the public; no registration is required.

The Mystic & Noank Library is located at 40 Library Street in Mystic, CT and has an extensive collection of books and media for children, teens, and adults. Library hours are from 10:00 am to 9:00 pm Monday through Wednesday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Thursday through Saturday.

Visit our web page at www.mysticnoanklibrary.org, or find us at Mystic & Noank Library on Facebook.

Contact: Erik Caswell, Adult Services Librarian

Telephone: 860-536-7721

Mystic Seaport Museum to Hold Ice Festival February 15-17

Family Activities Include Ice Sculptures, Working Dog Demonstrations, Toy Boat Building, Arts and Crafts, and Special Music Concerts in the Planetarium

Mystic, Conn. (January 28, 2020) — Mystic Seaport Museum will hold its annual Ice Festival, February 15-17. The event will be three days of winter activities in conjunction with the exhibition J.M.W. Turner: Watercolors from Tate, now on display in the Museum’s Collins Gallery.

Families are invited to enjoy games, activities, music, and entertainment throughout the Museum’s grounds:

· Ice sculpture demos (Sunday and Monday)

· Sock-skating rink for kids

· Toy boat building

· Paint-n-sip

· How to make pemmican, the original survival food

· A fire pit, with s’mores

· Working dog demonstrations with Saint Bernards and Newfoundlands (Saturday and Sunday)

· Horse-and-carriage rides (Monday)

· “Resonances Boreales,” a live music concert featuring the aurora borealis in the Planetarium

· The U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Bollard will berth at the Museum, weather permitting.

In conjunction with the Turner exhibition, there will be daily screenings of the feature film Mr. Turner and periods of piano music in the gallery on Sunday and Monday. The exhibition ends it run at the Museum on Sunday, February 23.

New to the festival this year is “Resonances Boreales,”a live piano performance by Canadian musician Roman Zavada set to a stunning 360-degree video of the Northern Lights projected onto the dome of the Planetarium. There will be daytime and evening performances. Daytime performances are 30 minutes long and will occur at 1 and 3 p.m. all three days of the festival. Tickets are $3 for members and $5 for non-members and can be purchased at the Planetarium starting at 10 a.m. on the day of the show.

The evening shows are 60-minute performances beginning at 7 p.m. on February 14-16. Tickets for these after-hours events are $8 for members and $10 for non-members (General admission not required for the evening shows and tickets can be purchased in advance).

General admission tickets will be valid for all three days of the festival.

For more information, please visit www.mysticseaport.org/icefestival.

About Mystic Seaport Museum

Mystic Seaport Museum, founded in 1929, is the nation’s leading maritime museum. In addition to providing a multitude of immersive experiences, the Museum also houses a collection of more than two million artifacts that include more than 500 historic vessels and one of the largest collections of maritime photography. The new Thompson Exhibition Building houses a state-of-the-art gallery that currently features J.M.W. Turner: Watercolors from Tate, the most comprehensive exhibition of Turner watercolors ever displayed in the U.S. Mystic Seaport Museum is located one mile south of Exit 90 off I-95 in Mystic, CT. For more information, please visit www.mysticseaport.org and follow Mystic Seaport Museum on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.

Contact:

Dan McFadden

Director of Communications

Mystic Seaport Museum

860.572.5317

dan.mcfadden@mysticseaport.org

Chelsea Groton’s Rich Balestracci Named New Leader in Banking

GROTON, Conn. – Rich Balestracci, VP, Commercial Loan Officer, was recently selected as a New Leader in Banking by the Connecticut Bankers Association (CBA) and American Business Media. This honor is awarded to up-and-coming professionals from across Connecticut. The 13 recipients are considered to be outstanding employees who have made a notable impact in their bank and their community, beyond their job description.

“Rich values his relationships with business owners and community members. He is a hard worker and a leader who is always trying to figure out how we can help a certain business get their start, or ways we can support a business as they grow,” said Michael Rauh, President and CEO of Chelsea Groton Bank. “Rich embodies the Bank’s philosophy of doing all we can to help customers achieve their goals in big and small ways, and he encourages his colleagues to do the same. This honor is well-deserved.”

An active member of the community, Rich is the Treasurer of the Stonington Community Center, a member of the Stonington Economic Development Commission, and a Loan Committee Member for the Southeastern Connecticut Enterprise Region (SECTER). Rich is also a coach with the Pawcatuck Little League.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Connecticut in 2007 and a MBA for emerging leaders from the University of New Haven. He completed the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut Leadership Program, and is a recent graduate of the American Bankers Association’s Stonier Graduate School of Banking at the University of Pennsylvania.

Rich and his family reside in Pawcatuck, CT.

