Ride a Vintage Train to Visit Santa Claus at Danbury’s Railroad Museum !


That portly gent from the North Pole will once again pay a visit to the Danbury Railway Museum and you can take a ride in a vintage train through the historic rail yard to visit him. The event will take place on Saturdays and Sundays, December 4th, December 10-11 and December 17-18. Trains will depart every half-hour from 12:00pm to 3:30pm on Saturdays and on 12:30pm to 3:30pm on Sundays.

The short train ride in a fully restored 1953 New Haven Railroad Rail Diesel Car (RDC), will take you through the rail yard and past the only powered turntable in Connecticut that has been recently listed on the National Historic Register. On your way to visit Santa, you will see over 70 vintage railroad cars, locomotives and many unique pieces of railroad history.

The train ride will bring you to Santa’s very own private railcar where you’ll be greeted by Mrs. Claus and Santa’s helpers in Toyland. Of course, the exhibits and multiple operating model train layouts inside the restored 1903 Danbury station will also be open as will the be the well-stocked gift shop. Also inside the station, you will find hot chocolate, temporary tattoos and other activities for the little ones.

Admission is $9.00 for ages 2 and up (under 2, free). Each child will receive a small gift from Santa. Based on the popularity of this event the past couple of years, reservations are suggested.

About the Danbury Railroad Museum
The Danbury Railway Museum is a non-profit organization, staffed solely
by volunteers, and is dedicated to the preservation of, and education
about, railroad history. The museum is located in the restored 1903
Danbury Station and rail yard at 120 White Street, Danbury, CT. For
further information, visit the Web site at http://www.danbury.org/drm, e-
mail to info@danburyrail.org, or call the museum at 203-778-8337.

For area information visit www.visitwesternct.com

WATERBURY’S PALACE THEATER ANNOUNCES DECEMBER LINE-UP


Warm up with a hot show this December at the Palace Theater! Tickets and gift certificates 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. Groups of 15 or more qualify for discounted rates and should call the group sales hotline at 203-346-2011.

Christmas at the Palace

Saturday, December 3 – 8pm

The Waterbury Chorale and the Waterbury Chorale Festival Orchestra present a program of secular and religious Christmas music that will delight and inspire audiences of all ages.

Tickets: $25/ $30/ $45

Waterbury Arts Magnet School presents A CHRISTMAS CAROL

Thursday, December 8 – 7pm; Friday, December 9 – 7pm; Saturday, December 10 – 2pm & 7pm

The timeless tale of Ebenezer Scrooge’s transformation from a bitter and disillusioned creature into the most caring and generous of men comes alive at the Palace Theater.

Tickets: $12

aFTER WORK sMOOTH jAZZ & r&b

Friday, December 16 – 5:30pm
Kick-off the weekend right with smooth vibes on a Friday night! ACTJamsProductions.com presents an after-work social event featuring performances by The Ron Howard Experience, R&B vocalist Marquist, and Jazz vocalist Andrea Deyo, who will celebrate the sounds of Christmas during the event’s “Tis the Season” segment. Hors d’oeuvres and drink specials will be served.

Tickets: $10

Woodbury Ballet presents The Nutcracker

Saturday, December 17 – 4pm

Enjoy a family holiday tradition where Sugar Plums dance, Flowers waltz and Snowflakes leap across the stage weaving a splendid tale of a little girl’s dream of first love.

Tickets: $28/ $38/ $48

Swan Lake

Wednesday, December 21 – 7:30pm; Thursday, December 22 – 7:30pm

The State Ballet Theatre of Russia, from the city of Voronezh, brings the world’s most beloved ballet – Tchaikovsky’s SWAN LAKE – to glorious new life.

Tickets: $28/ $38/ $48/ $58

SHEN YUN PERFORMING ARTS
Monday, December 26 – 7:30pm; Thursday, December 29 and Friday, December 30 – 7:30pmInspired by the spirit of ancient China, Shen Yun Performing Arts brings to life a bygone culture with a gloriously colorful and exhilarating show of classical Chinese dance and music.

