Week 18 of 52

“What another amazing week in Hartford County! From baseball, to art and everything in between – film, exercise, history, food, beer, fundraisers, walks and runs, theater, fishing, star wars, comic books, Mother’s Day gift making, Museum after Dark, travel, birthdays, activism, Derby Day, May Market, touch-a-truck, heritage and culture, hikes, car show, festivals, tea and more. As you can see our site is growing, in more ways than one – click around to see all the new that is coming.”  

Monday, May 1st

Happy May Day!

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6:30 – 8:30pm: Make Mom A Terrarium Create a terrarium in a shadow box or glass container. Supplies are not included and may cost up to $41. Michaels

Tuesday, May 2nd

Happy National Truffle Day!

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7am – 6pm: Bus Trip to the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum with Special Tour of The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s Join members of the CHS Decorative Arts Council on a special bus trip to the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum in New York City. Our visit will feature a tour of The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s, led by exhibit curator Sarah Coffin, Curator of 17th and 18th Century Decorative Arts. After a break for a delicious lunch, we will enjoy further exploration of the museum. You won’t want to miss this wonderful small group tour experience. The bus will depart the CHS promptly at 7:30am and returns at approximately 6pm. Lunch is included with the tour. $100 per non-member, $85 per member. 

4 – 6:30pm: Climbing Tower Days This 2.5-hour program introduces the bouldering wall, climbing tower and zip line. The climbing tower and zip line are designed to provide a more individual challenge and to build self-confidence while still relying on the group support system. The tower activities include the 8′ x 30′ bouldering wall for practice before the climbing tower. The climbing tower is 40′ high consisting of 3 sides; a 15′ beginner wall with incline, a 40′ intermediate vertical wall, a 40′ advanced wall with incline and over hangs. The 300′ long zip line is located at the top platform of the tower. Ages 4 and up. $30 per person. Winding Trails, Farmington

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6 – 7pm: FAQ’s For the Organic Vegetable Garden Join us for a series of open discussions in the Vegetable Garden at Westmoor Park. Bring your questions, concerns, puzzles, and queries, along with photos of your garden, and photos of any problems, insects, or diseases, and we will tackle them in order. Each session will have a timely seasonal topic, such as which plants to plant when, but any questions or discussion would be welcome. For adults and families. Children under 14 must be accompanied by an adult. All participants must be registered. April 4: Starting seeds under lights and soil testing. No class July 4. Runs until August 1st, co class July 4th. $9 a class, $36 a session. Westmoor Park, West Hartford

6:30 – 8:30pm: Make Mom A Cookie Bouquet Learn how to use buttercream icing to decorate beautiful flower cookies. Supplies are not included and may cost up to $27.

7 – 8pm: Recent Archaeological Discoveries in Windsor and Glastonbury Last summer was full of excitement in Windsor as the Friends of the Office of State Archaeology working with Connecticut State Archaeologist Brian Jones utilized ground-penetrating radar to investigate the boundaries of the Palisade which surrounded the Palisado Green during the Pequot Wars. A filled-in and forgotten cellar on what had been Captain John Mason’s home-site was excavated, yielding straight pins, ceramics, clay pipe fragments architectural remnants such as lead window came, glass shards, and plaster, coinage, and food remnants such as salt water shellfish, and animal bones. Jones will speak at Windsor Historical Society showing what artifacts from the Mason site and another early site at the Hollister Farm in Glastonbury reveal about 17th century colonial dress, diet, tablewares, architecture, and farming, and community. $6 adults, $5 students. Windsor Historical Society

Tuesday, April 25th – Sunday, May 7th

Wednesday, May 3rd:

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6:30 – 7:30pm: Girls in Stride is a new running program for girls ages 6 to 14. It’s a non-competitive training program designed for all levels of runners to introduce girls to the sport of running, help them gain confidence, build self-esteem and lead them to a path of health and fitness. This fun and empowering training program will prepare the girls for the Shad Derby 5K Road Race in May. The program includes a t-shirt and training journal and it meets Wednesdays through May 17th. $75. L.P. Wilson Community Center, Windsor

6:30 – 8pm: Breast Cancer and Prevention Did you know that 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer? Certain populations including Ashkenazi women are at particular risk. Prevention strategies for breast cancer will be discussed. Free and open to the public. Mandell JCC, West Hartford

6:30 – 8:30pm: Make Mom Paper Flowers Make colorful paper flowers and display them in a clay pot. Supplies are not included and may cost up to $4. Michaels

