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Newtown High School Class of 2013 graduate Jensine Eckwall, who continued her education by earning a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the School of Visual Arts and a Master’s at the Fashion Institute of Technology, is now an illustrator and part-time educator at the college level. We heard from a pretty big fan of Jensine’s recently, who told us about a few of her recent accomplishments. In March, Jensine celebrated the release of a set of six stamps she designed for Jersey Post, the provider of mail service for Jersey (officially Bailiwick of Jersey), a self-governing island country off the coast of France. Jensine continued Jersey Post’s series of Stories & Myths stamps. Her designs focus on ghost stories that have shaped Jersey’s history and culture. Two of the stamps are printed using spot UV ink so that elements of the stamp illustrations take on an eerie glow under ultraviolet light. Of the four stamps shared here, the lower right one is one of the special glowing ones; we think they’re all pretty magnificent. Jensine also, working with fellow MFA illustration candidate Nikki Scioscia, saw the installation of a pair of murals they designed for Northwell Health Long Island Jewish Forest Hills Hospital. The art was installed in the outdoor staff rest area of the hospital, to honor those lost to the pandemic and continue to inspire the health care workers who saw more than 2,000 COVID-19 patients between March 2020 and March 2022 at that location alone.

Back to the Garden, a band that celebrates the music and spirit of the original Woodstock Music Festival, will be at Edmond Town Hall Thursday, June 30. That’s the new date for the performance, which was postponed in April following a COVID scare. Tickets are still $25, and still available through edmondtownhall.org. Doors will open at 6 pm; Jonathan Niles Chapman is still on the bill for an opening set at 7 pm, and Back to the Garden is scheduled to take the stage at 8 pm. Contact the Edmond Town Hall box office (203-270-4285) if you have tickets from April and are now unable to attend the show.

Following the retirement of Newtown Bee Reporter Andrew Gorosko, whose primary responsibility was covering police and public safety beats, members of the Newtown Police Department who knew him and worked with him for many years requested a couple of personal effects to remember him by. Andy obliged by providing a pair of his glasses and a reporter’s notebook. During a recent visit with newly installed Police Chief David Kullgren, Bee Editor John Voket — a former office mate of Gorosko — was thrilled to see that the department had memorialized that police-reporter relationship by featuring a display including Andy’s photo and the items he shared in a showcase of curated historic items and department memorabilia.

As mentioned in last week’s paper, the annual Low-Cost Rabies Clinic is planned for this weekend: Saturday, May 14, from 9 am to noon, rain or shine. Please note that the event has moved to Newtown Animal Control Shelter, at 21 Old Farm Road. Cost is still $20, cash only. Cat and dog owners who want to have their pets vaccinated against rabies will need to have the animal’s current rabies certificate — not tags — showing prior vaccination or dog license certificate showing rabies expiration date valid to June 12, 2022, to receive a three-year dose. Those without certification will still receive a one-year dose. A tent will be set up for inclement weather, and there are no reservations; just stop by and hop in line. All are welcome, too — this is not just for Newtown residents. Tell ‘em Mountain sent you.

Mike Neiman had something of a celebrity in his yard last week. Mike stopped by The Newtown Bee office to share some photos of what he thought was “just a black bear and her two cubs.” He calls the photo here, showing Mama Bear in one of the trees in his back yard, “Demise of The Second Bird Feeder.” Mama had already taken down one feeder by the time Mike took this photo. If that wasn’t enough excitement for Mike, when he mentioned to a neighbor about the visit, he was told — and I paraphrase — “Oh, that’s Bobbi. She has her own Facebook page!” Sure enough, if you search on Facebook for Bobbi the Bear #217, you’ll find her page. Bobbi has a CT DEEP tag in her ear, which is how Mike and other residents of Newtown, Brookfield and Redding have figured out they have spotted the same bear.

Dawn Singer also stopped by the office last week. Seems a fellow Newtown Bee reader had mentioned to Dawn that her home was recently featured in this paper. Dawn’s house was the one pictured in the April 5 Way We Were column, identified on the photo itself simply as a vacant house along Currituck Road, July 1991. Dawn and her significant other have lived in that house for years. It was built in 1775, she said, and they have found in one closet writing that dates from the 1800s. “It’s a very old house, and we love, love, love it,” Dawn said, before heading out with a few spare copies of the issue with her house in it.

We heard from Newtown Youth & Family Services (NYFS) this week, who was very happy to let us — and readers, of course — know about a special new partnership the local mental health agency has joined into with NewSylum Brewing Co. Throughout May, which is Mental Health Awareness Month, all profits from any purchase of NewSylum’s Beautiful Consequences DIPA will be donated to NYFS. The brewery is within Fairfield Hills, at 36 Keating Farms Avenue.

I will have more than one reason to say “Cheers,” as long as you promise next week to ... Read me again.

Four of the six stamps designed by Newtown High School graduate Jensine Eckwall, published recently by Jersey Post.
View of the display case at Newtown Police Department headquarters that celebrates the tenure and hard work of former longtime Bee Reporter Andrew Gorosko. —Bee Photo, Voket
Bobbi the Bear, doing what she enjoyed. —Mike Neiman photo
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