Forty-five people of all ages (and some canines) showed up at Holcomb Farm on picture-perfect February 19 for a snowshoe hike. The group trekked the Farm’s east trails to where they intersect with McLean Game Refuge and Granby Land Trust property. Leaders Jack Lareau and Eric Lukingbeal provided some interesting information along the way. Check in with holcombfarm.org for upcoming events.
By Tim Nolan
The fall sports season was historic for some Granby athletes. Boys soccer won the NCCC regular season title outright for the first time since 2001. This included beating soccer power Suffield High School for the first time in multiple years. Baylor University commit Marieke Van Der Mark was named a third team All-American for her fall success leading the volleyball team to an NCCC title of its own. Under the guidance of Coach Dennis Lobo, who celebrated his 50th year as a cross-country coach, boys and girls’ cross-country had solid seasons as well. The track around the football field will fittingly be renamed in his honor. The field hockey program dominated again, falling just a game short of another Class M state final. Senior captains Jack Hauser and Gage Fiorentino finished their fourth varsity football season with all-conference honors, a bright spot of an otherwise dismal season.
All these are long gone, however, as the winter sports are in full swing. Girl’s basketball is 9-10 on the year, but this is a major improvement from a 4-16 record the prior year. When asked what has led to the improvement, junior guard Mackenzie Stahl replied, “All players (those who start, come in as subs, or don’t play significant minutes) impact our team positively.” Stahl also mentions that her teammates on the bench are even louder than the crowd at times. Despite a losing record, the Lady Bears have begun to play more efficiently and resiliently as a team, which will be very important in the state tournament.
Boy’s basketball is 8-9 to start the year. Although senior captain Tyler Disabella would’ve liked a much better record, he believes that this is essential to the experience of younger players, like his sophomore brother Logan. “Every single player has made an impact on this team for the better, and in a year or two I think they’ll have a very solid team,” he explained. Every single player had to step up. The Bears lost seven seniors, its best player transferred, and senior Romelle Hardy had to sit out the first half of the season for disciplinary reasons. Junior Jonathon Bystrowski and sophomore James Shelansky have taken their increased roles in stride. Bystrowski now starts for the Bears, and Shelansky has worked his way to sixth man.
The Suffield/Granby/Windsor Locks boys’ hockey co-op is 12-4. Granby’s own, goalie Dan Degagne, credits the Wildcats’ success to team chemistry and strong upperclassmen leadership. Unlike most high school teams, the ‘Cats rely on all four of its lines to win games, not just the first or top two. For example, fourth-liners Cole Battiston and Derek Megliola have goals against Simsbury and Xavier respectively, two of the top teams in Division 1. Degagne believes this strong confidence in the entire team will lead to good things during the Division 1 tournament. “As long as we continue to play with grit and effort every single game, no matter the skill of the opposing team, we will be very successful,” Degagne stated.
This is also the first season that the co-op offers a girl’s team. Although it cannot be recognized as a full varsity program yet, the club team is 11-2. Two of those wins have come against Simsbury, which had been the top team in the state before the first meeting. Junior Meaghan Leonardi is unsure that the co-op will maintain the numbers long enough to be recognized as a varsity program, but she is relishing the present. “The Wildcats’ girls program gives any girl in Connecticut the opportunity to play just like the boys,” she concluded.
Boys and Girls’ indoor track season is almost over. The boys placed 5th as a team at the NCCC meet in New Haven, while the girls team placed 7th out of 12 teams. Fifteen runners qualified for states, including three freshmen (Austin Wickham, Maria Nolan, and Sarah Cramer). Junior Joey Wix, who also qualified for States, attributes their success to an increase in depth. For example, this year’s team features two male hurdlers, whereas last year’s team didn’t have one.
Wrestling captured back-to-back NCCC titles for the first time ever. Ben Kibby, Cooper Fleming, and Steven Muller took first in their respective weight classes. Fleming, a junior, is no stranger to the top of the podium. He is 107-9 in high school wrestling matches. When asked what has made him and his team so dominant in recent years, he responded, “About half of our team participates in offseason wrestling all over the northeast US, so we’re all used to high-level competition.”
