(February 24, 2015) Today, Mayor Pedro E. Segarra announced that the City of Hartford has been chosen as the starting point for “Fireball Run: Space Race,” a contest modeled after Trivial Pursuit that is viewed online by approximately 1.7 million people world-wide. Production scouts from the series visited Hartford recently, looking for locations to highlight in the show. Filming will begin in Hartford on September 25, 2015 as contestants arrive for registration and it will be streamed live, Saturday, September 26, 2015. Filming will continue as teams tackle Hartford-based trivia ‘missions’ covering history, entertainment, music, academics, nature, geography and other categories that showcase the area and notable community achievements. Contestants in the upcoming season include four teams of international astronauts, as well as teams of business owners, senior level executives, industry celebrities and elected officials. Their names will be announced in the coming weeks. Some contestants will be Hartford-based. Spectators will have opportunities to see the vehicles in the competition, greet drivers and receive autographs from the astronauts while they are in Hartford. The race kicks off Sept. 27, 2015.
“It’s exciting that Hartford was chosen as the starting point for the show and I encourage all of our residents and businesses to turn out for the filming," said Mayor Segarra. “I also encourage anyone who wants to participate locally to let us know. I would love to see a Hartford native win the race.”
“This is a wonderful opportunity for people from around the world to learn about Hartford’s history and culture and to see it as a destination, a City with much to offer,” said Mayor Segarra.
“We look forward to being the starting line for The Fireball Run 9th season. This event will celebrate the Capital City and bring national and international attention to Hartford with the city benefiting from over $50 million in media coverage. Let’s get in gear Hartford,” said Kristina Newman-Scott, Director of Marketing, Events and Cultural Affairs.
This is Fireball Run's 9th Season. Forty driving teams will have eight days to complete the game while traveling 2,000 miles from Hartford to Florida’s Space Coast. Filming for the live production will end October 3, 2015 at a citywide parade with over 30,000 spectators at Cocoa Beach, Florida. While competing against one another, show participants will also raise awareness for America’s missing children. The series has aided in the recovery of 44 missing children for the Child Rescue Network, a Florida-based nonprofit.
“Fireball Run: Space Race” premieres June 2016. The series is available on GooglePlay, Roku, AmazonfireTV, SmartTV, NEO-TV, and Chromecast. Past seasons and episodes are available online at www.fireballrun.com. Several private events will also take place during the live production dates.
Any local companies or individuals interested in sponsoring their own vehicle for $10,000 should inquire about the selection criteria by calling the City’s Marketing, Events and Cultural Affairs Division at (860)757-9016.
(February 20, 2015) - Parents Who Complete Program Receive a Free Refurbished Computer and High-Speed Internet Access for a Year
Mayor Pedro E. Segarra encourages parents to enroll in programs by Concepts forAdaptive Learning (CfAL), a nonprofit from New Haven that offers basic computer literacy training to Hartford parents. In “Digital Literacy for Early Learners,” parents with children from birth to age 5 learn about early child development, discipline, library resources and valuable websites on early learning. This is a newer program that aims to close any achievement gap before a child enters kindergarten. It is held Saturday mornings at the Albany Branch of the Hartford Public Library. Childcare and snacks are provided. Parents who complete the class are given priority registration in “Technology Cascade & Training,”CfAL’s class in basic computer literacy for low-income families in need of a home computer. The three-week course offers training in Windows, word-processing, e-mail use, Internet navigation and resume writing. Parents who complete the class receive a freerefurbished computer for their home and high-speed internet access for one year.
“Concepts for Adaptive Learning helps children succeed in school by reaching the place that impacts young lives the most, the home. I’m so very grateful for the work the group has done and for broadening their efforts to help Hartford children during those critical early years before they start school. I encourage parents to take advantage of these opportunities to help themselves and their children,” Mayor Segarra said.
Concepts for Adaptive Learning established “Technology Cascade & Training” in Hartford in 2008. The course is offered every month in English or Spanish at the Parker Memorial Community Center and at the Albany Branch of the Hartford Public Library. Catholic Charities provides childcare and dinner. Only parents with children enrolled in Hartford Public Schools, grades K-12, qualify. The program has graduated more than 500 parents in Hartford since its inception.
“A primary goal is to increase students’ learning by extending learning beyond the classroom. Our second goal is to engage parents in their children’s education and to introduce them to technology to help them achieve that goal. The program simultaneously helps close the digital divide,” said Curtis Hill, Executive Director of CfAL.
“Over 70 percent of students whose parents participate in the TC&T program have better grades in school and over 80 percent of parents become more involved in their children’s education at home,” Hill said.
