Fairfield's HamletHub https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield Tue, 19 Oct 2021 18:32:52 -0400 HamletHub.com Halloween Events at Fairfield Museum https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50490-halloween-events-at-fairfield-museum50490-halloween-events-at-fairfield-museum https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50490-halloween-events-at-fairfield-museum50490-halloween-events-at-fairfield-museum

Fairfield, CT — Come one and all to celebrate the spooky season at the Fairfield Museum and History Center! Enjoy loads of Halloween fun on October 24 from 12-4 for Halloween on the Museum Commons, and from October 29-30 for Legends and Hauntings: A Halloween Experience in the Old Burying Ground.

Halloween on the Green

Witches, goblins, and ghouls are invited to Halloween on the Green for a day of non-stop Halloween fun! Come in costume to the Museum’s fifth annual Halloween on the Green on October 24 from 12-4pm. This free family event takes place on the Museum Commons (370 Beach Road) behind the Fairfield Museum. Featuring a costume parade, trick-or-treating, tours of the historic buildings, art-making activities, a bounce house, food trucks, and more, this Halloween extravaganza is not one to miss. Local businesses will host additional activities, and the entire area will be transformed into an enchanting Halloween village.

There will be food trucks to enjoy, including Proof Pizza Truck, Uncle G's Comfort Foods, Ted's Steamed Cheeseburgers, Flacos Tacos, Cheesy Duz It, DrewbaQ, and Lobster Craft.

In case of inclement weather, the event will be cancelled. Details about the day’s festivities can be found on the Fairfield Museum website at www.fairfieldhistory.org.

Event Support

Halloween on the Green is organized by the Fairfield Museum, the Town of Fairfield, and the Fairfield Chamber of Commerce. Generous support for the event has been provided by the Fairfield Rotary Club, Junkluggers, Knights of Columbus, Fidelity St. John’s #3, Eye Physicians and Surgeons PC, Filling in the Blanks, Denise Walsh and Partners, and Lesko & Polke Funeral Home, as well as many local businesses.

Legends and Hauntings: A Halloween Experience in the Old Burying Ground

Fairfield’s history comes alive in the town’s centuries-old Burying Ground where spirits share the scary legends of days gone by. Feel your spine shiver listening to true ghost stories and local folklore as night descends and the dry leaves rustle in the trees. Did body snatching happen in the cemetery? Did witches really live in Fairfield? What do all those skulls on the grave stones mean?

As you walk among the ancient gravestones of the Old Burying Ground, prepare to be greeted by some of the spellbinding characters buried there. Meet Eunice Burr, Samuel Smedley and Goody Knapp who was convicted and executed for witchcraft in 1653, while discovering long-buried legends that have haunted Fairfield for nearly 400 years.

“This year's team of 6 local actors and professional creative staff is excited to be returning to the Old Burying Ground for this immersive theatrical experience this Halloween weekend,” says director Eli Newsom. “Audiences will be treated to great writing and storytelling in a striking outdoor environment right here at the Fairfield Museum in downtown Fairfield.”

These outdoor, immersive performances take place on October 29-30 from 6-9pm, with showings at 6, 6:20, 6:40, 7, 7:20, 7:40, 8, and 8:20pm. Each performance is 45 minutes long and is recommended for those over 12 years old.

If the events are cancelled due to inclement weather, the Museum will make every effort to reschedule. Registration is required; visit www.fairfieldhistory.org to buy tickets.

About the Fairfield Museum and History Center

Fairfield Museum and History Center is a vibrant nexus of community life offering dynamic family programs and exhibitions, sparking dialogue and deliberating the challenges of the future. Central to our community-focused mission is a desire to provide important historical context to pressing issues of our time, and to offer a safe, trustworthy environment where multiple perspectives can be heard, and collective solutions explored.

The Fairfield Museum is located at 370 Beach Road, Fairfield, CT and is open every day from 10am to 4pm. Admission for Museum Members is free, non-member adults are $5, students and seniors $3, and kids under 5 are free. Become a Fairfield Museum member for only $30 and enjoy free admission plus many other benefits.

For more information, visit www.fairfieldhistory.org

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bornies@optonline.net (Biana Bova ) Events Tue, 19 Oct 2021 12:13:12 -0400
Fairfield Museum Awarded National Endowment for the Humanities Grant https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50489-fairfield-museum-awarded-national-endowment-for-the-humanities-grant50489-fairfield-museum-awarded-national-endowment-for-the-humanities-grant https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50489-fairfield-museum-awarded-national-endowment-for-the-humanities-grant50489-fairfield-museum-awarded-national-endowment-for-the-humanities-grant

Fairfield CT – The Fairfield Museum has received a highly competitive Sustaining the Humanities through the American Rescue Plan (SHARP) grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. One of only 115 SHARP grants awarded nationwide, the grant will support the Fairfield Museum’s efforts to resume its on-site programs and install new exhibitions focusing on the fascinating history of indigenous peoples and African Americans in southwestern Connecticut.

“The Fairfield Museum is deeply honored to receive this generous grant from NEH to create a new long-term exhibition that will explore southwestern CT’s diverse and complex history,” said executive director Michael Jehle. “The new exhibit and related educational programs will provide a more inclusive examination of the region’s 17th and 18th century history that includes new archeological discoveries related to pre-colonial Native American history, the role of African Americans in CT’s early history, and how race, gender, and class dynamics influenced the establishment of colonial Connecticut.”

Fairfield Museum and History Center370 Beach Road, Fairfield CT 06824 203-259-1598 fairfieldhistory.org

“The American Rescue Plan recognizes that the cultural and educational sectors are essential components of the United States economy and civic life, vital to the health and resilience of American communities,” said NEH Acting Chairman Adam Wolfson. “These new grants will provide a lifeline to the country’s colleges and universities, museums, libraries, archives, historical sites and societies, save thousands of jobs in the humanities placed at risk by the pandemic, and help bring economic recovery to cultural and educational institutions and those they serve.”

The Fairfield Museum’s grant award compliments earlier support from the National Park Service’s American Battlefield Protection Program that has helped uncover intriguing new archeological evidence related to the 1635 Battle of Munnacommock (Pequot) Swamp in present day Southport, CT that was the final battle of the Pequot War and the catalyst to the European settlement of southwestern Connecticut. New data and artifacts uncovered during that project will be included in the NEH-funded exhibition scheduled to open in 2022. For more information, visit www.Fairfieldhistory.org.

About the Fairfield Museum and History Center:

Fairfield Museum and History Center, located at 370 Beach Road, Fairfield, CT, is a vibrant nexus of community life offering dynamic family programs and exhibitions, sparking dialogue and deliberating the challenges of the future. Central to our community-focused mission is a desire to provide important historical context to pressing issues of our time, and to offer a safe, trustworthy environment where multiple perspectives can be heard, and collective solutions explored. www.fairfieldhistory.org.

About the National Endowment for the Humanities:

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at neh.gov.

