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round 100 people put on their

danci ng shoes and enjoyed

some quality time together at

the Eastern Greenwich Civic Center, as

Abilis hosted its annual Valentine’s Day

Dance.

“It was a great success,” said Lisa

Bria, activ ities manager at Abi lis.

“Everybody had fun and there was a lot

of dancing and food. Everybody had a

really nice time and that was great for

me to see.”

Abilis, a nonprofit organization

that provides services and support for

individuals with special needs, put

together the Valentine’s Day Dance

as part of its ongoing winter program

schedule. The $25 fee for the dance

included party games, prizes for best

costume, music, dancing and food.

“They look forward to it weeks in

advance,” Bria said. “That’s all that they

talk about. They plan what they are

going to wear, who they are going to go

with and who they are going to dance

with. Just like everybody else, they get

excited when big things happen in their

lives.”

While the dance was exciting for

the partygoers that made the trip to the

Eastern Greenwich Civic Center, it was

a rewarding experience for Bria.

“We just want to make their lives

better and have them out there in the

community doing things, like every

other person,” Bria said. “I started here

in December and I know that they

have annual dances. They have the

Valentine’s dance and we are thinking

about putting together a spring dance.

There’s also a Halloween dance. Our

clients really look forward to these

dances and coordinating it for them

and our staff is amazing. We have lots

of help and we all just pitch in and work

together to better their lives.”

And when it comes to preparing for

the Valentine’s dance, Abilis didn’t just

A

Swiss couple gave up their everyday life to try

to make a better planet by living on a boat

and conducting research to find solutions for

conservation.

That expedition—of over 16 years—has led them

to Greenwich.

Dario Schwoerer, a Swiss mountain guide and

climatologist, hosted a presentation at YMCA of

Greenwich on Feb. 8. Dario’s wife, Sabine, and their

five children assisted in the presentation with video,

photos, and stories of their travels around the globe.

“They’re a spectacular family,” said Bob DeAngelo,

chief executive officer of the Greenwich YMCA.

“They’re really super ambassadors in several respects.”

DeAngelo said the Schwoerer family was invited

to be members of the YMCA for the duration of their

visit to Greenwich, and they quickly made themselves

comfortable.

“The kids jumped in the pool to play water polo

and dive,” he said.

While pool time was certainly fun, the Schwoerers

had an important message to pass along.

T

he s t r ong w i nd s t ha t b l ew

t h rough t he a rea t h i s week

have caused the Greenwich Fire

Department to be on high alert.

On Monday, a tree toppled over on

the Merritt Parkway, and a day later

trees fell on Glenville Road and took

down power cables.

Ac c ord i ng t o Gr e enw i ch Fi r e

Department Deputy Chief Tom Nixon,

GFD was called to the scene near Exit

27 along the southbound side of the

Merritt Parkway around 2:45 p.m. on

Monday. A tree fell from the side of

the road and landed on the Merritt,

dumping limbs and branches on all four

lanes of the road.

When the tree fell, it also hit a

vehicle and trapped a person inside.

The operator of the vehicle had some

minor injuries, but the Greenwich Fire

Department was able to extricate the

driver from the vehicle without the use

of any of their specialized hydraulic

tools.

Greenwich Fire Department aided

in cutting the cutting the tree to open

the roadway and to clear a path for the

tow truck to remove the vehicle from

the road. The GFD cleared the scene

around 4 p.m. and the Merritt Parkway

was reopened shortly after.

“It seems that we are getting some

pretty signif icant weather events,”

Nixon said. “Just because of the amount

of mature trees that we have through

t he town, and just t he geographic

size, that any time we get any type of

significant weather event, it seems like

Greenwich definitely gets its share of

See WINDS on Page 4

Sentinel

Greenwich

Bu i l d i ng a St rong Commun i t y Toge the r

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Febr ua r y 17 , 2017

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LOCAL

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ECRWSS

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PAID

STAMFORD, CT

PERMIT NO. 376

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PALMER, MA

PER IT NO. 22

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Swiss Family Brings Conservation Message to Town

SpringMarket: Featured OpenHouses,

for more see

Page

12

58 Orchard Street

Cos Cob

$1,750,000 Sun 11:30-2:30 PM House of Maxx

45 Doubling Road

Greenwich

$1,699,000

Sun 1-3 PM Higgins Group

69 Circle Drive

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Sat 12-2 PM

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Sun 12-2 PM

Real Living

17 Lincoln Avenue

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Sun 1-4 PM

Sotheby's

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$7,895,000

Sun 1-3 PM

Sotheby's

48 Spring Street #5

Greenwich

$985,000

Sun 1-4 PM Weichert Realtors

Our Neighborhoods

DOWNTOWN

S

Wednesday, Feb. 22, 11 a.m.