Concepts for Adaptive Learning works closely with the Hartford Public Library, Catholic Charities, Achieve Hartford! And the Hartford Parent University. The nonprofit recently started training parents who have graduated from the Hartford Parent University. Concepts for Adaptive Learning is based in New Haven and runs similar programs in Bridgeport, Hamden, Meriden, New Haven and Waterbury.
For more information about or to register in “Digital Literacy for Early Learners” or “Technology Cascade & Training,” please call: 1(888)351-7667.
(February 18, 2015) A federal judge in Texas ruled this week to temporarily block President Barack Obama’s Executive Action on immigration reform, which would provide deportation relief and work authorization to millions of undocumented immigrants across the country. This includes an expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which was set to go into effect today, Wednesday, February 18, 2015, as well as implementation of the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA). Mayor Pedro E. Segarra, who co-chairs the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ Immigration Reform Task Force, released the following statement:
“President Obama acted within his authority when issuing an executive action that not only benefits many hardworking families, but would also strengthen our economy and communities. Hartford has already been enriched by the cultural diversity and entrepreneurism of immigrants, but would grow richer with the implementation of President Obama’s action. While disappointed in U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen’s ruling and the delay it causes in helping people who are eager to be a part of our society, I am confident the President’s action will prevail.”
Judge Hanen’s ruling in State of Texas vs. United States of America does not affect the existing DACA. The program provides deportation relief and work authorization to anyone who was under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012, arrived in the United States before June 15, 2007 and arrived before the age of 16.
Ballpark to Anchor Redevelopment of A New, Mixed-Use Neighborhood known as Downtown North
(February 17, 2015) Today Hartford Mayor E. Pedro Segarra, Hartford City Council President Shawn T. Wooden, City Council members and Rock Cats Owner Josh Solomon joined hundreds of community members for the historic groundbreaking of what will be Hartford’s first ever minor league Ballpark. Located at the intersection of Trumbull and Main Streets, the new Ballpark will anchor the redevelopment of the Downtown North neighborhood and will be home to minor league baseball beginning in the spring of 2016. This is the first time in over 60 years the City of Hartford will have a professional baseball team. With 72 home games, it is estimated that over 400,000 guests will visit the park each season.
“This is a truly historic day for the City of Hartford. What was once a sea of parking lots for over 40 years will soon be transformed into a thriving new neighborhood that will bring more housing, more jobs, more customers for our businesses and more economic opportunity to our great city,” stated Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra.
“Many people were involved with this project, but I especially want to thank Council President Shawn Wooden, the Council, our Treasurer, and the hardworking people of Hartford for all their support,” added Mayor Segarra. “We should feel proud of what we have accomplished. We are connecting two neighborhoods long separated by a highway, and revitalizing an area that has been underserved. I am more optimistic about our future and our progress than ever.”
Today’s groundbreaking is the result of countless hours of hard work and input from the City Council, members of the Stadium Authority and, most importantly, the Hartford community,” stated Hartford City Council President Shawn Wooden. “Thanks to community input and the true collaborative effort over the past eight months, plans for the new Ballpark and the redevelopment of the entire Downtown North neighborhood are better today than when the initial plans were presented.”
Last week the City reached a final agreement with DoNo Hartford, LLC, the developer of Downtown North and Connecticut Double Play, LLC, the owner of the Rock Cats Double AA Minor League baseball team. The new mixed-use neighborhood will include a supermarket of up to 50,000 square feet, a brewery, new housing, retail, restaurants, and the minor league ballpark.
“Thanks to everyone’s hard work, the redevelopment of Downtown North and the new minor league ballpark will soon be a reality,” stated Rock Cats Owner Josh Solomon. “We’re looking forward to baseball weather and providing affordable, family entertainment during baseball season and year round activities for the entire Hartford community and the region.”
Terms of the agreement include 30 percent revenue sharing for all non-baseball events at the ballpark, a project labor agreement, a guarantee of a Double AA Minor League team for the term of the lease, and hiring preference for Hartford residents and minority/women owned businesses for all direct and indirect contract work.
A report by the University of Connecticut Center for Economic Analysis (CCEA), found that the projected benefits of developing Downtown North includes over 1,800 jobs during construction, sustained employment in excess of over 1,000 jobs at full development.
Fans are also invited to participate in the “Name The Team Contest” which began today on the newly created website www.hartfordplaysball2016.com. Fans can suggest a new name that will replace the Rock Cats and are encouraged to submit their suggested name, which must include “Hartford,” along with a brief explanation of their entry.
The fan whose submission leads to the team’s new name will receive the Ultimate VIP Baseball Package (Two Lifetime Season Tickets, Team Jacket & Cap, photo in the Game Program). Four runners up will receive a pair of season tickets for the inaugural season.