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May2014NCN_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:41 PM Page 1

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In This Issue

• EAST WINDSOR: Town budget heads to referendum............. .................p. 4 • ELLINGTON: Budget now in hands of town voters to pass.................... ..p. 8 • ELLINGTON:Youth survey shows how teens use alcohol ..........................p. 8 • ENFIELD: Proposed budget show focuses on improvements............p. 11 • ENFIELD: Rotary bestows honor on three members ..........................p. 15 • SOMERS: Solar farm shines relief on town spending............................p. 17 • STAFFORD: Teacher honored as outstanding educator.......................p. 29 SUFFIELD: Family maintains third generation of farming ......................p. 30

• NEXT ISSUE • DEADLINE: May 28, 2014 (860) 698-0020

New Transit Center Coming to Thompsonville By Linda Tishler Levinson

ENFIELD — With a new Transit Center planned for Thompsonville, those involved in the area and the project came together to get a look at the future of Thompsonville and to celebrate new and existing partners in that effort. The event was held at the future Transit Center site at 33 N. River St. “It was beyond our biggest hope,� Courtney Hendricson, Enfield assistant town manager of development services,

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said of the April 16 event. More than 100 people attended, Hendricson said, including partners in the project, town staff and area residents, adding it was key to bring all of those players together. Thompsonville Transit Center The Thompsonville Transit Center will be a station on the New HavenSpringfield rail line, but will also be an intermodal center, Hendricson said. As an intermodal center, it will also be a

hub for bus service and provide parking for those using mass transit, as well as for those who will be pedestrians or ride bikes in the area. The Enfield Community Development Corp., a nonprofit corporation, purchased 33 N. River St., the future home of the Thompsonville Transit Center. The building, which dates back to the late 1800s, has been

TRANSIT/page 3

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Transit Center Will Add to Thompsonville



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used for dry goods shipping and receiving by rail, casket hardware plating, and most recently as a home to the Dow Mechanical Corp. “This could not be coming at a better time with all the interest on a state and federal level in transit,” Darrin LaMore, the executive director of the corporation, said in a written release. “The success of a sustained revitalization effort is not about moving people out, it’s about moving opportunity in so that people can create better lives for themselves and their families – and then pass that success on to the local businesses and the community in general, and transit is a huge part of that.” The site will be developed into residential units on the top two floors, a small rail station with platform access, retail units and office space on the second floor and gallery/studio space along with bus and bike service areas on the first floor. The transit center is projected to open in 2016, according to ECDC. “Undoubtedly, this project benefits the town,” Hendricson said. It will put Enfield on the map in terms of rail. “It’s something that we know is an economic development driver,” she said of rail service. It will bring additional traffic to the

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Marty and Ilona Levitz were honored with the Visionary Award for their purchase and renovation of Bigelow Mills in 1974, businesses in the area, as well as increasing property values in the area of the station. Walkable areas are attractive to younger people and to older people looking to scale back, she added. Six Awards Presented During the Thompsonville Partners Event and Award Ceremony, six awards were presented. Those honored were: • Caronna’s Supermarket, which received the Legacy Business Award. Founded 96 years ago by Saverio

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Caronna, the store is a full-service market that has worked together for the community. • The Enfield Tap, which received the Rising Star Business Award. The Enfield Tap opened on May 18, 2013. One month after opening, the Tap held an event to help clean up the Thompsonville streets, providing gloves and bags, as well as a free lunch buffet to all who volunteered. • The Pearl Street Library, which received the Community Pillar Award. Library Director Henry Dutcher said the library helps anchor the Thompsonville part of town. Of the award, he said, “It shows the importance of the Pearl Street Library to that part of the community for now 100 years.” • Karen LaPlante, who received the Residential Restoration Award. LaPlante recently finished refurbishing 19 Russell St., a two-family home from the 1880s. • Mark Dion of Concept Builders, who received the Commercial Restoration Award. Dion is building upon the mixed-use tradition that Thompsonville once thrived on. • Marty and Ilona Levitz, who received the Visionary Award. In 1974 they purchased the Bigelow Carpet Mills. They took on the task of securing historic preservation protections for the complex. Marty Levitz said he was shocked and awed by the award. “I sat there totally unaware that it was coming,” he said.

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Budget Set to Go to Referendum on May 13

East Windsor

EAST WINDSOR — Residents will vote on the proposed 2014-15 municipal budget in a May 13 referendum. The proposed $36,484,292 budget is an increase of $1643,674 or 4.72 percent over the current spending plan. The budget includes $13,577,539 for town government. That represents an increase of $680,778 or 5.28 percent. The budget also includes $21,476,817 for the Board of Education, an increase of $900,000 or 4.37 percent, and $1,429,936 for debt service, an increase of $62,896 or 4.6 percent. The budget assumes a reduction of $98,434 in state funding, due to legisla-

tive adjustments. The state legislature, however, has not yet adopted its budget. Town officials said in the budget presentation that the town property budget was adjusted to centralize purchasing of townwide expenses, such as postage, heating and electricity in order to maximize efficiency and to find cost savings. The budget also reflects refinancing of two 2004 bonds to take advantage of the current lower interest rates. The town estimates that will save $100,000 in debt service. The budget referendum will be held from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. May 13. Voting will be in Town Hall and the Annex.

EAST WINDSOR - Do you know someone that should be inducted to the East Windsor Athletic Club Hall of Fame? Send a nomination to: Melissa Maltese 76 S. Main St. East Windsor, CT 06088 Nomination criteria: • Out of high school for a minimum of five years 

• Displayed good sportsmanship, integrity and good character during their coaching, playing or contributor years A formal dinner and induction will take place in November. Completed nominations are due by May 12. Contact Melissa at 860-6276662 with any questions. Download the nomination form at

By Linda Tishler Levinson

Call for Nominees for Athletic Hall of Fame

Give Your Dogs a Dip

The East Windsor Dog Owners group invites you to have a dog-gone good time on Saturday, May 17, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the East Windsor Dog Park Doggie Dip. The event will be held at the East Windsor Park, 27 Reservoir Ave., located across from the Dog Park. Donate $10 per dog to swim with all proceeds going towards maintenance and improvements at the park. Dogs must be licensed and respond to voice command. For more information visit or on Facebook at East Windsor Dog Owners Group.

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East Windsor

Girl Scouts Learn About Water Treatment

Girl Scout Troop 10124 visited the East Windsor Water Pollution Control Facility on Water Street in East Windsor on March 29 and had an informative tour led by Art Enderle III, the superintendent of the facility.  The girls learned about how

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water goes from dirty, brown sewer water to clean, clear water and how Mr. Enderle monitors the facility as well as the sewer system around town. What a great opportunity for them and for him to share about the town of East Windsor.

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May2014NCN_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:41 PM Page 6

Summer Programs Offered by Parks and Recreation

East Windsor

EAST WINDSOR – The East Windsor Parks and Recreation Department is offering the following programs this summer. SUMMER FUN CAMP: This year we will be offering eight weeks of Summer Camp, Tiny Tots Camp and Counselor in Training. The first week of camp will be the week of June 30 and ending the week of Aug. 18. The fee for the Summer Fun Camp and Tiny Tots for regular hours (9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.) is $95 weekly for residents/$105 weekly for

non-residents; extended hours (7:30 a.m.-5 p.m.) is $105 weekly for residents/$115 weekly for non-residents. Counselor in Training cost is $75 for residents and $85 for non-residents. There is a $10 non-refundable deposit/week required at sign-up. Registration forms can be found on our website or outside the Recreation Office. Call the Parks & Recreation at 860-6276662 with any questions. KIDS FISHING DERBY: East Windsor Parks & Recreation along with

the Broad Brook Angling Club will be sponsoring the Annual Kids Fishing Derby on Saturday, May 3. Registration will take place from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. Fishing will take place from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. The fishing derby is for kids ages infant to 15. This is a free event open to all East Windsor residents. Prizes will be awarded for the largest fish, first fish caught and first person to catch the fourfish limit in each age group. No lures will be allowed. Contact the Parks & Recreation Department at 860-627-6662

with any questions. SPRING TINY TOTS SOCCER: East Windsor Parks & Recreation will be sponsoring the Spring Tiny Tots Soccer. This program is open to boys and girls ages 3 and 4 and the cost is $35 per child. It will be held at East Windsor High School from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. beginning Saturday, May 3, through June 7, skipping May 24. This program will teach the fundamentals of the sport

Annual Family Resource Center Summer Program Returns EAST WINDSOR - For the 14th year, the East Windsor Family Resource Center will be offering the East Windsor community a quality summer program for children ages 5-12 years old (Kindergarten-7th grade). During each week of Summer Program a weekly theme with age-appropriate activities including games, sports and field trips will be offered to each child. As an added benefit, Mike Mosher, an East Windsor High School teacher, will once again be joining the Family Resource Center staff as summer program

director. The ratio of children to staff is approximately 8:1. The camp takes place at Scout Hall, 28 Abbe Rd., East Windsor. Parents may choose to enroll their child for any or all of the seven weeks. Once again the program will be offering two time schedules (with reflecting rates) to choose from: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at $140 per week or 7 a.m.-6 p.m. at $180 per week. These rates include the cost of field trips and swimming at South Windsor’s Veteran’s Memorial Park pool. Travel for field trips will be by school bus.

