Blood cancer survivor and Newtown resident Sandi Kessman, and her family and friends, are determined to help build awareness about the approximately 1,012,533 people in the United States living with a blood cancer. She will be among those showing their support by participating in The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s (LLS) Newtown Light The Night Walk on Saturday, September 28, at Newtown Youth Academy. Registration begins at 5 pm, there will be a Remembrance Ceremony at 6:15, and the walk begins at 7 pm.
Master pastelist Rae Smith will be demonstrating in pastel at the next meeting of The Society of Creative Arts of Newtown (SCAN) on Wednesday, July 24, at 1:30 pm. Her subject will be a landscape. The meeting and program are open to the public and will be held in the lower room at Newtown Meeting House. All are welcome and admission is free.
Beginning Friday, July 19, local public broadcasting stations will air a one hour PBS special called “Concert for Newtown,” a community event that brought together the people of Newtown in song, spirit and common purpose in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook School shooting. “Concert for Newtown,” recorded on February 10 at The Ridgefield Playhouse during the presentation of “A Concert Of Caring, Healing And Togetherness,” will feature performances by Peter Yarrow, Dar Williams, Bethany Yarrow & Rufus Cappadocia, as well as members of Newtown’s own Flagpole Radio Café, which includes Francine and David Wheeler, the parents of 6-year-old Ben, who died on 12/14. WNET (Thirteen), based in New York, will debut the special on Friday at 9:00 pm, and then rebroadcast it on Sunday, July 21, at 12:30 pm.
The 18th Annual Gathering of the Vibes Festival will be presented at Seaside Park in Bridgeport, July 25-28. In the spirit of peace, love and music, Gathering of the Vibes announced on Monday, July 15, that Newtown residents are invited to attend any or all of the performances on Sunday, July 28, free of charge. In addition, anyone who attends The Great Newtown Reunion on July 27 is also invited to enjoy the music and fun at Vibes on Sunday.
With the official opening of its new studio space, HealingNewtown confidently announces an updated schedule of free workshops. Weekly arts and crafts sessions for kindergarden students are being offered weekly until the end of August, and weekly weaving workshops are also being offered. Programs are still free of charge.
Local musicians, artists, and community members will gather Sunday, July 21, on the Danbury Green for an outdoor concert to benefit HealingNewtown, a public arts center in Newtown established in response to 12/14. HealingNewtown Through the Arts is a project of Newtown Cultural Arts Commission. The fundraising event, called Random Compassion Act I, was co-founded by CityCenter Danbury and Nancy Metcalf. Acclaimed Rush tribute band Limelight will headline the concert. Other acts will include The Matt Rae Trio, Otis and the Hurricanes, Skanktones, Eugene Dobbs Ultimate Nu-Cullers Band, Spectral Fangs, The Bandolins, Voices For Heroes, and Bill Wisnowski. In addition to live performances, the event will feature vendors, including sponsors, with food and beverage for sale. Attendees are strongly encouraged to make a tax-deductible donation to HealingNewtown. All proceeds from Random Compassion Act I will go toward helping the arts center regain its financial balance and fund the arts space.
Pepper’s Dragons is a children’s story book written by Stacia Bjarnason, PhD, a clinical psychologist who has been helping some of the children of Sandy Hook since 12/14. She has found that working with fairy tales can give children a safe way to talk about upsetting things in a less threatening way. Dr Bjarnason has had copies of the book printed to give to the families of Sandy Hook. Any family that would like a copy can request one at C.H. Booth Library. In addition, Dr Bjarnason will share her insights during a program for parents and adults on Monday, July 8, at 6:45 pm, at the library. Copies of the book will be available during the program.
The Sherman Playhouse is currently offering an adaptation of "Anne of Green Gables," in which three of L.M. Montgomery's stories have been melded into one play. It is, writes The Newtown Bee Theater Reviewer Julie Stern, "a great show to see with kids, because it is as much fun to watch them be totally absorbed as it is to follow the performers on the stage." Performances continue weekends, including one Sunday afternoon matinee, until July 27.
Town Players of Newtown will host auditions for Tom, Dick And Harry, by masters of British farce, Ray and Michael Cooney, on Monday and Tuesday, July 15-16. Auditions will run from 7:30 to 9 pm each night. Gene Golaszewski will direct the production, which calls for six men and three women of various ages. Rehearsals will begin the week of July 21. Performances begin September 13, Friday and Saturday evenings, with two Sunday matinees, through October 5, for a total of ten performances.
“From Broadway With Love: A Benefit Concert For Sandy Hook”, which took place on January 28, at the Palace Theater in Waterbury, will begin airing on select public television stations throughout the tri-state area in July. “From Broadway With Love” was a concert of healing for the Newtown community where composers, musicians and more than 100 stars of Broadway came together with over 300 students from several Newtown dance groups, the Sandy Hook Elementary School third and fourth grades, and the Newtown High School Chamber Choir.