Fairfield's HamletHub https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield Tue, 02 Mar 2021 22:19:19 -0500 HamletHub.com Zoom Meet Author Jennifer Risher, Wed., March 10, 6-7pm https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/49925-pequot-library-161472410149925-pequot-library-1614724101 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/49925-pequot-library-161472410149925-pequot-library-1614724101

SOUTHPORT, CT - Jennifer Risher is the author of "We Need to Talk: A Memoir About Wealth", which tells her story and explores the impact of wealth on identity, relationships, and sense of place in the world. Jennifer was born in Seattle, Washington, grew up in Oregon, and graduated from Connecticut College. She joined Microsoft in 1991 where she worked as a recruiter and then as a product manager. She and her husband, David, have two daughters and live in San Francisco, where David is CEO of Worldreader, a nonprofit he co founded with a mission to create a world where everyone is a reader. In response to COVID, Jennifer and David launched the #HalfMyDAF challenge, which inspired over $8.6 million in charitable giving in 2020. Jennifer will be in conversation with Kelly LaFerriere, Chief Business Officer at A-Rod Corp and Pequot Library Board member.

To pre-register, go to:https://www.pequotlibrary.org/event/meet-the-author-jennifer-risher/
All pre-registered participants will receive a Zoom link on the day of the program.

heitmann@pequotlibrary.org (Pequot Library) Events Tue, 02 Mar 2021 12:32:28 -0500
CFJ to Celebrate 125th Anniv. w/ Virtual Gala, March 26 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/49926-cfj-to-celebrate-125th-anniv-w-virtual-gala-march-2649926-cfj-to-celebrate-125th-anniv-w-virtual-gala-march-26 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/49926-cfj-to-celebrate-125th-anniv-w-virtual-gala-march-2649926-cfj-to-celebrate-125th-anniv-w-virtual-gala-march-26

Bridgeport, Ct— The Center for Family Justice will celebrate its 125th anniversary as a nonprofit at its March 26 Virtual Jubilee Gala honoring the many volunteer leaders who have helped advance its mission of supporting survivors of domestic and sexual violence in six local communities. 

CFJ’s roots date back to 1895 when it was founded as the Bridgeport YWCA by a group of philanthropic Protestant women committed to helping young women cope with the “stresses of urban life” in what was then a bustling factory city.

Although its mission has evolved substantially in the ensuing years, CFJ continues to focus on providing hope, safety and empowerment services to thousands of adults and children impacted by the trauma of abuse in the communities of Bridgeport, Easton, Fairfield, Monroe, Stratford, and Trumbull.

Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, CFJ will celebrate its anniversary as a virtual event on March 26 at 7 p.m. The evening’s program will honor 28 of the nonprofit’s past and present Board Chairs, who have led the agency through a period of significant transformation and growth. 

During the last four decades, CFJ has transformed from being the Greater Bridgeport YWCA to The Center for Women & Families of Eastern Connecticut in 1995 to The Center for Family Justice in 2015.

Six years ago, CFJ became the state’s first Family Justice Center, adopting a service model focused on providing the many crisis and supportive services victims’ need under one roof in one safe place. Today, those comprehensive services include an emergency safe house, 24-hour crisis hotlines, crisis counseling and support groups, free legal services, therapeutic counseling for children, and self-sufficiency services. 

CFJ is also a nationally accredited Child Advocacy Center and operates Camp HOPE America-Bridgeport, a summer camp and year-long mentoring program for youth ages 7-17 impacted by abuse.

“We are so proud of our legacy and evolution into a place where anyone in our communities can come to cope with the trauma of abuse and receive free, confidential services to help them rebuild their lives,” said Debra A. Greenwood, President & CEO of The Center for Family Justice. “While much has changed since our Bridgeport YWCA days, what has remained a constant is our focus on providing support, empowerment and hope to the adults and children who come through our doors.” 

Besides honoring its former Board Chairs, the gala program will include a special surprise announcement involving CFJ’s future efforts to provide critical services to its domestic violence clients.

“We are excited that our jubilee celebration will mark the beginning of another exciting chapter in our mission history,” said Greenwood. “We hope people can join us to toast our history and leaders and learn more about our hopes and dreams for the future.” 

Tickets for the virtual gala are $50 each and or can be purchased in groups three for $125. Sponsorship opportunities are also available. 

To purchase tickets, visit CFJ’s web site CenterforFamilyJustice.org or call CFJ’s Development Team at 203-334-6154. 

bornies@optonline.net (Beth Fitzpatrick) Events Tue, 02 Mar 2021 12:30:02 -0500
Crowdfunding Campaign Launched for ‘The ECOoperative’ in Fairfield https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/49924-crowdfunding-campaign-launched-for-the-ecooperative-in-fairfield49924-crowdfunding-campaign-launched-for-the-ecooperative-in-fairfield https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/49924-crowdfunding-campaign-launched-for-the-ecooperative-in-fairfield49924-crowdfunding-campaign-launched-for-the-ecooperative-in-fairfield

Fairfield County, CT - Eco Evolution, a start up eco-friendly marketplace born during the 2020 coronavirus lockdown, is working to create a local Connecticut makers and creators cooperative to inspire community members to support local artists and creators by shopping local and cutting down on carbon emissions.  With the goal of providing the community with product services that are good for people, good for the planet and created with purpose, Eco Evolution created this project to amplify the work of our very own Connecticut-based creators of products such as: candles, soaps, body products, jewelry, pet supplies, ceramics, photography, organic clothing, etc. The cooperative will be located inside of a larger retail and coffee shop called Eco Evolution, which will be located in Fairfield, CT.  Eco Evolution and the ECOopertive will inspire conscious consumerism and help fight the climate change crisis by sourcing all-natural products locally.  

