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By the way for April 12

Backers of the bid to win $150,000 for renovations of the Memorial Sports Center in Middlebury have organized a viewing party for the 3 p.m. Saturday afternoon NHL game during which the winner of the Kraft Hockeyville contest will be announced. The rink is guaranteed at least $10,000, but could win $30,000 for a second-place finish. And the grand prize  also includes an NHL preseason game at the winning rink. Friends of Middlebury Hockey have arranged for a food truck at the rink at the viewing party, plus free Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. According to organizers, the Boston Bruins also donated a team-autographed jersey that they’ll be giving away. And anyone, whether they can make it or not, can support the effort by voting between 12 a.m. Friday (that is very early in the morning) and 11 a.m. on Saturday. Just log onto krafthockeyville.com and follow links to vote through the website as often as possible, according to organizers, who hope to use the winnings to fund public restroom and a heated family-friendly viewing area overlooking the ice. This community must outvote supporters of rinks in Shreveport, La.; Brandon, S.D.; and Clinton, N.Y.
 
The Addison County Solid Waste Management District has received a $39,027 grant from the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation to help fund household hazardous waste collection and disposal for the district’s 20 member communities. Residents of these towns can bring household hazardous waste such as paints, cleaning products, herbicides, pesticides, automotive products and many other toxic chemicals to the District’s HazWaste Center in Middlebury for safe and proper disposal at no charge. These wastes are prohibited from disposal as trash in order to keep toxic, flammable, corrosive, and reactive materials out of Vermont’s landfills. The District HazWaste Center, located at 1223 Route 7 South in Middlebury, will accept these wastes year-round. Its hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.. For more information, contact Don Maglienti at 388-2333, ext. 222.
 
The Middlebury Union High School class of 1978 will hold its 40th reunion on Saturday, July 21, from 6 to 11:30 p.m. at the Middlebury VFW Post 7823 in Middlebury. Entry fee for the dinner-dance $35 per person. Contact Martha Brisson Mott at martha.b.mott@gmail.com and provide mailing addresses for fellow classmates. Please help spread the word about this fun event.
 
Beeman Elementary School in New Haven will host a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services  naturalization ceremony this Thursday, April 12, at 1 p.m., at which 26 people will be welcomed as new Americans. Presiding over the ceremony will be the Honorable John M. Conroy, U.S. Magistrate judge with the U.S. District Court of Vermont. The citizenship candidates represent 18 countries: Australia, Belarus, Bhutan, Burma, Burundi, Canada, Chile, People’s Republic of China, Congo, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Italy, Jamaica, Macedonia, Mexico, United Kingdom, and Vietnam. Beeman Principal Kristine Evarts and staff member Annsunee Swift will offer welcoming remarks to the new U.S. citizens and their guests. Beeman students and the Mount Abraham Union High School singing group “Sweet Transition” will perform musical selections.
 
On Monday, April 16, there will be a Middlebury Brain Injury Support Group meeting at the Middlebury Union Middle School library, at 43 Deerfield Lane, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The topic will be “Awareness and Empathy, and They Go Together.” For more information, contact Lisa at 388-2720.
 
Ryan Kriger thinks a lot about making friends, and now he is sharing his insights around Vermont. Coming off a packed-room event in February, Kriger has started speaking throughout the state about a thorny issue with which many Vermonters struggle — how to find friends and community, and avoid social isolation, as an adult. On Sunday, April 15, he will be giving a free talk in Middlebury, after which will be an opportunity to socialize and meet and make new friends. The talk begins at 5 p.m. at the Marquis Theater on Main Street.
 
Attention, fans of Vermont Hard Cider Co.’s annual “Ciderstock” celebration: This year’s edition, slated for Aug. 18, will feature the band 311 as the headliner, along with supporting acts “Moon Taxi” and “Jukebox the Ghost.” The day will kick off with Vermont’s own “Seth Yacovone Band.” This will be the company’s fifth year of hosting a music festival in its own backyard off Middlebury’s Exchange Street.
 
The Lake Champlain Maritime Museum and the Vermont Folklife Center are among a multitude of Vermont and New York communities and organizations that will share in $1,599,842 in federal grants through the Lake Champlain Basin Program. The grants will fund projects aimed at improving water quality, reducing impacts from invasive species, and expanding interpretation of the culture and heritage of the Lake Champlain watershed. Funding for these grants comes from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Great Lakes Fishery Commission and the National Park Service. The Middlebury-based folklife center is receiving $5,000 to help develop a songbook, and the maritime museum is getting $10,000 to develop a teaching unit about diatoms in freshwater ecosystems, as well as an on-site exhibit aboard the LCMM canal schooner Lois McClure for when she sails through New York waters this summer.

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