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Volume 20, Number 17

Serving Durham, Middlefield and Rockfall

Lake Beseck excavation planned


By Mark Dionne Town Times

The town of Middlefield has received three bids on a project to excavate six areas of Lake Beseck while the lake remains drained for the nearly-completed dam repair. The excavation project will involved clearing accumulated sand and muck washed into the man-made lake from four outfalls and two tributaries. The outfalls collect runoff from roads and storm basins and have pushed a lot of the remains of winter sanding into the lake. “By dredging these six locations, that’s taking some of the muck out of the lake,” said Middlefield First Selectmen Jon Brayshaw. “In theory you should do this every 15 years.” The town has permission for the work from the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and from the state, which owns Lake Beseck. “We’re cleaning their lake. We’re basically doing their work. Middlefield has been exemplary in doing this,” Brayshaw said. Brayshaw called the stewardship of the lake another example of Middlefield’s leadership in environmental causes. See Beseck / Page 12

Friday, April 4, 2014

Middlefield mill rate proposed at 33.61 By Mark Dionne Town Times

Noor Gonzalez and her father, Amin, explore a sensory table at the Durham Co-op Nursery school’s recent annual Dad’s Night. See more photos page 13. | Submitted by Mica Machnik

The proposed budget for the town of Middlefield puts the 2014-2015 mill rate at 33.61, up from a 2013-2014 rate of 33.24. Middlefield First Selectman Jon Brayshaw presented the budget to the Board of Finance at a public hearing on March 27 at the Middlefield Community Center. While there were just about no members of the public there, Brayshaw and Finance Director Joe Geruch went through the 18 page budget and answered questions from members of the BOF. The philosophy of the budget, according to Brayshaw, was “to get the most for the least.” Much of the total budget figure of $17,030,225 is devoted to Middlefield’s portion of the school budget, $12,178,763. The remaining funds from Middlefield are put towards town expenses ($3,629,047), debt service ($486,128), and capital fund ($736,287). While the total budget figure rose 2.6 percent from the figure of $16,605,630 See Middlefield / Page 2


A2 Friday, April 4, 2014

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Middlefield tax burden on this average homeowner remained at in 2013-2014, Brayshaw said in $1,453. For town employees, his presentation that the average homeowner with a home Brayshaw put in a 2 percent assessed at $165,350 would salary increase “pretty much see no increase in the town across the board.” There were a few exceptions, such portion of their tax burden. According to their exam- as the building inspector, who ple, the town portion of the would receive a 4 percent increase because of a union contract. The salary line for the resident state trooper jumped 7.5 percent, for a $106,000 exUSPS 021-924 pense. “They’re getting their three year increases all in one Published weekly by year,” Geruch said. Record-Journal at Four days earlier, the 11 Crown Street, Durham Board of Selectmen also discussed the increased Meriden, CT. cost of the resident state trooper program. Durham Periodicals Postage Paid selectmen Jon Szewczyk at Meriden, CT and at suggested studying different additional mailing offices. ways to structure that town’s policing needs. P O S T M A S T E R: Proposed expenses for proSend address changes to fessional services went down in the Middlefield budget. Record-Journal, P.O. Box Funds devoted to town, la915, Meriden CT 06450 bor, and bond counsel and re1265818 From Page 1

gional planning all decreased. Of the professional services group, Brayshaw said, “Some of those are minuses. A lot of that has to do with Powder Ridge being behind us.” Brayshaw did add $5,000 to the professional services expenses so the town could hire a consultant to review and “clean up” the town’s job descriptions. “I’d like to have a professional - not me - look at job descriptions,” Brayshaw said. “Everyone deserves it.” The proposed 2014-2015 budget also contains a new line for the town web site, at $5,000. The proposed capital expenses portion of the budget totals $768,980, with the selectman’s proposal matching the department’s proposal in each case. The town budget has to be approved at a town meeting. In the past, Brayshaw has scheduled that town meeting in May after the approval of the school budget.

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The Rev. Dr. Elven W. Riggles, Jr. presented Boy Scout Troop 270 with a Certificate of Recognition and Gratitude for its volunteer contributions to the United Churches recently. Scouts were recognized for removing snow from church sidewalks, steps and parking areas, cleaning church buildings, building a new storage shed on the property, hosting regular coffee hours and other volunteer projects to benefit the United Churches. Many Boy Scouts, scout leaders and parents were in attendance at the Sunday morning worship service. | Submitted by John Hogarth

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Friday, April 4, 2014


Police: Car crashes Beseck residents encouraged to report suspicious activity into fire chief’s Middlefield house

ple functions in the neighbor- Watch website says that the hood. Members, numbering group will report incidents to over 100 households, get the police for residents who Resident State Trooper Eric e-mail updates about activ- feel uncomfortable talking to Kelly told the Middlefield ity in the neighborhood. The police. It was this function of the Board of Selectmen at its group also serves as “an aveMarch 18 meeting that nue so police are aware we’re group that concerned Kelly. some complaints from the getting a rash of this or that,” “If they call us versus calling her, we go right away. If I get Lake Beseck neighborhood Poturnicki said. “We’re all alert and aware the e-mail a day later, the likeweren’t reaching the police in time for the police to act of each other,” Poturnicki lihood of me finding the two on them productively if the said. “If there’s something individuals that someone was complaints went only to the weird, we report it.” The Lake Beseck Crime Crime Watch group. See Police / Page 10 Kelly is encouraging Lake Beseck residents to call police first when they witness something suspicious. In addition to 911 for emergencies, residents can reach police at (860) 349-9685. Calls to that For All Your Easter Sweets number will always be answered, Kelly said, because Chocolate Dipped Treats they roll over to the barracks Chocolate Bunnies and Pops if they are not picked up at Filled Candies, Sugar Cookies, Cupcakes the Middlefield office. The Crime Watch group, 16 Main Street - Durham Village officially called Lake Beseck 860-349-2256 ❤ Crime Watch for Health, was Store Hours: Tues. - Friday 10-5, Saturday 9-3, Sunday 9-12 founded in 2008, ironically enough because a number of crimes and small thefts went unreported to police. In an interview with the Town Times, Crime Watch captain Amy Poturnicki said that the group serves multiBy Mark Dionne Town Times

