In response to an increase in heroin overdoses and heroin related deaths in Waterbury, the Vice and Intelligence Division has been aggressively conducting investigations into all identified heroin traffickers within this city. VICE investigators began the preliminary phase of this operation in September of 2018. The objective of this extensive investigation was to suppress the trafficking of heroin in Waterbury and was dubbed “Operation: Raw Deal”.
Mayor Neil O'Leary, middle, led today's groundbreaking ceremony.
Photographs By John Murray
By Felix Manuel Rodriguez
UNCASVILLE- Award-winning country singer Jason Aldean brought his RIDE ALL NIGHT tour to Mohegan Sun Area on May 3rd and 4th in Uncasville, CT. Aldean brought along some special guests as opening acts, Carly Pierce and Kane Brown. Both amazing performers respectively who could easily be headliners themselves someday. Aldean started off the concert with his 2012 hit Take a Little Ride followed by Tattoos on This Town.
Waterbury native Krysta Scriven had never traveled beyond the eastern United States before attending Western Connecticut State University as a freshman in 2015. Currently a senior preparing to graduate in May with a Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing and a minor in Linguistics, Scriven has racked up plenty of frequent flier miles during her four years at WCSU with educational experiences that have included stops in Bulgaria, England, France, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Greece and Ireland.
354 NYC Tower Operator Jack Springer
The Railroad Museum of New England’s Speaker Series continues in May with a presentation by historian Kent Patterson, author of the book “Rails Around Westchester County.” He will give a historical and photographic overview of Westchester County’s past and current railroads, including Metro-North, New Haven Railroad, New York Central (including the Putnam Division), and J.P. Morgan’s New York Westchester & Boston Railway.
25th Annual Best of Waterbury Readers' Poll
$500 Grand Prize
To qualify for the Grand Prize, and to have your ballot counted, you must fill out a minimum of 25 categories on the ballot and fill in your personal information on the bottom. One ballot per person, and it's obvious when one person fills out multiple ballots with the same answers, and jotting down someone else's name. That's ballot stuffing , so save us all some time, and just submit one ballot. Thanks, and enjoy!
Review By Chelsea Murray Kaneb
The Book of Mormon, the 9-time Tony award winning, controversial musical graced the stage of the gorgeous Palace Theatre this past week. The Book of Mormon bursts with energy, is often offensive, and yet it really has the ability to tug at the heart strings. The show sprang to life from the minds of Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the creative team behind the satirical, crass, and hysterically funny animated show, South Park. As to be expected from these creators who push the envelope like no other, the musical both highlights and mocks many aspects of Mormon beliefs, and characterizes the African villages and their people in a deprecating way. The show takes you on a journey filled with outrageous jokes and musical numbers peppered with profanity, but ultimately lands on showing the audience the beauty of service and the power of love.
Story and Photographs by Felix Manuel Rodriguez
Uncasville, CT - Yeah, Yeah, Yeah, that’s how Bad Bunny started off as he walked on stage to a sold out Mohegan Sun Arena crowd performing one of his latest hits NI BIEN NI MAL (Neither Good Nor Bad). Already a hit song from his highly anticipated debut album X100PRE (a stylization of por siempre which means forever). Wearing fashionable retro cat eye triangle sunglasses and finger nails painted in pink polish. Bad Bunny is no stranger to making a fashion statement.
Almost 100 community members, students, faculty, and staff laced up their sneakers on March 24 to run and walk raising more than $3,000.00 for NVCC’s student food pantry.
Beginning at Founders Hall on NVCC’s Waterbury campus, the race began at 10 Sunday morning with a course that allowed participants to do 1.55 miles (2.5 K) or the loop twice for a 5k. Ninety-seven people participated in total and trophies for top female and male winners were given out in addition to medals for first, second, and third place by age division.
Photo Credit: Patty Wolfe
A SEASON TO DREAM THE DREAM ~ The Palace Theater announced their ‘19-20 Webster Broadway Subscription series. The well-rounded “dream season” offers theater goers the first play at a Connecticut venue of Chazz Palminteri’s semi-autobiographical story, A Bronx Tale; a week-long engagement of the new production of Cameron Mackintosh’s Les Misérables; the clever and hilarious farce, The Play That Goes Wrong; the moving backstory of Peter Pan in Finding Neverland and the iconic George and Ira Gershwin music and glorious dancing of An American in Paris and. A season that guarantees patrons the thrill and enjoyment that only a live theatrical experience offers.
