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Area High Schools Prepare for Annual Rite of Graduation By Linda Tishler Levinson Vivian Ojeda says she was not surprised when she was named her high school’s valedictorian. It was something she had been planning for since the fifth grade. “It was kind of my goal since I was 10 years old,� said Ojeda, valedictorian of the Stafford High School Class of 2012. Her fifth-grade teacher, Maureen Festi, taught her that it can be interesting to immerse yourself in learning, Ojeda said. Soon, she learned that she was rather good at it too. She said her parents were supportive, but “a lot of it was self-starting. They just wanted me to do what I felt best at doing,�

she said. In addition to her academic success, Ojeda is captain of the school’s indoor and outdoor track teams, as well as playing field hockey. She is president of the school’s chapter of the National Honor Society and the Service Corps. She also has studied dance for 12 years. She plans to attend Brown University in the fall and major in premed/biology. Like Ojeda, other valedictorians and salutatorians at area high schools are involved in seemingly everything. Katie Ann Loughrey, valedictorian of the Somers High School Class of 2012, is a volunteer at the Somers Public Library,

is in the Drama Club, and is president of the Beta Club. She is a member of the National Honor Society. She also is involved with the school variety show and studies dance. In addition, she has a parttime job. Ryan Geib, the salutatorian at Somers High School, was a Boys State Delegate

and is president of the Drama Club. He also does volunteer work ranging from Meals on Wheels to the townwide food drive and the basketball concessions at the school. He also is on the prom committee and has served in student government. He


Time Again For The North Central News Readers’ Poll! In fact, what better time than the occasion of The North Central News’ 10-year anniversary to roll out our most popular series of the year again - our “Best Of Reader’s Poll�? That’s right, it was 10 years ago this month that local residents received the first-ever issue of The North Central News in their mailboxes. One of the main reasons for the subsequent pattern of growth - in addition to our talented, dedicated staff and our valued advertisers - is the involvement and input from our devoted readers. In short, we love to hear from you.

In This Issue • PEOPLE: Helping teens learn about relationships................................p. 3 • EAST WINDSOR: Voters get second shot at approving budget..................p. 4 • EAST WINDSOR: Library offers variety of summer programs ............p. 5 • ELLINGTON: Budget passes ......p. 6 • ELLINGTON: Middle school students take to the stage ........................p. 7 • ENFIELD: Community volunteer remembered for service.............p. 13

And with our BEST OF series, it’s your chance to recognize the area businesses you know and love in a contest effectively run by the people they care most about: their customers! So take a few moments and fill out the ballot on page 18. There will be some great prizes randomly selected for those who do. This year we are also pleased to announce that perennial winner Rockville Bank is the first business to be inducted into our Readers’ Poll Hall of Fame. Look for more details on that - and the announcement of all the winners - in our August edition. - Gary Carra, Publisher

• ENFIELD: Tax rate will increase after council backs budget ........p. 14 • ENFIELD: Enfield Idol showcases talent and helps education................p. 15 • SOMERS: Local poet has work at national 9/11 museum ..............p. 19 • SOMERS: Residents approve budget at referendum ............................p. 23 • STAFFORD: Budget approved by 20vote margin ..............................p. 34 •STAFFORD: Town’s top dog ........p. 35 • CLASSIFIEDS:.....................pp.37-39

• NEXT ISSUE • DEADLINE: June 21, 2012 (860) 698-0020

Cookies Help Puppies East Windsor Daisy Troop 10124 donated a portion of their troop’s Girl Scout cookie sales to the Simon Foundation animal shelter in Bloomfield. The girls were given a tour of the shelter and learned about caring for the animals.















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North Central Publishing, LLC dba

The North Central News P.O. Box 427 Somers, CT 06071 PHONE: 860.698.0020 FAX: 860.394.4262 E-MAIL: WEBSITE:


Barbara Bresnahan Keith Griffin Barbra O’Boyle Linda Tishler-Levinson Deborah Stauffer PHOTOGRAPHERS David Butler II Stacey Lyn McDonald ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Gary Carra Sr. Amy Hartenstein CIRCULATION

Georgia Michalec PUBLISHER’S POLICY: The information presented in the North Central News is presented for your consideration and does not necessarily represent the views of the publisher or its advertisers. All information is checked for accuracy but cannot be guaranteed. Liability for errors in advertising is limited to rerun of the ad. Errors in advertising should be brought to the attention of the publisher, in writing, within seven days of publication for appropriate credit.

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People Helping Teens Learn About Relationships By Julie Cotnoir Teens who are beginning to date can oftentimes be confused when trying to figure out what the difference is between a healthy and non-healthy relationship. Looking to parents, family members, celebrities and relationships portrayed in the movies and on television can be confusing. Many of these relationships and portrayals in the entertainment industry do not always give teens a true picture of what should be considered “normal” when it comes to the world of teen dating. The Network Against Domestic Abuse, now often referred to as The Network, serves the towns of Enfield, East Windsor, Somers, Stafford, Suffield and Windsor Locks. This agency has a Youth Advocate on staff whose job is to help young people and their parents learn what a healthy relationship is all about. Annalisa Deal says being pro-active by discussing with young people about healthy relationships is always the best plan of action. She said parents can be preventative in many cases by sitting down with their children before they get involved in dating and talking about what should and should not be expected when dating. She said most teens who find themselves in a violent teen dating situation don’t realize what a healthy relationship is. According to the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence, located in East Hartford, teens can become easily convinced that what is being done to them is acceptable through excuses their violent partner uses to justify his or her hurtful actions. Being told how to dress, being checked up on constantly, being told that if they really loved them they should do something they do not feel comfortable doing are all messages a potential abuser could be giving to his or her boyfriend or girlfriend. Statistics from a Department of Public Safety’s 2009 Youth Risk Behavior Survey, provided by the Coalition’s Director of Public Affairs Linda Blozie, show that nearly 10 percent of the Connecticut high school students surveyed have experienced violence on some scale while in a relationship. They say that they have been hit, slapped or physically hurt on purpose by their boyfriend or girlfriend. She does state that this number is down from 12.4 percent in 2007. Blozie says in 2011, through the coalition’s member agencies, they worked with 283 teens on their teen dating violence issues. There are signs to look for if you suspect that someone you know may be in a violent relationship. Deal did say, however, that sometimes these signs are not only associated with dating violence. Bruising or injuries can be one sign of abuse. Teens who appear to be losing interest in activities and hobbies and are insolating themselves from others can possibly be in a relationship with an abuser. She said

while many abusers will try to get their boyfriend or girlfriend to cut ties to family and friends, those who are concerned should continue to offer support. She said this reassurance that there is support sometimes is enough for someone being abused to know that they can leave their abuser. Deal says free counseling is available at The Network’s Enfield offices. She said young people should also feel comfortable talking to a trusted adult, which can include parents, a teacher or counselor. She said parents can often achieve a good relationship with their children by showing that they are open to conversation without being judgmental. She said when talking about relationships with young people let them know that walking on eggshells or being with a controlling person is not what dating should be about. “You should be happy in a relationship,” says Deal. As part of her role as a Youth Advocate Deal will often go speak at high schools as d the word about teen dating violence, ways to foster healthy violence free relationships and support services available to victims and their families. Anyone in an abusive relationship, physical and/or mental, who needs guidance and/or support can call The Network’s hotline 24 hours a day at 860-

Annalisa Deal serves as The Network Against Domestic Abuse’s Youth Advocate. Photo by Julie Cotnoir 763-4542. To arrange for Deal to speak to an organization or school call the office at 860-763-7430.

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June 2012 North Central News




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East Windsor Voters Get Second Shot to Approve Town Spending Plan By Linda Tishler Levinson EAST WINDSOR â&#x20AC;&#x201D;The town budget will go to a second referendum in June. The proposed $34,438,525 budget for

the 2012-2013 fiscal year, which would have meant spending would increase $1,191,047 or 3.58 percent over the current fiscal year was voted down 852-454 in

a May 8 referendum. The total budget proposed for the June 12 referendum is $33,903,924, an increase of $656,446 or 1.97 percent over the current fiscal year. Under the new budget proposal, the General Government budget would be $13,730,574, a decrease of $4,641 or 0.03 percent compared to the current fiscal year. The previous proposal had been for a $13,860,574 General Government budget,

a 0.91 percent increase. The Board of Education budget would increase to $20,173,350, an increase of $661,087 or 3.39 percent. The previous proposal a $20,577,951 school budget, an increase of 6.04 percent. The second budget referendum will be held from noon to 8 p.m. June 12. Voters in District 1 will vote at the Town Hall Annex, 25 School St. Voters in District 2 will vote at Town Hall, 11 Rye St.

