April 6 – 12

Welcome to the first full week of April and it is starting to feel like Spring is finally here! Below are some unique events that we have found to do across the County for the next 7 days; some are for your kids, others are meant for just parents and most are family-friendly. Be sure to check out our list of regularly re-occurring activities for even more things to do on the daily (or sometimes monthly) and check back often as we add-on regularly.

Now through Sunday, April 26:

Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30pm, Friday at 8pm, Saturday at 2pm and 8pm and Sunday at 2pm. The Pianist of Willesden Lane Based on the book The Children of Willesden Lane by Mona Golabek and Lee Cohen adapted and directed by Hershey Felder. Running Time: 90 minutes with no intermission. Recommended for adults and children ages 12 and up. Tickets $25-85. Hartford Stage, Hartford.

{Parenting Time Out} Tuesday – Thursday at 7:30pm, Fridays at 8pm, Saturday at 2:30pm and Sunday at 8pm and Sundays at 2:30pm. Playing the Assassin In a compelling story about a man’s honor, his legacy and his humanity, Frank Baker, a retired NFL star is down on his luck. Now, he’s offered the chance of a lifetime – an interview on CBS before the Super Bowl. But just when he thinks his luck has changed, Baker and his interviewer are blindsided by secrets and revelations. Inspired by a true story, this new play looks closely at hero worship, race, atonement and legacy. How will you be remembered? 80 minutes (no intermission). Theaterworks, Hartford.

April 6 – April 11:

Hartford Prints! presents The Thread: Hartford’s Living Room Series A week of listening, reading and story-telling in your hometown The Thread is a week-long series of literary events happening all across Hartford the second week of April. During the week, usher in Spring by attending each one of these unique events. If you do, you will not only experience our city through this notable thread, but you will also receive a special thank-you gift from our sponsors! Why? Because as Mark Twain once said, we like a story well told. In collaboration with: Hartford Public Library, The Mark Twain House & Museum, Real Art Ways, WNPR and HartBeat Ensemble. Monday, April 6th; The Ear Cave Location: The Carriage House, Hartford. Tuesday, April 7th; Heart City Story Club Location: Hartford Public Library. Wednesday, April 8th; Other People’s Stories #17 Real Art Ways, Hartford. Thursday, April 9th; Syllable Series: Danger  Location: Hartford Prints, Hartford! Friday, April 10th; The Mouth presents Thrown for a Loop Location: Mark Twain House. Saturday, April 11th; Speak Up presents All About the Benjamins Stories About Money Location: Real Art Ways.

Tuesday, April 7:

9:30 – 10:30am and 11:30am – 12:30pm: Toddler Class: Spring has Sprung Let’s celebrate the arrival of spring by making some springtime quesadillas. We will prepare some fresh veggies and sandwich them between whole wheat flour tortillas. While they are cooking, we will decorate a springtime cupcake. Ages 2-5 (Parent must attend). $15 per child, $10 per siblings. Stew Leonard’s, Newington.

Wednesday, April 8:

9:45 – 10:45am: Little Hands in Harmony Come enjoy playing instruments and singing songs with your child! All ages. Free. Family Wellness Center, New Britain.

12 – 1pm: Lunchtime Lecture: Solomon’s Wisdom: Recreating the Whitman Library Historian and rare book collector Paul Kramer will describe his research into books that Solomon Whitman had in his personal library, as well as his project to reconstitute the library for Whitman’s office in the historic house. Beverages and dessert will be provided. Stanley-Whitman House, Farmington.

Thursday, April 9 – Sunday, April 12:

Thursday at 7pm, Friday/Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 3pm: Tchaikovsky Sleeping Beauty Joyous themes of physical beauty and movement take center stage in this program featuring select appearances by two acclaimed Connecticut dance companies. Plus, let your imagination soar with the music of Prokofiev’s brilliant Prodigal Son, originally created for Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes by George Balanchine. The Bushnell, Hartford.

