ONGOING OTHER FARMERS MARKET. Fridays, 3 to 6 p.m. Featuring locally grown fruit and vegetables, meats, baked goods, Italian ice, and handmade items. Farmington Library, 6 Monteith Dr., Farmington. (860) 673-6791. FarmingtonLibraries.org
Operation Fuel received a grant for $2,000 from the Bristol Brass General Grant Fund at the Main Street Community Foundation. The grant will be used to provide emergency energy assistance to households in Bristol, Burlington, Plainville, Plymouth, Southington, and Wolcott.…
The Department of Consumer Protection (DCP) is warning consumers about a recall of vanity light fixtures issued by Design Solutions International in conjunction with Home Depot. The recall is for the Home Decorators Collection 3-Light and 4-Light Comotti Vanity Fixtures.…
The United Way of West Central Connecticut is continuing its Adopt–A–Child Back to School Program. This year, over 550 children have registered, and donations are needed United Way is looking for donation. If you or your company wants to take…
By MIKE CHAIKEN
Although the local contestants did not win Miss Connecticut or Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen pageants this weekend, they did earn accolades at the event in Hartford’s Connecticut Convention Cente.
In the Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen pageant held Saturday afternoon, Miss Plantsville’s Outstanding Teen Taylor Plourd of Bristol was the third runner-up to the eventual winner, Miss Naugatuck Valley Brooke Cyr. Plourd also was awarded Miss Congeniality.
Miss Forestville’s Outstanding Teen Cassandra Lechner won the overall talent award. She also placed in the top 10.
In the Miss Connecticut contest, which was won by Eliza Kanner Saturday night after preliminaries on Friday, Miss Southington Bridget Oei was third runner-up. Miss Bristol Gina Salvatore reached the top 10.
Miss Forestville Erika Farrell received the Miss Congeniality award. She also received Miss America Academic Award scholarship.
Also competing from the area were Miss Southington’s Outstanding Teen Ava Onofreo and Miss Bristol’s Outstanding Teen Victoria Kilbourne.
“It’s incredible,” said the new Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen Brooke Cyr. “I’m still trying to process it.”
“It was incredible to be crowned by Alyssa Taglia (Miss Connecticut 2016),” said the new Miss Connecticut Eliza Lynne Kanner. “She has been my mentor for the past 10 years.”
“It was an incredible moment,” said Kanner.
PHOTOS by MIKE CHAIKEN
By MIKE CHAIKEN
Bristol Central High School sent off 284 graduates into the world during commencement exercises last Tuesday.
It was a time for some students to reflect on the past four years.
Alexandria Winarski, who will be studying forensic biology at Western New England University in the fall, said her fondest memory of Bristol Central will be “all the friends I made and all the teachers I interacted with.”
“Doing sports” was Kallie Clark’s fondest memory of high school. Clark, who will be going to the University of St. Joseph in the fall to study nursing, also said she will remember “coming out of my comfort zone to meet new people and force myself to go out and do things I enjoy.”
Julian VanBeveren said she will remember “all my friends and how my teachers inspired me a lot.” As for her future, she is looking forward to getting a good job in nursing.
Angela Reynolds, who currently has a job at First Bristol Credit Union, said she will remember how hard her freshman year was. And she will remember what a hassle the past four years have been. “But here I am graduating with my best friend (VanBeveren) and I’m the happiest person in the world.”
“I have no idea how my future or any other’s future will turn out,” said valedictorian Molly Watstein during her speech to graduates, faculty, friends, and family. “Our high school experience threw obstacles at us we never though we’d face,” such as budget cuts, political divide, poverty, abuse, tragedy, and more. However, she said, “For every challenge there was incredible triumph” such as Bristol Central’s victory in the Battle of the Bell football game or Bristol Central Principal Peter Wininger winning the national “Principal of Principle award.”
“Growing up isn’t easy,” said Watstein. “We were lucky to have our BC family to lighten the load.”
In her salutatorian address, Nicole Truszkowski told her fellow graduates, “At Bristol Central, it’s never really hard to find a reason to feel humble and blessed.”
In her comments to the graduations, Susan Moreau, the deputy superintendent of schools, said, “Each of you will be remembered (at Bristol Central), go forward, and make a point to make a difference in the world.”
