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Canton Officer Praised for New Hartford water rescue

February 28, 2017 Community, Police No Comments

Officer Andrew Schiffer

By John Fitts 

NEW HARTFORD – While the story ends sadly, a Canton police officer is being heralded for his bravery in rescuing an elderly man from the waters of the Farmington River Monday.

It was approximately 11:30 a.m. when state police spotted a 70-year-old New Hartford man in the Farmington River in New Hartford in the vicinity of the River Run complex on Route 44.

State police, New Hartford and Winsted ambulance crews, as well as volunteer fire departments from New Hartford, Nepaug and Canton, responded to the scene on the west side of the river but, due to a deep, fast-flowing channel of water, were hampered from immediately reaching the man.

Canton police officer Andrew Schiffer was asked to travel up Farmington River Turnpike on the east side of the river. A portion of that road is closed and blocked off during the winter and Schiffer had to reach the scene on foot. … Continue Reading

Canton Dollars for Scholars announces 2017 season

February 28, 2017 Community, Schools No Comments

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Submitted Release 

Canton Dollars for Scholars announces their 2017 scholarship season. Online applications will be accepted from Wednesday, March 1 through Friday, March 31. High school seniors residing in Canton may apply regardless of whether they attend Canton High School or a private, parochial or homeschool program. Scholarships are offered for a broad range of post-secondary programs including vocational and technical schools as well as two-year and four-year college degrees.

Canton Dollars for Scholars seeks the well-rounded student who is achieving his or her personal best grades while serving the school, community and the greater good. CDFS focuses on school involvement, work and community commitments.  Teacher recommendations and financial information are not considered or required, however, the student may provide this info if they want to pursue certain national scholarships through our parent organization, Scholarship America.

Students and parents can find information on both local Canton scholarships and national awards by visiting the CDFS website at www.canton.dollarsforscholars.org. Anyone interested in making a donation to support the scholarship programs should visit the website as well.

Images of Canton: CrownAid2017


Photos by John Fitts 

This past weekend, two events were held to benefit Crown and Hammer Pub and Restaurant employees, who have had limited economic opportunities following the fatal Jan. 23 accident, in which a vehicle crashed into the kitchen of the building, causing extensive damage.

On Feb. 25, fellow Collinsville businesses Wilson’s Pub and LaSalle Market hosted fundraisers for the employees. At Wilson’s, CrownAid2017 was spearheaded by local musician Corey Michael Rieman with the help of other area artisans and owner Esther Witkos. That event featured numerous musicians and generated $3,000, a total which was then matched by a private individual.

At LaSalle, Jean-Claude Trans/Am played a special Give Back Series event, which raised more than $900.

With some additional donations on Monday, the funds collectively raised had reached approximately $7,000.

Crown owner Lisa Maurer is targeting mid March for re-opening the 3 Depot St. restaurant.

See a full-sized gallery at https://johnfitts.smugmug.com.

Canton Boys Win Conference Title

February 17, 2017 Community, Schools No Comments

Canton junior Ryan Enns drives to the hoop.
Photo by Dave Heuschkel

By Dave Heuschkel

For the first time in 35 years, the Canton High boys basketball team are conference champions. The Warriors clinched the North Central Connecticut Conference regular season title Thursday night with a 55-33 win over East Granby.

Junior Ryan Enns led the Warriors with 14 points and senior Ethan Burke scored 12 as Canton won its first conference title since 1982. The Warriors went 17-3 overall, 15-1 in the conference.

The 17 regular season wins are the most by Canton since Craig Archambault took over in 2012. Of his five teams, he said this is the youngest. With the exception of Burke and junior Luke Brown, most of the players saw little or no varsity action on the team that went 14-6 in the regular season a year ago.

But Burke, the only returning starter, doesn’t think the Warriors overachieved. He said something occurred a year ago that made him truly believe this team could win a conference title. Read the story in the Feb. 23 edition of the Valley Press.

… Continue Reading

Canton Commission Continues Public Hearing on 5 River Road

February 16, 2017 Business, Community No Comments

A file photo of 5 River Road.

By John Fitts

On Wednesday, Feb. 15, the Canton Planning and Zoning Commission heard varying opinions on a proposal to add a used car dealership to the list of permitted uses at 5 River Road in Collinsville but ultimately continued a public hearing on the matter.

The half-acre, “v-shaped” property sits on the corner of Maple Avenue (state Route 565) and state route 179.

Resident Stephen Roberto purchased the property, formerly home to a gas station, in 2011, and in 2014 was successful in getting it re-zoned from “non-conforming” residential to business.

The proposal before the commission now looks to get permission for used car dealership with 30 spaces for “inventory,” 7 parking spaces, dark-sky compliant lighting for use during business hours and use of existing bays for limited repair.

While some businesses uses are allowed “by right,” a dealership would require several special permits and a site-plan modification.

Various criteria and standards come with the special permits and much of the debate on the proposal centers around intensity of use on the property, the character of the neighborhood and the town’s economic viability.

