Travel to the foothills of the Berkshires in Deerfield, Massachusetts, to visit the 8,000 square foot glass conservatory filled with 4,000 butterflies fluttering free about their tropical, peaceful environment. Revel in a warm morning stroll through a tropical environment where the sound of a waterfall and the thousands of butterflies create a tranquil and serene atmosphere. The group will stop for a short, winter hike at a local park on the way home. Leader: Priscilla Wood. Members $85/Nonmembers $95.
The Essex Land Trust is pleased to host a casual walk exploring vernal pools in The Preserve. This event, which takes place on Saturday, March 15, starting at 9 am, will search for breeding frogs, salamanders and other early spring life in some of the dozens of vernal pools that dot this property. Vernal pools are critical contributors to the diversity of our forests. We will explore how they function and witness their vibrancy and abundance at this peak period in their ephemeral season. All are welcome including families. Rain or shine. Bring boots. Since there is limited parking, we will be car-pooling from the Essex Town Hall. This activity is being co-sponsored by the Essex Park and Recreation Department as part of their Essex Outdoors program, which encourages families and people of all ages to experience the natural beauty of our community
The Essex Land Trust is pleased to announce a lecture on The Human and Natural History of The Preserve to be held at the Essex Town Hall, 29 West Avenue at 7 pm on Wednesday March 12. Join Ecologist Judy Preston from the Tidewater Institute and Chris Cryder, Special Projects Coordinator with Save Our Sound who will show slides and share their enthusiasm for this mini-wilderness in our midst. Learn what makes this 1,000-acre forest so special and why its protection so essential. The presentations will be followed by a panel discussion about the future use and protection of this land.
After a revolution overthrows a despotic leader, how do citizens fill the resulting power vacuum with a functional democracy? The Founding Fathers faced this dilemma – George Washington was offered the title of King – and in the wake of the Arab Spring, Egypt faces it now.
The Essex Library is proud to host Pulitzer-prize winning author and historian Gordon S. Wood, Alva O. Way University Professor Emeritus at Brown University, who will give a talk on “Advice to the Egyptians from the Founding Fathers” at Valley Regional High School Auditorium on Friday March 28th at 7 PM. The program is part of the Essex Library’s 125th Anniversary celebration, a year-series of programs and events commemorating the Essex Library’s vital role as a culture hub of the community.
The leading historian of the American revolution and the early American republic, Wood′s many books include the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Radicalism of the American Revolution; the Bancroft Prize-winning The Creation of the American Republic, 1776-1778; The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin; The Purpose of the Past: Reflections on the Uses of History; Revolutionary Characters: What Made the Founders Different; Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic, 1789-1815; and most recently, The Idea of America: Reflections on the Birth of the United States. He received his B.A. degree from Tufts University and his Ph.D. from Harvard University. He taught at Harvard University and the University of Michigan before joining the faculty at Brown in 1969.
In 2011 he was awarded a National Humanities Medal by President Obama and the Churchill Bell by Colonial Williamsburg. In 2011 he also received the Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. Award from the Society of American Historians. In 2012 he received an award from the John Carter Brown Library and the John F. Kennedy Medal from the Massachusetts Historical Society. Professor Wood is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Society.
Admission is free, and advance registration is suggested for this special event; please call the Essex Library at 860-767-1560. Valley Regional High School is at 256 Kelsey Hill Road in Deep River.
The Annual Deep River Rotary Club Antiques and Collectibles Auction will be held Saturday, March 22, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the Deep River Congregational Church. An outstanding assortment of wicker, furniture, china and glass, rugs and lamps, rugs, toys, and folk art will be up for bid. Items to be auctioned will be on display for preview beginning at 1:30 p.m. at the church.
Proceeds from this annual event benefit the outreach projects of the Rotary Club, including an annual Scholarship Fund, an ongoing “student of the month” award, an elementary school Dictionary Project, and international efforts like our Sister Cities Haiti Library project and African water project.
