Woodbury's HamletHub https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury Sun, 24 Sep 2023 22:24:07 -0400 HamletHub.com Flanders Art Exhibit and Meet & Greet Reception on Friday https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1802-flanders-art-exhibit-and-meet-greet-reception-on-friday1802-flanders-art-exhibit-and-meet-greet-reception-on-friday https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1802-flanders-art-exhibit-and-meet-greet-reception-on-friday1802-flanders-art-exhibit-and-meet-greet-reception-on-friday

Flanders is excited to announce the upcoming Art Exhibit! The Flanders Art Committee will host an opening night “Meet & Greet” reception on Friday, October 14 from at 6:30 to 8:30 PM.

Starting on Saturday, October 15, the exhibit will be open to the public daily from 11 AM to 4 PM closing on Sunday, October 23. The exhibit is taking place inside the historic Van Vleck Farm House on the Van Vleck Sanctuary located at 5 Church Hill Road in Woodbury. There are over 30 artists whose work will be on display. Some of the art work will be available for sale. The opening night reception and subsequent daily exhibit is open for all to attend! We hope the whole community comes out to enjoy this event!

For more information please contact the Flanders administrative office at 203-263-3711 or by email at flanders@flandersnaturecenter.org.


kerry@ducey.org (submitted) Events Wed, 12 Oct 2022 12:46:11 -0400
Watershed Treasure Hunt Team Challenge Returns https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1801-watershed-treasure-hunt-team-challenge-returns1801-watershed-treasure-hunt-team-challenge-returns https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1801-watershed-treasure-hunt-team-challenge-returns1801-watershed-treasure-hunt-team-challenge-returns

Woodbury Earth Day Festival, presented by Pomperaug River Watershed Coalition (PRWC), is excited to announce the return of the popular Watershed Treasure Hunt - a twist on the classic scavenger hunt game. 

In the Watershed Treasure Hunt, participants will receive clues leading them to natural and historic “treasures” of the Pomperaug Watershed and include stops in Southbury, Woodbury, Roxbury, Washington, Watertown, and Bethlehem, CT. Teams will earn points for each clue completed and prizes will be awarded to the three highest scoring teams. Tie breakers will be determined by which team submits their completed clues the earliest. 

“This is a great way to team up with friends and family to enjoy the beauty of spring in northwestern Connecticut. If you like, there are also fantastic restaurants, ice-cream shops, breweries, wineries and more along the way. By solving the clues, you and your team will track down lots of ‘Insta-worthy’ natural wonders and historic locations. Bonus points are available for sharing photos and social media posts, so click away. Just hop in a car with your team and challenge your friends to the Pomperaug Watershed Treasure Hunt.” said Hailey McKeever, PRWC Outreach Coordinator.

Visit www.woodburyearthday.org/treasure for full details, a list of prizes, and to pre-register. Participants can register themselves or a team for $25. All proceeds benefit the Pomperaug River Watershed Coalition's work to protect and restore local water resources. Clues will be released to teams beginning at noon on Earth Day - April 22. Those that complete the clues and submit their answers by midnight on May 15 will have the opportunity to win prizes. The more points collected from answering the treasure hunt clues, the more likely a team is to win one of the top three prize packages. All teams that register and submit their completed form by May 15 will be entered for a chance to win a PRWC Swag Package.  

In addition to the Watershed Treasure Hunt, earth month festivities will feature a mix of environmental workshops, hikes, stewardship volunteer opportunities and virtual and in-person programs throughout April culminating in the return of the Woodbury Earth Day Festival on April 30 in Hollow Park, Woodbury. 

For more information, to enter the Watershed Treasure Hunt, and for a schedule of Earth Month offerings and activities, visit www.woodburyearthday.org

kerry@ducey.org (PRWC) Events Tue, 12 Apr 2022 15:05:54 -0400
Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust Launches 60th Anniversary Capital Campaign https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/places/1799-flanders-nature-center-land-trust-launches-60th-anniversary-capital-campaign1799-flanders-nature-center-land-trust-launches-60th-anniversary-capital-campaign https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/places/1799-flanders-nature-center-land-trust-launches-60th-anniversary-capital-campaign1799-flanders-nature-center-land-trust-launches-60th-anniversary-capital-campaign

Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust, a leader in environmental education in the region, is pleased to announce the launch of a 60th Anniversary Capital Campaign to provide enhancements to its Environmental Educational facilities at the Van Vleck Sanctuary in Woodbury.

The campaign, which seeks to raise $600,000, has kicked off with great success, including a generous gift of $20,000 from the Ellen Knowles Harcourt Foundation.

