Tag Archives: bushnell

GHAC Celebrates A Good Year, Gets Ready For Another

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artsc1It was one big arts party over at Spotlight Theatres Wednesday as the Greater Hartford Arts Council  celebrated a successful 2014 year that included its $2.7 million campaign,  and said ‘hello’ to its 2015 fundraising plan.
Besides naming the Phoenix as campaign chair for 2015 at the annual celebration, it was also time to say goodbye to its Director of Communications & Donor Relations Tim Yergeau, who is joining Civic Mind, a Hartford marketing and branding company.
Yergeau, who has been with the council for four years, received a special shout-out from executive director Cathy Malloy during the program that was followed by a party in the theater’s main lobby and bistro.
For Malloy, there will be two campaigns going on in her life, one for the council and the one for her artsc4husband, Democratic incumbent Governor Dan Malloy who is running for reelection.
“His thing,” she said smiling when asked about juggling a couple of campaigns at the same time. “That won’t really get going until fall.”
artsc2It seemed anyone who was anyone with the arts attended the event including a more relaxed than usual including fresh-off-a-motorcycle ride Bushnell CEO David Fay and Michael Stotts, managing director at Hartford Stage.
“I’m always relaxed,” grinned Stotts adding that it was a little less hectic than usual at the theater because of the season break and theater renovations that will mean a new look in the fall.
“New paint, new seats, new carpeting, you won’t recognize the house,” he said.
artsc3Also doing a bit of celebrating was newly-elected council president, Atty. Moe Banks.
“My passion is to get what we need to put instrument in the hands of more Hartford students,” he said explaining his plans during his tenure.
Founding executive director Dollie McLean took the opportunity to give a thank you shout out to the council, noting the non-profit she began with her husband, celebrated musician Jackie McLean, and is responsible for a lot of what the venue has achieved over the decades.

“If it were not for the Arts Council, we could have not maintained a program,” said McLean. “And we are thankful for that.”

Happy ‘Hours’ And The Arts Rule This Weekend Hartford

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The first week of June brings more than signs of summer, the end of the school year and the arrival of prime wedding and prom season.

It brings some seriously good get-togethers at some of the Hartford area’s favorite places.calendar_clip_art-1.29213820_std[1]

Head over to the Wadsworth Atheneum Thursday and get your groove on at is “First Thursday” party. The 70’s themed social from 5 to 9 p.m. includes hustle dance lessons, a 70’s band, body art, a disco-ball craft activity, the film “American Hustle” and a new VIP lounge. For more information go here.

The Harriet Beecher Stowe Center will honor the 2014 recipients of the Student Stowe Prizes at the Big Tent Jubilee Thursday evening on the Stowe Center lawn.  Madeline Sachs of University of Chicago Laboratory High School (Chicago, IL) and Donya Nasser of St. John’s University (New York, NY) will receive their awards from Teresa Younger, newly appointed president and CEO of the Ms. Foundation for Women.  For more information go here. hbs

On Friday, head over to the New Britain Museum of American Art for its “First Friday” soiree beginning at 5:30 p.m. The R&B band, Strutt, will provide the sounds and there will also be appetizers, beverages, a poetry reading and more. For more information go here.

Attention, lords and ladies of the Seven Kingdoms, get your fill of jousting, fortune-telling, fencing andthrones more at the CT Science Center’s “Liquid Lounge” get-together Friday from 6 to 10 p.m. The 21+ party is going back to  the age of knights, fair maidens and dragons and if you dress as your favorite medieval or Game of Thrones character, you get a chance to win glittering prizes. Food, entertainment, hands on science and more are always the features at this  downtown bash. For more information go here.

As we mentioned, it’s not all about that end of the day unwinding this week.

MTH Exerior.28.25.04Head over to the Bushnell Saturday night and get your Dan Brown fix. The best-selling author of books including “The Da Vinci Code” and “Inferno” is doing a program there thanks to The Mark Twain House & Museum. The evening als includes a meet-and-greet with the famed author for those with VIP tickets. For more information go here.

On Sunday, it’s off to Max Downtown where the Greater Hartford Arts Council will hold its annual wine dinner fundraiser benefiting its summer arts program. For more information on the wine-paired dinner and evening of fun  go here.