About Chelsea Groton Bank

Based in Groton, Conn., Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also provides online and mobile banking, 24-hour telephone banking, and nationwide ATM banking for individuals, families and businesses. To learn more, please visit chelseagroton.com. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Wilcox Energy Announces Propane Delivery Expansion

Wilcox Energy is excited to announce the expansion of their propane delivery and service to the greater Mystic area, including the towns of Mystic, Stonington, & Groton. In business since 1955, Wilcox Energy has been providing service throughout the greater shoreline area for 65 years. Located in Westbrook, CT, Wilcox Energy is locally owned and operated, and is committed to providing quality, professional, and reliable service. According to the owners of the company, “There are not a lot of local options for propane in the greater Mystic area, & very few companies offer in-house, 24 hour service to their propane heating customers. We see an opportunity to fill this void and provide these services to propane heated homes throughout the greater Mystic area.”

If you use propane at your home or business, we’d love to hear from you. Chances are we can save you money while providing you the best in class service available. Visit our website: Wilcox-energy.com for more information. Or give us a call at 860-399-6218. Wilcox Energy. For all of your propane delivery and service needs.

WEAR YOUR HEART ON YOUR SLEEVE

Always Home’s February 7th HEART TO HEART Gala to Prevent Family Homelessness

Mystic, CT (January 23, 2020) — Always Home’s HEART TO HEART gala is set for Friday, February 7, 2020 at the Mystic Marriott Hotel & Spa. This heart-inspired evening begins at 6 pm and includes a three-course gourmet dinner, auctions of unique items and experiences, and live music for dancing. Being honored at the gala are Susette Tibus of Simply Majestic and Mike Mondello of Mystic Financial Group, LLC for their long-time support of Always Home and the community at large.

The gala is the nonprofit agency’s primary fundraiser for the year and supports Always Home’s mission to Prevent Family Homelessness. “Many families who live and work in our community are just one minor financial crisis away from homelessness,” said Always Home’s Executive Director, Betty Smith. “Yet family homelessness continues to be invisible to most of us. Our Heart to Heart gala theme is about having a candid conversation about this critical, regional issue.”

In the past six months, Always Home has already served 223 families, a 48% increase over the number of families served this same time last year. For these families, help with a month’s rent, a utility bill, child care or a costly car repair is enough to keep them in their homes and out of the emergency shelter system.

“Susette and Mike are enthusiastic and devoted supporters of Always Home,” added Smith. “We’re honoring them for leading with their hearts and making a difference in the lives of so many.” Smith also recognized the contribution of this year’s gala’s Presenting Sponsor, The Whaler’s Inn, and top corporate sponsors, Melinda Elliott Carlisle of Randall, Realtors, Stonington Odd Fellows Lodge #26, Groton Utilities, Mystic Shipyard, The Day, Mohegan Sun, Mystic Aquarium and The Murli Group.

Limited tickets to the event are still available. Individual tickets are $150. For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.alwayshome.org

About Always Home

Always Home is a private 501(C)3) non-profit formed in 1998 to address the needs of Eastern Connecticut's homeless and imminently homeless families. Formerly known as Mystic Area Shelter & Hospitality, Inc. (MASH), the agency continues to pursue its mission of Preventing Family Homelessness. As a key player in the Eastern Coordinated Access Network (ECAN), Always Home works closely with the other service providers in the Eastern Connecticut regional network to ensure that at-risk families receive the services they need to attain housing stability. For more information about Always Home, visit www.alwayshome.org

Contact: Kathryn Keller

Kkeller@alwayshome.org

(860) 245-0222

Jennifer Pensa
Katherine Allingham
Kathryn Alves

Alex Masse

Jessica Todd

Barbara Curto

Beth Glynn

Jamie Goulas

Jean McGran

Kristin Zummo

Michele Mogowan

Mario Siciliano

Chelsea Groton Bank Promotes 20

GROTON, Conn. – Chelsea Groton Bank is pleased to announce the promotion of 20 employees following a Board of Trustees meeting.

“Chelsea Groton Bank has been successful for over 165 years because of the hard-working team of people we have here,” said Michael Rauh, President and CEO of Chelsea Groton Bank. “Each of the employees earning a promotion exhibits the traits and behaviours we value – innovative, collaborative, trustworthy, professional, knowledgeable, versatile and positive – and has shown a high level of dedication to their job and the communities we serve. Congratulations to these well-deserving members of the Chelsea team.”

Jennifer Pensa of Stonington, CT, Director of Operations and Technology, has been promoted to Executive Vice President. In her role, Jenn has oversight of Risk and Compliance, Facilities, and the Business Intelligence team as well as Operations and Technology. Jenn joined Chelsea Groton Bank in February, 2018 after three years at WSFS Bank in Wilmington, DE, where she was Vice President of the Contact Center and Customer Experience department. Jenn earned her bachelor’s degree in Applied Behavioral Science from Penn State University. She is a 2015 graduate of the CT School of Finance and Management and a 2017 graduate of the Academy Leadership Executive Leadership Excellence course.

