Community: Inaugural Tiger-Shark Tank event, more Ridgefield news

iPhone, social networks classes

Add depth to your knowledge of technology through Ridgefield Continuing Education classes.  In "Get the Most Out of Your iPhone" (Nov. 10 from 1 to 3 p.m.), you can have your iPhone handy during our Zoom class and see how to use e-mail, calendar, maps, and other core programs. Learn how to take photos and videos, listen to music and podcasts, and organize your apps. We will also look at Apple’s App Store where you can download a wide variety of apps, both free and paid.   

In "Using Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter" (Nov. 9 from 1 to 3 p.m.), you will learn what sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter that allow you connect to and network with other people, both personally and professionally, have to offer, how to set up your accounts and profiles, how to promote yourself, and how to join groups and contribute to virtual communities. 

Instructor Lance Whitney is a technology journalist and the author of the books on LinkedIn and Windows.  He currently writes for TechRepublic, ZDNet, PCMag, and other technology sites. Previously, he was a system administrator with Ciba Specialty Chemicals.  He has taught many tech courses at Ridgefield Continuing Education for over 20 years, including eBay, Cyber Security, iPad, Social Networks, Google Docs and Windows.

Either class costs $40; Ridgefield seniors (age 62 and older) pay $34.  For more information, visit or phone Peggy Bruno at 203-431-2812.

History - WWII, World War II in Europe 

“World War II and the Cold War” is a Ridgefield Continuing Education Zoom course led by veteran history teacher, Nancy Maxwell.  It can be hard to believe that only twenty years after the horrors and devastation of World War I, and the lessons learned from it, the world went to war again. Did the terms of the Treaty of Versailles indeed provoke this, or is there more to the story? What was the appeasement policy of the 1930’s?  An examination of these events as well as the stages, operations and theaters of the war will help us understand how the very alliance that secured victory over the Axis powers evolved into the deadly arms race and threats of the ensuing Cold War.

This three-session class meets Nov. 14 and 21 and Dec. 5 from 1 to 2:30 p.m.  Cost is $58; Ridgefield seniors age 62 and over pay $49. Advance registration is required.  Also available: "The Creation of Germany" on Nov. 16 (1 to 2:30 p.m.; $29).  

Visit or phone Peggy Bruno at 203-431-2812. 

Asset Protection Trusts and Revocable Living Trusts seminar

In the "Protect Yourself with Trusts: Asset Protection Trusts and Revocable Living Trusts" seminar in Ridgefield Continuing Education program, Elder Law Attorneys Thomas E. Murphy and Michele F. Murphy of Danbury will explain how to protect your assets, avoid probate and taxes, and preserve your quality of life. Asset Protection Trusts protect your resources from long-term care. Revocable Living Trusts avoid probate and conservatorship. Retirement Plan Trusts protect your children if they get divorced or sued. Trusts give you protection and control.  Topics to be covered include, but are not limited to: comparison of Revocable Living Trusts and Irrevocable Trusts, pros and cons of probate, Medicaid and VA Aid and Attendance payment of long term care, the mechanics of how trusts work, and new laws regarding Powers of Attorney.  

Attorney Thomas E. Murphy received his Bachelor of Science in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, followed by a career in corporate management. He then graduated cum laude from Pace University School of Law with a Juris Doctor degree and a Certificate in Health Law and Policy.  Attorney Michele F. Murphy, RN, MSN earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania, her Master of Science in Nursing from Yale University, and her Juris Doctor from Pace University School of Law. Both are accredited attorneys with Veterans Affairs.  

This class meets on Nov. 16 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on Zoom. Advance registration is required. Cost is $29.  Senior discount available. Visit or phone Peggy Bruno at 203-431-2812. 

Restorative yoga

Come find inner peace at Ridgefield Parks & Recreation’s Restorative Yoga with Sarah on Sunday, November 20 from 4:00 pm to 5:30 pm at the Recreation Center.  You will learn restful poses that you can do at home or in any quiet space to help you through the stresses of life. This class is for people ages 14 and older and is free for Recreation Center members with a YOGA/CYCLE/TRX/ROW add-on, $18 for Recreation Center members, and $20 for non-members. No yoga experience is necessary, but you must be able to get down on the floor. Please dress comfortably and bring a towel or a small blanket. To reserve your spot, please call (203) 431-2755. 

We have partnered up with Thunder Ridge Ski Resort in nearby Patterson, New York.  When you sign up for ski or snowboard lessons through us, you will save compared to the regular rates. Group lessons are available for children ages 8 to 14 years old.  Classes start on January 4 and are available seven days a week at designated times.  This is a great way to have your kids learn the sport before heading on a family trip this winter. Classes sell out so sign up today! For more details, please visit or call (203) 431-2755.