East Windsor Receives STEAP Grant

Larson Supports River Commission Congressman John Larson stopped by the American Heritage River Commission booth at East Windsorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Community Day to support the efforts of the commission. He is pictured along with Dick Sherman (Chairman) of the AHRC, right To learn about upcoming events, like the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Cardboard Boat Raceâ&#x20AC;? on July 1, like the group on Facebook or email

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EAST WINDSOR - Governor Dannel P. Malloy announced that East Windsor will receive a Small Town Economic Assistance Program (STEAP) grant of $50,000 to replace sidewalks in Broad Brook Center. The award will be used to replace undesirable bituminous sidewalks with modern concrete sidewalks from Broad Brook Elementary School to the center of the village of Broad Brook. There are currently continuous problems with frost heaves and pot holes in this walk, which poses injury and liability issues for the town and serves to discourage pedestrian traffic. State Rep. Christopher Davis thanked Governor Malloy for recognizing the need

for infrastructure improvements in Broad Brook Center and investing the STEAP funds. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This grant wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t transform Broad Brook overnight, but it does facilitate a process of revitalization that is happening in the village,â&#x20AC;? Davis said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Safe walking paths for pedestrians are an important step toward injecting activity into this area, helping our businesses thrive, and making Broad Brook Center a more inviting place to be. The revitalization in the center is essential to the long-term success of East Windsor. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m excited for the project to begin.â&#x20AC;? The project is expected to create 10 jobs over a 60-day period.



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East Windsor Happenings at the Warehouse Point Library: Summer Begins Early EAST WINDSOR - Come celebrate summer a little early this month at the Warehouse Point Library, 107 Main St., East Windsor. Our monthly movie on

Wednesday, June 13, at 1 p.m. will be â&#x20AC;&#x153;A Summer Place,â&#x20AC;? a colorful soap opera about the passions of a pair of dewy-eyed teens and their straying parents, featuring

Troy Donahue, Sandra Dee and Dorothy McGuire. Admission is free. The Warehouse Point Library has received a Public Humanities Challenge Grant from the Connecticut Humanities Council to help fund the discussion series, The 1960s: The Subtlety of Protest. This is a five-part series, focusing on other forms of protest during the 1960s that were not violent and may have had just as much impact on changing the prevailing thoughts and opinions of that decade. Part I, The Music, begins Wednesday, June 20, at 7 p.m. with Dr. John Myers of Bard College at Simonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Rock in Great Barrington, Mass., as discussion leader. We will explore the music of the 1960s, its message and the changes that resulted in the world of music. To register for this program or for more information on subsequent discussions, call 860-623-5482. The Friends of the Library is sponsoring A Connecticut River Sampler with Captain

Karl Meyer, Commander of the Springfield Power Squadron on Monday, June 11, at 6:30 p.m. in the libraryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Community Room. Captain Meyer will discuss his interest in boating and how he built his first boat. He has spent the last six years mapping 130 miles of the Connecticut River above Hartford and will discuss the dangers of the river and the recreational opportunities available along the river. Registration begins Saturday, June 30, for the Summer Reading Program and continues through Friday, July 6, for ages 210. The program Read Sâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;more Books This Summer! starts Monday, July 9, and continues through Friday, Aug. 3. There are many exciting activities for registered participants, including visits from Rocky the Rock Cat, the CT Audubon Society, weekly movies, craft programs and a grand finale for all participants. Registration must be done in person at the library during library hours.

Photo Contest Winners Bob Lyke is pictured at the East Windsor Community Dayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s third annual photo contest. His entry received favorite â&#x20AC;&#x153;Community Vote.â&#x20AC;? Other adult ribbon winners were: Scott Vining, Linda Desmond, Seetal Kesharpu, Scott Riach, Ricki Dubuque, Nathan MacFarland, and Timothy King, along with student winners: Michael Welti, Emily Syme, Rachel Donnelly, and Louisa Harman. The Photo Contest display will be on exhibit at the Warehouse Point Library.


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The Board of Directors, staff and all the volunteers from the Connecticut Trolley Museum would like to thank everyone who has stopped in to offer us support whether it was donations of supplies or cash or if it was kind words and I pat on the back, we appreciate it all. Our Beer/Wine Tasting event to raise money to restore the trolleys destroyed in the theft of metal was a huge success and special thanks go to the following: Joeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Fine Wine & Spirits Rave Movie Theaters Teddy Bear Pools Inc. Integrity Martial Arts LLC ShopRite of EnďŹ eld Bardaglio Hart & Shuman LLC United Gear & Machine Inc. Club Fitness Mountain Tree Service Inc. Kelly Fradet Lumber

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Ellington Residents Easily Approve Town Budget By Linda Tishler Levinson ELLINGTON — Taxes will increase 1.46 percent under the town budget adopted in the May 15 referendum. By a vote of 523-290, the town adopted a $48,133,654 spending plan for the 20122013 fiscal year, according to the town Finance Department. The mill rate was set at 27.9 mills, compared to the current 27.5 mill rate. A mill represents $1 in tax for every $1,000 of

assessed property value. For a home assessed at $200,000, taxes will increase $80 for the year. The General Government budget will be $15,302,352, compared to the $15,023,557 budget approved for the current fiscal year. The Capital Outlay budget will be $1,312,865, compared to this year’s $971,429 budget. The Board of Education budget will be $31,518,437, compared to $30,033,940 this year.

Happiness Is a Warm Puppy Day ELLINGTON - There is no need to wait until the dog days of summer to experience everything canine at Happiness is a Warm Puppy Dog Day at Ellington Farmers’ Market, Saturday, June 9 from 9 a.m. to noon. Well-behaved dogs on leashes are welcome at the most popular theme day of the season. The CT State Police K9 Unit will be giving a police dog demonstration at 10 a.m. Ellington Center Animal Clinic will offer rabies shots ($20) and microchip insertion ($25) for cash donations to benefit Ellington Animal Control, which provides food and care for animals at the Ellington Dog Pound. Cats in carriers are

6 North Central News June 2012

welcome too. Doreen’s Country Pet Grooming will provide ear cleaning and nail clipping and your dog will be able to pose for a beautiful dog portrait by Joyful Reflections Photography. Your pooch can also try out a handmade dog couch or sample some gluten-free doggie treats. Meriden Humane Society, For the Love of Labs, and Sadie Mae Foundation dog rescue groups will be on hand to provide information about their services, and they might even bring some adorable dogs eligible for adoption. The Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation will be on hand as well at this everything canine event.

Book Signing of Copies of Historical Letters ELLINGTON - Mildred Dimock will be signing books at the Hall Memorial Library on Saturday, June 9, from 10:30 a.m. to noon. The book, “Letters from Nancy to her Dear Mother,” is composed of transcribed, journalized letters written by Nancy Ann Sikes Porter, who was born in Somers in 1826. The letters ended up at the Ellington Historical Society, where transcribed copies are now available in book form at $10 per copy. The proceeds benefit Ellington Congregational Church (now as part of the Talent Projects), and copies may also be purchased by contacting the Church Office at 860-871-6606. Nancy married the Rev. Rollin Porter on Feb. 16, 1851. On March 21, 1851, the newlyweds set sail for Gaboon (Gabon), West Africa, as missionaries under the

American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. Mrs. Porter wrote the letters from Gaboon (Gabon), West Africa, from 1851-1852 as a missionary with her husband. The letters provide a brief, small slice of life for the missionary family from 1851-1852, and there is a family connection to Nancy Sikes Porter in the Somers/Ellington area. Nancy’s mother lived in Somers and Nancy was Nellie McKnight’s great aunt. The McKnight family has a long history with Ellington, and the Nellie McKnight museum is located on Main Street in Ellington. Sadly, the mission work was cut short as Nancy, her husband Rollin, and their infant daughter all died from influenza in July 1852. The family was buried in West Africa.

Dwyer Named to Financial Services Institute ELLINGTON Local Financial Advisor and General Securities Principal Suzanna Dwyer, of Dwyer Wealth Management, announced she has become a member of the Financial Services Institute (FSI) in Washington, D.C. FSI advocates for Main Street Americans’ access to unbiased, affordable financial advice, delivered by a growing network of more than 35,000 independent financial advisor members.

“I am proud to become a member of the FSI, an organization that works hard every day, to protect my clients’ access to quality financial advice,” Dwyer said. “FSI helps educate elected officials and regulators on what Americans need from financial advisors and how the industry works with clients to secure their financial futures. They also help ensure that I can continue to offer my clients and potential clients the advice they need.”



