Just In Time For The Holidays, High School May Have Been Exposed To Mumps

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Dec 152017

File Photo: A young man with swelling in his face from the Mumps Virus.

Amity Supt. Charles Dumais sent out a letter to Amity High School parents and staff informing them that, according to the Health Department, that some people at Amity may have been exposed to a case of the mumps during the week of December 4.

The Health Department recommends that students and staff of Amity High School monitor for signs and symptoms consistent with the mumps until December 29th. If symptoms do develop, they are urged to see their healthcare provider.

Below is the Superintendent’s full letter:

We have been informed by the Health Department that Amity staff and students may have been exposed to a case of mumps at Amity Regional High School during the week of December 4, 2017.

Mumps is an acute viral disease that is transmitted from person-to-person through direct contact with respiratory droplets spread by coughing and sneezing or through contact with saliva from an ill person. Mumps can be prevented by immunization.

To help control the spread of active mumps within the community, please make sure indivudals are properly immunized and refrain from sharing items that come in contact with saliva, such as drink bottles, food, and lip balms.

Persons with mumps may develop headache, body aches, fever and swollen and tender glands in the jaw (parotitis). People who become infected with mumps may not show symptoms until 12 to 25 days after exposure, and they are typically infectious to others a few days prior to developing symptoms.

The Health Department recommends that students and staff of Amity High School monitor for signs and symptoms consistent with the mumps virus until December 29, 2017, which is 25 days after the date of last potential exposure.

If additional cases of mumps are identified, this time period may be expanded. If signs or symptoms of mumps develop, please see your health care provider and take this letter with you.

Your provider should contact the health department to arrange for appropriate testing. In addition, we recommend that all individuals review their immunization status to ensure that they are up-to-date and discuss the need for vaccination with their healthcare provider.

Again, mumps can be prevented with MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine. MMR vaccine prevents most, but not all, cases of mumps and complications caused by the disease.

The mumps vaccine is usually a two-dose series obtained in childhood. Two doses of the vaccine are 88% (range: 66-95%) effective at preventing mumps; one dose is 78% (range: 49%−92%) effective. The doses are typically given at 1 and 4 years of age.

A fact sheet about the mumps virus is attached to this letter. Please feel free to contact the Health Department at (860) 509-7929, should you have questions or concerns.

Dr. Charles Dumais, Superintendent

Click here for more information on mumps.

Remembering The Victims of Sandy Hook 5 Years Later

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Dec 142017

On Dec. 14, 2012, Orange Live was just 7 months old. I’d promised readers that I would stick to the town of Orange and had kept my promise until 9:37 a.m. when I first heard about the murders at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Everything that I reported that day came from former colleagues at the scene, one who was a good friend of Dawn Hochsprung, the school’s principal.

Although I could have grabbed a press pass and made my way up there, but first responders had enough going on and from the sound of their voices as they relayed their information to me, I knew that it was not necessary for me to be on the scene to feel the sadness and horror of a sicko murdering children and teachers in what everyone thought was a safe place.

I have never mentioned the murderer’s name, nor will I now, because that monster and its non-motive for killing the innocent should not be given any attention. But the principal, teachers, and little children, most of whom were as old as my granddaughter is now, should never be forgotten.


The monster started its morning by killing its mother in their home. Five minutes later at 9:35 a.m. it shot its way through a glass panel next to the locked front entrance doors of the school and was confronted by Dawn Hocksprung, School Psychologist Mary Sherlach, and Lead Teacher Natalie Hammond, who left a meeting to investigate. He killed Hockspring and Sherlach and wounded Hammond.

A school custodian, Rick Thorne ran through the school warning classrooms of the danger.

The monster forced his way into a first-grade classroom where substitute teacher Lauren Rousseau was trying to hide her tiny students in a bathroom. Rousseau and Rachel D’Avino a behavioral therapist, who was only there for the week were killed along with 15 students. Only one 6-year-old girl survived by lying still and playing dead — although she has to live with the horror of what she heard and saw that day.