Finally, although the cheer squad does not keep an official record, they have done well in their competitions. Captains Tori Rafoss and Emily Munsell have guided the girls to overcome injuries and plenty of underestimation. Junior Kat Ericksen credits their resilience to hard work and determination at every practice, allowing them to tune everything else out and compete as a cohesive unit.
Reminder: April 28, 2017
Come to GMHS on April 28 for soup, bread, and live music at Empty Bowls, an annual fundraiser hosted by the GMHS chapter of the National Honor Society. Proceeds from the event go to the Granby and Hartland food banks. In addition, a silent auction will be held to raise money for Visual Arts and NHS scholarships. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com for further details.
Office Hours: 8:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. Open 24/7 at www.GranbyRec.com for program registration!
Website: GranbyRec.com We accept Mastercard/Visa/Discover for payments. Our registration system and website allow you to register for programs at any time, find out if a program still has space available, check your account to see what activities your family members are signed up for, and print out a year end receipt for tax purposes.
Program/Trip Registration: programs/trips are based on a first come basis and space availability and require advance registration; payment must accompany registration. Please register early to avoid disappointment.
Scholarships: Recreational and leisure opportunities are not denied any resident because of lack of financial resources; program scholarship information is available upon request. All inquiries are kept in the strictest confidence; apply early.
Event Planning: Have your next family or other private event at SBP or the Holcomb Farm. The Salmon Brook Park House is a beautiful facility that can accommodate up to 99 people, featuring a gas fireplace and central air. The North Barn Pavilion at Holcomb Farm looks like a barn, but has all of the modern amenities to make your event for up to 125 people special. Make an appointment for tours to see if one is the right fit for your next event.
Summer Employment: We are seeking concession staff for spring and summer and lifeguards and day camp counselors for summer employment at Salmon Brook Park. Get our application at www.Granbyrec.com. Application deadline is Friday, March 24.
Red Sox vs. Tampa Bay Rays Monday, April 17 for the annual Patriot’s Day Game at Fenway Park. This is always a special home games of the season with the Boston Marathon being run through the city during the game and lots pre-game holiday pageantry and ceremonies. We will be seated in Right Field Box 88 for this game (under the retired numbers). The bus will leave Granby Town Hall at 7:30 a.m. for the 11:05 a.m. game start time and we should be home around 4:30 p.m. Tickets can only be reserved with full payment. $110pp.
Yankees vs. Red Sox Friday, Aug. 11, 7:05 p.m. Two of baseball biggest rivals will meet in Yankee Stadium for what is sure to be a battle for the top of baseball’s toughest division. Both the Yankees and the Sox have their sights set on a Championship this year so this game should have a playoff like atmosphere. We have seats in section 233B (straightaway left field, 2nd level) for this Friday night, game. Full payment must be made at time of purchase. $115pp.
Red Sox vs. Baltimore Orioles Friday, Aug. 25. The Red Sox will play defending World Series Champion Kansas City Royals at Fenway Park. We are lucky to have seats in right field box #88 for this game (under the retired numbers in right field). Our bus will leave Granby Town Hall at 3:00 p.m. (for the 7:10 p.m. game start time). Tickets can only be reserved with full payment. $125pp.
Lions, & Tigers, and Bears – Oh My! Monday, Aug. 21. Take your family on an exciting trip to the Bronx Zoo. With award-winning, cutting-edge exhibits featuring over 4,000 animals. Depart Salmon Brook Park at 7:00 a.m. and leave the Bronx Zoo at 4:30 p.m. The Total Experience Deluxe package is $59pp and includes zoo shuttles, Wild Asia Monorail, Bug Carousel, Children’s Zoo, the New 4-D Theater, and the Congo Gorilla Forest.
