Weekly Update - October 20

October 20, 2023


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Dear Neighbor,


I want to share some highlights including state and local updates.

In this email you'll find updates on district resources and news. Please click the links below to read the section that corresponds with the highlighted headline.

A NOTE: If you're having trouble clicking through the following links, open this email in a browser, use a computer or scroll through this email to the relevant section. 

The topics covered are as follows

It is my pleasure to announce that on Thursday the 26th I'll be leading tours of the Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Arch from 12:00pm-1:30pm and invite anyone that may be interested in learning some local history! I hope you can make it and feel free to share.


Find more information on the Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Arch here.


If you are interested in becoming a tour guide like me click here.


For parking information click here.

Legislative Updates

Connecticut-based Dalio Education recently released a report it commissioned that focused on "disconnected and at-risk youth" and found more than 63,000 young adults were disconnected, and 56,000 students were at risk between 2021 and 2022, according to the compiled data.

These are young people who have either dropped out of school or are in danger of dropping out of school, and who are, for those aged 18 to 26, unemployed and in many cases unemployable. 

Read the Report
A number of laws were passed in the last two legislative sessions meant to help disconnected and at-risk youth.

2022 Legislation - School-Based Health Centers (HB 5001SB 1HB 5506)
  • Provided grants to local schools to hire more support staff, including in the areas of mental health like social workers, psychologists, and counselors
  • Funded the expansions of school-based health centers and the services they provide
  • Created new walk-ins for mental health emergencies
  • Initiated a new position at the Office of the Healthcare Advocate to help families navigate care for children and adolescents
  • Expanded 24/7 emergency mental health response
  • Established state oversight and coordination of state response to kids' mental health needs
  • Expanded mentorship opportunities
  • Helped school-based health centers develop new mental health programming
  • Assisted local schools in expanding mental health staff and access to care
  • Provided mental health training to parents, students, and pediatricians
  • Established the Transforming Children's Behavioral Health Policy and Planning Committee (legislation passed in 2022; updated in 2023 with PA 23-90)

2023 Legislation - State Budget (HB 6941)

  • Prevented any town from receiving a funding cut to their local schools
  • Ensured more districts will meet eligibility requirements for the federal School Breakfast Program 
  • Maintained funding to support our bilingual students
This report shines a light on critically important data that shows elected officials, state agencies, and branches of government must collectively work better together to bring more stakeholders into this conversation, so that "at-risk and "disconnected" youth do not become "lost" adults.

Governor Ned Lamont unveiled new branding and announced the launch of a new marketing campaign for the State of Connecticut, including a new logo and website with the theme, “Make It Here.” The campaign’s objective is to foster continued economic growth and instill greater pride in state residents.


The new brand replaces the “Still Revolutionary” branding and tagline, which the state largely retired from use in 2019. The “Make It Here” themed marketing campaign showcases the wide variety of things made in Connecticut – from submarines and scientific breakthroughs to homes and families.


The campaign was, in part, spurred by recent research that found only 50% of residents are proud of the state and only 21% would recommend the state to others despite high marks as a place to live (73%), work (59%), and play (78%).  


Governor Lamont’s administration has spearheaded numerous initiatives to make the state attractive to both businesses and residents alike. Chief among these are:


  • More than $840 million in permanent tax cuts since 2019;
  • Business assistance programs including fixed, low-interest loans and guidance to small businesses through the Connecticut Small Business Boost Fund;
  • Investments in workforce development programs of more than $100 million to reskill current workers and train a new generation of workforce talent in industries like IT, cybersecurity, and advanced manufacturing;
  • More than $1 billion in capital investments to improve community vibrancy through multiple coordinated programs that would attract businesses, cultural attractions, and residents;
  • Annual minimum wage increases tied to federal economic indicators;
  • Statewide prescription drug discount program to help make healthcare more affordable for all residents;
  • Expanded laws to protect women’s reproductive rights;
  • Expanded laws to strengthen gun violence prevention; and, most recently,
  • The creation of the Connecticut Wind Collaborative to accelerate the state’s offshore wind industry.
Make it Here CT

Today In History

Connecticut-born radical abolitionist John Brown was already a nationally polarizing figure by the time he staged his infamous raid on the federal arsenal at Harper’s Ferry, Virginia in 1859. Born in Torrington in 1800, Brown’s adult life was characterized by failed business ventures, repeated moves across the country, and an increasingly fanatical devotion to fighting the spread of slavery.

