Santa’s Coming to Greenwich!

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Santa is rounding up his LIVE REINDEER- Dancer, Dasher and Prancer – to return for the 8th Annual Greenwich Reindeer Festival & Santa’s Village, November 25 to December 24, 2016, at its new HOME, “the North Pole on North Street,” Sam Bridge Nursery & Greenhouses, 437 North Street, Greenwich, Connecticut, just minutes from downtown Greenwich.

The cherished town tradition continues at this expansive nursery where visitors can have their photo taken with Santa, meet the reindeer and also ride on the Winter Wonderland Carousel and the North Pole Polar Express Train. Parking is free. From noon to 6 p.m. on Friday, November 25, the community is invited to Sam Bridge for a “We’re Back” party to welcome the reindeer.

A ribbon cutting at noon will officially open Santa’s Village for photos with Santa. While waiting for the reindeer to arrive for their month-long stay, there will be refreshments provided by b.good and face painting and balloon art by Faces by Wells.“We’re excited to host the reindeer this year and continue the tradition that has made the season so special in Greenwich,” said Sam Bridge. “The new additions of the train and carousel rides will create a village-like atmosphere and offer holiday fun for all ages.”

At Santa’s Village, sponsored by Mercedes-Benz of Greenwich, families, children, corporate groups and even pets (on leashes) can have their photo taken with Santa. Photo packages begin at $29.99 and include a gift bag filled with promotions redeemable at participating downtown Greenwich stores. Digital photos will also be available with photo packages. Train and carousel rides are $4 per ride or $40 for a family package of 12 rides. The hours are Monday through Friday, noon to 6 p.m. and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Throughout the four weeks, everyone is welcome to view the reindeer, thanks to Pepsi, Reindeer Stable Sponsor. Feeding times will take place Monday through Saturday at 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. The reindeer will depart on December 23 but Santa will stay on for photos from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

Everyone who has their photo taken with Santa can enter a raffle to win a Mercedes-Benz pedal car, a child’s ultimate holiday gift, from Mercedes-Benz of Greenwich. A lucky winner will be named on December 24. In addition, children can enter the 2016 Pepsi Name the Reindeer Contest and submit their favorite reindeer names in a ballot box. Santa will announce the winning names on December 20. Prizes will be awarded to the winners. Official reindeer ornaments, made from recycled Pepsi cans by Kenyan artists, will be for sale at Sam Bridge for $16 and $12. Two dollars from each item sold will be donated to Kids in Crisis. There will also be Kids in Crisis Giving Tree at Sam Bridge throughout the four weeks.

 

New York Botanical Garden Offers Classes at New Canaan Nature Center

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The New Canaan Nature Center urges you to ‘get closer to nature’ – with three Gardening and Landscape Design classes presented by The New York Botanical Garden.

The first class is a BASIC PRUNING course, on Saturday, November 12th from 10am-3pm. We will discuss all elements of pruning evergreens, deciduous trees, and shrubs, in addition to tool selection and ongoing maintenance. Bring your pruners, and get ready to spend the afternoon outdoors at the New Canaan Nature Center, analyzing proper techniques. Cost per person $99*. The class will be led by Mike Ruggerio of Matterhorn Nursery in Spring Valley, N.Y.

The second course, PERENNIAL PLANT COMBINATIONS takes place on Thursday February, 2nd 2017 from 10:30am-3pm. Whether in a shady corner or a sunny border, selecting the right combinations can make all the difference between a ho-hum garden and one that gets rave reviews. Learn to use color, texture, height, and bloom when combining plants for your garden. Cost per person $79*. The class will be led by Sheri Forster, longtime NYBG instructor and principal of The Scottish Gardener.

Finally, if you are interested in understanding LANDSCAPE DESIGN, join the introductory 3-session series starting Thursday, March 9th until March 23rd from 10am-1pm. Become familiar with the terminology, concepts, and basic principles of design. This course is recommended for students with little or no background in design who want to design for their own home. Cost per person $185*. The class will be led by Sheri Forster.

All classes will be held at the New Canaan Nature Center come rain or shine. Dress appropriately for the weather and bring a lunch.

To book these programs, please call 800.322.6924 or visit online: http://bit.ly/2dhWlJu

*A discount is available to members of NYBG. To become a member visit: http://www.nybg.org/support_the_garden/membership/join.php

What to do with used kids clothes? Clothes to Kids Non-Profit

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Kids outgrow clothes so fast! But what to do with all those shirts, pants, and dresses that no longer fit? Clothes To Kids is a new-to-Fairfield County organization that provides free, quality new and used clothing to low-income and in-crisis school-aged children. Based in Stamford, the organization allows kids to try on and select a weeks’ worth of clothing in a retail enviroment twice per year. The ability to choose clothing that kids feel cool and confident in builds self-esteem that’s needed to achieve academic success.