All items must be sold. In addition, the club will be accepting quality antiques and collectible items for this sale. Those wishing to consign items for auction will receive 80% of the selling price. Quality Collectibles of Deep River is in charge of the auction, and consigned or donated objects may be brought to their store at 156 Main St. in Deep River prior to the auction. Or you may call for pick-up.
At the auction there will be a 10% buyer’s fee. All items must be taken the night of the auction, but trucking will be available. Photos and listing of items already committed for auction can be viewed at auctionzip.com.
Food and drinks will be available during the auction, catered by the Whistle Stop restaurant. For details please call Chuck at 860.227.5125 or Quality Collectibles at 860.526.8343
Essex Winter Series will present The New Haven Symphony Orchestra on Sunday, March 30 at 3:00 pm in a spectacular program of three masterpieces spanning the entire era of German Romanticism. Music Director William Boughton will conduct “The Huntsmen of Wagner, Strauss, and Beethoven,” featuring horn soloist Leelanee Sterrett, a former NHSO hornist who is now a member of the New York Philharmonic and EWS’s 2014 Fenton Brown Emerging Artist.
The concert will take place at Valley Regional High School, Kelsey Hill Road, in Deep River, Connecticut. Tickets, all general admission, are $30 ($12 for students) and may be purchased online at www.essexwinterseries.com or by phone at 860-272-4572.
Richard Wagner’s Siegfried Idyll, a gentle song of contentment and gratitude Wagner composed for his wife Cosima and premiered on the staircase of their home on her birthday in 1870. New York Philharmonic Assistant Principal Hornist Leelanee Sterrett then will take the stage to perform Strauss’ Horn Concerto No. 2, which presents the horn first in a gentle and lyrical fashion and then through the fanfare gymnastics of the final movement which shows off the soloist’s virtuosity. The concert will conclude with Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6 (Pastorale), an innovative piece that expresses Beethoven’s profound love of nature through five descriptive movements: “Awakening of Cheerful Feelings on Arrival in the Country,” “Scene by the Brook,” “Merry Gathering of the Country Folk,” “Thunderstorm,” and “Shepherd’s Song, Glad and Grateful Feelings after the Storm.”
The March 30 New Haven Symphony Orchestra’s program will be the fourth concert of the Essex Winter Series 2014 Season, under the artistic direction of Mihae Lee. The Concert is sponsored by Guilford Savings Bank and Nancy Newcomb & John Hargraves. The final concert of the 2014 Season, an all-Bach program, will take place on Sunday, April 13 at 3:00 pm.
About Leelanee Sterrett, 2014 Fenton Brown Emerging Artist
Leelanee Sterrett, a former New Haven Symphony Orchestra hornist, joined the top echelon of classical musicians when she won her spot at the New York Philharmonic as Assistant Principal and Utility Horn in June 2013. She is also an alumna of The Academy, Carnegie Hall’s collective of young professionals and music advocates, and a former member of Ensemble ACJW. A Michigan native, Ms. Sterrett grew up in a musically enthusiastic family and attended Interlochen Arts Academy. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and a master’s degree from the Yale School of Music. Her primary teachers include William Purvis, Douglas Hill, and Julie Schleif. Ms. Sterrett has spent summers at the Tanglewood Music Center, the Pacific and Sarasota music festivals, the National Orchestral Institute, and the Banff Centre for the Arts. She is a past prizewinner in the International Horn Competition
About William Boughton, Music Director and Principal Conductor
William Boughton was born into a musical family: his grandfather (Rutland Boughton) was a composer, his father a professional viola player, and his mother a singer. After cello studies at the New England Conservatory (Boston), Guildhall School of Music (London), and Prague Academy, he entered the profession in London, playing with the Royal Philharmonic, BBS, and London Sinfonietta.
