November 30, 2022

Literacy Volunteers Valley Shore Hosts Scrabble Done Differently,Tonight

AREAWIDE – “An Evening of Words with Friends – Minus the Electronics” is being hosted by Literacy Volunteers Valley Shore on Wednesday, April 27, starting at 5:30 p.m.

The event, to be held at the First Congregational Church of Madison Meetinghouse at 27 Meetinghouse Lane, Madison, features a unique format you have to see to believe. Prizes will be awarded. A donation of $25 per player is requested. Proceeds will benefit the Literacy Volunteers’ free English tutoring and workplace literacy programs. Light refreshments will be served.

Call Literacy Volunteers Valley Shore at 860-399-0280 or go to for more information.


Red Dog Project Hosts Prison-based Foster Program Adoption Event, April 25

rdpSLADEThe Red Dog Project will host an Adoption Event Saturday, April 25, from 12 to 3 p.m. at PetValue (in the Kohl’s plaza), 28 Spencer Plains Road, Old Saybrook, Conn.

The dogs offered for adoption will be shelter dogs lovingly rehabilitated by the women inmates at York Correctional Facility in Niantic, Conn.

For more information or to apply online, visit

‘New Deal’ Art Exhibition on View at CT River Museum Through June 22

The Connecticut River Museum’s spring exhibit, New Deal Art Along the River, will open April 2nd. This painting, On the Rail by Yngve Soderberg is a watercolor on paper on loan from the Lyman Allen Art Museum. Photo courtesy of Lyman Allen Art Museum.

The Connecticut River Museum’s spring exhibit, New Deal Art Along the River, opens April 2. This painting, On the Rail by Yngve Soderberg is a watercolor on paper on loan from the Lyman Allyn Art Museum. Photo courtesy of Lyman Allen Art Museum.

During the depths of the Great Depression, the federal government created work relief programs to put unemployed Americans back to work. President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “New Deal” programs provided all types of jobs – including opportunities for out-of-work artists. The Federal Art Project (1935 – 1943) paid artists to paint murals and easel art, sculpt, and teach art classes. Their art was always located in a public place such as a school, library, or government building so that all Americans had access to it for inspiration and enjoyment.

The subject matter for much of this artwork is known as the “American Scene” – showcasing regional history, landscapes, and people. The Connecticut River Museum’s new exhibit has selected artwork that represents artists from the Connecticut River Valley, or that depicts views of regional or maritime traditions of the Connecticut River and coastline.

“These paintings offer us a glimpse at Connecticut from 60 years ago,” says Museum Curator Amy Trout. “We think of that time as being dark and depressing, but these paintings show us a vibrant time and place.”

The exhibit contains 20 works of art ranging from pastels, etchings, watercolors, and oils. There are also examples of bas relief work from Essex sculptor Henry Kreis who designed the state’s Tercentenary medal and coin in 1935 under the Civil Works Authority (CWA) funding. The paintings come from area museums such as the Lyman Allyn Art Museum, Mystic Arts Center, Connecticut Historical Society, and the Portland Historical Society, among others.

Even though these paintings were originally intended for public viewing, many have found their way into museum storerooms and are rarely seen. “It’s important to get them out on display and remind people of the wonderful legacy that was left to us. It gives us a chance to talk about Connecticut during the 1930s and appreciate the art that gives us greater insight into that period,” says Trout. The artists are also relatively unknown. Many continued in the field of art after the Depression, but few achieved great fame. “They needed to make a living, so many became commercial artists, illustrators, or teachers.”

The exhibition will open Thursday, April 2, with a preview reception at 5:30 p.m. featuring a short lecture by curator Amy Trout.  The exhibition runs through June 22.

The Connecticut River Museum is located at 67 Main Street, Essex and is open daily from 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. and closed on Mondays after Columbus Day. Admission is $8 for adults, $7 for seniors, $5 for children age 6-12, free for children under 6.

For more information, call 860-767-8269 or go to

New Modern Art Venue, Gallery19 Opening in Essex

"Gray Red" monotype, 18"x18", by Judy Friday

“Gray Red” monotype, 18″x18″, by Judy Friday

A new modern art venue, gallery19, is opening its doors at 19A Main Street in Essex, Connecticut’s historic downtown shopping area. Founded by Old Lyme artists Judy Friday and Helen Cantrell, the gallery will feature their abstract and expressionist paintings and works on paper, and will eventually include other artists who share the gallery’s commitment to modernism.

Gallery19’s inaugural reception will be Sunday, October 13 from 3 to 5 p.m., with refreshments catered by nationally-known chef Amanda Cushman. On view will be Cantrell’s expressionist oils, evoking the shoreline’s salt marshes, as well as a new series of suburban houses glimpsed from commuter railway windows. “Art is about perception, not nature,” says the artist, quoting Roy Lichtenstein, “although nature inspires me, as does the work of other artists, especially abstract expressionists like Willem de Kooning and Richard Diebenkorn.” Also featured will be Judy Friday’s new abstract work, which bounces between geometry and chaos, including collages from comics, luminous grids and brushy explosions of color, the freer paintings inspired in part by the work of Joan Mitchell.

Judy Friday has shown extensively in New England and Ohio, where she graduated from Ohio State University in 1980. She has studied at the Lyme Art Academy and is well known in the shoreline arts community as a 20-year veteran of the Cooley Gallery in Old Lyme. “The Cooley Gallery has been vital to my exposure as an artist, and I am grateful for their generosity in showing my work,” Friday says, adding: “Now I am launching a new adventure, a new way to explore all avenues of modernist, contemporary art.” Helen Cantrell, a painter and printmaker who moved to Old Lyme in 2010, is a graduate of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (Diploma 2004). Cantrell says, “We are excited to join Art Essex, the Essex Art Association, the Orison Project, and other artists in this area—we think the time is right to develop modernist and contemporary art synergy.”

Gallery19 will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. or by appointment. For more information call 860 581-8735, or email Helen Cantrell at

"Bridge" oil on canvas, 30"x30", by Helen Cantrell

“Bridge” oil on canvas, 30″x30″, by Helen Cantrell

Blues guitarist John Hammond comes to Chester Nov. 18

John Hammond

From the Blues Hall of Fame to the historic Chester Meetinghouse comes John Hammond, a legend in the world of acoustic blues guitar. His concert, to be held Sunday, Nov. 18 at 5:00 p.m., is sponsored by the Collomore Music Series in its 39th season.

Hammond has been likened by critics to Robert Johnson, combining powerful guitar and harmonica playing with expressive vocals. Tom Waits describes “John’s sound as so compelling, complete, and soulful it is impossible to imagine improving on it. He’s a great force of nature.” A seven-times Grammy nominee, Hammond was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2011.

Concert tickets are $21. For students from elementary through graduate school, a ticket is $5. All ticket-holders are invited to stay for a reception after the concert to meet John Hammond. Ticket info: (860) 526-5162 or The Chester Meetinghouse is located on 4 Liberty Street in Chester (Exit 6 off Rte. 9). The concert is sponsored by Essex Savings Bank and Essex Financial Services.

The Kitchen Witches at The Ivoryton Playhouse Opens Oct. 31

Pictured – from left Beverley Taylor, Carl Howell and Kim Catano (photo by by Anne Hudson).

Ivoryton: Aprons are tied and ladles are readied for battle as the Ivoryton Playhouse suits up for the clash of the cooking show divas – THE KITCHEN WITCHES by Caroline Smith.  Winner of the 2005 Samuel French Canadian Playwrights Contest, this hilarious comedy is just the recipe for a night of fun and merriment!

Isobel Lomax and Dolly Biddle are two rival cable-access cooking show hostesses who have hated each other for 30 years, ever since Larry Biddle dated one and married the other.  When circumstances put them together on a TV show called The Kitchen Witches, the insults are flung harder than the food!