The 10th Annual Trinity Hip Hop Festival Founded in the spring of 2006, the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival was created to combat the disunity, segregation, and violence of Hartford, CT and Trinity College. Using the historically education-oriented and politically revolutionary medium — Hip Hop – and focusing on its global potency and proliferation, the Trinity International Hip Hop Festival works to unify Trinity College, the city of Hartford, and the Globe. Click here for a list of the schedule. Free. Trinity College, Hartford.

Thursday, April 9:

10am – 12pm: Community Playgroup Feel free to come in with your children and spend some time playing with toys, have a snack, and participate in a story or craft. Free. Family Wellness Center, New Britain.

10am – 12pm: Bristol Early Childhood Fair Come to our Bristol Early Childhood Fair and meet preschool teachers and other awesome people in the community who help kids succeed, plus take home lots of free giveaways. Free. Bristol Library, Bristol.

12 – 1pm: Ending the Civil War: Connecticut’s History and Closing the Commemoration After four years of remarkable events that have dotted every region of Connecticut, the Civil War Commemoration is coming to a close. On the 150th anniversary of General Lee’s surrender at Appomattox Court House, commemorate the end of the American Civil War at the Old State House. Join Dr. Matthew Warshauer, co-chair of the Connecticut Civil War Commemoration Commission and author of Connecticut in the American Civil War: Slavery, Sacrifice, and Survival, as he provides a riveting account of the war’s final days, the war’s toll on Connecticut and how the state’s residents attempted to make sense of so much loss. Dr. Warshauer will also discuss the Commemoration Commission’s driving goal of considering what historians 50 years from now, at the bicentennial, will say about the efforts to learn our Civil War history. This program is free to attend and open to the public. Registration is encouraged, but not required. You can register via this link. Connecticut’s Old State House, Hartford.

5 – 7pm: Bristol Early Childhood Fair Come to our Bristol Early Childhood Fair and meet preschool teachers and other awesome people in the community who help kids succeed, plus take home lots of free giveaways. Free. Bristol Library, Bristol.

{Parenting Time Out} 5:30pm: Healthy HartBeat Happy Hour With plays that reflect the best work from emerging playwrights across the country, the Healthy Happy Hour reading series is an after work event that combines new plays, samples of new food trends and hotspots, and new faces interested in experiencing the human stories of mental illness with humor, grace and excitement. Schizphrenia/Bipolar: The Beautiful Dark by Erik Gernand (Chicago, IL) A woman must confront her darkest fears when she suspects that her teenage son may be planning an act of violence. “Affecting, thought-provoking. Mr. Gernand has created complicated, recognizable people who are, like most of us, victims of their own flaws.” – The New York Times. $10 per ticket. Carriage House Theater, Hartford.

5:45 – 6:45pm: Family Hip-Hop Dance Family fun for everyone! Come dance and get your bodies moving during this active and engaging program, which focuses on promoting healthy exercise through hip-hop dance. Free. Family Wellness Center, New Britain.

7 – 8:30pm: Vernal Pool Walk Learn about the amphibians that inhabit vernal pools as we search for nocturnal wildlife. Pre-registration is required for this program as space is limited. Not geared for very young children. Cost: $7 non-members. Roaring Brook Nature Center, Canton.

(Parenting Time Out} 7 – 9pm: 3rd Annual Shad Derby Trivia Contest Think you know everything? Test your knowledge at the Shad Derby Trivia Contest  at the Windsor Historical Society. Teams of up to 6 members (age 21 and up only) can compete during five rounds of questions ranging from general knowledge to Windsor-specific facts. The winning team will receive a $50 gift card from the Union Street Tavern, the Shad Derby Trivia Trophy, and bragging rights for a full year. Enjoy beer supplied by Back East Brewery along with other refreshments and the grand opening of the “Shad Derby: A Windsor Tradition” exhibition, on view until May 30th. Teams must register by April 7th – space is limited. Funds raised will benefit the Windsor Historical Society and the Shad Fest Bureau. Doors open at 6:30 with light refreshments, and the contest will start promptly at 7pm. Cost: $10/contestant and $5/onlooker. Windsor Historical Society of Windsor, Windsor.