“This exciting campaign seeks to enhance Flanders’ ability to educate and serve the thousands of children, adults and families who attend immersive, educational programming here at the campus,” says Flanders Nature Center Board President Jodi Wasserstein. “When complete, this project will add a state-of-the-art lab to the existing historic Trail House, enabling Flanders to educate more children at summer camps and NGSS Academies. It will also provide space to graduate-level researchers conducting vital environmental research on the campus’ 200-plus acres.”

The addition of facilities to the iconic Sugar House guarantees year-round use of the building for maple sugaring operations and youth and family programming. Two pavilions with solar panels on their roofs will also serve as space for youth education while providing sustainable energy for the organization.

“This Capital Campaign will not only increase Flanders’ ability to accommodate more campers, but it will also solidify the nonprofit as a leading location for conducting environmental research,” adds Flanders Executive Director Vincent D. LaFontan. “It will help Flanders carry out its mission to appreciate nature’s wonders, preserve land, inspire lifelong learning about our natural world and strengthen our communities’ environmental courage to do what we can during a time when our climate is changing.”

Stay tuned to Flanders’ social media pages and website for updates on the campaign progress.

For more information on how to donate to Flanders’ 60th Anniversary Capital Campaign, contact Director of Development Jennifer Callery-Stokes at 203-263-2711 ext. 15 or jennifer@flandersnaturecenter.org.



kerry@ducey.org ( Jennifer Callery-Stokes) Places Tue, 25 Jan 2022 04:51:04 -0500
Camp Scholarships Allow Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust To Welcome Record Number of Kids and Families https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/places/1797-camp-scholarships-allow-flanders-nature-center-land-trust-to-welcome-record-number-of-kids-and-families1797-camp-scholarships-allow-flanders-nature-center-land-trust-to-welcome-record-number-of-kids-and-families https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/places/1797-camp-scholarships-allow-flanders-nature-center-land-trust-to-welcome-record-number-of-kids-and-families1797-camp-scholarships-allow-flanders-nature-center-land-trust-to-welcome-record-number-of-kids-and-families

Local non-profit organization Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust celebrates its largest Summer Camp and Academy Season. During the 13-weeks of programming, young learners were able to engage with nature, the arts and science in unique and meaningful ways.

Due to the generosity of individual donors, the Jewish Federation of Western Connecticut and the SMPS Family Fund, Flanders was able to serve a greater population of families, providing safe, educational and fun summer programming to children in need from Woodbury, Waterbury and surrounding communities. These camperships provided families with much-needed childcare during the summer months and ensured that all those who wished to participate were able to do so.

Participants were deeply appreciative of the experience, here’s what one family had to say about the impact of their child’s campership:

“Thank you so much to the Flanders counselors. My babies love Flanders summer camp, it is their fun place away from home where daily they make new friends and have fun”

Flanders wishes to thank Jewish Federation of Western Connecticut and SMPS Family Fund, and all of the individual donors who helped to make this summer special for families in need. For more information on how you can grant the gift of a meaningful summer to a child contact Flanders’ Director of Development, Jennifer Callery- Stokes via phone at 203-263-3711 or by email Jennifer@flandersnaturecenter.org


kerry@ducey.org ( Jennifer Callery) Places Tue, 05 Oct 2021 05:53:43 -0400
Fun Filled Flanders Festival Being Held on May 22nd! https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1796-fun-filled-flanders-festival-being-held-on-may-22nd-16210197111796-fun-filled-flanders-festival-being-held-on-may-22nd-1621019711 https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1796-fun-filled-flanders-festival-being-held-on-may-22nd-16210197111796-fun-filled-flanders-festival-being-held-on-may-22nd-1621019711

Fun Filled Flanders Festival Being Held on May 22nd!

Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust is excited to announce that we will be holding our second Flanders Festival - A Celebration of Art, Farming and Nature! It is scheduled for Saturday, May 22, from 11 AM to 4 PM (rain date May 23rd) on the beautiful grounds of our main campus, the Van Vleck Farm & Nature Sanctuary located at 5 Church Hill Road in Woodbury.

The North Barn will be open and visitors will be able to interact with the bunnies, chicks, piglets, miniature ponies, goats and sheep who make their home there including all the newest spring arrivals. Local author and Flanders’ Environmental Education Coordinator and Farm Manager, Dianne Parmelee, will present a book reading of her new book: Booker Smile, Booker Style at 1PM in the barnyard!

Visitors can hop on a tractor for a wagon ride, go on a nature walk, touch a collection of vintage tractors, participate in fun children's activities, and buy unique items from local artisans.

Come enjoy a picnic lunch with great food being served by local food truck Weenie Lynn’s and Italian Ice from Avid Concessions.

