Cool Events this Weekend, Here & Beyond

Mary Johnson PhotoThe foot-high snowfall is giving way to expected torrential rains. Rising temperatures are causing the ice in Branford Point to break up – see the great photos by Mary Johnson on our Facebook page. Inside activities dominate the listings, but looking ahead, nature lovers can check out Branford Land Trust’s animal tracking classes. In the meantime, explore the area’s art, music, and cultural events.

Saturday, Jan. 13


11th Annual Shoreline Train Show

The 11th Annual Shoreline Train Show takes place Saturday, Jan. 13, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at United Methodist Church, 811 E. Main St. There will be vendors, operating layouts, food services, door prizes, and a Thomas the Tank Engine themed room for kids.
Admission is $6 for adults, $4 for seniors (age 60 and up), free for children 12 and under. For more information, call 203-457-1571 or go to

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 and visit the gallery website

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

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

Sunday, Jan. 14

Jeff Fuller at Ayuthai in Guilford

Bassist Jeff Fuller performs 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. He’ll return on Sunday, Jan. 21.

For Fuller’s complete schedule, go to

Monday, Jan. 15

Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast

With PermissionState Sen. Ted Kennedy Jr. (D-12th District) will be the keynote speaker at the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast to be held Monday, Jan. 15, 8:30 a.m. at St. Therese Church Hall,105 Leetes Island Road in Branford.

The breakfast, now in its 33rd year honors the legacy of Dr. King and his teachings. The tradition was created in 1985, sponsored by St. Stephen’s AME Zion Church. Volunteers from several local faith organizations have carried on the annual event. They select a different speaker each year and choose a theme based on the words of Dr. King.

The late US Sen. Edward Kennedy, Ted Kennedy Jr.‘s father helped pass a federal bill in the Senate in 1983 establishing Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Tickets for the breakfast are $10 for adults and $5 for children; they’re available at the door. Proceeds go toward the Community Dining Room and Branford fuel assistance for the elderly.

Tuesday, Jan. 16

iPhone/iPad Photography Class

Mac Expert Dave Wray will present tips and tricks for taking great, high quality photos on your iPhone & iPad on Tuesday, Jan. 16, from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., at the Blackstone Library, 758 Main St. Participants will also learn editing techniques and other features that will allow them to enhance their photos. Space is limited. To RSVP, call 203-488-1441.

Friday, Jan. 19

2018 National Geography Bee 

The 2018 National Geography Bee takes place at 1 p.m.  Friday, Jan. 19, at Willoughby Wallace Library, 146 Thimble Island Road, hosted by the Connecticut Experiential Learning Center Middle School.

Students in the fourth through eighth grades in thousands of schools across the United States and in the five U.S. territories, as well as in Department of Defense Dependents Schools around the world take part in the event.

The champion of the local Bee will advance to the next level of competition, a qualifying test to determine state competitors. All school champions are then eligible to participate in the 2018 National Geographic Bee, held in Washington, D.C., for a chance to win college scholarships and the glory of being the National Geographic Bee Champion.

The public is invited. For more information, call Melinda Alcosser, 203-433-4658 or email or visit or

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

Open House at St. Mary School

St. Mary School, 62 Cedar St., will host an open house from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 28. Participating will be Principal Sr. Annette D’Antonio, MPF, some of our teachers, staff, parents, and students. For more information, call 203-488-8386 or visit

Jeff Fuller at HOME

Musician Jeff Fuller performs at HOME Restaurant, 1114 Main St., 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.

For Fuller’s schedule, go to



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