PARKS/page 7

The program will offer snack(s) and children are required to bring their own lunches. Early Bird Special: Enroll your child by June 2, 2014 and receive a 20% discount for the first week. Enrollment forms will be available at the East Windsor Family Resource Center beginning May 1. A $100 deposit per child must be returned with the enrollment form. This deposit will be applied towards the first week’s tuition. Please contact EWFRC office at 860627-9741 with any questions.

May Events at The Connecticut Trolley Museum CRUISE NIGHTS

Beer & Wine Tasting Fundraiser

5PM-8PM DJ, 50/50 raffle, trolley rides

Friday, May 16 5PM-8pm

Every Tuesday through September

6 North Central News May 2014

(small fee charged) Snack bar will be open FREE to show your “wheels” orr just to come and have fun

Sunday, May 11

Mother’s Day All moms receive FREE admission with a paid child’s admission Great family day out Hours are 11am-4:30pm

Together with Joe’s Fine Wine & Spirits this event is to raise funds to restore the trolleys destroyed in the 2012 break-in.

$25 per person Music, food, raffle, trolley rides

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Parks Programs

East Windsor (continued from page 6)

of soccer. Please register with the East Windsor Parks & Recreation Office or download the registration form at Call the Parks & Recreation Office with any questions at 860-627-6662. EAST WINDSOR PARK 2014 PRICING: The Parks & Recreation Commission has the admission rates for the 2014 season at the East Windsor Park on Reservoir Avenue. Weekday and weekend admission prices: Residents $2, under age 2 and Seniors 60+ are free. Season passes for individual is $25 and family is $50. All season passes are for residents only. Beginning this season, the East

Windsor Park will allow admission of non-residents Monday through Thursday. Prices for non-residents will be $5 for adults 17 and up, $3 for ages 316 and Seniors and age 2 and under are free. Please call the Parks & Recreation Office at 860-627-6662 with any questions. LEGO CAMP: The East Windsor Parks & Recreation is teaming up with Play-Well TeKnologies to offer a week long camp for students in grades K-2 and grades 3-5. Students will be able to let their imagination run wild with tens of thousands of LEGO pieces. Build engineer-designed projects such as boats, bridges, mazes, motorized cars and skyscrapers. Students will explore the endless creative possibilities of the LEGO building system with the guidance of an experienced Play-Well

Art Show Slated for Warehouse Point Library

EAST WINDSOR - East Windsor High School presents its annual Spring Art Show again this year at the Warehouse Point Library, 107 Main St., East Windsor. Showcased will be artwork from talented and creative students from grades 9-12. Drawing, painting,

digital photography, and graphic design will be on display. The show will be on display throughout the month of May in the Community Room at the library. Please call the library at 860-623-5482 for more information. 

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The Cut Flower Club makes a great giŌ for Mother’s Day, Birthdays or Anniversaries. The Cut Flower Club is a giŌ that keeps on giving for eight weeks. GiŌ CerƟficates are available. We can custom design a membership, based on your schedule, please inquire. Either you, a family member or a friend can pick up your flowers, even if you are on vacaƟon. Call 860-623-5925 or email if you have any quesƟons. Like us on Facebook! Please return this form & payment to : Syme Family Farm LLC, Jennifer Syme, 121 East Road, Broad Brook, CT 06016 “Thanks for supporƟng local agriculture”- Jennifer Syme Name: ______________________________________________________________________________ Address: _________________________________________________________________________________ Email Address: __________________________________________________________________________ We will email you on Tuesdays as a reminder. Phone Number: ___________________________________________________________________________ Please Circle Your Choice: Traditional Bouquet: 8 weeks @ $9.50= $80.81 (tax included) Premium Bouquet: 8 weeks @ $14.00= $119.09 (tax included)

May 2014 North Central News

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Celebrating 40 Years

Vintage Shop store owners  and event sponsors, Nico will bring his fundraising efforts to East Windsor, to be held at 38 Bridge Street. The event will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be fun, food to enjoy, festivities, crafters, vendors to provide shopping fun, and children’s activities to enjoy. Bob The Clock man will provide $5 antique appraisals and proceeds will to go to Make A Wish. There will be many free drawings through the Vintage Shops Building next door. Free parking and admission. Bring the family for a fun day for a great cause.

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Gift Shop

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EAST WINDSOR - Hosted by the Vintage Shops of East Windsor, a very special charity event featuring the infamous Nico’s Lemonade Stand from Plainville is coming soon. Nico has been raising money through his own inspiration since the tender age of 5 when he wanted to help sick children through the Make A Wish Foundation. He has become a little bit of a celebrity in his hometown and has made headlines for his generosity and has continued his yearly work  for the Make A Wish Foundation.    On May 24 in cooperation with the

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860-627-6662 if you have any questions or for more information. PANTHER HOOPS CAMP: The East Windsor Parks and Recreation Department will be sponsoring a week of basketball summer fun. This camp will help your child develop a love for the game. Panther Hoops Camp will be held at East Windsor High School the week of June 23-27 from 8:30 a.m.-noon. Fee for this program is $55 with a $5 sibling discount. Please register by June 19.

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instructor. This is an ideal way to prepare young builders for the challenge of Engineering FUNdamentals. WHEN: June 23-27; WHERE: Town Hall Annex, 25 School St., East Windsor; TIME: Grades K-2, 9 a.m.-noon; Grades 3-5, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.; COST: $125 per student. Registration forms can be found online at or you may use the convenient online payment process through Webster Bank. Please call the Parks & Recreation Office at


May2014NCN_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:41 PM Page 8

Town Voters Will Decide Fate of Proposed Budget


By Linda Tishler Levinson

ELLINGTON — A referendum on the proposed budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year will be held on May 20. The proposed $51,577,732 budget has been approved by the Board of Finance, which set an Annual Town Meeting date of May 13. The Board of Selectmen voted to send the final budget proposal to referendum. The proposed budget would bring an increase of $1,291,977 or 2.5 percent over the current spending plan. “It’s a modest increase, particularly in light of what’s going on in the world around us,â€? First Selectman Maurice Blanchette said. “It’s in line with reality ‌ It will do the things that we need to do.â€? He added it does not include a lot of “extras.â€? The budget includes $35,441,900 for the Board of Education, which includes

$97,720 for capital outlay and $1,268,382 for debt. It also includes a general government budget of $16,135,832, which includes $1,317,372 for capital outlay, $1,164,834 for debt and a contingency fund of $200,000. The school budget carries an increase of $807,384 or 2.33 percent. The general government side carries an increase of $484,193 or 3.09 percent. The projected mill rate would increase from the current 28.4 mills to 28.7 mills. A mill represents $1 in tax for every $1,000 of assessed property value. Under the proposed budget, taxes on a house assessed at $200,000 would rise $60 a year. The Annual Town Meeting will be held at 8 p.m. May 13 in the Ellington High School auditorium. The budget referendum will be held from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. May 20 at the high school.

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ELLINGTON - Results from the 2013 Ellington Youth Culture survey have been released and the results are encouraging. The survey, completed in partnership with the schools, was administered last May to students in grades 6 through 12. The survey is done every four years and asks about use of several substances, particularly alcohol. The survey results show 30 use day rates for alcohol in high school students dropped 10 percent since 2009. Substance use went down across the board from the 2009 survey with alcohol having the largest drop. For the last eight years, Ellington has been a grantee for two Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (DMHAS) grants for the prevention of underage drinking. This past year, additional funding was awarded to address prescription drug misuse and the town sponsored a prescription drug take back day in January and will sponsor another one June 7 in collaboration with the Ellington Resident State Troopers’ Office. The DMHAS grant funding ends June 30 of this year and members of the coalition for the grant, the DPYC (Developing Positive Youth Culture), are seeking other grants to help build on the success. The DPYC has been in existence for over 15 years and has sponsored various initiatives to address underage drinking in youth and encourage positive choices.

