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Appleberry Farm Hosts Blooms In The Barn With Ballaro Dance



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It was a picturesque scene at Appleberry Farm, 8 Zoar Road, during its Blooms in the Barn with Ballaro Dance on Saturday, September 12.

The sun shone brightly, and the late-summer weather was comfortable, as masked attendees participated in a variety of activities among the farm’s lush grounds and decorated barn.

Appleberry Farm’s free event partnered with Ballaro Dance of New York to offer the public an opportunity to see, move, and share in nature.

In the early afternoon, an open-level Pilates class kicked off the festivities and was followed by a guided improvisation session for dancers called “Magical Garden Creatures Come Alive.”

During the latter, Ballaro Dance Founding Artistic Director Marisa F. Ballaro led the class in the garden with dancer Talia Putrino. Boston-based cellist Rob Bethel performed seated nearby.

Bethel also played during the Site-Specific Pop-Up Performances portion of the day, where people could watch the live art from a distance throughout the farm.

The evening concluded with an open-level yoga class then a Site-Specific Installation in the field that involved a dance/technology collaboration that was developed during the pandemic’s five-month quarantine.

Inside Appleberry Farm’s century-old barn, local artisans were set up with goods for purchase, including soy candles and handmade wool products.

All guests and those participating in the day’s event were asked to wear masks. Up to ten guests at a time were allowed inside the barn to adhere to social distancing guidelines.

Also on site in the historic barn was one of Appleberry Farm’s youngest kin, Becky Osborne, selling vibrantly colored floral arrangements — hence the event namesake of Blooms in the Barn.

The family-owned farm in Sandy Hook has been around for four generations and currently operates as a cut flower farm, according to the farm’s Facebook page.

On September 14, Ballaro called the weekend event “wonderful” when speaking with The Newtown Bee.

“As you can imagine, the pandemic has put a major halt on all things arts related — performances, concerts, museums — so Becky was very interested in hosting us, so we could bring art back to the local community in a safe way during this time,” Ballaro continued. We had a small but mighty crowd, enabling us to maintain distance while safely enjoying the classes, performances, and time spent in the barn."

“The partnership with Becky and the farm is very special to us; we hope to make an event like this an annual celebration,” she added.

Appleberry Farm will be hosting two more Blooms in the Barn events this season, September 19 and October 3, each running from 10 am to 2 pm. The public is invited to purchase cut flower arrangements and shop from different weekly vendors.

For more information about Appleberry Farm, visit facebook.com/appleberryfarmct. To learn more about Ballaro Dance and the company’s See, Move, & Share programming, check out ballarodance.com. Ballaro Dance is also offering free community classes weekly via Zoom that Newtown residents are welcome to join.

Among the garden plantings at Appleberry Farm, Ballaro Dance Founding Artistic Director Marisa Ballaro, center, and dancer Talia Putrino, far right, lead the children’s improvisation session called “Magical Garden Creatures Come Alive.” Boston-based cellist Rob Bethel, far left, can be seen playing music during the class. The activity was just one of many free offerings during Appleberry Farm’s Blooms in the Barn with Ballaro Dance on September 12. —Bee Photo, Silber
Becky Osborne of Appleberry Farm smiles under her mask as she stands beside a variety of colorful flower arrangements during the Blooms in the Barn event on September 12. She is part of the historic family-owned farm, which currently operates as a cut flower farm. —Bee Photo, Silber
Inside Appleberry Farm’s 100-year-old barn last weekend was a plethora of vibrantly colored flower arrangements displayed for sale. —Bee Photo, Silber
Miranda Procko of Owl Ridge Fibers hand-spins her 100 percent wool yarn to make one of her creations. Visitors could see how her work is made while perusing the variety of items she had for sale. —Bee Photo, Silber
Meghan Plunkett of 83 Main Candle Company stands among a variety of her products displayed inside the barn at Appleberry Farm. Her business focuses on using natural soy wax, cotton wicks, and essential oils. —Bee Photo, Silber
Up to ten guests could be inside the barn at one time as Appleberry Farm took social distancing precautions amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Everyone was also asked to wear masks. —Bee Photo, Silber
From left are Nicole Daniell, Hannah Kearney, and Emilee Ballaro Despagni of Ballaro Dance at the company’s welcome booth on September 12. In addition to showcasing the day’s itinerary, the table also had hand sanitizer available. —Bee Photo, Silber
Boston-based cellist Rob Bethel performs in the garden at Appleberry Farm during Ballaro Dance’s improvisation session for children called “Magical Garden Creatures Come Alive.” —Bee Photo, Silber
As guests walked from the field parking lot to the event, a colorful handwritten note welcomed everyone and reminded them to wear their masks. —Bee Photo, Silber
Pictured from left is Talia Putrino and Nicole Daniell of Ballaro Dance performing at Appleberry Farm on August 12. —Ashley Garrett Photography
Hannah Kearney of Ballaro Dance performs during the Site-Specific Pop-Up Performances while cellist Rob Bethel looks on. —Ashley Garrett Photography
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