Ben’s Lighthouse, an organization dedicated to supporting and uplifting the children of Newtown in the wake of 12/14, will host an ice cream social on Saturday, August 31, from 1:30 to 4:30 pm. The event will be at Trinity Episcopal Church. It will feature local dignitaries and celebrities scooping ice cream from Ferris Acres Creamery. In addition, Newtown Acts of Kindness will be providing free lemonade and lemonade stand kits, there will be activities and information booths sponsored by A Bead of Roses, Connecticut Music Therapy, Emerald Sketch Art Therapists, Ben’s Bells and the REACH program. Comfort pets and members of Newtown Juggling & Circus Arts Club are also expected to be on hand.
The Edmond Town Hall Board of Managers will host an open house in honor of the 156th anniversary of Mary Elizabeth Hawley’s birth on Wednesday, August 22, from 9:30 am to 5 pm. “We invite residents and others to stop by the Mary Hawley Memorial “We invite residents and others to stop by the Mary Hawley Memorial Room to sign the guest book and share in some refreshments,” said James Juliano, chairman of the board. The memorial room is on the main floor of the former town hall, at 45 Main Street. Newtown’s beloved benefactress is best known for her generosity to the community. Miss Hawley donated the fund to build Edmond Town Hall, a high school (now Hawley School) and Cyrenius H. Booth Library, as well as the Soldiers and Sailors monument located at the head of Main Street.
The Cultural Alliance of Western Connecticut, in partnership with the Danbury Farmers’ Market Community Collaborative (DFMCC), presents the third annual DisH Photography Exhibition, an outdoor, year-round installation on Kennedy Avenue. The theme is “The DisH — Downtown IS Happening.” Twelve photographs by seven photographers were selected to enhance Kennedy Park and Friday’s Danbury Farmers’ Market. Juror Cathy Vanaria named “Earth’s Bounty Eggplant” by Karla Bernstein of Newtown as 2013’s Best in Show.
A show of cartoons, watercolors, and acrylics by noted area cartoonists and artists is currently on display at Plain Jane’s Restaurant in Bethel. Original works by Orlando Busino, John Smallwood-Garcia, Frederick Carpenter, Jack Medoff, Joseph Farris, and Newtown cartoonist Dana Fradon decorate both dining rooms at Plain Jane’s. The public is invited to the opening reception for “The Artists of Plain Jane’s” on Sunday, August 18.
This year’s Shakesperience production will be Much Ado About Nothing, to be performed in the green at McLaughlin Vineyards on Saturday, August 24, at 4 pm (rain date August 25). Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 children and senior citizens. In addition, two different flavors of mead and food created by When Taste Matters will be available for purchase. Picnics are welcome.
The Candlewood Amateur Radio Association (CARA) will present its annual Western Connecticut Hamfest on Sunday, September 8, from 8:30 am until 12:30 pm. The event will again be in the gymnasium and lower parking lot of Edmond Town Hall. Hamfest will include commercial vendors and tailgating, ham radio equipment and computer gear, door prizes, and refreshments. Bill Thoren will present a seminar on Samuel Morse, and a talk-in will again be held for those who cannot attend or who want to be on the air while driving to the ARRL-sanctioned event.
Liz Kelley, who grew up in Connecticut and only recently moved out of state, felt compelled to visit the Memorial Tent on Church Hill Road after the 12/14 tragedy. While there in January, she met Gloria Milas there, whose daughter, Sarah, is an EMT with Newtown Volunteer Ambulance Corps. That was when Ms Kelley decided to do something to honor first responders. That "something" was vouchers for free hang gliding lessons.
On Sunday, September 1, naturalist and author “Wildman” Steve Brill will lead his annual foraging tour at Sticks and Stones Farm, 201 Huntingtown Road. The 60-acre stone masonry farm and retreat features a wide variety of habitats — mountain, meadows, woods, cultivated areas, and fields, and wetlands — all loaded with their associated wild plants and mushrooms. Nuts are coming into season now, and participants will also be on the lookout for shagbark hickory nuts and white oak acorns, both delicious, and unavailable commercially. During the two hour event, participants will also look for tasty and healthful roots, herbs and greens, and mushrooms.
C.H. Booth Library Director Shawn Fields announced Tuesday, August 6, that the library has established social media feeds on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and YouTube. Mr Fields also invites the public to check out his personal reading list, follow his blog, and to attend any of three upcoming focus group sessions.
After more than two years of planning, members of Newtown Cultural Arts Commission presented a two-day event at Fairfield Hills last September that offered a few thousand visitors everything from fine art to whirligigs. This year, organizers are expanding the festival to include six days of programs prior to the big September 21-22 weekend event at Fairfield Hills. Calling it “8 Days of Music Art and Joy,” Terry Sagedy, chairman of the 2013 Newtown Arts Festival, has announced the weeklong roster of events leading up to the onsite festival, from a children's art party and the reading of a new-one act play by Jan Neuberger to the screening of a short dramedy by a Newtown teen, a classical music performance and more, this year's festival has been greatly expanded.