Elle Sauli has been crowned Miss Northern States Jr Teen 2014. The 13-year-old from Newtown, who will begin her freshman year at Newtown High School this week, won the title during the New England Miss American Coed (MAC) Pageant. The event was held at the Radisson Hotel in Nashua, N.H., August 15-17. “I was stunned when then said my name,” Elle said this week. “I felt crazy, absolutely insane,” when her title was announced, she added. The 2014 pageant represented the third time Elle competed in the pageant. It was the first time for her to compete in the Junior Teen division, which pitted her against 13 other girls. While her next competitive appearance will be in November when she travels to Orlando, Fla., for national competition, Elle is already looking forward to her first public appearance with her new crown and sash. She will be joining Miss Connecticut and Miss Connecticut Teen next Monday for the Newtown Labor Day Parade.
“Pie is not about perfection,” Beth Howard told the Beloved Book Group Gals of Newtown, when she was visiting in March 2013. Ms Howard, from Iowa, is the author of Making Piece: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Pie, and travels the country bringing the message of “piece” — and pie making — to people needing comfort. Whether dealing with life or dealing with a testy pie crust, Ms Howard suggests always moving forward with confidence.
It may have been warm when the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge began gaining steam earlier this month, but the owners and employees of Newtown Veterinary Specialists ended up taking the challenge on one of the summer’s cooler days. Nevertheless, nearly two dozen people stood on the side lawn of the Church Hill Road 24-hour veterinary emergency and specialty hospital Friday afternoon and poured buckets of ice water over themselves. One of this summer’s big fads, the Ice Bucket Challenge involves people getting doused with buckets of ice water, capturing this on video, and posting that video to social media with a nomination — or, the challenge — for someone else to do the same. Those who accept the dare can consider themselves part of a growing group of people of all ages, many of whom have used Facebook to continue the trend, to solicit donations for The ALS Association. NVS Director of Hospital Operations Bernadette Vinci, MS, was the motivation behind the business deciding to do the ice water dump.
Two of Connecticut’s most accommodating municipal concert venues drew massive crowds recently hosting acts with broad appeal based on the multigenerational makeup of audiences who turned out to enjoy the music and perfect weather that has kissed the state throughout late summer. On Thursday, August 14, the Performing Arts Center at Simsbury Meadows and Premier Concerts brought in the Tedeschi Trucks Band with opening support form The Wood brothers. Both acts complimented each other as The Wood Brothers warmed up the Simsbury venue with their unique brand of rootsy ballads and rockers. Four night’s later, Danbury’s Ives Concert Park was equally packed – nearly selling out the second of two major headline shows hosted by the rustic venue this summer.
Sunshine on Saturday, August 16 caught bright ribbons rippling. Hula hoops spun and children played while local musicians Susan Lang, Bill Wisnowski and Leif Smith — a/k/a My Dad’s Truck — performed folk music at the Sandy Hook Village Green. Sandy Hook Organization for Prosperity (SHOP) members recently announced the first of what they hope will be an annual “Choose Love” Outdoor Summer Concert Series in downtown Sandy Hook Village. Free concerts, coupled with arts and crafts for children, will continue on Saturday afternoons until September 13. All performances are free of charge, and are suitable for all ages. Last weekend, during the afternoon event hosted by Sandy Hook Organization for Prosperity (SHOP), Melissa Lopata, who serves as SHOP’s Marketing Director, was glad to see people enjoying the first of five concerts. “We’re excited about bringing arts and culture to the community,” she said.
Tory Gozzi is eager to get students into a new ballet and voice space. Ms Gozzi, the artistic director and owner of Newtown Centre of Classical Ballet & Voice (NCCB), said recently. Finding a new space was among Ms Gozzi’s goals when she took over NCCB in 2013. The new studio at South Main Commons “looks beautiful — I’m so excited." NCCB will host a grand opening celebration at the new studio on Saturday, August 30, from 11 am to 2 pm. The afternoon will include face painting, games, raffles, demonstrations, food, and more. South Main Commons is at 87 South Main Street; the studio is in Suite 1.