The Daniel Barden Highland Mudfest takes place this year on April 5, at MJK Farms in Deansboro, N.Y. The 5K obstacle race is organized and run by volunteers, with support from business and corporate sponsors, and incorporates a half-mile Half Pint Kids’ Fun Run for ages 5 to 12, as well as an additional 5-mile timed Mud Run for 250 elite entrants. The Mudfest honors the memory of first grader Daniel Barden, one of 20 children who perished at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012. Organizer Daniel Williams of Deansboro is a personal friend of Mark and Jackie Barden, and their surviving children, James and Natalie, and came up with the idea for a mud run last year. More than 1,000 people registered to wallow in the mud and squeeze through a drainage pipe three-quarters full of mud, among other challenges in the inaugural event.
The Newtown Earth Day Committee is already making plans for its late April celebration. Newtown’s Seventh Annual Earth Day Festival, which brings together school groups, families, green-minded organizations, food and drink vendors, children’s activities, live music, and more, is slated for Saturday, April 26, between 10 am and 4 pm. It will again be presented on the front lawn of Newtown Middle School. Sharon Audubon Society will again offer birds of prey demonstrations, and Newtown Lions Club members will encourage residents to scour the roadsides in the annual Lose The Litter campaign. The Earth Day Festival Committee promises “a full day of family fun and learning.” Heading into its seventh year, the festival is designed to highlight Newtown’s abundant natural resources, help the community continue to become greener, and also continue to raise funds for the festival committee's scholarship fund. The committee has donated more than $4,000 toward scholarships during the last three years.
Lingering snow may be on the ground with more in the forecast, and many are counting down the days until the beginning of spring, but Marie Athans is already thinking about summer. She hopes residents interested in hosting an inner city child for a week or two will join her on March 20, the first day of spring, for a Fresh Air Fund Day Get-Together at Franco’s Pizza & Pasta to learn more about the nonprofit organization that provides the free summer vacation to the city children that will “introduce them to the joys of country life,” states a recent release. The get-together will be between 4 and 6 pm, with free pizza and surprises for children.
Although displaced from their regular meeting space in C.H. Booth Library since the beginning of the year, when flooding disrupted business at the facility, the library's Young Adult Council (YAC) has continued to meet regularly at other sites. The group is made up of young people in grades six and up, and is dedicated to promoting programs and raising funds to benefit the Young Adult Department of the C.H. Booth Library, under the guidance of YA Librarian Kim Weber.
“Leave your mark” on the Newtown Park and Bark dog park, is the message from park friends. Launching a buy-a-brick campaign this month, the Friends of Newtown Park and Bark, which is under construction and will open in early May, is selling Havana red 4-by-8-inch and 8-by-8-inch bricks for $100 and $200, respectively. The bricks will be used to create a walkway from the park entrance into the off-leash park, located on Old Farms Road, adjacent to the new Brian J. Silverlieb Animal Care and Control Center. Bricks purchased by April 1 will be included in the walkway in time for the grand opening on Saturday, May 3. Bricks will still be available after April 1, but will not be included in the initial installation.
Although it was only the second time that it had staged an awards ceremony, Newtown Kindness brought together several hundred people at Edmond Town Hall on the night of Saturday, February 22, to honor the memory of Charlotte Bacon, one of the first grade children who died in the 12/14 shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School. On what would have been Charlotte’s eighth birthday, Newtown Kindness provided several dozen Charlotte Bacon Acts of Kindness Awards to children from across the US and Canada for performing acts of kindness. The organization presented eight awards to finalists, 35 awards to medalists, and one legacy award during the ceremony held in the historic building's theater.
Baseball and music have been his passions since he was young, said country music star Scotty McCreery, Tuesday, February 25, but music is “something I get to do,” not something he has to do, he said.
The other thing he gets to do, is represent the 12.14 Foundation of Newtown. Recently named the National Goodwill Ambassador for the Foundation, Scotty was at the Dana-Holcombe House on Main Street in Newtown, Tuesday, to meet with members of the Board of Directors of the 12.14 Foundation.