Monday, October 18, 2021

The Sound Person of the Week

The Sound

Lisa Deane with her son Joe in happier times. Joe was a star athlete, brother, son, cousin and friend. He sadly became a statistic in 2018 when he unknowingly used street drugs laced with a lethal dose of fentanyl. Photo courtesy of Lisa Deane

‘Finding Hope’ a Way to Get Word Out on Fentanyl

Published Oct. 13, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Lisa Deane is working to prevent others from suffering the same fate.

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The Sound

From flying C-47s in World War II to keeping his pool game sharp today, North Branford resident and Madison native Bob Hart, 99, is a remarkable man who has lived a remarkable life. While he matter-of-factly notes he’s outlived many he’s known, Hart has made new friends at Evergreen Woods in North Branford, his home of nearly five years. Photo by Wesley Bunnell/The Sound

Nearly 100, Bob Hart Reflects on His Remarkable Life

Published Oct. 06, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Flying C-47s, Marrying a Spanish Woman, Owning a Successful Business Among the Highlights

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The Sound

When it comes to producing “Nightmare in North Branford,” an outdoor haunted trail coming Saturday, Oct. 23 to Totoket Valley Park, the spirits could not have possessed a more perfect person for the job than volunteer organizer Mary-Elissa Giovanni. 

Photo courtesy of Mary-Elissa Giovanni

Giovanni’s Halloween Dream is ‘Nightmare in North Branford’

Published Sep. 29, 2021 08:30 a.m.

When it comes to producing Nightmare in North Branford, an outdoor haunted trail coming Saturday, Oct. 23 to Totoket Valley Park, the spirits could not have possessed a more perfect person for the job than Mary-Elissa Giovanni.

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The Sound

Robyn Wolcott, who continues to support Branford programs with which she connected during her years with Shore Publishing Newspapers, will be presented with a 2021 Women of Excellence Award by the Shoreline Chamber of Commerce (Branford, North Branford, and Guilford) and Madison Chamber of Commerce. Photo by Bill Wolcott

Network of Support Leads Robyn Wolcott to Success

Published Sep. 22, 2021 08:30 a.m.

After graduating from the University of Vermont, Robyn Wolcott was ready to celebrate with a backpacking trip in Europe with a friend.

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The Sound

Friends of the Blackstone Library President Alfred ‘Al’ Bertoline says the group’s excitement is building as the days count down to the return of the gigantic book sale on the Branford Town Green after a year’s hiatus. The sale takes place Thursday, Sept. 30 through Sunday, Oct. 3. 

Photo courtesy of Al Bertoline

Bertoline and Friends Celebrate Book Sale’s Return to Branford Green

Published Sep. 15, 2021 08:30 a.m.

For Alfred ‘Al’ Bertoline and the Friends of the Blackstone Library (FOBL), the excitement is building as the days count down to the return of the Friend’s gigantic book sale on Branford Town Green.

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The Sound

Kristina Torre, a Branford resident, is looking forward to getting to know the staff and families of East Haven Academy, where she was recently hired as principal.

Photo courtesy of Kristina Torre

Kristina Torre Ready to Rock Her New Role as EHA Principal

Published Sep. 08, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Even before graduating from North Branford High School in 1992, Kristina Torre resigned herself to her second-choice career after realizing that her dream of becoming an MTV veejay was not realistic.

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The Sound

Pictured here in conductor gear he dons when he gets a chance to operate historic trolleys for Shore Line Trolley Museum (SLTM), volunteer Mike Hildreth also helps maintains the grounds, does track and line work, and helps plan and coordinate events. On Saturday, Sept. 11, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., the museum will hold a special 9/11 20th anniversary tribute with a display of its World Trade Center PATH car #745. The event is free to the public. 

Photo courtesy of Mike Hildreth

Hildreth Helps Trolley Museum: Public Invited to 9/11 Tribute

Published Sep. 02, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Unlike many of the volunteers at the Shore Line Trolley Museum (SLTM), it isn’t a love for trolley cars and trains that keeps Mike Hildreth coming back six days a week. In addition to occasionally operating the trolleys, Mike helps maintains the grounds, does track and line work, and helps plan and coordinate events.

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The Sound

Steve DePalma has happily—and handily—headed up the fried dough pizza booth at St. George Men’s Group Italian Festival since its inception. After a year’s hiatus due to COVID, the 2021 Italian Festival is back to make a saucy splash this Friday, Aug. 27 and Saturday, Aug. 28 behind St. George Church in downtown Guilford, 33 Whitfield Street. (weather permitting). All festival proceeds will benefit non-profit Community Dining Room of Branford. Photo courtesy of Steve DePalma

DePalma Helps St. George Men’s Group Cook Up CDR Support, Italian Style

Published Aug. 25, 2021 08:30 a.m.

