New Haven Region

Our New Haven Region coverage includes stories about all the towns in the Greater New Haven area, ranging from Southbury, Wolcott and Meriden to Milford, Branford and Madison.

Diane Orson / WNPR

The first national spelling bee in the U.S. took place back in 1925. In recent years, spelling bees have seen a surge in popularity nationwide.

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An oratorio based on the life of gay rights advocate and politician Harvey Milk gets its New England premiere this weekend in New Haven. Oratorios are typically large musical compositions with a dramatic theme, written for orchestra, choir, and soloists; think Handel's "Messiah," or Haydn's "Creation."

Ceyda Durmaz

In celebration of Earth Day, the New Haven - León Sister City Project is displaying nine colorful banners throughout the city. 

Forty-five years ago, the attention of the nation and much of the world swung toward New Haven, where the murder trial of Bobby Seale and Ericka Huggins had made the city a magnet for Black Panther outrage and pushed New Haven to the brink of anarchy.

It's an amazing story with a cast of characters that includes not only the Panthers, but future black leaders like Kurt Schmoke, a Yale student who would become mayor of Baltimore, and J. Edgar Hoover, Jerry Rubin, Allen Ginsberg, Archibald Cox, Spiro Agnew, Kingman Brewster and Tom Hayden.

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New Haven's peer mentorship program has helped the public schools increase the number of graduating seniors who go to college and stay there. 

The program started in 2010, and was created by Connecticut College Summit, a local non-profit. 

City of Stamford

Earlier this week, Connecticut DOT officials shut down a state-owned parking garage at the Stamford Transportation Center. A chunk of concrete fell from one of the parking decks to the deck below over the weekend. Fortunately, no one was injured.

The garage is almost 30 years old, and has been part of a redevelopment plan of the state’s for a very long time -- a plan that will probably involve replacing the parking garage. But for now, it’s closed for evaluation, and that’s thrown off about a thousand commuters who rely on the rails to get to work.

It points to a bigger question: what will the state do about developing around transit stations? Are we stuck planning primarily for cars? 

Courtesy of Tom Gray

The remains of a sailor killed at Pearl Harbor are coming home to New England.

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If you've ever wondered how a group of French musicians might play the music of The Ramones, you are in luck. Direct from Toulouse, France: Los Jamones, a Ramones tribute band, performs this Saturday night, April 18, at Cafe Nine in New Haven with Elm City punk rockers The Hulls.

Raymond Brown/flickr creative commons

The Branford, Connecticut-based charity Read to Grow celebrates its 15th anniversary this month with a dinner event on Saturday, April 25.

Police have cited and fined 19 people at Yale University during a protest calling on the Ivy League school to divest from fossil fuel companies.

Michelle Lee / Creative Commons

A bill that would block efforts to close a community college branch in Meriden because of anticipated state budget cuts has cleared the state Senate. 

Hyland House

Definitively dating an old house can be tricky. Today, we have things like photographs and land records, but how would you figure out a house's age without that kind of stuff? 

Snowmanradio / Creative Commons

Meriden's director of health and human services has been arraigned on charges she staged a burglary of her office.

Lisa Pippa was presented in court Thursday, accused of falsely reporting an incident. Prosecutors say Pippa ransacked her own office on March 9, and tried to implicate another department employee in the break-in. The Hartford Courant reports:

Alexander Gardner / Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University

Yale University's Beinecke Library announced the purchase of more than 57,000 photographic prints this week, primarily of President Abraham Lincoln, the Civil War, and American life in the 1860s.

The Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library acquired the collection, which also includes books, pamphlets, maps, and theater broadsides for a total of over 73,000 items from the Meserve-Kunhardt Foundation.

A nearly $300 million project widening Interstate 84 in Waterbury is about to begin.

The Republican-American reports that rebuilding the 2.7-mile stretch of highway that Governor Dannel Malloy has called one of the most infamous bottlenecks in Connecticut will begin Monday.

The state Department of Transportation's contact requires the project to be complete by June 25, 2020.

Wilfredo Rivera / CPBN Learning Lab

If you walk into one of James Flynn's social studies classes at Platt High School in Meriden, you might be shocked at what you see. Kids on smart phones, tablets, laptops. They're on Twitter, Instagram, posting messages on a Facebook-like program called Edmodo.

But, oddly enough, most of them are not distracted. Students at Platt use social media as part of their curriculum. 

