Community Connections



Partners Ed Goldberg and Brenda Larkin celebrated the official grand opening of their financial planning firm, Goldberg Larkin, with a ribbon cutting ceremony on May 9 in West Hartford.  Mayor Shari Cantor joined members of the West Hartford Chamber of Commerce to welcome the newest members of the local business community. Afterwards, nearly 50 invited clients, financial professionals and business leaders enjoyed a VIP evening reception featuring gourmet refreshments.

The full-service firm located at 433 South Main Street, Suite 105 in West Hartford is affiliated with Westminster Financial Companies. Goldberg, CFP®, ChFC, CDFA®, and Larkin CDFA® are both Certified Divorce Financial Analysts who work with numerous attorneys and clients in town.

“We appreciate the warm reception we have received and look forward to forging strong business and personal relationships,” said Goldberg.

Goldberg Larkin offers comprehensive financial planning, estate planning, insurance, retirement planning and business succession planning, particularly for people experiencing a major life transition. The firm manages a portfolio of over $100 million.



Chambers of Commerce Events



The trailblazing tech center created by Assisted Living Technologies, Inc. of Meriden and area partners was honored with the 6th Special Achievement in Innovation Award by the Midstate Chamber of Commerce. The award was presented to the collaboration of MidState ARC, Assisted Living Technologies (ALT) and NESIT Makerspace for the Technology Training Center of CT at the Chamber’s123rd Annual Meetingon April 11, 2019 at the Aqua Turf Club in Plantsville.

The annual Innovation Award recognizes “an individual or business who has done something new, extraordinary, or innovative in the last 18 months, including improvements, responsiveness to challenges, etc.”


The honorees joined forces in 2017 to establish the Technology Center of Meriden, located at 290 Pratt Street, as a one-stop resource for electronic devices that assist people with physical and developmental disabilities with the activities of daily life. The ground-breaking showroom is unique in that it also trains social service employees as technology assessors that can provide high quality, individualized services for the individuals they support.

“We are incredibly proud to be a part of this unique alliance and grateful that the Chamber recognized the difference the center has made in the lives of so people,” said Mario D’Aquila, Vice President of ALT. “Assisted Living Technologies pioneered the use of technology to supplement homecare in addition to successfully moving people from costly group homes to more independent living situations.”

Assisted Living Services Inc. and Assisted Living Technologies also served as Premier Sponsors of the Chamber event.



Chambers of Commerce Events


Golf Club of Avon

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

11:00 a.m. – 11:55 a.m.   Networking/Reception – Cash Bar

12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.   Luncheon/Meeting/Awards Presentations

Cost  $28/person

2019 Avon Chamber Awards

Large Business of the Year
Pullman & Comley

Small Business of the Year
Fitness Together/Avon

Loren Bristol Spirit Award
recipient to be announced at the Annual Meeting

New Member Advocate of the Year
recipient to be announced at the Annual Meeting

The presentation of the highly anticipated Loren Bristol Spirit Award and the New Member Advocate of the Year, along with other Special and Volunteer Recognitions, consistently attract 100 + members and guests — making this THE Chamber networking event most business leaders attend each year

  • Enjoy A Special 2018/2019 Retrospective – See Who is Featured This Year… 
  • Meet the Chamber’s Committees and See What They Have Been Doing For You… 
  • Get a Recap of Some Highlights/Benefits and a Glimpse at What Is In Store for the Coming Year… 
  • Welcome the Chamber’s New Officers and Directors… 
  • Say ‘Thank You’ to our Retiring Directors… 
  • Celebrate the Accomplishments of our Honorees… 
  • And other Great Surprises… 

For more information contact Avon Chamber of Commerce at 860.675.4832 ext. 1.

Community Connections



The world’s most beloved #1 blue engine is rolling into Springfield May 25! Springfield Museums is excited to present Thomas & Friends®: Explore the Rails, an interactive exhibit created by Minnesota Children’s Museum and inspired by the popular children’s series on PBS KIDS. The hands-on, immersive exhibit is ready for play May 25-September 8.

Featuring the favorite engines and destinations from Thomas & Friends, the STEM (Science Technology, Engineering, and Math)-focused exhibit seeks to engage children, ages 2 through 7 years, and families in foundational skills that foster STEM literacy through playful learning experiences. The exhibit incorporates foundational STEM practices that encourage thinking mathematically, making comparisons, experimenting to solve problems using a variety of methods and tools, thinking creatively and reflecting on actions and results.

“The skills and proficiencies children learn and refine through play in the early years set the stage for future learning and success,” said Larissa Murray, Director of Education at the Springfield Museums. “Thomas & Friends: Explore the Rails will deliver so much fun with the added benefit of learning experiences rooted in STEM skills.”

“This is not an exhibit people visit just to look at,” said Family Engagement Coordinator Jenny Powers, “this is an exhibit about DOING and figuring things out and having fun all at the same time.” Here is some of what is in store:

Climb into Thomas’s cab and explore the engine’s inner workings. Flip levers and investigate other moveable parts that trigger train noises such as braking, whistles and steam.

Fix Percy’s wobbly wheel by removing and replacing parts and experimenting to find a combination of wheels, rods and bolts that work.

