May,  2016 

Your copy of the Asylum Hill Neighborhood Association 'News & Views' has arrived!   You will find that you can easily go to any subject in the table of contents by just clicking on it or just browse through the articles as you wish. Please have a look. 


Next Meeting 05/02/2016

The next meeting is Monday May 2nd, 6:15 P.M. at Asylum Hill Congregational Church, 814 Asylum Avenue.
No minutes because April meeting was cancelled due to weather.


Mayor Bronin to attend AHNA May 2nd meeting

Monday, May 2nd Mayor Bronin will come to Asylum Hill to speak about the AHNA initiatives that the board has laid out for this year to share ways that the City can Partner with the neighborhood. Members of the Board will be speaking about goals for this year in Public Safety, Economic Development and Education that are priorities and the mayor will then share his thoughts on how best for Asylum Hill and the City to accomplish them.
Whatever his ideas, they will no doubt benefit from the support and efforts of the Asylum Hill Neighbors and we are all counting on lots of friends and neighbors to be there to share their thoughts and efforts.
In these challenging times more than ever it will be important for all of us to work together to keep Asylum Hill moving forward.
See you there!

From The Chair
Samuel Clemens better known as Mark Twain was a long time resident of Asylum Hill. He resided in Asylum Hill (Nook Farm) for 17 years, from 1874 to 1891. At that time Asylum Hill (Nook Farm) was a very affluent neighborhood.   Samuel Clemens experienced prosperity and wealth as well as poverty, death of loved ones, depression and loneliness during his life time.  For Samuel Clemens, writing was his gift to the world and his sanctuary of peace. He said while at his daughter's death bed "I am writing to keep my heart from breaking."

HouseFrom the House
With National Small Business Week taking place in May, it is a great time to highlight Connecticut's Small Business Express Program (EXP).





Matt Ritter Receives HARC Award

State Representative Matt Ritter has been selected as this year's recipient of HARC's Governmental Leadership award. HARC is a nonprofit that provides support services for people with intellectual and related disabilities.  Matt represents our neighborhood in the legislature and HARC is located on Asylum Avenue just west of Sigourney Street.

AHThenAsylum Hill Then and Now
I84 At Sigourney Street

While often the photos shown here represent what has been lost from the past, this month's offering shows much of what has and is being gained.
Pictured is a sign at Hawthorn and Sigourney St just as the I-84 work is beginning for the viaduct. Planning is now underway to replace it. The three familiar landmarks beyond the Sigourney St Bridge are a smoke stack that still remains as well as the Capitol dome and the Travelers tower. In today's photo, the sky is much clearer and the rubble in the foreground has been replaced with the CT Fastrak Sigourney St Station, part of a movement to reduce our dependence on automobiles and the over-crowded interstate highways.



Committee Briefs

Exploring Asylum Hill:
The Urban League of Greater Hartford
Begun in Hartford in 1964 as an affiliate of the National Urban League, the Urban League of Greater Hartford continues to serve anyone in need. Though the mission of the National Urban League is "... to enable African Americans to secure economic self-reliance, parity, power and civil rights." The mission of the Greater Hartford affiliate is "To reduce economic disparities in our communities through programs, services and educational opportunities. " And while those disparities still largely affect African-Americans, here in Hartford they serve anyone in need.


Encore!Hartford Fellow To Work With AHNA

Encore!Hartford is a program of the University of Connecticut Nonprofit Leadership Program in collaboration with Leadership Greater Hartford. Each year the program enrolls 20-25 seasoned corporate and public service professionals seeking managerial and professional positions in the Connecticut nonprofit sector. Mario Chiappetti has been assigned to work with AHNA for the next few months assisting with strategic planning and funding efforts.


Community Concerts Presented by The Hartford 
Enjoy free Hartford Symphony Orchestra concerts in Liam E. McGee Memorial Park on May 18th and June 1st.  This is a gift to the neighborhood and the city from The Hartford.  The park is on Garden Street behind The Hartford's campus.  This is a great opportunity to hear music from some of the Hartford area's best musicians


Urban League Employment Empowerment Expo
The career that you've been searching for may be within reach. Come to the Urban League of Greater Hartford 16th Annual Employment Empowerment Expo. Many well-known companies will conduct on-site interviews. BRING COPIES OF YOUR RESUME. (Note: To participate you should bring your resume and come professionally dressed.) Have your resume critiqued by certified resume writers, attend presentations on starting your own small business, and learn strategies to improve your interview skills. It's an event filled with opportunities you can't afford to miss ... and it's all here for you, absolutely FREE!