NYC – On Your Own: Spend the day in the city on your own to enjoy the Big Apple. See Chinatown, Little Italy, Central Park, a museum, the zoo, a Broadway show or shop – use your imagination. Departs Town Hall at 7 a.m. Drop off points in the City: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Plaza Hotel, and Rockefeller Center. Our pickup time is 7:00 p.m. in front of Stage Coach Tavern, near the Ed Sullivan Theatre, 7th Ave between 53rd & 54th Streets. Trip dates: Saturdays, May 6, Oct. 7 - $40pp, Dec. 2 - $45pp.
April Vacation Tennis Camp
Youth tennis lessons are geared to the beginner and intermediate youth player. Instruction is by Kevin Imbt, GMHS Tennis team Coach. Participants should bring an appropriately sized racquet, lots of water, towel and sneakers. Lessons are held Mondays–Thurdays, April 11 to 14. Fridays will be used to make up cancelled lessons due to weather. Lessons are held at the Salmon Brook Park Tennis Courts. $35 pp. At SBP. We are also accepting registrations for summer tennis lessons. Ages 3-6, 10 – 10:55 a.m. Ages 6-9, 11 – 11:55 a.m. Ages 9-16, 12 – 12:55 p.m.
April Vacation Art-Ventures! You can sign up for one, two, three or four days!
4/10 It’s Raining, It’s Pouring. But nobody’s snoring at this exciting art-venture! Decorate umbrellas with waterproof inks, sculpt birds out of neon clay and create cool umbrella collages with decorative papers. Rain or shine! Grades K-5, 9 a.m. -12 p.m. $39pp. HFWS.
4/11 Silly Cities and Wiggly Waves. In this cross-country art-venture, travel to the countryside to design model houses with mosaic roofs. Then build 3D cityscape collages with oil pastels. Finally, paint ocean waves that crash right over the edge of the canvas. Grades K-5, 9 a.m. -12 p.m. $39pp. HFWS.
4/12 Clowning Around: Silly Circus Art-ventures. Welcome to quirky art circus. Step right up! Paint and decorate shimmering carousel horses; design goofy clown or acrobat toys and draw colorful balancing acts complete with jugglers, tightropes and unicycles! Grades K-5, 9 a.m. -12 p.m. $39pp. HFWS.
4/13, My Animal, Me and the Clay Safari. Creating with clay! According to pre-Columbian legend, each person shares a common destiny with an animal—called a “Tona”— that matches his or her personality. Sculpt “Tona” masks out of clay, and bring them to life with paint, feathers, and more! Plus, design and decorate ceramic dinosaur banks, and create detailed drawings of brightly colored owls. Grades K-5, 9 a.m. -12 p.m. $39pp. HFWS.
SPRING YOUTH PROGRAMS
Music Time!!! With Miss Carrie, Thursdays, Mar. 9 – Apr. 20, 10-10:50 a.m. Children ages 6 months to 4 years (and their parents or caregivers) will learn basic melody, finger play, rhythm skills, dancing and music & movement. Come join Carrie Johnson. $125pp at SBP.
Indoor Field Hockey League for Grades 5-8, Mondays, Mar. 27 – Apr. 24, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Four teams of 8 will be created to play 6v6 with modified indoor rules. There will be two 25-minute games per night, each team guaranteed 2 games. Games will be played in Granby High School’s Main Gym $55pp at GHS.
Super Soccer Saturdays – Soccer Shots Apr. 22 – May 27, 9:00-9:50 a.m. or 10-10:50 a.m. Soccer Shots is a high-energy program introducing children to fundamental soccer principles, such as using your feet, dribbling and the basic rules of the game. Through games, songs and positive reinforcement, children will experience the joy of playing soccer. Ages 3-5, $95 at Ahrens Park.
AFTER SCHOOL AT KELLY LANE:
Mad Science, Grades K-2, Mondays, Mar. 6 -May 8, 3:20-4:20 p.m. 8 weeks of crazy chemistry learning about the tools scientists use in their laboratories. Examine and investigate super sticky things. The best part is, each day you’ll continue the science fun at home with lab-ware take-homes! $129pp at KL.