Dolly’s long-suffering TV-producer son Stephen tries to keep them on track, but as long as Dolly’s dressing room is one inch closer to the set than Isobel’s, it’s a losing battle, and the show becomes a rating smash as Dolly and Isobel top both Martha Stewart and Jerry Springer!

Canadian playwright Caroline Smith has whipped up a hilarious tale that’s sure to please even the fussiest palate.  Directed by Maggie Jennings, the show stars Beverley Taylor, Kim Catano*, Carl Howell*, and Casey McKeon.  The set design is by Dan Nischan, lighting design by Marcus Abbott, and costumes by LisaMarie Harry.

THE KITCHEN WITCHES opens in Ivoryton on October 31st and runs through November 11th. Performance times are Wednesday and Sunday matinees at 2pm. Evening performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30pm, Friday and Saturday at 8pm. Tickets are $40 for adults, $35 for seniors, $20 for students and $15 for children and are available by calling the Playhouse box office at 860-767-7318 or by visiting our website at  (Group rates are available by calling the box office for information.) The Playhouse is located at 103 Main Street in Ivoryton.
*member of Actors Equity

Ripples of Sea Life – Student Presentation Chester Public LIbrary Oct 22

Ask Silvia Gopalakrishnan why she is concerned about the health of our oceans and she’ll tell you, “I was sad that all of the sea animals were dying and I wanted to be a part of the action that was going on to protect them.”  Hoping to raise awareness about the salt water that covers almost 70% of the earth and the life that lives in it, this Chester Elementary School student has created a presentation she hopes will encourage other young people to ‘take action…to stop people from carelessly polluting the ocean.” Silvia’s fun and informational program discusses the ocean, sea life and environmental threats such as oil spills and plastic bags.

At the end of the power point presentation everyone will be able to make eco-friendly, sea-themed bookmarks to take home.  Refreshments will be served.  Intended for children ages 6-12, this program is planned for Monday, October 22 at 6:30 PM.  Please call the library to register (860-526-0018).

It’s your earth, come SEA what you can do to keep it healthy!

Chester Rotary 42nd Annual Lobster Festival This Saturday Sept. 8

The Rotary Club of Chester will host its 42nd annual Lobster Festival at the Chester Fairgrounds on Saturday, September 8, 2012.  Tickets are on sale now!

The event is highlighted by classic double entree dinners featuring Twin Lobster, Twin Steak, or Surf and Turf.  Traditional sides include corn on the cob, baked potato, coleslaw and rolls.  The gates will open at 4:00 pm for table decorating and general admission.  Dinners will be served from 5:00 pm and continue until 7 pm.   Soft drinks, bottled water, draft beer and wine are available for sale throughout the night.   The bands Bittersweet Harmony, Flying Blind & Second Chance return to entertain with classic tunes until closing at 10:30pm.

Admission tickets for double entrée meals are $40 in advance, $45 for remaining tickets at the gate.  Single entree dinner tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the gate.  Children’s hot dog meal tickets are available at the gate for $5.  Purchase tickets from any Chester Rotarian, from selected Chester merchants including Chester Bottle Shop, Chester Package Store, Century 21 Heritage Company and Chrisholm Marina or call Angie at 860-204-2426.  Tickets are also available for purchase on-line at

Access to the Lobster Festival is restricted to dinner ticket holders.  Seating is limited.  This event has been a sell out for the past several years so be sure to get your tickets early!  For additional information please visit

Chester Rotarians are dedicated to providing funding and service to local, national and international charitable organizations.  All proceeds from this event support these causes.

Creatures of the Night at Deep River Library Sept 26

Join US Fish and Wildlife Service Refuge, Kris Vagos, for an activity and discussion filled evening focused on nighttime wildlife at Deep River Public Library on Wednesday September 26 at 7:30pm.

Learn about owls, bats, oppossums, flying squirrels and other fun and fascinating creatures.

Family friendly fun and everyone is invited.  For more information and to register please call 860-526-6039.

Chess Nuts on Fire at Essex Library – Sept 13

Are you chess nuts? The Essex Library is hosting an open meeting for chess players, all levels and ages welcome, every Thursday afternoon from 3 until 5 PM beginning on September 13.  Drop in and enjoy a game; no registration necessary. Please bring a chess set if you have one. The Essex Library is at 33 West Avenue. For more information , please call the Library at 860-767-1560.

Tri-Town Substance Abuse Prevention Council Meeting Sept 12

The Tri-Town Substance Abuse Prevention Council will hold its first meeting of the new school year on Wednesday, September 12, 2012 at 9:00 a.m. at Tri-Town Youth Services, 56 High Street in Deep River.  The Tri-Town Substance Abuse Prevention Council is open to all who live or work in Chester, Deep River, or Essex who are concerned with substance abuse and committed to its prevention.  Many “sectors” of the community are represented on this Council: schools, youth, parents, law enforcement, healthcare, and others.

At the September meeting current prevention programming will be discussed as well as ways of strengthening our Coalition, currently in Year 2 of a Drug Free Communities Support Grant.  For further information please call Tri-Town Youth Services at 860-526-3600.

Le Comte Ory at Essex Library Sept 24

Juan Diego Flórez as Count Ory (disguised as the nun) and Diana Damrau as Countess Adèle in Rossini’s “Le Comte Ory.” Photo: Marty Sohl/Metropolitan Opera

Enjoy the Metropolitan Opera’s lively production of Rossini’s romantic farce Le Comte Ory starring Juan Diego Florez, Diana Damrau and Joyce DiDonato at Essex Library’s Monday Afternoon At the Opera, September 24 at 2 PM. Directed by Tony-award winner Bartlett Sher, this light-hearted romp stars Florez as the Don Juan-like Comte, who disguises himself first as a hermit, then as a nun, to get close to the virtuous Countess Adele (Diana Damrau).  The New York Times raved about  Damrau’s “lustrous, agile coloratura soprano voice, and charisma galore” and how Joyce DiDonato, playing the trouser role of the Comte’s page Isolier, ” sang with plush sound and impeccable passagework, sent top notes soaring and conveyed all the swagger of a smitten page.” This screening  is  free and open to all. The Essex Library is at 33 West Avenue; you may register for this program by calling the Library at 869-767-1560.

Deep River’s Oktoberfest Celebration Sept. 21

Popular Polish polka band Dennis Polisky & The Maestro’s Men will perform at the Deep River Oktoberfest on 21 September

Beer and polka, food and fun!   The Deep River Rotary Club invites everyone to come on down to the Stone House in Deep River on Friday, Sept. 21 for our 2nd annual Oktoberfest extravaganza.   Music will feature the popular Polish polka band Dennis Polisky & The Maestro’s Men.   They will be making joyful dance music from 7 to 10 p.m. under the tent on the lawn of the Carriage House.    In addition an authentic German feast will be available beforehand, from 5-8 p.m., including sauerkraut and sauerbraten, sausage, vegetables and desserts.    The evening will also include exciting auctions and fantastic brews.  The Committee especially looks forward to a German chocolate cake eating contest!   Tickets are available for $35 (which includes dinner) or $15 (music and dancing only).  Commemorative beer mugs will also be on sale.

Event organizers include Club members Jenny Pace, Desiree Richardell, Lorianne Panzara-Griswold, and Hedy Watrous.

The Maestro’s Men have been performing together since 1996.  They currently have seven recording releases.  The musicians’ unique backgrounds and experience form the heart of the Maestro’s Men sound.  Their unique sound and arrangements of traditional and original music offer an exciting and entertaining musical variety.  The band was a seven-time”Favorite Band/Instrumental Group Of The Year” by the International Polka Association Of Chicago, IL.  Their CD “Strike Up The Band” in 2003 was nominated for a Grammy as part of the 46’th Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles California.  The band was honored at this prestigious event in Los Angeles.