By Lauren Sievert Special to Town Times

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A Meriden man faces charges after police say he tried to evade state troopers and crashed his car into a house in Middlefield. The house is owned by Middlefield Volunteer Fire Company Chief Peter Tyc. Edwin Rodriguez, 29, of 281 Hanover St., Meriden, was charged with reckless driving, engaging police in pursuit, operating under suspension and failure to display marker plates. According to police reports, a resident state trooper was patrolling in the area of Jackson Hill Road on Thursday night, March 27, when he saw a car without a rear license plate. The car turned onto Cedar Street, and the trooper followed and

turned on his lights and siren to pull the car over. The driver accelerated when the lights and siren were turned on, reaching speeds between 60 and 70 miles an hour. The trooper tried to catch up to the car, but had to slow down because of a curve in the road. The car lost control while making the turn and drove through a set of trees, struck four parked cars and came to rest on its side in the driveway of 104 Cedar St. Rodriguez was identified as the driver and was taken to Hartford Hospital for treatment of minor injuries. Rodriguez was released $1,000 bail and is due in M i d d l e tow n Su p e r i o r Court on April 11. One of the cars Rodriguez struck was a town-owned vehicle.

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Durham Garden Club plans Arbor Day dedication will begin at 322 Main St., the West side of Main Street at the intersection of Talcott Th e D u rh a m G a rd e n Lane, where two Amelanchier Club will dedicate six new- × g ra n d i f l o ra ‘Au t u m n ly-planted native trees on Brilliance’ will be planted. Main St. and at Allyn Brook One of the trees is planted Park, Saturday, April 26, be- in recognition of the 80th ginning at 10 a.m. and con- Anniversary of the Durham tinuing through 12:30 pm. Garden Club, whose beginThe plantings continue a nings date to March, 1933. The civic beautification program club just completed a yearlong anniversary celebration. begun in 2000. The dedication ceremony The second tree, funded by

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the Durham Democratic Town Committee, is dedicated to the memory of George Zeeb, the former long time chairman of the Town Committee and a volunteer on several town boards and commissions. The ceremony will continue to the East side of Main Street, at 307 Main, with the planting of a third Amelanchier grandiflora x, this one funded by the friends of Jim and Ona McLaughlin in recognition of their 50th Wedding Anniversary. The ceremony will continue across the street to Notre Dame Church where the club is planting two replacement trees for trees



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that were damaged during the devastating storms a few years ago. Two Cercis canadensis will be planted, one in memory of Greg and Kathleen Curtis and the other in memory of Catherine Orio. Both trees were originally funded by the respective families to honor their loved ones who were influential in the founding of Notre Dame Church. The final tree to be dedicated is a Magnolia virginiana, to be planted at the flagpole at Allyn Brook Park, where the ceremony will end with refreshments. The magnolia is funded by the club in recognition of Marcia Kalayjian, a club member since 1975, who chaired the 80th Anniversary Celebration and has worked on club projects for decades. All of the trees are native, ornamental and have three season appeal. Amelanchier x grandiflora, commonly called serviceberry, has white blooms in April, berries in


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June, and brilliant autumn color. Cercis canadensis, eastern redbud, blooms pink in April and has autumn color. Magnolia virginiana, sweetbay magnolia, blooms May to June with fragrant flowers and has showy berries in fall. Bonnie Penders, Renee Kelley, Marge Stahl, Nancy Grenier, and Barbara Olsen of the club Civic Beautification Committee, chose the locations and tree selections with the help of Jane Harris, the head of Middletown’s Urban Forestry Commission. Kurt Bober and the Public Works Department will be assisting the club with getting the trees planted. The Durham Garden Club has planted scores of trees since beginning the project in 2000. Planting and tree maintenance are funded by the club through the yearly sale of holiday wreaths and sprays. The club currently has openings for new members. Please phone Flo Flynn at (860) 349-0504, if you think you would like to help serve your community in this type of beautification endeavor or just to take advantage of the many programs and workshops sponsored by the club. The April 10 meeting at 10 a.m. at the library is open to the public and includes a presentation by John Himmelman on Singing Leaves — the Stories & Songs of the Crickets and Katydids.

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Town Times |

Friday, April 4, 2014


Religious Briefs


Notre Dame Church

The Notre Dame Church Catholic Outreach Ministry has scheduled a Poverty Dinner for Wednesday, April 9, 6 p.m., in the church hall, 272 Main St. All are welcome. A free will offering will be accepted to benefit the Catholic Relief Services rice bowl. A panel discussion about hunger will follow the dinner.

Molly (left) is a 14-yearold girl whose owner went into a nursing home. Molly may only have a few weeks or months to live, but needs a loving home to spend her final days on someone’s lap. Benson is a large 2 year-old male tabby. He is affectionate and will quickly make himself at home. For more information about Molly and Benson, call CATALES at (860) 3449043 or email info@

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Community supper The Church of the Epiphany, 196 Main St., has

scheduled a free community supper for Sunday, April 13, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., in the church hall. Meal will be prepared by Epiphany parishioners; dessert by Notre Dame parishioners. For more information, call (860) 349-9644.