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Formerly DAPC (Drug Abuse Prevention Council), the council changed its logo and mission to reflect the positive culture it had been supporting all along. The coalition still provides support for the prevention of alcohol and drug abuse in town. The DPYC sponsors the youth leadership group, Rise Above, whose members are high school students in Ellington. The group performs community service throughout the town and also sponsors several activities for their peers. Director of Youth Services and chairperson for the DPYC, Diane LasherPenti, is pleased with the results and hopes to continue the work of keeping the numbers low. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I would like to thank members of the DPYC, police, schools, parents and community for their hard work and commitment to developing a positive youth culture for our youth,â&#x20AC;? said Lasher-Penti. Prevention Coordinator Deborah Stauffer is also pleased with the results of the survey; however, she maintains a guarded optimism about the future. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Underage drinking is a continuous issue in Ellington and nationally and has to be addressed indefinitely,â&#x20AC;? Stauffer said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I am very pleased the new data shows a decrease in 30 day use. This tells us our messages are being heard. We have put a lot of effort into our campaigns and cannot stop, even when the money runs out.â&#x20AC;?




May2014NCN_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:41 PM Page 9

New Ellington Senior Center Celebrates Grand Opening


ELLINGTON - On Saturday, April 5, the new Ellington Senior Center, located at 40 Maple St., had its grand opening celebration. Senior citizens and Ellington residents were able to tour the new facility, which was funded after the support of two town referendums. The welcoming ceremony was given by Senior Center Director Erin Graziani, Director of Human Services Doris Crayton, and Ellington’s First Selectman Maurice Blanchette. Ellington seniors, led by music director Barbra Caramante, and Ellington High School’s Jazz Ensemble, also provided musical entertainment during the celebration. State Rep. Christopher Davis, one of

the guest speakers for the ceremony, spoke to the crowded room of Ellington seniors and town officials about all of the hard work and devotion that made the creation of the new senior center possible. “After years of planning and two referendums, this project was finally able to become a reality,” Rep. Davis said. “This could not have been completed without the dedicated work from the members of our local boards and committees, along with the help of several volunteers and charitable donations. This was truly a community effort, and now, our community can finally enjoy this new facility.”

State Rep. Christopher Davis (R-Ellington) speaking during the grand opening celebration at Ellington’s new senior center.

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May 2014 North Central News


Saturday, June 7, 2014 9 am to noon


May2014NCN_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:41 PM Page 10

Open House Includes Youth Archaeological Dig Opportunity


ELLINGTON - The Nellie McKnight Museum, 70 Main St., Ellington will be open on Saturday, June 14, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. to celebrate Connecticut Open House Day at Connecticut museums. This event is sponsored by the Connecticut Office of Tourism. The house museum was built in 1812 in the Federalist style by the Sexton family. It has eight rooms and originally had seven fireplaces. Purchased by Nellie’s father Howard in 1922, it was occupied by the McKnight family until Nellie’s death in 1981, when it was bequeathed to the Ellington Historical Society to be used as a museum. Admission is free. The Open House will also feature an archaeological dig on the grounds of the museum. Participants and observers will

all who attend have a chance to dig. Young people ages 7-16 may sign up by calling 860-875-5804. All participants must be accompanied by an adult. Observers are welcome. Questions may be directed to 860875-5804.

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learn the techniques of excavation and will participate in ongoing research of the property. If you like the excitement of uncovering history, and don’t mind getting dirty, this is for you. Archaeologists from the Friends of the Office of State Archaeologists will give

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instructions on how to dig, and what to look for. This event will be held rain or shine unless the ground is too saturated. The dig will be from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m., and will be free of charge. It will be limited to eight participants at a time, but an effort will be made to insure that

ELLINGTON Ellington Congregational Church, located at 72 Main Street, will be holding its famous Indoor Tag Sale on Saturday, May 17, in the Social Room from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be a great variety of items offered, including dishware, holiday decorations, glassware, toys, games and puzzles, books, sports equipment, tools and more. The church is handicap accessible. The location is very customer friendly with plenty of parking and the comfort of being indoors. Please contact the church office for additional information at 871-6606 or visit its website:

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May2014NCN_NCN new template 4/28/14 1:45 PM Page 11

Proposed Enfield Budget Has Major Capital Improvements


By Linda Tishler Levinson

ENFIELD — Town residents had a chance to learn more about the proposed town budget at a community conversation event held by the Town Council on April 2 at Henry Barnard School. Town Manager Matthew Coppler is seeking an overall town and Board of Education budget of $119,888,064 for the 2014-15 fiscal year. The budget proposal includes reducingthe General Fund commitment to the capital improvements plan from $3,193,385 in  the current fiscal year to $2,048,006. Coppler reviewed the proposed expenditures in the capital improvement plan, saying that this budget would commit $750,000 toward Thompsonville revitalization, restructure Information Technology to align with needs of the town and the schools while committing

to cloud-based technologies, continue the replacement of Department of Public Works vehicles, begin the process of facility review to address the capital needs of all town facilities, commits to the ongoing replacement of vehicles for the Police Department, as well as addresses various equipment needs, and allow the Recreation Department to expand programming. Coppler said the proposed budget raises the mill rate from 29.26 mills to 29.36 mills. He displayed a mill rate chart comparing Enfield to other towns, and he noted Enfield tends to fall in the middle. The budget includes a town-side budget of $55,625,908 and a Board of Education budget of $64,626,156. A public hearing on the proposed budget was scheduled for April 30.

Spelling Bee Winners

The Enfield Junior Women’s Club held its annual Town of Enfield Spelling Bee on April 8 at John F. Kennedy Middle School. The winner of the 2014 Spelling Bee was Cassidy O’Hara, left, a sixth grader at St. Martha School. Runner-up was Hannah Marsh, also a sixth grader, at John F. Kennedy Middle School.

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Kissel Highlights Work of North-Central Connecticut American Legions

12 North Central News May l 2014

Sen. John A. Kissel highlights the activities of local American Legions on this month’s “Sen. Kissel & Friends”. (PATV15, Mondays at 9:30 p.m.) In photo, from left to right: Sen. Kissel; Jim Raynor, Past Commander, John Maciolek American Legion Post #154 in Thompsonville; David P. McCaffrey, Post Commander of Buck - Dubiel Post #101 in Somers; Jonathan Normand, Sr. Vice Commander of Buck - Dubiel Post #101 in Somers. On the Web: and

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BROAD BROOK - Opera House Players, Inc. presents the epic musical “Les Misérables” at the Broad Brook Opera House, 107 Main St., Broad Brook, on May 2 through 18 (Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.). This production is directed by area director and performer Sharon FitzHenry, with musical direction by Bill Martin. The cast consists of actors from Connecticut and Massachusetts. Tickets are available by calling the box office at 860-292-6068 or visiting Tickets are $21 (adults) and $17 (under 12/over 60). “Les Misérables” synopsis: Discover a nation in the grip of revolution, where convict Jean Valjean is on the run. Hunted relentlessly by the policeman

Javert for breaking his parole, he must leave his past behind and keep his vow to raise the young orphaned Cosette. But with revolution in the air and Javert closing in, Jean Valjean has no choice but to fight for his life and sacrifice everything to protect the people he loves. The show was recently brought to the big screen, starring Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe, and Anne Hathaway. The Opera House Players’ 2014-2015 season was recently announced: “Spitfire Grill” (September 2014), “Fiddler On The Roof” (November 2014), “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels” (February 2015), and “Spamalot” (May 2015). Flex season passes and gift certificates are available by calling the box office.

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ERfC Meets $10,000 Challenge To Benefit Scholarship Fund


ENFIELD â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Over 100 guests attended ERfCâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 20th Anniversary celebration and the 2nd annual Wine & Beer Tasting Event to benefit the ERfC Scholarship Fund on Friday, April 11, at the Enfield Holiday Inn. Claire Hall, ERfC Executive Director said this year ERfC was promised an anonymous $10,000 match for funds raised at the event. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We are happy to announce that the $10,000 challenge was not only met, but exceeded,â&#x20AC;? she said. Mayor Scott Kaupin, master of ceremonies for the event, interviewed many guests, including Maura Bellamy of Westfield, mother of 2014 Olympian and Sochi silver medal winner Kacey Bellamy. On display were Bellamyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Olympic medals. Kacey was not able to

attend, but donated several signed items to the auction including a hockey stick used at the Olympics, photograph and trading card. Keynote speaker and Enfield native Paula Apruzzese Long, a 1979 graduate of Enrico Fermi High School in Enfield, shared how she has been delivering game-changing, high-tech innovations for over 30 years. A co-founder of EqualLogic, her company was acquired by Dell in 2008 for $1.4 billionâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the biggest buyout of a private tech company at the time. Long is now a founder and CEO of DataGravity, currently in stealth mode startup. Event sponsors included local businesses Carillo & Howland Insurance Advisors, Conval, Inc., Custom Spray, Family Ford of Enfield, Ideal Flexibility,

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Wine and beer tasting was provided by Joeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Fine Wine & Spirits from East Windsor, and cellist Allan Ballinger, violinist Dana Lyons, and jazz pianist Jim Markey entertained guests. Over 100 donated items were also featured in the silent auction.

