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‘The Biggest Loser’ Contestant Aims to Inspire Change by Opening Orangetheory Fitness in Ridgefield

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Tara Costa, owner of Orangetheory Fitness in Danbury, will open Orangetheory Fitness this fall on Ethan Allen Highway in Ridgefield.

RIDGEFIELD, CT — The Biggest Loser contestant, mother of one and one on the way, Tara Costa said she wants to inspire others to “experience more life” which is why she got into the fitness industry after struggling with her weight and body image for years. It impacted everything she did, she said.

“I went through a major life change after realizing I couldn’t walk up a flight out of stairs or take a subway without being drenched in sweat,” she said, reflecting back on the days when she worked in the in corporate finance.
“I was living life but I wasn’t really living—being the biggest person in the room, always looking for the chair— you don’t want to be who you are, you don’t feel comfortable in your own skin. After getting involved in the show, I made a vow to try to inspire change in the lives of others.”
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That change came in the form of a fitness franchise which she opened with several partners in Danbury, Orangetheory Fitness. The Long Island woman became a fitness coach after The Biggest Loser Season 7 finale and helped a lot of people reach their goals. She started sending her clients to a gym in Long Island before deciding to open one of her own.
“After The Biggest Loser was over, I did Iron Mans and ran a few marathons, and the way that it made me feel, pushing myself physically and mentally helped me to break through a  barrier. You don’t realize how strong you are until you push yourself to do something. That’s what Orangetheory provides to people,” she said.
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“I ended up partnering with two people— a client who lost 160 pounds, and a friend I met through my speaking circuit, Matt Long. All of us were impacted by fitness and fitness provided more life to us. The camaraderie that existed became so empowering,” she said of working with her partners.
Costa lost 155 pounds on The Biggest Loser and is now celebrating a special anniversary this May as she plans her kickoff party for her new location, Orangetheory Fitness Ridgefield with a celebration on Saturday, May 18 from 12-6:00 p.m. at 850 Degrees Wood Fired Pizza, 424 Main St., Ridgefield.
The family-friendly event includes face painters for the kids, a caricature artist, and a balloon twister. The first 100 people to arrive will receive a free heart rate monitor.
“This is a pre-sale and we’re offering the lowest rates we can offer in the state of Connecticut for a limited time,” she stated.
Her Ridgefield studio manager, Shaun Chang, is a dedicated fitness enthusiast and is very excited to be joining the team. He has always enjoyed making a difference in the community, loves to exercise, and finds pleasure working with all kinds of people.
Shaun is an active volunteer for Ann’s Place and serves on the Board of Directors for Apex Community Care. He worked in the healthcare industry in his previous career which helped him realize how important good health is to one’s future. Shaun currently works out, runs, and participates in obstacle races such as Tough Mudder and Spartan Races.
“He cares about people,” Costa said, “we lift each other up. We’re super excited to get to a take part in a community that’s already close-knit and so involved.”
Orangetheory Fitness Ridgefield will open in September on Ethan Allen Highway on the Ridgefield/Wilton line in the Keogh’s Hardware shopping plaza.

Free Mother’s Day Massage & Spinal Check from Peterson Chiropractic & Acupuncture

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RIDGEFIELD, CT — She drove you to music lessons, baseball, dance, football and cheer, she stayed up late nights nursing you back to sleep when you got the flu or whooping cough or you were just scared of the monsters under the bed. She attended every game, every performance, was there for you when your prom date ditched you for someone else and did it all with a smile. Now it’s time to show her how much you care by giving her the priceless gift of health and wellness.

Peterson Chiropractic & Acupuncture has a very Mother’s Day special that will leave your mom (or you) feeling relaxed and refreshed. Their Mother’s Day special includes a free Adrenal stress test, a free spinal evaluation, and best of all, a free 15-minute trigger point massage.

Peterson Chiropractic & Acupuncture is located at 31 Bailey Ave. in Ridgefield and has been a leader in the wellness industry for more than 40 years. The practice offers a drug-free, holistic approach to wellness and recently added a Naturopathic Physician, Dr. Layli Harandi, to help their patients explore a variety of drug-free alternatives to pain relief.

