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NORTH CANAAN — Geer has received approval from the state to build a new 120-bed nursing facility to replace the aged and inefficient building on campus that was built in the 1960s.

Geer CEO Kevin O’Connell said that this is an important first step but the hard work is now just beginning. Money has to be raised, not just for building the new facility (which could cost between $20 million and $25 million) but also to do preliminary drawings and plans.

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North Canaan

Turning back time at NCES show

To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the North Canaan Elementary School Drama Club presented a special cavalcade of costumes from past productions as part of Friday night’s presentation of “Wicked Is as Wicked Does.” Students of all ages dressed in costumes commemorating such past shows as “Ali Baba,” “Beauty and the Beast Jr.” and “Into the Woods Jr.”

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Will brewery open this summer?

NORTH CANAAN — Residents of North Canaan are eagerly awaiting the grand opening of Great Falls Brewing Company, which will occupy one wing of the historic Canaan Union Station. 
The depot has been out of use for decades since an arson fire in 2001, but long-delayed renovations have been under way over the past year to bring the building back to life. 
At a meeting of the North Canaan Exchange Club on Tuesday, March 20, Great Falls Brewing Company co-founder Chris Tripler said he expects to hold a soft opening for the brewery by midsummer. 

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Eichman new owner of Raynard and Peirce Realty

NORTH CANAAN — After working as a broker associate for the firm for several years, Wendy Eichman purchased Raynard and Peirce Realty on Feb. 14.
A resident of North Canaan, she says she sees indications that the real estate market here is in for a good year, as buyers recognize that there is positive change going on here — especially buyers with young families.
“We have affordable home prices in North Canaan, and that attracts young buyers,” she said.

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More to come, even as Seeds is closed

NORTH CANAAN — With regret, Dale McDonald announced at an afternoon reception on Thursday, March 15, that she is closing down the Plantin’ Seeds Farm Kitchen on Main Street. 
A small group of the restaurant/shop/food hub gathered to hear the announcement (snacking on a delicious spread of healthy foods prepared by Tracy Hayhurst and served by Devon McRimmon). 

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Blarney and an Irish band at Geer

Dave Paton and his musical colleagues entertained residents of Geer Village with Irish tunes in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, during a celebration held on Friday afternoon, March 16. Some of the residents, such as Richard Patz, dressed in silly splendor for the occasion.

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Region, board support choice of Roy for NCES

NORTH CANAAN — A replacement has been chosen for retiring North Canaan Elementary School Principal Rosemary Keilty. 
Region One School District Superintendent Pamela Vogel announced on Thursday, March 8, that the North Canaan Board of Education’s choice is Alicia M. Roy, who has been the superintendent of schools in New Fairfield, Conn., since 2010. 

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New rates at NC transfer station

NORTH CANAAN — It’a time for North Canaan residents to buy new transfer station stickers (they went on sale on Thursday, March 15). Once again, they are only available at the transfer station and not at Town Hall; the only exception is for commercial haulers, who should buy their stickers at the office of the selectmen at Town Hall. Payment is by credit card or check only, not cash. 

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Steering Tesla cars toward North Canaan

NORTH CANAAN — Selectman Christian Allyn announced a potential forthcoming partnership between the town of North Canaan and Tesla, Inc., at a meeting of the Canaan Exchange Club on  Tuesday, Feb. 20, at Geer. 
Tesla, an electric automotive company led by CEO Elon Musk, contacted the North Canaan zoning office shortly after Allyn’s election to the Board of Selectmen and proposed the Stop & Shop on East Main Street as an ideal location for a Tesla Supercharger station. 

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Tales of witches and magic in early Connecticut

NORTH CANAAN — Women who did not conform to contemporary gender roles were likely to be considered witches in Colonial New England, according to Peter Vermilyea. The author of “Wicked Litchfield” and a teacher at Housatonic Valley Regional High School, he spoke to the Exchange Club and Salisbury Rotary Club at Geer Village on Tuesday evening, Jan. 16.
Vermilyea said there are four documented cases of “witches” in Litchfield County in the mid 18th century.

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The human impact on a bird’s life

NORTH CANAAN — Successional habitats are critical for birds, and human development reduces the amount of such habitat.
That was the takeaway from a talk by Jane Seymour, a wildlife biologist for the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and a steward at the Belding Wildlife Management Area in Vernon. She spoke at the Douglas Library in North Canaan on Saturday, Jan. 13 as part of Great Mountain Forest’s continuing series of lectures.

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