Cool Events This Week, Here and Beyond

Lots of activities leading up to Thanksgiving and the deep dive into the holidays, made a bit more festive by Thursday’s snow. Hope you stayed safe and warm. The weekend, however, looks fine, so take some time to enjoy some cool events around town amid your Thanksgiving preparations, including the Branford Land Trust’s Van Wie Walk. Consider helping residents in need through the Branford Food Pantry and Community Dining Room. The Branford Police Department along with Branford Big Y, 1075 West Main St. will be doing its third annual “Give A Cop The Bird” this Saturday, Nov. 17, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Saturday, Nov. 17

Holiday Fair

Stony Creek Congregational Church will hold its Holiday Fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 17. Featured will be gift baskets, children’s gifts, and specialty foods such as pies, breads, desserts, jams and more. Lunch will be available.

For more information, call 203-488-7827 or go to

Uncover Branford

riends and neighbors get together to share favorite Branford places and stories at the Blackstone Library, 758 Main St., at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 17. Then they plan an outing to a special spot to explore and uncover new places.

To RSVP, call 203-488-1441, extension 318 or visit

Sunday, Nov. 18

Land Trust Annual Pre-Thanksgiving Walk

Branford Land Trust hosts its traditional pre-Thanksgiving hike at Van Wie Woods on Sunday, Nov. 18 at 1 p.m., exploring fields, woodlands, streams, and granite outcrops of the 100 acres donated by two generations of the Van Wie family. Led by Bill Horne and Matt Reed, this is an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors with friends and family.

Meet at the trailhead at 87 Red Hill Road. Proceed to no. 87, which is on the right, and park on the right side of the road or at the pull-off by the pond.

The full walk is approximately two miles long (90 minutes) and of moderate difficulty with two or three short steep stretches. Walkers also have the option of a shorter (one mile) walk. Wear appropriate dress and comfortable, supportive walking shoes. Bring water. Walking sticks welcome. The walk is appropriate for kids as young as 6 or 7. Parents of younger children should use their discretion and be prepared to carry them for parts of the route.

This annual event is free and open to the public. For more information email

Beginning Friday, Nov. 23

Santa’s Trolley Winter Wonderland

Ride the trolley at the Shoreline Trolley Museum, River St., East Haven, on Nov. 23, 24, 25, and Dec. 1, 2, 8, 9, 15, and 16. The first trolley leaves at 11 a.m., the last at 4:30 p.m.

Children can visit with Santa and receive a small gift, antique trolleys decorated for the holiday can be inspected, along with the model train layout

In the evening the museum transforms itself into a wonderland of festive holiday lights. Many of the trolleys, buildings and sites in the yard area have been decorated for the holidays adding a wonderful soft glow reminding visitors of Christmas’ past.

The cost is $10 per person. Special weekday and evening charters are available. Tickets can be purchased at the door or at

Saturday, Nov. 24

Tree Lighting and Parade

The town’s annual tree lighting and parade takes place at 6 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 24, from Branford High School and ending at town green for the tree lighting.

Bring a non-perishable food item to benefit the Branford Food Council. The raindate is Sunday, Nov. 25. For more information or to register a float, go to or call 203-488-8304

Monday, Nov. 26

Home for the Holidays

Home Restaurant, 1114 Main St., hosts Home for the Holidays Monday, Nov. 26, 6 to 9:30 p.m. The event benefits the Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter.

Tickets are $20 and include appetizers, drink specials and raffles. They can be purchased at Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter 749 East Main St., or via; click on donate, then follow Paypal instructions. Tickets will be held at the door.

Tuesday, Nov. 27

Film Screening: Resilience Documentary

Blackstone Library and East Shore District Health Department will offer a free screening of “Resilience: The Biology Of Stress and The Science Of Hope” on Tuesday, Nov. 27, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Fire Headquarters, 45 N. Main St. The film is about childhood trauma and the adverse effects on health over a lifetime — and the role that everyone in the community can play in reversing them.

The one-hour documentary explores Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) and a new movement to treat and prevent Toxic Stress. Now understood to be one of the leading causes of everything from heart disease and cancer to substance abuse and depression, extremely stressful experiences in childhood can alter brain development and have lifelong effects on health and behavior. Find out how people across the country are working to address Toxic Stress.

