2018 Arts Festival Events Will Again Lead Into Arts & Humanities Month

Published: September 13, 2018 at 10:20 am


This weekend will launch six weeks of events hosted or co-hosted by Newtown Cultural Arts Commission (NCAC), highlighting myriad facets of art within town.

The weekend will open with a headlining performance on Friday, September 14, by The Lords of 52nd Street: Legends of The Billy Joel Band. The tribute rock band is made up of musicians who backed Joel circa 1976-81. The band has reportedly sold more than 150 million records and continues to perform the sound that helped establish Joel’s career.

Newtown resident and vocalist/pianist/songwriter Dylan Cortese will offer an opening set.

A tent will be set up for the stage and VIP seating; lawn seating will also be available for the show, which will begin at 6 pm.

VIP tickets are $35, and lawn seats are $25. Tickets can be purchased in advance at newtownartsfestival.com.

The two-day outdoor Newtown Arts Festival will be Saturday and Sunday, September 15-16, from 11 am to 5 pm. Ongoing performances, workshops, artisans, food trucks, and a wine and beer garden will all be offered.

New this year is “The Art of Science,” a tent that will celebrate musical instruments and visual arts on Saturday and host hands-on exhibits and activities led by staff of EverWonder Children’s Museum on Sunday.

“The Art of Farming,” another new tent, on Saturday, will have maple syrup to sample, information on keeping on backyard chickens, bee husbandry, and information on The Victory Garden at Fairfield Hills. On Sunday, the tent will transform into The Art Oasis and will host ongoing demonstrations of art by members of The Society of Creative Arts of Newtown.

Coming back are the dance pavilion, with myriad free performances offered each day. The Make & Take Tent will also return, with ongoing knitting and tatting demonstrations and coloring for all ages. Workshops will include making monoprints, turning retro library cards into notebooks, and weaving potholders on Saturday and Bottles of Hope and Cardboard University on Sunday, among other offerings.

Daytime festival entertainment will include performances by Tales of Joy and Cheap Thrill on Saturday. The NHS Singers and NHS Marching Band will continue their tradition of opening the field on Sunday at 11 am.

Additional Sunday performances scheduled as of this week include Unclaimed Baggage and Gorja.

All workshops and performances are included with festival admission, which remains $5 for adults and $3 for ages 5-12. Children age 4 and under will be admitted without charge.


‘Evening Of The Arts’

“An Evening of the Arts” will be on the stage Saturday, September 15. The performance is scheduled for the tent that will be set up for the weekend along Primrose Street. In the event of rain, however, this event will move to Edmond Town Hall.

Beginning at 6 pm, the evening will include performances by New England New Music Ensemble, The Westfield Winds, Hat City Flutes, Harmony on The Sound Chorus, and students from Newtown Centre of Classical Ballet.

A play reading by members of Town Players of Newtown and a poetry reading by Newtown resident Charles Rafferty will also be part of “An Evening of the Arts.”

Acts and their order of appearance are subject to change.

Tickets are $20 for adults and $5 ages 13 and under.

Tickets for the September 14 and 15 evening events and additional festival information are available at newtownartsfestival.com. To contact a member of the NCAC Arts Festival Committee, call 203-417-0862 or e-mail newtownartsfestival@gmail.com.

Proceeds from the September 14-16 events will support grants and scholarships for local artists and arts organizations, future festivals, and other work of the Newtown Cultural Arts Commission.


Additional Festival Events

Coinciding with October being observed as National Arts & Humanities Month, 2018 Newtown Arts Festival events will continue with the opening on Friday, September 21, of The Fox on the Fairway. Town Players of Newtown will be presenting Ken Ludwig’s comedy at The Little Theatre, 18 Orchard Hill Road, weekends through October 13.

Performances are Friday and Saturday evenings at 8; and Sundays, September 30 and October 7, at 2 pm. Tickets are $22 for the evening shows and $18 for the matinees.

In addition, Friends of Newtown Seniors will be hosting a special Saturday afternoon benefit performance on September 29. Refreshments will be served at 1, and the performance will begin at 2. Tickets are $30 and should be reserved by calling 203-648-6905.

Reservations and additional information for all other performances are available by calling 203-270-9144, sending email to reservations@newtownplayers.org, or visiting newtownplayers.org.

NCAC and C.H. Booth Library are collaborating to bring a uniquely Newtown project to the community in recognition of National Arts and Humanities Month. “The Main Street Replica Project” will include a series of free workshops that will teach participants how to use 3D printers. Residents are invited to help create a miniature replica of Main Street, using the library’s 3D printers.

Newtown resident and NCAC auxiliary member Scot Wilson will serve as the instructor for the modeling phase of the project.

Mr Wilson is an experienced Google Street View Virtual Tour creator whose work can be found across Google Maps, Google Poly, Google Earth, and Google Search. He hosted a project at the library in 2010 that was the precursor to this new one (sans 3D printing).

The first session, on Tuesday, September 25, from 6 to 7:30 pm, will serve as an orientation and preparation. It will be in the meeting room of the library, 25 Main Street, and it will run from 6 to 7:30 pm. Attendees should bring a laptop.

3D Printer Orientation sessions will be offered beginning the following week. Participants only need to attend one of the 60-minute sessions, at which time they will become certified in using the printers.