Pamper your mom (or yourself) by calling to set up her/your appointment set up today! (203) 438-9609 and tell them you saw the free offer on CT Buzz News.

For more information about Peterson Chiropractic & Acupuncture, visit their website.

Local Comics Headline at Ridgefield Playhouse 

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By Aline Weiller

RIDGEFIELD, CT — Christine O’Leary has always been funny. But, it wasn’t until she won a stand-up contest in Maine that she quit her day job to pursue a career in comedy. O’Leary is now an award-winning stand-up comedian, professional host and coach for budding comics enrolled in her workshop at The Ridgefield Playhouse. Her spring semester students will take center stage at “Christine O’Leary’s Comedy Graduation Showcase” on Monday, April 30 at 7:30 (doors open at 6:30) at the Ridgefield Playhouse, 80 East Ridge Road, Ridgefield. General Admission tickets are on sale now ($20 each); orders can be placed online (Comedy Graduation Showcase | The Ridgefield Playhouse), called into the Ridgefield Playhouse box office at (203) 438-5795, or purchased in person the night of the show, space permitting.

O’Leary has taught nearly 30 sold-out comedy classes at her post at the Playhouse, with many repeat students, who take an 8-week program to develop a tight, economized, 5-minute set — the first increment of time given to new stand-ups at comedy clubs. The students bring weekly material to “Rip and Read” in class to determine winning content, then video conference one-on-one with O’Leary to finalize their material and hone their set. After two months, they’re ready for an audience.


“Comedy is a way to tell the truth, solve a problem and sell the material with a feeling. I love and live to share with people the greatest ‘high’ and joy I know — standing up and getting paid in laughs! Anyone can do this; there’s enough for everyone. For me, stand up is liberation and freedom. You can ‘up your game’ in life whether your a parent or a podiatrist,” said O’Leary, Founder, Team Green Light Comedy.

O’Leary’s stand up class has been a staple at The Ridgefield Playhouse since 2013. Her Assistant is fellow comic, Sue Ellen Landwehr, who has also performed locally. The April 30th lineup includes amateur comedians: Angel Fredricks, Will Bergen, Judy Eckert, Frank Fuhrman, Stephanie Griffin, Jerry Kuyper, Matthew MacGregor, Michael Mast, Micky Pasquerella, George Reynolds, Ben Robertson, Marcela Rodrigues, Eric Schwartz, Michael Zeitz, and Aline Weiller. They include doulas and designers, wealth managers and writers, students and salespeople, electrical engineers and bankers, teachers and beyond.


“You’ll never see anything like it…they’ll be born as comics before your eyes,” O’Leary added.

Christine O’Leary has worked with headlining comedians to include Gilbert Gottfried, Joy Behar, Chevy Chase, Sinbad, Tracey Morgan, Robert Klein, Margaret Cho, and Janeane Garofalo. She takes her Team Green Light Comedy comrades to area shows and also hosts and performs at companies, colleges, and charitable, club and pride events nearby and nationally. She can be contacted via christine@christineoleary.com and on all social media platforms.

The Ridgefield Playhouse is a not for profit 501 (c) (3) whose mission is to present a variety of performing arts to the community and the surrounding area that they can enjoy and experience at a varied price point. The Playhouse presents national and local acts and is the cultural hub for the town of Ridgefield. For details regarding “Christine O’Leary’s Comedy Graduation Showcase” tickets and classes, visitwww.ridgefieldplayhouse.org.

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PHOTO: Comedian Christine O’Leary and her students gear up for their “Comedy Graduation Showcase” at the Ridgefield Playhouse, 80 East Ridge Road, Ridgefield on Monday, April 30th at 7:30. General Admission tickets $20) are on sale now, are available via www.ridgefieldplayhouse.org, but calling (203) 438-5795, or can be purchased in person on the night of the show, space permitting.

