Mystic Chamber Member News

Stonington Community Center Partners with Nationally Recognized Paddle Pros

Offering youth and adult paddle racquet clinics and lessons

[Stonington, CT] - The Stonington Community Center (COMO) today announced that it is partnering with locally renown paddle professionals, Jerry Albrikes and Nick Raho, to grow its racquet programs and provide additional instruction.

The COMO has a long legacy of offering racquet sport opportunities in lessons and play. Last season the COMO renovated its four tennis courts, resurfacing them with a resilient multi-layered surface called DecoTurf. The COMO also expanded its paddle tennis facility, building two courts in addition to its original two and warming hut. Paddle tennis has experienced great growth over the past five years with players of varying abilities.

Albrikes and Raho will bring years of experience and accomplishments to the COMO courts. Albrikes, a two time state champion and 2017 New England Tennis Hall of Fame inductee, has taught and coached professionally for the past 25 years. Raho is a USPTA certified elite professional who began teaching in 2012 and was recently ranked #53 in the country for the 2017-18 platform tennis season.

“Partnering with Jerry and Nick was a natural progression,” said Beth-Ann Stewart COMO Executive Director. “They are dedicated to providing stellar instruction and we are eager to provide our community with increased racquet opportunities for all ages and abilities.”

Albrikes and Raho will offer winter paddle tennis clinics, semi-private lessons and private lessons for both youth and adults. Interested players should email to schedule all paddle programs with either pro.

“We are thrilled to partner with the COMO as we work together to grow the love of racquet sports in the region,” said Jerry Albrikes.

Additional information regarding the pros and COMO racquet membership can be found online at

About The Stonington Community Center

The Stonington Community Center, fondly known as the COMO, was founded on April 1, 1946 as a nonprofit with the goals of strengthening families and community. The first COMO programs included high school aged basketball, junior baseball teams, arts and crafts classes, teenage weekend dances and more. 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, annex, 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 Stonington Community Center 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


October 18th, 2018 - GUILFORD, CT – Bishop’s Orchards Farm Market & Winery in Guilford will be hosting their first ever Cyclo-Cross Race on November 25th, 2018. Join them at the Bishop’s Little Red Barn in the picturesque shoreline town of Guilford for the penultimate Connecticut CX Series race of the season. The rolling, technical Euro-style course features 140 feet of elevation gain per 1.7-mile lap and will tackle the terrain of Bishop’s Apple Orchard. Thaw out with post-race refreshments from on the of region’s best-known market and winery! This year’s event will benefit New Haven Farms, a nonprofit organization that promotes health and community development through urban agriculture.

“I have worked for Bishop’s for almost thirty years, ridden even longer, and have always thought Bishop’s would be a great place for a race. Better late than never for a race,” says Farm Manager and Race Promoter Brad Isnard. “I think we have a great course that will be fun for all levels!” Sponsors for this year’s event include Zane’s Cycles and Thimble Island Brewery, both of Branford.

Racers are allowed to race twice, with additional races costing $15. One-day Beginner licenses may be purchased on site for $10 and are valid for a single day of racing. These may only be purchased by Category 5 men and women, for use in races open to those categories. Pre-registration is currently available at Day-of registration will begin at 7:45am and closes 20 minutes before each event.

The first race will start approximately at 8:45am. Registration and race location will be at Bishop’s Orchards Farm Market in Guilford on Route 1, 1355 Boston Post Road. This is an USA Cycling Sanctioned event, all USA cycling rules apply. For more information, visit

2018 Bishop’s Orchards Cyclo Cross Race | 203-453-2338

Groton Art in the Airport Program Opens Norwich Sculptor Exhibit

NORWICH, CT – The Southeastern CT Cultural Coalition announces the Art in the Airport program’s fall exhibit. “Bela Lyon Pratt: Sculptor of Monument” presented by Slater Memorial Museum of Norwich Free Academy opened September 1 and is on view through November 25 at the Groton – New London Airport. The Art in 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 in the Airport program is a partnership of the Cultural Coalition and the Connecticut Airport Authority.

Bela Lyon Pratt (1867-1917) was born in Norwich, Connecticut to Sarah (Whittlesey) and George Pratt, a Yale-educated lawyer. Together, Pratt’s maternal grandfather and great uncles Orramel, Henry and John Whittlesey, started the first American piano making company in Salem, Connecticut. Orramel also founded, in 1835, the first music school, for women, in the country authorized to confer degrees to teach music, Music Vale Seminary, in Salem, Connecticut.