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Townwide Tag Sale

ENFIELD – The PLA will be sponsoring the 4th annual Enfield Town Wide Tag Sale this year on Saturday, May 17, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. (rain or shine). Whether you like to shop, or need a reason to de-clutter your home, this event is fun for everyone. Over the past three years it has been a great way to unite the community, recycle items, and support a wonderful cause in the Enfield Foodshelf. For a $20 donation to the Enfield Foodshelf, participants will get their address marked on a map of Enfield that is distributed to shoppers the week before the event, as well as a sign placed on the corner of their street directing traffic to each and every tag sale. Checks should be made out directly to the Enfield Foodshelf, and mailed no later than Friday, May 2, to: T. Rivera, 253 Broad Brook Road, The Enfield Junior Women’s Club carries out the club’s mission on making a difference in the community, centered around edu- Enfield, CT 06082 Please be advised that checks will not cation, health, home life and community service. On Thursday night, April 10, the club gave the Enfield Police Department be cashed until after the day of the tag a significant donation toward the purchase of two GPS tracking collars for the Department’s two K9s. Bruin and Falco, the sale. two tracking dogs, will wear the GPS collars. The Enfield Junior Women’s Club also made donations to the Arthritis If you have any questions about the Foundation, Gengras Center, Johnson Memorial Cancer Center, Thomas J. O’Connor Animal Control and Adoption event, please feel free to email the PLA Center, and the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.  EJWC serves  Enfield  and the surrounding towns. Currently there are at 17 members. If you are interested in joining, please email or like the club on Facebook.

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Rotary Club Names Three as Paul Harris Fellowship Recipients


ENFIELD – The Enfield Rotary Club has named Linda Bridge, Lori Gates and Jennifer Smith as this year’s Paul Harris Fellowship recipients. The award is named for Paul Harris, founder of Rotary International and honors those

Enfield Lions Club Pancake Breakfast

ENFIELD - The Enfield Lions Club will hold its annual All You Can Eat Pancake Breakfast on Saturday, May 3, from 8 a.m.-11:30 a.m. at the Enfield Senior Center on Elm Street. Come and help the Lions Club to reach an all-time goal of serving 300 people this year. One hundred percent of the proceeds from the fundraiser will go directly back to the community to help local charities, scholarships to Enfield graduating students, youth sport teams and many more. You can obtain your tickets at the door: adults $5, seniors $4, under 12 $3. For more information about the Lions Club or the pancake breakfast, you can contact Jack at 860-745-1141 or go to

who serve the community. Linda Bridge was associated with the Enfield Food Shelf from 2002 to 2012 as a volunteer, then president and executive director. Linda was a hands-on leader who did everything from stocking shelves, serving clients, creating awareness and raising numerous donations during difficult times. Lori Gates from Enfield Hooah! is a tireless supporter of service men and women from Enfield and surrounding towns who are serving, or have served, in our nation’s armed forces. Her duties have included sending care packages to welcoming our soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen home, to helping families through new or repeat deployments. In addition, Lori has dedicated her life to assisting military members and their families. Jennifer Smith, a member of the Enfield Rotary club since 2008, launched the inaugural Cinco K Mayo Road Race. Her involvement was critical to the success of the first and successive events. Jen’s dedication to the Enfield Rotary

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A donation in the amount of $1,000 is made by the local club or an individual to the Rotary Foundation in the name of each Paul Harris Fellow. These funds help support the Foundation’s educational and humanitarian programs around the world. Family and friends of this year’s recipients are invited and encouraged to attend the Foundation and Awards Dinner banquet on Friday, May 16, at the Holiday Inn in Enfield. A social hour begins at 6 p.m. Dinner will be served at 7 p.m. The cost is $30 per person. For ticket information, please contact Ed Palomba at 860-741-4395 or any Enfield Rotarian.

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Club was evident from her willingness to serve as secretary, put her name into the succession plan for president, as well as establishing the 4-Way Test Essay Scholarship program. In addition, Jen volunteered at virtually all of the Club’s functions and events and shared her talent for improving events, generating larger attendance numbers and engaging members in volunteer roles. An additional Paul Harris Fellowship, through an individual donation, is being awarded to Shannon Grant. Grant is President of EFEE, Enfield Foundation for Excellence in Education, and the driving force behind Enfield’s recent Invention Convention, which returned to Enfield for the first time in over a decade.

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Voters Will Decide Fate of Proposed $29.8 Million Budget


By Linda Tishler Levinson

SOMERS — Residents will vote on a $29,898,933 proposed municipal budget in a May 20 referendum. A public hearing on the budget was held April 21. At the Special Board of Finance Meeting immediately after the public hearing, the finance board unanimously voted to recommend the budget, First Selectman Lisa Pellegrini said. The Town Meeting on the budget will be held at 7 p.m. May 6 in the Town Hall auditorium at 7 p.m. to formally set the referendum date. There is no tax increase  associated with the proposed 2014-2015 budget. The proposed mill rate will remain at the current 23.37. “This is due to an increase in revenues – grand list is up with the driver of that being the Somers Solar Installation on South Road … that installation generates an additional $235,000 in tax revenue for the town.  All future installations of that type are now tax exempted by law due to a bill passed last year by the state legislature.  The Town of

Somers fought very hard to be able to keep that tax revenue, thus easing the burden on local property taxpayers,” Pellegrini said. “In addition, the town is able to finance two road reconstruction projects (Mountain Road and Somerset Lane) and vehicles including two firetrucks, a senior bus, as well as achool roofs, and achool generators and fire alarms due to a bonding package previously passed by the town,” she said. “The BOF, BOS and BOE believe that the proposed budget is a very good one for the community as it addresses all needs and ensures programs are sound while at the same time recognizes the need to keep taxes low. All departments have worked very hard together,” she said. The budget proposal includes $7,057,271 for town government, an increase of $179,442 or 2.61 percent; $20,744,253, an increase of $386,373 or 1.9 percent; $300,000 for capital improvements (town funded), a decrease of $91,748 or 23.42 percent; and

$1,797,409, an increase of $31,716 or 1.8 percent. Overall, the budget is an increase of $505,783 or 1.72 percent.

Shred It Day The town will held Shred It Day from 9 a.m. to noon May 31 in the Town Hall parking lot. The event is free of charge for town residents.

SOMERS - All adults are invited to participate in the Somers Senior Center’s bus trip to the Mohegan Sun Casino on Friday, May 16. You do not have to be a senior citizen or a resident of Somers to take part. Passengers must be at the Somers Senior Center by 8:15 a.m. Bus will leave promptly at 8:30 a.m. and will return to the Center at about 5:15 p.m. Trip cost of $20 includes round-trip deluxe bus, two gambling vouchers, voucher towards the cost of lunch, and the bus driver’s gratuity. Organizers would like to honor longtime volunteer trip planner, David Gwilliam, who passed away on Jan. 18, 2014, by naming the Mohegan trips after him. Thanks to David, the senior center

now has ongoing trips to the casino. Please join the seniors on May 16 for their “David Gwilliam Mohegan Sun Trip.” Payment must be made at time of reservation (cash or check), along with the full name and contact telephone number for each person. No refunds. All checks should be payable to the Somers Recreation Department. Either drop off your reservation/payment at the Senior Center or mail reservation information and check to the Somers Senior Center, 19 Battle St., P.O. Box 308, Somers, CT 06071. Reservations/payments deadline is Friday, May 9. Any questions, please call the Somers Senior Center at 860-763-4379.

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Above, Hoopsters Boosters, who raised the most funds last year with $6,446, stop for a photo after completing the 2014 Walk MS in Enfield. At right, Emily Carra takes a bow after performing with Integrity Martial Arts’ demo team during the event. Photos courtesy of

Enfield Community Laces Up and Steps Out for ‘Walk MS’ 2014 ENFIELD More than 6,000 Connecticut residents battle the effects of multiple sclerosis, a potentially debilitating disease that affects the central nervous system. In a show of support, each year hundreds of loved ones,

friends, neighbors, and co-workers throughout Enfield and surrounding communities, including Windsor and Springfield, step out in solidarity for a single cause: to end the effects of MS. Enfield’s J.F.K. Middle School served as

State Grant Focuses on Affordable Residential/Mixed Use Housing for Windsor Locks

HARTFORD – State Sen. John A. Kissel applauded the State of Connecticut’s April 10 approval of a $20,000 grant for predevelopment costs associated with establishing an Incentive Housing Zone (IHZ) in Windsor Locks. An IHZ allows for residential or mixed-use developments that set aside a minimum of 20% of the units for households earning 80 percent or less of the area median income for minimum of 30 years. A unit is affordable if it costs no more than 30 percent of a person’s annual income. The state funding will help to analyze workforce housing needs, identify potential IHZ locations, draft potential IHZ regulations and design standards.


