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The Buzz Around Town




Lourdes Shrine driveway resurfaced
 
Peter Tavino, Litchfield's intrepid drone photographer, captured aerial images of the work that was done in November to strip the old and rutted pavement of the driveway at the Lourdes Shrine and replace it with a new asphalt surface. The $220,000 project was funded by $100,000 from the Montfort Missionaries, $100,000 from the Seherr-Thoss Foundation and $20,000 in private donations. Peter Tavino photos
Morris staff pays tribute to Nancy Skilton
Nancy Skilton, who is stepping down after two terms as town treasurer in Morris, admires the bouquet of flowers given to her during a farewell party at Town Hall on Nov. 13. Skilton has served four years as town treasurer and is credited with improving the efficiency of the town's fiscal office. She is being succeeded by Ronald Ciccatelli, who has been appointed by the Board of Selectmen. BZ photo
New tree planted in Memorial Park in Morris
Morris First Selectman Thomas Weik, left, and Morris highway department worker Kyle Rosenbeck stand next to a white oak that was planted in Memorial Park on Nov. 7 as part of the celebration of the 100th anniversary of Connecticut’s arborist law, which requires that arborists be licensed. The tree was a gift from the Connecticut Tree Protective Association, which is donating trees to all 169 municipalities in the state. Rosenbeck, a certified tree warden, assisted arborist Bill Pollock in planting the tree. Contributed photo
 
 
Troop 29 serves up pasta supper
 
 
Blaise Perusse of Boy Scout Troop 29 of Bantam serves Thelma Seelye of Torrington during the troop's annual pasta supper at the Bantam firehouse Nov. 8. In the background, Boy Scout Ned Urion serves John Sniffen of Litchfield. The supper was a fundraiser for the troop. BZ photo
 
 
Record-setting pumpkin grown at CJR
 
 
A record-setting 796-pound pumpkin was grown at the Connecticut Junior Republic during the summer and early fall. Shown with the pumpkin is CJR plant science and horticultural instructor Rey Budny. Contributed photo
 
 
A job well done: George Humphrey retires
 
 
George Humphrey's 41-year career with the public works department in Litchfield concluded with his retirement on Oct. 31. Humphrey's colleagues in the department threw him a retirement party the week before his departure. Humphrey's experience and knowledge of the town's roads and bridges was invaluable,according to public works director Raz Alexe and will be impossible to replace. Humphrey lives in Morris and is a volunteer firefighter with the Morris Fire Company. BZ photos
 
 
 
Friends of Topsmead holds annual meeting
 
 
Friends of Topsmead State Forest, a nonprofit organization that works to improve the state-owned property in Litchfield, elected its officers and members at large for 2020 during its annual meeting at the Litchfield Community Center Oct. 19. President is Carol Gould of Harwinton, vice president is Meg Begley of Harwinton, treasurer is Patrick Ryan of Northfield, and secretary is Jenny Riggs of West Hartford. Members are large are, from left, Janet Blauvelt of Torrington, Renee Betar of Litchfield, Barbara Littell of Thomaston, Rosemarie Greco of Litchfield and Caroline King of Litchfield. Missing from the photo is Bea Beyer of Goshen. BZ photo
 
 
St. Paul's Lodge holds recognition ceremony
 
 
Pat Ianuzzi, right, master of St. Paul's Lodge in Litchfield, presents the Lifetime Member Award to Mark Dzurnak. Contributed photo
 
St. Paul’s Lodge No. 11 in Litchfield bestowed recognition on several longtime members during a recent awards ceremony.
 
Honored were Kenneth W. Bentley (10 years of service); Charles R. Harrell (20 years); Richard R. Reynolds (25 years); A. Paul Chapin IV, William J. Neller Jr., and Daniel J. Seabourne (35 years); Thomas S. Waugh (40 years); Edward S. Clark (45 years); Walter C. Anderson (50 years); Arthur H. Carlstrom (55 years); and Frank W. Blakeslee and Walter L. French Jr. (65 years).
 
Lodge Master Pat Ianuzzi presented Mark Dzurnak with the Lifetime Mentor Award. The Past District Deputy Jewell Award went to A. Paul Chapin IV; the Key Man Award to Kenneth A. Buckbee and James L. Fischer; and the Honorary Membership Award to Peter Keefe. A certificate of appreciation was presented to Judey Buckbee.
 

