Tony Fusco, the city’s poet laureate, will host a poetry reading from 6-7 p.m. Aug. 19 at the Main Library, 300 Elm St.
Fusco, a lifelong resident who in April was appointed the honorary position of poet laureate by Mayor Nancy R. Rossi, will read poems from his upcoming books, “Westies” and “Don’t Make Me Laugh.”
The free event, open to the public, will include light refreshments and an open microphone after the reading.
As the city’s first official poet, Fusco will appear at readings and conduct workshops as an advocate for the reading and writing of poetry.
He has written four books of poetry, including “Java Scripture,” featuring poems about his youth, Savin Rock and Allingtown. His poetry has won many awards, including the Sunken Garden Poetry Prize.
A graduate of West Haven High School, Fusco has a master’s degree in creative writing from Southern Connecticut State University and is co-president of the Connecticut Poetry Society.
Te fall sports season is set to begin in football, soccer and baseball. The West Haven Voice would like to remind league publicists and coaches of the requirements for weekly reports. All leagues are to have one publicist through whom all stories come. Our rule is: we will edit it, head- line it and print it, but we will not write it.
Coaches are reminded to check with their league officials as to the protocol to be followed in order to have games published in the Voice. No individual games will be accepted. All games must be through the league’s publicist.
Deadline for copy is Tuesday at 10 a.m. unless prior clearance is given by the editor for a later submission. All copy must be in paragraph form and is subject to the same editing for clarity, grammar and space as are all other submissions.
Pictures are welcome and will be published on an “as need” basis. Pictures should be accompanied by the names of the players involved, the action in the photo, and the score of the game.
All games must have scores in those divisions where scores are kept. We understand some younger divisions do not keep score, but those that do should be reported accordingly.
For information on sports submissions, please call the Voice office, (203) 934-6397 during regular hours.
The Friends of West Haven Library will hold the 16th annual Book Sale on Friday and Saturday Sept. 6 and 7 in the Connie Sacco Room of the Main Library, 300 Elm St. Donations and Volunteers are needed. Please bring your new and used books, DVDs and Music CDs to the Main Library Circulation Desk. All Donations should be in good condition; no magazines, textbooks or encyclopedias.
Volunteers are needed to prepare for and staff the book sale. Sign up at the Circulation Desk for help beginning Sept. 3 either from 10-noon, or l-3. All proceeds of the sale are used to help the library with programming, museum passes and other materials.
Used Book Sale
The First Congregational Church, 464 Campbell Ave., will host its monthly used book sale and Clothes Closet opening on Saturday, Aug. 10, between 9-2. As usual there will be a large selection of gently used books, including many children’s, mysteries and romances, for sale and clothing available at very low prices. For more information, call (203) 933-6291.
The West Haven Italian-American Ladies Auxiliary is hosting a Karaoke night with “Terreoke Entertainment,” on Friday, Aug. 16, from 7-11 p.m., at the club, 85 Chase Lane. Proceeds will go to the Ladies Auxiliary so they can continue to contribute to local organizations and others in need. $10 entry, includes 1 food item. There will be food, raffles and a cash bar.
Join the Harugari’s annual German Bierfest and Pig Roast on Sunday, Aug. 25, under the pavilion.The time is 1 p.m. rain or shine. The Adlers will be performing for your listening and dancing pleasure. The Harugari Schuhplattlers will also perform traditional German folk dances. German food and bier will be available for purchase.Admission is $5 for adults, Under 18 free. Veterans can receive free entrance when you show your Veterans’ Card.
WHHS Class of 1964 will be holding its 55th year class reunion on Saturday, Oct. 5 at App’s Restaurant, Captain Thomas Boulveard. More info to follow.
The West Haven Italian-American Civic Association Senior Center is seeking new members to join its Tuesday senior gathering. Join a group of friendly seniors in an afternoon of good company, with Bingo, cards, trips to casinos and conversations with like-minded people and more. We meet at the club, 85 Chase Lane, each Tuesday from noon to 3. The cost is just $3 per week to cover expenses. We offer refreshments at no additional cost. Call Sherri Torre, (203) 932-2893 for further information.