Friday, April 10 – Saturday, April 11:

9:30 – 10:30am: Toddler Class: Spring has Sprung Let’s celebrate the arrival of spring by making some springtime quesadillas. We will prepare some fresh veggies and sandwich them between whole wheat flour tortillas. While they are cooking, we will decorate a springtime cupcake. Ages 2-5 (Parent must attend). $15 per child, $10 per siblings. Stew Leonard’s, Newington.

Friday, April 10 from 5-8pm & Saturday, April 11 from 9am- 2pm: Sale of a Whale Children’s Consignment Sale; sell or donate your children’s gently used clothes, toys and gear; then when this date hits come and shop; others people unused goods can be your new treasures. Avon Junior Women’s Club, Avon Senior Center, Avon.

{Parenting Time Out} Friday, April 10 from 7 – 10:30pm & Saturday, April 11 from 12pm – 4pm, Reception: 7:30pm – 8:00pm and Dining and Dessert: 8:00pm – 11:00pm: Sip, Savor & Stroll Indulge in a culinary celebration! Tickets range from $110-225. Connecticut Convention Center, Hartford. Click here for more information about this parenting time off opportunity.

Friday, April 10:

10 – 11am: Museum & Me: Playdates with Art In this new program, parents and caregivers learn how to share art with their babies and toddlers by recognizing and responding to signs of visual stimulation. Led by Museum educators and docents, the program focuses on a different theme each class through stories, guided gallery explorations, and a sensory play session. Parents and caregivers participate at every stage, so come ready to enjoy a special museum visit with your little one. Museum admission includes entrance to the class, as well as a “coffee break” during the play session. Strollers are welcome, and the spacious Stanley Works Center will be available for the duration of the class for anyone needing a break with their child. Front carriers are suggested for babies. Ages 0-2. Free with admission. Reserve your museum pass a your local library to get in for free. New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain.

5:30 – 8:30pm: Parents Night Out Need an evening without the kids? My Gym’s Parents’ Night Out gives our parents the opportunity to take a well-deserved break. Go out for a night on the town feeling confident that your little ones are safe and having the time of their lives with their favorite My Gym teachers. This incredible evening for your children is filled with a variety of fun games, rides and activities, and they won’t want the night to end! And don’t worry about food – we’ll take care of that too!! Ages 2.5 and up.

6 – 7:30pm: Canvas and Cupcake Class Our incredibly popular class is back again, this time we will be painting a colorful butterfly on 11×14 canvases and serving it up with a tasty butterfly cupcake to enjoy. Ages 6-12. $30 per child. Stew Leonard’s, Newington.

6 – 7:30pm: Father Daughter Spring Dance Put on a special dress and bring your Dad or Special Person to Elmwood Community Center. DJ Bernie will join us for great music and games. Tickets are $8 per person and will not be sold at the door, call to register. Children must be accompanied by a adult. Children ages 6-12. Elmwood Community Center, West Hartford.

7pm: Matilda in the Middle: A Bunny Ballet Story Join us for Storytime with Sue: Matilda lives with her family, she takes ballet lesson and begins to shine. Free. Barnes & Noble, Enfield.

7 – 8pm: Read It and Sleep Get comfy with a cup of hot chocolate and snacks, and listen as a children’s book is read by a guest. As a special treat the first 25 families take home a free copy of the book! Charter Oak Cultural Center, Hartford.

7pm: Hartford Wolf Pack Game: Hartford Wolf Pack vs. Springfield Falcons Children under 2 years of age are free. XL Center, Hartford.

{Parenting Time Out} 9pm: Hot Chocolate June Archer, Eleven28 Entertainment and A&G Insurance present Hot Chocolate Soul! Hot Chocolate Soul is a delicate balance of Music, Comedy & Poetry with a live band featuring Karl Browne’s Smooth Improvisation. The ultimate performance showcase! $30 per ticket. The Bushnell, Hartford.