There will be family and environmentally friendly entertainment provided by Cyril the Sorcerer as he will be performing magic show at 3 PM. As well carving demonstrations throughout the day by members of the CT Wood Carving Association and wool spinning by Rachel Gerowe of Redbarn Originals.

Flanders invites the whole community to come out and spend a fun filled family day exploring our farm and nature sanctuary on Saturday, May 22 from 11 AM to 4 PM during our Flanders Festival: A Celebration of Art, Farming & Nature!

The cost for this full day of entertainment and fun is $7 per person, but complimentary for children aged two and under. All proceeds from the day go toward Flanders’ environmental education programming. For more information visit Flanders website at www.flandersnaturecenter.org or call (203) 263-3711.

kerry@ducey.org (Ana Jordan) Events Fri, 14 May 2021 11:15:11 -0400
Fun Filled Flanders Festival Being Held on May 22nd! https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1795-fun-filled-flanders-festival-being-held-on-may-22nd1795-fun-filled-flanders-festival-being-held-on-may-22nd https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1795-fun-filled-flanders-festival-being-held-on-may-22nd1795-fun-filled-flanders-festival-being-held-on-may-22nd

Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust is excited to announce that we will be holding our second Flanders Festival - A Celebration of Art, Farming and Nature! It is scheduled for Saturday, May 22, from 11 AM to 4 PM (rain date May 23rd) on the beautiful grounds of our main campus, the Van Vleck Farm & Nature Sanctuary located at 5 Church Hill Road in Woodbury.

The North Barn will be open and visitors will be able to interact with the bunnies, chicks, piglets, miniature ponies, goats and sheep who make their home there including all the newest spring arrivals. Local author and Flanders’ Environmental Education Coordinator and Farm Manager, Dianne Parmelee, will present a book reading of her new book: Booker Smile, Booker Style at 1PM in the barnyard!

Visitors can hop on a tractor for a wagon ride, go on a nature walk, touch a collection of vintage tractors, participate in fun children's activities, and buy unique items from local artisans.

Come enjoy a picnic lunch with great food being served by local food truck Weenie Lynn’s and Italian Ice from Avid Concessions.

There will be family and environmentally friendly entertainment provided by Cyril the Sorcerer as he will be performing magic show at 3 PM.  As well carving demonstrations throughout the day by members of the CT Wood Carving Association and wool spinning by Rachel Gerowe of Redbarn Originals.

Flanders invites the whole community to come out and spend a fun filled family day exploring our farm and nature sanctuary on Saturday, May 22 from 11 AM to 4 PM during our Flanders Festival: A Celebration of Art, Farming & Nature! 

The cost for this full day of entertainment and fun is $7 per person, but complimentary for children aged two and under.  All proceeds from the day go toward Flanders’ environmental education programming. For more information visit Flanders website at www.flandersnaturecenter.org or call (203) 263-3711

kerry@ducey.org (Ana Jordan) Events Fri, 14 May 2021 11:10:36 -0400
Flanders Field & Forest 5K on June 4 at Flanders Van Vleck Farm & Nature Sanctuary in Woodbury https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1793-flanders-field-forest-5k1793-flanders-field-forest-5k https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1793-flanders-field-forest-5k1793-flanders-field-forest-5k

Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust is excited to announce the return of their popular Field & Forest 5K Trail Run!

 The race is planned for Friday, June 4th at the Flanders Van Vleck Farm & Nature Sanctuary in Woodbury at 6PM. All ages and skill levels of runners, joggers and walkers are welcome to register to enjoy this 3.1 mile run/walk through the trails and rolling hills of the picturesque nature center. After the race, participants will enjoy live music by the popular local rock band, Scratch, as well as be able to purchase food from local food trucks and local craft beer from Woodbury Brewing Company. Additionally, Flanders is offering a virtual option to allow participants who cannot attend to still participate from anywhere in the world!

The registration fee is $25 for all ages (plus processing fees). Those signing up by May 1st will receive a performance race shirt!  Registration will close on June 3rd and we will not have same day race registration. Awards will be given to top male and female finishers overall as well as in 8 age categories ranging from age under 10 to over 60.

“We are looking forward to an outdoor in-person event that historically has been a fun evening out for the whole family,” commented Heidi Ball who is co-chairing the race with Heather Dever.

“We encourage people to register as soon as possible and bring friends and family for this great evening of fitness, food and fun!” added Heather.

For full information and to register online go to https://flandersnaturecenter.org/5k/

The race will begin promptly at 6PM and will be held rain or shine; however, Flanders reserves the right to cancel in the case of lightening. We are sorry but the event cannot accommodate strollers or pets on the course.

