New Canaan Nature Center’s 42nd Annual Fall Fair October 15

The crisp days of autumn are here! It is a glorious time of year in Connecticut when families can enjoy traditional fairs and festivals amidst a backdrop of orange, scarlet and gold leaves.

The New Canaan Nature Center’s 42 annual Fall Fair is chock full of traditional fall fair activities that will please young and old alike. Visitors to the Fair will enjoy pony rides, a “haunted” woodland trail, apple slingshots, nature-based crafts, a hay maze, cupcake and pumpkin decorating, and fire engine rides on New Canaan’s antique fire engine, Old Faithful. The giant bungee jump, one of last year’s most popular attractions will also be back along with the “Kids On The Go” obstacle course and other inflatable rides.


The Fall Fair will feature a wide range of entertainment throughout the day. The Moses Brothers band will entertain families with a live performance of their blues/bluegrass/rock music from 11a.m. – 3 p.m. The 4th Annual Apple Pie Eating contest will begin at 3 p.m. with categories for youth and adults. There is an entry fee ($5 for youth and $15 for adults) and prizes will be awarded. Other live shows include birds of prey demonstrations, shadow puppet shows and story readings between 10:30am – 2:30pm.

New this year will be an “Eco-Village” where attendees can learn about the latest products, services and businesses to help green their home, family and life. Participating Eco-Village sponsors/exhibitors include Alteris Renewables, BPC Green Builders, Going Green Landscape Lighting, Graze Delivered, Sunlight Solar Energy Inc. and Vinylume Inc. Renewal by Andersen.

A wide range of fresh foods will be available to purchase throughout the day, including grilled hot dogs, pulled pork and vegetarian sandwiches, pizza, hot soup and hot and cold beverages. A variety of homemade baked goods will be for sale courtesy of Nature Center volunteers.

Admission to the Fall Fair is free and parking is available at St. Mark’s and the First Presbyterian Church. Tickets can be purchased for $1 each for the activities and food, which range from 1-7 tickets.

About the New Canaan Nature Center

The New Canaan Nature Center is a not-for-profit organization that is an environmental education center and sanctuary dedicated to helping people of all ages better understand, appreciate and care for the world of nature. The annual Fall Fair helps raise funds to maintain and offer this community treasure admission-free to residents of New Canaan and the surrounding area throughout the year. For more information about the Fall Fair visit www.NewCanaanNature.org of call (203) 966-9577.

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.

Summer Sunday Concerts at Stamford’s CT’s Bartlett Arboretum & Gardens

In 1913, Francis A. Bartlett, a well known dendrologist and founder of the internationally known F.A. Bartlett Tree Expert Company, acquired 30 acres of North Stamford woodlands to use as his residence, training school and research laboratory for his successful tree-care company. Over the years he assembled a large number of woody plant specimens on the property from all over the world in particular from North America, Europe and Asia.

By 1965, Mr. Bartlett’s research laboratory had moved to North Carolina and his Stamford home, which now covered some 64 acres, was purchased by the State of Connecticut and was designated the Connecticut State Arboretum.

Today, the Bartlett Arboretum & Gardens is a unique natural preserve whose 91 acres highlight the best of what Connecticut’s native landscape has to offer: magnificent award-winning Champion trees, charming gardens, wildflower meadows, red maple wetlands and boardwalks, woodland walking trails, varied wildlife and native habitats.

On Sunday’s in the Summer, visitors to the Bartlett Arboretum and Gardens can experience a very special treat as Sunday Concerts in the garden are offered through August 7th.

Morning concerts are held in the garden from 10:00 am – 11:00 am and feature student soloists from the Yale School of Music graduate program. Bring a chair and your newspaper and relax as the classical music blends with the sights and smells of their beautiful gardens in their own version of aromatherapy-a sure-fire way to recharge your batteries for the week ahead!

Evening Pops on the Lawn takes place from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm. Guests are encouraged to bring a chair or blanket, your favorite beverage and a light snack — (sorry no cooking allowed ) and enjoy a great evening of music surrounded by the natural beauty of the Arboretum and it’s gardens. On July 24 the soft, silky warm voice of singer song writer Ellen Woloshin performs; on July 31, Bluegrass award winning guitarist and mandolin player Orrin Star & the Sultans of String perform under the stars. The final summer concert on August 7th brings a performance by Katie Wilson and the Two Time String Band whose modern all acoustic bluegrass sound has pleased audiences throughout southern Connecticut. For more information call 203-322-6971.

For concerts, members are free, non members are free with garden admission. Garden admission is $6 per adult and free to children under the age of 12.

About The Bartlett Arboretum & Gardens

The Bartlett Arboretum & Gardens is open to the public every day of the year. The grounds are open from 9:00am – 7:00pm. Admission is free to members and $6.00 per adult. Children under the age of 12 are free and Wednesdays are free to all.

The Bartlett Visitor Center, is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 am – 4:30 pm and is closed on national holidays. Please call for weekend Visitor Center hours.

Visitors to the Arboretum are allowed to walk their dog on the forest trails. Stamford charter and city code Section 111-1 through 111-12 requires that dogs be leashed at all times on the property and that visitors pick up after their dog.

The Bartlett Arboretum & Gardens is located on 151 Brookdale Road Stamford, CT
Tel: 203 322 – 6971 Fax: 203 595 – 9168 or visit http://www.bartlettarboretum.org.

