Stay Connected


Rotary donates $20,000 for Wallingford planetarium restoration


WALLINGFORD — The Rotary Club has donated $20,000 to the Wallingford Education Foundation for restoration of the Mahan Planetarium and Learning Dome at Sheehan High School.

The restoration of the planetarium has been the Wallingford Education Foundation’s main project for several years, with many events helping the organization reach its fundraising goal.

A year and a half ago, members of the Rotary Club agreed to make a donation to the Wallingford Education Foundation, according to Roz Gallagher, the club’s chairwoman for the planetarium project. Gallagher said the Rotary Club would donate $10,000 if the education foundation reached a specific fundraising goal. If it reached a second goal, the Rotary Club would donate another $10,000, she said.

“We felt that the renovation was a unique opportunity for us to do something for Wallingford and the local school community,” Gallagher said. “It’s such a privilege and honor to have a planetarium in our community.”

Rotary Club President Mark Davis said supporting the planetarium was important to the organization.

“Anything with kids and education really gets our attention. It’s a nice project and it’s an existing infrastructure already, there’s just no funding to get the equipment,” Davis said. “... It’s about the kids. It’s about helping kids — they’re the future.”

Chris Stone, a Wallingford teacher, has been working with the foundation in trying to secure grants to use for restoration. With the $20,000 donation from the Rotary, in addition to over $100,000 already raised, Stone said a higher-end projection system could be purchased for the planetarium.

“It’s a fantastic donation,” Stone said. “It’s just really nice the Rotary Club is putting forth that kind of funding for this project, which has been ongoing for about three to four years.”

The foundation hopes to have the planetarium restored by the fall. Installation of the projection system will take place over the summer. Once completed, Stone said area teachers can begin using the planetarium for lessons. It will also be available to use for all of Central Connecticut, he said.

“Our club is pleased to be one of the major donors to this project,” Gallagher said, “and as I said, to do something for the students in our town and surrounding community.”

The foundation will also receive a $12,000 donation from Choate Rosemary Hall next week, also for the planetarium restoration project, according to Lorraine Connelly, the school’s associate director of communications for marketing and media.

evo@record-journal.com (203) 317-2235 Twitter: @EricVoRJ



Back to WallingfordNews
Top Stories of the Week

Father of Southington teen killed in car crash helps others …
I recently was forced to face every parent’s worst nightmare. I lost my 14-year-old daughter, Olivia, in a tragic automobile accident. Olivia was a beautiful, … more ...

Top 5 stories on MyRecordJournal.com this week …
Here are the top 5, most clicked stories on MyRecordJournal.com this week. Father of Southington teen killed in car crash helps others heal “I recently … more ...

Smarter Balanced assessment results reveal gaps in math scores …
The majority of students taking a new computerized test in the 2014-15 school year met or exceeded the benchmark set by the state for English, … more ...

Area lawmakers meet with business leaders in North Haven …
NORTH HAVEN — Members of the business community discussed the state’s economic climate on Thursday, days after Gov. Dannel P. Malloy confirmed that he has … more ...

Things to do this weekend: Hot air balloons, orchard walk …
Here is a list of 12 things to do this weekend including a hot air balloon festival in Plainville, a Bierfest and pig roast in … more ...

Comments