1st Church VBS
Join the First Congregational Church of West Haven for a week of fun and learning with its annual Vacation Bible School (VBS).This year features a journey to Athens on Aug. 5-9. Kids will learn all about the Apostle Paul and God’s immeasurable love. Visit our website for more information and registration: http://fccwesthaven.org/vbs/.
West Haven High School Class of 1969 will hold its 50th reunion on Friday, Sept. 27, at Seasons located at 990 Foxon Road, East Haven, from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. There will be music provided by a DJ, a plentiful cocktail and hors d’oeuvre hour, buffet dinner along with open bar. The cost is $75 per person Checks should be made payable to Charlene Morgal and mailed to 18 Shumway St., West Haven, 06516, before Aug.ust 15 More information can be found on our Facebook page: WHHS Class of 1969- 50th reunion, or by emailing chazbo40@ aol. com /203 494 7379 or firstname.lastname@example.org /203 494 7730.
Senior Center trips
Join the West Haven Seniors on the following scheduled trip: All trips leave from Savin Rock Conference Center:
Monday, Aug. 19 “Holiday Hill” — statewide annual senior picnic 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Cost is $45 per person with unlimited buffet all day. This trip is in conjunction with The West Haven Housing Authority. Pick up times are: Morrissey Manor 8., Savin Rock Conference Center 8:15, Surfside 8:30, Union 8:45, and John Prete 9. If you are being picked up at Housing Authority sites please make reservation with Yolanda (203) 933-9449. If you are being picked up at Conference Center please register at the West Haven Senior Center or call (203) 937-3507. Payment is due no later than Aug. 1.
Tuesday, Sept. 17, Aqua Turf – Rob Zappulla Celebrates the Music of Frank Sinatra $67 per person Rob has performed to sold out audiences of all ages across the country and headlined performances at the Lincoln Center in NYC and Foxwoods Casino to name a few. Menu includes coffee and donuts upon arrival, door prizes, complimentary glass of wine or beer. Family style luncheon: salad, penne bolognese, chicken florentine, baked scrod, vegetable, potato and dessert. Bus leaves Savin Rock Conference Center 10 a.m. Payment is due by Friday, Aug. 30.
Wednesday, Sept. 25– The Big E “New England’s Great State Fair” in Springfield Trip cost is $45. Scooter rental available for $50 and must be paid in advance of the trip by check or credit card along with reservation form available in the office. This trip is in conjunction with Savin Rock Communities. Pick up times are: Morrissey Manor 8 a.m., Savin Rock Conference Center 8:15, Surfside 8:30, Union 8:45, and John Prete 9. If you are being picked up at Housing Authority sites please make reservation with Yolanda (203) 933-9449. If you are being picked up at Conference Center please register at the West Haven Senior Center or call (203) 937-3507. Payment is due no later than Sept. 1.
A flyer with further details is available at the office at the West Haven Senior Center 201 Noble St. or you can call the Senior Center (203) 937-3507.
The Liberty Coin Club of West Haven, organized in1962, will host a Coin Show on Sunday, Aug. 18, Oct. 20, and Dec. 15, at the Elks Club, 265 Main St., from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission is free. Anyone with an interest in buying, selling or collecting coins, or with questions about coins, is welcome to attend. Expert dealers and collectors will be on hand.
An Al-Anon meeting group invites new members to attend its weekly meetings on Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. in the First Lutheran Church, 52 George St. For information and details, call (203) 506-1464.
Health care advocates, cancer survivors and state legislators gathered at Yale-New Haven Hospital recently to brief the public about a new law requiring health insurers to cover the costs of Ultrasounds for cancer screening for women with dense breast tissue.
For women identified as having dense breast tissue, an ultrasound is recommended to detect abnormalities that may be masked by the tissue and missed by the mammogram. Those ultrasounds are not covered in the same way mammograms are and as a result many patients forgo this screening because they have to meet high deductibles or pay out of pocket for the procedure.
Based on legislation championed by former Gov. Jodi Rell years ago Connecticut was the first state in the nation to require notification to women with dense breasts that they can benefit from an ultrasound as well as the mammogram, and this is now a national requirement. However, advocates say the state fell behind in the actual coverage for this test.
This is legislation that had been worked on for years by many legislators, and this year Borer submitted a bill to push it over the finish line. It passed unanimously through the Insurance Committee and was incorporated into the budget signed by Governor Lamont in recent weeks.