The murderer then came into Victoria Soto’s first-grade classroom and shot her, teacher’s aid Anne Marie Murphy and five children. What exactly happened is not clear, but somehow, when the monster stopped shooting (possibly because the rifle jammed) nine children were able to run from the classroom to safety. Police later found two surviving children who had hidden in the bathroom.

Vicki’s father told me last year that his daughter was supposed to have the day off, but decided to go in that morning.

So, today, let’s take a few moments to remember the heroes, first responders, and the victims and their families and pray that even though many of our legislators are owned by the NRA and refuse to make changes, that senseless gun violence can be stopped. Enough is enough.

Think about these innocent children and the terror they felt, calling for their mommies’ and sobbing as the merciless monster shot them and their friends.

Charlotte Bacon, 6Daniel Barden, 7, Olivia Engel, 6, Josephine Gay, 7, Dylan Hockley, 6, Madeleine Hsu, 6,  Catherine Hubbard, 6, Chase Kowalski, 7, Jesse Lewis, 6, Ana Márquez-Greene, 6, James Mattioli, 6, Grace McDonnell, 7, Emilie Parker, 6, Jack Pinto, 6, Noah Pozner, 6, Caroline Previdi, 6, Jessica Rekos, 6, Avielle Richman, 6, Benjamin Wheeler, 6, and Allison Wyatt, 6.

The only guns that should be allowed to the public are muskets. They take a long time to load and give you time to think. 

A Look At The Past On A Snowy Day

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Dec 142017

bThis photo, from the Orange Historical Society’s archives, recently was posted on the “You Know You’re From Orange” Facebook page.

Some residents recognized the man pictured, others just thought it was a great photo.

First Selectman Jim Zeoli posted the following so everyone could properly ID him in the future.

“Arnold Hine, Town road worker, farmer, First Selectman 1947 – 1961”

I wonder how difficult it was to pull that wagon through the snow.

Does anyone know the name of his dog?


Wrestling: Amity Shuts Out Cheshire in Season Opener

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Dec 132017

The Spartans Wrestling team kicked off the winter season on Tuesday, Dec. 12 with a shutout victory against Cheshire.

Way to go Amity!

One Night Only: Get Your Tickets For The Laramie Project Ten Years later

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Dec 072017

The Jamie Hulley Arts Foundation is sponsoring a performance of “The Laramie Project Ten Years Later,” in the John J. Brady Center at Amity High School on Friday, Dec. 8. at 8 p.m. 

In the fall of 2007, the revamped Amity Creative Theater presented its first play: The Laramie Project.

The Laramie Project tells the story of the brutal killing of a gay college student named Matthew Sheppard and how his hometown of Laramie Wyoming dealt with the aftermath of the crime.

The authors of the play revisited Wyoming ten years later to investigate if any real change had occurred in Laramie. What does change look like? Have we progressed as a nation? How do we stop hate?

Get your tickets for the ACT presentation of The Laramie Project Ten Years Later HERETickets are only $10. 

Festival of Lights and Trees at Maplewood Senior Living of Orange

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Dec 052017

Maplewood Senior Living of Orange, 245 Indian River Road is sponsoring a Festival of Lights and Trees community event to raise funds for the Orange Community Assistance Programs which provide assistance with Food Bank, Fuel Assistance, Holiday Baskets and Adopt a Family.

For this event, donors are asked to decorate a tree for auction at The Festival of Lights and Trees.

The event will take place at Maplewood on Tuesday, Dec. 5, from 4:30 PM to 7 p.m.

The Community Assistance Programs are vital to assist Orange residents in need and are maintained solely by donations and the generosity of local businesses, organizations, schools, churches and residents. Please decorate a tree, stop by for some culinary delights and support your neighbors in need!

Orange Live will be on hand with the “decorative” lighted Gingerbread Lighthouse raffle. Tickets are $2 each with all proceeds going to the Orange Food Bank. (Drawing to be held on December 12).

