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The Way We Were, for the week ending April 1, 2016



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April 5, 1991

Police and fire officials closed off a section of Church Hill Road shortly after a gas line ruptured at 11 Church Hill Road Wednesday morning, April 3. Evacuated business professionals stood patiently on the sidewalk. A possible disaster was averted by combined efforts of fire officials and police after local construction workers accidentally ruptured a line carrying natural gas while digging with a backhoe at approximately 9:10 am. Excavation work was taking place outside Re/Max Real Estate and Dental Associates and workers were not aware of an existing gas line. According to fire officials, the contractor failed to call "Call Before You Dig," and as a result faces heavy fines. "Call Before You Dig" is a contractors' hotline with up to date information about underground utilities. At approximately 9:30 am Yankee Gas Company officials wheeled up and shut off the gas, stopping the leak.


The Charter Revision Commission has decided on a new proposed format for the budget's adoption process. The new format would eliminate town meetings on the budget, but require that all budgets be adopted at an automatic referendum. Under the current system the school board and selectmen give their requested budgets to the Legislative Council, which holds a public hearing before reviewing the budgets. The council then presents the budget to a town meeting. After each town meeting voters can petition for a referendum on the same budget.


Last summer more than 800 Newtown children learned to swim and make arts and crafts at summer camp. But Parks and Recreation Director Barbara Kasbarian said there were many more who wanted to go to camp, but couldn't afford it. The need exists, said Social Services Director Sheila Knox. Last year 10 children were put through camp using an informal aid program. This year camp fees have been raised and more parents may apply for financial help. "We expect to be bombarded," Ms Kasbarian said. A camp scholarship fund was established and service organizations and individuals will be asked to donate.


Andrea's Bake Shop owner Phil DiSora is happy the Borough Zoning Board of Appeals approved his special permit request to continue hanging a neon sign in his storefront window. The board previously denied his and the Smoke Shop's applications, but changed their decision. Board members added the stipulation that signs be limited to the size described in the application. Business owners were previously denied because commissioners did not feel they were in keeping with the character of the town's center.


April 8, 1966

About 200 persons attended the groundbreaking for Christ The King Lutheran Church at Mount Pleasant on Palm Sunday afternoon. Many turned a ceremonial spadeful of earth. Members and friends met in the open lot on Route 6 at Tory Lane, next to the parsonage, for the groundbreaking ceremonies for a new church building. Pastor James B. Ilten conducted the service at the edge of a pond on the property.


There were considerably more chiefs than Indians at the Middle Gate PTA meeting to which the whole town was invited. The entire Board of Education was there along with Superintendent of School John Sommi. But of the group of 40 or more who heard the board explain the new budget, only 23 were parents of school children. The board was happy to answer their questions and those of other taxpayers there, but where were all those other "Indians" who are the real chiefs as budget time comes around? The budget hearing is set for April 12.


With the coming of warmer weather, more and more people will be taking to the great outdoors and, unfortunately, more and more litter will be seen about the countryside and roads. During the winter months it took only a matter of eight weeks for a number of inconsiderate people to throw this much [pictured in photos] trash along Castle Meadow Road on Miss Anna Lord Strauss's property. Behavior such as this means hours of work for property owners and, in this particular case, could lead to the closing of the lands about Hattertown Pond, which Miss Strauss owns. A clean spring can result in more fun for all.


As a chartered club the Future Nurses Club of Newtown High is participating in a national youth program to help the nation meet future nursing needs. The club's activities are designed to enable members to explore career opportunities in nursing and other health fields. The FNA of Newtown High consists of about 18 members. Plans for the rest of the year seem bright, promising and fun. Our next meetings will be group discussions on the various types of nursing, to help the girls make their decision on a particular field.


April 4, 1941

William Shepard and Allen Pike, students at the University of Connecticut, have been enjoying the spring recess at their parents' homes in town. It will be of interest to many of "Bill's" friends to know that in a rifle test in the military training course, he scored 91 out of a possible 100 and as a result gained 13th place in competition with 300 other students. Bill will be among the first 20 students to shoot it off for three medals, shortly after he returns to the university. Much luck is extended to him with the hope that he takes one of the prizes.


The April entertainment committee of the Pohtatuck Grange will sponsor a modern and old-fashioned dance at St. Rose hall on April 16 at 8:30 p.m. The music will be furnished by one of the most popular old-time orchestras in Connecticut, namely Swede Stolt and his Hayseeders from Washington. Just check off the date, April 16, on your calendar and come for an evening of real enjoyment.


Dr George B. Garlick of Bridgeport has just taken title to a parcel of farmland of approximately 40 acres on Eden Hill from Isaiah Bolmer. The land lies part in Newtown and part in Easton, and is of high elevation commanding a view of Long Island Sound. Dr Garlick proposes to build a home on this property in the future. The sale was made through the real estate agency of Laurence M. Corwall of Southport.


Elliott H. Platt of the State Department of Agriculture, formerly of Newtown, is the author of an interesting article, "The History of Poultry," which appears as a part of the 28-page supplement in the March issue of "The Connecticut Circle." The supplement is devoted to a description of the poultry industry in Connecticut, in which there are some 15 thousand actually and vitally interested.

March 31, 1916

Basket Ball - Newtown 36 - Sandy Hook 5. The professional game between Newtown and Sandy Hook, the game that there had been so much talk about and challenges in the papers, came next. There was working too for Newtown kept the ball rolling into their basket and Sandy Hook kept following them around and wondering how it was done. For Newtown, the two Bradleys, Harry and Edward, carried off the honors, Carlson, Beers, and Ray did their share of the work as will be seen by the score.


Nowadays the successful farmer is a practical business man. He figures costs and profit percentages. Holstein cattle have proven the big money makers and that is the reason why they are in demand.


Robert S. Wheeler, who recently purchased a large tract of timber of C.H. Pratt in Zoar District, is beginning the work of turning it into ties and lumber. The mill of Charles Beardsley was installed on the tract this week.


A good-sized audience attended the service Sunday night at the Congregational church when pictures were shown illustrating the work of the American Missionary association in Puerto Rico. Miss S.J. Scudder, in an effective manner, read the lectures and Carleton Hubbell operated the balopticon. A missionary offering was then taken.

The 1986 aerial view of Newtown Shopping Center, top right, included Newtown Hardware, a Drug Center, left, and a post office, bottom left, which is now My Place Restaurant.
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