Norwalk's HamletHub Wed, 11 Dec 2019 22:29:22 -0500 The Maritime Aquarium Tending to Rescued Coral Reefs

The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is one of 17 aquariums in the U.S. – and the only one in New England – tending to live corals rescued from Florida in an unprecedented effort to save North America’s largest bank reef.

Thirty-five corals, representing 13 different species, arrived at The Maritime Aquarium last month from the Florida Reef Tract, a 360-mile bank reef that extends from Port Saint Lucie down to the Florida Keys. In recent decades, the tract’s coral populations have been reduced by up to 90 percent, and a new epidemic – called stony coral tissue loss disease (SCTLD) – threatens to take much of the remaining corals.

In response, The Maritime Aquarium and 16 other select members of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) are caring for healthy corals removed from the reef, with the hope of returning the corals to Florida when the SCTLD outbreak subsides. Nicknamed a “coral ark” after the Biblical story of Noah, such an effort has never been attempted before on this scale in the United States.

Maritime Aquarium guests can view the corals in a 1,000-gallon exhibit near the sea turtles.

“This is an unprecendented collaboration between federal and state wildlife authorities and public aquariums,” said Barrett Christie, the Aquarium’s director of Animal Husbandry. “Ultimately the creation of this coral ark is a last-ditch effort to preserve some of the reef tract’s biodiversity, and accredited aquariums and zoos were the only places with the husbandry knowledge and skills to pull off such a project in such a short period of time.”

According to the AZA, the purpose of the coral ark is two-fold: to prevent localized extinction for the most vulnerable species, and to maintain as much genetic diversity as possible for more than 20 species identified for eventual reef restoration.

As of this month, more than 1,500 corals have been placed in AZA institutions, with the eventual goal of 5,000 corals in additional facilities. Many of the species have never been placed in 

human care before. Some are listed as Endangered Species.

Corals and coral reefs are critical components of healthy oceans. They’re home to one-fourth of all marine species, yet cover less than one-tenth of the world’s oceans. Coral reefs also help to protect our coastlines by buffering wave energy during storms, and they’re a major economic driver for tourism and recreation.

Coral health is impacted by such factors as pollution, warming water temperatures and human misuse. There currently is no known prevention or cure for stony coral tissue loss disease, which was first observed on the Florida Reef Tract in 2014.

Barrett expects it to be several years before the SCTLD runs its course and the corals can be returned to Florida’s waters to help repopulate the reef tract. Meanwhile, the corals in their temporary home at The Maritime Aquarium have a constant 78-degree water temperature, specialized “grow” lights to encourage the corals’ symbiotic algae, and a steady supply of tiny tasty food.

“We’re prepared to give these corals a proper habitat as long as necessary, but look forward to the day that they can return to the reef tract and help it to recover,” Christie said.

IMAX movie “Great Barrier Reef”

In addition to displaying the live rescued Florida corals, The Maritime Aquarium on Dec. 14 is premiering “Great Barrier Reef,” a new IMAX movie that offers an awesome giant-screen exploration of one of Earth’s greatest natural wonders. The film introduces audiences to some of the creatures that live on the massive Australian coral reef, and documents the work being done by researchers and volunteers to better understand and protect the reef and its inhabitants.

“Great Barrier Reef” will play at 11 a.m. and 2 & 4 p.m. daily. A standard IMAX movie is included with Aquarium admission.

(A bank reef, like the Florida Reef Tract, and a barrier reef are different coral formations. A bank reef is closer to shore than a barrier reef, features “spurs” and “grooves” influenced by wave action, and lacks landward lagoons that are characteristic of barrier reefs.)

Learn more about the exhibits, IMAX movies and special holiday offerings at the popular South Norwalk family attraction at


]]> (Gina Zammit) Life Wed, 11 Dec 2019 08:47:52 -0500
Fairfield County Bank Appoints Cheryl MacCluskey to Senior Loan Officer

Ridgefield, CT – December 11, 2019 – Fairfield County Bank recently appointed Cheryl MacCluskey to Senior Loan Officer. Before joining the Bank, Cheryl was a Loan Officer at First Republic Bank.

As a Senior Loan Officer, Cheryl will meet with Clients regularly to determine their loan product needs to ensure their goals are being met. Ms. MacCluskey is also responsible for maintaining a knowledge base of the Bank’s loan products and understanding of the qualifications required for each client.

“Cheryl is a great addition to our experienced team of lenders. She brings with her a wealth of knowledge and experience and is excited to work with her clients to help them achieve their goals,” says Raymond LaFlamme, Chief Mortgage Sales Office at Fairfield County Bank.

In her spare time, Cheryl volunteers at the YMCA and Inspirica. She also belongs to the Greenwich Board of Realtors, National Notary Association and the Marist College Alumni. In 2016, Cheryl received the Volunteer of the Year award from the YMCA. Growing up, Cheryl competed in Dressage and actively participated in triathlons. She graduated from Marist College with a Bachelor’s of Science degree and currently resides in Greenwich, Connecticut.