Easter schedule

Palm Sunday - April 13, 9:30 a.m. Blessing of the palms and procession to the church. Maundy Thursday - April 17. Dinner in the parish hall, 6:30 p.m.; Holy Eucharist in parish hall and stripping of See Briefs / Page 7


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The Children from Miss Joanne’s Learning Center visited Italy as they study countries around the world. Pictured, Emilia Richard paddles a gondola down the canals of Venice. Cooper and Paige LaPointe wear masks for the Italian Carnavale.

Town Times |

Friday, April 4, 2014

Cahill honored as friend of education

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William Cahill was recently honored as the 2014 recipient of CAS’s Distinguished Friend of Education Award. The award honors a person, organization, or corporation for outstanding service to education in Connecticut. Cahill, as an active member, is one of the eight founding members of “The Benchwarmers,” an athletic booster club started in 1967 to support Coginchaug Regional High School’s athletic programs. The club has raised over $1 million to fund scholarships, purchase sports equipment and improve athletic facilities in the greater DurhamMiddlefield community.

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Town Times |

Get a new iPhone and save the planet, too By David Sandler

ber one generator of e-waste in the world. How do we combat this growing e-waste menace? Fix (C.A.T. Chat features infor- it, don’t toss it. I took my faulty iPhone mation from members of the Coginchaug Area Transition a to the geniuses at the Apple Store for a diagnosis. The verlocal group dedicated to promoting a more thoughtful and dict was that my battery was sustainable, give-and-take ap- failing. The genius offered proach to living on this planet. me two solutions. They could Look for C.A.T. Chat on a reg- replace the battery for a mere $79 or I could buy a new iPular basis throughout 2014.) We all have become so de- hone for $200. Not much of a pendent on our smart phones, choice. With no worry about but they eventually break, be- voiding my expired warranty, come obsolete or we simply maybe I could repair it mywant the latest, greatest ver- self, so why not at least try? After a quick search online, sion. This leads to a proliferation of e-waste. One website, I ordered a replacement, estimates tery and repair kit from ifixit. that 65.4 million tons of org. They have a manifesto e-waste will be generated by on their website to encour2017, with the USA the num- age repair: Repair is better Special to Town Times

nervous about losing things; I used my largest refrigerator magnet to keep the screws and small parts from disappearing. It was also helpful to have another set of hands available and a magnifying device. I read the enclosed repair instructions and readied the online video on my laptop. I took twice as long as the woman in the video, but with my online coupon, I have a new iPhone for $29! I also discovered that I could recycle my old lithium battery at the AT&T Store in Middletown. So for a half hour of my than recycling, repair saves the planet, repair saves you time, I got a “new” iPhone, money, repair teaches engi- saved at least $50, saved the neering and if you can’t fix it, planet and learned that, yes, they can make screws THAT you don’t really own it. The parts are tiny, so I was small.

CAT will sponsors a series of free programs on Thursday evenings with the Joint Task Force on Clean Energy and Sustainability. The next free program will be on Thursday, April 10, at 7 p.m. in the Durham Library. The topic will be organic lawn care with local resident Diane St. John of Natureworks providing tips on keeping your lawn looking good without harming pets, children or wildlife. The program is free and open to all; refreshments will be provided. For updates and interesting articles, “Like” us on Facebook at Coginchaug Area Transition or check out the Transition movement website at www.

Voter registration effort underway in Durham By Keith Hagarty Special to Town Times

DURHAM — Are you registered to vote? If so, is your information up to date? To ensure all town voter information is accurate and current, the Town of Durham’s Registrar of Voters has been mailing notice cards to registered citizens as part of the town’s annual update of all registered voters. Notice cards should be mailed back to the office of the Registrar by May 1. As of March 11, there are a total of 5,044 registered voters in Durham, of which 1,360 are registered Republicans, 1,215 registered Democrats, 2,436 registered Unaffiliated and 33 classified as Other. While the town has seen 111 new voter registrations over the past year, it has also had 205 voter registration removals during the same time period, typically caused by voters moving out of town or deceased ranks. However on average, according to

Karen Cheyney, Durham Democratic Registrar of Voters, the overall registered voter numbers in town remain consistent with previous years. “I have been (Democratic) Registrar since 2008 and the number of voters has hovered between 5,000 and 5,100,” she said, noting one of the biggest increases in active new voter registration came between 2008 and 2009 when the town saw 408 new registered voters coinciding with Barack Obama’s first presidential campaign. “Interesting candidates or exciting campaigns lead to citizens registering to vote,” said Cheney. “Durham is a more settled town, so most new registrations are people who have moved into town or people who attained the age or citizenship to register.” Connecticut has the shortest registration deadline in the country, with citizens allowed to register to vote up until one week before an election, compared to other states which typically allow citizens up to 30 days to

register before an election. One of Durham’s more interesting trends over the past few years is the ability for citizens to register at town hall on Election Day itself. While residents are strongly encouraged to register early so as to avoid any crowds or last-minute obstacles, Cheyney believes providing citizens with a convenient option to register and cast their vote right away can only be a benefit. “This allows people who moved into town but forgot to register to vote to still vote in the election,” said Cheyney. In her first term as Durham Republican Registrar of Voters, Pam Lucashu takes great pride in helping any citizen, regardless of age or political affiliation; take those first steps in the voter registration process. “I believe voting is a privilege we often take for granted in America,” said Lucashu. “If we want to keep our freedoms we need to be involved in the process.”

