"The Home Energy Solutions (HES) program that is funded by a small fee on our electric bills is offering FREE home energy audits until the end of 2020. There are new, more generous rebates for efficiency improvements, with no-cost efficiency work for those who are income eligible. There are larger incentive payments for windows, air or ground source heat pumps, or insulation, and the audit includes several free conservation measures during the visit. The program is free if you have not had an audit in the past 36 months. This revised program is designed to make up for the time lost this year because of the pandemic, and includes new safety procedures to cope with COVID19. One of them is a virtual pre-audit by phone. You can apply for a free home audit by phone at 1-877-WISE-USE (9473-873) or online at www.energizect.com ."
Monday, August 31, 2020
Sunday, August 30, 2020
Middletown’s Sustainability Team and Clean Energy Task Force have proposed a resolution to Mayor Florsheim and to the Common Council, declaring a climate emergency and resolving to take local action to reduce carbon emissions and to pressure state and federal leaders to face this crisis.
To illustrate the magnitude of the climate crisis, consider this. For the past 800,000 years, the concentration of atmospheric CO2 varied between 180 and 280 parts per million (ppm) as the earth’s climate fluctuated between ice ages and warm spells. In the last 170 years, since 1850, when the industrial revolution accelerated the burning of fossil fuels, atmospheric CO2 has increased from 280 to over 410 ppm. Is that serious? The last time the earth’s atmosphere had 410 ppm was in the Pliocene era, approximately 4 million years ago. In the Pliocene, sea level varied 10-25 meters higher than at present, and the coastline of Virginia was 90 miles inland from its present location. (See photo.) If we stay at 410 ppm, eventually the delayed warming will catch up to the CO2 level and the eastern seaboard of the United States will be completely underwater. (Green dots show location of shoreline in the Pliocene era.)
To avoid the worst climate catastrophe, we need to look beyond the pandemic and the November elections that are consuming the public’s attention. Since state and federal governments have proved themselves incapable of an adequate response, action needs to come from the grassroots and local governments. To register your support of local climate action, sign the petition which will be forwarded to city officials. You will be informed when further support for climate action is needed.
Sign The Petition on the Jonah Center website here.
Friday, August 21, 2020
August 31st Start Date - Apply Now!
Oddfellows Playhouse Youth Theater in Middletown, CT is hiring a Program Manager for the fall season of outdoor and online classes and potentially beyond. This is a part-time, hourly position, approximately 25 hours per week.
coordination and support of our fall series of outdoor classes in Middletown
communication with families
coordination of teaching staff and teaching assistants
marketing and outreach, including social media
managing program safety according to CDC guidelines
communication with bus company, schools and other partners
*The position will require some in-person work indoors in a safe work environment, as well as supervising outdoor after-school classes.
The ideal candidate has:
an attention to detail
is completely reliable
communicates well with families, students and staff
understands the unique attributes of teaching performing arts
can assess and respond to risk factors effectively
has experience as a teacher
is comfortable maintaining safety protocols and managing behavior
enjoys working in a fluid, diverse environment
has a positive attitude and will represent the organization well
People of color are encouraged to apply. Spanish a plus.
This is an immediate opening, scheduled to start work August 31.
Please send a short cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.
We're an equal opportunity employer. All applicants will be considered for employment without attention to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, veteran or disability status
Thursday, August 20, 2020
Yoga at the Mansion
to benefit The Rockfall Foundation
Monday, August 17, 2020
Information Session to be Held September 10
The Rockfall Foundation is now accepting applications for its 2021 Annual Environmental Grants Program, available to non-profit organizations, municipalities, and schools. The Environmental Grants are for projects and programs that support the environment through conservation, preservation, restoration or education in the Lower Connecticut River Valley, which includes Middlesex County as well as Lyme and Old Lyme.
“Through all the challenges this year, The Rockfall Foundation remains committed to supporting community projects,” said Amanda Kenyon, Grants and Communications Coordinator. “It’s been a hard year for many organizations, and we’re adapting our grants process to acknowledge that. We want to ensure a sustainable future.”
All interested applicants are encouraged to attend a virtual information session on September 10. Applications are due by November 10. More information is available at www.rockfallfoundation.org/grants.The Rockfall Foundation has awarded over a half million dollars since the inception of its grant program in 1972. The Rockfall Foundation also operates the historic deKoven House Community Center that offers meeting and event room rentals and office space for non-profit organizations.
For additional information about The Rockfall Foundation and the grant programs, or to make a tax-deductible donation, please visit www.rockfallfoundation.org or call 860-347-0340.
Sunday, August 16, 2020
Thursday, August 13, 2020
Welcome to Middlesex Community College's campus for Super Saturday—a one-stop, in-person fall semester registration event on Saturday, August 15. Hours are from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The campus is located at 100 Training Hill Road in Middletown.
