NORWICH BULLETIN (May 18, 2019) — Revelers outfitted in red and blue packed several downtown sidewalks and streets Saturday as the city’s first official Haitian Flag Day event roared to life.
Along Bath and Franklin streets, that flag, with its parallel red-and-blue bars, was waved in hands, draped over shoulders and tied into bandanas by residents who danced, hugged and laughed to a soundtrack pumped out from nearby speakers.
Under a tent overhang, Mirlande Daniel, owner of Norwich-based Mommy’s Delicious Food restaurant, set up serving trays filled with black rice, fried plantains and jerk chicken. Daniel, a Haitian emigrate, said she hoped the street festival would give attendees a better sense of her native country.
“Not a lot of people know about Haiti or even where it is,” she said. “We have a beautiful history.”
THE DAY (May 15, 2019) — A Cromwell hotel developer purchased the former Elks Club building, more recently the Majestic Rose restaurant, at 352 Main St. on Wednesday and plans to complete renovations aborted several years ago to create a boutique hotel.
RCN Capital LLC, which took over ownership in 2016 of the vacant 1843 former mansion home of mill mogul John F. Slater, sold the building Wednesday to Ganesha Hospitality LLC for $400,000, according to land transaction records filed in the Norwich city clerk’s office.
Developers Amit Maran and his uncle, Harry Patel, have been looking at the building for several months after they saw it listed on a website featuring business properties for sale, Maran said.
THE DAY (May 2, 2019) — A welcoming gesture to help a new downtown business owner open a new Chinese market and tea café sent ripples across the globe, and on Wednesday, 14 top professional artists in China stopped by to donate artworks to city leaders in a cultural exchange and act of appreciation.
The artists are in the Northeast touring and hosting art seminars at Yale and Harvard universities, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an exhibit in Manhattan.
The Norwich stop was added when Sharon Chu, executive director of the North American Chinese Culture Foundation, based in Mansfield, learned how Norwich officials and volunteers with Global City Norwich assisted business owner Mei He, also of Mansfield, in her plan to open A&S Marketplace, a Chinese market in the Thayer Building at 16 Franklin St. The market will open in mid-May.
Claire: I love the energy in Norwich. My studio is Downtown in Foundry 66, so I feel as if I am in the heartbeat of [the City’s] rejuvenation. I can feel it when I walk into businesses here and I can feel it in speaking with the owners. I love being able to talk about the various places and movements in Norwich, like Global City Norwich, with my out-of-town clients, who can’t wait to come back. Even when there are disagreements or slightly different visions, we are all working towards the same goal of revitalization. There’s definitely an energy here and I think everyone can feel it.
Q: If you had to give someone advice about freelancing, what would you tell them?
Claire: Charge your worth. At the same time, you should always, always be striving to improve what you do and what you offer. You are your business’s charismatic leader, so no matter where you are or who you’re with, you are your brand and you have to carry it well.
Q: What are you currently passionate about right now?
Claire: I’m really passionate about my job. I think it ties into what I love about Norwich and why I want to be a part of what’s going on here – when I walk down the street, I’m passionate about the things I’m seeing and the people I’m seeing. I love being able to provide a unique experience for my clients while simultaneously providing them with the highest level of service that I can.
Rose Arts Festival is also coming up on June 29 and I’m looking forward to coordinating the photography coverage and marketing the event!
Q: What are you most looking forward to within the next year?
Claire: Being able to continue photographing a wide range of people, with a focus on headshots and branding. It’s amazing the kinds of people I’ve had an opportunity to work with, the things I’ve learned, and the challenges I’ve faced. I want to continue to be challenged!
Norwich – Mayor Peter Nystrom warned fellow members of the City Council Monday to “keep your weekends open” for council workshops on issues including reviving his proposed economic development bond, creating a charter revision commission and discussions on waterfront development.
Nystrom delivered his sixth State of the City address as mayor Monday, mixing a celebration of development accomplishments over the past year with calls for city leaders to work together on development issues in the year ahead.
“It should be noted that change through economic development is a long-term proposition that takes focused teamwork and dedication to implement and benefit from,” Nystrom said. “We have a talented team of professionals, passionate and dedicated leadership, a highly flexible and resourceful utility, and, a community ready to embrace change.”
Additional Gift is to Focus on Funding for Entrepreneurship & Small Business
NORWICH, Connecticut (December 10, 2018) – The Chelsea Groton Foundation recently presented a grant donation of $100,000 to NCDC’s Global City Norwich program, to be used specifically for assisting multicultural entrepreneurs and small business owners who are interested in occupying storefront spaces in the Downtown area, or who currently own businesses and are looking to grow.
Funds will be used to identify and train entrepreneurs, build partnerships in order to help entrepreneurs find appropriate storefront spaces and funding for their businesses, and create a thriving downtown environment that will ensure increased traffic in area businesses.
“Since the launch of Global City Norwich, we’ve already seen a positive impact on the Norwich community. People came out in droves for the festivals that were hosted this summer and fall. Now, the Chelsea Groton Foundation is thrilled to give another grant to Global City to really focus on developing and assisting multicultural entrepreneurs and small business owners, an area that’s very important to us,” shared Michael Rauh, President and CEO of Chelsea Groton Bank and President of the Chelsea Groton Foundation. “Small business activity is critical to the success of any downtown area, and it will be no different in Norwich. There are incredibly talented entrepreneurs and small business owners in Norwich and the surrounding areas, and we’re looking forward to supporting them through this grant.”