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Ellington Middle School Students Perform Night at the Wax Museum ELLINGTON - Ellington Middle tion included help from many staff memSchool music teacher Bobbi Angelica bers at the school as well. Angelica holds turns the stage at the school into a busy auditions in February and starts rehearsals place every February through May and has the end of that month. They have done so for almost 10 years. Mrs. Angelica rehearsals two to three times a week right shares her passion for the arts with her stu- after school. She does a musical every dents and their perother year and those formance on May years she begins a 15th showed it. With earlier, in IN THE SCHOOLS little the spring show often January. Next year their first exposure to she is planning on drama, the middle â&#x20AC;&#x153;Guys and Dolls Jr.â&#x20AC;? school students are The junior version is involved on and off stage with every designed for middle school singing voices. aspect of the play. Students can be found Ticket sales from the previous year pay on the several crews it takes to accomplish for scripts, royalties and any props or cossuch a production. Many of Angelicaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s stu- tumes needed. The budget is tight and dents often go on to join the OKP Angelica often puts out her needs to par(Opening Knight Players) when they enter ents for props and costume items. Being Ellington High School. creative with what they have is always This yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s play, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Night at the Wax helpful. Art teacher Jake Sadler lends a Museum,â&#x20AC;? was performed during the hand with the creative part and Tech Ed annual Showcase, which is a spring open teacher Jim Matroni assists with the set house at the middle school for parents to and props. Indeed a school group effort see their childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s accomplishments over goes into the production. the year. The Showcase this year also feaâ&#x20AC;&#x153;Night at the Wax Museumâ&#x20AC;? is an entertured a plant sale by the EMS Gardening taining play about six students who have to Club and The Great American Bake Sale re-take history class in summer school. that benefited Share Our Strength, a chari- Their teacher arranges for them to help her ty to end hunger in America. two aunts set up the new wax museum as Angelica always chooses a play that their class project. When a mysterious includes many students. This cast alone incantation makes the wax figures come to had more than 30 students in it and the life, the fun begins when everyone is after crews were about the same. The produc- the same thing â&#x20AC;&#x201C; a treasure hidden some-

deborah stauffer

where in the museum. Eighth grade student Daniel Joy got his first taste of the drama life in the OKP production of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bye Bye Birdieâ&#x20AC;? in 2008. In â&#x20AC;&#x153;Night at the Wax Museumâ&#x20AC;? he plays Skip Webster, handyman of the museum. He credits Mrs. Angelica for preparing them for all aspects of the play. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I think the middle school play is a good introduction because it gets you started in understanding and appreciating what it takes to actually put on a play, with sets, costumes, makeup, memorizing lines, lighting, sound, etc.,â&#x20AC;? he said. Daniel plans on joining OKP next year as a freshman. The wax museum students in the end learn much about history and in real life learn about what it takes to put on a drama production. Angelica enjoys watching the students grow. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m so happy when I spark interest at this level,â&#x20AC;? Angelica said.

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June 2012 North Central News




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Ellington Group Renamed Council for Developing Positive Youth Culture By Deborah Stauffer ELLINGTON - The Ellington Drug Abuse Prevention Council decided it was time for a change. The organization has been in existence for more than 15 years and, after reviewing the many different roles it has, it was unanimous among the members that a new name to reflect the roles was in order. The Council for Developing Positive Youth Culture, or DPYC, has a simple mission and that is to create and sustain a positive culture for Ellingtonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s youth through collaboration among the community, schools and town agencies. The DPYC student reps kicked off the prom season this year with a slogan contest held in April at Ellington High School. The theme for the week of prom was â&#x20AC;&#x153;Project Prom 2012.â&#x20AC;? The winner of the contest received two free tickets to the prom or a gift card of equal value. The winning slogan was â&#x20AC;&#x153;Red Solo Cup, donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t fill me up,â&#x20AC;? which is a take on a popular country â&#x20AC;&#x153;partyâ&#x20AC;? song. The prom week focus was on safety and each day had some type of activity taking place. On Monday wrist bands with the winning slogan were given out. Tuesday

was â&#x20AC;&#x153;Did You Knowâ&#x20AC;? day with alcohol statistics read in the classes all day. Wednesday was â&#x20AC;&#x153;Black Outâ&#x20AC;? day where students were encouraged to wear black in honor of those they knew who have been affected by alcohol and candy was passed out to all those who wore black. Thursday the Connecticut State Police visited for the day with the BATMOBILE (Breath Alcohol Testing Mobile Unit) and the Convincer and Rollover simulators. The purpose of the Convincer is to â&#x20AC;&#x153;convinceâ&#x20AC;? those drivers to wear their seatbelts at all times. The machine simulates a crash at 5 mph. Students were allowed to sit in the driver seat of the Convincer and experience the â&#x20AC;&#x153;crash.â&#x20AC;? The Rollover simulator showed a car rolling over several times with two crash dummies inside with no seat belt on. After a few rolls, the dummies came out of the car onto the pavement. On Friday of the week, students were given a free cookie (supplied by Big Y Supermarket) in a bag. Each bag had a sticker with the Prom Project slogan on it. On Monday, May 21, which was National Underage Drinking Prevention Day, a press conference was held at the State Capitol to re-launch the state media

State Police TFC Dave Pereira, right, of the CT State Police with the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Convincer,â&#x20AC;? and Sergeant Troy Anderson talk to students at Ellington High School on May 17 during Prom Project Week. Photo by Deborah Stauffer campaign Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman, DMHAS Commissioner Pat Rehmer, OPM Under Secretary Mike Lawlor and CT State Police Trooper Kelly Grant were on hand to announce the campaign and speak directly to parents. Spring and summer brings warmer weather and

important events. The emphasis was made to parents that adult-supervised parties with alcohol and providing alcohol to minors is illegal. The other emphasis was that underage

PARENTS/page 9



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Ellington Ten-Year-Old Raises Champion Bull ELLINGTON - Ten-year-old Brittani Burke and BRF Master Marty of Burke Ridge Farms in Ellington/South Windsor have been cleaning up the local show circuit. Marty was 2010 and 2011 Big E champion Angus Bull and 2011 Fryeburg Fair Supreme Champion Bull. Marty is the brother of BRF Miss Maddie, who was the 2009 Big E Champion Angus Female. Both Marty and Maddie are the offspring of BRF Miss Mollie, who is Brittani’s first and favorite

cow. According to Brittani, “That cow family has personality that makes you LOVE THEM, and quality that is hard to beat in the show ring.” Burke Ridge Farms is family owned and operated. They offer their all natural Angus beef for sale at their garden center/farm market at 95 Wapping Wood Rd . (Rte. 74) in Ellington. Visit them this season and enjoy an ice cream while gazing at Marty’s family grazing the hillside.

Parents Responsible for Parties (continued from page 8) drinking is dangerous to the developing teen brain. Alcohol is now listed as the leading contributor to death from injuries and is the main cause of death for people under age 21 in this country. In addition, researchers say that teenage brains, of the middle school age, are developing just like a toddler’s and that serious health issues can result in later life. In May, legislation was passed that added to the already existing social host law. It prohibits anyone who owns or controls private property, including a dwelling unit (apartment), from recklessly or with criminal negligence, permitting any minor to illegally possess alcohol in the unit or on the property. It also increases the penal-

ty to a Class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by up to one year in prison, up to a $2,000 fine, or both. Under current law, a first violation is an infraction. Also, the owner of the property need not be present to be charged. This new law will take effect Oct. 1. Ellington has had an increase in underage drinking violations in the last few months and newly appointed State Police Sergeant Patrick Sweeney says there probably will be more. Sergeant Sweeney warns parents and those underage and any adult thinking about supplying alcohol to minors that his officers have been and continue to be out in full force this graduation and summer season in search of violators of the underage drinking laws.