Taste of the Valley 2012 – Sept 7

Deep River, CT – Taste of the Valley 2012 is an evening of passionate chefs creating incredible appetizers and desserts to benefit Tri-Town Youth Services. Circle the date – Friday, September 7, 2012 at 6:00 pm – and get your tickets TODAY!

Each year, our community gathers on a late summer evening on the beautiful grounds of the Deep River Historical Society to sample one tasty morsel after another from local restaurants and caterers. The 2012 Restaurants and Caterers are Apple Rehab Saybrook, Brushmill by the Waterfall, El & Ela’s, Essex Coffee & Tea, Gabrielle’s, La Vita Gustosa, Riverhouse at Goodspeed Station, Saybrook Soup and Sandwich, The Ivory Restaurant, Kathy Pindar from The Sweet Shoppe, Trapiche, and Truffle Shots. As part of the event, the Taste of the Valley Committee is excited to announce the theme for the silent auction, entitled “From The Hands of Our Community 2012: Harmony”. Every donated item or service in the auction will handmade or completed by hand inspired by the concept of “harmony”. There will also be a live auction. The live music will be provided by the Mass Conn Fusion.

You will also cast your ballot for the restaurant that takes home the coveted Taste of the Valley FORK! There will also be awards for Best Appetizer, Best Dessert, Best Presentation, and other categories.

Tickets are $35 and can be purchased at Celebrations and Tri-Town Youth Services in Deep River or online. Note: This is event is for adults over the age of 21.

TASTE OF THE VALLEY 2012 is generously sponsored by The Valley Courier, The Clark Group, Middlesex Hospital, Dr’s. Elgart, Pinn, Gordon & Elgart Optometrists, Essex Savings Bank, Tower Labs, PCi Medical, Tom Alexa, Safety Zone, Bogaert Construction and many other local businesses.

For more information or tickets, contact Gail Onofrio at Tri-Town Youth Services at (860) 526-3600 or view our website: If you would like to be a sponsor or donate an item for our silent auction, send an email

ABOUT – TRI-TOWN YOUTH SERVICES BUREAU, INC. is a nonprofit agency that coordinates, develops and provides services dedicated to promoting the positive growth and development of youth and families in Chester, Deep River and Essex, Connecticut. The Deep River Historical Society is located at 245 Main Street, Deep River, CT.

Free Concert, Opera in the Park Aug 30

“Opera in the Park” is a free concert presented by Salt Marsh Opera on Thursday, August 30 (rain date August 31), at 6:30 PM on the Old Saybrook Town Green, adjacent to the Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center, 300 Main Street.

Baritone Kyle Pfortmiller and Soprano, Laura Pfortmiller will perform duets and arias from the works of Verdi, Puccini, and other grand opera composers. Accompanist is Cathy Venable.  According to Artistic and Executive Director Simon Holt, “Pack a picnic, bring a chair and enjoy a glorious summer evening of your opera favorites under the stars courtesy of the Salt Marsh Opera.”

Sponsors of “Opera in the Park” are the Connecticut Commission on Culture & Tourism, the Economic Development Commission – Town of Old Saybrook, and the Essex Savings Bank.  Wilma Asch of Old Saybrook’s Economic Development Commission is the Event Coordinator.


Long-Lost Mural Art Exhibit at Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek Sept 10

A long-long mural, The Founding of the State of Israel, 1948,  by Connecticut artist Sanford Low and his colleague Walter Korder headlines an art exhibit opening September 10th at Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek  (CBSRZ) in Chester.

The eighteen-foot mural was located by an agent for Jeff Cooley of the Cooley Gallery in Old Lyme, and Cooley loaned the artwork to CBSRZ for the exhibit.  The CBSRZ exhibit also includes most of the surviving lithographs of Rachel Szalit-Marcus, a high acclaimed artist who was born in Lodz, Poland and died in a concentration camp. Her best-known works are illustrations for books whose authors include the famous Yiddish writer Sholem Aleichem.  Szalit-Marcus’ work is on loan to CBSRZ by the Derfner Judaica Museum in New York.

The exhibit is free 
and open to the public beginning Sept. 10 thru Oct. 31, Mon. – Fri,
10 a.m. – 3 p.m., in the CBSRZ Gallery located at Congregation Beth
Shalom Rodfe Zedek, 55 Kings Highway, Chester CT.  Call temple
 secretary at 860-526-8920 for group visits.

This event is co-sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Greater New Haven.

Maritime Musician Geoff Kaufman to Perform at River Museum on August 16

Maritime folk musician Geoff Kaufman performs on August 16 and August 30 at the Connecticut River Museum’s Thursdays at the Dock summer series

Essex, CT – On Thursday, August 16, maritime musician Geoff Kaufman returns to the Connecticut River Museum’s Thursdays at the Dock summer series to perform songs of the River and the sea.  Skilled in a variety of string instruments, Kaufman is known for his traditional maritime music including sea chantey and ballads.  His resume spans 28 years including 15 years as a member of the powerhouse quartet Forebitter, based at Mystic Seaport.  He will also perform again on August 30.

Now in its fifth summer season, “Thursdays at the Dock” extends the Museum’s daily hours by opening the first floor galleries, museum shop and North deck from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm every Thursday evening through August 30.  All are invited to sample the River’s great heritage and natural beauty while enjoying music and cocktails on the waterfront.  Each week, featured area musicians perform a diverse mix of maritime folk, bluegrass, folk rock, and other popular styles.   Admission is $5 per person, museum members are admitted free.  Cash bar and light snacks will be available.  For more information on Thursdays at the Dock, go to or call 860-767-8269.  The Connecticut River Museum is located at 67 Main Street on the historic waterfront in Essex, CT.

The Gallery at Riverside Press is Opening New Show of Four Local Artists Aug 12

Saybrook Marsh by John Berube

John Berube of Chester: John studied art at a young age and painted through his early twenties. Picking up a brush again 12 years ago he studied with artist & author Maurice Sendak and is now concentrating on his love for local seascapes and marshes in a modern impressionistic style using acrylics.

Lesley Braren of East Hampton: Enjoys doing work ranging from landscapes, still life and into abstract. Love of nature and experimenting with different media to capture the mood and the moment.

Rob DeBartolo of Centerbrook: Artist and printer explores his deep connection to color and it’s limitless possibilities through monotypes, poured inks, pastel, acrylics and collage from   realism to minimalism.

Deborah Quinn-Munson of Chester,: Composes and creates paintings filled with reflection, movement, color, depth, light & atmosphere, desiring to keep the message simple & clear with a feeling of peace & beauty. Working in pastel, oil. and watercolor.

Opening Reception Sunday August 12 from 2-4pm.

The show runs from August 13 to September 21 2012

The Gallery at Riverside Press
18 Plains Road
Essex, CT  06426


Open Monday through Friday 10-4, by chance on Saturday 1-4

Family Maritime Festival & Concert at Connecticut River Museum on August 11

The Connecticut River Museum’s Family Maritime Festival and Concert, scheduled for Saturday, August 11, will feature maritime games and activities, schooner cruises and an evening concert. For more information, go to call 860-767-8269 or go to

Essex, CT – Gather the entire crew and head down to Essex’s historic waterfront on Saturday, August 11 for a boat load of family fun and entertainment.  The Connecticut River Museum’s Annual Family Maritime Festival starts at 1 pm with maritime games and activities, all free of charge throughout the afternoon.  Learn how to make rope, caulk a ship, or sing a sea chantey or two.  And for those who want to get out on the water, the historic schooner Mary E will set sail at 1:30 pm, 3:30 pm, and 6:00 pm for a leisurely sail along the Connecticut River.  Tickets for the 1.5 hour afternoon cruises are $26 for adults and $16 for children age 12 and under.  Tickets for the two-hour sunset cruise are $30 per person, all ages. Advance reservations are recommended.

