Restaurants, Microbreweries, Adjust to the New Normal of Take Out and Delivery in Wake of Coronavirus Shutdown

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Tuesday was St. Patrick’s Day. It was also the first full day of a state-ordered shutdown of eat-in dining and bars for the foreseeable future in an effort to curb the COVID-19 outbreak. The phone started to ring at 11:20 a.m. with takeout orders, but business was down compared to a normal day, said Deb Corning, a family owner of the Monkey Farm Cafe in Old Saybrook. “St. Patrick’s Day is a big day for us. Normally we’d be full right now,” said Corning. “We’re not allowed to serve alcohol. Fortunately we have a lot of people who love it

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Local Farms Are Planning Crops, Signing up CSA Shareholders for Summer Season

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The New England landscape may appear cold and desolate, but small farmers across the region are growing seedlings in hoop houses and planning summer harvests.  As a means of obtaining “seed” money, many of these farms set up CSA –Community Supported Agriculture — programs that allow customers to invest in a share of the business in advance of the growing season. Farmers then use the invested money in the winter and early spring months to buy seeds, supplies and equipment. In exchange for sharing the upfront costs, shareholders later receive produce during the summer and fall months.  Now is the

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Delamar Hotel Approved for Mystic Seaport Waterfront

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STONINGTON — In a series of close votes Tuesday night, the Planning and Zoning Commission approved Mystic Seaport Museum’s plan to demolish the Latitude 41° restaurant and build a three-story, 27-room boutique hotel and restaurant on the same parcel. The museum owns and leases the 1.36-acre site at 105 Greenmanville Ave. where Latitude 41° Restaurant & Tavern is located. The new building, named the Delamar, was designed by architect Bruce Beinfielld of Norwalk, Conn. The proposed hotel will be set closer to the Mystic River than Latitude 41°, leaving space for a circular driveway in front with valet parking. The

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Groton Startup ThayerMahan Grows to Capture Offshore Wind and Electric Boat Opportunities

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GROTON — Years before the Connecticut Port Authority approved a $157 million deal to redevelop State Pier in New London as a staging area for offshore wind, and before a $22 billion submarine contract was awarded to Groton-based Electric Boat, a growing ecosystem of smaller companies have been setting up shop in the region, hoping to service the wind and maritime industries. “We’re a bunch of guys who started a company based on maritime [technology and data]. Many of us are former submariners and we sought to do things with autonomous vehicles that we used to do with submarines with

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Zoning Change Allowing Redevelopment of Older Resort Properties Raises Opposition in East Haddam

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EAST HADDAM — A large number of vocal town residents attended the Planning and Zoning Commission’s public hearing Tuesday on a proposed special exception to change the town’s density rules and allow a developer to convert an empty 28,000-square-foot banquet hall into an estimated 20 or 22 residential spaces. The banquet hall, which was built in the 1930s, is part of Banner Country Club Estates on Banner Road, and would qualify as adaptive reuse under the proposed amendment, according to Gary Hendren, an architect from Boston who represented the applicants, property owners Anthony and Frank Longhitano, of New Rochelle, New

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Tourism District Leaders Share Plans to Include Small Towns, Maximize Limited Funds

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As the Eastern Regional Tourism District moves toward resolving a breach of contract dispute with the state regarding funding, the district will next need to determine what actually to do with the $400,000 or more that it will receive from the state government for marketing campaigns. “If we’re not effectively putting a positive effect on everybody’s bottom line in the region then we’re not doing our job,” said Chris Regan, who represents Stonington on the district board. “We have to look at how we can maximize that $400,000 to help everybody in our region, and that will help the state

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State Sen. Heather Somers to Sponsor Bills Targeted at Drug Costs, Insurance, Mental Health and more…

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MYSTIC — When CT Examiner caught up with State Senator Heather Somers (R-18th) on Monday morning, she arrived with a long list of bills she’s getting ready to submit, and in some cases resubmit, during the upcoming legislative session. With measured optimism, Somers said it takes persistence to get a bill made into law. “I call it continuous bill commitment,” she said of several bills that have made progress each year. Drug rebates, health insurance Somers’ first bill is aimed at reducing drug costs for consumers by taking aim at drug rebates — negotiated for insurance companies by pharmacy benefit

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Regional Tourism Board Meets to Resolve Breach of Contract, Secure Future Funding

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NORWICH — The Eastern Regional Tourism District board voted on Friday to overhaul district procedures, and add new leadership, in an effort to resolve a breach of contract with the Connecticut Office of Tourism that threatens access to $400,00 in state funding for fiscal year 2019-20, and $160,000 in funding leftover from 2018-19. “Three years ago we were knocked out of business. Now we’re starting all over again, and nobody knows nothing about what the hell is going to happen,” said former State Senator Pete Connair, who represents East Lyme on the tourism board. “It’ll take more than twelve meetings a

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32 Takes on the New Year with CT Examiner

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We asked 32 writers, politicians, educators, artists, journalists, acadmics to contemplate the New Year for us.

Participants include Ned Lamont, Joe Courtney, Paul Formica, Devin Carney, Justin Elicker, Alma Nartatez, Richard Stout, Tony Sheridan, Luanne Rice, Will Haskell, Sophie Spaner, David Kelsey, Jack Monmeat, Jerry Weiss, Gail MacDonald, Betsy Gara, Rolf Wolfswinkel, Brian White, Brittany Stalsburg and others...

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Mystic Seaport’s Steve White Takes a Bow

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MYSTIC — “It was a perfect moment, an intersection of all these key things coming together,” Steve White said in a phone conversation with CT Examiner on December 19. “The Charles W. Morgan needed to be restored, and then the question became how much should she be restored. It was clear to me as a new person here that if we’re going to restore her that much that this would certainly be the only and singular opportunity to take her back to sea.”  For White, 66, who announced on December 17 that he will retire in 2020 as president and

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