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bornies@optonline.net (Michael Jehle ) Places Tue, 19 Oct 2021 12:07:58 -0400
Why Small Businesses Matter in Fairfield: The Batch Pantry https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50396-why-small-businesses-matter-the-batch-pantry50396-why-small-businesses-matter-the-batch-pantry https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50396-why-small-businesses-matter-the-batch-pantry50396-why-small-businesses-matter-the-batch-pantry

Why Small Businesses Matter

Shop small, do big things for your community

Why Small Businesses Matter puts a spotlight on the local merchants who donate their time, talent, goods, and services for the betterment of our community. The shop local movement spreads virally as local businesses who are “tagged” have the opportunity to share their story!

You're IT The Batch Pantry!

Three questions with Deborah Latham, founder of The Batch Pantry.

Why did you start your business?

I've been cooking and baking for years. Friends told me years ago I should really start my own business. I thought about it for a while and it's something I love doing so I decided it was time.

What is your best-selling product/service?

Cookies and cupcakes seem to be the most popular. I've done Avenger Cookies, unicorn cookies, etc. for birthdays, plus, hearts, tulips, and flower cookies for a Memorial service, and many more. Visit my website thebatchpantry.com to see more.

How many local businesses do you use to support your business (products and services) and can you name them?

We use Fairfield County Bank to support our business!

Visit The Batch Pantry online here!

HamletHub thanks Fairfield County Bank for making our Why Small Businesses Matter series possible!

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daliborboldis@gmail.com (Dan) Places Tue, 19 Oct 2021 06:33:00 -0400
Caregiving: Love What You Do https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50488-caregiving-love-what-you-do50488-caregiving-love-what-you-do https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50488-caregiving-love-what-you-do50488-caregiving-love-what-you-do

When your company is a best place to work, it attracts and produces employees who are eager and determined to drive your business forward...

Fairfield, CT - Great Place to Work Institute (https://www.greatplacetowork.com/certified-company/7024640) has honored ComForCare Home Care (www.comforcare.com/fairfieldct) with certification as a Great Place to Work.  The certification process considered thousands of employee surveys from across the U.S. Great Place to Work, an independent research and consulting firm, evaluated more than 60 elements of team members' experience on the job. These included employee pride in the organization's community impact, belief that their work makes a difference, and feeling their work has special meaning. Rankings are based on employees' experiences, no matter who they are or what they do.  90% of employees agreed that ComForCare is a great place to work.

Caregiver training is a critical component of ComForCare’s culture. This year, the company rolled out a monthly training program to ensure caregivers can grow in their field and equip them to handle a variety of situations, such as managing fall risk, dementia behaviors, Parkinson’s disease, and identifying red flags of stroke, diabetes, and more.

Since this initial certification, ComForCare Home Care also has been awarded:

ComForCare loves its caregivers and welcomes you to apply for open positions: https://fairfieldct.careerplug.com/j/0xbn7q 

ComForCare Home Care is a premier provider of in-home care with nearly 200 independently owned and operated locations in the U.S., Canada and the U.K., helping older adults live independently in their own homes and continue to do all the things they love.  The home care company is committed to helping people live their best life possible and also offers special programs for people with Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia.

ComForCare Home Care

Serving Fairfield & New Haven Counties

1700 Post Road, Suite E5

Fairfield, CT 06824

(203) 612-8966

www.ComForCare.com/FairfieldCT

fairfieldct@comforcare.com

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bornies@optonline.net (Neil Anand, Owner, ComForCare Home Care, Community Contributor) Places Mon, 18 Oct 2021 06:24:08 -0400
Golf Performance Center Announces Women's College Prep Series November 5-7 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50475-golf-performance-center-announces-women-s-college-prep-series-november-5-750475-golf-performance-center-announces-women-s-college-prep-series-november-5-7 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50475-golf-performance-center-announces-women-s-college-prep-series-november-5-750475-golf-performance-center-announces-women-s-college-prep-series-november-5-7

Golf Performance Center's (GPC) College Prep Series is the Northeast’s premier event for college-bound golfers and their parents. This year, we’re excited to dedicate it entirely to girls age 13 and older.

Reserve your seat HERE.

The College Prep Series features top PGA professionals and elite women’s college golf coaches in a multi-day, immersive session designed with one purpose in mind: helping aspiring junior golfers achieve their dreams of playing at the next level.

Junior players at the College Prep Series will have the opportunity to undergo a Player Development Index (PDI) Assessment conducted by elite PGA and TPI-certified performance coaches. The PDI Assessment takes a deep, objective look at key skill areas including putting, chipping, bunker play, shot-making, mental proficiency and physical skills, and precisely identifies areas that need improvement. The assessment will result in an Index (PDI), giving players a number to quantify the state of their game and the ability to track progress toward their goals.

HARD DATA ONLY, NO GUESSWORK!

Players and parents will also participate in detailed, guided sessions explaining the college golf recruiting process and featuring head coaches at top college golf programs.

Players and parents will leave with a detailed report covering the weaknesses that may be holding them back from college golf and with a thorough understanding of the recruiting process.

Learn more and reserve your seat HERE.

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kerry@ducey.org (Golf Performance Center) Places Mon, 18 Oct 2021 03:36:00 -0400
Westport Playhouse to Host Family Fun Day, Oct. 30 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50487-westport-playhouse-to-host-family-fun-day-oct-3050487-westport-playhouse-to-host-family-fun-day-oct-30 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50487-westport-playhouse-to-host-family-fun-day-oct-3050487-westport-playhouse-to-host-family-fun-day-oct-30

Westport, CT - Westport Country Playhouse will host a “Family Fun Day” on Saturday, October 30, from 12 to 4 p.m., an outdoor event with activities for kids, treats, food trucks, community food drive, beer tastings, and costume parade for kids and dogs. In addition, the Playhouse box office will be open from 1 to 3 p.m. for 25% discounts on in-person tickets to the upcoming performances of “Doubt: A Parable” as well as 2022 Flex Passes. Admission is free and open to the public. Rain date is Sunday, October 31, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“The Playhouse is happy to welcome families in our community back to our campus for a unique event that combines fun family friendly activities and giving back,” said Jennifer Carroll, Playhouse community and sales manager.

“Family Fun Day” begins at 12 p.m. with a ghost story on the Playhouse patio as guests listen to the WSHU Public Radio broadcast of the latest play in the Playhouse Radio Theater series, “Spectres and Spirits,” by Richard R. Henry, directed by Mark Shanahan. At 1 p.m., Firefly the Woodland Fairy will host a Story Hour on the patio.  At 2 p.m., a children’s costume parade will march around the Playhouse campus, followed at 2:30 p.m. by a pet parade with treats courtesy of Earth Animal. At 3 p.m., another Story Hour will be hosted by Jenny Nelson, reading “There is a Witch in Your Book.”

Children are encouraged to bring their own pumpkins for decorating.  Other activities include going on a scavenger hunt, making an origami ghost, and weaving a spider web.

EP Local Food Truck and Food Truck Refinery will be on site with their specialties available for purchase. Hot drinks and apple cider donuts will also be for sale. Free beer tasting will be provided by Two Roads Brewing Company. Vendors are subject to change.  