The project’s organizers are calling on the community to join this initiative by donating to a crowdfunding campaign and/or volunteering in the effort. If the campaign reaches its $20,000 goal by its fundraising deadline of Earth Day, April 22, 2021, the project will receive a matching grant of $5,250 from Sustainable CT’s  Community Match Fund, which is an innovative funding resource for public, community-led sustainability projects. For project details and to donate, please visit: Patronicity.com/CTCreatorsCooperative

“I am so excited to create a community space that is fun, purpose-driven, and amplifies the creative work of our state’s artists, creators, and makers,” said Brad Kerner, Founder of Eco Evolution. 

This project will also provide free retail space for refugee woman creators who are a part of “our Woven Community” in Bridgeport and provide free workshops by cooperative artists for community youth. The project will also create capacity building opportunities for cooperative members on marketing and scaling up their creations. 

Sustainable CT is an initiative of Eastern Connecticut State University’s Institute for Sustainable Energy that inspires, supports, and recognizes sustainability action by towns and cities statewide. The Community Match Fund — supported by the Smart Seed Fund, Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation, and the Connecticut Green Bank —provides a dollar-for-dollar match to donations raised from the community, doubling local investment in projects. Anyone can lead a project and ideas can be proposed at any time. 

"Through the Community Match Fund, we aim to put residents at the forefront of creating positive, impactful change," said Abe Hilding-Salorio, community outreach manager for Sustainable CT. "Match Fund projects are community led and community funded, demonstrating the power of people working together to make change in their communities."

Have a great idea for a public project in your community? Contact Sustainable CT at hildingsalorioa@easternct.edu

bornies@optonline.net (Sarah Roy) Neighbors Tue, 02 Mar 2021 05:50:44 -0500
Glass Art on Show at Beardsley Zoo, March 6 - April 6 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/49923-glass-art-on-show-at-beardsley-zoo-march-6-april-649923-glass-art-on-show-at-beardsley-zoo-march-6-april-6 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/49923-glass-art-on-show-at-beardsley-zoo-march-6-april-649923-glass-art-on-show-at-beardsley-zoo-march-6-april-6

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo will present “DAZZLE: A Garden of Glass” with a presentation of 500 pieces of the Riverton, Connecticut-based artist Peter Greenwood’s glass art. The award-winning Glass Master has shown his work in twenty-five museums, from The Louvre Museum in Paris, France, to Connecticut’s The Bruce Museum in Greenwich, and the New Britain Museum of American Art. 

Greenwood’s visually arresting and brilliantly colored art will be displayed throughout the Greenhouse, using lush foliage and beautiful blossoms to enhance the beauty of both artwork and plants. The theme, as described by Greenwood, is “regeneration.” The pieces, many repurposed from previous installations, are intended to evoke vines, leaves, roots and petals in vibrant shades: cobalt blue, ruby, green, and yellow.  A striking display of twenty glass pitchers will be tilted from a tree overhanging the pond. In other places, glass reeds will rise from the foliage. Colorful glass will appear throughout the Greenhouse and encourage guests to engage in a discovery of beauty.

“The Zoo is delighted to share Glass Master Peter Greenwood’s beautiful glass blown treasures amid the natural beauty of the rare plants and colorful blooms in the Greenhouse,” said Zoo Director Gregg Dancho “We invite you to come and be dazzled by his hand-crafted artwork!”

Greenwood, a Connecticut native, studied at the Rhode Island School of Design, as well as the Pilchuck School in Washington State, where he was exposed to the Venetian virtuosity of glassblowing. He opened his first studio in 1980. Today, he works out of a historic stone church in Riverton, Conn. His works include finely crafted wood furniture, hand forged iron, stainless steel fabrications and stonework. His career, spanning more than four decades, has resulted in numerous exhibitions of his art and nationwide critical acclaim. 

DAZZLE will be open seven days a week from 9-4, from Saturday, March 6 through Tuesday, April 6. Entrance to DAZZLE is included in the price of admission. Members enter for free. All the pieces in the show will be available for purchase at the end of the exhibition. 

Zoo admission is $15 for adults, and $10 for children 3-11 and seniors over 62. Children under three are free.

The Zoo is committed to maintaining a safe space for families, so Covid-19 rules remain in effect. Masks are to be worn by all guests, except for those ages two and under. Social distancing must be observed, with six-foot distancing between family groups. Tickets can be purchased online at beardsleyzoo.org

About Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo

Let your curiosity run wild! Connecticut’s only zoo, celebrating its 99th year, features 300 animals representing primarily North and South American and Northern Asian species. Guests won’t want to miss our Amur tiger and leopards, maned wolves, and Mexican grey wolves and red wolves. Other highlights include our new Spider Monkey Habitat, the prairie dog exhibit, and the Pampas Plain with Giant anteaters and Chacoan peccaries. Guests can grab a bite from the Peacock Café and eat in the Picnic Grove. Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo is a non-profit organization approaching its 100th year at a time when the mission of helping fragile wildlife populations and eco-systems is more important than ever. 

Tickets must be purchased on the Zoo’s website at beardsleyzoo.org. Face masks are required for everyone over the age of two, with the exception of those with medical conditions that preclude wearing them. 

bornies@optonline.net (Lisa Clair ) Events Mon, 01 Mar 2021 08:18:26 -0500
CT BBB: Online Purchase Scams https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/publicsafety/49922-ct-bbb-online-purchase-scams49922-ct-bbb-online-purchase-scams https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/publicsafety/49922-ct-bbb-online-purchase-scams49922-ct-bbb-online-purchase-scams