And in case you forgot, Sunday is Broadway’s Tony Award day and Hartford Stage and itsgentguide “Gentleman’s Guide To Love and Murder” is a front runner. The Stage will be holding a  Hartford party at The Society Room where guests will watch the televised show in New York and keep their collective fingers crossed that Hartford’s own play will be picking up its deserved Great White Way honors. For more information go here.

Celebrate May’s Last Weekend Hartford!

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Where did the month go? May is nearly done and only blue skies, sunshine and summer to lookcalendar_clip_art-1.29213820_std[1] forward to as we wait for June, July and August to arrive.

But let’s not shortchange these last days of May. There are plenty of choices when it comes to getting out before the month changes again.

On Friday, “living legend”  and Grammy award winner Tony Bennett will be at The Bushnell belting out the classics that have made him one of the most popular and talented singers of the past 50+ years.

tonyBennett will be performing with his daughter Antonia Bennett in the show featuring his hits like  “I Left My Heart in San Francisco,” “Rags to Riches”  and “Who Can I Turn To.” Tickets are $59 to $129. for information go to  bushnell.org or call  860-987-6000

Also on Friday, head to The Pond House Café for the 5th Annual Rainbow Ball Masquerade from 6:30 p.m. to midnight.  For more information go here.

The evening includes food, entertainment and fun with all proceeds going to CLARO, a non-profit organization promoting homophobia and heterosexism policy and education.

Saturday is a day for dancing and art and good causes.

Interval House, the non-profit providing assistance to victims of domestic abuse, will hold its annual interval“Step Up and Step Out” benefit  at The Society Room in Hartford. The black tie event includes a red carpet welcomes, wine-paired dinner,  and auction benefiting the agency and its work. Get ticket information here.

Saturday also marks the fifth  annual “Art for Aids” party, benefiting  AIDS Connecticut, with a portion going to ACT’s permanent endowment, The Richard B. Fried Fund, administered by the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving.

The evening includes the “art grab” allowing each guest to take home an original 12′ by 12′ canvas,artforaids as well as music, food, art and more. There is also an art show sale.

Go here for more information.

Also on Saturday, The Hartford  Symphony Orchestra closes its 2013-2014 “Pops!”  series with “Do You Hear What The People Sing?” at 7:30 p.m. at The Bushnell.  For information go here.

All weekend you can head to Theaterworks for its new play “Love/Sick”  and Hartford Stage for its production of “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike.”

 

 

 

Grab Your Hat Hartford! It’s The Weekend!!

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The rain is scheduled to go away (oh please)  and that means time to partake of the weekend Hartford!  Andcalendar_clip_art-1.29213820_std[1] the choices range from very, very pretty to very, very  hot!

It’s Kentucky Derby Day Saturday. Besides a host of restaurant and club specials, there is also Ron’s Run for the Roses, the annual fundraiser at Folly Farm in Simsbury, benefiting The Ron Foley Foundation and its fight against pancreatic cancer.

The fun, including fabulous hats and mint juleps,  begins at 2:30 p.m.  There are hat and outfit contests, auctions, equestrian displays, Kentucky Derby viewing and more at the event that has raised  over $500,000 for research and help to those patients and their families in need.

run12For more information go here.

Also on Saturday, the CT Forum will host another in its lecture series, this one titled “Nerd Fest.” It features panelists Adam Savage, co-host of “MythBusters,” actress Aisha Tyler and New York Times “ethicist” and author Chuck Klosterman.

The forum convenes at The Bushnell at 8 p.m. For more information go here.

nbm8Also on Saturday, the New Britain Museum of American Art will hold its annual “The Art pARTy of the Year” spring gala. About 500 people are expected at the fundraiser that includes a cocktail reception, dinner , dancing , auctions and more. For more information go here.

 

 

On Sunday, Matthew Phillips Salon on LaSalle Road in West Hartford will host its 14th annual “Cut-A-Thon” benefiting the Helen and Harry Gray Cancer Center at Hartford Hospital. Haircuts are being offered from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. for a cost of $25. Walk-ins are welcome. Information: 860-523-5261.

tandooriBut let’s back up a bit. Start the weekend on May 1 at the Wadsworth’s “First Thursday After Hours” and its May theme,  “Indian Tandoori.” The popular, monthly  Happy Hour from 5 to 8 p.m. will include Bollywood dance lessons, Indian-inspired food, henna body art, dance demonstrations and more. For Information go here.

