According to the dictionary, to fete is to honor with a celebration, and Officer Peter Osowiecki was very much honored at the big retirement party his friends held for him on April 5. Over 200 came to the Sun Valley Resort banquet hall in Stafford that evening, including fellow officers and leaders of the Suffield Police Department, along with a diverse crew of folks he had helped during his 30 years of service.
With the wrangling on how to correct the project’s problems settled, construction work on the new Broad Brook Brewery on South Street resumed over a month ago after a delay of almost a year. The recent work has been inside, not apparent to passers-by.
As reported last month, the bid requests for renovating and slightly expanding the Suffield Town Hall were published in late February, with a response date of March 21. Seven architects and three construction contractors responded and participated in the mandatory walk-through.
First Selectman Melissa Mack announces in her update on Page 3 of this issue that the Kent Memorial Library will open to the public in June. That is great news, and this reporter’s words may have become superfluous, but some details may be of interest. One day in early April the town’s temporary library on Ffyler Place was shut down for an hour and a half in mid-day, and the library staff all got a chance to examine the interior of the “big house,” in which many of the last tasks of its renovation and remediation had been completed.
When Cub Scouts complete their career in the early years of the overall Scout program, those who want to continue – and almost all of them do – “cross over” to become Boy Scouts in a very nice ceremony held in the Cub Pack’s annual Blue & Gold Banquet.
In recent years, the news has spread that our local flora, including essential food crops, is threatened by the shrinking population of pollinating bees. So on March 3, about 50 people interested in doing something about it gathered at the Second Baptist Church at 3 p.m. in a program sponsored by the Green Team of the church, the Friends of the Farm at Hilltop, and the Suffield Land Conservancy.
This year’s interfaith service at the Third Baptist Church honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday, January 21, was held almost five weeks later on February 24, and that was two years after the last such observance in town – both delays having been caused by weather problems – but the event made up for the delays with its enthusiastic spirit and the forcefulness of the messages offered. The little church was close to full when Suffield’s Interfaith Choir and members of Third Baptist marched slowly in with the customary powerful opening spiritual, We Come This Way by Faith.
Suffield’s Kate Butler taught in Manchester briefly after her studies at Eastern Connecticut State University (Class of 2017) focused on education and history, but she decided to follow in the family footsteps and is now a “fourth generation crime fighter.” That’s the inscription in the nice shadow box her father, Matt Butler, presented to her shortly after her graduation from the Hartford Police Academy as a new hire of the Hartford Police Department. The centerpiece of her father’s shadow box was his own badge as a Special Agent of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, from which he had retired as Agent in Charge of the NCIS Training Academy in Georgia after a long career in responsible NCIS positions all over the world.
The project to renovate the present Town Hall is moving forward, and the Request for Qualifications and Proposal was published on February 22. Actually there were two closely related RFP’s issued, one for the architectural and engineering design work (A/E) and one for a “Construction Manager at Risk” (CMR).
Old timers in town will remember Little Orphan Annie from her radio program and her long-running comic strip, and many will remember at least one of her several movies and the popular musical play, Annie, as well as Annie, Jr., the adaptation for a young cast offered to Suffield in 2012 as the first musical play produced by Suffield Middle School. Annie, Jr. came to town again for three performances this year at the end of February and the start of March, and the town was delighted again.