The experience of playing in orchestras led to a passion to pursue a career in conducting and he decided to return to studies first with George Hurst and then with Sir Colin Davis. In 1980, he formed the English Symphony Orchestra and developed the ESO’s repertoire through the Baroque period to Viennese classics and into contemporary music. During his time with the ESO, he commissioned more than 20 works from such composers as Peter Sculthorpe, John Joubert, Anthony Powers, Michael Berkeley, John Metcalf, Stephen Roberts, and Adrian Williams. The depth of his partnership with the ESO was epitomized in 1985 when, as Artistic Director of the Malvern Festival, he collaborated with Sir Michael Tippett in presenting a musical celebration of the composer’s eightieth birthday, which became the subject of a BBC “Omnibus” documentary.
With the ESO on Nimbus Records, he built a significant discography of internationally acclaimed recordings—predominantly of English music—a number of which reached the Top Ten on the US charts.
During his final years with the ESO, Boughton successfully launched the first ESO Elgar Festival in Malvern and Worcester, and also celebrated the orchestra’s 25th Anniversary performing a complete Beethoven symphony cycle, in which he created a new series of pre-concert performances of British contemporary music, including works by Birtwistle, Knussen, Watkins, Woolrich, Holloway, and Turnage. He has participated in a number of high-profile arts programs for BBC Television, a radio program about Elgar that was broadcast in New York, Chicago, Washington, and Boston in 2006, and a series entitled “1st Eleven” for Classic FM, during the 2006 Soccer World Cup. He has guest conducted major orchestras around the world, including the San Francisco, London, and Helsinki Symphony Orchestras.
In July 2007, he became the tenth Music Director of the New Haven Symphony Orchestra, with whom he has instituted a Composer-in-Residence program and undertaken a major recording project of the works of William Walton; the first recording—Walton’s Violin Concerto and First Symphony—was released by Nimbus in 2010 and selected as a Critic’s Choice for 2010 by prestigious Gramophone Magazine. Under Mr. Boughton’s leadership, the NHSO was awarded an ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming in 2010.
On Saturday, April 5, 2014, the Chester Rotary will host THE LONGEST DINNER TABLE from 7pm to 11pm at Saint Joseph’s Parish Hall. Join friends, family and neighbors for dinner and an evening of dancing to The Shiny Lapel Trio. Attendees bring their own portable feasts including food, drink and dinnerware. Themed table decorating and costumes are strongly encouraged but not required. Prizes will be awarded for the Best Overall table, the Most Elegant table, and the Most Creative table. There will also be a silent auction.
Individual seats at The Longest Dinner Table are available for $25 per person. Group tables of 8 may be purchased for $200. Multiple tables may be purchased together for larger parties. Seats at the table are limited and on sale now at www.ChesterRotary.org or from any Chester Rotarian.
This “Adults Only” event promises to be an evening full of fun, food and frivolity shared with friends and family. All proceeds will benefit local organizations whose focus is on providing food to members of our local communities who need a helping hand. These organizations include the Chester Food Pantry, the Back Pack Program and the Shoreline Soup Kitchen
The Acton Public Library in Old Saybrook hosts a Balloon Sculpting program for children, ages 8 and up, on Thursday evenings in March from 6:30 to 7:30pm (March 6, 13, 20, and 27.) Children are invited to learn some basic balloon twisting projects. Registration is not required.
For more information, call The Acton Library at 860-395-3184, or visit the library during regular hours: Monday through Thursday 10am – 8:30pm, Friday and Saturday 9am – 5pm, and Oct – May on Sundays 1pm – 5pm or visit on-line at www.actonlibrary.org .
Celebrate spring with Music Together of the River Valley, for “Inch By Inch, Row By Row,” a family sing along concert on March 29, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. at Grace Church in Old Saybrook to benefit the Connecticut shoreline soup kitchen, Common Good Gardens. The special event will feature live musical performances by Music Together teachers, local bands, and special guest appearances. It is open to the public with a suggested donation of $10.00 per family. Visit us on Facebook for the latest concert updates and for more information call 860-304-5260 or email email@example.com.