Need some peace and solace?

yoga-area-header[1]

Head over to Elizabeth Park on May 3 for the second annual “Re-Create Ct,” a holistic festival featuring yoga, Zumba classes, vendors, artisans, a fitness workshop. meditation and more to soothe mind and body. The event begins at 11 a.m. and continues to 5 p.m. For more information go here.

SAMBA-2014-poster-11-x-17[1]Want anything but peace and quiet?

Then dance over to Hartford’s eighth annual “Samba Fest” at Mortensen Riverfront  May 3 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Composer/guitarist Ivan Vilela will be featured along with Nation Beat and a host of other musical acts. For information go here.

Want a little more weekend? Monday is Cinco de Mayo and that means dozens of restaurant and party specials all over the state and on Tuesday Malta House will celebrate its “Wonder Women” at The Bushnell.

Also on Tuesday, “Beauty and the Beast”  opens at The Bushnell. For more information go here.

“Dancing With The Stars” CRIS Style

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cris12 (2)It was a hot night with some sassy dancing at the Bond Ballroom Saturday as CRIS Radio held its annual “Night to Remember, Dining and Dancing in the Dark” fundraiser.

The spotlight was on several well-known Hartford-area people who have spent the past several months taking dance lessons donated by the Arthur Murray studio near Westfarms in preparation for the contest and the chance to win Hartford’s version of the coveted “mirror” ball of “Dancing With the Stars” fame.

And the dancers did not disappoint.

cris99Winners were the not-so-amateur amateurs, Miss CT Kaitlyn Tarpey who danced with Arthur Murray pro Moises Guerrero and Broadway actor/director Billy Johnstone who danced with studio pro Sally Nasatka, marking the first time in the history of the event that there have been two teams with perfect scores.

But it was the real amateurs, Bushnell’s Paul Marte, Hartford Public Access television’s Jose Vega, WFSB reporter Courtney Zieller and NBC Ct’s Todd Piro, who stole the show.

While all landed solid scores from judges FoxCt/WTIC Joe Furey, ballroom dancer/instructor Heather Leyden and Java, Piro got an extra nod for going above and beyond. He waxed his chest for the competition.

“I did it for you,” he told judges dancing in a costume that included an “unbuttoned-down-to-cris11 (2)there” shirt, making man-scaping a must.

cris98Emceed by Scot Haney, the WFSB weather guy had just learned a few days before the competition that his longtime ex, Marte, would be dancing to “Marry You” by Bruno Mars.

“All I can say,” joked Haney after watching a dapper, dressed- as-a-groom Marte perform with dressed-as-a- bride Lacey Escobales,  “he never danced like that when we were together.”

A Weekend Sure To Wonderfully Wear You Out Hartford!

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If you haven’t squeezed in a nap by now this week, you are out of luck. calendar_clip_art-1_opt

There is so much going on in and around Hartford going forward,   that there is no time for weekend snoozing.

Fun begins Thursday  at On20 in Hartford with a launch party celebrating the “Best of Hartford.” The event features the May issue of Hartford Magazine and the people, restaurants, shops and services named to its 11th annual “Best of” list.

Also on Thursday, the state Office of Tourism will hand out its annual “Pineapple Awards” at the Connecticut Conference on Tourism at the Connecticut Convention Center. Awards in categories including Excellence in Tourism, Tourism Ambassador and Volunteer of the Year will be presented to each of the state’s three tourism districts.

pineappleAmong those competing for awards in the Central Connecticut district are the Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum, the Marriott Hartford Downtown Hotel, Farmington Valley Trails Council and Mark Twain House & Museum.

Keynote speaker at the daylong event is Daniel Levine, global editor of the website WikieTrend.org. For information go here.

Also on Thursday , the Simsbury Performing Arts Center will hold its Kickoff Celebration at the Hop Meadow Country Club beginning at 6 p.m. The event will highlight the upcoming 2014 season which includes performances by  Willie Nelson and Lynyrd Skynyrd. Proceeds from the event will benefit the center.

For information go here.

On Friday, the Wadsworth Atheneum opens its “Art and Flowers” weekend. On Friday, floral FineArtFlowers_wadsworthatheneumF-10-2_WEB[1]designer Bill Graham who will create arrangements based on “the little black dress” theme. The demonstration is followed by lunch.

