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December 2017 A guide to finer living in Connecticut & abroad.

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Vol 13 Issue 145 2017

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Charming country cape nestled on 4.25 private acres in the historic town of Hadlyme.

This home boasts 2799 sq ft of living space. Perfect floor plan for entertaining your guests in a updated kitchen with custom granite countertops. Granite Center island with seating. open to dining room, living room, and post and beam great room with airy vaulted ceilings, floor to ceiling masonry fireplace with 2 french doors leading to sun filled deck. This 4 bedroom 3 full bath home has the unique quality of first or second floor master bedroom option. Upstairs master bedroom features 2 walk in closets, Private master bath with jacuzzi tub. This home enjoys hardwood floors throughout, central air conditioning, Oil heat, a fireplace and 2 wood burning stoves. Generator and hookup included. All of this on a professionally Landscaped large level yard perfect for outdoor entertaining, gardening, or horse property. Spacious 2 car garage with wood burning stove and stairs leading to second floor storage area. This is a must see home. Only minutes to center of town and major highways. $ 349,000. For more photos go to : www.107HemlockValley.com Contact Joel Lucas 860.304.9150 bankerbuddy@hotmail.com


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www.inkct.com

Features

DECEMBER 2017

Columns, Reviews, Events

ISSUE CONTENTS

The Cheesemonger

Cheese for the Holidays 2017

CURATED: Fine Art With a Twist

pg. 10

pg. 68

On The Vine Holiday Wine Gifts

pg. 74

December Events pg. 78

Upcoming events in Connecticut

The Power Behind the Olde Mistick Village

pg. 18

Dr. Seuss on the Loose: Seuss Museum in Springfield Massachusetts pg. 26

A Connecticut Christmas: Celebrating the Holiday in Classic New England Style

pg. 36

Cover image by: Caryn B. Davis from her recently released book “A Connecticut Christmas”

INK staff

David Holzman: Odyssey of the Technicolor Woodman pg. 46

Contributors:

Advertising:

Jeffery Lilly- founder/publisher/webmaster

Contact us to receive our media kit complete with detailed advertising information including ad rates, demographics, and distribution in your area.

Stephanie Sittnick - publisher/sales/design Carolyn Battisa - editorial Susan Cornell - editorial Laurencia Ciprus - editorial Caryn B. Davis - editorial/photography Charmagne Eckert - editorial Mark Seth Lender - Cardinal Points Nancy LaMar-Rodgers - editorial Barbara Malinsky - editorial Rona Mann - editorial

Harpist Grace Cloutier GRACE-ing the Strings pg.56

Paul Partica - The Cheesemonger

Please direct your advertising inquiries and questions to: Stephanie Sittnick - Director of Advertising advertising@ink-pub.com - 860-227-8199 Cheryl Powell - Greater Connecticut cheryl@ink-pub.com - 860-608-5749 Rona Mann - Clinton, CT - Rhode Island six07co@att.net - 401-539-7762 Jacki Hornish - Litchfield jacki@inkct - 401-539-7762

Anthony Reczek - editorial

Submit Events Listings to:

A. Vincent Scarano - photography

Angela Carontino - events@inkct.com

Every issue is printed using 100% Soy based ink.

We encourage the public to submit stories, poems, photography, essays, and all things creative. If you know of a person or place of interest, please submit your ideas to: submissions@ink-pub.com We will do our best to put your ideas in INK.

All content of INK Publications including but not limited to text, photos, graphics and layout are copyrighted by INK Publishing, LLC. Reproductions without the permission of the publisher is prohibited. Ink Publishing, LLC is not responsible for images or graphics submitted by advertisers which are not copyrighted or released for use in this publication.

INK PUBLISHING, LLC 107 Hemlock Valley Rd., East Haddam, CT email: info@ink-pub.com www.inkct.com


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Featuring art by contemporary expressionist Andre Kohn, one of the most collected figurative painters on the American art scene today, and exquisite bronze sculpture by Nicola Godden, creator of Icarus for the 2012 Olympic Village. w w w .cu ra te d .w orl d

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Pamela Stone-Duggan: Collector of Beautiful Things

CURATED: Fine Art With a Twist by RONA MANN

Pamela Stone-Duggan has incredible eyes. Aesthetically they are large and beautiful, filled with wonder, awe, and more than a playful dash of fun. But the eyes are more than what draws you to this woman; they are what has powered her success throughout her life and enabled her to bring something very special to Mystic. Because these eyes do more than just see, they possess a vision all their own. Ask Stone-Duggan where she’s from, and it provokes first a furrowed brow, then a hearty laugh. “I don’t actually know,” she begins. “I was born in New York City, but my mother had wanderlust. By the time I was 16 we had lived all over the United States and Mexico.” Although exposed to many different types of culture, it was always the visual that most

appealed to the young woman. “I’m very visual, I get bored quickly; therefore I am constantly drawn to what is unique and different.” “Unique and different” are also the adjectives that pepper Pamela’s life and drive her ambition. She majored in Spanish Studies and Business at Hofstra University, then found herself in an Israeli-owned company that manufactured engine parts. Originally hired to write technical material, she soon became their graphic designer. This led to publishing her own magazine and finally putting down roots in Boulder, Colorado for 21 years as Marketing and Public Relations Director for the University of Colorado’s Theatre and Dance Department. But tired of having to work with severely limited resources and raising the needed funds to power her projects, she applied on a whim for

Pamela Stone-Duggan

the job of Marketing and Creative Director at Stanford. “I got the job, and within two weeks I was out of Boulder and living up in Northern California.” This, Stone-Duggan readily offers, “was my dream job. I was empowered to do it...and I absolutely killed it!”


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A quick turn around CURATED yields a United Nations of fine art. There are vintage Moroccan rugs, a particular favorite of Pamela’s alongside kanthas from India. For the uninitiated, kantha is a form of traditional embroidery made from saris, featuring a simple running stitch along the edges. The colors and patterns are varied on both sides with motifs of flowers, animals, and geometric shapes, creating unique and beautiful shawls meant to stand out in a crowd. She also was empowered to search online for male companionship in her new area. Within a short time she met an Irishman who likewise shared her love of travel and beautiful things. A year later they married and moved yet again, this time south to the beautiful California town of Ojai; but in little more than a year and a half wanderlust once again took hold, and the couple began looking for a new place to put down roots. Pamela had become familiar with Mystic while visiting friends several times and convinced Peter to take a trip to the seaside town. It didn’t take long before he too was smitten, and the couple moved East. Although Peter spoke of retirement and slowing down, his wife pushed back. Pamela StoneDuggan clearly yearned for yet another adventure! On April 1st that adventure took on new life when the doors opened wide to CURATED, “a fine art gallery with a twist,” according to its owner/curator. CURATED satisfies Pamela’s desire for that “unique and different,” showcasing amazing art and artistry culled from every corner of the globe. “Everything here is one-of-a-kind,” Stone-Duggan says. “We travel all over the world to bring back beautiful things. I am always searching for the cool stuff.” A favorite

venue of this energetic curator is Porto, Portugal, while pausing to add, “we’re also going to art shows in Bologna and Spain this winter.” While Pamela and her husband are across the world seeking out unusual fine art and beautiful goods, CURATED and the customers who visit, will be well cared for by Sales Manager,

Sculpture is positively inherent to the charm and allure of CURATED from the whimsical little characters dotting the front window beckoning you to venture inside, to the more classic pieces by artists Nicola Godden and the Terra Cotta of Paola Grizi found throughout. Perhaps most prominent is Godden’s winged metal sculpture titled “Icarus Rising,” a piece that always arrests visitors and with good reason. Pick up an Irish blanket from Galway and enjoy the feel of the cashmere and lambswool against your skin, or follow Pamela’s gaze to the polarized Izipizi eyeglasses from France, the chunky silver jewelry from Madrid, and the delicious pewter and turquoise tags for your favorite pet. Best of all, there’s “fine art with a twist” here for everyone in every price point.

