Darien Bicentennial Opening Ceremonies on Friday, Keynote by Scott Pelley

Rolling Out The Red Carpet for Darien’s 2020 Bicentennial Year

Amidst monumental murals depicting key events from Darien’s history, the town will kick off its Bicentennial year with a glittering celebration to formally launch the town’s 200th birthday year celebrations.

The Bicentennial Opening Ceremony will be held on Friday, January 10 in the Town Hall Auditorium, 2 Renshaw Road. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the presentation begins at 7 p.m. (Snow date: January 11 at 2 p.m.) The event will include special guest presentations, including performances by Darien High School’s Tudor Singers, and a keynote address by Darien’s Scott Pelley, award-winning correspondent with 60 Minutes and author of Truth Worth Telling: A Reporter’s Search for Meaning in the Stories of our Times. 

“We are inviting the entire community to mark the beginning of a very special year for Darien. Our town’s 200th birthday will be a time to celebrate everything that is truly special about this community,” said First Selectman Jayme Stevenson.

The Opening Ceremony is free and open to the public. No registration is required, and seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Following the Opening Ceremony, there will be a ticketed Bicentennial Reception hosted at the Darien Arts Center, co-sponsored by the Darien Historical Society. Wine, refreshments and hors d’oeuvres will be served. Palmer’s Market will cater the event and wine will be supplied by Sipstirs. Tickets are limited, and cost $45 if purchased in advance and $50 if purchased at the door. Please visit www.darienarts.org for information and to purchase tickets.

When doors open at Town Hall at 6:30 p.m., a slideshow presentation will feature old photographs from the collection of the Darien Historical Society and the Tudor Singers will perform special selections.

Members of Scouts BSA -- Troop 53 will open the formal program at 7 p.m. with the presentation of the colors. Al Miller, chairman of the town’s 2020 Bicentennial Committee, will deliver opening remarks and First Selectman Stevenson will present a welcoming address.

“This celebration is all about getting the community fired up with hometown pride,” said Miller. “Set against the backdrop of the WPA murals depicting momentous events from our town’s history, the auditorium at Town Hall is the perfect venue.”

The highlight of the evening will be a presentation by Pelley, best known for his work on 60 Minutes and as anchor and managing editor of CBS Evening News. Pelley will discuss his inspiring new memoir Truth Worth Telling, a book that brings readers to the front lines of history by chronicling the stories of those who have lived through recent historic events. During the Opening Ceremony, Pelley will share his thoughts on free speech and freedom of the press, and how poignant and unforgettable stories of today become the history of tomorrow.

Following the Opening Ceremony, there will be a book sale and signing with Pelley, arranged by Barrett Bookstore. Also, 2020 merchandise featuring the official Bicentennial 2020 logo (hats and t-shirts) will be available to purchase. Both the 2020 Bicentennial logo and the merchandise were designed by Darien High School students. All 2020 commemorative items cost $20 each and may be purchased with either cash or check. Proceeds benefit the town’s 2020 celebrations.

Nearly 80 percent of the anticipated expenses for the town’s 2020 expenses will be raised through private donations, according to Miller.

To sponsor or donate, please mail check to Town of Darien, and include “2020 Bicentennial” in the memo line of the check. Checks may be mailed to Darien Town Hall, 2 Renshaw Road, Darien, CT 06820 and include ATT: 2020 Bicentennial on the envelope.

Information on Bicentennial events and projects is available at www.darienct.gov/2020.To participate, volunteer or donate visit www.darienct.gov/2020 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Darien’s 2020 Bicentennial Committee wishes to thank its First Official 2020 Sponsors:

Platinum Benefactor:

A special thank you to The Darien Foundation for the $32,000 Leadership Grant to fund the Darien Heritage Trail

Platinum Benefactor:

A special thank you to The Darien Foundation for the $32,000 Leadership Grant to fund the Darien Heritage Trail

Gold Sponsors:

Baywater Properties

Crestwood Advisors

DR Bank

Hollow Tree Self Storage

The Waters Edge at Giovanni’s

Silver Sponsor:

RAND Insurance

Bronze Sponsors:

Barrett Bookstore

Brown Thayer Shedd Insurance Agency

Town of Darien 2020 Bicentennial Events:

Bicentennial Opening Ceremony Friday, Jan. 10. Doors Open: 6:30 p.m. | Program: 7 p.m. Town Hall Auditorium, 2 Renshaw Road

Snow Date — January 11 at 2 p.m.

Weed Beach Festival’s Bicentennial Bash Saturday, June 6 Anniversary Day Friday, June 12 at 6 p.m. Slawson Cemetery,

Hanson Road Heritage Day Celebration October 24 from 10 to 4 Darien Historical Society & Mather Homestead Featuring: The Fifth Connecticut Regiment


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