6:30 – 8:30pm: Family Freshwater Fishing Class Learn to fish. Families and individuals age eight and up are welcome to attend this unique program that is part of the CT DEEP’s CARE (Connecticut Aquatic Resources Education) program. The class is taught by certified volunteer instructors and it’s fun! All course material and fishing tackle is provided for class use. The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Fisheries Division sponsors this terrific program so it’s free to participants, but pre-registration is required. Individuals who register for this class will automatically be registered for the Family Fishing Festival on Saturday May 13th. Participation in the Family Fishing event will serve as the class fishing trip so participants can practice what we’ve learned. T Ages 8 and up. Westmoor Park, West Hartford

Wednesday, May 3rd – Sunday, May 14th:

Thursday, May 4th

Happy National Star Wars Day!

4 – 6pm: May The Fourth Be With You! Celebrate Star Wars Day with super-fun Star Wars® themed classes and events. Kids can choose from building spaceships and characters in LEGO Star Wars; create movies in Star Wars Animation Studio; or build and program robots in Star Wars Robotics… or, try and experience all three! 2-hours. Ages 7-14. $19 per child. Snapology at Unitarian Universalist Church, West Hartford

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5 – 8pm: Iron & Grain Pop-Up Iron & Grain Co. will host a pop-up event at the Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society to celebrate its two-year anniversary. Guests will enjoy tasty cuisine and brews from food trucks including Iron & Grain’s ’59 Chevy, Yardbird & CO, and Greekin’ Out. Iron & Grain is one of West Hartford’s newest mobile food establishments. The food truck is housed in a refurbished 1959 Chevy Viking and comes complete with a wood fired oven to cook fresh and locally sourced foods over an open flame. Tate Norden, with co-founder and chef, Adam Belward, opened Iron & Grain Co. last year and they have been busy ever since bringing the truck to farmers markets and events across the state. Belward, a veteran who served in both Iraq and Afghanistan is a graduate from the Culinary Institute of America. A portion of the proceeds of the evening will go to the Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society. There is a $10 cover charge for admission, which includes a $5 voucher toward a food truck purchase. Tickets are limited. Raindate: 5/11.

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6 – 7:30pm: Secrets of the Museum If you’ve ever wondered about our museum collection, its history or how pieces are acquired this is the night for you. Join us as Museum Executive Director Louise L. DeMars enthusiastically expounds on the background and other little known facts of our beautiful museum collection. Join scholars and experts as we learn about the art and history of carousels, their carvers, the artists, and your favorite carousels. Museum After Hours will be held from 6:30-7:30pm with a wine and cheese reception taking place 6-6:30pm. Admission to this series is included with the cost of general admission.

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6:30pm: The Italian Vegetable Dinner Metro Bis is pleased to welcome Michele Scicolone for a five course, wine dinner featuring, The Italian Vegetable Cookbook. The Italian Vegetable Cookbook explores how resourceful Italian cooks have devised countless ways to prepare vegetables and shares recipes gathered while traveling in Italy from talented home cooks, family and restaurants. Michele Scicolone is the author of 16 cookbooks including the New York Times bestseller The Sopranos Family Cookbook. She has been nominated for James Beard and International Association of Culinary Professionals Awards, and she was one of the editors of the 75th Anniversary edition of the classic Joy of Cooking. Metro Bis, Simsbury

6:30- 8:30pm: Make Mom A Painted Rock Family Create rock portraits using craft paint and stickers. Supplies are not included and may cost up to $20. Michaels

7pm: Historic Uses of Farmington River Sites A lecture sponsored by the Farmington Valley Visitors Association. Ellsworth Visitor Center, Simsbury

Thursday, May 4th – Friday, May 5th

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Friday, May 5th

Happy Cinco de Mayo! 

Reminder: Pick up your Passport for the CT Wine Trail!

4 – 5pm: Westmoor Park Indoor Animal Feeding Help our Westmoor Naturalists take care of the animals in the Discovery Room! Make salads for the turtles, hand feed crickets to the geckos, and watch the snakes eat mice. Please note: some of our animal foods include peanuts and other nuts and grains. Ages 6 – 11. $12 per child. Westmoor Park, West Hartford

4 – 5:30pm: The Jr. Farm Apprentice Program offers an opportunity for students ages 8-12 years old to experience a connection between raising healthy livestock, growing a variety of plants and eating well. Experience Spring on the farm at Northwest Park! Students will learn homesteading skills such as feeding livestock, collecting eggs, spinning wool, growing and harvesting vegetables and cooking. Runs until May 26th. $65 Windsor residents, $75 non-residents. Northwest Park, Windsor

4 – 7pm: Mother’s Day Gift Making Workshop Drop in anytime to make a one–of–a kind Mother’s Day gift! Paint a 4″ flower pot and we’ll throw in the flower for free! $22 includes an hour studio fee and flower. No pre–registration required. The Claypen, West Hartford

6:30- 8:30pm: Make Mom A Mug Dads and kids team up to decorate a coffee mug for Mom. Supplies are not included and may cost up to $16. Michaels

7 – 8:30pm: Spring Morning Bird Walks in Earle Park Take a short walk along the trails of Earle Park during the spring migration period, when many resident birds return and others migrate through on their way to points north. Non-members $5. Reoccurs on May 12th. The Connecticut Audubon Center, Glastonbury

7 – 9pm: May Market Preview Party Enjoy a glass of bubbly in the historic Makeshift Theater while shopping premium exhibitors at the May Market Preview Party. Tickets include two-day admission to May Market. Tickets: $50. Hillstead, Farmington


Friday, May 5th – Saturday, May 6th:

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Friday, May 5th – Sunday, May 7th

Friday, May 5th – Sunday, May 21st:

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Saturday, May 6th

8:30am: First Annual Kid’s Fishing Derby The Derby is open to children between the ages of 4 – 15. Each participant must be accompanied by an adult. Prizes will be awarded for the biggest fish, smallest fish and most fish caught. Registration fee is $10. Blish Park, Marlborough

9:30am – 3pm: C.A.R.E. Family Fishing Class For Mom & Me Fishing is fun for moms and kids! This Family Fishing Class is for moms and kids that want to learn the basics of fishing. This free class will teach you about basic fishing tackle, how to set up a rod, bait selection and more. After the indoor classroom introduction, an outdoor fishing practice is held at Walton Pond. Bring your own lunch to enjoy between the class and practice. Schedule: 9:30am to 11:30am: Class 11:30am to 12pm: Bring your own lunch 12pm to 3pm: Fishing Practice. Free. Ages 9 and up. Winding Trails, Farmington

9:30am – 3pm: Paws In The Park That’s right an event entirely for man’s best friend featuring a wide variety of attractions for our canine buddies. It’s not only a great event for dog owners and dog lovers, but also for both businesses that service the canine community such as breeders, trainers, groomers, vets, food, etc and those that just want to show their support for our animal friends. All Businesses are welcome to be a part of this unique event and may choose from booth space, doggie bags, and more to reach all those dog owners. Nevers Park, South Windsor

10am: Great Strides Walk is a fun, family-oriented event with a healthy 5k walk, children’s activities, food, and festivities that participants look forward to year after year. Wickham Park in Manchester

10am: Baking for Mom Hey Kids! Mother’s Day is right around the corner and we’re celebrating with a fun class all about baking! We’ll teach you to bake like a pro and create a dessert that is perfect for mom! Suitable for ages 8-13. Sur la Table

10am – 1pm: Ready, Set, Registry Event Here’s your chance to create or update your registry with ease. You’ll take a tour of the store with a Personal Registry Partner, test drive everything you’ll need and get answers to all your questions. Plus, meet & mingle with other parents-to-be. Enjoy games, giveaways and raffles, too! Reservations preferred, but walk-ins are always welcome. Our Ready Set Registry events are held the first Saturday of every month. So if you can’t make it to this one, join us at the next one instead! Babies R Us

10 – 11:30am: Shinrin Yoku – Forest Meditation Shinrin Yoku is a gentle, guided walk that supports well-being through sensory immersion in forests and other naturally healing environments. Shinrin Yoku is a term that means “taking in the forest atmosphere” or “forest bathing.” It was developed in Japan during the 1980s and has become a cornerstone of preventive health care and healing in Japanese medicine. This session is open to adults only and space is limited. Indian Rock Nature Preserve, Bristol

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10:30am – 12pm: Raise Your Voice! Music as Activism! It’s a Hartford Symphony Orchestra Family Series event at the Stowe Center! Kids will play games and activities highlighting the powerful ways music can be part of activism. By singing and playing music together, children will practice speaking up and teamwork. By listening to others, they will model compassion and respect. Get hands-on with instruments and raise your voice to fight for what you believe in. All activities are free. At noon, enjoy the Stowe Center’s family tour with storytelling, historic photographs and letters for kids 5-12 with an adult. Harriet Beecher Stowe Center, Hartford

11am: 10th Anniversary Celebration To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Stew Leonard’s store in Newington, Conn., the community are invited to join the Leonard family for a special cake cutting celebration. Members of the Newington High School choir will also sing “Happy Birthday” to the store’s 287 Team Members, 37% of whom have worked at the Newington store since it first opened. Stew Leonard’s beloved costume characters – including Wow the Cow and Stewie the Duck – will also be on hand to greet children and families. Throughout the day, Stew Leonard’s culinary team will also offer complimentary samples of customers’ most-loved products. Stew Leonard’s, Newington

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12 – 2pm: Community Labyrinth Walk In celebration of World Labyrinth Day, the community (all ages) will be welcomed to walk the labyrinth on the front lawn, make labyrinth crafts, enjoy some lively music and delicious refreshments. Labyrinths have an ancient history and are found all over the world and in all cultures. Walking labyrinths are thought to enhance right brain activity, and uses include problem solving, conflict resolution, meditation and stress management. The community is welcome to experience the labyrinth on World Labyrinth Day. “Solvitur Ambulando. It is solved by walking.” All are welcome, weather permitting, to walk the grassy path of our front lawn labyrinth any time. For centuries, in various cultures, labyrinths have been spiritual tools used for reflection and prayer amid life’s journey. Unlike a maze, a labyrinth has only one path which allows you to focus your mind and spirit in peaceful contemplation as you walk. First Church of Christ Congregational, West Hartford

MAKE Break

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2 – 5pm: Poetry Read-In On The public is invited to hear well-known poets Marilyn Nelson and Benjamin Grossberg as they lead an afternoon of poetry at the Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society. Maria Sassi, West Hartford poet laureate emeritus, will host the afternoon’s festivities, including an open mic portion. Poets are encouraged to read their own works during the open mic portion of the afternoon. Sign-up sheets will be available at 1:45pm. Light refreshments will be served. The event is free to the public, but donations will be gratefully accepted.

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6pm – 12am: The Art Party of the Year Dine on fabulous food and sip on champagne in support of the Museum’s educational programming for children and families. This year we honor Gail and Ernst von Metzsch, collectors and longtime supporters of the arts. Last year, the Museum exhibited their robust collection in As We See It: The Collection of Gail and Ernst von Metzsch, which centered the spotlight on living New England-based artists. Plan to join Gail and Ernst, as well as Director Min Jung Kim, for a lively evening featuring cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, a sumptuous dinner provided by Riverhouse Catering, live and silent auctions, raffle drawing, and dancing at Gala After Dark. This year’s auctions will offer outstanding art, including both favorite and rising artists, enticing 5-star resort stays in various Caribbean destinations, and much more! New Britain Museum of American Art


8pm: A conversation Between Alan Alda & Jason Reitman Join us for a live, unscripted conversation about television and film, art and life with TV icon Alan Alda and breakthrough director Jason Reitman. The two will share stories from their careers and lives in front of and behind the camera, discuss their craft, and talk about the films and shows we know and love. Alan Alda is a beloved actor, writer and director best known for portraying Hawkeye Pierce on M*A*S*H, which earned him five Emmys for acting, writing, and directing, the only actor in history to win in each category for a single series. Jason Reitman is an Oscar-nominated director known as a smart, original storyteller with memorable characters and pitch-perfect commentary. His films include Thank You For Smoking, Juno, and Up In The Air, which was nominated for six Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director. The Bushnell, Hartford

9pm – 12am: Museum After Dark Returning for the second year, Gala After Dark will feature an open bar, snacks and dessert, and a DJ. Help us raise important funds for the Museum! Cocktail attire (no jeans, please), 21+ only. Please note: tickets for Gala After Dark are included in admission prices for The Art Party of the Year. $50 per person. New Britain Museum of American Art

Saturday, May 6th – Sunday, May 7th

Reminder: Museums on Us

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{Hop, Skip & a Jump} 11am – 5pm: $45 Carload Weekend Quassy kicks off its 109th season with a $45 carload special. Up to 10 persons in a vehicle receive an all-day ride wristband for only $45, parking included. Egg hunt for prizes at 3pm on Sunday, May 7th. Quassy Amusement Park, Middlebury

Sunday, May 7th

Happy Free Comic Book Day! – Get your free comic book at Eye Opener in Newington, Omni Comics & Cards in Wethersfield, Heroes & Hitters in Rocky Hill and Simsbury Cards & Comics