Katherine Allingham of Preston, CT, Director of Risk Management, has been promoted to First Vice President. Kate joined Chelsea Groton in 1999 and worked in Retail Banking, Financial Services, and Marketing before joining the Risk Management department in 2008. In 2015, she assumed the role of Assistant Director of Risk Management. Kate is a cum laude graduate of Wellesley College and was awarded the John G. Shortell Award for outstanding academic achievement when she graduated from the CT School of Finance and Management in 2007. Kate is also a graduate of the ABA National and Intermediate Compliance Schools, the ABA Graduate School of Compliance and Risk Management, and the ABA Stonier Graduate School of Banking. She is a Certified Regulatory Compliance Manager (CRCM).

Kathryn Alves of Groton, CT, Credit Department Manager, has been promoted to First Vice President. Kate joined Chelsea Groton Bank in 2005 and worked in Loan Servicing and Risk Management before moving to the Commercial Credit department. Kate earned her bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from Merrimack College. Kate is a 2008 graduate of the CT School of Finance and Management and a 2011 graduate of the Chamber ECT Leadership Program. Kate has received several awards including the 2012 Chelsea Award, 2013 40 Under Forty, and 2015 Connecticut Banker’s Association (CBA) New Leader in Banking Award.

Alex Masse of Baltic, CT, has been promoted to Director of Operations and Business Intelligence, and First Vice President. In this new role, Alex will be assuming responsibility for Business Intelligence, in addition to his responsibility for the Business Banking and Deposit Operations departments. Alex joined the Bank as a teller in 1998, and held various branch positions for 15 years. Since 2013, Alex has overseen the suite of treasury management tools and services offered at the Bank. In 2011, Alex was named a New Leader in Banking by the CBA and in 2014, he was named a 40 Under Forty honoree. Alex graduated from the Connecticut School of Finance and Management, the American Bankers Association Stonier Graduate School of Banking, and the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut Leadership Program. He serves on the Town of Sprague Board of Finance and is a Board member for the Sprague, Franklin, Canterbury Little League.

Jessica Todd of Niantic, CT, Director of Finance, has been promoted to First Vice President. Jess has been with Chelsea Groton Bank since 2004 and is responsible for all aspects of the finance function including staff, systems, and financial reporting. Jess has a master’s degree in Accounting and a CPA license. In addition, Jess completed the ABA Stonier Graduate School in 2014 and was named a CBA New Leader in Banking in 2012. Jess is President of the East Lyme Public Trust Foundation and serves as Treasurer for the East Lyme Middle School PTA.

Barbara Curto of Mystic, CT, Marketing Manager, has been promoted to Vice President and has assumed responsibility for management oversight of the Bank’s community education programs. Barb joined Chelsea Groton in 2015 as a Marketing Representative. She has a Bachelor of Arts from Loyola University Maryland and earned a Graduate Certificate in Strategic Communication from Villanova University. Barb graduated from the CT School of Finance and Management in 2019, and was a recipient of Banking New England’s 2019 Women of Fire Award.

Beth Glynn of Oakdale, CT, Retail Loan Originator, has been promoted to Vice President. Beth joined Chelsea Groton in 1995 and has spent the past 25 years as a Retail Loan Originator. Beth is an Ambassador for Safe Futures and a member of the Southeastern CT Women’s Network. She is also an active Board Member for the Home Builders and Remodelers Association of Eastern Connecticut (HBRAECT). She was a 2014 New Leaders in Banking award winner, 2016 George W. Strouse Spirit Award recipient and was recently honored with the 2019 HBRAECT Affiliate of the Year Award.

Jean McGran of Norwich, CT, has been promoted to Member Experience Market Manager and Vice President. She will have responsibility for regional management. Jean joined the Bank in 2017 as a Regional Sales and Service Manager. She graduated from Furman University’s School of Retail Bank Management and has over 30 years of retail banking experience. Jean is a 2018 Chelsea Award recipient, and in 2019, graduated from the Greater Norwich Area Chamber of Commerce L.E.A.D. Program.

Kristin Zummo of East Lyme, CT, Learning and Development Manager, has been promoted to Vice President. Kristin joined Chelsea Groton in January 2018 after several years at Electric Boat, where she spearheaded Training and Employee Development. Kristin has a bachelor’s degree from Messiah College and a master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Mansfield University. She is a certified DiSC Assessment Facilitator and is a certified Lean Six Sigma Yellow Belt.

Michele Magowan of Groton, CT, Retail Lending Sales Specialist, has been promoted to Assistant Treasurer. She started her career at Chelsea Groton as a teller in 1988. In 2000, she became a Residential Loan Representative and has held various roles in the Residential Lending department since that time. In 2013, Michelle assumed the responsibility of the Retail Internet Lending Specialist. Michelle is a 2003 graduate of the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern CT Leadership Program.

