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FC Buzz Weekend of Art and Culture in Fairfield County March 1-3

<p><strong>FC Buzz Weekend March 1 - March 3 2024</strong></p><p>HamletHub is proud to partner with the Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County and FCBuzz to Elevate Arts and Culture in Fairfield County! Each week, look for a listing of weekend events and activities. The Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County celebrates the vibrancy and diversity of the arts and culture across 15 towns in coastal Fairfield County. Sign up to receive a free eBuzz newsletter with top picks and spotlight events from the hundreds of events posted on FCBuzz.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/aldrich-after-hours-4/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Aldrich After Hours</strong></a></p><p><strong>The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield</strong></p><p>Friday Mar 01, 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm</p><p>Kick off the weekend with Aldrich After Hours and enjoy drinks and special programming in the Museum’s galleries. Chief Curator Amy Smith-Stewart will give a highlights tour on Loie Hollowell’s exhibition, Space Between, A Survey of Ten Years, which has been featured by W Magazine, Artnet, and Interview Magazine, among others. Enjoy a musical performance by Xondra, whose “rich vocals and layered melodies create an immersive experience that resonates with authenticity.” Explore the exhibitions on view including Amanda Martínez, Yvette Mayorga, Chiffon Thomas, and Loie Hollowell.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/mark-fraser-betts-a-table-next-to-the-mountain-art-opening/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Mark Fraser-Betts: A Table Next To The Mountain Art Opening</strong></a></p><p><strong>Art in Common Gallery, Ridgefield</strong></p><p>Friday Mar 01, 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm</p><p>Art lovers won’t want to miss the opening reception of Mark Fraser-Betts’ show, A Table Next to the Mountain. Mark paints collages that examine themes of time, distance and meditations of an outsider living in America.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/connecticut-guitar-festival-opening-night-concert/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Connecticut Guitar Festival | Opening Night Concert</strong></a></p><p><strong>MoCA Westport</strong></p><p>Friday Mar 01, 7:00 pm - 12:00 am</p><p>A feat of styles and artists kick off the 2024 festival with performers: Daniel Lippel, Dani Sehu, Quarantined Quartet, David Steinhardt at MoCA Series, featuring a diverse range of Jazz, Classical, and Pop performances!</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/nasa-comes-to-newtown-ct-march-2024-discover-exoplanets-the-search-for-alien-worlds/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Discover Exoplanets: The Search for Alien Worlds</strong></a></p><p><strong>C.H. Booth Library, Newtown</strong></p><p>Friday From Mar 01 to May 31, 9:30 pm - 8:00 pm</p><p>The C.H. Booth Library, in partnership with the Space Science Institute, is one of only ten libraries in the country selected to receive the NASA 700 sq ft traveling exhibition Discover Exoplanets: The Search for Alien Worlds. The pre-exhibit ephemera is already on display. During the exhibit you will see Webb Space Telescope Images, Astrophotography, Cosmological Artwork, over 20 Interactive Hands-on Displays where visitors can build their own solar systems, see the most recent NASA discoveries with monthly NASA Speakers, and daily space related programs.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/every-picture-tells-a-story-exhibit-and-opening-reception-at-silvermine-galleries/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Every Picture Tells A Story Exhibit</strong></a></p><p><strong>Silvermine Galleries, New Canaan</strong></p><p>Saturday Mar 2, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm</p><p>This exhibition invites viewers to explore the power of visual storytelling. Each work on display has an accompanying statement from the artist, proviing context and insights into understanding the artist’s intentions and the underlying narratives. The exhibit will be on view from February 28 - April 4, 2024.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/take-flight-with-bessie-coleman-family-fun-performance/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Take Flight With Bessie Coleman</strong></a></p><p><strong>Weston History &amp; Culture Center ( Weston Historical Society)</strong></p><p>Saturday Mar 02, 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm</p><p>Take flight with Bessie Coleman, America’s first African-American female aviator during this educational and entertaining performance for the entire family! Celebrate Black History Month and Women’s History Month with your family! Historian and storyteller Tammy Denease will take audiences on a journey as she portrays Bessie Coleman, the first African American woman to ever become an internationally licensed pilot. Co-sponsored by Friends of the Weston Library, LWVofWeston and WHCC.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/ridgefield-symphony-orchestra-string-quartet/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>RSO String Quartet</strong></a></p><p><strong>Ridgefield Theater Barn</strong></p><p>Saturday Mar 02, 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm</p><p>Chamber music concert featuring the principal string players of the Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra. Program includes a mix of traditional and contemporary classical music. The concert will take place in the main theater at the newly renovated Ridgefield Theater Barn. An engaging program on music in a marvelous, intimate venue!