Bela studied art at Norwich Free Academy, Yale University’s School of Art, and in Paris. He worked in the studio of renowned American sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens and, in 1892, created two large sculptural groups representing The Genius of Navigation for the World’s Fair in Chicago.

Bela became an influential teacher of sculpting at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston and received numerous commissions for monumental public work around New England, including the figures representing Art and Science for the Boston Public Library; Literature, Science and Art for the Thomas Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress; the Andersonville Boy on the grounds of the State Capitol, Hartford, Connecticut; Nathaniel Hawthorne in Salem Massachusetts; Captain Nathan Hale for Yale University and placement at other sites, as well as Governor John Winthrop in New London and Captain James Avery in Groton, Connecticut. The exhibition panels reveal his work and life, including the influence of his wife Helen Lugarda Pray Pratt, also a sculptor.

The terminal building at Groton – New London Airport is open daily from 7 am to 6 pm. Terminal parking is easily accessible and free to the public.

For more information about the Arts in the Airport program, visit ( the-airport/). 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.

Images: Nathan Hale by Bela Lyon Pratt, on the Campus of Yale University, New Haven. John Winthrop by Bela-Lyon Pratt, New London.

P.O. Box 95, New London, CT 06320 | (860) 448-5135 | |

NEWS RELEASE Contact: Wendy Bury September 9, 2018 Executive Director

(860) 448-5135 |

Photo Caption: Eric Munro will present a free SCORE workshop on “The Succinct Business Plan” on Tuesday, November 13th, 2018 from 6:00PM to 7:30PM at Groton Public Library.

SCORE To Host Workshop On “The Succinct Business Plan”

DATE: Tuesday, November 13th, 2018

TIME: 6:00 to 7:30 PM ET

LOCATION: Groton Public Library, 52 Newtown Road, Groton, CT 06340


The Southeastern Connecticut chapter of SCORE, Mentors to America’s Small Businesses, will present a free Small Business Workshop, “The Succinct Business Plan,” with presenter Eric Munro.

This workshop offers a unique approach to thinking about, researching, documenting, writing and selling a Business Plan in three pages of text with three spreadsheets. The objective is to set you on a path to developing a well thought out, well documented, realistic, verifiable, creditable Business Plan. Discussion will be on how to produce the plan appropriate to your needs and situation. Participants will work on business plan concepts and techniques and how to go about getting a plan done with a minimum of work and agony.

Workshop presenter Eric Munro, a Madison resident, is a product management, sales and marketing executive with experience in high-technology businesses, both domestically and internationally. Most recently, Eric was Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for a telecommunications equipment manufacturer based in Meriden, Connecticut. His career also includes consulting in business management for a division of DeVry University as well as teaching graduate MBA classes where he provided his expertise on project and strategic management.

About SCORE: SCORE® is a nonprofit association that offers free and confidential advice on starting your own business or improving and growing your existing small business. Since 1964, SCORE has helped more than 11 million aspiring entrepreneurs. Each year, SCORE’s 10,000 volunteer business experts provide hundreds of thousands of free small business mentoring sessions, workshops and educational services to clients in 300 chapters nationwide. In 2017, SCORE volunteers provided 3.6+ million hours to help create more than 54,000 small businesses and 116,000 full-time, part-time and contractor jobs. All 40 counselors in Southeast Connecticut are volunteers, receive no compensation, and are working or retired business owners, executives, and managers. SCORE’s nine counseling sites in Southeast Connecticut include Guilford, Madison, Old Saybrook, Essex, Waterford, Middletown, Mystic, Norwich, and New London. For more information on upcoming free workshops and how to schedule a free small business mentoring session with our counselors, visit

Would You Like To Become A SCORE Volunteer? Your business knowledge and experience can help others start or grow a small business. Learn more about becoming a SCORE volunteer at:

Southeastern CT SCORE

Contact: Anne Driscoll,

PO Box 283, Old Saybrook, CT 06475


Telephone: 860.388.9508

CT Retirement Security Authority Issues Employer Advisory Regarding Savings Plan Implementation Date

WETHERSFIELD, November 7, 2017 – Labor Commissioner Scott D. Jackson, Chair of the Connecticut Retirement Security Authority (CRSA), is providing an update to the public regarding the project timeline of the Connecticut Retirement Security Exchange.

The CRSA is responsible for the design and implementation of a Connecticut Retirement Security Exchange for the state’s private sector employers and their employees. The Exchange is being designed as a way to promote and enhance retirement savings for Connecticut’s private sector workforce. The CRSA Board of Directors voted to defer the statutory January 1, 2018 implementation date of the Exchange.