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Enfield Robert Boozang Remembered for Work with HomeFront By Julie Cotnoir ENFIELD - May 12 was a day that Robert Boozang would have liked. There wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t a drop of rain in the sky, it wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t too hot and close to 40 people were out in Enfield helping a family in need of a hand up, not a handout. Boozang passed away last August at the age of 76, but the work that he did for others continues. Back in 1997, Boozang was approached by the pastor of St. Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s church in Enfield and asked if he could start a Social Justice Committee. He did and he and his wife Imelda, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Mel,â&#x20AC;? served on the committee. A visit to the group from a representative of the Hartford Archdiocese ultimately improved the lives and homes of 42 families in Enfield. The committee was asked if it could gather groups of volunteers to come together and help families who needed a hand fixing up their homes. The group assembled and began to do repairs to specially selected homes in Enfield. A year after doing the first house the group teamed up with AmeriCares and became AmeriCares HomeFront. Mel says the groupâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s motto has always been warm, safe and dry. On May 12, Mel, who thought she was going to the latest Homefront project to deliver the crewâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s lunchtime pizza, instead found assembled an appreciative

Bob Boozang was honored by friends, family and Mayor Kaupin at a HomeFront project last month. Photographed from left to right, Phil Shea, Jeff Buchholz, Mel Boozang, Mayor Scott Kaupin, Bob Atiyeh and Denis Duclos. Photo by Julie Cotnoir group of volunteers, along with Mayor Scott the mayor read to the group the history of Kaupin there to honor her husbandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s legacy Boozangâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s dedication to Enfield, St. and to formally recognize his efforts in a Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s church and the HomeFront organitown proclamation. Volunteers put down their paint brushes and rakes and listened as

zation. Touched and grateful for the outpouring of appreciation shown to her late husband, Mel spoke after about the satisfaction that assembling volunteers and improving a familyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s home gave to her husband. The group has helped between four to eight families each year since the initiative began. Robert Atiyeh knew Bob Boozang from when the two worked at what was then called Hamilton Standard. Dennis Duclos, a fellow parishoner at Holy Family church, recruited Atiyeh to become a part of HomeFront. The two now co-chair one of the teams of volunteers who work on a home each May. Atiyeh took over Boozangâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s leadership role back in 2010. Atiyeh said when he went to help on his first house around six years ago he was amazed at how many familiar faces he saw volunteering. He says he looked at Boozang as a mentor. Atiyeh said partnering with AmeriCares has provided the group with an opportunity to get major work done at a fraction of the price. AmeriCares asks groups working on improving homes for $2,500 for each home,

BOOZANG/page 29

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Enfield Tax Rate Will Increase from Town Council Backed Budget By Linda Tishler Levinson ENFIELD â&#x20AC;&#x201D; The tax rate will go up 3.96 mills under the budget adopted by the Town Council May 16. The council voted 10-1, with Deputy Mayor Ken Nelson Jr. voting against, to adopt the $114,355,273 spending plan for the 2012-2013 fiscal year. According to Town Manager Matthew Coppler, the town-side budget was set at $51,213,917. The Board of Education budget was set at $63,141,356.


Earlier versions of this budget had been criticized for providing too little funding to the school board. This budget decreased townside funding, but maintained school funding. Some IT costs for the school system were transferred to the town side of the budget. Coppler said this budget is a reduction of $27,000 over the adopted spending plan for the 2011-2012 fiscal year. He said this was made possible by eliminating a couple of positions, as well as significantly reduc-






in preparation of the high school referendum, â&#x20AC;&#x153;so we have the best interest rate possible for the long term,â&#x20AC;? he said. The mill rate was set at 27.84, compared to the current 23.88 mills. A mill represents $1 per $1,000 of assessed property value.

Firefighters Praised for Handling of Structure Fire To the Editors: On April 27, I was at home when my police/fire scanner stated that there was a structure fire on Park Avenue. Not even 20 seconds later a chief arrived and stated that this was a working fire. I began to listen closely at this point as in my youth I was a volunteer fireman and later a fire commissioner in the town of Branford. This early arrival was key in setting the apparatus where needed. The wind was out of control on that date and I vividly remembered during my tenure as fire commissioner half the center of my town burned under similar conditions. As I listened to the broadcasts there was no panic. Our firefighters knew what had

to be done and did it with textbook accuracy. The next day I viewed the fire scene and I could not believe that the only damage that I could see to the neighboring properties was some slight melting of some vinyl siding. I have been a resident of Enfield for about five years now. I was very impressed with the operation and training of our firefighters. At this time I requestfully ask the town council to issue at the least letters of commendation to all firefighters involved as well as our dispatchers who make the calls and make it happen. Joseph Porrello 41 Till St Enfield, CT 06082

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Enfield Idol Benefits Local Education

There were 18 contestants competing in the recent Enfield Idol Competition. The contestants performed the television show Glee's version of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Don't Stop Believingâ&#x20AC;? as part of the May 4 show. Enfield Foundation for Excellence sponsored the show, which was held at Asnuntuck Community College. Enfield native Cassandra Kubinski, right, who lives and works in NYC, returned home to perform as part of the event. Kubinski will soon release her latest album â&#x20AC;&#x153;Just Being Myself.â&#x20AC;? Above middle, Enfield Idol contestant Debony Hayes sang her original song â&#x20AC;&#x153;Lead by Exampleâ&#x20AC;? as part of the competition. Far left, winners for Enfield Idol posed with judges following the performances. They are back row, from left to right judges Kate DaSilva, owner of Riley's School of Dance; Asnuntuck Community College President Martha McLeod, under 16 years of age second place winner Megan Torres and Enfield Mayor Scott Kaupin. Front row, from left, second place over 16 years of age winner Hannah Dessert; first place over 16 years of age winner and overall winner Chad Glabach and first place under 16 years old winner Brendan Turner.

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Regional Graduation Dates Set for North Central CT High Schools (continued from page 1) too has worked while a student. And they are just a few examples of the students who will lead their classes at graduation this June. Commencement Due to this past summerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hurricane and the October snowstorm, commencement exercises at local high schools are being

held about a week later than usual. In some schools, valedictorians and salutatorians have not yet been announced. East Windsor High School Graduation is scheduled for 6 p.m. June 22 at La Renaissance. The schoolsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; valedictorian is William Kehoe, and the salutatorian is Omar Sarwar. Principal Edward Keleher said this yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s graduation is special to him since

Network Against Domestic Abuse and Charities of Hope Host Clothing Drive ENFIELD - Hereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s an opportunity to clean out closets and make a difference by supporting The Network Against Domestic Abuse. On Sunday, June 3, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., The Network Against Domestic Abuse will team up with Charities of Hope to host a Clothing and Shoe donation drive. The event is open to the community, and you can drop off your items for donation at their table located at Shop Rite of Enfieldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s second Anniversary Event, 40 Hazard Ave., Enfield. According to Charities of Hope event coordinator Siobhan Becker: â&#x20AC;&#x153;We have the highest regard for the work that The

Network Against Domestic Abuse does, so it was a very easy decision to work with this organization. Our goal is to raise 10,000 pounds of clothes, so we need the community to come out and support our efforts.â&#x20AC;? Accepted donations include: â&#x20AC;˘ clothing â&#x20AC;˘ accessories (purses, backpacks, hats, gloves, ties, scarves, belts, etc.) â&#x20AC;˘ household fabrics (bedding, curtains, towels, bath mats, etc.) Please, no furniture, appliances, or toys. If you can, please put clothing in well-tied, plastic garbage bags and package shoes in a separate bag.


this is his first as principal of the school. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been a wonderful senior class, and theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve certainly made this year very enjoyable,â&#x20AC;? Keleher said. Ellington High School Graduation is scheduled for 6 p.m. June 15 on the varsity soccer field. In case of inclement weather, it will be moved to the gymnasium. Enfield High School Graduation is scheduled for 6 p.m. June 20 at the school. Enrico Fermi High School Graduation is scheduled for 6 p.m. June 21 at the school. The valedictorian is Kerry Davis. The salutatorian is Gregory Zaylor. Rockville High School Graduation is scheduled for 6 p.m. June 20 in the courtyard.

Somers High School Graduation is scheduled for 6 p.m. June 15 in the gymnasium. The valedictorian is Katie Ann Loughrey. The salutatorian is Ryan Geib. Stafford High School Graduation is scheduled for 7 p.m. June 19 in the gymnasium. The valedictorian is Vivian Ojeda, and the salutatorian is Melissa McCloskey. Jolene Piscetello, who along with Eileen Laramie is the adviser to the senior class, said this is a creative, compassionate class. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been very compassionate to the underclassmen,â&#x20AC;? Piscetello said. She said they have shown their creativity through the videos, skits and songs they have prepared for Class Night. She said the class is close and connected, and many are involved in the community.










