Danbury Mad Hatter Society receives $5,900 grant, among other area highlights

Allison Amaya, a sophomore at Bethel High School, has won U.S. Senator Chris Murphy’s sixth annual Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Essay Challenge for the 5th Congressional District. Senator Murphy received more than 2,200 registrations from elementary, middle and high school students from across Connecticut. Fifteen winning essays were selected.

The students reflected on Dr. King’s dream and aspirations in the essays.

The winners are on display in Senator Murphy’s office in Hartford.

The essay can be read at murphy.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/CD%205%20Allison%20Amaya%2010.pdf.


College student is also one of 15 essay challenge winners

Lyndon Tessier, a sixth-grade student at Whisconier Middle School in Brookfield, is also a winner of Connecticut State’s 5th Congressional District U.S. Senator Chris Murphy’s sixth annual Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Essay Challenge.

The essay can be read at murphy.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/cd_5_lyndon_tessier.pdf.


Five high school students also receive awards

Five Immaculate High School students are the winners of the school’s 2022 Scholastic Fine Arts and Writing Awards. The awards honor the bold ideas of creative teenagers each year.

The winners in the writing category are: Caitlin Doherty, from the school’s class of 2022, and Matthew Reeves, from the school’s class of 2022.

The arts category winners are: Julong Williams, from the school’s Class of 2022, Anna Kopec, from the school’s Class of 2023, and Caroline Tucker, from the school’s Class of 2023.

An awards ceremony will be virtual via Zoom on Saturday, February 12 from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.


Immaculate High School Mock Trial Team Members Recognized

Members of the Immaculate High School Mock Trial team have been recognized for their performance in a mock trial regarding a civil case involving a football injury that a football player once sustained during a football tournament.

The Mock Trial program is sponsored by Civics First School. The program teaches an understanding of trial law, language, communication, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills in a real trial setting.

Students compete with their peers throughout Connecticut. Attorney Mary Caitlin Cronin and attorney Kristin Chiriatti have volunteered to prepare the team for the 2022 Trials competitions.

Allie Bellone of Redding, received the award for best plaintiffs’ side counsel. Nikolas Badinelli from Danbury, was awarded the second best lawyer. Ben Gasparinni of Ridgefield, received the best witness award.

Carolyn Jandura of Redding, received the Best Defense Counsel award. Gavin Buttafuoco of New Fairfield, was awarded second best lawyer.

Ernst Koch from Danbury, received the third best witness. Jude Vail, from Brookfield, was also one of the students who took part in the competition.

The 2022 team recently moved on to the next round of competition on Friday, February 4.

Results are pending submission.


Immaculate Engineering Team Students Win State Competition

The Immaculate High School Brave Engineers team won the 2022 Real World Design Challenge State Champion Governor’s Award.

The students were recognized as being the most innovative students.

They were: Nikolas Badinelli, Carolyn Jandura, Mario Perez, Paulina Garcia, Ava Viola, Yipeng Zhao and Nicole Radliff.

“Unmanned Aircraft System Challenge: Airspace Integration of UAS Package Delivery” was the title of the challenge. The activity asked the participating teams to design a drone under certain constraints to deliver parcels in an urban environment. The team followed safety guidelines and built a business case that pays off for the city and a business.

Jeanine Antonios, a math and engineering teacher at Immaculate High School, coaches the team. Ruthanne Szumski, technical manager of Pratt and Whitney Aircraft Engines, supervises the team.


Immaculate High School Student Receives Congressional Award

Immaculate High School student Caroline Tucker will receive the Congressional Award for service as a student teacher at the Children’s Leadership Institute at an upcoming ceremony in Washington, DC.

Tucker has already been recognized by the US Congress for her 400 qualifying volunteer hours for organizations like the Danbury Children’s Leadership Institute.

Tucker is part of the school’s Class of 2022. Tucker is also a top college student and advocate for service to others.