As a member of St. George Men’s Group (SGMG), Steve DePalma has happily—and handily—headed up the fried dough pizza booth at SGMG’s Italian Festival since its inception.

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The Sound

Joe Naylor’s fascination with Branford’s history led him to join Branford Historical Society (BHS) while tracing his family ties to the founding of the town. This active BHS board members is happy to share stories of the past and volunteer his time and talent to support non-profit BHS, which also owns and operates the historic 1724 Harrison House museum at 124 Main Street. Shown here. Naylor wears a reproduction militia uniform donated to the BHS collection.

Photo by Pam Johnson/The Sound

Joe Naylor Shares Connections to Branford History

Published Aug. 13, 2021 09:13 a.m.

Born in Washington, D.C. and growing up in Alexandria, Virginia, Joe Naylor was blissfully unaware of his historic ties to Branford—until the inheritance of a family genealogy book turned the page.

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The Sound

Retiring after 40 years in one business is a significant milestone for anyone, but more so for Lee-Ellen Magna,  who will also close the doors on Myers Flowers in Branford after 108 years in business. Photo courtesy of Lee-Ellen Magna

On Eve of Retirement, Lee-Ellen Magna Looks Back on 108 Years of Flowers

Published Aug. 11, 2021 08:30 a.m.

After 108 years in business, Myers Flowers in Branford is closing its doors on Saturday, Aug. 14 and owner Lee-Ellen Magna, who turns 71 this month, is retiring after 40 years there.

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The Sound

After 18 years supporting North Branford’s treasured senior population, Senior Center Program Coordinator Kathy Poston recently switched over from full-time to part-time senior program coordinator, and is now working collaboratively with the center’s new full-time program coordinator, Sarah Brown. Photo by Pam Johnson/The Sound

Kathy Poston Switches Posts, But Still Serves North Branford’s Seniors

Published Aug. 04, 2021 08:30 a.m.

After 18 years supporting North Branford’s treasured senior population, “now, I could be a senior in my own senior center!” says Senior Center Program Coordinator Kathy Poston, with a smile.

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The Source

Danny Moss, the new rabbi at Temple Beth Tikvah, believes that what most people are looking for from a faith leader is someone who provides love and understanding no matter where someone is in their life. Photo by Jesse Williams/The Courier

Rabbi Danny Moss: ‘Not Your Grandparent’s Shul’

Published July 28, 2021 08:30 a.m.

The hallway leading to Rabbi Danny Moss’s office is a work in progress. Framed photographs lean against the walls. A padded chair holds an unplugged coffee machine.

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The Sound

Ellen Carucci has served as Shoreline Chamber of Commerce (SCC) program director since November 2020, bringing decades of experience in sales and marketing combined with an innate understanding of what it takes to help local businesses succeed. Non-profit SCC serves the Branford, North Branford and Guilford area. Photo courtesy of Ellen Carucci

Carucci Supports SCC as Program Director

Published July 21, 2021 08:30 a.m.

With seemingly endless energy, Ellen Carucci is supporting Shoreline Chamber of Commerce (SCC) as its program director.

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The Sound

At the end of this month, Branford native Diane Arnold will take the helm of the Essex Savings Bank, taking over for retiring bank president Greg Shook.

Photo by Rita Christopher/The Sound

Diane Arnold Blazes a Trail in Local Banking

Published July 14, 2021 08:30 a.m.

As part of the process of choosing the Dali Lama, a team of worthies visited a young Tibetan boy who had a series of objects placed in front of him and they determined on the basis of what the child reached for, that he would be the next Dali Lama.

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The Sound

On Wednesday, July 14, Lela Stokes is hosting a free Ladies’ Night Workshop from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at her Guilford business, The Car Care Clinic, to teach other women from around the shoreline the basics of car repairs and maintenance. Stokes has also built a benefit raffle into the event, with all proceeds going to support Women & Family Life Center (WFLC). The non-profit center provides resources and education for women and all families in crisis in towns all along the shoreline, including Branford and North Branford.

Photo by Catherine Kieran/Kiernan Photography

Roll Up Your Sleeves: Stokes Offers Free ‘Ladies Night’ Auto Basics to Benefit WFLC

Published July 07, 2021 08:30 a.m.

When it comes to empowering women, Lela Stokes is ready to roll up her sleeves. On Wednesday, July 14, Lela is hosting a free Ladies’ Night Workshop from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at her Guilford business, The Car Care Clinic, to teach other women from around the shoreline the basics of car repairs and maintenance.

