Manchester last year declared Juneteenth a town holiday and this weekend has lots of activities planned to celebrate and commemorate that day in 1865 when troops arrived in Galveston, Texas to take control of the state and -- two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation -- ensure that all enslaved people be freed. We have event details below as well as other news and notes. Want to subscribe to OneManchester? Just click here.
A Community Celebration
The banner is flying on Main Street but most of the action this weekend will be at the Mahoney Center. Here's a quick look at what's happening:
A 'kick-off' procession will leave Cheney Hall at 6 p.m. and head to the Mahoney Center for a program that features the launch of a luminaries exhibit honoring trailblazers who've been catalysts for change in Manchester. For more about the event click here.
The luminaries exhibit honors the Cobb Family, John E. Rogers, Lou Irvin, Tom Stringfellow, Reverend Josh Pawelek, Pamela Floyd-Cranford, Yolanda Castillo, Darryl E. Thames, Sr., Diane Clare-Kearney, Rhonda Philbert, Matt Geary, Jim Spafford and Ryan Parker. Read more about them here.
Mahoney Center will be bustling from noon-6 p.m., starting with an opening ceremony that features the dedication of three new murals with arts, entertainment and more through the afternoon. Here's the breakdown.
To wrap things up the movie "John Lewis: Good Trouble" will be shown at dusk at Charter Oak Park.
This painting by Jaii Marc Renee earned first prize in a Juneteenth art contest sponsored by Manchester Adult and Continuing Education and the school district's Department of Race and Equity. Carnetta Parnell and Akua Owusu finished second and third respectively and there's more info here.
In Our Schools
Verplanck welcomed a team from the arts group Movimiento Cultural Afro-Continental on Tuesday and learned about Bomba, the oldest Puerto Rican dance and music style. For more click here.
Wednesday was the last day of the academic year and Superintendent Matt Geary shared a letter with the MPS community looking ahead to summer programming and the return to school in the fall. You can read it here.
The BoE's next meeting is scheduled for Monday, June 28 at 7 p.m. with an agenda that includes an end-of-the-year update. It will streamed live on the district Facebook page, and viewers can submit questions during the meeting. Here's more information.
HUMANS OF MANCHESTER
DeAndre Jordan credits the supportive staff at New Horizons for helping him turn his life around. He's the newest addition to our gallery, which you'll find on both Facebook and Instagram.
Click to hear the MHS Concert Band performing "Anthem For Winds And Percussion" by Claude T. Smith (the product of a great deal of hard work from our students under difficult performing/rehearsing restrictions).
The MHS Athletic Department's seventh annual golf tournament is scheduled for Wednesday and all the info is here.
The TLC Diyeso-Lewis House is holding a virtual silent auction with bids closing Friday at midnight. Click here for more.
Among district staff retiring this year is Jen Jalbert, the library media specialist at Keeney Elementary. Students and colleagues gathered last Friday to wish her well.
MANCHESTER TEACHER ELECTED CEA PRESIDENT
Kate Dias, a math teacher at MHS and MEA president, this week was elected president of the Connecticut Education Association -- the organization that represents 160 teachers unions across the state. She will serve with VP Joslyn DeLancey of Darien, who defeated Tom Nicholas, who is also from Manchester. This photo was taken at MPS Convocation in 2019.
News And Notes
FLAG DAY RITUAL
With help from Boy Scout Troop 27, the Manchester Elks held their annual ceremony last Thursdaythat included the proper disposal -- by burning -- of worn American flags..
The town's 21st Century Public Library Task Force has identified needs that include more parking, more bathrooms, private study rooms etc. and is seeking public input on what else should be offered in a modern Manchester library. Click here to learn more and weigh in.
Cheney Library has lots going on including these intriguing outdoor programs:
Cup Stacking: Professional sport stacker Glenn Costello will teach teens the basics of this sport on Monday at 2 p.m..
Who Pooped in The Park? Next Thursday at 10:30 a.m., kids 4 and older can learn how to identify animal droppings, tracks, and other remains of animals in Connecticut.
There are links in the calendar below with more information
GLASS FROM THE PAST
Kids last Saturday had their once-a-year chance to dig for glass at the old Pitkin Glass Factory Ruins. The Manchester Museum has a display of what used to be made there and we have more on the OneManchester Facebook page.
THISSA AND THATTA
Many Main Street benches need a fresh coat of pain and the Downtown Manchester Special Services District is seeking artists to help with the work. Click here for information.
There's a Farmers Market in the Forest Street lot every Saturday and much more on the second Saturday of each month (as was the case last weekend, when these pictures were taken). Also new this summer, a series of special Thursday nights in July on Purnell Place. We do our best to keep it all straight in our calendar each week
Manchester PAL is running a free 3-on-3 tournament for youth 5-18 at Charter Oak starting June 25. Click for more.
For more on what's coming up -- and what isn't -- check out our OneManchester planner. (And sorry to say the 'not this year' list includes the Dutch Fogarty Fourth of July Celebration.)
All Together One Last Time
A week after graduating, seniors were together one last time for Friday's Senior Prom, which was held in the MHS courtyard but preceded for many by a trip to Wickham Park for photos and fellowship.
OneManchester is compiled by Jim Farrell of the school district's communications office and he can be reached at email@example.com or 860-268-6377. OneManchester has been published since August 2017, is always free, and has not been hacked since Sept. 12, 2019, Want to subscribe? Just click here.