Reinhold Behringer / Creative Commons

The World Health Organization has selected Greater New Haven as one of 15 urban areas worldwide to pilot a planned “age-friendly city indicator guide”.  

Katrina Leskanich

"Walking on Sunshine" topped music charts worldwide in 1985, catapulting the British band Katrina and The Waves to stardom. 

Paul Bass / New Haven Independent

Former Connecticut Governor John Rowland was sentenced on Wednesday to 30 months in prison in a campaign fraud case. He was also fined $35,000.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

The Hamden mayor who led Governor Dannel Malloy's Sandy Hook Advisory Commission is leaving public office to take a job in the governor's administration. 

Hindu Holi Festival Brings Spring Colors to Waterbury

Mar 13, 2015
John Humphrey / WNPR

Washington Park was still covered in snow this past Sunday, but that did not deter festival-goers from gathering to celebrate Holi, the Hindu spring festival, and the start of their new year.

Wasted Time R / Creative Commons

Quinnipiac University faces a $150-a-day fine, with the Hamden Planning and Zoning Commission accusing it of violating a 2006 housing agreement that led to construction of the York Hill campus. 

Zbigniew Warzynski

"Song of the Goat" is the literal meaning of the ancient Greek word for tragedy. It's also the name of the  theater company from Wroclaw, Poland bringing a new adaptation of "King Lear" to New Haven this weekend.

In Polish, that's "Piesn Kozla."

Grzegorz Bral, the artistic director of the theater company, said he doesn't see "King Lear" so much as a story about a father and his three daughters, but rather a "tragedy without a mother."

Jonathan Cohen/Flickr

Officials at Tweed New Haven Regional Airport have said that they are negotiating with a Missouri-based airlines which could create an airline link between southern Connecticut and Washington, D.C.

Airport authority Chairman John Picard and Executive Director Tim Larson have said that the airport is negotiating with Buzz Airways of Branson, Missouri, to run regular, scheduled charter service between New Haven and Dulles International Airport in Virginia outside Washington. 

Yale University has banned a fraternity from campus for two years over a violation of the school's sexual misconduct policy. The university's chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon is being punished for what the fraternity describes as a presentation made at a February 2014 initiation ceremony. 

Daniel Case / Creative Commons

Starting next fall, the Waterbury school district will recognize two Muslim holidays.

Often, when Eid Al-Fitr or Eid Al-Adha falls on a school day in the United States, Muslim families have to make a choice. "A lot of kids have to make the choice between religion and going to school on that day," said Amr Abu-al-rub, an imam at the United Muslim Mosque in Waterbury. "It's a tough choice to make, especially for kids."

It's a choice made tougher if a field trip, classroom party, or major test is scheduled on the holiday.

jackof/iStock / Thinkstock

The Waterbury School board will consider whether to recognize two Muslim holidays on the school calendar on Thursday night. 

According to The Republican-American, a petition with nearly 300 signatures is seeking recognition of the holidays Eid Al-Fitr and Eid Al-Adha. The petition asks that the days be recognized on the school calendar and that teachers and staff avoid scheduling tests, field trips and other events on those days.

Alberto Bocchetta, Giorgio Tamburini, Pina Cavolina, Alessandra Serra, Andrea Loviselli and Mario Piga / Wikimedia Commons

Yale University and the state are now offering a new treatment to young people living in the New Haven area who are experiencing psychotic symptoms. The treatment is also the subject of a soon-to-be-released study.

Wessel Krul / Creative Commons

Think of "room escape" like a fancy cocktail: one part mystery, one part problem-solving, and two parts teamwork, with a dash of adrenaline-inducing claustrophobia on top.

If you're still puzzled, then congratulations -- that's the point.

Room escape is a new form of puzzle-based entertainment that's only just begun to catch on in America. It involves transforming ordinary rooms into extraordinary playscapes: richly themed environments in which willing participants are locked inside, and forced to solve mind-bending puzzles in order to escape.

CFGNH

A new report shows an influx of immigrants to New Haven since 2000 has made it the fastest growing city in Connecticut.

The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven commissioned DataHaven to research how immigration has impacted the Elm City and the 20 towns surrounding it. Among the report findings, between 2000 and 2012--the population of Greater New Haven grew by 27,000 people. 75 percent of the new residents are foreign born and half of them are naturalized citizens. During the same period, there has been minimal growth in the region's native born population.   

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