Georgia Neri and sales associate, Melissa Pelham, each with a long history of high end retail sales and a knowledge of, and appreciation for, everything in the gallery. “Most of the art here is abstractive,” StoneDuggan says, “but absolutely everything here brings a smile to my face.”

Pamela’s artistic talents have also allowed her to design an exclusive CURATED line of beautiful things from leather pouches to the wildly popular lightweight crossbody bags with room for money, phone, credit cards, keys, lipstick, and many compliments. Each represented artist is featured on a white board with images, biographies, and a bit about their individual media, so visitors can better understand the inspiration behind their art.


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a welcoming, joyous, fun place enhanced by wooden plank floors, rustic beams, and lighting that serves to complement the work, not overpower it. Pamela Stone-Duggan is by her own admission a collector of beautiful things, inviting

Every time the door opens those beautiful, wise eyes light up as Stone-Duggan warmly greets visitors, allowing them the time and privacy to explore, but letting them know she’s here to answer questions or help. And when they do ask, she launches not into a sales pitch, but into a litany of love as she happily demonstrates, pontificates, and identifies each artist and their country. CURATED is the sort of place you want to return again and again because it constantly changes (“I play Spin the Bottle fairly often”), with Stone-Duggan carefully curating the beautiful things within. This is not a stuffy gallery that intimidates those of little knowledge or experience. Pamela’s careful eye aided by her design background has made CURATED

you to visit CURATED and discover them yourself through her eyes... and your own. CURATED is found at 29 West Main Street, right in the heart of downtown Mystic. www.curated.world (800) 249-0129


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It Takes a Village? No! It Takes a Joyce... The Power Behind The Olde Mistick Village by RONA MANN The Olde Mistick Village is just shy of 60 unique shops, restaurants, cinemas, and services. The Olde Mistick Village is a four-season shopping and entertainment destination. The Old Mistick Village is modeled after a circa 1720 New England village.

The Olde Mistick Village is JOYCE OLSON RESNIKOFF. Some people collect stamps. Others collect coins, dolls, or other inert memorabilia. Joyce Olson Resnikoff collects people. They matter more to her than leases and financial statements. She wants to “look in their eyes and have them tell me their dreams.” That’s the process she undergoes as developer of the Olde Mistick Village when she meets with a potential tenant. “I never look at their financial statements,” she reiterates, “but I always look in their eyes to see if they really want this.” Titans of business would scoff, but it’s the way Resnikoff works, and she’s never been burned. “I sign a lease with a handshake; each of my tenants is family to me. That’s what I tell

every new tenant: ‘Welcome to the Family.’” Corny? If that’s corny, then so is this delightful 81year old woman who’s been doing business this way for the past 55 years. “I credit it all to my father, 150%” Joyce says.

It is impossible to interview this powerhouse of a woman and not hear about her father. She fairly insists upon telling the stories because she embraced his wisdom and lived his lessons not just with her success in business, but in life. Her father came to America from Norway speaking no English, but he knew how to build a house. So he built one house in East Haven, Connecticut. “After that one house, he built a street of houses and then a whole housing development,” Joyce imparts. “When I was in the 4th grade I was playing hide and seek, fell down, and broke my elbow. At the hospital


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“We went through eight architects until we selected the right one,” Joyce continues. Her twin brother, Jerry did all the construction making it look not like a mall, but like an 18th century New England village. “The Olde Mistick Village opened in 1973 with 40 stores,” Resnikoff says proudly. At the time Joyce was a mother of four young sons, and many scoffed at her role as developer, expecting her to stay home and just be a housewife. But Joyce was always determined like the father who had gone before her...and she was a fighter. they looked at my father and asked him if he had a house. He told them, ‘I have 500 houses.’ They didn’t believe him and therefore only charged him $7! I just love telling that story.” Martin Olson went on to become a prime

developer of FINAST Grocery Stores, then in 1952 he built the first shopping center, the Groton Shopping Plaza, which the family still owns to this day. In 1965 Olson wanted to build his first mall in the Mystic area, but was told there was not enough population to do so.

During these years the “Blue Laws” were still in effect prohibiting retail business on Sunday in Connecticut. That didn’t sit well with Joyce Olson Resnikoff who picked up the gauntlet and fought for the right of her tenants to remain open. She took on those who felt that


23 business on Sunday somehow harmed God and the family, ignoring the double standard that those same laws were relaxed from Thanksgiving to Christmas. Her arguments supported the very heart of tourism. If the Mystic Seaport was a family destination and it was allowed to be open on Sunday, why not the Village? Eventually the Blue Laws ended, and the Olde Mistick Village flourished. In addition to her father, mother, and early family life, Joyce credits her educational choices for making her what she became. “I originally went to college in Pennsylvania, but didn’t feel it was going anywhere. I persuaded my father to send me to Katharine Gibbs in Boston, and he agreed. They taught you how to handle yourself in business, and that has put me in good stead all these years. I’ve had a great life, I’ve been very lucky. You know, a lot of people say that, but they don’t act on it. You have to do that.” Resnikoff has indeed acted upon her good fortune, giving back every chance she gets to a community who has embraced her as a kind of Earth Mother to all. She has commandeered fundraisers, worked for the rights of women in business when even banks were loathe to give them a loan, and her rallying cry of “What can I do?” has become her mantra to a grateful community. Recently the Ocean Community Chamber of Commerce honored Joyce with its coveted Athena Award, an annual award given to a woman who has helped women realize their potential in business and has demonstrated both excellence in business and

community service. It could not be a more apt award since Athena was thought to be a protectress and the Greek goddess of war, wisdom, and practical reason. Sums up Joyce Olson Resnikoff just perfectly! She is also a fierce mother and grandmother, championing the causes of each member of her family, embracing them all, loving them unconditionally.