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the starting point for the 2014 Walk MS last month. Over 400 participants took to the pavement in Enfield last year. Together, they raised $25,716. This year, the Enfield planning committee hopes to raise $29,000. “Each year Enfield-area residents come out in large numbers to demonstrate support for those in their

community battling multiple sclerosis,” said Karen E. Butler, National MS Society, Connecticut Chapter vice president of marketing and public relations. “Our Enfield walk site planning committee members do an exceptional job of rallying the troops, bringing people together from all walks of life in a single effort to raise funds to find a cure.”

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Special Easter Celebration

Rev. Dr. Barry Cass speaks to his congregation in the newly completed Somers Congregational Church in Somers on Easter Sunday. The 200-year-old church was burnt to the ground in a fire on New Year’s Day 2012. Photos by David Butler II



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SOMERS – The Somers Lions Club with support from the S.E.F. and Somers Rotary Club presents a Kentucky Derby Festival, Saturday, May 3, from 3 p.m.10 p.m. at the Shallowbrook Equestrian Center, 247 Hall Hill Rd., Somers. Watch the race, as well as the races leading up to the derby, live on the screen. There will be food, live music,

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Samuel Shlafstein Earns Pokémon Regional Championship Title

Shown (l to r) are First Selectman Lisa Pellegrini, Somers Republican Town Committee Chair David R. Drinan, Somers Director of Human Services Amy Saada, and Somers Chief Financial Officer Mike Marinaccio.

Republicans Donate Excess Campaign Funds

The Somers Endorsed Republicans, the campaign arm of the Somers Republican Town Committee, has donated $586 to the Somers Emergency Assistance Fund. On April 2, David Drinan, Somers Republican Committee Chairperson, proudly presented the check to Somers Director of Human Services, Amy Saada. In the run-up to the March 4 primary



for Republican Town Committee seats, the Somers Endorsed Republicans raised monies to fund their campaign to retain their seats on the Town Committee. Upon the successful conclusion of the campaign, members voted unanimously to donate all leftover funds to charity and selected the Somers Emergency Assistance Fund as the recipient.



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TRANSFORM YOUR HOME! 22 North Central News May 2014

Pokémon U.S. National Championships will be the last chance for competitors to earn valuable Championship Points that count toward a potential invite to the Pokémon World Champions in Washington D.C. this August. “As the final event leading into this summer’s national and international events, Spring Regionals brought out a strong turnout of competitive players and we look forward to seeing many of them at the National and World Championships,” said J.C. Smith, director of Consumer Marketing for The Pokémon Company International. “Congratulations to all of the Pokémon Spring Regional Champions and a special thank you to the thousands of families, friends and Pokémon fans who attended events throughout the season.”

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SOMERS - After a weekend of headto-head Pokémon Trading Card Game (TCG) battles, Samuel Shlafstein earned the esteemed title of Pokémon Spring Regional Champion at the 2014 Pokémon Spring Regional Championships. Held in Madison, Wis., on April 12 and 13. Samuel is among only six Senior Division Spring Regional TCG champions from across North America to earn the esteemed title. Players that achieve a top Championship Points ranking following the Spring Regional Championships will earn Travel Awards to compete at the 2014 Pokémon U.S. National Championships in Indianapolis this July. As the final step in what is often a year-long journey for many players, the

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May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 23


Battling a Brush Fire

Somers Fire Department personnel battle a brush fire off South Road in Somers on a recent Saturday morning. The fire was under control in short time. Photo by David Butler II

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May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 24

Popular Sale Benefits Somers Garden Efforts


SOMERSault Gymnastic Champs

SOMERSault Jungle's Level 3 USAG Team competed in the Connecticut State Championship Cup, which was conducted the weekend of March 29-30 with over 30 gyms competing. The team took home seven gold medals and a silver medal for its all-around scores. A gold medal is awarded for a combined score on all four Olympic events of 35 or higher. A silver medal is for a combined score between 33-34.95. SOMERSault Jungle Gymnastics is also extremely proud to announce two of its students are the 2014 USAG Level 3 State Vault Champions. Amaya Randolph, age 11, had a vault score of 9.8, which was the highest vault score for all sessions of the entire competition. Jazlynn Aponte-Lee, age 10, had a vault score of 9.75, which tied her for second place in the entire competition.



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SOMERS - With the wild, wicked winter finally melting away, we see the season of yard raking and flower bed preparations. If you look closely, the daffodils are stretching through the leaves and tulips are peeking around mulch beds. May also brings the members of Somers Beautification to prepare for the 20th annual Plant Sale at Grower Direct.  The seeds have long been planted at the Greenhouse and the young plants are being prepared to bring smiles to your faces as you plant them in your prepared gardens or baskets and barrels. Grower Direct at 164 Hampden Rd. in Somers will once again open its wholesale greenhouse on Saturday, May 17, from 8 a.m. to noon for a sale to benefit Somers Beautification. When you purchase plants on this one special day when the greenhouse is open to the public, you support the volunteer members of our group, as well as the Somers Fire

Department and the High School Beta Club. Pell Farms will again be bringing a wonderful selection of perennials, shrubs, and trees. This is a great opportunity to spruce up those winter weary yards. Meadowbrook Farms will have a huge selection of vegetables for you (feeding the rabbits is optional). We look forward to welcoming you to this plant sale event. Enjoy a free cup of coffee and a doughnut, meet members of Somers Beautification, Grower Direct, Somers High Beta Club, Somers Fire Department, and purchase plants for your enjoyment or to give as gifts.  This summer, when you pass by a public garden in Somers, you can appreciate knowing that by your contribution you are a part of beautifying Somers. Can you think of 20 different things that we have done for the town of Somers? Stop at the sale and let us know what you have observed.

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Saturday, May 19th - 8 a.m. till Noon At Grower Direct, 164 Hampden Road, Somers, CT

Grower Direct, our local wholesale plant grower, will open its multiple greenhouses for this one morning where you may view and purchase plants from this wonderland of flowers. You may purchase beautiful, healthy plants for your yard or to give as gifts while you support the work of the volunteers who keep the public areas of Somers colorful and attractive. Pell Farms will have shrubs and trees available. Meadowbrook Farms will bring young vegetable plants for your gardens. There will also be selections of perennials as well as acres of annuals in every size. Full and partial annual trays will be available. Please come to the plant sale, enjoy a free cup of coffee and doughnut, meet members of Somers Beautification, Grower Direct, Somers High School Beta Club, Somers Fire Department, and purchase beautiful plants for your enjoyment all year.

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May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 25

Annual PMC Suffield Kids Ride Scheduled for May 10


Event Features Red Sox World Series Trophies

fee until May 9 and $20 walk up fee on event day. A $25 per rider fundraising minimum is in place for all riders. The PMC Kids Rides are spokes in the PMC wheel, joining the more than 5,500 adult PMC cyclists in their mission to fund adult and pediatric patient care and cancer research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute through the Jimmy Fund. The PMC is a two-day, 190-mile bike-a-thon held the first weekend of every August. Since 1980, the PMC has raised $414 million for the Jimmy Fund. PMC Kids Rides offer a way for children to become part of the PMC mission, involving young people in volunteerism and fundraising in a safe and

athletic way. Since the first ride in 1998, The PMC Kids Rides program has raised more than $5.5 million. To provide the young cyclists with an additional push, the PMC recognizes cyclists in the Kids Rides program who raise $250 or more. Riders who meet this goal are honored as Heavy Hitters and receive an official PMC sack pack

and certificate to acknowledge their fundraising achievements. PMC Kids Rides are sponsored by the Yawkey Foundation. Contributions can be made payable to the Pan-Mass Challenge. To register, visit For more information, email Chris Nikolis at or by cell at 860-7963633 or call 800-WE-CYCLE.