Waterbury Board of Education Commissioner Tom Van Stone Sr.
Column by John Murray
A unique intersection of opportunity and need has presented itself in Waterbury as the city roils with racial tension triggered by four students of color choosing to sit during the Pledge of Allegiance at Waterbury Arts Magnet School. The students sat in silence last Autumn as a protest against racial discrimination in America. The response to the protest triggered federal litigation, inflammatory comments by a Board of Education commissioner, a rebuke from the NAACP and black clergy, and a head-spinning response across social media.
Column By John Murray
The worst kept secret in Waterbury burst into the open this afternoon after Waterbury Mayor Neil O’Leary declared he will seek an historic 4th term in office this November.
“I've had a couple of job offers, some recently,” O’Leary told 300 business people and community leaders attending the annual “Mayoral Luncheon” event hosted by the Greater Waterbury Chamber of Commerce. “But I just have to tell you that I love it here. I love this job, and with your support I intend to run for mayor again in 2019.”
Sworn In As 89th Governor of Connecticut
Governor Ned Lamont shared a moment with his wife, Annie Lamont, as they marched past the State Capitol following his inauguration inside the State Armory. Photograph by John Murray
Ziggy "The Flagman" Berisha (4/24/1942 - 12/25/2018)
Ziggy became an American citizen on July 4th he said it was the "greatest day of my life."
Story and Photographs By John Murray
Ziggy the Flagman was impossible to ignore. In 1999 Zeqir Berisha began waving the American flag through downtown Waterbury shouting “USA, USA, USA” and overnight he became the most recognizable (and loudest) man in the city. Dressed from head to toe in stars and stripes he burst onto the scene as an evangelist for America, a champion of freedom.
Who was he? Where did he come from?
(Editor's Note - the following comments were made by Waterbury Police Chief Fred Spagnolo (pictured above) after he was sworn into office by Waterbury Mayor Neil O'Leary on December 13th in a ceremony on the stage of the Palace Theater in downtown Waterbury. The photographs of Chief Spagnolo were taken by Jennifer Rose)
Thank you. These are my three beautiful children. Kids what is dad’s favorite number? 15. Dad is changing that and my new favorite number is 22, because I am now the 22nd police chief of the great city of Waterbury.
I started my career in 1992 at the Waterbury Police Department. It was all new to me as I did not come from a family of law enforcement or public service. My family is of Irish and Italian decent and immigrated to this country during my generation. I grew up learning to be acceptant and respectful of others and their traditions.
After a swearing in ceremony last night on the Palace Theater stage, Fernando Spagnolo Jr. is now officially police chief in the City of Waterbury. Photograph by Jennifer Rose
Ilmika Kulla Will Display Her Paintings December 6th
Ilmika Kulla describes her work as impressionist.
Story By John Murray
Ilmika Kulla is obsessed with painting glamour, particularly Hollywood stars from the 1950s and 1960s: Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe and Marlon Brando among them. “Our icons today don’t have the same elegance and style,” Kulla said. “I’m fascinated by old Hollywood.”
But don’t try and pigeonhole this young artist, because Kulla will surprise you with paintings of singer Freddie Mercury, Muhammad Ali, Gandhi, Michael Jackson, Kim Kardashian, JFK, Buddha and Barack Obama.
Alex Ward and his father, Derek Ward Sr.. Photo by John Torsiello
Story By John Torsiello
There was one football moment that Derek Ward, Sr. just had to make sure he captured on camera it was when his son, Alex, then a sophomore, scored his first touchdown for Holy Cross High School. Alex would never forgive his father if he didn’t have that special score to save for posterity.
“Alex was playing tight end and I was following him down the field, he caught the pass and scored,” said the elder Ward, while sitting outside Holy Cross on a cool autumn afternoon. “I caught him raising his arms after he scored and that has to be my favorite photo that I ever took.” Said the younger Ward, “I was wondering if he got that shot.”
First Black Woman Elected To Congress From CT
Photographs By John Murray
Jahana Hayes made an emotional entrance into a crowded ballroom filled with soul music and anticipation. With last night's victory Hayes has made an extraordinary leap from the Berkeley Heights Project in the North End of Waterbury, to the 2016 National Teacher of the Year, to the halls of the United States Congress. Jahana's improbable and fantastic journey captured national attention as very few members of Congress have ever experienced poverty the way Hayes has. Last night she carved her name into history as the first African-American woman to represent Connecticut in Congress, "I'm a history teacher making history," she said.