Lucashu and Cheyney are excited to be involved in the town’s annual voter registration drive scheduled to take place in May at Coginchaug Regional High School. “Last year my Democratic counterpart (Cheyney) and I began teaching a basic civics course in conjunction with that event, and held a mock election in the presidential year,” said Lucashu, noting the two have also set up voter registration tables during the spring and summer months at The Durham Farmer’s Market. “This gives us a chance to talk to citizens about any upcoming voting events and answer registration questions, and our plan is to continue these efforts,” Lucashu added. “It is so much fun when a new voter is excited about voting.” Cheyney agreed, saying a participatory democracy requires all of its citizens to vote, which in turn requires they first be registered. See Voter / Page 19

Briefs Middlefield Senior happenings

60+ Club day trips

The 60+ Club has scheduled the following day trips. Thursday, April 10 Tuesday, April 22 - AARP Safe Driving Course. A fee Newport Playhouse $ Cabaret is charged. Registration re- “My Husbands Wild Desires”. Wednesday, May 28 quired at (860) 349-7121.

For more information, call Frankie Valli and 4 Seasons (860) 346-0724. Tribute at the Aqua Turf. Wednesday, June 11 - Doris Free luncheon Duke Estate walking tour. Tuesday, July 8 - All You The Durham Senior Center Can Eat Lobster at Delaney and the Durham Public House. Library has scheduled a free

soup and salad luncheon for Friday, April 4, noon, at the library. Reservations are required by Wednesday, April 2 at noon. For reservations, call Amanda Pedersen at (860) 349-3153.

Town Times |

Friday, April 4, 2014

Meriden-Wallingford campership drive starts April 6 The Meriden-Wallingford Summer Campership Fund will begin its annual fundraising drive Sunday, April 6. The Campership Fund is in its 39th year of offering campership awards to boys and girls in Meriden and Wallingford. This year’s goal is $60,000 and awards will be $130 per child. Last year, $55,000 was raised. This made it possible to award 405 camperships

to youngsters to attend two weeks at a local, nonprofit camp. All money raised goes directly to fund camperships. Applications for campership awards have been distributed in Meriden and Wallingford schools. The completed application should not be returned to the Meriden Youth Services office. Applications and proof of family income must be brought to the camp office of choice. Families ap-

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plying must submit a DSS budget sheet or completed 2013 income tax form. The number of awards will be determined by the amount raised during the campaign. Call the camp phone number on the list of camps on the second sheet of the application to check on office hours. For more information contact Youth Services a t w w w. m e r i d e n h e a l t h . com and click on Youth Services. Camperships will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. The campership committee members are President Eliot White, Record-Journal;

James Ieronimo, Meriden/ Wallingford United Way, secretary; Lawrence McGoldrick, and treasurer; Denise Keating, Meriden Youth Services. The Meriden-Wallingford Campership Fund is sponsored by the Record-Journal, the United Way and Ion Bank Foundation and administered by Meriden Youth Services. The RecordJournal publishes all contributions. Tax deductible contributions should be sent to: Summer Campership Fund, c/o Doreen Marinaro, Ion Bank, 500 West Main St., Meriden, CT 06451.


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Town Times is published every Friday by the Record-Journal Publishing Co. and delivered to all homes and businesses in Durham, Middlefield and Rockfall. Executive Vice President and Assistant Publisher – Liz White Senior Vice President of Operations and Major Accounts – Michael F. Killian Senior Vice President and Editor – Ralph Tomaselli News Editor – Olivia L. Lawrence Assistant News Editor – Nick Carroll Reporter – Mark Dionne Advertising Director – Kimberley E. Boath Advertising Sales – Joy Boone Office Assistant, Press Releases – Marsha Pomponio


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A10 Friday, April 4, 2014

Town Times |

Government Meetings

Durham (Unless otherwise indicated, all meetings are held in the Durham Library. Check the town website at for updates.) Monday, April 7 Clean Energy & Sustainability Task Force, Library, 6:30 p.m.

Board of Education Budget hearing, Coginchaug Regional High School, 7 p.m. Fire Department Trustees, Durham Vol. Firehouse, 7 p.m. Board of Selectman Budget hearing, Coginchaug Regional High School, 8 p.m. Board of Finance, Coginchaug Regional High School, 8 p.m.

Tuesday, April 8 Conservation Commission, Library, 7 p.m. Board of Educations Budget hearing, CRHS, 7:30 p.m. Library Board of Trustees, Library, 7:30 p.m. Durham Volunteer Fire Company, Durham Vol. firehouse, 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 9 Board of Education, CRHS,

Tuesday, April 15 Board of Finance, Town Hall, 7 p.m. Agriculture Commission, Town Hall, 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 16 Planning & Zoning, Library,

7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 10 Board of Education budget hearing, CRHS, 7 p.m. Thursday, April 11 Zoning Board of Appeals, Town Hall, 7:30 p.m. Monday, April 14 Board of Selectman, Town Hall, 7 p.m. Inland Wetlands, Town Hall, 7:30 p.m.

See Meetings / Page 11

Police From Page 3


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complaining about are slim to none.” Both Kelly and Poturnicki acknowledged that some people do not feel comfortable talking to police. BOS members speculated on other reasons residents might hesitate to call police in addition to discomfort around law enforcement, and those reasons matched up with reasons listed on the Lake Beseck Crime Watch web site - the belief that the crime or suspicious activity is probably minor, the thought that the police won’t be able to help, and the concern about “bothering” the police. “They need to call us. They can be anonymous. We don’t need names, we don’t need numbers,” Kelly said. “I’d rather go up there 100 times and find someone that’s supposed to be there ... then not go up there the one time and that’s when someone’s house gets broken into.” BOS member Ed Bailey said that residents might not be aware of the number for routine police calls: (860)3499685. This number is for concerns that do not rise to 911 emergency levels. Bailey suggested putting the number for routine calls on the neighborhood Crime Watch signs. Poturnicki said she includes the routine police number in her e-mail updates and encourages residents to call police first. With a sentiment similar to Kelly’s, Poturnicki said, “The police would rather come out 100 times for nothing then not be called when needed.” The Crime Watch group will continue, Poturnicki said, to keep residents alert and informed and communicate with police. “Every neighborhood needs a Crime Watch,” Poturnicki said.