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SUFFIELD â&#x20AC;&#x201D; This spring, the PanMass Challenge (PMC) Suffield Kids Ride will be one of 37 PMC Kids Rides throughout New England and beyond. In 2013, the PMC Kids Rides program attracted nearly 4,700 cyclists, between the ages of 2 and 15, who rode between one and 26 miles in mini-bike-a-thons to raise money for cancer care and research. The 2014 PMC Suffield Kids Ride will take place on May 10 at the McAlister School in Suffield. The event expects 125 children, ages 3-16, to ride a 5-mile loop on Hill Street or in the parking lot circle of the Suffield Middle School. The day will feature lunch for all riders and guests, live music, gift bags for the first 125 riders and a terrific raffle, including Red Sox, Celtics, Bruins and Patriots tickets. Additionally, the 2004, 2007 and 2013 Boston Red Sox World Series trophies will be on site from 8 a.m.-10 a.m. Fans are encouraged to arrive early and are welcome to take a photo with the trophies, all to benefit PMC and The Jimmy Fund. The ride will start shortly after 10 a.m., with a fundraising goal of $20,000, adding to the $27,000 raised in the first two years. The PMC Suffield Kids Ride was started by Chris and Denise Nikolis of West Suffield. Chris is a five-year rider of the PMC and this will be the third annual PMC Suffield Kids Ride, There is an early bird $15 registration


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May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 26

Community Supported Agriculture Supports Local Produce


STAFFORD - Once a month in Stafford, a diverse group of people comes together in the libraryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s community room to discuss irrigation, organic pest control, soil enrichment and how things are going at the farm they help run cooperatively. The group, comprised of a graphic illustrator, a banker and financier, teachers, an office manager, and others from the corporate and manufacturing world, forms the steering committee for Staffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Down to Earth Community Supported Agriculture, or CSA. The CSA movement has been growing rapidly across the country, as people become aware that typical grocery store fare has traveled long distances and been treated with pesticides and preservatives. How does a CSA work? Simply put, people pledge monetary support to a local farm in advance of the growing season: the time when farms face their greatest expenses. In return for their monetary support, members receive a weekly share of the farmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s harvest throughout the growing season. This local food movement allows safe,

healthy, organic alternatives while reducing our foodâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s carbon footprint. Staffordâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Down to Earth Farm leases its land from Robert White, an organic beef farmer. The farm is located at 5 Michalec Road. Charlotte Hansen, the groupâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s treasurer, emphasizes that Down to Earth is a bit different from other CSAs in Connecticut: most of the shares offered at Down to Earth include farm work as partial payment. Working members help out at the farm for two hours every other week, and attend two wholefarm workdays during the growing season. Hansen explains that the farm has chosen this path in the belief that it is important for people to have a connection to their food, and says that many members choose Down to Earth because they can participate in growing their own food. Rich Longmore, the farmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s assistant manager, agrees. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I think it gives you a great appreciation for food. I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t waste as much now, because I know how much effort went into producing it.â&#x20AC;? Longmore often freezes a portion of his share, allowing his family to enjoy local

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vegetables deep into the winter. Other farm members have taken up canning. Mary Ellen Vigeant, who writes the farmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s newsletter, notes that pickle recipes are popular when cucumbers are in season. Though some people might be initially put off by the up-front cost of joining a CSA, the fact that Down to Earth offsets some of the costs with member labor makes it a great value. Longmore notes that this is particularly true if people compare prices with organic produce at popular supermarkets. Though the farm relies on member help, the steering committee hires a farmer, Caroline Brown, who oversees operations throughout the year: ordering seeds, seeing that they are started in the greenhouse at the appropriate times, and planning a rotation of crops to maintain soil nutrients. The farmâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s harvest season runs from early June into November: roughly 22 weeks. During that time, members get a wide variety of vegetables, including lettuce, onions, garlic, potatoes, carrots, peas, beets, radishes, beans, greens, tomatoes, squash, kale, and melons. The farm also grows an assortment of herbs and flowers. Vigeant, whose farm work hours usually fall on Saturday harvest days, delights in watching members come to pick up their shares. â&#x20AC;&#x153;What we offer goes so far beyond anything you could find at the supermarket. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been intro-

duced to baby bok choi, curly cress, parsnips, beans in all sorts of colors, and watermelon radishes. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s great to watch people collecting their shares, swapping recipes, and getting so excited about the food weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve grown together.â&#x20AC;? Shares for the 2014 season are on sale now. Applications are available at the organizationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s website,

ÂĄÂ&#x153;Â&#x2013;Â&#x17D;Â&#x161;Â&#x2039;Â&#x153;Â&#x161;Â&#x17D;ÂŁ Â?Â&#x153;Â&#x17D;ÂŁÂ&#x161;Â&#x153;¤Â&#x2019;Â&#x160;¨Â&#x17D; ¤Â&#x153;Â&#x2DC;Â&#x17D;Â&#x160;Â&#x161; Â&#x160;Â&#x2039;ÂĄÂ&#x153;Â&#x2013;Â&#x17D;Â&#x161;Â&#x2019;Â&#x17D;Â&#x160;ÂĄÂĽá&#x20AC;&#x201D;á&#x20AC;&#x201D;á&#x20AC;&#x201D;

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Now accepting registrations for 2014-2015. Call today for more information on the great educational opportunities awaiting your child! 860-684-2600 Tuition assistance available

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%XFNOH\+LJKZD\5RXWH6WDIIRUG6SULQJV&7 Â&#x160;¨Â&#x201C;Â?Â&#x153;ÂĄÂ?Â&#x160;ÂŁÂ&#x2013;­á&#x20AC;&#x2018;á&#x20AC;&#x201D;á&#x20AC;&#x201D;á&#x20AC;&#x201D;á&#x20AC;&#x2018;ÂĄÂĽÂ&#x2019;Â&#x153;Â?Â&#x17D;Â?Â&#x201C;Â&#x152;ÂŚÂĄÂ&#x2018;Â&#x17D;ÂĄÂŽá&#x20AC;&#x2018;Â&#x;ÂŚÂ&#x201C;Â&#x161;Â&#x17D;á&#x20AC;&#x2018;Â&#x153;Â&#x2DC;Â?Â&#x160;Â&#x161;Â&#x201C;Â&#x153;Â&#x161;Â&#x161;Â&#x201C;Â&#x2DC;Â&#x160;Â&#x2014; Â&#x2014;Â&#x2014;Â&#x201C;ÂŁÂ&#x153;Â&#x161; Â&#x160;ÂĄÂ?Â&#x161;Â&#x17D;ÂĄá&#x20AC;&#x2018;á&#x20AC;&#x201D;á&#x20AC;&#x201D;á&#x20AC;&#x201D;á&#x20AC;&#x2018;ÂŚÂĄÂ&#x2018;Â&#x17D;ÂĄÂŽá&#x20AC;&#x2018;Â&#x153;Â&#x2DC;Â?Â&#x160;Â&#x161;Â&#x201C;Â&#x153;Â&#x161;Â&#x161;Â&#x201C;Â&#x2DC;Â&#x160;Â&#x2014;á&#x20AC;&#x2018;Â&#x153;¨Â&#x201C;Â&#x161;Â&#x17D;á&#x20AC;&#x2018;Â&#x;ÂŚÂ&#x201C;Â&#x161;Â&#x17D;

May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 27

Stafford Library May Events Include Special Musical Guests


STAFFORD – On May 3 at 10:30 a.m.: Sensory Storytime-Special Musical Guests-Hannah & Garry Demmerle of Two Right Feet will merge music and stories for a fun time. This interactive story time will combine stories and music for a fun time for parents or caregivers with their little ones. Learn how to interact with your little one with conversation to help your child get the most out each story. All ages will enjoy music, rhymes, stories, and song. A free book will be given out following the program. Call to register at 860-684-2852. Drop-ins welcome. Program made possible by the Andrew Eder Conversational Reading Grant. May 5, 12, 19: Rhyme Time at 10 a.m. - Enjoy rhymes, board books, songs

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May 21, 7:30 p.m.: The Conservation Commission will be sponsoring a program at the library about black bears in Connecticut. Jason Hawley, a wildlife biologist from the Department of Environmental Protection will give a presentation about black bears. May 22, 7 p.m.: The Stafford Community Emergency Response Team will hold a informational meeting to let the public know more about this important team. All are welcome.

Jewelry Workshop

STAFFORD - Flights of Fancy Gallery will hold a Bracelet and Earring Making workshop on May 4 at 1 p.m. Cost is $30. Mother’s Day is around the corner of this workshop. Accessorizing is an art form in this class with Deb Callahan. The evidence of jewelry goes back to ancient civilizations. Create a bracelet and pair of earrings using Swarovski crystal and other beads. This is a terrific Mother’s day gift. All materials are provided. Registration is limited so please preregister by calling the Pond House Bed & Breakfast, 860-684-1644.