And she prays. Although raised in the Episcopalian faith, she converted to Judaism when marrying her second husband and is found nearly every Saturday at the synagogue. “If I am going to be here at the Village,” Joyce says, “I always go to the synagogue first. I keep prayer lists of people who are sick or need help, and I believe they work. I’ve seen it happen. So every Saturday

I stand up in synagogue and read t heir nam es.” At 81 is retirement in the picture? Not any time soon for this vibrant great-grandma who calls herself a “cougar” alluding to her “younger boyfriend” in Madeira, Portugal, a favorite destination. “If I ever get up in the morning, put my feet on the floor, and don’t want to go to the office, then it’ll be time to retire. But not until then...if that ever happens.” Looking around Resnikoff’s space which looks nothing like a traditional office, but rather like a home with sofas, comfortable chairs, tapestries, much cherished photographs of family, and a plethora of awards, plaques, and thank you certificates for her multitude of contributions, one’s eyes fall upon a small sign resting on a mahogany table. Its message is simple and succinct: SOMETHING GOOD IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO YOU. It did. It has. And there is absolutely no doubt it will continue. The Olde Mistick Village is easy to access just off I-95, Exit 90 in Mystic. The physical address is:


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Photo by Richard Malinsky


museum. From the fanciful archway naming the museum to the intricate curlicue, bubblegum pink handrails you know you are about to be transported to Dr. Seuss’s unique world.

Dr. Seuss on the Loose: Seuss Museum in Springfield Massachusetts By Barbara Malinsky A parade! In true Seussian style, like characters popping off the pages of his books, that’s exactly what the people of Springfield, Massachusetts did when the Amazing World of Dr. Seuss made its debut. Winding through the streets of Springfield where Theodor Seuss Geisel was born and raised and where much of the inspiration for his stories originated, they finally arrived at the front entrance to the

“I actually got very teary-eyed when we entered. It was like walking back into my childhood,” said Lesléa Newman, award-winning children’s book author. If you were reading Dick and Jane books you certainly missed out on the clever writing of Dr. Seuss who made reading fun with his wonderful rhymes and stories. As you from the proceed entrance you explore the exhibits and murals and find all your beloved characters. They are all here! Why here is a child-sized sculpture of the Cat in the Hat with Thing One and Thing Two right behind him ready to create mischief. They’ve all come to life in many ways. There are sculptures, murals, interactive electronic and traditional stations to explore literacy, motor skills, and encourage creative and imaginative play. His first book, And to Think That I Saw It on

Mulberry Street, was rejected by more than 20 publishers. Through a personal connection, Vanguard Press finally published it. It illustrates young Marco’s walk home from school while imagining an unbelievable array of events taking place on this humble street of his youth. There is an airplane dropping confetti, an elephant, and then an elephant helped by two

giraffes, a chariot, a sled and a brass band. In response to his father’s query about what happened on his way home from school, Marco responded that he saw a horse and wagon. In his child’s mind, however, it was a completely different story that certainly validates a child’s imagination and has a prominent spot as a mural in the museum.

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Dr. Seuss’s stories often have a message but he made a point of not beginning to write with a moral in mind stating that “kids can see a moral coming a mile off” but he was not against writing about issues. Green Eggs and Ham suggests that we shouldn’t judge things by their appearance alone. In McElligot’s Pool, we visit a young boy who begins to fish against the advice of a farmer. However, as he continues to persevere he imagines catching fish of all kinds - one with a checkerboard stomach, a

seahorse with the head of a horse, and an eel with two heads. “Oh the seas is so full of a number of fish, If a fellow is patient, he might get his wish!” Here persistence, respect for our waterways, and the willingness to explore the unknown is rewarded. In an interactive display, anyone can create their own special fish and watch them swim on an animated screen. Seuss commented on the Lorax, “In The

Photo by Richard Malinsky

Lorax, I was out to attack what I think are evil things and let the chips fall where they might.” The Lorax lives in a peaceful habitat among the truffula trees; he lives in harmony with the other animals until a manufacturer starts cutting down the trees to make thneeds, an allpurpose fancy. In time, the forest is depleted and the animals are gone. The one hope is a young boy who is given the last truffula seed and is heeded to nurture it and let it grow into a forest. The Lorax is a cautionary tale about caring for the environment and replenishing the earth.


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Photo by Richard Malinsky


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How the Grinch Stole Christmas is an admonition about the consumerism surrounding Christmas. The Grinch does not succeed in stealing Christmas because the spirit of Christmas and giving is in the hearts of those who celebrate its message. An imposing Grinch is part of the sculpture in front of the museum. Artist, teacher, and muralist John Simpson is the designer for the fabrication of the museum that was eight years in the making. Photo by Richard Malinsky

In fact, he has produced murals throughout Springfield. With assistance from interns from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, he was responsible for painting all the murals and designing the touchable sculptures. Using the grid system, he was able to replicate the large murals from small drawings. Starting with simple charcoal drawings, house paint, and artists’ acrylics he was able to transform bare walls into fully actualized pages from Dr. Seuss’s books. There were many challenges especially paint-

ing walls above staircases where ladders were straddling stair steps. Creating a wall where children could draw without reprisal was another challenge. Theodor actually did draw on walls and was never reproached by his parents who encouraged his creativity. An art room on the basement level is available for a variety of arts and crafts. His stepdaughters Lark Grey Dimond-Cates and Leagrey Dimond were so pleased with the outcome that they agreed to donate to


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the museum many personal items like family photographs and letters; the collection continues to grow. There is a complete restoration of his studio and living room on the second floor, which allows further insight into this creative phenomenon. Theodor Seuss Geisel spent his entire career as an illustrator and cartoonist working for Vanity Fair and Life as well as various other publications. During the Great Depression he drew ads for General Electric, NBC, Standard Oil, Narragansett Brewing Company and others. During World War II, he worked in an animation department of the United States Army where he produced several short films, including Design for Death, which later won the 1947 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. After the war, he continued to write many other children’s books. In May 1954, Life magazine published a report on literacy among school children that concluded that children were not learning to read because their books were boring. William Ellsworth Spaulding, the Chairman of Houghton Mifflin, compiled a list of 348 words that he felt were

important for first-graders to recognize. He asked Geisel to cut the list to 250 words and write a book using only those. He challenged Seuss with the task to “bring back a book children can’t put down.” Nine months later Geisel completed The Cat in the Hat using 236 of the words given to him. In his honor, the National Education Association has adopted March 2 as Read Across America Day.

The recent purchase of Theodor Geisel’s childhood home at 74 Fairfield opens up an incredible realm of new possibilities – an artist-inresidence program, lectures, readings, writing workshops for various age groups, and more. There will be a trolley, which will take visitors from one location to another. Springfield will indeed become Seussville. Contact SeussInspringfield.org


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A Connecticut Christmas:

Celebrating the Holiday in Classic New England Style


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Profile & Photography By Caryn B. Davis

“A Connecticut Christmas is a sentimental journey through the lore of Connecticut and makes you want to sing Irving Berlin’s ‘White Christmas.’ The beautiful pictures celebrate the marvelous diversity, beauty, and spirit of the Nutmeg State . . . this heartwarming book makes you smile.” ... Jacques Pépin, Celebrated Chef, Author, and Connecticut Resident

A

few years ago Ink writer, Caryn B. Davis pitched a story idea to Victoria Magazine about the Connecticut River Valley as a travel destination. Having been to over 50 countries, Davis strongly felt that of all the places she had visited, the river towns of Connecticut remained one of the most picturesque areas she had ever seen. The photo journalist admits that she is still quite taken by the natural beauty of this area and the serenity of these tiny river towns that for the most part, time has forgotten. “It’s what makes this region not only unique, but also a great place to live and explore, especially in today’s fast paced world.”