On Saturday, there will be a farm-to-table dinner and tours of the galleries and art and flower displays. For ticket information for both events  go here.

And what is spring without Meriden’s annual Daffodil Festival?

DaffodilsThe sea of yellow is ready and waiting at Hubbard Park  and opens Saturday at 10 a.m. Celebrating its 36th year, the festival includes 600,001 daffodils, food, arts and crafts, children’s rides, entertainment, a parade, and firework on Saturday , and arts and crafts, food, children’s rides and entertainment on Sunday.

For more information go here.

Saturday night has more events than any one person can possibly get to but here goes.

The American Red Cross will hold its “Red, White And You Ball” at the Connecticut Convention Center.

stew (2)The black tie evening, emceed by WFSB personalities Dennis House and Kara Sundlun and ESPN’s Kevin Negandi, features educational exhibitions, digital storytelling, three-dimensional installations and imaginative pop up booths.

Honorees for the night will be Kim and Stew Leonard Jr. who will receive the Red Cross 2014 Community Impact Award.

For information go here.

Meanwhile over at Hartford Stage’s “Party in the Paint House” time once again, this one hs13celebrating the theater’s 50th birthday.

Titled “1964” Hartford Stage Gala” the evening is all about the year the theater began and will feature its paint shop turned into a “oh-those 60s” party venue. For information go here.

At the Bond Hotel, CRIS Radio will host its 4th Annual “Dancing in the Dark” gala featuring a dance competition with celebrities including Broadway actor Billy Johnstone, NBC CT anchor Todd Piro, Miss Ct. Kaitlyn Tarpey, WFSB reporter Courtney Zieller, tv host Jose Vega, the Bushnell’s Paul Marte and emceed by WFSB personality Scot Haney.

Cris Radio Dining & Dancing in the Dark April 21, 2012For information go here.

And at the Bushnell, the Hartford Symphony Orchestra will perform its 2nd annual “Playing With Food” concert, a collaborative effort with several Hartford area restaurants.  Music based on food dishes will be featured. For more information go here.

Like chocolate? On Sunday head over to the Connecticut Science Center for the Chocolate World Expo. All things chocolate  including baked goods, special foods, gelato and more will be featured at the event that runs from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.  For more information go here.

MetroHartford Alliance Unveils New Logo At Annual Meeting

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MHA_logo_color_cmyk_med_horz_vectorHartford’s “rising star” has moved from high in the sky to almost earth again, landing firmly between the words “Metro” and “Hartford” for the foreseeable future.

That tiny five-pointed star first introduced to Hartford in 2001, is now part of the updated MetroHartford Alliance logo, new branding that was unveiled at the alliance’s annual meeting at the Bushnell Monday night.

“It’s about the diversity and the different people and the different strengths in our city,” explained Alliance president/CEO  Oz Griebel about the Mintz and Hoke created logo featuring an arc of multi-colored shards that, depending on how you look at them, resemble a star burst or a roughly drawn city skyline. “It is more futuristic and contemporary than the old logo,” he said explaining the new design that represents the city in tandem with the city’s new marketing mantra “Hartford Has It.”

It was an elbow- to – elbow crowd at the annual meeting that attracted an energetic group of community leaders, businessmen and women, and non-profit representatives, all celebrating the new logo, the renewed sprit in the city, a bit better economy and a future of growth.

“People in this city could not have been nicer,” said Dan Hincks, who is responsible for one of the big business ventures for the city in 2014, his long-awaited Infinity Hall music theater at Hartford’s Front Street entertainment district. “We are excited to be coming here and still expect to open our doors in June or July.”

But the big question to Hincks, also CEO of Farmington-based Data Management Inc. as well as Infinity Hall in Norfolk, is who will be the big opening act when the Hartford venue opens for business?

“We have a few choices lined up but we can’t make a final decision until we know exactly what date we are opening,” said Hincks, who was attending his first Alliance annual meeting. “But it will be good.”

Spring Arrives And So Does The Hartford Weekend

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calendar_clip_art-1.29213820_std[1]jewIt’s practically official, winter is over and spring has arrived. And it’s time to seriously get out of the house Hartford! And the spring choices include:

The highly regarded Jewish Film Fest opens March 20 at Front Street’s Spotlight Theatres. The festival features 23 thrillers, romantic comedies, shorts and documentaries from 13 countries in five venues over 10 days. The 2014 series opens with “The Jewish Cardinal” and an opening night dinner gala at the Hartford theater. The series continues through March 30. For more information go here.