Tickets: $50/ $70 / $90/ $120

About the Palace Theater

The Palace’s primary purpose is to revitalize the Greater Waterbury community through the presentation of the performing arts and educational initiatives in collaboration with area cultural and educational institutions. Its mission is to build a strong sense of community and an appreciation for the arts by operating, maintaining and sustaining itself as a financially viable not-for-profit performing arts center that generates a positive artistic, educational, social and financial impact on the Greater Waterbury area. For more information, visit: http://www.palacetheaterct.org.

The Palace Theater gratefully acknowledges support by Comcast, Webster Bank, Bank of America, City of Waterbury, Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism, Naugatuck Savings Bank, Waterbury Hospital, FOX CT, Republican-American, WATR Radio and WTNH/WCTX.

ALL ABOARD FOR “THE POLAR EXPRESS AT THE MARITIME AQUARIUM AT NORWALK Nov. 25-Dec. 31

Polar Express at the IMAX Theatre Maritime Center Norwalk

Renew (or begin) a family tradition by securing your tickets for a magical ride to the North Pole as “The Polar Express” steams back onto the giant IMAX screen for a limited engagement at The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk.

Based on the 1986 Caldecott Award-winning book by Chris Van Allsburg, “The Polar Express” follows a young boy who doubts the existence of Santa Claus. On Christmas Eve, a locomotive arrives to take him and other doubtful children to Santa’s North Pole headquarters. Their shared experiences ­– onboard with a mysterious conductor, at the North Pole and then on the return leg – make a compelling adventure.

The star of this adventure is Tom Hanks who cleverly plays five roles, including the train’s officious conductor, a ghostly hobo and Santa Claus. Hailed by critics nationwide, this film, shot entirely in Performance Capture, a process by which an actor’s live performance is digitally recorded by computerized cameras and becomes a human blueprint for creating virtual characters has been tapped to become a perennial classic that will be shared by the generations. Polar Express manages to sidestep all the tiresome Christmas cliches that children have inflicted on them this time of year and presents a fresh look at this magical time of year.

Tickets for “The Polar Express” are specially priced at $11.50 for adults, $10.50 seniors 65 and older, and $9.50 for children ages 2-12. Maritime Aquarium members save $1 and can be reserved in advance online at www.maritimeaquarium.org or by calling (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206.

The show runs from November 25 – December 31st. Show times through Dec. 24 are 4 & 7:30 p.m. Fridays & Saturdays and 4 p.m. Sundays. After Christmas, “The Polar Express” will play at 4 & 7:30 p.m. Dec. 26-30 and at 4 p.m. Dec. 31.

Dec. 2nd, The Barr Brothers, Fresh and Edgy Folk, Come to StageOne

StageOne, part of the Fairfield Theatre Company on 70 Sanford Street in Fairfield is presenting “The Barr Brothers” on December 2nd at 7:30 pm. “The Barr Brothers aren’t just brothers,” says Sticky Magazine this month, “They’re more like a close-knit family with a vision of what modern folk should sound like.” Not unlike the Fleet Foxes or Dawes, the Barr Brothers (built around Brad and Andrew) are at the forefront of a sort of revival of ’70s folk rock aesthetics, through their sound, lifestyle and recording approach.

Best known as founding members of the spirited and unpredictable rock trio The Slip, brothers Andrew and Brad Barr had spent most of the ’90s on tour with that band. With The Barr Brothers, they are keeping on their experimental, explosive and curious musical career while exploring sounds quieter and more ethereal than anything in their previous work.

Sara’s classical harp was recorded through a fuzz pedal and they used a fretless peanut-bowl banjo and a bamboo angklung to create a masterfully modern and organically smooth Americana folk album. This kind of non-traditional music is not made every decade, never mind every year or every day.