PHOTO CREDIT: Sue Ellen Landwehr

Best Brunch Spots in Ridgefield

 

Screen Shot 2018-03-30 at 2.38.56 AMRIDGEFIELD, CT — Blueberry Blintzes, Eggs Benedict, Spinach Frittatas, Country Farm Pancakes…. is your mouth watering yet? Looking for a great spot to take the family for Easter Brunch or Passover? Here are the top three spots in Ridgefield, as ranked by Trip Advisor and Yelp users.

Yelp’s Top 3 Ridgefield Brunch Spots 

  1. Bailey’s Backyard, 23 Bailey Ave.
  2. SUCRÉ SALÉ, 109 Danbury Rd.
  3. The Hideaway Kitchen & Bar, 30 Grove St.

Trip Advisor’s Top 3 Ridgefield Brunch Spots

  1. Luc’s, 3 Big Shop Lane
  2. Bernard’s, 20 West Lane (Route 35)
  3. Little Pub, 59 Ethan Allen Hwy.

What do you think of their picks? Tell us in the comments.

We wish you a very Happy Passover season and a Happy Easter to you and yours!

Photo Credit: sushiesque via Flickr Creative Commons

4th Nor’Easter Set to Pack a Punch

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DANBURY, CT — The first day of spring is on Tuesday, but spring weather is staying at bay, at least for now, as a fourth Nor’Easter in one month threatens our area. The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook now through Sunday which “will likely bring accumulating snow from late Tuesday night into Wednesday evening.”

NECN’s meteorologist said this could be enough to bring “plowable snow” and “cause delays and cancellations for Thursday morning.”

WFSB meteorologist Bruce DePrest stated that  light snow will begin early in the morning on Wednesday and then snow will become heavy at times, with strong winds. Snow is expected to end before dawn on Thursday. Depending on the track of the storm, some areas may receive significant snowfall of 6 inches or more, according to the NWS.

“We are forecasting 6-12 inches for much of the state,” DePrest said.

If area students have a snow day, many will be getting out in late June as snow day totals approach nearly two dozen for some schools.

Photo credit: Wendy Ann Mitchell

BREAKING: Ridgefield Superintendent of Schools Placed on Administrative Leave

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Sunday, March 11, 2018, 10:35 p.m.

RIDGEFIELD, CT — After a special Executive Session was called by the Ridgefield Board of Education last Friday, the Chairman of the Board announced Sunday, via email, that Ridgefield Superintendent of Schools Karen Baldwin has been placed on administrative leave. Te letter did not state whether or not Dr. Baldwin is on paid or unpaid leave.

The following letter was sent to parents Sunday evening:

“Dear Ridgefield Community,

After the Special Meeting that the Board of Education held on Friday evening, we want to reassure all members of our school community that the board will continue to work closely with the experienced team of leaders who work in our schools and in the District’s Central Office to ensure that work continues without interruption.  Our administrators and teaching staff have a depth of knowledge and experience that will help to guide the District.

On Friday at a Special Meeting of the Ridgefield Board of Education, the board took the following actions.  The Board of Education authorized board member Jonathan Steckler, to appoint an investigator to look into the alleged use of sources by the Superintendent.  The investigation will be without prejudice.  While the investigation is ongoing, the Superintendent has been placed on Administrative leave.  An interim Superintendent will be appointed shortly.  Our community is relying on the professional Ridgefield administrators, teachers, and staff to be focused on the job of teaching and learning.  If anyone has any questions or comments that they feel are of immediate importance, please begin by contacting your building administrator.

Fran Walton
Board of Education Chair”

The investigation stems from allegations made that Dr. Baldwin’s letter to parents following the Parkland, Florida high school shootings was plagiarized. After it took Dr. Baldwin a week to address the tragic shooting in which 17 high school students were murdered, parents and students were upset and voiced their concerns on various town Facebook pages. Paul Kim, a Ridgefield High School senior, attempted to address the plagiarism at a Board of Education meeting, but was not allowed to speak.

The following document was obtained by CT Buzz News that shows striking similarities between Dr. Baldwin’s communications and letters and speeches from others, including Brookfield’s Superintendent of Schools and President Barack Obama.

Click here to read the document.

How do you feel about the allegations? Tell us in the comments or send a Letter to the Editor to ctbuzznews@gmail.com.