</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/eccbs-5th-anniversary-season-gala/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>ECCB’s 5th Anniversary Season GALA</strong></a></p><p><strong>MoCA Westport</strong></p><p>Saturday Mar 02, 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm</p><p>Come celebrate five years of this innovative company that continues to bring high caliber dance to and revitalize the dance world in Connecticut. This delightful and joyous evening will include hors d'oeuvres, drinks, a signature ECCB performance, auction event and live music.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/gctyo-winter-concerts/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>GCTYO Winter Concerts</strong></a></p><p><strong>The Klein Auditorium, Bridgeport</strong></p><p>Sunday Mar 03, 12:00 am - 9:00 pm</p><p>Principal Orchestra Concert 3 will feature acclaimed artist Nuné Melik as soloist on the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, plus “Fenix,” composed by GCTYO’s own Polina Nazaykinskaya, with multimedia! Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Ms. Nazaykinskaya on Concert 2, brings world-renowned pianist Olga Kirpicheva-Villard to the stage to perform the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 2, accompanied by the orchestra. Hear big band jazz on Concert 2 as well. Concert 1 features GCTYO’s unique advanced Saxophone Orchestra under the baton of Jim Clark, as well as Virtuosi Orchestra conducted by Britney Alcine.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/wisdom-after-hours-subtle-activism/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Wisdom After Hours: Subtle Activism</strong></a></p><p><strong>The Meetinghouse, Ridgebury</strong></p><p>Sunday Mar 03, 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm</p><p>We live in a culture of isolation and individualism that can leave us feeling hopeless in the face of the systemic changes needed for the well-being of people and the planet. Systemic change calls for working across three levels of change: Personal Transformation, Alternatives, leading to Changing of Dominant Systems. Subtle activism invites us to work across all three levels through an awakened consciousness to social change, understanding that context informs where we begin.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/opening-reception-for-residency-showcase-exhibition/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Opening Reception for Residency Showcase Exhibition</strong></a></p><p><strong>Center for Contemporary Printmaking, Norwalk</strong></p><p>Sunday Mar 03, 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm</p><p>This exhibition represents the forefront of contemporary printmaking from emerging to established artists. This reception is especially exciting because it is also a celebration of our inaugural residency exchange with Dresden, Germany. We are honored to welcome the Chairman of Culture and Tourism from the Elbe/Labe Euroregion at the opening reception!</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/camerata-damici-winter-concert/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Camerata d’Amici Winter Concert</strong></a></p><p><strong>St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, Ridgefield</strong></p><p>Sunday Mar 03, 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm</p><p>Choral group Camerata d’Amici will perform its winter concert “Music in the Air”. Conducted by artistic director Kristin Sponheim, the program will feature compositions that convey the power of music to express our hopes and fears.</p><p><a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/event/hot-cool-jazz-judy-carmichael-swinging-standards-sultry-vocals-sassy-humor/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>Hot &amp; Cool Jazz: Judy Carmichael – Swinging Standards, Sultry Vocals &amp; Sassy Humor</strong></a></p><p><strong>Wilton Library</strong></p><p>Sunday Mar 03, 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm</p><p>Get ready for an afternoon of jazz as pianist/vocalist Judy Carmichael and guitarist Chris Flory swing through favorites of the American songbook, from Gershwin and Cole Porter to Frank Loesser and Harold Arlen. Nicknamed “Stride” by the great Count Basie, the Grammy-nominated pianist, vocalist, and songwriter enchants audiences with her command of the idiom at the piano, as well as her charming effervescence away from it. Newsday said she's like “Peggy Lee meets Fats Waller meets Paula Poundstone.” Judy Carmichael is a Grammy-nominated pianist/vocalist and songwriter. Her radio show/podcast "Jazz Inspired," is in its 24th year on NPR stations. Advance registration recommended.</p><p>See these and discover hundreds more events on the&nbsp;<a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/fcbuzz-events/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">FCBUZZ EVENTS</a>&nbsp;page at&nbsp;<a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">https://culturalalliancefc.org</a>&nbsp;Sign up for the&nbsp;<a href="https://culturalalliancefc.org/resources/newsletter-sign-up/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">Cultural Alliance eBuzz</a>&nbsp;to receive top picks and spotlights each week in your inbox.</p>