Town Times |

Friday, April 4, 2014

Meetings From Page 10 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 17 Durham Middlefield Interlocal Agreement, Middlefield Community Center, 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 23 Senior Citizen Board, Durham Activity Center, 1 p.m. Board of Education, Korn Elementary School, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 29 Ethic’s Commission, Town Hall, 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 30 Durham Volunteer Ambulance Corps, 205 Main St., 6 p.m.


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Thursday, April 10 Board of Finance, 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 15 Board of Selectman, 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 16 Inlands/Wetlands Commission, 7 p.m. Thursday, April 17 Durham Middlefield Interlocal Advisory Board, 7 p.m. Thursday, April 24 Middlefield Housing Authority, 3 p.m. Tuesday, April 29 Zoning Board of Appeals, 7 p.m.

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Board of Finance, 7 p.m. Economic Development Commission, 7 p.m. Monday, April 7 Board of Selectman, 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 9 Planning & Zoning, 6:30 p.m. Board of Finance, 7 p.m.



The Middlesex Hospital Vocal Chords recently celebrated its 24th year of singing as a family. The group has grown from 25 to 90 members. Recipients of tokens of appreciation were given to: first row John Lomartra (20 years);second row, from left: Cathy Clayton (5 years), Louise Fortier (5 years), Jean Bonnier (20 years), Joann DiModica (20 years): third row, Kathy Cameron (5 years), Martha Blake (5 years), Fred Spallone (20 years), Janina Eddinger (5 yeyrs);back row, Corinne Trebbe (15 years), Kate Porch (20 years), Ed Parker (10 years).


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A12 Friday, April 4, 2014

Town Times |

Beseck From Page 1

L a ke B e s e c k Ad - Ho c Co m m i tte e C h a i r A my Poturnicki said the collection of sand is part of a “natural process” that still needs to be addressed. “It’s basically filling in our lake,” said Poturnicki, who noted that the lake was not as deep as it used to be. “Over time your lake becomes a swamp.” Two of the outfalls are on either side of the Lake Beseck beach area. According to Brayshaw, Middlefield budgeted for the project. The bids received

by the town were in the lowto-mid $30,000 to $50,000 range, which Brayshaw called “favorable.” At the March 18 Board of S e l e c t m e n m e e t i n g , Selectmen Ed Bailey cited the amount of road sand as approximately 1,400 cubic yards. Soil from the lake is currently being inspected by the state for contamination. If the soil is clean, Brayshaw said, the town will find uses for it. “Some we’ll keep for ourselves. We can always use fill.” The material may also be sold for construction or used by residents.


After the soil is tested, the town will award the project to one of the three interested companies. The project will take between two and four weeks, largely depending on how dry the ground is. The DEEP wants the project to finish by the end of April, which is usually the date given to begin refilling Lake Beseck. If necessary, “we’re going to prevail upon the state to keep that water down for a little bit,” said Brayshaw at the March 18 BOS meeting. Brayshaw said he expected the town to award the contract during the first week of April.

The dry lake bed of Lake Beseck reveals years of accumulated road sand and other run off. The Middlefield Board of Selectmen have approved an excavation project to remove approximately 1,400 cubic yards of what First Selectman Jon Brayshaw termed “muck.”

Registrar of Voters updating information The Registrars of Voters are conducting the annual update of all registered voters in Durham. Every year, registrars review their records to en-

sure all registered citizens’ information is accurate and current. Citizens who have moved in town, changed a name, become a new citizen, or have not yet registered to

vote, are encouraged to fill out a new voter registration card. Notice cards should be returned to the Registrar office by May 1.


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Friday, April 4, 2014



The Durham Co-op Nursery School held its annual Dad’s Night recently. The theme was Jungle Safari. At left: Josh Poturnicki and his father, Adam, made binoculars. Right: Peyton Palo Mack and her father, Tim, use a rainstick. | Submitted by Mica Machnik

Exchange club’s Adopt-a-Road project set for next Saturday The Durham-Middlefield Exchange Club has scheduled its Adopt-a-Road project for Saturday, April 12, at 8 a.m., rain or shine. The annual clean-up project, scheduled for both spring and fall, enlists the help of residents to collect debris on the roads

of town. Volunteers should meet at Allyn Brook Park at 8 a.m. Volunteers do not need to be a part of any group or organization. For more information and to volunteer, call (860) 3490798 or

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Town Times |


How to simplify your garden

Boy Scout Troop 27 hosted a community supper at the Church of the Epiphany in Durham recently. Approximately 70 members of the community attended. The pasta dinner was made and served by the scouts. Members of the congregation provided dessert.

Nancy DuBrule-Clemente, garden expert and owner of Natureworks, an organic garden center in Northford, speaks to people about their gardens, she may ask them “what things make your garden(s) hard to take care of?” Answers usually include “too many plants to deadhead,” and “encroaching” grass and plants. Most problems come down to this: “I love my garden, but it’s too much work.” Lifestyle, phys-

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ical abilities and energy change with age. What was once a simple garden may have turned into a massive, demanding entity. How does one get started simplifying? I traveled to Manchester recently to hear DuBruleClemente speak at a meeting of the Manchester Garden Club, which is large and active. She offers f ive things you can do to plan a simpler garden. It’s not a quick fix; Judy this process Moeckel can be ongoSpecial to ing, as your Town Times house, gardens and even yourself changes over the years. 1. Buy an inexpensive journal and write down what your goals are for your property for the next five to 10 years. 2. Write down what you want - plants you can’t live without, gardens that must remain. 3. Write down what you could eliminate that you presently have- a wild perennial border, overgrown foundation plantings, etcetera. 4. Fantasize about what your dream for your yard would be — is it possible? 5. Spend quiet time searching your soul for the answers to what you want/need to do to simplify your gardens- it’s hard work. If she has a theme for her garden advice, it’s this: Dwell and believe in possibilities. When you start dreaming, she suggests, do a sketch of your property and gardens. Use tracing paper, or blow up photos and mark your ideas on them. Words in “idea” bubbles” are fine, for example, “walkway” or “sitting bench.” Some dreams may include things that involve an investment of time and/or work, so you have to weigh this against what you will get out of it. I was intrigued by the idea of raised bed gardens with wide boards along the top, so I could garden them while sitting on the See Garden/ Page 15

Town Times |

Friday, April 4, 2014

A recent Manchester Garden Club event featured speaker Nancy DuBruleClemente shown here, at left, with club co-president Beth Brunone.