“I am one of those women with dense breast who require an ultrasound coupled with my mammogram,” said Rep. Borer. “It’s appalling that because of the cost, many women need to forgo this test. This legislation is exactly the type of tangible, concrete step we need in order to eliminate inequities in healthcare and bridge the difference between those who have and those that have not”.
Borer invited Nancy Cusano Tagliatela, a West Haven resident who is a Breast Cancer survivor to attend the conference which was held at Yale’s Women’s Center.
“Having been diagnosed with Breast Cancer in November 2015, I know the importance of early detection and being pro-active. When you have the unnecessary stress of wondering how to pay for these scans, you end up not following-up which, in the long run, creates an even bigger problem. Thank you to all the legislators and advocates who worked on this bill and my own State Rep. Dorinda Borer for not giving up until this passed. So many lives will now be saved; and for that, I will be forever grateful.”
“I’m so impressed but not surprised that Nancy had the courage to stand up at a press conference amongst all the Yale leaders and senators to share her story,” said Borer. “She’s a true advocate and remarkable role model.”
Joe Cappello and his wife Nancy (who passed away earlier this year from complications of breast cancer) started the CT organization “Are you Dense, Inc.” many years ago.
“This is a wonderful day for women in the great state of Connecticut,” said Cappello. “With the passage of this legislation women across the state will finally be able to avail themselves to screening tools. Women with dense breast tissue will be screened properly and in a timely manner which will facilitate finding breast cancer at its earliest and most treatable stage. We have been trying for 10 years to get this legislation passed and we thank everyone involved and especially Rep.Borer from West Haven for finally getting us over the finish line.”
In accordance with this new law that takes effect Jan. 1 health insurers will be prohibited from charging coinsurance, copayments, deductibles and other out-of-pocket expenses for breast ultrasounds and mammograms.
The West Haven Summer Concert Series continues on the Green at 7 p.m. Thurday, August 1st with dance rock anthems performed by The Signature Band. The two-hour concert is free; the rain date is Monday at 7 p.m. For rescheduling information, visit the Department of Parks and Recreation web- site, www.whparkrec.com, or call (203) 937-3677 after 4 p.m.
By Josh LaBella
Michelle Caprio has spent years doing philanthropy in and around West Haven, and she doesn’t have plans to stop anytime soon.
She said having a passion for helping others and giving it her all helps to make other people smile and make the world a better place. The West Haven native has been involved in copious fundraisers and projects.
“I got involved when my older daughter, Michaela, started at Mackrille Elementary School,” said Caprio. “When Hurricane Katrina hit, I organized for a truck to come and I had gotten supplied from the community and we filled the truck and sent it down to New Orleans to help the victims.”
For Caprio, this was just one chapter in a long story of having a passion for helping others. Soon after she said she started a program called “Backpacks for Kids” with teacher Cathy Biagetti which gave “gently used” backpacks filled with school supplies to foster children or children in need.
Caprio said she has always enjoyed helping others but got more involved after her daughters Michaela and Chloe were born. She said she realized that bad things could happen to anybody.
“You’d always want someone to come along to put a smile one your face and make your day a little better,” said Caprio. “So I’d always had that feeling people could use a helping hand sometimes. So why not help out?”
Caprio said for five years she hosted the Health and Wellness Fair for students in the school district which saw over 30 vendors and medical professionals give out free items and information. She said over 300 families attended each year.
The list of events and fundraisers Caprio has organized or been involved in organizing is extensive. During the past 20 years she has run a dental hygiene day for students to get free teeth cleanings, helped raise supplies for foodbanks like WHEAT, ran “A Day of Caring” for struggling or homeless families as well as several benefits for families going through hard times. She also does work with national organizations.
“I am an active participant of fundraisers and do walks for the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, Alzheimer’s Association and Wounded Warriors Foundation,” said Caprio.
Her work has not gone unnoticed as Caprio has received many awards and honors. ) In 2014 she received the “Forever Friends” award from the West Haven Community House. In 2016 she received a proclamation from the office of the mayor of Meriden for being a “hometown hero for West Haven.”
This year the West Haven Republican Party gave her an award for her service and commitment to the city. Caprio said it was an honor to be chosen for any of the numerous awards she has been given but one stuck out.