CROMWELL, Conn. — In honor of National Consumer Protection Week the Better Business Bureau (BBB) has released the 2020 BBB Scam TrackerSM Risk Report. The report found that adults ages 18–24 reported the highest median losses ($150) and the highest likelihood of loss (56.6%) to scams in 2020. Previously, older age groups consistently lost higher median dollar amounts to scammers year over year, even while young adults tended to lose money more often. This year, the financial loss reported by those 18-24 was equal to that of adults 65+. Online scams rise during COVID-19 pandemic: 2020 BBB Scam Tracker Risk Report, focuses on the impact of scams in the wake of the pandemic and the demographic groups most at risk.
More scams were perpetrated online and yielded the highest likelihood of financial loss in 2020. This is likely connected to consumer habit shifts since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic; in a survey of over 5,000 individuals that reported scams to BBB Scam TrackerSMin 2020, 43.1% said they spent more time online due to the pandemic, and 57.1% said they purchased more online because of the pandemic. 
According to BBB ScamTracker, Connecticut residents lost over $97,000 to scams in 2020, $63,000 (65%) of the money lost was due to online purchase scams.
The risk of financial loss also rose significantly in 2020. Nearly one of every two reports to BBB Scam Tracker (47%) noted a financial loss. Online purchase scams were the top riskiest scam in 2020, comprising 38% of all scam reports. Pet and PPE-related online purchase scams spiked during the pandemic.
Another way scammers take advantage of younger adults in particular is by utilizing a payment method less familiar to younger generations: checks. Fake check scams were the second most risky scam for adults ages 18-24 in a year where payment via online payment systems rose across all age groups. Fake check scams yielded one of the highest median dollar losses per encounter at $1,679 in 2020.
The five riskiest scams of 2020 were: 
  1. Online purchase 
  2. Employment
  3. Fake check/money order
  4. Advance fee loan
  5. Home improvement
For more highlights from Online scams rise during COVID-19 pandemic: 2020 BBB Scam Tracker Risk Report, visit BBB.org/RiskReport.
Go to BBB.org/ScamTracker to report a scam, learn more about other risky scams on BBB.org/ScamTips and visit our scam news feed




bornies@optonline.net (CT BBB) Public safety Mon, 01 Mar 2021 08:14:50 -0500
Creativity Connects Fairfield: Meet Debbi O’Keefe, Community Connector, Local Creative https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/49916-creativity-connects-fairfield-meet-debbi-o-keefe-community-connector-local-creative49916-creativity-connects-fairfield-meet-debbi-o-keefe-community-connector-local-creative https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/49916-creativity-connects-fairfield-meet-debbi-o-keefe-community-connector-local-creative49916-creativity-connects-fairfield-meet-debbi-o-keefe-community-connector-local-creative

Creativity Connects Fairfield

What fuels a vibrant, connected, and creative community? What makes people feel good about living in Fairfield?

When locals share the creativity that they uncover in the nooks and crannies of their community it brings about connectivity and makes us all feel good. Believe it or not, you discover creativity every day as you walk, shop, work, and play in Fairfield. 

Creativity connects us. 

Meet Debbi O’Keefe, community connector and founder of ConnectFairfield.

Is there an organization in town that makes you feel good?

Yes! Woofgang & Co. I love their mission! Woofgang & Co. is a nonprofit organization that empowers young adults with disabilities by teaching them a variety of vocational skill sets. They do this by creating jobs tailored to each individual - jobs that include producing, packaging, marketing and selling high-quality treats, toys, and accessories for pets.  The Woofgang & Co. retail store is located at 1300 Post Rd. in Fairfield.

You can learn more about Woofgang & Co. here.

What do you love about your community?

I’m a relationship builder by nature. Bringing people together whether it’s for social, economic or community functions is my passion. I love the process of collaborating and partnering toward a positive experience for everyone. I created ConnectFairfield to produce entertaining events that bring local community residents, businesses and organizations together.

I am currently launching the ConnectFairfield Scavenger Hunt, a two-week Community FUN-raiser.  This idea was actually a brainstorm with a friend and former colleague on a beach walk. I am also developing The Fairfield Newcomers Club to create connections for those new to town. 

Where do you go in Fairfield for inspiration and creativity?

Without a doubt walking along one of our amazing beaches always inspires me.  I love to walk at the beach with a friend or colleague and brainstorm!  The jetty at Jennings, the Reef at Penfield and Sunsets at Sasco are some of my personal favorites!

Creativity Connects Fairfield is made possible by LIFEWTR.

If you have local creativity to share and would like to be featured in this series, feel free to email  CreativityConnects@HamletHub.com 

The views and opinions expressed above are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of HamletHub or LIFEWTR. 

kerry@ducey.org (HH) Neighbors Mon, 01 Mar 2021 06:43:00 -0500
Fairfield, CT First Selectwoman to Present Fiscal Year 2021-2022 Budget https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/politics/49921-fairfield-ct-first-selectwoman-to-present-fiscal-year-2021-2022-budget49921-fairfield-ct-first-selectwoman-to-present-fiscal-year-2021-2022-budget https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/politics/49921-fairfield-ct-first-selectwoman-to-present-fiscal-year-2021-2022-budget49921-fairfield-ct-first-selectwoman-to-present-fiscal-year-2021-2022-budget

Fairfield, CT - On Monday morning, March 1, Fairfield First Selectwoman Brenda Kupchick will present her second annual budget to the Board of Selectmen. In advance of the presentation, FS Kupchick shared the following preface with the public:

"In crafting this budget, I was mindful of all the sacrifices and triumphs we have experienced as a Town and as a Nation living through the challenges of a pandemic and the economic hardships that came with it.I am saddened by the loss of life in our Town and heartened by our community’s resilience that makes Fairfield a great place for families, for seniors to retire, and for businesses to grow. 

This budget utilizes the grand list growth to replenish the accounts that were used to subsidize last year’s 0% tax increase. This budget also ensures that the Town’s long-term liabilities are once again fully funded. My proposed budget (click here), if adopted unchanged, will result in a 1.98% tax increase.