9:30am – 3pm: Bus Tour of Farmington River Sites FVVA bus tour of historic sites along the Farmington River

10am – 12pm: CFPA Ramble: Matianuck Natural Area Preserve Hike Join us for a Ramble in the Matianuck Natural Area Preserve. This unique park is home to interior sand plains. Last fall, DEEP cleared the area to open up the habitat. Enjoy looking for signs of wildlife, such as deer, turkey, and coyotes, during this level and gentle walk. This hike starts in the commuter parking lot found on Rt 218. The entrance to the lot is across the street from the intersection of Rt 218 and Columbia Road. We will meet in the back of the lot near a bus shelter where a trail leads us less than one mile to the sand plains. This trail is fairly level but can be muddy so dress appropriately. No dogs, please. Free. Heavy rain postpones to 5/21. Free but RSVP recommended. Matianuck Natural Area Preserve, Windsor

10am – 2pm: 10th Annual Rocky Hill Car Show Elm Ridge Park, Rocky Hill

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11am- 1pm: Adult Painting Class Get out from under those April showers and learn to make this beautiful May Flowers Platter! We’ll teach you this design using an assortment of super easy techniques and specialty glazes, you get to pick the pottery shape! Cost of the class is $10 for class instruction, paints and materials, glazing and firing plus the cost of the pottery piece you select ($19 and up). The Pottery Piazza, Plainville

11am – 4pm: Spring Lamb and Sparrow Grass Although cooking on the hearth has been romanticized throughout history, it remains an art that few today have experienced. On Sunday, May 7th you’ll have an opportunity to learn the art of open hearth cooking at our unique one time only cooking event: Spring Lamb and Sparrow Grass. The Welles-Shipman-Ward house boasts one of the largest known period fireplaces in the area. At this hands on cooking event you’ll learn open hearth cooking methods including roasting lamb in front of a fire. The roasting of meat in the 1800’s was an art. The meal you will prepare will consist of green and root vegetables, a lamb roast, artisanal bread and apple pie. While the food is cooking you’ll learn about the customs of the period and enjoy cheese, crackers and cyder. Feel free to bring your own beverages of choice. $75 per person. Welles-Shipman-Ward House, South Glastonbury

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{Hop, Skip & a Jump} 11am – 5pm: 7th Annual Wooden Warrior Day Exclusive morning ride time on our award-winning roller coaster, lunch and more! Pre-sale ticket required for this event. Quassy Amusement Park, Middlebury

12:30 – 1:30pm: Mom-and-Me Fitness Moms – have fun, interact and feel good with your children in our new fitness program. Free and open to the community. Mandell JCC, West Hartford

1pm: Come Fly with Me Al Charlevois, former Pan American World Airways pilot, provides insight into the life of a commercial pilot. Al is a retired U.S Marine Captain who flew Vought F-8 Crusaders prior to his career as a commercial pilot. With special guest, Gould Mcintyre, former Captain with Pan Am. New England Air Museum, Windsor Locks

1pm: Amistad @ 30: Songs and Spirituals The Sunday Serenades chamber music concert series is presented in collaboration with the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art as a musical counterpart to special exhibitions and the permanent collections. Concerts take place in the museum galleries, and feature Concertmaster and Sunday Serenades Artistic Director Leonid Sigal and Hartford Symphony Orchestra musicians. 1pm: Gallery Talk with Frank Mitchell, Executive Director, The Amistad Center for Art & Culture 2pm: Concert. Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford

1 – 3pm: Touch-A-Truck Public Safety Day There will be plenty of trucks and other vehicles for you to explore on what is always one of the best days at Winding Trails. This event is open to everyone. No registration is required. Free. Winding Trails, Farmington

1 – 3pm: Camp Shalom Open House Meet administrative staff, tour the facility, family activities and refreshments. Rain or shine. Camp Shalom, Windsor

2 – 3:30pm: Mother’s Day Tea Party We will be having fun in the gym with Mom’s jumping on a moon bounce and doing fun gym activities. Enjoy having some arts and crafts time, tea, and cookies with your child in our art room. Romp n’ Roll, Wethersfield

3pm: Author Signing with La’Wana Harris Author La’Wana Harris will be in our store to share her books with you! Jaden Israel is about a little boy on the path to discovering who God created him to be. In You Are Still Good La’Wana Harris shares her journey through one of the toughest times of her life. She has taken the lessons she learned and provided tangible tools for others who find themselves in similar situations. Barnes & Noble, Farmington

Plan Ahead

Diana Krall