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The Sound

On June 22, community leaders gathered to congratulate 13-year-old Leandro Rameriz (center, holding prize envelope) for creating the winning BCTV-Keep Branford Healthy Youth PSA Contest video encouraging his peers to get their COVID vaccine. L-r: Peter Cimino (Keep Branford Healthy/Branford Counseling & Community Services), Branford State Representative Robin Comey, Branford Parks & Recreation Director Alex Palluzzi; East Shore District Health Dept. Director Michael Pascucilla, Rameriz (with mom Iraci Martins and younger brother Lucas Rameriz); BCTV board member Susan Dahill, Branford First Selectman Jamie Cosgrove.

Photo by Pam Johnson/The Sound

Speaking to His Peers: Ramirez Wins Covid-Vax PSA Contest

Published June 30, 2021 08:30 a.m.

When community leaders challenged the town’s youth to help alert their peers to the importance of getting a COVID vaccination, 13-year-old Leandro Ramirez answered the call with a winning video.

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The Sound

Among many plans she has to assist non-profit Community Dining Room (CDR), CDR’s new Volunteer/Program Coordinator Andrea Savino is excited for Tuesday, July 6, when she’ll help CDR kick off seven fun weeks of free Summer Meal Tuesday Night Take -Out and Activities. The food and fun is free for families and will be set up at the spacious CDR parking lot at 30 Harrison Avenue from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. 

Photo by Pam Johnson/The Sound

Savino Brings Much to the Table for CDR

Published June 23, 2021 08:30 a.m.

As Community Dining Room’s (CDR) part-time Volunteer/Program coordinator, you could say Andrea Savino brings much to the table.

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The Sound

Ranked number one out of 141 academic classmates, Caroline Shadman is the North Branford High School Class of 2021 valedictorian. She plans to attend UConn as a music education major. Photo by Pam Johnson/The Sound

Shadman Proud to be Valedictorian of ‘Resilient’ NBHS Class of 2021

Published June 16, 2021 08:30 a.m.

North Branford High School (NBHS) Class of 2021 Valedictorian Caroline Shadman recalls exactly what she was thinking at the start of her first day of high school four years ago.

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The Sound

North Branford resident Marilou Elles creates tiny bereavement gowns to give hope to those enduring loss, as a volunteer with Connecticut-based Hope After Loss. On June 2, Elles was honored by Hope After Loss during its Compassionate Care Awards at Woodwinds in Branford. To date, she has crafted no less than 150 heartbreakingly tiny white garments, as well as two heart shaped mementos of the same fabric—one for the wedding gown donor and one for the family of the child—with each gown. A photo of her work appears with this story at www.zip06.com. Photo courtesy of Marilou Elles

Elles Shares Her Talents to Help Give ‘Hope After Loss’

Published June 09, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Working patiently with donated wedding gowns of silk, satin, and lace, Marilou Elles creates tiny bereavement gowns to give hope to those enduring loss.

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The Sound

Chris Rucinski grew up in Branford and now works in Los Angeles as a film editor (including Ford v Ferrari). But when it came time to craft his first feature film, Northern Shade, Chris knew there was no place like home. Residents of the shoreline, where many of the scenes were shot, can help him raise the final $20,000 needed to complete postproduction of the indie action drama. Photo courtesy of Chris Rucinski

Rucinski Grateful for Shoreline Support of Indie Film ‘Northern Shade’

Published June 02, 2021 12:01 a.m.

Chris Rucinski grew up in Branford and now works in Los Angeles as a film editor (including Ford v Ferrari). But when it came time to craft his first feature film, Northern Shade, Chris knew there was no place like home.

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The Sound

On Monday, May 31, Richard “Dick” Greenalch, Sr., will be honored by the Branford Veterans Parade Committee and the Town of Branford as grand marshal of the 2021 Branford Memorial Day Parade. He will be the featured speaker at Memorial Day ceremonies on the Town Green at 10 a.m. before leading the parade, which steps off at 10:30 a.m. Photo by Bill O’Brien

For Community and Country: Greenalch Honored as Memorial Day Parade Grand Marshal

Published May 26, 2021 08:30 a.m.

An active octogenarian and veteran who still serves his hometown, Richard “Dick” Greenalch, Sr., is humble, yet proud, of his service to his country during the Korean War era.

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The Sound

Emma Schreiber, a recent graduate of North Branford High School and former member of the East Haven High School Co-Op Marching Band, is now a volunteer instructor with the co-op band. Photo courtesy of Emma Schreiber

Emma Schreiber Brings Lifelong Love of Music as Volunteer Instructor of EHHS Co-Op Marching Band

Published May 19, 2021 08:30 a.m.

For as long as she can remember, Emma Schreiber has been interested in music.

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The Sound

Soundview YMCA Youth & Family Director Lynn Wheeler is prepared—and thrilled—to meet this summer’s pent-up demand for the Y’s weekly in-person kids’ day camps, which serve kids from East Haven to Madison. Weekly camps will begin June 21 and run through August at the Y’s Branford location. Photo courtesy of Lynn Wheeler

Wheeler Offers Summer Camp Thrills at Soundview YMCA

Published May 12, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Last year at about this time, Soundview Family YMCA was one of this area’s only organizations gearing up to offer in-person, COVID-conscious kids’ day camps throughout the summer of 2020.