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Westport Country Playhouse Announces New Leadership Team

<p><strong>Mark Shanahan appointed artistic director, Beth Huisking managing director, as historic venue transforms</strong></p><p><strong>into year-round performing arts center while continuing to produce theater.</strong></p><p><strong>&nbsp;</strong>Westport Country Playhouse’s board of trustees has appointed director, playwright, and actor Mark Shanahan as artistic director, and long-time Playhouse administrator Beth Huisking as managing director. Since last summer, Shanahan and Huisking have served as incoming artistic director and acting managing director, respectively, and now officially assume the positions.</p><p>&nbsp;"We are thrilled to have Mark and Beth at the helm,” said Athena T. Adamson, chair, Playhouse board of trustees. “They both have a deep knowledge of and respect for this treasured theater, while still keeping an enthusiasm for the future and all that the Playhouse can become. The board is grateful to have such strong leadership as the Playhouse moves forward with its plan to become a year-round center for the performing arts while continuing with its proud tradition of producing world-class plays."</p><p>Shanahan<strong>&nbsp;</strong>will continue as curator of the Playhouse’s Script in Hand Playreading series. He is also the creator and curator of Westport Country Playhouse Radio Theater, in partnership with WSHU Public Radio, and served as writer/director of the Playhouse radio adaptation of “A Merry Little Christmas Carol,” and as director of scripts commissioned for the series. He is the writer/director of “A Sherlock Carol,” which was produced for the Playhouse’s 2023 holiday season, and has played annually at London’s Marylebone Theatre and three seasons in New York, where it received an Off-Broadway Alliance nomination for Best New Play 2021 and was named a “Critics’ Pick” by&nbsp;<em>The New York Times.</em></p><p>“I’m grateful and honored to continue my association with the Westport Country Playhouse as I step into the role of artistic director,” said Shanahan. “Like so many in our audience, I love the Playhouse for its rich history, its standard of artistic excellence, and the sense of community that is always found when coming through our doors.</p><p>“As we usher in a new chapter for the Playhouse, I’m excited to work alongside our incredible, devoted staff and board members and contribute to the ongoing legacy of this cherished theatre. In recent months, we’ve felt a groundswell of support from the audience we serve, and I look forward to building on that trust and enthusiasm as we program more innovative, year-round events and plan a new season of outstanding productions beginning in the fall. It is a true privilege to be a part of this transformative moment as we imagine a vibrant future for the Westport Country Playhouse.”</p><p>Beth Huisking joined the Playhouse in 2005 as marketing associate and in 2010 was named associate director of marketing. After eight seasons in the marketing department, she moved to the position of general manager in 2013, and in December 2023 was named managing director.