Explore the favorite Island of Sodor destinations including: Tidmouth Sheds, Brendam Docks and the Sodor Search & Rescue Station on an over-sized Thomas Wooden Railway train table.

Work with old and new friends loading luggage, livestock and other freight into the coaches of two train
Collaborate with others to get Percy moving by loading coal into his coal box and filling his tank with water from a water tower.

Suit up as the conductor to exchange money and sell tickets to other visitors taking a ride on the train.

Wander through a Thomas & Friends retrospective featuring model engines from the original live action series produced in London, copies of the original drawings and manuscripts from the Rev. W. Awdry, the creator of Thomas & Friends, and a collection of memorabilia documenting the history and evolution of Thomas & Friends through books, television, and toys.

Community Connections

Ability Beyond Named Beneficiary of 7TH Annual O’Neill’s Annual 5K Run on May 19th

It’s fitting that the efforts of more than 700 walkers and runners with a wide range of abilities expected to participate in the 7th Annual O’Neill’s 5k will help the more than 3,000 people with disabilities served by Ability Beyond.

The nonprofit is a leading provider of independent housing, day programs, employment initiatives and other critical support services to clients throughout Connecticut and New York’s lower Hudson Valley. For more than 60 years, Ability Beyond has upheld the dignity of individuals with developmental, intellectual, autism spectrum, acquired brain injury and mental health disabilities.

“Ability Beyond is extremely grateful to be the beneficiary of the 2019 O’Neill’s Annual 5K Run in Memory of Annie Curtin,” said President and CEO Jane Davis. “This year the race that was inspired by Annie will help empower people with disabilities to live full and rewarding lives.”

Annie passed away almost nine years ago; she was 6 1/2. To celebrate her life, Annie’s parents Paul and Kat Curtin, along with O’Neill’s Irish Pub and Restaurant, established an annual fundraising event to help people in the community.

An Ability Beyond team comprised of staff members, clients and families will run or walk in the event.

“Parents of the individuals in our programs are always extremely supportive of our fundraising efforts that help their children go beyond what was ever imagined possible. Our greatest reward is to see the people we serve gain confidence, joy and hope as they realize their dreams,” Davis said.

The course for the May 19th road race in Norwalk, CT is certified by USA Track & Field. It is mostly flat and runs through SoNo and East Norwalk, with a breathtaking view of the harbor at the halfway point. Runners will receive ChronoTrack’s disposable B-Tags to record their times and allow family and friends to track them live.

Participants of all ages may sign up as an individual or with a team. They will receive a T-shirt and a swag bag. All are invited to the after party at O’Neill’s Pub and Restaurant, 93 North Main Street, Norwalk, featuring a barbecue, awards, entertainment, beer and prizes.

“We look forward to this event both for the chance to extend our Irish warmth and hospitality and for giving back to the community by supporting causes about which we are passionate,” said Ollie O’Neill.

Register at or call 203-838-0222. The cost is $45 for adults the day of the race, with discounts for early registration and youth 11-19. Children 10 and younger are admitted without charge. Parking is in the public lot behind the cinemas (free on race morning), or on the streets in South Norwalk. The race begins at 11 a.m.

Runners and teams can create a fundraising page that allows friends and relatives to contribute at Donations can be made to the event without registering to run.

There are still opportunities to become a sponsor:

  • Event ($5,000)
  • Start or Finish Line ($1,000)
  • Halfway ($500)
  • Water Stop, Kilometer or T-shirt ($250)
  • Friend ($100)

For more information about sponsorships, call 203-826-3148 or email Mary Gregory at

Community Connections

Golfers Invited to Play the 9th Annual FORE FACS Golf Classic

The Foundation for the Advancement of Catholic Schools (FACS) is hosting its ninth annual FORE FACS Golf Classic at Shelter Harbor Golf Club in Charlestown, Rhode Island on May 13th. The fundraiser benefits FACS which supports students attending Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Hartford.

FACS Executive Director Cynthia Basil Howard says proceeds generated from this popular event helps FACS with its mission to provide scholarships to deserving students, some of which would otherwise not have the means to attend a Catholic school.

“FACS’ important work is vital to our schools in providing scholarships to students of all faiths, making an outstanding education possible, AND making their dreams come true,” says Howard.

News anchor and reporter Todd Piro will once again emcee the event festivities and play the course.

A golf package includes: a round of golf, greens fees and a cart, lunch, refreshments on the course, dinner and a gift for $500.00 per golfer or the cost of a foursome is $1800.00. The event takes place from 10:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. For information visit

Businesses of all sizes are encouraged to join FACS Partners Sinatro Agency General Insurance and St. Francis Hospital and become a sponsor to help a great cause. For information about sponsorships and registration, please contact Marie: or call 860.761.7499.

FACS raises funds and provides scholarships for students who attend Catholic Schools in the Archdiocese of Hartford. It is a local, nonprofit corporation that has supported Catholic schools in the Archdiocese of Hartford for over 36 years. The Foundation consists of a committed Board of Trustees led by Honorary Chairman Archbishop Leonard Blair and Brian A. Giantonio Chairman and President.