Prepare yourself for a folk rock show that comes complete with a full-size classical harp! “Their tremendous talents shine through in this album and capture an Americana folk that keeps up with today’s demands for a fresh sound.” – Paste

The Details – The Barr Brothers on Saturday, December 2; Doors open at 7:00 PM; the Show begins at 7:30 PM.
Venue: StageOne 70 Sanford St., Fairfield, CT 06824 Tickets: $15 Member Discount: $3 Buy tickets: Box Office: 203.259.1036 or buy online: http://www.fairfieldtheatre.org

Upcoming Shows to Watch For

Sat., Nov. 26 @ StageOne: Corey Glover and Daniella Cotton: Daniella rocks out with hard rock band Living Colour’s lead singer
Wed., Nov. 30 @ StageOne: Dan Hicks and the Hot Licks: a “folk jazz” holiday show

Thu., Dec. 1 @ StageOne: Chadwick Stokes: The reggae/folk rock Dispatch singer

Sat., Dec. 3 @ The Klein: Alice Cooper: The nightmarish classic rock legend

For additional information please visit http://www.fairfieldtheatre.org

About Fairfield Theatre Company

FTC manages two venues, StageOne in Fairfield and The Klein in Bridgeport. FTC is dedicated to presenting the best of live entertainment and performing arts education in the region.

TAKE A GINGERBREAD BREAK IN LITCHFIELD HILLS AND FAIRFIELD COUNTY CONNECTICUT

Lots of places feature colorful gingerbread houses for the holidays, but Kent, Connecticut goes a step further.
The whole town will take part in the second annual Kent Gingerbread Festival from November 25 to December 30. Everyone is invited to follow the Gingerbread Walk through town to view imaginative and ingenious gingerbread delights in over 50 shop windows. Visitors can enjoy the displays as they stroll, then vote for their favorite creations at the Gingerbread Station, 1 Kent Green Boulevard. The station will have its own displays of entries from the local gingerbread baking contest and will also offer baking and craft classes Phone (860) 927-1463 for schedules. Besides gingerbread displays, Kent will have special events every weekend, from pancakes with Santa to caroler and a Messiah sing-along.

MORE SWEET TREATS

Kent has the biggest show, but Connecticut’s Litchfield and Fairfield Counties offer several other impressive gingerbread displays guaranteed to delight, as well as the chance to take home some of the prize creations or make your own gingerbread confection.


More than 60 buildings, with horse and sleigh teams, ponds, boats, and sledders, all dressed up in Christmas splendor will be featured at the 44th annual Gingerbread Village, a lavish display from December 3 to 10 at St. George’s Church on Tucker Hill Road in Middlebury. Everything is for sale, available to take home when the display ends. Admission is Free. Hours are Saturday, December 3rd 10 a.m. to 7 p.m, Sunday, December 4th, Noon to 8 p.m., Monday, December 5th to Friday, December 9th 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. and Saturday, December 10th, 10a.m.to 4 p.m. Call (203) 758-9557 for information.

The third annual Visions of Gingerbread: The Sweetest Architects at the Stamford Museum and Nature Center November 12 through December 18 shows off imaginative confections made by some of the area’s best pastry chefs, restaurants, and caterers. DiMare’s Pastry Shop of Stamford, SoNo Baking Company of South Norwalk and Sweet Lisa’s Exquisite Cakes of Greenwich are among those who are vying for first prize from a panel of special judges. These are far from ordinary houses; one of the past displays was a perfect miniature of the Duomo Cathedral in Florence, Italy. Visitors are invited to vote for the “Fan Favorite” of the year. Learn more at www.stamfordmuseum.org.


MAKE YOUR OWN

Those who are inspired to make their own gingerbread houses should contact the Silo Cooking School in New Milford. Each year The Silo offers classes for parents and children (ages 5 and up). There are classes also for adults, who enjoy appetizers and mulled wine as they assemble their architectural masterpieces.

Classes are held several times on November 25-27, December 2-4 and December 9-10. The cost is $85 for each adult team or each parent-child team, up to 3 people. The classes sell out every year but would-be bakers can check for openings or waiting lists at (860) 355-0300. The Silo is part of the Hunt Hill Farm Trust so they are found on-line at www.hunthillfarmtrust.org

For more information about gingerbread adventures, directions to events and listings of all the holiday doings in the region, contact the Western Connecticut Visitors Bureau, PO Box 968, Litchfield, CT 06759, (860) 567-4506, www.visitwesternct.com. They offer a free copy of UNWIND, a 112-page color guide to the attractions in the Litchfield Hills and a free color Fairfield County Getaway Guide.