The Playhouse will host a community food drive to benefit Open Doors Shelter in Norwalk during the “Family Fun Day,” as well as serving as a Toys for Tots drop-off location through December 10. Any guest donating food, a new book, or a toy to these charity drives at “Family Fun Day” will be entered into a drawing for a pair of tickets to a show in the Playhouse’s 2022 season. 

Masks are encouraged though not required while outdoors. Restrooms are located indoors where masks are required. Playhouse staff and volunteers will be masked and vaccinated.

“Family Fun Day” details at:  https://www.westportplayhouse.org/show/familyfunday/

Last year, the global pandemic shut down the Playhouse’s 2020 Season. During 2021, the Playhouse has produced online, outdoors, and on the radio. This November, in-person theatrical productions will resume with a live staging of John Patrick Shanley’s Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning drama, “Doubt: A Parable,” playing November 2 - 20. In addition, the play will be filmed before a live audience for on-demand streaming at home, from November 11 – 21.

Opening the 2022 season from April 5 through April 23 will be the musical, “Next to Normal,” with music by Tom Kitt, book and lyrics by Brian Yorkey, and directed by Marcos Santana.  “Next to Normal,” a 2009 Tony Award®-winning musical and winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, gives an unconventional look at a family in crisis, while pushing the boundaries of contemporary musical theater.

“Straight White Men,” written by Young Jean Lee and directed by Mark Lamos, will play from May 24 through June 11. It’s Christmas Eve, and Ed has invited his three grown sons back to their family home for Chinese takeout, pranks, and gossip. But when an impossible question threatens the cheery festivities, they’re forced to face their own identities.

A dance-filled, reimagined, sassy, and sultry “Ain’t Misbehavin’” will run from July 5 through July 23. The 1978 Tony Award® winner for Best Musical celebrates the legendary jazz great Fats Waller. The show as you’ve never seen it before will be directed and choreographed by Camille A. Brown, 2019 Tony® nominee for Best Choreography for “Choir Boy.” The musical is conceived by Richard Maltby Jr. and Murray Horwitz. Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield, MA, will co-produce.

“4000 Miles,” written by Amy Herzog and directed by David Kennedy, Playhouse associate artistic director, will be staged from August 23 through September 10. After suffering a major loss while on a cross-country bike trip, 21-year-old Leo seeks solace from his feisty 91-year-old grandmother in her Greenwich Village apartment. Over the course of a single month, these unlikely roommates infuriate, bewilder, and ultimately find each other. “4000 Miles” was a finalist for the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, and winner of the 2012 Obie Award for Best New Play.

The 2022 Season will culminate with “From the Mississippi Delta” by Endesha Ida Mae Holland, from October 18 through November 5, 2022. The journey begins in Greenwood, Mississippi--the Delta--where Phelia works in the cotton fields. Her experiences inspire her to dream, sweeping her into the momentum of the civil rights movement and attending college in the north. The play won a Los Angeles Drama-Logue Award and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

2021 Season Sponsor is the Eunice and David Bigelow Foundation. 2021 Season Media Sponsors are Moffly Media and WSHU Public Radio.

All titles, artists, dates, times, and formats are subject to change.

For updates on Covid-19 health and safety protocols at the Playhouse, visithttps://www.westportplayhouse.org/visit/covid19safety/

For more information on “Family Fun Day” or ticket purchases, visit www.westportplayhouse.org, or call the box office Tues., through Fri., 12 to 6 p.m., at (203) 227-4177, or visit Westport Country Playhouse, 25 Powers Court, off Route 1, Westport. Stay connected to the Playhouse on Facebook (Westport Country Playhouse), follow on Twitter (@WCPlayhouse), and on YouTube (WestportPlayhouse).

ABOUT WESTPORT COUNTRY PLAYHOUSE

Founded in 1931, Westport Country Playhouse is celebrating its 90th anniversary year. The mission of Westport Country Playhouse is to enrich, enlighten, and engage the community through the power of professionally produced theater of the highest caliber and the welcoming experience of the Playhouse campus. The not-for-profit Playhouse provides this experience in multiple ways by offering live theater experiences of the highest quality, under the artistic direction of Mark Lamos; educational and community engagement events to further explore the work on stage; the New Works Initiative, a program dedicated to the discovery, development, and production of new live theatrical works; special performances and programs for students and teachers with extensive curriculum support material; Script in Hand play readings to deepen relationships with audiences and artists; the renowned Woodward Internship Program during the summer months for aspiring theater professionals; Family Festivities presentations to delight young and old alike and to promote reading through live theater; and the beautiful and historic Playhouse campus open for enjoyment and community events year-round.  Charity Navigator has recently awarded its top 4-star charity rating to the Playhouse in recognition of its strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency.

Photo Attached:  Activities at a previous Westport Country Playhouse “Family Fun Day” – Photo by Kat Gloor

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bornies@optonline.net (Pat Blaufuss) Events Fri, 15 Oct 2021 12:23:51 -0400
Lineup Set for Fairfield Restaurant Week, Oct. 25 - Nov. 7 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50486-lineup-set-for-fairfield-restaurant-week-oct-25-nov-750486-lineup-set-for-fairfield-restaurant-week-oct-25-nov-7 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50486-lineup-set-for-fairfield-restaurant-week-oct-25-nov-750486-lineup-set-for-fairfield-restaurant-week-oct-25-nov-7

Fairfield, CT - First Selectwoman Brenda L. Kupchick is pleased to announce that 28 restaurants will participate in the 2021 edition of Fairfield Restaurant Week, now in its 10th year. The ever-popular annual event will run for two full weeks from Monday, October 25 through Sunday, November 7.  

Restaurants participating in this year’s event will be offering special prix fixe or other discounted lunch and dinner menus showcasing their finest culinary offerings. Additionally, several restaurants will be offering takeout and family meal deals.

First Selectwoman Kupchick said, “Fairfield is excited to sponsor this town-wide event, celebrating our many great restaurants. Restaurant Week gives the public the opportunity to visit longtime favorites or try someplace new. With the variety of cuisine that’s offered during this event, it’s easy to see why Fairfield continues to be a top dining destination.”  

Acknowledging the pandemic and the difficulties that many businesses continue to face, Mark Barnhart, Fairfield’s Director of Community & Economic Development, commented, “It’s been a trying time for many small businesses.  Between staffing shortages, increased costs and supply chain issues, restaurateurs face a host of challenges.  We hope that residents and visitors alike will be able to enjoy and support the many restaurants that Fairfield has to offer, while also being conscience of the continued difficulties faced by these businesses as a result of the pandemic,” stated.  This year’s event is slated to run two full weeks, giving patrons more time to visit their favorite eating establishments.

This year’s lineup of restaurants includes the following establishments:   

55 Wine Bar & Wood Grille * Artisan * Aurora’s * Barcelona Wine Bar & Restaurant * Beijing Chinese Restaurant * Bella Sera Ristorante * Blackstones Grille * Boca Grille & Raw Bar * Bodega Taco Bar * The Castle on Post * Centro Ristorante * The Chelsea * Colony Grill * Flipside Burgers & Bar * Geronimo Tequila Bar & Southwest Grill * The Gray Goose * The Little Pub * Malibu Taco * Metro Kitchen & Bar * Old Post Tavern * Paci * Puerto Vallarta Fairfield * Quattro Pazzi Café * The Sinclair * Smokin’ Noodle * Sonia’s Gourmet Kitchen * The Stand Vegan Café * Taj Indian Cuisine

The public can visit www.experiencefairfieldct.org/eats to learn more about participating restaurants and to view sample menus. 