The Massachusetts Horticultural Society’s flower show in Boston presents Romance in the Garden as the 2014 inspiration with sumptuous garden, eye-popping displays, and stimulating programming. Whether found in the fairytale elegance of a royal garden or the sleek and sexy site of a modern meet-up, scenes of love and passion will be in bloom! Leader: Bob Kuchta. Includes transportation from Connecticut and entry into the show. Members $85/ Nonmembers $95.
Centerbrook was recently awarded a grant from the Connecticut Main Street Center under its 2014 Preservation of Place Program. The grant will be used to conduct a visioning exercise. This series of public workshops will help the community of Centerbrook to hold an honest discussion about what kind of village Centerbrook is today and what it could be in the future.
Ivoryton, CT: The Ivoryton Playhouse will be holding local auditions for Equity and non union actors for All Shook Up on Saturday, March 22nd, 2014 from noon – 6pm in the Rehearsal Studio, 24 Main Street, Centerbrook.
ALL SHOOK UP by Joe Di Pietro- runs July 2nd – 27th, 2014
Inspired by and featuring the songs of Elvis Presley. Looking for singers and dancers of all ages.
Auditions are by appointment only. Bring a headshot and resume and prepare a song.
For audition appointments, call 860-767-9520, ext 203
Dipping back into Chester’s roots as a manufacturing town, the Chester Historical Society has created its fourth challenge for area artists, sculptors, photographers, engineers, and all others with a creative mind.
This spring’s creative challenge is named “Unearthed in Chester,” because it is based on flat, rusted iron pieces found buried in an early Chester Center property – one of the oldest houses in Chester. These rusty pieces measure 1 ¼ by 2 inches and look like the capital letter E.
The finished pieces of art, jewelry, sculptures, photographs, etc. will be exhibited and sold by silent auction at the Historical Society’s Unearthed in Chester Reception on Saturday, March 22, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., at the Chester Meeting House.
“The Society has staged similar challenge over the past ten years. In 2004 we started with Brooks for Hooks, which used hooks and screw eyes manufactured by M.S. Brooks & Sons,” said Skip Hubbard, Historical Society president. “Our last two challenges utilized 2-inch-square knitting gauges made by C. J. Bates & Son and bone handles from Bishop & Watrous.
“Each challenge has brought enthusiastic response from local residents, with artists often asking, ‘What’s the item for next year?’ At times, the silent bidding can get quite spirited, so it’s best to be on hand to for these one-of-a-kind creations,” Hubbard added.
“It all works so well – the creative artistry of this area today using artifacts from our rich manufacturing history,” said Hubbard. “This is just another great example of making history current, the ‘then and now’ that is often part of our exhibits at Chester Museum at The Mill.”
The Unearthed in Chester reception will feature hearty hors d’oeuvres from Chester kitchens served with white wine and non-alcoholic beverages.
Tickets for the evening are $30 and will be limited. They can be purchased at Chester Gallery and Ceramica, both in the center of Chester, or by calling Sosse Baker at Chester Gallery, 860-526-9822.
All the proceeds from the event will benefit the Chester Historical Society and its programs, including Chester Museum at The Mill. Information is available on the Society website, www.chesterhistoricalsociety.org or at Facebook.com/chestercthistoricalsociety.
Architectural Historian Chuck Benson explores the Gothic treasures of Great Britain’s Cambridge and Oxford Universities, and their influence on celebrated American college campuses, on Friday, March 21 from 7 to 8 p.m. at the Essex Library.
Large swaths of the Yale campus in New Haven, for example, are designed in what is called, alternately, Collegiate, Neo or Faux Gothic, a style that was popular well into the 20th Century. The 216-foot-tall Harkness Tower is a prominent and classic example of the genre.
This illustrated presentation is part of the Centerbrook Architects Lecture Series, one of many programs offered by the Essex Library. Please call the library at (860) 767-1560 to register for this free event. Sponsored by Centerbrook Architects, the lecture series is in its sixth season.
