Free for a day at Stepping Stones Museum for Children

On Saturday, September 20, from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm Stepping Stones Museum for Children opens its doors to all for FREE! It’s Nickelodeon’s 11th annual Worldwide Day of Play and Stepping Stones is an official registered Nickelodeon site, and to join the fun is simple!

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Step One: Turn off your TV, video games, computers, mobile phones and tablets. Parents too!

Step Two: Come on over to Stepping Stones Museum for Children, beginning at 10:00 am through 5:00 pm, and join us for a day packed with physical activities, amazing performances and cool activities. The event will feature outdoor field games, interactive sports and fitness demonstrations, awesome educational activities and amazing live performances – all for free and guaranteed to keep your family moving.

Children can experience gymnastics and yoga, meet some of their favorite sports mascots from local professional teams, dance the afternoon away at our rocking dance party featuring local bands, play chess against the experts and enjoy our garden book walk where visitors can exercise their bodies and their brains. In addition, there will be plenty of experts on hand from the community to provide ideas on ways families can take charge of their health.

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Now in its 11th year, Nickelodeon’s Worldwide Day of Play is an entire day dedicated to active play. The day is part of a larger movement to reduce childhood obesity and reinforce lessons about the tremendous benefits of healthy lifestyles among children. Stepping Stones is proud to serve as a local host of this event for the 7th consecutive year.

Make the most of this day-long worldwide movement all about the power of play. For more information, call 203 899 0606 or visit http://www.steppingstonesmuseum.org/dayofplay.

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Stepping Stones is located at 303 West Avenue, exit 14N or 15S off I-95 in Norwalk. Museum hours are Labor Day through Memorial Day, Tuesday – Sunday and holiday Mondays from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm; and Memorial Day through Labor Day, Monday – Sunday from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. Admission is $15 for adults and children and $10 for seniors. Children under 1 are free. To learn more, call 203 899 0606, ext. 264.

INTRIGUE IS AFOOT AS LITCHFIELD, CT
CELEBRATES SPY WEEKEND

The serene and beautiful village green in Litchfield, Connecticut hardly seems the setting for spies and intrigue. But during the Revolutionary War, this classic New England town in Western Connecticut was a hotbed of activity. This surprising history will come to life during the Litchfield History Museum’s Spy Weekend, September 19 to 21.

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The special activities are added reason to discover Litchfield, a town also noted for its early architecture, Colonial inns, fine dining and great shopping.

The fun begins on Friday night when a showing of the film, The Scarlet Coat, a 1955 swashbuckling historical drama starring Michael Wilding, Cornel Wilde, and George Saunders. The movie tells of the creation of the first “American Secret Service,” with Litchfield’s own Benjamin Tallmadge in the main role (though Hollywood has changed his name). The film will be shown at 7 p.m. at the Litchfield Community Center. Admission is free and popcorn will be served!

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Author Richard Welch will discuss his new book on Benjamin Tallmadge, “General Washington’s Commando.” on Sunday at 3 p.m. Welch will describe Tallmadge’s roles during the Revolutionary War, including his work as intelligence and counter-intelligence officer, as well as dragoon commander and master of combined land-sea operations. The program is free for members; $5 for non-members.

A guided walking tour on Saturday at 10 a.m. will relive Litchfield during the Revolution, when families were divided by those loyal to the British crown and those seeking independence and intrigue were in the air. Guides will point out historic sites where prisoners of war were jailed, and where a military presence guarded stores and provisions. The tour is free to members, $10 for non-members. Registration is required for the Saturday and Sunday programs, by email at registration@litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org or by phone at
860-567-4501.

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On Sunday afternoon, there will be an added bonus as the Litchfield Fire Company hosts the 131st annual state Firefighter’s Convention ending with a parade featuring over 1,000 firefighters from all over Connecticut.

For information about lodging, dining and other activities in the area and a free copy of UNWIND, a full-color, 163-page booklet detailing what to do and see, and where to stay, shop and dine in Fairfield County and the Litchfield Hills of Western Connecticut, contact the Western Connecticut Visitors Bureau, PO Box 968, Litchfield, CT 06759, (860) 567-4506, or visit www.litchfieldhills.com

HiSTORYtime at the Litchfield Historical Society

The Litchfield Historical Society is inviting children aged 3 and up, along with their caregivers, for “story time” at 10:30 a.m. on September 18. After the stories are read and discussed with an educator from the Litchfield Historical Society, kids will be entertained with a craft project or game.