]]> (Ryan Arconti) Neighbors Wed, 11 Dec 2019 08:30:04 -0500
Great Barrier Reef Film Coming to IMAX at the Maritime Aquarium

Plunge in for a breathtaking IMAX movie adventure into Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, and also visit actual live corals saved from a ravaged Florida reef, this winter at The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk.

Opening Sat., Dec. 14, the IMAX movie “Great Barrier Reef” offers an awesome giant-screen exploration of one of Earth’s greatest natural wonders and introduces audiences to scientists and volunteers working to preserve it. The film is a timely addition, as The Maritime Aquarium displays a new collection of corals that one day will help to save the Florida Reef Tract, America’s largest bank reef.

“The new IMAX movie and our exhibit of live corals work together nicely to explain the serious threats to these vital marine habitats, while also offering hope by celebrating the extraordinary research and conservation efforts being made on behalf of reefs all around the world,” said Barrett Christie, the Aquarium’s director of Animal Husbandry.

“Great Barrier Reef”

Narrated by Australian actor Eric Bana, the 40-minute film will play at 11 a.m. and 2 & 4 p.m. daily in Connecticut’s largest IMAX Theater, with a screen that’s six stories tall. The theater’s giant screen and 70mm film-projection system combines for the biggest, brightest, clearest images at almost 10 times the resolution of standard-projection formats, so seeing “Great Barrier Reef” is the next best thing to actually experiencing the famed Australian marine sanctuary.

“Great Barrier Reef” follows Jemma Craig, a young underwater photographer and reef native, on an expedition to document the work being done by researchers and volunteers to better understand and protect the reef and its inhabitants. The film visits the Great Barrier Reef’s first sustainable eco-resort on Lady Elliot Island – where Peter Gash has rehabilitated the remote cay from devastation caused by mining in the late 1800s – and the Fitzroy Island Turtle Rehabilitation Center, where dedicated volunteers nurse injured sea turtles back to health.

With stunning images shot exclusively for the giant screen, “Great Barrier Reef” gives audiences IMAX-sized encounters with some of the fascinating creatures that live on the reef. Among these are playful dwarf minke whales, thousands of migrating green sea turtles and their hatchlings, a Maori wrasse named Wally whose epic photo-bombing skills have made him a local legend, a male seahorse giving birth, and fluorescent corals whose kaleidoscopic colors are especially vivid when viewed at night.

The film also includes cutting-edge coral-husbandry research being conducted at the Australian Institute for Marine Science, where scientists are working to develop hardier corals that will survive long-term environmental changes. And “citizen scientist” volunteers, who are helping to track the health of the reef, will inspire people to leave the Norwalk theater wanting to get involved in conservation efforts.

Coral Reef Rescue

One coral-conservation effort to support is the The Maritime Aquarium’s display of 35 corals, representing 13 different species, rescued from the Florida Reef Tract, a 360-mile bank reef that extends from Port Saint Lucie down to the Florida Keys. In recent decades, the tract’s coral populations have beeen reduced by up to 90 percent, and a new epidemic – called stony coral tissue loss disease (SCTLD) – threatens to take much of the remaining corals.

The Maritime Aquarium and 18 other select members of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums are caring for healthy corals removed from the reef, with the hope of returning the corals when the SCTLD outbreak subsides. Nicknamed a “coral ark” after the Biblical story of Noah, this unprecedented effort has never been attempted before.

The Maritime Aquarium is the only aquarium in New England participating in the coral rescue. Guests can view the corals in an exhibit near the sea turtles.

“Great Barrier Reef” is a December Media film produced in association with Slattery Family Trust, Biopixel, Soundfirm, Film Victoria, and Screen Queensland, and is distributed by MacGillivray Freeman Films.

Admission to The Maritime Aquarium, which includes a standard IMAX movie and all exhibits, is $26.95 for adults, $24,95 for seniors, and $19.95 for children (3-12).

Get tickets and learn more about exhibits and programs, view trailers of IMAX movies, and more at


]]> (Gina Zammit) Life Tue, 10 Dec 2019 04:51:02 -0500
Seeking Peace and Calm? Visit SoNo’s Maritime Garage Gallery Winter Exhibit

If you’re feeling stressed in your day-to-day life thinking of the upcoming holiday season, your job, the state of the world, etc., take time to stop by the Maritime Garage Gallery’s winter exhibit to experience a sense of calm. The works of art featured in the Gallery’s “Seeds of Peace” exhibit embrace the senses of peace and serenity. The exhibit will run from December 10, 2019 through February 29, 2020.

“Seeds of Peace” presents the works of 28 artists from around the region, including Mark Schiff of Norwalk; Jennifer Prat from Fairfield; Julie O'Connor, of Weston; and Shanan Haislip of Terryville, CT. Nadia Martinez has curated the exhibit.

“We want this exhibit to be a sort of haven or respite for people from the craziness of life. All the pieces inspire harmony, tranquility, generosity and calmness,” says curator Nadia Martinez.

