STAR fundraiser raises over $1,600

Darien hair salon Fredric & Co. donated 100 percent of funds raised over three hours on May 20 to STAR, Inc. After the afternoon of Prosecco and Perrier-fueled blowouts and hair cuts, the salon raised over $1,600 for the nonprofit, which serves individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

“This was a high-energy and fun community collaboration,” STAR Executive Director Katie Banzhaf said.

“We are so glad that our team could raise so much money and meet so many friends from STAR in one day,” said salon co-owener Connie Hatterman. “We are all feeling very good about this experience.”


Connecticut Open House Day set for June 9

Connecticut residents will receive free or discounted admission or special offers at more than 225 destinations across the state — including attractions, historical sites, museums, galleries and restaurants — on June 9, in celebration of Connecticut Open House Day.

The one-day statewide event is designed to showcase Connecticut’s mix of history, art, culture and tourism. Participating properties span the entire state, and range from well-known destinations to hidden gems.

To view the complete list of participants, visit

This year, 32 new properties are taking part for the first time, including 11 businesses at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket and seven businesses in the town of Stratford, as well as Saybrook Point Inn, Marina and Spa in Old Saybrook, Leroy Anderson House in Woodbury and Powder Ridge Mountain Park and Resort in Middlefield.

Residents can expect free admission at over 85 attractions, including museums and historical sites; free tours at over 25 properties, including some that are rarely open to the public; and special offers and giveaways at dozens of businesses, including hotels and art galleries.

Other special activities throughout the state include farm and house tours, antique car, boat and train rides, scavenger hunts and crafts, hearth cooking demonstrations, kayak and paddleboard rentals, and food and beverage tastings.

“Open House Day is a perfect opportunity for residents to become tourists in their own backyard and experience what makes Connecticut such a prime New England destination,” said Randy Fiveash, director of the Connecticut Office of Tourism.

Connecticut’s $14.7 billion tourism industry directly supports nearly 83,000 jobs — and over 121,000 jobs in total. For Connecticut Open House Day updates, visit; RSVP to the Facebook event; and, follow #CTOpenHouse.

Local residents receive academic honors

The following Darien residents were recently named to the Northeastern University’s dean’s list for the spring semester, which ended in April:

Edward Edwards, Spencer McKeough, Matthew Morgan, John Byrne, Jason Flynn, Caroline Lowder, Rebecca Porter, Finn Maloney and Dhruvil Shah.

To achieve the dean’s list distinction, students must carry a full program of at least four courses, have a grade point average of 3.5 or greater out of a possible 4.0 and carry no single grade lower than a C- during the course of their college career. Each student receives a letter of commendation and congratulation from their college dean.

Person-to-Person receives $10K grant

The Board of Directors of the Inner-City Foundation for Charity & Education awarded a $10,000 grant for the Person-to-Person Campership Program, funding a full summer of day camp for more than 16 Stamford schoolchildren. The foundation is a long-time supporter of the Campership Program.

According to P2P Executive Director Ceci Maher, the impact of this grant is significant. “The Campership Program benefits the entire family. It provides the type of enrichment that translates into better academic performance when children return to school in the fall and it helps maintain the family’s financial stability by enabling parents to continue working during the summer months.”

Person-to-Person was established in 1968 to provide low-income individuals and families living in lower Fairfield County with basic emergency services. With offices in Darien and Norwalk, the Person-to-Person service area includes Darien, New Canaan, Norwalk, Stamford, Weston, Westport and Wilton. Information may be found on the web at

Internship gives students a taste of business

Local high school students have been given the opportunity of first-hand experience in the real estate industry.

On May 21, the Darien office of Houlihan Lawrence welcomed its latest group of Darien High School seniors for a four-week internship program, now in its fourth year. The experience is intended to provide broad introduction to the business and exposure to all stages of buying and selling homes.

“These students will shadow me or one of my colleagues. They will tour broker open houses, sit in on client meetings and work with mortgage brokers and attorneys to understand the buying/selling process,” said Houlihan Lawrence agent Janine Tienken, who organizes and administers the program. “By the end of the program, they will have a full understanding of the ins and outs of real estate and what it means to be a professional.”

Each student will work about 25 hours a week, both in the office and out in the field, under the mentorship of an experienced agent. Darien High allows seniors to leave campus after Advanced Placement testing to pursue unpaid internships for four to five weeks, both locally and in New York City.

This year’s interns include Kathleen Tropsa, Megan Smith, Max Grant, Connor Tienken, Charlie Olsen, Lauren Jennings, Emily Bergwall, Corinne Bevill, Alex Swift, Caroline Kelley, Jake Kooyman and Madison Aponte.

At the end, the students will give a presentation on what they learned and put together a mock listing and marketing plan for their parents’ home.

Brokaw named top senior athlete

Jacqueline Brokaw, of Darien, was one of several Colby College students to receive an award as a top senior athlete at the 30th Annual Colby College Senior Awards Ceremony on May 22.

Brokaw and helped her team to New England Small College Athletic Conference titles, and was named an Ellsworth “Bill” Millett Award winner.

Brokaw helped the women’s lacrosse team win the 2017 NESCAC title with her play on defense.

Brokaw was an All-American as a sophomore and has a good chance to be honored again when this year’s teams are announced. She was a four-time all-region selection, a three-time All-NESCAC pick, and was the NESCAC Rookie of the Year.