Inaugural Tiger-Shark Tank event 

On Oct. 26, the Ridgefield Economic & Community Development Commission (ECDC) held an inaugural Tiger-Shark Tank event at the Ridgefield Library with a crowd of over 100 people. More than 40 individuals had contacted the ECDC in the weeks leading up to the event, seeking to pitch. Six people were chosen to pitch to five esteemed, local Judges including Jay Walker, founder of Priceline; Deb Backes, owner of Deborah Ann’s Sweet Shoppe; Jeff Bornstein, former Vice Chairman of General Electric; Chris Bishop, co-founder of Blue Buffalo dog food; and Sean Dowd, ECDC Commissioner and co-founder of Ridgefield Bicycle Company.

The judges asked probing, friendly questions to all of the presenters. They also provided guidance, suggestions and support to the local entrepreneurs. At the end of the event, the Judges awarded “ECDC (fake) money” and thus chose the winners of Tiger-Shark Tank.

The first-place pitch was Olga Chin, CEO and Founder of InterPrice Technologies, Inc., which assists corporate finance teams to understand their current business funding costs. InterPrice already has over 70 clients, including Honda, PayPal, Wells Fargo Bank, and Keurig. It is currently raising Series A funding in order to scale sales & marketing, technical development, client support, and data providers.

The second-place pitch was Anthony Perelli and Chris Jones of PinDo, an online services marketplace that connects word-of-mouth recommendations in order for people to hire service providers (eg landscapers, plumbers, babysitters, tutors, and more). PinDo has developed an exclusive proprietary algorithm that enables people to automatically receive recommendations from their personal networks to hire the perfect service provider. Ratings, reviews and other important criteria are more heavily weighted from people they know. PinDo also provides a platform for the workflow, such as getting quotes, booking, scheduling, completing the job, payment processing and reviews. PinDo plans to launch their platform in Ridgefield!

Third place was Patrick Sciarratta of Culture World, a travel comparison website to streamline group travel. Culture World would service the “smerf” market which includes, social, military families, educational, religious and fraternal groups, which jointly form the largest segments of the group travel market. The website would provide information about specific group tour providers and experience.

Fourth place was awarded to Laura and Kevin Davis of MindBody Botanicals, for their creation of ultra-moisturizing bamboo towelettes that can be used anytime, anywhere on any body. The towelettes provide a convenient and easy solution to moisturize dry skin, particularly for sensory-sensitive people, and originally was created for Kevin who has Down Syndrome. Their towelettes, bath bombs and more are already for sale at local store Nature’s Temptations, and is featured in some nursing homes and hotels around the country.

Kerri Austin presented about a new website (already up and running!) Hot Flash Diaries, a website building a community of support, strength, humor and love for women aged 40+. The platform is a place to go, feel seen, and heard, to provide shared experience and
communication. Women can read daily diary entries from others and/or submit their own entry. The website is is already up and ready, so can be viewed now!

Additionally, James Albis pitched RedLeaf, a unique mobile app for gig economy workers and people who need work done. Homeowners use the app to connect (through direct call or messaging) to local service providers, describe the job to be done, and rate and review providers. The app provides better transparency for the providers at a very low cost.

The ECDC thanks all of the presenters for their hard work, creativity and inspiration, and the Judges who reviewed pitches before the event, and came prepared to guide and assist the local entrepreneurs. The Commission plans to hold another Tiger-Shark Tank in the future. Watch for details, and get your pitch ready!

Ridgefield Apartments installs electric charging stations

Stephen Zemo, president of Ridgefield Apartments, is excited to announce that they will install two electric vehicle charging stations to charge both fully electric and plug-in hybrid cars. 

The new charging stations will provide EV charging options to tenants and customers in their continued effort to serve the Ridgefield Community. The first locations will be at 100 Danbury Road and The Marketplace at 105 Danbury Road. The two initial stations will serve as prototypes for future installations at all of their Ridgefield properties. 

The installation is expected to be completed in December. Ridgefield Apartments is collaborating with Artis Energy Solutions, who has worked closely with their team and Eversource to develop and install the project, and Carroll Construction is performing the work. Artis will install the SemaConnect Electric Vehicle Stations and provide a demo showing how easy it is to charge your vehicle. 

Ridgefield Apartments is the leading provider of short-term furnished and long-term unfurnished apartments in Ridgefield, CT. They began offering short-term furnished apartments in the Beechtree Manor building over a decade ago when most of their residents were corporate travelers. Now, their short-term apartment residents also include people who are between homes, renovating their homes or visiting relatives in the area. To learn more about their company or properties, please visit

Ridgefield Library to screen 'The Jewish Jail lady and the Holy Thief'

Join the Ridgefield Library for a free screening of a surprising documentary. A discussion of the film and the Annual Festival, May 18 through 21 2023, will immediately follow.
Please register for tickets.

