CT Folk Festival & Green Expo, Saturday, Sept. 9

On Saturday, Sept. 9, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., the CT Folk Festival & Green Expo presents their annual free festival of live music, cultural performances, green workshops, children’s activities and more at New Haven’s beautiful Edgerton Park. Enter on 75 Cliff St.

The Green Expo highlights over 75 exhibitors that include handmade artisans and exhibitors with innovative ideas and products for sustainable lifestyles. The New Alliance Foundation Performance Tent will host cultural performances such as Healing Drums percussion workshops, environmental presentations, and garden tours. For all families, the Green Kids’ Village offers hands-on activities and entertainment to engage children of all ages including our huge puppet parade at 3:45 p.m.

Festival Director, Nicole Mikula and the CT Folk Board of Directors will unveil a lineup that celebrates the best in folk music and beyond. New for 2017, The Ballroom Thieves and Livingston Taylor will co-headline the main stage as well as highlighting Forlorn Strangers. Also, the stage for the Grassy Hill Song Circle will be End of America and LadyBird, named appropriately after the festival’s top sponsor, Grassy Hill Entertainment.

Now in its second decade, The CT Folk Festival & Green Expo has organically grown into one of Connecticut’s leading folk festivals as well as presenting the largest Green Expo in the state. The festival has earned its reputation by attracting premier talent across all mediums to provide a landscape meant to please all the senses.

Proceeds will benefit CT Folk, a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to traditional and contemporary roots music and to caring for the Earth.

$5 suggested donation to continue CT Folk’s efforts. Info: Nicole Heriot-Mikula, Festival Director nicole@ctfolk.com. Call: 917-576-9147, or go to www.ctfolk.org.

New Haven To UI: Not One More Dime | New Haven Independent

by Markeshia Ricks, Sep 13, 2016 ©2016 New Haven Independent

New Haveners concerned about a proposed rate increase said that they want United Illuminating to have the infrastructure to withstand superstorms, but that they’ve already paid for it.

The electric company is asking the state Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) to grant a more than $100 million distribution rate increase over a three year period. The increase would generate $65.6 million next year, $27.1 million the following year and another $13.4 million in 2019. This would raise individual customer bills by an average of about $30 a month over that three-year period, according to the Office of Consumer Counsel.

The counsel’s office opposes the rate increase. It also came out for reducing by almost $10, to $7.63, a residential fixed charge that UI levies.

UI said it needs the increase to replace poles and wires and make other investments to avoid power outages during major storms.

More than 35 residents from New Haven and other parts of the state attended a PURA hearing Monday in the Hall of Records at 200 Orange St. to oppose the rate increase. They said some people already can’t afford their bills. And they argued that the rate increase de-incentivizes energy-efficiency efforts.
Several people also argued that UI is primarily seeking to line the pockets of its new parent company, Spain-based Iberdrola.

Frank Panzarella said that stats already showed during the last rate increase request that Connecticut residents are having trouble paying their bills. He asked what made UI think that customers can afford to pay more. [….]

For the complete article, visit: New Haven To UI: Not One More Dime | New Haven Independent.

Protesters Occupy Board of Alders Meeting

by Jon Greenberg, Contributing reporter, Sep 22, Yale Daily News

Members of the Board of Alders met Tuesday evening in City Hall to discuss a plan to allocate funds for a new police dog. But the meeting took an unexpected turn when about fifty New Haven residents, who were protesting police brutality just outside, stormed the chamber.

The protesters — who waved homemade posters and chanted slogans like “No justice, no peace, no racist police” — occupied the hall for over an hour. During that time, they expressed their frustrations to the alders and proposed courses of action that they believed the city government should take to curb police brutality and empower New Haven residents. The protest was spurred by the alleged assault of New Haven resident Holly Tucker by two New Haven Police Department police officers during a traffic stop on Sept. 10. Tucker, who was at the protest, said she was dragged from her car by one of the officers, thrown to the ground, handcuffed and spent the night in jail while her young daughter was unaware of the situation and waiting for her, worried, at home. At the protest, Tucker showed that she still had bruises on her arms from the altercation.

“A mother was dragged out of her car and we’re here talking about a dog,” said Barbara Fair, Holly Tucker’s mother and the leader of Tuesday’s protest.

To read the complete article, visit: Protesters occupy Board of Alders meeting

International Day of Peace, Building Blocks for Peace, 1-6 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 18, 2016, at the United Nations Peace Garden in West River

International Day of Peace, Building Blocks for Peace, Sunday, Sept. 18, 2016, at the United Nations Peace Garden in West River

International Day of Peace, Building Blocks for Peace, Sunday, Sept. 18, 2016, at the United Nations Peace Garden in West River

International Day of Peace Celebration

Sunday, Sept. 18, the West River Neighborhood Services Corporation will host the eleventh United Nations Inter-national Day of Peace Celebration at the Peace Garden located at the intersection of Ella T. Grass Boulevard and Legion Avenue from 12:30 to 6 p.m.

