Since 2002, Rock House's system of musical instruction—which comprises DVDs, books, and Web-based lesson support—has helped aspiring rock stars to master strumming guitars, plucking basses, and tickling keyboards to a variety of different genres. Several renowned blues, rock, and metal artists have participated in the Rock House program, including members of Megadeth, The Gary Hoey Band, and Parliament-Funkadelic. In addition to their training materials, Rock House also certifies instructors at local music centers so they can conduct one-on-one private lessons tailored to enhancing students' strengths and neutralizing their weaknesses, such as the inability to destroy a guitar on the first smash.
Part of the Connecticut Fund for the Environment, Save the Sound works to restore and protect the tidal wetlands, coastal grasslands, and island forests of the Long Island Sound. Environmental engineer Gwen MacDonald works with construction crews and project managers to implement her design plans at habitat-restoration sites, and volunteer coordinator Kierran Broatch organizes locals to fill these areas with native plant species. As part of their efforts to restore degraded coastal marsh and river habitats, Save the Sound has opened fish breeding habitats that were blocked for more than a century. It achieved increased public awareness through outreach and education, and now volunteers monitor these areas regularly.
Schooner Inc began in 1975 as a means to highlight the plight of the Long Island Sound and to help amplify the positive difference that the Clean Water Act was starting to make in US waters. Today, the company connects more than 8,000 people each year to the beauty and history of New Haven Harbor via public sails, summer camps, and educational programs.
For the last 23 years, the Quinnipiack?central Connecticut's only traditionally rigged tall ship?has hosted hands-on marine experiences for kids and adults. The New Haven mayor has officially decreed the schooner to be the city's flagship, as well as the ship Most Likely to Wear Couture Sails. The spacious boat was named to honor the Native Americans who inhabited the region and is helmed by an experienced and friendly crew.
For nearly 20 years, Easter Seals' merrymakers have ornamented New Haven's Lighthouse Point Park with luminous holiday displays. As dusk settles, caravans wind their way through the spacious park's festive arrangements, which, in holidays past, have greeted revelers with flocks of deer peeking through the pines, igloos that broach the seashore, and blazing tunnels of twinkling lights. Many displays feature LED bulbs, which not only create more vibrant displays but also save electricity that can be used to recharge the noses of VIP reindeer. Every car that passes through the light-flecked park supports Easter Seals Disability Services, a nonprofit that provides enrichment opportunities for those with disabilities.
Since Jim and Mike Amore opened Jet Cleaners in 1956, the place has become a rite of passage not only for Mike Amore Jr., who worked there as a teen and now represents the third generation of his family's business, but for New Haven residents. The company's Facebook page fondly catalogs photos of staff through the decades, occasionally noting the growth of their careers and families, or marking their passing. The good feelings are mutual, as the community voted Jet Cleaners Elm City's Best Dry Cleaner and Tailor in 2011. Voting with their dollars, the Yale Repertory Theater and Yale Medical School entrust Amore and his team with their costumes and lab coats, a practice begun after hearing the school's dean relied on them to starch his upper lip. A light touch with these delicate materials extends to refreshing heirloom quilts and wedding gowns, as well as tailoring suits. Free weekly pickup and delivery services save trips to the cleaner's modernist building on State Street, which is instantly recognizable not only for its austere design but also for the garden flourishing within its glass walls.
A renowned artist whose work has graced shows at major museums, Brainard Carey knows the difficult journey from aspiration to success firsthand. Through The Art World Demystified, he helps connect artists at all levels – from those just starting out to others seeking major breaks in mid-career – to opportunities for shows and sponsorship. In his subscription-based newsletter, Brainard spotlights not only deadlines for grants, awards, and residencies, but also interviews major figures in the arts, such as Pablo Picasso's favorite brush. He even extends his services directly to individual subscribers with one-on-one mentoring, which ranges from answering questions to consulting artists about their work and networking skills.