Wednesday, August 12, 2020
COMMENTARY: This opinion piece is written by Ed McKeon who is one of the founders of The Middletown Eye, and a Common Council member. This is McKeon's individual opinion and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of any other elected official, or the City of Middletown.
To say I am disappointed is an understatement.
I am shocked. I am angry. And I am disgusted.
Yesterday I found out that a former Common Council member had filed a request to gather petition signatures for referendum item to rename the new middle school for President Woodrow Wilson.
|Amos G. Beman|
Despite being president, there is no historical doubt that Woodrow Wilson was a self-avowed segregationist and a racist.
Don't get me wrong, any citizen has a right to petition the government, by our charter (though there is still some consideration in this case whether the petition request is legal). Such a petition is required to acquire signatures from 10% of the registered voters in town by a deadline 60 days before the election. All petitions, and the signatures thereon, are public information.
In this case, considering the facts, I can only come to a single conclusion.
If you are gathering signatures to honor a racist. It's a racist act.
If you sign a petition to honor a racist. It's a racist act.
I'm shocked that proponents of the "Wilson" name are still beating a dead horse.
The name was vetted by a Board of Ed naming committee, approved by the committee and the Board of Education, was approved by the City's Public Works commission, was given a public hearing according to charter by the Common Council, and was voted in a unanimous majority by the Common Council (with one abstention).
The opposition offered a number of arguments in opposition (though they did not, with a very few exceptions, show support at the Common Council public hearing). Some arguments were more convincing than others: alumni had sentimental attachment to the old name (perfectly understandable); alumni had been promised the Wilson name would remain on the school (no evidence was offered); the minority, Republican party was not included on the original naming committee (a Republican member was appointed, but didn't or wouldn't show up to meetings, and even though he is chair of the local party, did not find a replacement); that bonding was somehow at risk (it wasn't and isn't); that there was more public support for the "Wilson" name than for Beman Middle School (there wasn't): and that "the process" was "not fair" or "not adequate" or "not thorough" (after nearly a year of research, consideration, debate and open, public decision-making, this argument is just silly).
So this last ditch effort to strip the school of a name honoring a prominent Africa-American Middletown family and to resurrect a name honoring an old bigot, is just a puzzle and a terrible shame.
Here's what I said the night the Common Council voted to accept the Beman name.
We live in terribly divided times. Today, our country has been saddled with a president who is a racist, and worse still, consistently encourages other racists to spew their bigoted hatred. I’m afraid we can’t view this controversy through any other lens.
Woodrow Wilson was a racist. He was a self-avowed segregationist. As president, he implemented Jim Crow segregation in federal offices by saying he was: “seeking, not to put the Negro employees at a disadvantage but ... to make arrangements which would prevent any kind of friction between the white employees and the Negro employees.”
Imagine that, separate bathrooms. "Because it was good for them." Separate water fountains. "Because it was good for them." Separate pay scales. "Because it was good for them."
You’ve heard it before, right?
Separate schools. "Because it was good for them." Separate seats on the bus, in the back. "Because it was good for them." Separate voting rules. "Because it was good for them."
You and I know what Woodrow Wilson, and every other bigot who followed him through the 20th century was really saying. Not, "it’s good for them." They were saying "it’s good for us.”
Legally sanctioned segregation no longer exists, but the shadow is long, and the prejudices and fears still scar our country. So, we will not again, name a school after a racist. Because if we did, we’d be honoring a racist. And when a community honors a racist, that community will be seen as racist. And we will not allow this for Middletown.
It is not rewriting history. It is “righting” r-i-g-h-t-i-n-g history. Making it right. Making it correct. Making it true.
And that’s what we’ll do tonight when we name the new middle school after the amazing Beman family. A family whose patriarch Cesar Beaman named himself after he found freedom fighting in the American Revolution.
Talk about a founding father. He help found the country. He found his freedom. He found himself. He founded a community. And he founded a family name. Beman, because he would no longer be a slave. He would no longer be someone else’s property. He would no longer be overlooked, and powerless. He would Be A Man.
Beman. It’s a powerful name.
And his family, they were soldiers, and merchants, abolitionists, preachers, entrepreneurs, teachers, founders of a prominent Middletown Church, Cross Street AME Zion, founders of a free black community, respected fighters for the rights of African American men and women.
As I said, it’s a divided time. But we’re on the verge of important changes. We have been shocked, as a nation, into a realization that we must fight racism wherever we find it. We have come to a realization that Black Lives Matter, and that it’s time to stop talking and to take action. So tonight we will take action. And tonight we will recognize, finally, the Beman’s place in Middletown history, and the history of this country. We will bestow an appropriate name on a school so that every child can be proud learning in a school named for true giants in the history of fighting for freedom.
With that being said, I encourage my fellow Middletown resident to withdraw the request for petitions. And, if such petition goes forward, I request my neighbors and community members not to sign.
