11/24-11/30 Weekly Happenings

National Novel Writing Month happens every November! It’s a fun, seat-of-your-pants writing event where the challenge is to complete an entire novel in just 30 days. For one month, you get to lock away your inner editor, let your imagination take over, and just create! That means participants begin writing November 1 and must finish by midnight, November 30. The word-count goal for our adult program is 50,000 words, but the Young Writers Program allows 17-and-under participants to set reasonable, yet challenging, individual word-count goals.

Through December 24 | West Hartford | Experience the Ice Palace | West Farms Mall in celebration of the November 18 release of the Disney Frozen Sing-Along Edition on DVD & Digital HD, West Farms presents a Frozen Ice Palace experience. The Ice Palace will feature characters from the number one animated film of all time, Disney Frozen. This much-loved, interactive holiday display features the art of Anna, Elsa and their friends Olaf, Kristoff and Sven, plus a 30 foot Ice Palace with falling snow, a light show and other activities for the whole family. Interactive globes will showcase scenes such as Anna & Elsa ice skating with Olaf, plus Anna, Kristoff & Sven on their quest to find Elsa on the North Mountain. Adults & children alike will enjoy leaving their hand print in ice at The Icy Hand Print experience, seeing how they compare in size to Sven & Olaf and having their photo taken with Olaf at the Ice Throne. End your magical journey at the Ice Palace with a visit to Santa and a special Disney Frozen Look-and-Find book!

Through January 6 | Hartford, CT | 44th Annual Hartford Festival of Light | Hartford Festival of Light has become a not-to-be-missed event for the thousands who turn out on Constitution Plaza each year to sing carols, enjoy musical entertainment and witness the spectacle that is the illumination of more than a quarter of a million tiny white lights.

Tuesday, November 25 – Sunday, November 30 | Hartford, CT | Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical | The original television classic comes to life! First airing in 1964, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer has become a beloved Christmas classic – capturing the hearts and wonder of generations of fans. Now, 50 years later, something magical is happening as the beloved classic soars off the screen and onto the stage this holiday season. Join us in celebrating Rudolph’s 50 years on television and come see all of your favorite characters from the special including, Santa and Mrs. Claus, Hermey the Elf, Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, Clarice, Yukon Cornelius, the Misfit Toys and, of course, Rudolph, as they come to life in the all new Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical. It’s an adventure that teaches us that what makes you different can be what makes you special. Don’t miss this wonderful new holiday tradition that speaks to the misfit in all of us. Beloved heartwarming memories which last a lifetime are just waiting to be made. Based on the animated television special “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and the stage production directed and conceived by Jeff Frank and First Stage. Script adaptation by Robert Penola. Arrangements and orchestrations by Timothy Splain.

Thursday, November 27 | Farmington, CT | 10th Annual Malibu Road Race | Malibu Fitness is happy to bring you the 10th annual Malibu Road Race to be held this year at Malibu Fitness in Farmington. The race will once again be broadcast live on WFSB channel 3 with Scot Haney and will begin at 6:45 am sharp on Thanksgiving morning. We are proud to donate 100% of the proceeds to several charities including programs for injured veterans, Channel 3 Kids Camp, and various other local causes. We hope all of the families and returning individual runners will once again support us and come out to run or walk. Sign ups begin now, and remember, beautiful long sleeve “dri-fit” type shirts will be given to the first 400 registrants!  Thanks for your continued support!

Thursday, November 27 at 10am | Manchester, CT | 78th Annual Manchester Road Race

Thursday, November 27 – January 1; Sunday-Thursday 5-9pm & Friday-Saturday 5-10pm | Hartford, CT | Holiday Light Fantasia is a much loved Greater Hartford tradition and this season’s destination. The 2-mile show transforms Goodwin Park into a drive-through wonderland of holiday spirit with a beautiful collection of over 1 million lights.​Whimsical holiday scenes, familiar characters and local tributes shine bright in larger-than-life lighted scenes and 200 individual displays. Lighted animations celebrate not only Christmas, but Hanukkah, New Years and Three Kings Day.

Friday, November 28 from 8am-8pm | Bristol, CT | Drop and Shop all day on Black Friday. Children ages 5 and up.