“I received 2017 Westies Care Deb Hutchinson Award,” said Caprio. “She passed away and I was very close to Deb so this was heartwarming. It was very special.”
Caprio said she has not done any of this work alone and said she has had support from Mayors Picard, O’Brien and Rossi as well Superintendent of Schools Neil Cavallaro. She said she has met countless great and likeminded people along the way.
“I thank everyone who has entered my life and made an impact on the lives of others through all our hours of volunteering because I didn’t do any of this alone,” said Caprio. “I was always in great company.”
With such a long resume, Caprio said her crowning achievement is her daughters, who came to PTA meetings, City Council meetings and all of her events and helped her learn so much along the way. She said she wants her children to see her work and realize there are people who need their help.
“Like I’ve always said, if you’re able to give back, don’t hesitate – do it,” said Caprio. “Don’t second guess it. Get out there, present an idea and get it done because it will always help someone else.”
By Dan Shine
“Washington’s Black Regiment”
Can you imagine Congregational ministers fanning the fires of war? It couldn’t be possible, could it? And yet, the English authorities termed the colonial ministers of 1775 “Washington’s Black Regiment,” referring to their black robes and their stance in the coming rebellion.
Eighteenth-century America was a deeply religious culture that lived self-consciously under the eye of heaven. Events were generally perceived by the colonists, not from their own viewpoint, but from God’s perspective. The colonists didn’t see themselves as a ragtag settlement of religious exiles, but as God’s special people.
Lacking all of today’s media, they turned instead to the church sermon; it was generally an hour and a half long, and was part prophet, newspaper, video, internet, community college and social therapist all rolled into one. By the time a colonist turned 70, he would have listened to some 7000 sermons, totaling 10,000 hours; this is about the amount of lecture time a college student would need today to earn ten different undergraduate degrees, without ever repeating the same course! The colonists therefore, habitually turned to their ministers for news, information and guidance.
In 1775, English royal supremacy was being taught to the colonists at the point of a bayonet. King George III had issued a declaration asserting English sovereignty in “all cases whatsoever” in the colonies. This was an outrage to the colonists, who up until this point had considered themselves loyal Englishmen; they saw in this new declaration a British plot to deprive them of their fundamental English rights and God-ordained liberties.
The American Revolutionary era is known as the “Golden Age of Oratory.” We have all heard the famous words of Patrick Henry, Benjamin Franklin and the like. Yet, it is not well known that patriotic oratory from the pulpit played a key role in the Revolutionary movement.
The American Revolution was first and foremost a religious event. The ministers saw in the English actions, tyranny and idolatry, and considered these actions blasphemous. The preachers, quoting Romans 13, admonished their flocks to “be subject to higher powers” than the English. They firmly believed that it would be sinful not to resist English blasphemy, even by force of arms.
Before the battles of Lexington and Concord—“the shot heard ‘round the world”—the Rev. William Emerson (grandfather of Ralph Waldo Emerson) preached to the colonial militia, and propelled them into what he termed “the greatest event taking place in the present age.” Quoting Chronicles 13, he said, “And behold, God himself is with us for our captain. …O children of Israel, fight ye not against the Lord God of your fathers, for ye shall not prosper.”
And so it was that Congregational ministers took to the forefront of the rebellion against England—and helped bring about the birth of our nation.
Dear Gripe Vine Readers:
Several weeks ago, Gripe Vine published a letter from a disgruntled reader who complained of heavy commercial traffic on Canton Street. My response indicated I had contacted Councilwoman Robin Watts Hamilton who represents your district for help with this problem.
Today, I have good news! Councilwoman Hamilton followed up with this complaint and provided Gripe Vine with this reply, “I spoke with Sgt. Joseph D’Amoto of the West Haven Police Department’s Traffic Division. He told me he will post No Thru Truck Traffic signs on Canton Street. I have been in contact with the individual who lives on Canton Street to keep him updated.”
Thank you, Councilwoman Hamilton,
Dear Eleanore Turkington:
There are potholes on Ardale, Dix and Eaton Streets that need repair. These are on the ends of each street.