Run Close To Home, The Turkey Trot Tradition Continues

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Nov 202017

In what has truly become an annual tradition in the Town of Orange, The Rotary Club of Orange will host its 5th Annual Thanksgiving Day 5k Road Race and 2 Mile Walk on Thanksgiving morning, November 23, 2017.

Whether you are a competitive runner, a casual jogger or just like to go for a nice walk on a beautiful autumn day, this event is sure to be one that you will enjoy participating in. Each of the past four years, the number of participants has grown significantly, making this one of our most important and successful fundraisers.

The race will take place on a scenic USATF certified and sanctioned course and will start at the High Plains Community Center, 525 Orange Center Road, and run through Orange with a finish back at the Community Center. 

Race Details

$25.00 by November 17th – $30.00 After and on Race Day

Early Packet Pickup and Late Registration – Wednesday, November 22 at High Plains Community Center, 525 Orange Center Rd., Orange, CT  from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM

Awards: Trophies to the top male and female finishers overall. Medals to the top three male and female finishers in each division. Divisions 5K Run (12 & Under, 13-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60-69, 70-79, 80+).  Finisher Ribbons for Walkers.  Top quality T-Shirts for all PRE-REGISTERED participants.  Refreshments will be served after the race.  There is ample parking.  Timing and Results by FastTrack Timing, LLC. The following are the logistics for signing up and race day information.

5K RUN – 8:00 AM
FUN WALK – 8:05 AM

TO REGISTER – go to www.rotarycluboforange.org  or www.fasttracktiming.com

GPS DIRECTIONS: Enter the following address on your GPS: 525 Orange Center Rd, Orange, CT 06477

Race organizer and tri-athlete Carl Russell (don’t worry, he’s not running in the race) has been the driving force behind this event since its inception five years ago. Thanks to his hard work, leadership, and commitment to the success of the race, it has become a “don’t miss” race for participants from both near and far.

The funds raised from this event will go towards supporting several of the Orange Rotary’s initiatives both locally and abroad. Locally, Rotary provides dictionaries to every third grader in Orange, register area children in the Amber Alert ID Program and make much-needed donations to support the town food pantry, energy assistance programs, and others.

The last five years the Rotary has participated in “Operation Warm” and donated thousands of coats to area schools and shelters to help keep underprivileged kids warm. Additionally, the club awards $6,000 in college scholarships annually to high school seniors from Orange.

Internationally, our fundraising efforts support clean water projects around the globe, donating funds for heart surgeries for hundreds of needy children and the ongoing fight against polio which still represents a threat to populations in many countries.

Please join in to help support this fun and worthy event and get your Thanksgiving Day off to a great start!

Orange Police: Fatal Car Accident

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Nov 102017

The following is a statement from Town of Orange Police Department Chief Robert Gagne:
First and foremost, the thoughts and prayers of the entire Orange Police Department are with the family of Philip Hunt, who unfortunately succumbed to his injuries as a result of the crash in West Haven.
Orange Police were called to the scene of a motor vehicle crash at Route 34 and Route 152 (in Orange) in which a light-colored minivan struck another vehicle from behind, then fled the scene, eastbound, on Route 34 without stopping.
Shortly thereafter, Orange Police observed a vehicle matching the description of the offending vehicle traveling southbound on Dogwood Road near New Haven Avenue. The vehicle had front-end damage and was being operated in an erratic manner. The vehicle initially slowed to a stop (or near-stop) for police on Dogwood Road near Route One, but then continued east on Route One, and then south on Meloy Road into West Haven, prior to crashing on Meloy Road.
Orange police were cooperative with the West Haven Haven Police Department at the scene of the crash. Orange Police are cooperating fully with the Connecticut State Police, who are investigating this incident. The original accident at Route 34 152 and its connection to the West Haven crash remains under investigation.
The Orange Police Department defers any further comment to the Connecticut State Police Public Information Office.

Orange Highway Department Snow Plowing Policy

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Nov 092017

There are more than 110 miles of streets in the Town of Orange. Snow removal can cost up to $2,500 per hour. Therefore, it is important for the Department of Public Works to use its resources wisely with cooperation from the residents to minimize the cost.