We caught up with Alexandra Briggs Kling, Director of the newly opened Stamford chapter to learn about this amazing organization, their fall fundraiser, and how you can help!

Fairfieldista: When and how did Clothes to Kids originate?

Alexandra: Clothes To Kids of Fairfield County is an affiliate (but a stand alone non-profit organization) of other Clothes To Kids non-profits. The original Clothes To Kids was founded by Jode Eye and Marie McClung in Pinellas County, Florida. Through their volunteer work with students, they recognized that children without adequate clothing often felt embarrassed and unprepared in school.

Our Executive Director, Elaine Rubinson, was inspired to open a Clothes To Kids of Fairfield County when she attended a March 2015 fundraiser in St. Petersburg, Florida. Elaine was motivated by their mission statement and intrigued by the creativity used to implement their mission.

Fairfieldista: How many chapters do you currently have? When did the Fairfield County chapter start?

Alexandra: Although we are affiliated with other Clothes To Kids locations, we operate as a stand alone non-profit. Currently there are five other Clothes To Kids organizations (Denver, CO; Waynesville, NC; Providence, RI; Clearwater, FL; St. Petersburg, FL)

The Clothes To Kids of Fairfield County organization was formed in November of 2015 and we opened the doors to our store last week.

Fairfieldista: How may families do you currently serve? 

Alexandra: Clothes To Kids of Fairfield County just opened its doors, however we have received numerous requests for appointments since that date. In total, the Florida based Clothes To Kids organizations gave out 114,000 wardrobes since they opened in 2003.

Fairfieldista: How can someone donate? 

Alexandra: To donate interested individuals can call our Executive Director, Elaine Rubinson, at (203)533-9846 or can submit the donation form on our website at clothestokidsfairfieldcounty.org

Fairfieldista: How can school PTAs and other community groups help?

Alexandra: Individuals in the Fairfield County community can help by organization clothing donations (heading into the winter months is especially looking for donations of winter coats, hats, boots, gloves and scarves), organizing a small fundraiser in, or outside of, their home, volunteering and, perhaps the easiest and, perhaps the most important way individuals can help, letting their friends and family know about Clothes To Kids of Fairfield County. We are also looking for qualified individuals to join our Board of Directors.

Fairfieldista: Tell us about your upcoming fundraiser?

Alexandra: Cook for Kids is a two hour event, from 6-8 pm on December 1, at Aitoro Appliances in Norwalk, CT, which has generously donated their space, featuring. . . Food! Guests at the event can sip a glass of wine, watch as chefs prepare various hors d’oeuvres for their enjoyment and help Clothes To Kids of Fairfield County by bidding on a variety of wonderful silent auction items. Tickets to this event are $50 if purchased by October 20 and $60 thereafter.

 

Stamford Sports & Wellness Expo

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The 5th Annual Stamford Health, Wellness & Sports Expo returns to Chelsea Piers this weekend offering an opportunity to explore the latest products and services from over 100 exhibitors including wellness entrepreurs from Shark Tank, fun activities for kids, local celebrities, raffles, and healthy holiday gift ideas. Additionally, Stamford Hospital will showcase some of their state-of-the art technology and offer health screenings.

The event takes place at Chelsea Piers Connecticut, 1 Blachley Road in Stamford, Saturday, October 15, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, October 16, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Admission and parking are free. The public is asked to bring nonperishable food and purchase $5 raffle tickets for The Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County.

Odd Squad Solves Mystery in Stamford

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The Odd Squad, the hit kids PBS show, comes to life at the Palace Theater in Stamford on Thursday! Join Ms. O as she discovers that something is amiss in Fairfield County. In this interactive adventure, Ms. O partners with the audience and her two trusty agents, Owen and Ophelia, to solve the mystery. Kids in the audience are asked to put their STEM skill s to the test and decode, decipher and unravel clues to stop villains like Father Time and Lady Terrible. Featuring an original script by the creators of Odd Squad and new music including songs by Soundcheck, Odd Squad: Live! is a laugh-out-loud, action-packed experience not to be missed. $50 tickets include meet & greet with The Odd Squad after the show.

Odd Squad Live!
Thursday, Oct. 6 at 3:30 pm & 7:30 pm
Tickets: $15.00 – $50.00

Go Ape! CT’s Longest Zip Line

img_7658-2October boasts some of the year’s most beautiful days, so it makes perfect sense to want to spend them outdoors enjoying all that nature has to offer! Instead of spending your day looking at all the beautiful leaves, spend your day among them in a treetop adventure that challenges both your mind and body. Although it’s a bit of a drive from Fairfield County, but Go Ape! Adventure park in New Britain, Connecticut is a fun and exciting experience for older kids (minimum age 10) and adults.