Friday, November 28 – December 13 Mon/Thurs/Fri 10-8, Sat.Sun 10-6 | Windsor, CT | Gingerbread House Festival Extravaganza! | New England’s biggest display of sweet and spicy Gingerbread Houses is returning to South Windsor’s Wood Memorial Library and Museum again this year. Admission is free. Donations are welcome. The show features gingerbread houses from professional bakers, restaurants, local artisans, and children and families.

Friday, November 28 | Hartford, CT | Misrepresented, maligned and misunderstood, the great white shark is an iconic predator: the creature we love to fear. Great White Shark explores the great white’s place in our imaginations, in our fears, and in the reality of its role at the top of the oceanic food chain. Shot on location in South Africa, New Zealand, Mexico and California, the film looks to find the truth behind the mythic creature forever stigmatized by its portrayal in the world’s first blockbuster movie, JAWS. Great White Shark concludes the oceanic trilogy begun by Wild Ocean and The Last Reef, and brings nature’s greatest predator to Giant Screen 3D as never before.

Friday, November 28 from 5-7pm | Newington, CT | Santa Claus comes to Stew’s | Santa Claus will make his first appearance of the season and will arrive at Stew’s on a truck from the Newington Fire Department, which will be decked out in holiday trim. Join Wow the Cow, Cynthia the Chick and Daphne the Duck while Santa and his helpers greet children and distribute candy canes to families.

Friday, November 28 – Sunday, November 30; 10am to 5pm | Hartford, CT | Black Friday Weekend | The first 100 visitors each day will receive free passes to Lake Compounce Holiday Lights.

Friday, November 28 – January 6 | Old Hartford, CT | Home for the Holiday’s | A Butler-McCook House Celebration! Come view the decorated Butler-McCook House and learn how the McCook family celebrated Christmas.

Friday, November 28 – December 13 | South Windsor, CT | Gingerbread Festival | The Wood will once again deck its halls and throw open its doors for one of the largest Gingerbread House Festivals in all of New England. Local artisans and bakers, experts and beginners alike show off their creative talents in a vast array of candy covered houses, trains and in some cases entire villages. Anyone is welcome to submit a gingerbread house and sign-ups are starting now. With holiday music playing in the background and the spicy aroma of gingerbread in the air, the library will provide the perfect holiday venue for showcasing the sugary artistic creations. “Ye Olde Gingerbread Shop” will also be open offering the opportunity to take home a bit of the magic with many holiday themed gifts and treats.

Friday, November 28 – 30, December 5 – 7, December 12 – 14, December 19 – 21; Friday 5-9pm, Saturday & Sunday 4-9pm | Bristol, CT | Holiday Lights at Lake Compounce | The park will be covered in lights, thousands of bulbs and spectacular light shows every half hour set to music. A selection of children’s and family rides will be open. Find all “12 Days of Christmas” – 12 light displays throughout the park. Meet Santa!

Friday, November 28 – December 28 | Hartford, CT | A Christmas Carol | A Ghost Story of Christmas The magic of Charles Dickens’ heart-warming classic returns for its 17th season. Come see Connecticut’s favorite family holiday tradition and spend some time with Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim, Ebenezer Scrooge, Jacob Marley and the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future as they bring A Christmas Carol to life on stage.

Friday, November 28 at 7pm | Hartford, CT | Hartford Wolfpack vs the Admirals. $1 hot dogs and $2 beers (ears plugged) until the start of the second period.

Friday, November 28 – February 1 | Hartford, CT | Winterfest | Enjoy free ice-skating and free skate rentals, daily, through February 1, 2015 at the Winterfest Hartford rink in Bushnell Park.

Friday, November 28 from 11am-1pm | Newington, CT | Frozen Fun for Everyone | To celebrate the start of winter, we will prepare an Ice Princess Braided Pretzel, Snowman Sugar Cookies, and Blue Cupcakes with White Chocolate Snowflakes. Children will pack up their goodies in a snowflake box to take home and share. Ages 6 and up.

Friday, November 28th from 11am-3pm | Windsor Locks, CT | Santa Visit | Santa will be making his annual visit to the Air Museum to meet and pose for photos with children in our newly acquired U.S. Coast Guard Dassault HU-25A. Santa will also have a gift for each child!