Yoga for all levels with MaryEllen Mullins, Tuesdays Apr. 18 – May 23, 8:15-9:15 a.m. Stretch, strengthen and restore with a gentle warmup, an invigorating flow and ends with deep stretch. Helps gain flexibility, balance and strength. $65pp at the HF Workshop.
Paint Night with Laura Eden, Thurs. Mar. 16, 7:00-9:30 p.m. Create a beautiful Stonewall masterpiece while enjoying the company of friends and fellow blossoming artists! Create a beautiful Stonewall scene under the tutelage of Laura Eden. All the materials will be provided and you’ll be delighted with your masterpiece! Bring your own snacks and beverage of choice. $40pp at HFNB.
Combination Safe Boating/Personal Watercraft Course, Mon. – Wed., Mar. 6 - 8, 6-9 p.m. is an eight-hour course in time for the spring/summer boating season. Upon completion and passing the exam (given during the last class), participants will satisfiy the DEEP’s requirements and be able to apply for a certificate of personal watercraft operation (CPWO), which costs $50 and is NOT included in the class fee. This class and certificate is required by individuals 10 years of age and older to operate any recreational vessel registered in Conn. except a personal watercraft (“Jet Ski” operation requirement is 16 years of age.) on Conn. waters. $25pp at SBP
Spring Cookie Decorating Class, Sun., April 9, 1:30-3:00 p.m. Learn how to decorate spring-themed cookies that are shaped like baskets, eggs, butterflies, bunnies, and flowers. Great fun for kids and adults! Decorating instruction, cookies, icing and decorating candies/sprinkles will be provided. All participants will take home their drying cookies in a bakery box. $27pp at SBP.
SUMMER CAMP PROGRAMMING
Please check our website, www.GranbyRec.com for the latest information and registration for all of our Summer 2017 programs including youth sport and enrichment camps.
Salmon Brook Park Day Camp
A traditional day camp filled with active games, sports, arts and crafts, group interaction and the wonders of nature. Your child may swim daily in the pond, go on exciting field trips, and see spectacular entertainers. Children are grouped by age/grade and all activities are age-appropriate. Camp is scheduled in one-week sessions. Also check out the Extended Day Program run by the Camp Director. Save $10 a week by registering by Friday, April 14. The discount shows up during online checkout.
All of our staff is first aid and CPR certified. Sue Olechna, the camp director, is an experienced educator. Salmon Brook Day Campers should bring a lunch, snack and water bottle to camp each day. They should also bring sunscreen and bug spray each day. All campers must purchase an individual ($35) or family membership ($80) to Salmon Brook Park in order to register for camp. Please visit the website for dates and prices and to register.
Mission: Adventure, a Camp for ‘Tweens and Teens
Students in grades 6-9 have a camp all their own. Campers experience scuba diving, trampoline dodgeball, an aerial maze, play in a waterfall, and zip-line across a water-filled quarry. This summer there will be some new experiences mixed in with the best ones from our first four summers. Each two-week session has at least 6 off-site field trips. When campers are on-site all day, they will participate in scavenger hunts, team building, sports, swimming and more.
We have added a 5th session of Adventure Camp! This late August session features a field trip every day. 5 Packed Days of fun. All campers must purchase an individual ($35) or family membership ($80) to Salmon Brook Park in order to register for camp. Please visit our website for date and prices and to register.
GET A FREE SEASONS PASS TO SIX FLAGS
Register for 2 or more sessions of Mission: Adventure Camp and get a free 2017 Seasons Pass to Six Flags! The pass is for the registered camper only and must be brought to camp on the Six Flags trip days during the child’s camp sessions. Passes are available for pickup beginning April.