And I make a vow to spare no energy in my opposition to any referendum that supports racism in Middletown.
Tuesday, August 11, 2020
The doors of The Buttonwood Tree Performing Arts Center currently remain closed
as we continue to prioritize the safety of our community during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis,
however, the show must go on! We remain dedicated to bringing music and art to our community
through our five ongoing Zoom programs which can be accessed via our website buttonwood.org.
Our weekly program schedule is as follows:
Mondays 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm ZOOM Anything Goes Open Mic & Moments of Gratitude:
Sign up starts at 6:30 pm, the open mic at 7:00 pm. During the open mic we also host
Moments of Gratitude, sharing our gratitude to build positive energy and encouragement!
A donation of $5 per person is suggested.
Tuesdays 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm ZOOM Laughter Yoga with Myléne: These days we must
increase our immune system - and laughter is a good, and fun way to do that. Laughter
decreases stress hormones and increases immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies,
thus improving your resistance to disease. Laughter triggers the release of endorphins,
the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. This activity is sure to brighten up your day.
A donation of $5 per person is suggested.
Thursdays 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm ZOOM Acoustic Open Mic with Bob Gotta: Bob is creating and
performing his music and will host online Open Mic as usual. Sign ups start at 6:00 pm!
A donation of $5 per person is suggested.
Saturdays 10:30 am – 12:00 pm ZOOM Align with Source - A Spiritual Empowerment Workshop with
Annaita Gandhi: “As our world moves into a higher frequency, the 5th Dimension, our series of
ongoing workshops offer guidance in understanding events and making the required shifts within
ourselves. These are wonderful times and opportunities to create a beautiful new world on a higher
level, one of love, truth, and integrity serving ALL.” To attend this program please contact
The Buttonwood Tree directly for the Zoom information.
Sunday, August 23, 1:00 pm: ZOOM Our newest episode of The Listening Tree: The Listening Tree
Talk Show's next guests are K9-Koda and Officer Matthew Bloom from the Middletown, CT, Police
Department. K-9 Koda is a well-trained dog who is very popular in the Middletown, CT community.
He is part of the Police K-9 Unit. In a team effort with his handler, Officer Bloom, Koda helps make
the community a safer place to live. Tune in to The Listening Tree on our Facebook Live and YouTube
channel. You can watch the first two episodes via our website.
TBT Talk: In an effort to provide more digital content to our Buttonwood community, we have launched
TBT Talk, The Buttonwood’s new podcast. Each week, two of our “sensational six” summer interns will
sit down with artists, performers, instructors, and familiar faces at The Buttonwood to find
out the role they play in making The Buttonwood an internationally recognized performing arts center
and learn how they got involved in what they love to do.
TBT Talk is a weekly podcast and will be releasing new episodes every Saturday. It is streaming on all major podcast platforms like Spotify,
Apple Podcasts, and Google Podcasts. The best part is that it is completely free! We know you’re dying to listen…
All you have to do is search “TBT Talk” on those podcast platforms! Episode one is already on Spotify featuring Terri Lachance and the next
episode will be released soon and featuring Deni Young.
We hope to see many new and returning faces in these weekly events and look forward to seeing
you all back in The Buttonwood Tree in the future!
Friday, August 7, 2020
Your vote is important.
As a follow-up to the information received by Frank that I just posted, I called the town clerk's office because I have not yet received my ballot. The person I spoke to at the town clerk's office stated that 1,700 people still have not received their ballots, and the town clerk's office is working very hard to get all remaining ballots to the post office today.
As I understand it, the problem stems from an issue with the private company that was handling the ballots, and that company is no longer contracted by the state.
As long as you receive your ballot by Tuesday, you can fill it out and drop it off at one of the drop boxes, which is my plan as it certainly doesn't make sense to mail it back because it likely would not be received back on time.
What about those people who may not be able to drop off their ballots?
What about those who may never receive the ballot before Tuesday or at all?
Go to the poll if you are able to, and demand better for our November election.
Let's learn from our mistakes and avoid repeating them.
Every vote is important.
Update: our state's absentee ballot woes made national news. Here ia a CNN article explaining more about it:
Submitted by Frank Logiudice
Tuesday, August 11, 2020 will be the Connecticut Presidential Preference Primary across the state. Voters affiliated with the Democratic & Republican political parties will be able to cast their ballots to decide who will be their party’s nominee for president for the November 3, 2020 presidential election. The voting hours are from 6 a.m. until 8 p.m.
Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic Governor Ned Lamont signed an executive order allowing all people to vote by absentee ballot by checking off the box labeled COVID-19. Applications were sent out to all voters in July. According to Middletown Town Clerk Ashley Flynn-Natale she stated
Elizabeth Santangelo-Democratic Registrar or David Bauer-Republican Registrar. Their email addresses are
Information above courtesy of Frank Logiudice