The Maritime Garage Gallery is part of the Parking Authority’s “Art in Parking Places” placemaking initiative, an effort to support art in parking spaces. The gallery is located at 11 North Water Street in the SoNo district of Norwalk. It is free and open to the public from 9:00am -5:00pm, Monday through Friday. For more information, call 203- 831-9063, or visit

]]> (Gina Zammit) Life Mon, 09 Dec 2019 06:34:12 -0500
The Christmas Show at Anthony's Lake Club, Tashua Knolls, and The Norwalk Inn

Steppin' Out Entertainment of Trumbull presents "The Art Of Christmas", a holiday musical comedy with dinner. Enjoy a delicious four-course meal served between the acts of this hilarious holiday musical guaranteed to put you in the Christmas Spirit.

Matinees and evening performances will be held at Tashua Knolls, The Norwalk Inn and Anthony's Lake Club in Danbury. After bringing their Christmas show to the Spinning Wheel Inn for over twenty years, writer/ director Karen Randazzo has continued the tradition each year since 1985.

This year's show takes place at an art gallery's Christmas gala, where everyone's a critic. Over a dozen musical numbers include a Pentatonix arrangement of I'll Be Home for Christmas, some traditional Christmas carols and an arrangement of Silent Night with Peace On Earth which has been the finale of the show for 30 years. This year's show opens on Dec. 7th and closes Dec. 22nd.

For more information, dates, times and menus you can visit or call 203-261-4868.

The Art of Christmas Cast from left to right (standing) Tracey Marble, Peter Randazzo, Beth Bria, Lou Ursone (seated) Mark Holleran and Meaghan Elliot.

]]> (Steppin' Out Entertainment) Events Sat, 07 Dec 2019 05:12:00 -0500
Menorah Lightings set for Fairfield, Trumbull, Easton, Stratfordand Monroe

The Mishkan Israel Day Camp plans to celebrate the Jewish festival of Chanukah with a series of public lightings of menorahs Dec. 23-29 in five Fairfield County communities—Fairfield, Trumbull, Easton, Stratford and Monroe. 

The ceremonies are all open to the public free of charge and are expected to draw a number of civic representatives such as Mayor Laura Hoydick of Stratford and police department and fire department officers. 

Activities for children, light refreshments and musical entertainment have been arranged at all five locations. 

The list of ceremonies: 

  •       Stratford: Dec. 23 (Monday), 6 p.m., Stratford Town Hall, 2627 Main St., third year of the ceremony in the community. 
  •       Trumbull: Dec. 24 (Tuesday), 6 p.m., Trumbull Town Hall, 5866 Main St., 34rd year of the ceremony in the community. 
  •       Fairfield: Dec. 25 (Wednesday), 6 p.m., Sherman Green, Reef Road, 30th year of the ceremony in the community. 
  •       Easton: Dec. 26 (Thursday) 6 p.m., Easton Town Green, 34th year of the ceremony in the community.    
  •       Monroe: Dec. 29 (Sunday), 6 pm., Monroe Town Hall, 7 Fan Hill Rd., eighth year of the ceremony in the community. 

    Mishkan Israel operates a Stamford-based summer day camp, an outreach initiated in Bridgeport in 1945 by Rabbi Israel Stock and his wife as emissaries of Rabbi Yosef Schneersohn.   

    Additional information is available at or by calling 203.268.0740.

]]> (Gina Zammit) Events Fri, 06 Dec 2019 06:31:59 -0500
Westport Country Playhouse Script in Hand Playreading of Romantic Comedy “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley”

Westport Country Playhouse will present a Script in Hand playreading of “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley,” the romantic comedy sequel to Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice,” by Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon, on Monday, December 16, at 7 p.m. The reading will be directed by Anne Keefe, Playhouse associate artist and curator of the playreading series. Tickets are $20 each.

“’Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley’ ticks so many boxes!,” said Keefe. “It has a literate, classic setting and well-loved characters wrapped in comedy and tied with a romantic bow. I hope you make it part of your holiday, whatever that may be.”

“Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley” was one of the most produced plays in the U.S. in 2017.  Set in December 1815, two years after “Pride and Prejudice” ends, “Miss Bennet:  Christmas at Pemberley” focuses on middle-sister Mary as its unlikely heroine. At Pemberley, the grand estate of Mr. and Mrs. Darcy, an unexpected guest at a holiday gathering sparks Mary's hope for independence, an intellectual match, and possibly, even love.   

The cast includes Kristen Hahn as Mary Bennet (Broadway’s “A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder,” “Our Town”; Westport Country Playhouse’s “Our Town,” Script in Hand playreadings “You Know I Can’t Hear You When the Water’s Running,” “The Late Christopher Bean,” “Dracula”); Allison Altman as Jane Bingley (Westport Country Playhouse’s Script in Hand playreadings Breaking Legs,” “I Hate Hamlet”; regional theater’s “Nicholas Nickleby,” “Pride and Prejudice”); Rebekah Brockman as Lydia Wickham (Westport Country Playhouse’s “The Liar,” Script in Hand playreadings “Lunch Hour,” “The Country Club”; films “Bridge of Spies,” “The Chaperone”); Joe Delafield as Charles Bingley (Westport Country Playhouse’s “The School for Husbands”; Broadway’s “Tartuffe”; Off-Broadway’s “Fashions for Men,” “Outward Bound”; nominee, LA’s Best Supporting Actor Ovation Award).