Winter fun has just begun at YMCA Camp Jewell in Colebrook, with snow tubing adventure for kids of all ages. Hike up the hill then race back down as Camp Jewell welcomes families for snow tubing every Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m. Tubes and helmets are provided free of charge, warming and restroom facilities are available, and activities are supervised by YMCA staff. Please check tubing conditions by visiting Camp Jewell YMCA on Facebook or call the camp at 860-379-2782. Camp Jewell is located at 6 Prock Hill Road, Colebrook.
Office Hours: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Open 24/7 at www.GranbyRec.com.
Website: www.GranbyRec.com. Accepting MasterCard / Visa / Discover for payments. The registration system and website allow you to register for programs at any time, find out if a program still has space available, check your account to see what activities your family members are signed up for, and print out a year-end receipt for tax purposes.
Program/Trip Registration: All programs/trips are based on a first come basis and space availability and require advance registration; payment must accompany registration. Please register early to avoid disappointment.
Scholarships: Recreational and leisure opportunities are not denied any resident because of lack of financial resources; program scholarship information is available upon request. All inquiries are kept in the strictest confidence; apply early.
Event Planning: Have your next family or other private event at Salmon Brook Park or Holcomb Farm. The Salmon Brook Park House is a beautiful facility that can accommodate up to 99 people, featuring a gas fireplace and central air. The North Barn Pavilion at Holcomb Farm is built to look like a barn, but this gorgeous new building has all of the modern amenities to make your event for up to 125 people special. Make an appointment for tours to see if one is the right fit for your next event.
Red Sox vs. Tampa Bay Rays: Monday, April 17 for the annual Patriot’s Day Game at Fenway Park. This is always a special home game, with the Boston Marathon being run through the city during the game and lots of pre-game holiday pageantry and ceremonies. We will be seated in right field box 88 for this game (under the retired numbers). The bus will leave Granby Town Hall at 7:30 a.m. for the 11:05 a.m. game start time and we should be home around 4:30 p.m. Tickets can only be reserved with full payment. $110pp.
Yankees vs. Red Sox: Friday, Aug. 11, 7:05 p.m. Two of baseball’s biggest rivals will meet in Yankee Stadium for what is sure to be a battle for the top of baseball’s toughest division. Both the Yankees and the Sox have their sights set on a Championship this year so this game should have a playoff-like atmosphere. We have seats in section 233B (straightaway left field, 2nd level). Full payment must be made at time of purchase. $115pp.
Red Sox vs. Baltimore Orioles: Friday, Aug. 25. The Red Sox will play the Orioles at Fenway Park. We are lucky to have seats in right field box 88 (under the retired numbers). The bus will leave Granby Town Hall at 3 p.m. for the 7:10 p.m. game start time. Tickets can only be reserved with full payment. $125pp
Indoor Field Hockey Clinics: Feb. 6 to March 13, at Wells Road. Grades 5 and 6 at 6-7 p.m., $105pp. Grades 7 and 8 at 7:15-8:30 p.m. $130pp. Basics of passing, receiving, stick skills, shooting, defensive concepts and game strategy will be covered and games will be played to utilize these skills. Instructors will be current GMHS coaches and players. Limited to 15 players per session. Each clinic will feature instruction and game play. All participants must supply their own mouth guards, field hockey sticks and shin guards. Indoor gloves are optional. Bring lots of water. New players: when going to a sports store to buy equipment, provide two (2) measurements for correct size stick: 1) from hipbone to floor and 2) height.
American Red Cross Babysitting Course, ages 11-15: Feb. 21, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. at Salmon Brook Park. This class will give youth the information and skills necessary to provide safe and responsible care for children in the absence of parent and adult guardians. This training will help participants develop skills in leadership and professionalism; basic care; safety and safe play; and first aid. $100pp.
Junior W.A.V.E., ages 11-13: Feb. 6, 6:30-8:30 p.m. at Salmon Brook Park. The Women Against Violence Everywhere women’s self-defense program deals with real life scenarios and situations. The comprehensive program teaches participants the proper way to deal with threatening and dangerous situations that may arise at any time of day or night, both inside and outside the home or work. It is a no frills class that teaches practical techniques that have been proven effective. Techniques will include escape and defense from the many types of attacks a woman may be faced with. Participants will be taught the correct way to use the weapons they possess, i.e. hands, feet, knees, and elbows. $20pp.