Saturday, April 11 – Sunday, April 12:

1 – 1:30pm, 2 – 2:30pm, 3 – 3:30pm: Strong-Howard House Museum Experience History truly comes alive as you visit Windsor Historical Society’s Strong-Howard House Museum and meet Captain and Mrs. Howard in their 1810 home. Costumed actors portraying this historic couple will welcome you into their newly renovated historic house, where yes, you can touch everything! Pre-registrations necessary since space is limited inside the house. Contact the Society at (860) 688-3813 to make your reservation now! Walk-ins will be accommodated only as space allows. Cost: $10. Windsor Historical Society of Windsor, Windsor.

Saturday, April 11:

9am – 5pm: Spring Cleaning Please join us for our annual Spring Clean-up Day. Bring your rake, hand or electric saw, screw drivers, 2″ by 8″ by 6′ or more wood to repair picnic tables, a small trailer to help us take waste to the recycling or bulky waste center, all are needed. Bring buckets, cloths, window washers, or ask us, we probably need it!  Wear clothes that can get dirty or damaged, and boots or sturdy shoes. Free. Connecticut Audubon Society Center, Glastonbury.

10am: Junior Chef: Lunch Box Lessons From veggie sushi and sandwich wraps to colorful fruit kabobs, we’ll teach you how to pack the best lunch box ever using the freshest spring produce. And come lunchtime, all your friends will want to trade with you! Suitable for ages 5-13. Free. Williams-Sonoma Stores, Windsor and West Hartford.

11am: See-It-Grow Spring is here and it’s time to start gardening! Your child will love learning about plants and watching them grow with this great kit! Free. Lowe’s Stores.

11am: I Wish You More Storytime Join us for Storytime and activities featuring Barnes & Noble’s Picture Book of the Month, I Wish You More. This sweet, uplifting book is perfect for wishers of every age. Free. Barnes & Noble of Enfield, Canton, Farmington and Glastonbury.

11am – 12pm: Secrets of the Veeder House Tour When Asylum Avenue still passed through cow pastures, Curtis Veeder built a grand home with an elevator, central vacuum, and even an indoor car wash. This special tour highlights features of the 1928 house that is now the Connecticut Historical Society that are not regularly accessible to the public. Come unlock the secrets of the Veeder House and learn more about the historic house and the history of its West End neighborhood. Tours last approximately 45 minutes and are appropriate for ages 12 and up. Tour price includes general admission. Space is limited. $4-8 for non-members. Connecticut Historical Society, Hartford.

12pm: The Botelle School Bookfair With Author Erin Bowman Join us in-store for the Botelle School bookfair. Ask any bookseller how you can help support the school. Also, special guest Erin Bowman will be signing her new book, Forged. Free. Barnes & Noble, Canton.

12 – 4pm: Family Raptor Day Join us for a fun day of children and adult programing featuring the Roaring Brook birds of prey. Cost: $6 non-members. Roaring Brook Nature Center, Canton.

12 – 5pm: Blue-White Spring Football Game Make your plans to check out the 2015 Huskies in action for the first time! The 2015 University of Connecticut Blue-White Spring Football Game will take place with a 3pm kickoff. Admission and parking are free as the lots open at noon and the stadium games open at 1pm. In addition to the game, fans can take part in several pregame and postgame activities. From tailgating with your normal game day crew to visiting the family-friendly “Fan Fest”, there’s something for everyone at this year’s Spring Game! Break out the brats and burgers…its tailgating time! Ever wondered what it’s like to take the field like the Huskies? Fans interested in this opportunity can take a walk through the tunnel and take pictures on-field with the 20-foot tall UConn helmet! 1pm. Fan Fest is the central hub of Spring Game. Located behind the scoreboard, adults and children can take part in a variety of fun and exciting activities. This year’s Fan Fest includes an inflatable obstacle course, bounce house, rock wall, a performance by the UConn Marching Band, face painting, pictures with the UConn Cheerleaders, meet and greet with Jonathan the Husky and much more! Fans are welcome to sit anywhere during the game. Postgame, Meet the Huskies after the game, fans are invited on-field for a meet and greet and autographs with the team! Free. Rentschler Field, East Hartford.

