Local Artist Available for Custom Commissions!

Adorn your kids’ rooms, kitchen, or any room in your home that begs brightening with a work from one of Fairfield’s most popular artists!!

Stephanie Peterson Jones is a renowned children’s book illlustrator, art teacher, and a best-selling artist at the Junior League Annual Art Show for the past two years! 

She is looking to create some commissioned artwork this summer and Fairfield Families is thrilled to help her spread the word.  My family, for one,  is eagerly commissioning her for two works in my kids’ rooms…paintings we will pass down for generations!

Stephanie Peterson Jones

http://www.stephanie-peterson.net

Fairfield Resident, Children’s Book illustrator, Pilates Teacher and Roger Ludlowe Middle School Art Teacher.

“Over the past 2 years I have been creating whimsical animal paintings with acrylics, sometimes incorporating hand-painted collage papers into the images. The results have been silly and fun, and have been very well received at the annual Junior League Art Show.

I would love to create a painting for your kid’s room, your beach house, or even for your kitchen (I have a hankering to do a farmer’s market scene).

Please contact me at 203-767-0265 or peety@optonline.net and we can discuss what you are thinking and I will give you an estimate.”

May Happenings at The Maritime Aquarium

THE MARITIME AQUARIUM AT NORWALK, 10 N. Water Street, Norwalk, CT;(203) 852-0700www.MaritimeAquarium.org.  Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

The only Aquarium focused on Long Island Sound presents sharks, seals, river otters, sea turtles, jellyfish and more than 100 other species from Long Island Sound and its watershed. Two staffed touch tanks allow hands-on close encounters with intertidal animals and a chance to pet live sharks and rays.  “Go Fish!” explores our cultural relationship with the sea through fishing and the sustainable seafood movement. “Ocean Playspace” offers fun for toddlers and a rest for big people. Marine Lab shows visitors how we care for marine animals, including raising baby seahorses and jellies. IMAX® theater offers the largest movie screen in Connecticut. And, on weekends (daily in July & August), come aboard for exciting hands-on study cruises out onto the Sound aboard the research vessel Oceanic.

 

Special Exhibit:   “White Alligator”

Open Sat., May 26 – Labor Day (Sept. 3)

See a very rare “great white of the wetlands,” an 8-foot white alligator!

It may be the rarest live animal you’ll ever see. Of some 5 million or so American alligators thought to be alive, only 44 are white and The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk has one for the summer.

This “Cajun curiosity,” hatched in Louisiana and raised in Florida, will be on display from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day. The exhibit is free with Aquarium admission.

Previous visits of a white alligator in 2005 and 2008 were extremely popular with Aquarium visitors.

The alligator to be exhibited isn’t an albino, it’s leucistic. (Albinism and leucism are similar in that both have a genetic cause that results in little or no skin color.  Leucistic animals can have normal eye color, while albino animals will have red eyes.)

Aside from being creamy white, the alligator looks and acts like a regular gator.

White alligators are rare because, when young in the wild, they cannot hide from predators. Also, alligators are cold-blooded reptiles that rely upon the warmth of their surroundings for energy. Unfortunately, white alligators can’t bask in the sun because they’re susceptible to sunburns. (The Aquarium’s visiting white alligator will enjoy a special shaded, heated enclosure.)

 

 

NORWALK, CT  – Get close to one of the rarest animals you’ll ever see in a special “White Alligator” exhibit, open Memorial Day-Labor Day at The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk.  It will be included with Aquarium admission. Get more details at www.maritimeaquarium.org.

New “Sharks & Rays” Gallery

Opened April 14

Come and play in the shark-infested waters of The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, with a new Sharks & Rays gallery that offers the chance to touch a live shark.

Just opened in April, the new gallery’s Shark & Ray Touch Pool features nurse sharks and several species of raysMore than 90 feet of pool-edge access allows more visitors more chances to run their fingers down the backs of these prowling – but harmless – predators. (By comparison, the Aquarium’s former Ray Touch Pool, which has closed, had slightly more than 20 feet of visitor access.)

A clear side panel on the new exhibit provides fascinating underwater views of the sharks and rays as well.

Other don’t-miss exhibits in the new Sharks & Rays” gallery display the creatures as they come to life. Watch as skates and chain dogfish sharks develop in – and hatch from – their embryonic egg cases. Be charmed by baby sharks and rays. And get a real feel for sharks, by touching actual shark teeth and cartilage at an artifacts display.

This permanent new gallery is part of the Aquarium’s $4 million “FINtastic RefurbFISHment,” which mostly opened in February.

  Marine Life Study Cruises

April 28 – June 30:  at 1 p.m. Saturdays.

July & August:  at 1 p.m. daily.

Cruise out for close encounters with crabs, fish, lobsters and always a few surprises when you come aboard the research vessel Oceanic for The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk’s new season of Marine Life Study Cruises.

These exciting outings reveal what is, to many, a surprising diversity of marine life just off our shores in Long Island Sound.  Aquarium educators put participants to work in collecting and examining animals from all levels of the water column:  tiny wriggly plankton gathered at the surface (and viewed with a videomicroscope), little crabs and worms grabbed from the muddy bottom, and an always-unique variety of fish, crabs, lobsters and surprises brought up in the Oceanic’s trawl net.

Starting April 28, Marine Life Study Cruises will occur at 1 p.m. Saturdays through June 30.  Beginning July 1, they’ll depart at 1 p.m. daily through August.

Weekday chartered cruises are available for school groups.

Tickets are $20.50, or $18.50 for Aquarium members. Maritime Aquarium Study Cruises are good for ages 8 and older. Space on the Oceanic is limited so advance reservations are strongly recommended.  Walk-up tickets will be sold, space permitting.The cruises depart from the dock outside the Aquarium’s IMAX movie theater.

