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HARTFORD, CONN (June 13, 2017) – Today, the Greater Hartford Arts Council (Arts Council), the City of Hartford, and United Technologies announced the “Summer in the City” partnership program to celebrate arts and culture in Hartford.  The program will pay for costs associated with hosting a series of existing regional events, and for promoting and highlighting the region’s vibrancy through an online event calendar, community engagement campaign, and neighborhood events.  In addition, Riverfront Recapture announced that Riverfront Fireworks will return this summer on July 8th.


“Hartford has a great lineup of concerts and festivals every summer, but the City has never had the resources to promote and support these events as part of a coordinated summer series," said Mayor Luke Bronin.  “These events happen every year because of committed, dedicated volunteers.  As our fiscal challenge forced the City to cut back on subsidizing those events, we asked private funders to help us do what we really aspired to do, which is not just to help keep particular events going, but to bring them together into one, well-branded Summer in the City series.  I’m grateful to our program supporter and to the Greater Hartford Arts Council and the event organizers for their tremendous partnership.” 


"The Arts Council is thrilled to partner with the City of Hartford to help highlight the incredible vibrancy of our community,” said Cathy Malloy, CEO of the Greater Hartford Arts Council.  “Summer in the City is a showcase of the arts and cultural events that make Greater Hartford such an exciting place to live, work and visit.


“Riverfront Recapture is pleased to be bringing back our mid-summer fireworks display to the Connecticut River,” said Mike Zaleski, CEO of Riverfront Recapture.  “Many have worked hard over the past year to secure the private sector funding required to put on this fun, free celebration.  My thanks to Mayor Bronin, the Greater Hartford Arts Council and the numerous companies and corporations that stepped up to support fireworks on the river and all of our summer events.”


Mayor Bronin secured the private funding to support “Summer in the City” and asked the Arts Council to manage the coordinated, branded summer event series.  The Arts Council will manage the program, coordinating with event organizers, developing the website, and ensuring that the Greater Hartford community is aware of the program so that they can enjoy the many events being offered.


Events that are part of “Summer in the City” include:

  • June 17: Black-Eyed and Blues Festival
  • June 24: Greater Hartford Latino Fest
  • July 8: Riverfront Fireworks
  • July 14-16: Greater Hartford Festival of Jazz
  • August 5: Taste of the Caribbean and Jerk Festival
  • August 12: West Indian Independence Celebration
  • August 19: Riverfront Dragon Boat & Asian Festival
  • September 9: Hartford Capital City PrideFest


Program support provided by United Technologies.  To learn more, please visit:


About the Greater Hartford Arts Council

The Greater Hartford Arts Council uses the power of the arts to improve lives and transform communities. The organization is dedicated to connecting all citizens to the arts in their community and promoting the arts as a regional asset. To learn more about the Arts Council’s programs and services, visit or follow @letsgoarts_org on Twitter.





HARTFORD, CONN (June 9, 2017) – Tomorrow, the Hartford Public Library (HPL) and Hartford’s Department of Families, Children, Youth and Recreation (DFCYR) will host a Summer Learning Kick-Off at the downtown library branch and on Burr Mall between 12:30 PM and 3 PM.  The celebration will be carnival themed, and there will be many activities for children.  There will also be opportunities to sign up for HPL’s Summer Learning Program and City summer recreation programs, and to meet with community groups providing their own programs. 


The Summer Learning Program allows participants of all ages to set learning goals, but particularly encourages young students to read books so that they don’t lose the progress they made during the school year.


“The Hartford Public Library’s Summer Learning Program will help kids avoid the ‘summer slide,’ and continue the progress they made on basic literacy during the school year,” said Kim Oliver, Director of Hartford’s DFCYR.  “I’m grateful for the Library’s leadership in this area, and I’m looking forward to an afternoon of fun to begin the summer.”


“Saturday's kickoff gives a taste of all the programs that will be offered by the Library and City organizations that help children and families continue to learn through fun activities,” says Marie Jarry, Director of Central Public Services for Hartford Public Library.


Residents of any age can earn one ticket to the Yard Goats game on August 31st by completing self-selected learning goals by the end of the summer.  Anyone interested can visit to create an account and track their progress.