JAG Program At Hartford Public High School
Hartford Public High School has become the seventh high school in Connecticut to offer the Jobs for America's Graduates leadership development program for high school seniors with a $30,000 grant from AT&T.

HPHS Earth Day Cleanup Celebration

The night of 4/21 Mother Earth rewarded the HPHS students and volunteers who were scheduled to celebrate her cleanup the next morning, by providing soft moist soil in which to work. Even the thunder and lightening was her way of saying welcome. And welcomed they were on Saturday, as more than 100 showed up for this annual event.

Fresh Express Farmers Market
The Hartford, Aetna and Billings Forge are excited to share the attached flyer highlighting the 2016 Asylum Hill Fresh Express program, which launches Thursday, June 2nd and runs weekly through October 27th.  Additional details on shuttle stops and times are included in the flyer.


Choral Masterworks Concert at AHCC

The Asylum Hill Congregational Church Sanctuary Choir and Orchestra under the direction of Jack Pott will perform a concert of choral masterworks by Handel and Hayden.  In addition the orchestra will perform the overture from the Music for the Royal Fireworks by Handel.  The concert will be May 13th at 7:30 in the AHCC sanctuary.  There are no tickets required, but a $10 donation is suggested which will benefit the Chrysalis Center. 


Town & County Spring Forum
For the third year the Town & County Spring forum has focused on Asylum Hill, this time on the hidden treasures of art & culture that are present here in Asylum Hill.

  AHCC Partnership Sunday
For the past several years, AHCC has designated one Sunday in the spring as "Partnership Sunday" They have invited representatives of all of the various organizations that they work with and support throughout the year to come and let the church members see and meet as many as possible in one place.

Read More


Hartbeat Ensemble Play
The current production at Hartbeat Ensemble is Gross Domestic Product - A Musical Look at Motherhood, by co-founding director Julia Rosenblatt. It is a realistic portrayal of parenting today, with an optimistic tone. The GDP is explained in song just after intermission - it's all about commerce. If a mother nurses her baby, she is not contributing to the GDP. If she bottle-feeds her baby, she has purchased formula and bottles, and is thus contributing to GDP. The humorous musical numbers throughout the play, written by Rosenblatt and composed by Martin Carrillo, keep the serious content floating along toward their unexpected outcomes.


Old Fashioned Variety Show

The Cathedral of Saint Joseph and the Knights of Columbus will present a variety show in the newly refurbished Bishop's Hall at the Old Cathedral School (behind the Rectory, 140 Farmington Avenue.  




WNPR Radius Project

Join WNPR as we map Hartford in a new way, searching for perspective on the city - its beauties, its issues, and most importantly its people.
Radius is about what happens when we explore the edges, paths, and landmarks of a city, and meet our neighbors.  Please click on link below to find out more and view podcasts.






Words To Give By

Entering its second year, Words to Give By is a community-wide storytelling project created to find, record and share stories of everyday generosity. The project is a partnership between the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving and WNPR.
In 2015, 170 participants joined WNPR producers to record 154 interviews throughout the Greater Hartford region, sharing personal stories of everyday generosity. Edited versions of these recordings air on WNPR each Wednesday at 3:04 p.m. All edited stories are archived on this website and Soundcloud for listening and sharing.
Web Link




Hartford News AHNA Supplement

As part of our communications efforts we publish our newsletter 'AHNA News and Views' as a supplement in the Hartford News monthly.  To cover the printing costs we need to secure ads generating $500.00 dollars each month.  This provides us with four pages with color.  If you, an organization you work for or belong to would like to help support this effort please see the order form below.  Please contact the editor at  if you know of anyone or business you think we might reach out to for support.  Thank you.


Ad Order Form

Events Calendar


Please click on the following link to go to our online Events Calendar.

From The Editor
If you have any comments, suggestions or submissions please contact me via email at 
Paul O'Mara Communications Committee Chair
Contact Us
Send emails directly to AHNA at

To visit our website click on the following link.   AHNA Website

To visit our Facebook page go to 'Asylum Hill Living' group page.