To purchase tickets or for more details, go online towww.MaritimeAquarium.org or call (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206.

  

More Special Exhibits

 

•  “Meerkats”

Special exhibit open daily through through Labor Day 2012

A family of meerkats, one of Africa’s most entertaining species, burrows into visitors’ hearts in this special exhibit at The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk.

First popularized by the comical sidekick Timon in Disney’s “The Lion King,” and then celebrated in the Animal Planet television series “Meerkat Manor” (2005-2009), meerkats are members of the mongoose family that live in social “mobs” in the Kalahari Desert, in the southern African nations of Botswana and South Africa.

No mere cats, meerkats (Suricata suricatta) are fascinating for living in structured but cooperative societies, including a foraging strategy where adults take turns standing guard upright on their hind feet, watching for predators, while the others eat.

The exhibit features six sibling meerkats – three males, three females – born in the Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City, Utah. Their exhibit offers the meerkats lots of opportunities for climbing, digging and exploring, with several feeding locations to keep them always on the alert for incoming crickets. And a viewing bubble lets visitors pop up right among the meerkats.

It’s made possible by Bank of America and Fifth Street Capital, and is free with Aquarium admission.

 

•  “Africa: From the Desert to the Sea”

Special exhibit open daily through through Labor Day 2012.    

Explore the aquatic wonders of Africa and discover how the continent’s fish – though much different from those in Long Island Sound – face similar environmental challenges.  

See amazing fish from the Nile River, the lakes of Africa’s Great Rift Valley and the Red Sea. Species highlighted include exotic air-breathing lungfish that can survive for a year if their waterhole goes dry, and electric catfish that use bioelectric radar to sense surroundings and zap their food in a dark and murky habitat. Colorful cichlids and coral reef species shine in shimmering rainbows.

Sponsored by Bank of America and free with Aquarium admission.

 

 

In The IMAX Movie Theater

Connecticut’s largest IMAX theater, with a screen that’s six stories high and eight stories wide.  For the latest movie schedule, call, go online or text “TMA” to 71297. (Regular texting charges apply.)

 

Daily April 20 – Sept. 3:

•  “To the Arctic”

Call, text or go online for IMAX show times.

Follow a polar bear and her two cubs as they navigate a changing wilderness in the compelling new IMAX movie “To the Arctic.”

Travel with a migrating herd of caribou, plunge into the ethereal underwater world of waltzing walruses and gaze across an incredible vast expanse of the Arctic Ocean, an exquisite spectacle of sapphire white – all shown with dazzling clarity on the Aquarium’s six-story screen.

Two-time Oscar-winning actress Meryl Streep narrates the film, which is a production of Warner Bros. Pictures, MacGillivray Freeman Films and IMAX Corp.  

 

•  “Sea Rex: Journey to a Prehistoric World”

Call, text or go online for IMAX show times.

Through the power of IMAX, experience a wondrous adventure from the dinosaur age. Join an imaginative young woman named Julie on a unique voyage through time and space. Explore an amazing underwater universe inhabited by such creatures asLiopleurodon and long-necked Elasmosaurus – enormous animals that were ruling the seas before dinosaurs conquered the earth. See science come alive in an entertaining manner and get ready for a face-to-face encounter with a gigantic Prognathodonthe T-Rex of the seas!

 

•  “Search for the Great Sharks”

Call, text or go online for IMAX show times.

Join shark experts Dr. Eugenie Clark and Rodney Fox on a round-the-globe expedition for close encounters with some of the world’s largest sharks, including whale sharks and great whites. Swim with a whale shark (life-sized on the giant IMAX screen), witness the birth of a baby shark and see if Fox survives when dropped into great white-infested waters while inside a clear diving tube.

 

•  “Born to Be Wild”

Call, text or go online for IMAX show times.

This inspiring film follows orphaned baby orangutans and elephants, and the extraordinary people who rescue and raise them for eventual release back into the wild.

This heartwarming adventure transports audiences into the lush rain forests of Borneo with world-renowned primatologist Dr. Biruté Mary Galdikas, and across the rugged Kenyan savannah with celebrated elephant authority Dame Daphne Sheldrick, as they and their teams rescue, rehabilitate and return these incredible animals back to the wild.  It’s narrated by Academy-Award® winner Morgan Freeman.

 

 

Trainings for Horseshoe-Crab Tagging

Thurs., May 3 and Sun., May 6, both at 7 p.m.

It may not be sweet romance but the spring moons soon will be drawing male and female horseshoe crabs up onto our beaches for an annual mating ritual.

Staff from The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk will be on hand to greet them. But your help is needed.

The Maritime Aquarium is seeking volunteers to help attach census tags to horseshoe crabs as the crabs come up out of the water to spawn at Calf Pasture Beach.  It’s all part of a census of horseshoe crabs in Long Island Sound, being led by Dr. Jennifer Mattei of Sacred Heart University in Fairfield.  The Maritime Aquarium is assisting with the census and tagging.

The horseshoe crab population on the East Coast may be declining as the animals are harvested and ground up for use as bait in eel pots.  Fewer horseshoe crabs would mean fewer horseshoe crab eggs, which are an important food source for migrating shorebirds.  Thus, fewer horseshoe crabs could mean fewer birds on our coastline.  Dr. Mattei’s census is establishing a baseline crab population and will reveal horseshoe crab migrations and any change in numbers.

Horseshoe crabs come up onto beaches to spawn on the nights of the full and new moons. That’s a tagging bonanza time for researchers, so extra volunteers are needed to help.

