Chamber Corner with Larry McHugh

Chamber Corner with Larry McHugh


Happy Labor Day Middlesex County! 

Labor Day, at its core, is designed to provide a day of rest for working men and women.  I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge every single one of these individuals.

The Chamber’s far-reaching membership, 2,370 businesses that employ nearly 50,000 people, allows me to observe the outstanding diversity in the Middlesex County workforce.  The men and women of the Middlesex community not only provide the economic productivity that allows us to maintain a high standard of living, but they give back each and every day, and provide a great example for our young people.  

Despite the many differences in occupations, there is a definite common denominator among those in our county and statewide workforce: everyone works hard. A job in any field requires a personal commitment and a lot of time and effort. Enjoy your Labor Day Middlesex County, but let us not forget our fellow citizens who are currently looking for work.  We are still in a challenging economic time, and we are all in it together.  

Now that we have reached Labor Day, the Chamber is ready to kick into high gear.  Our geographically based divisions will begin meeting on a monthly basis, and our events and programs will become even more active.  The Chamber will be rolling out some very exciting initiatives in the next couple of months, and I will be sure to keep everyone informed as we move forward.  

I was happy to attend a great Grand Opening event on Wednesday of last week as Papa John’s Pizza officially opened in Metro Square.  I would like to once again welcome Jay and Faith Hamilton, and the entire Papa John’s team to Middletown.  

On Thursday of last week, the Chamber’s Arrigoni Bridge Committee met in the Chamber Conference Room.  The committee continued its ongoing dialogue with Department of Transportation, and Middlesex Corporation officials, regarding the renovations to the Arrigoni Bridge.  An official announcement was made that the bridge will reopen to all four lanes of traffic, by Saturday, September 15th, two months ahead of schedule.  

While there is still work to be done, this represents a major milestone for this very important project.  Lane closures will still occur, to facilitate final paving and other details, but only during non peak hours.  I want to publicly thank Ken Fargnoli, Assistant District Engineer at DOT, and his entire team for their great work throughout this project.  I also want to recognize Middlesex Corporation for their professionalism, and thank them for keeping the lines of communication open throughout this entire process.  

A special thank you goes out to the Police, Fire, and Public Works Departments from Middletown, Portland, and Cromwell, and also Middlesex Hospital, and all of the local emergency services personnel.  Finally, I want to recognize the great support of our local municipal leaders, especially the First Selectman’s office in Portland, and the Mayor’s office in Middletown.  The Arrigoni Bridge project is nearly complete, and that is great news for the local business community, and all of us who use this vital river crossing on a consistent basis.  

The Chamber’s award-winning Side Street to Main Street Minority Business & Leadership Development Program is now accepting Applicants for the Fall 2012/Winter 2013 Session.   All Applicants are required to attend a Mandatory Program Orientation and Application Registration Meeting, this Thursday, September 6, 2012, 7:00 P.M. at the Middlesex County Chamber of Commerce, 393 Main Street, Middletown.  

Now entering its 16th year, and fully funded by a Grant from Aetna, Inc., the Side Street to Main Street Business & Leadership Development Program is a one year long entrepreneurial and business development course, specifically designed to assist “minority small business owners” in the community, who have not had formal business training, to become more successful by developing the attitudes, skills and qualities necessary for effective business ownership and success, taking them from the “Side Street to the Main Street” of the business community.  

Classes are held at the Chamber Offices, 393 Main Street, Middletown, and are scheduled to begin on Tuesday, October 2, 2012 through February 12, 2013, followed by quarterly sessions in March, June and September, 2013.  To register for the Mandatory Program Orientation and Application Registration Meeting on Thursday, September 6th, please contact Program Coordinator Jennifer De Kine at  Email: jennifer@middlesexchamber.com Tel. 860-347-6924.

September is another busy month and we are looking forward to a Member Business After Work Networking Event on Wednesday, September 12th at Water’s Edge Center for Health & Rehabilitation in Middletown, and our monthly Member Breakfast Meeting with US Senator Joe Lieberman on Monday, September 24th.  
Labor Day is upon us, and the Chamber is on the move.  

For more information on Chamber events and activities, please contact Jeff Pugliese at jpugliese@middlesexchamber.com.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.


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