An American Odyssey: The Jewish Experience in Greenwich

This exhibition curated by the Greenwich Historical Society located in Cos Cob will explore the history of the Jews of Greenwich within the broader context of the history of the town and the nation.

Beginning with the question of why Jews chose to settle in Greenwich and how they gained an economic foothold, the exhibition will explore the experience of Jewish families living and working in Greenwich for more than a century. It will examine how they, like other immigrants, struggled with the pull to integrate into American society and yet also remain distinct. And it will look at how they, as well as other minorities in Greenwich, have contributed to the larger community despite experiencing periods of discrimination and restrictions on worship, employment and housing opportunities.

Although the lion’s share of the growth of Greenwich’s Jewish community began in the 1960s (today about 11 percent of the population is Jewish), the tale really begins with the mass exodus of Jews from Eastern Europe to America between 1880 and 1920. The stories of those who sought to build new lives here–emblematic of larger historical themes–will be told through photographs, artifacts, archival documents, ephemera and first-person accounts. The exhibition will also explore the little-known fact that there were Jewish property owners in Greenwich as far back as Colonial times.

An American Odyssey: The Jewish Experience in Greenwich is curated by Dr. Ann Meyerson, a nationally recognized independent museum curator who most recently co-curated The First Jewish Americans: Freedom and Culture in the New World (October 28, 2016 to March 12, 2017) at the New-York Historical Society.

Savor CT 2018 in Naugatuck

Once again this year the Naugatuck Historical Society is hosting the popular Savor CT at the Naugatuck Portuguese Club located on 110 Rubber Ave. on Feb. 10 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. This event features just Connecticut businesses that carefully craft a multitude of goodies from beer and wine to all manner of food from chocolate to cookies!

Participants in Savor Connecticut include: four breweries, two vineyards and four distilleries. There will also be a great variety of food, all made in Connecticut to sample including the specialties of Nardelli’s, Mr. D’s Tavern, Fascia’s Chocolates, Avery Soda, Pepperidge Farm, Hummel and much, much more. There will be over 30 vendors featured at the event. Guests at the event will enjoy drinks, a commemorative glass as a souvenir, food, music and raffles from around the state.

The event helps to support the mission of the Naug uck Historical Society. The Society tells the stories of Naugatuck through programs, school visits, exhibits, articles and more. Currently, the museum is located at 171 Church Street in Naugatuck, and is looking forward to moving to the Tuttle House when renovations are complete.

The snow date for this event is February 12, but only will be used in extreme weather conditions. Tickets are available at the museum on Church Street which is open 11-4pm on Saturdays or at Fine Wines and Liquors. Tickets are $15 for members of the Society or Portuguese Club when purchased in advance. Tickets for non-members are $20 when purchased in advance. All tickets at the door are $25.

For information on how to become a vendor, donate a raffle prize or to purchase tickets contact Wendy Murphy 203 218 5349, wendy.murphy@snet.net

Flanders Offering Handmade Collaged Valentine Card Workshop

Led by professional artist Dita Carley, Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust is hosting a workshop on handmade collaged valentines. The class is being held on Saturday, February 3 at 10AM.

Carley has given workshops in collage at Guilford and Brookfield Craft Centers and has exhibited her work nationally with a number of pieces becoming part of private collections. She will be bringing examples of valentines she has created.

Appropriate for adults and kids at least 8 years old accompanied by an adult, at the workshop participants will make handmade collaged valentines for their sweethearts. Collage materials and cards will be provided but bringing your own wrapping paper, photos, magazine pages or any type of collage material to customize your valentines is encouraged.

The workshop will be held at the Flanders Studio on the corner of Flanders and Church Hill Road in Woodbury. The cost is $20 for members and $25 for non-members with an additional supply fee of $5 per person.

Those interested may register online at www.flandersnaturecenter.org or call 203-263-3711, ext. 10, for more information.

About Flanders

Flanders Nature Center & Land Trust acquires, preserves and manages land; and uses the land to promote understanding and appreciation of nature, art and the environment. Founded by artist, farmer and environmentalist Natalie Van Vleck, Flanders provides a variety of environmental education programs year-round, designed to bring a deeper understanding of art, nature and farming to children, youth and adults in the Woodbury region and throughout Connecticut.

Kids! Make Your Own Valentine’s Day Chocolates!

The Wilton Historical Society located on 224 Danbury Road in Wilton is hosting a chocolate workshop for kids on Feb. 10 from 11 am to 12 noon. 

This very popular chocolate-making workshop for kids in grades K-8 on Saturday. Program participants will make something extra nice for their Valentine – delicious, professional-looking chocolates and a decorated box to put them in! The fun and easy one hour session will make use of an extensive collection of small, charming chocolate molds. Hearts, flowers, a multitude of animals, stars and even tools are just some of the shapes that will be on hand.

Registration is required and space is limited. Please register by email: info@wiltonhistorical.org or call (203) 762-7257 to reserve your place. Members: $10, maximum $25 per family; Non-members: $15, maximum $35 per family Parents are welcome to stay.

Did you know?

“Although 18th-century Americans did not enjoy candy bars or other modern chocolate treats as we know them today, they did love chocolate. In fact, George Washington ordered 20 pounds of chocolate from British merchant Thomas Knox in 1757 . . . . as hot chocolate was a favorite breakfast beverage at Mount Vernon. . . . This was the first of many chocolate orders he placed over the course of his life.” — From George Washington’s Mount Vernon website

Three Day Ski Jumpfest in Salisbury Feb. 9-11

Oohs and ahs and gasps of disbelief are guaranteed when the best young ski jumpers in the Northeast compete, sailing through the air in the 92nd. Annual Eastern National Ski Jumping Championships Sunday, February 12.