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Victoria Magazine liked Davis’ idea but decided to take it one step further and do a feature article about Christmas in the Connecticut River Valley. Caryn posted some of the images from the magazine spread on Facebook which caught the attention of WTNH’s news anchorwoman and author, Ann Nyberg. Ann had just written a book entitled, “Remembering Katharine Hepburn,” which was published by the Globe Pequot Press. The editor for that book was Amy Lyons. Ann knew Amy wanted to produce a Christmas book, so Davis showed the editor her work. The rest, as they say, is history. So for two seasons, (Caryn Davis did pray for snow although she’s not a fan of shoveling it), she visited no less than 40 villages, towns, and cities throughout the state photographing light displays, decorated churches, inns, and museums, spectacular private homes, festivals, tree farms, and barns, carolers, town greens, boat parades, and much more in an attempt to capture the beauty of Christmas and the spirit of community surrounding this holiday. Davis recalls encountering “so many wonderful people, businesses, charities, and organizations, who despite their hectic schedules at the busiest time of year, shared with me their passion for Christmas by allowing me the privilege of photographing their homes, celebrations, and traditions.”


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The result is a 224 page book entitled, “A Connecticut Christmas: Celebrating the Holiday in Classic New England Style.� Renowned author, Eric D. Lehman has penned an eloquent narration, relaying a little history, fun facts, and the origin of some traditions that actually began right here in the Nutmeg State. There is also an event listing in the back of the book for residents and tourists who want to experience all the magic that Christmas in Connecticut has to offer. Enjoy! For more information log onto www.carynbdavis.com.


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Relax in our indoor, heated saltwater pool. Take classes in our state-of-the-art tness center. Give our ne dining menu a thorough once over. Explore your creative side in our arts studio and woodworking shop. Make new friends at our cultural and social events. And that’s just the beginning!

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David Holzman: Odyssey of the Technicolor Woodman by Laurencia Ciprus / photos by Paul Gobell

David Holzman…4 AM. Take the dog out, make coffee, and hit the cold studio by 4:30. Disciplined creativity is its own religion. This enviable daily process started in July of 2011; the work of art a massive technicolor output, shot through with artistic industry humming electric. Harness the energy, and it might power the universe! Scanning his exhibitions and studio work, this is bold and original thought challenging the tide of the vox populi

wire was the ’84 MoMA exhibition “Primitivism’ in 20th Century Art: Affinity of the Tribal and the Modern.” This show sparked massive controversy, posing questions about the incorporation of ethnic imagery in the works of established European master artists such as Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, and Paul Gauguin. Was the embrace of these “primitive” ideas authentic or simply sensational to boost the artists’ fame? Holzman was transformed by this show. “The Mayan hieroglyphics

New York shows are loaded with so much subtext and meta, that the essential soul of the work has been sucked out of it. “I am resistant to the movements of curators and gallerists and the incestuous quality of the collectors. I think it’s pretty distasteful, although I admittedly need to generate income to survive. I have a certain way of creating imagery.” It is unplanned and spontaneous and intended to have a fresh energy coming out of it with a level of authenticity.”

of commercial art gurus. There are running motifs – both figural and imagined – morphed and refined with each pass and crafted in a myriad of media. Whether on paper or board, high-relief sculptural carved wood, or the motifs and icons translated into woodblock textiles, this collective of tribal surrealist stuff pulls you closer and closer with a dazzling visual whiplash.

are fascinating. Reading Cracking the Mayan Code got me thinking. Mayan writing could be translated into different icons. I could create iconic images which don’t need direct meaning to be appreciated.” Look closely at his work – especially the textiles and sculptures. Recurrent symbols show up. Like Chinese or Middle Eastern calligraphy, the beauty reads without any need for direct meaning.

Take a wide lens to Holzman’s work – icons dancing somewhere between PreColumbian/Mayan, Folk Art, and Afrocentrism – and there’s no surprise that his creative trip-

Holzman’s own embrace of these ideas is purposefully authentic. “I want to honor the experience of seeing objects in museums and learning about different cultures. So many

Holzman’s hour in the damp of the workshop/studio yields his daily image, an initial scribble-scrabbled/closed eye/automatic drawing on paper in a 6”x9” space, yanked from the edges of his pre-dawn subconscious. After a day teaching art at Simsbury High School, this spontaneous daily image – the “Umm” – is later code cracked to decipher repetitive and familiar forms or patterns in this scribble, which can be further developed into his larger, illustrative pieces. There are both abstract and representational images of people, objects, and creatures. Holzman pushes harder when he goes the distance with his vast store of the


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painterly, illustrated versions of these daily early morning sketches. The 12”x18” formalized paintings are saturated shades of flashe paint, a medium often used in vivid commercial signage. There is so much lengthy process about this processdriven artist. His exhibition at a local village gallery is a tasting menu of the various genres of output, with the high relief wood sculptures feeling like the end product in a lengthy genesis. Life imitating art or art imitating life, Holzman – translated from the German – is “wood man”. As he states in his bio, he discovered this as a teen, seeing it as a sign from his ancestors. The woodcuts also morphed into woodblocks, and his current sculptures incorporate swaths of textiles imprinted with his own motifs and symbols resembling hieroglyphs. The intriguing component to Holzman’s work is that meaning is not imposed but purely subjective. There is a no holds barred freedom to experiencing the

cartoon-like figures, animals, and improbable imagery. Fun…pure unbridled fun! Once we grab onto the process, there an invite back to the converted home studio up the road. It’s as great as expected – joyful as a carnival. On

a double take you’ll catch his recurrent motifs in a hand painted frieze bordering the high peak of the roof line and a white WPA styled sign applied directly to the exterior siding. Holzman arrives first, and through the opened

door, a barrage of form and color jumps forward against a really ragged and rainy afternoon – windswept in greyscale. Despite the inclement weather, inside the studio there is layer upon layer of work retaining a power and sensation in size, color, and visual impact. It is as defiant against the dim light straining through the cataracted windows, as Holzman’s intention to push past his sense of the myopic limitations entrenched in the art world. Relaxed inside his space, we talk about the future as the artist generously fans out image upon image of the illustrated versions of his works on a dusty worktable; pulled from meticulous three-inch volumes. Holzman is reflective and excited about the future as he edges up on his formal retirement from teaching. Up until this point, the larger works had to live in his head until he had time to create in the off periods of summer. Always thoughtful about shifting and improving his method, he is also acutely aware of the limitations many artists


