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West River Peaces Out
by Staff | Sep 17, 2012 11:37 am
Posted to: Citizen Contributions, West River
West River neighbors and peace activists gathered Sunday for a multi-faith celebration at an official peace garden.
Paula Panzarella sent in the following writeup and photos:
The West River 7th Annual International Day of Peace festival was held Sunday, Sept. 16, by the United Nations Peace Garden at the juncture of MLK Boulevard, Ella Grasso Boulevard and Legion Avenue. It was a great day for the neighborhood to celebrate peace and community.
The event opened with Islamic, Jewish and Christian prayers for peace. The City of New Haven Peace Commission presented the neighborhood with a Peace Tree and a plaque. Alderperson Tyisha Walker presented the West River Neighborhood Services Corporation a citation for its work in building community. Sen. Toni Harp and Rep. Pat Dillon also greeted the crowd.
Music by Ben Ross, Sam Allesandrine, Boogie Chillun, I.N.I.T.Y. and Morgan Boisvert kept people dancing and entertained.
There was a Kung Fu sword demonstration by Dr. Shunyu Li and meditation exercises led by Jonas from the Art of Living.
Eighth-grade students of Barnard School made peace flags for the day, students from New Horizon School made the banner for the stage, “Peace Begins with a Smile” (a quotation from Mother Teresa), and youth from Squash Haven were on-hand to volunteer for whatever was needed.
The weather couldn’t have been better to enjoy the camaraderie. There was free ice cream, hot dogs and fruit, and free kites for all the children and adults who wanted them. We thank the sponsors who made this event possible: the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, the City of New Haven Mayor’s Community Arts Grants Program, New Haven Peace Commission, Start Bank, Stop & Shop and Yale-New Haven Hospital.