I am proud to report that my administration has made great strides over this past year in changing the culture in Town Hall. My reorganization plan, as reflected in this budget, will continue to provide for a realignment of staffing. These reorganization efforts will enable Town government to be more efficient and responsive to taxpayer needs, while at the same time reducing the number of people working in government.

My proposed budget includes a $7.5 million increase (4.1%) in education spending, which is the second highest dollar increase in a decade, despite declining enrollment.During Board of Education (BOE) budget deliberations, a BOE member was quoted as saying, "[The] Board of Education is not charged with finding out how much its budget will cost the Town." I disagree, affordability is the responsibility of every Town body. Our residents cannot afford a nearly 6% increase to the Board of Education budget, which is almost 3x the rate of inflation.During last year’s budget process, I called upon the Board of Education and Superintendent to reorganize and restructure, as I have done with Town government. I am renewing my offer to the school administration to work with my administration and other Town bodies in the coming year to address structural cost drivers as the education funding amounts to 2/3 of the total Town budget. My reorganization of Town government is part of a multi-year approach to move our Town forward. I remain steadfast in the belief that making these crucial investments, no matter how difficult, will enable us to grow our local economy, provide tax relief to our residents, maintain excellent schools, and provide the highest level of service to help us chart a new course for Fairfield.

bornies@optonline.net (Town of Fairfield) Politics Sat, 27 Feb 2021 06:03:52 -0500
COVID Is No Match for Boy Scouts Troop 199 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/49920-covid-is-no-match-for-boy-scout-troop-19949920-covid-is-no-match-for-boy-scout-troop-199 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/49920-covid-is-no-match-for-boy-scout-troop-19949920-covid-is-no-match-for-boy-scout-troop-199

Fairfield, CT - Visitors to Sandcastle Playground Sunday, Feb. 21, were treated to quite a spectacle. Instead of the usual under-10 yr. old crowd, the park was populated with nearly 40 boy scouts from Fairfield’s Troop 199. The challenge of the day was to build a 10-foot high structure made of locally harvested timbers, manila rope and the classic scouting knots. The “lashing tower” was deftly executed through the leadership and knowledge of the scouts. The task helped the boys hone their skills in pioneering and teamwork. The construction project was also planned as a way to attract new members to the troop.   

Two crews alternated between assembling the tower and using the troop’s 30-year-old Klondike Derby sleds for racing on the snow-covered ground. Both activities were led by senior-ranking scouts while adult leaders remained on the sidelines. Unlike Cub Scouts, where adults are in charge, Boy Scout troops are run by the scouts. Sunday was the perfect opportunity to introduce kids and parents to this time-honored philosophy. 

According to Scoutmaster Dave Hinkle, “The day was part of our ongoing efforts to keep the troop active during the winter months. Our group is too large to gather inside for our weekly evening meetings, so we’ve shifted to weekends when we can take care of troop business, work on rank advancement and add a challenging outdoor activity.” The troop has taken numerous hikes within Connecticut, held an outdoor field day (including hatchet throwing, tether ball and cornhole), took an outing to Burr Pond State Park for ice fishing in January and completed several socially distant campouts. 

“Scouting is all about navigating the outdoors -- in all conditions -- so moving the majority of our activities outside came naturally to our troop,” noted Hinkle. While Covid has prevented many organizations from functioning over the past year, Troop 199 has thrived, a testament to the Boy Scout motto “Be prepared.”

For more information about Fairfield’s Boy Scout Troop 199, please contact Dave Hinkle at dhinkle173@gmail.com. For details on other local troops, visit: www.beascout.scouting.org.

jenhinkle203@gmail.com (Jennifer Schonbrunn Hinkle) Neighbors Sat, 27 Feb 2021 05:57:09 -0500
Deal Creates Bachelor’s Degree Pathway for Community College Students https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/49919-deal-creates-bachelor-s-degree-pathway-for-community-college-students49919-deal-creates-bachelor-s-degree-pathway-for-community-college-students https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/49919-deal-creates-bachelor-s-degree-pathway-for-community-college-students49919-deal-creates-bachelor-s-degree-pathway-for-community-college-students

Bridgeport, CT - Community colleges in southwestern Connecticut are offering students a guaranteed pathway to bachelor’s degrees thanks to a new agreement reached with Lees-McRae College. Dr. Thomas G. Coley, Regional President at Shoreline-West Connecticut State Community College and Dr. Lee King, President of Lees-McRae College signed a memorandum of understanding on February 24 at a virtual signing event that helps students transfer and obtain a bachelor’s degree.

Other signers to the agreement included Dr. William T. Brown, CEO, Gateway Community College (GCC); Dr. Dwayne Smith, CEO, Housatonic Community College (HCC); and Cheryl C. DeVonish, Interim CEO, Norwalk Community College (NCC); as well as representatives from LMC, including Kevin J. Phillips, VP for Enrollment Management; Wayne M. Leon, Executive Director of Distance Learning and Transfer Programs; and Amanda Merritt, Director of Admission.

The agreement puts in place a guaranteed admission program between the four colleges beginning with the Fall 2021 semester. The program provides automatic admission to North Carolina-based Lees-McRae for all students attending Gateway, Housatonic, and Norwalk Community Colleges who complete an Associate’s degree and meet stated academic and grade point average requirements.

Furthermore, upon admittance to Lees-McRae, students from GCC, HCC or NCC will receive academic merit scholarships in amounts up to nearly 70% off the Lees-McRae annual main campus tuition rate. Tuition discounts are also available to these students entering one of Lees-McRae’s online degree completion programs. The merit-based scholarships for students from GCC, HCC or NCC are significantly higher than those awarded by Lees-McRae to transfer students from institutions that are not part of the agreement.

Leaders of the educational institutions commented on the agreement’s significance in advancing the educational needs of our region’s community college students.

