Columbia, Coventry, Vernon, Tolland

November Brings 3 New Businesses to the 8th District

Posted on November 30, 2018 by jpheasant


I’m pleased to announce that November has been a busy month for a variety of new businesses who have chosen to plant their roots within the 8th District.

Back on November 8th, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held to welcome licensed optician Sonya Maher and eyeTrade to Coventry village. eyeTrade specializes in offering affordable and stylish eyeglasses, sunglasses, and contact lens technology. eyeTrade also offers a trade in program to benefit those who are unable to afford a pair of eyeglasses or sunglasses by donating them to medical missions and other charitable organizations across the country and around the globe. Anyone who brings in a pair of glasses or sunglasses (in functional condition) will receive 10% off toward your new frame purchase. eyeTrade is located at 1197 Main Street and is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. on Saturday. For more information, you can visit her website here.

The Wendy’s Company opened a new location in Vernon at 145 Talcottville Rd (Route 83), right next to Taco Bell on November 7th. Construction for the 3,300 square-foot restaurant began in August and will feature burgers, fries, salads, a children’s menu, desserts, and a drive-through.

Lifelong Coventry residents Ed and Susan Grace kicked off their grand opening with a ribbon cutting event of The Coventry Village Professional Building on November 29th. The Coventry Village Professional Building rents out office space with Wi-Fi and electricity included for a flat rate of $5.00/hr. The newly renovated building also features a furnished office, separate waiting room and break room. Ed and Susan created this space as a flexible model to allow local professionals to rent space and only pay for the time in which they use. There are currently 11 various professionals renting space. Coventry Village Professional Building is located at 1153 Main Street, Coventry. For more information about the Coventry Village Professional Building please email them at .

I am very happy to share in the excitement of bringing these new businesses to our area. This excitement can be contagious and bring a renewed interest in attracting other businesses to the 8th District. I look forward to many more ribbon cuttings in the near future.

Rep. Ackert Hails Grant Awarded by AT&T to Coventry Academy

Posted on September 13, 2018 by jpheasant


COVENTRY – The Coventry Board of Education has been awarded a $10,000 contribution from AT&T to support vocational training stipends to students at Coventry Academy.

Coventry Academy’s alternative education program offers support for students seeking a non-traditional, non-college track post-high school. Vocational training is a major component at Coventry Academy.

“I’d like to thank AT&T for approaching me and for supporting students at Coventry Academy who have chosen to take a vocational path,” Rep. Ackert said. “This grant will allow our students to continue their growth and development in the technical related fields.”

“As we explore opportunities to support students who require a less traditional path to experience success at the high school level, the funding from AT&T will afford our district a means to further enhance this work. Through the vocational training component at Coventry Academy, students will now have the assistance needed as they work to attain their goals. As a district we are fortunate to have the backing of AT&T to support our students.” said Dr. David Petrone, Superintendent of Coventry Schools.

“AT&T aims to identify organizations that are making real differences in the lives of local students and families, and this organization is a prime example,” said Abby Jewett, Regional Vice President AT&T Connecticut. “The vocational program at Coventry Academy is an impactful resource for Connecticut’s youth, and we are very proud to offer our support to help them reach more local students.”

The AT&T contribution will support several small stipends for students in the Coventry Academy vocational training program, as well as cover transportation and other materials.

The twenty students in the Coventry Academy program have an academic schedule that is customized to meet their individual needs. Their academic programming includes consistent support, which includes measures that ensure they are successful and develop the tools necessary to work toward independence. There is also a focus on team cohesion that includes team-building opportunities throughout the year.

State Representative Tim Ackert represents the 8th General Assembly district towns of Columbia, Coventry, Tolland, and Vernon.


(Photo): State Representative Tim Ackert (center),  Abby Jewett, Regional Vice President AT&T Connecticut (fourth from right), and David Petrone Superintendent of Coventry Schools (far right), stand alongside students in the Coventry Academy vocational program.

Rep. Ackert Congratulates Children on Reading Achievement

Posted on September 6, 2018 by jpheasant


COVENTRY – State Representative Tim Ackert (R-8) and Children’s Librarian Meg Schiebel of the Booth Dimock Memorial Library recognized ten children who have recently completed the ‘1,000 Books Before Kindergarten’ program.

“It is extremely important to get children involved in reading at an early age because it promotes a desire to continue reading as they get older,” Rep. Ackert said. “Completing this challenge is incredibly impressive, I don’t think I’ve gotten to 1,000 books quite yet,” Ackert joked.

The goal is to engage families in their child’s pre-K education, and help them grow the necessary skills to succeed once they enter school. With every new book read, parents helped the children keep track of their progress by logging their books, either by paper or via a mobile app. After completing every 100 books, journals are then brought to the library where the child is awarded a sticker.

At Tuesday night’s ceremony, students who participated in the program each received a certificate from both the Representative and the library, in addition to a new book titled ‘I Wish You More.’

If you or someone you know is interested in signing up their child or grandchild for this program, please visit the Booth and Dimock Memorial Library’s link here.

State Representative Tim Ackert and Children’s Librarian Meg Schiebel present Olivia Bellantoni with certificates for completing the ‘1,000 Books Before Kindergarten’ program.