Summer

Special Section to: Greenwich Post

Scapes
HERSAM ACORN NEWSPAPERS
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The Wilton Bulletin

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The Darien Times

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New Canaan Advertiser

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The Ridgefield Press

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The Redding Pilot

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The Weston Forum

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The Lewisboro Ledger

To swim or not to swim?
WHAT TO WEAR IS THE QUESTION
By Lois Alcosser

Sam is wearing Quicksilver Boardshorts — four-way stretch, quick-dry, ultra lightweight — and a Hurley shirt, with ultraviolet light ray protection, from Swim ‘n Surf, 43 Unquowa Road in Fairfield. – Bryan Haeffele photo

For teenage girls — as well as for most women — buying swimwear is a Momentous Decision. So what will it be in the summer of 2012? This season, sunscreen products should sell very well because there’ll be lots of Ms., Miss and Mrs.’s skin showing at the beach and around the pool. Bikinis have added a couple of inches of fabric for the more conservative crowd, but the skimpiest of the skimpy is still popular. The perfect answer for most women is the less-revealing Tankini — a two-piece with a tank top that covers the belly and most of the panty. Many of them have skirt bottoms, flattering to lots of different bodies. Kelly Kegan of Swim’n Surf in Fairfield sees the comeback of the classic one-piece swimsuit, but cut higher on the leg and quite a bit more sophisticated. These come in various textures, a crocheted look as well as spandex stretch, and there’s something sexy about not exposing the midriff. Colors are neon bright. Prints, stripes and dots are all available, but solid colors are looking very good.

What’s really big news is what goes over the swimsuit — cover-ups have come into their own. No longer just a floaty sheer fabric, this season’s cover-ups are fashion-savvy and are also worn as dresses away from the beach, often all day long. Rosie Costello of Everything’s Rosey in Darien said most of her customers buy three or four because they’re so comfortable, so summery, so versatile. There are tunics, shifts and breezy shirt shapes in a great choice of colors, fabrics and styles. Lyn Evans Potpourri Designs in Ridgefield and New Canaan agrees that these dress-like cover-ups are a fashion trend here to stay. Metro Swim in Norwalk has swimwear for the whole family — from six-month-old babies to Grandma and Grandpa. They have just about every swimsuit Speedo makes, including the new Olympic line. There are workout suits for swimmers who care more about fitness than looks and fashion swimwear for everyone else Suits continued on page 7

Where to Buy
Swim ‘n Surf 43 Unquowa Road Fairfield 203-292-6351 Everything’s Rosey 1015 Boston Post Road Darien 203-722-6060 MetroSwim 181 Westport Avenue Norwalk 203-226-8848 Lyn Evans Potpourri Designs 423 Main Street Ridgefield 203-244-2980 103 Elm Street New Canaan 203-972-3620 Hutton’s 15 Bailey Avenue Ridgefield 203-438-6989 Beach Corner 102 Main Street New Canaan 203-966-4644 Tahiti Street 84 Greenwich Avenue Greenwich 203-622-1878 Stamford Town Center 100 Greyrock Place Stamford Danbury Fair Mall 7 Backus Avenue Danbury

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• SummerScapes • Hersam Acorn Newspapers •