“We believe our business community should be a reflection of our diverse and vibrant community. The Global City Norwich program is focused on removing the barriers to entrepreneurship through collaborations, business education and shared resources. The talent and our future business leaders live amongst us and this program lends to pave the road to business ownership,” explained Bob Mills, President of NCDC.
The first grant presented by the Chelsea Groton Foundation was to assist with the launch and development of Global City Norwich, a multi-cultural program that brings people together to participate in rich, diverse, multicultural experiences that the residents of Norwich and its surrounding communities have to offer.
To view parts of the grant presentation, and to gain a better understanding of the positive impact Global City Norwich has and will continue to have on area business owners, watch this video.
About the Chelsea Groton Foundation The Chelsea Groton Foundation was formed in June 1998 as a Section 501(c) (3) organization. Initially endowed with a $2 million donation from Chelsea Groton Bank, and recently gifted an additional $5 million from the Bank, the Foundation has, to date, awarded over $3.2 million in grants to hundreds of scientific, educational and charitable organizations located within the Bank’s market area. To learn more, visit www.chelseagroton.com/CGFoundation.
About NCDC / Foundry66 NCDC is a private 501(c) (3) development corporation founded to improve the economic condition of Norwich, its Downtown, waterfront and Business Park. Foundry66 is a co-working space dedicated to helping create and support microenterprise businesses in the area. To find out more about us and our mission, please visit www.askncdc.com and www.foundry66.com.
This summer, Norwich welcomed yet another new business: The Royal Punjabi! The Indian and chicken wing restaurant opened its doors July 16, 2018 and has been well received by the Norwich community—including NCDC! We highly recommend checking it out (if you have not done so already!) CLICK HERE to read the more about The Royal Punjabi opening!
Q: Where were you born & raised? Julio: Peru, South America.
Q: What is your role at Canggio? Julio: I’m the owner, the executive chef, dishwasher, referee… everything you can possibly think of.
Q: When did you open Canggio Restaurant? Julio: August 21, 2017
Q: When did you enter the restaurant business? Julio: Right after high school, I started helping my dad in a restaurant. My first job was as a dishwasher at a restaurant in West Springfield, MA. From there, I began working for all kinds of restaurants—French cuisine in West Hartford, Mediterranean in Bloomfield, Greek/Italian in Hartford.
Q: What was your most fulfilling moment working in the food industry? Julio: When I worked at J Restaurant and Bar in Hartford, my first executive chef job, I got to cook for a lot of people I never in my life would have imagined I’d have the opportunity to cook for. I’ve cooked for Andy Grammer, Jason Alexander, Bob Newhart, and John Leguizamo.
Q: Why did you decide to open in Norwich? Julio: People here are great. Everyone gives you their hand and is so ready to help you succeed. One thing that we, as Norwich, have is that we work together.
Q: If someone was trying to open up their own business or restaurant, what advice would you give them? Julio: Don’t give up. It’s easy to give up or walk-away. But follow your goals; you need to give yourself time to make it happen. There have been times that I’ve felt that it’s not worth the struggle, but at the end of the day, when I see customers loving the dishes we make for them that they come back for more—that makes it for me. You’re going to have people there to support you, keep working towards what you believe in.
Q: What are you most looking forward to within the next year or two? Julio: Within the next two years, 1) I want to grow Canggio and make it self-sustaining with the crew that I have and 2) I want to open a prohibition-type bar (speakeasy)…with elegant appetizers and secret entrances, hopefully right here in Norwich. I like the idea of it because I feel it’s new and innovative, and it offers something different. Norwich has given me so much; I feel it’s important to give back to the community that believed in me in the first place.
Canggio’s can be found at 20 Lafayette Street, Norwich, CT 06360.
Foundry 66 has opened its second floor! The addition features two large conference rooms, a yoga and dance studio, and media room. The new space features six offices and 12 designated desks. The design and color were inspired by Sedona Mountain Skyline. (We felt after walking up two flights of stairs you should be rewarded with a delightful array of colors & textures much like the scenery in Sedona!) F66 is hosting a variety of workshops, including Small Business Academy (collaboration with Liberty Bank) and Fall Lunch and Learns, “Creating Your Brand” and “Interactive Enneagram Workshops.”
To schedule a tour of Foundry 66 or to inquire about upcoming workshops, please contact Jill Fritzsche: [email protected] or call 860-887-6964.
It has been in the news for many months, but the Mohegan Tribe is investing heavily in the region. Of course, they are adding many venues and improving the assets at Mohegan Sun as good businesses do. This showed up most recently as the addition of the $80MM Convention and Conference Center which is designed to draw thousands to the region for years to come. This was the site of the 3rd of the Barrett-Jackson Auto Auction events since 2015. Many other recognizable trade shows will be hosted here, furthering eastern Connecticut as a destination for many people and organizations.
Additionally, the Town of Preston via the Preston Redevelopment Agency, and the Mohegan Tribe have agreed on the purchase of the former Norwich Hospital site in Preston, approximately 400+ acre development. The conceptual master plan shows the development including everything from residential housing and retail support services to large format entertainment and theme parks to indoor waterpark and hotels with banquet halls. In all, an estimated investment range of $200,000,000-$600,000,000 over the full buildout. If you pass by the site via automobile along RT12 or the Mohegan Pequot Bridge, or from the Thames River, you will see much of the overgrowth thinned out and huge stockpiles of clean fill accumulated on the southwestern corner of the site. This is all in preparation for environmental remediation of the soils under the old roadbeds.