Cool Events This Weekend, Here & Beyond

The new year has brought with it a massive snow storm. By this weekend, cabin fever will be sure to set in, so head for the library for a screen-free game night or the Branford Forum talk. Check out Guilford for Quattro’s jazz brunch or Ayuthai for some jazz and great Thai food; Bassist Jeff Fuller heads up both gigs. Whether you prefer the great indoors (films, art classes) or the great outdoors (BLT’s animal tracking class), there are lots of ways to stave off the winter blues.

Friday, Jan. 5

First Friday Game Group at the Blackstone Library

Game night at Blackstone Library, 758 Main St., will feature all types of board games, from fast-paced, hilarious party games to highly strategic games that will leave your head spinning!

F2G2 is all about having fun, learning new games, and making friends. There are games for everyone, regardless of experience level. Participants can bring their own games, as well. Adults of all ages welcome. To RSVP, call 203-488-1441, extension 318, or visit www.blackstonelibrary.org.

Sunday, Jan. 7

Branford Forum

Branford Forum will present “One Hundred Years of Solitude, Struggle & Violence Along the US/Mexico Border: An Oral History,” a talk by Quinnipiac University Prof. John Thomas, on Sunday, Jan. 7, at 2 p.m. at the Blackstone Library, 758 Main St.

The event is free. For further information, email rabinkux@sbcglobal.net.

Jeff Fuller at Quattro’s, Ayuthai in Guilford

Musician Jeff Fuller (top photo) performs at Quattro’s (4 Water St.) from noon to 3 p.m. during the restaurant’s jazz brunch with Dr. Gary Grippo, and at Ayuthai (2279 Boston Post Road) from 6 to 8 p.m. with guitarist/radiologist Dr. Joe Cardinale, and pianist Doug Schlink, Ben Bilello, drums.

For Fuller’s schedule, go to https://www.jefffuller.net/performances.

Saturday, Jan. 13

January Art Classes at Branford Art Center

Branford Art Center, 1229 Main St., offers several art classes to while away the winter. Winter Paint Nights take place from 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Saturdays, Jan. 13, 20, and Feb. 10, which includes instruction and painting materials for two. $40 per class includes a glass of wine.

Meditative art classes designed to boost your creativity take place on five consecutive Fridays from 6:30 to 7:45 p.m., beginning Jan. 5. $25 per class includes materials (enroll for all five nights and get one class free).

For more information, call Yvonne Gordon-Moser at 860-334-4642 or email 1229bacgallery@gmail.com and visit the gallery website www.branfordartcenterct.com.

Full Moon Feast

Celebrate the longest night of the winter and stay warm together with The Unseelie Fae (fairies) on from 6 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 13, at Bill Miller’s Castle. 834 E. Main St.

The evening includes festivities and merriment, a night of “Mischievous Fae and Fantastic food.” Dressy casual and Renaissance garb is encouraged. Tickets are $30 to $90. Details at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/frost-moon-feast-tickets-37626109707?aff=es2.

Branford Folk Opens 2018 Season

The Branford Folk Music Society opens its 2018 concert series on Saturday, Jan. 13, at 8 p.m. in the auditorium of the First Congregational Church of Branford on the Town Green with a return visit from internationally renowned and respected balladeers Debra Cowan and John Roberts.

With their eloquent voices and expert musicianship, Cowan and Roberts bring to life songs seldom heard on TV or radio these days. Drawn from both the folk tradition and the work of contemporary songwriters, many of these songs tell of the timeless joys and sorrows of human experience. They offer windows into where we’ve come from and perhaps where we’re headed.

Both musicians can also spin a ripping good yarn and whether illuminating, inspiring, or laugh-out-loud funny, their stories convey their love of the songs and the people who’ve sung them over the years, decades and, in some cases, centuries.
Admission is $20 for non-members, $17 for members and $5 for children age 12 and under.

For more information, call 203-488-7715 or access the society’s Web page at www.branfordfolk.org/

Monday, Jan. 22

Digital Lives of Kids: ScreenAgers

A screening and discussion for all parents and families of the film “Digital Lives of Kids: Screenagers” takes place on Monday, Jan. 22, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Branford High School Auditorium, 185 E. Main St.

The film explores social media, habits, time management, pressures on teens and pre-teens, family relationships and developing healthy ways to grow up in a digital world. Sponsored by Branford Families, the film is part of a larger monthly series dealing with the issue of technology and lives of children. Admission is free.

Tuesday, Jan. 23

Casablanca: 75th Anniversary

Willoughby Wallace Library, 146 Thimble Islands Road, will air Casablanca, starring Ingrid Bergman and Humphrey Bogart, at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 23. The showing celebrates the 75th anniversary of the film.

Casablanca is the story of Rick Blaine, a cynical world-weary ex-patriate who runs a nightclub in Casablanca, Morocco during the early stages of World War II. Despite the pressure he constantly receives from the local authorities, Rick’s cafe has become a kind of haven for refugees seeking to obtain illicit letters that will help them escape to America. But when Ilsa, a former lover of Rick’s, and her husband, show up to his cafe one day, Rick faces a tough challenge which will bring up unforeseen complications, heartbreak and ultimately an excruciating decision to make.

Free and open to the public.

Saturday, Jan. 27

Animal Tracking Classes

The Branford Land Trust will sponsor Animal Tracing Classes from 9:30 to 11 a.m. on Saturdays, Jan. 27 (snow date Jan. 28) and Feb. 24.

Learn to recognize animal footprints and other signs of their passage through the woods during these free classes led by Tom Cleveland and Chris Woerner at the Lake Saltonstall preserve.

Meet at the Regional Water Authority parking lot on the north side of Hosley Avenue, 0.3 miles from Brushy Plain Road. Expect moderate terrain, some sloping trails and inclines, rocky underfooting. Parents should be prepared to carry younger children if they get tired. Wear appropriate dress and comfortable, supportive walking shoes. Bring water. Walking sticks welcome. Watch BLT’s Facebook page for possible schedule changes. For details, call Tom Cleveland, 203-981-9040.

Sunday, Jan. 28

Jeff Fuller at HOME

Bassist Jeff Fuller performs at HOME Restaurant, 1114 Main Street, from 5 to 8 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 28, with guitarist Tony Lombardozzi.

HOME has intimate (couch and tables) atmosphere and the terrific food (mac-and-cheese and other comforts). Seating is first come, first served.

Fuller will also perform in Guilford at Ayuthai, 2279 Boston Post Road, from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sundays, Jan. 14 and 21.

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