To participate, volunteers should attend one of two training sessions at the Aquarium: at 7 p.m. on either Thurs., May 3 or Sun., May 6.  They’ll learn about the natural history of horseshoe crabs, what has been learned so far from the census work, and how to safely tag horseshoe crabs. Volunteers should be in 10th grade or older. Younger children can assist if working with a parent, teacher or guardian.

Tagging sessions at Calf Pasture will be held on selected mornings and evenings later in the month of May and also in June.

To sign up or for more details about the training sessions, call The Maritime Aquarium at (203) 852-0700, ext. 2352, or e-mailjschnierlein@maritimeaquarium.org.

 

 

Toy Boat-Making Workshop

From 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays & Sundays.

Visit the toy boat-making area on weekends for a fun 20-minute boat-building project.  Build and decorate a toy sailboat to take home as a special keepsake of your visit.  Cost: $5 per child (plus Aquarium admission)

 

 

Behind-the-Scenes Tour

Sat., May 19 at 8:15 a.m.

The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk opens its backstage spaces for a rare behind-the-scenes tour. Conducted before the Aquarium opens, from 8:15 to 10 a.m., the guided tour offers unique opportunities to see how the animal-husbandry staff meets the varying food and water needs of some 2,000 resident animals.

The tour includes stops at the Aquarium’s “fish kitchen,” where 18 tons of fish a year is prepared, and above the 110,000-gallon Open Ocean tank, where the dorsal fins of 8-foot sand tiger sharks cut through the water surface. Learn the delicate requirements of a jellyfish “nursery.”

Participants must be at least 10 years old; under 15 must be accompanied by an adult. Cost is $32.50 ($22.50 for Aquarium members) and includes Aquarium admission.

The tour is limited to 25 people, so reservations are strongly recommended. Walk-up tickets will be sold, space permitting.

For reservations or more details, call (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206.

 

 

HOURS:

10 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily; open until 6 p.m. daily in July & August. (Closed only Thanksgiving Day & Christmas Day)

 

FOR INFORMATION:

Call (203) 852-0700 or go online to www.maritimeaquarium.org  or for text alerts and our IMAX movie schedule, text “TMA” to 71297.  (Standard text charges apply.)

 

ADMISSION:

Aquarium only:  $12.95 for adults, $11.95 for seniors 65+ and $9.95 for children 2-12. Members free.

Adventure Pass (Aquarium + IMAX movie):  $19.45 for adults, $17.95 for seniors 65+ and $14.45 children for 2-12.

IMAX movie:  $9 adults, $8 seniors and $6.50 kids 2-12.  Members save $2.

Hollywood IMAX movies:  $11.50 for adults, $10.50 for seniors and $9.50 for children 2-12.

# # #

The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk inspires people of all ages to appreciate Long Island Sound and protect it for future generations. A vibrant and entertaining learning environment, it achieves this goal through living exhibits, marine science, and environmental education.

 The Maritime Aquarium receives support from the State of Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism.

Fairfield Families Feature: Splurge and Splurge Kids

This weekend, at the Burr Homestead, the Junior League of Eastern Fairfield County will present its 20th Annual Art Show including the highly anticipated, expanded Boutique & Cafe.

One of the eighteen vendors featured hails from just down the road in Greenwich.  Splurge and Splurge Kids collectively offer something for everyone.  From lovely hostess gifts to exquisite wedding gifts, hand-crafted jewelry and many items to accessorize the home, both establishments offer a warm and welcoming environment, unique products, fair prices, and highly-personalized customer service reminiscent of years past. SPLURGE is the winner of the Greenwich Chamber of Commerce “Small Business of the Year,” and “Best Hostess Gifts” from the Greenwich Magazine’s Best of the Gold Coast.

 

 

 SPLURGE Kids offers unique gifts and room décor for babies and kids up to age 8. Many items in the store can be  personalized.  Winner of Serendipity Magazine’s Best Goody Bags, the store also features a Party Pantry filled with hundreds of quality party favors and offers goody bag assembly services.

This Saturday and Sunday, Splurge and Splurge Kids will join seventeen other vendors in a tent behind the Burr and 739 Old Post Rd., Fairfield.  Boutique hours are 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM on both days.  Don’t miss it!

SPLURGE is located at 39 Lewis Street and SPLURGE Kids is located at 60 Lewis Street in Greenwich, CT.  Both stores are open Monday through Saturday 10am – 6pm and Sunday by appointment.  Phone: 203-869-7600 (SPLURGE) and 203-585-3363 (SPLURGE Kids).  Email: sonia@splurgegifts.com.

2nd Year Brings Expanded “Boutique and Cafe” to Renowned Art Show

The Junior League of Eastern Fairfield County, as part of the 20th Annual Art Show,  is thrilled to present eighteen unique vendors who will comprise the 2nd Annual “Boutique & Cafe”  to be held this Saturday, March 31st, and Sunday, April 1st, from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM at the Burr Homestead, 739 Old Post Rd., Fairfield.

After the success of 2011’s pilot boutique, the tent behind the Burr Mansion will hold a full 50% more vendors than last year as well as an expanded cafe, catered by the renowned Bistro Box. With vendors from throughout the region with wares for all tastes and budgets, the Boutique expands on the Art Show’s motto: “Beautify your home; better your community.”  On offer will be jewelry, objets d’art, stationery, home goods, fashion accessories, children’s fashions and gifts, and other unexpected treats.

Anticipated vendors include the sophisticated scents of Jo Malone, the original jewelry of Silpada and Oliphant, women’s fashions from Flourishes and Bulabula Fashions, baby and children’s gifts from Splurge of Greenwich and Susan Pillay, and exclusive handcrafted accessories from Nature Girl Designs and Bungalow Basics.