This pike, recovered from Harper’s Ferry and now owned by the Smithsonian, was one of nearly 1,000 pikes made in Collinsville, CT ordered by John Brown, who hoped to use them to arm hundreds of slaves.

As tensions between the North and South increased over the spread of slavery in western territories, Brown became convinced that the “evil” spread of slavery could  be stopped only by violent means. In 1856, near Pottawatomie, Kansas, Brown gained national infamy when he led a party of armed abolitionists on a raid that resulted in the killing of five pro-slavery settlers in cold blood. Brown’s actions triggered several months of bloody retaliations between pro- and anti-slavery settlers known as “Bleeding Kansas,” which historians cite as one of the major conflicts of the 1850s that accelerated the onset of the Civil War.

John Brown’s most extreme plan of action, however, was yet to come. In 1859, Brown planned an elaborate raid on the federal arsenal at Harper’s Ferry, hoping to use the stolen munitions to start a massive armed slave rebellion that would consume the entire South and deal a fatal blow to the institution of American slavery. On the night of October 16, Brown and a small force of men (including five black men and two of Brown’s sons) cut the telegraph wires outside of Harper’s Ferry and successfully captured the armory. The next day, local militia surrounded the armory and the two sides exchanged intermittent gunfire for nearly a full day before a company of U.S. Marines — ordered to the scene by President James Buchanan and led by then-Colonel Robert E. Lee — arrived and demanded Brown’s complete surrender. Brown refused to comply, and on the morning of October 18, 1859, Lee’s Marines advanced on the occupied armory, overtaking Brown’s small group of raiders in only three minutes’ time.

Overall, 10 of Brown’s men, including both his sons, were killed in the raid, along with a single Marine and six civilians. Brown was taken to nearby Charles Town to await trial, where he was quickly found guilty of conspiracy to incite a slave insurrection, first-degree murder, and treason against the state of Virginia, and was executed by hanging on December 2nd. That day, Brown penned his last testament, defiantly declaring:

I John Brown am now quite certain that the crimes of this guilty land will never be purged away; but with Blood. I had as I now think: vainly flattered myself that without very much bloodshed; it might be done.

Brown’s ominous, foreboding words proved to be a self-fulfilling prophecy: Just over one year later, South Carolina’s declaration of secession would precipitate the bloodiest conflict the United States had ever seen, and put an end to the institution of American slavery.

Further Reading

John Brown: A Portrait of Violent Abolitionism,” connecticuthistory.org

John Brown’s Raid,” Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Fergus M. Bordewich, “John Brown’s Day of Reckoning,” Smithsonian Magazine


Please arrive early to be in line for 9 am as the truck leaves promptly at 9:30 am. Open to the public--bring a sturdy grocery bag! This program is made possible by Foodshare and Winn Residential - Resident Service Program. For more information call 860-646-1280.


Squire Village, 48 Spencer Street, 06040 (1st parking lot off Imperial Drive #78)

  • Tuesday, October 24, 2023 | 09:00 AM - 09:30 AM



Get mobile pantry updates in your area by texting the word Foodshare to 85511.

Manchester Mobile Foodshare

East Hartford

The Connecticut Foodshare truck will be in the parking lot to distribute the food. Please bring your bags and be prepared to possibly wait in line.


Mayberry Village –St. Isaac Jogues Church Parking Lot (41 Home Terrace East Hartford) 

  • Monday, October 30th, 2023 12:30 PM-1:15 PM

Get mobile pantry updates in your area by texting the word Foodshare to 85511.

East Hartford Mobile Foodshare

MHS Homecoming Festivities!

Homecoming Parade – Friday, Oct 20th – Step off at 3:00pm from Purnell Place; Grandstand will be on Brookfield Street.

Homecoming football game – Friday, Oct 20th - Kick off at 6:00pm at Memorial Field.

To buy tickets click

Halloween Happenings is happening in Downtown Manchester on Saturday, 10/21!