Woobury Connecticut Holiday House Tour Dec. 10

Saturday, December 10, 2011 marks the day for a holiday favorite, the 17th Annual Holiday House Tour, which will feature a 19th century Rectory as a Designer Showcase House as well as four other fine Woodbury homes. In keeping with the holiday spirit, the tour will include the Leroy Anderson House, where the American musical classic “Sleigh Ride” was composed. Tickets are $20 when purchased in advance / $25 if purchased on the tour day.

Tickets may be purchased by sending a request for tickets to The Woman’s Club of Woodbury, PO Box 1014, Woodbury, CT 06798. Requests should include a check, payable to WCW, to pay for tickets ordered and a Stamped, self addressed #10 envelope. Tickets will be available on the day of the tour at the Woodbury Senior Center. For more information call 203– 263– 3810.

Designer Showcase

New this year, the the Designer Showcase House will be decorated by area designers and artisans reflecting “Christmas in Connecticut”. A special Preview Party is planned on Friday evening December 9th, the day before the tour. Preview party ticket-holders will stroll through the beautifully decorated rooms of this 19th century Greek revival rectory, meeting the designers and enjoying wine, hors d’oeuvres, and Christmas music. Raffle tickets will be available for prizes which include: A Wine Basket from Walker Roads Vineyards, A Catered High Tea from Kate Valentine, A Gift Certificate for a stay at Cornucopia at Oldfield B&B, Southbury, A Catered Brunch in your own home by Duncan Stephens, and An Organizing/Clutter Clearing Session from Top Results Coach Maureen Moreau. Special tickets for the Dec 10th tour that also include the Dec 9th preview party are $50.

Houses to Tour

In addition to touring the Designer Showcase located in an 1830’s Greek Revival styled house, built as a rectory, for St. Pauls’s Church, located across the street, the following four private homes are open and offer a wonderland of decorative ideas for the season.

Cape Cod Revival – Every room of this quaint, rambling saltbox decked out for the holidays is a visual feast. The house showcases framed artworks, interesting decorative touches, and in particular the striking crewel-work pieces. The living room has a large multi-paned window that looks out over the pleasant grounds. A classic dining room features a Duncan Phyfe style table, crewel-work cornices, an antique corner cupboard, and, overhead, beams from an antique barn.

Whipstick Farm Colonial – Set beside a lovely pond, this 1992 home looks like it was built 200 years ago. Inside, handsome old antiques and carefully chosen reproduction furniture continue the illusion. The home, on property called Whipstick Farm, is filled with colorful artwork, books and decorative pieces.

Home of “Sleigh Ride” Composer- One of the most interesting homes on the tour was once the home of the world-renowned composer Leroy Anderson. The house, built in 1953 is set on a picturesque sweep of lawn and woods and features modernist furniture, burnished colors, and wonderful mementos of the composer. It centers on a living room where a grand piano takes center stage in front of a great wall of windows looking out on the inviting landscape. Anderson, who wrote Sleigh Ride, Syncopated Clock, Blue Tango, and many, many other celebrated orchestral pieces, has been the pride of Woodbury for many years.

Stately Tudor – This grand Tudor-style home features gorgeous rooms filled with handsome antique and reproduction furniture—many pieces with a Scandinavian feel. Decorated for the Holidays, the glowing dining room features a restored barn-board table, comfortable Windsor chairs, and a cupboard displaying a wonderful collection of china and decorative objects. An inviting tea service on a tray is set out in the bright library, which is crammed with books, cozy seating, and family mementos. Upstairs, the serene, gently colorful bedrooms feature beautiful bed linens and quilts. The gorgeous kitchen looks out on a garden patio and a lovely “English Summerhouse,” for reading and lounging on warm days.