Following the film, local health professionals will be on hand for a discussion and to answer questions. For more information, call Barbara Naclerio, East Shore District Health Department, 203-488-4233.

Thursday, Nov. 29

Changes in the Land: A Talk by Jane Bouley

The Branford Land Trust hosts Town Historian Jane Bouley for a free presentation on “Changes in the Land,” on Thursday, Nov. 29, 7 p.m. at Branford Fire Headquarters, 45 N. Main St.

Bouley will share her observations about Branford’s changing landscape from the colonial period to the present. What did the landscape look like when the colonists first came and what changes did they and subsequent generations make to Branford’s topography? How did natural events such as hurricane have an impact on the coastal community?

Bouley is a lifelong resident of Branford and as a young adult began to pursue the genealogy of her family, which has roots in Branford and Guilford. In 1985, she was appointed Branford’s Town Historian. As such, she has devoted hundreds of volunteer hours to the study of Branford’s history.

Bouley is also a recipient of an Award of Merit from the Connecticut League of Historical Societies and was inducted into the Branford Education Hall of Fame in 1999. She is the author of several books including “The Origin and Naming of Branford’s Streets,” which will be on sale at the event.

For more information email

Friday, Nov. 30-Saturday, Dec. 1

Open House at 188 N. Main

The artists at 188 North Main Street will host their 26th Annual Holiday Open House on Friday, Nov. 30, 5 to 8 p.m., and Saturday, Dec. 1, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. This year Cynthia’s Flower Shop, the Martha Link Walsh Gallery, and Luckey Redo will welcome guest artists Anita Griffith, Bob Parrott, and Susan Roberts.

A percentage of the sales from the event will be donated to Feed Branford Kids, a grass roots organization operating under the Branford Food Bank that works to ensure all Branford kids have food on weekends. It is 100 percent volunteer run and is supported solely by monitory and food donations.

The Holiday Open House is free and open to the public. Guests can enjoy refreshments provided by Take the Cake (Guilford) and special surprises all weekend

Saturday, Dec. 1

Christmas Fair

First Baptist Church of Branford, 975 Main St., will host its Christmas Fair on Saturday, Dec. 1, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Shoppers will find a large selection of gifts, including baked goods, crafts, and Christmas items, with breakfast sandwiches from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and lunch available from 11:30 a.m. Pianist Michael Cretella will provide holiday music and Santa will visit with children and be available for pictures.  There will also be a huge Tag Sale. Chances for two door prizes will be available to all who visit, with the prizes being awarded at 2 p.m. that day.

For more information, call the church office at 203-488-9777 for additional information.

Dudley Farm Open House And Holiday Market

Dudley Farm, 2351 Durham Road, Guilford, hosts a variety of holiday events from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 1 and 8, and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 2.

In the farmhouse, there will be cookies, carols, and merriment. In the Munger Barn, 34 vendors will have fresh cut holiday greens and wreaths, nature-based tabletop holiday decor, ornaments, late seasonal vegetables, naturally raised meat and eggs, jams, salsa, maple syrup and candy, hot chocolate, cider and coffee, platters of holiday cookies and sweets, breads, natural body products, organic teas and elixirs, and a variety of handmade artisanal crafts.

For further information, visit, or call 203-457-0770.

Thursday, Dec. 6

2nd Annual Branford Sip, Shop & Stroll

Join Branford’s Town Center Merchants on Thursday, Dec. 6 from 5 to 8 p.m. for an evening of sipping, shopping and strolling! Special holiday promotions will be offered by various businesses, which will offer beverages and sweet and savory snacks.

Holiday Gift Basket Sale

The Friends of the Blackstone Library’s annual Holiday Gift Basket Sale kicks off on Thursday, Dec. 6, from 5 to 8 p.m., with complimentary champagne and holiday cookies in the lower rotunda at the library.

Ready-made and wrapped, themed baskets are designed for holiday giving containing specialty foods, children’s items, entertainment, gardening supplies, kitchenware and more. All proceeds from the sale will benefit the Library programs and services you have come to love.

Baskets will continue to sell throughout the weekend as supplies last. Donated items for the sale can be dropped off at the library by Friday, Nov. 30.

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