At 5:00 pm, the Connecticut River Museum’s Annual Picnic and Concert gets underway with all invited to bring a blanket or chair and picnic dinner to enjoy while  listening to sea chanteys performed by the Freemen of the Sea and calypso party music performed by The Sun Kings.  Wine, beer, and soda will also be available for purchase.  Festival activities and concert are free of charge thanks to a sponsorship by Guilford Savings Bank.  For more information on the day’s events, call 860-767-8269 or go to

Canoe & Kayak Around Thatchbed Island and South Cove August 9

Here’s a great opportunity to enjoy one Essex’s most scenic paddles! Join naturalist Phil Miller and kayaking enthusiast Kathy LaBella in touring around Thatchbed Island and venturing to Turtle Creek Cove on Thursday August 9.

Learn about the area’s natural history and experience close-up views of birds and plants and the beauty of Middle and South Coves. Departure is promptly at 5 pm so participants should plan to arrive ahead of time to launch their canoe’s/kayaks. Open to paddlers of all ages, but basic experience in paddling is required.

This is an Essex Great Outdoors Pursuit event. Launch from Essex Town Park on Main Street. Park behind the Post Office at 12 Main Street, Essex. Bad weather cancels.

How to prepare for a Walking Marathon – August 9

How should you prepare for a 26 mile walking marathon? You are invited to a TBBCF Walker Training Clinic.

If you want to walk a 6, 13 or 26 mile marathon, there are things you need to do to train for that length walk.  Come to Anytime Fitness, learn about walk training and footwear; take a local 2 mile fitness walk, and find out more about the Terri Brodeur Breast Cancer Foundation (TBBCF) Walk Across Southeastern CT which will take place on October 6, 2012. Learn about walking as a team and about fundraising opportunities.

The walk training will take place on Thursday, August 9, 2011, 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm at Anytime Fitness, 17 Liberty Way, Niantic, CT. For directions, visit .  For more information about the TBBCF Walk Across Southeastern CT, visit  Please call 860-245-0402 to let us know you plan on attending or if you have any questions.

Jazz Jam at Ulrich Franzen Home to Benefit Community Music School July 22

A Jazz Jam for musicians and music lovers will take place on Sunday, July 22 at 7 pm with proceeds to benefit the Community Music School. This award-winning Essex residence on Book Hill Road was designed by Ulrich Franzen and offers unparalleled views of the Connecticut River. Tickets are $25 ($15 is tax deductible) and guests will enjoy an evening of music, wine and savory snacks. The featured performer is local jazz musician Julie Blum, a CMS alumnae and 2008 Carolyn Greenleaf Memorial Award winner. Julie is an accomplished musician who has performed professionally throughout Connecticut since 2006. She is best known for her jazz saxophone performances and has appeared on WFSB’s Better Connecticut and at numerous prestigious jazz festivals. Learn more about Julie at her website:

Community Music School, located in the Centerbrook section of Essex, CT, is a not-for-profit arts education organization offering instrumental and vocal students of all ages outstanding private and group instruction. In addition to long-running programs such as Kindermusik and Jazz and String Ensembles, CMS offers special programs for homeschool students and a full menu of summer offerings. Additionally, a certified music therapist is on faculty offering individual and group Music Therapy services, using music as a tool to reach individualized therapeutic goals for people of all ages and skill levels. For additional information on programs or performances, please visit

Tickets may be purchased through Community Music School at 90 Main Street, Centerbrook or by calling 860-767-0026.

Latin Grammy Award Winner Fernando Otero to play in Essex July 28

Fernando Otero will play a solo piano concert on July 28, 8:30pm as part of the Book Hill Series at the Ulrich Franzen House designed for Henry and Shavaun Towers, to benefit Community Music Series in Centerbrook, Connecticut. First introduced to series producer Deirdre Towers during the Dance on Camera Festival at Lincoln Center in New York City, Otero was featured in a documentary about the new generation of tango aficionados in TANGO: A STRANGE TURN directed by Mercedes Garcia Guevara in 2004. In deference to the Connecticut Tango Festival which runs July 14-22nd, Otero will play a few tangos for the audience to dance.

Argentine composer and pianist Fernando Otero found his voice as a writer, musician and bandleader when he began to incorporate the indigenous sounds of his native Buenos Aires into his work. On his Nonesuch debut “Pagina de Buenos Aires,” he evokes a feeling of Buenos Aires – something you can sense even if you’ve never been there – through his innovative use of the bandoneon. Now based in New York City, he won the 2010 Latin Grammy Award for best classical music album.

The BBC Music Review said that his music is “Urbane and exotic, surreal and streetwise, and alive with emotion and invention.” The New York Times, as recently as May 16, 2011, praised the “sizzling interpretations of sultry and rhythmically vibrant works by Fernando Otero” played at Symphony Space, New York.

Tickets are $35 and can be purchased at the door or by contacting CMS: For more information on Fernando Otero, visit .More on Ulrich Franzen House, see

Community Music School is an independent, nonprofit school which began as a pilot program in the summer of 1980. Patricia Hurley, the school’s founder and artistic director, had a vision to enrich students’ lives with musical opportunities beyond the public school programs. The 6,000-square-foot facility houses 17 studios. CMS is member of the National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts and to follow that organization’s Code of Best Practices

Children’s Book Author and illustrator Jane Manning at Deep River Library July 18

Children’s Book Author and illustrator Jane Manning will be reading her soon-to-be -released book “Millie Fierce”  Under the Stars at Deep River Public Library on Wednesday July 18 at 8pm, plus other fun things that evening!

CMS Offers New Kindermusik Scholarship Program, Summer Demo Days in July and August

ESSEX – Through a generous grant from the Women’s Initiative Fund of the Middlesex United Way, Community Music School is pleased to offer partial scholarships for the award-winning early childhood development program, Kindermusik. Demonstration and information days are being offered on Tuesday, July 24 and Tuesday, August 14 for families interested in the program. The events are FREE and will take place at Community Music School, 90 Main Street in Centerbrook (next to Essex Elementary School). Demonstrations are scheduled for specific age groups and include:

10 – 10:40 a.m.: Our Time for 18 months to 3 years old – children are introduced to singing, moving, listening and playing simple instruments.

11 – 11:40 a.m.: Imagine That! for 3 to 4 year olds – a wide variety of musical subjects and hands-on projects are introduced through singing, listening, moving and exploring.

1 – 1:40 p.m.: Young Child/ABC Music & Me for 4 to 6 year olds – this program introduces young musicians to composers, songs, and styles from a variety of genres, such as classical, jazz, and folk.

With more than 25 years of experience in early childhood development, Kindermusik is the world’s most trusted name in musical learning. Community Music School faculty member and certified Kindermusik educator Nancy Thomas will lead these engaging and fun music education sessions.

For additional information about the Kindermusik program or for a scholarship application, please contact Community Music School at 860-767-0026 or visit

First Congregational Church of Deep River Annual Flea Market August 11

The First Congregational Church of Deep River will have its Annual Flea Market on the Green on Saturday, August 11, 2012 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.  Many of the 74 spaces have already been reserved, so contact the church as soon as possible  to reserve your spot.  Spaces are 20 x 20 and the price is $30.00.  For more information please call the church at (860) 526-5045 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. to request a map and registration form.   You may also email the church office at or download the form and map from our church website,

The members of the congregation will also have a tag sale inside the Fellowship Hall, and there will be a variety of baked goods for sale.    Refreshments may be purchased throughout the day:  coffee and doughnuts in the morning and hamburgers, hotdogs, and side dishes throughout the day.