</p><p>“I started working at the Playhouse just before the 2005 reopening after the renovation,” said Huisking. “It was a time of new beginnings, and I couldn’t have been happier to be a part of the team that was making everything possible. And now I am honored to be helping to lead the dedicated team that is reinvigorating our beloved theater and introducing it to a whole new audience.”</p><p><strong>Shanahan and Huisking Backgrounds</strong></p><p>Shanahan recently directed his own adaptation of “Agatha Christie’s The Murder of Roger Ackroyd,” in partnership with Agatha Christie Ltd., which premiered at the Tony Award-winning Alley Theatre. He has directed at stages around the country such as George Street Playhouse, Virginia Stage, Arkansas Rep, White Heron, Mile Square Theatre, Hudson Stage, Theatre Squared, Fulton Opera House, Weston Playhouse, Orlando Shakespeare Festival, Florida Rep, Penguin Rep, Merrimack Rep, The Cape Playhouse, and many more.</p><p>&nbsp;As an actor, Shanahan appeared at Westport Country Playhouse in “Journey’s End” (2005), “David Copperfield,” directed by Joanne Woodward and Annie Keefe, (2005), “Sedition” (2007), “Tryst” (2008), and “Around the World in 80 Days” (2009), and numerous Script In Hand readings. On and Off-Broadway, he appeared in “The 39 Steps,” “Tryst,” “The Shaugraun,” and others, and has performed at many celebrated regional theatres. He is the author of “A Merry Little Christmas Carol,” “See Monsters of the Deep,” the Off-Broadway and regional hit comedy “The Dingdong,” as well as numerous radio plays as creator of the White Heron Ghost Light series, featuring Christopher Plummer, Judith Ivey, Rhonda Ross, and other notables. Each year, Shanahan is proud to participate as the writer/director of the annual gala for The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, a summer camp founded by Paul Newman to serve seriously ill children and their families. He is a graduate of Brown University (BA) and Fordham University (MA, former adjunct faculty).</p><p>&nbsp;Huisking was a marketing associate with Stamford Center for the Arts, where she began as a summer intern. She was also an event staff supervisor for the Bob Carpenter Center, Newark, DE, where she coordinated over 25 performances per season. A marketing major at the University of Delaware, she was a member of the American Marketing Association and of Gamma Sigma Sigma, the national community service sorority. She recently received a certificate in Human Resources Management from Cornell University.</p><p>&nbsp;A complete schedule of Playhouse events is available at <a href="https://www.westportplayhouse.org" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">https://www.westportplayhouse.org/</a></p><p>&nbsp;For Westport Country Playhouse information and tickets, visit <a href="https://www.westportplayhouse.org" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">https://www.westportplayhouse.org/</a> or call the box office at (203) 227-4177, toll-free at 1-888-927-7529. Stay connected to the Playhouse on Facebook (Westport Country Playhouse), Instagram (wcplayhouse), and&nbsp;YouTube (WestportPlayhouse).&nbsp;Westport Country Playhouse is located at 25 Powers Court, off Route 1, Westport.&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p>