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Somers Poet Has Work Added to National 9/11 Memorial Library By Linda Tishler Levinson SOMERS â&#x20AC;&#x201D; A town residentâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s book of poetry is now part of the library of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum in New York. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Widge Over Trouble Waters: The Language of the Widgeâ&#x20AC;? by Carl J. Keller II is a collection of his poems on the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We are very moved by your commitment to honoring the memories of the nearly 3,000 lives lost on September 11 through the messages of peace that prevail through your poetry,â&#x20AC;? wrote Alexandra Drakakis, assistant curator of collections for the museum. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We are grateful to have â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Widge Over Troubled Watersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; as part of our growing library.â&#x20AC;? Keller said that he has been writing poetry for most of his life. He describes

being a poet as something you are, not something you can learn to be. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Poetry begins with a note, continues with a rhyme, eventually becoming your written symphony,â&#x20AC;? he writes. A U.S. Army veteran of the Vietnam War, Keller has lived in town for 30 years. He grew up on Long Island as one of 11 children. Because his fatherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s name also was Carl, his family called him by his nickname Widge. A cancer survivor, he is retired from CNS Wholesale Grocers. In addition to writing poems about Sept, 11, he has written about the explosion of the Challenger space shuttle. His book contains a letter stating that his poem on the Challenger was accepted into the NASA archives in 2000. Keller said he had been working on a

collection of poetry before Sept. 11, but when he heard of the tragedy, it motivated him to complete the book so that he could share his views on the attacks and patriotism. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Widge Over Trouble Waters: The Language of the Widge,â&#x20AC;? published byXlibris, is available on, and Keller can be reached on Facebook at Carl J. Keller.



Carl J. Keller II of Somers shows his book, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Widge Over Trouble Waters: The Language of the Widge.â&#x20AC;? Photo by Linda Tishler Levinson



June 2012 North Central News




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Valedictorian, Salutatorian Announced Somers High School has announced that the Class of 2012 valedictorian is Katie Ann Loughrey, left, and its salutatorian is Ryan Geib, right. Senior Awards Night will be June 5 at 7 p.m. in the Percoski Auditorium and SHS Graduation for the Class of 2012 will be June 15 at 6 p.m. in the gymnasium.

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Seniors Scooped for Other Seniors It was the men serving all women (and men) on Thursday, May 10, at the Somers Senior Center as everyone celebrated Mother’s Day. Thanks to the Town of Somers Senior Center staff, a “make your own ice cream sundae” celebration was attended and enjoyed by more than 45 seniors. Everyone reminisced about days gone by as several male seniors filled the roles of soda jerks (as they used to be called) and they served the ice cream and toppings. They were adorned in the customary white hat, white shirt, white apron and black bow tie. Pictured from left to right are Ron Patenaude, David Gwilliam, Jordan Chatis, Al Kingsbury, and Jack Sizer.



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Somers Residents Approve Next Town Budget with Little Opposition By Linda Tishler Levinson SOMERS — With little opposition, the town has a budget. Voters accepted the town’s budget proposal in a May 22 referendum. By a vote of 360-240, the $29,241,201 spending plan for the 2012-2013 fiscal year was approved. The budget represents an increase of $986,679 or 3.49 percent over the current fiscal year. “It was an extremely quiet budget season,” First Selectman Lisa Pellegrini said. “During the process the feedback was very positive.” The Town Government budget will be $6,742,645, an increase of $323,823 or 5.04 percent. The Board of Education budget will be $19,827,174, an increase of $365,000 or 121.67 percent. Capital Expenditures will be $665,000, an increase of $365,000 or 121.67 percent. Debt Service will be $2,006,382, a

decrease of $195,001 or 8.86 percent. The mill rate was set at 23.12, an increase of 1 mill. A mill represents $1 in tax for every $1,000 of assessed property value. Grants In other business, the town received a $100,000 Small Town Economic Assistance Program grant from the state for the new parking lot at the Senior Center. The work began May 14 and was expected to be completed May 25. The town also will receive an $85,000 STEAP grant to repave the Town Hall parking lot, something Pellegrini had said was on the Capital Improvement Projects list for the 2014-2015 fiscal year. She said state Rep. Penny Bacchiochi and state Sent. John Kissel were helpful in getting this grant. Shred-it event Residents are invited to bring up to two boxes of documents to be shredded to the

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Somers Somers Summer Concert Series Kicks Off Thursday, June 21 SOMERS - The Somers Cultural Commission is pleased to announce the summer concert series “On-TheCommon” on Battle Street. Spend a relaxing Thursday evening under the stars and enjoy all seven concerts this year. All programs begin at 7 p.m., but come a little early and set up your own special picnic. The commission has a great variety musical programs set for this year. Starting on June 21 with the 60-piece South Windsor Community Band, fol-

lowed by the Country & Pop group Annie & The Mixers, the 50-piece Windham Concert Band under the direction of Peter Lillpopp, with patriotic singalong songs and the “1812 Overture,” Eva Tereso with special guest Jimmy Mazz, with soft rock hits from the 1950s and beyond, Jimmy Mazz, with his Las Vegas review show, local star Theresa (MacFeat) Camerota, with Classic Light Rock, and finally the Grassroutes Blue Grass Band. The “On-The-Common” park also has a fenced children’s playground, so you can

Mohegan Sun Bus Trip for All Adults SOMERS - Adults of all ages are invited to participate in the Somers Senior Center’s bus trip to the Mohegan Sun Casino on Friday, June 22. Participants do not have to be a senior citizen or a resident of Somers. Bus will leave the Somers Senior Center at 8:30 a.m. and return at approximately 5 p.m. Come join the fun on the bus and at the casino – you might strike it lucky. Trip includes round-trip deluxe bus, two gambling vouchers, voucher for a buffet lunch, and the bus driver’s gratuity.

This is all for the price of $16 per person. It’s a beautiful ride, the buffet food is good, and you will enjoy the company of the other bus passengers. Please call Connie Carenzo at 860-7490445 to make your reservation. Checks should be made payable to and sent to the Somers Senior Center, 19 Battle St., P. O. Box 308, Somers, CT 06071. Deadline for making reservation and payment is Tuesday, June 12. After payments are made, there are no refunds upon cancellation.

bring the entire family. Rain moves the concerts into the Town Hall auditorium on Main Street. A rain date for the July 5 concert is Friday, July 6. For more information, please go to

Somers Women’s Club Annual Meeting SOMERS - The Somers Women’s Club will hold its annual meeting and spring luncheon at Ellington Ridge Country Club on Thursday, June 7. The social hour will begin at 11:30 a.m. with the luncheon to follow. Installation of new officers for 2012-2014 will take place following the luncheon. The Somers Women’s Club is affiliated with the General Federation of Women’s Clubs (GFWC).



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O’Neill Receives Award SPRINGFIELD, MA - Andrew O’Neill of Somers was recognized for participation in campus activities recently at a ceremony in the Griswold Theatre. O’Neill, a junior majoring in physical therapy, received the L.E.A.D. Award and Outstanding Junior Award.

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A 10-year anniversary thank you to all of our clients will be held from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. June 19 at the 99 Restaurant, 54 Hazard Ave. Enfield Come and enjoy free appetizers and a meet-and-greet with our staff and drug company representatives. Complete veterinary services for all phases of your pet’s life. Cats Dogs Birds Exotics Medical, Surgical & Dental Services Emergency Service

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24 North Central News June 2012



10:26 PM

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Library Hours:

Library Closed:

Monday - Thursday: 10 a.m.-8p.m. Friday: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

July 4 – Independence Day Holiday Closed on Sundays until October Open Saturdays during July and August: 10:00 – 1:00

Dream Big-READ! Summer Reading Program June 18—August 10 How does it work? All you have to do is sign up beginning June 18. You will receive a reading log, a book bag and a bookmark. Keep track of the library books you have read, or your time spent reading, in your reading log and bring it with you when you visit the library. Each week that you visit the library, you’ll receive a reading incentive and raffle tickets for wonderful prizes. Weekly raffles will be held every Friday at 3:00 p.m. beginning June 22. Our last raffle will be held on Friday, August 10 at 3:00 p.m. You don’t have to be present to win. Winners will be called.

Paint a Ceramic Owl! Wednesday, June 20, 10:30-11:30 a.m. For ages 6 & up. Design your own ceramic owl. Registration begins June 4.

Sweet Dreams! Storytime & Craft Friday, July 13, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages 2-5 with parents. Dreams come true with stories, songs and a craft. Register one week in advance.

Harmonious Happenings! Interactive Music & Movement Thursday, June 21, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages birth - 5. Miss Renee Coro, a board certified music therapist & children’s songwriter will have you singing, dancing and playing together. Registration begins June 4.

The following programs will complement our Summer Reading Program. All special events are sponsored by The Friends of the Somers Library.

What a Hoot! Storytime & Craft Friday, June 22, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages 2-5 with parents. The owl says…..whooo! Let’s make some owl sounds with stories, songs and a craft. Register for this event beginning June 4.

Whooo is Awake? Presented by The Lutz Children’s Museum Tuesday, July 17, 2:00-2:45 p.m. Nocturnal animals need extra special senses to get around in the dark. How do they use their five senses to help them survive? We will meet some real animals of the night and find out what interesting adaptations they have. For children ages 36. Registration begins June 25.