 

 Brandywine makes donation to Post 27

Brandywine Living in Litchfield donates $1,105 to American Legion Post 27 of Litchfield on Oct. 18. The donation represents proceeds from the car show Brandywine hosted in September. Above, from left, are Post 27 Commander Dick Robert, Post 27 member Bob Lefebvre, Brandywine Executive Director Robin Vaughn, Brandywine esapades producer Tobylynne Yurchick, and Post 27 members Gene Saska and Jim Amrich

Below, from left, are Brandywine chauffer Jason Marshall, Vaughn, escapades staff member Michael Lyn Cappello and Yurchick.

Former Methodist chuch bell is blessed

Congregants of the United Methodist Church of Litchfield and Bantam gathered at the site of the former United Methodist Church of Bantam Oct. 12 to bless the bell that stood in the church before it was destroyed by the tornado of July 10, 1989. Parishioners of St. Paul's Church and the Rev. Brett Figlewski from St. Paul's joined in the service that was led by the Rev. Ed Horne, pastor of the United Methodist Church of Litchfield. The blessing of the bell was held to commemorate the renaming this summer of the Litchfield church to the United Methodist Church of Litchfield and Bantam. BZ photo

Public Rosary held at Our Lady of Grace Church

Nick Diorio, second from left, the deacon at Our Lady of Grace Church in Bantam, led a public Rosary prayer in front of the church on Saturday, Oct. 12. Several of the church's parishioners attended. BZ photo

Blessing of the animals at St. Paul's Church

In honor of St. Francis, the patron saint of animals, St. Paul's Church in Bantam held a blessing of the animals service on Oct. 6. Parishioners brought dogs, cats, gerbils, therapy goats and stuffed animals to be blessed by the Rev. Brett Figlewski and the Rev. Nick Combs of Trinity Episcopal Church in Torrington. Each pet received a special blessing. All were well-behaved. Contributed photos

Fall festivals held in Bantam and Litchfield

Bob Kluge of the Litchfield-Morris Rotary Club was selling Litchfield's 300th anniversary hats and reusable shopping bags during a harvest festival held Saturday at the Bantam Borough Hall. Eileen Schmidt photo

Below, the Litchfield Historical Society held an apple festival at the Tapping Reeve Meadow on Saturday. Peter Tavino photo

Climate change rally held on the Green

Anne Kelly, left, of Goshen, was among the crowd on the Litchfield Green during a recent rally supporting the idea of climate change. Contributed photo

Wamogo Class of 1969 celebrates anniversary

The Wamogo Regional High School Class of 1969 held its 50th reunion at the Torrington Country Club Sept. 28. Below are class members, from left, Mark Durling, Christine Gemelli, Nancy Baldwin, Lynne Wilson and George Humphrey. BZ photos

Blondins celebrate 40 years in business

Matt and Audrey Blondin, formerly of Litchfield and now of Goshen, celebrated 40 years in business at the offices in Torrington on Thursday. Matt Blondin and his son-in law, Michael Shea, run Blondin Shea Eye Care and Audrey Blondin and her daughter, Rose Blondin Shea, run the Blondin Law Office. The anniverary celebration was part of the Northwest Chamber of Commerce's Business After Hours program and drew a large crowd of well-wishers. Audrey Blondin was a selectman in Litchfield for eight years and is a member of the Democratic State Central Commitee. BZ photo

 

Blondin Shea sworn in in U.S. District Court
 
 
Attorney Rose Blondin Shea, right, of Litchfield was recently sworn in as an attorney in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut by Judge Robert A. Richardson in Hartford. She was accompanied by her mother, Attorney Audrey Blondin, left, who became a member of the Connecticut District Court Bar on Aug.11, 1980. Blondin Law Office is located in Torrington at 379 Prospect St. and is Torrington's oldest women-owned law firm, having been founded in May 1980. The firm practices in the area of real estate, elder law, wills, probate, bankruptcy, family, business and non-profit law.
 
 
Judge Blick at highest point in the Northeast
 
 
Litchfield Hills Probate District Judge Diane Blick and her companion, Frank Pierzga, at the top of Mount Washington in New Hampshire Sept. 20. At 6,288 feet, Mount Washington is the highest point in the Northeast.