Mardi Gras 2015 at The New England Carousel Museum

Madri Gras also known as Fat Tuesday, refers to events of the Carnival celebrations beginning on or after Epiphany or King’s Day culminating on the day before ash Wednesday. Traditionally, this celebration reflects the practice of eating rich foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season, but today, there are many related popular events associated with this including parades, wearing masks and costumes.

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The New England Carousel Museum on 95 Riverside Ave. in Bristol Connecticut is hosting a Louisiana-style evening on February 7, 2015 from 7 pm – 11 pm. This festive evening promises to chase away the winter doldrums and features music and dancing in the magnificent Museum ballroom. Along with a 50/50 raffle and live entertainment, there will be wine and bourbon tastings, BYOB and food a plenty! The evening festivities will culminate in the crowning of a king and queen of the ball.

Tickets are on sale at the Carousel Museum or you may order them by mail or phone. RSVP by February 1, 2015 by calling (860) 585-5411. The cost is $50 per person and pre-paid tables of 8 may be reserved. For more information or to purchase tickets, please contact The New England Carousel Museum at (860) 585-5411 or email info@thecarouselmuseum.org.

The Millionaires’ Unit Documentary Film Screening

On January 29, the Greenwich Historical Society is hosting the screening of The Millionaires’ Unit Documentary from 3 pm to 5 pm. at the Vanderbilt Education Center on the grounds of the Society. The tickets are Members: $10; nonmembers: $15 and can be purchased at http://greenwichhistory.org or by calling 203-869-6899, Ext. 10.

Millionaires-Unit

The Millionaires’ Unit is the story of an elite group of college students from Yale who formed a private air militia in preparation for America’s entry into World War One. Known as the First Yale Unit and dubbed “the millionaires’ unit” by the New York press, they became the founding squadron of the U.S. Naval Air Reserve and were among the first to fight for the United States in the Great War. Using the squadron members’ letters and diaries, the documentary chronicles the coming of age of these young pioneers against the backdrop of an event that signaled America’s emergence as a world power.

The film focuses on their service and sacrifice and chronicles a great, untold story of early aviation in America. The documentary was inspired by the book The Millionaires’ Unit by Marc Wortman. After seven years in development and production by co-producers Ron King and Darroch Greer, the film is being presented to the public to commemorate the centennial of World War I.

Bee Gee’s Legacy stays alive at the Palace Theatre

A celebration of one of the most influential and famous musical groups of all time, the new Australian Bee Gees Show keeps the legendary music of the Gibb brothers “Stayin’ Alive” with a special one night only performance at the Palace Theater in Waterbury on Tuesday, February 3, at 7:30pm. Tickets for the multimedia stage show are $55, $45, and $35 and can be purchased by phone at 203-346-2000, online at www.palacetheaterct.org, or in person at the box office, 100 East Main Street in Waterbury.

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From the producers that brought the world RAIN: A Tribute to The Beatles, London’s West End production of Let It Be, and PFX: The Pink Floyd Experience, Annerin Productions and co-producer SPI Entertainment present The Australian Bee Gees Show, a multimedia theatrical concert experience that takes a nostalgic trip through the legacy the Bee Gees left behind while celebrating over 40 years of infectious music written by the Gibb brothers.

Together for more than 17 years, The Australian Bee Gees Show has mastered the look, sound and personality of the adored trio, while cementing their reputation as the world’s leading Bee Gees show. The band’s record breaking music is captivated live on stage with mesmerizing resemblance in sound and mannerisms and features live camera images, vivid graphics and state-of-the-art sound that will get audience members dancin’ on their feet. From early hits (“Massachusetts,” “New York Mining Disaster 1941,” “To Love Somebody”) to later classics (“Stayin’ Alive” and “You Should Be Dancin'”) this show will have music fans reliving all of their favorite Bee Gees moments.

The Bee Gees are one of the top five of the most successful recording artists of all time alongside the Beatles, McCartney, Elvis and Michael Jackson. Having sold more than 220 million records worldwide, the group is still proving that their music is Stayin’ Alive and have had at least 2,500 artists record their songs.

The Witches are back in Kent Connecticut!

