An ‘Elevated Lobster Shack’ Opens on Essex Island

“We fell in love with the island, just the feeling that you get. We felt like when you cross the ferry, you’re actually on vacation as soon as you arrive on the little island,” said Christina Pahis. “You feel almost like you left Connecticut.” For eight years, Essex residents Avni Krasniqi and Pahis have owned and operated Haywire Burger Bar in Westbrook, CT, and on June 8, the couple opened Siren Kitchen & Bar on Essex Island at Safe Harbor Marina. “We saw that the space has become available, and we said, ‘Let’s just kind of satisfy our curiosity and

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Niantic Farm-to-Table La Belle Aurore Emails Plea to Customers

Dawn Bruckner said that even when the pandemic first hit, she never considered closing. “With the food supply getting super hinky, I knew our farmers would always be there, and we would be able to get the best ingredients to [our customers].” And her customers responded graciously to her remaining open. “There was just a huge outpouring. People I hadn’t seen in years were coming in, asking ‘Are you guys okay? What do you need?’” Bruckner said. “They were buying things and were grateful we were open because they could get better produce, better food, better meat. It was amazing,

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Lamont Rejects Plea for $330 Million of Subsidies for MIRA Waste-to-Energy Plant

The State of Connecticut rejected a Materials Innovation and Recycling Authority (MIRA) plea for a grant of over $330 million in a letter Tuesday, calling the plan a “false choice, and a bad deal” for taxpayers across the state, for Hartford residents and for the environment. The struggling waste authority, which serves 70 municipalities across Connecticut, had warned the state that if it did not provide hundreds of millions in subsidies, it would convert its “waste-to-energy plant to a massive transfer station” in order to send trash to landfills. “I cannot support sending hundreds of millions of state taxpayer or

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The Kate Announces High School Winners of the Inaugural Kate Scholarship for 2020

The Katherine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center has announced Old Saybrook High School seniors Maggie Maselli and Timothy Thomas as the recipients of the inaugural Kate Scholarship for 2020. The scholarship was created in honor of The Kate’s 10th anniversary and recognizes high school seniors who live in Old Saybrook and demonstrate a passion and participation in the arts. Maselli, who will be pursing a double major in physics and music at Hamilton College in the fall, said that winning the scholarship was recognition of the hard work she had put in over the years for a variety of groups and

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Rail-Bikes, the Latest Hit Attraction for the Valley Railroad Company in Essex

The Valley Railroad Company in Essex has halted operation of its popular Essex Stream Train and Riverboat rides while the state adjusts to life with COVID-19, but is instead offering, for a limited number of dates this summer, a novel rail-bike experience along the scenic lower Connecticut River. “The rail-bikes were going to be one of our season opening events, but it was originally slated to just be in an addition to the things we’re already doing,” said Valley Railroad Company Vice President Rob Bradway. “It was never anticipated that the rail-bikes would be the Essex Steam Train and Riverboat

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As Lamont Announces New Rules For Graduations, Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Opt for June 12 Ceremonies

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Governor Ned Lamont announced on Wednesday that his office will allow in-person graduation ceremonies beginning July 6. The state-authorized ceremonies are limited to outdoors venues and to no more than 150 people, according to Department of Education Commission Miguel Cardona. Lyme-Old Lyme Schools Superintendent Ian Neviaser has decided instead to move forward with plans that will allow graduating seniors to walk across the stage on Friday, June 12. “We have 127 in the graduating class, so that would be much like the NHL or NBA or MLB playing with no fans,” said Neviaser. “We plan to continue with the graduation

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Penny Lane Pub Owner Alex Foulkes Receives Architectural Approval for Post Road Restaurant “Maple & Main”

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OLD SAYBROOK — The Town of Old Saybrook Architectural Review Board approved the design proposal for a new restaurant, “Maple & Main” on Boston Post Road. Alex Foulkes, owner of the Penny Lane Pub on Main Street, has proposed converting an existing one-story commercial office building, located at 813 Boston Post Road, into a restaurant serving breakfast and lunch with occasional banquet services after normal business hours, according to the application materials. Foulkes requested approval for 75 seats, including 63 seats in the main interior dining room, seven seats under the front covered porch and five additional outdoor seats. The

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Old Saybrook to Purchase 20 Adirondack Chairs for the Town Green

The Town of Old Saybrook announced the Economic Development Commission will be purchasing 20 Adirondack chairs to “provide support for restaurants and provide additional seating,” according to Susie Beckman, economic development director for Old Saybrook. The chairs will be placed on the town green. “This is a concept that I had seen a couple of years ago that worked in another town where they were just doing some placemaking,” said Beckman. “By just adding some conversational areas with Adirondack chairs, it encouraged people to come and sit.” To start, the commission will arrange 20 chairs in four groups of five

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