Summer Readers Meeting & Training Tuesday, June 12, 6:00 p.m. For students entering grades 5 & up. Volunteer to read stories to children at our weekly storytimes. Summer Volunteer Meeting Tuesday, June 12, 6:30 p.m. For students entering grades 8 & up. Volunteer to work at our summer reading table. Summer Reading Kickoff with World of Owls! Tuesday, June 19, 6:30 p.m. Julie Anne Collier from Wingmasters will bring with her a variety of owls and discuss their specialized powers of sight, hearing and fight to survive and thrive. For ages 6 & up. Free tickets available beginning June 4.

NEW AT THE LIBRARY: Thanks to the generosity of the Friends of the Somers Library we now have an announcement sign located near the library’s driveway. Special events and programs will be posted on a regular basis. Also debuting this month is our new Facebook page. “Like” us and get up-to-date information on what’s happening at the library. And watch for “Boopsie” – a library mobile phone app coming in July!

ADULT PROGRAMS: Global Warming Facts and Myths On Monday, June 11 at 7:00 p.m. former research scientist David Law, Ph.D., talks about global warming facts and myths and the conflicts between science and politics. The program is free and open to the public. Please call 860-763-3501 to register. Movie Matinees This month we will be showing two of the Academy Award nominees in the library’s Blake Community Room. All shows start promptly at 1:00 p.m. and are shown with English subtitles when available. June 5 - The Iron Lady (‘PG-13’; 105 min.) June 19 – Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close (‘PG-13’; 130 min.) Book Discussion Wednesday, June 27, 7:00-8:30 p.m. The Poet and the Murderer by Simon Worrall Copies of the books are available at the library. Please register by calling 860-763-3501.

Wonderful Ones, Storytime for 12-24 months with parents Mondays, June 25 - August 6, 10:30 a.m. Stories, finger plays, music & movement. Program length: 25 minutes plus optional playtime and browsing. (No class on July 23) Register for this six week session beginning June 4. Kid’s Movie Night Tuesday, June 26, 6:00 p.m. We will show the movie Secret World of Arrietty. No registration required. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Rated: G, 94 minutes Vehicle Day! Wednesday, June 27, 10:30 a.m. -12:00 p.m. All ages are invited to our big truck event. Come and see a fire truck, an ambulance, a plow truck, a loader, a school bus and many more. A child ID event will be included and sponsored by NY Life. Drop-in. STARLAB presented by The Children’s Museum Thursday, June 28, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For children in grades K-2. A nocturnal friend introduces young astronomers to the night sky, what causes day and night, and how to form the constellations. Registration begins on June 11. Space is limited. Wish Upon a Star! Storytime & Craft Friday, June 29, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages 2-5 with parents. Catch a falling star with stories, songs and a craft. Register one week in advance. Teddy Bear Picnic Tuesday, July 3, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Bring your bear and a blanket to this special teddy bear storytime. We will read stories, sing songs and enjoy a snack. We will be outside if weather permits. For ages 3 & up. Registration begins June 18.

Little Monster! Storytime & Craft Friday, July 20, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages 2-5 with parents. Did you hear that? Stories, songs and a craft about some not so scary monsters. Register one week in advance. Night Visitors! Storytime & Craft Friday, July 27, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages 2-5 with parents. Possums & raccoons & skunks...Oh my! Stories, songs and a craft. Register one week in advance. Firefly Night! Tuesday, July 31, 6:30-7:30 p.m. For ages 4 & up. Let’s light up the night with crafts and activities. Registration begins July 16. Flashing Fireflies! Storytime & Craft Friday, August 3, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages 2-5 with parents. Twinkle, twinkle firefly...stories, songs and a craft. Register one week in advance. The Bat Lady Monday, August 6, 6:30 p.m. For ages 6 & up. Gerri Griswold, “The Bat Lady”, will visit us and bring with her some of her favorite bats. She will also talk about the importance of bats and how they impact our environment. Free tickets are available beginning Monday, July 16. Going Batty! Storytime & Craft Friday, August 10, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages 2-5 with parents. Come hang out with us...stories, songs and a craft. Register one week in advance.

Let’s Go Camping! Storytime & Craft Friday, July 6, 10:30 -11:15 a.m. For ages 2-5 with parents. A camping spree with Ms. Marie ...stories, songs and a craft. Register one week in advance. "Songs and Stories" with Renata Bowers Thursday, July 12, 10:30-11:15 a.m. For ages infant-6. She will read her book "Frieda B. Herself", then guide the children through a number of songs and activities that focus on the importance of Dreaming Big. Registration begins June 18. June 2012 North Central News




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Students Receive College Scholarships More than two dozen promising Connecticut high school graduating seniors have been awarded financial recognition awards from the Rockville Bank Foundation. Academic scholarships, vocational, and agricultural awards were presented at special ceremonies attended by the studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; families, school faculty and administrators, and Rockville Bank governance and staff. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Rockville Bank Foundation has been proud to support local students through our scholarship program for the past 13 years,â&#x20AC;? stated Bill Crawford, President & CEO of Rockville Bank. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We cannot emphasize enough the importance of education in life and wish all of the scholars continued success in the future.â&#x20AC;? Front row â&#x20AC;&#x201C; seated (left to right): Rachelle LaFlamme of Bacon Academy

in Colchester; Carolyn Sireci of Tolland High School; Alicia DiVito of Enrico Fermi High School in Enfield; Patience Bearse of Enfield High School; and Samantha Davis of East Windsor High School. Back Row â&#x20AC;&#x201C; standing (left to right): Albert J. Kerkin, Jr., Honorary Director of Rockville Bank and a Past Rockville Bank Chairman; Kodjo Erasmus of Manchester High School; James Sicord of South Windsor High School; Matthew Kramer of Ellington High School; Jordan Sabin of East Catholic High School; Ryan Mailhot of Somers High School; Stephen Silva of Suffield High School; and David A. Engelson, a Director of Rockville Bank. Not pictured: Angus Deane of Rockville High School and Jake Downham of Coventry High School.

Local Students Earn Master's Degrees WILLIMANTIC - Eastern Connecticut State University's 122nd Commencement took place at the XL Center in Hartford on May 15. Peter Bard of Rockville graduated with a master's degree in Secondary

Education. Dawne Goodwin of Stafford Springs graduated with a master's degree in Reading/Language Arts. Galilee Simmons of Rockville graduated with a master's degree in Elementary Education.








26 North Central News June 2012



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Sunday Drive The ‘Inn’ Crowd, Worthy St. Beerfest Good For ‘Ales’ Ya By Gary Carra Welcome back to the Sunday Drive, the column that inspires to enlighten the masses on some of the area’s lesser-known treasures/off the beaten path entertainment options. Or shall we say Sunday Drives, as there are no less than three instances for you to get your motors running and head out on the highway this installment. As promised last month, your friendly, neighborhood Sunday Driver will kick things off chronicling his recent stay at the historic Lord Jefferey Inn in Amherst, Mass. Freshly renovated – and reconfigured to include 8,000 square feet of meeting space and expanded conference facilities – the 49-room inn now achieves the perfect balance of modern, functional design and old New England charm. And the architectural/décor triumph is one that General Manager Robert Reeves is clearly just as excited to talk about today as he was back at the grand re-opening 2011.

“The whole facility is completely energy efficient, using geothermal for both heating and cooling,” he explains as he ushers through the 2,360 ballroom into a beautiful, outdoor seating area that is adorned with modern sofas, a fireplace and view of an adjacent garden. Each contemporary twist is punctuated with glimpses into the facilities’ nearly 100-year-old past, in this case, the massive copper rain gutters and drain pipes that cling to the edges of the expansive, slate roof. “ F o r every room with high speed internet, 32-inch televisions and high definition programming, we were conscious to leave things like the copper or windowed hearth wherever possible.” Clearly, the crowning jewel of the new ‘Jeff’ is the 30 Boltwood restaurant. Strictly regarded as a pub tavern in its former life, the new Boltwood boasts a Napainspired look - awash in bright colors and large, comfy, halfcrescent booths.