An ex-con turned Rabbi. A nice Jewish girl who liked bad boys. Together, they’ve saved thousands of lives.

"The Jewish Jail Lady and the Holy Thief" is a feature-length documentary that follows the dark, troubled, often unbelievable pasts of Rabbi Mark Borovitz and Harriet Rossetto, as their journeys not only lead them to one another, but to the formation of Beit T’Shuvah, a one-of-a-kind recovery and treatment center known around the globe.

Working across documentaries, music videos, and narrative films, Victor Velle is a freelance Director currently working in Los Angeles. His directorial debut was with short documentaries including “FOUR”, “Nomad”, and “Across borders”.

He has directed two feature documentaries; “8 Billion Angels”, the recipient of awards worldwide, and “The Jewish Jail Lady & The Holy Thief”, currently beginning its festival run.

As a production designer, he has made  more than a dozen music videos with more than 4M+ views each, and as an Art Director, he worked on "Pretty Problems" which was selected by 2022 SxSW as an official nomination.

Recently, Velle’s short film “MAIZ” finished post-production, and he is in production for his next narrative film “Spring Must Come”.

Jennifer Williams gallery opening on Nov. 17 at RPAC Gallery

RPAC Gallery, located at 410 Main Str., is excited to present "Day & Night: A Study in Contrast." This exhibition will showcase the artwork of visiting artist Jen Williams and RPAC Resident Artists. The theme of this show is set by Jen’s impactful use of contrast in her paintings to evoke a sense of the mystical and dramatic interconnection. The RPAC Resident Artists will display artwork that play on and elaborate this theme with their own interpretation. 

Jen Williams is an Australian born contemporary oil painter residing in Rowayton. Her paintings are lively expressions of landscapes, cities, figures and abstract themes. Building on a long-standing history that has led from ancient art and impressionism to the art of today, her paintings bring a sense of joy and light to the senses. Using gesture, line and form she communicates the majesty of our landscapes as she perceives them - full of movement and light.

Jen has a way of mixing reality with a sense of fantasy. Upon entering her studio, one is invited to become immersed in her work. She captures the mystical beauty of the city streets in the moonlight, the long cast of the shadows in lower Manhattan, the warm glow of the Paris Cafes and the glitz of Times Square. Her technique of painting, texturing, glazing and extracting on metal enables the viewer to feel the energy and excitement of her landscapes. 

Visit and for more information.  

Trio Brejeiro at Congregation Shir Shalom

Cantor Deborah Katchko-Gray, under the auspices of Congregation Shir Shalom, Ridgefield is excited to bring the music of Trio Brejeiro with Beryl Diamond-Chacon (violin, Roni Ben-Hur (guitar, and Eduarado Belo (upright bass) to 46 Peaceable Str. to perform a collection of Jewish and Sephardic; Brazilian and American jazz music on Nov. 6 at 3 p.m. at Congregation Shir Shalom in Ridgefield.

Trio Brejeiro has made a name for itself as an ensemble worthy of musical attention. Their stunning virtuosity is matched with remarkable musicianship and a deep devotion to the language of music, allowing them to achieve a one-of-a-kind sound that shares equal parts understated subtlety and irresistible groove. But it is their love of traditional Jewish and Brazilian music and the connection between each other and their audience that creates a very rare and profound beauty.

Voter information
Election Day is Nov. 8. Polls are open 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Bring ID.

“Are you Registered to Vote?” “Where is your polling place location?” Find out at, go to Registrar of Voters under departments, then click on “Am I Registered?”.

All three Polling Places are open:

Polling Dist 1: East Ridge Middle School Gym

Polling Dist 2: Scotts Ridge Middle School Gym

Polling Dist 3: Yanity Gym

Polling Dist 4: East Ridgefield Middle School Gym.

The Registrars of Voters will hold a limited voter registration session on Nov. 7 to admit those seeking to vote in the election whose qualification as to age, citizenship or residence was attained after Nov. The hours will be 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The session will be held in the Registrar of Voters office in the Town Hall, 400 Main Str.

Election Day Registration will take place in the Registrar of Voters Office (400 Main Str.) on Nov. 8 from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. You must bring ID and proof of Ridgefield residency. Once you have registered, you will vote at the same location.

Any questions, please call the Registrars at 203-431-2771 or 203-431-2772.

'Cheers to 250 years!' exhibit at Keeler Tavern Museum & History Center

Keeler Tavern Museum & History Center (KTM&HC) announced the opening of "Cheers to 250 Years! A History of T. Keeler’s Inn, Tavern, and Store" on Oct. 22.