10:30 am Magic Show with Danny Magic at Mary Cheney Library

A Spooktacular Family Magic Show, presented by the incomparable, Danny Magic, enjoy amazing feats of magic.  A great family program! 

11:00 am Decorate a Bag at WORK_SPACE

Decorate your own trick-or-treat bag! Join us at WORK_SPACE at 903 Main Street to decorate a bag that you can use to collect your candy! While you are there, pick up some great information about upcoming events, get a temporary tattoo, and more! We'll be there until supplies run out, so stop by after the magic show! 

11:30 am to 1:00 pm Trick or Treat

Stroll around Downtown Manchester and collect candy from our local businesses!

More Events

Downtown Scarecrow Festival - View the unique scarecrows lining Main Street!

Free Craft by All Ways There Home-Care, LLC - Distributed in front of Anne Miller Real Estate

Free Craft & Face Painting at The Firestone | Art Studio & Cafe

Pumpkin Give-Away at The Manchester Mall at 811 Main

Take Great Photos With Your Smartphone


This class is limited so call the library at 860-645-0821 to reserve your spot.

Peter, of Peter Glass Photography, is an award-winning professional photographer specializing in commercial, corporate, and editorial photography. For over 25 years, he has serviced clients locally, nationally, and internationally. These have included large corporations, small businesses, advertising agencies, and a variety of magazines. Peter's other specialty is stock photography. His images can be found in brochures, magazines, websites, and on book covers. For the past dozen years, Peter has been designing and teaching one-to-one photography workshops. This free class is for those interested in producing high-quality images with their smartphone cameras. That means moving away from the Auto Mode, where control of the camera by the shooter is almost nonexistent, to the Manual or Shutter Priority Modes. Doing so lets the photographer be in full control of the camera. And that control will mean significantly improved pictures. 

Please note: This class will not cover the taking of selfies.

Everything necessary for taking great smartphone pictures will be addressed, including: 

• Basic photography theory

• Using both your default smartphone camera app AND other camera apps available from the Android or iPhone app store

• Identifying and setting the camera controls

• Suggestions for hand-holding your camera

• Specific steps to follow when taking a picture

• Useful accessories for your smartphone camera

• And, how to compose your photographs to produce truly wonderful results 

Fall Program and Event Guide

Event Guide

Manchester Bicentennial 

Manchester has launched planning efforts for its 2023 Bicentennial Celebration.  This year long celebration will consist of a variety of opportunities to remember the past, celebrate the present, and dream about the future. Festivities will include historical and educational programs, special events, and commemorative projects.

Manchester Bicentennial
Town Of Manchester
Town Resources
Manchester Public Schools - One Manchester
Manchester Matters

East Hartford High School vs Conard High School (Homecoming)


Fri, Oct 27, 2023 at 6:30 PM

To buy tickets click here
East Hartford Parks & Recreation Invites

you to our Trick or Treat Trail

East Hartford residents are invited to join us for a FREE Trick or Treat Trail event on the Town Green, 1021 Main Street on Sunday, October 29th from 1:00pm – 3:00pm.

This event is for East Hartford children ages 10 and younger, and their accompanying parent/guardian.

No registration is required.

Participants will head down the trail in our festively decorated park to various stations, sponsored by local organizations and businesses, for candy, treats and giveaways. Each participating organization and business will have representatives and costumed characters distributing goodies.

Each child should bring their own bag or basket to collect treats. Please dress appropriately for the weather. Halloween costumes are encouraged! This event will be held rain or shine.  

If you are a local businesses interested in participating in the event, please fill out the form below or call Parks and Recreation at 860-291-7160 for assistance: 

Businesses are asked to register by October 20 at 4:30 PM.

For more information, please call East Hartford Parks and Recreation Department at 860-291-7160


Leaf Collection Program 2023

to Begin October 30, 2023

East Hartford, CT— The Town of East Hartford will begin the annual curbside leaf collection program on Monday, October 30, 2023. The program will feature a continuous vacuuming of leaves placed in piles on a tree belt. Leaves will be vacuumed Monday through Saturday starting October 30th continuously through December 9, 2023. 

