For the fourth year in a row, Newtown High School Odyssey of the Mind team members are gearing up to offer the annual Bunny Watch, a fundraiser for the group to attend the World Finals of the problem-solving competition. Odyssey of the Mind is the largest intellectual competition in the world. Teams of up to seven students select and solve one of five long-term problems that they present at the annual state competitions. The top 30 teams in each competing state then head to World Finals, where teams from more than 30 countries come together in the spirit of international competition. This year’s Odyssey of the Mind World Finals will be held at the end of May in Ames, Iowa. A number of Newtown’s Odyssey of the Mind teams will be attending World Finals. This year’s Bunny Watch is set for 10 am to 4 pm, Friday, April 18, and Saturday, April 19. It is once again being held on the Fairfield Hills campus, behind Glander Field. Rides will cost $5 per person and each participant will be given a tally sheet to “count” each bunny seen along the path. Additional activities will also be offered during the two-day event, including an inflatable slide.
Work From Home Newtown-CT will host its next lunch gathering on Friday, April 25. Remote workers, home-based business owners, sole proprietors, jobseekers, stay-at-home parents, retirees, et al, are invited to join Newtown resident Greg Pategas for networking and socializing beginning at 11:30 am, at Sweet Mango.
Newtown Historical Society has three days of special events planned this month. The first program is for its current crew of docents, but is special in that it is also being opened to those who are interested in becoming a docent and would consider volunteering their time to the society. The second program will be an open house and living history demonstration, and the third will be an evening program on the history and traditions of Ellis Island. There is no charge for any of the programs, but reservations are required from anyone wishing to participate in the docent event.
The Society of Creative Arts of Newtown (SCAN) is seeking entries for its Annual Spring Juried Art Show, to be presented at C.H. Booth Library, 25 Main Street, May 3-11. SCAN is an organization dedicated to promoting art and art education in the region. All artists may enter works for consideration into the show, whether they are members of SCAN or not. Receiving will be held Thursday, May 1, from 4 to 7 pm, at the library. Work accepted includes oils, pastels, watercolors, acrylics, mixed media, graphics and sculpture. Traditional as well as contemporary artists are encouraged to enter up to two pieces.
Looking at her winning entrant for the logo for the 2014 Newtown Arts festival, artist Julia Provey noted, “I looked around Newtown and, from my imagination, I saw a musician, a juggler, an artist and a dancer, and they were all Newtown.” Admittedly, the performers in her art are derivative of people she actually knows in Newtown, she added. Ms Provey’s design has been selected from among those entered to Newtown Cultural Arts Commission’s Festival Artwork Selection Committee. Announced in October, the competition sought new, original art that illustrated the idea of “Newtown Arts & Culture.” Ms Provey’s winning image will be used to promote the 2014 Newtown Arts Festival, in businesses and public spaces around Newtown and surrounding towns; and printed on T-shirts, posters, and other items that will be available for purchase at this year’s arts festival. Events are being planned for September 6-14, culminating in a two-day outdoor festival at Fairfield Hills, September 13-14. In addition to having her work selected as this year’s arts festival logo, Ms Provey also received a cash prize from the arts commission.
On Friday, April 11, acclaimed Providence, R.I., rock group Low Anthem returns to the Edmond Town Hall, performing the next Live At Edmond Town Hall concert. The band has had quite the journey since its last Newtown appearance in 2011, including the opening sets for The National, Emmylou Harris and Bruce Springsteen, while continuing to work on and then record their next album. Mark Barden and Alternate Universe will open. Ticket sales will benefit ongoing improvement efforts at the Edmond Town Hall.
Flagpole Photographers Camera Club will host a general meeting and members’ photo competition on Thursday, April 17. The meeting will include a guest speaker on how to enter digital images into competition. The public is invited to join members of the local photography club for the program, to be held in the lower meeting room of C.H. Booth Library. For members, April’s assigned subject is “Texture.” The club’s Annual Photography Show will be a one-day event this year, on Sunday, May 18. The event will showcase images by Flagpole Photographers Camera Club members. The public is invited to meet members during a reception, and also to vote for the People's Choice Award.
Tennessee Williams’s classic "The Glass Menagerie" will kick off Town Players of Newtown’s 2014 season on Friday, April 25. Directed by Marla Manning of Easton, The Glass Menagerie features Alex Clapp of Wilton as Laura, Miles Everett of Thomaston as Tom, Chris Luongo of Bethel as Jim, and Karen Pope of Bridgewater as Amanda.
Newtown Historical Society is hoping to find some new docents, to join members when presenting programs for the public. An educational seminar has been scheduled for Saturday, April 12. The program is for the current crew of historical society docents, but is special in that it is also being opened to those who are interested in becoming a docent and would consider volunteering their time to the society. Adrienne Saint Pierre, curator of The Barnum Museum, will present the program “Costume in Context: A Close Look at 18th Century American Dress with Hints on Making Good Reproductions.” Reservations are required and additional information, including location and start time, will be provided upon request.
The Gallery at Still River Editions will begin hosting “Discovering Solitude: Photographs by Paul R. Berger” on April 12. The exhibition, featuring the work Mr Berger, a Newtown photographer and resident, will remain on view until May 30 in Danbury. “The concept of solitude means discovering a place, or a state of mind, that can exist without other people directly intruding, at least for a few moments,” said Mr Berger. “Yet the viewer has the opportunity to project themselves into that environment and imagine what it might feel like.” Mr Berger’s work in both black-and-white and color is shot entirely on medium-format film. Medium format film is much larger than 35 millimeter film, and can produce crisper enlargements. Using analog film instead of digital media means not shooting quickly and not being able to instantly review his photographs. “It turns out that this slower pacing is a good match for me, for the way I visualize my subjects and my efforts to craft a meaningful photograph,” Mr Berger says of his continued use of film.