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Boosolini To Rule the Streets of Collinsville Once Again During Oct. 25 Halloween Parade

Boosolini, right, Monster of Ceremonies for the Collinsville Halloween Parade, returns on Saturday, Oct. 25.  Courtesy photo

Boosolini, right, Monster of Ceremonies for the Collinsville Halloween Parade, returns on Saturday, Oct. 25.
Courtesy photo

Boosolini Collins, the Monster of Ceremonies for the Collinsville Halloween parade, is somewhat of a mystery. Year after year, he makes his appearance on the porch of the Canton Historical Museum, commanding attention, presenting costume awards and ordering thousands of parade participants to march through Collinsville while encountering frightening displays. He even hosts screaming contests. This year it all takes place on Saturday, Oct. 25 in downtown Collinsville.

Some say John Squier, aka Jon Art, plays the role of Boosolini. Squier insists he simply channels the “mild mannered, creative spirit.”

“The spirit of Boosolini will be summoned from somewhere,” Squier said. “We don’t know were this guy comes from. We do recognize him as a benevolent spirit.” … Continue Reading

Cherry Brook Primary School Students Celebrate the Author in Their Midst

Students at Cherry Brook recently celebrated the author in their midst.

At an all-school assembly last week, students and staff hosted a surprise tribute to kindergarten paraeducator Beth Vrabel, whose book, Pack of Dorks, was published earlier this month by Sky Pony Press.

At the beginning of the assembly, Linda Caraher’s second-grade class performed several anti-bullying skits, after which teachers, students and family surprised Vrabel with a special tribute.

Kindergarten teacher Kelly Theriault talked to students about Vrabel’s book and then her class sang a special song in her honor. Staff members also presented her with flowers and Vrabel’s family, including husband Jon and children Emma and Ben, also joined in with flowers and hugs.

“It was really amazing,” Vrabel said. “I was completely surprised the kids could keep a secret this long.”

… Continue Reading

Canton Siblings are Finalists in Xprize Big Hero 6 Challenge

Screen shot

Screen shot

Sister and brother Simone Mesa and Gabriel Mesa have been named finalists in the Xprize Big Hero 6 Challenge sponsored by Disney.  If they win they will be flown to Hollywood to walk the red carpet in at the premier of the Big Hero 6 movie, meet real Disney imagineers and visit DisneyLand.

They are looking for community support to help make their dreams come true by voting daily now through Sun at:
Simone – Junior: http://bit.ly/11ow0CR
Gabriel – Senior: http://bit.ly/ZEyfB2 … Continue Reading

Images of Canton: Live at the Ax Factory

The Meadows Brothers, Dustin and Ian, rehearse while Ty Morin of 179 Pictures sets up video cameras. In background, working at a sound board, are Mike DiPanfilo and David Fiore of TELEFUNKEN, which manufactures tube microphone.

The Meadows Brothers, Dustin and Ian, rehearse in a freight elevator Monday night while Ty Morin of 179 Pictures sets up video cameras. In background are Mike DiPanfilo and David Fiore of TELEFUNKEN microphones.

This week, Collinsville-based 179 Pictures, with the help of microphone manufacturer TELEFUNKEN, has been busy filming several bands at the factory complex.

Initially slated to take place over six days, the idea is to film several Connecticut-based bands in various places around the factory, said Ty Morin, co-owner of 179 Pictures.

… Continue Reading

Legendary Songsmith Janis Ian Coming to Bridge Street Live Thursday

Janis Ian Press photo by Lloyd Baggs

Janis Ian
Press photo by Lloyd Baggs

By Carl Wiser
When she steps on stage at Bridge Street Live this Thursday night, Janis Ian will know her opening number and her closing song, but what happens in between has a lot to do with the audience. Janis teems with energy and empathy – performing the same set every night isn’t in her nature. Her energy is creative: she is constantly writing songs and working on a variety of other projects, which over the years have included scoring films, writing a children’s story (The Tiny Mouse), and making an audio book (Society’s Child: My Autobiography – it won the Grammy in 2013 for Best Spoken Word).

Her empathy is where the audience comes into play; she’s acutely aware and genuinely interested in whoever she is interacting with, be it in conversation or concert. What she plays depends on what you want to hear. “Some people want to hear mostly familiar songs, but there are also people who follow me around and are interested in newer material,” she told me in a recent phone call. … Continue Reading

Images of Canton: Thursday Evening Music With Andre Balazs

Andre Balazs plays at La Trattoria Thursday evening.

Andre Balazs plays at La Trattoria Thursday evening.

Andre Balazs plays at LaTrattoria Restaurant in Canton from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. every Thursday night. The former Collinsville resident now lives in the lakes region of New Hampshire but comes back every Thursday for a full day of teaching private lessons, followed by the gig.

He said he loves playing at La Trattoria due to the freedom to play a good amount of original music. In fact, the restaurant also has his CDs in its rotation.

“It’s kind of weird, I’ll take a break, turn on the sound system and still hear myself singing,” he said.  … Continue Reading

Featured Event: Two Original Members of The McLovins to Share Stage with Krizta Moon

o2frJeff  Howard and Jake Huffman, founding members of the jam band trio “The McLovins,” will join singer-songwriter Krizta Moon for a special show on Sunday, Oct. 12.

The 7 p.m. show takes place at the Buttonwood Tree, 605 Main St., Middletown. … Continue Reading

Live Music is an Important Part of Canton Historical Museum’s Oktoberfest

Cville stringMusic has always been a big part of the Canton Historical Museum’s Oktoberfest and this year will be no different as attendees will be treated to the sounds of Jr Krauss and the Shakes and The Collinsville String Band.

Jr. Krauss and the Shakes is a popular, award-winning band and has played the event each year. United by a love of blues, jazz, rockabilly, swing and rock n’ roll, the four current members are the same ones that started the band in the late 1990s. (There was a fifth member for a time).

“We all came together with a common idea to do what we’re doing and everyone contributes,” said guitarist Andy MacDonald. … Continue Reading

Featured Event: Jeff Howard to Reunite with McLovins Bandmate for Show with Krizta Moon


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Canton High School Groups Perform at Sam Collins Day

The Canton Chamber Singers, Jazz Combo and Jazz Ensembles all performed at the 20th Annual Sam Collins Day on Sept. 20, 2014. See more performances, filmed by Mark Wiles, here


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