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At the end of the presentation, we were left with a edge. But these are expensive, great question: “Does my garand really would not fit aes- den really have to be perfect? thetically into our “space” in The answer: probably not — it’s up to you. the woods. Now that spring is upon us, While you’re at it, DuBruleClemente says, cut back on look for plant sales (many run lawn. It does very little for na- by non-profit organizations), tive critters and is a pain to where you can purchase natake care of. “Hardscaping,” tive plants and other things for such as walkways and patios, your garden. The Manchester can provide access to hard- Garden Club holds its sale to-reach parts of the garden, Saturday, May 17, 2014 at the and is less work to maintain Community Baptist Church than mulched or grassy paths. in Manchester. She offered a creative, practical idea, especially if you are older, and things have gotten overgrown. Example: You planted some pretty tufted, We have nearly 20 years’ experience. striped grass a number of Call Randy Whitehouse, 860-349-1904. years ago; it has spread everywhere, and pulling clumps WHITEHOUSE CONSTRUCTION INC. of it up is the only solution. Durham, Connecticut | CT Lic. #554559 Solution: Pair up with a 860-349-1904 | young, inexperienced garPaving Gravel Driveway Restoration Top Soil Retaining dener, or someone with a new, Walls Drainage Septic Systems Excavator, Backhoe + Dozer naked property that cries out Work Light & Heavy Hauling Residential + Commercial for plantings. Bestow your “largess” on them. They will be thankful, and so will you. B oth the Manchester Garden Club (and many other clubs) and DuBruleClemente agree one of the best things you can do with your garden—one that will bring you pleasure while Professional Service helping sustain our planet— Since 1976 is to encourage diverse flora and fauna. Cultivate native Durham, CT (860) 349-1131 plants and plants and flowPick-up & Delivery ers that attract pollinators like bees and butterflies; also, provide an inviting habitat for birds and other animals by Home Improvement giving them the things that they need such as shelter, & Handyman Services food (including that found Complete Residential Work on plants), water and nesting • Kitchens & Bath • Flooring & Laminates material. More information • Decks & Additions • Power Washing Decks & Siding can be found on the web• Painting & Decorating • Concrete & Patio Pavers sites of the National Wildlife Federation and National • Siding & Special Trim • Repairs on Wood Products Audubon Society. Strongly • Electrical & Plumbing Repairs 860-882-3631 recommended is the book, ”Bringing Nature Home,” by SAVE THIS AD Douglas Tallamy and Richard Darke. It’s a classic among gardening and conservation KENNETH R. JAY people.


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A16 Friday, April 4, 2014

Town Times |

CIAC should adopt separate ‘schools of choice’ division for postseason I lived in the Hamptons for seven and a half years. I know a snub when I see one. Scheduling the Class L girls basketball final involving undefeated and No. 1 Capital Prep for 10 a.m. on Saturday morning? That was a diss, a little back-hand slap to a charter school with an outspoken operator and an outspoken girls basketball coach. And the tip to a larger issue, of course. Look, I have no prob-

lem with charter or magnet schools. The private business model is probably the best educational option for Connecticut’s big cities. Outside of them, public schools are sound. Inside of them, public schools too often fail. And I have no problem with the CIAC basketball committees. Truly. They run the best state tournaments in Connecticut high school sports, as this year’s brackets, capped by the week-

end finals at Mohegan Sun, proved once again. But when it comes to dealing with the “schools of choice” issue, I’d really like to see the basketball committees — all of the CIAC, for that matter, in every sport — strip everything down to the common denominator to solve the problem, which is only going to grow as more of these schools continue to sprout. No more mind-bending math, no more multiplying

and dividing enrollments. Bag, too, the “success in tournament” system adopted for the current year, in which a school of choice was classified based on how many state basketball quarterfinals it had reached in the three previous season. (That’s how Capital Prep, after winning Class S a year ago, got bumped up two divisions to Class L.) Please, no more digs in the frozen food aisle. Just make like a smart grocer. Put

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apples with apples, oranges with oranges. Separate the parochials and the charters and the magnets from the public schools. Schools that draw Bryant from a deCarpenter fined geographic area Special to Town Times here, schools that draw beyond geographic boundaries there. Mind you, this would just be for the CIAC tournaments. Fruit cocktail is fine for the regular season. Conferences are well-established. No need to upset those apple carts, as it were. Keep the long-standing rivalries. Keep the divisions that conferences have taken pains to devise. Spare the extra travel and expense that separate “allchoice” conferences would incur (though, it could be argued, the vo-tech schools have long been criss-crossing the state for the sake of playing fellow birds of a feather). This certainly isn’t a kneejerk proposal, one fed by watching choice schools win championships at the expense of the publics (though I confess delight in watching Fairfield Prep squander big halftime leads in both the Class LL football and basketball finals to Southington and Bridgeport Central). The choice schools are always big players in the postseason, particularly in basketball, but they haven’t cornered the market yet. Seven of this year’s eight state hoop finals featured a choice school. Three of them — Lauralton Hall, Sacred Heart and Capital Prep — won a title. Last year, six of the 16 state basketball finalists were choices. Two were crowned. Dating back five years, 41 percent (33 of 80) of the state finalists were choice and 35 percent (14 of 40) were champions. Small potatoes for some, See Carpenter / Page 17

Town Times |

Friday, April 4, 2014

Town Times Facebook photo contest

GETTING WARMED UP Twenty players from Coginchaug Little League attended a softball clinic at Middletown High School on March 22. Coaches and players from the MHS softball team provided instruction to players. In addition, specialty sessions were held for more experienced players to improve in specific areas. Directors from CLL softball stated that the clinic was both fun and informative.