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face as they continue to create into the later chapters of their careers. “When Matisse was an old man, he was no longer mobile. He has a method to fall back on in order to continue to create.” The process and format Holzman established back in 2011 will continue to serve him into the upcoming years; holding true to a 3:2 size ratio. The artist further talks animatedly about the repository of images in his head that he continues to pull from and rework over time. The small moleskin sketchbooks alone are worthy of an exhibition which would hold their own handsomely, presented in their entirety. Again, the volume and scope of this work is astounding. The experiments over the years kept the work fresh and will continue to stretch Holzman. “Twenty to twenty-five years ago I experimented with latex. Rubber can look like skin. I also like fabric as well. It has a familiar quality to it and reminds you of a sense of humanity.” There is always thought behind the experimentation and a sentimentality and kindness worked into

the visuals offering an approachable warmth open to any viewer. Going forward, he talks about more textile possibilities into the realm of wearable art. The intention is to repurpose

Grinning, he leans back against soft mounds of wood shavings with his arms folded and a kid’s delight breaking through his deep reflection. “I love Dr. Seuss.” Holzman is one and the same with his work. “I’m in this; I’m completely in this. My work is my costume, and I put it on every day when I carry my moleskin notebook with me to capture any idea or thought that comes up.” The studio is almost dark, and we’ve ferreted out all the corners of the space: the partial pieces in progress…some painted; others smooth raw wood that is primal in their simplicity.

existing ideas, remaining always mindful of the existing outside world. “My history as an artist began in the museum. Culture is as important as the air, and it is critical to have a visceral connectivity in my work. It always needs to be spontaneous and represent the collective unconscious.” Asked who makes him smile?

There is a solidity long intention of and passionate transcending time, age, and any limitations.

to this lifethis prolific creative – defiant of

Visit David on the web at: davidholmanart.com


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GRACE-ing the Strings Meet Harpist Grace Cloutier By Sloan Brewster

S

ince she was a child, Grace Cloutier has been aware her life would involve the harp, and she has never faltered in this pursuit. In her words, when she is playing, she knows she is doing what she is supposed to do. It all started when she was five with a dream in which she was performing onstage to what she describes as a sea of people with various shades of skin, speaking many different languages.“I didn’t understand at the time, but clearly I understand now that it had a global entity,” the Connecticut native said, taking time this summer during a break from her busy concert schedule to sit down and chat at a North Haven cafe. Before she awoke, she saw angels playing the harp, a detail made more interesting by the fact

that she had never before seen one, nor had she come from a musically inclined family. Still, from the instant she awakened, she was drawn to the instrument; and after her first lesson she knew she was going to play, thereby bringing the dream to reality.“I just knew from the moment I touched the strings and taking lessons I loved it,” she said. “Just through the waves of life, good and bad, I’ve always loved it.” Her harp is part of her and brings her joy, Cloutier said. In some ways her relationship with it is deeper than any she has with the people in her life. On long hauls between gigs, when, for example, she drives from Canada to Mexico to Maine, just knowing the harp is in the car gives her comfort. Losing it, she

assured, would be akin to losing a limb. “It’s [a relationship] of complete love, trust, and admiration. It’s something I can’t get from a human. You know I can always rely on the instrument, and the instrument is always there for me, and I can always go do my thing,” she


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Music from the school in 2003. In 2005, she received her Master’s Degree in Music from Yale University. A virtuoso harpist by the time she was about 18, she has also studied in France and performed the world over. After winning a national audition, she became principal harpist for the El Paso Symphony Orchestra, enjoying the twice monthly commute to the Texas town from her New York City home while maintaining a global touring schedule. “It was just fun bringing my harp to an isolated town. I mean it’s a border town, and the people are lovely. I met so many lovely people,” Cloutier said. “I still have them as friends.”

said. “It’s more than a friend, it’s just this amazing companion that’s been in my life my entire life.” Debbie Vinick, of Manchester gave Cloutier harp lessons between the ages of 10 and 15.

Even as a child, she was devoted to the instrument, very sincere about playing, and did so from the heart, tapping into innate abilities while working hard.“I have a memory of her just being this very young girl so excited to be playing the harp and taking lessons,” Vinick said. “She just soaked up the knowledge; that s the only way I can describe it, she just couldn’t practice enough.” As a teenager, Cloutier began playing with youth symphonies, entering the pre-college program at The Julliard School when she was 16. After completing the program at Julliard, she went on to receive her Bachelor’s Degree in

Cloutier was also concerto soloist with the Nashua Symphony Orchestra, in Nashua, New Hampshire. In 2000, she was among 36 harpists in the world selected to go to The International Harp Contest in Israel; and in 2006 she co-founded the Ukrainian International Harp Competition. That same year, she gave her debut concert at Carnegie Hall and has since returned twice. In addition, she has collaborated with numerous composers, including David Lefkowitz and Pulitzer Prize-winner, David Del Tredici, whose score, Aeolian Ballade she commissioned and premiered at Carnegie. Though she has been performing worldwide since 1998, her touring schedule took off after she graduated from Yale. This year, she has concerts in several U.S. cities and Canada; and in January she will give a private recital for sheiks in Dubai. She also performs in hostels, nursing homes, and at the bedsides of dying patients.“They have some sort of moment, I can’t say what it is, some sort of moment that helps them get to the next step. It melts them, it melts them in a good way,” she said of what music does for hospice patients. “I know what I am doing is helping people.” Cloutier is also extremely passionate about spreading her love of music. She teaches harp to private students, gives master lessons, offers workshops, does Q and As and visits schools to introduce the harp to young people.


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Cloutier said she wants to leave a footprint in the world and help people get in touch with themselves, demonstrating her meaning with a story of giving a private recital for a woman in Vermont. “She was crying afterwards, but she was smiling and said, ‘Grace, I haven’t felt those feelings in

it up a little bit,” she also remembers they are just people.“I wouldn’t give any less to them nor more to them than another person,” she said. Cloutier’s music is engrossing. Her rendition of David S. Lefkowitz’s “Who Write on Clouds” carries the listener to a place of harmony and wonder where clouds form musical notes and angels are moved to tears. Watching her play, it becomes clear that she too is transported.“I’m just in a place of giving. I really love what I do, so I’m giving from my heart. I feel very much at peace when I’m playing, very much at peace.”

Rosa Melendez of North Haven, remembers Cloutier visiting Clintonville Elementary School when her daughter Daisy Melendez was in fifth grade. The girl came running out after school, chattering about Cloutier and insisting her mother meet her. Shortly thereafter, she began taking harp lessons. Now at 23, she is working toward a Bachelor’s Degree in psychology at Quinnipiac University and

20 years,’ and she said, ‘What did you do?’” Cloutier repeated. “‘I heard your heart and I just felt your emotions.’” More recently, Cloutier’s music benefitted a personal friend who was having a bad day. In July, she performed at Elim Park Place, a retirement community in Cheshire, the friend having attended the recital after losing his job. “He said, ‘Grace, I really was not doing well,’” she said. “And he said, ‘The music just washed away all of those feelings, and now I have a smile on my face.”

plans to go for her Master of Arts Degree. Ultimately, she hopes to become a music therapist. Rosa attributes her daughter’s musical aspirations to Cloutier’s influence and passion. Cloutier’s visit to her grade school music class came when nothing motivated nor inspired her, Daisy said. Seeing Cloutier with her harp changed that.“It kind of woke me up that [playing the harp] was just something I wanted to do,” she said.