Dr. Benson has been teaching Art and Architectural History for more than twenty five years at various universities and has led groups to explore iconic places and buildings in America, Italy, England, France, Germany, Greece, Turkey, and elsewhere.
His lecture credits include MOMA, Getty Museum in Los Angeles, and the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. He studied the history of art and architecture at Yale, and holds advanced degrees from Columbia University. He also has studied at Cambridge and Oxford.
Dr. Benson currently serves as the Director of Colorado Operations, and Head of Design for a group that specializes in the architecture and engineering of Satellite Operations Centers and Mission Control Stations. He currently teaches as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, and has taught at the Colorado College and the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center.
The Essex go Bragh – Translated Essex Forever – Irish Parade and Festival is Sat March 15th. The Parade will step of from the Essex Town Hall at 10:30am, led by our 2014 Grand Marshal; Mr. John Schumacher. Mr. Schumacher is a long time Essex Resident who devoted that last 24 years to the Town of Essex working at Town Hall to help to keep it tidy, safe and inviting for all. An ardent veteran Mr. Schumacher was inducted in to the United States Marine Corps in 1943, where he served in the 5th Amphibious Corp.
The Parade will march down Main Street Essex. The Festival will follow in the Village offering Food, Drink, Horse Drawn Carriage Rides, Live Music by “Rock of Cashel” at the Griswold Inn, and Kids Activities sponsored by the Community Music School. Profession Face Painting by Ruth, an Irish Step Dancing Demo, Guinness Pour at the Gris, are just some of the festivities planned for after the parade. So plan to stay downtown after the parade, enjoy the festival and visit local restaurants & business to check out their special St. Patrick Day promotions. We would like to invite your group or organization to come “March with Us” – to confirm your groups participation or for more information contact Essex Park and Recreation 860-767-4340 x110 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Literacy Volunteers Valley Shore is pleased to announce its upcoming 7th Annual April Fools 5K Run, 3K Walk & Backward Mile on Saturday, April 5, 2014. The Race has something for everyone including a lollipop run for children age 6 and under. Mark your calendar and don’t miss out on this exciting event. This is a big fundraiser for LVVS, proceeds benefiting its one-on-one tutoring programs. Runners-sign up at www.register.fasttracktiming.com or contact LVVS at 860-399-0280 or go to our website for a direct link www.vsliteracy.org.
Saint John School of Old Saybrook will be holding its Gala Dinner Auction with a “Roaring 20′s” theme on Saturday Eve, March 29, 2014 at 6:00p.m. in the Mystic Marriott Ballroom. The school is celebrating its 20 year anniversary since reopening in 1994, and Alumni are encouraged to attend and can reserve tables. The evening includes Hors d’Oeuvres, Dinner, Silent and live auction items, and various entertaining raffles. If you are interested in donating, attending, or a group table for this Event, please contact the school office at 860-388-0849 for further ticket and table information.
OLD SAYBROOK – UCONN men vs. women. Sorry sports fans, this event is not a basketball battle of the sexes, but an a cappella battle between all-male and all-female vocal groups March 8, 7 p.m., First Church of Christ in Saybrook (Congregational) 366 Main St. Seating is limited, so please purchase your tickets as soon as possible. All proceeds support the June 2014 Teen Mission trip to Tennessee. Tickets are $20 per adult, $15 students ages 13-18, $10 for children 12 and under. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.firstchurchsaybrook.org, call 860-388-3008, email email@example.com, or stop by the church office.
LVVS is celebrating St. Patrick’s Day during their March book promotion. Featured books include National Geographic Society’s “Discovering Britain and Ireland” and a photo journal guide book “Ireland Observed”. Additionally all “green” colored books are on sale. Promotional books are $1.50; all other hardcovers are $2.00, and paperbacks are $1.00. Stop in to our book sale Mon-Fri 8AM -2PM. They are located on the lower level of the Westbrook Library, 61 Goodspeed Dr. 860-399-0280. Always accepting gently used books 2004 and newer.