Local Author John LaPlante at Essex Library 12 July

Local author John LaPlante, author of 27 Months in the Peace Corps.: My Story, Unvarnished, will talk about his hitch as the Peace Corps’ oldest volunteer at 80 years of age, at the Essex Library on Thursday July 12th  at 7 PM. John, who served in the Ukraine, will reveal the challenges, laughs, and surprises he experienced at a point in his life when many of us think our adventures are over. Books, including his other two works  Around the World at 75. Alone, Dammit! and Around Asia  in 80 Days. Oops, 83! will be available for sale and signing. Join us for this inspiring look at one man’s amazing “second act”.  Please call the Essex Library at 860-767-1560 for more information or to register.  The Essex Library is at 33 West Avenue.

Thursdays at the Dock Returns for Music & Spirits on Essex Waterfront July 12

Connecticut River Museum’s Thursdays at the Dock on July 12 from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

ESSEX – It’s time to gather your crew and head down to the Connecticut River Museum at Steamboat Dock on Thursday evenings for cocktails and music overlooking historic Essex Harbor.  Back by popular demand for a fifth summer season, “Thursdays at the Dock” extends the Museum’s daily hours by opening the first floor galleries, museum shop and North deck from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm starting on July 12 and running through August 30.  All are invited to sample the River’s great heritage and natural beauty while enjoying music and refreshments on the waterfront.  Each week, featured area musicians perform a diverse mix of maritime folk, bluegrass, folk rock, and other popular styles.   A reduced admission price of $5 per person will be charged, Museum members are admitted free.  Cash bar and light snacks will be available.

Jazz duo Tom Briggs and Andy Sherwood will be the featured performers for the July 12 season opener.  Both musicians are currently faculty members of the Community Music School in Centerbrook, each having been with the United States Coast Guard Band for more than 25 years.   Mr. Briggs was the musical director of the Coast Guard Masters of Swing jazz septet while Mr. Sherwood led the Coast Guard Dixieland band.  For more information on Thursdays at the Dock, go to or call 860-767-8269.  The Connecticut River Museum is located at 67 Main Street on the historic waterfront in Essex, CT.

Thursdays at the Dock Returns for Music & Spirits on Essex Waterfront July 12

Andy Sherwood and Tom Briggs bring their collaborative jazz style to the Connecticut River Museum’s Thursdays at the Dock on July 12 from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm.

Essex, CT – It’s time to gather your crew and head down to the Connecticut River Museum at Steamboat Dock on Thursday evenings for cocktails and music overlooking historic Essex Harbor.  Back by popular demand for a fifth summer season, “Thursdays at the Dock” extends the Museum’s daily hours by opening the first floor galleries, museum shop and North deck from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm starting on July 12 and running through August 30.  All are invited to sample the River’s great heritage and natural beauty while enjoying music and refreshments on the waterfront.  Each week, featured area musicians perform a diverse mix of maritime folk, bluegrass, folk rock, and other popular styles.   A reduced admission price of $5 per person will be charged, Museum members are admitted free.  Cash bar and light snacks will be available.

Jazz duo Tom Briggs and Andy Sherwood will be the featured performers for the July 12 season opener.  Both musicians are currently faculty members of the Community Music School in Centerbrook, each having been with the United States Coast Guard Band for more than 25 years.   Mr. Briggs was the musical director of the Coast Guard Masters of Swing jazz septet while Mr. Sherwood led the Coast Guard Dixieland band.  For more information on Thursdays at the Dock, go to or call 860-767-8269.  The Connecticut River Museum is located at 67 Main Street on the historic waterfront in Essex, CT.

The Jester Jim Show July 10

With nothing more than a truck full of props and his non-laced Adidas, Jester Jim takes the stage and starts his show.  Young and old are glued to his every sound as he performs his amazing beatbox intro.

Tuesday July 10, 3:30pm, Deep River Public Library.  For more information call 860-526-6039.

Hairspray: The Broadway Musical At The Ivoryton Playhouse

Ivoryton: Move over Baltimore! Ivoryton is the new home for Hairspray — the soultastic, hair hoppin’, dance-til-you-drop musical! It’s 1962 and big girl Tracy Turnblad has only one desire – to dance on the popular Corny Collins Show. When her dream comes true, Tracy is transformed from social outcast to sudden star, but she must use her newfound power to vanquish the reigning Teen Queen, win the affections of heartthrob Link Larkin and integrate a TV network – all without denting her ‘do!

Don’t miss Hairspray, Broadway’s musical-comedy phenomenon that inspired a major motion picture and won eight 2003 Tony Awards, including Best Musical.  As The New York Times says, “If life were everything it should be, it would be more like Hairspray. It’s irresistible!”

Cast includes Jill Sullivan as Tracy, Michael Barra* as Edna, Neal Mayer* as Wilbur, Karen L. Anderson* as Motormouth Maybelle and Justin Gerhard as Link Larkin.

Directed by Jacqui Hubbard, choreography by JR Bruno and musical direction by John DeNicola. The set design is by Cully Long, lighting design by Marcus Abbott, and costumes by Vivianna Lamb. Music by Marc Shaiman, lyrics by Scott Wittman and Marc Shaiman and book by Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan.

Hairspray opens in Ivoryton on July 4th and runs through July 29th and runs for 4 weeks. Performance times are Wednesday and Sunday matinees at 2pm. Evening performances are Wednesday and Thursday at 7:30pm, Friday and Saturday at 8pm. Tickets are $40 for adults, $35 for seniors, $20 for students and $15 for children and are available by calling the Playhouse box office at 860-767-7318 or by visiting our website at  (Group rates are available by calling the box office for information.) The Playhouse is located at 103 Main Street in Ivoryton.

*member of Actors Equity

CMS Presents Classical Guitar Concert 1 July

CENTERBROOK – Community Music School is pleased to present a chamber music concert featuring Neal Fitzpatrick, guitar, and Pamela Dubey Allen, flute, on Sunday, July 1 at 3 pm at the Centerbrook Meetinghouse, 51 Main Street, Centerbrook. Award-winning classical guitarist and composer Neal Fitzpatrick will perform original compositions and works by Villa-Lobos, Barrios and others. Special guest flutist Pamela Dubey Allen will join Neal for guitar and flute duets. Tickets are $10, students 12 and under are FREE. For additional information, please contact 860-767-0026.

Vacation Bible School at Deep River Congregational Church – Starts July 9

Sign up for vacation bible school at Deep River Congregational Church which will take place July 9 – 13.

Join the VBS ~ Adventures on Promise Island, Where Kids Discover God’s Lifesaving Love!  All children 4 years old through entering 5th grade are welcome to attend.  Bible stories, crafts, games and snack are all part of this special week.  Program runs from 9 am – noon.

Registration forms are available  in the church office or on-line at – click on the Vacation Bible School link.

Working families now have the option for childcare after the VBS program. Advance sign up is required and open donations are requested for care.

For more information contact Chelsea Chiappa at 860-391-9112 or email

Let Your Dreams Soar at Chester Library this Summer- Starts July 2

Monday, July 2:  Horizon Wings visits Chester Library

Meet an owl, other raptors, and even a tortoise who currently call the wildlife rehabilitation center, Horizon Wings, home.  All are welcome to come hear these animals’ stories, learn their habits and ways to protect them.  During this opening program, children will have the opportunity to sign up for the Dream Big summer reading incentive program.  The program begins at 5:30, after which theme related refreshments will be served.

Beginning Monday, July 2:  Dream Big Summer Reading Incentive Program

Our reading incentive program is open to children preschool age and up and is designed to be flexible to fit your summer schedule, or lack thereof!  Each week, as kids visit the library for books, stickers will be awarded for progress charts and “food” given to feed the baby owls.  The more each child reads, the more they feed.  At the end of the summer a full nest will help supply real food for the owls at Horizon Wings.  As an added incentive, sweet treats will be in supply for the children too.