The commission is slated to continue the hearing at its March 15 meeting, which would take place at 7:30 p.m. in the Canton Community Center.

See more in next week’s edition of the Valley Press.  

Musical Events to Benefit Crown and Hammer Employees

February 15, 2017 Business, Community No Comments

Hand-drawn and watercolored image by Kate McAllister of KMcA Fine Art.

By John Fitts

COLLINSVILLE – On the last Saturday in February, two local establishments will host musical fundraisers to benefit employees of the Crown and Hammer Pub and Restaurant.

Many of the 17 people who work at the Crown have had limited economic opportunities since the restaurant had to temporarily shut its doors after the Jan. 23 accident in which a vehicle crashed into the building, which resulted in the death of passenger Margaret Stoppani, 86, of Canton. Police said the investigation is ongoing.

While the death has certainly been the most tragic outcome, employees at the restaurant have also struggled to keep up financially.

On Feb. 25, there will be two efforts to lend them a hand.

From 1 p.m. to 1 a.m. on that day, Wilson’s Pub, 3 River St., will host CrownAid 2017, featuring numerous acts. There will be a $10 suggested donation.

Additionally, from 7 to 10 p.m. that same evening, LaSalle Market and Deli, 104 Main St., will host its monthly Give Back Series, also to benefit Crown employees. The night will feature Jean Claude Trans Am, which plays “Space Rock and beyond” and people will have the chance to donate to the effort.

See more in this week’s Valley Press. To view updates search LaSalle Give Back Series on facebook and visit https://www.facebook.com/CrownAid2017/.

Winter Festival Auction is Underway

February 15, 2017 Community, Schools No Comments

By John Fitts

CANTON – With items that range from a plow truck ride in the Memorial Day Parade to an adult night out at the local brewery, area residents might do well to check the annual online Winter Festival auction. 

The auction, found at biddingforgood.com/cantonpto, is a major fundraiser for the Parent Teacher Organizations at Canton Intermediate and Cherry Brook Primary schools. Last year the event netted more than $30,000. 

Items include sporting tickets, hand-made goods, summer camps, professional services, field trips, art lessons and much more. 

See more in this week’s Valley Press and at biddingforgood.com/cantonpto.

Your Silent Neighbors: Ada Johnson, Explosion Victim

February 15, 2017 Community, History No Comments

By David Leff 
Town Historian  

Ada Elizabeth Johnson (1888-1933) died in what the Farmington Valley Herald called “the most tragic accident to occur here in many years.”  She was a 1906 graduate of Collinsville High School and afterward completed studies at Hutsinger Business College in Hartford.  She was employed in a couple different offices for over a dozen years and spent her last decade as clerk of the Canton probate court.  She also did work in the Canton town clerk’s office, according to one news report.

Johnson never married and lived with her parents on Johnson Place in Collinsville.  On February 14, 1933, Johnson was at home in a closed room off the kitchen cleaning some clothes in gasoline.  While putting them through an electric wringer there was an explosion that blew out every window of the house and was heard a quarter-mile away.  The house then caught fire, practically destroying the rear of the structure and two upper stories.

Johnson was pulled from the conflagration by a neighbor and immediately treated by Doctor Ralph Cox, who lived on The Green.  She was so seriously burned that she could not be transported to a hospital and died at a neighbor’s home that evening.  She was conscious long enough to tell the doctor how the accident happened. … Continue Reading

Images of Canton: CIS Students Claim Victory

February 15, 2017 Community, Schools No Comments

The staff at Canton Intermediate School recently took to the basketball court to face a formidable group of students. Surprisingly – or maybe not so much so – the kids managed to squeak out a 39-38 win. The Parent Teacher Organization-sponsored event featured several zany moments with colorful wigs, costumes, a few bizarre calls and an ever-growing number of kids on the court. Perhaps more importantly, attendees collected more than 300 items for the Canton Food Bank. “I love this event because it’s about bringing the CIS Community together in a fun-silly environment, yet, at the same time, giving back to the community by supporting the Canton Food Bank,” said PTO President Jennifer Barri Almeida. “It’s a win-win, literally.” –John Fitts

Images of Canton: Prisms Through Time

The Canton Music Department, along with numerous senior class leaders, presented “Prisms Through Time” Feb. 4. The program, produced by Anna Holland, Noah O’Leary and Elizabeth Raynor, used a moving storyline of the “Belmont” family to illustrate musical and arts pursuits over time. To accompany each of the stories, Canton High School bands played a variety of musical styles that included medieval, baroque, classical and romantic, impressionism and modern. 

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Have you ever wished you could continue to bowl without putting on bowling shoes or lugging a heavy ball?  You’re in LUCK!!  Join the Canton Senior Center Wii Bowling Team, The Canton Rollers.  Show off your bowling skills or learn new ones at the Senior Center.  Mondays at 1:30pm, Wednesdays ...
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