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The Top Of The Mountain



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They didn’t quite get their entries in before the end of the 2019 Bee Abroad Contest, but Dr Charlie and Karen Yarish did quite some traveling last year — and proudly displayed The Newtown Bee wherever they went, including the Sydney Harbor National Park in Australia. The Yarishes also visited various other sites in New Zealand and Tasmania, so the paper took quite a tour with them. I think they deserve a big mention for their dedication to bringing along the hometown paper. Congratulations, and thank you for letting us know the worldwide travels of The Newtown Bee!

The Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary will host a fundraiser to support wildlife rescue work in Australia, this Sunday, January 19, from 2 to 3 pm, at Newtown Community Center, 8 Simpson Street. There is a wildlife catastrophe due to devastating bushfires and drought in that country. Join CVH Animal Sanctuary volunteers to raise funds supporting WIRES Wildlife Rescue and wildlife rescue work in Australia. Animal Embassy and their ambassador animals will be on hand to educate about Australia’s animal species and the efforts to save them. One hundred percent of the money raised will go directly to WIRES. Donations can also be made at WIRES Facebook page, or at wires.org.au/donate/emergency-fund.

Do you or someone you know have room in your hearts… and property… to temporarily house Buddy, a 800-900 pound pig? According to Animal Embassy’s Facebook post from December 19, “Buddy was purchased to help a child dealing with the traumas associated with surviving the Sandy Hook School shootings.” Buddy has achieved his mission, but now has to be rehomed. He is confirmed to have his forever home at the Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary when the sanctuary is up and running. In the meantime, Buddy needs a foster home. For those interested in helping Buddy the pig, contact Animal Embassy at 203-655-5404.

Congratulations to Violet Hughes, who has been announced as a semi-finalist in Mars Name the 2020 NASA Rover Contest, her mom shares with us. “Tenacity” is a big word for a kindergartner, but that’s the name Violet picked for the NASA rover, along with submitting a short essay. She was the only K-4 student selected in Connecticut. Nine top finalists will be picked the end of January, and an overall winner announced in March. The top winner will be invited to see the spacecraft launched at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, in July. Best of luck to Violet!

Consider sending greetings to our troops this Valentine’s Day, if you have not already. For one more week, until January 24, Newtown Youth & Family Services is continuing this year’s Operation Heart To Heart: Valentines For Troops program. The public is invited to drop off valentines, no larger than 5 by 7 inches, at the NYFS office, 15 Berkshire Road in Sandy Hook. The cards will be forwarded to local troops who are stationed overseas. For additional information call the agency at 203-270-4335.

We love our Christmas trees, but in the interest of safety, it’s time for natural ones to be taken out of homes. According to the National Fire Protection Association, nearly one-third of Christmas tree fires occur in January. If you still have your tree, and would like help removing it from your property, Boy Scouts from Newtown Troop 270 will be doing one more round of tree pick-ups Saturday and Sunday, January 18-19. In return for a $10 donation, Scouts will pick up your undecorated tree, and transport it to Old Farm Road. There, Candlewood Valley Trout Unlimited and Pootatuck Watershed Association members are conducting their annual Trees For Trout project. For additional information or to make a reservation, visit troop270newtownCT.org. The financial donations will benefit the local Boy Scout troop; the tree will continue to protect Deep Brook.

We are seeking input from our print newspaper readers — what do you like to read, how often do you read, what is local news worth to you? Take a few moments to fill out our survey found in this week's print edition (page A-6; it will also be repeated in upcoming issues), and drop it off at the 5 Church Hill Road office or mail it to us — or if you’d like, take a photo of your answers and e-mail that to editor@thebee.com, subject line SURVEY. Thanks, in advance!

National Popcorn Day is January 19, so sit back and catch up on all the Oscar nominees and have a bowl of popcorn!

Did you know that 2020 is the Year of the Rat? The Chinese New Year is coming up on January 25 and runs through February 4, if you plan to celebrate. Chinesenewyear.net tells me that using negative words like death, sick, empty, pain, ghost, poor, break, and kill are big no-nos during the Chinese New Year, so as not to accidentally jinx anyone. Try not to break anything glass, and don’t use sharp objects: that can cut your wealth and successes. Avoid fighting and crying — always good advice — and do not give gifts of clocks, whatever you do! Do have fun, though, and wear new clothes (red is preferable) and new shoes (purchased before the holiday, please).

I love bird watching and birds, of course, so here’s what I hear from CT Audubon: “Connecticut’s Congress members have a chance to be early co-sponsors of one of the most important pieces of bird protection legislation ever. H.R. 5552, a new version of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, would halt the recent rollback of regulations and standards that have protected birds for a century... The new legislation is necessary because in 2018 the US Department of the Interior changed the way the century-old Migratory Bird Treaty Act was enforced. The department ruled that it would no longer be a violation to “incidentally” kill birds during the course of doing business. Only “intentional harm” would count.” To add your voice and encourage US Representatives to cosponsor this legislation, visit https://p2a.co/FwqOWLs?bblinkid=198701745&bbemailid=18820871&bbejrid=1338135524.

First Selectman Dan Rosenthal will present the next public information sessions regarding Fairfield Hills Master Plan recommendations on Tuesday, February 18, and Monday, March 16, at Newtown High School. These meetings convene at 7 pm, and take note: the talks will be held in the lecture hall, not the auditorium.

My head is spinning from the wild weather changes! Last weekend’s glorious taste of spring temperatures in the 60s sank quickly into chilly numbers on Monday — and what’s this I hear about weekend snow? It is winter, but it seems a fickle season this year. I’m keeping my fur coat on, but scouting out some cool spots to snooze should spring return unexpectedly again. How about you?

You can be guaranteed I’ll be scouting out the best tidbits of news this week, too, so be sure to... Read me again.

Charlie and Karen Yarish did a bit of traveling in 2019, and brought along The Newtown Bee.
Kindergartener Violet Hughes undertook a home project and has been named a semifinalist in a contest to name the Mars rover.
Comments are open. Be civil.
  1. comprehenderkm says:

    I wonder why it is discouraged to give a gift of clocks in the Chinese New Year

    1. dennis brestovansky says:

      Clocks of any type should be avoided because the word for clock sounds a lot like the word for the funeral ritual. Clocks also are a reminder that time is running out and are considered a reminder that life will come to an end.

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