Printer orientations are planned for Monday, October 1, at 2 pm; Tuesday, October 2, at 6 pm; Thursday, October 4, at 6 pm; Tuesday, October 9, at 2 pm; and Wednesday and Thursday, October 10-11, at 6 pm. These sessions will be at the library within the chbMakers’ Corner.

There will then be two hands-on sessions, led by Mr Wilson, to help participants with questions about the use of the software. These will be in the library’s meeting room on Wednesday, October 17, and Monday, October 22, each running 6 to 7:30 pm. Participants can attend one or both, as needed.

There is room for 30 participants, so registration is required. Enrollment will be first come, first served.

Contact the library at 203-426-4533 or chbtech@biblio.org, or visit chboothlibrary.com, reservations or additional information.

The NCAC Someday Cinema Series will continue on Sunday, September 30, with two screenings of The Blues Brothers. The 1980 comedy with John Belushi and Dan Ackroyd leading an amazing cast will be shown at Edmond Town Hall, 45 Main Street, at 3 and 7 pm. Tickets are $3, and the matinee will have subtitles.

“In Our Rearview Mirror,” featuring the work of Newtown Arts Festival Official Photographer Marleen Cafarelli, will open at The Gallery at Newtown Municipal Center on Monday, October 1. Works by artists who create in other mediums will also be presented in the exhibition, which will remain on view weekdays through October 30.

Food writer, singer, historian and self-proclaimed “Diva of Deliciousness” Tinky Weisblat will talk about her books, rhubarb, and her life in food on Wednesday, October 3, at C.H. Booth Library.

In her latest release, Love, Laughter, and Rhubarb, the Massachusetts resident shares some of her reasons the plant she disliked as a child is getting her praises these days. She also offers more than 60 recipes — from beverages and appetizers to main courses and desserts — along with essays about the plant’s history, its place in fiction, its use as the centerpiece of festivals around the world, and the many meanings of the word “rhubarb.”

Nibbles will be served during her 60-minute program, and registration is requested so that Ms Weisblat knows how much food to prepare (203-426-4533 or chboothlibrary.org).

Newtown Day will be celebrated at Fairfield Hills on Saturday, October 6, from 11 am to 5 pm. The family-friendly event will feature food, music, fun, and festivities for all ages.

Admission is $3 adults and $1 ages 6-12. Children ages 5 and under will be admitted free of charge.

Limited parking will be available at Fairfield Hills (the event will be presented on the grounds near the intersection of Trades Lane and DG Beers Boulevard), and at Reed Intermediate School, opposite the main entrance to the campus at 3 Trades Lane.

Additional parking will be available at Newtown High School and Newtown Middle School, with shuttle bus service running between those locations and Fairfield Hills.

Newtown Day will lead into The Third Annual Newtown-Sandy Hook Restaurant Week, October 8-14. This year’s celebration of local eateries and their specialties will also include Music in the Streets, October 13-14; details TBA.

Additional 2018 Newtown Arts Festival events will continue with an October 13 basket weaving workshop led by master weaver Tina Puckett (1 to 4 pm, Newtown Teen Center/The Garage, $40; contact Newtown Parks & Rec, 203-270-4340, for details and reservations); “Courageous Conversations in A Complex World,” a free program featuring the Reverend Robert Chase reading excerpts from his new book, Beyond The Comma (Wednesday, October 17, 7 pm, at Newtown Meeting House); the next Live at ETH concert, October 19, with David Wax Museum headlining (6:30, tickets $20; edmondtownhall.org/liveateth); and the next Natalie’s Open Mic (Sunday, October 21, 5 to 8 pm, at Foundry Kitchen & Tavern, 1 Glen Road), which will feature performers under age 21 offering music and readings.

Newtown Parks & Recreation will present The Second Annual Fall Carnival at Fairfield Hills (Friday, October 19, 6 to 10 pm; Saturday, October 20, 2 to 10 pm; and Sunday, October 21, 1 to 5 pm; purchase tickets at the event); Sandy Hook resident and author Sophfronia Scott will host the next installation of her Connecticut Author’s Reading Series (Sunday, October 21, 2 pm, C.H. Booth Library) with special guests to include Tom Seigel reading from his debut novel; local writers will be celebrated in “The Wordsmiths,” with personal works including humor, essays, and performance to be shared (Wednesday, October 24, 7 pm, participants TBA, at Newtown Meeting House, free); internationally acclaimed pianist Konstanza Chernov will perform at the meeting house (Sunday, October 28, 3 pm, $10) in a recital that will benefit the historic building; and a double feature Someday Cinema Series offering with screenings of Bride of Frankenstein and The Beast with Five Fingers (Sunday, October 28, 3 and 7 pm, Edmond Town Hall) will close out this year’s arts festival events.


‘In The Bag’

Newtown Municipal Center is hosting a presentation of “In The Bag: The Art & Politics Of The Reusable Bag Movement.” 

On view since early September, the traveling exhibition brings awareness to the harm created to the planet through the discardment of single-use plastic bags, creative ways people around the world have recycled those bags and other found objects, and works by contemporary artists using single-use bags and other found objects.

On view weekdays through September 28, the exhibition will also be open September 14-15, 11 am-5 pm each day, in conjunction with the 2018 Newtown Arts Festival weekend presentation.

Newtown Environmental Action Team representative Susan Kassirer confirmed those hours to The Newtown Bee this week, and added that the reusable shopping bags designed by Newtown student Adriana Russo, which debuted last weekend during the exhibition's opening reception, will also be available at that location.


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