Carson Elrod will play Arthur de Bourgh (Westport Country Playhouse’s “Don Juan,” “Bedroom Farce,” “How the Other Half Loves,” and others; Broadway’s “Peter and the Starcatcher”); Brenda Meaney as Anne de Bourgh (Westport Country Playhouse’s “And a Nightingale Sang,” reading of “The Revolutionists”; New York theater’s “Indian Ink,” “Incognito,” “Party Face”); Elizabeth Stahlmann as Elizabeth Darcy (Westport Country Playhouse’s “Grounded,” for which she earned the Connecticut Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Solo Performance; New York’s The Acting Company); and Max von Essen as Fitzwilliam Darcy (Westport Country Playhouse annual galas in 2010, 2011, and 2016; Broadway’s “Anastasia,” “An American in Paris” (Tony/Drama Desk/Grammy nominations).

Stage directions will be read by Alexandra Rapapport. Stage manager is Megan Smith.

The co-playwrights are Lauren Gunderson and Margot Melcon.  Gunderson is the most produced living playwright in the U.S.  She is a winner of the Lanford Wilson Award and the Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award. Her work has been commissioned, produced, and developed at companies across the U.S.  She is Playwright in Residence at Playwrights Foundation. Melcon is a theater artist, administrator, and writer. She was the director of new play development at Marin Theatre Company for seven years, where she dramaturged over 30 productions and administered the company’s two annual new play prizes and commissioning program.

Director Anne Keefe is the associate artist at Westport Country Playhouse and curates the Script in Hand playreading series. She has directed nearly 50 Script in Hand readings.  She served as artistic director of Westport Country Playhouse with Joanne Woodward in 2008, and as associate artistic director from 2000-2006, also with Ms. Woodward.

All dates, titles, and artists subject to change. 

The Script in Hand Playreading Series will continue on Mondays at 7 p.m. on February 24, March 23, and April 27; titles to be announced.

The Script in Hand Playreading Series is sponsored by Marc and Michele Flaster in 2019 with support from the White Barn Program of the Lucille Lortel Foundation.

For more information and to buy tickets, visit or call the box office at (203) 227-4177, toll-free at 1-888-927-7529, or visit Westport Country Playhouse, 25 Powers Court, off Route 1, Westport. Stay connected to the Playhouse on Facebook (Westport Country Playhouse), follow on Twitter (@WCPlayhouse), and on YouTube (WestportPlayhouse).

The mission of Westport Country Playhouse is to enrich, enlighten, and engage the community through the power of professionally produced theater worth talking about and the welcoming experience of the Playhouse campus.  The not-for-profit Playhouse provides this experience in multiple ways by offering live theater experiences of the highest quality, under the artistic direction of Mark Lamos; educational and community engagement events to further explore the work on stage; the New Works Initiative, a program dedicated to the discovery, development, and production of new live theatrical works; special performances and programs for students and teachers with extensive curriculum support material; Script in Hand play readings to deepen relationships with audiences and artists; the renowned Woodward Internship Program during the summer months for aspiring theater professionals; Family Festivities presentations to delight young and old alike and to promote reading through live theater; youth performance training through Broadway Method Academy, Westport Country Playhouse’s resident conservatory program; and the beautiful and historic Playhouse campus open for enjoyment and community events year-round. Charity Navigator has recently awarded its top 4-star charity rating to the Playhouse in recognition of its strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency.


]]> (Gina Zammit) Events Thu, 05 Dec 2019 20:44:07 -0500
Rowayton Resident, Student Athlete Reflects on Football Season at Sports Assembly

“I have loved football since I was three years old,” explained Rett Zeigler, a co-captain of New Canaan Country School’s varsity team. A ninth grader, Rett was one of two student-athletes selected to offer reflections at the end-of-term Upper School sports assembly, held Nov. 11.

“I have played a couple of different sports over the course of my eleven years here at Country School, including basketball, lacrosse and squash. Outside of school, I also golf, but there is something about football that’s just so awesome and this past season has been so much fun.”

The team, which was made up of 24 seventh through ninth graders, represented a range of abilities from newcomer to veteran. In his role as captain, and as a “senior” at the Pre-K through Grade 9 independent school, Rett focused his energies on making sure that his teammates all felt valued and encouraged regardless of skill level.

“As a ninth grader, you feel a sense of duty to make the younger players know that they are part of a team. Not just on the field, but also in the hallways of the Upper School building, out at recess and in the dining hall. You have to take them under your wing, show them the ropes, and make them feel welcome. I remember my older teammates who did that for me. Whenever I would see them, they would say ‘hi’ or give me a high-five and it gave me such a good feeling,” recalled Rett who began playing at the varsity level as a seventh grader. “Team-building and confidence-building are as important as skill-building.”

“We want to be competitive, of course, but we also want to be kind and set a good example for all on the field,” said the quarterback and Rowayton resident whose parents are Eric and Country School alumna Stephanie Zeigler ’81. While he has not yet finalized his plans following graduation in the spring, he is determined to continue pursuing basketball and lacrosse – and especially football – at the highest levels possible.