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On Thursday, September 18, the funny tale about Noah Webster, one of Connecticut’s most famous residents will be the highlight. The book Noah Webster and His Words, written by Jeri Chase Ferris and illustrated by Vincent X. Kirsch, provides a fun chronicle of Noah Webster.

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Webster, whose father wanted him to be a farmer, grew up to write schoolbooks, language, and grammar books, and the dictionary. Kids will hear the tale of how this school teacher united the 13 colonies using words and language. The story will be read aloud and then a game will be played or a craft project will be presented that relates to Noah Webster’s words.

This program is a suggested $2 donation. It is for children aged 3 and up. It will be from 10:30 am to 11:30 am at the Litchfield History Museum. No registration is required. Litchfield History Museum is located at 7 South St., Litchfield, CT. For more information about this or other programs, please see www.litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org or call (860) 567-4501.

WWI Posters on View at the Litchfield Historical Society

The exhibit Join the Brave Throng: Poster Art of WWI at the Litchfield Historical Society will highlight a selection of WWI posters from the Museum’s collection. It will be on view through November 30, 2014.

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When the Great War broke out in Europe in 1914, the town of Litchfield was actively involved in war efforts from the start. Ranging from work of the local Red Cross chapter to the collection of medical supplies, Liberty Loan campaigns, food conservation efforts, and enlistment of local soldiers, the residents of Litchfield did whatever they could to show their patriotic zeal.

To rouse the public’s interest in the war, colorful posters dotted walls and billboards across the county. Designed by some of the nation’s most talented artists, these propaganda items appealed to the public’s patriotic side, while others incorporated shocking anti-German imagery.

Come see some of the posters that ignited Litchfield residents to actively support the national war effort. The Litchfield History Museum’s hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Sunday, 1:00 to 5:00 pm. Litchfield History Museum is located at 7 South St., Litchfield, CT. For more information about this or other programs, please visit www.litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org or call (860) 567-4501.

PJ Party and Story Time at Stepping Stones Museum for Children… with the Bears!

The life size Berenstain Bears will be the highlight at the Pajama Party hosted on Friday, Sept. 12 from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk located on 303 West Ave. So put on your most furry or comfy pajamas, perfect for hibernating like a bear (!), and head over to the Museum!

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Stepping Stones is excited to bring this classic, lovable Bear Family who recently celebrated their 50th anniversary to their museum. Participants will hear the tale “The Berenstain Bears Go To School.” In the story, Sister Bear, nervous about entering kindergarten, overcomes her fears when she discovers that school is really fun.

After the story, kids will have the opportunity to meet Brother and Sister Bear! The museum’s friends at Berenstain Bears describes these two lovable characters:

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Sister Bear is a highly-competitive, born-to-win, self-reliant third-grader, who is often braver than she imagines. She loves acting, her Bearbie dolls and the color pink. Sister is very outdoorsy and sports-minded, but she also loves fairytales, writing and jump rope

Brother Bear is 10-years old and a stand-up guy. He is very sports- minded, with his favorite being soccer. He is also a big fan of T. Rex dinosaurs, model airplane building, and “wheels” of all kinds. Brother is computer literate and into video games. He often acts as protector and stands up for Sister and the smaller cubs at school.

In addition to listening to the story and meeting Sister Bear and Brother Bear, pajama party guests can participate in a variety of school-related activities throughout the evening. Practice packing a backpack with school supplies and have fun with apple stamping – stamp real apples with paint! Make a 3-D bus model out of paper and “Be the Teacher” using white boards and markers to draw and write like a teacher.

Kids can even create their own text book cover by tracing an illustration of the Berenstain Bears using a light table. In the bedtime story corner, kids can enjoy a quiet family snuggle time reading other Berenstain books while relaxing on beanbags.

At the end of the evening, kids are invited to hold their 3-D bus model high as they march and sing along with the Wheels on the Bus Parade. Then, it’s time to go home for a little hibernation, like bears do in the winter, but only for the night – and maybe some extra sleep because it’s the weekend!