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Maritime Aquarium Explores Long Island Sound's Salt Marshes in New Exhibit

<p>Norwalk, CT – The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is inviting guests to explore&nbsp;<em>Life Among the Grasses,&nbsp;</em>its new exhibit dedicated to salt marshes. The immersive experience features creatures of Long Island Sound's tidal habitats and examines ways these habitats have inspired culture.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p>“We are proud and excited to welcome guests to our newest exhibit. Its ambitious design conveys not only how vital salt marshes are for our environmental and economic well-being, but also how central salt marshes are to our culture and identity over the millennia, stretching from Native American folklore to Grateful Dead albums,”&nbsp;<strong>said President and CEO Jason Patlis.&nbsp;</strong>“We are thankful for our many partners who helped us create this multicultural and multidisciplinary experience.”&nbsp;</p><p><em>Life Among the Grasses&nbsp;</em>is the first exhibit to open at the Aquarium since the launch of its new strategic plan in January and follows the July 2023 opening of its Sturgeon Touch Tank. It aims to ignite a passion in people and inspire them to protect salt marshes – beautiful but threatened&nbsp;ecosystems that protect coastal communities from storm damage, remove nutrients and pollutants from runoff and store high levels of carbon below ground.&nbsp;</p><p>As guests walk down the boardwalk and into the bilingual gallery, they will encounter diamondback terrapins, a species of concern in the State of Connecticut, and learn about the threats these turtles face as they move from brackish water to nesting grounds. They will also see over a dozen additional species including longwrist hermit crab, tautog and lined seahorse.&nbsp;</p><p>Moving further into the exhibit, guests will have the opportunity to touch&nbsp;<em>Spartina</em>, the type of grass that grows in salt marshes, to understand what these areas feel like. They will also see how animals react to changes in water levels as they observe the exhibit’s dynamic tidal tank, which moves from high tide to low tide every seven minutes.&nbsp;</p><p><br></p><p>In addition to live habitats, the space features art inspired by salt marshes from nineteenth century paintings to Grateful dead album covers. The "Marshing Through Time!” digital kiosks allow visitors to take an even deeper dive into the ecological and sociological aspects of New England’s salt marshes through film, storytelling, historic photos and games.&nbsp;After leaving the Aquarium, guests can continue to enjoy the experience at home by&nbsp;<a href="https://about:blank/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">watching a live stream</a>&nbsp;of the Sturgeon Touch Tank. This feature will also provide educators with a unique tool to showcase these prehistoric creatures outside of the Aquarium's walls during school programs.&nbsp;</p><p><em>Life Among the Grasses&nbsp;</em>was made possible through funding from the U.S. Economic Development Administration and CT Humanities. To plan a visit to see the new exhibit, visit&nbsp;<a href="http://www.maritimeaquarium.org/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">www.maritimeaquarium.org.</a>&nbsp;</p>

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Norwalk Symphony & Shakespeare on the Sound on Sunday, March 17

<p><strong>Annual Music for All Ages Concert: SHAKESPEARE COMES TO THE SYMPHONY on Sunday, March 17, 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM</strong></p><p>Immerse yourself and your whole family in an afternoon that brings Shakespeare to life through music, acting, and jest. We will dive into both Tchaikovsky and Prokofiev’s gorgeous settings of Romeo and Juliet, interspersed with the play’s most famous moments. These scenes from “R+J4evr” are interpreted by gifted actors from Shakespeare on the Sound, our own local troupe. Meanwhile, witty Mr. Shakespeare (a.k.a. Philip Callen) will travel through time to add his insightful repartee. This unforgettable fusion of music and theater will transport you to a unique musical Shakespearean realm.&nbsp;</p><p>The concert also features violinist Gia Lin, winner of our 12th Annual Concerto Competition. With the full orchestra backing her up, she will perform the piece that won her top honors, the first movement of <em>Erich Korngold’s Violin Concerto. </em></p><p>As is the tradition with March concerts, young musicians from the Norwalk Youth Symphony’s Principal Orchestra will play side-by-side with our Norwalk Symphony musicians. And - as an added treat – Chris Bell, Norwalk Symphony’s Board President, takes up the baton to conduct <em>Procession of the Nobles </em>from Mlad by Rimsky-Korsakov. </p><p>Performance is at the Norwalk Concert Hall, 125 East Avenue. Individual tickets, which range from $10 for students and children, and $25, $<a href="37.50" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">37.50</a>, and $50 for adults, can be purchased online at the Symphony’s website <a href="https://www.norwalksymphony.org" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">https://www.norwalksymphony.org/</a> or by calling the Symphony office at 203 956-6771.</p>

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Run Like A Mother 5K in Ridgefield on Mother's Day! Registration is OPEN!