“In signing today’s historic agreement, this partnership is a shining example of the work we are doing at the Connecticut State Community College to develop innovative pathways to meet the educational needs of our students, and improve their access to quality and affordable higher education. Through this collaboration, we are elevating our commitment to furthering students’ academic journeys, as they strive to achieve their personal and career goals. Gateway, Housatonic and Norwalk Community Colleges are honored to partner with Lees-McRae College in this important endeavor,” said Dr. Coley.

“Today is an exciting day for the Shoreline-West Region Connecticut State Community College and Lees-McRae College. I look forward to working with students from Gateway Community College, Housatonic Community College, and Norwalk Community College. At Lees-McRae, we can offer students the prospect to continue their education in one of our online programs or one of our experiential on-campus programs. Lees-McRae prides itself on attracting and serving students from many states and backgrounds. This partnership with Gateway Community College, Housatonic Community College, and Norwalk Community College is a great way to further that mission,” said Dr. King.

“We want to expand opportunities for our students so that they can strive to reach the goals they envision. Through this agreement, we are encouraging students and increasing their possibilities so they may have valuable options for furthering their education,” said Housatonic Community College Academic Dean Robin Avant.

The agreement will be reviewed and renewed on an annual basis. To learn more about southwestern Connecticut’s community colleges visit Gateway.edu, Housatonic.edu and Norwalk.edu. Visit LMC.edu to learn more about Lees-McRae College.

LauraRobertsMarketing@gmail.com (Laura Roberts ) Places Thu, 25 Feb 2021 09:10:18 -0500
Bruce Museum: The Artists of Instagram Webinar, March 4 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/49902-bruce-museum-the-artists-of-instagram-webinar-march-449902-bruce-museum-the-artists-of-instagram-webinar-march-4 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/49902-bruce-museum-the-artists-of-instagram-webinar-march-449902-bruce-museum-the-artists-of-instagram-webinar-march-4

GREENWICH, CT — Once upon a time, visual artists had to forge their way toward success using such primitive forms of marketing as opening their studios, cultivating buyers, charming the pants off of gallerists, and creatively spreading word of mouth. Today there's Instagram, a platform where artists can show off the gift that produces their work, but, even more than that, can inspire literally tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of people to follow them and to engage in a rich, spirited, ongoing dialogue about their work.

The Artists of Instagram: Everything You Always Wanted to Know and Aren't Afraid to Ask, a Bruce Presents webinar on Thursday, March 4, 2021, 7:00 – 8:30 pm, showcases four extraordinary artists who have not only built substantial followings on Instagram, but also represent a revolution in terms of how we define what makes someone a successful contemporary artist.

From Daisy Collingridge (@daisy_collingridge), whose draped and tufted sculptures serve as evocative representations of the body and soul; to Lauren Ko (@lokokitchen), a baker whose visually exquisite edibles challenge traditional definitions of art itself; from actor-filmmaker Sarah Ramos (@saraheramos), whose teenage pursuit of celebrities grew into a provocative visual meta-commentary; to artist-musician Láolú Senbanjo (@laulunyc), whose breathtaking take on Afromysterics caught Beyoncé's eye – these artists are singular in their approach and collectively representative of a generation for whom Instagram is a key element of their practice.

The Artists of Instagram: Everything You Always Wanted to Know and Aren't Afraid to Ask will be moderated by Bruce Presents co-producer Leonard Jacobs; a Q&A session will follow the conversation among the IG artists. Admission to the webinar is free for Museum members and $20 for non-members; students receive a 20% discount. To register, visit brucemuseum.org or call 203-869-0376, ext. 311. Support for Bruce Presents programs is generously provided by Berkley One, a Berkley Company, Connecticut Office of the Arts, and Northern Trust.

More about our Bruce Presents panelists and Instagram artists:

Daisy Collingridge studied Fashion Design at the renowned Central St. Martins in London, receiving her BA in 2014. Since graduating, her work has morphed into a multi-disciplinary art practice. Her work sits in an awkward space between sculpture, theatre, and art. The “Flesh Suits” or “Squishes” explore fabric, form, and flesh. At the core of her work are traditional craft techniques like free machine quilting, applique, and pattern cutting. Daisy has won the international award at the World of Wearable Arts, exhibited at Alexandra Palace in London, and has been featured in numerous art publications, including the magazines Hi FructoseTrebuchetDesignBoomDezeenDazed DigitalArte Tracks, and Observer

Lauren Ko is an artist, self-taught home baker, and author of the best-selling cookbook, “Pieometry.” Her colorful geometric style made all hell bake loose on the frontier of contemporary pie art, and her iconic signature spoke design has been dubbed the “modern lattice.” Her work has been widely featured in publications such as Vogue, O Magazine, Buzzfeed's Tasty, and on-screen in Martha Bakes and CBS’ Sunday Morning. Lauren has roots in sunny San Diego, but is currently based in Seattle, with her partner, Ben, and their bear dog, Santi.

Sarah Ramos is a filmmaker, writer, and actor. She starred as Haddie Braverman on the NBC drama series Parenthood from 2010 until 2015. Most recently, she emerged on Instagram feeds with her DIY re-enactments of cult-favorite movie/TV scenes and pop culture moments (“Quarantscenes”). She has written and directed short films (The Arm and Fluffy) as well as the 2017 web series City Girl, which she also starred in at age 25 after writing the script at 12. Her latest projects include creating the Autograph Hound zine in collaboration with THNK1994 Museum, directing an episode of Marvel 616, and creating and co-hosting The Renner Files podcast.

Láolú Senbanjo is a Nigerian-born, Brooklyn-based visual artist, singer, songwriter, musician, and human rights lawyer. Láolú has always had a desire to help others and reveal their truth. He does this through a way that comes most naturally to him: Art. After practicing law for three years, he quit his job, moved to New York City and has been creating ever since. Láolú is guided by the idea that all surfaces are his canvas. His unique technique, which he coined as the Sacred art of the Orí, is based on the Yoruba religious practice of becoming one with yourself or awakening the God in you (Orí).