“The Board agrees that because the Authority is currently in the preliminary stages of plan development, the implementation date specified in the state statute is not achievable,” Jackson said. “As the Authority continues its work on the Exchange, a realistic project timeline will be developed by the Board’s regular meeting in March of 2018.”

Jackson also stressed that at this time, no action is required on the part of employers to comply with any requirements in the legislation. “There appears to be misinformation that employers must purchase retirement savings products for their employees by January 1, 2018,” Jackson said. “However, we want employers to be aware that this is inaccurate information.”

The CRSA is asking any employer contacted by a retirement product vendors indicating that a retirement savings plan must be offered to their employees by January 1, 2018, to contact the Authority by emailing so any misinformation, errors or misrepresentation can be corrected.

A new CRSA web page with additional information about its work, including research materials and meeting discussions, can be found at

Public Act 16-29 as amended by Public Act 16-3 establishes the Connecticut Retirement Security Authority and the Connecticut Retirement Security Exchange to “promote and enhance retirement savings for private sector employees in the state.” The Authority is charged with designing and implementing a program to provide private sector employees with retirement savings accounts if their employer does not offer one.

Media Contact: Nancy Steffens, Communications Director 200 Folly Brook Boulevard, Wethersfield, CT 06109-1114 Phone: (860) 263-6535 – Fax: (860) 263-6536 – An Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer

Questions? Contact Nitame Thomas, Fiduciary | 860-326-6690

Brandon “Lectronic” Couloute

Nelson “Martian” Chalas

Professional Dancers to Perform at “Dancing for Degrees” to Benefit Higher Edge

New London, CT – Higher Edge’s 3rd Annual “Dancing for Degrees” fundraiser on November 3rd from 6-10p at Connecticut College’s Crozier-Williams Student Center, 1962 Room, will feature performances by two area professional dancers; Brandon Couloute and Nelson Chalas.

Brandon “Lectronic” Couloute has been teaching Hip-Hop & break dancing to students and adults in Connecticut for eight years. His passion for old school Hip Hop culture has led him to not only train in its various forms but also to educate his students about the Hip-Hop culture. Couloute is donating his performance to support Higher Edge’s work with college-bound students. “Supporting Higher Edge is important because it means supporting the future of young talented individuals. My career has been dedicated to doing exactly that,” he explained.

Originally from Bronx, New York, Nelson “Martian” Chalas began dancing in New London, Connecticut at 15 years old. He has competed locally and internationally as a breakdancer but has also developed skills in other styles of dance that have helped him as an entertainer and teacher. After graduating from the University of Connecticut, Nelson moved to New York City and signed with BLOC NYC which has led to a number of opportunities, including dancing on the 2018 MTV VMA awards show. “Being asked to support and celebrate HIgher Edge’s work through dance was an honor and an easy ‘yes,’” said Nelson Chalas. ”Their dedication to helping students achieve their dreams is definitely worth supporting.”

“We are grateful to both Brandon and Nelson for donating their time and talent to help strengthen programming for Higher Edge students in Willimantic and New London,” said Higher Edge Executive Director Theresa Armendarez. “We are looking forward to a fun and festive evening that will also include performances by some of our students.” The student dances are being choreographed by Lillian Cook of The Lion’s Den Dynasty.

Tickets: General Admission-$35; Students-$15 - available at Muddy Waters Cafe in New London or online at Ticket price includes: Admission, Entertainment, Food, Music by DJ Tim Allen and one free drink (water or soft drink). Cash bar will be available.

About Higher Edge

Higher Edge guides low-income and first-generation students through enrollment, retention, and graduation from college by providing the support and resources needed for success. Higher Edge, Inc is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization under the IRS code.

New book from The Day celebrates region’s parks, nature preserves, farms and waterways

Written and edited by Steve Fagin, The Day’s outdoor recreation columnist, and Dirk Langeveld, the newspaper’s marketing editor, the 144-page, hardcover coffee-table book features more than 50 lively essays and more than 120 color photographs.

New London, CT – October 5, 2018 – The Day Publishing Company has announced the upcoming release of a new book, Treasures of Southeastern Connecticut: Our Proud History of Preserving Scenic Woodlands, Farms, the Shoreline and Other Natural Gems.

Written and edited by Steve Fagin, The Day’s outdoor recreation columnist, and Dirk Langeveld, the newspaper’s marketing editor, the 144-page, hardcover coffee-table book features more than 50 lively essays and more than 120 color photographs.

Fagin and Langeveld spent six months researching, visiting and photographing scores of state parks, forests, land preserves, farms, waterways and other natural areas in the region.