• June 21, 2012 •

Local escapes for families
By Melissa Ezarik
Ahhh, summer ... so many possibilities. Taking lots of local excursions — ideally free or inexpensive ones — is how my family fits in maximum fun. Following are four great close-by places and two more that are worth a road trip, plus suggestions on kid-friendly places to grab a bite to eat. Danbury Railway Museum, 120 White Street, Danbury, 203-778-8337, danbury.org/ drm. Adults $6, ages three to 12 $4, children under three are free, plus $3 for Danbury Rail Yard tour. Located inside the historic train station and rail yard in downtown Danbury, the museum offers railroad history, tours of the six-acre railyard with more than 70 pieces of historic equipment and artifacts, opportunities to try hands-on railroad work, and of course train rides (weekends and special events only). The 20-minute tour of the rail yard includes a ride on a real operating turntable. Kid-friendly meal add-on: Pancho’s Tacos, 145 White Street, Danbury, 203-7900900, panchostaco.com. Earthplace, The Nature Discovery Center, 10 Woodside Lane, Westport, 203227-7253, earthplace.org. Teens/adults $7, children $5, but free for the grounds only, where there’s plenty to do. On the 62-acre property are six, 15- to 30-minute walking trails, including one that loops around a swamp and a universal design trail, Wheels-in-the-Woods IV. Pick up one of the trail activity flyers for an enhanced outdoor adventure, such as word hunting. After your walk, stroll through the birds of prey exhibit area to meet injured feathered friends and then check out the well-equipped wooden playground (after 3 p.m. and on weekends only). Kid-friendly meal add-on: Bobby Q’s for pit-smoked BBQ; 42 Main Street, Westport, 203-454-7800, bobbyqsrestaurant.com. Want to linger longer in Westport? Head to The Levitt Pavilion for the Performing Arts, 40 Jesup Road, Westport, 203-2212153, levittpavilion.com, for a free outdoor concert. Held on more than 50 summer nights, the best times to bring the kiddos are Wednesdays for the Children’s Series (7 p.m. start) and Fridays for Party Band and Pop (8 p.m. start). “Opening Night: The Sixties Show,” on Sunday, June 24, will also be popular with families. Most visitors bring their own picnic food, but snacks and ice cream are on site for sale. Stepping Stones Museum for Children, 303 West Avenue (Mathews Park), Norwalk, 203-899-0606, steppingstonesmuseum.org. At $15 a head, how does this one make the list of free and cheap places? Here’s how: snag a discount pass from your public library for buy-one-get-one admission, or plan to attend when admission is free — Thursday, July 5, and Thursday, August 2, from 5 to 8 p.m. for anyone, or Saturday, July 14, from 9 to 11 a.m. for families of children with special needs. In five main galleries are 100-plus hands-on activities. A giant open-air tent with eco-friendly play surface is the place to be on must-be-outside days. Free all the time are the themed community garden areas on site and Devon’s Place accessible playground, located across the parking lot. Kid-friendly meal add-on: Ash Creek Saloon, for barbecue, sandwiches and salads; 2 Wilton Avenue, Norwalk, 203-847-7500, ashcreeksaloon.com. Dinosaur State Park, 400 West Street, Rocky Hill, 860-529-8423, dinosaurstatepark. org. Teens/adults $6, $2 for youth ages six to 12, and free for kids five and under. The exhibit center’s geodesic dome features 500 of the 2,000 dinosaur tracts accidentally discovered back in 1968, plus a model of a Dilophosaurus. Jennifer Fetcho of Hamden visited with her husband and daughter, now eight, whose fave parts were the dinosaur footprints and hands-on room. “She was able to hold real fossils,” said Fetcho. “We really love it there and plan to visit at least once each summer.” The grounds, free to visit, feature nature

FREE AND INEXPENSIVE

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trails, picnic spots, mining for gems and fossils ($5.50-$9 per bag) and a track casting area (available in dry weather; BYO materials listed online). Kid-friendly meal addon: Michel Angelo’s Pizzeria, Restaurant & Lounge for pizza, grinders and burgers; 825 Cromwell Avenue, Rocky Hill, 860-257-3136, michelangelosct.com/rocky_hill/. Submarine Force Museum and USS Nautilus, 1 Crystal Lake Road, Groton, 800343-0079. Free (closed Tuesdays). Tour the USS Nautilus, the world’s first nuclear-powered ship and the first vessel to go to the North Pole. The ship, in use from 1954 to 1979 by the U.S. Navy, has been converted into an historic landmark that anyone can visit via a selfguided audio tour through the spaces where the crew lived on long voyages. Is it worth the drive? Moira Cotlier-Cassell’s boys, ages eight and 10, sure think so. “We swung by there on our way back from the Cape,” said Cotlier-Cassell, of New Haven. “The boys loved the tour of an actual submarine, including sleeping quarters and the mess hall. Hard to imagine living on a sub for months at a time!” Kid-friendly meal add-on: Groton Townhouse Restaurant for salads, sandwiches and ice cream; 355 Route 12, Groton, 860449-0355, grotontownhouserestaurant.com.