1 – 3pm: Backpacking Workshop Join Friends of Sessions Woods Director Jan Gatzuras for an introduction to backpacking. This workshop will provide the essentials for beginners to learn about equipment, clothing, food, water treatment, and suggestions for beginner backpack trips. Participants will learn how to safely camp and secure food from wildlife. The resources available to identify wildlife encountered during outdoor activities also will be discussed. Backpacking is healthy, provides an opportunity to spend time outdoors, and is a great way to explore Connecticut’s beautiful natural resources. Free. Registration is appreciated. Sessions Woods, Burlington.

2pm: Macy’s Presents Destination Spring Fashion! Join Macy’s and a Style Expert for a runway show celebrating spring fashion and everything you need for your next vacation destination! After the show, enter for a chance to win a style consultation with the Style Expert as they show you how to take your wardrobe from drab to fab! Enjoy mini makeovers and music while you shop! Plus with any purchase in Women’s fashion of $75 or more, received a personalized Macy’s garment bags (while supplies last)! Free. West Farms Mall, West Hartford.

2 – 3pm: Secrets of the Veeder House Tour – See details above.

4pm: Educator Appreciation Days – Kickoff Reception We love educators at Barnes & Noble. Enjoy extra savings from April 11 to 18 on all your in-store purchases and enjoy a 25% discount! All K through 12th grade educators are welcome. The kickoff reception will feature prizes and giveaways and a discussion of To Kill a Mockingbird to celebrate the upcoming release of Harper Lee’s next book. Barnes & Noble, Farmington. Click here to learn more about Educator Appreciation Days.

7pm: Hartford Wolf Pack Game: Hartford Wolf Pack vs. Albany Devils Police & Fire Appreciation Night: Join the Wolf Pack in saluting the police officers, fire fighters and first responders that serve our community. Children under 2 years of age are free. XL Center, Hartford.

Sunday, April 12:

11am: Cooking from the Spring Farmer’s Market Spring farmers’ markets are brimming with fresh fruits and vegetables that we’ve waited for all winter long. We’ll showcase this wonderful local produce in a seasonal soup, pasta and stir-fry. Free. Williams-Sonoma Stores, Windsor and West Hartford.

12 – 2pm: Family Sunday: Merry-Go-Music A carousel ride just isn’t the same without an antique band organ blaring in the background. Come on down to the Carousel Museum to learn about the history of music and the carousel and listen to our very own organ, and then create your own set of musical instruments to take home! Admission to this program also includes a tour of the entire Museum and a ride on our working carousel $6 per adult, $5 per child, and members are free! Carousel Museum, Bristol.

{Parenting Time Out} 1 – 3pm: Slow Art Day was first created to share the joy and benefits of art with more people in a personal setting. By slowly examining various pieces, viewers will get a glimpse of the true essence of five pre-selected works in the Museum. Observers will be guided by volunteer Beverly Field Pierz, and fellow Slow Art docents. Pre-registration is required. $15 for non-members. New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain.

2-3pm: Fairy Tales & Tea Celebrate like royals as you work together to create dazzling, jeweled crowns and wands while sipping tea during this fairy tale workshop. Wear your favorite party dresses and have a ball! Ages 3 and up. $15 pp/ $12 members (children and adults). Seating limited to 12 participants. The Art Truck, Glastonbury.

{Mom Time Out} 3 – 5pm: Discover Yarn Night Come Sit and Stitch with Michaels! Bring your project and make new friends. $5 reserves your spot. Michael’s, New Britain.

Plan Ahead:

Saturday, April 25 at 2pm: Happy Mealtime Event Whether you’re breastfeeding, bottle-feeding, or spoon-feeding, from newborns to new nibblers, you’ll find advice and products on feeding favorites and mealtime must-haves right here! Free. Babies R Us locations.

For activities and events outside of Hartford County, check out our sister site, Momecticut by clicking here.

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