Annual Green Corn Festival in Litchfield Hills Connecticut

The Institute for American Indian Studies Museum and Research Center in Washington CT is hosting it’s Annual Green Corn Festival on Saturday, August 6 from 11:00 am – 3:00 pm on the grounds of the Museum located on 38 Curtis Road. The event will be held rain or shine. Adults: $10; children: $6.

Traditionally corn has been an integral part of the annual cycle of life for Native American People and this Festival celebrates the first corn of the season. Fun filled activities for the whole family including drumming, dancing, face painting, kids’ crafts, and more make this event memorable.

Highlights of the event include exciting Native American ceremonies including traditional Eastern Woodland song & dance with the Wampanoag Dancers & Singer, guitar music of Ojibwa musician & artist, Allan Madahbee and singing and drumming with the Sint-Sink Singers. A favorite of young and old alike are the Native American folktales told by storyteller, Janis Us of Mohawk-Shinnecock descent. Kids will enjoy Native American inspired crafts and facepainting.

Two not to be missed features of the Festival are the crafts for sale by local Native American artisans and a taste of traditional cooking including Pow-wow style food for sale in the outdoor Algonkian Village hosted by Dale Carson, of Abenaki descent.

About the Institute for American Indian Studies Museum and Research Center

The focus of the Institute has always been stewardship and preservation. In 1991, the name was changed to the Institute for American Indian Studies. With the name change there was a shift in focus to include education in conjunction with research.

The ethnographic collection of the Institute for American Indian Studies contains over 6,000 cultural items. While focusing on the Eastern Woodlands Peoples, the collection represents indigenous communities throughout the western hemisphere. Items vary in raw material composition – textiles, wood, stone, clay, glass, shell and semi-precious jewels – function and style from moccasins, rugs, baskets and leggings to containers, weaponry, personal accessories, recreational objects and fine art.

The Research & Collections Building is artifact-friendly with a climate controlled vault and spacious laboratory. It is home to an abundance of collections, both ethnographic and archaeological. It also houses both an education and research library, containing over 2,000 books and journals and is open only by appointment (860-868-0518 ext.109).

For museum hours and other special events visit: http://www.birdstone.org.

New Canaan Nature Center Art Exhibit The Little Things by Melissa Kircher

A exhibit of original paintings and photography by Melissa Kircher will be on display at the New Canaan Nature Center through June 14. The exhibit, entitled “The Little Things,” is a series of floral and nature inspired photographs that combine elements of color, light, and texture, both man-made and natural. Kiircher says “I find the often overlooked aspects of nature appealing, taking joy in spotting a hidden flower, leaf, or an unusual scene. These works are about discovering the beauty in little things.”

The photographs have all been processed with different fine art elements to create unique and truly original works of art. Melissa Kircher attended Gordon College in Massachusetts where she studied drawing, printmaking, graphic design, and sculpture. She earned a BFA in Visual Arts with a concentration in sculpture. Melissa is currently a self employed artist in the fields of painting, photography, photo-processing, graphic design and freelance writing. Her home and studio is in Norwalk, Connecticut and her work has been displayed in various Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York City locations. Melissa’s artwork can be seen on her web-site: http://www.melissakircher.com.

For more information please call 966-9577. A portion of proceeds from the sale of the artwork will benefit the New Canaan Nature Center

The New Canaan Nature Center is an environmental education center and sanctuary dedicated to helping people of all ages better understand, appreciate and care for the world of nature. The Nature Center’s grounds, which include a Birds of Prey exhibit and gardens, are open from dawn to dusk daily. The Visitor’s Center and Discovery Room are open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Meet The Snakes… At Earthplace !

Earthplace in Westport Connecticut has a long history of educating the community about nature and the environment. True to their mission on Saturday, April 16 from 2:30 – 3:15 pm families are invited to get up close and personal with a snake ! Animal Care Technician, Andy Todd, aka The Snake Guy, will take participants on a journey to learn all about the world of snakes.

Andy will answer questions and provide key information and insights into snake behavior, snake size, daily diet, and which snakes make good pets. “Snakes are one of the most misunderstood and unjustly feared and hated animals on the planet” said Todd. “I want kids to come away feeling like they just got to participate in something exciting and out of the ordinary; something that they will remember when they are adults.”

Children over the age of 3 will have the opportunity to see and touch different types of snakes. The program runs from 2:30-3:15 and is included with the price of general admission and free for members. Contact Linda Roberts at (203) 227-7253, ext. 115 for more information.F

Founded in 1958 and accredited by The American Association of Museums, Earthplace, a non-profit organization maintains an 84-acre wildlife sanctuary with trails, contains an interactive natural history museum, houses live wildlife for public viewing and hosts many public nature programs and events for children and adults. Other activities include a state-licensed and accredited nursery school, summer day camp, a wildlife rehabilitation program, and the Harbor Watch/River Watch water quality testing program, which this year is celebrating the 25th anniversary of its formation.

Earthplace, The Nature Discovery Center is located on 10 Woodside Lane, Westport, CT 06880.(I-95 Ex.17. Rte. 15 Ex. 41). (203) 227-7253. Grounds are open daily 7 to dusk and the Center is open Mon.-Sat. 9-5, Sun. 1-4. http://www.earthplace.org.