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��������������������������������� KIDS CALENDAR: A SELECTION OF EVENTS FOR YOUNGSTERS AND THEIR FAMILIES ����������������������
Summer Theatre of New Canaan, under tent in Waveny Park, parking at New Canaan High School, Farm Lane; box office 203-966-4634 or stonc.org: The Wizard of Oz, Sun., June 17 through Sat., Aug. 4, Sun. June 24, July 1, at 12:30; Sat., June 23, June 30, July 21, July 18, at 10 a.m.; Sat., July 7, at 1; Fri., July 27, at 10:30, Fri., Aug. 3, at 10 a.m.; tickets $16, stage-side and orchestra tables avail.; Pinkalicious: The Musical, July 4 through Aug. 5, weekend days; Joseph and the Amazing Techicolor Dreamcoat, July 14 through Aug. 5, weekend evenings. Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo, 1875 Noble Ave., Bridgeport; adm. $12/adults, $10/children three to 11 and seniors, free for children under three; open daily 9 to 4; 203394-6565, beardsleyzoo.org; 90th Birthday Celebration: 90 Days of Summer, through Labor Day weekend, special offers and admission rates (details online). family performer Chris Rowlands, live, at 11, 1 and 3 daily June 23-30, free w/zoo adm. Levitt Pavillion, 40 Jesup Road, downtown Westport; levittpavilion.com, concert hotline 203-221-2153; the children’s series runs on Wednesdays from June 27 through Aug. 29 (note: there is no program on July 4th); The Bindlestiff Family Cirkus, Wednesday, July 25 — a unique hybrid of circus, vaudeville, Wild West shows and sideshow (a ticketed event to benefit the Pavilion); Sundays — Jazz and Big Band, 7p.m.; Mondays (August only) — movie nights at sundown, most movie nights in August are teen flix; Tuesdays — wild cards and anything goes, including dance, comedy and more, 8 p.m.; Thursdays – classical, cabaret, Broadway and beyond, 8 p.m.; Fridays — party bands and pop, 8 p.m.; Saturdays — blues/folk/rock/ world/DJs, 8 p.m. Bridgeport Arts Fest, July 7, McLevy Green. Walnut Beach Summer Concert Series, July 15 through Aug. 16, Walnut Beach Pavillion. Bethel Summerfest Craft Fair, July 21, July 22, Municipal Center (front lawn). The Discovery Museum, 4450 Park Ave., Bridgeport; 203372-3521; Tues.-Sat., 10-5, Sun., 12-5; museum and planetarium, $8.50 adults, $7 children, seniors, students, free under five: daily planetarium shows (The Little Star That Could, for ages eight and younger; Dawn of the Space Age, for ages eight and older), Challenger Learning Center, call for schedule; many interactive exhibits; Your House, My House, exhibit exploring all types of homes, through Sept. 2; many interactive exhibits, incl. Preschool Power for babies through three year olds. Military Museum of Southern New England, 125 Park Ave., Danbury; 203-790-9277; usmilitarymuseum.org: more than 30 armored vehicles; massive collection of military artifacts; story of the 10th Mountain Division; life-size dioramas with major military vehicles; The World in Flames, story of World War II 1939-1945; The War in the Pacific, expanded exhibit; large gift shop; summer hours, Tues.-Sat., 10-5; Sun., 12-5; adults $6, active duty military, children and srs. $4; under five, free. Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, 10 N. Water St., adm. $12.95 ������������������ for adults, $11.95 for seniors, $9.95 for children 2-12; ���������������� open 10-5 daily (till 6, July and August); info., 203-8520700, ext. 2206: Toy Boat Workshop on Saturdays and Sundays between 11 and 3, 20-min. workshop, $5/child, no res. required. Africa: The Desert to the Sea, through Labor Day, 2012; seal feedings at 11:45 a.m. and 1:45 and 3:45 p.m. daily; Meerkats, special exhibit, through Labor Day, 2012. Marine Life Study Cruises, 2.5-hr. trips on the RV Oceanic with trawling for samples, data collection, for people at least 42 inches tall, $20.50, res. recommended, daily in July and August. FARMERS’ MARKETS Darien Farmers’ Market, Wed., 11-4, through December; Mechanic St., behind the Darien Farmhouse; darienfarmersmaket.net. Fairfield Farmers’ Market, indoors, Sat., 10-1, through May, Greenfield Hill Grange, 1873 Hillside Rd., Fairfield; then Sat., 12:30-4, through Oct. 27, 1950 Bronson Rd., Greenfield Hill, Fairfield.