A professor will present four virtual conferences on the climate, its impact

Western Connecticut State University Biology Professor Dr. Stephen “Mitch” Wagener Presents Free Monthly Plus Virtual Lectures “Earth in Crisis: Earth’s Climate Change and Its Impact on Us” for the Public , the last Monday of the month, from January to April.

Registration is available at danburylibrary.evanced.info/signup/EventDetails?EventId=36789&backTo=Calendar&startDate=2022/02/01, or on the Danbury Library website at danburylibrary.org for Zoom links to lectures.

The events are courtesy of WestConn’s Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences and Danbury Library.

The conferences are intended for anyone aged 16 and over.

Danbury Library’s Technology Program Coordinator, Aurelio Muraca, can be contacted at [email protected], WestConn’s public relations office at [email protected], for more information.

Wagener is also an ecologist and climate change educator who teaches climate ecology, entomology and related courses in school.


Danbury Mad Hatter Chorus Receives $5,900 Operating Support Grant

Danbury Mad Hatter Chorus member Barbershop Harmony Society received a Connecticut Cultural Fund operating support grant of $5,900 from Connecticut Humanities.

Connecticut Humanities is a statewide, nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

The Chorus plans to use the funds to buy music, improve the technology it uses for virtual meetings, performances, increase its marketing reach and public relations, and grow its membership.

The Chorus was one of 624 organizations in the state to recently receive support from Connecticut Humanities. The support totaled $16 million for Connecticut Humanities.

The grant the choir received is part of $30.7 million in support that is being allocated to nonprofit arts, humanities, and cultural organizations through Connecticut Humanities over the next two years by the Connecticut General Assembly and approved by Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont.

The grant will help organizations recover from the coronavirus pandemic and maintain and grow their capacity to serve their community.

Connecticut Humanities administered the grant with funding provided by the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development and the Connecticut Office of the Arts state agency of the Connecticut General Assembly.

The Chorus is also an international group of men and women dedicated to preserving an original American art form called Barbershop Harmony.

The choir has performed and contributed to music education programs in western Connecticut since the 1960s.

Connecticut Humanities’ projects, administration, and program development are supported by state and federal matching funds, community foundations, and donations from private sources.

Visit cthumanities, org for more information.

New Milford

Community Culinary School recruiting students for upcoming sessions

The Community Culinary School of Northwestern Connecticut is recruiting students for its new class sessions starting with a class scheduled to begin Monday, April 18.

Classes will be held Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Parish Hall of St. John’s Episcopal Church. The church is located at 7 Whittlesey Ave. in New Milford.

Chef Blythe Roberts will teach the course. Tuition is free for qualified candidates for the 12 weeks of hands-on cooking training.

Students gain hands-on experience by helping to prepare and serve the meals they serve.

For more information about applying or to learn more about the program, contact Dawn Hammacott, executive director of the Community Culinary School of Northwestern Connecticut, at 203-512-5791, or culinaryschoolsbcglobal.net, or visit communityculinary.org.


Woman’s Club members raise approximately $1,700 for area charities

Members of the Woman’s Club of Danbury and New Fairfield braved the cold in the parking lot of Hatters Park in Danbury recently on Thursday, January 27, to raise around $1,700 in donations for area charities. Members of the Woman’s Club Health and Wellness Committee raised approximately $800 worth of paper, cleaning supplies and personal hygiene products through this effort.

The items were donated to the non-profit organization Catholic Charities, Market Place.

Approximately $900 worth of non-perishable food items were also collected for the Religious Communities Association non-profit organization to distribute through the organization’s Comida food pantry program which distributes items to families in the needs of the region.

Ladies who join the Woman’s Club must complete a freshman project. The group of new members also recently collected cleaning supplies, bedding, toys, food and treats to donate to the Danbury Animal Welfare Society. The items will support the care of the animals, which are waiting to be adopted.

The Woman’s Club motto Caring, Sharing, and Giving was also demonstrated by all members’ support of community organizations.

Hatters Park is located at 155 Deer Hill Ave. in the city.

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