Christina Nocito of New London, CT, BSA Manager, has been promoted to Assistant Treasurer. Christina joined Chelsea Groton Bank in 1998 as a Checking Account Representative, and went on to hold various roles in Deposit Services, including the Risk and Compliance Specialist for the Deposit Services department. In 2015, she joined the BSA department. She has a bachelor’s degree in Justice Studies from Southern New Hampshire University. Christina graduated from the CT School of Finance and Management and the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut Leadership Program. Christina is the Chairperson of the Board of Directors for the OIC of New London, is Treasurer of Shoreline Roller Derby Inc., and volunteers at New London Community Meal Center and Habitat for Humanity. She is a 2018 George W. Strouse Spirit Award recipient.

Matthew Benoit of Westerly, RI, has been promoted to Project Management Specialist and Assistant Secretary. In this new role, Matt will be responsible for bank-wide project management. Matt joined Chelsea Groton in 2015 as the Business Process Analyst. Matt has a bachelor’s degree in Communications from the University of Rhode Island and an MBA from Southern New Hampshire University.

Jamie Goulas of Moosup, CT, Retail Loan Originator, has been promoted to Assistant Secretary. Jamie joined Chelsea Groton in 2015. She graduated from Three Rivers Community College with a Marketing degree and an Accounting concentration. In 2018, Jamie graduated from the Greater Norwich Area Chamber of Commerce L.E.A.D. Program.

Matthew Hastava of West Hartford, CT, Security Manager, has been promoted to Assistant Secretary. Matt joined Chelsea Groton Bank in 2019 as the Operations and Technology Coordinator. Matt has a Bachelor of Arts from Southern Connecticut State University. He is a Family Counseling Center board member and assists with the fundraising efforts for the United Way.

Becky Jacoinski of Westerly, RI, Benefits and Wellness Specialist, has been promoted to Assistant Secretary. Becky joined the Bank in 1995 as a Loan Servicing Representative, and has held various roles in lending and customer service. A few years later, she transitioned to Human Resources, where she currently oversees employee benefits and all wellness programming. Becky graduated from the CT School of Finance and Management in 2001 and was a 2015 Chelsea Award recipient.

Sara Lundy of Oakdale, CT, Compliance Administrator, has been promoted to Assistant Secretary. Sara joined Chelsea Groton in 2016 as a Risk and Compliance Specialist. She has a Bachelor of Arts from Thiel College and a MBA from New England College of Business and Finance. Sara is a graduate of the ABA Foundational, Intermediate, and Advanced Compliance schools, and is a 2019 graduate from the CT School of Finance and Management. She is a board member of the Bank Compliance Association of Connecticut.

Jessica Mazzaccaro of Newington, CT, Retail Lending Production Administrator, has been promoted to Assistant Secretary. Jessica joined Chelsea Groton in 2015 when the Bank opened a Lending Center in Glastonbury. Jessica has a bachelor’s degree from Assumption College in Foreign Affairs with a minor in Spanish and Politics.

Damen Norton of Groton, CT, Lending Compliance and Encompass Administrator, has been promoted to Assistant Secretary. He joined Chelsea Groton in 2018 as the Loan Servicing Team Lead. Damen graduated from the CT School of Finance and Management in 2012 and he is Lending Compliance certified through the American Bankers Association.

Elizabeth Owen of Norwich, CT, Senior Credit Analyst, has been promoted to Assistant Secretary. Liz joined the Bank in 2010 as a temporary employee in the Human Resources Department and moved to Loan Servicing in 2011 as the Escrow Representative. This past October, Liz was promoted to the position of Senior Credit Analyst. Liz was awarded the Chelsea Award in 2017.

Mario Siciliano of Westerly, RI, has been promoted to Technology Operations Manager. Mario joined Chelsea Groton in 2016, and was promoted to Technology Services Specialist II last year. He has been instrumental in providing Bank-wide technical support, development of the Bank’s employee intranet, and migration to VDI among other projects. Mario has a degree in Information Technology, Network Engineering, from the New England Institute of Technology along with several certifications from industry-leading companies.

About Chelsea Groton Bank

Based in Groton, Conn., Chelsea Groton Bank is a full-service mutually owned bank with over $1 billion in assets. Chelsea Groton Bank’s products and services include consumer banking, business banking, mortgage and business lending, cash management, financial planning and financial education classes. With 14 branch locations throughout New London County and a Loan Production Office in Hartford County, Chelsea Groton Bank also provides online and mobile banking, 24-hour telephone banking, and nationwide ATM banking for individuals, families and businesses. To learn more, please visit chelseagroton.com. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Connecticut Water Helps The Arc Eastern CT with Energy Assistance Project

The Arc Eastern Connecticut received $2,500 from Connecticut Water as part of Connecticut’s 2019 Neighborhood Assistant Act Tax credit program. The company’s participation helped The Arc ECT to begin upgrading aging and drafty windows at its Mechanic Street, Danielson building, which houses day supports for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. “Connecticut Water has been an an annual participant in the Neighborhood Assistance Act program,” said Judy Daviau, Deputy Quality Assurance Officer for Day Services at The Arc ECT. “They give back to so many deserving agencies throughout the state; we’re honored to have been a recipient of their support this year. ” Connecticut Water is dedicated to providing its 95,000 customers in 56 towns throughout the state with high quality drinking water, and is committed to conservation, health, and safety.