Indoor Field Hockey League, for grades 9-12: Feb.28 – March 21, 8-9:30 p.m. Four teams will be created to play 6v6. Modified Indoor rules are played. Each night there will be two 25 minute games, each team is guaranteed two games; maximum 8 players on each team. Games will be played in GMHS’s main gym using modified indoor rules. $55pp.
Indoor Field Hockey League, for grades 5-8: March 27 – April 24, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Four teams will be created to play 6v6. Modified Indoor rules are played. Each night there will be two 25 minute games, each team is guaranteed two games; maximum 8 players on each team. Games will be played in GMHS’s main gym using modified indoor rules. $55pp.
Winter Afterschool Programs at Kelly Lane (grades K-2)
Soccer Shots: Feb. 15 – April 19, 3:20-4:20 p.m. Learn the fundamentals of soccer while focusing on individual skill, fitness and sportsmanship. Children will be challenged through fun games and team interaction. Children will also be introduced to competition in a developmentally appropriate manner. $100pp.
Mad Science: March 6 - May 8, 3:20-4:20 p.m. Eight weeks of Crazy Chemistry: We’ll learn about the tools scientists use in their laboratories – atoms, molecules, and reactions; acids and bases; and fluorescence and phosphorescence. We’ll also examine and investigate super sticky things by exploring suction, hydrogen bonding, and static cling and see some very cool dry ice demonstrations. The best part is that each day we’ll be able to continue the science fun at home with our very own labware take-homes. $129pp.
Winter Afterschool Programs at Wells Road (grades 3-5)
Engineering FUNdamentals using LEGO: Feb. 7 – April 18, 3:20-4:50 p.m. Power up your engineering skills with Play-Well TEKnologies and tens of thousands of LEGO®. Apply real world concepts in physics, engineering, and architecture through engineer-designed projects such as arch bridges, skyscrapers, motorized cars, and the Battletrack. Design and build as never before, and explore your craziest ideas in a supportive environment. An experienced instructor will challenge new and returning students to engineer at the next level. $180pp.
Mad Science: Feb. 9-Apr. 6, 3:20-4:20 p.m. Eight weeks of Crazy Chemistry: We’ll learn about the tools scientists use in their laboratories – atoms, molecules, and reactions; acids and bases; and fluorescence and phosphorescence. We’ll also examine and investigate super sticky things by exploring suction, hydrogen bonding, and static cling and see some very cool dry ice demonstrations. The best part is that each day we’ll be able to continue the science fun at home with our very own labware take-homes. $129pp.
Yoga for All Levels with MaryEllen Mullins: Feb. 14 – March 21, 8:15-9:15 a.m. at Holcomb Farm Workshop. Stretch, strengthen and restore. Class begins with a gentle warmup, builds to an invigorating flow and ends with deep stretch and peaceful relaxation. Perfect to help gain flexibility, balance and strength. It will be a great way to start the day. $65pp.
Comedy Night: Saturday, Feb. 25, 7-10:30 p.m. at Holcomb Farm North Barn. Join as Lori Palminteri and Jay Black take the stage. Cash bar available. $40pp.
Paint Night with Laura Eden: Thursday, March 16, 7-9:30 p.m. at Holcomb Farm North Barn. Start getting excited for the arrival of spring by creating a beautiful stonewall scene while enjoying the company of friends and fellow blossoming artists. Create your masterpiece under the tutelage of local Granby resident and artist, Laura Eden. All the materials will be provided.Please feel free to bring your own snacks and beverage of choice. $40pp.