Cloutier has also performed privately for celebrities, including Oprah Winfrey and Donald Trump before he was president, as well as for former President George W. Bush and First Lady, Laura Bush. Playing for famous people can be interesting, she said, admitting she is “tickled by it,” but while she feels the need “to step

When not on tour, Cloutier splits her time between homes in New Haven and New York. For further information visit: www.gracecloutier.com


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W e believe everyone

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CAROLE PECK’S

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Plan your holiday celebrations here at Good News Cafe. We can accomodate parties of 2 to 60 in our main dining or private dining rooms. We offer catering and convenient take-out too! Give the gift of good food and purchase a gift certificate online or at the restaurant.

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Cheese for the Holidays 2017 C heese is still one of the best appetizers you can serve. Paul Partica, The Cheese Shop, Centerbrook CT

You can buy it in advance. It keeps well. It’s easy to serve. It requires little, if any, attention once served. It can stay out for hours. It requires no re-heating. And as if that’s not enough, cheese is still the best-tasting appetizer – in my unbiased opinion. I just mentioned that you can buy cheese in advance. It seems that most perceive cheese as very perishable and therefore wait until the last minute to purchase. Rest


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assured that you really do not need to buy the day before. Try purchasing a week away and avoid the long lines. Cheeses cut fresh at time of sale will easily last much more than a week, providing they were cut fresh and wrapped properly at the outset. So, if you want to do a quality control check of your holiday cheese purchases before the party, just be sure to rewrap properly. To do so, always use fresh cling wrap every time you open your cheese, as it only clings the first time. By using the same wrap, you allow the cheese to dry and mold before its time. Cheese Tray Serving Suggestions Room temperature cheese is the key to a good tray. This requires taking all cheeses out of the refrigerator at least an hour before serving. Hold off on unwrapping, however, until you are ready to eat. You want the cheese to warm up, but not dry out. It is always best not to cube cheese; this causes moisture loss and poor taste. In addition, a mess of dried-out cubes leaves little to salvage for another day, should any leftovers remain. Leave cheese in whole wedges, with enough rind removed to allow for easy access by your guests. If you are preparing the tray in advance avoid placing crackers alongside the cheese. The crackers will absorb moisture and become soft and soggy. It is best to place them nearby in a bowl or a small basket. Open them just before serving. I like to serve condiments with cheese trays. I prefer to place them on the tray, but not actually on the cheese. Not everyone will like the toppings. Poured directly on the cheese, toppings can become an unattractive mess with no chance of leftovers. One of our best condiment lines, the very popular Dalmatia Fig spreads, comes from Croatia. Figs and cheese go handin-hand. We were very happy to see that Dalmatia increased their product line to add an assortment of new spread flavors such as Green Olive, Black Olive, Red Pepper, Apricot, Tangerine, Sour Cherry, Fig Cocoa, Strawberry and Orange Fig. They not only add great flavor to a tray but really create a beautiful appearance.

Fondue Christmas means fondue for me. At least once during the season I must have it. I prefer the traditional Swiss recipe of Emmenthal, Gruyere and a little Appenzeller melted in a dry white wine. Check out the recipe page of our website for my traditional, age-old recipe. Did you know that both the precooked fondue mixture and the finished product freeze very well? We’ve done many tests and it is quite hard to tell the difference. So, you can always have a kit ready in your freezer when the mood strikes for Fondue. Raclette Whether you are making a traditional Swiss Raclette (cheese, potatoes, cornichons) or the American version (which can also include shrimp, chicken, sausage, vegetables etc.), raclette is a great dish. All the elements are prepared in advance so you can enjoy the meal with friends and family. If a raclette grill is not counted among your kitchen gadgets, many retailers rent them. We enjoy raclette cookery all year long. You might find us grilling shrimp and scallops during a hot summer night, but it seems especially festive for the holidays. Baked Brie or Camembert The classic Baked Brie (or Baked Camembert) dish is still very relevant and festive for the holidays. The availability of porcelain bakers on the market has done much to grow its appeal and popularity in the last few years. With these bakers, you now have a neat, contained way of serving the appetizer with a superb ability to keep it warm, and even reheat and reuse another day. To add to the appeal, recipe variations are endless. You can invent all kind of flavor combinations using such delicacies as chutneys, preserves, nuts, honeys, herbs, spices, fruit and so on. Please remember that Brie and Camembert are basically the same cheese (the only difference being the region in France that each comes from). They share the same recipes, so don’t get caught up about the name. The degree of ripeness should be your most important consideration. Gift Boxes and Baskets “A gift of cheese is sure to please,” we always say. It’s an old saying for me, but still so very true. ‘Tis the season for company and friends getting together; what could be easier or more satisfying then an array of cheese? Cheese, a useful gift indeed. Happy Holidays. Paul Partica, The Cheese Shop

www.cheeseshopcenterbrook.com


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By Art LiPuma, General Manager, SeaSide Wine & Spirits, Old Saybrook, CT

Holiday Wine Gifts With the wide variety of wines from different countries available to us, picking out a gift can be interesting and fun. In years past there were many pre- made gift packs of wines, which made it a easy gift purchase, however the wines were not of great quality. Now you can easily pick out two or three wines that you think your recipient would enjoy and put them in a gift box yourself. This is also a good time to be a little creative without going out of their taste profile. For example if the person on your list likes Pinot Grigio, surprise them with Vernaccia or Vermentino from Italy. Similar to P. G. they have good acidity and a crisp finish. If you need something fruitier, the wines from Vouvray are made of Chenin Blanc. This style will serve your purpose. In the sweet realm you will need to go with a Moscato or an Auslese Riesing from Germany. Pinot Noir is a great light red that is very popular, originating in Burgundy, France. Pinot Noir can be found from many other countries. Including the United States. There are many choices for choosing a light red aside from Pinot Noir. Cru Beaujolais, which represent one of the 10 villages in Beaujolais, are made of the Gamay Grape. It’s light and lively with medium fruit. These wines are better quality than a Beaujolais Village. For a choice slightly zestier would be something from the Southern Rhone Valley, also in France. The wine ranges from the low cost Cote du Rhone area to small villages slighty higher priced such as Vacqueyras and Gigondas. The premeire property would be Chateanuef-de- Pape. If you’re looking for a bolder red, try a California Cabernet Sauvignon. It is gown in great areas Such as, Paso Robles, Sonoma County, Napa, you can find it in almost any area of wine country in California. Washington State produces excellent Cabernets and other parts of the United States. These wines are full flavored with soft tannins. Another big red can be found in France in the Bordeaux region , which is the blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot , Cabernet Franc , Malbec and Petite Verdot. These wines can be somewhat drier than California Cabernets . Rioja is an area in Spain which produces medium bodied dry reds made predominantly of the Tempranillo grape. Not leaving out the big dry wines of Barolo in Piedmont, and Brunello in Tuscany, Italy. Other bold and interesting wines: Red Zinfandel from Califorina, Amarone from Italy, Malbecs from Argentina, Shiraz from Australia and Red blends from around the world. On the other spectrum how about a sweet desert wine or Ice wine usually available in half bottles because of its intense and rich flavors. One other in this realm would be a port. Port could be white but mostly red that is fortified with brandy to give the warming feeling for the winter months. It is important to remember that some of these great wines come in larger bottles, for a special treat! There’s a great big world of wine out there, happy shopping and don’t forget to pick one or two for yourself! Happy Holidays!! Art LiPuma

