Students celebrate the arts

We always hear and read about the many achievements of our local Darien athletes, however we don't hear too much about the fact that Darien is also blessed with many extremely talented, successful student and young adult artists in an amazing array of disciplines, many of them true Renaissance men and women.

YWCA Parent Awareness and Darien Library recently gathered a panel of some of these impressive figures to tell about their journeys, challenges and successes in music, dance, visual art and drama, to parents and students alike. Not only were their stories fascinating and inspiring, but each and every one of them had thoughtful and helpful answers to all the audience's questions.

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On behalf of The YWCA Parent Awareness Network, I would like to thank the following artists: Collin Shay; Alison Goldsmith; EJ Couloucoundis; Sandy Garnett; and Claire Karpen; as well as our poised moderator, Malcolm Karlan, who took time out of their very busy lives to come out to enlighten, fascinate and educate local parents and students about life in the arts. We are in awe of their focus, perseverance, talents and achievements and greatly appreciate their efforts to inform and

educate us.

Many thanks as well to the kids and parents that came out to learn and find inspiration to pursue their dreams. This program was part of series that YWCA Parent Awareness and Darien Library have put together on "Celebrating the Arts."

Leslie Pennington, Director

YWCA Parent Awareness Network

Possible solution to leash issue

There have been any number of letters regarding the proposed off-leash hours at a couple of Darien's parks. The only reason I am joining the tumult is because the one simple and logical solution to the wildlife and neighbor issue at Woodland Park is not being voiced by anyone else.

A simple two-plank split-rail fence backed by netting erected along the approved dog paths would protect the wild life and keep the dogs out of the yards. It could be done over a period of time to spread out the expense and installed with the help of Darien citizens with a vested interest in the park. Dog owners happy, birds happy and neighbors happy.

Connie Melvin

Darien

ABC thanks those who participated in raffle

On Memorial Day, the winning ticket was drawn in the second annual A Better Chance in Darien Vespa raffle. All tickets were sold by the dedicated board members, host families and scholars who participate in the ABC program. Our sincere thanks to the many local businesses that provided us ticket selling locations.

Special thanks to Palmer's Market, Darien Doughnut, Darien Sport Shop and EspressoNEAT.

A Better Chance in Darien has been providing scholastic opportunities for highly motivated and academically promising young women for 29 years. Currently, six scholars live in the ABC House (generously provided by the First Congregational Church), and attend Darien High School.

This month, two of our scholars will graduate from DHS with self confidence, deep roots in our town and a great opportunity for a bright future as they head to two very competitive colleges.

ABC has once again been successful in giving talented girls a better chance.

We extend our thanks to everyone who supported the Vespa raffle.

Our program owes it existence in this town to your generosity.

Jane Yezzi and Ron Hammer

Co-Presidents, ABC in Darien

Memorial Day Parade a success

My name is Andrew Fletcher. I am a part of Darien's Boy Scout Troop 53, and I marched in the Memorial Day Parade last Monday.

I'd like to express my gratitude to the town of Darien for putting on another great event once more this year. Although having marched in the parade, I could tell that the spectators had an enjoyable experience viewing the many representatives of local groups marching together.

Many of these groups, including the Boy Scouts, use this day not only as a ceremonial gathering, but also as a way to respect and remember those brave souls who have served, or are serving, our country.

Memorial Day is one of the few days on which we are able to do this each year. I believe it is very important that we should recognize these heroes, especially because many of my relatives have served in the military.

Overall, this Memorial Day was a huge success. Once more, I'd like to thank the town for helping us all remember those who have served us, and having a fun time all the while.

Andrew Fletcher

Darien

Open letter to the BOS

As advocates of trees, all of us on the Tree Conservancy were interested when we learned New Canaan had been named a Tree City by the state Department of Environmental Protection. According to DEP Commissioner Daniel C. Esty, "The Tree City USA designation helps communities manage their tree resources, and also shows visitors and potential homeowners and businesses that the community cares about the environment."

With a little effort, Darien can join the other 19 Connecticut towns and cities -- including Bridgeport, Fairfield, New Canaan, Norwalk, Stamford and Wilton -- with The Tree City USA designation. Below are the Arbor Day Foundation standards for becoming a Tree City USA:

A tree board or department;

A community tree ordinance;

A community forestry program with an annual budget of at least $2 per capita;

An Arbor Day observance and proclamation.

Our group would like to assist in acquiring the designation of Tree City USA for Darien.

Since our inception we have built partnerships with other town organizations, and work within policies and procedures that make us uniquely suited to help in this cause.

Residents of Darien are fortunate to enjoy an abundance of majestic, significant and historic trees on town property.

A Tree City USA designation would celebrate this and emphasize our care of the environment. Please let us know if you agree, and would like to meet to discuss plans for going forward.

The Tree Conservancy of Darien

Susan Flanagan, Debbie Parnon, Heather McHold, Eileen Smith, John Schlactenhaufen, Pam Bass, Cindy Ryan, Ginger Morgan, Lynn Hamlen, Gil Kernan, Katie Keith,

Heather Pommernelle