50th Anniversary celebration of the restoration of the Merwinsville Hotel begins with a Glass Sphere Hunt! Go on a treasure hunt! Participating historic sites will include New Milford, Danbury, Brookfield, Kent, Litchfield and Gaylordsville
Reaching a milestone as important as the 50th anniversary deserves to be celebrated and that is exactly what the Merwinsville Hotel Restoration is planning on doing throughout the second half of 2021.
In 1971 the Gaylordsville community came together and formed a non-profit association to restore the building. These efforts were spearheaded by George Haase and continues today with his two daughters, Jeremy Ruman and Jennifer Haase, President and Vice President of the board of directors.
Kicking off their 50th anniversary celebration, the Hotel hired glassblowers Leslie French and Andy Pyle from Nunwell Glass in Lakeville, CT to create 50 glass spheres that will be hidden at historic sites in the area for people to find and keep. Each glass sphere will be stamped with “MHR 50” and will be numbered. The glass spheres will be hidden in early August and a complete list of historic sites participating in the hunt will be on the Hotel’s website soon.
“We are so excited to be celebrating the 50th anniversary of the restoration, and thanks to a much-appreciated donation from the New Milford Commission on the Arts to celebrate this milestone, the Hotel’s expenditure in our ‘glass sphere scavenger hunt’ became much more affordable,” said Jeremy Ruman. “We also wanted to give other local non-profits the opportunity to take an active part in the event. Due to the pandemic, we have all suffered the loss of revenue and visitors. By inviting other historic non-profits to take part in the hunt by hiding the glass spheres (at no cost to them other than coming up with a great hiding places), we can all benefit. It is so important for all our local non-profits to continue to thrive and grow. We hope this event will be a way to help achieve that.”
Participating non-profits include: Brookfield Craft Center, Danbury Museum & Historical Society, Danbury Railway Museum, Gaylordsville Historical Society (Brown’s Forge and Little Red Schoolhouse), Merwinsville Hotel, Kent Historical Society, Litchfield Historical Society, New Milford Historical Society, Gallery 25, Harrybrook Park and The Silo (in New Milford).
Other events planned this year will include Sunday tours from 2-4PM starting July 11th, annual Potluck Dinner September 10th, Art and Fine Craft Show & Gala starting Friday, October 8th and the Holiday Christmas Show that begins the Friday after Thanksgiving.
The Merwinsville Hotel opened for business in 1843 as a meal and station stop for the Housatonic Railroad that ran between Bridgeport and Pittsfield. The second-floor features rooms with period furniture and decor reminiscent of the hotel’s earliest years. There is also a museum of artifacts featuring the rich history of the Gaylordsville area.
The Merwinsville Hotel Restoration is a national historic landmark located at 1 Brown’s Forge Road in Gaylordsville, CT, only 15 minutes from Kent, Sherman, New Milford and the Harlem Valley/Wingdale Railroad Station. For further information, call 860-350-4443 or visit www.merwinsvillehotel.org