The Greenwich Retired Men’s

Associat ion (RMA) wi l l host

U.S. Congressman Jim Himes

speaking on “Early Days in the

Trump Administration,” as part

of their weekly meeting. Himes

will give his assessment of the new

administration and the issues facing

the 114th Congress. From his seat on

the United States House Permanent

Select Committee on Intelligence

(HPSCI), he will give his informed

perspective on whether to sustain

or lift sanctions on Russia and the

new administration’s measures to

enhance national security. RMA's

meetings are free and open to the

public. For more information, visit

greenwichrma.org

or contact

info@ greenwichrma.org.

S

Thursday, Feb. 23, 7 p.m. The

Nantucket Project (TNP) Library

welcomes Liz Murray for "My

Journey fromHomeless to Harvard:

The Power of Mentors," where she

will share her remarkable story and

introduce The Arthur Project, the

nonprofit she co-founded to bring

mentoring to underserved youth.

This program is free but RSVP is

required, at:

nantucketproject.com/ upcoming-events/homeless-

to-

harvard.

S

Tuesday, Feb. 28, 8 to 11 a.m.

Greenwich Hospital will mark

national American Heart Month

with its annual Heart Health and

Stroke Fair. The free event will

take place in the hospital’s Noble

Conference Center at 5 Perryridge

Rd . Educ ators , pha rmac i s t s ,

dietitians, holistic practitioners and

other healthcare professionals will

be on hand to answer questions

about nutrition, medications,

lifestyle changes, genetic concerns,

diagnostic tools, treatment options

and community resources. No

registration is needed. For more

information, call 203-863-4444.

BACKCOUNTRY

S

Thursday, Feb. 23, 7 p.m. The

Round Hi l l As soc iat ion w i l l

sponsor a forum with Director of

Greenwich Conservation, Denise

Savageau, who will speak about

"Greenwich Water – Quantity and

Quality." Held in the Round Hill

Community Center, 397 Round Hill

Rd.

COS COB

S

Wedne sday, Feb. 22 , 6 :30

p.m. Vi st a L i fe Innovat ions ,

a nat iona l ly accred ited post-

secondary program for individuals

w it h d i s abi l it ie s , i s hos t i ng

"Introduction to Independence:

Transit ion Prog rammi ng for

Young Adults." Representatives

w i l l prov ide a n ove r v iew of

transition programming and be

available to answer questions. The

program is free and will be held

at the Cos Cob Library, 5 Sinawoy

Rd. To RSVP, register online at

vistalifeinnovations.org/greenwich

or call 860-399-8080, ext. 106 by

Feb. 20.

S

Saturday, Feb. 25, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary

Flotilla 78 offers “About Boating

Safely” Classes. A course that

meets the CT Boating Education

requirement. Attendees must first

obtain a CT Conservation Number.

To obtain your personal number

log into:

ct.wildlifelicense.com/ internetsales.

The class will be

held at the Greenwich Water Club,

49 River Rd. There is a fee of $75,

which includes training materials.

For registration, call 203-661-4033,

ext. 200, or email

flotilla78@yahoo. com

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Sports

|

Page 14

The GHS gymnastics

team wins another

FCIAC crown.

News

|

Page 3

Cycle for Survival

returns to Greenwich

Equinox.

By Paul Silverfarb

A tree along the Merritt Parkway fell during high winds on Monday, stopping traffic

on both lanes and crashing through a car. Luckily no one ws seriously injured. (photo

courtesy of the Greenwich Fire Department)

High Winds Down

Trees and Wires

Dario Schwoerer, a Swiss mountain guide and

climatologist, speaks to a crowd at Top to Top Presentation

at the YMCA of Greenwich. (contributed photo)

By Rob Adams

See SWISS on Page 3

For Abilis, Another

Valentine's Day to Remember

By Paul Silverfarb

Abilis hosted it annual Valentine's Day

Dance at the Eastern Greenwich Civic

Center, much to the excitement of around

100 Abilis clients who enjoyed games,

food and, of course, dancing. (John Ferris

Robben photo)

See ABILIS on Page 4