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  • Volunteers Needed At Sandy Hook Promise

    As Sandy Hook Promise reaches out beyond the borders of Newtown and even Connecticut, more volunteers will be needed, said office and volunteer coordinator Betsy Gaier. Sandy Hook Promise (SHP) is a national, nonprofit organization founded by community members, as well as parents and spouses who lost loved ones on 12/14 at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Since its formation in January 2013, volunteers have provided support and staffed the office. “We have had as many as 40 volunteers working with us,” said Ms Gaier. Lifestyle and job situation changes have created a drop in the number of volunteers available to assist the organization, though. Additional volunteers will be needed within the next four to six weeks, she said, as the new Promise Communities program begins to open across the country. Eight to ten volunteers, some local and some willing to travel, will assist the self-led Promise Communities formed to promote gun responsibility, Ms Gaier said.

  • Volunteers Refresh Gardens At Holcombe Hill During Annual Day Of Action

    Sparse, cottony clouds and a gentle breeze kept volunteers company Wednesday, June 4, at the Holcombe Hill Wildlife Preserve. Members from various departments at The Taunton Press gave their time and effort to Newtown Forest Association property. Nearly 600 volunteers from 25 local businesses and corporations demonstrated their community support, according to a recent release. More than 100 projects — including the Holcombe property maintenance for the NFA, a private, nonprofit land trust — took place to benefit more than 30 nonprofit agencies throughout greater Danbury and greater New Milford areas this week.

  • Relay 2014 Celebrates Life, Remembers Those Lost To Cancer

    Those lost to cancer were remembered: “To my lovely sister who I miss so much, I love you,” said one handwritten message on the Wall of Remembrance displayed during this year’s 2014 Relay for Life on May 31, its tenth in Newtown.  The message continues, “You are missed every day."

  • Svigals: Sandy Hook School Design Reflects Community’s Spirit

    “There was never one ah-ha moment.” That observation from architect Barry Svigals of Svigals + Partners came during an interview ahead of a community information meeting revealing the latest Sandy Hook School developments set for Thursday, June 5. When asked if at any time since the earliest stages of conception, any contributor offered a single idea, thought, or inspiration that generated a major turning point in the development process, or significantly influenced a major design aspect, Mr Svigals was quick to reply. He explained that in all his years, he has never seen a public project that was so influenced by so many voices, and resulting in a concept that was so organically tied to its community.

  • Selectmen Begin Exploring Municipal Facilities Analysis

    Top elected officials began what is expected to be a slow, deliberate, and complex process to produce the most comprehensive analysis of town-owned buildings and facilities ever mounted in Newtown. After much pre-meeting discussion, the Board of Selectmen June 2 welcomed Geralyn Hoerauf, AIA, LEED AP, and senior project manager from Diversified Project Management. Ms Hoerauf will be supporting selectmen and other town staff, contractors, and officials through at least the preliminary stages of facilities analysis prep. During her visit and presentation Monday, First Selectman Pat Llodra brought a couple of other voices into the conversation, including a member of the Edmond Town Hall Board of Managers and the local Cultural Arts Commission chair.

  • I-84 Traffic Shift Slated For Riverside Bridge Project

    The Connecticut Department of Transportation is announcing that traffic will be shifted on Interstate 84 to rehabilitate the bridges over Center Street in Newtown. The shifts on Interstate 84 are scheduled for Tuesday night, June 10, 2014 for I-84 eastbound and Thursday, June 12 for I-84 westbound.

  • Former NFL Player Arrested On Drug Charges

    In connection with the execution of a search-and-seizure warrant at his 10 White Oak Farm Road home on the morning of Friday, May 30, federal drug agents charged former National Football League player Gennaro Label DiNapoli, 39, with two counts of illegal sale of narcotics. US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents made the arrest with the assistance of Newtown police. After the two charges were processed at the town police station, DiNapoli was released on $150,000 bail for a June 17 arraignment in Danbury Superior Court, according to court records. On May 30, DiNapoli was arrested on a court warrant which alleges that he sold a total of 330 pills of oxycodone to DEA undercover agents at his home in April and in May for a total of $6,200. Oxycodone is a powerful painkiller.

  • CycleFest Ride Is Sunday

    This Sunday, June 8, is the 22nd Anniversary of the CycleFest Bicycle Charity Ride, one of the oldest, safest, and most scenic self-paced charity rides in Western Connecticut. CycleFest, sponsored by Hat City Cyclists, offers 105, 80, 54, 23, and 14 miles route options.

  • Poverty Hollow Road To Close For Bridge Replacement

    Starting on Monday, June 9, the town will close the southern section of Poverty Hollow Road to through-traffic for a construction project that will replace the Poverty Hollow Road bridge that crosses above the Aspetuck River, just south of the parking lot entrance for Centennial Watershed State Forest. The parking lot, provides access to the 15,300-acre state forest which lies in Newtown, Redding, Easton and Weston, is expected to remain open to forest users during the bridge construction project. A northern roadblock to through-traffic will be placed on Poverty Hollow Road in Newtown, just south of its intersection with Farm Meadow Road and Hopewell Road. In Redding, a southern roadblock will be placed on Poverty Hollow Road, just north of its intersection with Church Hill Road. Although there will be no through-traffic on that 2.2-mile section of Poverty Hollow Road while the bridge construction is underway, local traffic will be allowed in that area.

  • School Board Honors Retiring Teachers, Top Students

    The Board of Education honored both Newtown’s retiring educators and students within the top five percent of the graduating Class of 2014, including valedictorian Anne Beier and salutatorian Amisha Dave, at its meeting on Tuesday, June 3. Superintendent of Schools Joseph Erardi, Jr, announced each retiring teacher or administrator before they were greeted by Board of Education members and handed a gift by school board Chair Debbie Leidlein.“I’d like to start by recognizing 344 years of service,” Dr Erardi said, acknowledging the combined total of years the teachers and administrators have spent in Newtown and other districts. With the retiring educators assembled in a line behind him, Dr Erardi said the night marked “an extraordinary moment for our retiring teachers.”