Many outdoor events as fall begins: giant pumpkins! boat show! scarecrows!
The Third Annual Giant Pumpkin Weigh-Off will take place Sunday, Sept. 27, from 10 to 3 in Ballard Park, just off Ridgefield's Main Street, opposite the Ridgefield Library. The exhibit and competition has become a popular fall event in the town, with growers bringing their prize specimens from New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Massachusetts as well as Connecticut. It's hosted by the Ridgefield Chamber of Commerce in cooperation with the Ridgefield Supply Company and the Connecticut Giant Pumpkin Growers Club.
Judging begins at noon. Last year the top six entries each weighed more than 1400 pounds. There will be music, farm stands, food trucks and family activities; for more information call the chamber at 203-438-5992.
Also this weekend.....
Boat show opens
The Progressive Insurance Norwalk Boat Show opens today, Sept. 24 at Norwalk Cove Marina, 52 Calf Pasture Beach Rd., East Norwalk, and motors or sails along on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 to 6 each day. Visitors can view and shop for deals on the newest models of motor and sailing yachts, sport fishing boats, family cruisers, sailboats and marine accessories.
There are also opportunities for interactive boating and water sports education; paddleboarding with pros; free boat rides on Long Island Sound, plus Nature Nick’s Animal Adventures for families and kids and more. Admission is $15 per adult, children 15 and under free when accompanied by adult; group discounts available. Online tickets: BoatShowNorwalk.com; up-to-minute info on Twitter, Facebok and Instagram.
Autumn book sale
Organizers of this weekend’s Awesome Autumn Book Sale fund-raiser at Wilton Library, 137 Old Ridgefield Road in Wilton Center, tout that from tots to teens (in the Brubeck Room) to adults (Book Cellar) are covered by the offerings, which range from board books, to picture books, young adult novels, fantasy and fiction, bestsellers and nonfiction and many specific categories, like mysteries, travel, gardening and biographies, plus DVDs, CDs and books on CDs. The sale starts Friday, Sept. 25, at noon, and continues Saturday from 10 to 5 and Sunday 1 to 5 (when everything is half-priced). For more details: wiltonlibrary.org or 203-762-3950.
Sheffield arts show
The Summer Sheffield Arts Series opens a new show at St. Philip’s Artists Guild, 23 France Street, Norwalk, on Friday, Sept. 25, with a reception and silent auction from 6 to 9 p.m. This benefit for the Norwalk Seaport Association features works by the St. Philip’s Artists Guild, Rowyaton Arts Center, Firing Circuits Artists Studios, the Loft Artists Association plus a solo exhibit by Sherry Becker. For more details, go to spagstudios.com.
Carrying The Weight
The Fairfield Theatre Company welcomes a new chapter of the classic rock band The Band as The Weight drops by the theater company’s venue, The Warehouse at 70 Sanford Street, Fairfield, on Friday, Sept. 25, at 8 p.m. (doors open at 7). For tickets, $35-$40 ($3 member discount), call the box office at 203-259-1036 or visit fairfieldtheatre.org.
Created by Jim Weider, who succeeded Robbie Robertson as lead guitarist, The Weight is a five-piece ensemble which replicates the music of the retired band of The Last Waltz concert and album fame, whose one-time employer and sometime mentor was Bob Dylan.
Memphis: The Musical, which follows the fame and forbidden love of a radio deejay who wants to change the world and a club singer who is ready for her big break (a story said to be inspired by underground dance clubs of 1950s Memphis), will open at Downtown Cabaret Theatre, 268 Golden Hill Street, Bridgeport, on Friday, Sept. 25, at 7:30 p.m. and continues Saturday at 5 and 8:15 and Sunday at 5. For tickets (discount packages available), call the box office at 203-576-1536 or visit dtcab.com.
Pilobolus, whose dance performances require “extreme strength, flexibility and athleticism” and whose members have made “a specialty of playful topsy, turvy entanglements that defy anatomical logic,” according to the troupe, will take center stage at the Ridgefield Playhouse at 80 East Ridge, Friday, Sept. 25, at 8 p.m. For tickets, $50, call the box office at 203-438-5795 or order online at ridgefiedplayhouse.org.
Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, a farcical, satirical comedy by Christopher Durang, ended its run at the Carriage House Arts Center in Cranbury Park, Norwalk, and now moves to the Wilton Playshop’s Lovers Lane theater, with a second opening night, Friday, Sept. 25, at 8 p.m. The show continues Saturday at 8 and Sunday at 2. Tickets: wiltonplayshop.org or box office at 203-762-7629.