“Whatever path you choose, I wish you immense success,” said Councilor and Deputy Mayor Anthony D’Amato. “After today’s celebration ends, the hard work begins.”
Bristol Central Graduates for 2016-2017:
Brett Patrick Adams, Matthew Aguero Wilson, Branden A. Alvarado, Justin Alves, Jadon Angel Amaez, Nevin C. Anderson-Tulloch, Simon Christopher Andrews, Jadyn T. Anton, Marianna Apergis, Jasmine Marie Applegate, Caitlyn Marie Archambault, Daniel Eduardo Avila, Aracelis M. Ayala, Jeremey M. Baldeo, Janessa Bartolucci, Kayla Elizabeth Battle, Morgan A. Begin, Steven M. Behmke, Zachary N. Bell, Olivia Ashley Bernardoni, Sierra R. Blake, Autumn Marie Blasi, Joel S. Boder, Joshua Arthur Bodley, Dominic Vincent Borrelli, Aries Borysewicz, Nicholas C. Bouchard, Anthony Joseph Boucher , Morgan Katie Boucher, Sara Ashley Bouley , Alexis Heather Bourgoin, Logan Jacob Brennan , Emily Cristina Brito, Alonzo Jah’lil Brooks , Britney A. Brown, Riley N. Burrell, Kaltrina Bushi, Jonathan Cabrera, Alexa Jessica Cahill, Tyeisha J. Camp, Gabriella M. Capasso, Christina Jade Caputo, Joshua Cardona Toledo, Amanda Jo Carlucci, Ethan Michael Caron, Eyleen K. Castillo, Johnny K. Chea, Benjamin W. Cherwinski, Jordan A. Chokshi, Brock Michael Clark, Kallie A. Clark, Ryan Matthew Coderre, Aaron M. Collins, Justin Colon, William Colon III, Kaynan James Conrod, Ethan Cote, Marisol Crespo, Rebecca M. Croce, Keith Gordon Cross Jr., Ashley N. Cummings, Abigail F. Cyr, Emily M. Daigle, Taylor N. Dale, Hunter James Damon-Smith, Kailey Bryanne Davis, George DeLeon, Julius J. Delgado, Devon Christie DeNoto, Shaunna Marie Deprey, Isabelle Derosier, Abigail Sarah Deschaine, Giovanni Diaz, Luis Javier Diaz, Precious Aaliyha Diaz, Mariah K. Dignazio, Tyreek S. Dixon, Melanie Doak, Ethan J. Dorazio, Aaren Dutkiewicz,
Devon Esposito, Andrew Charles Ewart, Carmelo Ferraro, Sean Michael Fitzgerald, Seth Cohen Florian, Barbara L. Fowkes, Benjamin D. Funk, Isabella Rose Gagliardi, Jeremy D. Ganavage, Felipe Andres Garay-Ortega , Kailee Garcia, Hope Alexus Marie Garetta, Eric Danny Gaudreau, Kassandra Giammatteo, Ramoo Giles, Brianna Nicole Glenn, Dakota Walter Gomez, Alejandro Gonzalez, Ava Dalani Gorneault, Garrett John Gottschall, Alrick Anthony Grant, Logan Ashley Greger, Seth Gregory Griswold, Marcus Samuel Grumley, Brenna Guerrette, Andrew Christopher Guzman, Marco Sebastian Guzman, Brianna Brooke Hamel, Meghan Hamel, Angelina C. Hamm, Elizabeth Marie Harter, Ryan D. Havel, Noah S. Hicking, Jessica Marie Higginson-Calabro, Cody B. Hildebrand, Alison Holden, Jamie Elizabeth Houlihan, Richard A. Iffland, Edward Orlando Irizarry, Brandon M. Jacobs, Natallie Jesionka, Jeffrey Rafael Jimenez , Hannah Catherine Jones, Alysha Marie Kalahan, Olly Nicole Kay, Patrick Michael Kenney Jr., Dominik Jan Kluk, Kenneth Martin Knox Jr., Rezarta Kolludra, Mark Anthony Krawiec, Brianna Christine Kriscenski, Kayla L’Italien,