First Selectwoman Kupchick also encouraged the public to explore the many programs and events taking place in Fairfield during the two weeks of Restaurant Week. Community and Economic Director Mark Barnhart added, "We wanted to highlight the many things to do in Fairfield, as well as places to eat, to create more of a 'night out' experience." He continued, "The Town appreciates the support of our community partners for featuring a spectacular array of events and activities in conjunction with Fairfield Restaurant Week." For a list of activities and events, please visit www.experiencefairfieldct.org/events.

Bankwell Senior Vice-President Robert Palermo said, “Bankwell is thrilled to support this community event, and I look forward -- like everyone else -- to sampling the best that Fairfield restaurants have to offer.”  

The Town of Fairfield is very grateful to Bankwell as the lead sponsor of this year’s event, as well as to Fairfield University for its financial support. Media partners for this event include: Star 99.9, WSHU, and Hearst Media/Connecticut Post.  

For information or questions, please contact the Fairfield Community and Economic Development Office at 203-256-3120.

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bornies@optonline.net (Jackie Bertolone ) Events Fri, 15 Oct 2021 12:16:37 -0400
National Friends of Libraries Week October 17-23 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50485-national-friends-of-libraries-week-october-17-2350485-national-friends-of-libraries-week-october-17-23 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50485-national-friends-of-libraries-week-october-17-2350485-national-friends-of-libraries-week-october-17-23

Fairfield, Conn. -  The Fairfield Public Library will be spending the week of October 17-23, 2021 celebrating its Friends of the Library organization as part of the 16th annual National Friends of Libraries Week. 

In existence since 2003, The Friends of the Fairfield Public Library is a non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the partnership between the Fairfield Public Library and the community, and advocating for quality library service for all of the people of the Town of Fairfield. 

Over the past eighteen years, The Friends have provided over $450,000 to the Library to support special programs, services and resources not included in the operating budget, including a commitment to fund the Library’s museum pass program with $10,000 a year for 10 years.

Acting Town Librarian Jan Fisher said, “We could not do what we do without the generous support of the Friends of FPL. Their dedicated service and advocacy provide a wealth of opportunities and resources for the community. We are lucky to have such good Friends!” 

For the past fourteen years The Friends have sponsored the Soundwaves Concert Series featuring the internationally acclaimed Lions Gate Trio in performances at the Library in the spring and fall. The Friends also manage the Bruce S. Kershner Gallery at the Main Library, where a new art exhibit is presented every 7-8 weeks, together with an opening reception featuring intimate presentations by the artists and light refreshments.  

After the temporary closing of the Kershner Gallery, as well as a year-long suspension of the Soundwaves Concerts due to the COVID-19 pandemic, The Friends are thrilled to announce the re-opening of the Gallery as of Thursday, October 7 with the current exhibit “Behind the Scenes,” and a Soundwaves Concert scheduled for Saturday, November 13, 2021 at 2pm in the Main Library’s Memorial Room. 

As part of their fundraising efforts, The Friends oversee the ongoing sale of gently used books, tapes and CDs in the Twice REaD Room at the Main Library, and offer a Bookplates as Gifts program which allows people to honor or remember a loved one with a bookplate placed in a new book to be added to the Library’s collection. Funds raised from these programs directly benefit the Library. 

To commemorate National Friends of Libraries Week, tables will be set up at both Libraries, Sunday through Saturday, with Friends brochures and materials. Patrons are encouraged to join and learn more about what the Friends do. 

The Friends will be offering a free book from their Twice REaD Room to anyone joining the organization at the Main Library’s Ambassador Desk during the following hours: Monday, Oct. 18, 10am-2pm and 3-5pm; Tuesday, Oct. 19, 10am-6pm; Wednesday, Oct. 20, 10am-12pm and 2-4pm; Thursday, Oct. 21, 10am-12pm and 2-5pm; Friday, Oct. 22, 9-11am, 12-2pm and 3-5pm; and Saturday, Oct. 23, 1-3pm.

For more information about the Friends of the Fairfield Public Library, please visit http://fairfieldpubliclibrary.org/our-community/friends-of-fairfield-public-library/.

All programs at the Fairfield Public Library are free.  For more information about Library programs, visit us online at:  www.fairfieldpubliclibrary.org or call 203-256-3160. Follow the Fairfield Public Library on Twitter: www.twitter.com/fairfieldpublib and Facebook: www.facebook.com/fairfieldlibrary.  

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bornies@optonline.net (Joleen Marren) Places Fri, 15 Oct 2021 12:11:24 -0400
Westport Playhouse & WSHU Partner for Halloween Play https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50484-westport-playhouse-wshu-partner-for-halloween-play50484-westport-playhouse-wshu-partner-for-halloween-play https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50484-westport-playhouse-wshu-partner-for-halloween-play50484-westport-playhouse-wshu-partner-for-halloween-play

Westport, CT - In the spirit of the Halloween season, Westport Country Playhouse Radio Theater, a free-of-charge broadcast series, will present an original audio play, “Spectres and Spirits,” airing on WSHU Public Radio on Saturday, October 30, at 12:06 p.m. (following the national news), with a rebroadcast on Sunday, October 31, at 4:06 p.m. Radio station frequencies and locations are listed at wshu.org. “Spectres and Spirits” will also be accessible on the Playhouse’s website (westportplayhouse.org) from November 1 – 21.  Playwright and lead performer is Richard R. Henry. Director of the play and curator of Playhouse Radio Theater is Mark Shanahan, who is also curator of the Playhouse’s Script in Hand playreadings. 

“From the wonderfully macabre mind of frequent Playhouse collaborator Richard R. Henry, comes ‘Spectres and Spirits’,” said Shanahan. “With a little nod to Orson Welles’ classic ‘War of the Worlds’  broadcast, which sounded so real audiences believed it to be a true news broadcast, Henry’s radio play perfectly mimics the format and sound of a modern podcast, allowing us to eavesdrop on a fun-filled tale of ghostly horror.

“Along with John Gromada’s pitch perfect and immersive original sound design and an expert cast joining our wonderful writer/performer, ’Spectres and Spirits’ delivers a neat trick and a chilling Halloween treat which our Playhouse Radio Theater listeners are sure to love,” added Shanahan.

In “Spectres and Spirits,” Jeff Switzer is the host of a popular and quirky ghost-hunting podcast. The play dramatizes the supposedly lost audio recordings from the last episode Switzer hosted before he went missing.