Go Ape features 5 action packed treetop obstacle course sections, leading you higher into the forest canopy. Guests will navigate 40 exciting crossings like, the Half Trapeze, Wobbly Ladder, 2 Tarzan swings and 5 exhilarating zip lines (CT’s longest sends you fling over a lake not once, but three times!). The park is challenging and can be a little scary for younger kids (I had two athletic 13 year-olds with me that looked a little shaky at times!), but it’s great for building confidence and self-esteem.

On Sunday, October 2, Go Ape! is offering an “kids go free” special! Check out their website and call for details!

 

Boat Show Sails Into Norwalk Harbor

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Celebrating it’s 40th year, the Progressive® Insurance Norwalk Boat Show®, the Northeast’s premier in-water boating event, docks at Norwalk Cove Marina September 22-25, 2016, offering area water lovers an all-access pass to discover why life is better with a boat. Thousands of boating novices and lifelong enthusiasts can check out the newest introductions and best deals of the season with exclusive show specials and competitive bargains on hundreds of boats, plus the largest selection of marine accessories. With 60 different varieties of watercraft for every budget and lifestyle, from luxury yachts and center console sportfishers to affordable family cruisers, the Norwalk Boat Show is the ultimate destination to shop and compare boats side by side in a beautiful waterfront setting.

Beyond the best in boating, the Show will offer new boaters and those looking to hone their skills the chance to boat confident and participate in interactive on-the-water workshops, join educational DIY seminars on maintaining, repairing and upgrading a boat at Fred’s Shed and try stand up paddle boarding in Try It Cove. There will also be family-friendly activities for all ages including free boat rides, live music and the chance to take in the last bit of summer on Long Island Sound.

Tickets are $15 for adults, and children 15 and under get in FREE when accompanied by a paid adult. Save $2 per ticket when you purchase online by September 21 at boatshownorwalk.com. Enjoy a $3 discount per ticket for groups of 10-30 people and a $5 discount per ticket for groups of 31 people or more.

For more information, to order tickets online, and to see updated features, seminar and event schedules, visit BoatShowNorwalk.com. Want up-to-the-minute information and fun? Follow the Show on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Pokemon Go! What you need to know!

It’s a cultural phenomenon! Everyone’s playing it! Pokémon Go is an app that overlays the game on to Google Maps and uses augmented reality to lead players around in real time to capture the cute little creatures. Why? How? Watch the video below to learn everything you need to know about the game (and impress the heck out of your kids!).

Sorry daily subscribers, video doesn’t appear in the email, please click here to watch

Dig This! Join an Archaeological Dig in Stamford

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Here’s your chance to experience hands-on archaeology in lower Fairfield County. The Stamford Historical Society will be carrying out an archaeological dig at the Hoyt Barnum House property, 713 Bedford Street in Stamford, on Saturday, July 16th and Sunday, July 17th from 9AM- 3PM each day. The Historical Society will provide trowels for digging, buckets, and basic instructions on how to dig. You will be using 1/4″ mesh to screen all dirt. This dig will be held by Executive Director Thomas Zoubek, who has a PhD from Yale University and has led multiple archaeological explorations. Volunteers should wear appropriate clothing and should bring work gloves to keep their hands clean. Call 203-329-1183 or contact info@stamfordhistory.org to reserve a place in this historic dig.

A professional dig by the Public Archaeology Lab (PAL) this spring located a number of interesting artifacts including 18th century pottery and an Indian Head Penny. Who knows what you might uncover? All finds will belong to the Stamford Historical Society and will contribute to the record and understanding of the Hoyt Barnum House (built 1699) and its inhabitants over the years. Please bring your own refreshments/snack/lunch. Sunscreen and a hat are recommended. The dig will not take place if there is a thunderstorm and there will be no raindate. Get ready to dig into history and get your hands dirty!

Darien Sport Shop Model Search

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You’ve perfected the art of the selfie, so why not share your glamorous pout with the rest of us! The Darien Sport Shop is conducting a model search for their Fall 2016 advertising campaign and TV commercial and you, your friends, or your family could be Fairfield County’s next top model! No prior modeling or acting experience necessary!

Think you’ve got what it takes? Here’s what they’re looking for:

Families with kids ages 5-13

Groups of women friends

Individual women

Applicants must be available for fittings the week of August 8, and filming in Darien during the week of August 27. Compensation will be in the form of apparel and photos.

Ready to apply? Send photos to gcorrigan@dariensport.com