Seaside Wine & Spirits, Old Saybrook CT


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DECEMBER EVENTS

80 December 1 Mystic FIRST FRIDAY. Just in time for the holidays! | A fabulous trunk show EST. 2016 by Uno de 50, live music with Flamenco guitarist Tommy Giarratano, and bubbly. Born in Madrid in the late nineties, UNOde50 creates unique jewelry with original designs with & L UXUR Y GOODS personality. The first UNO collections were made up to only 50 units of each design. A commitment to quality and exclusivity forced to evolve because of the brand’s success. Currently all pieces are made using traditional methods as if they were one-of-a-kind, also presenting 50-unit Limited Editions with each collection. 5:00 - 7:00pm. Curated, 29 W. Main Street, Mystic, CT www.curated.world FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM @ CURATED.WORLD

Dec 2-10 Guilford Holiday Open House & Market. The Dudley Farm Museum. Step back in time and visit the 1844 Dudley and Farmhouse Museum for cookies, carols and merryment and browse through the two floors of the 1890 Munger Barn to purchase those special homegrown and handmade artismal gifts presented by more than 30 local vendors. See Father Christmas, listen to the dulcimer, and experience the hospitality of a 19th century Connecticut farm on December 2, 9, and 10. 2351 Durham Rd, Guilford, CT 06437

Dec 1 - Jan 27 Madison Festive Holiday Show at Susan Powell Fine Art. 33 award-winning Artists from around the country will be featured at the Annual Holiday Show at Susan Powell Fine Art Gallery in Madison. The show will continue through January 27. We offer a versatile selection of landscapes, marine art, still lifes, floral, figurative, and New York City scenes. Exhibiting Artists are: Kathy Anderson, Carol Arnold, Del-Bourree Bach, Julie Beck, Peter Bergeron, Stephanie Birdsall, Kelly Birkenruth, Karen Blackwood, Dan Brown, Deborah Chabrian, David Dunlop, Eileen Eder, John Falato, Judy Friday, Vincent Giarrano, Neal Hughes, Timothy Jahn, Carol Jenkins, Susan Jositas, Sarah Lamb, Sarah Stifler Lucas, James Magner, Anne McGrory, Leonard Mizerek, Cindy Procious, Deborah Quinn-Munson, Carlo Russo, Polly Seip, Claudia Seymour, Dennis Sheehan, Jeanne Rosier Smith, Katie Swatland, and George Van Hook.The gallery is located at 679 Boston Post Road, Madison near the fire station. Gallery hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 11 am to 5 pm, and anytime by appointment. For further information, please call (203) 318-0616, visit wwwsusanpowellfineart.com to see works in the show, or email susanpowellfineart@gmail.com.

Dec 3 Middletown Reindeer on the River Cruise Lady Katharine Cruises. Welcome the holiday season with a magical afternoon aboard the Mystique. This family-oriented brunch cruise features entertainment including a visit from Santa and a magician. Enjoy endless opportunities to add precious memories to your family photo albums. Fun for all ages. Signature Brunch Buffet includes a wide selection of pastries, fresh fruit, breakfast meats, french toast, fabulous hot entrees, coffee, tea and scrumptious desserts. Noon-2 p.m. (860) 395-5446 80 Harbor Dr. Middletown, CT 06457 www.LadyKateCruises.comHarbor Park Landing

FINE ART

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Dec 1– Jan 2 Westbrook Featuring selected works from Susan Powell Fine Art at the Valentine H. Zahn Community Gallery located at Middlesex Hospital Shoreline Medical Center. The Gallery is open during regular business hours and is located at 250 Flat Rock Place, Westbrook, CT. For more information, contact Middlesex Hospital at 860-358-6200 or zahngallery@midhosp.org.

December 3 Hartford 37th Annual Holiday House Tour The Mark Twain House & Museum. In addition to The Mark Twain House, which will be decorated for the holidays, the Wadsworth Atheneum's Austin House (130 Scarborough St.) and three privage homes will be decorated according to their homeowner's holiday traditions. The Mark Twain House & Museum. 11 a.m.- 3 p.m. 351 Farmington Ave. Hartford, CT 06105 December 5 Mystic Peppergrass and Tulip. Please come to Downtown Mystic on Tuesday night, Dec. 5, 2017, from 6-9pm, for the Holiday and Luminaria Stroll. The stores will be open late serving refreshments. Stroll through the picturesque streets of Mystic. There will be wonderful carolers Singing ,taking you back to the Victorian Era. You might even see Santa playing a Saxophone! Come and enjoy a Mystical Night!!!


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December 6 Pawcatuck Holiday Stroll & Luminaria. The streets of historic downtown are lined with luminaria, carolers, and Christmas festivities. Enjoy a hay ride with Santa or a complimentary cup of hot chocolate and a cookie to warm you up while shopping. Stores run special promotions and discounts to kick off the holiday seasonMain Street 5 p.m.-9 p.m. Pawcatuck, CT 06379

December 7-17 Ivoryton It’s a Wonderful Life. Inspired by the classic American film, It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play is performed as a 1940s live radio broadcast in front of a studio audience. Five actors perform the dozens of characters in the radio play as well as produce the sound effects. It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play premiered in 1996 at Stamford Center for the Arts in Stamford, Connecticut, and has since been produced around the country to critical acclaim. Theatre Address, 103 Main Street, Ivoryton, CT 06442 info@ivorytonplayhouse.org December 8 - 9 West Hartford 1th Annual Gingerbread Days. Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society. Each December the museum bakes batches and batches of gingerbread and use custom cookie cutters to create the foundation pieces for your own gingerbread house kit. Friday: adults only and BYOB. Saturday: families spend a kidfriendly day at three different session. Kids and adults can build a delightful (and delicious) house from holiday-themed candies, white icing and homemade cookies. The museum's play area, Noah's Discovery Learning Space is open during the day. Fri. 7 p.m., Sat. 11 a.m., 1 p.m. & 3 p.m. Pre-registration is required. Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society 227 South Main St. West Hartford, CT 06107

