Community News: Shelton trails group hosting mid-winter hike

Shelton City Hall.

Shelton City Hall.

Contributed photo

Kindergarten registration for 2023-24 school year

Open Enrollment for the 2023-24 school year for kindergarten registration will take place from Feb. 1 to March 1 at each elementary school. School officials ask parents to contact the elementary school their address is assigned to schedule a registration appointment.

Street Listings can be found at Kindergarten registration forms can be found at

Shelton Trails Committee hosting hike

The Shelton Trails Committee will hold a mid-winter hike on the Tahmore Trail at 1 p.m. on Jan. 29. The moderately hilly one-mile loop leads to a beautiful overlook of the Housatonic River.

Those hiking are asked to wear appropriate footwear for conditions — shoes with good traction if the ground is clear, snowshoes if the ground is snow-covered, spikes if it is icy.

Children and leashed pets are welcome. No registration is necessary.

Meet in the turn-circle at the end of Tahmore Place. If weather is questionable, check the Hikes and Special Events page of the for updates.

To receive email notifications of future Shelton Trails Committee hikes and work parties, send your email address to

Marching Gaels hold can drive

The Shelton High Marching Gaels will hold its bottle and can drive from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Jan. 28 at the Shelton High School bus loop.

Valley United Way appoints new president, CPO

The Valley United Way Board of Directors has named Michael E. Pacowta the new president and chief professional officer.

Pacowta will oversee the organization, which covers Ansonia, Derby, Oxford, Seymour and Shelton. He succeeds Interim President and Chief Executive Officer David Kennedy, who retired on Jan. 9.

“The board of directors is thrilled that Mike will lead VUW,” said board Chair Karen Stockla. “He will focus on building fundraising momentum to strengthen our partner agency’s impact within the community.”

Stockla said Pacowta joined the Valley United Way as area director in August 2022 and has “consistently displayed the qualifications and expertise needed to drive the organization towards providing lasting change for the Valley."

“While we are excited about this new chapter of growth for VUW, the board is grateful for David Kennedy’s leadership and guidance during the past three years,” Stockla added. “This was especially true during the pandemic, where he was instrumental in raising funds as part of the Valley Community COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, which supported community members who were severely impacted by COVID-19.”

Pacowta said he was enthusiastic about working with donors, corporate and agency partners, volunteers, staff, board of directors, and community members to better understand and address the many challenges within the Valley.

“I believe strongly in the work that our organization carries out and am certain that through our collaboration, we will be successful in delivering greater investment to improve the lives of those most in need.,” he added.

Pacowta has a long-established presence in the Valley, serving as president of the Greater Valley Chamber of Commerce from 1991 through 1994, and as Shelton's mayor from 1985 through 1991.

He also served for several years as president of the Greater Waterbury Chamber of Commerce and, immediately before joining VUW, was an employment specialist with TheWorkplace, Inc.

American Legion to host blood drive

American Legion Post 16 will host a community blood drive with the American Red Cross from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Feb. 17 at Post 16, 295 Old Bridgeport Ave. in Shelton.

For more information or to make an appointment to donate, sign up online at

“Hosting a blood drive coincides with The American Legion’s core values of giving back to the community,” said Post 16 Commander Dave Gallagher. “With a simple blood donation, we have the ability to help save the life of someone who could be a coworker, loved one or neighbor.”

Donors of all blood types are needed, especially those with types O negative, B negative and A negative. According to the Red Cross, type O negative is the universal blood type that can be safely transfused to anyone, and is often used to treat trauma patients.