Readers will learn about:

A former gold prospector who planted 100,000 trees on his property, now a preserve in Stonington, in order to recreate the Canadian forest.

How textile mills once ran around-the-clock in what now is a state forest.

Rowdy quarry workers who mined granite from what now is an island state park.

How battalions of young men hacked trails and built state park campsites during The Great Depression.

Photographers from The Day as well as by others throughout southeastern Connecticut provided additional images for the book, due to be published in early December.

A number of writers also contributed essays, including Amby Burfoot, a former Boston Marathon winner and Runner’s World editor who recalled his high school training runs through what is now Haley Farm State Park in Groton; and Margarett L. Jones, executive editor of the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center, who described preservation efforts at the Barn Island State Wildlife Management Area in Stonington.

Other highlighted areas include Bluff Point, Harkness Memorial, Rocky Neck, Gillette Castle, Minnie Island and Selden Neck state parks; Pachaug and Nehantic state forests; Connecticut College Arboretum; Ocean Beach, Uncas Leap, Long Island and Fishers Island sounds; Little Narragansett Bay; and the Connecticut, Pawcatuck, Eightmile and Salmon Rivers.

Also featured are Tiffany, Beriah Lewis, New Mercies, Old Orchard, Senkow and Morgan farms, among others.

“So many magnificent natural ‘treasures’ have been preserved in southeastern Connecticut,” Fagin said. “My goal was not just to document these unspoiled lands and waterways, but to give credit to the many individuals and organizations who have ensured they will be protected and enjoyed by future generations.”

The book pays tribute to the accomplishments of numerous land trusts and conservation organizations, including The Nature Conservancy, Avalonia Land Conservancy, Lyme Land Conservation Trust, Salem Land Trust, Groton Open Space Association, Friends of the Oswegatchie Nature Preserve and Save the River/Save the Hills.

“Southeastern Connecticut has a wonderfully diverse collection of natural areas, as well as a proud history of preserving these places for all to enjoy,” said Langeveld. “I’ve visited several of these sites during my time in the region but learned about many more during the course of our work on this book. I hope it will help make readers more aware of the beautiful preserves in the area.”

Treasures of Southeastern Connecticut will be available on pre-sale though Oct. 31 for $29.95/book plus tax and shipping & handling (if applicable). Books are expected to arrive in-market in early December. For more information and to order pre-order copies visit

To schedule an illustrated talk/book-signing by Fagin, please contact Jaclyn Nardone at

CONTACT: Jaclyn Nardone

PHONE: (860) 701-4030


DATE: October 5, 2018

Mystic Seaport Honors Dawn Riley and Oakcliff Sailing with the America and the Sea Award

Mystic, Conn. (October 5, 2018) — Mystic Seaport Museum honored Dawn Riley and Oakcliff Sailing of Oyster Bay, New York, with its 2018 America and the Sea Award. The prestigious award recognizes those individuals and organizations whose extraordinary achievements in the world of maritime exploration, competition, scholarship, and design best exemplify the American character. The award was presented at a gala fundraiser at the Metropolitan Club in New York City October 3.

Riley stands alone as the first woman to compete in both the America’s Cup and in the Whitbread Round the World Race, two of the pinnacles in the sport of sailing that prior to her had been all but closed to women sailors. Riley also went on to become the first American, male or female, to sail in three America’s Cups and two Whitbread Round the World Races.

“Dawn Riley has blazed the trail for women in sailing over the course of nearly three decades, and has had a tremendous impact on the sport, both as a competitor and as a teacher,” said Steve White, President of Mystic Seaport Museum. “She is in a class by herself, serving as an inspirational role model for young women and all sailors.”

Riley trains premier-level American sailors for future Olympic, America’s Cup, and other world-class level sailing competitions, and leads a movement to reinvigorate the sport in this country. One nexus of this movement is Oakcliff Sailing in Oyster Bay, N.Y., where she serves as Executive Director. A high-performance training center for sailors who have progressed beyond traditional coaching methods, Oakcliff’s vision is to “Build American Leaders through Sailing.” Riley’s leadership and the quality of the programs she oversees were recognized recently by New York Yacht Club’s American Magic, which is currently preparing a challenge for the 36th America’s Cup. This syndicate partnered with Oakcliff to recruit and train members for their America’s Cup Team.

Riley pursued an impressive racing career on the water punctuated by unprecedented accomplishments such as her role as the watch captain/engineer on Maiden, the first all-women’s team in the 1989-90 Whitbread Round the World Race; pit person for America3, winner of the 1992 America’s Cup and first woman to have an active role on an America’s Cup team; skipper of Heineken, the only all-women’s entry in the 1993-94 Whitbread Race; team captain of America3, the women’s team in the 1995 America’s Cup; 1999 US Sailing’s Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year; America True CEO and Captain in the 2000 America’s Cup; and winning skipper at the 2002 IC45 World Championships.

