Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Free Financial Literacy Workshop!

One of the goals of the United Way Women’s Initiative is to ensure that women have the education and tools to be independent and self-sufficient. To help meet this goal the Women’s Initiative is sponsoring a free workshop called “Understanding Money & Credit” on Thursday, December 2 at 9:30 a.m. at Middlesex Community College. This event is not restricted to women - anyone is welcome to attend. The workshop will last about 90 minutes and breakfast is provided.

During this workshop you will:

  • Assess your current financial situation
  • Learn how to set financial goals
  • Understand the cost of credit
  • Create a budget based on your income

You will receive a free workbook to help you
on your path to financial stability. The first 50
participants also receive a free padfolio with

And did we mention it’s free?

More location details: @Chapman Hall (C & D)
Middlesex Community College
100 Training Hill Rd, Middletown

Jill Davoll at Middlesex
United Way, (860) 346-8695

Monday, November 29, 2010

CMI completes a successful first season – watch out, 2011, here we come!

The Community Music Initiative is a new NEAT program that builds North End community through participation in music. CMI has been running Saturday music events in the neighborhood every other week since September. Though the program is finished for this year, we’ll be back every other Saturday starting January 29th, 2011!

The first five CMI events have shown how fortunate we are to have an incredibly enthusiastic, creative, and musical neighborhood! Saturday events demonstrate increasing and committed attendance, from 25 participants at our first event to 53 at our fifth. CMI participants have been jumping into music-making with open minds and lots of energy, from young volunteers leading sections of the singing circle to older participants demonstrating drum beats for everyone to jam on. And best of all, people are making friends and making connections. One young CMI student now affectionately refers to another volunteer as her “adopted sister.” Performing together, singing together, and drumming together – we are getting to know each other.

Ana and Paige performing.

Jon and Aaron singing.

Our most recent workshop was especially musical and meaningful. Andrew Fogliano led us in Nyabinghi drumming which is a kind of group music where you drum and sing about life. And what did we sing about? Middletown, of course! We split up into small groups and made up short verses about the place we all live. Sometimes people disagreed (I like ____ restaurant better than ____) and sometimes they found common ground (I love going to the library, too). While making music together, CMI participants also learned about Middletown and each other.

Drumming and singing about life in Middletown.

A huge thanks to everyone who has supported the Community Music Initiative this fall. Thank you to workshop leaders, students, volunteers, and participants at our events. And a special shout-out to Roger Dufour, James Bendzinski, Betsy Gabriel, and Trisha Boirie for their consistent help making CMI Saturdays run smoothly.

Group photo, November 20th! Thanks Bruce Morin and Izzi Greenberg for all the fabulous photos along the way!

Stay tuned! CMI will post soon about a plan to go CAROLING. We’ll sing fun group songs with no particular religious-affiliation, travel around the neighborhood, and share some hot chocolate and snacks. If you’d like to be involved or help out, please email emily@neatmiddletown.org or call NEAT and ask for Emily (860 346 4845).

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Macdonough Environmental Club with International Aspects

Maybe you can go home again — at least for a little while. At least that’s what 9-year-old Kendalyn Zipf thinks as she sits in a classroom at Macdonough Elementary School eagerly awaiting for the Skype call to go through.

The group — made up of fourth- and fifth-graders involved in the Environmental Club — is calling students in Ghana, an effort that is supposed to encourage cultural connections between students from foreign lands. The term “foreign,” however, is relative as students participating in the “Dear Mother…Letters to the Earth” project come from all walks of life, from all parts of the world. Some students are from the southern portion of the United States, affected by Hurricane Katrina. Others were affected by the oil spill locally and overseas, according to principal, Jon Romeo.

The brainchild of composer Glenn McClure, the project was kick started as a tribute to the College of the Environment on Wesleyan University’s campus, a program launched this past year. In April, McClure, a faculty member at New York’s Eastman School of Music, hopes to perform a musical composition he is in the process of producing. As a supplement to the piece, McClure will incorporate letters, poems and drawings depicting young students’ perspectives on “Mother Earth.”

Monday, November 22, 2010

CHC Groundbreaking

Today was the groundbreaking for the new Community Health Center building on Main St. and Grand St. in the North End. There were lots of great people in attendance, including kids from Macdonough Elementary School, Senator Dodd, neighbors, doctors and friends. Congratulations to CHC for the start of a terrific new project.

Friday, November 12, 2010

West African Drumming & Dance Workshop

Green Street Arts Center presents: West African Drumming & Dance Workshop
with teaching artists Jocelyn Pleasant and Lovette Caesar-Johnson

Saturday, November 13th | 1-3pm
Regular: $20 | Family/Friends, Student/Senior: $17 | Member: $16

Explore the rhythms and music of West Africa through drumming and dance. Guinean rhythms along with the corresponding dances will be taught. All participants, whether you choose to drum or dance, will gain a deeper understanding of the relationship between musicians and dancers in this rich and exciting experience.

Call 860-685-7871 or email gsac@wesleyan.edu for more information.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The State of Native Connecticut: A Panel Discussion

Join the conversation about on of the most relevant topics in Connecticut: Green Street hosts The State of Native Connecticut with esteemed panel participants on Friday evening.

The State of Native Connecticut: A Panel Discussion
Friday, November 12 | 7-9 pm
Suggested donation: $5

Join us to discuss the most current issues facing the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation, Easter Pequot Tribal Nation, and Golden Hill Paugussett Indian Nation as they strive for federal recognition. Panel participants include
Trudie Lamb Richmond (Schaghticoke) and Ruth Garby Torres (Schaghticoke), and Troy Phillips (Nipmuc), and will be moderated by Amy Den Ouden, a member of the Anthropology Faculty at UMass Boston. To view more information on panel participants, click here.

Call 860-685-7871 or email gsac@wesleyan.edu for more information.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Don't forget to vote! Tomorrow is Election Day and it is a very important

dist 1election. We will be deciding who represents us as the Governor, in Congress, Senate, State Senate and the State House of Representatives, among others. We will be choosing people who will really affect our day to day life. I urge you all to get out and vote!! IF you have any questions about candidates, how to use the voting machines or anything else, please contact the NEAT office.

As part of the North End votes campaign, we still need a few volunteers this week to help out. If you can help at the polls, please contact the NEAT office to sign up. A neighborhood that votes is empowered!!

We need people to:

1) take a shift at Macdonough School (the North End's only polling place) to hand out "North End Votes" stickers and to answer questions (don't worry, we'll give you cheat sheets!)

2) offer to walk or drive your neighbors to the polls, or call NEAT if you know of a neighbor who needs a ride.

But, most importantly, VOTE! We hope to see you at Macdonough Tomorrow. (use the side entrance on Pease Ave. and don't forget your ID)
Not sure who to vote for? Check out these websites: