March 8 – 14

Editor’s Note: Welcome to the second week of March! Below we have highlighted some of the best things to do this week in Hartford County! Saint Patty’s Day is coming up on Thursday, March 17th, as you can see below; many businesses are already having fun with the upcoming holiday! Maple Syrup activities are still underway – make sure your family takes the time to learn about this seasonal process which has strong roots in CT. The Easter Bunny is out and hopping around, get your pictures while there is still time. This week is also extra fun because it is National Pancake Day and Museum Day Live! Lots of extra reasons to eat pancakes (for a good cause) and to check out some local museums while it’s free.

Daily:

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Monday – Saturday from 10am – 8pm and Sunday from 11am – 6pm: Photos with the Easter Bunny at Bunnyville Stop by Bunnyville in Center Court and have your photo taken with the Easter Bunny March 4 – 26. Photo packages start at just $22. West Farms Mall, West Farms.

Weekdays from 11am – 8pm and Saturday – Sunday from 11am – 6pm: Photos with the Easter Bunny Hop on over to visit with the Easter Bunny! Pre-order photos to get double the prints and save. See the Easter Bunny the smart way! Save over 30% on your photo package by pre-purchasing online. Plus, save even more when you make a reservation to visit before March 24. Photo purchase and reservations are not required to visit the Easter Bunny. Friday, March 25, Saturday, March 19 and 26 extended hours from 10am – 9pm. The Easter Bunny may take occasional carrot breaks. Pet Nights: Monday, March 14 and 21 from 5pm – close. Cats and dogs only, please. The Shoppes at Buckland Hills, Manchester.

Tuesday, March 8:

National Pancake Day

7am – 7pm: Pancakes with Purpose Since beginning its National Pancake Day celebration in 2006, IHOP restaurants have raised nearly $20 million to support charities in the communities in which they operate. On March 8, 2016, from 7 AM to 7 PM, guests from around the world will celebrate the eleventh annual National Pancake Day at participating IHOP restaurants and enjoy one free short stack of Buttermilk pancakes. In return for the free pancakes, guests will be asked to consider leaving a donation for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals or other designated local charities. There is one free short stack per guest. The offer is valid at participating restaurants for dine-in only while supplies last and is not valid with any other offer, special coupon or discount.

10:30 – 11:15am: March Family Playtime! Looking for a fun indoor activity to do with your1-5 year old on these cold winter days? Then why don’t you join us for our Family Playtime. This is an open gym forum where children accompanied by a caretaker can explore the many obstacle courses on the floor, the balance beam, the vault, the bars and the pit. Family Playtime is for children ages 1-5 years of age with caretaker participation. Non-members are welcome. $10 per child and $5 for siblings. A general release form is required for non-members. The Gymnastics Training Center, Simsbury.

2 – 7pm: Blood Drive The American Red Cross will be holding a blood drive on today. Make an appointment on the American Cross website and enter sponsor code MJCC. Mandell JCC, West Hartford.

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7 – 9pm: Clybourne Park Auditions Little Theatre of Manchester is seeking to cast an African-American man, an African-American woman, three Caucasian men, and two Caucasian women (ages ranging from late 20’s to late 40’s) for a June production of Bruce Norris’s explosive, Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-winning comedy-drama Clybourne Park. The play’s two acts are 50 years apart; each actor will play a different character in each of the acts. Auditioners will read selections from each act. More information on the play and the rehearsal and performance schedule can be found at below. Callbacks: Wednesday, March 9th if needed. Cheney Hall, Manchester.

7:30pm: Something Quiet Jayce and Redwine are a lesbian couple living together in a cozy Brooklyn co-op. Their best friend, Marco, is a goldstar and an eternal PhD candidate in Art History at Columbia. When DOMA is overturned, Jayce surprises Redwine by popping the question. And to her surprise, Redwine refuses. Their right to be together tears them apart, leaving Marco without the company of his two best friends…until he comes up with a plan to get them back together. Thus ensues a hilarious interrogation of queer coupling and what it means to defy or define one’s self by that which we deem the status quo. Set on a rooftop in Brooklyn, SOMETHING QUIET is a sexy, romantic comedy about the myriad ways we define family and choosing love over politics. $5 admission includes talk back with playwright & cast along with the opportunity to complete an audience response card. Playhouse on Park, West Hartford.

Tuesday, March 8 – Sunday, March 13:

{Last Call} Tuesday at 2pm, Wednesday – Thursday at 7:30pm, Friday – Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 2pm: I Hate Hamlet A young and successful television actor relocates to New York, where he rents a marvelous, gothic apartment. With his television career in limbo, the actor is offered the opportunity to play Hamlet onstage, but there’s one problem: He hates Hamlet. His dilemma deepens with the entrance of John Barrymore’s ghost, who arrives intoxicated and in full costume to the apartment that once was his. The contrast between the two actors, the towering, dissipated Barrymore whose Hamlet was the greatest of his time, and Andrew Rally, hot young television star, leads to a wildly funny duel over women, art, success, duty, television, and yes, the apartment. Sunday matinees are followed by a talk back with the cast. Playhouse on Park, West Hartford.

Wednesday, March 9:

5pm: We launch our new pictorial book, Mark Twain’s Hartford, published by Arcadia Books — an exploration of the author’s relationship to the city where they lived for two productive decades. The book draws on the Mark Twain House & Museum archives, with many rarely seen images presented for the first time in print. The author and picture editor for the book, our own Steve Courtney, will present the tale. This is a free event, but a $5.00 donation is requested and reservations are recommended. Mark Twain House, Hartford.

5:30 – 7pm: This is America: A Visual Expedition by Carol M. Highsmith The CHS welcomes photographer Carol M. Highsmith to provide a unique detailed account of her experiences photographing Connecticut and the United States. For 35 years, Carol M. Highsmith, the woman often saluted as “America’s Photographer,” has produced memorable images of life and places across the United States on behalf of our esteemed Library of Congress. There, her collection of 30,000 images is ranked alongside those of historical luminaries including Mathew Brady and Dorothea Lange.  As part of a state-by-state project of a lifetime, Highsmith has explored Connecticut and will describe how her carefully preserved photographs depict 21st-Century America and our state. Highsmith’s exhibition, Connecticut Captured: A 21st Century Look at an American Classic, will be on view and shows the diversity of Connecticut: its charming rolling roads and Colonial villages; its rich maritime heritage; its ubiquitous house museums; and the vestiges of the state’s industrial might and bustling railroads in cities throughout the state. $10 for non-members, wine and cheese reception included. Reservations are requested. Connecticut Historical Society Museum & Library.

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7pm: The Making of a Mensch So many PJ books teach our children what it means to be a mensch (a good person). Learn with Rabbi Howard Herman how to use Jewish values to build your children’s character. Watch the Moxie Institute’s video, The Making of a Mensch, and make a plan for your family on ways to improve the lives of others and the community by learning to improve yourself. Free and open to the community. RSVP. Mandell JCC Valley Sports & Community Center, Canton.

{Reoccurs} 7 – 9pm: Drop-In Badminton for Adults (No Program: 4/20) Fee: $5 per week. Runs until May 25th. Irving Robbins School Gymnasium, Farmington.

7 – 9pm: Drop-In Teen Center The Drop-In Program at Farmington Youth Center began in 1971 to provide a place where teens from Farmington and Unionville could have a comfortable and safe place to meet with professional youth workers. Part of its informal nature allows counselors, interns and adult volunteers to interact with teens through music and conversation. Ages 13-19 welcome. Free. 23 School Street, Unionville.

Thursday, March 10:

10:30am: Oliver Poons and the Bright Yellow Hat Storytime Lauryn and Lois Wendus will be joining us for a very special Storytime. They will be sharing their book Oliver Poons and the Bright Yellow Hat, a fun-filled story about a lovable cat named Oliver and his very special hat. Come on in for this truly unique Storytime. Click here to learn more about this children’s book. Free. Barnes & Noble, 1599 South East R0ad, Farmington.

{Reoccurs} 7 – 9pm: Drop-in Pickleball for Adults Runs until April 14th. $5 per week. Irving Robbins School Gymnasium, Farmington.

5:30 – 7:15pm: Race and Food Access How can we challenge inequities in our food system? How does food access connect to other social justice issues? How can youth lead on this issue? Join the conversation with featured guests from Grow Hartford, a youth leadership and youth organizing program that builds youth leaders in Hartford to challenge racial inequities in our food system and society at large. The event is free. Harriet Beecher Stowe Visitor Center, West Hartford.

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(VIP at 5:30pm) 6 – 9pm: Big Red for the Arts Celebrate 45 years of community support! We’re celebrating the arts in a new way this year! Join us at Big Red for the Arts to celebrate the Greater Hartford Arts Council’s 45th anniversary and the start of our United Arts Campaign. Discover our one-of-a-kind arts showcase, enjoy dishes from the area’s best restaurants, and sample wines and spirits from around the world. Our featured chef for VIP is Chef Leslie Tripp who brings thirty years of experience in fine dining and membership service to The Hartford Club. Chef Tripp has served as the Executive Chef at Fresh Salt Restaurant at the Saybrook Point Inn for the past five years. A former student of Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France, he is classically trained in culinary arts, pastries, and wines. Our signature United Arts Campaign kick-off event is being reimagined as an arts showcase to celebrate all of the incredible artists and organizations our region has to offer. This is the Arts Council’s largest fundraising event of the year drawing more than 250 local business and arts leaders. All proceeds benefit the United Arts Campaign. $125 per person. VIP $175 per person. The Hartford Club, Hartford.

7pm: An Evening with Azar Nafisi Azar Nafisi is the critically acclaimed author of Reading Lolita in Tehran, a long-running number one New York Times bestseller published in thirty-two languages, and Things I’ve Been Silent About, also a New York Times bestseller. A fellow at Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies, she has taught at Oxford University and several universities in Tehran. She will also be talking about her newest book The Republic of Imagination: A Life in Books, in which she cites Adventures of Huckleberry Finn as a major influence on her life. This program will be recorded for broadcast on NPR’s Person Place Thing, an interview show based on this idea: people are particularly engaging when they speak not directly about themselves but about something they care about. Guests talk about one person, one place, and one thing that are important to them. The result? Surprising stories from great talkers. The program will be followed by a book sale and signing. Tickets are $30 for the general public. There will be a VIP reception from 5:30-6:30 in the Museum Café. The VIP ticket which includes the meet and greet reception preceding the event is $65. Mark Twain House, Hartford.

Thursday, March 10 – Sunday, March 13:

Women Composers Festival of Hartford We are pleased to feature Jessica Meyer as our composer-in-residence and Liane Curtis as our Keynote Speaker. Our score call winners and other women composers past and present will also be highlighted. The Nautilus Brass Quintet and Cuatro Puntos are our guest ensembles.  A schedule of events and information about our featured artists can be found at the link above.

Thursday from 5:30-8pm, Friday from 7-8:30pm, Saturday from 2-3:40pm and from 7-8:30pm: Beneath the Gavel is an interactive performance piece about high-end art auctions and the extraordinary adventures that happen when fine art meets fine-ance. Using the artwork from our Permanent Collection as inspiration, Bated Breath Theatre Company will bring the audience into the hushed halls of a high-end auction house and dramatize the undercurrents, mixed motives, and tensions of high-stakes bidding on works of art. Audience members may engage directly in the action if they choose, bidding on works that will be won with fake money. Meanwhile, the differing perspectives of artists, collectors, auctioneers and many others will come together for an experience that is active, hilarious, serious, and immersive. Beneath the Gavel will remind audience members why they love art and will celebrate the artists, curators, dealers, and collectors who bring the excitement to the public. This is the Museum’s third collaboration with Bated Breath Theatre Company. Open night included a reception. Reoccurs on Thursday, March 24th from 7-8:30pm. $25 per person. New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain.

Tuesday – Thursday at 7:30pm, Friday – Saturday at 8pm, Saturday – Sunday at 2pm and Sunday at 7:30pm: Romeo & Juliet Director Darko Tresnjak follows up his spectacular production of Hamlet with Shakespeare’s most popular play. The intense feud between the Montague and Capulet families devastates the city of Verona and foreshadows tragic consequences for young Romeo and Juliet. Revenge, passion and a secret marriage lead the world’s most famous star-crossed lovers to a harrowing end. Runs until March 20th. Hartford Stage, Hartford.

Thursday at 7:30pm, Friday – Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 3pm: Russian Masters Carolyn Kuan and the Hartford Symphony Orchestra interpret the red-hot and icy-cool works of two iconic Russian masters! Inspired by his conducting studies of Haydn and Mozart, Prokofiev’s first symphony is known as the “Classical” and remains one of his most popular and beloved works. Written while in a Soviet safe haven during World War II, Prokofiev described his fifth symphony as “a hymn to free and happy Man, to his mighty powers, his pure and noble spirit.” One of the best-known violin concerti in the repertoire, Tchaikovsky’s is widely considered as one of the most technically difficult works for the instrument. The Bushnell, Hartford.

