UPDATE (Monday, February 3): The kick-off event has been postponed due to weather. New date TBA. || Relay For Life organizers are inviting residents of Newtown and surrounding communities to help officially launch the community’s 10th Relay For Life of Newtown Event. In honor of the community event’s tenth presentation year, the theme for the 2014 event is “Party." The free kickoff party is set for Monday, February 3, at 7 pm, in the Newtown High School Lecture Hall, according to Relay Event Chair Chris Farrington. The 2014 event will be Friday into Saturday, May 30-31, at Fairfield Hills. Mr Farrington is hoping many residents will turn out for refreshments, an opportunity to meet the 2014 Honorary Chairs, and hear about a number of new developments with the event. During the kickoff, Mr Farrington will also host a “meet and greet” for Newtown’s brand-new American Cancer Society liaison, David Andros. There will also be news of new relay participant and team recognition programs with the American Cancer Society.
Even if he wasn’t a familiar face from his many health and medical reports on ABC News and Good Morning America, with five children, Dr David Katz told The Newtown Bee during a recent interview, he has plenty of practical “hands-on” advice to share with fellow parents. And he plans to do just that with as many moms, dads, grandparents, and caregivers he can pack into the Newtown Meeting House when he is welcomed by the Newtown Prevention Council as the second guest in its “Parent Speaker Series” Tuesday, January 28, at 7 pm. Dr Katz, whose youngest is a high school freshman and whose oldest two children are out of college and living independently, said every parent and attendee to the Prevention Council event can take a few basic steps to add years and enjoy a greater quality of life. “I really want everyone attending to know they can do this for their own family,” he said.
The month of January has been designated as Radon Action Month in Connecticut according to Newtown Health District Director Donna Culbert. Her local agency is joining with the Connecticut Department of Public Health, the American Lung Association of Connecticut, and US Environmental Protection Agency urging local residents to test their home for radon, and, if necessary, mitigate high levels when found.
“Radon is not necessarily predictable, one home could have high levels of radon gas and the one next door may not,” Ms Culbert told The Newtown Bee this week. “The only way to be sure is to test.” Radon is an invisible, odorless radioactive gas that is formed from the radioactive decay of uranium, which occurs naturally in bedrock worldwide
Two members of Newtown Christian Church became certified CPR instructors last year, and have decided to share their knowledge with the community. Following a series of three one-day events last October, November and December, another series of classes has been planned for the next three months. Jamie Tanner and Kevin Kuzma will lead Adult & Infant CPR, AED & First Aid classes on Saturdays, February 8, March 15 and April 19. Each five-hour class will run from 9 am until 2 pm, and students will need to bring their own lunch.
Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield of Connecticut on January 13 extended its deadline for customers who signed up for coverage through the state’s health insurance marketplace to make their first premium payment in order to receive coverage retroactive to January 1. The new deadline is January 31, the insurer announced, blaming a backlog in processing.
Newtown Youth & Family Services, Inc. will be holding an American Red Cross CPR Certification class on Thursday, February 13, from 6 to 8 pm. “The class which will cover cardiopulmonary resuscitation for infants, children and adults, is a great class for all caregivers and anyone interested in being certified,” said agency Executive Director and CPR instructor Candice Bohr.
Newtown Lions Club will host an American Red Cross blood drive at Newtown Congregational Church, on Monday, January 13. Donors should be at least 18 years of age, weight at least 110 pounds, and be in generally good health. Appointments are available, and walk-ins will be welcomed.
The Resiliency Center of Newtown will sponsor a course, “Creative Insight: Taking the Next Step,” which was instrumental in helping hundreds of 9/11 family and community members move forward with their lives. Creative Insight focuses on the development of skills to address six major life challenges including time and stress, balance, relationships, purpose and vision, self-worth, and prosperity. The goal is to strengthen and enrich one’s life so that participants are better able to help strengthen and enrich their families and community.
The Newtown High School boys’ basketball team and Newtown Youth Basketball Association are teaming to host Pack The Gym Night to kick off the American Cancer Society’s Officials vs Cancer fundraising event during the Newtown versus Brookfield game at Newtown Newtown High School at 7 pm. NYBA representatives will collect donations at the game, and present pink whistles to the referees. The high school players will wear pink ribbon logo socks provided by NYBA. Additionally, NYBA representatives will sell NYBA pink ribbon shirts.
Connecticut's Department of Insurance says it is receiving calls from consumers who signed up for coverage on the state’s insurance marketplace but have not yet received a bill or identification card. Some callers said they are having trouble paying their bill online, reaching their carrier, or reaching the Access Health CT health insurance exchange. Others said they have been approved for Medicaid through the exchange but have not yet received an ID card for their new policy, which was supposed to take effect January 1. According to an announcement from Access Health CT earlier this week, the answer depends on which plan or program for which they are eligible.