Láolú has collaborated with Beyoncé Knowles on her Grammy award-winning visual album “Lemonade,” Taraji P. Henson, Lupita Nyongo, Alicia Keys, Swizz Beats, and Danielle Brooks. His brand collaborations include Kenneth Cole, Nike, Equinox Fitness, Starbucks, Belvedere, Bvlgari, TED, Apple, Facebook, and more. Láolú’s work has also been featured in the Brooklyn Museum and the Whitney Museum.

To participate in The Artists of Instagram virtual program on Thursday, March 4, starting at 7:00 pm, visit brucemuseum.org or call 203-869-0376, ext. 311. The Bruce Museum’s virtual series of conversations among thought leaders in art and science continues on Thursday, April 8, with Women in Contemporary Science: How to STEM the Leaky Pipeline.

bornies@optonline.net (Scott Smith ) Events Wed, 24 Feb 2021 05:43:00 -0500
Creativity Connects Fairfield: Meet Ginna Paules, Program Coordinator and Youth Services Director for Fairfield Parks and Recreation https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/49912-creativity-connects-fairfield-meet-ginna-paules-program-coordinator-and-youth-services-director-for-fairfield-parks-and-recreation49912-creativity-connects-fairfield-meet-ginna-paules-program-coordinator-and-youth-services-director-for-fairfield-parks-and-recreation https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/49912-creativity-connects-fairfield-meet-ginna-paules-program-coordinator-and-youth-services-director-for-fairfield-parks-and-recreation49912-creativity-connects-fairfield-meet-ginna-paules-program-coordinator-and-youth-services-director-for-fairfield-parks-and-recreation

Creativity Connects Fairfield

What fuels a vibrant, connected, and creative community? What makes people feel good about living in Fairfield?

When locals share the creativity that they uncover in the nooks and crannies of their community it brings about connectivity and makes us all feel good. Believe it or not, you discover creativity every day as you walk, shop, work, and play in Fairfield. 

Creativity connects us. 

Meet Ginna Paules, Program Coordinator and Youth Services Director for Fairfield Parks and Recreation.

Is there an organization in town that makes you feel good?

I enjoy working with the high school students of the Town Youth Council (TYC). I have missed meeting with them in person during the pandemic and can't wait to start up once we are out of this horrid ordeal. TYC is our community service organization that volunteers countless hours to Fairfield Parks and Recreation special events. We have a lot of fun and I get to know so many great kids throughout their high school years. I've overseen TYC for the last 25 years and love to see them when they now participate with their own children in Fairfield Recreation programs!

Where do you go for inspiration and creativity?

I usually head to the beautiful beaches of Fairfield's coastline for serenity. I enjoy opening for the participants of Maggie Taylor morning Yoga that takes place at Penfield Pavilion. I also love walking to S. Pine Creek beach on my lunch hour or eating lunch at the S. Benson Marina. I like to share my lunch with my Gull friends (my seagull friends!)

What do you love about your community?

It's an honor to work for Fairfield Parks and Recreation in the town I grew up in. I have worked at Fairfield Rec for the past quarter century and have met so many wonderful people. I am still close to the friends of my childhood! That's the beauty of Fairfield! I enjoy running our seasonal special events like Breakfast with Santa, our Easter Egg Hunt, Sand Jam Family Movie Nights, Peanut Butter Jam Concerts and our Summer Concert Series at Sherman Green.

Creativity Connects Fairfield is made possible by LIFEWTR.

If you have local creativity to share and would like to be featured in this series, feel free to email   CreativityConnects@HamletHub.com 

The views and opinions expressed above are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of HamletHub or LIFEWTR.

kerry@ducey.org (Kerry Anne Ducey) Neighbors Wed, 24 Feb 2021 05:17:52 -0500
Kennedy's Barber Club Ribbon Cutting: Fri. Feb. 26, 12:30pm https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/49915-kennedy-s-barber-club-ribbon-cutting-fri-feb-26-12-30pm49915-kennedy-s-barber-club-ribbon-cutting-fri-feb-26-12-30pm https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/49915-kennedy-s-barber-club-ribbon-cutting-fri-feb-26-12-30pm49915-kennedy-s-barber-club-ribbon-cutting-fri-feb-26-12-30pm

Fairfield, CT - The Fairfield Chamber of Commerce is happy to announce that its newest member, Kennedy’s Barber Club and Spa, has scheduled its Ribbon Cutting on Friday, February 26. The ceremony will be officiated by First Selectwoman Brenda Kupchick, at 12:30PM.

Located on 1330 Post Road Fairfield, Kennedy’s of Fairfield Club mixes Hair Styling with Day Spa Amenities, combining two great experiences for clients looking to rejuvenate and enhance their look, while enjoying day spa amenities. The end goal: Revitalizing their internal balance. 

The club offers monthly memberships for men’s hair, face & waxing services, and women's hair blowouts, facials & waxing services. The Spa offers monthly memberships and daily use of Infrared Sauna booths (2), soon-to-be launched sensory deprivation tanks (2) and a thermal infrared cocoon pod. Walk-ins are welcome and encouraged. 

Opened briefly for four days in March 2020, then closed for two months by the state’s Covid response, and reopened again, the Club has quickly become a destination for people looking to re-set their personal mental health and personal physical image.  

The Club offers signature men’s haircuts that include straight razor blocking and styling, followed by a hot towel neck and shoulder massage. The service is rounded out by a hair shampoo and conditioning regiment. Men have been gravitating to the straight razor facial shaves and deep cleansing facial services, as stress-releasing pampering opportunities. 

Parents and young children can visit together to get stylish attentive hair cuts by the two leading Kennedy’s stylists, Nini Afonso and Nadine Torres. The Club offers special pricing for young children, as well as special memberships for “young professionals” on both the hair club and spa offerings.   

