Weekly Newsletter - March 17, 2021

Members AND Sponsors, please send your news, updates and photos to newsletter.tsc.news@gmail.com so we can share with the Tri-State community.

Together, we are #TriStateStrong!
We are all in this together folks - please wear your mask!

RENEW or BECOME a Member:

The Tri-State region is on a path to fully reopening and the Chamber is here to better connect our commerce and our community. Together, we can show our strength!
#TriStateStrong


Thank you to our amazing SPONSORS!


To become a SPONSOR please contact Jean Saliter or Lisa Duntz at treasurer@tristatechamber.com

Coffee with the President 

You may notice a change this week, the theme photo in the background is of a stand of snowdrops that appeared last week at my front door! Having moved here in August, I had no idea what was waiting below the surface, delighted! I wonder what other surprises are coming...
And while on the topic of change, your TSC Board of Directors welcomed its newest director Lee Ann Sullivan this month! We accomplished a lot in our March meeting, the goal of which was to streamline committees and reassign chairs and teams. I will have the full list for you next week; we are combining some committees and renaming them, in the interest of efficiency. Call it spring cleaning!

Speaking of which, here are some great tips from our friends at Good Housekeeping :

Happy SPRING!
SBT logo
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Update
 
If you have intentions to apply for a PPP loan, please fill out an inquiry form on our website, salisburybank.com, at your earliest convenience.
 
The inquiry form will be available up until 5pm on March 24, 2021 as the program is currently scheduled to end on March 31, 2021. This is to allow ample time for the Bank to review outstanding applications and to collect additional supporting documentation that may be needed in order to submit a complete package to the SBA prior to March 31st.
 
The SBA continues to make changes to the program and one of the recent changes made by the SBA centers around the eligible loan amount for Schedule C filers. The SBA has now incorporated the use of “gross income” or “net income” for Schedule C filers. It is recommended that you review the Interim Final Rule to better understand these changes and how they impact your eligibility. Please note that the SBA is implementing this change with respect to PPP loans that are approved after the effective date (3/3) of this rule. A borrower whose PPP loan has already been approved as of the effective date (3/3) of this rule cannot increase its PPP loan amount based on the new calculation methodology.
 
Please keep in mind, Salisbury Bank will only be accepting First Draw inquiries for existing customers and Second Draw requests from customers who received their initial PPP loan through Salisbury Bank.
 
It is ultimately your responsibility to understand the rules and your eligibility for the program which can be found at the Treasury website here
                                                    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT:
Bob Whelan, Executive Director
Habitat for Humanity of Northwest CT
(860) 435-4747 – admin@habitatnwct.org
 
AN AFFORDABLE HOME IN NORTH CANAAN:
IT’S A HAND UP, NOT A HAND OUT
 
LAKEVILLE February 26, 2021. Habitat for Humanity of Northwest Connecticut will accept applications from eligible families eager to pursue their dream of homeownership in North Canaan from February 14th, 2021 – April 11th, 2021.
 
The construction of the home at Salisbury Road in North Canaan is preparing to commence, and we need to recruit a Partner Family to work alongside Habitat volunteers and skilled tradespersons to see the project to completion.
 
The mission of Habitat’s Northwest Connecticut affiliate is to facilitate ownership of simple, but decent and affordable homes for local workforce families who find themselves priced out of the market by the spiral of escalating prices and/or limited income that denies them access to traditional mortgage sources.
 
Family composition is irrelevant, and never factors into Habitat’s qualification process. However, to be eligible for a Habitat home, applicants must meet three distinct criteria.
 
First, they must be facing a pressing need to improve their living conditions. For example, squeezing too many family members in a one-bedroom apartment, enduring serious mold conditions, a failing or inadequate heating system, poor insulation, or any other issues that significantly impair quality of life will deem a family eligible.
 
Then, the applicant must also demonstrate a reasonable sense of responsibility for meeting current financial obligations, like rent, as well as verify adequate income to keep up with Habitat’s comfortably affordable monthly payments.
 
Finally, to make their dreams come true, Habitat households must commit to partner with Habitat by investing 400 hours of their labor in the construction of the home (200 hours is the amount of hours a partner family must invest for a rehabilitated home). 100 hours must be donated by the actual partner family, but friends and others can help to make the 400 hours a reality!

That often means working on the construction of their own, or even someone else’s, Habitat home. But they can also earn such “sweat equity” in other ways, like volunteering to work in Habitat’s fund-raising events and other activities. Any family member can contribute time to be credited as sweat equity -- even friends and more distant relatives are welcome to pitch in.
 
“Habitat’s proven formula for home affordability is based on three key factors: first, by keeping land acquisition and construction costs low. Second, by the use of wonderful volunteers who help to build the home and third, by providing interest-free mortgages,” said Bob Whelan, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity of Northwest Connecticut. 
 
Building lots are acquired either by donation or at a significantly discounted price. Dedicated volunteers, including the partner/owner family, provide construction labor, under the skilled supervision of qualified professionals. Local vendors, artisans and craftspeople donate or offer sharply discounted prices for high quality supplies, materials, and specialized labor. Other local corporate and individual donors also subsidize the process, committed to the mission of providing affordable homes for year-round residents who work to make our communities “work!”
 