Valentine’s Day Cookie Decorating Class for all ages: Sunday, Feb. 5, 1:30-3:30 p.m. at Salmon Brook Park. Learn how to beautifully decorate Valentine’s Day-themed cookies with your family and friends. You will be decorating cookies that are shaped like hearts, “X’s” and “O’s”, Valentines, etc. Decorating instruction, cookies, icing and decorating candies/sprinkles will be provided. All participants will take home their drying cookies in a bakery box. $27.
Combination Safe Boating / Personal Watercraft Course: March 6- March 9, 6-9 p.m. at Salmon Brook Park. This 8-hour class is just in time for the upcoming spring/summer boating season. Upon completing the course and passing the exam (which is given during the last class), the participant will have satisfied the DEEP’s requirements and will be able to apply for a Certificate of Personal Watercraft Operation (CPWO). The cost to apply for the certificate is $50 and is NOT included in this class fee. A Safe Boating Certificate/Personal Watercraft Class (SBC/CPWO) is required for individuals 10 years of age and older to operate any recreational vessel registered in Connecticut except a personal watercraft (Jet Ski type vessel) on Connecticut’s waters. $25pp.
By Nick Boorman
The Wildcats hockey’s first alumni jamboree to benefit the Wounded Warrior Project on Jan. 6 was a huge success. The rink was filled with current and former student athletes and fans from Suffield, Granby, and Windsor Locks. Thirty alumni played in the jamboree. The current players chose the Wounded Warrior Project as a charity because they wanted to help our military troops and veterans. The Wildcats Hockey Booster Club coordinated the event raising $941 for the Wounded Warrior Project. Assistant coach Jon Cieri did a great job reaching out to the alumni for the game. Even though several of the alumni graduated many years ago, they all still feel a strong bond with the Wildcats Hockey Program. Donations may still be made online at fundraise.woundedwarriorproject.org/rtt/Fundraising/individual/40404352.
Wildcats hockey team and alumni
The Granby Land Trust held its annual meeting and hike on Oct. 23 at Holcomb Farm.
At the meeting, the Mary Edwards Friend of the Land Trust Award, the land trust’s highest honor, was posthumously awarded to Ann Pelka, who left 143 acres of land in North Granby to the Granby Land Trust. Submitted photo
By Jesse Stanhope
It’s Christmas Time! And what does that mean? You guessed it: Christmas movies. Christmas movies are the pinnacle of the Christmas spirit. You may be thinking, “What about family dinners and presents?” Let me ask you this: Has a Christmas movie ever started an all-out brawl over the last piece of ham? Or has a Christmas movie ever put you in the uncomfortable situation of receiving a gift you already own and struggling to be thankful—but internally mapping out when you can return the double? The answer to either of these questions is “maybe” for most people. I have no doubt forks have crossed while watching Elf. However, Soul Leavitt, a student at Granby Memorial High School, when asked “why are Christmas movies important?” replied, “They [Christmas movies] instill a sense of wonder in all watchers, allowing one to heighten the Christmas spirit or laugh at a not-so-perfect Christmas.”
When asked what their favorite Christmas movie is, many current and former GMHS students were avidly ready to share their thoughts on the matter. Here are just a few of the numerous responses: Home Alone (Chiara Alfarone and Angela D’Agata), The Polar Express (Melanie Williams and Einnon Timms), A House Without a Christmas Tree (Paige Stickel), and National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (Collin Kaczka). Even the Granby high school teacher of film, Michele Dafgek, weighs in, stating, “I like the original, animated version of Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas and it just wouldn’t be Christmas without watching it with my family. Its message is timeless as the Grinch learns that Christmas ‘doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas, perhaps—means a little bit more!’”
Through my interviews, I reached the conclusion that, whether the movie is a goodie, oldie, or newbie, the moral of a good Christmas tale transcends time and proves to be entertaining for any generation. Although one may prefer the remake rather than the first edition, or the black-and-white version over the colorized, it is the plot that keeps the tales alive. However, I believe that nothing else brings the Christmas spirit to life more than listening to the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future in the timeless movie A Christmas Carol and the wisdom shared in It’s a Wonderful Life.
FUN & REC
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