Spring is here (hopefully), and Town Times is getting ready to jump into the season with a photo contest. Send in your best seasonal photo, to be used as the cover photo on our Facebook page. Photo should be a horizontal shot and should be recognizable as taken in the community. The picture can be outdoors or indoors, with or without people in it, and can be in either color or black and white — use your imagination. We will collect photos until April 18, when a winner will be selected. Follow us on Facebook to see some of the entries. The winner will receive a notice informing him or her that the winning photo will be featured in the paper as well as on our Facebook page. E-mail (digital format) photos to: State the date, location, and name of any people/event depicted in the photo. Good luck!

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a major problem for others. It’s actually not a bad return based on the ratio of choice schools to publics. For me, it’s an easy fix, with entertainment value to boot. (Hey, more tournament tickets for the CIAC to sell.) I don’t mean to be flip. The CIAC has a good thing going with basketball. Mohegan Sun Arena is proving a great site for the finals. A pro atmosphere that’s just the right size. A destination that provides a some of that “going to states” vibe enjoyed in the larger dominions of the Lower 48. If you still find exposing young’uns to the beeping neon allure of the casino a problem, well, you probably aren’t on Twitter or Instagram. Young people cast their eyes upon far worse every day, for hours a day, but that, my friends, is another issue for another morning.

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A18 Friday, April 4, 2014

Town Times |

Calendar Friday, April 4

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Brownstone Psychological Associates, LLC 199 Main Street, Durham, CT Durham, CT 860-788-3231 860-788-3231

We consign & sell hand crafted goods and gently used furniture, home décor, accessories and more.

Est. 1965


Colors of the Wind Artists’ Emporium & Consignments FORGET THE MALL, SHOP SMALL!

Items marked down everyday. Unique, one-of-a-kind gifts for all occasions. Please Note: We do not consign used clothing.

360 Main Street Durham, CT 06422 860-788-2514

270 Main St., Middlefield 860-349-8551

website: facebook: email:

...serving Durham, Middlefield & Rockfall

Joy Boone Advertising

1289953 48225R

11 Crown Street, Meriden, CT 06450 203-317-2313 • fax 203-235-4048


48217R 1289954

• Septic tank cleaning • Septic systems installed & repaired • Sewer drain cleaning • Portable restroom rentals

Spamalot - Coginchaug Regional High School has scheduled “Spamalot” for Sunday, April 6 at 2 p.m. A fee is charged. Tickets are available at the door.

Thursday, April 10

Cahill Septic Service

Book sale - Levi E. Coe Library has scheduled its book and bake sale for Saturday, April 5, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Spamalot - Coginchaug Regional High School has scheduled “Spamalot” for Saturday, April 5 at 7:30 p.m. A fee is charged. Tickets are available at the door. Winter market - The Dudley Farm Winter Market is scheduled for Saturday, April 5, 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., in the Munger Barn, 2351 Durham Road, North Guilford. The market features baked goods, eggs, arts and crafts, honey, maple syrup, jams, jellies, naturally raised mates and sundries. Call (860) 3493917 or visit

Sunday, April 6

Debra S. Nelson, Psy.D. & Stacia K. Bjarnason, Ph.D.


Rob Grant

P1-0286729 Durham, CT

Knowledge, Service, and Experience ~ Fully Insured ~


Specializing in Well Repair

Casual bridge - The Durham Activity Center, 350 Main St., schedules casual bridge every Friday at 6:30 p.m. All are welcome. For more information, call Jim Martinelli at (860) 346-6611.

Open house - The Middletown Agriculture Science and Technology center, has scheduled an open house for Thursday, April 10, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 to 8 p.m. at Middletown High School, 200 LaRosa Lane. The open house showcases the available programs including plant science, animals science, agriculture mechanics and environmental science. For more information, call (860) 704-4599, ext. 4594 or visit middletownschools. org. CAT - Coginchaug Area Transition has scheduled a free program for Thursday, April 10, 7 p.m., at the Durham Library. Diane St. John is scheduled to discuss organic lawn care. The public See Calendar / Page 19

Town Times |

Friday, April 4, 2014


Library Briefs The Levi E. Coe library now offers a pass to the New Haven Museum.

Phonathon The Levi E. Coe Library has scheduled its annual Phonathon for Monday, April 7 through Wednesday, April 9. Volunteers will place calls after 6 p.m. To make a donation to help the library reach the goal of $7,000, drop it off at the library or call (860)

voter registration card. Additional upcoming town voter registration drives in“As registrars, we are pasLevi E. Coe Library sionate about fair elections,” clude state-mandated voter Library hours are: registration sessions the The Durham Public Library she said. Monday through Thursday Citizens who have moved second Saturday before the schedules Classic Movie 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturdays 10 Matinee for Thursdays, ,1:30 in town, changed a name, be- November election, Oct. 18, a.m. to 2 p.m.; closed Fridays. p.m., beginning April 10. The come a new citizen, or have from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and all Book sale film series is free and open to not yet registered to vote, are day registration on Oct. 28, encouraged to fill out a new from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. the public. April 10 - “Gentlemen Levi E. Coe Library has scheduled its book and bake Prefer Blondes” (1953) starsale for Friday Preview Day, ring Marilyn Monroe and April 4, noon to 4 p.m. (a fee Jane Russell. is charged) and Saturday, April 5, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. See Library / Page 20

Calendar From Page 19

is welcome. Call Sue VanDerzee at (860) 349-0777.

