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Kent

KENT — The annual Ice Watch, a fundraiser for the Kent Volunteer Fire Department (KVFD), is underway. 

This year’s Ice Watch takes on special significance since people have been literally watching the ice more closely than ever before, because of the ice jam that formed on the Housatonic River in mid-January, making state and national headlines. 

At 12 feet thick and two miles long at its peak, the ice jam drew news crews and visitors from across the region.

Newscasters could be seen at all hours of the day and night broadcasting ice jam...

Kent

In Kent, the sweet smell of gingerbread success

KENT — The votes from December have been tallied and the winning entries in Kent’s annual gingerbread house competition have been selected.
The judges are anonymous; their votes were collected and tallied by the also-anonymous Ginger Judges.

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Welcoming change with open arms

KENT — Traditions and routine are deeply rooted in small New England towns, but that doesn’t mean change has to be hard. The First Congregational Church in Kent has warmly received its new transitional minister, Abby Gackenheimer, following the departure of minister Melissa Keck after 24 years of service. 
“This congregation views change as a chance, not a challenge,” Gackenheimer said, characterizing the heartfelt welcome she has received from the community.

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From a ladybug: change is OK

KENT — In Kent, Vincent LaFontan is perhaps best known as a former selectman and as the owner of Mountain View Farm, along with his wife, Maria. 
In addition to those accomplishments, LaFontan is also an accomplished storyteller. His book for children, “Farmhouse Ladybug,” has just been released.
LaFontan learned to tell stories while working in the after-school program at the New Milford Youth Agency (NMYA), where he was employed from 1994 to 2004. 

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Kent Historical Society’s trip back in time sheds light on life in 2017

KENT — The first Holiday Historic House Tour, presented by the Kent Historical Society, happened under blue skies on Sunday, Dec. 10 — with a new blanket of snow to punctuate the winter theme. 
Seven houses were opened for the tour, each with its own special character and history. 
Many have been renovated to accommodate 21st-century owners, but the work on all of them was done with an eye to preserving the original character of the house; many of the original elements have been carefully maintained. 

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Students shine in winter concert

KENT — Students in grades five to eight at Kent Center School performed a diverse program of songs and musical selections for the winter concert on Wednesday, Dec. 13, under the guidance of music teacher David Poirier and chorus instructor Sandra Kleisner.

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Slowly, the new Swyft pizza inn unfolds

KENT — The renovation of the former Kent Apothecary at the corner of Maple Street and Main Street took more than a year, but the work appears to have been well worth it. 
The interior is completely transformed; it’s virtually impossible to mentally reconcile the former country pharmacy’s interior with the understated, Asian-inspired dining room and kitchens (there are three cooking areas there now) at Swyft, the “pizza and beer” restaurant that opened on Friday, Dec. 8.

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Holiday music

Linnea Saxton played “Mountain Spring” during the Kent Center School grades five to eight winter concert on Wednesday, Dec. 13, under the guidance of music teacher David Poirier and chorus instructor Sandra Kleisner. For story, see Students shine in winter concert.

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New leaders for Kent BOE

KENT — Melissa Cherniske was welcomed to the first Kent Board of Education meeting (on Wednesday, Dec. 6) since the municipal elections in November.
Martin Lindenmayer was elected chairman, replacing Allan Priaulx, who previously held that position but no longer serves on the board. Gonzalo Garcia-Pedroso was elected vice chairman.

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Town gets funds from state for upgrades

KENT — New Kent Selectman Chris Garrity attended his first meeting of the board on Tuesday, Dec. 5. He was elected in November, replacing Michael Vanvalkenburg, who did not run for office again. 
First Selectman Bruce Adams reported that a $500,000 grant Kent was promised last year from the state’s Main Street Investment Fund will soon be made available to the town following months of uncertainty due to the budget war in Hartford. Kent’s Streetscape Committee plans to use this funding to repair sidewalks and revitalize Main Street.   

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IMAX grant will help students make films — and progress

KENT — The Marvelwood School is one of the latest recipients of IMAX’s In Focus grant for young filmmakers. Photography and film studies teacher Ben Willis sat down with The Lakeville Journal last week to share news about what he and his students will do to take advantage of the funds.

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