The Connecticut Neighborhood Assistance program allows certain firms to invest in community programs and receive 100% tax credit for energy conservation initiatives. Businesses interested in participating in the 2020 Neighborhood Assistance Act program can contact The Arc ECT for more information.

American Truck Historical Society Presents Award to The Arc ECT

The Nutmeg Chapter of the American Truck Historical Society, based in Woodstock, presented The Arc Eastern Connecticut with a $500 donation at its bimonthly meeting. The ATHS has been a longtime supporter of The Arc and and advocate for services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the region. This year the Nutmeg Chapter raised over $7,000 to benefit organizations that help people in need in eastern Connecticut. Other awardees at the ceremony were TEEG and Boy Scout Troop 26 of Pomfret.

To learn more about The Arc ECT’s programs, please visit thearcect.org or contact Denise Tift at (860) 889-4435 x 116.

Community Foundation’s Women and Girls Fund Supports The Arc Eastern Connecticut

The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut’s Northeast and Southeast Women and Girls Funds has awarded The Arc Eastern Connecticut $2,500 and $3,500, respectively, to augment and expand its successful “Voices” program for women with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) in both New London and Windham counties. Voices provides safe, nurturing groups for women with IDD who are at risk of, or survivors of, sexual assault, domestic violence or exploitation. Since 2016, the Foundation’s support has allowed the program to offer a variety of workshops led by area professionals in the areas of self-care and self-advocacy, establishing boundaries, stress reduction, personal safety, art therapy, etc. This year, a grant from the Northeast CT Women and Girls Fund will allow The Arc ECT to begin to offer the Voices program to women at its Danielson offices as well as at its main offices in Norwich.

“Many participants tell us this is the first group in which they’ve felt comfortable enough to begin to explore issues they’ve carried with them for many years,” notes The Arc ECT’s CEO Kathleen Stauffer. “Without the support of the Community Foundation and the Women and Girls Funds, this success would not be possible. The Foundation has been a tremendous partner.”

Voices is part of The Arc ECT’s Community Life & Advocacy (CL&A) program, which provides a wide variety of advocacy, support, health/fitness and social activities to people with IDD throughout eastern Connecticut. To learn more about CL&A or The Arc ECT’s other programs throughout the region, please visit thearcect.org or contact Denise Tift at (860) 889-4435, ext. 116.

Contact: Andrea Kaiser

The Arc Eastern Connecticut

akaiser@thearcect.org

860-889-4435 x118

thearcect.org

Custom Coasters Fundraiser

Commemorate your loved ones with a personalized gift

Celebrate your love this Valentine’s Day with a set of personalized laser-engraved cork coasters made in the Stonington Community Center’s (COMO) Makerspace! Your purchase supports youth arts and technology programming. Submit initials, names, and a meaningful date to create a special gift your partner, friend, or family members can use everyday (perfect for anniversaries or birthdays too)! Orders must be received by February 2 to guarantee pick-up by February 12; coasters can be purchased as a set of 4 for $15 or 8 for $25. Planning a party or a wedding? We can provide that perfect custom favor. Orders may be submitted online or dropped off at the COMO. For further information, please visit www.thecomo.org, stop by the COMO at 28 Cutler Street, Stonington, Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m, or call the COMO at 860-535-2476.

Kimberly Gagliardo Joins The Spa at Norwich Inn: Luxury spa veteran to bring health and wellness experience to destination spa and resort

Norwich, CT: January 2020 – John O’Shaughnessy, General Manager of The Spa at Norwich Inn, announced that Kimberly Gagliardo has joined the executive leadership team as its new Spa Director. Gagliardo joins the Spa from the Delamar Hotels, Hartford, CT and previously the Ocean House at Watch Hill, Rhode Island. Gagliardo’s history is one of impressive growth through the ranks from Assistant Spa Director to Regional Spa Director overseeing multisite spa operations throughout New England. Gagliardo is a graduate of both the University of Connecticut and the Galen Institute for Medical Massage Therapy.

“I am confident that the skills and experience Kimberly brings with her help round out our already strong Spa team and will help guide the Spa to ongoing success.” – John O’Shaughnessy, General Manager

As a leader in the spa industry, Gagliardo prides herself on creating an employee culture that delivers service standard excellence, and providing guests with a welcoming, integrated approach. Gagliardo is looking to bring innovation and opportunities into therapies, treatments, and wellness products while leveraging the beautiful surroundings and environment of the Spa at Norwich Inn.

“Ever since I can remember, the Spa at Norwich Inn had been on my radar as a place that I wanted to be. The professionalism of the team, the backing from the ownership and the loyalty of our customers, are all unsurpassed in spa circles. I can’t wait to get started!” – Kimberly Gagliardo.