The cast includes the playwright himself, Richard R. Henry as Jeff Switzer (Westport Country Playhouse’s “Room Service”; Off-Broadway’s “Two Gentlemen of Verona-The Musical”Yale Repertory Theatre’s “Assassins”; and Goodspeed Musicals’ “Oliver!”  www.richardhenrynyc.com); Erin Elizabeth Clemons as Helen Davis (Broadway’s “Les Misérables,” “Hamilton”; National Tours of “Hamilton,” “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical”); and Tina Johnson as Rose Miller (Broadway’s “State Fair,” “Damn Yankees,” “She Loves Me,” “South Pacific,” “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas”).

Director Mark Shanahan appeared at Westport Country Playhouse in “Around the World in 80 Days,” “Tryst,” “Sedition,” “David Copperfield,” “Journey's End,” and over 20 Script in Hand playreadings, and directed readings of “Butterflies Are Free,” with Blythe Danner and Jonathan Groff, and “The Greatest Gift” by Weston playwright David Wiltse. He is the creator and curator of Westport Country Playhouse Radio Theater and writer/director of the Playhouse radio adaptation “A Merry Little Christmas Carol.” He is also curator of the Playhouse’s Script in Hand Series. New York acting credit includes “The 39 Steps,” “Small World,” “Checkers,” “Tryst,” “The Shaughraun,” “As Bees in Honey Drown,” and “The Internationalist.” His directorial work has been seen at Alley Theatre, George Street Playhouse, Virginia Stage, Arkansas Rep, White Heron, Fulton Opera House, Weston Playhouse, Florida Rep, Penguin Rep, Merrimack Rep, The Cape Playhouse, and many more. He has written numerous radio plays for White Heron’s Ghost Light Series (featuring Christopher Plummer and Judith Ivey, among others), and is the author of the Off-Broadway and regional hit comedy, “The Dingdong“; “A Merry Little Christmas Carol”; “A Murder at Fernly Hall”; and “A Sherlock Carol,” which premieres this fall Off-Broadway at New World Stages. www.mark-shanahan.net

John Gromada, sound design and original music, is a composer and sound designer for theater, film, television, and dance. He has been on the production team for 10 Westport Country Playhouse shows, including “Of Mice and Men.” Best known for his theater music for plays, he has written scores and designed sound for many critically acclaimed, award-winning Broadway productions. Gromada received a Tony nomination for his work on “The Trip to Bountiful” and has also received three Drama Desk Awards, and the Lucille Lortel, Obie, Henry Hewes, Drama-Logue, EDDY, and Connecticut Critics Circle awards.www.johngromada.com.

Megan Smith is production coordinator.

Following the audio play will be a brief discussion with playwright and director of “Spectres and Spirits.”

The audio play runs approximately 30 minutes. Appropriate for ages eight and up.  Complete details at https://www.westportplayhouse.org/spectresandspirits

“Spectres and Spirits” marks the Playhouse’s third play commission for terrestrial radio and online audio platforms, in collaboration with WSHU. Productions are recorded for audio broadcast under strict Covid-19 protocols, with actors recording remotely from their own homes.

The Playhouse’s 2021 Season continues with “Doubt: A Parable,” the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning drama written by John Patrick Shanley and directed by David Kennedy, Playhouse associate artistic director, playing November 2 through November 21. A complete schedule is available at westportplayhouse.org

2021 Season Sponsor is the Eunice and David Bigelow Foundation. Production Sponsor is Barbara Samuelson.  2021 Season Media Sponsors are Moffly Media and WSHU Public Radio. 

All play titles, artists, dates, and formats are subject to change.

For Westport Country Playhouse tickets and information, visit westportplayhouse.org, call (203) 227-4177, or email atboxoffice@westportplayhouse.org. Stay connected to the Playhouse on Facebook (Westport Country Playhouse), follow on Twitter (@WCPlayhouse), and on YouTube (WestportPlayhouse).

ABOUT WESTPORT COUNTRY PLAYHOUSE

Founded in 1931, Westport Country Playhouse is celebrating its 90th anniversary year. The mission of Westport Country Playhouse is to enrich, enlighten, and engage the community through the power of professionally produced theater of the highest caliber and the welcoming experience of the Playhouse campus.  The not-for-profit Playhouse provides this experience in multiple ways by offering live theater experiences of the highest quality, under the artistic direction of Mark Lamos; educational and community engagement events to further explore the work on stage; the New Works Initiative, a program dedicated to the discovery, development, and production of new live theatrical works; special performances and programs for students and teachers with extensive curriculum support material; Script in Hand play readings to deepen relationships with audiences and artists; the renowned Woodward Internship Program during the summer months for aspiring theater professionals; Family Festivities presentations to delight young and old alike and to promote reading through live theater; and the beautiful and historic Playhouse campus open for enjoyment and community events year-round.  Charity Navigator has recently awarded its top 4-star charity rating to the Playhouse in recognition of its strong financial health and commitment to accountability and transparency.

PHOTO: Richard R. Henry, playwright/actor

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bornies@optonline.net (Pat Blaufuss ) Events Fri, 15 Oct 2021 05:15:00 -0400
CFJ Presents Speaking of Men Breakfast, Nov. 4 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50483-cfj-presents-speaking-of-men-breakfast-nov-450483-cfj-presents-speaking-of-men-breakfast-nov-4 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50483-cfj-presents-speaking-of-men-breakfast-nov-450483-cfj-presents-speaking-of-men-breakfast-nov-4

Bridgeport, Ct— Jamal Stroud, a nationally-recognized motivational speaker and community activist, will offer the keynote address at The Center for Family Justice’s annual Speaking of Men Breakfast on Nov. 4 at the Trumbull Marriott.

Stroud will highlight a morning program that is part of the nonprofit’s ongoing efforts to engage more men and boys in its efforts to end domestic and sexual violence in the six local communities it serves. 

The 8:30 a.m. breakfast event will also include a special recognition of Milford resident Alan Masarek, a CFJ volunteer and co-chair of its Empower House campaign. Masarek recently finished a coast-to-coast bike ride from Portland, Ore. to Portland, Maine to support CFJ’s Empower House Project, its ambitious plans to open a new domestic violence safe house for abuse survivors sometime in 2022. 

Speaking of Men is a project of CFJ’s White Ribbon Committee, a group of male community leaders who work with the nonprofit’s team to engage more men and boys in its mission to eradicate domestic and sexual violence near and far. The committee is chaired by Gary MacNamara, the former police chief in Fairfield, who now serves as Executive Vice President of Government Affairs and Public Safety at Sacred Heart University. 

Stroud was selected as this year’s Speaking of Men keynote for the leadership he has demonstrated in providing mentorship to boys through his South Carolina-based nonprofit Big Homies, Lil Homies. The organization works to offer strong male mentors to boys who lack strong father figures in their lives. Stroud’s work and long-term commitment to these mentorship efforts was featured on and honored by The Ellen DeGeneres Show. In addition to his personal nonprofit, Stroud is also on the executive staff of Camp HOPE America, a network of camps across the United States which support children impacted by the trauma of abuse. CFJ operates the Elizabeth M. Pfriem Camp HOPE America-Bridgeport, which is an affiliate of this innovative and award-winning summer camp and year-long mentoring program. 