Evening with Vega
Singer-songwriter Suzanne Vega will perform in a benefit concert for Bridge House on Friday, Sept. 25, at the Bijou Theatre, 275 Fairfield Ave., Bridgeport. A reception and silent auction begin at 6:30 p.m., the program and concert at 8:30. For tickets, $100 each, call the box office at 203-332-3228 or visit thebijoutheatre.com.
Bridge House assists persons with psychiatric disabilities to return to school, work or independent living. Info: bridgehouseconcert.org or 203-335-5339.
Collection of comedies
Love/Sick, the newest production by Broadway star John Cariani, described as an assortment of “nine slightly twisted” comedic short plays, opens on Friday, Sept. 25, at 8 p.m. at Arc Stages theater, at 147 Wheeler Ave. in Pleasantville, N.Y. This Westchester regional premiere is followed by shows on Saturday night at 8 and Sunday night at 7. For tickets ($36, adults; $28, students/seniors), visit arcstages.org or call 914-747-6206.
Montmartre in Darien
La Place des Artistes comes to life at Grove Street Plaza, Darien, on Saturday, Sept. 26, from 10 to 6. This is a Paris-style, free outdoor art event, where visitors can interact with art and artists (over 20, including painters, photographers, ceramicists, printmakers), plus musicians, dancers, French-themed cuisine, such as crepes and pastries, and more. A benefit for Darien Arts Center (darienarts.org), the rain date is Oct. 3.
Woofs, Wines, Felines
Woofs, Wines and Felines, sponsored by ROAR and Blue Buffalo to benefit the cats and dogs at the ROAR Donofrio Family Animal Shelter, will take place Saturday, Sept. 26, from 4 to 7 at Cellar XV, 88 Danbury Road, Ridgefield. More than 60 wines and craft beers will be offered, along with music by the Griffin Anthony Full Band, and Oktoberfest foods by Ciao! Catering, plus a silent auction. Tickets are $40 in advance at Cellar XV or at roar-ridgefield.org; $45 at the door.
The Devon Rotary Club gets an early jump on biergarten season with the 27th annual Milford Oktoberfest, a benefit for charities that’s sponsored by Milford Bank, on Saturday, Sept. 26, from noon to 9 at the Rotary Pavilion at Fowler Field (1 Shipyard Lane) behind the Milford Public Library. Fourteen Oktoberfest and craft beers will be on tap, a bratwurst-eating contest, photo ops with the club’s own version of the St. Pauli girls, mugs, German hats and t-shirts, raffles, dancers, music by an oom-pah band, Rum Runners and Total Hacks, plus a kid’s corner. Pavilion’s number: 203-783-3284.
Outdoor art show
More than 185 juried artists from 31 states, Canada and Israel — 42 of them new exhibitors — will display their paintings, pastels, photography/digital art, wearable art, crafts and more at the 54th annual Armonk Outdoor Art Show, benefitting the North Castle Public Library, on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 26-27, 10 to 5, rain or shine. Admission to the venue at 205 Business Park Drove, Armonk, N.Y, is $10, $8 for seniors, free for 17 and under. Info: armonkoutdoorartshow.org or 914-806-6307.
Christ Church Tashua’s Apple Festival opens on Saturday, Sept. 26, from 10 to 5, and continues Sunday, Sept. 27, 11 to 4. There will be pies, other baked goods, candy and caramel apples; crafts, Kid’s Zone; mums, pumpkins, gourds, etc. For more details, call the church, at 5170 Madison Ave., Trumbull, at 203-913-2270.
Pascal to perform
Tony nominee and Broadway star Adam Pascal (Rent, Aida, Memphis, Cabaret and Chicago) will perform at a special event to benefit Music Theatre of Connecticut on Saturday, Sept. 26, at 8 p.m. (VIP event with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres begins at 6:30) at MTC Mainstage, 509 Westport Ave., Norwalk. Tickets $125 and $75 may be reserved by calling 203-454-3883 or visit musictheatreofct.com.
Art show reception
Ridgefield Guild of Artists opens its 38th Annual Juried Show on Saturday, Sept. 26, with a reception from 4 to 6 at the guild’s gallery at 34 Halpin Lane. The show draws established and emerging artists from all over the Northeast. Juror is Lisa Messinger, an independent curator, specializing in modern and contemporary art, who previously served on the curatorial staff of the Metropolitan Museum. For more details, visit rgoa.org or call 203- 438-8863.