Each vendor has graciously agreed to donate 15% of their profits to support JLEFC mission and causes. Even if fine art is not in one’s budget this year, the Art Show’s Boutique offerings make helping our neighbors in need affordable for all  who attend.

Art Show attendees and Boutique shoppers will also be able to enjoy “gourmet road food” provided by Bistro Box in the tent café, as well as live piano music by Russell Wickett and live guitar by Henry Boyd.

A full list of vendors follows.  The JLEFC membership looks forward to seeing everyone at 2012’s not-to-be-missed event!

Boutique Vendors
A Charmed Life-Fine Jewelry Featuring Charms, High-Karat Gold, & Gemstones
Black Meadow Flora-Exquisite High-Quality Orchids
Buckle Bling-One-of-a-Kind Belt Buckles, Pendants, & Necklaces
Bulabula Fashions-Exotic Women’s Fashion Apparel & Accessories from Around the World
Bungalow Basics-Stylish Gifts, Home Accents, Jewelry, & Accessories
Everything is Rosey-Unique Accessories, Gifts, & Home Decor
Flourishes-Stylish Women’s Fashion, Accessories, & Jewelry
Ilyse’s Pieces-Handcrafted Jewelry with a Modern Twist
Jo Malone-Exclusive Scents for Bath, Body, & Home
M. Saverine Decoupage-High-Quality Decoupage Plates Featuring Antique Botanicals & Nautical Images
Nature Girl Designs-Handcrafted Fashion Accessories Including Belts, Wrist Cuffs, Pendants, & Cufflinks
Oliphant -Classic Jewelry Featuring Bold & Whimsical Designs
patrice-Vintage Jewelry, Tunics, Sarongs, Scarves, Tablecloths, Placemats, & Napkins
Peaceable Hill Paperie-Original Watercolor Stationery on Linen Stock
Silpada Designs-Fine Sterling Silver Jewelry
Small Field Papers-High-Quality Stationery & Personalized Goods
Splurge of Greenwich-Unique, Eclectic Gifts & Home Decor
Susan Pillay-Hand-Painted Children’s Fashions

Cafe Caterer
Bistro Box-Gourmet Road Food

Fairfield County’s Premier Artists’ Showcase Celebrates 20th Year

The art community can anticipate a banner year for the area’s premier exhibition of local and regional artists, as the Annual Art Show hosted by The Junior League of Eastern Fairfield County celebrates its 20th anniversary.

The event, which takes place March 30 – April 1, 2012, will feature pieces from over 100 artists, as well as a destination boutique and a café (Saturday and Sunday only), and interior design inspirations throughout the Burr Homestead, from 10am to 5pm daily.

“The Annual Art Show features something for everyone, at all price points, from the traditionalist looking for a landscape, to a loft-dweller interested in black-and-white photography.  We are proud to be able to gather top artists from throughout the region under one historic roof,” said 2011-2012 JLEFC president Hannah Everard.

The show will feature both traditional representational paintings and contemporary abstract works at affordable prices, as well as photographs, prints, drawings and sculpture by artists represented by galleries throughout Connecticut and the Northeast. Noted artists who are returning to the show to exhibit their work include Claudia Mengel, an elected member of the Silvermine Guild of Artists noted for her abstract paintings and prints; Stephanie Peterson, the illustrator of the popular Peek-a-Moo! children’s book series; Anda Styler, whose work focuses on the magic of the New England landscape; and Ellen Hovercamp, whose digital scans of flowers illustrated the recently published “Natural Companions” by noted garden writer Ken Druse.

New artists in the show this year include Ann Mallory, whose ceramic sculpture was awarded Best in Show at the 2011 Westport Fine Arts Festival; Jay Misencik, whose photographs of Bridgeport’s Palace and Majestic Theaters were featured in a recent exhibit at the Fairfield Museum and History Center; and Ken Scaglia, awarded Best in Show at the 2011 Friends of Hall-Brooke Art Show for his realist paintings of classic cars.

In addition to the art on show, the Burr Mansion will provide additional inspiration via interior decoration throughout the space, focusing on the historic mantelpieces in the home.  This year’s designers are Connie Cooper of Connie Cooper Designs, Victoria Ross of Victoria Ross Florals & Events, Christopher Stevens of Christopher Stevens LLC, Sarah Weiland of Tusk Home and Design LLC, Robin O’Neil of robin’s nest design LLC and Desiree Witt of The Pious Bird of Good Omen.

On Saturday and Sunday portrait artists will be on hand to create a more personal piece of art for patrons to take home.• Beverly Branch will paint half hour acrylic portrait sketches on Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.• Joan Elizabeth Goodman, a member of the Connecticut Society of Portrait Artists, will be doing half hour colored pencil portrait sketches. Saturday 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.• Carol Lebeaux will create silhouette portraits Saturday and Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.Portrait appointments may be made in advance by calling the League office at (203) 259-9995.

After a successful first year, the Boutique will also be returning to the Art Show on Saturday, March 31 and Sunday, April 1.  Filled with vendors from throughout the region with wares for all tastes and budgets, the Boutique expands on the Art Show’s motto: “Beautify your home; better your community.”  On offer will be jewelry, objets d’art, stationery, home goods, fashion accessories, and other unexpected treats. Anticipated vendors include the sophisticated scents of Jo Malone, the original jewelry of Silpada and Oliphant, women’s fashions from Flourishes and Bulabula Fashions, and exclusive handcrafted accessories from Nature Girl Designs and Bungalow Basics. Art Show attendees and Boutique shoppers will also be able to enjoy “gourmet road food” provided by Bistro Box in the tent café, as well as live piano music by Russell Wickett and live guitar by Henry Boyd.