“Speaking of Men is so important to advancing our work because it highlights the role men can and do play in preventing abuse,” said Debra A. Greenwood, President & CEO of The Center for Family Justice. “Since we believe the seeds of future abuse often begin with traumatic experiences during childhood, having someone as captivating as Jamal Stroud speak to the importance addressing these issues with male teenagers and younger boys is critically important.” 

Greenwood also noted honoring Alan Masarek is a “wonderful way to show our Speaking of Men audience the way that men can be powerful examples and leaders in the efforts to put a stop to abuse.”  Throughout his cross-country bike journey, which began in August and ended in October, Masarek highlighted the prevalence of domestic violence and the need for safe shelter for victims in many of the communities he visited. His efforts helped raise tens of thousands of dollars and awareness about CFJ’s efforts to expand its shelter capacity for victims. As a result, the new Empower House safe house will open its doors some time next year. 

Tickets for the breakfast are $50 each. They can be purchased by visiting CenterforFamilyJustice.org or calling CFJ’s Development Team at 203-334-6154. 

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bornies@optonline.net (Beth Fitzpatrick ) Events Wed, 13 Oct 2021 13:10:11 -0400
GBS' Bassick H.S. Session Supports 76th Season Launch https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50482-gbs-bassick-h-s-session-supports-76th-season-launch50482-gbs-bassick-h-s-session-supports-76th-season-launch https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50482-gbs-bassick-h-s-session-supports-76th-season-launch50482-gbs-bassick-h-s-session-supports-76th-season-launch

Bridgeport, CT - The Greater Bridgeport Symphony featuring Conductor Eric Jacobsen and an orchestra of 55 musicians will play Dvorak “From the New World” along with a discussion led by Jacobsen. For students and faculty only, at Bassick High School, 1181 Fairfield Ave, Bridgeport, on October 14 from 1-1:40pm.

This is an annual cycle of High School full-scale concerts that GBS has been doing in Bridgeport since 2017, interrupted for two years by Covid.  Last year, GBS distributed concert videos which were used by the music teachers at Harding and Central high schools.  

This year, GBS will give free tickets to students and their families who want to see GBS’ 76th season opening show, titled The Spirit Of ’76, on Saturday, Oct. 16 at the Klein in Bridgeport. GBS wants to make sure that kids who want to be there can be there and share it with their families.

More About GBS' Return:

The Greater Bridgeport Symphony (GBS) returns to The Klein in Bridgeport, CT for the first time since the pandemic began on Saturday, October 16 at 8:00pm for its appropriately themed Spirit of 76 honoring both the orchestra’s 76th season and the American-related music in its program.  

Conductor Eric Jacobsen is back for his eighth season. Pianist Andrew Armstrong, a favorite of local audiences, will perform Rachmaninoff’s “Piano Concerto No. 1", which debuted in its finished form in Philadelphia in 1917. The October program brings back two compositions cancelled in Spring 2020 because of the pandemic: Dvorak’s “Symphony No. 9", “From the New World", which reflects the influence of American song and music on the Czech composer, and Gershwin’s rousing “An American in Paris.”  GBS will take this show on the road, performing Dvorak for students at Bridgeport’s Bassick High School on October 14.

Jacobsen will conduct three of the five concerts with the other two to be conducted by exciting up-and-comers: Brazilian-born Eduardo Leandro on November 13 and Israeli conductor Elinor Rufeizen on December 18. “We’ll have five incredible concerts this season, with Dvorak, Rachmaninoff, Gershwin, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, and Bach, and we even have a dance troupe joining us for an onstage appearance in March,” said Jacobsen.  

Leandro will make his conducting debut with GBS on Saturday, November 13 at 8:00pm at The Klein and will showcase perhaps the most iconic of all symphonies – Beethoven’s 5th– as well as soloist (and GBS concertmaster) Deborah Wong, who will perform Prokofiev’s “Violin Concerto No. 1."  African American composer Jessie Montgomery’s “Starburst” will round out the program.  Rufeizen’s concert on Saturday December 18 at 8:00pm at The Klein will center around operatic arias that tell stories of bringing people together, with works by Puccini, Rossini, Mozart, Strauss, and Weber.  Mendelssohn’s “Italian Symphony” and, of course, favorites for the holidays – will top off this special evening.

“Something I have hoped to do for years,” is how Jacobsen describes GBS’ offerings in March. “Everything is different about this concert!” says Mark Halstead, GBS’ Executive Director. The orchestra will perform Holst’s “The Planets” with the famous Dance Heginbotham troupe. Groups of about 120 concertgoers will be invited on to the stage at the Mertens Theater at Paier College (formerly the University of Bridgeport) during six performances over three nights. Patrons can choose from either of two shows on Thursday March 10, Friday March 11, or Saturday March 12.  In this intimate setting, the audience will feel part of the music and dance around them. Shows will be at 7:00pm and 8:45pm on each of the three nights, with a reception (at extra cost) between shows. “Our season theme of ‘Coming Together’ is so well-represented here,” says Halstead. “Music and dance will merge right around the audience.”

Finally on Saturday, April 9 at 8:00pm at The Klein, GBS will be joined by the Connecticut Chamber Choir and the Fairfield County Children’s Choir to complete the season. On the eve of Palm Sunday, the ensembles will join for Bach’s “St. John Passion,” one of the most dramatic ecclesiastical works ever composed.  Grand in scale, it tells the tale of Christ’s crucifixion through dramatic chorale music.

GBS unofficially began its 76th season with a bang, performing for 2,500 people at Bridgeport’s newest attraction, the Hartford Healthcare Amphitheater on Labor Day weekend. Their 75th season was anything but idle. Though there were no live indoor concerts in 2020-21, GBS presented a Covid-safe outdoor concert in September 2020 at Trumbull’s Indian Ledge Park. They followed this with a four-concert “eSubscription” season, with recorded full-orchestra concerts made available for in-home viewing all season long. It quickly became a fan favorite with viewers from all over the world, so the GBS is bringing it back again this year. These recorded concerts attracted such top-notch talent such as violinists Mira Wang and Simone Porter, as well as pianist Tiffany Poon. In addition to the eSubscription concert last December, Poon also hosted a livestream event from The Klein, and recorded an album with GBS, which is due out in the spring of 2022.

The videos created for the 2020-21 season were made available free-of-charge to the Bridgeport public schools and have already been used in music programs there. The videos will also allow residents of eldercare facilities, shut-in by the pandemic, to have great music come to them.  This new video capability, made necessary by the pandemic, will continue this season to bring music to young and old, who otherwise would not have access to it.

Ticket pricing remains the same as in recent years but now, the ticketing fees are now included in the list prices, which range in five levels from $85 to $255 for the full season, and from $18 to $65 for single tickets, available at www.GBS.org.  Patrons subscribing for a full season may request a complimentary eSubscription – all five concerts available for home viewing – with issue dates three weeks after the concerts.  Halstead explains, “We want to respond to those who may be uncomfortable with large public settings. The eSubscription gives patrons the flexibility to enjoy our music in their homes, while allowing our musicians an outlet for their tremendous talents and spreading our music as far as we can.”