Activities and entertainment will include: face painting and airbrush tattoos; a scavenger hunt in the library; balloon animal artists; caricature artists; stilt walkers, jugglers, and a unicyclist; free treats from Ice Cream for a Dream; signups for a year-long membership to the Connecticut Science Center at reduced rates; and a concert by FriendZWorld Music at 1:30 PM.  There will also be an opportunity to interact with animals, including reptiles, thanks to Curious Creatures. 


To learn more about the Summer Learning Program at the Hartford Public Library, go to:







HARTFORD AND EAST HARTFORD, CONN (June 7, 2017) – The communities of Hartford and East Hartford, led by The Hartford/East Hartford Innovation Places Planning Team, have been selected as an Innovation Place, announced yesterday afternoon by the CTNext Board of Directors.  The Hartford/East Hartford Initiative will receive up to $2 million in Implementation Grant funds in fiscal year 2018 to begin implementing the team’s vision for making Hartford and East Hartford a hub for innovation, entrepreneurship, and business growth.


The selection of The Hartford/East Hartford Initiative concludes a process that began last summer and culminated last month with a site visit and pitch.


“With a strong presence in the insurance, healthcare and aerospace and advanced manufacturing industries, Hartford/East Hartford is already one of the State’s – and the region’s – strongest economic center points,” said Glendowlyn Thames, Executive Director of CTNext.  “As a designated Innovation Place, we are excited to see the impressive leadership team bring together its existing resources and assets, many of which have been underutilized to this point, and take the Hartford/East Hartford communities to the next level.”


Innovation Places is a CTNext-run program created to help the state’s communities become centers for entrepreneurship and innovation, magnets for talent, and launching points for growth-stage companies.  The program will distribute $6.9 million in fiscal year 2018 to selected Innovation Places communities to support implementation of their strategic plans.


Senator John Fonfara (D-Hartford), who was instrumental in designing a comprehensive law to help Connecticut embrace the innovation economy, joined other leaders in applauding the decision by CTNext to invest in the Hartford area.


“I’d like to congratulate the core team that made this happen, in particular Michelle Cote of the Connecticut Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation,” Sen. Fonfara said.


“I am incredibly grateful to the dozens of entrepreneurs, education and business leaders, and city staff who developed a powerful vision for Hartford and East Hartford as a hub of innovation,” said Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin.  “Our proposal focused on Greater Hartford’s strengths in the insurance, aerospace, and medical technology fields, and this is exactly the kind of effort that will change the game for our region and for the state.  The entire Hartford-East Hartford Innovation Places team should be proud of their winning proposal, and I look forward to working together, in partnership with CTNext, to make the Greater Hartford region a truly vibrant ecosystem of innovation.”


"We are very excited to partner with Hartford on this regional initiative which will further strengthen our communities as a hub for innovation and growth,” said East Hartford Mayor Marcia Leclerc.  “Together our communities provide many benefits to innovators and entrepreneurs looking for a central location at the crossroads of New England with easy access to collaborative partnerships with first class universities, other pioneering businesses, and established manufacturing and research centers of excellence.”


"It has been remarkable for me to watch our community come together in service of creating the right conditions for entrepreneurs and innovators to thrive, and attract top talent to our community,” said Michelle Cote, Managing Director of the Connecticut Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at UConn.  “We have received commitments and investments from both Hartford and East Hartford, as well as the community's anchor companies, educational institutions, and civic organizations. The strength of our strategy comes from cooperation, coordination, and collaboration in pursuit of a shared goal.”


A summary of The Hartford/E. Hartford Initiative’s proposal and application is available on the CTNext website at  For more information, please contact Michelle Cote, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


The Hartford/East Hartford Innovation Places Planning Team includes leaders from the following organizations: UConn, Goodwin College, Trinity College, University of Hartford, Metro Hartford Alliance, Travelers, The Hartford, Phoenix, Hanover Group, CIGNA, XL Catlin, Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, Hartford Healthcare, Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, City of Hartford, Town of East Hartford, reSET, Connecticut Small Business Development Center, Upward Hartford, MakerspaceCT and several entrepreneurs. 


Each of these community stakeholders will play a role in the execution of the group’s strategy, and in making Hartford and East Hartford visible centers of entrepreneurship and innovation.


About CTNext


CTNext is Connecticut’s go-to resource for entrepreneurial support.  The goal of the program is to build a more robust community of entrepreneurs and to accelerate startup growth by providing access to talent, space, industry expertise, services, skill development and capital to foster innovation and create jobs for people in Connecticut. CTNext launched in 2012 and has more than 1,700 members in its network.  Visit for more information.





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