Calendar continued on page 5

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PLAY BALL!
Joe Espinosa’s

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Summer Outdoor Baseball Camps
Weekly Sessions • Full & Half Day June 25-August 17

Boys & Girls Ages 6-11

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Advanced Baseball Camp Ages 12-14
East Ridge Middle School, Ridgefield, CT

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Convenient Camp Location

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SPACES STILL AVAILABLE!
Now register online at www.baseballplusct.com

Private and Small Group Instruction in Baseball & Softball

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203-778-4131
88 Sugar Hollow Rd, Route 7 • Ridgefield/Danbury Line Full Program & Registration Details available at baseballplusct.com

• June 21, 2012 •

• SummerScapes • Hersam Acorn Newspapers •

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SUMMER ENTERTAINING

Make it a lobster clambake!
By Julie Butler Evans
Summer features plenty of backyard barbecues, the aroma of grilled burgers, hot dogs, steak or chicken wafting through the air. That’s fine, that’s tasty, that’s typical. But what about a backyard lobster clambake? Now there’s a way to put a very summer-y stamp on a backyard party or special occasion! Vicki Nye, co-owner of Capt’n John’s Clambakes — which has been providing Connecticut with classic New England clambakes for 33 years — said that they can do clambakes anywhere, from small backyards to beaches to large yacht club and corporate events, but that the key to any great clambake, first and foremost, is the quality of the seafood. “All of our seafood is brought in fresh the day of the event,” she said. “Even the lobster.” Cathy Caminiti-Szabo, co-owner with her husband, Dan, of Szabo’s Seafood in Shelton, agreed. “There could be nothing worse than not having freshly-caught or bought seafood,” she said, “especially for a clambake.” Caminiti-Szabo said that Szabo’s Seafood has been catering clambakes since 2000, and that a typical offering to a client will include a choice of chowder or steamed clams or mussells, cooked shrimp or a raw bar, and lobster, swordfish, chicken or steak. “The most popular combination is lobster and steak,” she said. “With corn-on-the-cob and cole slaw.” Capt’n John’s also offers a variety of choices. Most often the clambake will consist of a half-pound Maine lobster, steamers, mussles, corn and potato, with add-ons such as a raw bar, and a variety of salads “made fresh by us,” Nye said. “Especially our chowders — they are homemade, not out of a can.” “A typical party starts with our staff arriving with all the fresh food and the equipment needed to cook and serve the food on site,” said Nye. “We bring grills, charcoal, plates, napkins, knifes, forks, spoons, wet naps, bibs — everything!” Both companies also offer special kids’ menus, such as hamburgers and hot dogs for the less seafood-savvy young palate, plus corn and watermelon. Capt’n John’s also offers “Travelin’ Clambakes,” for one or more, that come ready-to-cook in a reusable pot that is yours to keep. Each contains a quarter-pound lobster, corn, potato, mussels, clams and little sausages, and are available in three different-sized pots. “All you do is had some liquid, put it on a heat source and you’re done!” said Nye. Whether you want to hold a cozy clambake or a large lobsterfest, the summer months are the time to do it. Capt’n John’s Clambakes, 99 Commerce Street in Norwalk, can be reached at 203-866-4343, or visit captainjohns.com. Szabo’s Seafood, located at 615 Howe Avenue in Shelton, can be reached at 203-922-1191 or visit szabos-seafood.com.