<p><em>Empower. Inspire. Enable. Run Like A Mother® Isn’t Just a Race, It’s Our Way of Life.</em></p><p>National organization Run Like A Mother® announces its 2024 5K race in Ridgefield, Connecticut. Participants will run the memorable race on Sunday, May 12th.</p><p><strong>Register </strong><a href="https://runsignup.com/Race/CT/Ridgefield/RunLikeaMotherRidgefield" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>HERE</strong></a><strong>.</strong></p><p> The point-to-point looped course starts at The Ridgefield Playhouse and finishes in the heart of town, Ballard Park. Runners, along with their family and friends, will enjoy a post-race party.</p><p>Run Like A Mother Ridgefield is proud to support the Noreen L Papa: Mothers Live Your Life Fund at the Ridgefield Library, which helps provide programming and other Library resources to encourage health and wellness.</p><p>Race participants will have several unique opportunities to support this important community charity. Runners can make a donation when they register for the race, or they can choose to donate during the registration process, which automatically enters them to win items and experiences provided by partners of Run Like a Mother.</p><p>A celebration of women, Run Like A Mother was founded in 2008 by Ridgefield, CT resident, owner of Ridgefield and Darien Running Companies, and author of <em>See Mom Run- Every Mother’s Guide to Getting Fit and Running Her First 5k</em>, Megan Searfoss. Since its start, Run Like A Mother has encouraged more than 25,000 women in all stages of motherhood (novice, new, and experienced) across the country to make running a part of their life.</p><p>“Run Like A Mother encourages women to step out the door and move,” said Searfoss. “The race gives women an opportunity to run a race with their family cheering them on from the start to the finish and post-race celebration.”</p><p>Registration is currently open for the race. Additional information on the race, charity partner, and post-race party can be found at <a href="https://chat.openai.com/c/www.runlikeamother.com" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">www.runlikeamother.com</a>. </p>

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Pickleball for All - A Charity Event for ElderHouse

<p>Tickets are on sale now for “Pickleball for All – A Charity Event for ElderHouse”. This exciting new fundraising event will take place on Thursday, March 21 from 6pm-9pm at Pickleball America, one of the largest indoor pickleball venues in the US, located at The Stamford Town Center. This fabulous event space is perfect for all levels of play, and even for those who do not wish to play, but would like to enjoy great food, drink, and friends while supporting ElderHouse. There will be a silent auction with “Opening Day” Baseball tickets (great seats!) and much more….</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>Although guests do not need to be pickleball players to attend, this action-packed evening includes instruction for beginners, pro-led clinic for all levels, round-robin play, giveaways, prizes, auction baskets, and 50/50 raffle. Food and beverages provided by Bridges by Epoch / Waterstone on High Ridge. All proceeds will support ElderHouse, an award-winning adult day center serving lower Fairfield County.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>“Come out and enjoy an exciting evening while supporting older adults in Fairfield County. ElderHouse truly enables people and families to navigate what can be a challenging time in their lives.” said Julia Schwartz-Leeper, Executive Director of ElderHouse.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>Tickets are still available. Please visit EventBrite <a href="https://elderhouseevent2024.eventbrite.com" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>https://elderhouseevent2024.eventbrite.com</strong></a> or call, <a href="https://www.google.com/search?q=elderhouse&amp;oq=elder&amp;aqs=chrome.0.69i59l2j46i10i433i512j46i10i131i433i512j69i60l2j69i61j69i65.1443j0j7&amp;sourceid=chrome&amp;ie=UTF-8" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">(203) 847-1998</a>. Payment by check for $150 per ticket can be mailed to ElderHouse, 7 Lewis Street, Norwalk CT 06851.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>ElderHouse would like to thank its generous sponsors to date, including Fairfield County Bank, Webster Private Bank, Garavel Auto Group, First County Bank, EFA Partners, The Tradition Golf Club at Oak Lane, and Bridges by Epoch / Waterstone on High Ridge.</p><p><strong>&nbsp;</strong></p><p><strong>About ElderHouse</strong></p><p>ElderHouse,&nbsp;a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit certified adult day center, is a leader in providing services to older adults with full days of social engagement, memory care, enjoyable activities, and personal care with compassion and dignity. While aging adults attend ElderHouse, family caregivers benefit from reliable, affordable, high-quality care for their loved ones, knowing that their loved ones are enjoying their day, in a safe, stimulating environment. Visit <a href="http://www.elderhouse.org/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">www.elderhouse.org</a> or call (203) 847-1998&nbsp;for more information.</p><p><br></p>