“We really wanted to set the restaurant off from the Inn and give it its own identity,” Reeves remarks upon our entrance. “There are plenty of places in the area for standard pub fare, so why even try and compete with that?” Equally inspired about his ambitious surroundings is Executive Chef Dino Giordano,

SUNDAY DRIVE/page 28 Modern design meets New England charm at the recently renovated Lord Jefferey Inn in Amherst. Photo by Margaret Carra

June 2012 North Central News




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Sunday Drive Travelers Championship Scores with Music; Craft Beer Showcase continued from page 27 who has in turn elevated his menu to culinary heights scarcely attempted - let alone executed to such a degree. In a style he calls “modern farm to table cooking,” Giordano starts us off with Duck Confit Crepe, consisting of goat cheese and caramelized onions on an herb salad, as well as his take on Mussels - with fennel and chorizo lining the tomato Coriando broth. Baby bok choy and honeycomb white asparagus helped bring out the true flavor of the scallop entree that followed, but perhaps it was the Misty Knoll Chicken that best showcases Giordano’s brash combination of daring and technique. Adjacent to the succulent fowl sits a bone marrow stuffed with grilled corn puree and succotash, and the entire plate is garnished with bacon popcorn. For more information and/or reservations to the Inn or 30 Boltwood, kindly point your browser at ‘Travel(er)-ing’ Musicians Closer to home, it appears that the organizers of one of the area's largest golf tourneys—The Travelers Championship (—are making a fore-ay into the music world this season.

"With the support of Powerstation Events, we are excited to announce significant musical acts coming to our 2012 tournament," Director Nathan Grube said of the recently announced appearances by Connecticut native Javier Colon (June 20) and party-pop favorites KC & The Sunshine Band (June 23). "As with all of our events, these concerts will not only provide entertainment, but will help raise additional funds for our charities." Concerts at the Travelers Golf Championship are free with admission to the tournament proper and will begin at approximately 7 p.m. (or right after the last golfer finishes) at the Fan Zone, center course. We’re Not ‘Worthy’ Whether you’re craving the infectious sounds of Primate Fiasco or cover kings Maxxtone or simply a taste of some of the best craft beers in the country, Theodore’s and Smiths Billiards has got something good for what “ales” ya. Specifically, the two legendary Springfield venues have pooled their collective resources to reboot the second annual Worthy Street Craft Beer Showcase ( - the perfect place to soak in both sounds and suds from more than 30 premiere breweries. “We have asked each brewery to bring in one of their great everyday beers as well as at least one specialty,” notes Smiths

KC and the Sunshine Band performs at the Travelers Championship on June 23. Billiards manager Jim Trainor. “We do this to attract everyone from the novice beer drinker to the beer geek - and the results are going to blow people away.” The Worthy Street Craft Beer Showcase is slated for Saturday, June 23, starting at noon and will necessitate the closing of historic Worthington Street throughout the New Location!

afternoon before pouring back into the respective clubs that evening. Do you own a facility or know of a hidden gem in the region that would be the perfect focus of a future Sunday Drive? If so, please email your suggestions to

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Regional â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Fish Talesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Alissa Milliken and Andrew Skalski were among the award winners at the annual, Somers Rotary sponsored Fishing Derby held recently at Worthington Pond. Photos by Barbra Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Boyle

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Robert Boozang Rememered continued from page 13 improving homes for $2,500 for each home, which comes out to $10,000 a year for St. Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s group that traditionally commits to four homes each May. In turn, AmeriCares is able to provide the group with $10,000-$20,000 worth of materials for each house. The group meets with candidates each year to determine whom they will be able to help. Atiyeh says this year fifteen visits were made to fifteen homes to select four houses for the two weekend event. Three homes had crews of volunteers on site for one Saturday with another house being worked the next Saturday in the month. Atiyeh says that many times the local St. Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s group will work with The Town of Enfieldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Office of Community Development in terms of raising the funds needed for AmeriCares. The office is aware of grants that will support this type of home improvement and sometimes can put a lien on the house for the amount of money needed to do the repairs. They then

can offer the homeowner a low or no interest loan which allows them to get important work done at the home, in turn raising the value of their home which allows the needed funds to be recouped, to pay off the lien, when they decide to sell the house. In the past work at the homes has included, painting of exterior and interior walls, landscaping and yard work, repairing and replacing of windows and doors, along with electrical and plumbing repairs. Volunteersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; skills can range from being a gopher, to a novice painter to a master electrician. Everyone can have a role. Homeowners and their families, when physically able, are working with the volunteers on the improvements. The age range of volunteers also varies, with teens working along side retirees. Those interested in making a taxdeductible donation can make checks out to St.. Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Church with HomeFront placed in the memo section. Mail donations to St. Patrickâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Church, c/o HomeFront, 64 Pearl Street, Enfield, CT 06082.

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Patty Albrecht receives 2012 Nightingale Award Patty Albrecht, who works for Visiting Nurse & Health Services of Connecticut Hospice and Palliative Care Program, is the recipient of the 2012 Nightingale Award. She is passionate about the care of hospice patients and helps guide the patient and family through the final journey with dignity and respect. Albrecht is recognized in the community as being an integral part of VNHSC Hospice and Palliative Care Program.



30 North Central News June 2012




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Stafford School Reading Program Earns National Award STAFFORD - Staffordville School in Stafford Springs has been awarded the 2011-2012 Connecticut Exemplary Reading Program Award by the International Reading Association. The award was given on Sunday, April 29 in Chicago. The International Reading Association chose Staffordville because of the school's overall literacy success including providing a tight net of intervention. The goal of the program is to have students reading independently by the end

of first grade. Staffordville was also recognized in November by the Connecticut Association of Schools for its exemplary efforts to promote early childhood literacy. Both awards recognize the outstanding reading and language arts program at Staffordville that focuses on improving and supporting literacy to emerging readers to acquire and maintain reading strategies that will enable them to be successful lifelong learners.

*ULOORQ$Q(JJ" Talented Student Artists


On May 9, Stafford High Schoolâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Drawing and Painting class had its first art opening to exhibit the new mural it had painted. After learning about Andy Warhol and the Pop Art movement, the students researched endangered species to then paint images of these animals and place them within a mural leading to the science wing of the school. Above, Emily Lemire with her larger than life self-portrait.







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32 North Central News June 2012




9:51 PM

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Stafford Stafford Middle School Choirs Win Major Music Festival STAFFORD - The Stafford Middle School Stage and Select Choirs are bringing home the gold. Both groups, under the direction of Brett Duchon, had the opportunity to visit Washington D.C., meet U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney, meet â&#x20AC;&#x153;Boâ&#x20AC;? Obama and last but not least compete in the Showcase Music Festival in Richmond, Va., on May 19. Both choirs took the first place trophies in their competition. Stafford won all four Outstanding soloist awards (Veronica Allevo, Victoria Molitoris, Shelby Westall and Madison Mitzkovitz) and was named the overall Grand Choral Champion of the competition. The SMS Choirs have been participating in the competitions for 10 years and have been named champions for the past four years under the direction of Brett Duchon.

Arts Should Fund Its Programs with Admissions To the Editor, The move to reduce the funding for the Arts commission shows a small step in the right direction. The events offered by the commission certainly are welcomed in the community, I have attended several and they do provide a service, however I was very surprised that there was not a charge to attend the events. I have attended events in other towns and they all had a very nominal fee, which is not out of line. What is wrong with the Arts Commission trying to stand on its own? Every thing cannot be free. It is my understanding the towns such a Somers and Tolland, to name a couple, do not fund their Arts Council at all, and they are able to provide events for their community. I for one am very happy to see our

Board of Selectmen looking for areas that spending can be reduced, it is obvious that this has not been the case in the past. It is very true that times are difficult, that is exactly why cuts need to he made. Times are tough and we need to be responsible for the economic needs of our town and community. I do not see where a fee of $1 or so is out of line. In essence this is a microcosm of what is wrong with our society right now. In a perfect world all things would be free to everyone, however, as we can see this is not practical. Some concessions should be made and therefore preserving the best for all. Michael Pifer 159 Crooked S Rd Stafford Springs

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Stafford Narrow 20-Vote Margin Approves Town Budget on First Try By Linda Tishler Levinson STAFFORD — What a difference just a few votes can make. By a vote of 920-900 in the May 23 budget referendum, the town approved a $37,229,487 spending plan for the 20122013 fiscal year. “It was really close,” First Selectman Richard Shuck said, with “an unprecedented turnout on the first try.”

Shuck said that while he is pleased that the budget did pass, he is concerned by the close vote. There was a strong, organized effort among those who supported the budget to get out the vote, he said, but no such effort among those opposed. “Obviously, there’s a large group of people out there who don’t feel the town is being responsible,” he said. He added that he wants to get the message out to people

Library Film Explores Issue of Slavery STAFFORD - The PBS film "Slavery by Another Name" will be shown at the Stafford Library on June 6 at 6:30 p.m. There will be a discussion with professor Bilal Sekou of the University of Hartford after the film. This film screening and discussion is free and open to all. Please call the Stafford Library at 860-684-2852 to register or visit “Slavery by Another Name” resets the

national clock with a singular astonishing fact: Slavery in America didn’t end 150 years ago, with Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 Emancipation Proclamation. Based on Douglas A. Blackmon’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book, the film illuminates how in the years following the Civil War, insidious new forms of forced labor emerged in the American South, persisting until the onset of World War II in 1941.