The Hadlyme Garden Club will present a talk on honeybees on Tuesday March 25 at the Lyme Public Library. The program, “The Wonderful World of Honeybees” will be given by Apiarist Tom Kalal of the Cranberry Meadow Farm. A power point presentation will be part of the program.
The public is invited to attend the event which will begin at 6:00p.m. with light refreshments followed by a short business meeting and the presentation by Tom.
For information about the club or to reserve a spot for the event please contact Ellen Fennema at
860 434 2373 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Deep River, CT – There may be several inches of snow and ice on the ground but it’s looking more like spring at Valley Regional High School as preparation for the musical production of THE SECRET GARDEN hits its final phase. Construction of garden walls, trees and plants is close to being finished while the final cast member, Robin, has arrived on set and is getting comfortable in his new surroundings. As the production’s title suggests, nature plays a key role in the story, presenting a new challenges in casting and staging. In early January, Valley Regional Musical Productions Director Ingrid Walsh issued an open call for a puppeteer to provide guidance and assistance in filling the important role of Robin, an English robin who lives in the secret garden and imparts many life lessons. New Haven artist Linda Wingerter answered that call and with artistic mastery created two puppets with wing and head movements that can be manipulated by cast and crew members through the use of strings. Both robins share the one role so Robin can quickly appear in different places on the stage. A detailed illustration of Ms. Wingerter’s creative process can be found at http://paintedbooks.blogspot.com.
Based on the classic novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett and set in Victorian England, THE SECRET GARDEN is an emotionally deep story of struggle and survival told through the lyrics/book by Marsha Norman and music by Lucy Simon (sister of Carly Simon). With a total of 116 students participating, including 76 cast members, 34 crew members and 6 orchestra pit musicians who are partnered and being mentored by 15 professional musicians, the production’s large vocal ensembles, varied set designs and challenging mix of music promise to be well tended.
Tickets for each of the four performances scheduled for March 14-March 16 are $10 and are on sale now at Valley Regional High School in Deep River, Gather in Ivoryton, Toys Ahoy! in Essex, Celebrations in Deep River and The Wheatmarket in Chester. More information is available at the school’s website at www.vrhs.reg4.k12.ct.us or by calling the school’s office at 860-526-5328.
“Fresh Work,” a new show featuring “Ice Scape” photographs by Jerry Reed, abstract and geometrical work by Judy Friday, and “The Birds,” winter paintings by Helen Cantrell, along with other contemporary artists, will be on display at Gallery 19 from February 1 through April 30. Gallery 19, located at 19A Main Street in the heart of historic Essex, Connecticut, is committed to new art, including by artisan weaver Stephanie Morton, potter Clare Cunningham and others who share the gallery’s modernist sensibility.
Essex resident Jerry Reed’s “Ice Scapes” are a work in progress. “Two years ago, in a field next to a farm to market road near my home,” the photographer says, “there were two ruts where I suppose the tractor turned at the end of a row, in these ruts, rain water collected, then froze. Photographing the sheets of ice is a continual process: “I go back each winter, got nothing last year, but this year the luck was with me,” he says. Reed’s series of time-lapse photographs of the sky and sea of Long Island Sound are also on display.
Judy Friday’s new abstracts are a return to her vivid, slashing palette knife work, inspired in part by the paintings of Joan Mitchell, while her geometric paintings are a play on classic quilts. Friday’s latest colorful work is a continuation of her exploration of the boundaries between order and chaos.
“The Birds” by Helen Cantrell is a new series of oil paintings of birds in snow in Cantrell’s expressionist style. “I watch birds out my studio windows, and the fierce struggles of these little creatures to survive are impressive. The stark blacks and whites of New England winters also impose a formal order, like the Japanese screens I admire,” the artist says.
Gallery 19’s winter hours, Thursdays through Sundays from 11 to 5 pm, will continue until March 15; thereafter the gallery will be open Wednesdays as well. For more information call (860 ) 581-8735, or visit gallery19essex.com.