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The Sound

On Sept. 11, Lisa (Esposito) Selmquist will take part in her third Closer to Free ride as she began her own team, Pedaling for Pop Pop, in honor of her dad, Joe Esposito of Branford. Photo courtesy of Lisa Selmquist

Lisa Selmquist to Ride in Closer to Free for Dad, Joe Esposito

Published May 05, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Though this is the third year that Lisa Selmquist, née Lisa Esposito, has participated in Closer to Free, this year’s event hits closer to home as she will ride in honor of her father, Joe Esposito, who was diagnosed with prostate cancer at the end of 2020

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The Sound

Jessica Cave is being thanked by many for being a huge help with helping seniors receive vaccines, in her work as North Branford Recreation and Senior Center secretary, a job she’s been in for four years. She found her office “family” thanks to volunteering her graphic design skills to help the town’s Economic Development Commission develop the first “North Branford-Northford Grown” farm brochure, shortly after moving to town in 2015 with her husband, Rob, as the new proprietors of Totoket Tree Farm. Photo courtesy of Jessica Cave

Cave is Happy to Help Out in Her Hometown

Published April 28, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Back in 2015, Jessica Cave and her husband, Rob, were on the hunt for a unique farm property and came upon the Forte family’s Totoket Tree Farm on Mill Road, which was up for sale.

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The Sound

In just three years’ time, Amos Parker has brought so much to Community Dining Room (CDR) as a volunteer that CDR has just created a new position, volunteer kitchen assistant, with Parker at the post. Amos brings years of experience with food rescue and community-supported agricultural farms at a time when CDR is serving more people and expanding strategies to support its health and nutrition plans and its go-green initiative.

Photo courtesy of the Community Dining Room

Parker Brings a Passion for Food Rescue to CDR

Published April 21, 2021 08:30 a.m.

With years of experience in food rescue and community-supported agricultural farms, Amos Parker has brought so much to Community Dining Room (CDR) as a volunteer that CDR has just created a new position, volunteer kitchen assistant, with Amos at the post.

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The Sound

Northford resident Luke Izzo, 16, is the youngest moderator of the 24,000-strong NY/CT/MA Vaccine Hunters and Angels Facebook group, for which he’s also established a hotline for non-English speaking folks in need of assistance with lining up their vaccinations. Photo courtesy of Luke Izzo

A Vaccine Hunter and Angel: Izzo Assists His Community and Beyond

Published April 14, 2021 08:30 a.m.

When 16-year-old Luke Izzo first joined the New York/Connecticut Vaccine Hunters and Angels Facebook group to see if he could help others, his efforts got noticed.

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The Sound

Photographer Peter Otis shares six photographs from among hundreds he’s captured while visiting a plethora of sites. His exhibit, A Treasure of Beauty, is featured now in a gallery that’s lighting up the walls of JavaHut in Guilford through Tuesday, May 11. 

Photo by Bobbe Otis

Otis Shares ‘A Treasure of Beauty’ with Your Java

Published April 07, 2021 08:30 a.m.

When you’ve visited dozens of national parks and many more state and local gems—and photographed them all—figuring out how to represent the lot in six pictures might sound like an impossible task. Somehow, photographer Peter Otis, who also regularly puts his talent on loan to assist his church, Branford’s Trinity Episcopal, has managed to do just that.

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The Sound

Tania Abbatello credits growing up in Northford—and early readings of Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax—with her lifelong interest in environmentalism. She combines her biology background and her business experience when serving on the Clinton Sustainability Committee and as an alternate for the Inland Wetlands Commission. Photo courtesy of Tania Abbatello

Tania Abbatello: Merging Biology and a Business Background

Published March 31, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Tania Abbatello credits growing up in Northford—and early readings of Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax—with her lifelong interest in environmentalism. Since then, Tania’s involvement with various organizations has increased as she seeks to improve her new hometown of Clinton as well as the state.

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The Sound

Branford resident and UConn Master Gardener Malaine Trecoske’s talk, Plant It and They Will Come: Gardening from a Native Bee’s Perspective, will be given as a free online presentation on Wednesday, April 7 at 7 p.m. presented by the Branford chapter of Living Wisely and Well on Planet Earth. Photo by Catherine Kiernan/Kiernan Photography

‘Plant it and They Will Come:’ Trecoske Will Share Ways to Support Native Bees

Published March 24, 2021 08:30 a.m.

Have you heard the buzz? The earliest of the area’s native bees, that fuzzy bumble bee, will be headed to your backyard soon—and it’s one of 340 native bee species in Connecticut that needs your help to survive.

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