Ashley M. Labbie, Sarah A. Labbie, Joana Lalaj, Scott Thomas Larson, Danielle Elena Lavigne, Emilie M. LeBlanc, Michael Robert Lemke, Spencer James Leszko, Matthew Thomas Ligi, Denis C. Little, Jordan Alexander Lopez , Kenyelle Lora, Chabelkis Lorenzo Nova, Lynndora Mae MacMillan, Emily Grace Maglio , Tyler Mahaney, Jose I. Manguia Galindo, Nicholas Joseph Marcantonio, Hannah Rose Marcil, Janitza M. Marrero, Weston Marshall, Michael Ryan Matthews, Emily Anne McAllister, Alicia Marie McCormack , Morgan McCurda, Ryan Anthony McKenna , Luis Rogelio Medina, Kristina Leigh Mendela, Ashley Nicole Michaud , Kevin David Michaud, Melanie Anne Michaud, Kyle J. Mickel, Dezirae Bry’Anna-Marie Miller, Virginia M. Mills, Emily Rose Mitchell, Madison Riley Moriarty, Breana Lee Morin, Joshua Morrell, Max Richard Naranjo, Thomas M. Nardi, Thomas C. Nelligan, Cristian Nugra, Allen Ivan O’Brien, Peter Daniel O’Dell, Quinn James O’Donnell, Patrick M. O’Keefe, Nancy Helen Adongo Ongany, Liam O’Rourke, Hannah Danielle Ouellette, Thalia Esperanza Palacios, Amanda Rose Palladino, Michael Paloka, Macey Michele Paradis, Susan Angel Paradis, Travis Michael Parsons, Alyssa L. Pasniewski, Adam Manuel Passander, Sofia Marie Patria, Christianna M. Peabody, DeVante Pearson, Steven Patrick Pelletier, Tyler John Perkins, Edward James Perkowski, Nathan James Pileski, Brandi Marie Pinette, Nicole Miosotiz Pizarro, Katherine Rose Plourde, Marcus Raymond Poteau, Daniel Charles Potz, Nicholas Pratt, Lauren Angelina Putnam, Jenniffer Marie Quinones Batista,
Andrew James Rajotte, Facundo Sebastian Ramos, Julianna Paige Ranaldi, Desarae Elizabeth Rankin, Nicholas M. Ratta, Cameron J. Reed, Dylan T. Reed, Fallon Finn Repeta, Angela Marie Reynolds, Kemani Richards, Trenessa Claudine Rioux, Michael L. Rivera, Anthony M. Rivera VanBeveren, Ravan C. Rodriguez, Ryan Lee Rodriguez, Anthony Titus Ross, Kaylee Brooke Roy, Cody Joseph Runkle, Amanda Maria Saccente , Hunzla Sajjad, Sean Elijah Sandy , Luis Matthew Santana, Mariah Lynn Santana, Jacinto Maneul Santiago, Lauren Mae Santiago, Colin James Savino, Olivia A. Savino, Anthony Richard Scarola, Ashley Ann Schulze , Brett D. Scully, Jesse Rafael Serrano, Ronin James Shaknaitis, Damien Alexander Shepherd , Mehar Singh, Shanaya C. Siriwardene, Austin Sloane, Noah Nathan Soucy , Kaitlyn R. Spann, Justin Tyler Spitze, Brianna Leigh St. Onge, Kara Marie Stakey, Cole Anthelm Staples, Connor James Staubley, Endya Reshae Stewart, Morgan Lyn Strickland , Sarah Ann Strilkauskas, Ryan Conner Suiter, Hadyn Robert Sundgren, Steven Suon, Jennifer Lynn Swiger, Catherine Thai, Kevin Thai, Klaudio Thanasi, Kaylene Elizabeth Thomas, Erin Leigh Treloar , Nicole Truszkowski, Cheyanne Ruby Lynn Upham-Roberts, Haley Marie Vadella , Juliann VanBeveren, Lindsay Nicole Vannest, Devon A. Varela, Brendan Patrick Varnum, Alexandria Vigue, Stephen Alexander Vitale, Tommy Vongsamany, Casey Rose Walters, Taya Rose Watson, Molly Hannah Watstein, Jurnee Weymer, Kevin White, Carrie Whitney, Gabriella Marie Williams, Caleb Shane Willis, Alexandria Love Winarski, Joseph C. Wosilis, Caeli Wygant, Ashley Yung, Amber D. Zarick, Arben Zhuta, Brianna Jane Zipke.