Friday, March 11:

9:30 – 11:30am and 11:30am – 12:30pm: St. Patty’s Day Celebration Let’s celebrate the luck of the Irish! Today we will make Irish soda bread bites and layered shamrock chocolate trifles. Each child will also decorate their very own lucky rainbow cupcakes with a pot of gold on top! Ages 2-5. Reoccurs on Saturday from 9:30-10:30am and on Tuesday, March 15 from 9:30-10:30am and 11:30-12:30pm. $15 per child (must be accompanied by an adult), Stew Leonard’s, Newington.

10 – 10:45am: Museum and Me Too Building on the success of Museum & Me: Playdates with Art, the NBMAA invites “graduates” to join our Museum educators for a sensory tour and exploratory art making session. We’ll sing, share, read stories, dance, and more as we get up close and personal with artworks that are especially toddler friendly. Dress comfortably and be prepared to make a beautiful mess as we create art inspired by what we see. Enjoy an introduction to the joy of art and the wonder of museums for the littlest of visitors! Reserve your spot by registering online. New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain.

11am – 12pm: Essential Oils 101 Join us to learn how to use essential oils. Kids are welcome. Free. Imagine Studio, West Hartford.

5:30 – 8:30pm: Kid’s Night Out Every kid deserves a special night out…and so do you! That’s why we created Kid’s Night Out. Parents get an evening to themselves while the children get to run, play, dance and create their own masterpiece with our energetic instructors. The evening also includes a pizza party dinner and ends with our famous bubble dance party. Ages 2 through 5. Children do not need to be potty trained. $35 for one child. Discount for siblings. Romp n’ Roll, Wethersfield.

6 – 8pm: St. Patty’s Day Celebration Let’s celebrate the luck of the Irish! Today we will make Irish soda bread bites, Irish nachos, and layered shamrock trifles. Each child will also decorate their very own lucky rainbow cupcakes with a pot of gold on top! Ages 6-12. $25 per child. Stew Leonard’s, Newington.

6 – 9pm: Parents’ Night Out is a 3 hour drop off program designed to keep your kids active and entertained while you have a night out to yourself! Pizza dinner for the kids is included! Children ages 4-10 years (fully potty trained only please). $35 for the 1st child, siblings are $15 each. My Gym, Glastonbury.

6 – 10pm: Kids Night Out This is the ultimate night out for any kid! Tons of games, pizza, an ice cream sundae bar, a big screen movie, and endless amounts of fun await you here at the Trails. This program has evolved into a very popular kids event and space fills up quickly. So parents plan your night out and send the kids here for theirs. Head on over to the Trails for a night out that you will never forget. Sorry, parents not allowed! Please bring clothing that is appropriate for outdoor (weather dependent) and indoor play as well as provide a sleeping bag/blanket and pillow for the movie. $25 per non-member. Winding Trails, Farmington.

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6 – 10pm: Liquid Lounger: Blarney Ball Hartford’s hottest night out is going out to the ball game–St. Patrick’s Day style! Join 1,000 of your closest friends for games, prizes, dancing, liquid delights, and more. Wow us-and the Hartford Yard Goats mascots, Chompers and Chew Chew -with your pitching skills, pose in our Postcard Photos from Ireland photo booth, dance a jig, and much more. See our newest traveling exhibit, Leonardo da Vinci: Machines in Motion, while you’re here. Show us your finest leprechaun-inspired outfit for a chance to win awesome prizes! Ireland-inspired entertainment includes: live DJ and live music, Celtic temporary tattoos, photo booth, make your own masterpiece with the Art Truck, tastings from Hooker and much more! Liquid Lounge is a 21+ event. ID will be required. Tickets are $15 in advance and $18 at the door. Capacity is limited. Connecticut Science Center, Hartford.

6:30 – 8pm: Sweaty Guys Night Out Grab the guys for some male bonding, a variety workout and a beer! Lite refreshments served. $15 per person. Pre-registration is required. Mandell JCC, West Hartford.