Friday-Sunday, November 28-30, December 5-28 and Monday, December 29 from 5/6-9pm | East Windsor, CT | Winterfest | That delightful and magical season of WinterFest is now upon us. The Connecticut Trolley Museum once again pushes the limits to treat you and yours to an evening of entertainment and seasonal exhilaration! Ride the antique traction through the “Tunnel of Lights” tripping on our open electrical chariot (The Montréaler) or another open car – 3 miles of cool breezes under the starlit heavens. Or cozy down in an enclosed trolley for the warmer, dashing through the snow, rail trip. Open your complimentary “Ride & Sing Along WinterFest Songbook” and belt out your favorite Christmas Carol with the Trolley Crew and fellow passengers! Stroll through the Teresalee Bertinuson Visitor Center where the functioning and enchanting model train layouts will take your mind on a flight of fancy. The “halls are decked” with the proverbial “boughs of holly” and there are enough decorations to satisfy any souls need for visual Holiday splendor. The youngsters can sit on Santa’s lap and receive a gift – you may also if you desire.

Saturday, November 29, Sunday, November 30, December 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21 from 12 – 3pm | Hartford, CT | Winterfest: Photos With Santa | Winterfest wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Santa, so visit the Pump House and have your photo taken with him for free. Each family receives 1 free 5×7 photo; additional prints may be purchased online, the day after you skate.

Saturday, November 29; 9am-12pm| Home Depot | How to build a Give and Save Bank

Saturday, November 29 | Simsbury, CT | Simsbury Celebrates | Join in the fun at Simsbury Celebrates! Simsbury’s only free town-wide family event. The festivities, with indoor and outdoor family entertainment, start at 4:30pm and continue throughout the evening. The celebration ends with a holiday-decorated Fire Truck Parade, followed immediately by a spectacular fireworks show.

Sunday, November 30th | Newington, CT | Huffing Off Stuffing 5K Race | If you’re feeling a little full after your big Thanksgiving dinner, we have the perfect chance for you to run it off and support lupus!

Sunday, November 30; 2pm – 5pm | Santa Sunday | Bristol, CT | Santa Claus is coming to town! Kick off the holiday season at the Carousel Museum by sitting on Santa’s lap and enjoying an afternoon of family fun!

November 30 – December 2 | Suffield, CT | Holiday Festival: A Children’s Holiday | Ring in the holidays with a visit to the Phelps-Hatheway House! Local clubs and organizations, including the Suffield Garden Club, decorate the house with natural decorations to highlight this year’s theme: A Children’s Holiday.

Save the Date: Monday, December 1st (snow date December 3rd) at Elmwood Community Center for “Building Meaningful Relationships with Teachers” from 6:00 to 7:30 pm.  An important key to your child’s success is the parent-teacher relationship. Come join us for an evening of information and humor with presenter Beth Bye, long-time early childhood educator, as she helps build parental self-awareness and provides practical advice for strengthening your relationship with your child’s teachers. Dinner provided and childcare (age 3 and up) by reservation. Please RSVP by Sunday, November 30th to RSVPGreatBy8@gmail.com.

Save the Date: January 31st -February 1st , 2015 | Saturday, 10am to 5pm, Sunday, 10am to 4pm | 11th Annual Big Y Kid’s Fair | Fun, entertainment, exhibits, prizes and more are what you’ll get this day at the Connecticut Convention Center, in Hartford. Here’s one-stop-shopping for the latest products and services for growing families, including national, state and local companies offering product samples and valuable information. Plus, we’ll present entertainment, celebrity appearances and loads of activities for families with busy babies and toddlers. There will be Pony Rides and a Petting Zoo, magicians, a stage area featuring events like a kids fashion show, a kids play area, amusement rides and much, much more! $10 Adults, $5 Kids {Adults get $2 off with Big Y Express Savings Club or Silver Savings Club Card, limited to one per party}.

Check back often as we update on the regular. Don’t forget to check out our reoccurring activity page where you will find more daily things to do. And if you like to plan ahead, check out our page on holiday happenings.

Please visit the venue’s website directly for any inclement weather postings.

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