Four high school bandmates returned to their first spotlight at the Newtown Teen Center August 16. The Screw Ups — all 2008 Newtown High School graduates — have been enjoying a growing success since then. The band — a ska/jazz/funk/reggae sound — has grown despite distance from one another, and from venues in Boston and Rhode Island. Since graduation they have become popular in the Massachusetts and New England areas. Bass player Kyle Kearney and drummer Dave Manville now live in Boston, while alto sax player Nico Bonvini and guitarist and songwriter Julian Wahlberg live in town.
“One more time?” asked Leaps of Faith Disabled Waterski Club President Joel Zeisler.
Calling back from the water where he clung to a ski rope, Avi Golden said, “Two more times. Three more times.” Moments earlier he had managed to lift himself out of a crouch and water ski briefly before the rope slipped his grasp. Excited to have been up on the surf ski after repeatedly losing his balance, Mr Golden was ready to try again. He gave a smile and a thumbs up to Mr Zeisler, who positioned the boat for another run.
Only 35 seconds long and with more than 850,000 views, a video of resident Ron Kroha’s English springer spaniels begins with his voice: “Let me see if it’s ready, I’ve got to check…”
Scampering on a hardwood floor and occasionally spinning with excitement are Hope and Rosey. He asks them, “Girls, are you hungry?” They appear eager for their dinner.
Mr Kroha then sings, “It’s ready! It’s dinnertime, it’s dinnertime. Hope and Rosey, want their dinnertime.”
Five Scout’s Angels service dogs wagged their tails outside The Villa restaurant Tuesday afternoon, August 13. They watched as people crossed the parking lot. The dogs and handlers, visiting Newtown from Denver to bring comfort to the community, soon met guests at an outdoor patio.
Sandy Hook Promise representative James Belden said his organization, which formed after 12/14, has helped to arrange venues for the guests, and “get them into the community and get as much exposure as possible.”
On Friday morning, August 9, Dave Ackert, chairman of The Newtown Foundation, and Steve Stuhmer and Geoffrey Schiffenhaus of the Kraft Group Family of Businesses Rand Whitney in Newtown hovered over the design table in the Edmond Road container company’s design room. On the table lay one of eight sculptures that make up the “Meditation On Mourning” installation, recently released by its creator to The Newtown Foundation “so that it can help in our efforts to raise awareness of the impact that gun violence has on families, as well as to aid in the healing and transformational work we do,” said Mr Ackert.
Newtown resident Adell Mastro returned to the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference for the third time this year, with a competition quilt in hand. And for the third consecutive year, Ms Mastro returned home knowing that her handiwork earned the largest amount of money to support SkillsUSA through the annual conference auction. Ms Mastro’s quilt this year was called “Finding Your Way.” Its theme was tools, and each square had to do with “various tools or trade organizations,” she said. A mariner’s compass was the focal point of the front of the piece, which also included a lot of red, white and blue. Dedicated to 12/14, the back of the quilt featured a pattern with six hearts surrounded by another 20 hearts. A dedication square on the work included notes about using a compass to find one’s way, “whether to go home or on an adventure,” Ms Mastro explained. A green and white ribbon was pinned to the dedication square. The quilt was purchased by the same woman from Texas who has won Ms Mastro’s quilts through auction the past two years.
Admiring the bell peppers’ rich, dark color, Grace Pisano purchased her produce Tuesday, August 6, at The Farmers Market at Fairfield Hills. Sue Shortt of Shortt’s Farm & Garden Center bagged the peppers for Ms Pisano. Also for sale in the Sandy Hook farm's booth were were baskets spilling over with eggplant, cherry tomatoes, and fresh fruit. Elsewhere on the sunny afternoon, shoppers had their picks of fresh fruit, succulents and other plants, baked goods, lemonade, and even caramel corn.