Race organizers thank their major event sponsors. We also thank the band members of Scratch, all of whom donate their time and talents to giving the event a fun and celebratory vibe.

kerry@ducey.org (Kerry Anne Ducey) Events Wed, 21 Apr 2021 13:13:43 -0400
Register for Tribury Rotary's Chili Cook Off by April 29 https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1794-register-for-tribury-rotary-s-chili-cook-off-by-april-291794-register-for-tribury-rotary-s-chili-cook-off-by-april-29 https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1794-register-for-tribury-rotary-s-chili-cook-off-by-april-291794-register-for-tribury-rotary-s-chili-cook-off-by-april-29

A Chili Cook Off where YOU are the JUDGE!

A socially distanced chili cook-off fundraiser. Five area restaurants (Mercato, Leo's and Nardelli's in Southbury and 1754 House and New Morning Market in Woodbury) compete for "Best Chili" and YOU are the judge!
The deadline to purchase the tickets is April 29th. Purchase tickets HERE.

This is the Tribury Rotary’s, “we put the FUN in FUNdraising” event.  The Tribury Rotary remains diligent in its efforts to bring about positive change within the communities of Woodbury, Southbury, Middlebury and beyond.  As you may know, 100% of all fundraising is used to further our Seven Areas of Focus:  Supporting the Environment; Basic Education; Maternal & Child Health; Peace and Conflict Resolution; Water, Sanitation, & Hygiene; Economic & Community Development, and Disease Prevention & Treatment. 

The Tribury Rotary does much to help others; most recently, we have supplied beds to our local area veterans; provided scholarship to local area graduating high school students; donated personal hygiene items to abused women and children; supported animal shelters with food and funding; assisted seniors whose homes have fallen into disrepair; offered support to grieving children through relevant kits and online resources to aide them with managing their grief and so much more.  We want to do more, and we need your help. 

Please purchase a ticket for $50 for the Chili Cook Off, pick up your delicious dinner for two with cornbread and Fritos on Friday, April 30th between 4:00 and 6:00 pm at the Woodbury Brewery in Woodbury.  Consider buying some craft beer when you pick up your dinners and after you go home to taste test, then be SURE to vote for your favorite.  YOU are the judge for this event.

Learn more and purchase tickets here.
kerry@ducey.org ( Rotary Club of Woodbury-Southbury-Middlebury) Events Wed, 21 Apr 2021 13:12:05 -0400
Flanders Haunted Hikes – Science Experiments Gone Terribly Wrong! https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1790-flanders-haunted-hikes-science-experiments-gone-terribly-wrong1790-flanders-haunted-hikes-science-experiments-gone-terribly-wrong https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/events/1790-flanders-haunted-hikes-science-experiments-gone-terribly-wrong1790-flanders-haunted-hikes-science-experiments-gone-terribly-wrong

Join us at Flanders for our 2nd Annual Haunted Hikes!

Hermit Guides will take you across our fields and forests to find out what the big mystery is happening at Flanders!

Hikes will take place on Friday and Saturday nights October 23, 24, 30 and 31. Friday night hikes start at 5 PM, while Saturday hikes begin at 4PM. The early guided hikes on all nights will be kid friendly for spooky family fun with costumed characters.

From 6:30 - 8 PM the “fright factor” is ramped up! These hikes will kick off each half hour, will be truly spine chilling and are geared for adults and youth ages 12 and older.

Hikes will last about 40 minutes. Please leave your flashlights at home and come prepared for a night of adventure dressed for the weather!

Cost is$7 per person. There will be seasonal refreshments available for purchase.

To assure your spot in a search party, purchase your tickets today online at flandersnaturecenter.org or call Flanders at (203) 263-3711, extension 12.

About Flanders

Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust is a nonprofit organization that focuses on environmental education, and on the acquisition, conservation, and stewardship of open space. Through its land trust initiatives, Flanders actively works to protect important natural sites and the area’s landscape character and quality of life. Flanders manages over 2,300 acres of preserved land in Woodbury and neighboring towns. Educational programs for children and adults are offered at the Van Vleck Farm and Nature Sanctuary, Flanders’ main campus in Woodbury. Trails at its seven major nature preserves are open to the public at no charge from dawn to dusk. For more information, call 203-263-3711 or visit flandersnaturecenter.org

kerry@ducey.org (Ana Jordan) Events Fri, 16 Oct 2020 08:56:07 -0400
Connecticut DEEP Announces the Opening of State Parks and Beaches https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/places/1789-connecticut-deep-announces-the-opening-of-state-parks-and-beaches-15900000681789-connecticut-deep-announces-the-opening-of-state-parks-and-beaches-1590000068 https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/places/1789-connecticut-deep-announces-the-opening-of-state-parks-and-beaches-15900000681789-connecticut-deep-announces-the-opening-of-state-parks-and-beaches-1590000068