New to the Kennedy’s offering has been a focus on female customers and offerings. Women have been frequenting the Club to try the monthly memberships for hair blowouts and shampoos. A big success has been the “female centric” deep cleanse facial services introduced my Nini with jelly masks and pore cleaning techniques. Eyebrow waxing and other waxing advice for women has garnered more fanfare. 

The Spa services have rapidly gained attention. Members -- both men and women -- flock to enjoy the heat-producing infrared saunas. Each private booth has its own personal shower amenity. Towels for showering after a sauna appointment and bottled water are provided for customers.  

The idea for Kennedy’s Club and Spa of Fairfield is to offer people an opportunity to take a personal vacation -- without going far. To treat themselves well amidst the chaos of life, work, family and Covid. In the members' waiting area, there are two massage chairs for relaxation before or after service.

Every aspect of the Club and Spa follows strict COVID sanitary practices and staff wear personal protective masks at all times.     

Appointments can be booked online or by calling the club, (203) 292-8177. Kennedy’s is open Tuesday through Saturday. In the coming weeks, Sunday hours will be added.  

“We look forward to serving you and your family," invites Owner Robert Craft.


  • Kennedy’s Barber Club & Spa
  • 1330 Post Road, Fairfield, CT  06824
  • Phone:  203-292-8177
  • Closed: Mondays
  • Open: Tuesday – Saturday
  • Hours:  9:00am-6:00pm 
bornies@optonline.net (Beverly Balaz) Places Tue, 23 Feb 2021 07:06:00 -0500
SHU Introduces NE's First Approved Center for Play Therapy Education https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/49914-shu-introduces-ne-s-first-approved-center-for-play-therapy-education49914-shu-introduces-ne-s-first-approved-center-for-play-therapy-education https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/49914-shu-introduces-ne-s-first-approved-center-for-play-therapy-education49914-shu-introduces-ne-s-first-approved-center-for-play-therapy-education

FAIRFIELD, Conn.—Sacred Heart University will offer a certificate of advanced study in play therapy in New England’s first Approved Center for Play Therapy Education in the fall of 2021 through its Isabelle Farrington College of Education. 

According to the Association for Play Therapy (APT), Approved Centers for Play Therapy Education, “are designated to generate more play therapy research, peer-reviewed publications, instruction and supervised clinical experiences at universities.” The center at SHU is called the Institute for Play Therapy and Expressive Arts Education and Research. As an Approved Center for Play Therapy Education, the institute will offer play therapy training through its certificate of advanced study program.

The online, two-year, part-time play therapy program prepares students to work with children and adolescents in a culturally responsive and developmentally appropriate manner. The program is open to students enrolled in master’s-level licensure preparation programs such as counseling, social work, couples and family counseling, and professionals who already completed a master’s degree in these areas. Students will take an introductory course, as well as seminal theories of play therapy and play therapy in the school setting and clinical mental health settings, among other courses. There is a clinical portion to the program and a three-day, on-ground, residency. 

“This will be the first Approved Center for Play Therapy Education, on ground or online, in the entire New England area,” said Rebekah Byrd, associate professor of SHU’s clinical mental health counseling program and director for the institute. She is also a registered play therapist and supervisor (RPT-S). “SHU has the unique opportunity to be at the forefront of these training needs. This certificate program will meet the post-master’s educational requirements for the registered play therapy credential as detailed by the APT.”

According to the APT, “Child play therapy is a way of being with the child that honors their unique developmental level and looks for ways of helping in the ‘language’ of the child: play. Licensed mental health professionals therapeutically use play to help their clients, most often children ages 3 to 12 years, to better express themselves and resolve their problems.”

“You need to have training; you need to have the skills to administer play therapeutically. It’s not the same as regular play,” said Franc Hudspeth, associate professor and director of SHU’s clinical mental health program.

Hudspeth is an RPT-S and editor of the International Journal of Play Therapy. He was instrumental in establishing the University of Mississippi’s play therapy program and is enthusiastic about bringing play therapy to Sacred Heart, as the program aligns with SHU’s mission. “SHU believes in social justice and appropriate treatment for all,” Hudspeth said.  

Byrd and Hudspeth believe play therapy is the best way to work with children and adolescents, and there is plenty of evidence and research to support this. “We’re using a child’s preferred way of communicating, which is play, instead of talking,” Hudspeth said. 

According to the APT’s website, “Play therapy works best when a safe relationship is created between the therapist and client, one in which the latter may freely and naturally express both what pleases and bothers them.” It goes on to say that mental health agencies, schools, hospital and private practitioners “utilize play therapy as a primary intervention or as a supportive therapy for behavioral problems, such as anger management or grief, and behavioral disorders, such as anxiety or depression.”

The certificate of advanced study play therapy program meets the post-master’s educational requirements for the RPT credential as detailed by the APT. Once students complete the program and all clinical and supervision requirements, they have the opportunity to apply to become an RPT.  

For more information please contact Rebekah Byrd, director of the Institute for Play Therapy and Expressive Arts Education and Research or Kathleen Farmer, director of graduate admissions.


