Tolland and Windham Region

Our Tolland and Windham Region coverage includes stories about all the towns in the Tolland and Windham Counties, ranging from Somers and Hebron to Thompson and Sterling.

WILI Boom Box Parade / Facebook

Willimantic's unique Independence Day "Boom Box" parade is celebrating its 30th anniversary.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

Connecticut’s dangerous, winding roads usually restrict Nutmeggers to their cars when they’re getting around rural parts of the state. So, when it comes to the carless -- the elderly, the disabled, and the poor -- how are they able to get where they need to go? 

PATH Academy Windham

Teachers at Path Academy Windham are now represented by the American Federation of Teachers, the state’s second-largest teachers union. Last week, the teachers signed a two-year agreement with the school and its management organization, a Hartford-based group called Our Piece of the Pie, one of many organizations that run charter schools in Connecticut.

Courtesy David Foster

Blue legend B.B. King died Thursday at the age of 89. Connecticut blues singer and former club owner David Foster had a decades long friendship with King, and played with him as recently as last year.

Gilberto Santa Rosa / Flickr Creative Commons

There are many kinds of nudism - or naturism. There are people who just like doing stuff while not wearing clothes. And there are those who believe there are hygiene benefits. And people who link nudism with various utopian movements that break down barriers among people.

And there are people who believe in de-stigmatizing the parts of the human anatomy ordinarily covered by a bathing. The way this plays out in life, therefore, is that some naturists just want the chance to live in the raw in fairly private settings.

Harriet Jones / WNPR

Connecticut is receiving the federal disaster declaration needed to receive federal aid to help cover costs incurred from the January blizzard.

Gov. Dannel Malloy said Wednesday that financial assistance will be provided to state agencies and municipalities in New London, Windham and Tolland counties. Also, the Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribes will be eligible for funding to help cover costs incurred from the storm. The reimbursement rate is 75 percent.

Ryan King / WNPR

Some of the best professional duckpin bowlers on the east coast gather this weekend for the Eastern Duckpin Classic in Mansfield.

In the 1920s and '30s, Connecticut residents Frank Barber and George Iseman arranged bowling tournaments between Connecticut duckpin bowlers, and some of the best bowlers from Washington, D.C. and Maryland, where the sport originated.

Coventry Regional Farmers' Market / Facebook

The well-known Coventry Regional Farmers' Market is heading into its final summer season, beginning on May 31 and running every Sunday until October. While local businesses and vendors are sad to see the market go, they are grateful for the executive board’s dedication and ambition over the past 12 years.

Patrick Skahill / WNPR

Imagine Connecticut: mountains as high and as sharp as the Himalayas, volcanic activity, and ancient earthquakes shaking the ground -- much more powerful than those we feel today. To understand how this happened, we need to dial the clock back just a little bit... about 300 million years.

That's when the supercontinent of Pangea was taking shape, and an ancient landmass housing modern-day Africa and South America had slammed into Connecticut's coast. 

Weston Observatory / Twitter

Have you been feeling the earth move?

In what's becoming a daily event, a minor earthquake has shaken parts of eastern Connecticut.

University of Connecticut

The University of Connecticut is in negotiations to buy a hotel in Storrs and eventually turn it into a student dormitory.

Tim Cook / The Day

Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy, Republican challenger Tom Foley, and Independent candidate Joe Visconti met on Thursday for a gubernatorial debate at the Garde Arts Center in New London. 

At UConn, Does "Civility" Trump Free Speech?

Oct 16, 2014
dcJohn / Creative Commons

On August 28, UConn held a pep rally for the football team on a patio outside the Student Union. The 6:00 pm event included the UConn marching band and cheerleaders, and was emceed by UConn IMG Sports Radio Network -- pretty typical for this sports-crazy campus.

Sean D. Elliot / The Day

Four-term Democratic congressman Joe Courtney faced his Republican challenger in the second district in a debate hosted by WNPR and The Day newspaper.

Two candidates vying for Connecticut's Second Congressional District seat, which represents the eastern half of the state, faced off at a debate in New London on Tuesday evening at the Garde Arts Center. 

J Holt / WNPR

The slow death of the textile industry in the U.S. was underscored last December by the closure of the last operating mill in Connecticut, the historic Warren Mills in Stafford Springs. That same mill is celebrating its re-opening under new owners. 

American Woolen Company

Textiles are once again being produced in Stafford Springs. Eight months after the Warren Corporation mills closed, ending the industry in Connecticut, the newly-reopened company has taken its first work order.

The Last Wolf in Connecticut

Nov 29, 2013
Connecticut Historical Society

Israel Putnam is a name that stands out in the colonial history of Connecticut as a war hero of the French and Indian War and the American Revolution. Prior to his wartime glory, he earned the nickname “Wolf Putnam” by killing what was believed to be the last wolf in Connecticut when he was a young farmer in the eastern Connecticut town of Pomfret.

carlosbezz/iStock / Thinkstock

As the number of Hispanic students in Connecticut's schools continues to rise, the achievement gap between these students and their white classmates remains. Gaps can be found in every grade, in every subject, in just about every school district in the state. The highest percentage of English language learners can be found in the town of Windham. In the past year, there have been big changes there to the way Hispanic students are being taught.

Visual Law Project

Yale Law School’s Visual Law Project has created a film about Northern Correctional Institution in Somers, Connecticut. The documentary film sheds light on the hidden world of supermax prisons, where inmates may be held in solitary confinement for weeks, months, and even years at a time. The film is called "The Worst of the Worst."

Putnam has banned non-essential water use as of today because the water level in the Little River is low. Residents may not water lawns and gardens or wash cars, and they are urged to conserve water for showers and household cleaning. No rain is expected for several days, which means the ban could last a week or longer.

Tucker Ives / WNPR

Have you visited the Quiet Corner lately? In nighttime satellite imagery, it shows up as a swath of darkness in a field of twinkling lights. This rural area is larger than you might think - it’s about half the size of Arizona’s Grand Canyon, and about ten times the size of Acadia National Park in Maine. And it’s almost 80 percent forest and farmland.

Jillian Ives

We’re at the Student Union on the Storrs campus as a new school year is underway, and the state’s flagship school is back in the news once again. They’re planning new facilities, like a $100-million recreation center for students, and they're preparing for an even bigger rebuild that will require a new flow of water onto campus.

There’s also a "flow" of money for top administrators at the school, as some students worry about what this means for the rising cost of college.

Agriculture Chief Hopes Grants Boost "Locally Grown"

May 13, 2013
Sujata Srinivasan

The recent growth in farmer's markets in Connecticut speaks to the increasing popularity of locally grown food. Now the state's Department of Agriculture has big plans for Connecticut-grown produce to fuel the economy and create jobs. 

Storrs Downtown Supermarket Plans Hit A Snag

Dec 10, 2012

The new Storrs Center just down the road from the University of Connecticut is buzzing with activity. But that project is only partly finished, and the developers have had to make some very big changes to what’s left of it. Critics say those changes could undo the attempt to create a college downtown atmosphere where none existed before.

Wikimedia Commons

Remember the 1989 Robin Williams movie “Dead Poet’s society?” An unorthodox and inspirational teacher takes on the establishment culture of a prestigious boy’s school.

The real-life teacher who helped inspire that character has been teaching literature at UConn since 1978. Sam Pickering told us that he doesn’t really think much about the movie. He told us that he “only saw it once” and even missed parts of it.