Cool Events This Weekend, Here & Beyond

Arts and crafts lovers are drawn to Guilford every summer for the annual Craft Expo, which gets bigger and better every year. The juried exhibit and sale features the best of the best in terms of fine crafts presented by 180 artists. Short Beachers (old and new) anticipate the annual Community Picnic, which is a prelude to Short Beach Days at the end of the summer. And, what would a summer week be without the Branford Jazz Series? Very… unmusical!

Friday, July 14 to Sunday, July 16


Guilford Craft Expo

In celebration of its 60th year, the Guilford Art Center’s annual Craft Expo will return to the Guilford Green, celebrating the arts with its extensive array of handmade crafts by 180 American artists. Craft Expo 2017 will be held for three days: Friday, July 14 (noon to 9 p.m.); Saturday, July 15 (10 a.m. to 7 p.m.); and Sunday, July 16 (noon to 5 p.m.). See top photo.

Craft Expo is known for its one-of-a-kind work of the highest quality: Ceramics, wearable and non-wearable fiber, metal and non-metal jewelry, glass, leather, metal, mixed media, painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture and wood. Items range from decorative to functional and traditional to contemporary.

For more information, go to

Saturday, July 15

Festival of Yoga

A daylong festival of yoga, meditation and wellness classes will be held on the Branford green today from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.  Try it.

An Insider’s Look

If you’re new to town or just curious about that magnificent granite building on Main Street, this is your chance to learn all about it. On Saturday, July 15, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m., you can tour the Blackstone Library, learn historical tidbits, and get an insider’s peek into the day in the life of a Blackstone library employee. To register, call 203-488-1441.

Short Beach Community Picnic

The Short Beach Union Church fundraiser to support Short Beach Days’ 71st anniversary takes place at Pardee Park Saturday, July 15, from 2 to 3 p.m. Rain date is Sunday.

Included will be family games, music, and raffles. Tickets are $12 for hamburgers, hotdogs, and sides or $17 for barbecue ribs or lobster rolls and sides. Call 203-488-4841 or email

Saturday, July 15, and Sunday, July 16

Christmas in July

  Cynthia Purcell, Martha Link Walsh and Owen Luckey have joined together for Christmas in July, at their galleries, 188 North Main St., on Saturday, July 15, and Sunday, July 16, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days.

The Martha Link Walsh Gallery features Spread Your Wings to Soar, an exhibit of Martha Link Walsh’s newest paper cuttings. Luckey ReDo offers the latest creations by textile artist Owen Luckey including a new line of reimagined denim jeans. Well-known for her creative floral displays, Cynthia Purcell welcomes visitors to stop into Cynthia’s Flower Shop to enjoy some of her recent arrangements.

Items for sale include potted plants and seasonal flowers at Cynthia’s Flower Shop; wearables and accessories at Luckey ReDo; cards, prints and papercut luminaries at the Martha Link Walsh Gallery, plus a chance to see the new 2018 Papercut Calendar.

The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. For more information, call 203-481-3505 or visit

Thursday, July 20

Branford Jazz Series

The Branford Jazz Series on the town green continues at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, July 20, with Oli Silk and JJ Sansaverino.

They have earned numerous jazz accolades throughout their outstanding musical career – Silk as one of the most dynamic entertainers in the genre and a sought after smooth jazz producer, while Sansaverino, an outstanding performer, composer, arranger, and musical director in the world of smooth jazz, R&B, world music, and fusion.

The concerts run through Thursday, Aug. 24. 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

Animal Camp continues

Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter’s Animal Camp runs July 17 to July 21, July 24 to July 28, Aug. 14 to Aug. 18, and Aug. 21 to Aug. 25.

The camp is a fun, educational, hands-on camp that allows children to interact and learn about all kinds of animals. The focus is to promote respect for all living creatures, including each other. Included will be games such as animal tracking, nature art, and water games.

For more information or registration forms, go to, call Laura at 203-315-4125, or Dawn at 203-393-8628.

