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KENT —In a split vote at their October meeting, Kent’s Planning and Zoning Commission approved an application for Birch Hill, an 85-bed for-profit drug and alcohol detox and residential treatment facility to open in the building that was formerly The Kent at 46 Maple St. 

The approval followed an extended public hearing period that began in July when the application was first put forward.

Birch Hill elicited strong opinions from residents both opposed to and in favor of the facility. There was standing room only at several Planning and Zoning meetings and...

Kent

Kent is on the map with its own app

KENT — The primary goal of the Kent Chamber of Commerce is to promote the town. New President Tim Good has figured out an ingenius way to will help achieve that aim, with an app that he hopes will put Kent on the map. 
The app, called KentCT, was developed in conjunction with Rural Intelligence, an online publication that covers the Tri-state area. 

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Finding treasures at annual egg hunt

KENT — Despite the morning chill, turnout was good for the annual Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, April 8, at Town Hall. 
Two hunts were held. The first was on the front lawn for younger tykes, up to age 5; the second was on the back lawn for ages 6 to 10. 
Bundled up in coats and hats, the children waited in anticipation at the starting line, scoping out the prizes to be found. 
“The town has been doing the annual Easter Egg Hunt for well over 20 years,” said Lesly Ferris, director of Parks and Recreation. 

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Determining what success looks like at KCS

KENT — The regular Board of Education meeting at Kent Center School (KCS) on Wednesday, April 5, was brief.
Three students from KCS who participated in the Invention Convention, a competition designed to promote critical thinking and problem solving, will be moving on to the finals at the state level. One sixth-grade student who invented a cell phone projector has even applied for a U.S. patent.

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KCS students met the meaty mind behind ‘Meatballs’

KENT — Among  the second-graders of Kent Center School there is a rite of passage and a marker of the start of spring: Judi Barrett Day. 
The children’s book author, who splits her time between Brooklyn, N.Y., and Kent, has made a holiday of her annual visit to the second-grade class, an anniversary that stretches back more than 15 years. 

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How to share precious resources (such as volunteers and equipment)

KENT — It was a summit meeting, the first of its kind ever held in Kent and though it wasn’t the G8, you could call it the NP37. Attending were representatives of the 37 different nonprofit entities that coexist here (in a town with a population of about 2,960 people, many of whom are part-time residents). That’s right: 37 nonprofits servicing the needs of fewer than 3,000 people.

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Like the cavalry, AmeriCorps steps in

KENT — The last day in the Northwest Corner for 12 AmeriCorps volunteers was raw and chilly and featured an unpleasant morning wintry mix.
It was Friday, March 24, and several of the young adults could be found painting walls in the Kent Community House basement. Throughout the morning and afternoon, some of the crew also worked outside on Kent’s portion of the Appalachian Trail and the trails in the East Kent Hamlet Nature Preserve. 

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Rare wines help protect Kent lands

KENT — Corks popped, wine flowed, and bubbles fizzed at the seventh annual wine tasting to benefit the Kent Land Trust (KLT) on Saturday, April 1. Organized by Kent Wine & Spirit proprietor Ira Smith, all the proceeds from the event were donated to the KLT to assist them in their mission of preserving Kent’s rural lands.
Hosted by R.T. Facts at 8 Old Barn Road, the soirée “marks the end of winter and signals the welcoming of spring,” Smith said. 

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Modest rises in budgets planned, hearing to come

KENT – The Board of Finance met on Tuesday, March 21, to hear budget proposals from the selectmen  and the Board of Education for the coming fiscal year, which begins July 1. 

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Helping family and friends with inventive ideas

KENT – One of the nicest surprises at the annual elementary school Invention Conventions is learning how compassionate youngsters can be and how eager they are to solve the problems that plague their family members. 
Kent Center School held its convention in the school library on Thursday, March 23. Students in grades two through seven took part; of the 23 youngsters, about 11 of them are seventh-graders who elected to take part in the STEAM program this year. 

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Shop Hop hops despite the gloomy weather: Congresswoman meets townspeople

KENT —The Kent Shop Hop was held as planned on March 24 to 26 despite overcast skies and rain. Organized by the Chamber of Commerce, this event draws visitors from near and far to take advantage of sales and promotions offered by 30 participating businesses. The Easter Bunny even braved the dreary weather to greet children at the Kent Green gazebo on Saturday.

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