ACE Awards going virtual, will do retrospective

Published on Wednesday, 16 September 2020 14:51


BRISTOL – The New England Carousel Museum’s “ACE Awards” are going virtual this year and will be done as a retrospective on all past recipients.

The ACE Awards honors those who contribute to the arts, culture, and entertainment of Greater Bristol. The awards were created in 2007 and the museum typically received nominations from the community, with winners announced at the ACE Awards gala on the first weekend in November.

Morgan Urgo, executive director for the New England Carousel Museum, said that, this year, the awards will be done as a “virtual celebration” that will be featured on the New England Carousel Museum website,, throughout the month of November.

“It will be a virtual retrospective of previous award winners,” she said. “We invite the community to share, create and tell stories, photos and memories of these community creatives and community supporters.”

In 2019, the Ace Awards honored Jerry Brick, then general manager of Lake Compounce, and BBK (Bob Alim, Bob Beaudreau, and Kevin Prior), the trio behind Broadview Manor.

Brick, Urgo said, was honored because he had supported the New England Carousel Museum through fundraising and allowed them to use Lake Compounce as a venue for the annual Crocodile Club luncheon. The amusement park had also assisted in a restoration project for a historic carousel.

BBK, Urgo said, had been supporters of art and culture organizations for several years. Every October, the trio traditionally hosted a party called “Cocktails at Eight” at Broadview Manor. Over the years, the event has raised more than $100,000 for local nonprofits and other groups.

In 2018, the Ace Awards were presented to retired Arts Administrator Lori Meusel Eschner and Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu. Eschner had been a teacher in Bristol for 31 years, 10 of which were as chair of the art department. When presented with the award, she said she was a life-long advocate for the arts who “always put the kids first” and tried to help them “excel in art and appreciate art.”

Zoppo-Sassu was honored in 2018 for the establishment of the Memorial Boulevard Committee, trying to transform the former school into an arts magnet school. The mayor said at the time that it could be a venue to showcase local talent.

Urgo thanks their community for continuing to support The New England Carousel Museum.

“The museum is extremely grateful for the generous support our patrons and the public continue to give to keep the museum moving forward in these unprecedented times,” she said.

For more information, visit or call 860-585-5411.

Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or

Posted in The Bristol Press, Bristol on Wednesday, 16 September 2020 14:51. Updated: Wednesday, 16 September 2020 14:54.