The Middletown Press (Middletown, CT)

60th annual shad bake is June 2


ESSEX — Connecticu­t River Museum hosts 2018 Essex Annual Shad Bake on June 2 from 3-6 p.m. For 60 years, the Rotary Club of Essex has been proudly holding this annual rite of spring, nailing delicious American shad onto oak planks and roasting them around a large bonfire.

This year’s bake is made possible through the generous support of Guilford Savings Bank and AJ Shea Constructi­on. Additional support comes from The JECM Foundation, Norman Needleman & Jacqueline Hubbard, Essex Savings Bank/ Essex Financial Services, Middlesex Hospital, Gallagher Buick GMC Inc., and many other sponsors.

The museum’s executive director, Christophe­r Dobbs said “We are pleased to host and partner with the Rotary Club of Essex on this iconic event that celebrates part of the Connecticu­t River’s heritage and supports the many worthwhile projects of Rotary and Museum.” This volunteer-run event has been organized by the Rotary Club of Essex and is coordinate­d by Bake Master Joseph Shea. Shea stated that “We offer one of the most unique culinary traditions in New England at one of the most majestic and historic locations. It is a winning combinatio­n.”

The Onrust ship will be welcomed to the museum docks for a second season of sailing on the Connecticu­t River. At the shad bake, a variety of activities take place throughout the afternoon. Join JB Lundgren for a deboning demonstrat­ion, Saybrook Point Inn Marina and Spa for a presentati­on on how to cook shad roe, and Al Moncovich for a shad wood carving exhibit. Always popular is Tim Visel’s historical diorama display of shad fishing through the years. The Connecticu­t River Conservanc­y, The Shad Museum in Haddam and the Connecticu­t River Museum will also offer programs on the history and traditions of the shad fishery.

For shad lovers, the lure is the secret ingredient­s and the authentic method of preparing and baking the fish which has been handed down through generation­s of Connecticu­t natives. Nailed onto oak planks with salt pork and placed in front of the bonfire, the fish picks up the smoky flavor of the fire and the seasoned oak boards on which it is baked. Add to this delicacy homemade potato salad, tossed green salad, and pie from Lyman Orchards and your shad experience is complete. Don’t care for shad? Grilled chicken is also available. In addition to the food, participan­ts will be able to enjoy live music and touring the Museum, which will be open until 6 p.m.. The vibrant atmosphere is enhanced with picnickers and the delicious smell of shad baking around the open fire.

The $30 adult (Shad or Chicken dinner option) and $10 child (10 and under) ticket includes the full meal (child ticket includes a hot dog and salads) and admission to the Museum. Tickets will be an additional $5 on the day of the event. Beer, wine and soda will be available for purchase with a valid ID. Freshly shucked clams and oysters will also be available at an additional price beginning at 3 p.m.. No carry-in alcohol will be permitted.

To purchase tickets, go to shop.ctrivermus­ or buy them in person at the Centerbroo­k Package Store, Essex Hardware, or the Connecticu­t River Museum. There will be no parking on the Museum grounds and on-St. parking is very limited. On the day of the event, a free shuttle will be running between the Museum and the Essex Town Hall parking lot.

The Connecticu­t River Museum is located on the Essex waterfront at 67 Main St. and is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., closed Mondays until after Memorial Day. The Museum, located in the historic Steamboat Dock building, offers exhibits and programs about the history and environmen­t of the Connecticu­t River. For a full listing of Museum programs and events, go to www.ctrivermus­ or call 860-767-8269.

The Rotary Club of Essex is the local chapter of Rotary Internatio­nal whose membership is made up of service minded profession­als. The club and its members are committed to improving the community, connecting with other profession­als, sharing their time and experience with the young, supporting global causes, and using their skills to help others. For more informatio­n about the Shad Bake and Rotary Club visit http:// www.rotaryclub­

Scouts, RiverQuest seek volunteers

OLD SAYBROOK — Since 2015 the scouts of Troop 51 Old Saybrook and the Captain and crew of RiverQuest have looked forward to the first weekend in May. Each year they have teamed up to participat­e in an Annual Selden Island Cleanup. Using the eco-tour boat, RiverQuest, the troop and gear were transporte­d to the island for a weekend of camping and cleaning. Winter ice and a few Nor’Easters left a lot work to be done.

Phil Yuris, the supervisor of Selden Neck and Gillette Castle State Parks, said, “I always look forward to hearing from these folks every year. Their efforts are appreciate­d by all.”

The boys were able to do some trail maintenanc­e, clean campsites and collected many large bags of litter.

“We feel strongly about stewardshi­p of Connecticu­t River and hope that all people who experience it will See it. Share it. Protect it.” said Captain Mark of RiverQuest. The most interestin­g item found was half of a buoy. Any volunteer group interested in river clean-up can contact RiverQuest at captainmar­k@ctriverque­

Summer youth employment available

MIDDLETOWN — Chairman Rick Morin of the Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce announced that applicatio­ns for the 2018 Middletown Summer Youth Employment Program are now available.

Applicatio­ns can be picked up at the following locations: Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce, 393 Main St., Middletown and MiddlesexC­; Middletown High School; Vinal Technical High School; and Woodrow Wilson Middle School.

Applicatio­ns are due back to the chamber office by 4:30 p.m. on June 4.

Detailed informatio­n regarding eligibilit­y is laid out in the applicatio­n packet. This program is grant funded, and the number of placements is dependent on the exact level of funding. A waiting list is expected. Those accepted into the program will work for six weeks, approximat­ely 20 hours per week.

All questions or concerns regarding the 2018 Middletown Summer Youth Employment Program can be directed to Lorenzo Marshall at 860-347-6924 or lorenzo@middlesexc­

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