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is devoted to representing claimants in Social Security disability hearings and appeals and helping veterans obtain service-connected disability and other benefits. Dillon is also an instructor of Paralegal Studies with the University of Hartford. To pre-register for this program, call the library at 860-684-2852. May 13, Teddy Bear Time at 10:00: Features special musical guests Hannah & Garry Demmerle of “Two Right Feet.” This interactive story time will merge stories and music for a fun time for parents or caregivers with their little one. Learn how to interact with your little one with conversation to help your child get the most out of story time. All ages will enjoy music, rhymes, stories, and song. A free book will be given out following the program. Drop-ins welcome. Program made possible by the Andrew Eder Conversational Reading Grant. May 17 at 11:00 - Creature Teacher: This program features live animals you will see up close and learn amazing facts about them too. Call to register. All ages welcome.

May 2014 North Central News

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and finger plays with music and movement followed by a short playtime for ages 0-2 years plus parent or caregiver. May 5 at 6 p.m.: Mothers Day PJ Storytime - You may come in pajamas and bring a stuffed toy to enjoy stories, rhymes, songs, music, and a special Mothers’ Day craft to surprise mom or a special person on Mothers’ Day. All ages welcome. May 6, 13, 20, & 27, 10 a.m.: Teddy Bear Time for ages 2 and up. Enjoy stories, songs, rhymes, music and movement with a short activity to go along with the day’s theme. May 6 at 6 p.m.: Free informational seminar on Social Security Disability Claims and Appeals. Presented by attorney Sharron D. Dillon, who has practiced law for 20-plus years. Her practice

May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 28

Voters Will Decide Fate of Town, School Budgets at Annual Meeting


By Linda Tishler Levinson

Johnson Memorial Holds Health Seminar

Over 50 community members came to Evergreen Health Care Center, the skilled nursing facility of Johnson Memorial Medical Center, to attend a free panel lecture. Caring for Your Aging Parent: The Coming Crisis featured panelists in the fields of elder law, home care and financial services who highlighted topics ranging from home health care options, family support services, financial planning and long-term care. Panelists included: Wendell Avery, Esq., Marcia Hess, Esq., William McCloskey, Stateline Senior Services, LLC, David John, MD, Kinsha Williams-Davis, Director, Home & Community Health Services, and Anna Romanowski, Business Manager, EHCC. Above, Stuart E Rosenberg, CEO/President, JMMC, makes opening remarks.

STAFFORD — The Board of Selectmen is seeking a $13,078,123 budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year, while the Board of Education is seeking a $27,365,776. Both budgets represent cuts from what the boards had sought. The Board of Finance cut the selectmen’s budget $410,000. The total selectmen’s budget reflects an increase of $896,301 over the current spending plan. First Selectman Richard Shuck stressed that many of the requested increases are offset by revenue increases. “I’m working very hard to tow the line,” Shuck said, adding while he would like to have no budget increase,

that would mean drastic cuts to town services. The proposed 2.5 percent increase includes $102,000 for revaluation, offset by an $80,000 transfer; $229,000 in buildings, offset by $112,000 in state aid; $275,000 in fixed charges; $50,000 in capital outlay to repair drainage on High Street and Furnace Avenue; and $59,000 in emergency services, offset by $38,500 in revenue. The selectmen’s budget includes $10,549,906 for general government spending, $1,997,286 for debt service and $530,931 for the Stafford Public Library. A town meeting on the budget is tentatively scheduled for May 7, with a tentative referendum date set for May 14.



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May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 29

Staffordville’s Bidwell Receives Outstanding Educator Award


STORRS – Sandra M. Bidwell has been selected to receive the Outstanding School Educator Award from the Neag School of Education Alumni Society of the University of Connecticut. Bidwell was recently recognized at the 16th Annual Awards Dinner of the Neag School of Education. Bidwell is a reading recovery teacher and reading and writing instructional support teacher  at Staffordville Elementary School. She started her career as a mathematics teacher at Assumption Jr. High, Manchester, before transitioning to teaching reading and mathematics for Stafford schools, where she has taught since 1986. “Mrs. Bidwell cares deeply about education and the progress and wellbeing of each and every child who is fortunate enough to learn from her,” said Peggy Felcetta, principal of Stafford School. “Her energetic approach and ability to analyze a problem and offer innovative solutions make her an educator frequently sought out as a member of many committees.” “Mrs. Bidwell has a prodigious

School. Being a reading specialist for two decades, Bidwell has published many articles on using drama to improve motivation, comprehension and fluency, particularly for disabled readers. She actively serves as a beginning educator support team and teacher education and mentoring program mentor to numerous student teachers and begin-

capacity to initiate, participate and take on responsibilities that improve her teaching, promote student learning and positively contribute to Stafford’s professional community,” added Michael J. Bednarz, director of Curriculum and Instruction at Stafford Public Schools. Bidwell earned a master’s degree in education in 1987 and a sixth-year degree in professional education and reading in 1991 from the Neag

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ning teachers. She also leads the district’s New Teacher Committee. When she’s not teaching in the classroom, Bidwell actively volunteers within the community, including leading the community group at Staffordville School Parent Teacher Organization to develop surveys on improving home/school communication.

May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 30

Hastings Farm Offers Customers Farm to Table Options


By Julie Cotnoir

SUFFIELD - When asked if she has ever thought of a career away from her family’s farm, Lauren Kaplan has a very clear answer. “I can’t see myself doing anything else.” Her sister Megan and father Larry both have the same answer. The three spend a lot of time together and their commitment to the family business is clearly evident. Hastings Farm, located at 472 Hill St. in Suffield, has been an operated by the family for decades. What began as a tobacco farm has seen its purpose change to dairy and beef since the first generation of Hastings worked the farm’s fields. It was initially Larry Hastings’ great grandfather who took over the farm by way of having a third mortgage on the property.

Hastings can’t remember when it became Hastings Farm, but he does remember that the first tractor purchased by the family was in 1936. In 1956 Larry’s father took over the operation and it was passed to Larry and his wife Susan in 1985. The farm has grown with each generation. The family currently owns more than 200 acres and rents and/or uses an additional 200. As milk prices took a dip in 2009 the family realized it needed to diversify its offerings. They have operated a store on the property for three years and now the milk that is not sold to Agrimark is sold locally to area customers. Every other day the cows produce between 13,000 to 14,000 pounds of milk. The family had always done custom

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Larry Hastings takes a break from working to pose with two of his grandchildren, Bridget and Samantha Kaplan, at Hastings Farm. beef orders, but about four years ago cheeses, local eggs and other local prodthey realized that there was a local mar- ucts as well. ket for grass and corn-fed beef. Now “Things have definitely developed locals can come to the store anytime over the last couple of years,” says between 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Lauren, who has taken on the responsiSaturday and grab some steak tips, burg- bility of overseeing the beef side of the ers or rib eyes in addition to many other business. She says there is a tremendous types of beef, along with their half-gal- amount of work involved in getting the lon of milk. Visitors can also visit the beef ready for sale, including having the farm’s greenhouse, where all cows under packaged beef processed at a USDA two months of age are housed. inspected facility in Vermont and then The family has started making its own dry aged. All beef is individually packcheeses and yogurt as well. They also aged and frozen, ready for purchase. offer a compliment of Cabot brand

GRASS/page 31

May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 31

Grass Fed Beef Helps Improve Sales at Hastings Farm


(continued from page 30)

Customers may also arrange to purchase a whole side or half side of beef. A half a side of beef can be purchased for approximately $1,200. 212 Milkings Daily The farm has 106 cows that need to be milked twice a day. This takes approximately 2.5 hours each time, according to Lauren. Quality is a word that the Hastings family uses often. Megan says, â&#x20AC;&#x153;We want the best quality for what we are going to sell here and what we will send out.â&#x20AC;? Larry says he is happy that his daughters have continued to grow the business. He says he knows from experience that maintaining the quality of the product is hard work. The farmer says that owning a farm means being committed to working seven days a week. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They are going to work their tailbones off,â&#x20AC;? he says, talking about his daughters and their future at the farm.