By LISA CAPOBIANCO
Despite the drops of rainfall that fell from the sky before their graduation ceremony began last Wednesday, Bristol Eastern High School seniors “pushed through” to share that final moment together on the varsity baseball field.
Pushing through together was among many lessons that the Class of 2017 learned from their high school experience.
“No matter what you’re going through, you can always get help,” said Sondra Keltner, who will study chemical engineering at Arizona State University this fall. “You’re not alone.”
“If you don’t ask for help, you’re going to be left behind,” said Israel Ortiz, who will study criminal justice at Tunxis Community College.
“Never stop trying,” added Caleb Pagan, who will study theology and business at Belmont University.
Whether they attended Bristol Eastern all four years or transferred there, the graduates recognized teachers who helped prepare them for success.
Jaime Mitchell said the support she received from teachers in her AP classes helped prepare her for Salve Regina University, where she will study nursing this fall.
“I can’t wait for college, and I’m definitely ready for the next step,” said Mitchell.
“There were quite a few teachers who helped me a lot when I transferred,” said Natalie Vasquez, who also plans to pursue a career in nursing.
Just moments before the graduation ceremony took off, the sun pushed through the clouds that lingered over the baseball field where dozens of families and friends gathered to cheer on over 300 graduates.
“We’re supposed to fall four times and get up five. That’s what’s really being tested,” said graduate Ryan Palzere, addressing his class. “The real test is whether or not we have the perseverance and strength to get back up even after life is doing its absolute best at knocking us down.”
Bristol Superintendent of Schools Dr. Ellen Solek also echoed this lesson when she addressed the graduates about what it means to meet adversities and failures “head on.”
“We must take a long look in the mirror, deep inside ourselves at the very core of who we are,” said Solek. “We must be willing to grow, even though it may hurt for a little while.”
Valedictorian Alexandra Allen grew through her role as a student representative for the Board of Education this past school year.
For Allen, this leadership role gave her an opportunity to address a concern she had as a freshman: the midterm schedule. After proposing a half-day schedule for midterms, school officials unanimously approved the change, which will now take effect this upcoming school year.
“The only way to make a change right now is by using your voice,” said Allen, urging her peers to speak up in order to make a change. “No one will be there to force you to take action—only you can make the choice to stand up for what you believe in.”
The midterm schedule was not the only change for Bristol Eastern. In October, the high school welcomed Rachel’s Challenge— a non-profit organization based on the life of Rachel Joy Scott—the first victim of the 1999 Columbine shooting. Like Rachel, Bristol Eastern students pledged to start a chain reaction of kindness throughout the year, such as raising over $5,000 through the Friends of Rachel Club to support a Bristol elementary school student who is fighting against cancer.
“Rachel Scott said that, ‘tomorrow is not a promise, but a chance,’” said Bristol Eastern High School Principal Carly Fortin in her address to the graduates. “I know that all of you will use that chance to do big things in your future—not only for yourselves, but for each other.”
“You’re about to embark on a life that will be full of opportunities—they will be all around you,” Mayor Ken Cockayne told the graduates.
