We’re heading into the three biggest events of the summer – the Branford Festival, the annual fireworks display, and the beginning of the Jazz series on the Branford green. They all prove that you don’t have to roam far to have a great time.
Friday, June 16 to Sunday, June 18
This year’s 33nd edition of the Branford Festival will kick off on Friday, June 16, and continue through Sunday, June 18. Plenty of music throughout the weekend, food vendors, craft and community expo on Saturday (be sure to visit the Branford Eagle’s booth), souvenirs, talent contest, baking contest, kids’ activities, Father of the Year contest and Father’s Day Road Race on Sunday … and did we say food vendors?
Entertainment is always the highlight of the weekend, beginning Friday night:
5 to 5:30 p.m. – Opening Celebration featuring The Branford Chorale, The Connecticut Governors Foot Guard and the Raising of the Festival Flag
5:45 to 6:45 p.m. – Branford High School Choir, directed by Cathyann Roding
6:45 to 7 p.m. – The John Moss Scholarship Presentation
7 to 8 p.m. – The Benders, Classic Rock band
8:45 to 11 p.m. – “Wanted DOA,” the Ultimate BonJovi Tribute!
On Saturday, dozens of local businesses and organization will fill the green for the Craft and Community Expo – be sure to stop and say hello to the Eagle staff.
Here’s the entertainment schedule for Saturday evening:
5 to 5:45 p.m. – DynaMojo, playing blues, rock, and soul
5:45 to 6 p.m. – Father of the Year
6 to 7 p.m. – The Leaf Jumpers, modern classic rock
7:15 to 7:30 p.m. – Sponsor announcements, Festival Committee introductions
7:30 to 8:30 p.m. – “Cover This,” performing the latest hits and party rock
9 to 11 p.m. – “Bruce in the USA,” Bruce Springsteen and E St. tribute band
Sunday’s activities include the following:
9 a.m. – 7th Annual Gary Dinello Classic Car Cruise
10:15 a.m. – 36th Annual Branford Road Race
11:30 a.m. – Winners of the 2017 Baking Contest
11:45 a.m. – The Branford Road Race Awards Ceremony
Noon to 2 p.m. – Eight to the Bar
2:30 p.m. The New Haven Ballet
3 p.m. – Her Song, an anti-bullying musical performance
Festival hours: Friday, 5 to 10:30 p.m.; Saturday, 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Full Branford Festival details at branfordfestival.com.
Saturday, June 24
Branford Fireworks Display
It isn’t officially summer until people gather at Branford Point on Saturday, June 24, and points nearby (visible from Foote Park) to view the annual fireworks display.
The show begins at dusk, 8:45 to 9 p.m. Raindate, June 25. Details at https://www.facebook.com/Branford-Fireworks-578135275661466/.
Thursday, June 29
Branford Jazz Series Opens
The Branford Jazz Series on the town green kicks off at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 29, with The Recess Bureau, a collective of musicians who strive to continue on the ever-evolving path of music and explore possibilities of improvisation, and aims to go against the standard of jazz.
The series continues on July 6 with saxophonist Jeanette Harris and pianist/keyboardist Jay Rowe.
Restaurants along Main Street will be open during the concert and attendees are invited to bring chairs and blankets and picnic suppers.
The concerts are canceled in the event of rain – there is no alternate venue – and performers are invited back for next season. Details and schedule at Branfordjazz.com.