State Parks Remain Open with Restrictions; Shoreline Swimming Areas Open; Inland Swimming Areas Closed, Capacity Limits and Social Distancing Guidelines Remain in Place

They also encourage visitors to select locations closest to your home. State parks and beaches near Woodbury include:

Park City Location
Black Rock State Park Watertown Watertown
George Waldo State Park Southbury Southbury
Kettletown State Park Southbury Southbury
Larkin State Park Trail Southbury Southbury/Naugatuck/Oxford/Middlebury
Mount Bushnell State Park Washington Washington
Southford Falls State Park Southbury Southbury

While some of the information is guidance that DEEP has shared previously, the plan contains a good amount of new information, such as DEEP’s current plan for the swimming areas it oversees, and provides a “one stop shop” for the latest information on outdoor recreation offerings administered by DEEP.

As the state begins a phased re-opening of its economy, the vast majority of state parks remain open, as they’ve been throughout the pandemic. The restrictions that they’ve operated under, such as daily capacity limits, social distancing guidelines for visitors, and use of face coverings, also remain in place.

The operational plan can be found here.

Swimming and Beaches:

Last week, Gov. Ned Lamont, along with the governors of New York, New Jersey, and Delaware, announced that they would open beaches in their respective states effective Friday, May 22. Gov. Lamont also announced that in Connecticut, state parks that feature beaches along the Connecticut shoreline will be open May 22, though with capacity limitations, and visitors are advised to follow social distancing guidelines.

At this time, DEEP is permitting swimming only at shoreline State Parks (not inland State Park swim areas). Guidance from the state Department of Public Health indicates that recreational swimming is not a known form of transmission of COVID-19, in saltwater or freshwater. At this time, DEEP is making decisions about permitting swimming at State Parks based on considerations of potential crowding and the ability to maintain social distancing onshore, at beach locations.

It is DEEP’s assessment at this time that shoreline parks that feature beaches, operating under limited capacity, can safely accommodate visitors on beaches, provided they follow recommended social distancing guidelines. Visitors to shoreline parks must maintain 15’ of space from other beachgoers (blanket-to-blanket).  This distance will allow for a 6’ radius around each person or family and a 3’ walkway in between groups.

Based on the very limited size of our beach and swim areas at inland state parks, and current social distancing guidance, DEEP will close beaches at inland State Parks, and prohibit swimming at inland State Parks. Again, this operational decision is based on the potential for on-shore crowding, not a concern of risk of transmission in freshwater.  Park staff will monitor beach closure and educate the public to ensure compliance with the closures. DEEP will continue to review this policy in alignment with public health recommendations and will consider the reopening of designated swim areas on a case-by-case basis. 

If you choose to visit a shoreline state park that features a beach, visitors are encouraged to select locations closest to home, and consider visiting early in the morning before crowds gather. At least 6 feet of social distancing must be maintained between persons, and groups over five remain prohibited. Visitors should recreate with members of their immediate household and not meet up with others. Visitors should bring face coverings and use them whenever they are in proximity to others. Face coverings should not be worn in the water. Visitors should not expect that restroom buildings will be open, but most locations will have portable toilets available.  

DEEP will reduce parking capacity and close beaches for the day if social distancing cannot be maintained, and will make adjustments to operations and consider longer-term closures if the situation warrants. Updates on closures are posted on the state parks Twitter feed,@CTStateParks.

Lifeguards will not be on shoreline beaches in Connecticut state parks early in the season.  These beaches are currently posted as "No Lifeguards on Duty."  It is expected that shoreline beaches will begin lifeguarding when adequate staffing, training, and safety practices meeting DEEP standards are in place. Lifeguards will be provided training to reduce the risk of virus transmission in the course of their duties, including providing CPR. Guidance for lifeguards is available from the American Red Cross. Lifeguards will not be posted at inland beaches while swimming is prohibited at those beaches.

Staff in DEEP’s Water Monitoring and Assessment Program will be monitoring water quality at the shoreline parks open for swimming. The water quality at the beaches will be tested for the presence of infectious diseases using standard bacteria indicator species. Residents will be able to find swimming area closure information at DEEP’s state parks Twitter feed, @CTStateParks, and will soon also be able to find that information on the DEEP website athttps://portal.ct.gov/DEEP/State-Parks/Recreation-Information/State-Swimming-Area-Water-Quality-Report, or on DEEP’s toll free Water Quality Information Phone Line at 1-866-287-2757.