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bornies@optonline.net (Julie Lichtenstein ) Events Wed, 13 Oct 2021 13:01:05 -0400
Abilis' 16th Annual Walk/Run: Oct. 17 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50481-abilis-16th-annual-walk-run-oct-1750481-abilis-16th-annual-walk-run-oct-17 https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50481-abilis-16th-annual-walk-run-oct-1750481-abilis-16th-annual-walk-run-oct-17

Greenwich, CT - It’s time for the annual Walk/Run for Abilis event! Now in its 16th year, Walk/Run for Abilis will take place on Sunday, October 17, at Greenwich Point Park. Participants can walk or run in person or participate virtually from anywhere in the world! Registration is free for walkers and $40 for adult 5k runners and $20 for runners ages 11-17. Online registration is available until 12 p.m. on October 15, and available in person at the Walk/Run event starting at 7:30 a.m. on Sunday morning. There will be fun for all ages with the popular Bubble Bus for children, music, dancing and an energetic warm-up before the walk with celebrity fitness instructor Billy Blanks Jr., gift items from Abilis Gardens & Gifts and more. Andre DeNunzio, age 22, an Abilis program participant, will serve as the Walk/Run for Abilis ambassador this year. Shuttle buses are available at Greenwich Point to transport participants from the parking areas to the Clambake area where the event will be held.
 
The annual Walk/Run for Abilis is an annual celebration for the Abilis community. Each fall, Abilis’ community members, families and friends gather for Walk/Run for Abilis, and the event is Abilis’ largest annual fundraiser and signature “friend-raising” special of the year. Many who take part in Walk/Run for Abilis do so because they are inspired by a friend or family member with special needs.
 
With Walk/Run for Abilis back in person this year, all participants are encouraged to wear their Walk/Run for Abilis t-shirts or custom team outfits and costumes and document their Walk/Run for Abilis photos and videos by posting on social media using the hashtag #WalkRunForAbilis. As in year’s past, both in-person and virtual teams are encouraged to create team t-shirts and costumes to build excitement and camaraderie and to compete for prizes for most creative outfits.
 
Sponsors of Walk/Run for Abilis include Holland & Knight, DARCARS Automotive Group - Lexus of Greenwich, Infiniti of Greenwich and Lexus of Mt. Kisco, Alera Group, Connecticut Community Bank, Greenwich Magazine/Moffly Media, Shepard Insurance Group, The First Bank of Greenwich, John Dwyer Builders & General Contractors, Mutual of America Financial Group, J&S Sweet Success, Connecticut Skin Institute, Greenwich Braces, The Halper Family and SEBASS Events.
 
Sunday, October 17, 2021
7:30 a.m. - Registration Opens
9:00 a.m. - 5K Run 
10:00 a.m. - Fun warm-up with Billy Blanks Jr.
11:00 a.m. - Walk begins
12:00 p.m. - Event ends
 
Greenwich Point Park
Tod’s Driftway - Clambake Area
Old Greenwich, CT 06870
 
Abilis is celebrating its 70th year in 2021 of being a 501c3 non-profit organization that supports more than 800 individuals with special needs and their families from birth throughout their lives. Abilis is a leader serving the special needs community in Fairfield County, Connecticut, in towns including Darien, Greenwich, New Canaan, Norwalk, Ridgefield, Stamford, Westport, Weston and Wilton, and has a long-standing reputation for individualized, high quality care. For more information, visit www.abilis.us, or facebook.com/Abilisinc, twitter.com/Abilis, or instagram.com/abilis_us.
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bornies@optonline.net (Jeni Howard ) Events Wed, 13 Oct 2021 12:46:18 -0400
Fairfield Ludlowe High School Senior Launches Program to Expose Inner City Elementary Students to Ice Hockey https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/50480-local-fairfield-ludlowe-high-school-senior-launches-program-to-expose-inner-city-elementary-students-to-ice-hockey50480-local-fairfield-ludlowe-high-school-senior-launches-program-to-expose-inner-city-elementary-students-to-ice-hockey https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/neighbors/50480-local-fairfield-ludlowe-high-school-senior-launches-program-to-expose-inner-city-elementary-students-to-ice-hockey50480-local-fairfield-ludlowe-high-school-senior-launches-program-to-expose-inner-city-elementary-students-to-ice-hockey

Fairfield, CT - Fairfield Ludlowe High School senior and avid hockey fan John Vallillo has launched Chance To Play, a fully integrated program that exposes young urban kids to ice hockey. John has been a member of the high school varsity hockey team since he was a freshman, Vallillo currently serves as the captain of Ludlowe High School’s hockey team and plays center position. He is truly passionate about the sport and was disheartened to learn that hockey is not introduced to many schools in the inner cities surrounding his town due to the cost of the sport. 

Nearly 90% of children are interested in a sport as a result of exposure in elementary school physical education classes. Because public schools are not incorporating hockey into the curriculum, there is low enrollment from more urban areas in the sport as students get older.

Vallillo, who is a huge Boston Bruins Hockey fan, has educated himself about large scale community outreach programs that Boston offers to expose inner city kids to the sport and he wanted to execute a similar program at a smaller scale in his metropolitan area. This inspired him to create Chance To Play, a program that exposes elementary age kids to the sport, secures future ice time for players if they are interested in trying ice hockey and offers a full scholarship for programming and equipment if they choose to continue with the sport. Vallillo’s objective was to not only expose kids to the sport, but to actually give them a real opportunity to play in the future.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Vallillo had to put the program on hold, but used the time to continue developing the initiative so that when schools finally did reopen, he could offer them a fully comprehensive opportunity to get kids exposed and playing hockey. He secured big sponsors, such as the Bridgeport Islanders and USA Hockey to help him fund and execute the Chance To Play program.

He has also offered local physical education teachers the opportunity for him to teach hockey to schools that don’t offer it as part of their curriculum on their school premises. While John is also a student in school, he has been able to work out with his teachers and guidance counselor, to be excused from classes and make up his work alternatively so that he can fulfill the duties he offers to the other schools in his area.

Vallillo has executed this program at the Hall School in Bridgeport CT to 3rd-6th grade students and has been asked to return as a result of its success. For many of the students, it was their first exposure to hockey, and converted them to avid fans of the sport. He has other Bridgeport elementary schools lined up to participate in the program and is currently working with the Bridgeport Islanders and USA Hockey to host a “learn to play” program day with students, giving them the opportunity to learn to skate and play hockey on the big ice. Following this program, Vallillo will work with USA Hockey to obtain equipment and program scholarships for students who may be interested in a future playing the sport.

For more information about John Vallillo and Chance To Play, please visit chancetoplay.net. Follow his instagram @chancetoplayct

 

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klynn@tractenberg.com (Katie Lynn ) Neighbors Wed, 13 Oct 2021 07:53:16 -0400
CT's Beardsley Zoo's Amur Tiger Reka to Transfer Out https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50479-ct-s-beardsley-zoo-s-amur-tiger-reka-to-transfer-out50479-ct-s-beardsley-zoo-s-amur-tiger-reka-to-transfer-out https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/places/50479-ct-s-beardsley-zoo-s-amur-tiger-reka-to-transfer-out50479-ct-s-beardsley-zoo-s-amur-tiger-reka-to-transfer-out

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. – Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo will say goodbye next week to Reka, a female Amur tiger born at the Zoo, as she moves to a new permanent home. Born on November 25, 2017, Reka and her sister Zeya were raised by the Zoo’s animal care staff when their mother, Changbai, displayed no interest in her cubs. Zoo guests and supporters have followed Reka and Zeya’s journey from newborns whose survival was uncertain to the healthy young adult tigers they are today. 