To get the weekend off to a good start, you can also head over to Hartford’s Real Art Ways for its monthly Creative Cocktail Hour from 6 to 10 p.m. on March 20.  The evening features the opening of two new exhibits and a recycled art workshop with Trashion Fashion. More information is here.

While we officially say goodbye to  hot chocolate season, you can enjoy the treat another way on March 21 at the Bushnell. The program titled” Hot Chocolate Soul” includes music, comedy and poetryhome with a live Karl Browne’s Smooth Improvisation. More information is here.

What better way to welcome spring than with some spring clean-up, fix-up inspiration when it comes to your home. Get a big boost of that energy by heading over to The Spring Home Show at the XL Center from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. March 21 to 23. The show features over 300 exhibits all aimed at giving you ideas when it comes to home improvement.  For information go here.

Now that the weather if getting a bit nicer, time to put that body in motion and support severalriding_a_bicycle_311140[1] good causes in Hartford . Get a jump-start by heading over to XL Center atrium where the Downtown Hartford YMCA will host its 4th annual  “Mission in Motion” event March 22 from 8:30 to  1 p.m. The event supports the YMCA’s Annual Campaign, Read to Succeed, Live Strong and Footlights Performing Arts Program.  Teams secure sponsors and spend time on a bank on stationary bicycles to raise money. Find out more  here.

Love Italian? You must get over to the Wadsworth Atheneum for its Italian Film Wesaluteekend.

On March 21,  there will be a reception at 6 p.m with food from  Peppercorn’s Grill followed by a screening of ” I Am Love” at 7 p.m. On March 22, at 5 p.m. it’s “Big Night,” followed by a five-course Italian dinner at the museum cafe.

On March 23, explore “Views of Italy” in a docent-guided tour of the museum’s collection followed by a screening of “Mid-August Lunch.” For more information go here.

Get in a spring kind of mood by thinking pink and head over to the Hill-Stead Museum on Mardancersch 23 from 2 to 4 p.m

Guests are invited to celebrate French artist Edgar Degas and his famous painting “Dancers in Pink,” part of Hill-Stead collection,  at this family-friendly event. It will feature a performance by the Albano Ballet dancers and a tour of the museum. Light refreshments will be served. there will also be a special art activity mural project as part of the event. To find out more go here.

 

 

Roaring 20s/Gatsby At The Bushnell’s Ovations Gala

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bushtubYou knew you were in for some fun as soon as you walked into the Bushnell’s annual ovations gala Saturday night.

The receiving line included a bathtub full of gin flasks!

The props was just part of the plan to set the tone for the annual fundraiser, that this year was themed “ All That Jazz,” a night all about “bees knees,” “hotsy totsy” and “cats pajamas” as guests celebrated those Roaring 20s and all that naughty behavior that went with the decade.

“The fun part was trying to come up with the right outfit,” said Laura Campbell, a West Hartford resident who put together a flapper-style dress with a feathered hair fascinator for the evening. “And this was my grandmother’s,” she added showing off a vintage beaded mesh evening bag from the 20s. “I know she would get such a kick out of knowing I used it tonight.”

Also lending just the right look to the bash were actors from the Thomaston Opera House includibushova12ng Frank Beaudry and Shannon Sniffin, also decked out in 20s costumes.

The costume-optional event gave guests a chance to be someone else for the night. For board member Larry Starr and his wife Cindy, it mean “gangsta” time.

The two, who are well-known for having some of the best costumes at the annual gala, were dressed in matching pinstripes and carrying some make-believe heat as they channeled “Bonnie and Clyde.”

“She’s my gun moll,” joked Starr about his date for the night.

The annual Ovations gala benefits The Bushnell’s arts-in-education programs, including bush10 (2)PARTNERS (Partners in Arts Revitalizing Schools).

Doing the official welcome was Bushnell president and CEO David Fay who opted out of period dress in favor of “dapper” but had good words that were suitable for any decade.

“It has been a really good year, a terrific year,” said Fay, with longtime girlfriend Peggy Beley at his side. “It’s a night to celebrate.”