Once construction or rehabilitation is complete, Habitat assumes the role of a lender, making a zero-interest mortgage for a reasonable term that best suits the financial strength of the eligible applicant. Consequently, mortgage payments for a Habitat owner/partner family can be as low as half what they would normally be for a conventional mortgage, lower even than prevailing market rents for equivalent housing.
 
This one-story structure will feature 3 bedrooms and 2 baths, with an open kitchen, dining and living area. Many sustainable building practices and features will be incorporated into the home, such as LED lighting, insulation that exceeds code, a high efficiency heating and hot water system as well as a possible rooftop Photovoltaic array. These features help to keep long term costs to a minimum.
 
“We’re not just about bricks or mortar, hammer and nails,” said Tracy Atwood, President of Habitat’s Northwest Connecticut affiliate. “We’re really all about making people’s dreams come true. This home is an exceptionally special opportunity for a family who never thought they could afford to own a home in any of the communities we serve.”

 
Serving housing needs in Sharon, the Town of Salisbury, North Canaan, Norfolk, Canaan/Falls Village, Torrington and Cornwall, Habitat – acting both as a builder and a lender— has already enabled 13 families to realize their dream of home ownership.
 
To determine if you or perhaps someone you know --a relative, a friend, an employee, an associate or a neighbor perhaps— is eligible to own a home on Salisbury Road in North Canaan, don’t wait! Call Bob Whelan now at (860) 435-4747, or email a request for an application package which can all be sent through email – admin@habitatnwct.org.
 
Habitat will accept complete applications only until April 11th, 2021.
 
 
Salisbury Rotary Club joined the Rotary Club of Hartford’s 3/15 ZOOM meeting to hear Shan Rigg’s talk about his 3250-mile, 92-day run across the US last Fall to benefit Foodshare’s national effort to feed folks in need during the COVID-19 pandemic. Rigg is a 41 year-old ultramarathon runner, meaning he does runs longer than the traditional 26-mile marathons. He started in September 1st in California and ended at CT’s Hamminasset State Park on December 1st, Giving Day! His efforts have raised $45K+ to date for Foodshare and donations can still be made via the link found on his website, Shan Runs Across America:

Stop & Shop has partnered with and supports Foodshare in this effort: http://site.foodshare.orgShan Rigg is a professional consultant in sales and sponsorships related to event management, currently living in Salisbury, and looking for new clients during these challenging COVID times.
ZIPPING IT UP
When English settlers first landed on New England’s shores, they left behind the fine homes they had once lived in and faced the challenge of surviving in hastily built, one-room homes crafted from rough-hewn clapboards and insulated with wattle and daub. 

The houses were cold, dark, drafty—and completely energy inefficient.
March is Maple month at Sharon Audubon Center! Come visit our Maple Trail, where you’ll learn about the role of maple sap inside a tree, how we harvest the sap, and how we eventually boil it down to make maple syrup. Additionally, you’ll learn about some of the wildlife that takes advantage of sap’s “sweet” opportunities. This special trail will be up through March, and all are invited to take a self-guided stroll to learn about all things maple from our trail signage. COVID facemasks must be worn and social distancing must be observed at all times. View the Maple Trail web page at https://sharon.audubon.org/maple-trail.
 
Want to learn more about maple sugaring? Join Sharon Audubon Center for a virtual program this Friday.
 
Friday, March 19
6 - 7 p.m.
Maple sugaring is a tradition practiced by diverse cultures throughout Connecticut’s history and continues into the present day. Join Sharon Audubon Center for a virtual program in which our special guests will explain the importance of maple to the Algonkian tribes of the Northeast, as observed in their customs, design motifs, and cultural traditions. You will also glimpse the variety of current-day sugaring operations around the state. Not least, we’ll explore the fascinating ways that a maple sugarbush can support wildlife, especially how it can help our declining forest birds. Join us for a delightfully “sweet” program on sugaring in Connecticut, past and present, human and wild!
 
  • Program Fee: $10 per person, $15 per family
  • Pre-registration is required. Select here to register.
  • Suitable for families and participants of all ages
  • Upon registering, you will receive a link to access this event on Zoom.
 
For questions, please contact Bethany at bethany.sheffer@audubon.org or 860-364-0520.
 
WHO:  Hill-Stead house, Farmington, CT
WHAT: A live tour of the house and its collections
WHEN:  Saturday March 20 4:00
WHERE: Zoom
COST: Free
 
 
Era of Elegance: Live Tour of the Highlights of Hill-Stead, Farmington, Connecticut
 
SALISBURY Explore the history of Hill-Stead Museum, a lovely Colonial Revival-style house built in 1901 and located in Farmington, Connecticut. The house was designed by the pioneering female architect Theodate Pope Riddle as a retirement home for her father and mother, Alfred and Ada Pope. Alfred was an avid art collector, most known for purchasing paintings by notable French Impressionist artists Claude Monet, Edgar Degas and Mary Cassatt. This is the second in the Era of Elegance Series sponsored by the Salisbury Association and the Scoville Memorial Library. This tour will virtually transport you to Hill-Stead and take you through the home room-by-room weaving in the enriching history of the Pope family. The tour will take place on Saturday March 20, at 4:00 p.m. and will last about an hour.