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that until the town experiences grand list growth, there will continue to be a need for tax increases. “The easy cuts are over,” he said, “You can only negotiate so far... We need to do something because it’s not going to fix itself.” He said that from 2000 to 2012, the national inflation rate was 34.28 percent. At the same time, he said, the Board of

Selectmen’s budget has increased 35.50 percent, effectively just keeping pace with inflation. The adopted budget for 2012-13 for the Board of Selectmen is $8,317,713, compared to the actual 2010-2011 expenditures of $8,078,470. The mill rate was set at 32.29. A mill represents $1 in tax for every $1,000 of assessed property value.

Stained Glass Creations and Beyond Will Move to New Location STAFFORD - Stained Glass Creations and Beyond will be moving to its new location in July. They have acquired a new larger storefront at 69 Main St. Stafford Springs. The new location will allow them the space needed to increase their supply section of stained glass and fusing. This new location also has a separate larger classroom space. Due to the increased retail space they will be adding local Connecticut artists/crafters handmade items to their store. They will continue to carry the hand-poured candles by Candles by Laura that have become such a favorite with their customers. They also will be carrying handmade scrapbooks albums for every occasion, local soaps by Sleepy Moon Soaps, photography and artwork from local artists. Grand Opening will be July 13 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Join them for refreshments, raffles, tarot card readings and balloon artist. Also get to meet the artist/crafters of their store. Watch www.facebook. com/stainedglasscreationsandbeyond for the date of the soft opening.

They are still open at their current location at 2 River Rd., Stafford Springs until the third week of June. They welcome everyone to attend the grand opening. There will be a ribbon cutting ceremony as well.

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Stafford Cooper Is Staffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s No. 1 Dog STAFFORD - Following in his grandmother's paw prints as Stafford's No. 1 dog is Cooper for the year 2012. Cooper is a 4½-year-old German Shepherd certified therapy dog, and his owner is Nancy Benway. Presenting the No. 1 license tag to Cooper was Stafford Town Clerk Karen Troiano. Cooper regularly volunteers at the CT Veteransâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Home in Rocky Hill, visiting both the Health Care Facility and the Residential Facility, along with Evergreen Health Care Center and the UConn finals week, and a variety of other activities. All dogs ages 6 months or older must be licensed during the month of June in accordance with state law. The cost is $8 for spayed or neutered dogs and $19 for

male or female dogs. A current rabies certificate is required. License renewal forms will be mailed by June 1, to the owners of all dogs registered in Stafford during the last year. If you did not receive one, or if you have a new dog, you still must comply with the licensing regulations. You may purchase your dog license in person at the Town Clerkâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s office during regular business hours or by mail. Please direct mail registrations to Town Clerk P O Box 11, Stafford Springs, CT 06076. Include the following information: name, address and telephone number of owner, name of dog, breed, age, color and sex of dog, required rabies and spay/neuter documentation if applicable, a selfaddressed stamped envelope and required fee. Mail registrants must be postmarked by June 30 to avoid penalty fees


Summer Concert Series Hosted by the Stafford Arts Commission STAFFORD - The free Stafford Summer Concert Series will take place every Sunday at 6 p.m. from July 1 to Aug. 19. A different musical genre will be represented each week at Heritage Park (Rt. 109 Stafford) or if it rains, at the Stafford Senior Center. New bands this year include â&#x20AC;&#x153;Kerry Boysâ&#x20AC;? (Celtic-7/29), â&#x20AC;&#x153;Donna Martin Trioâ&#x20AC;? (Folk- 8/12), and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Simply Swingâ&#x20AC;? (Swing-

8/19). Local bands, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Eastside Ramblersâ&#x20AC;? (Dixieland Band 7/1) and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Summerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Highâ&#x20AC;? (Rock 7/8) are returning for another year. The Johnson Memorial Medical Center is sponsoring the folk trio, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Wintergreenâ&#x20AC;? on July 15. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Canticoâ&#x20AC;? (Latin Jazz- 7/22) and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Dillionairesâ&#x20AC;? (Blue Grass- 8/5) will add to the musical variety of the Summer Concert Series.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Herlandâ&#x20AC;? a womenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s music fair in Stafford STAFFORD - Ten female musicians will be performing at the Herland Music Fair at the Ben Muzio Town House (Old Town Hall) in Stafford on June 3 from noon to 6 p.m. The program features performances by Lara Herscovitch (Contemporary Folk), Suzanne McNeil (Acoustic), Ada Pasternak (Jazz), Sarah Blacker (Folk), Donna Martin (Folk), Carolyn Waters (Soul), Michelle Lewis

(Folk/Pop), Patti DeRosa (Acoustic), Tara Greenblatt (Folk/Blues/Soul), and Kristen Graves (Folk/Pop). There will also be a variety of vendors and informative booths. Admission is $10 for adults and $7 for students and seniors. Tickets can be purchased by calling 860-684-9500 or at the Millpond Country Store.

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Auto Nissan Hits a Home Run with Its All New for 2013 Altima Changing the number two selling car in mpg â&#x20AC;&#x201C; a figure easily beat during a road the U.S. is a huge gamble, but Nissan has trip through Bell Buckle, Tenn., to the Jack pulled off a stunning change with the all- Daniels distillery. (Don't worry â&#x20AC;&#x201C; no alconew 2013 Nissan Altima. Simply put, the hol was consumed during this test drive!). Japanese automaker has produced a midI drove both the 3.5-liter V6 with 270 size sedan that once again should come out horsepower and 258 lb. ft. of torque and on top. the 2.5-liter inline four with 182 horseFor 2013 that all changes. Nissan has power â&#x20AC;&#x201C; up from 175 horsepower â&#x20AC;&#x201C; with a created an aspirational sedan. torque rating of 180 lb. ft. It's going to be a car that peo(same as the previous model). ple want to be in. It will not be The 2.5-liter engine delivers seen as practical transportation all the power you'll need 99.9 BEHIND with a roomy trunk. It's still all percent of the time. Granted, it The Wheel that but now it's a sedan that strains under hard acceleration can engender passion among but â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and most auto reviewers its owners. tend to forget this â&#x20AC;&#x201C; the averBut I'm going to focus on KEITH GRIFFIN age driver doesn't constantly two practical elements of it drive under hard acceleration. that are perfect: 38 mpg on the highway The 2013 Nissan Altima also has availand the zero-gravity seats. Let's look at the able safety technology including blind latter. Simply put, these are the most com- spot warning, lane departure warning and fortable seats â&#x20AC;&#x201C; bar none â&#x20AC;&#x201C; that I have sat moving object detection. The latter two are in for a long time. offered for the first time in the mid-class Seats are going to become the next bat- segment. The three systems are part of the tleground in the midsize sedan class optional Technology Package, which also because of what Nissan has accomplished includes the NissanConnect with with the NASA-inspired â&#x20AC;&#x153;zero-gravityâ&#x20AC;? Navigation with 7.0-inch color touchfront seats that help relieve pressure points screen and steering wheel navigation sysno matter what the body type. After all that tem controls. driving, I felt no fatigue. Whenever I got The system doesn't use radar like other out of the car, there was no need to stretch. vehicles. The information comes from the Nissan needs to do what it did with the Altima's rearview camera. It has an media at every dealership: a side-by-side impressive self-cleaning feature that kicks seat comparison. You're not going to get in whenever it senses the view is obscured. the appeal of the seats on a short test drive. Nissan specifically told me it will clear You're going to have to put some miles on snow and ice so that it works during a the car. slushy winter. Speaking of miles, the 2013 Nissan Another new aspect of the 2013 Nissan Altima gets the aforementioned 38 mpg on Altima that works extremely well is its the highway from the 2.5-liter, inline four- active understeer control. It uses intellicylinder engine. Its city mpg rating is 27 gent control logic and high-response brake

actuators to brake the inside wheels for better handling. Hit a curve hard at an aggressive speed and the system takes you through almost effortlessly. (Of course I tried it.) Active understeer control works with the Altima's vehicle dynamic control and traction control and was undetectable when I tested it. There's no sense of an electronic nanny stepping in to take away all of your fun. The 2013 Nissan Altima is going to change the game in the midsize sedan segment. It seemingly makes my former favorite, the 2012 Hyundai Sonata, look less appealing.

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