HawkWatch and Hawkwatch Festival & Green Bazaar at Greenwich Audubon Through Nov. 20

Each autumn, 17 species of hawks, eagles and vultures migrate southwest over Quaker Ridge’s scenic hilltops in northern Greenwich.

The fields are one of the highest locations in town and the sweeping views are an excellent vantage point for spotting birds. On clear days in September when winds are from the North, birders may count a few thousand broad-winged hawks as they swirl in ‘kettles’ before heading South along migration routes.

In the late 1960’s, birders searched Fairfield County for the best sites where large numbers of migrating raptors could be observed. Over several years, more than a dozen sites were tested on weekends and in the end, it was determined that the Quaker Ridge Hawk Watch at Audubon Greenwich, was the best site in the area.

Ever since 1972, migrating hawks have been officially counted as they pass over Quaker Ridge (a.k.a. Hawk Watch Lawn). As part of the network of hawk watch locations nationwide, the Greenwich Audubon Society hired a full-time hawk watcher in 1985.The Official Hawk Counter staffs the site 9:00 am-5:00 pm, Monday-Friday, from August 20-November 20, each year.

On weekends, volunteer counters help to staff the site. Anyone is welcome to volunteer to become a counter at the Audubon’s Hawk Watch. The more eyes the better because the seasonal counts average 18,000 raptors. You don’t need to be able to identify the hawks. Greenwich Audubon simply needs eyes watching the skies! In fact, some of the best spotters are beginners that know very little about identification. Volunteers count and record the data and then, researchers can try to gauge the health of Northeastern raptor populations.

Visitors are encouraged to visit the Greenwich Audubon Center during this exciting time of year and to ask questions, talk with volunteers, and enjoy counting eagles, hawks, and falcons from Hawk Watch Lawn.

For detailed data about raptor sightings at Greenwich, visit http://www.hawkcount.org.

Hawkwatch Festival & Green Bazaar October 1 & 2

Coming up on October 1 & 2, at the peak of the migration spectacle, Greenwich Audubon will host the ‘HawkWatch Weekend Festival & Green Bazaar’ that will feature two days of live birds of prey and animal shows, hands-on nature education, bird workshops, activities for kids, eco-shopping, food, and more! Festival is Rain or Shine from 11 am-5 pm. Admission is $7 for youth/$10 for adults (New or current Audubon Members: $5 for youth / $7 for adults). $35 National Audubon Society family memberships will be available at the Festival Gate.

For more information visit http://greenwich.audubon.org. To learn more about exhibiting or the schedule, call Jeff Cordulack at 203-869-5272 x239.

About the Audubon Center at Audubon Greenwich

The Audubon Center in Greenwich opened in 1942 as the National Audubon Society’s first environmental education center in the United States on land donated by Eleanor Clovis Reese and H. Hall Clovis. The 295-acre sanctuary has approximately seven miles of trails that lead to a hardwood forest, old fields, lake, streams and vernal ponds. Reminders of the past are the stone walks, an old apple orchard and original New England homestead buildings. Audubon Greenwich’s main sanctuary is the site located at 613 Riversville Road, which is comprised of 285 acres, with 7 miles of walking trails. There you will find the Kimberlin Nature Education Center building with exhibits, staff offices and classrooms. The Center contains the Hilfiger Children’s Learning Center with hands-on nature activities and interpretive natural history exhibits, the Kiernan Hall Nature Art Gallery, a Wildlife Viewing Window and honey bee hive exhibit, a Nature Gift Store: books, binoculars, birdfeeders, gifts. The Kimberlin Center is also available for event rentals and children’s parties. Audubon Greenwich is comprised of 11 other sanctuaries totaling 686 acres of woodlands, meadows, and wetlands, and 15 additional miles of hiking trails.

Birds in Their Habitat Art Exhibition at Birdcraft in Fairfield Connecticut Sept. 24 & 25

Connecticut Audubon Society is bringing together talented artists from around the country who specialize in avian art during its second annual Birds In Their Habitat juried artists’ exhibition and sale at Birdcraft located on 2325 Burr Rd. in Fairfield Connecticut. This annual event is taking place September 23-25.

Twenty one artists working in a variety of media have been selected to display and sell their works. Jury selection of participating artists was based upon technique, execution, quality and uniqueness of work. The exhibition will illustrate that wildlife artists are committed to close observation and rendering fine artworks so that others may recognize the beauty of our natural world. Media includes: painting, photography, sculpture, printmaking, wood carving and fine art crafts. In addition to the art show, live birds of prey will be on hand for live demonstrations. Refreshments will be provided by the Butterfly Garden Cafe Committee.

This year’s Juried Show and Sale will feature the following Painters: Sue deLearie Adair: Etching, Del-Bourree Bach: Acrylic,
Wendy Brockman: Graphite and Watercolor, Mary Christiansen: Gouache and Graphite, Michael DiGiorgio: Watercolor and Oil,
Katie Lee: Graphite and Acrylic, Carol McArdle: Oil and Acrylic, Sharon Rowley Morgio: Oil and Watercolor, Sean Murtha: Oil and Watercolor, Dorie Petrochko: Watercolor, Kelly Leahy Radding: Gouache and Watercolor, Carolyn K. Smith: Graphite and Watercolor, Linda Thomas: Watercolor and Oil, and Patricia J. Wynne: Colored Pencil and Etching. Photographers featured at the show include: Paige Alexander, Michael Amodeo, Lori Bolle, and Margaret Harris. The pottery works of Judith Taylor and the Woodcarving of Roscoc Condon and Bill Rice will also be highlighted.