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• SummerScapes • Hersam Acorn Newspapers •

• June 21, 2012 •

Above: Little Sparklers owner Lindsay Cain and birthday girl Ava Lee. Right: Party guests Ashley Aufderheide, Georgia Palmgren, Cameron Butz and Claire Hesser.

Little Sparklers
By Amanda Bomann
Walking into Little Sparklers is like walking into a big, delicious puff of pink cotton candy. Oversized candy bowls act as centerpieces, the rugs are a funky zebra print and dressing room mirrors hang on the very, very pink walls. It is little girl bliss. Little Sparklers, a jewelry-making studio for pre-tweens and tweens, is the creation of Lindsay Cain, owner of Femmegems, a design-your-own jewelry business. Both are located on Greenwich Avenue in Greenwich. “I’ve had a demand from my customers who were mothers to do parties for their daughters since the day I opened in Greenwich,” said Cain. Located in the back of the Ella Vickers store and just a few doors down from Femmegems, Little Sparklers ignited last fall (2011). Ava Lee, age seven, was celebrating her birthday the day I visited. The room was full of the sound of little girls giggling and Taylor Swift strumming. “This was the perfect activity for a birthday party because it is creative and the jewelry is something everyone can be proud of and take home to wear for many years,” said the birthday girl’s mother Gloria Lee. Little Sparklers parties Catering to little girls who want to be just as sparkly as their moms, Cain devised a variety of activities, including Little Sparklers parties for ages seven to 10, Sparklers parties for ages 10 to 13 (boys can be invited!), appointments and drop-in hours. Each guest at the parties create two custom designed pieces of jewelry (necklaces, bracelets, anklets or drop earrings). Personalized party invites or emailed invites are provided as well as a personalized copy of Cain’s book Get Your Sparkle On. Guests bring their jewels home in pouches provided by the store. But none of this compares to the grand finale — a red carpet runway show complete with wigs, sunglasses and “paparazzi” (a.k.a. the store staff) taking photos. The “celebrity” photos are compiled into an online album that the birthday mom can forward to parents. Little Sparklers also provides thank you cards that include party photos. Add-ons to the party include snacks from Whole Foods, cupcakes from Crumbs and the ultimate grooming activity for showing off new jewels — professional pedicures. But, most importantly: is a Little Sparklers party fun? Of course, as only a seven-yearold can put into words. “This birthday party is fun,” said Claire Hesser, an attendee of Ava’s party. “It is kind of different. At school we have to learn a lot and don’t get to eat cookies.” “I’ve never made my own necklace before, “said Georgia Palmgren, another guest. “And I like cake.” Bead boards are provided to help lay out the designs before stringing and only quality materials are used. “I made a conscious effort to offer sophisticated materials that are still age-appropriate,” said Cain. “The materials make the girls feel special.” For years, Cain has wanted to make the private jewelry-designing parties that her store Femmegems offers available to children, and was waiting for the perfect space to open. When a room in the back of the Ella Vickers store became vacant, the wine and hors d’oeuvres adult parties were transformed into a tween dream. But the best part about her new business for Cain is watching the girls’ experience. “I love seeing the girls’ faces when they walk in the studio,” she said. “Their eyes can’t hide their excitement. There’s a great visceral reaction where every girl seems to instinctively run her hands through the bowls of beads. The red carpet shows, however, are my favorite part of the parties. The girls cut loose and rock out in their new creations with their pals, and it is great to see them just be crazy kids.” And the Little Sparklers experience is not just for in-store parties. This past winter, Little Sparklers began partnering with event planners to offer off-site jewelry making at events such as Sweet 16’s and Bat Mitzvahs. Little Sparklers parties start at $385 for up to eight children. Drop-in hours are posted online and change weekly and are fully staffed, so moms can run errands and there is no charge beyond the cost of the jewelry. For more information, visit littlesparklers. com or call (203) 622-2990.

