9 People Shine as West Hartford Kiwanis Club’s Stars for Kids Award Winners

From a press release provided by the West Hartford Kiwanis Club:

West Hartford, CT – December 2009 – In the Kiwanis spirit of making a difference one child at a time, The West Hartford Kiwanis Club and Kiwanis Foundation will be holding their Third Annual “Stars for Kids” Awards Program on January 29, 2010.

Stars for Kids is a special award evening honoring 9 people in the community who have volunteered their time and energy to be a light for children.

Recipients are chosen for their exemplary service and volunteerism to help children in the community and beyond. Five high school seniors, a firefighter, a police officer, and 2 residents – one receiving the Mayor’s award and one receiving the first “Kiwanis Star” award, will be honored.

The Kiwanis Club of West Hartford is pleased to announce this year’s award recipients. They are: James Procaccini, West Hartford Resident – Mayor’s Award; Morris Palmer, Senior, American School for the Deaf; Chloe Singer, Senior, Conard High School; Jack Nilsen, Senior, Hall High School; Arissa Fram, Senior, Kingswood-Oxford; Kelly Gilhooly, Senior, Northwest Catholic High School;; Captain John Brice, Firefighter Award; Officer James Mahon, Police Officer Award; and Michael Zullo, West Hartford Resident – Kiwanis Star Award. Each student will also receive a $500 scholarship.

Bill Austin, Kiwanis Club President said, “The Kiwanis Club is excited to help the five scholarship awardees and to honor the other outstanding citizens who will be recognized with awards.” President Austin also stated that “in addition to the Mayor’s Award, this year’s honorees will include a first time Kiwanis ‘Star Award’. The Stars for Kids Award program recognizes high school students and citizens that are making a difference in children’s lives one day at a time.”

The award event, STARS FOR KIDS – People Lighting the Way for Children, will be held on Friday, January 29, 2010 at the West Hartford Town Hall Auditorium at 6:30pm. All proceeds from this event will benefit community service projects such as “Lose the Training Wheels”, an annual bicycle camp for children with special needs and the club’s Early Childhood Initiative, and scholarships.

The evening will include not only the recognition of the 9 outstanding award recipients but also live music from the award-winning Hall High School Jazz Band, food, beverages, and a silent auction at which over 250 people are expected to attend. The club is delighted to once again have Susan Christensen, former Fox 61 TV News Anchor as honorary chair and emcee of the event.

Tickets are $50 per person or $400 for a table of 10. The price includes hors d’oeuvres, wine, beer, soda, and fun. Donations and ticket payments may be mailed to Kiwanis Club of West Hartford Foundation, PO Box 271131, West Hartford, CT 06127-1131. To donate silent auction items, please contact Kiwanis directly by telephone or email.

The West Hartford Club is a local chapter of Kiwanis International, a volunteer group with over 600,000 members in 94 nations dedicated to improving the lives of children.

For more information, please contact Karen Brylle at 860-678-7728 or Claudia Bowles at 860-313-0101 or email stars@westhartfordkiwanis.org. You may also visit www.westhartfordkiwanis.org.

Links:
West Hartford Kiwanis

The New Green Tea House Brings Authentic Chinese Teas to West Hartford

On Thursday, November 5, it was tea time with a purpose at the grand opening of the Green Tea House in Blue Back Square.

A percentage of the new store’s sales for the day benefited the West Hartford Kiwanis Club Community Service Foundation. Store owner Ting Chaponis was welcomed by the Chamber of Commerce and Mayor Slifka at a ribbon cutting ceremony.

Links:
The Green Tea House
West Hartford Kiwanis
West Hartford Chamber of Commerce

West Hartford Kiwanis Club Hosts “Lose the Training Wheels”

Riding a bike is a rite of passage for children, but for some kids the freedom that comes with riding a bike is difficult to achieve.

Lose the Training Wheels is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping individuals with disabilities learn to ride a conventional bicycle. This week they are in West Hartford in partnership with the West Hartford Kiwanis Club to teach local children how to ride on two wheels. Hall High School is host site for the week long camp.

Thirty-eight campers come throughout the day in shifts to work with volunteers. By the end of the week nearly all campers are typically able to ride a bicycle by themselves.

Parents who have been helping their children learn the skill for a while are surprised at how quickly their kids can learn to ride a bike with modifications made by Lose the Training Wheels. For the campers, the confidence that comes with learning something they thought impossible can be life changing.

Lose the Training Wheels is an international organization running camps all year. The Kiwanis plan on funding the camp again next year.

Links:
Lose the Training Wheels
West Hartford Kiwanis Club