The Bristol Eastern High School Class of 2017:
Fatima Zehra Abbas, Muhammad Ridhwan Abdulsalam, Alexander Antonio Acevedo, Casey Ann Adams, Christina Marie Adkins, Christian Lee Agosto, Feryal Al Hamadani, Alexandra Louise Allen, Courtney Elise Anderson, Donavan Curtis Anderson, Riley Gladys Anderson, Allison Nicole Anulewicz, Sean Austin Arasimowicz, Morgan Rose Armour, Derek Paul Armstrong, Emily Rose Aston, Christopher George Baehr, Rachel Ann Bairrington, Sarah Kay Barkley, Natalie Jean Barnes, Andrew Simon Beale, Elizabeth Anna Beaulieu, John Joseph Beaulieu, Ethan Joseph Begin, Nathan Andrew Begin, Samantha Rose Bender, Brianna Elizabeth Beyers, Justin Matthew Blais, Justin Patrick Blake, Christopher James Bleau, Tyler Alan Bourgoin, Kyle Michael Boutote, Christine Danielle Boyce, Alexis Marie Brown, Kayla Elizabeth Brown, Melina Teresa Brown, Savanna Rose Brunet, Sarah Mae Buchas, Tia Marie Burey, Camryn Sarah Burke, Gabriella Taylor Cadogan, Shane Randall Caggiano, Keymari Camacho, Andrew Dakota Carlson, Jonathan Robert Carlson, Amanda Marie Caron, Heather Jean Carroll, Adam Edward Carter, Federica Castaldi, Alivia Elyse Castle, Joseph Alexander Checovetes, Matthew Jonathan Checovetes, Aimee Allison Choquette, Ashley Mary Clark, Jonathan Clark, Kacey Alistair Clementson, McKenna Kayla Cloutier, Tamhja Elizabeth Coe, Kyuzylia Martine Colon, Ayanna Marie Correa, Gian Domenico Costantiello, Emerald Tatum Coviello, De’Shawn Arnold Cox, Zachary Charles Crameri, Kellie Corinne Crandle, Jose Crespo, Mallory Antoinette Crisafulli, Larry Julian Crossman, Kiana Nicole Cruz, Aubrey Alexis Cyr, Noah Austin Cyr, Janey Marie Czertak,
Gavin Hale Daddario, Christian Michael Dailey, Nicole Patricia D’Amato, Dylan Joshua Davenport, Zoey Monique Davis, Harrison Werner Dayton, Corey Robert Deeves, Destiny Lenee DeMontigny, Frank Salvator DeNoto, Jake Robert Desmarais, Katlynn Lee DiYulio, Jacob Arnold Dossias, Benjamin Dowd, Nevan Thomas Doyle, John Wyatt Doyon, Paul John Dziala, Emily Dailanee Dziubanski, Samantha Courtney Eilerman, Matthew Joseph Faggaini, Zachary Richard Ferland, Rebecca Lynn Figueiredo, Emily Louise Fillmore, Logan James Flis, Francis Timothy Flood, Vanessa Marie Floyd, Connor Alexzander Folsom, Tychelle Foreman, Clifford Allen Fort, Chandler Dante Foss, Alexus Denise Fusco, Gary Roger Gagnier, Adrian Noel Garcia, Alexandra Danielle Garcia, Lissy Marie Garcia, Adrian Zbigniew Gasior, Karisma Lyann Gilhooly, Evan Michael Gionta, Thomas Quinn Gonzales, Hannah Rose Goodwin, Michael Thomas Grabowski, Allison Joan Graham, Caitlin Dorothy Gravelle, Nicholas Bordes Grokoski, Elizabeth Grace Guilmette, Brenden Ray Hall, Sadarius T. Harris, Kahari Monet Hawley, Matthew David Hebert, Ivan Hernandez, Nicholas Patrick Hill, Nicholas Russell Holcomb, Jacob Andrew Hooks, Roland Horvath, Jamarcus Bernard Hunt, Felicity Brooke Irizarry, Damaris Marie Jackson, Cailee Jayne Jacquette, Amy Elizabeth Jakiel, Brandon Edward Janelle, Makenzie M. Jankowski, Roderick James Jenkins, Britney Shion Mahelia Johnson,