The exhibition, located in the Gilbert Wing of the museum’s historic tavern, will run through Dec. 31 and commemorates the 250th anniversary of the opening of former site resident Timothy Keeler’s successful business enterprises. "Cheers to 250 Years!" explores the interconnectedness of people during the colonial and early republic periods, nationally and internationally, through the lens of Timothy Keeler's tavern and store in colonial and early republic Ridgefield (1772-1800).

According to Catherine Prescott, KTM&HC’s chief curator and assistant director, “Colonial Ridgefield was not isolated from the rest of the global economy and was not an entirely self-sufficient small town. Visitors to the exhibit will gain a better sense of how connected Ridgefield actually was to larger exchanges of ideas and goods.”

Keeler's tavern, as a gathering place located at the convergence of two major travel routes, acted as a gateway between Ridgefield and the rest of New England. In the tavern, locals and travelers alike could socialize, conduct business, and share ideas. In his home, Timothy Keeler also operated a general store, which, like his tavern, acted as a connection to the wider world, selling goods from far-flung places: tea from China, chocolate from South American, sugar and molasses from the Caribbean. Though Keeler's participation in this economy meant he could provide desired products for his customers, the exhibit examines how his participation was also active complicity in the enslavement of Africans and the international slave trade.

"Cheers to 250 Years! A History of T. Keeler’s Inn, Tavern and Store" is generously supported by The Fountain Inn, Martha Campbell in memory of David Campbell, Nicholas Donofrio, Judi Pankenier, Joel Third, Brian Truskowski & Terry McManus, Annette & Dan O’Brien, and Cheryl Crowl.

Visitors receive exhibit access with regular site admission, and exhibit-only passes are also available. KTM&HC is open for tours and exhibits in November and December from Thursdays through Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Get tickets at

Ridgefield Chapter of National Charity League launches membership drive  
The Ridgefield Area Chapter of National Charity League is launching its Annual Membership Drive and will be hosting a prospective member session on Nov. 17 at 7 p.m. at Keeler Tavern Museum.  We are looking primarily for girls in the sixth grade though membership is also open for 7th through 9th grade students. 
The NCL Ridgefield Chapter started in 1990, has about 210 members, and is partnered with more than 40 philanthropic and local government organizations in the community.  In 2021-2022, the chapter contributed about 4,400 hours of volunteer community service to local philanthropies.  
NCL member, Hilary Flanagan, loves spending time with her daughter through giving back.  “I want to instill the importance of giving back to the community at a young age - and found that opportunity through NCL.  The organization is about creating a youth philanthropy movement, where our young members can help grow and strengthen the place we call home.” 
Over the past year, the chapter has delivered meals to homebound seniors, volunteered at Special Olympics, collected diapers for the Diaper Bank of Connecticut, volunteered at a pet adoption rescue service, helped with a local health clinic, transferred fresh food surpluses from local businesses to social services, and written letters and created care packages for deployed troops, veterans, and frontline workers - among many others. 
Membership drive details: 
•    Timeline: Membership applications will be accepted during the annual membership drive, through Jan. 15. 
•    Eligibility: Prospective members shall reside within the Ridgefield community and have a daughter currently in sixth through ninth grade. 
•    Prospective member meeting: Interested mothers and daughters are encouraged to attend this meeting on Thursday, November 17 at 7:00pm at Keeler Tavern Museum.  
•    Applications: Completed applications are due by Jan. 15, 2023. 
For more information, please visit our website at  You can also contact us at 

Ridgefield’s Jillian Collins completes international Irish Dance competitions

Jillian Collins of Ridgefield, a junior at Lafayette College in Easton, Pa., placed second in the Ladies Under 20 division at the Great Britain Irish Dancing Championships in London on Oct. 22.

Her strong finish on the international stage follows being crowned champion at the North American Championships in the Ladies U20 division this past July in Montreal. In April, Jillian placed sixth at the 50th Anniversary of the Irish Dancing World Championships in the Ladies 19-20 division held in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Jillian dances for the Doherty Petri School of Irish Dancing, based in Bethel. Her dance teachers’ faces light up when they speak about Jillian. “There have been very few young women in the Irish dancing community who have distinguished themselves as Jillian has. She is a delightful student and a true asset to our school where her hard work and good sportsmanship provide a true role model to younger students. Her spectacular resume sets Jillian apart as one of the most accomplished dancers in the history of North American Irish dancing,” said the school’s owners, Lisa Petri Amos and Karen Petri.

In addition to her 2022 major competition results, Jillian previously won the New England Regional Championships four times and another North American Championship in 2018. In 2019, she placed ninth in her division at World Championships. He next major competition is the New England Championships being held in Hartford in November. Jillian is a psychology major at Lafayette College. She hopes to work with special needs children with developmental disabilities after graduation in 2024.