Beginning Monday, July 9:   Big stories, Big crafts and Big fun (Ages 3-6 )

Summer storytime for children ages 3-6 will include stories from BIG books, with crafts and games. These sessions will be held each Monday through August 6, at 10:30 AM.  Be sure to register!

Wednesdays, July 11, Aug. 1, and Aug. 8:   Hold on to your Dreams (Ages 7-10)

Children ages 7-10 are invited to create Big Dream cards, ‘hopes and dreams’ collection boxes and more. These creative craft sessions will take place on Wednesdays at 3:30 PM.  Register to reserve a spot.

Wednesday, July 18:  Artist and Writer Dreams (Ages 7-10)

At 3:30, Cheryl Kling, CT author and illustrator, will visit to read her book, Nature’s Royal Tea Party.  Younger children may attend the story reading. Children ages 7-10 are invited to stay and learn to create their own book with Ms. Kling.   The author will have copies of her book available for sale.

Wednesday, July 25:  Teen Book Discussion

Arsenic Under the Elms  (JWMS)

Join us at 3:30 PM as we explore two cases of murder most foul, in towns you know.  Arsenic Under the Elms  by Virginia McConnell  is a non-fiction summer reading selection for JWMS students.  Gather with your friends, talk, eat pizza …. and take care of that summer reading project!   You’ll need to write a reflection of the book and discussion, not to exceed 250 words, to receive credit for this project.  Sally Murray is your discussion leader.

Monday, August 13:  Dreams of Music with Margie Warner

Margie Warner will entertain us at 10:30 AM with her program Dancing Dreams.  Although this event is geared to 3-8 year olds this joyful, interactive music is wonderful fun for all ages.  Refreshments will be served.

Wednesday, August 15:  Teen Book Discussion.

The Psychopath Test: A Journey Through the

Madness Industry  (VRHS)

Chosen from the VRHS non-fiction list, this book  by Jon Ronson takes readers on a ”madcap journey”  that includes visits with potential psychopaths as seemingly different as a former Haitian militia leader and a power-hungry CEO.   Gather with your friends, talk and eat pizza …. and take care of that summer reading project!   Wednesday at 3:30PM.  Sally Murray, discussion leader.

Registration is required for all programs. Space is limited so please sign up early. You may register by calling 860-526-0018 or at the library desk.


All programs are generously funded by the Friends of the Library.


TTYS Summer Play and Parenting Support Groups Begin July 11

Tri-Town Youth Services, at 56 High Street in Deep River, will offer summer play and parenting support groups led by Parent Resource Coordinator, Meredith Adler.  Both groups will run on Wednesday from July 11 through August 20.  Outstanding Ones, for ages 12 months to 24 months, will meet from 11 to 11:30 a.m. with a cost of $20 for Tri-Town residents and $25 for non-residents.  Terrific Two, for children 24 months to 36 months, will meet from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. with a cost of $25 for Tri-Town residents and $30 for non-residents.  Please call 860-526-3600 or email for more information and to register.

Dragons and Dreams at Deep River Public Library June 28

With castles, kings, a dragon keeper, an Ice Sorceress, the Horn of Fire, two villagers, and a daring journey to save the entire kingdom, enjoy this spectacular adventure as we’re swept away to a world where dragons are real, dreams come true, and only the most daring of people will survive to tell the tale!  Join Deep River Public Library  as we learn about the science of Fire & Ice by telling a tale of Dragons & Dreams using experiments of flash paper, exploding bottles, “cool” dry ice, and much more.  Wouldn’t dragon’s breath be an amazing sight!?!

Mahogany Memories Boat Show Set For July 7

The 28th Annual Mahogany Memories Antique & Classic Boat Show will be held at the Connecticut River Museum on Saturday, July 7 from 9 am – 4:30 pm. Admission is free

Essex, CT – The Southern New England Chapter of The Antique and Classic Boat Society will present the 28th annual “Mahogany Memories” boat show on the grounds and docks of the Connecticut River Museum on Saturday July 7 from 9:00 am to 4:30 pm.  Admission is free. The show will feature numerous examples of the finest classic wooden and fiberglass boats commonly seen in this area in the last century.  Boats built by Chris Craft, Century, Lyman, Gar Wood, Elco and many more will be showcased.  Boat owners will be on hand to talk about their boats, exchange ideas and share the joys of using and preserving these beautiful “woodies” and other memorable classics.

Also featured this year, Connecticut craftsman Schuyler Thomson will share his vast knowledge of wooden canoe restoration on the Museum’s waterfront lawn.  He, along with Abby Burbank, will demonstrate both rib installation and planking on a “rough” canoe while discussing canvas replacement, steam bending, finishing, and other processes.  This is an excellent opportunity to see and learn, first hand, from a professional restorer and builder who has worked on over 1000 boats.

In addition, marine supplies, clothing and boat merchandise will be available for purchase and a raffle will be held at the end of the show. This year’s sponsors include Antique Boat Center, Ashcroft Inc., CCJ, Clark Group, Connecticut River Museum, Essex Savings Bank, Hagerty Collector Boat Insurance, Heritage Marine Insurance, ki Advertising, Middle Cove Marina, New England Chrome Plating, and Soundings.

The Connecticut River Museum is located at 67 Main Street on the historic Essex waterfront.  For more information on the Antique and Classic Boat Show and other Connecticut River Museum programs and events, go to or call 860-767-8269.

Ivoryton Library House and Garden Tour This Saturday June 16

The Ivoryton Library will offer its third House and Garden Tour: Through the Garden Gate on Saturday June 16, 2012, from 10-4pm.

Making up this year’s tour are properties in Ivoryton and Centerbrook. This tour is unique in that it features gardens which, for the most part, have been created and maintained by the owners. Our Garden Tour gives you not only an opportunity to stroll through eight of these gardens but the homes of their owners, displaying their interior design talent as well.

Tickets are $25 in advance and are available at the Ivoryton Library and at Gather of Ivoryton. Tickets will be sold on the day of the tour for $30 at the library only. Please call 860-767-1252 for more information.

Chester Midsummer Night Stroll June 15 and 22

Celebrate the beginning of summer on two Friday evenings in Chester – June 15 and June 22. On these two evenings, the Merchants of Chester will be celebrating their 21st Annual Midsummer’s Night Stroll through Chester Center from 5 to 8 p.m. Galleries, restaurants and stores will be open for special events to usher out spring and welcome in summer. Parking is available in several public parking lots in walking distance of town

Cinderella Story – Musical At Chester Meeting House June 22, 23, 24

Madhatters Theatre Company is proud to support the efforts of the Middlesex County Community Foundation in helping to raise both awareness and funding in support of “TEAM AVERY”…Avery Rose Leopoldino , age 4, was born with a very rare genetic disorder called CDKL5. It will impair her everyday functioning for the rest of her life and she will require intensive 24 hour care. Avery suffers from daily seizures; she can not walk or talk; she is profoundly cognitively impaired and is cortically blind….Avery is known as a “silent angel” who is always happy and content wherever she is… She loves lights and music and she  has gained tremendous  admiration, love and support from so many members of our community…when purchasing tickets, if  TEAM AVERY is mentioned, $1.00 from each ticket sold will be donated and proceeds from the concession stand will be donated to TEAM AVERY. These generous efforts will be used to promote both awareness and funding towards a cure and improvement in her quality of life….thank you for helping to make Avery’s dreams of happiness come true!!

Essex Art Association Features First Open Show of the Season – Reception June 29

Davis Cottage 2 by Luisa Kreis Whiting

Essex Art Association, a non profit art gallery, is featuring its first Open Show of the season “Fluidity”. This is a show juried only for awards and will have a salon atmosphere with over 200 works displayed.