“Rett was a terrific captain for us this season, and he set a great example for the rest of the team by working hard in practice to improve his passing, running and tackling skills,” said Head Coach and Upper School Teacher Scott Lilley. “It’s clear from watching him play that he loves the game of football, loves to be involved in every play. That enthusiasm helped to bring the rest of the team along with him.”

“As this season comes to a close, I will always reflect back on this year with a huge smile—remembering that after every play, my teammates would be there to help me up and lift me to my feet. And it's these things, these small acts, that make a big difference. These small acts of sportsmanship and kindness are what sets my team apart and which will mark my memory of NCCS,” said Rett.

New Canaan Country School is a co-ed, independent day school for students in Pre-K (ages 3 & 4) through Grade 9. Located on a 75-acre campus in New Canaan, the school offers fifth through ninth grade students 13 different athletic offerings and age-appropriate physical education classes and activities for those students age 3 through Grade 4. For more information about the school or its athletic program, please visit

]]> (Communications at Country school) Neighbors Thu, 05 Dec 2019 06:52:56 -0500
Norwalk Residents Receive Free Admission to The Maritime Aquarium On Dec. 7

Norwalk residents can get close to seals, sharks, sea turtles and even “Shark-Diving Santa” for free on Sat., Dec. 7 in a special admission offer from their grateful hometown jewel, The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk.

On The Maritime Aquarium’s annual “Salute Norwalk Day,” the popular family attraction thanks the residents of Norwalk for their support by offering free admission to city residents. Proof of residency is required.

Admission – which includes a spectacular 40-minute IMAX movie – regularly is $26.95 for adults, $24.95 for seniors (65+), and $19.95 for children (3-12). Thus, for a family of four, “Salute Norwalk Day” is a value of $93.80.

In addition, Norwalk residents receive 10 percent discounts in the Aquarium Gift Shop on “Salute Norwalk Day.”

Visiting The Maritime Aquarium offers the thrill of getting close to more than 3,000 marine animals, including sand tiger sharks, harbor seals, sea turtles and pulsing jellyfish – all native to Long Island Sound, its watershed and the oceans beyond.

Besides welcoming Norwalk residents for free on Dec. 7, the Aquarium also will be hosting “Shark-Diving Santa” at 12:15, 1:15 and 2:15 p.m. Santa Claus will squeeze into his scuba gear and join the Aquarium’s volunteer dive team in the “Ocean Beyond the Sound” exhibit to dispel myths about sharks, including the featured 7- to 9-foot sand tiger and lemon sharks. Santa will swim up to the exhibit window so bring your camera for a unique “photo with Santa.” (“Shark-Diving Santa” is offered most Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays in December.)

Also special in December is the Aquarium’s “Flurry Zone,” a brief fun indoor snow squall that happens on the hour from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.

Plus, the citizenry can take pride in their hometown IMAX movie theater, whose six-story screen is the largest in Connecticut. On Dec. 7, choose between “Superpower Dogs” at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.; “Dolphins” at noon & 3 p.m.; and “Journey to the South Pacific” at 1 & 4 p.m.

(The holiday IMAX movie “The Polar Express” plays at 5 p.m. and, as a feature-length film, is specially priced and not included as part of “Salute Norwalk Day.”)

“Salute Norwalk Day” is just one of many contributions The Maritime Aquarium makes to Norwalk and its citizens. The Aquarium offers dozens of educational programs and other marine-science opportunities that supplement the education of Norwalk's students, sometimes at no cost to the schools. And the Aquarium and its 500,000 visitors inject more than $20 million annually into Norwalk's economy.

For more information about Maritime Aquarium offerings in December, to reserve tickets or to purchase an Aquarium membership as a holiday gift, go online to

]]> (Dave Sigworth) Events Wed, 04 Dec 2019 12:17:00 -0500
Norwalk Post Office Extends Saturday Hours to Meet Demand of Busy Holiday Season

The Post Office understands the holidays are a busy time, that’s why Post Offices around Connecticut Valley are extending the hours customers have to prepare for them.

This holiday season, the Postal Service is giving customers a gift money can’t buy – more time to prepare.

Throughout Connecticut, the Postal Service is extending hours beyond the usual times exclusively for retail convenience. Depending on the location, customers will get an extra 3-5 extra hours for the holidays.

For the next three Saturdays in a row – Dec. 7, 14 and 21 – these locations will be extending retail lobby hours until 5 p.m.

  • Bishops Corner
  • Bridgeport / Bayview
  • Bristol
  • Danbury
  • Fairfield
  • Glastonbury
  • Greenwich
  • Groton
  • Hamden
  • Manchester
  • Meriden
  • Middletown
  • Milford
  • New Britain
  • Newington
  • Norwalk
  • Norwich
  • Stamford
  • Stratford
  • Wallingford
  • Waterbury
  • West Hartford
  • Westport

“We know this is the busiest time of year for some of our customers,” said District Manager Kevin Clark. “We wanted to relieve some of the stress of the holiday by adding some bonus hours for them.”