Slow cooking that corned beef

Join us this week for St. Patrick’s day specials through Friday (or till supplies last)

Baileys Irish cream cheesecake coming out of the oven
Join us this week for St. Patrick’s day specials through Friday (or till supplies last)

Baileys Irish cream cheesecake coming out of the oven
Spring is coming—so let's enjoy it together! 

Easter Brunch and Egg Hunt
Join us on Easter Sunday for a distinctive 3-course pre-fixe menu. We'll be serving from 11:30am to 6pm, with tables in the Dining Room, Tap Room, and on our porches, weather permitting. Our annual Easter Egg hunt will be on the Green, starting at 11am, and is open to the whole community! (It's BYOB—bring your own basket). Click here to see our brunch menu and then book online, or call us at 860-435-0030 to make a reservation. 

Enjoy a Spring Getaway
Our Inn has rooms available, so come enjoy the beauty of a Litchfield Country spring! Start your day with a complimentary breakfast in Provisions and then head to the Appalachian trail, tour the covered bridges in Kent and West Cornwall, or make your way up to the stone tower at Haystack Mountain in Norfolk. (Or just take it easy and rent an electric bike at Covered Bridge Bike instead!) Book a room online or call us at 860-435-0030 for reservations.

Easter Offerings from Provisions
For a gourmet meal in the comfort of your home, our brilliant chefs have created some signature Easter dishes for you to warm up at your house. Order by Wednesday, March 31st and pick-up on Easter Sunday beginning at 11:30am. See all of our Easter offerings here.

St. Patty's Day Specials
St. Patrick's Day is this Wednesday! We have a special take-away dinner for 4: corned beef with red bliss potatoes, cabbage with bacon butter and roasted carrots. We'll also have holiday specials including soda bread and chocolate Guinness cake. Stop by and enjoy a meal on property—remember, Provisions opens at 7am daily—or bring something home for your family!

Delivery from Provisions
And don't forget, we deliver custom food boxes every Thursday to Salisbury, Lakeville, Twin Lakes, Sharon, Falls Village, Millerton, and Cornwall. Orders must be placed each Monday at 4pm for Thursday delivery between noon and 5pm. Free delivery for orders over $75. Click here to see all our food options. Call us at 860-435-0030 or click here to place your order.

Happy Spring, everyone!
Track Tapas Days:

Are you itching to drive on our iconic Road Course, but don’t know where to start?

We have the answer!

Our new Track Tapas Days give participants an opportunity to get their feet wet on both the Road Course and the Autocross track.

Two hours in length, run by one professional instructor, the day begins with one hour of driving on the Autocross track, followed by another hour on the Road Course.

TRACK TAPAS UPCOMING DATES
May 6, 2021 10:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m.
June 1, 2021 10:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m.
June 17, 2021 10:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m.
An Evening with Sandra Cisneros:
A Conversation on Writing, on The House on Mango Street, on Activism, 
and on the Heart Breaking Over and Over Again Until It Stays Open

Thursday, April 8, 2021, 7 PM on Zoom 

Join us for this rare opportunity to be entertained, challenged, and inspired by one of our most influential writers. 

Sandra Cisneros is a poet, short story writer, novelist, essaying, performer, and artist whose work explores the lives of the working-class. She is the author of the classic, coming-of-age novel, The House on Mango Street, published in 1984, which has sold over six million copies and is required reading in schools and universities nationwide. A MacArthur Fellow, Cisneros has received numerous awards, including the National Medal of the Arts. She is a dual citizen of the United States and Mexico and earns her living by her pen. Her life and work are driven by her belief that “we do this because the world we live in is a house on fire and the people we love are burning.”

She will be joined in conversation by Maria Acosta Cruz, PhD, Professor of Languages, Literature and Culture at Clark University in Worchester, MA. Dr. Cruz teaches Spanish language and literature and is especially interested in Caribbean and Latino cultures, identity, and national and gender-based stereotypes.  

This program is proudly presented as a collaboration of community libraries: The Hotchkiss Library of Sharon, Kent Memorial Library, The Norfolk Library, and Scoville Memorial Library.

This event is free and open to the public, but advanced registration is required at http://www.norfolklibrary.org/events/an-evening-with-sandra-cisneros/
Planning on celebrating St. Patrick's Day at home? Here a few recipes to try to help you feel extra Irish!
Corned Beef and Cabbage
Irish Soda Bread
FUN FACTS
Just as earth has earthquakes, the moon has—you guessed it—moonquakes. Less common and less intense than the shakes that happen here, moonquakes are believed by U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists to occur due to tidal stresses connected to the distance between the Earth and the moon.
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