Past recipients of the America and the Sea Award include philanthropist and environmentalist David Rockefeller, Jr. ; oceanographer and explorer Sylvia Earle; historian David McCullough; legendary yacht designer Olin Stephens; President and CEO of Crowley Maritime Corporation, Thomas Crowley; philanthropist William Koch; former Secretary of the Navy John Lehman; WoodenBoat Publications founder Jon Wilson; yachtsman and author Gary Jobson; maritime industrialist Charles A. Robertson; author Nathaniel Philbrick; and Rod and Bob Johnstone and their company J/Boats.

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 iconic Thompson Exhibition Building is a state-of-the-art gallery that will host Death in the Ice: The Mystery of the Franklin Expedition, a major exhibition of one of seafaring’s most mysterious tragedies December 1, 2018 through April 28, 2019. Mystic Seaport Museum is located one mile south of Exit 90 off I-95 in Mystic, CT. For more information, please visit and follow Mystic Seaport Museum on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.


Dan McFadden

Director of Communications


Groton’s Annual Fall Festival Celebrates 13 Years this Saturday, October 6th!

Join your Greater Groton community for a day of celebration

GROTON – Come celebrate your Greater Groton Community. It’s time for you to discover Groton’s Thirteenth Annual Fall Festival, scheduled for Saturday, October 6, 2018. This is a special community event created and hosted by the Groton Business Committee (GBC) of the Greater Mystic Chamber of Commerce.

Groton’s Thirteenth Annual Fall Festival runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is a rain or shine event.

The main Festival site is located at Poquonnock Plains Park and will feature exhibits by nearly 100 local businesses and organizations. Artists, artisans and crafters will be displaying their skill and wares for purchase, and the Blackhawk helicopter and popular scarecrow contest return to the scene for a second year. Other activities include pie-baking and donut-eating contests and a corn hole tournament with opportunities to win great prizes! There will also be karate exhibitions featuring Gabriele’s Martial Arts and the Town of Groton Parks and Recreation Department, and a variety of food trucks will offer tasty treats, including Supreme Hot Dogs and NoRA's Cupcakes.

The Groton Business Committee (GBC) would like to recognize the companies, businesses, and organizations, who have committed to be a sponsor for this year’s event. They are Groton Utilities, the Groton Parks and Recreation Department, the Connecticut Municipal Electric Energy Cooperative (CMEEC), Stonington Odd Fellows Lodge #26, Mohegan Sun Casino and the Mohegan Tribe, and the Sun Media Group, Mystic River Press.

A complete list of businesses, organizations, participating artists, crafters, and food vendors, can be found at, the official web site of Groton’s Thirteenth Annual Fall Festival.

For businesses, this is an opportunity to connect with your current customers and attract new ones. For artists and crafters, it gives you access to thousands of new customers. For non-profit organizations, it is an opportunity to promote your message to thousands in person.



(Groton, CT) October 4, 2018 Ignite, a program of Thames River Innovation Place, will host a its monthly Innovators Networking Series on Thursday, October 18th. The Startup Success Story will feature ThayerMahan, a local marine technology company. Thames River Innovation Place’s Naval and Maritime Consortium will also be present. There will be networking and refreshments. The event will take place from 4:30 – 6:30 pm at BioCT Innovation Commons located at 93 Shennecossett Road in Groton, CT. This event is free, but registration is requested. For more information and to register, visit

ThayerMahan, founded in 2016, uses modern technology and robotics for undersea security to protect the world’s maritime food supplies, trade routes, industrial infrastructure, and borders. While not a submarine supplier, ThayerMahan’s technology complements the use of submarines with smaller, less expensive undersea vehicles that can go places larger submarines cannot. The Groton company, named for the 19th century naval officer ThayerMahan, is dramatically changing how the physical and environmental security of the world’s oceans are monitored.

The Naval and Maritime Consortium is a network of companies that collectively address challenges, share solutions, collaborate on opportunities, and capitalize on the growing submarine supply chain and offshore wind industry. Through a partnership with UConn, the Consortium promotes innovation and cutting-edge solutions to improve products, reduce costs, rapidly transition technologies, and to develop the next generation workforce.

Ignite is designed to spur new ideas, businesses, and innovative growth in the Thames River region by producing events, sponsoring education, and connecting entrepreneurs into the business development support system. The Ignite program is established under the Thames River Innovation Place and is made possible by support from CTNext . The Innovators Networking Series takes place monthly and is just one of many programs regularly held by Ignite.