Can’t make it to the Post Office for any of these hours? Consumers don’t have to leave their homes to ship their packages. Simply visit to schedule a pickup. The Postal Service anticipates Dec. 16 will be the busiest day online with more than 8.5 million consumers predicted to visit for help shipping that special holiday gift.

]]> (USPS) Life Wed, 04 Dec 2019 11:05:31 -0500
Fairfield County Bank Appoints Arianna Middleton to Vice President, Electronic Banking Manager

Ridgefield, CT – December 4, 2019 – Fairfield County Bank recently appointed Arianna Middleton to Vice President, Electronic Banking Manager. Arianna has held various positions at Fairfield County Banking, including Vice President, Deposit Operations Manager, Vice President, Branch Manager of the Wall Street Office in Norwalk, and Assistant Vice President, Branch Manager of the Fairfield Office.

As the Electronic Banking Manager, Arianna will lead a strong team of digital and payment product specialists as they launch the Bank’s 2020 developments for payments, mobile, and online banking. Arianna will be responsible for various projects related to the Bank’s digital and electronic banking efforts. She will be coordinating with all levels across the organization and its core provider to implement enhancements and upgrades to ensure Clients will receive an enhanced digital banking experience.

“I am very excited for Arianna to step into this role at such a pivotal moment in the digital banking world. With her leadership, the Bank is rolling forward our 2020 Vision, enhancing our digital channels to deliver a best-in-class Client Experience,” said Stephen Wooters, Executive Vice President at Fairfield County Bank.

Arianna currently volunteers her time with Junior Achievement, United Way, and the Ridgefield Playhouse Arts and Education program. Mrs. Middleton previously belonged to the Fairfield Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and served as an Ambassador and as a Fairfield Rotarian. Arianna graduated from Roger Williams University with a Bachelor’s of Science in Public Administration. She is also a graduate of the Connecticut School of Finance and Management program, the American Bankers Association (ABA) Foundational Compliance

School and is currently enrolled in the ABA Stonier Graduate School of Banking at the University of Pennsylvania. Arianna currently resides in Easton with her husband and two children.

Founded in 1871, Fairfield County Bank is a $1.5 billion community bank with locations throughout Fairfield County. Fairfield County Bank delivers a full range of financial services through superior Client relationships and the knowledge that when you put your money in Fairfield County Bank, it stays in Fairfield County - strengthening our communities. Visit to find out more about the Bank.

]]> (Ryan Arconti) Neighbors Wed, 04 Dec 2019 05:23:57 -0500
Blood Donation Opportunities in Norwalk

Those who come to give through Dec. 18 will receive a $5 Gift Card

Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, more than 1 million units of blood could be transfused in the United States. Individuals are urged to give a lifesaving gift this holiday season by making an appointment to donate blood or platelets and help the American Red Cross ensure a sufficient supply is available for patients throughout the holiday season. Those with type O blood are especially needed.


There are four opportunites to blood in Norwalk during the month of December:


12/12/2019: 11:45 a.m. - 5:45 p.m., Walgreens, 55 Westport Avenue


12/19/2019: 11 a.m. - 4 p.m., Avalon - East Norwalk, 8 Norden Place


12/20/2019: 1:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., Norwalk Hospital, 34 Maple Street


12/22/2019: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Temple Shalom, 259 Richards Street

Additional blood donation opportunities in Fairfield County through Dec. 31


12/18/2019: 12 p.m. - 5:30 p.m., Bridgeport Hospital, 267 Grant Street

12/18/2019: 7:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Bridgeport Hospital, 267 Grant Street

12/30/2019: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m., Congregation B'nai Israel, 2710 Park Avenue


12/26/2019: 1:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., Brookfield Library, 182 Whisconier Road

12/31/2019: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Congregational Church of Brookfield, 160 Whisconier Road


12/10/2019: 11 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Danbury Hospital RSM, 24 Hospital Avenue

12/24/2019: 8 a.m. - 1 p.m., Immanuel Lutheran Church, 18 Clapboard Ridge Rd.

12/30/2019: 8 a.m. - 1 p.m., The Crowne Plaza, 18 Old Ridgebury Road


12/14/2019: 8 a.m. - 1:15 p.m., Darien Masonic Lodge, 354 Post Road

12/17/2019: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m., First Congregational Church of Darien, 14 Brookside Road


12/10/2019: 12 p.m. - 5 p.m., Easton Public Library, 691 Morehouse Road


12/4/2019: 11:30 a.m. - 4:45 p.m., Cambridge Health and Rehab, 2428 Easton Turnpike

12/11/2019: 1:30 p.m. - 6:45 p.m., Gaelic American Club, 74 Beach Road

12/12/2019: 1 p.m. - 6:45 p.m., Grace United Methodist Church, 1089 Fairfield Woods Road

12/18/2019: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Congregation Beth El, 1200 Fairfield Woods Road

12/24/2019: 8 a.m. - 1 p.m., St. Timothy's Episcopal Church, 4670 Congress Street

12/28/2019: 8 a.m. - 1:15 p.m., Trinity St. Michael's Church, 554 Tunxis Hill Road


12/11/2019: 11:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Greenwich Town Hall, 101 Field Point Road


12/17/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 1:30 p.m., Masuk High School, 1014 Monroe Turnpike

12/18/2019: 11 a.m. - 4 p.m., Dunkin Donuts / Baskin Robbins, 135 Main Street

12/24/2019: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., YMCA Lakewood Outdoor Center Monroe, 204 Stanley Road

New Canaan

12/26/2019: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., New Canaan Library, 151 Main Street


12/19/2019: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m., Newtown Municipal, 3 Primrose Street


12/5/2019: 1:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., Ridgefield Park & Recreation Center, 195 Danbury Rd.