The event takes place at Satre Hill in Salisbury, a classic New England village in Connecticut’s Litchfield Hills. The masters of this challenging sport will show the amazing coordination and grace needed to fly some 200 feet in the air with a happy landing, a feat that always brings admiring cheers from the crowd. The jumpers you watch at Satre Hill are Junior National hopefuls, and some will go on to represent the US in the Olympics!

The championships are the highlight of a gala three-day Jumpfest, which features night time target jumping, human dog sled racing, ice carving, a chili cook off, a pancake breakfast, a bourbon tasting and a Snow Ball dance in addition to ski jumping contests.


Friday, Feb. 9

The fun begins on Friday, Feb. 9 with target jumping under the lights beginning at 7 p.m. with jumpers flying under the lights, unfettered by judges points- their only goal is to land on a bulls eye target for big prizes- and big fun! When the target jumping ends, the real zaniness ensues with the Human Dog Sled Races. These are teams of six slightly crazy folks, five pulling and one riding on a sled of the group’s own design. They careen around a .3 mile course, and, well, accidents do happen. Crazy fun to watch! Friday Night Lights admission is $15.

Saturday, Feb. 10

The fun continues on Saturday, February 10 with the Salisbury Invitational Ski Jumping Competition when jumpers compete for prestigious SWSA trophies! The fun warms up with practice from 11 a.m. to noon; withe the competition beginning at 1 p.m. Spectators on Saturday can also watch Junior 20 and 30 meter jumping at 9 a.m.

Saturday events also include an ice carving demonstration from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the White Hart Green featuring two nationally recognized carvers and the Snow Ball Dace at the Lakeville Firehouse Annex from 8 p.m. to midnight. Admission for the Salisbury Invitational Ski Jumping Competition is $15 and admission to the Snow Ball Dance is $15.

Sunday, Feb. 11

The Eastern U.S. Ski Jumping Championships takes place on Sunday, February 11. This is the big one. Jumpers vie not only for trophies but also a spot on the Junior National Team! Practice and warm ups for this event is held from 11 a.m. to noon with the competition beginning at 1 p.m. Admission for this event is $15.

If you have never seen ski jumping live, you have never truly witnessed the sport. Standing amidst the ringing cowbells, with crowds cheering on their favorites, hearing skis slapping against the landing hill as these brave jumpers soar up to 200 feet through the air at speeds up to 50 miles an hour, is something you will never forget. Even if the winter looks brown outside your window, it’s white over at Satre Hill thanks to state-of-the-art snow guns.

For happy viewing, fans are advised to dress warmly in lots of layers and to bring a cowbell, the traditional way to cheer on the jumpers. Hot food and beverages are available to help watchers keep warm. Limited bleacher seating is provided or guests can bring their own lawn chairs.

Proceeds help fund the all-volunteer, non-profit Salisbury Winter Sports Association, host of the annual event. SWSA provides cross-country and jumping equipment and training for area children. For a full schedule and complete information, see www.jumpfest.org.

For more area information on what to see and do in the Litchfield Hills and to sign up for a monthly newsletter visit www.litchfieldhills.com

A Midwinter’s Night in Falls Village

The Friends of The David M. Hunt Library (63 Main St.) in Falls Village will hold its winter fundraiser, A Midwinter’s Night in the Village, at the library on Saturday, February 17 from 5pm to 8pm. Warm up with old friends and make new friends while enjoying an evening of tasty breads, hors d’oeuvres, and chocolate with music and poetry focused on love and laughter. Wine, beer, and non-alcoholic refreshments are included in the ticket price. Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door, and can be purchased by stopping by the library, visiting http://www.huntlibrary.org or by calling 860-824-7424.

The main feature of A Midwinter’s Night in the Village will be the library’s famous 16-ft long bread board piled high with a variety of homemade breads ranging from sweet dessert loaves to hearty savory breads, delicious hors d’oeuvres and chocolate treats. For entertainment, a roster of local personalities from Falls Village and beyond will perform poetry, song, and comedy focused on love and laughter with a round of the Name that Tune game for good measure.

Introduction to Minerals at Seaside Center

Mineral collector and Stamford Mineralogical Society president Dr. Howard Heitner will give a talk and demonstration on the importance, properties, and structure of minerals on Sunday, February 4, 2018, (with a snow date of February 11) at Greenwich Point Park. The event is open to all ages and no reservations or beach pass are needed.

Presented as part of the Bruce Museum’s Fred Elser First Sunday Science Series at the Seaside Center, Dr. Heitner’s presentation will begin at 2:00 pm and will be followed by a question-and-answer session. Family friendly activities on the rock-and-mineral theme will also take place from 1:30 to 4:00 pm.

“My objective is to get people interested and to understand more about the minerals they see at exhibits in the Bruce Museum and other collections,” says Dr. Heitner, who has been collecting minerals for over 50 years. He is retired from Cytec Industries, where he worked in new product development and holds a number of patents.

Heitner will answer questions such as “What is a mineral?” and” What is a crystal?” as well as demonstrate some of the physical properties of minerals such as fluorescence, cleavage, fracture, hardness, color and streak, variability of color, specific gravity and flame testing. Participants are welcome to bring samples for identification after the lecture.

The Fred Elser First Sunday Science programs are supported in part by Osprey Private Client and are organized by the Bruce Museum. The event is held at the Innis Arden Cottage/ Seaside Center in Greenwich Point Park, Old Greenwich, CT.