The Exit Gallery features “Nantucket Island, Sconset Paintings”  by Luisa Kreis Whiting a resident of Essex, working in oil her works have a hard-edged light that is reminiscent of Edward Hopper. Luisa is daughter of one of the founders of Essex Art Association, her father Henry Kreis was a well known sculptor with an international reputation. He was instrumental in forming the basis for the EAA being an organization that welcomes artists working in all mediums and expressing themselves from the traditional to cutting edge. His sculpture “Woman with a Bowl” may be seen in the entrance to the building.

As always the public is welcome free of charge to the gallery and Reception Friday June 29. 2012 from 6-8 pm. Open Wednesday through Monday 1-5 pm June 30th. through July 21st.

Great Meadow Walk and Turtle Talk June 27

Eastern Box Turtle. Photo by North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission

Essex Land Trust will host a Great Meadow Walk and Turtle Talk on Wednesday, June 27, from  5-7 p.m. at Pettipaug Yacht Club.

Enjoy one of the Land Trust’s most stunning preserves with naturalist Phil Miller, leading our walk from 5:00-6:00 pm. At 6:15, Kasha Breau, Connecticut Audubon educator, will join us at Pettipaug Yacht Club for a presentation: “Tremendous Turtles of Connecticut.” Kasha will show different land and water turtles, let you examine turtle shells and models and will talk about turtles that live in our area. She will also talk about their habitats and special concerns including what to do if you find a turtle.

This is an Essex Great Outdoors Pursuit event. Rain or shine, with talk taking place indoors at PYC if weather is bad. BYO picnic to enjoy after the talks. Entrance to Pettipaug is located between 143 and 145 River Road, Essex.

La Boheme at Essex Library June 18

Star-crossed lovers Rodolfo (Rolando Villazón) and Mimi (Anna Netrebko) star in Puccini’s La Boheme at the Essex Library’s film series Monday Afternoon At the Opera June 18 at 2 p.m.

The Essex Library’s  Monday Afternoons At The Opera presents Puccini’s immortal La Boheme starring opera superstars Anna Netrebko and  Rolando Villazón, on Monday June 18 at 2 p.m. in a feature film production directed by Robert Dornhelm.  The Times called it “starry and sumptuous”, and Opera Now magazine raved “Breathtakingly dramatic and emotional…full to the brim with some of the best vocal talents of today”. The show is free and open to the public; for more information or to register please call the Essex Library at 860-767-1560.




EHS to Announce Preservation Award Winner at Strawberry Social June 25

First Preservation award winner, the Ivoryton Library

Essex, CT– The Essex Historical Society (EHS) have tallied up the nominations for local buildings that have been preserved or restored, keeping intact the town’s historic character. This year’s winner will be presented with the Preservation Award during a picnic dinner and strawberry social at the Pratt House, on Monday, June 25, 2012 (rain or shine).

Kick off the evening at 4:30 pm with a historical stroll of Prospect Street, starting at Pratt House and finishing at Hill’s Academy. Susan Malan will serve as your personal escort, providing a glimpse into the past of the structures along the way. Then step back in time when you step through the doorway of Pratt House where docents will be available for guided tours throughout the night.

After walking up an appetite, come spread your blanket on the Pratt House lawn and settle in for an evening picnic dinner starting at 5:30. Unpack your picnic basket and beverages of your choice, relax and enjoy the simple pleasure of eating under the summer sky. In case of rain, the barn and a tent will provide shelter.

Chris Pagliuco, town historian, will address attendants and illustrate the victorious building’s lifetime before presenting the Preservation Award to the 2012 winner. A good old-fashioned strawberry social will follow with a timeless New England delight, homemade strawberry shortcake!

The Essex Historical Society is a non-profit organization serving Essex, Centerbrook and Ivoryton. EHS maintains two buildings, Pratt House and Hill’s Academy, and strives to protect the history of the people, places and events that have shaped Essex through the ages.

Contact: Essex Historical Society, PO Box 123, Essex, CT 06426, Ph: 860-767-0681

Goodspeed Musicals Welcomes Carousel Starting July 13

Get ready for a “real nice clambake” as Goodspeed Musicals welcomes Carousel to the main stage this summer. Musical theatre fans have waited 30 years for another Rodgers & Hammerstein show to grace the Goodspeed Opera House stage, and now the wait is over! The classic Golden Age musical will run from July 13 – September 23 at the Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam, Conn. Carousel will be sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), Amica, Robinson & Cole, and Comcast. [Official Press Opening will be August 1, 2012]

Carousel has captivated audiences around the world with the powerful love story of an innocent young millworker and swaggering carousel barker. He meets a tragic end but is given one chance for redemption by delivering hope to the daughter he never knew and whispering words left unspoken to his wife. Featuring “If I Loved You,” “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” and “June is Busting Out All Over.” Experience one of the most celebrated musicals of all time!

Carousel features Music by Richard Rodgers and Book and Lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II. It is based on Ferenc Molnár’s play Liliom as adapted by Benjamin F. Glazer. Original Dances are by Agnes de Mille.

The cast will be led by Teal Wicks as Julie Jordan and James Snyder as Billy Bigelow. Ms. Wicks appeared in Broadway’s Wicked and Goodspeed’s 1776 and Pippin. Mr. Snyder appeared in Broadway’s Cry-Baby. Starkeeper will be played by Ronn Carroll whose numerous Broadway credits include Oklahoma, Annie Get Your Gun, How To Succeed…, Crazy For You, and Gypsy. Carroll’s Goodspeed credits include How To Succeed…, Camelot, 1776, and The Little Rascals. Carrie Pipperidge will be played by Jenn Gambatese who appeared in Broadway’s Is He Dead?, Tarzan, All Shook Up, A Year With Frog and Toad, Hairspray, and Footloose. Ms. Gambatese also charmed audiences as Annie Oakley in Goodspeed’s Annie Get Your Gun and All Shook Up at Goodspeed’s Norma Terris Theatre. Enoch Snow will be played by Jeff Kready of Broadway’s Billy Elliot: The Musical, Sunday in the Park with George, and Les Misérables.

Ms. Mullin will be played by Deanne Lorette of Broadway’s La Bête. Nettie Fowler will be played by Anne Kanengeiser who appeared in Broadway’s Little Women and Ragtime. Jigger will be played by Tally Sessions of Broadway’s The House of Blue Leaves and Goodspeed’s Lizzie Borden at The Norma Terris Theatre.

The ensemble includes Jessica Bishop (Broadway’s West Side Story and The Phantom of the Opera), Beth Crandall (Broadway’s West Side Story), Belle Doraz  of Madison, Conn. as a Snow Child (Goodspeed’s Show Boat), Jennifer Evans (Broadway’s Ragtime and A Tale of Two Cities and Goodspeed’s Where’s Charley and Very Good Eddie), Eloise Kropp as Louise, Edward Lawrence, Leisa Mather, Jonathan Rayson as Mr. Bascombe (Broadway’s Little Shop of Horrors and A Year With Frog and Toad), Sam Rodgers, Michael Scirrotto, Jet Thomason (Goodspeed’s Show Boat), Travis Waldschmidt, Aaron Young (Goodspeed’s Annie Get Your Gun), and a Snow Child to be announced.

The Swings are Maria Briggs and Andrew Scott Holmes.

Carousel will be directed by Rob Ruggiero who helmed audience favorite Show Boat last season at Goodspeed as well as Irving Berlin’s Annie Get Your Gun, Camelot, Big River, and 1776. Mr. Ruggiero also directed Broadway’s High and Looped.  Choreographer for this production will be Parker Esse who served as Associate Choreographer for Broadway’s Finian’s Rainbow and A Tale of Two Cities.