Funds raised from art sales and other weekend events support the JLEFC and its community projects.  Tickets are $7 at the door, or $5 in advance.  Seniors are $5 and children under 12 attend for free.Members of the community are invited to come celebrate the 20th Annual Art Show at its Great Gatsby Preview Gala on Friday, March 30th 6:30 to 10:30 at the Burr Homestead.  Tickets can be purchased at http://www.jlefc.org and are priced at $100/person including dinner, live band, open bar and silent auction.

About The Junior League of Eastern Fairfield County
The Junior League of Eastern Fairfield County is an organization of women committed to promoting voluntarism, developing the potential of women, and improving the community through the effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. Its purpose is exclusively educational and charitable. Communities represented by the JLEFC include Bridgeport, Easton, Fairfield, Monroe, Newtown, Redding, Shelton, Southport, Stratford, Trumbull, Weston and Westport.  For more information about the League or volunteer opportunities, please visit us online at http://www.jlefc.org or call 203-259-9995.

Now Updated: Spring Into Fairfield Fun!

Nature, animals, history, dancing, theater, and art.  Whatever your family’s interest, there are a host of events in our area to put a spring in little steps. Let’s not forget that it’s also the season of Easter egg hunts and carnivals, events kids remember for a lifetime! 

Ongoing

Fairfield Public Library Children’s Programs

Ongoing, Winter & Spring 2012

Our library system in Fairfield is a true treasure.  With more programs for children and parents than we can possibly list here, many of which are free, and several of which you can simply drop-in, their Calendar of Events page should be bookmarked on all Fairfield parents’ computers.   Programs are held in both the Main Branch downtown and the Fairfield Woods Branch on Fairfield Woods Rd.  Seriously not to be missed!

For More Information:  http://fairfieldpubliclibrary.org; Main Branch: 203.256.3120; Fairfield Woods Branch: 203.255.7308

Pequot Library Children’s Programs

Ongoing, Winter & Spring 2012

As if having one stellar library system isn’t enough, we must not forget that the Pequot Library in Southport has their own full schedule of enriching kids’ offerings.  Again, with a bookmark-worthy calendar, and several free and drop-in programs, there’s almost always a rewarding experience to be had at our towns’ libraries.

For More Information: http://www.pequotlibrary.org; 720 Pequot Avenue  Southport, CT 06890

2011/2012 Bridgeport Sound Tigers’ Season

Now Until Apr 15, 2012

The 2011/2012 Sound Tiger’s season runs Oct 8th, through mid-April, 2012, bringing hockey and family entertainment to Bridgeport. You’ll enjoy the many upcoming features multiplying the fun at the Sound Tiger’s games: season tickets, group outings, special family events, birthday parties and more!

For More Information: Bridgeport Sound Tigers; 600 Main Street, Bridgeport, CT; info@soundtigers.com; 203.334.GOAL; http://www.soundtigers.com

March 2012

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo’s Zoo Tots

Tuesday, March 13 & Wednesday, March 14  at 10:30 AM

This monthly 45-minute program for children 22 months to four years, who are accompanied by an adult, may include stories, games, activities, crafts, and live animals.  This session, entitled “Animal Tales,” will feature animal tails and their functions.  The cost is $10 for Zoo members and one child, and $15 for non-members and one child.  To reserve a space in the program, pre-register by calling the Zoo’s Education Department at 203-394-6563.

For More Information: Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo; 1875 Noble Ave., Bridgeport, CT, 06610; 203.394.6565; www.beardsleyzoo.org

 

 

 

Connecticut Audubon Society’s Live Birds of Prey

Saturday, March 17

10:30am – 11:30am

Sleek, strong, silent. Falcons, hawks and owls. Meet the Center at Fairfield’s live birds of prey up close! These birds cannot be released back into the wild, but now serve as bird ambassadors who help us tell the story of their status in Connecticut and what each of us can do to help them. Fee:  $3 for CAS Members, $6 for Non-members. To register or for more information, call 203-259-6305 ext. 109.

For More Information:Connecticut Audubon Society; 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield; 203.259.6305; http://www.ctaudubon.org

Fairfield Museum and History Center
Storytime: Paint the Town Red

Wednesday, March 21, 2012
11:00 am – 12:00 pm
$5 per child; Recommended for ages 4 – 6, accompanied by an adult.

Come to the Fairfield Museum and History Center and hear engaging stories, followed by a fun craft.This week’s theme is Paint the Town Red. Listen to storybook adventures with vibrant illustrations and then create your own painting.

For More Information: Fairfield Museum and History Center; 370 Beach Road,Fairfield CT, 06824; 203.259.1598; http://www.fairfieldhistory.org. This event is accessible to people with disabilities.

 

 

Fairfield Museum and History Center
Girls Club: Wartime with Molly

Wednesday, March 21, 2012
4:30 pm – 6:30 pm
$15; $10 for members. For Grades 3-5.  Please pre-register.

Growing up during World War II was tough, but people throughout the world galvanized together to save resources and to make sacrifices. Learn about Molly’s life during the war and she discovered the fascinating stories of Britain’s royalty.

For More Information: Fairfield Museum and History Center; 370 Beach Road,Fairfield CT, 06824; 203.259.1598; http://www.fairfieldhistory.org. This event is accessible to people with disabilities.