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Governor Lamont Taps Rachel Lenda To Serve as Connecticut Tourism Director

<p>Governor Ned Lamont today announced that Rachel Lenda will serve as the new director of the Connecticut Office of Tourism. Lenda brings a wealth of tourism and hospitality experience to the team and holds the distinction of being the first Connecticut born and raised resident to occupy this position in a generation.</p><p>Her background includes leadership roles at Hard Rock Café International and the Eastern Regional Tourism District. In her most recent position, Lenda played a pivotal role in leading the organization towards a new brand identity.</p><p>“With Rachel’s extensive background in the tourism industry and her forward-thinking approach, she is well equipped to lead Connecticut tourism toward sustained growth,”&nbsp;Governor Lamont said. “Given the record-breaking numbers of the past two years, my optimism for the future of Connecticut’s tourism industry has never been stronger.”</p><p>The Connecticut Office of Tourism is a division of the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development.</p><p>“What a privilege it is to have the opportunity to contribute to a team that has transformed Connecticut from a drive-through state into a must-visit destination,”&nbsp;Lenda said. “I grew up here and made my home in Connecticut, so to now be in a position to champion the state as a destination to visit fills me with excitement. I am really looking forward to collaborating with my colleagues and partners throughout the state to build upon this impressive momentum and further enhance Connecticut’s vibrant tourism landscape.”</p><p>“Rachel is the embodiment of a true Connecticut ambassador,”&nbsp;Anthony Anthony, chief marketing officer for the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development, said. “Her love and enthusiasm for the state combined with her extensive tourism experience makes her a wonderful asset to the team, and I am confident that under Rachel’s leadership, our tourism office will continue to grow and thrive.”</p><p>Lenda’s arrival coincides with an exciting period for the Connecticut Office of Tourism, marked by record-breaking visitation to the state and to its tourism website,&nbsp;<a href="https://officeofthegovernor.cmail20.com/t/j-l-shuudkl-tlluktttuu-u/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>CTvisit.com</strong></a>. In 2023, the state achieved an unprecedented milestone, welcoming nearly 68 million visitors, resulting in an impressive occupancy revenue of $1.173 billion – a 6.7% increase from the previous year. Simultaneously,&nbsp;<a href="https://officeofthegovernor.cmail20.com/t/j-l-shuudkl-tlluktttuu-o/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>CTvisit.com</strong></a>&nbsp;reached new heights, reaching an all-time high of 9.4 million visitors – a remarkable 32% increase from the previous record year. This achievement positions&nbsp;<a href="https://officeofthegovernor.cmail20.com/t/j-l-shuudkl-tlluktttuu-b/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>CTvisit.com</strong></a>&nbsp;among the top 10 most organically trafficked state tourism websites in the nation, surpassing not only its New England neighbors but even outpacing New York.</p><p>Following its record-breaking visitation in 2023,&nbsp;<a href="https://officeofthegovernor.cmail20.com/t/j-l-shuudkl-tlluktttuu-q/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>CTvisit.com</strong></a>&nbsp;has undergone enhancements to elevate the design and user experience. These upgrades are designed to streamline the discovery of all there is to see and do in Connecticut, making it more convenient for visitors to explore a myriad of experiences. Moreover,&nbsp;<a href="https://officeofthegovernor.cmail20.com/t/j-l-shuudkl-tlluktttuu-a/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>CTvisit.com</strong></a>&nbsp;has revamped its branding to align seamlessly with the state's recent rebrand, presenting a unified visual identity and narrative. This cohesive approach not only emphasizes Connecticut as a prime vacation spot but also highlights its appeal as a place to establish a home, pursue a career, or grow a business.</p><p>For more information about the Connecticut Office of Tourism or for inspiration on travel destinations and attractions around the state, visit&nbsp;<a href="https://officeofthegovernor.cmail20.com/t/j-l-shuudkl-tlluktttuu-f/" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank"><strong>CTvisit.com</strong></a>.</p><p><br></p>

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