John Levon Kachidurian, Elizabeth Marie Kalfayan, Emma Breanne Kelly, Sondra Leigh Keltner, Jessica Marie Kenney, Vaziuddin Yusuf Khan, Elijah Israel King, Autumn Lee Klemonski, Igor Pawel Korpanty, Nicholas Taylor Kurandy, Cody Edward Kurpaska, Jacob Kustra, Jeremie Eric LaChance, Donato Jax Laferriere, Katelyn Rose LaFleur, Lex Jacob Lagace, Jackson Thomas LaMar, Adiya Marie LaMarre, Raina Anne Lambert, Hannah Rose Langlais, Paul Anton Medina Lapaan, Logan Brian Laprise, Miya LeAnn Laprise, Alyssa Paige Latko, Christopher Michael LeBeau, Jillian Rose LeBeau, Mikayla Xiao Bing Lewandoski, Jacob Thomas Lincoln, Rose Lynne Lombardi, Alexis Suzanne Longo, Anthony Edward Lozier, Francess Capili Luna, Kolby Joseph Lynch, Michael Daniel Maccio, Ian Alexander Mace, Jillian Rose Maghini, Connor Robert Maguire, Krista Leanne Malenfant, Mary Kathryn Manning, Zea Jadyn Manning, Zachary Michael Marquis, Issabella Marie Marrotti, Mikayla Ann Martin, Michael John Massarelli, Lexie Nicole Mastroianni, “David Charles Maxfield, II”, Jessica Nicole McCarron, Owen Paul McCarty, Taylor Tajmone McKay, Matthew Raymond McLaughlin, Abigail L. McMenemy, Jared Michael McQuarrie, Tate Ryley Mendez, “Emilio Mercado, Jr.”, Amy Alicia Merriam, Alexander Taylor Michaud, Cole Joseph Michaud, Nel Rose Mielcarek, Ashley Kathleen Mitchell, Jaime Camille Mitchell, Natasha Esther Molina, Tejal Leigh Monteiro, Cord D. Moore, Lukas Franciszek Morin, Myranda Marie Morneault, Jeremy David Mosieur, Ryan Christopher Muller, Brooklynne Rayann Murdock, Brett Logan Myers, Mone’t Leeona Rose Naha, Emily Nelson, Samantha Lee Newell, Rubi Adriana Nieves, Mikaela Marie Norton, Mason Giovanni Nozzolillo, Sabrina Laci Oakes, Ethan Richard O’Day, Georgia Ann Ogonowski, Noah Donati Ogonowski, Riley Anne O’Hanlon, Alexandra Opoka, Israel Ortiz , Edgar Ortiz-Hernandez, Alexander Antonio Osorio, Jarid Michael Ouellette, Caleb Elias Pagan, Devin Malik Pagan, Ryan Thomas Palzere, Rochelle Joyce Pare, Zachery Ryan Parker, Julia Ann Pearlingi, Victoria Lynn Pearlingi, Ethan Tyler Pearson, Johnathan Nathaniel Peddlar, Alexis Marie Pelletier, Kylie Rachel Pelletier, Lorenzo Edgar Perez, Leah Marie Perri, Jacob Larsen Perry, Gillian Rose Piazza, Chadwick Allan Pitcher, Devon Andrew Plourde, Jared Dominick Procko, Tiffany Amber Quirion, Ashley Taylor Redman, Angel Jossue Reyes-Colon, Gabriela Bailey Reymont, Jason Ruben Rivera, Mike Jesus Rivera, Sheyna Jaleez Rivera, Emily Kate Rivoira, Savannah Renee Robinson, Jacob Thomas Rodjenski, Felipe Rodriguez, Alexander T. Rollins, Lauren Taylor Rooney, Jenna Michele Roy, Subro Simon Roy, Sarah Ashley Ruest, Evan Robert Ruszczyk, Morgan Irene Ruszczyk,
Jennifer Sabatis, Stephanie Diane Sacharko, Diego Alexander Sanmartin, Allison Jasmine Santiago, Erik Gabriel Santiago, Javier Antonio Santos, Mason Tai Santos, Paul Decker Saraceno, Zachary David Sassu, Shamili Satheesan, Shawn Michael Savoir, “Krister Clement Schonrock, Jr.”, Jasmine Dorianne Scott, Paulina Serafin, Kayla Brooke Sledzik, Tyler Michael Smith, Donovan Bryant Soucy, Emily Jane Stadnicki, Joelle Marjorie Stairs, Gavin Scott Sullivan, Veronica Ann Sullivan, Alexis Nichole Sylverne, Neeley Jordan Tedd, Matthew Thornton, Ethan Michael Tillbrook, Faith Amor Tirado, Jenalle Angelie Tobon, Jacqualynn Nicole Trevarthen, Justin Roland Trottier, Connor James Trowbridge, Marina Rose Truiolo, Natalie Janae Vasquez, Nicolas Gordon Vega, Antonela Velaj, Jonahibi Ventura, Jacob Robert Violette, Justin James Walden, Lyndsay Lee Watt, Desiree Nicole Wiley, Anna Louise Paige Wilson, Donovan Michael Wilson, Cody James Witkowski, Diana Izabela Wnuk, Ivy Marie Wnuk, Alessandra Antualet Wong, Deja Lynn Woods, Nicholas William Woods, Mackenzie Margaret Worley, Emily Paige Worthen, Joseph Richard York.
PHOTOS by JOE CZAJKOWSKI