BioCT Innovation Commons (The Innovation Commons) is committed to providing a hassle-free, full-service professional space combined with a supportive community whose mission is to help you succeed. The Commons offers commercial-grade labs, offices, co-working and special event spaces at cost-effective prices and with flexible lease terms. Located halfway between Boston and New York City, The Commons offers nearly 22,000 square feet of newly-design space in southeast coastal CT, led by a team of experienced entrepreneurs and scientists.

WHAT: Innovators Networking Series featuring ThayerMahan

WHO: Hosted by Ignite, a program of Thames River Innovation Place

WHERE: BioCT Innovation Commons, 93 Shennecossett Rd, Groton

WHEN: Thursday, October 18th from 4:30 - 6:30 pm

HOW: Register at

CONTACT: Emma Palzere-Rae

(860) 961-6067

Nautical Nightmares Returns to Mystic Seaport Museum October 12

Halloween Theatrical Performance Inspired by H. P. Lovecraft

Mystic, Conn. (October 1, 2018) — Mystic Seaport Museum announces the return of its Halloween theatrical production, Nautical Nightmares, beginning October 12

The performance is a dramatic experience that explores ghost tales, legends and unsolved mysteries of days gone by. This year’s show, “Nautical Nightmares: Madness on the Mystic River,” is inspired by the works of H. P. Lovecraft, who, according to Stephen King, was "the 20th century's greatest practitioner of the classic horror tale.” Visitors in small, guided groups join the alienists of Arkham to investigate a haunted whaleship and the madness that has descended throughout the town of Mystic. The story is related through a series of scenes as the group navigates a path through the Museum’s village and waterfront.

Performance nights are October 12-13, 19-20, and 26-28. Tours run 6-10 p.m. and leave every 15 minutes from the Museum’s main entrance.

Ticket prices are $25 for adults ($21 for Museum members) and $20 for youth ages 12-17 ($16 for Museum members). Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling 860.572.5331. Advance registration is required.

Nautical Nightmares is recommended for children ages 12 and older. Visitors will be walking outdoors along both dirt and stone paths and are encouraged to wear appropriate footwear.

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 iconic Thompson Exhibition Building is a state-of-the-art gallery that will host Death in the Ice: The Mystery of the Franklin Expedition, a major exhibition of one of seafaring’s most mysterious tragedies December 1, 2018 through April 28, 2019. Mystic Seaport Museum is located one mile south of Exit 90 off I-95 in Mystic, CT. For more information, please visit and follow Mystic Seaport Museum on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.


Dan McFadden

Director of Communications


Groton Utilities Begins Electric Vehicle Pilot Rebate Program

“Giving Back to the Community”

GROTON – Groton Utilities has started a limited time, pilot rebate program for the acquisition of plug in electric cars (EVPI). How does it work, you may ask?

The program provides a $2,000 rebate for the first 20 electric vehicle purchases by Groton Utilities and Bozrah Light & Power customers, and a $1,000 rebate for the first 20 electric vehicle leases by Groton Utilities and Bozrah Light & Power customers.

These rebates are available in addition to a Federal tax credit of $7,500 and a State of Connecticut $2,000 grant. Within our local service area, Cardinal Honda and Girard Nissan are also offering rebates on their qualifying EVPI models.

The program also provides an additional rebate up to $600 for an approved Level 2 charging station.

Customers must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Provide a copy of the most current Groton Utilities electric bill paid in full, i.e. showing a zero balance.
  • Provide a proof of purchase of either an electric hybrid plug-in vehicle or an electric plug-in vehicle from any dealer selling new qualified EVPIs.
  • Provide proof of a dedicated 240V circuit installed by a Connecticut licensed electrician and signed off electrical permit from the governing building inspector.
  • The customer must also pass a Groton Utilities post installation inspection.

For more information, contact Energy Engineer Hollis McKee at 860-440-9932. Customers can also always go to the Groton Utilities web site at to review the program highlights and requirements.

Groton Utilities is, as always, at your service.


Frank E. Winkler

Manager Economic Development

Groton Utilities Spokesperson

(860) 446-4095


Credit Union Announces New Assistant Vice President-Lending and New Call Center Manager

Waterford, CT – September 25, 2018 – Charter Oak Federal Credit Union has announced the promotion of two individuals to accommodate the continuing growth in its business lending and retail banking operations.