The event starts at 12:30 p.m. with the planting of a Ginkgo sapling that survived the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima in the Peace Garden. This is a gift from the Japanese government to the City of New Haven Peace Commission.

Music will be provided by the Christian Sons Gospel group, Nfinity Mzk, Professor B. & Army of Love featuring Papa Biggie Reggae, and the Veronica Douglas Group. There will be meditation taught by the Art of Living, free ice cream, fruit, beef hot dogs, refreshments and children’s activities. There will also be information tables from various New Haven organizations and businesses.

For more information, contact Stacy Spell at (203) 777-2192 or wrnscsecretary@gmail.com.
In case of rain, the event will be held Sunday, Sept. 25.

Al Marder to be Recognized Aug. 6 at New Haven Peoples Center Reception

A reception and fundraiser highlighting the history of the New Haven Peoples Center will recognize the leadership of it’s president, Alfred L. Marder over a span of 80 years for peace, equality and justice. The event will take place at Coogan Pavilion in Edgewood Park near Whalley Ave and West Rock Ave. from 4 to 7 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 6, also marking Hiroshima Day.

Al Marder poses with New Haven peace activist and Peace Council member Mary Compton at the Peace Day celebration at the Amistad Memorial statue outside New Haven City Hall Sept. 21, 2015.  The statue was built thanks to his guidance and supervision. Marder is chairman of the Amistad Committee.  (photo: cjzurcher)

Al Marder poses with New Haven peace activist and Peace Council member Mary Compton at the Peace Day celebration at the Amistad Memorial statue outside New Haven City Hall Sept. 21, 2015. The statue was built thanks to his guidance and supervision. Marder is chairman of the Amistad Committee.
(photo: cjzurcher)

As founder of the Amistad Committee who served as chair of the City of New Haven Peace Commission for many years as well as the United Nations International Association of Peace Messenger Cities and the U.S. Peace Council, Marder has been called a “hero for peace.”

A resident of Westville, Marder has been active in New Haven since the age of 14 when he was a student at James Hillhouse High School. He expanded his vision through participation in events at the New Haven Peoples Center. The Peoples Center was founded in 1937 to provides social, cultural and educational opportunities for the community. With Al Marder’s participation, it was the site of the first inter-racial theater group in the city called Unity Players. This was one of many efforts that broke down racial segregation at that time.

Today the Peoples Center hosts the youth group New Elm City Dream, and is home to the immigrant rights group Unidad Latina en Accion as well as the SEIU 32 BJ janitors union and Greater New Haven Peace Council. The space is utilized by many social justice organizations.

The event will include an exhibition of Peoples Center memorabilia, remarks by Marder and refreshments. Donations will be accepted toward the restoration fund for the building which was erected in 1851. The Peoples Center, a site on the Connecticut Freedom Trail, is currently raising $10,000 as part of a grant to restore the windows, roof and entry door.

In his early years, Marder served as Executive Director of the Connecticut CIO Youth and Sports Organization and was President of the New Haven Youth Conference. During World War II and the fight against fascism, Al served in the U.S. Infantry from 1942-1946 in the European Theatre and received a Bronze Star. During the McCarthy period, as one who was persecuted for his ideas, he stood firm for civil liberties. He has supported every civil rights and workers rights struggle of his times.

Marder is known for bringing to light the story of the Amistad captives and its lessons of Black-white unity to achieve freedom. Through all the decades, Marder continues organizing, educating and creating positive change. His depth of knowledge, commitment to equality, powers of persuasion and indomitable spirit inspire generations in New Haven and throughout the world.

Requested donation at the door is $25 or what you can afford, no one will be turned away. Tax deductible contributions to the restoration fund can be sent to PERA / New Haven Peoples Center, 37 Howe St., New Haven CT o6511.

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Announcing New Haven’s Energy Task Force and Environmental Advisory Council

by Paula Panzarella, Energy Task Force

Since this past March, a number of New Haven residents and representatives of environmental organizations have been meeting once a month to develop an Energy Task Force (ETF). On Sept. 21, the New Haven Board of Alders unanimously approved the creation of an Environmental Advisory Council (EAC). Once the EAC is developed, it is hoped the ETF will be empowered to 1) become the expert on all aspects of the production, use and conservation of energy in New Haven, 2) evaluate the best methods for all segments of the city to become energy efficient and carbon neutral as quickly as possible, 3) inform the administration, Board of Alders and residents on these issues and 4) propose, encourage and evaluate actions to achieve the goals of energy efficiency and end our reliance on fossil fuels as quickly as possible.

Until then, programs that ETF members have been working on include popularizing solar power and the different programs that make it affordable for low-income communities and others; working with the City and State legislature to have more clean energy and energy-efficient programs in place; and networking with Energy Task Forces in other CT towns and businesses and organizations that promote clean energy to discuss how their successes may work in New Haven.

For more information, you can e-mail newhavenenergytaskforce@gmail.com, or phone Annie Harper at (203) 668-1213, or Paula and Frank Panzarella at (203) 562-2798.