Not many people know that Connecticut was New England’s most determined witch prosecutor – even fiercer than Salem. The record is terrible: The first person hanged for witchcraft in New England came from Windsor, and for a time every Connecticut woman indicted for witchcraft was convicted and hanged.

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In another of its continuing “Sunday Series” presentations, the Kent Historical Society will host Walt Woodward, the Connecticut state historian, giving a presentation on witch hunts that happened in Connecticut.

The lecture will be held Sunday, January 18, 2015 at 2 p.m. at the Kent Town Hall.
Walt Woodward animates this extraordinary, but neglected episode in a lecture that begins with the Protestant Reformation and continues through the Hartford Witch hunt of the 1660’s – a nightmare of trials and executions that preceded Salem by a generation. The story improves, too. Woodward documents how Connecticut’s Governor John Winthrop, Jr. played a role in ending executions for witchcraft 30 years before they even began at Salem.

Kent’s own Seger family was caught up in the madness. Elizabeth Moody Seger was accused of witchcraft three times. It is documented on the family’s web site http://www.onsegermountain.org/witchcraft.html

For more winter event information on the Litchfield Hills visit www.litchfieldhills.com

MOMIX: The 35th Anniversary A Celebration of Company Favorites at the Warner Theatre

On Saturday, January 17, 2015 and Sunday, January 18, 2015 the Warner Theatre will once again welcome the irrepressible Moses Pendelton and the internationally acclaimed dancer-illusionists troupe, MOMIX, as they celebrate 35 years of presenting works of exceptional inventiveness and physical beauty.

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In this performance, the MOMIX 35th Anniversary Celebration features a collection of company and audience favorites, creating a show that breaks the bounds of the conventional and enters an aesthetic orbit all its own.
MOMIX is a company of dancer-illusionists based out of Washington, CT and under the direction of Moses Pendelton. Known internationally, MOMIX performs on stage world-wide and recently appears in nationally-televised commercials. With nothing more than light, shadow, props and the human body, MOMIX has astonished audiences on five continents for over 30 years.

Warner Theater

Warner Theater

Performances are Saturday, January 17 at 8 pm and Sunday, January 18 at 2 pm. Tickets start at $43 and are available by calling the Warner Theatre Box Office at (860) 489-7180 or online at www.warnertheatre.org

LEGOS AND LIGHTHOUSES BRIGHTEN THE SEASON IN CONNECTICUT

There’s no merrier place to be this season than Fairfield County in Western Connecticut where two of the most original exhibits in New England brighten the season at local museums.

A lavish moving landscape made of a billion LEGO® bricks delights visitors to the Stamford Museum and Nature Center while the 13th annual Festival of Lighthouses contest at the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk shows off dozens of fabulous new miniature creations.

WIDE WORLD OF LEGOS®

Trains and planes. Cars, tractors and trucks. Ships, shuttles and monorails. Helicopters and spaceships

Just about anything that moves on land, sea, air and space will be seen as colorful LEGO® sculptures, moving through a three-dimensional imaginary landscape at the Billion Bricks 2 exhibit at the Stamford Museum & Nature Center. Everything in the amazing exhibit is made of LEGO blocks.
Master builder Bill Probert & I LUG (LEGO® Users Group) NY return to the Museum Galleries for a sixth season of their popular displays, promising a LEGO world that is even bigger and better this year. The exhibit runs from November 22 to January 25.

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Starting in January, families are invited to make their own LEGO® creations in weekend workshops. Participants on Saturday, January 3 will build and race a LEGO® car while the group on Sunday January 4 will build and fly a Lego helicopter or space ship.

Lights! Camera! Action! Animation Workshops on Saturday and Sunday January 17 and 18 for ages 10 and up will be led by Alex Kobbs, of KooberzStudios. Kobbs will teach techniques for film stop action animation using LEGO® creations and mini figures.

Workshops are limited in size and advance reservations are required. Phone 203-977-6521 to register and see www.stamfordmuseum.org for more information.

LIGHTHOUSES LIGHT UP THE SEASON

Some are funny. Some are clever. Some are beautiful.