A premier Destination Spa in Connecticut, The Spa at Norwich Inn is located less than two hours from both New York City and Boston. Built-in 1929 and renovated in 2017 and 2018, includes 49 unique rooms with four distinct suites. The Spa is consistently recognized as a top Destination Spa and the Best Day Spa by the readers of Connecticut Magazine. Located on the 42 acres adjacent to the main inn are 41villas offering every bedroom style with features such as galley kitchens, private balconies, and living rooms with wood-burning fireplaces. The Spa and guestrooms are complemented by the award-winning Kensington's Restaurant and Ascot Pub, both open to the public. The Spa at Norwich Inn is owned by the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation and is a member of the Historic Hotels of America, a program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, www.historichotels.org.

For more information on The Spa at Norwich Inn, visit www.thespaatnorwichinn.com.

Contact:

David Labbe

(860) 572-0851

David@bridgemarketingct.com

Announcing the Grand Marshal of the 2020 17th Annual Mystic Irish Parade

WHO: The Mystic Irish Parade Foundation Board of Directors

WHAT: The Mystic Irish Parade Foundation Board of Directors will proudly announce this year’s Grand Marshal for the 2020 17th Annual Mystic Irish Parade!

WHERE: Sift Bake Shop, 5 Water St, Mystic, CT 06355

WHEN: Friday January 17th, 8:30 a.m.

WHY: An important announcement! The Grand Marshal is carefully selected each year by the Mystic Irish Parade Foundation’s Board of Directors. Regardless of their heritage, the primary prerequisite for leading the parade in this role is honoring, supporting and being a positive, contributing member in the Southeastern Connecticut community.

The annual Mystic Irish Parade has grown to be the region’s largest parade with over 2,000 participants and 30,000 plus spectators each year. The Mystic Irish Parade Foundation is a volunteer-driven non-profit organization that raises money to fund local charities.

In addition to organizing a spectacular parade for the community and raising funds for these charitable organizations, the foundation also hosts an annual Irish Dinner and produces and funds the Grand Colleen Scholarship Contest. The Mystic Irish Parade Foundation is dedicated to promoting and sharing their Irish heritage through our website, Facebook page and other events throughout the year.

INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES:

Mystic Irish Parade Foundation leaders will be available to discuss the selection of the Grand Marshal for the 17th Annual Mystic Irish parade, which will be held Sunday, March 22nd, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. The Newly announced Grand Marshal will also be available for questions.

ADDITIONAL NOTES:

More information about this year’s events, sponsorship opportunities, registration for the parade or volunteering can be found on www.mysticirishparade.org.

CHARTER OAK EARNS TOP 5-STAR RATING FROM BAUERFINANCIAL

Superior Ranking Indicative of Credit Union’s Strong Financial Condition

Waterford, CT – January 14, 2020 – Charter Oak Federal Credit Union has earned the top 5-Star rating from BauerFinancial Inc. for its superior financial performance during the first nine months of 2019, reflecting Charter Oak’s position as one of the strongest financial institutions in the nation.

“Earning this five-star rating from BauerFinancial confirms that Charter Oak is a safe, sound and very strong financial institution,” said Brian A. Orenstein, Charter Oak’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “We work very hard to manage our finances in a sound manner for our members, so it’s gratifying when our strong financial position is confirmed by an independent ratings firm like BauerFinancial,” he said. Charter Oak’s top 5-Star rating is based on financial data filed with federal regulators as of September 30, 2019.

The Florida-based BauerFinancial is the nation’s leading independent bank and credit union rating and research firm. The firm only awards its top 5-Star rating to those financial institutions that excel in their capital, asset quality, profitability and other financial areas.

Financial institutions that earn BauerFinancial’s top 5-Star rating are safe, financially sound and operating well above their regulatory capital requirements. BauerFinancial compiles its financial data based on information reported to the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), which is the governing federal agency for credit unions. For more information about BauerFinancial, visit its website at www.BauerFinancial.com or call 800.388.6686.

Charter Oak is eastern Connecticut’s largest credit union with assets of $1.17 billion as of September 30, 2019. Charter Oak has an expansive and convenient network of 16 branches serving New London and Windham counties, providing the largest and most convenient branch network of any local financial institution serving eastern Connecticut. For more information about Charter Oak’s broad range of products and services, please visit any of our convenient branches, or visit our website at CharterOak.org, or call our Contact Center at 860.446.8085 or 800.962.3237. Federally insured by NCUA. Equal Housing Lender.

Charter Oak Federal Credit Union is like a bank, just better! We’ve been proudly serving eastern Connecticut since 1939 and we offer great checking, deposit, lending, insurance and investment products. And because we’re a credit union, we’re owned by our members, not by shareholders. So we can offer lower rates on loans and higher rates on deposits. It’s easy to become a Charter Oak member: simply live, work, worship, learn, or volunteer in New London or Windham counties. So join today and see why Members Bank Better at Charter Oak!