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• June 21, 2012 •

• SummerScapes • Hersam Acorn Newspapers •

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Calendar

continued from page 2

Georgetown Farmers’ Market, Sun., 102; June 17-Oct. 28, 4 Old Mill Rd., Georgetown; georgetownctfarmersmarket. com. Newtown-Fairfield Hills Farmers’ Market, Tues., 2-6 p.m., ; through October; Wasserman Way, Fairfield Hills Campus, Newtown. Greenwich Farmers’ Market, Sat., 9:30-1; through Nov. 17, commuter parking lot off Exit 3 I-95, Arch Street and Horseneck Lane. Shelton Farmers’ Market, Wed., 3-6 p.m., and Sat., 9 a.m.-1 p.m.; through Nov. 17, corner of Cornell and Canal Streets. Trumbull Farmers’ Market, Thur., 2-6 p.m., June 21-Oct. 25, Long Hill Green, Main St. New Canaan Farmers’ Market, Sat., 102, through October, Old Center School Parking Lot, South Avenue and Maple Street.; newcanaanfarmersmarket.net. Norwalk Rainbow Plaza Farmers’ Market, Wed., 11-3; through Oct. 31, 305 Main Street.; ctfarmfresh.org. Old Greenwich Farmers’ Market, Wed. 3-6 p.m.; through through Nov. 14, at the Presbyterian Church of Old Greenwich, 38 West End Avenue.; oldgreenwichfarmersmaket.com. Westport Farmers’ Market, Thur., 10-2, Imperial Avenue commuterlot; westportfarmersmarket.com. Wilton Farmers’ Market, Wed., 2-6 p.m.; through Sept. 12, at the Wilton Historical Society, 224 Danbury Road (Route 7); info., 203-762-0567. Antiques & Farmers’ Holiday Outdoor Markets, Pound Ridge, N.Y., business district; 9-5 on Independence Day (July 4), Labor Day (Sept. 3); heavy rain cancels, barbecued lunch; info., 914-764-5122. Sunday Farmers’/Bakers’ Market and second Sunday Antiques Market, at Antiques and Tools of Business and Kitchen, 11-4; 65 Westchester Avenue, Pound Ridge, N.Y.; 914-764-0015 or 5122. NATURE CENTERS Devil’s Den/Lucius Pond Ordway Preserve, a Nature Conservancy property, 33 Pent Road. Weston; open dawn to dusk to passive recreation; 20 miles of trails; info., concerns, 860-455-0716; natureconservancy.org. New Canaan Nature Center, 144 Oenoke Ridge, New Canaan, 203-966-9577; satellite site for NY Botanical Garden programs (800-322-6924); buildings open Mon.-Sat., 9-4 (closed major holidays); Saturday Explorers Club, second Saturday of month for ages six and up and families, 1:30-2:45; First Saturdays, first Saturday of the month, free guided activities for visitors, 10 a.m.-1 p.m.; free live animal presentations, Saturday at 3, lasting 15-20 min., different animal each week. Stamford Museum and Nature Center, 39 Scofieldtown Rd., Stamford; 203-3221646 or stamfordmuseum.org: Heckscher Farm, daily, 9-4 (Animal Embassy open Tues.-Sun., 10-2); Nature’s Playground, daily 9-5; Bendel Mansion (main building), Mon.-Sat., 9-5, Sun., 11-5. Earthplace, The Nature Discovery Center, 10 Woodside Lane, Westport; open Mon.Sat., 9-5, Sun., 1-4 (closed major holidays); adm. $7/adults, $5/ages 1-12 & srs.; free adm. to trails and property, daily 7 a.m.-dusk; interactive nature museum, live wildlife, family program on Sat.; 203227-7253; earthplace.org.

The Bridgeport Bluefish are celebrating their 15th season of bringing professional baseball to Fairfield County.