Ardale Street Resident
Dear Ardale Street Resident:
Gripe Vine has notified your District Councilwoman Bridgette Hoskie of your complaint. Her reply, “I have reached out to Public Works. I’ll let you know when I hear back.” Councilwoman Hoskie’s reply was date July 19. Please inform Gripe Vine when these potholes were repaired.
Dear Gripe Vine Readers:
I received complaints from readers who had occasion to use the portable toilet facilities that were recently placed on the Green. Their gripes were numerous and quite honestly, disgusting in their description of these facilities.
If my readers experienced these same conditions, please email me at email@example.com or drop me a note to Gripe Vine c/o West Haven Voice, 666 Savin Ave.
Dear Eleanore Turkington:
There are several large holes in a row on Maltby Avenue. Maybe their vehicles hover over the holes or they ignore their responsibilities to tax taxpayers. There is another large hole on Maltby Avenue at the intersection with Timberland Drive. Hazardous driving and walking conditions are here for there are no sidewalks on Maltby Avenue. It is also dangerous for kids or others riding bikes in the neighborhood of mothers with strollers.
Dear MA Potholes:
I heard from Councilwoman Robbin Watt Hamilton. “ I will forward this to the Commissioner of Public Works. I am confident it will be addressed.”
Thank you, Councilwoman Hamilton.
Dear Gripe Vine Readers:
I have received numerous inquiries on the new plastic bag law. Next week, I will have complete information for you, when it becomes law, what to do at the cashier’s counter and much more.
You can send your gripes, comments and issues to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to me c/o West Haven Voice, 666 Savin Ave. Please be sure to include your name, address and phone number, kept strictly confidential with me. You can also submit through our online form.
By Rich Lowry
Beto O’Rourke, the losing Texas senator candidate who bootstrapped his way into becoming a losing presidential candidate, had a message for refugees who had come to America: Your new country is a hellhole.
The former congressman told a roundtable of refugees and immigrants in Nashville, Tennessee: “This country was founded on white supremacy. And every single institution and structure that we have in this country still reflects the legacy of slavery and segregation and Jim Crow and suppression.”
Just in case the newcomers were inclined to believe that they had escaped to the greatest country on Earth, an open, dynamic, generous society that, whatever their struggles now, will afford them opportunities unimaginable back home — Beto was there to tell them of all its sins.
He had made himself into an instrument of woke assimilation.
This is the backdrop of the controversy over Ilhan Omar, the Somali-born left-wing member of Congress whom Donald Trump urged, in particularly noxious tweets, to return to her native country and fix it before presuming to tell us what to do.
It’s a mistake, though, to think that Omar is anything other than on her way to total assimilation, only on the terms set out by Beto O’Rourke.
American has two assimilation problems. One is immigrants feeling only a tenuous connection to America, and getting isolated in ethnic enclaves. The other is immigrants like Omar — and some of her second-generation colleagues — assimilating into the America of identity politics and grievance.
They have learned to speak not just English, but the language of oppression. They understand our system (at least no less than the average officeholder), but hold it in low regard. They know our history, as taught by an instructor cribbing from Howard Zinn.
They may be citizens, but they are certainly outraged victims.
According to a profile in The Washington Post, Omar felt betrayal immediately upon getting to America.
“I arrived at the age of 12 and learned that I was the extreme other,” she explained to The Post, noting bullying when she was in school in Arlington, Virginia, an affluent Washington, D.C. suburb. “I was black. I was Muslim. I also learned I was extremely poor and that the classless America that my father talked about didn’t exist.”
Somehow, despite all the depredations, she gained a seat in Congress. Omar doesn’t represent a majority-minority district. She started her elected career, as The Post puts it, by getting to know “older peace-and-justice hippies.” She attended Black Lives Matter protests, and established relationships with all the left-wing groups in Minneapolis.
Omar’s default is to blame America first. She explained that local Somali-Americans attempted to join the Islamic State as a function of “systemic alienation.” She contends that she has met American veterans “who say the most horrendous things, who have complete disregard for life.” And she accuses her congressional colleagues of singling her out for demonization.
Anyone who thinks these attitudes are alien to America has never been to a college campus or watched MSNBC. In short, whatever foolhardy things Trump may tweet, Ilhan Omar is not suited to return and fix Somalia, rather to join a segment of the American elite.
Rich Lowry is editor of the National Review.(c) 2019 by King Features Synd., Inc.