Plow Routes: The streets are plowed and sanded in order of priority. Main (collector) roads are addressed first with special attention to steep hills and difficult intersections. Side streets are done next, then dead-end streets.  Side streets will remain unplowed if the main roads require repeat plowing due to the heavy volume of snowfall. This may not seem fair to the residents of side streets or dead-ends.  However, the main roads must remain open.

Blocked Driveways: All snow plows angle the same way; to the driver’s right. While plowing, the plow will push the snow in front of a residential driveway.  The homeowner is responsible for access to his/her driveway. The only way to avoid additional snow removal is to wait until DPW work crews have completed their final clean up of your road.

Mailbox Damage: The town repairs or replaces only those mailboxes and/or posts that are actually struck by the plow blade.  Usually, a paint mark or tire tracks provide evidence of a mailbox strike.  The Town does not repair or replace mailboxes and/or posts that fall from the force of plowed snow. Mailboxes and supporting posts must be installed to withstand the rigors of snow removal; including the force of snow pushed from the street onto the roadside.  It is recommended that homeowners do not purchase and utilize plastic mailboxes and/or posts as they are subject to damage.  DPW recommends the use of a 4″ x 4″ wooden post or 2″ metal pipe with a metal mailbox.

Private Plowing: The Town of Orange prohibits private plow contractors from pushing snow from private driveways or parking lots onto Town streets.  This practice is dangerous and impedes the Town’s snow removal efforts.  If there is no other alternative to pushing the snow into the street, the plow driver must plow off the windrow left across the street by re-plowing until the road is safe.  This may not necessarily mean bare pavement, but certainly, it should be no worse than when the driver began work.

No Parking:   The Town of Orange Snow Removal Ordinance takes effect on November 1 of each year, and continues to April 1 of the following year.  During this time, there shall be no parking on public roads during snowstorms.  Should your vehicle be parked on the street causing an obstruction to snow removal vehicles, your vehicle may be ticketed or removed by the Town of Orange Police Department.  The cost of removal and any other subsequent fees shall be borne upon the owner of the vehicle.

Snow Stakes:   The Town of Orange Highway Department reminds Orange residents to install “snow stakes” now before the ground freezes.  It is difficult to distinguish between the pavement edge and the edge of a lawn in heavy snowfall.  Installing stakes along property edges as close to the pavement as possible without interfering with traffic will help homeowners avoid unsightly lawn damage this winter, especially for properties with underground sprinklers or invisible fencing.  Snow stakes should be 30-36″ high and can be purchased at a local hardware store.  If using wooden stakes, paint the top 3″ of the stakes red to increase visibility against the snow.

Residents who feel they have a legitimate complaint should call the Town of Orange Department of Public Works at (203) 891-4775

Stars and Stripes Dance To Benefit Knights Scholarship Fund

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Nov 092017

The Holy Infant Knights of Columbus will host its annual Scholarship Fundraiser Dance this coming Saturday, November 11, from 7-11 p.m. in the Holy Infant School gym, 450 Racebrook Road. Everyone is Welcome to attend.
This year’s dance called a “Stars & Stripes Dance,” is taking place on Veteran’s Day to honor all veterans attending the dance. Each military veteran attending this event will receive a memento to signify how we feel about our veterans.
Complimentary wine, beer, soft drinks, water, light hors-d’oeuvres, and desserts also will be available.
The dance will be hosted by Orange’s own “DJ Steve” Schneider, who will play a wide variety of music from the 1940s to the present day (he has an incredible library of music—bring your requests!).
There will be a “Name That Tune” contest, and several line dances will be featured. All net proceeds will benefit the Knights’ Scholarship Fund.
Tickets are only $25 per person, and may be obtained from any Holy Infant Knight member, or by calling Kevin at 203-795-0134 or Mike at 203-799-7818.
originally Published on: Nov 7, 2017 @ 23:12