Tickets for this event cost $10 per person for museum members and $15 per person for non-members. Children under the age of one will be admitted for free. Storybook Pajama Party tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable. Registration is required. Space is limited and tickets are selling briskly, so register early. Call 203 899 0606, ext. 264 or http://www.steppingstonesmuseum.org/ to register.

Stepping Stones is located at 303 West Avenue, Norwalk, CT, exit 14 North and 15 South off I-95. Museum hours are: Labor Day through Memorial Day, Tuesday—Sunday and select holiday Mondays from 10 am-5pm; and Memorial Day through Labor Day, Monday-Sunday from 10 am-5 pm. Admission is $15 for adults and children and $10 for seniors. Children under 1 are free. To learn more, visit www.steppingstonesmuseum.org.

Baby Clothes 1800-1950 and Tool Exhibition at Wilton Historical Society

The Wilton Historical Society’s fall show called White Linen and Lace, Baby Clothing from 1800- 1950 that will be on display through October 4. Pure yet practical, white has been the traditional choice for baby clothing for hundreds of years. In this small exhibition, tiny garments made with love and lavished with fine needlework are on display. There are christening gowns and slips, night gowns, caps, bonnets, bibs, dresses and petite shoes created between 1800 and 1950. The delicate attire is shown with some of the furnishings of childhood – a cradle, blankets, highchair, silver mugs and utensils, baby bottles and rattles.
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A circa 1870 sewing box reminds us of the countless hours women spent laboring over their precious snowy creations, working by the light of candles, oil lamps, or by rays of sunlight through a window. Exquisite clothing with nearly invisible stitches, tiny tucking, tatting, crochet, soutache, cutwork, drawn work and embroidery — their needle skills are remarkable.

Of particular interest are the family connections many of these heirlooms have with Wilton. Do these names sound familiar? Sturgis, Hurlbutt, Ambler, Belden, Davenport, Evans, Nash, Marvin, Parisot, Rounds – many are now memorialized as road names, while others still boast descendants living in town today.

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Another exhibition, Changing Times: Hand Tools Before the Industrial Revolution, features Connecticut Tools of the Trades from the Walter R.T. Smith Collection. Mounted on the walls of the Burt Barn Gallery, the setting compliments the sculptural appearance of the old tools. They have an almost folk-art quality, with their worn wood and rather eccentric shapes. The machines that supplanted them in the Industrial Revolution would never have the soul of these antique implements.

Both exhibitions will continue through October 4, 2014. The Wilton Historical Society is located on 224 Danbury Road and is open Tuesday—Saturday, 10:00-4:00. There are house tours every day at 2:00, and by appointment. For more information http://www.wiltonhistorical.org

The Abbott Blacksmith Shop, also on the property, with a working blacksmith, is open most Saturdays, except in winter.

37 Annual Members Show at Carriage Barn Arts Center

On Saturday, September 13 – Sunday, October 5, the Carriage Barn Arts Center located on 681 South Ave., New Canaan will celebrate the diverse work of its strong contingency of current artist members in its annual Members’ Show. There will be over 150 artists participating mainly from Connecticut and New York and the work will represent all subjects, styles and media. A highlight of this show are the outdoor sculptures of renowned sculptor Carole Eisner.

Marianne Rothballer, Weir Farm

Marianne Rothballer, Weir Farm

At the opening reception on Saturday, September 13th, the Carriage Barn Arts Center will also celebrate winning and receiving the Editor’s Pick of Moffly Media’s Best of the Gold Coast. It is a great honor for the Carriage Barn to be recognized as one of the leading arts venues in Fairfield County.

Gathering Nancy Woodward

Gathering Nancy Woodward

The opening reception is Sept 13 from 4 pm – 6 pm. There will be a talk with the artists on Saturday, September 27 from 4- 6 p.m. and children’s art workshops led by exhibiting member artist and teacher Nancy Scranton on Sunday, September 21st, 2-3:30 pm and Sunday, September, 28th, 2-3:30 pm. for kids ages 8-12.On the closing day of the show, Sunday, October 5th, Madera Winds will perform a free concert from 3-4 pm.

The gallery hours are Wed.-Sat. 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. and Sunday, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. For more information visit www.carriagebarn.org. For area information www.visitfairfieldcountyct.com