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The Way We Were

June 23, 1989

Though the proposed teen center is still plodding through two zoning commissions, parents need not worry about their children having a place to “hang out.” According to Barbara Kasbarian of the Parks and Recreation Department, Dickinson Park’s hours have temporarily been extended through the summer, well into November. “The ‘Teen Hang Out’ will be open 7:30 to 11 pm,” she said. The park will be open its regular hours from 9 am to 7:30 pm, as well. She still plans to pursue establishing a permanent teen-center to allow the young adults to have a spot to socialize with their peers, during the cooler months.

 

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A vacant house on Toddy Hill Road, which was being renovated by the new owner, was gutted by a fire early on the morning of June 17. Nobody was hurt. Chief Halstead said that the fire was reported by a neighbor at 2:36 am, and that the house was full of flames when firefighters arrived. Because the sheet rock had been removed from the inside, as part of the renovation project, the fire quickly got into the rafters and studs.

 

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As a result of the cutback in the Board of Education’s budget, Newtown High athletes will have to “pay for play,” next September. When the new school year begins, athletes trying out for interscholastic sports teams will have to pay a $35 fee. Those cut from the team will be refunded. The new policy will add $20,000 to the budget while keeping all school sports intact.

 

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There seemed to be an air of extraordinary casualness, a disregard for formality, as the members of the Class of 1989 gathered at the high school June 16. Students stopped to chat with friends in the parking lot and lobby, ignoring advisors’ pleas to assemble. Maybe it was the weather. Maybe it was because of a resignation to the personality of the largest class ever to leave the school system — a class that had developed a reputation for inordinate unruliness during its 13 years of existence. Maybe it was because the administration had just learned the high school principal would be leaving. Whatever it was, students, teachers, parents and friends seemed to revel a bit more than usual in the fact that the end was in sight.

 

June 26, 1964

The first outdoor commencement exercises for the Newtown High School were held Sunday on the grounds behind the school cafeteria. Despite the heat, a capacity crowd attended to see 99 students graduate, and to hear Dr Gertrude E. Noyes, Dean of Connecticut College, give the main address.

 

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At 1:30 pm, on Sunday, June 21, the Board of Fire commissioners met to accept the new fire engine delivered by the Maxim Motor Company of Middletown, Mass. The new unit, known as Engine One, is for the use of Newtown’s Fire Companies and will run on all fire calls in town. It is equipped with a 750GPM pump, carries 600 gallons of water, 1,200 feet of 2½ ” and 1,000 feet of 1½” hose, with proper and various nozzles of fire fighting.

 

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A 20 x 30 foot storage building was destroyed by fire Tuesday evening belonging to Newtown Building Supply Corporation, along with various types of building materials, including shingle backer board wall board and topping material. Chief Lee Glover of Newtown Hook and Ladder Company said the building, located about 500 feet south on Wall Street off of Church Hill Road, went up in flames very quickly. Flames were so intense they threatened an abandoned house about 50 feet north of the storage structure.

 

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A dedication ceremony was held at the Sandy Hook Elementary School just prior to summer vacation during which time a plaque was presented to the school in memory of the late President John F. Kennedy. This program was started by the sixth grade classes and the funds collected exceeded the cost of the plaque. The remaining balance was used to purchase a tree which was also dedicated to the memory of the late president. The tree was planted in front of the school.

 

June 23, 1939

The three-night carnival held under the auspices of the members of the Hawleyville Fire Department on the fire company’s grounds in Hawleyville, closed on Saturday night with a good attendance each evening. The radio which the firemen had canvassed on, was won by J. Russell Clark of Brookfield. About $200 was cleared.

 

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The June meeting of the Newtown Chamber of Commerce has been called by the president, Paul S. Smith, for Thursday evening, June 29th at the Parker House, at 8 o’clock. There are several important items of business to come before this meeting, including reports on the proposed sidewalk from Newtown to Sandy Hook and also the committee on the Town Forest.

 

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Newtown music lovers became genuinely excited upon learning that George Cehanovsky, famous baritone of the Metropolitan Opera, was to sing at the June 29th concert. The acceptance of the Newtown engagement by Mr Cehanovsky adds another emment (sic) name to the illustrious list of artists who have collaborated with this popular orchestra, now in its seventh successful season.

 

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The Hardscrabble Work Shop, under the direction of Jerome P. Jackson, Jr, of Gray’s Plain district, Sandy Hook, will open for its sixth season on July 6. Sessions are held on Tuesdays and Thursdays through July and August, from 9 am to 4:30 pm. The boys are taught manual training and the use of various tools, as well as provided supervision for swimming and other recreations. Parents with sons between the ages of seven and twelve, or thereabouts, who are interested in this unique school which “Jerry” Jackson has been running for the past several summers.

 

June 26, 1914

The several electrical installations in Newtown were visited and inspected on Wednesday of this week by T.H. Day, the official inspector from the New England Insurance Exchange of Boston. Mr Day states that he finds the electrical installations in Newtown well up to present day standards and had very few corrections to suggest.

 

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It would be a good thing for some or all of our town schools to offer a prize for courtesy and good manners. Since the Governor’s speech brought up this subject as being a most important one that of good manners, it should awaken the parents and teachers to the fact that Webster defines courtesy thus: “Wellbred kindness and consideration.” The Wykeham Rise school this year gave a prize for courtesy; why not try it in Newtown?

 

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The large ice house belonging to the Borden’s at the Station has been taken down and shipped to Washington. W.H. Frisbie, the Washington contractor, had charge of the work.

 

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A victrola dance for the benefit of the Library will take place Tuesday, June 30, at 8. Exceptionally good ice cream cones for sale and the time of your life guaranteed. Be sure and not miss it. Admission 25 cents. At the library.

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