In addition, Connecticut Audubon Society has selected Floyd Scholz as its 2011 “artist of the year.” A professional carver since 1983 and in his fortyfirst year of carving, Floyd Scholz is universally recognized as a top carver of birds in the world. His portrayal of eagles, hawks, owls and many other large birds has won him a large international following and many top awards at major shows throughout the country. When not in his studio, traveling and doing essential field studies of birds take up most of his time.

The Preview Party is Friday, September 23 from 6:30 to 9:30 at Birdcraft located on 2325 Burr Street in Fairfield CT. The Show and Sale opens to the general public on Saturday, September 24 and Sunday, September 25 from 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM; adults are $5.00 and children under 10 are free. Proceeds from this event will benefit educational programs in the Fairfield region. For additional information, call 203-259-6305 ext. 109 or visit http://www.ctaudubon.org.

About Birdcraft Museum

Founded in 1914, Birdcraft is the first private bird sanctuary in the United States. This six-acre site was originally planted as a refuge to attract, harbor, and feed migratory and resident birds. To date, more than 120 bird species have been recorded on its grounds. Birdcraft’s focus today is offering premier natural history education programs and events for children and adults. It is also a federally-licensed Bird-Banding Station.

The Museum and Cottage were the original headquarters of the Connecticut Audubon Society. The Museum contains dioramas of Connecticut’s wildlife and habitats as they existed at the beginning of the 20th Century; the Four Seasons Room, which shows bird diversity over the years; the Frederick T. Bedford Collection of African Animals, and changing exhibits.

Ride Your Harley, Stay For Charlie Palace Hosts First Ever Motorcycle Ride Fundraiser Oct. 15


Rev up your hog and join the Palace Theater for its first ever motorcycle ride on Saturday, October 15, at 1:00pm. The event will serve as a fundraiser for the theater’s Ticket and Travel Subsidy Fund, a program that provides children with access to experience live, educational theater programs at the Palace.

Registration for the ride is from 1:00pm – 2:00pm at the theater, which is located at 100 East Main Street in Waterbury. At 2:00pm, riders will begin a scenic drive that will take them North through the Litchfield Hills, loop through Woodbury and Middlebury, and conclude at the theater where a street festival will be getting under way.

The festival will take place from 4:00pm – 7:30pm, and will feature local vendors, food, drawings and musical entertainment by Crosseyed Cat, Eran Troy Danner and Jimmy Jack. Both sides of East Main Street will be closed for the event, which is open to the public and supported by Main Street Waterbury, Spirit of Waterbury, and the Arts & Culture Collaboration Waterbury Region. Both the motorcycle ride and street festival will take place rain or shine.

For those who wish for the fun to continue, the Palace will end the day with a performance by “Easy Rider” himself, Charlie Daniels, who will perform with his band on the theater’s stage at 8:00pm. Tickets for the concert, which is sponsored by Naugatuck Savings Bank, Darter Specialties, and WTNH/MyTV9, are on sale now and can be purchase by phone at 203-346-2000, online at http://www.palacetheaterct.org, or in person at the box office.

Registration for the motorcycle run is $25 per rider and $15 per passengers. A special package for riders who want to attend the Charlie Daniels Band performance is also available for $55. To pre-register, or for more information, call the box office at 203-346-2000.

Bravo! A Century of Theatre in Fairfield County at the Fairfield Museum and History Center


Photo Caption: Katharine Hepburn as Portia in Merchant of Venice American Shakespeare Festival Theatre, Stratford. Photo Credit: Friedman-Abeles Courtesy, ASFTA Archives

When the curtain rises on Bravo! A Century of Theatre in Fairfield County, Fairfield Museum and History Center expects the crowds to be standing room only!

The six-month exhibition will begin with a special gala fundraising preview that will honor actor Christopher Plummer; playwright A.J. Gurney; director Mark Lamos; and costume designer Jane Greenwood on Saturday, September 24th at the Museum.

The honorary event chair is distinguished actor Joanne Woodward and the gala event chairs are Mary Jane Berrien, Lisa Callahan and Caroline Owens Crawford, all of Fairfield.

According to Director of Exhibitions and Programs for the Museum, Kathleen Bennewitz, Bravo! opens to the public on Sunday, September 25th and will run through Sunday, March 18th, 2012. “It will be the largest, first-of-a-kind exhibition the Museum has undertaken and will focus on the legacy of Fairfield County’s regional theatres, highlighting the Westport Country Playhouse, the White Barn Theatre and the American Shakespeare Festival Theatre and Academy,” she said.

Photo Caption: From left…Actors Maggie Lacey, Paul Newman and Ben Fox in the 2002 Westport Country Playhouse production of Our Town.