7pm: The Night Before St. Patrick’s Day It was the night before St. Patrick’s Day and all through the house … well, not quite. In this homestead, Tim and Maureen are busy setting traps to catch a leprechaun. Finally, exhausted by their labors, they sack out, only to discover the next morning that they have actually snared a little green creature. The next question is, what do they do with him? Barnes & Noble, Enfield.

Friday, March 11 – Saturday, March 12:

Friday at 7pm and Saturday at 2pm: Rapunzel Rene Shwartzbuckle is cuckoo for a turnip-like vegetable called Rapunzel. When she spots a mouth-watering patch of the plant in Witch Izwitch’s garden, she sends her husband Walt out to ’borrow’ some. Witch Izwitch is certainly not amused! With her diabolical henchmen, the Glumpwarts, she terrorizes Walt into promising her his firstborn child in exchange for his freedom. Fast forward to Rapunzel Shwartzbuckle’s 18th birthday. The Witch and the Glumpwarts show up as promised and whisk poor, innocent Rapunzel away to a tower in the forest. From here, a boisterously entertaining rescue attempt begins! Can Prince Bobby persevere over the powers of evil? Filled with plenty of laughs, this hair-raising tale gives a new twist to an old story and a gentle message about the nature of beauty. NCTC Performing Arts Theatre, Newington.

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{Last Call} Friday – Saturday at 8pm: Forbidden Broadway is the long-running Off-Broadway hit musical revue where Broadway’s greatest musical legends meet Broadway’s greatest satirist.  Join us In this loving, hilarious, and endlessly entertaining tribute to some of the theatre’s greatest stars and songwriters, spoofing Annie, Les Miz, Mama Mia, West Side Story, Hairspray, Wicked, Rent, Fiddler and more! Farmington Valley Stage Company, Collinsville.

Friday, March 11 – Sunday, March 13:

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Saturday, March 12:

Museum Day Live!

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9:30 – 11:30am: St. Patty’s Day Celebration Let’s celebrate the luck of the Irish! Today we will make Irish soda bread bites and layered shamrock chocolate trifles. Each child will also decorate their very own lucky rainbow cupcakes with a pot of gold on top! Ages 2-5. Reoccurs on Tuesday, March 15 from 9:30-10:30am and 11:30-12:30pm. $15 per child (must be accompanied by an adult), Stew Leonard’s, Newington.

10am: Washington Elementary PTA Bookfair Support the Washington Elementary PTA during their bookfair! Join us for fun activities including guest Storytimes, STEM play kits and a scavenger hunt. Barnes & Noble; Buckland Hills Mall, Manchester.

10 – 11:30am: Build a Bluebird Birdhouse Learn how to create a nesting habitat for one of Connecticut’s most loved and beneficial birds. Protect this declining species so it can continue to make a comeback! Children must be accompanied by an adult. Bring a hammer and we will provide all other materials. The cost is $10.00 per box. Registration is required. Northwest Park, Windsor.

10am – 4pm: 10th Annual Maple Festival Live demonstrations of sap boiling, syrup drawing off, and tree tapping. There will be live music, pancakes, classes, tours, sugar-on-snow eat, and more. Join us for a fun filled day out with the family! Sweet Wind Farm, East Hartland.

10am – 4pm: Open Cockpit & Meet “Howard Bunce” Open aircraft include the Vietnam War era “Huey” helicopter, the North American F-100 Super Sabre jet fighter, the Coast Guard HH-52 rescue helicopter, the Lockheed F-104C Starfighter, and many more. Meet Connecticut aviation pioneer Howard Bunce from 11am to 3pm. Bunce will be brought to life interacting with visitors and presenting his story. In 1912, 17 year-old Bunce built his own airplane which is now on display at the Museum. In addition, visitors can also participate in a hands-on Build and Fly Challenge, view and participate in R/C flight demonstrations by Time Machine Hobby, take a flying lesson on the Flight Sim Spot high tech flight simulators, or fly the Ercoupe full-motion flight simulator built from a real aircraft. The event will be held inside the Museum’s three large, heated display hangars. Sneakers or rubber-soled shoes are recommended. New England Air Museum, Windsor Locks.

10am – 5pm: Community Day: Hartford, Farmington, and West Hartford This month, residents of Hartford, Farmington, and West Hartford enjoy an admission free day of gallery viewing and art activities. Visitors can now explore more artwork throughout our recently completed expansion and view works that have been hidden in our collection. You can also bring the family and create your own work of art by joining one of the hands-on art activities taking place in our new studio classrooms. Open Studio: 11:00 a.m. to 2 p.m. Let our volunteer educators tap into your creative side and create self-portraits with your children inspired by a variety of artists. New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain.