Connecticut municipalities continue to make decisions regarding the beaches and swimming areas they oversee. DEEP has been in consultation with municipalities during the pandemic, and will continue to be. DEEP’soperational planis available for municipalities to adapt to their needs if they wish to do so.

Limited swimming capacity at state parks, combined with restrictions made by municipalities around the swimming areas they oversee, mean that residents will have to plan beach and swimming excursions well in advance, and be ready with a back-up plan if their first choice is closed.

State Campgrounds, Cabins, and Youth Sites:

As was recently announced, state Campgrounds, Cabins, Youth sites, Backcountry and River Camping sites are closed until at least June 11.  Additional campground reservations for the 2020 season have been postponed for the time being to prevent the need to reimburse the public for future reservations if campgrounds remain closed.

Other options to open campgrounds are being considered that minimize staff and public risk.  The decision will be based on current public health guidance, cleaning protocols and the availability of adequate staff and appropriate personal protective equipment.  

As we move forward into the summer season, DEEP will continue to monitor and assess public use and recreational activities that occur at state parks and other DEEP managed outdoor recreation areas. Evaluation of that information may result in changes to the operational plan. While law enforcement personnel are authorized to enforce social distancing and group size guidance, DEEP seeks to educate first and ask people to follow the rules, in hopes that visitors will take personal responsibility and make sure that they comply. 

To view the operational plan, go here:https://portal.ct.gov/deep-parkscovid19.

cronmpuser@hamlethub.com (CT DEEP) Places Wed, 20 May 2020 09:14:03 -0400
Letter: CT Guidelines Miss the Mark, Do Not Allow for the Safe Reopening of Offices https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/politics/1788-letter-ct-guidelines-miss-the-mark-do-not-allow-for-the-safe-reopening-of-offices-15893886651788-letter-ct-guidelines-miss-the-mark-do-not-allow-for-the-safe-reopening-of-offices-1589388665 https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/politics/1788-letter-ct-guidelines-miss-the-mark-do-not-allow-for-the-safe-reopening-of-offices-15893886651788-letter-ct-guidelines-miss-the-mark-do-not-allow-for-the-safe-reopening-of-offices-1589388665

Letter to the Editor

Guidelines Released by the Reopen Connecticut Taskforce Miss the Mark, Do Not Allow for the Safe Reopening of Offices

On May 9, 2020, a council of Connecticut business leaders, in concert with the Lamont Administration, released rules and guidance for the “safe” reopening of workplaces across the state. The processes, principles, and protocols issued by this taskforce reflect a failure to address some of the most basic needs that the state’s business community (including both employers and employees) desperately requires.

The guidelines state that “employees are encouraged to continue to work from home where possible.” While I am sure this statement was intended to highlight how even the most detailed and complete safety measures would still result in a substantial amount of risk present in any and all office environments, there is no excuse for the incompleteness of the issued guidelines.

Allow me to highlight some examples of where the program outline failed.

Reopen Connecticut failed to issue regulations or standards to be followed by building managers and landlords, which should have focused on the safe setup of common bathrooms, elevators, building access points, and even stairwells.

While the regulations issued state that all office spaces are required to be thoroughly cleaned prior to reopening (and on an ongoing basis), there are no clear guidelines as to ownership of this responsibility. What falls to the employer/tenant, and what will be the responsibility of building management? Given the fact that office spaces are most often cleaned by service providers secured directly by the landlord, standards for their cleaning needed to be defined, and were not.

Employers are responsible for providing office workers with Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), and Reopen Connecticut guidelines have made it clear that if PPE is not provided to employees, offices cannot open. However, the State has not provided a way for businesses to acquire the needed PPE, which will significantly hinder most from reopening their doors given how difficult it continues to be to acquire masks, gloves and, most importantly, sanitizing products.

Once offices reopen, there is also the inevitability that an employee or a member of their household will test positive for COVID-19. None of the guidance issued outlines steps a business must follow when this occurs. The cascade of challenges and issues that will shadow such an incident were very much overlooked by our leaders in Hartford, and protocols for meeting “re-certification” standards to reopen after such a diagnosis was also notably absent.

Even more troubling, there are also no specific requirements that mandate building management to notify tenants when an individual who has been in the building tests positive for COVID-19.

Businesses bringing employees back to the office will be required to post clear signage reinforcing all safety related protocols and policies, yet the State did not provide samples of these postings or indicate where they can be downloaded. It can be anticipated that the content of these notices may be incomplete and thus ineffective without the proper guidance from the taskforce.

It is understandable that Connecticut employers want to reopen their offices and welcome employees back as quickly as possible. However, in order to do so safely, they must be provided with a much more complete, robust, and clearly outlined set of standards and guidelines.