The Fairfield Museum and History Center is working in partnership with Martha S. LoMonaco, PhD, Professor of Visual and Performing Arts at Fairfield University, who is guest curating this exhibition. The Fairfield Museum has chosen this topic because Fairfield County holds a unique place in the history of American theatre and is rich with vibrant stories. “One of Connecticut’s important roles in the performing arts has been as an ‘incubator’ of emerging talent, providing a place where playwrights, actors and designers have had the freedom to experiment with groundbreaking ideas,” Bennewitz noted. “Over the past century, regional theatres have provided opportunities for internationally known artists to ‘try out’ their craft on a regional stage to allow audiences to experience the best in classical, popular and innovative dramatic art in a different setting outside New York. “Collectively, the productions have comprised a who’s who of stage artists like Katharine Hepburn, Alfred Drake, Morris Carnovsky, Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Christopher Plummer, James Earl Jones, June Havoc, Robert Ryan and Bert Lahr, to mention only a few.

Bravo! will offer visitors a unique opportunity to hear the fascinating stories behind those actors and some of their landmark performances,” Bennewitz added. Bennewitz explained that interactive stations will provide a window to “behind the scenes” stage production and a colorful array of costumes, props, photographs and manuscripts will combine to illustrate Fairfield County’s theatrical history.

Photo Caption: The internationally famous and glamorous producer, Lucille Lortel, popularly known as the “Queen of Off-Broadway”, opened the White Barn Theatre in 1947 on her Westport estate in a former horse barn.

The Museum will also offer a slate of public education programs, related to Bravo!, where visitors may participate in activities, presentations and performances at the Museum and at partnering institutions. These programs will provide the experience of live theatre while inspiring the artists and audiences of tomorrow.”Another of the very exciting aspects of Bravo! is the partnerships we have established with more than 60 performing arts organizations throughout Fairfield County that will co-promote the exhibition and its related educational programs and performances,” Bennewitz said. “These partnerships will help make the exhibition and their own performances appealing.”

For more information on Bravo! A Century of Theatre in Fairfield County, its programs and the opening gala, visit http://www.fairfieldhistory.org or call 203-259-1598.

6th Annual Watertown CT House Tour Saturday September 24th

The 6th Annual Watertown House Tour will take place on Saturday September 24th from 11am to 3pm, rain or shine. Five fabulous homes will be featured in this year’s tour including The Hickcox House at 235 Main Street, The Woodward House at 126 North Street, The Long House at 241 Woodbury Road, The Guernsey Davis House at 141 Merriam Lane, and Trillium at 2579 Litchfield Road. The Watertown Historical Society Museum and the Nova Scotia Schoolhouse at 22 DeForest Street will also be open for viewing.

The Watertown House Tour is a benefit for the Watertown Historical Society Museum. The Watertown Historical Society is a private, nonprofit, all volunteer organization dedicated to collecting, preserving, and sharing Watertown and Oakville’s history through the Museum.

Advance tickets are $25 per person, and will be $30 the day of the tour. Tickets for this self-guided house tour are non-refundable & can be purchased by mailing a check or money order to: Watertown House Tour, c/o 107 Vaill Road, Watertown, CT 06795.Checks should be made payable to the “Watertown Historical Society”. Tickets can also be purchased online with a credit card at: http://www.watertownhistoricalsociety.org

All tickets and maps will be mailed to those that purchase advance tickets, starting at the beginning of September. Advance orders must be received no later than Friday September 16th. Requests for tickets after this date will be held for pick-up on the day of the tour at the Museum.

Tickets will soon be available at the beginning of September at the following retail locations: LaBonne’s Market in Watertown, Chubba’s, the Health Complex, The Watertown and Oakville Libraries, Hosking’s Nursery, Depot Square Farm Shoppe, Jimmy’s of Watertown and at the Watertown Fall Festival.

On the day of the tour tickets will be available at all of the businesses, all of the houses and at the Museum, which will be tour headquarters. Call the Museum at 860-274-1050 or view http://www.watertownhistoricalsociety.org for more information.

Roxbury Race for Open Space Set for September 17


A 5K “Race for Open Space” will be held in Roxbury on Saturday, September 17, starting at the River Road Preserve on River Road at 8:30 a.m.

Co-sponsored by the Roxbury Land Trust and Roxbury Road Race Series, the race is open to all ages for walking or running. Registration is $5 per person, with children under 10 free.

The race will benefit the stonewall restoration project at the Mine Hill Preserve that was completed this summer.

Work at the historic 19th century iron ore mining complex, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, encompassed reconstruction of massive stonewalls in five areas, as well as much-needed drainage improvements.

The Roxbury Land Trust has preserved 3,400 acres of farmland, woodlands, wildlife habitats, watercourses, wetlands and open space in Roxbury and neighboring communities since it was established in 1970.

The non-profit organization, which is governed by a volunteer board of directors and is supported by membership dues and charitable contributions, now maintains 32 preserves with 30 miles of hiking trails and three active farms, as well as offers a wide range of educational programs.

For more information, visit http://www.roxburylandtrust.org or call 860-350-4148.