12/21/2019: 8 a.m. - 1 p.m., Ridgefield Park & Recreation Center, 195 Danbury Rd.


12/6/2019: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m., Shelton Community Center, 41 Church Street

12/10/2019: 8 a.m. - 1:45 p.m., R.D. Scinto Towers, 2 Corporate Drive

12/24/2019: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Hewitt Health & Rehab Center, 45 Maltby Street


12/14/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 1:15 p.m., Tully Health Center, 32 Strawberry Hill Court

12/28/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 1:15 p.m., Tully Health Center, 32 Strawberry Hill Court

12/31/2019: 7:45 a.m. - 1:15 p.m., Tully Health Center, 32 Strawberry Hill Court


12/11/2019: 10 a.m. - 3 p.m., Ryders Partners, LLC, 88 Ryders Lane, Suite 208

12/13/2019: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m., Atria Senior Living, 6911 Main Street

12/27/2019: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Homewood Suites, 6905 Main Street


12/10/2019: 1 p.m. - 6 p.m., St. Joseph's Center, 6448 Main Street

12/13/2019: 1:15 p.m. - 6:15 p.m., Maefair Health Care Center, 21 Maefair Ct

12/14/2019: 8 a.m. - 1 p.m., Nichols United Methodist Church, 35 Shelton Road

12/14/2019: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., St. Theresa Parish, 5301 Main Street


12/12/2019: 10 a.m. - 3 p.m., Westport Library, Arnold Bernhard Plaza, 20 Jesup Road


12/12/2019: 11 a.m. - 4 p.m., The Greens at Cannondale, 435 Danbury Road

12/23/2019: 1 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., Wilton Library, 137 Old Ridgefield Rd.

How to donate blood

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at or use the Blood Donor App.




]]> (Kelly Isenor) Charities Wed, 04 Dec 2019 03:25:40 -0500
Black Bridge Motors Scholarships Bolstered By Launch of B3 Craft Ale

Harbor Bridge Academy is a STEAM-based educational initiative located in South Norwalk providing students with hands-on, real world skills and training in automotive and related technical areas of study. The Academy encourages teenagers with a will and aptitude to seek an alternative career path and readies them for entry into an industry in need of young science and technology-trained talent. The public is invited to take part in the scholarship fund by simply buying a pint of Black Bridge Brew (B3), a newly launched craft ale created in partnership with Thimble Island Brewing Company of Branford, on tap at participating restaurants in Connecticut from Greenwich to New Haven.

Adults can easily support Harbor Bridge Academy students by ordering a B3 craft ale at Saltwater restaurant and Our House in South Norwalk, Jack’s Steakhouse in New Haven, or Blackstones Steakhouse locations in Greenwich, Stamford, Norwalk, and Southport. Connecticut State Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff showed his support for the Academy when he attended the launch of B3 at Saltwater on Thursday, November 14. Proceeds from the sale of B3 go directly to the Harbor Bridge Academy scholarship fund to sponsor each class of Norwalk public high school students.

Scott Gilbert, owner of Black Bridge Motors in South Norwalk, developed Harbor Bridge Academy - now in its third year - to give students the academic and scientific background, hands-on training, and other skills needed to begin careers in an automotive industry predicted to grow by 50,000 jobs by 2026. With school budgets stretched to the limit, Harbor Bridge Academy provides a business focused, classroom environment for students who have shown an aptitude outside of traditional, college-based educational pathways and careers.

About Harbor Bridge Academy

Harbor Bridge Academy ( was founded in 2016 to offer STEAM-based vocational educational programs to an underserved audience. Harbor Bridge Academy offers an accessible entry point to an industry in need of new talent for students showing aptitude and a strong interest in automotive and related technical careers. It is located at Black Bridge Motors in South Norwalk and offers scholarship programs to deserving students.

]]> (Leslie Singer) Charities Tue, 03 Dec 2019 15:48:00 -0500
JAGGED LITTLE PILL’s Derek Klena to Join Bryan Perri for ACT's Broadway Unplugged on Dec. 16

JAGGED LITTLE PILL’s Derek Klena to Join Bryan Perri in ACT of CT’s Next “Broadway Unplugged Series” on December 16

 ACT (A Contemporary Theater) of Connecticut is excited to announce that Derek Klena, star of Alanis Morissette’s highly anticipated new musical, JAGGED LITTLE PILL, will join ACT's Resident Music Supervisor, Bryan Perri, on December 16, 2019 for the Broadway Unplugged Series 

Tickets for the December 16, 2019 show may be purchased HERE.