The leaf collection program will commence on roads in the northwest corner of town in the area of Pitkin Street and then proceed north and east through the Burnham and Goodwin Street areas. Leaves will be vacuumed along each street, weather permitting. Collection will proceed in a clockwise direction around town. There will be no leaf collection on two (2) Town-observed holidays—Veterans Day, November 10, 2023 and Thanksgiving Day, November 23, 2023.

The schedule for leaf pickup can be found on the Department of Public Works Weekly Advisory Map, that will be live for October 30, 2023, and on the Facebook page. The map will show completed areas as well as the areas where leaf collection is anticipated the following week. Residents should note that the map is tentative and dependent on the weather and the speed of collection and should not be considered a set collection schedule. Progress of the collection is weather-dependent and will be affected by rain or snow. Snowfall before mid-December may cause a suspension or cancelation of leaf collection. The map will be updated with address-specific collection information, such as whether collection has been completed or is anticipated by close of business on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Residents, please look for leaf program lawn signs! Leaf collection lawn signs will be posted in neighborhoods to notify residents that curbside leaf pickup is coming, and to encourage raking to the curb and paper leaf bag collection.

This information will also be communicated via our EH Alert platform as a text, call or email to those subscribed to “town services.” To receive those notifications, please select "Town Services" during registration in the drop down menu.

Residents also have two (2) additional options for leaf disposal:

OPTION 1:  Curbside Brown Bag Collection for six (6) weeks

  • Town crews will pick up leaves placed in biodegradable brown paper bags beginning October 30, 2023 through December 9, 2023 on your regular waste collection day, weather permitting. Leaves, in biodegradable brown paper bags only. No grass clippings, branches or other waste items can be placed in the paper bags nor will the Town collect leaves in plastic bags. 

OPTION 2:  Resident Transport to The Transfer Station for FREE Disposal

  • Residents may also bring their leaves to the Transfer Station on Ecology Drive between 8 AM to 1:45 PM on the following days:
    • Every Saturday in November
    • First three Saturdays in December
    • Transfer Station will be open on November 11 & 25 for leaves only.

Leaves in plastic bags will not be accepted.

Instructions for using the Weekly Advisory Map:

 Enter your address in the search bar.

 The Map will show your property- click on it to pull up the anticipated collection week.

To find out if the leaf collection has already been completed in your area, please click on the road centerline, which will indicate if the street has been completed.

For any additional information, please call Public Works Administration, 860-291-7374.

First Time Homeownership Info Session

East Hartford Works! invites all individuals who are new homeowners or are about to purchase their first home, to an information session on homeownership! The first-time homeownership info session will be held Wednesday, November 8 from 6 to 7 PM at the East Hartford Public Library, located at 840 Main Street. Attendees will hear from experts about the necessary steps in the home-buying process and get valuable advice on lending and real estate.

Please register in advance as space is limited! Register at this link.

East Hartford Farmers Market

The East Hartford Farmers’ Market are excited to present to you their new and improved Farmers' Market, with new vendors and updated hours. The 2023 farmers’ market dates are held Tuesdays from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00p.m.   They invite residents to celebrate Connecticut-grown fruits, vegetables and locally produced foods, as well as enjoy our market - a place to connect with others in our community.

Location: Raymond Library at 840 Main Street, East Hartford, CT 06108

Dates: Tuesdays through October 24

Hours: 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

For more information click here

East Hartford Partners with East Hartford Tennis Club

to Offer Indoor Pickleball

The Town of East Hartford once again partnered with the East Hartford Tennis Club to offer indoor pickleball for local senior residents 55 years of age and older. 

The program will be held at the East Hartford Tennis Club, 151 Roberts Street on Tuesday & Thursday from 1:00pm – 3:00pm, at a cost of $5.00 each day. 

The program will run from Tuesday, October 10th and through March 2024. 

This will be another positive boost to a very popular program for seniors as the town has opened up six new first-class concrete courts located at Hockanum Park on High Street.

Please contact the Tennis Club can be contact with any questions (860) 528-9251.

Town Of East Hartford
Town Resources
Pulse of East Hartford Newsletter
East Hartford Public School News
East Hartford Works

My office is always open if you or your family are in need of assistance. Please do not hesitate to contact me by email at Jason.Rojas@cga.ct.gov or by phone at 860-240-8541.


Jason Rojas


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