For the 13th year, artists and would-be-artists will compete for the most original entry in the Festival of Lighthouses at the Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk from November 22 through January. 19.

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The rules are simple. Entries must be three to six feet tall and have a working light. They may not include animal remains such as shells. Beyond that, it’s up to the creators’ imaginations and the results are guaranteed to amaze. Past entries have been made of stained glass, stone, yarn, clay, candy and tiny coffee cups. One entry was made of holiday greeting cards, another included computer animation. One memorable entry featured all the makings of the 12 days of Christmas.

This year’s exhibit will showcase 24 lighthouses and there is no telling what the creative results will be. Aquarium visitors will follow these one-of-a-kind beacons through the galleries and then cast a vote for their favorite. The winner takes home the $1,500 first prize. Runner-ups divide the rest of the $3300 in prize money. To learn more, see www.maritimeaquarium.org.

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For more information about holiday events and a free copy of Unwind, a full-color, 152-page booklet detailing what to do and see, and where to stay, shop and dine in Fairfield County as well as in the Litchfield Hills, contact the Western Connecticut Visitors Bureau, PO Box 968, Litchfield, CT 06759, (860) 567-4506, or visit their web site at www.visitwesternct.com.

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“Downton Abbey cooking classes” at The Silo

With the premiere of Season 5 of PBS’ enthralling Masterpiece miniseries, Downton Abbey, fans will be glued to their televisions for their next dose of crisis and intrigue. To celebrate the season kick-off, The Silo Cooking School at Hunt Hill Farm in New Milford is offering a “live” chance to experience some of the fun, culinary tastes and tradition of the post-Edwardian era depicted in the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants.

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On Saturday, January 10 at 6 p.m., and again on Sunday, January 11 at 11 a.m., the Silo is inviting both novice and experienced chefs to join Chef Catherine Felix for “Downton Abbey Dinner and Brunch.” The demonstration classes will feature an “Upstairs/Downstairs” menu based on the Downton Abbey series. Participants will dine on all the prepared courses.

Catherine is a Principal Chef for Unilever Foods, NA, with 25 years of experience in consumer product development. She has contributed to the success of numerous products such as Haagen-Dazs Chocolate Chip CookieDough Ice Cream, Wishbone Raspberry Hazelnut Vinaigrette, and the P.F. Chang line of frozen entrees. A former Food Editor of “Victorian Homes” magazine and 1980 graduate of Le Cordon Bleu, London, she has worked as a pastry chef, consultant, culinary educator and writer. She contributed the chapter on “The Wedding Breakfast” to Romantic Victorian Weddings, Then and Now and has appeared on numerous television food programs, including HGTV’s “A Christmas in Cape May with Kitty Bartholomew.”

Join Catherine as she discusses early 20th century table etiquette, and shares some of her collection of late 19th and early 20th century table-top antiques.

Saturday’s Downton Abbey Dinner includes: Cheese Straws; Oysters A La Russe; Ethel’s Salmon Mousse with Greens; Downstairs’ Lamb Stew; English Peas; Semolina Pudding; Lady Sybil’s Cake; and Crepes Suzettes.

Sunday’s Breakfast or Brunch menu consists of: Vichyssoise; Alfred’s Bouchees au Fromage – (Gougere with Cheese Filling); Lady Mary’s Post-Pig Rescue Scrambled Eggs; Mrs. Patmore’s Kedgeree; Shepherd’s Pie; Raspberry Meringue; and Creamy Rice Pudding.

The Silo Cooking School named Best Cooking School in Connecticut by Connecticut Magazine is located at Hunt Hill Farm, 44 Upland Road in New Milford. The school is part of the Smithsonian Institution affiliated Hunt Hill Farm Trust, a non-profit organization, which provides the public with diverse opportunities to explore the arts amid historic farm buildings and protected open space in the heart of Connecticut’s Litchfield Hills. The cost of the class is $90 per person. For more information and to register for the class, call (860) 355-0300 or visit http://www.hunthillfarmtrust.org. Registration is also available at The Silo during regular business hours. The Silo gallery and store are open Wednesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, from noon to 5 p.m.

For more event information on Litchfield Hills visit http://www.litchfieldhills.com/events/index.jsp