Fairfield Parks and Recreation
Family Fun Dance

A Winter Welcome at the “New” Penfield Pavilion on Beautiful Long Island Sound! Sponsored by the Town Youth Council and Fairfield Parks & Recreation

Friday, March 23rd; 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm

Reservations are a must and space is limited. Call the Recreation Department at 203-256-3191 beginning Wednesday, January 18th at 9:00 am to reserve your family’s spot. Residents are invited to dance the night away at the family fun dance at the Penfield Pavilion, 323 Fairfield Beach Road. Here’s your chance to see this beautiful new facility. DJ, Marvin Parsons and the Town Youth Council will get your family up and dancing! This event is presented by the Town Youth Council and a $1.00 per person donation will be collected at the door to benefit a TYC fundraiser, “The Jacky Durrell Memorial Service Award.” Each year, we award three, $1000.00 scholarships to Fairfield Graduates for their community service accomplishments. Please bring your own dinner and drinks!

For More Information: Fairfield Parks & Recreation Department ; 75 Mill Plain Road, Fairfield, CT 06824; (203) 256-3191;cal.fairfieldct.org; recsupport@town.fairfield.ct.us

Stepping Stones Museum
Family Fun Night: The Cat in The Hat

Friday, March 23. 6-8:30PM

Everyone’s favorite cat from the mind of Sr. Seuss is on hand for storytelling, crafts, and a musical parade.  Appripriate for toddlers, preschoolers, and young elementary kids. Register online or call.

For More Information:  Stepping Stones Museum; 303 West Ave., Norwalk, CT; 203.899.0606 x264; steppingstonesmuseum.org

 

Yale Peabody Museum

A Night at the Peabody: A Family Night Full of Fun and Surprises

Saturday, March 24, 6-9 PM
Tickets:$12 and $18, under age 3 free
Advance purchase required at www.peabodystore.com

Everything is more fun at night, including A Night at The Peabody Museum. Families can visit the museum after hours and enjoy games, crafts, scavenger hunts, live animals, and some other surprises. 

For More Information: Yale Peabody Museum; 170 Whitney Ave., New haven, CT; www.peabody.yale.edu/events; 203.432.5050

Connecticut Audubon Society’s Egg-stravaganza

Saturday, March 31; 9:30am -11am & 1:30pm – 3pm

“Eggs-plore” what’s hatching at the Center at Fairfield’s 16th annual “egg-stravaganza!” Fun-filled family activities include an egg hunt (ideal for children 8 and under), spring-themed craft making, live animal meet-and-greet, and a visit from a very special rabbit. Our morning egg hunt includes a continental breakfast while our afternoon egg hunt includes juice, cookies and healthy snacks. Bring cameras and a basket! Program held rain or shine.

For registration call 203-259-6305 Ext.109. Pre-registration and pre-payment required. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Program fee: $10/child, $5/adult for CAS members; $15/child, $10/adult for non-members. Free for children under 2 years old. All proceeds support Connecticut Audubon Society environmental education programs.

For More Information: Connecticut Audubon Society; 2325 Burr Street, Fairfield; 203.259.6305; http://www.ctaudubon.org

Fairfield Parks and Recreation
Easter Egg Hunt

Saturday, March 31, 2012   1:00 PM  SHARP!
South Pine Creek Soccer Field on Old Dam Road

A sure sign that spring is right around the corner is the Annual Easter Egg Hunt presented by the Town Youth Council and Fairfield Parks and Recreation Department.  Pre-school children to 3rd graders should bring their Easter Baskets to the South Pine Creek Soccer Field on Old Dam Road on Saturday, April 16. The Egg Hunt starts at 1:00 PM sharp, but all are encouraged to come down early and meet the Easter Bunny.  A $1.00 per person donation is requested to benefit a Town Youth Council fundraiser, “The Jacky Durrell Memorial Service Award Scholarship”  which awards 3 scholarships to local High School Seniors each year.  Don’t be late! The eggs go fast !

In case of inclement weather call the Recreation hotline (203) 256-3144 the morning of the event.

For More Information: Fairfield Parks & Recreation Department ; 75 Mill Plain Road, Fairfield, CT 06824; (203) 256-3191; cal.fairfieldct.org; recsupport@town.fairfield.ct.us


The Westport Country Playhouse
The Ugly Duckling and The Tortoise and the Hare

Sunday, March 18, 2012
1pm and 4pm
Pre-school & younger, Young elementary
$18

Children ages six and up can enjoy two classic fairy tales produced by Corbian/Lightwire Theater. Lined with electroluminescent wire, these well-known characters continue the Corbian tradition as they illuminate the darkened stage and put a modern spin on classic tales.

For More Information: www.westportplayhouse.org; 203-227-4177; 25 Powers Court (off Route 1), Westport, CT 06880

April 2012

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo
Zoo Tots

Mon, 04/09/2012, 10:30am – 11:15am
Tue, 04/10/2012, 10:30am – 11:15am

This monthly 45-minute program for children 22 months to four years, who are accompanied by an adult, may include stories, games, activities, crafts, and live animals.  This session, entitled “Animal Tales,” will feature animal tails and their functions.  The cost is $10 for Zoo members and one child, and $15 for non-members and one child.  To reserve a space in the program, pre-register by calling the Zoo’s Education Department at 203-394-6563.

For More Information: Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo; 1875 Noble Ave., Bridgeport, CT, 06610; 203.394.6565; www.beardsleyzoo.org

 

 

Fairfield Museum and History Center
Jump into Spring!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012
11:00 am – 12:00 pm
$5 per child. Recommended for ages 4 – 6, accompanied by an adult.

Come to the Fairfield Museum and History Center and hear engaging stories, followed by a fun craft. Spring is finally here! Hear stories that celebrate animals that love to run, romp and jump. Decorate animal pictures with fun shapes inspired by nature.