The Waterford-based credit union said that Dawn Sandvoss has been promoted to Assistant Vice President of Business Lending and Lyndsey O’Brien has been promoted to Manager of Charter Oak’s Call Center operations.

“Both Dawn and Lyndsey are very talented individuals who have excelled in their positions with Charter Oak,” said Brian A. Orenstein, Charter Oak’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “In her new role as Assistant Vice President with our Lending team, Dawn will continue to broaden her management and lending responsibilities,” he said. “Lyndsey’s strong background in our branch operations gives her the essential tools she’ll need as she takes on additional responsibilities managing our Call Center,” he said.

Sandvoss joined Charter Oak in 2013 as a Senior Business Credit Analyst and was promoted to Commercial Credit Manager in 2016. The following year, she added to her responsibilities as a Charter Oak Business Lender. In her new role as Assistant Vice President, she will supervise Charter Oak’s team of Credit Analysts in addition to her duties as one of Charter Oak’s three business lenders.

Charter Oak continues to expand its Business Banking operations throughout New London and Windham counties. The credit union offers a full complement of business-enhancing products, from business checking to business lending including fixed-term loans, commercial real estate, lines of credit, and SBA loans. Charter Oak also offers a full suite of business eBanking services as well as employer-sponsored HSAs.

Sandvoss is a graduate of Eastern Connecticut State University in Willimantic and is a 2018 graduate of the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut’s Leadership Program. She is active in numerous civic and non-profit organizations and serves on the Finance Committee of the Children’s Museum of Southeastern Connecticut as well as the Membership Committee of the Lawrence & Memorial Auxiliary organization in New London. She also is a member of the Southeastern Connecticut Women’s Network and volunteers with numerous other local organizations.

O’Brien joined Charter Oak in 2005 as a Teller and then became a Member Service Representative before joining Charter Oak’s Training Department in 2007. She returned to the credit union’s branch operations in 2010, holding a number of positions including Teller, Member Service Representative and Work Leader. In 2016, she was promoted to Assistant Branch Manager and a year later was promoted to Branch Supervisor of Charter Oak’s Montville Branch. Earlier this year, she was promoted to Branch Manager of the Montville Branch before assuming her new responsibilities with Charter Oak’s Call Center.

O’Brien is a graduate of the University of Connecticut and is active locally in numerous organizations, including her role as Chair of the Montville Division of the Chamber of Commerce of Eastern Connecticut. She also serves as a Trustee of the eastern Connecticut chamber and is a Board Member of the Montville Education Foundation as well as a member of the Young Professionals of Eastern Connecticut.

Charter Oak is eastern Connecticut’s largest credit union with assets of $1.095 billion as of June 30, 2018. Charter Oak offers an expansive and convenient network of 16 branches serving New London and Windham counties, providing one of the largest and most convenient branch networks of any 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, or contact our Call Center at 860.446.8085 or 800.962.3237. Federally insured by NCUA. Equal Housing Lender.


Anthony Cronin, AVP-Director of Marketing


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Mystic Seaport Museum Receives $736,167 In Save America’s Treasures Grants Funds

Support Restoration of 1921 Fishing Schooner L.A. Dunton and Critical Preservation Work for the Museum’s Rosenfeld Collection of Maritime Photography

Mystic, Conn. (September 24, 2018) -- Mystic Seaport Museum today announced it is the recipient of $736,167 in Save America’s Treasures grants to support the restoration of the L.A. Dunton fishing schooner and critical preservation work for the Rosenfeld Collection of Maritime Photography.

The National Park Service, in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the National Endowment for the Arts, awarded $4.8 million in Save America’s Treasures grants to help fund 16 projects in 12 states. The funds will support the preservation of nationally significant historic properties and collections throughout the country. Mystic Seaport Museum received two separate grants under the program.

“We are very grateful for this support because these generous awards recognize the importance of maritime history to the American story and the value the L.A. Dunton and the Rosenfeld Collection have in that narrative,” said Steve White, president of Mystic Seaport Museum. “These funds will save important pieces of history that are truly American treasures and which have a positive impact on the surrounding community.”

Built in 1921 in Essex, Mass., the 123-foot-long L.A. Dunton is one of the last surviving examples of the Grand Banks fishing schooners, once one of New England’s most common fishing vessels in the beginning of the 20th century. The Dunton was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1994. The grant of $491,750 will support the acquisition of rare shipbuilding timber and other materials for the planned restoration of the vessel.

The second grant of $244,417 will fund the restoration, digitization, and rehousing of selected cellulose diacetate negatives from the Museum’s Rosenfeld Collection of Maritime Photography, which have been affected by a form of acetate film base deterioration. The Rosenfeld Collection, acquired by the Museum in 1984, is built on the inventory of the Morris Rosenfeld & Sons photographic business and is the largest archive of maritime photographs in the United States.