He admits that he was not jumping on the bandwagon when they approached him about expanding the offerings, but he has seen the positive results. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They keep selling more yogurt so they must be doing something right.â&#x20AC;? He said he is not surprised by how the sale of the beef has taken off. â&#x20AC;&#x153;People are looking for grass-fed beef,â&#x20AC;? he says. He adds that they have a well-balanced diet, â&#x20AC;&#x153;People want this kind of food.â&#x20AC;? Lauren smiles and jokes when discussing the cattle. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They eat better than we do,â&#x20AC;? she says. In addition to the farm store, Hastings milk can be purchased at Highland Park Markets in Suffield, Farmington and Manchester. They also participate in a Farmerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Market each Sunday, beginning on June 8 in Collinsville Center in the Post Office parking lot from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information on the farm, like it on Facebook, or visit

Bridget Kaplan, 8, enjoys spending time on her familyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Hastings Farm. Photos by Julie Cotnoir

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May2014part2_NCN new template 4/28/14 1:56 PM Page 32

Relay for Life Team is Driving for a Cure for Cancer


By Julie Cotnoir

SUFFIELD - On June 7 at 10 a.m. more than 37 teams will take to the track at Suffield Middle School to make a difference, to offer hope and to show support in a battle that every person involved has some connection to. Whether it is a relative, neighbor, coworker or friend, everyone participating in this year’s 16th Annual American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life of North Central Connecticut knows someone who has been afflicted with cancer. One local team, participating in the Suffield event is Driving for a Cure. The team was established in 2007. It began with two families (Reynolds-Thompson & Morris) and now boasts 13 families. They have raised almost $25,000 for this annual event. Nearly 400 people will step foot on the track for 24 hours in June. But it is not just a 24-hour commitment that all of these teams make to the cause. Teams raise funds throughout the year. The extremely enthusiastic Driving for a Cure team is no different. Their commitment and enthusiasm is contagious.

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Debora Reynolds, the founder for the group, brought the idea of a Relay team to her family when she moved to Connecticut from Virginia. She had participated in a relay team there that her son’s football team had started. Her sister Amy Morris’ family came on board and the group continued to grow. Manny Carestia & Cari Cieri will serve as this year’s co-chairs for the team. All of the families, with the exception of Reynolds, have children on the team. The group has had some successful efforts this year. Jumping on the excitement surrounding the AMC “Mad Men” television series the group held a “Mad Men”-themed night at the Oak Ridge Country Club, where people dressed like the characters, bid on auction items and raised more than $5,000. A tag sale held last month has also become a tradition. The group raises a significant amount of money from this effort. In years past one family donated the entire contents of a home for the group to sell. On May 8 from 5 p.m.-8 p.m. at the Suffield Country Club the team will host a “Pretty Pieces” jewelry sale. The sale is free and open to the public.

All of the team’s members contribute in their own way. Artist Christi Blad, a member of the team, creates unique jewelry using Scrabble tiles and featuring messages of hope that the team will sell

throughout the weekend. Others on the team organize fundraising events, offer their home for the tag sale location or

FAMILY/page 33

May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 33

Family Fighting Against Cancer


(continued from page 32)

will man the team’s site and sell the add a bead necklaces that have become so popular (participants purchase a necklace and add a bead after each lap they complete on the track). Hastings Farm has also donated little cartons of strawberry milk to the group to sell at their site.

The women are very close and have expanded their philanthropy beyond raising money for Relay. They have organized Moms Helping Moms. The women make meals and donate gift cards anonymously to women who are battling Cancer in their town. Member Gundi Lobo says, “It teaches our kids this is what you are supposed to do.”

Suffield Garden Club Annual May Market By Rita M. Chmura

SUFFIELD - On Saturday, May 10, Suffield Garden Club will be celebrating its 37th annual May Market. It will be held as usual, on the grounds and barn of the historic Phelps-Hatheway House, 55 S. Main St., from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. This annual community event promises a variety of items for sale at better than competitive pricing. One can find a large assortment of specialty trees and shrubs supplied by Garden Club members and its many vendors. Large blooming geraniums grown by the agriscience students at Suffield High are a favorite. The agriscience students also have a large selection of flats containing annual, perennial

and vegetable seedlings. Another popular May Market spot is Collectibles, where you may find a unique gift at a reasonable price. The Gourmet Food Booth offers delicious home-baked goods made by garden club members. Visit the Garden Club booth where you can get help with horticulture dilemmas. Our Master Gardeners have many tips for successful gardening. This booth also offers beautiful fresh flower arrangements, Polish Pottery stepping stones, and unique gifts for Mom on her special day. Last but not least is the Tea Cup Auction, where you can take a chance to win an item of your choice. Admission is free and the event will be held rain or shine.

Relay for Life Driving for a Cure team members are front row, from left, Debora Reynolds, Sloane Waicunus, Holly Tobey; back row: Gundi Lobo, Cari Cieri, Erikia Horne, Susi Keane, Amy Morris, Christi Blad and missing from the photo are Manny Carestia, Cathi Smith and Amy Nemeath. Photo by Julie Cotnoir

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May2014part2_NCN new template 4/27/14 7:56 PM Page 35

2015 Honda Fit: Great Things Can Come in Small Packages


The Honda Fit used to be just an OK is just average. Nissan and Subaru do car with an engine that didn’t always much better jobs with CVTs. The CVT is feel up to the challenge and an automat- the better choice for the fuel savings at ic transmission that seemed outdated. It 33-mpg city and 41-mpg highway comwas also a noisy car to drive pared to 29-mpg city and 37down the highway. Honda mpg highway. has addressed those conSafety shouldn’t be a concerns in a complete redesign cern with the Fit, which of the 2015 Honda Fit. Honda expects to achieve a EHIND Honda put a lot of focus top safety pick from the The Wheel into noise, vibration and Insurance Institute for harshness (NVH) for the Highway Safety, as well as a 2015 Honda Fit and it most5-star safty rating from the ly succeeded. Thanks to KEITH GRIFFIN National Highway things like extensive use of Transportation Safety soundproofing material throughout the Administration. The Fit comes standard body, including in the ceiling, doors, with front, side and curtain airbags with fenders, and floor, and in the dash, rollover detection. instrument panel and center console, the The Fit excels in its use of interior Fit is now the quietest sub-compact on space. It has best-in-class space numbers the market. with class-leading cargo capacity. It has But getting to highway speed isn’t a more front shoulder room, passenger Zen-like moment. The 1.5-liter, 4-cylin- volume and rear legroom than its closest der engine that produces 130 horsepow- competitors: Nissan Versa Note, the er (an 11 percent improvement) gener- Hyundai Accent and the Ford Fiesta. ates a fair amount of noise back to the The Fit continues to have what it calls passenger cabin. Yet, once at highway magic seats that flip and fold various speed the cabin becomes noticeably ways to achieve maximum cargo flexiquiet and it’s possible to start drifting bility. This is a little car that can swallow north of 70 mph without realizing it. up eight beanbag chairs or a mountain The Fit comes with a choice of two bike with its wheels still on. transmissions: a six-speed manual that New standard features include auto enhances the driving experience and a on-off headlights, LED brake lights, continuously variable transmission that Bluetooth HandsFreeLink and a center



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storage console with armrest. Items such as smart entry push button start, a onetouch operated moonroof, seven-inch touchscreen display audio with nextgeneration HondaLink, and heated leather seats are among the upgrades available for the first time in Fit. This is not a car that looks or feels like an entry-level sub-compact. Exterior styling offers distinct features like the LED brake lights and the integrated rear spoiler with just a hint of the Volvo C30. Up front, the Fit has a strong but not overwhelming grille that mimics the rest of the Honda lineup without being a carbon copy. Honda has adapted a fairly simple strategy for selling the Fit. It’s available in only three trim levels: the base LX, mid-trim EX and the EX-L. The LX starts at $15,525 with the continuously variable transmission costing an addi-

tional $800; the EX starts at $17,435 with the $800 bump for CVT; and the EX-L starts at $19,800 and is not available with the six-speed manual. Consumers can also spend an additional $1000 for the EX-L with the seven-inch navigation screen. VITAL STATISTICS Wheelbase: 99.6 inches Length: 160.0 inches Width: 67.0 inches Height: 60.0 inches Curb weight: 2513 lbs. manual transmission / 2544 lbs. CVT Engine: 1.5-liter, four-cylinder Horsepower: 130 @ 6600 rpm Torque: 114 lb. ft. @ 4600 rpm Base price: $15,525 As-tested price: $20,800 Also consider: (a comparative vehicle) Nissan Versa Note, Hyundai Accent, Ford Fiesta

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All classified ads are 30 words or less, no logos. Price is $24.95 for text only or $29.95 boxed. Checks and classified copy can be sent to North Central News, P.O. Box 427, Somers, CT 06072. Email: for more info. DEADLINE FOR JUNE EDITION MAY 28.



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New Investment Challenges Thinking!! Require New Thinking That’s why we utilize the following modern asset programs for our KRP managed retirement portfolios: • Traditional investments, including specialty/sector investments, to expand your core holdings.

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May 2014 North Central News  

Community, school, parks and rec, library, senior news and more serving the towns of East Windsor, Ellington, Enfield, Somers, Stafford and...

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