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The Top of the Mountain

Dancers from The Gray School of Irish Dance had a busy St Patrick’s Day season this year. Of course, it’s one of their busiest times of the year, with performances in local parades celebrating their talents, and this year students from the various schools — located in Newtown, Danbury, Ridgefield, and elsewhere — had performances in Danbury, Essex, and Norwich St Patrick’s Day parades, a program at Danbury Library, and other events across the state. To cap the March 15–16 weekend, the school was featured in a segment on CBS Good Morning with Charles Osgood. Among those welcoming the dancers to the television studio was CBS News Correspondent Margaret Brennan, who danced with Gray School for many years.

Nana the nanny dog from the NHS production of Peter Pan did not even notice me crouched among the record crowd at Saturday night’s performance. I did observe something that made me a wild cat, though. The high school is kind enough to bow to a public that cannot make it through a two-hour performance without sustenance, allowing snacks and water to be brought into the auditorium. But what’s this? One family proceeded to snack nonstop through the play, “crinkle, crinkle, crinkle” with the bags of candy and chips and “slurp, slurp, slurp” from the bottles. The worst of it, though, was using the auditorium floor as one big garbage bag, leaving behind empty bags and candy wrappers strewn all around their seats. It doesn’t seem the kind of example parents would want to set for their children, and at the very least, was disrespectful to the custodians who had to clean up after them. If the high school was to rescind its decision to allow food in the auditorium, it would not surprise me in the least — and frankly, I’d be pleased enough to purr.

Congratulations to the NHS Nighthawks hockey team for its Division III State Championship win! The Nighthawks conquered E.O. Smith/Tolland 2-1, last Saturday night. Senior Dan Harrison was out with a broken wrist early on, but rest of the team went on to make the whole community pretty darn proud.

If your heart has been heavy since Tony Posca closed Andrea’s Bakery on Queen Street two years ago, cheer up. Tony is back, and just a hop, skip, and a jump away from Newtown. The Bake and Cake Café opens April 2, at 316C Main Street South, in Southbury. Opening at 8 am, he promises doughnuts hot from the oven, and lots of his other sweet treats.

Inspired by “The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Takes on Alzheimer’s,” the Alzheimer’s Association is calling on one million women to use their amazing brains to help wipe out Alzheimer’s disease. Share “Why Your Brain Works,” a 130-character blurb about the marvel of your brain, at www.alz.org/mybrain, and find out more about how to support research for a disease that more women over the age of 60 are likely to get than breast cancer.

The Sandy Hook 5K second annual race to honor the memories of the victims and support those affected by the events of 12/14 takes place this coming Saturday morning, March 29, at Fairfield Hills. Nearly 1,200 adults and 125 children will be participating in the race, and more than 100 others will participate virtually in their own communities. What a beautiful show of support.

Compiler/editor Suzanne Davenport still has copies of Letters from Sandy Hook-Newtown to the World available, and will be set up at RIS twice this weekend. She will be at the school Friday, March 28, from 5 to 8 pm, while organizers of the Sandy Hook 5K are on site to hand out early bird registration packets. She will also be at the school Saturday morning, from 7:30 until 10 am. The book has letters from approximately 100 current and former residents of town who share stories of growing up, moving away from, or their favorite parts of town. Copies are $29.95, and proceeds will go to The Newtown Memorial Fund and other local charities.

“Re-imagined,” the current show at Ridgefield Guild of Artists, includes work by Sandy Hook artist Liz Alpert Fay. Curated by RGA Creative Director Kim Hanna, the exhibition explores the idea of reconceptualizing, repurposing and reimagining as a visual art form. “Re-imagined” is on view until April 27 at the RGA galery7, 34 Halpin Lane, Ridgefield. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday, noon to 4 pm; call 203-438-8863 or visit www.RGOA.org for additional information.

Everyone always wants the cute little ducky or bunny when Eastertime comes around. But how about a snuggly kitty or dog? The Green Fur Kidz are hosting a pet adoption day this Saturday, March 29, at Your Healthy Pet, 224 South Main Street, from 11 am to 3 pm. If you are considering adding to your pet family, stop by and see if yours is the forever home these dogs are seeking.

Saturday Night Open Mic, a popular series for poets, jugglers, singers, comics, musicians, and other entertainers in grades 5–12 takes place Saturday, March 29, from 7 to 9 pm, in The Great Room at Newtown Congregational Church, 14 West Street. Suggested donation is $1. Adult family members attending are invited to bring a drink or snack to share. First come, first served signup starts at 6:45 pm, and doors will open by 6:30 pm for those who wish to wait in line to sign up. There are 5-minute spots for about 20 performers. Microphones, keyboard, guitar amp, and more will be available, for live music only. Youth under grade six must have a parent or guardian present. For additional information contact Jim at 203-270-9659 or jimallyn24@aol.com.

An Interfaith Seder will be held Sunday, April 6, at Newtown United Methodist Church, 92 Church Hill Road. Volunteers are needed to help to make this a success. No special culinary skills are needed. Donated items such as celery, parsley, peeled hard boiled eggs, bottled horseradish, bottled non-kosher grape juice, etc, are needed. If you would like to volunteer, reach out to Seder co-chairs Betsy Kraushaar at betsykraushaar@charter.net or Kathryn Wolfe at scottwolf02@gmail.com, or call the NUMC parish office at 203-426-9998. Meanwhile, spaces are filling quickly for those who want to attend. Suggested donation is $5 per person. Checks, made payable to NUMC, with names of attendees, can be sent to NUMC by March 31. Proceeds from the Seder will go to FAITH Food Pantry.

The NY Daily News reports that all North Korean men must now sport the same hair-do as their leader, Kim Jong Un. It’s the only option available at any barbershop now, apparently. I’ve tried to imagine myself with my ears sticking out above the high, tight fade, and come to the conclusion that it’s a good thing I’m not living in that particular country. Vive le difference (in haircuts, especially)!

“An Ancient Prophecy, A Powerful Relic, An Insatiable Evil” — they are all part of the young adult fantasy novel Candlewax, by local author C. Bailey Sims (starring a feline hero, my favorite part). If you didn’t read the print copy when it was first published in 2012, you can now get the book in Kindle edition, for just $2.99. The best news of all, the author is putting the finishing touches on the sequel to Candlewax and the continuing adventures of Spelopokos, the fairrier cat, and Princess Catherine. I’m rubbing my paws together in anticipation...

No doubt, you are rubbing your hands together in anticipation of next week’s news. I hope you will take the time to… Read me again.

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