Stepping Stone Museum for Children’s “Grand Memories!” day on Saturday. Sept. 26, offers free admission for grandparents for the opening of the “Broken? Fix It” hands-on workshop, where things like dolls in disrepair or misfiring train track circuits or even grandma’s favorite plate can diagnosed and fixed. There’s also a display of past and present called “Typewriter Meets IPhone 6.” and at 3 p.m., a Talented Education Suzuki School ensemble of children ages 4-12 will perform selections for violin, piano, cello and guitar; later visitors can play the instruments. This Mathews Park museum at 303 West Ave., Norwalk is open 10 to 5, Monday-Sunday; info: steppingstonemuseum.org or 203-899-0609.
Fallen heroes tribute
The 11th biennial Fallen Heroes Memorial Tribute will be held on Saturday. Sept. 26, at Indian Ledge Park in Trumbull from 11:30 to 2:30. Music by Remember September will be performed from 11:30-12:55. The Gold Star ceremony begins at 1 p.m. For more information on this free and open to the public event, visit ctfallenheroes.org.
Magic Moments gala
The Kennedy Center’s weeklong Autism Week celebration culminates with Magic Moments, a benefit that takes place Saturday, Sept. 26, at the Westport Inn, 1595 Post Road East, beginning at 7 p.m. with a cocktail party. There’ll also be food, a silent auction and music by The What Up Funk Band, featuring Jerry Vigorito from Band Together. Tickets are $125 per person. For more details, call 203-365-8522, ext. 229, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit KC-Autism.org to register online.
Time to feed
Early morning visitors to the Maritime Aquarium, 10 North Water Street, Norwalk, can take a turn feeding turtles, horseshoe crabs, rays and harbor seals on Saturday, Sept. 26, from 8 to 10. Advance registration for Feeding Time is required and the fees are $45 per adult and $25 per child, who must be at least 5. To register: 203-852-0700 or online at maritimeaquarium.org. Before feeding the aquatic creatures, landlubber participants partake in a light breakfast at the Cascade Cafe.
The 17th annual Scarecrow Festival returns to Plasko’s Farm, 670 Daniels Farm Road in Trumbull on Sunday, Sept. 27, from 11 to 5. The events include Make Your Own Scarecrow ($15 for materials), games, horse rides on Splash, community booths, crafts and food, including a corn roast. The farm has a corn maze called Defeat the Dragon, with more than one-and-one-half miles of twists and turns but it’s not part of the free admission; a portion of the maze fee is donated to St. Vincent’s Swim Across the Sound. For more details, call 203-268-2716.
Quick Center fetes 25th
Fairfield University’s Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts will mark its 25th anniversary season with a premiere composition by Connecticut-based composer Gwyneth Walker, Mornings of Creation, to be performed by the Connecticut Trio at concert on Sunday., Sept. 27, at 3 p.m., at 1073 N. Benson Road on the campus in Fairfield. Also on the program: Haydn’s Piano Trio in C Major, Arensky’s Trio in D Minor and music by Piazzola, For tickets ($35. $30 and $25). go to quickcenter.com or call 203-254-4010.
The second annual CrimeCONN Mystery Conference, co-sponsored by the Westport Library at 20 Jesup Road and the New York chapter of Mystery Writers of America, will tale place Sunday, Sept. 27, from 9 to 4:30 in the library’s McManus Room. Panels will feature authors (Parnell Hall, David Handler, Chris Knopf, Steve Liskow, Nina Mansfield, Joe Meyers, Liz Mugavero, Tom Straw and E.J. Simon) plus forensic experts and publishing professionals. Books will be available for sale and signing. A $25 fee includes admission to all panels, a light breakfast, coffee and tea in addition to lunch. Registration is online at westportlibrary.org.
Opening the 68th season of Wilton Candlelight Concerts is the Takacs Quartet on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 4 p.m. at the Wilton Congregational Church, 70 Ridgefield Road. The program will feature Haydn’s String Quartet op.74 no. 1, Shostakovich’s String Quartet no. 3 and Dvorak’s String Quartet op. 105. Tickets, $30, (16 and under free) may be obtained at the door. For information on the concert series, which benefits the Wilton Library Associaton, go to wiltoncandlelightconcerts.org.
Dr. Kevin Green, an adjunct professor of physics at the University of Connecticut, will give a lecture on The History of the Galaxies on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 3:30 p.m. at the Bruce Museum, 1 Museum Drive, Greenwich. Scientists say there are somewhere between 125 and 200 billion galaxies (spiral, elliptical or dwarf varieties) in the universe — in the parts that can be observed, that is. Admission is free for museum members; donations accepted from others.