December 8 Three Centuries of Christmas: Preview Party Webb-DeaneStevens Museum. Each year, using greenery and native plants, authentic decorations from days of yore, and some pretty clever food-styling tricks, the Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum’s “Three Centuries of Christmas” tours show in fascinating detail how the American holiday season has evolved over the past 300 years.The 2016 season kicks off with the lively Holiday Preview Party. Guests will delight in a candlelight preview of the dazzling holiday decorations throughout the museum, stroll from house to house enjoying delicious food, wine, ale, and live holiday music, and chat with Mr. and Mrs. Silas Deane, Mrs. Claus, and guides in period dress.Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum 5 p.m.-8 p.m. 211 Main St. Wethersfield, CT 06109 December 8 Mystic Festival of Lights. Friday, December 08, 2017 5:30 PM Walk through our winter wonderland from dusk until 9:30pm when over 6,000 luminaries light the walkway of Olde Mistick Village and the surrounding area. This is a family friendly event with FREE parking and admission. Come stroll 23 acres and enjoy holiday decorations and festivities. Find a gift for that special someone in over 40 unique stores, dine in one of several restaurants, or catch a movie at our luxury cinema. There will be complimentary refreshments in the Meeting House from 5:30-8:30 as you listen to Ragtime Too! perform holiday songs in a variety of musical styles. Outdoor entertainment will include Fly-by-Night Comedy Jugglers who will entertain audiences of all ages with a combination of technical skills and comedic antics. The Festive Brass Ensemble will play holiday favorites in the Gazebo from 6-9pm. Carolers from Stonington High School and Tyl Middle School Chamber Choir from Montville will be singing holiday classics as they roam the Village. The Mystic Aquarium is offering free admission with the donation of a canned good in conjunction with Festival of Lights. They will be open December 8 from 5-9:30 pm. Mystic Aquarium will also have activities this night. Please see their website for details: Mystic Aquarium December 9- Essex Essex Holiday House Tour. Festive self-guided walking tour featuring seven distinctive private homes beautifully decorated for the holidays, along with the Essex Historical Society's properties, the Connecticut River Museum with it's special holiday train show. The Essex Art Assocation will offer free chili. Home base of the tour will be the Essex Town Hall (29 West Ave.), where tickets may be purchased or picked up, and where there will be a large boutique with vendors offering a variety of items. Open 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m.Various locations. Main Street Essex, CT 06426 (860) 443-2896 www.childandfamilyagency.org

DECEMBER EVENTS

December 5 Mystic DOWNTOWN HOLIDAY STROLL & LUMINARIA DECEMBER 5 @ 6:00 PM. Enjoy warm refreshments, extended store hours and musical performances as you stroll downtown for your holiday shopping! Sidewalks will be lined with luminaries to light the way.


DECEMBER EVENTS

82 December 9 Niantic Niantic / East Lyme Light Parade. Celebrating its 29th anniversary in 2017, the Annual East Lyme / Niantic Light Parade is the largest holiday light parade in all of New England, and maybe one of the most unique events you will find anywhere. The 2017 Niantic/East Lyme Light Parade will be held on Saturday night December 9th beginning at 6:00 p.m. (with a Rain Date of Sunday, December 10th at 5:00 p.m.) Main Street in Niantic, Main St, Niantic, CT 06357 Dec 9 - 10 Westbrook OPEN HOUSE. Friday, Saturday and Sunday December 8th, 9th and 10th. Our gift to you 20% OFF all sales. Refreshments - Free gift Wrapping and Gift Certificates. Rambling River Antiques 172 Boston Post Road, Westbrook, CT 860-664-9270 Hours Daily 11-5 Sun 11-4

December 10 Chester Concert in the Garden with Ramblin' Dan Stevens and a Fiery Band $20 donation - BYOB - Indoor Bistro Style Seating in the Gallery Please join us for a Concert in the Garden at the Leif Nilsson Spring Street Studio & Gallery at 1 Spring St, Chester Center on Sunday, December 10, 2017 from 4pm to 6pm featuring bluesman Ramblin’ Dan Stevens and a Fiery Band. Dan performs an eclectic mix of traditional fingerstyle blues and originals and has entertained audiences throughout the US, Germany, UK, Canada and Virgin Islands. For more info on Dan Stevens, please visit www.danstevens.net. $20 donation - BYOB and picnic - Indoor Bistro Style Seating in the Gallery. GATES OPEN Half Hour before the show. First come first seated. December 12 New Haven Holiday Extravaganza Woolsey Hall. Celebrate your holiday with New Haven Symphony Orchestra Pops conductor Chelsea Tipton and the NHSO’s soundtrack for the season. Fan favorite Connor Bogart will lead a Holly Jolly musical medley of seasonal favorites including "White Christmas," "Winter Wonderland," "Sleigh Ride," and a Christmas carol singalong, and more.7:30 p.m. This program will also be performed on December 16, 2017 at Hamden Middle School and December 17, 2017 at Shelton Middle School. Woolsey Hall 500 College St. New Haven, CT 06510 (203) 865-0831 www.newhavensymphony.org

December 15 Mashantucket 12 Bars of Christmas Pub Crawl Foxwoods Resort Casino. Enjoy old friends and make new ones during the annual holiday pub crawl. Try special holiday-themed cocktails across 12 bars and restaurants on the property and then finish your evening at Centrale in Fox Tower with a DJ, dancing and prizes. There will be a raffle and an Ugliest Sweater Contest. $10 of the admission ticket is donated to the United Way. Grand Theater at Foxwoods Resort Casino, 350 Trolley Line Blvd. Mashantucket, CT 06338 December 16 Snowflake Family Tea. Lyman Allyn Art Museum. Families will enjoy tea, a hot chocolate bar, and desserts in the charming Hendel Library. Then, before heading to the art studio for a snow globe art project, children will be able to add their artistic touch to the gallery walls in our Coloring New London exhibit. Come early and participate in additional holiday happenings at the museum. 1:30 p.m.-3 p.m. (860) 443-2545 Lyman Allyn Art Museum, 625 Williams St. New London, CT 06320 www.lymanallyn.org December 19 Old Saybrook Bolshoi in HD: "Nutcracker" Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center. As the clock strikes midnight on Christmas Eve, Marie’s wooden nutcracker doll comes to life and transforms into a prince. Soon joined by her other toys that have also come to life, Marie and her prince embark on a dreamy, unforgettable adventure. A holiday tradition for the whole family, The Nutcracker sweeps the Bolshoi stage for two hours of enchantment and magic. Along with Tchaikovsky’s cherished score and some of the Bolshoi’s greatest artists, The Nutcracker remains a timeless treasure not to be missed. Shown on The Kate's big screen. Katharine Hepburn Cultural Arts Center 300 Main St. Old Saybrook, CT 06475 December 31 Hartford 29th Annual First Night Hartford 2018. First Night is a celebration of the New Year through the arts. It is an alcohol free, family-friendly, public celebration that marks the passage from the old year to the new with art, ritual and festivity. The day is a multicultural, artistically unique, with countless professional musicians, artists, performance groups and exhibits that inspire thousands of people of all ages to attend each year. It’s also an affordable way for everyone to ring in the New Year. The day includes two spectacular fireworks shows at 6 p.m. and midnight in Bushnell Park that can be seen throughout the city by thousands of residents and visitors. 2 p.m.-midnight. Downtown Main St. Hartford, CT 06103