Stonington Garden Club Offers Gardens By the Sea Tours June 12-13, 2020

Gardens By The Sea, a walking tour of a hand-picked selection of private gardens in the village of Stonington, Connecticut is planned for Friday, June 12th and Saturday, June 13th, 2020. “Artists in the Borough” A unique feature of our 2020 walking tour is the showcasing of celebrated Plein Air artists from all over New England who will be painting in gardens and throughout the Borough, drawing inspiration from our seaside village landscapes. Our Tented Marketplace, located on the village square, will have a variety of vendors and will feature garden accessories, plants, crafts, clothing, jewelry, and home decorating and gift items. Our Celebrity Lecture and Luncheon will feature acclaimed author and garden designer Page Dickey. Gardens By The Sea will be open to the public each day from 10 am-4 pm, rain or shine. Tickets are $35 in advance, and $40 if purchased after June 1 and day of the tour, and are valid both days. Seating is limited and luncheon ticket orders will be accepted on a first come, first served basis.

Contact the Stonington Garden Club via...

Email: stoningtongardentour@gmail.com

Website: www.stoningtongardenclub.org

Phone: 860-415-9102

SCORE Southeastern CT Searching for Volunteers

Volunteer with SCORE and help local business owners. Become a leader in your business community. Feel empowered sharing your expertise with others. Grown professionally through lifelong learning.

SCORE is a nationally recognized non-profit organization: its mission is to help individuals to start or grow their own business.

Southeastern CT SCORE has a geographical footprint from Guilford to Stonington and from the Shoreline to the Middletown/Norwich area.

If you are looking for a way to give back to your community, have business experience, good communication skills and are comfortable using a computer, we invite you to join our dynamic group of volunteers.

Your knowledge provides those seeking small business advice an invaluable resource and ultimately strengthens the fabric of local communities by helping small businesses thrive. We welcome volunteers retired and those still active in their careers who are experienced and business savvy. Our volunteers are friendly, helpful and good listeners, willing to provide honest feedback and advice.

If you are interested in joining our team please visit https://sect.score.org/volunteer-97 or contact our New Member Chairperson, Tom Dolan, directly with any questions at (860) 304-4910 / tommey811@gmail.com.

Groton Utilities Announces Groton Caberet Schedule

Clan O’Cleary – Sunday, January 19, 3 – 5 pm. City of Groton Municipal Building Auditorium – Cost: Free

Clan O’Cleary’s music is firmly rooted in the sounds and the instruments of Ireland. Beautifully harmonious in both voices and instruments, from the soft mysticism of New Age Celtic to the raucous songs of the Irish bar band, this is Irish music played with gusto and grace, as it should be.

https://www.facebook.com/events/1223145954552367/

Azalea Drive Duo - Sunday, February 9, 3 – 5 pm. City of Groton Municipal Building Auditorium - Cost: Free

This is the trimmed down and mellowed up version of the popular full band Azalea Drive. Kym and Ron use their magical musical chemistry to bewitch audiences with the best of the last several decades, including Hall and Oates, Stevie Wonder, Bruno Mars and much more.

https://www.facebook.com/events/893641031031379/

Whiskey Wine and Coke - Sunday, March 8, 3 – 5 pm. City of Groton Municipal Building Auditorium - Cost: Free

Whiskey Wine and Coke are a musical trio with a male and female lead singer and acoustic guitarist. The band skillfully covers songs from the 60's, 70's, 80's and 90's and modern country. Through the intimacy of a trio, they engage their audience to experience musical nostalgia while dancing and singing along to timeless favorites!

https://www.facebook.com/events/1989206044557436/

The City Cabaret concert series is co-sponsored and co-produced by Groton Utilities and the City of Groton Parks and Recreation Department.

Dessert, coffee and bottle water will be available for purchase from the Fitch High School Alcohol and Drug Free Party Committee.

The concerts are free. No alcohol is allowed. The concert info line is (860) 446-4129.

Link to article with full schedule: http://cityofgroton.com/2019/12/03/city-cabaret-2019-2020-schedule-announcement/

Community Foundation’s Women and Girls Fund Supports The Arc Eastern Connecticut

The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut’s Northeast and Southeast Women and Girls Funds has awarded The Arc Eastern Connecticut $2,500 and $3,500, respectively, to augment and expand its successful “Voices” program for women with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) in both New London and Windham counties. Voices provides safe, nurturing groups for women with IDD who are at risk of, or survivors of, sexual assault, domestic violence or exploitation. Since 2016, the Foundation’s support has allowed the program to offer a variety of workshops led by area professionals in the areas of self-care and self-advocacy, establishing boundaries, stress reduction, personal safety, art therapy, etc. This year, a grant from the Northeast CT Women and Girls Fund will allow The Arc ECT to begin to offer the Voices program to women at its Danielson offices as well as at its main offices in Norwich.