Prior to joining the cast of JAGGED LITTLE PILL, Klena originated the role of Dmitry in the recent Broadway adaptation of ANASTASIA. Other Broadway credits include: THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY (OBC), WICKED (Fiyero, 10th Anniversary Company.) Off-Broadway and Regional credits include: DOGFIGHT (Second Stage), CARRIE (MCC), DINER (Signature Theatre, DTC), UNKNOWN SOLDIER (WTF), HAIRSPRAY (Hollywood Bowl). Derek is also known for his appearances on television in “The Code” (CBS), “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” (Netflix), “Quantico” (ABC), “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver” (HBO), “Blue Bloods” (CBS), “Law and Order: SVU” (NBC), and “Carrie Diaries” (CW).

The Broadway Unplugged Series is the brainchild of the accomplished Perri, who is currently working as Music Director on the Broadway musical JAGGED LITTLE PILL alongside Alanis Morissette, Tom Kitt, and Diane Paulus. Perri recently finished a five-year run as Music Director and Conductor of the Broadway production of WICKED, and as Music Director for SUPERHERO, having its world premiere Off-Broadway at Second Stage Theater. Each show in the Broadway Unplugged Series presents an intimate evening where Perri sits down at the piano with renowned Broadway performers for an exceptional evening of never before heard stories, great conversation, and incredible vocals.

ACT’s Artistic Director Daniel C. Levine says, “We are so excited to welcome Derek to our theater. With the opening of JAGGED LITTLE PILL this year, this is going to be a huge year for him! We are thrilled (and lucky) that he is taking the time to be with us in Ridgefield. Bryan always puts on a riveting performance and I can’t wait to see what he and Derek have in store for our audiences!"

Tickets for the December 16, 2019 show may be purchased HERE.

For more information about ACT of CT, ticket and annual subscription sales, education programs, sponsor/donor opportunities, and other theater-related news and announcements, visit

]]> (Amanda Duff) Events Tue, 03 Dec 2019 07:26:00 -0500
Eversource Connecticut Prepared for Heavy Snow, Sleet ad Gusty Wind

Eversource is Fully Staffed and Ready to Respond 

Readiness Condition: Monitoring
  • Eversource is preparing for heavy, wet snow mixed with rain and sleet with potential wind gusts of 30 - 35 mph this evening, Sunday, December 1, through Monday and into Tuesday.
  • Highest snow/ice amounts will occur across the Northwest Hills, Central and Northeast Hills.
  • Any wintry mix will change over to snow by Monday afternoon, with snow continuing through the night and into Tuesday.
  • Eversource has crews ready to respond to any outages the snow, sleet, ice and wind may cause. 
  • Eversource has staffing plans to ensure crews are ready to respond to any outages.
  • Connecticut Electric Operations is currently at an Event Level 5 (Emergency Response Plan), the least severe of the five emergency conditions.
  • Gas Operations does not anticipate any impacts but is monitoring the system, and crews are prepared to assist with electric restoration if requested.
  • Community Relations is reaching out to our community partners and is ready to assist with emergency planning, as needed.
  • The Connecticut Incident Command Center will open at 8 a.m. on Monday, December 2.
  • Employees are encouraged to check in with their emergency preparedness coordinator and prepare to fill their storm roles.
  • We will launch other internal and external communications as appropriate.
  • This Preparedness Briefing will be sent to communities, including state regulators and the Connecticut Division of Emergency Management and Homeland Security.
  • Storm preparedness messaging will be on Twitter (@EversourceCT) and Facebook 
  • Customers are encouraged to download the Eversource mobile app to report outages or check for updates. You can also sign up to receive storm outage updates on the channel of your choice (text, email, phone call) at


  • If the power goes out, we want customers to stay safe and comfortable. Get ready for the storm by visiting Outages & Storms on, then click on Storm Preparedness.
  • If you see a downed wire, call Eversource at 800-286-2000 or 911 to report it. Stay as far away as possible until Eversource arrives to make the area safe.
  • Before you use a generator, make sure it is connected by a qualified electrician. Always operate it outdoors, as far from the house as possible. Keep it away from doors, windows and air vents to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
  • Gas customers are reminded to keep natural gas meters, all gas appliances and outdoor vents clear of snow and ice buildup to maintain safe operation and access.
  • If you smell a gas odor in your home or business, leave immediately. From a safe place, call Eversource to report the leak at our 24/7 emergency number, 877-944-5325, or call 911. Please remain outside until Eversource can check the source of the odor.
Outbound Call to Medical Customers (sent out at 11:40 a.m. today)

Hello, this is an important message from Eversource. Severe weather is expected in your area and may cause power outages. Please prepare a backup power source or move to an alternate location if necessary. Information on emergency disaster services—including shelters—is available at or by calling 211. Download the Eversource mobile app in the App Store or Google Play to easily report or check an outage and view the outage map. Our crews are prepared to restore power as quickly as safety allows. Thank you and stay safe. Goodbye.

]]> (Eversource CT) Public safety Sun, 01 Dec 2019 08:41:11 -0500