Those employed in the State of Connecticut are also eager to return to their workplace, but demand that they have confidence the office they return to is safe and that the State and their employer have done everything possible to ensure their health and wellbeing.

Reopen Connecticut fails miserably to address the needs of both Connecticut employers and workers. As a thirty-year resident of the state and business owner since 2001, I am incredibly disappointed in the taskforce’s efforts and output on this front. We all deserve better.

- David Lewis, Norwalk, Connecticut

David Lewis is CEO of OperationsInc (www.OperationsInc.com), the state’s largest HR Consulting Practice. The 90-employee consulting group is based in Norwalk.

cronmpuser@hamlethub.com (David Lewis - Operations Inc) Politics Wed, 13 May 2020 07:12:07 -0400
How Many Electric Vehicles are Registered in Woodbury? https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/life/1787-how-many-electric-vehicles-are-registered-in-woodbury-15888738381787-how-many-electric-vehicles-are-registered-in-woodbury-1588873838 https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/life/1787-how-many-electric-vehicles-are-registered-in-woodbury-15888738381787-how-many-electric-vehicles-are-registered-in-woodbury-1588873838

Roadmap Outlines Strategy for Accelerating Deployment of EVs in Connecticut

Coinciding with the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day which took place a few weeks ago, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection issued its Electric Vehicle Roadmap for Connecticut (EV Roadmap), a comprehensive strategy for achieving widespread deployment of electric vehicles in the state, and a key tool in the state’s effort to improve air quality for residents while also addressing the climate crisis.

According to the DEEP, there have been 5,213 Electric Vehicles registered in Connecticut. Electric Vehicles registered in zip codes near Woodbury include:

Zip EV Registrations
06482 26
06488 26
06798 25
06478 23
06770 21
00000 19
06708 19
06762 18
06795 11
06783 10
06752 9
06751 7
06779 5
06704 3
06723 3
06793 2
06841 2
05515 1
06680 1
06710 1
06724 1
06794 1
10021 1
10128 1
10165 1
30348 1

The top 10 towns in Connecticut for electric vehicle registrations are:

Town # Registrations
Greenwich 328
Westport 227
Stamford 181
New Canaan 140
Darien 111
Fairfield 106
Wilton 93
Ridgefield 79
Guilford 77
Weston 75

The top 5 models for Connecticut Registrations of EV’s are:

Model # Registrations
Tesla              1,218
Chevrolet              1,072
Toyota              1,016
Ford                  733
Nissan                  389

One of the focus areas of the EV Roadmap is scaling up electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) such as charging stations in order to encourage higher EV penetration rates. “Range anxiety,” or fear that an EV will run out of power before a destination is reached, will diminish as consumers become more confident in charging accessibility. 

There are 376 publicly-accessible EV charging stations with a total of 966 charging connectors in the state, including 50 direct current fast charger (DCFC) locations with 212 charging connectors. A significant increase in workplace Level 2 charging connectors, public Level 2 charging connectors, and public DCFC connectors will be critical to supplement residential charging and meet future charging demands.

The EV Roadmap focuses in on several key areas, including the transitioning of public and private fleets and medium and heavy-duty vehicles to EVs; making the consumer charging experience more consistent; minimizing grid impacts through demand reduction measures; providing demand charge relief for charging station owners and EV fleet operators; exploring opportunities for pilot programs with local innovators in the EV field; working with the state and municipal governments to modify building codes and permitting requirements to support EV infrastructure deployment; and leveraging financial incentives, such as the Connecticut Hydrogen and Electric Automobile Purchase Rebate (CHEAPR), to help make EV purchase price less of a barrier to consumers.

In issuing the EV Roadmap, DEEP is mindful of the pervasive impact the COVID-19 pandemic is having on communities both locally and around the world, the full scale and effects of which, though unknown at this time, are and will be significant. DEEP will continue to monitor the COVID crisis and consider its impact on the long-term goals outlined in the EV Roadmap.
Environmental stakeholders from around the state applauded the EV Roadmap’s release.

To view the EV Roadmap, visit: http://www.dpuc.state.ct.us/DEEPEnergy.nsf/c6c6d525f7cdd1168525797d0047c5bf/f7ed4932eec438d0852585520001c81b/$FILE/EV%20Roadmap%20for%20Connecticut.pdf

cronmpuser@hamlethub.com (CT DEEP) Life Thu, 07 May 2020 08:03:07 -0400
Find out where Woodbury High School ranks in U.S. News & World Report https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/places/1786-find-out-where-woodbury-high-school-ranks-in-u-s-news-world-report-15883651191786-find-out-where-woodbury-high-school-ranks-in-u-s-news-world-report-1588365119 https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/places/1786-find-out-where-woodbury-high-school-ranks-in-u-s-news-world-report-15883651191786-find-out-where-woodbury-high-school-ranks-in-u-s-news-world-report-1588365119

U.S. News & World Report reviewed more than 24,000 U.S. public high schools and 207 Connecticut schools made their 2020 rankings. Below are the rankings of high schools in and around {town}.