Wednesday, July 26

Stone Walls of England and New England

Andrew Pighills will speak at the Blackstone Library, on Wednesday, July 26, from 7 to 8 p.m. He will draw comparisons of the geology, building styles, and techniques of stonewalls in England and New England from colonial times to present day. He will explain how stonewalls have developed, evolved, and how they fit into the garden and wider landscape of past and present.

The lecture is sponsored by the Branford Historical Society

Saturday, July 29

National Trolley Festival

The National Trolley Festival is an all-day event celebrating the 117th anniversary of the start of trolley service on the line (the Branford Electric Railway started operating July 31, 1900) and the 72nd anniversary of the founding of the museum (on Aug. 14, 1945), taking place at the Shoreline Trolley Museum, 17 River St., East Haven. The highlight will be two parades of cars, at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

There will be food trucks in the yard and a DJ. A special feature will be a 1 p.m. tour of the old Johnson’s Quarry site, led by well-known Branford Trust member Bill Horne.

For details, go to

Summer Food & Supply Drive

The Branford Compassion Club will hold its annual Summer Food & Supply Drive, Saturday, July 29, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at its Feline Rescue & Adoption Center, 2037 Foxon Road, North Branford.

The kitties’ wish list includes canned pate and dry cat and kitten food, paper towels, kitchen trash bags, Yesterday’s News cat litter, Tidy Cats litter, pet supply gift certificates, and small cat trees.

Stop by for lemonade and cookies, check out the popular “catio,” and meet many wonderful cats and kittens available for adoption.
For more information, visit

Saturday, July 29, and Sunday, July 30

Early Guilford Days Family Festival

Guilford’s five history museums present tours, hands-on activities, and craft demonstrations and sales during the fourth annual Early Guilford Days Family Festival from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, July 29 and Sunday, July 30. Experience the sights, sounds, and aromas of the 1600s, 1700s, and 1800s at each of the sites: Henry Whitfield State Museum, Hyland House Museum, Thomas Griswold House Museum, Medad Stone Tavern Museum, and The Dudley Farm Museum.

The Henry Whitfield State Museum at 248 Old Whitfield St. will have craft demonstrations and sales, including wool spinning, 17th century reproduction furniture, and tinsmithing. The Whitfield House, built in 1639, is Connecticut’s oldest house. The museum is operated by the State of Connecticut’s State Historic Preservation Office.

The Hyland House Museum, 84 Boston St., a classic saltbox built in 1713, will feature hearth cooking (Saturday only), herb gardening, fabric dying, and storytelling.
Built circa 1774, The Thomas Griswold House Museum at 171 Boston St. will have a blacksmith working at the forge in the blacksmith shop and will present weaving demonstrations on both Saturday and Sunday.

The 1803 Medad Stone Tavern Museum, also owned by the Guilford Keeping Society, will host stenciling, paper cutting, and games each day. The 14-room, 10-fireplace building has seen little alteration since it was first constructed.

The Dudley Farm Museum at 2351 Durham Road (junction of Routes 77 & 80) in North Guilford invites visitors to the late 1800s to try their hand at doing laundry, weaving, whittling, and timber hewing, view the gardens, and visit with the sheep, chickens, and oxen.

A $10 ticket offers admission to all five sites for both days of the event. Admission is free for children 12 and younger.

Through Aug. 6

Beauty and the Beetle at the Peabody Museum

Coleoptera in Art and Science is on display through Aug. 6 at the Peabody Museum of Natural History, Whitney Avenue and Sachem Street, New Haven, as represented by artist Gar Waterman and photographer William Guth, who present dazzling representations of these incredible insects.

Of the one million species of insects known to scientists today, nearly half – about 400,000 – are beetles. These tremendously diverse animals, known by the scientific term Coleoptera, are found in habitats across the globe, and take on a wide variety of shapes and sizes (the largest is over 400 times longer than the smallest).

Their work allows us a rare glimpse of details and topographies typically the reserve of scientists and their microscopes. Artists and scientists alike are diligent students of nature, each investigating its subject in remarkably similar ways: science to document and explain, and art to interpret and express.



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