“Many participants tell us this is the first group in which they’ve felt comfortable enough to begin to explore issues they’ve carried with them for many years,” notes The Arc ECT’s CEO Kathleen Stauffer. “Without the support of the Community Foundation and the Women and Girls Funds, this success would not be possible. The Foundation has been a tremendous partner.”

Voices is part of The Arc ECT’s Community Life & Advocacy (CL&A) program, which provides a wide variety of advocacy, support, health/fitness and social activities to people with IDD throughout eastern Connecticut. To learn more about CL&A or The Arc ECT’s other programs throughout the region, please visit thearcect.org or contact Denise Tift at (860) 889-4435, ext. 116.

Jewett City Savings Bank Foundation Awards $500 to The Arc Eastern Connecticut

The Jewett City Bank Foundation has awarded The Arc Eastern Connecticut $500 to its Day and In-Home Supports (IHS) programs for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and Autism Spectrum Disorder. This grant will allow the programs to purchase weighted blankets and a swing chair. These sensory items will give participants, especially those with ASD, a sense of security as well as aid in relaxation and calming.

Weighted blankets also help people recover and sleep after a seizure, a common issue for many of The Arc’s participants. “The Jewett City Savings Bank Foundation has been a great supporter of our agency,” notes The Arc’s CEO Kathleen Stauffer. “They’ve always been there to help augment not only our day services but our employment training programs and micro-enterprises. We’re lucky to have them as a community partner.”

To learn more about The Arc ECT’s day services and its programs throughout eastern Connecticut, please visit thearcect.org or contact Denise Tift at (860) 889-4435, ext. 116.

Dime Bank Foundation Awards Training Equipment to The Arc Eastern Connecticut

The Arc Eastern Connecticut was honored to receive a $1,003 grant from the Dime Bank Foundation in order to purchase CPR and first aid training materials for staff members working directly with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities in eastern Connecticut. With the July 2019 merger of The Arc New Lonodn County and The Arc Quinebaug Valley, the agency now employs over 450 full and part-time staff, all of whom are trained in CPR and emergency first aid. The grant will allow The Arc Eastern Connecticut’s northeast offices to replace its outdated equipment, allowing staff to receive the most up-to-date and comprehensive emergency training, keeping participants as safe as possible.

The Arc ECT provides supports and services to over 800 people with IDD and their families throughout eastern Connecticut. To learn more about The Arc ECT’s programs throughout the region, please visit thearcect.org or contact Denise Tift at (860) 889-4435, ext. 116.

Community Foundation’s Women and Girls Fund Supports The Arc Eastern Connecticut

The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut’s Northeast and Southeast Women and Girls Funds has awarded The Arc Eastern Connecticut $2,500 and $3,500, respectively, to augment and expand its successful “Voices” program for women with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) in both New London and Windham counties. Voices provides safe, nurturing groups for women with IDD who are at risk of, or survivors of, sexual assault, domestic violence or exploitation. Since 2016, the Foundation’s support has allowed the program to offer a variety of workshops led by area professionals in the areas of self-care and self-advocacy, establishing boundaries, stress reduction, personal safety, art therapy, etc. This year, a grant from the Northeast CT Women and Girls Fund will allow The Arc ECT to begin to offer the Voices program to women at its Danielson offices as well as at its main offices in Norwich.

“Many participants tell us this is the first group in which they’ve felt comfortable enough to begin to explore issues they’ve carried with them for many years,” notes The Arc ECT’s CEO Kathleen Stauffer. “Without the support of the Community Foundation and the Women and Girls Funds, this success would not be possible. The Foundation has been a tremendous partner.”

Voices is part of The Arc ECT’s Community Life & Advocacy (CL&A) program, which provides a wide variety of advocacy, support, health/fitness and social activities to people with IDD throughout eastern Connecticut. To learn more about CL&A or The Arc ECT’s other programs throughout the region, please visit thearcect.org or contact Denise Tift at (860) 889-4435, ext. 116.

The Art At the Airport Program Showcase's the Region's Uniqueness

The Art At the Airport program's purpose is to showcase the region's uniqueness, history, industry, culture and geography through visual arts in the airport's main terminal located at 155 Tower Avenue in Groton. The Art At the Airport program is a partnership of the Cultural Coalition and the Connecticut Airport Authority, which manages and operates Groton - New London Airport.

Groton - New London Airport's terminal is open daily from 7 am to 6 pm for public viewing of the exhibit. Parking is easily accessible and free.

For more information about the Arts At the Airport program, visit www.CultureSECT.org (http://culturesect.org/art-at-the-airport/).

Media Contact

Name: Wendy Bury

Title: Executive Director

Phone: (860) 448-5135

Email address: W.Bury@CultureSECT.org

About Southeastern CT Cultural Coalition

The Southeastern Connecticut Cultural Coalition, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization, contributes to the cultural identity, economy and quality of life of Southeastern Connecticut by advocating and supporting arts, heritage, cultural and business activities and organizations.