For More Information: Fairfield Museum and History Center; 370 Beach Road,Fairfield CT, 06824; 203.259.1598; http://www.fairfieldhistory.org

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo
International Bat Awareness Celebration

Tue, 04/17/2012 – 11:00am – 3:00pm
Wed, 04/18/2012 – 11:00am – 3:00pm
Thu, 04/19/2012 – 11:00am – 3:00pm

Come learn all about the amazing world of bats! Activities will include scavenger hunts, crafts, story times, and bat box raffles. Program will begin in the Research Station. FREE with paid admission to the Zoo. This program is also presented on April 18 and 19.

For More Information: Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo; 1875 Noble Ave., Bridgeport, CT, 06610; 203.394.6565; http://www.beardsleyzoo.org

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo
Party for the Planet

Sat, 04/21/2012 – 9:00am – 3:00pm
Sun, 04/22/2012, 9:00am-3:00pm

Join Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo to celebrate the 42nd anniversary of Earth Day on April 21 and 22! Our Earth Day event is about encouraging local, organic, earth-friendly choices as a way of promoting better health for our planet and ourselves. Environmentally-friendly vendors will be on hand with everything from green cleaning products and recycled fashion accessories to better lawn care for you and wildlife! We’ll have live music performed by The Mudpuppies and by The Environmental Hootenanny with Tom Calliman and Ann Shapiro. Both performances are at the Peacock Pavilion. Come learn what you can do to make the planet a healthier place for you and your family.

For More Information: Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo; 1875 Noble Ave., Bridgeport, CT, 06610; 203.394.6565; http://www.beardsleyzoo.org

McKinley School Carnival

Thursday, April 26, 2012 6-9 PM
Friday, April 27, 2012 6-10 PM
Saturday, April 28, 2012 1-10 PM
Sunday, April 29, 2012 12-5 PM

Jennings Beach, 880 South Benson Road, Fairfield, CT 06824

For More Information: Contact McKinley School at (203) 255-8318.

May 2012

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo
Zoo Tots

Tue, 05/08/2012, 10:30am – 11:15am
Wed, 05/09/2012, 10:30am – 11:15am

This monthly 45-minute program for children 22 months to four years, who are accompanied by an adult, may include stories, games, crafts, and a live animal presentation.  This session, “Garden Critters,” will explore our historic greenhouse and its collection as well as animals found in gardens. The cost is $10 for Zoo members and one child, and $15 for non-members and one child. To reserve a space in the program, pre-register by calling the Zoo’s Education Department at 203-394-6563.
For More Information: Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo; 1875 Noble Ave., Bridgeport, CT, 06610; 203.394.6565; http://www.beardsleyzoo.org
Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo
Dinosaur Day

Sat, 05/12/2012
12:00pm – 3:00pm

Enjoy a day of dinosaurs and related activities at the Zoo. Dinosaur experts from around the state will bring information and artifacts on these fascinating prehistoric creatures.

For More Information: Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo; 1875 Noble Ave., Bridgeport, CT, 06610; 203.394.6565; www.beardsleyzoo.org

 

 

Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo
Mother’s Day

Sun, 05/13/2012
9:00am – 4:00pm

Bring your mom to the Zoo on Mother’s Day and her ticket is on us! Connecticut’s only zoo wants to thank all those moms who work so hard throughout the year. Enjoy the special day visiting our animals and bringing a picnic lunch to enjoy in our Peacock Pavilion.

For More Information: Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo; 1875 Noble Ave., Bridgeport, CT, 06610; 203.394.6565; http://www.beardsleyzoo.org

Fairfield Museum and History Center
Storytime: Hooray for Memorial Day!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012
11:00 am – 12:00 pm
$5 per child. Recommended for ages 4 – 6, accompanied by an adult.

Come to the Fairfield Museum and History Center and hear engaging stories, followed by a fun craft. This week’s theme: Feeling patriotic yet? Learn about the red, white and blue and make your own flag.

For More Information: Fairfield Museum and History Center; 370 Beach Road,Fairfield CT, 06824; 203.259.1598; http://www.fairfieldhistory.orgThis event is accessible to people with disabilities.

Fairfield Museum and History Center
Girls Club: Remember the Past with Addy

Wednesday, May 16, 2012
4:30 pm – 6:30 pm
$15; $10 for members. For Grades 3-5. Please pre-register.

Learn about Addy’s challenges growing up during the Civil War. We’ll make a scrapbook to keep and exchange our own memories. We’ll also create a delicious snack inspired by history.

For More Information: Fairfield Museum and History Center; 370 Beach Road,Fairfield CT, 06824; 203.259.1598; http://www.fairfieldhistory.orgThis event is accessible to people with disabilities.

Holy Family Church Carnival

Thursday, May 17, 2012 6-9 pm
Friday, May 18, 2012 6-10 pm
Saturday, May 19, 2012 1-10 pm
Sunday, May 20, 2012 12-5 pm

Jennings Beach, 880 South Benson Road, Fairfield, CT 06824

For More Information: Contact Suzie Whelan at suzieharko@aol.com

Fairfield County Ducky Derby

Saturday, May 19th, 2012

The Fairfield County Duckie Derby is an annual free family fun event scheduled for May 19, 2012. Over 1000 little rubber duckies will be released into the Mill River at 1:30 for a race to the finish line. Large sized rubber ducks will be decorated ahead of time and entered into the “Decorate Me Duck” contest. Trophies and prize ribbons will be awarded. Games, food, and two fuzzy, friendly duck mascots will be on hand to entertain the “young at heart”. A $10 donation gets you and your family a race duck number- you might have a real winner. A $15 donation gets you a large rubber duck to decorate ahead of time and enter into the Decorate Me Duck Beauty Contest. All proceeds benefit St. Catherine’s Academy, a school for children with special needs located in Fairfield.