Michael Schweikardt will be the Scenic Designer. His designs have been seen in Goodspeed’s Show Boat, Irving Berlin’s Annie Get Your Gun, Camelot, Big River, and 1776. Alejo Vietti will serve as Costume Designer. Vietti also designed Goodspeed’s Irving Berlin’s Annie Get Your Gun, Camelot and Meet John Doe at The Norma Terris Theatre. Lighting design will be by John Lasiter who served as Lighting Designer for Goodspeed’s Irving Berlin’s Annie Get Your Gun, Camelot, Big River, and 1776, and Broadway’s High. Sound design will be by Jay Hilton who is in his 26th season at Goodspeed.

The Music Director for Carousel will be Michael O’Flaherty who is in his 21st season as Goodspeed’s Resident Music Director. F. Wade Russo will be Assistant Music Director. Orchestrations will be provided by Dan DeLange, who orchestrated Goodspeed’s Mame, Show Boat, My One And Only, How To Succeed…, Irving Berlin’s Annie Get Your Gun, 42nd Street, Singin’ in the Rain, The Boy Friend, and many more. 

Carousel will run July 13 through September 23, 2012 [Official Press Opening August 1, 2012]. Curtain times are Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Thursday at 7:30 p.m. (with select performances at 2:00 p.m.), Friday at 8:00 p.m., Saturday at 3:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m., and Sunday at 2:00 p.m. (with select performances at 6:30 p.m.).

Tickets are available through the Box Office (860.873.8668), open seven days a week, or on-line at For show highlights, exclusive photos, special events and more visit us at and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.






Essex Antique and Classic Car Show Moved to July 4

Essex, CT
— Citing problems with unpredictable weather for the past few years with a fall show date, the Essex Automobile Club has announced plans to present its 5th Annual Antique and Classic Car Show on Wednesday, July 4.  Various classes of pre-war cars, muscle cars, foreign sports cars, exotics and others will be on display for public viewing from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at Hubbard Field located at 75 North Main Street in Essex.

According to EAC Co-founder Tim Lynch, “Our annual show has been growing in popularity and support among car collectors and the public.  Unfortunately, the weather has not been equally supportive.  So, we decided to hold the show in the summer, and thought, ‘what better time and place then the 4th of July in the Best Small Town in America…Essex!’ “

EAC Co-founder Wes Bray added, “The club is proud to continue our tradition of donating a portion of the proceeds from the show to Child and Family Agency of Southeastern Connecticut so we hope for good weather and a great turn out.”

People’s Choice Awards will be given to the first and second place entries in multiple domestic and foreign car categories.  Admission is $5.00 per person with children under age 12 admitted free.  Information for owners of antique (pre-1982) or exotic cars who would like to enter the show should go to or send an email to “”.


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PHOTO CAPTION:  This 1955 Cadillac Convertible is just one of the many beauties that have been invited to display at the 2012 Essex Antique & Classic Car Show on July 4th.

Constant Waterman at Deep River Public Library June 14

Constant Waterman will appear at Deep River Public Library on Thursday June 14 at 6:30 p.m. to read excerpts from his four published books. Copies of his books are for sale at Anchor and Compass in Deep River.

Constant Waterman, aka Matthew Goldman, the Stonington resident and Hadlyme native grew up on and around boats. He has had many trades and loves the sea. So it was no surprise that he turned to writing.

Artists Collaborate on Installation About Nature Opens June 8

Chester, CT — Artists Collaborate on Installation About Nature – “In the Blossoms’ Shade”

The Lori Warner Studio/Gallery, will feature an installation entitled “In the Blossoms’ Shade” opening June 8, 2012. “In the Blossoms’ Shade” is an art installation about nature. It is a collaboration between Katherine Anderson and Pat Smith.

Katherine Anderson is a Seattle artist with a background in landscape architecture. She will be working with natural materials. Pat Smith is a CT sculptor. She will be working in porcelain. Together they will create an intrinsic work of art reflective of Basho poetry and Wabi Sabi aesthetics. This is the first in The Lori Warner Studio/Gallery’s series of window installations by invited artists.

The Lori Warner Studio/Gallery is a unique source for artwork and objects that make a lasting impression. Artwork featured in the gallery includes monotype prints, encaustic paintings, stoneware sculpture, one-of-a-kind jewelry, and custom letterpress notes. The gallery carries many exclusive pieces and regularly features guest artists that are pioneering creativity in their chosen medium.

The gallery is located at 21 Main Street in Chester, Connecticut. (860) 322-4265.

Free Evening Paddle to Celebrate Summer Solstice June 20

Essex, CT —   On Wednesday, June 20, Connecticut River Museum and Connecticut River Watershed Council educators will team up and lead a free, evening paddle to celebrate the longest day of the year. All are invited to join the two-hour exploration of North Cove in Essex, a natural embayment to the Connecticut River featuring extensive tidal marshes, historic sites and other points of interest.

The tour will launch at 5:30 pm at the Essex boat ramp at the foot of Main Street next to the Museum. Participants must bring their own canoe or kayak and life vest and are encouraged to bring a river-friendly snack and non-alcoholic beverage. Dogs are not permitted.

The paddle is free but pre-registration is required and space is limited. To register, call 860.767.8269 ext.110 or email

The Connecticut River Museum, a private, non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the natural and cultural heritage of the Connecticut River and surrounding valley region, is located at 67 Main Street in Essex.  More information can be found at

Chester Synagogue Invites Neighbors to Free Klezmer Band Concert June 25

A Klez Act will perform on Monday, June 25 at 6:30 pm on the CBSRZ synagogue’s lawn

If it’s June, Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek is cleaning off its grill and tidying the grounds for the annual picnic and Klezmer music concert featuring CBSRZ’s “house band,” A Klez Act. Its loyal fans will gather on Monday, June 25  at 6:30 p.m. on the synagogue’s lawn (weather permitting) with their folding chairs and blankets. The event is free and open to the public. Guests may bring their own picnic fare or purchase food and drinks. Fresh grilled kosher hot dogs and home-made foods, along with drinks, will be for sale with the proceeds going to the Shoreline Soup Kitchen.

Klezmer music began as a musical tradition of the Ashkenazic Jews of Eastern Europe. It was created as dance music to celebrate weddings and other joyous occasions. Klezmer came to the U.S in the late 1800s with the arrival of these Jewish immigrants. Today, the music may also have bits of gypsy, Eastern European folk or French café music or American jazz. CBSRZ’s A Klez Act was founded in 1993 and plays on festive Jewish holidays and other special occasions. Band leader Norman Hanenbaum said, “We look forward to getting together on the lawn and playing Klezmer music. It’s the traditional music of the Jewish people–we want to keep it alive. We’re happy to play for the public.” He said the band will be playing songs that are typically Jewish, Yiddish or Israeli.  The music will be upbeat, the kind that makes audiences feel happy, tap their feet and want to dance. Dancing is encouraged.

Making their debut with A Klez Act at this year’s concert will be two talented young singers, Nicole Jubelirer, a UConn student, and Collin Schuster, a senior at Old Saybrook High School. A Klez Act’s regulars are Hanenbaum on sax, Harvey Redak on trumpet, Neil Gottfried on clarinet, Lori Jubelirer on bass, Bill Bertelli on drums, Steve Jacobs on violin, Lary Bloom on keyboard and Belinda Brennan doing vocals.

There is no charge for the concert, the last of the CBSRZ’s Music & More 2011-12 series. Guests should bring lawn chairs or blankets. In case of inclement weather, the event will be moved inside to the synagogue’s community room. Congregation Beth Shalom Rodfe Zedek is located at 55 East Kings Highway in Chester. For further information, call 860-526-8920.