About Sacred Heart University

As the second-largest independent Catholic university in New England, and one of the fastest-growing in the U.S., Sacred Heart University is a national leader in shaping higher education for the 21st century. SHU offers more than 80 undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and certificate programs on its Fairfield, Conn., campus. Sacred Heart also has satellites in Connecticut, Luxembourg and Ireland and offers online programs. More than 9,000 students attend the University’s nine colleges and schools: Arts & Sciences; Communication, Media & the Arts; Social Work; Computer Science & Engineering; Health Professions; the Isabelle Farrington College of Education; the Jack Welch College of Business & Technology; the Dr. Susan L. Davis, R.N., & Richard J. Henley College of Nursing; and St. Vincent’s College. Sacred Heart stands out from other Catholic institutions as it was established and led by laity. The contemporary Catholic university is rooted in the rich Catholic intellectual tradition and the liberal arts, and at the same time cultivates students to be forward thinkers who enact change—in their own lives, professions and in their communities. The Princeton Review includes SHU in its Best 386 Colleges–2021 Edition, “Best in the Northeast” and Best Business Schools–2020 Edition. Sacred Heart is home to the award-winning, NPR-affiliated radio station, WSHU, a Division I athletics program and an impressive performing arts program that includes choir, band, dance and theatre. www.sacredheart.edu

bornies@optonline.net (Kim Swartz) Places Tue, 23 Feb 2021 06:47:47 -0500
CT BBB Tip: Why Saving is More Important Now Than Ever Before https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/publicsafety/49913-ct-bbb-tip-why-saving-is-more-important-now-than-ever-before49913-ct-bbb-tip-why-saving-is-more-important-now-than-ever-before https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/publicsafety/49913-ct-bbb-tip-why-saving-is-more-important-now-than-ever-before49913-ct-bbb-tip-why-saving-is-more-important-now-than-ever-before


CROMWELL, Conn.—As our country continues to recover from the health & financial crisis, there is no better time to stress the importance of saving to ensure long-term financial health. As part of America Saves Week 2021, February 22 – February 26, several local organizations are spreading the message of saving and urging its network to save automatically. 
The Connecticut Saves Campaign has planned several events in celebration including a free virtual kick off event designed for everyone from business owners to families and will include an interactive trivia. This free virtual event will be help Monday February 22nd at noon. Residents can register for the event at bit.ly/CTSaves2021
A key feature of the savings campaign is the opportunity to take the Connecticut Saves Pledge. It's an opportunity for savers to set a financial goal and to receive information and encouragement to help them make progress toward achieving it. 
You can take the pledge by texting “CTSaves” to 877877 or by visiting ConnecticutSaves.org
Each day of America Saves Week highlights a unique theme offering fresh opportunities to promote personal savings and reasons why it's important. 
Save automatically. Direct a part of your paycheck to go directly into a savings account. You can do this through your HR department at work or by setting up an auto-transfer at your bank or credit union.
Save for the unexpected. As our country continues to recover from the health & financial crisis, there are many reasons to ensure that you save for unexpected expenses, both big & small. 
Save to retire. You may be contributing to your 401K, TSP, or IRA… but are you saving ENOUGH for retirement? Increasing your retirement contributions by one percent each year can go a long way. 
Save by reducing debt. Paying down debt is saving! By reducing debt you’re saving on interest, late fees, & maintaining/increasing your credit score.
Save as a family. What better way to strengthen your family’s bond than to save as a family? Let’s make saving a family tradition by setting a yearly goal and making a plan to reach it. It all starts with a conversation!
The Connecticut Saves Campaign is primarily coordinated by UConn Extension. Partnering organizations in this effort to promote saving include the Better Business Bureau Serving Connecticut, Chelsea Groton Bank, Connecticut Association for Human Services, Connecticut Department of Banking, Connecticut State Library and Human Resource Agency of New Britain.
For more information on the Connecticut Saves Campaign visit www.ConnecticutSaves.org





bornies@optonline.net (CT BBB) Public safety Tue, 23 Feb 2021 06:44:11 -0500
Connecticut Housing Partners is planning to expand its affordable housing presence into Monroe, CT https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/life/49911-connecticut-housing-partners-is-planning-to-expand-its-affordable-housing-presence-into-monroe-ct-g-iong-partenrs49911-connecticut-housing-partners-is-planning-to-expand-its-affordable-housing-presence-into-monroe-ct-g-iong-partenrs https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/life/49911-connecticut-housing-partners-is-planning-to-expand-its-affordable-housing-presence-into-monroe-ct-g-iong-partenrs49911-connecticut-housing-partners-is-planning-to-expand-its-affordable-housing-presence-into-monroe-ct-g-iong-partenrs

Trumbull, CT - Connecticut Housing Partners has proposed to construct 49-units of affordable housing for Seniors on Main Street in Monroe. The plan was well-received during a Planning and Zoning Commission at the end of January. the plan is to build a three-story New England style building for residents age 62 and older on Main Street in Monroe as an attractive and well-designed project on a site naturally buffered from neighborhood impacts. 

Connecticut Housing Partner's attorney said, "This project would benefit Monroe especially its Senior Citizens!  It's something that everybody could be proud of."  One of the Commissioners in attendance said, "I think this is a beautiful plan that fills a great need in our town for our aging population and our ability to keep them here." 

The housing would be built on just over two acres at 195, 201, and 211 Main Street, close to where Skate Time Roller Rink used to be. Among Connecticut Housing Partners' Senior Housing is Huntington Place, 1235 Huntington Turnpike in Trumbull, Wilton Commons, 21 Station Road in Wilton and Greenfield Commons, 580 Villa Avenue in Fairfield. David Goslin, an architect from Crosskey Architects in Hartford, showed a rendering of the 50,000 square foot facility. "It is a very traditional looking building in keeping with the architecture of Monroe," he said. The independent living facility's front facade has bay windows and gables, according to the design. The facility will include a community room that would serve as a gathering place for tenants to have social events. 

Stay tuned as Connecticut Housing Partners continues with the process of bringing this much-needed development to life!

Connecticut Housing Partners is a 501 (c) 3 organization and its mission is to create and sustain innovative housing, revitalize neighborhoods, and enhance the quality of low and moderate income residents of Connecticut. We are also fighting to end homelessness.

To learn more about Connecticut Housing Partners, please visit www.cthousingpartners.org 



kerry@ducey.org (Robin Jerrild) Life Mon, 22 Feb 2021 08:51:50 -0500