11am: Willard the Dragon: Sneeze-Fire Storytime Join us for a special Storytime featuring author Suzanne Cordatos and her new book Willard the Dragon: Sneeze-Fire! Special craft and book signing to follow Storytime. Barnes & Noble; Somerset Square, Glastonbury.

11am: The 45th Annual Greater Hartford St. Patrick’s Day Parade The parade begins at Capitol Avenue by the State Capitol, takes a left on Main Street, a left on Asylum, a left on Ford Street, and then ends by the Memorial Arch.

11am: Too Many Carrots Storytime When Rabbit collects too many carrots which leave him unable to sleep in his cozy burrow, other animals offer to share their homes. Will Rabbit make his way back? Join us to find out at a special Storytime featuring Too Many Carrots. Activities and coloring to follow. Barnes & Noble, Farmington, Canton, West Hartford, Glastonbury, Manchester and Enfield.

11:30am: One Book, One Town West Hartford: Bilingual Storytime Join us for our bilingual storytime featuring the story Just Like Home/Como en mi tierra. The book follows one girl as she describes adjusting to life in a new country in both English and Spanish. This storytime is appropriate for children ages 5 to 8. The story touches upon themes present in the One Book, One Town West Hartford 2015-16 book selection Outcasts United by Warren St. John. Barnes & Noble; Blue Back Square, West Hartford.

12 – 1pm: What’s Hot for Kids – Flash Charms Swap Does your tween collect Flash Charms? They can bring their collection to our Flash Charm Swap to trade charms with other kids and make new friends in the process. Michael’s locations.

12 – 1pm: Spectacular Saturdays! Join us for a fun-filled Saturday! Each week, we will explore a favorite book through dance, drama, music and fun! Each class is taught by one of your favorite characters! You can sign up for all five, or join us for as many as you would like. Today’s Class is The Lorax. $30 per child. Hartford Stage, Hartford.

1 – 5pm: Open Studio Celebrate and enjoy the studio with free classes, snacks, and nutritional consults! Arrive 15-20 minutes early to check in and get your spot for classes. Click here for the class schedule. No registration required. West Hartford Yoga, West Hartford.

2 – 4pm: Hands-On History Workshop: Photography from Stereographs to Snapchat Explore the history behind your Instagram filters in this hands-on workshop designed just for kids! We’ll go behind-the-scenes to see how photography has evolved over the years and make our own pinhole cameras and zoetropes to take home. We’ll then look at photography today as we try out documentary photography around the museum. Please note: students participating in this workshop are required to bring a device with a camera. This program is appropriate for students ages 10-14. The cost is $8 per student for members and $10 per student for non-members (no cost for parents or guardians). Space is limited and pre-registration is required.  Connecticut Historical Society, Hartford.

2 – 4pm: Barn Fun Get your horse and farm fix with our monthly Barn Fun sessions. Each two-hour session will include activities such as: grooming time with the horses, stall cleaning, feeding all the animals, and learning about seasonal activities on the farm. $15 per kid per session. Parents can drop off their 5-12 year old or stay and learn as well (younger kids are welcome, but programs will be geared to 5-12 year olds. Parents need to stay with anyone under 5)! New, old and current students are welcome. Advance registration required. Maple View Farm, Granby.

2:30 – 4:30pm: Kidz Art Scene – Happy Bunny Bring your kids for a step-by-step painting class along with music and lots of fun. We provide all of the paint and supplies you’ll need to make your masterpiece. The background and heart leaf colors of this fun and whimsical tree can be unique for each painting. Family members joining us can each leave with a unique creation and have a series of tree paintings of various colors to display at home. Our teaching artist will guide you, step-by-step, through the painting and will make sure that you stay on track and complete your masterpiece by the end of class. Our goal is for you to have fun, relax and enjoy – and our teaching artists love to help you make the painting uniquely yours! Doors open at 2:00 pm, instruction begins at 2:30 pm. Scene Art Bar, Unionville.