Award-winning poets Jessica Greenbaum (Gerald Cable Prize) and Daniel Brown (New Criterion Poetry Prize) will help the Katonah Poetry Series kick off the 2015-16 season at the Katonah Village Library, 26 Bedford Road, on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 4 p.m. (door open at 3:30 for seating). A reception follows the readings. The library is within walking distance from the Katonah train station. Info: katonahpoetry.com.
First gospel concert
The first annual Gospel Concert for Independence, a benefit for ARI of Connecticut, Inc., will be held on Sunday, Sept. 27, at Norwalk Concert Hall, 125 East Ave. There’s a VIP reception with appetizers and drinks ($100) at 5 p.m. at the nearby Norwalk Inn. The concert starts at 7 , featuring B.A.S.I.C. - Brothers & Sisters in Christ with Eric Brown, Chris Coogan and The Good News Choir, and cellist Kari Arezinni and more.
For concert tickets ($20 adults, $10 for children and seniors) and info: arict.org. ARI of Connecticut provides support services for people with developmental disabilities.
Folks on spokes, foot
Hundreds of cyclists, runners and walkers are expected to head to Fowler Field in Milford on Sunday, Sept. 27, for the 24th Folks on Spokes|Folks on Foot Ride, Run, Walk for Mental Health to benefit Bridges...A Community Support System, Inc. Registration and check-in begin at 7 a.m. There’s the 5K race, one-mile Kids Fun Run for children 5-9; bicycle tour with distances from 5 to 66 miles. The fees are $45 adult cyclists, $35 runners or walkers, children under 12, $10; day of event registration: $50 and $40 for adults. For details, visit folksonspokes.bridgesct.org or call 203-878-6365, ext. 359.
Ying Quartet concert
The Ying Quartet with guest Elinor Freer on piano will open the Newtown Friends of Music’s 39th season on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 3 p.m. at Edmond Town Hall, 45 Main Street. On the program: works of Schubert, Childs and Schumann. Single tickets ($25) are available at the box office one-hour before the concert. Kindergarten through 12th grade students are admitted free with ticket-buying adult; free also for college students with ID. Informal reception with the artists follows in the lobby. Reservations are required; call 203-426-6470 or visit newtownfriendsofmusic,org.
“The Spirit of Michael,” a multimedia tribute to the life and legacy of Michael Jackson will take center stage at the Ridgefield Playhouse, 80 East Ridge Road, on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 8 p.m. The show features a dance troupe that performs Jackson’s choreography, plus lasers, large screen video projections and concert sound. Tickets, $47.50, are available via ridgefieldplayhouse.org or 203-438-5795.
And coming up...
Andrew C. Wilk’s take on Live from Lincoln Center is a free presentation by the executive producer of the long-running PBS series, on Monday, Sept. 28, at noon at the Westport Library, 20 Jesup Road.; info: 203-291-4800 or westportlibrary.org.
Best-selling author Karin Slaughter will show up at the Wilton Library, 137 Old Ridgefield Road, on the release date of her latest novel, Pretty Girls, on Monday night from 7:30 to 9. The $30 fee includes two seats and one hardcover copy of the psychological thriller. Info: wiltonlibary.org or 203-762-3950.
The Bridgeport Community Historical Society presents Rich Marazzi and his book A Bowl Full of Memories: 100 Years of Football at the Yale Bowl on Tuesday, Sept. 29, at 6:30 p.m. at the North Branch Library, 3455 Ave., Bridgeport. The meeting is free. Info: 203-371-6397.
Art historian Susan Larkin will lead a tour of the Greenwich Historical Society’s collections with a focus on current pieces at the Bush-Holley House, 39 Strickland Road, Cos Cob, on Wednesday, Sept. 30, at 1 p.m.; $10 fee for adults ($8 seniors). Info: greenwichhistory.org or 203-869-6899, ext. 10.
Price for Freedom cast members and other stars including Robert Vaughn and Robert Clohessy are expected to attend a special screening of the film about the origin of Islamic terrorism in Iran, on Wednesday. Sept. 30, 7 p.m., at the Prospector Theater, 18 Prospect Street, Ridgefield.
Author and psychotherapist Joseph Burgo will be at the Ridgefield Library, 472 Main Street, on Thursday, Oct. 1, 7-8:30 p.m., talking about his new book, The Narcissist You Know: Defending Yourself Against Extreme Narcissists in an All-About-Me World. Info: ridgefieldlibrary.org or 203-438-2282.