Diacetate negatives are subject to a natural process of degradation as the diacetate plastic mounts give off acetic acid in the presence of humidity and/or other environmental factors. The plastic mount shrinks and partially separates from the base, resulting in the formation of channels in the film. The resulting condition, “vinegar syndrome,” renders the negatives unusable. The grant will enable the Museum to preserve 3,500 affected negatives.

The federal Save America’s Treasures program, established in 1998, is managed by the National Park Service in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, with the objective of preserving nationally significant historic properties and museum collections for future generations of Americans.

The Save America’s Treasures program has provided $315 million to more than 1,300 projects to provide preservation and conservation work on nationally significant collections, artifacts, structures, and sites. Requiring a dollar-for-dollar private match, these grants have leveraged more than $377 million in private investment, and contributed more than 16,000 jobs to local and state economies.

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 iconic Thompson Exhibition Building is a state-of-the-art gallery that will host Death in the Ice: The Mystery of the Franklin Expedition, a major exhibition of one of seafaring’s most mysterious tragedies December 1, 2018 through April 28, 2019. Mystic Seaport Museum is located one mile south of Exit 90 off I-95 in Mystic, CT. For more information, please visit and follow Mystic Seaport Museum on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.

Higher Edge Receives Grant from The Lord Foundation for Scholarships

New London, CT – Higher Edge is pleased to announce it has received a $75,000 grant from The Edward and Mary Lord Foundation to establish “The Higher Edge Scholarship Fund.” The endowment fund will be invested and managed by the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut and will provide financial assistance to Higher Edge students attending qualified educational institutions.

“We are grateful to The Lord Foundation for having the vision to invest in our students’ bright futures,” said Theresa Armendarez, Higher Edge Executive Director. “The benefit of a scholarship endowment fund is its long-term impact through continued donations and growth. Most of our students are from low-income families and, are the first in their families to attend college – this fund will benefit countless students for years to come.”

The Edward and Mary Lord Foundation has given away over $2.2 million to 42 nonprofits throughout the region. The Foundation considers grant proposals by invitation only after consideration of a letter of inquiry. “The trustees were impressed and excited with the mission, programs and wonderful success of Higher Edge since first learning of the organization several years ago. It was our privilege to provide Higher Edge with a $75,000 seed grant to establish a scholarship endowment fund,” said Kathryn Lord, Trustee and Director of the Lord Foundation. “It is our hope that other community organizations and individuals will support the fund and help it to grow robustly. No Higher Edge student should be thwarted from their college or university aspirations because of a lack of adequate funding. The endowment fund will enable Higher Edge to fill in shortfalls in major scholarship awards and enable every qualified student to go on to attend the college of their choice. This is important and life-changing work.”

“Access to education is the catalyst for a brighter future for young people and for our society. Higher Edge is a key partner in closing the opportunity gap for students in the New London and Windham areas by empowering them through mentoring and supportive navigation as they work to pursue their educational dreams,” said Maryam Elahi, President and CEO of the Community Foundation. “Our generous donors have made it possible for us to support Higher Edge’s important work through our grantmaking and now, we couldn’t be more thrilled to work with them and the Lord Foundation in this new way.”

About Higher Edge

Higher Edge guides low-income and first-generation students through enrollment, retention, and graduation from college by providing the support and resources needed for success.

About The Edward and Mary Lord Foundation

It is the Mission of The Edward and Mary Lord Foundation to financially support programs and capital projects of local non-profit organizations who provide services to New London County, Connecticut populations of elderly persons, children and programs involved in community health care. The Mission also seeks to provide support to the local arts and cultural community. In addition, the Foundation provides support to local community colleges with endowment and scholarship funding. Through this philanthropy, it is the goal of The Edward and Mary Lord Foundation to improve the immediate welfare of the target populations as well as to make a worthwhile impact on their future welfare and that of our community.

About the Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut

The Community Foundation is here to bring people together to work towards a healthy, thriving, sustainable Eastern Connecticut. We do this by putting philanthropy into action to address the needs, rights and interests of our region, while fulfilling the passions of our donors.

Pictured from left: Higher Edge Board Chair Gladys Rivera-Griffin; Lord Foundation Trustee Jeffrey V. Lord; Lord Foundation Director and Trustee Kathryn F. Lord; Lord Foundation Trustee S. Joel Suisman; Higher Edge Executive Director Theresa M. Armendarez; and Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut President and CEO Maryam Elahi