5:30 – 9pm: Parent’s Night Out Big fun on the Big Screen. Inflatables, Zany Games, Gymnastics, Pizza and a Movie on our 9 foot screen keep your children entertained while you enjoy an evening out! Don’t forget to bring your pillow and blanket to cuddle up in for the movie! Children ages 4 years and up are welcome. $30 per child. Gymnastics Training Center, Simsbury.

6 – 9pm: Explore the Nights Walk Miss Judy invites you to bring your friends and family for a fun night of learning about the great outdoors. The general format includes an inside introduction to the evening program, an outside walk, a warm fire with Smores or something baked in the fire, a short walk outside to check the night sky, and of course family socializing with other night explorers. Dress in layers for the weather conditions that day it can get very cold on these winter nights. The Welcoming Spring program in March will have us exploring the wetlands and forest for the sounds of spring peepers and wood frogs along with glimpses of early spring plants. Winding Trails, Farmington.

7 – 9pm: 7th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Concert The Irish band Cead Mile Fealte returns for our 10th annual celebration of Celtic music and culture! Seating is limited and registration is required. Admission is $15 per person. A complimentary glass of wine or cider will be served before the concert. Stanley-Whitman House, Farmington.

Saturday, March 12 – Sunday, March 13:

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10am – 4pm: Open Sugarhouse at Northwest Park Learn the art and skill of maple sugaring from Chuck Drake, our sugarhouse expert. Admission is free. Reoccurs Saturday – Sunday until 3/26. Northwest Park, Windsor.

Saturday 10am – 5pm and Sunday 12 – 5pm: Watch Maple Syrup Being Made Guests can enjoy complementary Hot Maple Coffee and Hot Chocolate and also sample our products. Runs until March 30th. Rain or shine. Lamothe’s Sugar House, Burlington.

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1:30 – 3:30pm: Weekend Family Walks This winter join Miss Judy for a fun weekend afternoon of learning something new about the great outdoors. The program format is an indoor introduction about the days topic followed by a hands-on outdoor activity to try out what you learned. Dress in layers so you can be comfortable for the indoor introduction and to be warm enough for the outdoor activity. Saturday programs include an Early Spring Discovery in March to explore what animals and plant are appearing now that winter is finished. Sunday programs include Maple Sugaring Season in March to learn about the traditional maple sugaring season, with a tasting of some local syrup. Winding Trails, Farmington.

Saturday at 7pm and Sunday at 2pm: The Mandell JCC’s Youth Theater Program is proud to present Beauty and the Beast, Jr. Reoccurs on Thursday, March 17th at 7pm and Sunday, March 20th at 2pm. Snowdate: Tuesday, March 22nd at 7pm. $14 per adult, $10 per student. Mandell JCC, Zachs Campus, West Hartford.

Friday from 7 – 8pm and Saturday from 1-4pm: A Warm Winter Evening with the Howards Windsor Historical Society’s hands-on Strong-Howard House is magical at night. Actors Walter Mantani and Susan Buchholz, portraying Captain Nathaniel Howard and his wife, Ann, will welcome you into their home and show you around. Neighborhood friends of theirs will prepare hot mulled cider over the hearth for you, as well as Ann’s famous shortbread cookies and perhaps some other treats! Cost: $8 adults and $4 students. Snow dates: March 19 and 20, 1-4 pm. Windsor Historical Society, Windsor.

Sunday, March 13:

Daylight Saving Time

A Chorus Line Auditions Seeking performers who are ensemble players with strong endurance for the long rehearsal and performance schedule. Auditions: March 13 in West Hartford by appointment only. If you would like an audition time, please submit your headshot and resume to Artistic Director Sean Harris, details in the link above. Performances June 15-July 31. Rehearsals begin May 24. Playhouse on Park, West Hartford.

10am – 3pm: Think Green! Wear your green today and help us celebrate St. Patrick’s Day!  A few of the activities include Sweet treats, crafts for kids and adults, a treasure hunt to find the pot of gold and learning about Irish symbols and their meanings. $8 Adults, $5 Children. Barnes Nature Center, Bristol.

{Teen Time Out} 10:30am – 12pm: Hipstory Join Israeli artist Amit Shimoni as he presents his illustration series, “Hipstory.” Amit Shimoni is a young Israeli artist based in Jaffa, Tel Aviv, Israel. He is a graduate of the 2014 class for visual communications in the Bezalel Academy of Art & Design. Free and open to all teens. A fun art project will follow presentation. Emanuel Synagogue, West Hartford.