For More Information:  www.stcatherineacademy.org

 

For Moms Who Read: Books We Love

 

As moms who made their careers within the book publishing industry, we at Fairfield Families read.  We read a lot.  To that end, we’d like to offer reviews of books we’ve loved and appreciated since becoming moms, books that taught something about motherhood,  made us laugh, or simply entertained us during those very few solitary, quiet moments of our day.

Also, if there is a book you’d recommend to your fellow Fairfield moms, please let us know by submitting a comment! We’d love to have your input !

NEW!
The Happiest Mom

10 Secrets to Enjoying Motherhood

Megan Francis and the Editors of Parenting Magazine

Reading The Happiest Mom is like actually having the time to chat with your best girlfriend and getting all the positive parenting support and advice you need, while laughing the whole way through.  While most parenting books add to your overwhelming “to do” list, the ten simple secrets outlined in this one help you manage and shrink your burdens, while enjoying yourself and your kids as you go.  Relief swept through me as I read the title of the first secret, “Take The Easy Way Out”, where I learned to stop making motherhood harder than it has to be by putting my effort into things that really matter to me, not to other moms.  “Find Your Tribe” helped me identify the friends that really nurtured and supported me, relationships that have since flourished beyond my expectations.  “Make Your Bed” gave me some brilliant ideas to conquer the clutter that was growing in my house as fast my kids, and “Love Your Love Life” reminded me that my relationship with my husband is key to being a good mom and must be nurtured as well.  Best of all, this book is full of practical, easy tips to accomplish these goals and more. Because, what they say is true, if mom’s not happy, nobody’s happy…

When Did I Get Like This?

The Screamer, the Worrier, the Dinosaur-Chicken-Nugget Buyer & Other Mothers I Swore I’d Never Be

by Amy Wilson

If there is one event that can cause an intelligent, confident, capable woman to feel as if she is falling apart at the seams, it is simply this: becoming a mother.  Happily though, When Did I Get Like This? is here to remind us of the following:  We have unrealistic expectations for ourselves, we are attempting to live up to what are oftentimes ridiculous standards, and most entertainingly, and the real reason to read Amy Wilson’s memoir, a mother’s efforts to do-it-all and do-it-perfectly, can be HILARIOUS.

They are especially hilarious in Amy Wilson’s words.  The vignettes of her escapades in motherhood are seam-splitting, too, but in good way!  You’ll feel her pain and certainly, her frustration, but laugh, really laugh, in glaring recognition of her obsessions and her futile efforts to be a no-less-than-perfect mom.  Her baring honesty and openness will make you feel as if you’re having a much needed and very fun night out with your best girlfriend.

Amy hits perfectly on many of the most absurd standards and challenges of modern motherhood.  The birth clinic, pregnancy pains, birth plan, first nursing attempts, mommy and me classes, sibling rivalries, and sleeping (or rather NOT) stories.  My personal favorite chapters involve her efforts to place her firstborn into one of the ludicrously competitive Manhattan preschools.  Another must read is entitled “Penny the Pig”; the classic story of putting way too much effort into a mom project for little or no reward.  Haven’t we all been there?

If you’re a mom who can do with a little sanity check, you won’t find a better read than When Did I Get Like This?

Connected Parenting

by Jennifer Kolari, MSW, RSW

I chose to read Connected Parenting because of its irresistible promise of developing deep, enduring bonds with my children.  Drawing on twenty years as a child therapist, Jennifer Kolari teaches how to parent with empathy, rather than discipline with anger.  So powerful are her techniques, she has helped thousands of parents transform their relationships with the most challenging of children.  For those with easier kids with whom a close attachment already exists, I can personally attest that her strategies work like a dream, helping to maintain that close relationship while instilling noticeable confidence and positive self-esteem.

Kolari explains how all children crave the unconditional attention and understanding they received as infants.  Unknowingly, I was giving my own son too much responsibility, causing him to feel insecure and anxious. Connected Parenting taught me to rebuild his sense of security through “baby play”, a heartwarming, affectionate practice that we now enjoy every day.

Also pivotal is her CALM strategy, a simple practice to empathic relating through “mirroring” your child’s feelings, instantly inspiring understanding and soon eliminating problem behaviors. I credit CALM with deflating tantrums and unbelievably, successful potty training, after a year of failed attempts. However, please note that these techniques promise to work right into the teen years for teen troubles as well.

I consider this one of the most helpful of parenting books and a “must-read” for any parent who dreams of bringing out the best in her children and developing loving bonds that last a lifetime…and really, are there any parents who don’t?

Bullying and Suicide Prevention Presentation in Fairfield, CT on February 15, 2012

Dear Friends of Fairfield Families,

Please help us spread the word about an upcoming presentation on this most important of topics:

Bullying, Cyberbullying and Suicide Prevention Presentation by Mr. John Halligan
Wednesday, February 15, 2012
Roger Ludlowe Middle School Auditorium
7:00pm
Open to the Adult Community

Bullying and Suicide Prevention

John Halligan is a renowned speaker on the topic of Bullying, Cyberbullying and Suicide Prevention.  John had been featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show , PBS Frontline , Good Morning America, Anderson 360 and many more wonderful programs.  This presentation is open to the adult community of Fairfield.   To learn more about the presentation and John Halligan please visit:  www.ryanpatrickhalligan.org

This presentation is a compliment to the presentation all middle school students will be hearing by John Halligan on Feb 15,16 and 17th at each of the three Fairfield Middle Schools.  There will also be a parent night presentation on February 16, 2012 at Tomlinson Middle School, 7pm for all parents of Fairfield Middle School children only.

All events and presentations are generously sponsored by The Fairfield Special Education PTA, Inc.