To the Editor:

The Age-Friendly Community Initiative has completed its “Our Towns” year-long project, a gift to our six member towns (Bethel, Gilead, Greenwood, Hanover, Newry, Woodstock). Through an AARP Community Challenge grant, wooden benches and picnic tables have been given to the towns to be placed in public places for the relaxation and socialization of its residents.

Painted in vivid colors and with local motifs, each piece is adorned with a lovely copper commemorative plaque, and the tables have a checkerboard painted on top. This has been a wonderfully collaborative project with labor provided by the Congo Craftsmen, artist Kate Webb (BAAM coordinator), community and Telstar-student painters, and Amanda Moran.

AFCI enthusiastically thanks the following for their hours of work: Bob Iles and Congo Craftsmen Joe Aloisio, Jim Chandler, Jim List, Steve Lovejoy, Seabury Lyon, Art Marshall, Jeff Martin, Irv Robinson, and Dean Walker; Kate Webb and community helpers Jim Armstrong, Hali Barter, Jillian Brice, Andrew Hoagland, Michelle Lucas, Laina Pulkkinen, and Matt Webb; Telstar Freshman Academy teacher Beth Clarke and students Rylee Cooper, Ella Hopps, Cedar Shauffler, and Hayley Smith; and artisan Amanda Moran. Thanks also to Mike and Eva Zioli for the long-term storage.

The benches and tables made their debut at the June 14 polling stations, and you can look for them to be popping up at their new homes during the summer. And if you’d like to help us finish the project, we’re in need of summer painters, both artists and those not so artistic but willing to do some simple painting. You may contact Kate Webb to volunteer your services: ([email protected]).

Nancy Davis 

AFCI Board

Bethel

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