Managed by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP), inter-regional transfers are arranged with careful attention to gene diversity in the hope that successful breeding will take place. Last year, Zeya was sent to Rosamond Gifford Zoo as an excellent genetic match to that Zoo’s resident male tiger. Reka’s new home zoo will announce her arrival once a standard quarantine period is complete later this fall.  Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo remains home to Reka and Zeya’s mother, Changbai. 

Amur tigers are very rare and are critically endangered in the wild. According to the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) statistics, today Amur tigers are thought to occupy less than seven percent of their original range. Threatened by habitat loss and degradation, poaching, tiger-human conflict, and loss of prey, four of nine subspecies have disappeared from the wild just in the past hundred years. The future of the Amur tiger has been a major concern of the world’s zoos for many years as the species has been pushed toward extinction. 

There is an SSP program in place for many species of animals through oversight by a group called the Taxon Advisory Group (TAG). The SSP makes breeding recommendations based on genetics, age and health of animals, and need for more of the species to protect future populations. Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo’s Deputy Director, Don Goff, is the Co-Chair of the National Felid TAG group. He leads a committee of AZA-accredited zoo members whose goal is to save declining species.

“As sad as we are to say goodbye to Reka, the planned transfer of animals to other member zoos ensures the sustainability of a healthy, genetically diverse, and demographically varied AZA population,” explained Goff.

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo has had repeated success in breeding endangered species, a testament to the Zoo’s animal care specialists and the highest quality of animal care.  The Zoo has been the birthplace of multiple endangered species in recent years, including Amur tiger cubs, maned wolf pups, red wolf pups, three baby Giant anteaters, and two Amur leopard cubs.

About Amur tigers

The Amur, once called the Siberian tiger, is a rare subspecies of tiger, and the largest cat in the world. Adult male tigers can weigh up to 675 pounds, with females weighing up to 350 pounds. Similar to people’s fingerprints, no two tigers have the same striped pattern. Amur tigers differ from other tigers with fewer, paler stripes, and a mane that helps to keep them warm. They live in southeast Russia as well as small areas of China and North Korea. They live for 10-15 years in the wild, and up to 22 years in human care.

About Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo

Let your curiosity run wild! Connecticut’s only zoo, celebrating its 99th year, features 350 animals representing primarily North and South American and Northern Asian species. Guests won’t want to miss our Amur tigers and leopards, maned wolves, Mexican gray wolves, and red wolves. Other highlights include our new Spider Monkey Habitat, the Rainforest Building, the prairie dog exhibit, and the Pampas Plain with Giant anteaters and Chacoan peccaries. Guests can ride on the carousel, grab a bite from the Peacock Café and eat in the Picnic Grove. Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo is a non-profit organization approaching its 100th year at a time when the mission of helping fragile wildlife populations and eco-systems is more important than ever. 

Tickets must be purchased on the Zoo’s website at beardsleyzoo.org. In accordance with the state of Connecticut COVID-19 guidelines: we recommend that guests continue to wear masks while visiting the Zoo, but when guests are outside and can maintain social distance, masks may be removed. In any indoor area, or when social distancing cannot be maintained, masks are required. Everyone over the age of two, except for those with medical conditions that preclude wearing them, should have a mask available. 

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bornies@optonline.net (Lisa Clair ) Places Wed, 13 Oct 2021 07:04:38 -0400
Dec. 2021 Norwalk Film Fest Announces Venue Lineup/Support https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50478-dec-2021-norwalk-film-fest-announces-venue-lineup-support50478-dec-2021-norwalk-film-fest-announces-venue-lineup-support https://news.hamlethub.com/fairfield/events/50478-dec-2021-norwalk-film-fest-announces-venue-lineup-support50478-dec-2021-norwalk-film-fest-announces-venue-lineup-support

Norwalk, CT – The Norwalk Film Festival (NFF) is very pleased to announce that the State of Connecticut’s Office of Film and Television, along with the City Of Norwalk via the Norwalk Arts Commission, are official sponsors of the 2021 Norwalk Film Festival, happening at multiple venues in Norwalk over the weekend of December 17-19th, 2021.

NFF screenings and related events will take place at the Norwalk Public Library, Factory Underground Studios, Norwalk Art Space, Juice Creative Group, and the Wall Street Theater which will serve as the main venue. The NFF will include films carefully selected from submissions by filmmakers globally. Final selections and program line-up, along with ticket packages, will be announced in early November.

Films will be included from the following categories: narrative features and shorts; documentary features and shorts; music videos; Connecticut shorts, and more. Panel discussions are currently being developed with local and regional filmmakers and industry experts on the art and craft of film-making, as well as the importance of the film community to the creative economy.  

Criteria for film selection includes a fit with the NFF theme of “University through Diversity Through Film”, as well as professional production values. The  success of the 2019 inaugural festival, where over 60 films were selected for screening, was recognized by Mayor Harry Riling, who recently stated, “The inaugural Norwalk Film Festival in 2019 was a huge success. After taking a year off due to COVID-19, with over 100 films from which to choose, I hope members of the public will join me in enjoying the Norwalk Film Festival this December.” 

In addition, NFF has forged an advisory relationship with the newly launched Bridgeport Film Festival, which held its inaugural festival in July of 2021. Both organizations are committed to uniting through film the commonalities of two of Fairfield County’s (and Connecticut’s) vibrant and diverse urban centers. As Jason A. Coombs, Producing Artistic Director and Founder of the Bridgeport Film Fest, commented, "I truly admire and appreciate how the Norwalk Film Festival fully engage local audiences by bringing such diverse art and culture to the community. It's wonderful that both of our initiatives can support and be resources for one another, especially since our missions and love of storytelling align.”

The NFF was founded by and operates with a grassroots community of volunteers comprised of filmmakers, cultural leaders, and movie lovers living and working in Norwalk. In the spirit of “Unity Through Diversity Through Film,” the festival leadership believes that cultural equity is a key component to long-term viability of a diverse and thriving artistic community. The goal of the NFF team is to bring together local communities and stimulate ongoing dialogues generated by the power of cinema. 

To learn more, or to inquire about sponsorship or volunteer opportunities, please contact Info@NorwalkFilmFestival.org, or visit the website at www.norwalkfilmfestival.org.

The Norwalk Arts Society, a 501(c3 nonprofit that seeks to improve the general public awareness and appreciation of arts, culture, and education in Norwalk, serves as the fiduciary sponsor for the Norwalk Film Festival.

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bornies@optonline.net (Jennifer Bangser ) Events Wed, 13 Oct 2021 06:10:11 -0400