1 – 4pm: Maple Sugar Madness Demonstration Glastonbury native Mark Packard will take you through the maple sugar making process. Along with the watching the sap transform as it boils in a large 2’x4’ pan, on our granite fire pit, you will be able to explore the property and check out the sugar bush on the hill where the trees are tapped. You’ll get to learn and see first hand how delicious maple syrup transforms from sap from a tree to syrup and ask any questions you may have along the way. The sap that is prepared and boiled during the demonstration won’t complete while you’re there. BUT inside the Welles-Shipman-Ward House, pancakes will be cooked on the open hearth using an 18th century “receipt” and served with authentic native syrup – so you will get a taste of the final product. In addition to learning how to make maple syrup, Donald Preli of Beltown Orchards will be onsite providing an apple tree pruning demonstration at 2:00pm. This is a great opportunity to take advantage of if you are interested in harvesting your apple trees. By the end of the day you’ll be ready to make your own maple syrup and tend to your own apple tree orchard. This is a great family event! All ages are welcome. Admission is only $5 per person. Snowdate: 3/20. Welles-Shipman-Ward House, Glastonbury.

1:30pm: 11th Annual Saint Patrick’s Celebration Concert Ringrose, Freeman & Friends, Featuring All-Ireland Champion John Whelan, playing traditional Irish music of the hearth and pub – plus dancers from the Griffith Irish Dance Academy! Come early for an Irish Brunch and a Guinness. $28 adult and $15 students. University of Saint Joseph; Autorino Center for the Arts, West Hartford.

2 – 3pm: Maple Sugaring in Your Own Backyard Our annual demonstration teaches you how to make maple syrup the easy way. We’ll cover the entire process from identifying the tree to the best part – tasting the final product. $6 nonmembers; $ for children. Pre-registration is not required. Roaring Brook Nature Center, Canton.

5:30pm: Hipstory Join Israeli artist Amit Shimoni as he presents his illustration series, “Hipstory.” Amit Shimoni is a young Israeli artist based in Jaffa, Tel Aviv, Israel. He is a graduate of the 2014 class for visual communications in the Bezalel Academy of Art & Design. Free and open to the community. The first 20 people to RSVP to this event will get a free ticket to the 7:00pm Book Festival event, “All Who Go Do Not Return.” Mandell JCC, West Hartford.

7pm: Jewish Book Festival One man’s moving and revealing account of growing up Hasidic, and his harrowing struggles with his loss of faith, family, and community. $20 per person. Mandell JCC, West Hartford.

Monday, March 14:

4:30 – 6pm: Easter Egg Dying, Basket Decorating and Egg Hunt! Ages 3 – 10. Drop-off. The Little Green Tambourine, Canton.

5 – 8pm: Pet Nights Do you want your pet to have a picture with the Easter Bunny? Here is your chance. Cats and dogs only, please. Reoccurs on Monday, March 21. The Shoppes at Buckland Hills, Manchester.

6:30 – 8:30pm: Writing Children’s Books Take a much needed parenting time out – our version of the PTO; all while taking a stab at the prospect of getting a children’s book published. Starting on March 14th and for six consecutive Mondays nights, our friends at the Mark Twain House & Museum together with author Pegi Deitz Shea, will show you how to do just that! Want to write for children and teens? Do you have ideas but don’t know where to start or how to get published? Pegi will show you the range of children’s fiction, non-fiction and poetry, and help you write your book, while teaching you how to use constructive critique to improve your skills along the way. Come away from the six week course with at least one manuscript ready to submit to an agent or editor. $300 for the six week course. Mark Twain House, Hartford.

7:30pm: Celtic Crossings Phil Coulter from Derry, Northern Ireland and Andy Cooney from New York join forces on this rare North American tour that brings together two icons in Irish Music from two different worlds. Celtic Crossings promises an evening of Celtic tranquility and the great songs of Phil Coulter, sung by the magnificent voice of Andy Cooney, with special guest Geraldine Branagan, and the Irish Pops Ensemble. The Bushnell, Hartford.

Be sure to check out more fun things to on our activities page. These are usually fun activities that reoccur each week or month – we just don’t want to inundate this page with redundancy – but these are also some fun things to do too!

If you don’t mind the drive, check out our parent site, Momecticut – who lists things to do across the entire state, including our sister edition in Fairfield County!

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