High School CT Rank Nat Rank Grad Rate Enrollment
Waterbury Career Academy #104 #5,778 97% 838
Watertown High School #125 #7,745 95% 836
Waterbury Arts Magnet School (High) #132 #8,505 92% 466
Naugatuck High School #137 #8,916 87% 1,226
Crosby High School #162-207 #13,345-17,792 71% 1,147
John F. Kennedy High School #162-207 #13,345-17,792 82% 1,273
W. F. Kaynor Technical High School #162-207 #13,345-17,792 99% 776
Wilby High School #162-207 #13,345-17,792 71% 1,072
Newtown High School #23 #1,162 98% 1,624
Pomperaug Regional High School #30 #1,486 97% 1,197
Shepaug Valley School #57 #2,734 95% 263
Nonnewaug High School #58 #2,746 97% 710
Oxford High School #71 #3,547 96% 556

According to U.S. News & World Report, the highest-ranked schools are scattered throughout the country, showing that the best schools are not concentrated in any one geographic area. Nine different states are represented among the top 10 schools. More broadly, the top 100 schools span 29 states.

U.S. News & World Report says that they take a holistic approach to evaluating schools, focusing on six factors: college readiness, reading and math proficiency, reading and math performance, underserved student performance, college curriculum breadth and graduation rates. College readiness measures participation and performance on AP and IB exams.

Here are the top 10 high schools in Connecticut:
#1 Connecticut IB Academy in East Hartford
#2 Weston High School
#3 Darien High School
#4 Staples High School (Westport)
#5 New Canaan High School
#6 Simsbury High School
#7 Greenwich High School
#8 Hall High School (West Hartford)
#9 Ridgefield High School
#10 Marine Science Magnet High School of Southeastern
See the complete Connecticut High School rankings HERE.
To see how schools in the state’s top metro areas ranked, check out the pages for Hartford, New Haven, Norwich, and Bridgeport.

View the article in its entirety here.

cronmpuser@hamlethub.com (US News and World Report) Places Fri, 01 May 2020 11:13:04 -0400
Some Good News https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/life/1785-some-good-news-15875083391785-some-good-news-1587508339 https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/life/1785-some-good-news-15875083391785-some-good-news-1587508339

Some Good News!

Everyday heroes are emerging amidst the pain we are all experiencing. Their stories can inspire us all.

HamletHub has been received an abundance of stories about ordinary people doing extraordinary things so we created a special "hub" to spread joy called Community is not Canceled.

Community is not Canceled features a plethora of inspiring stories that will give you many reasons to smile!

Read about:

We are in this together. Stay strong. 

If you have an inspiring story from Woodbury to share, please email communitymatters@hamlethub.com

Visit Community is not Canceled HERE.






cronmpuser@hamlethub.com (HamletHub) Life Tue, 21 Apr 2020 12:39:15 -0400
The Story Behind Connecticut's inspiring Rainbows https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/neighbors/1784-the-story-behind-connecticut-s-inspiring-rainbows1784-the-story-behind-connecticut-s-inspiring-rainbows https://news.hamlethub.com/woodbury/neighbors/1784-the-story-behind-connecticut-s-inspiring-rainbows1784-the-story-behind-connecticut-s-inspiring-rainbows

Casey Castillo, a nurse and busy mom from Orange, CT founded 203 Rainbow Hunt after being inspired by a community hunting for rainbows in upstate NY.  Her Facebook Page is spreading joy and the vibrant colors of the rainbow throughout Connecticut. 

Since launching the page just a few weeks ago, she has gained over 5,000 members (join here) who are finding rainbows in nature, seemingly mundane objects, and sharing artistic rainbow creations. 

In a blog post, one of the page admins and champion of rainbows, Caroline Hoffman said, “We are currently living in a situation we’ve never experienced before. It’s a little confusing, scary, frustrating. What we can certainly do is find rainbows throughout this storm.”

203 Rainbow Hunt not only brings town residents closer together, but it connects each community in the Nutmeg State. 

Thank you to Casey, Caroline, and all who are leading our “Hunt”. Please use hashtag #203RainbowHunt and share your rainbows on the 203 Rainbow Hunt Facebook Page here.

To find out which Connecticut communities are part of the 203 Rainbow Hunt (and to add yours) click here.

kerry@ducey.org (HH) Neighbors Sat, 18 Apr 2020 12:19:29 -0400