Introducing Lakeview Estates, Middlefield’s Premiere Active Adult Lake Community. Picturesque waterfront setting offering beach, boat dock, walking trail and more. Building 22 Custom designed detached energy efficient homes with first floor master suites. Conveniently located to many attractions near and around Lyman Orchards. Visit


Set on 4.5 private acres in a quiet cul-de-sac of 6 homes and abutting Lyman Orchards Golf Course, this statement-making home offers 4,520 square feet distinguished by its generous scale and light-drenched spaces. Truly, this home will leave you wanting for nothing! $829,000.

Sharon Kastner 860-919-4446








Now Leasing 1 & 2 Bedroom Apartments - Starting at $825.00 Heat & Hot Water Included.



Call now: 860-346-1292 Email: Web: 1160-1150 South Main St., Middletown

Durham THE EXTRAS STEAL THE SHOW Beautiful Colonial in desirable Old Blue Hills. Fabulous outdoor entertaining area with stone patio & fireplace, Trex deck w/awning, finished lower level, crown moldings, built-ins and much more. Yours for $389,000.

276 North Main Street, Southington, CT 06489

Saturday, April 12 Easter egg hunt - The Middlefield Lion’s Club has scheduled its annual Easter egg hunt for Saturday, April 12, 1 p.m., at Peckham Park. The event is intended for pre-school children through grade 4. Refreshments and jelly bean contest. Meeting - The Durham American Legion Post 184 is scheduled to meet Saturday, April 12, 9:30 a.m., at the Durham Library. All veterans are welcome. Presentation - Durham Fitness, 339 Main St., has scheduled a health and wellness presentation for Saturday, April 12, 9:30 a.m. Call (860) 638-8781 or email



Friday, April 11 Square dance - The 4 C’s square dance club has scheduled a square dance for Friday, April 11, 8 to 10 p.m., at the Brewster School. Caller is Dayle Hodge; cuer is Sue Lucibello. For more information, call (860) 3498084 or (860) 828-5978.

From Page 8

Durham Public Library




Open Sunday 2-4 Middlefield TOOLBOX SPECIAL Lake views and waterfront access in this 3 bedroom Ranch. Needs work but imagine the possibilities for only $149,000. 29 Fowler Lane.

Open Sunday 11:30-1:30 Middlefield ALL YOU HAVE TO DO Is move into this immaculate condo in tucked away complex. No more shoveling and mowing, it’s all about enjoying. Lower level finished with 3rd bedroom and family room. 22 Sylvan Ridge.


Located Rt. 17 South of Randolph Road




Museum pass


Well preserved center chimney Colonial farmhouse with beautiful private yard, inground pool and large post and beam barn. Like previous generations, you’ll be smitten by the beauty and the grace of design. $499,000.

Sunday, April 13




Sherri Ahern Ellen Paklos Sue Camolli


Community supper - The Church of the Epiphany, 196 Main St., has scheduled a free community supper for Sunday, April 13, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., in the church hall. All are welcome. Call (860) 349-9644.


Debbie Huscher •

A20 Friday, April 4, 2014

Town Times |


Kim Novak. (1957) starring Henry Fonda. May 1 - “The Apartment” May 15 - “Casablanca” (1960) starring Jack Lemmon (1942) starring Humphrey From Page 19 and Shirley MacLaine. Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. May 8 - “12 Angry Men” May 22 - “Singin’ in the April 17 - “High Noon” (1952) starring Gary Cooper and Grace Kelly. April 24 - “Vertigo” (1958) starring James Stewart and

Rain” (1952) starring Gene June 5 - “Breakfast at Kelly and Debbie Reynolds. Tiffany’s” (1961) starring May 29 - “To Kill A Audrey Hepburn. Mockingbird” (1962) starring June 12 - “A Fistful of Gregory Peck. Dollars” (1964)

Judge Marino seeks re-election


WEDNESDAY APRIL 9th 6pm-8pm & SATURDAY APRIL 12th 9am-11am

At The Middle�eld Community Center Please bring football players or cheerleaders to registration signups for proper equipment fitting.



FROM 9:00 am to 11:00am We are a HEADS-UP football organization! FROM 6:00pm to 8:00pm

FALCONS MISSION: To promote the growth of our student athletes from the towns of Durham, Middlefield, and Rockfall through the spirit of competition and teamwork.


The Honorable Joseph D. Marino, Judge of Probate for the District of Middletown, announced his intention to seek re-election for an eighth term. The Middletown Probate District serves the towns of Cromwell, Durham, Middlefield and Middletown. The Middletown Court is also a part of the Central Connecticut Regional Children’s Court in Meriden Marino where Judge Marino presides over cases involving custody, guardianships and termination of parental rights. M a r i n o, a D e m o c rat , is a past president of the Connecticut Probate Assembly and has been a member of numerous committees within the probate system and is currently serving on the Budget Committee which sets the staffing level, employee compensation and budgets for all the courts in the State. He is a member of the Middletown Rotary Club, the Middlesex County NAACP, the Italian Society of Middletown, the Solnit Children’s Center Advisory Group, the Italian-American Civic Order and is on the Board of Directors for the M i d d l e s ex Co u n ty B a r Association. He is the recipient of the Community Service Award from the NAACP and the Paul Harris Community Service Fellowship Award from the Middletown Rotary Club. Marino is a graduate of Xavier High School and holds bachelors degree in political science from John Carroll University, Ohio. He earned his law degree from Catholic University in Washington, D.C.


Town Times April 4, 2014