– Courtesy of Bridgeport Bluefish

THE BRIDGEPORT BLUEFISH

The ‘Boys of Summer’ at Harbor Yard
By Julie Butler Evans
The Bridgeport Bluefish, the AAA minor league baseball team that calls the Ballpark at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport its home, are now in their 15th season and to celebrate that milestone, there are events galore planned at the ballpark for this summer. The Bluefish are a member of the Liberty Division of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (it is not affiliated with Major League Baseball) and they have been to the league’s championship series five times, winning the title in 1999. They also won the division title in 2010. “We are in a good, competitive league,” said Bob Goughan, the Bluefish general manager. “We have been a contending team and I think we have nice chances for this year.” As of press-time, the Bluefish were in second place. In addition to the home baseball games and special promotional events preceding those games, the Bluefish organization really knows how to hit a homerun with kids by offering special birthday packages, as well as Bluefish baseball camps for boys and girls, ages five to 13, with all instruction given by current Bluefish players. The three-day camps run from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and the cost is $250 per child. Camp dates are: July 11, 12, and 13; July 23, 26, and 27; and August 8, 9, and 10. Kids under age 12 eat free every Tuesday at the ballpark and there will be special Sunday afternoon Family Fun Days at 2:05 p.m. on June 24, July 29, Aug. 12, and Aug. 19. Fireworks will light up the sky above Harbor Yard on Tuesday, July 3, Saturday, July 28, and Saturday, Aug. 18. Special theme nights include a “Batman Night” on Friday, June 22, “Christmas in July” on Saturday, July 14, and a “Hawaiian Night” on Friday, Aug. 17, when the players will wear special Hawaiian-themed jerseys which will be sold after the game. Even dogs get their day this summer with “Bark in the Park” nights, when dogs will be allowed to accompany their owners to a Bluefish game, on Wednesday, June 27, at 7:05 p.m. and Wednesday, Aug. 22 at 7:05 p.m. Ticket prices for games are $9 for loge seating, $12 for field box and $20 for premium seating in the Harbor Club. The Ballpark at Harbor Yard is located at 500 Main Street, Bridgeport. For more information and to purchase tickets, call 203-345-4800 or visit bridgeportbluefish.com.

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•6•

• SummerScapes • Hersam Acorn Newspapers •

• June 21, 2012 •

A meal with a water view
THE QUINTESSENTIAL SUMMER EXPERIENCE
By Polly Tafrate
Celebrate these lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer by eating at restaurants with a view of the water or on an outdoor deck. The following list of restaurants are good choices and range from casual to upscale. Each has something unique to offer: all feature fresh fish with landlubber options available, a liquor license, free parking and are open every day. Most have a raw bar; a few have dock slips, others offer live entertainment and many have been on local “The Best of ” lists. Marnick’s Restaurant and Rodeway Inn 10 Washington Parkway Stratford, CT 06115 203-377-6288 Breakfast, lunch dinner “Don’t miss the double meat lobster roll served with fries and a side of Cole Slaw”, said many regulars about this right-on-the-beach, family friendly restaurant. Tables with unobstructed views of Long Island Sound are available inside or out on their new deck and bar. Marnick’s is right on Long Beach so save time for a stroll. Next door is The Rodeway Inn which makes spending a few nights here a tempting option. Costa Azzurra 72 Broadway Milford, CT 06460 203- 878-6688 Lunch and dinner weekdays, and dinner only on Saturday and Sunday This intimate American-Italian-American family-run restaurant has been in business since 1972. It’s best described as “a hidden gem,” with its unobstructed views of Long Island Sound and Charles Island. A wide selection of seafood and traditional Italian dishes are on the menu with Executive Chef Pietro do Nicolo’s signature dishes of Veal Saltimbocca and Zuppa die Pesce, which is enough to serve two people. Two large and recently renovated beach-side banquet rooms are available for catering and special events. LaRoue Elayne at Cobb’s Mill Inn 12 Old Mill Road Weston, CT 06883 203-227-7221 Lunch and dinner The J.K. Country Café, a stylish coffee bar, with pastries and sundries, will open mid-summer. Known for its romantic setting and as one of the prettiest places in Connecticut to dine, the former Cobb’s Mill Inn recently re-opened under new ownership by partners Drew Friedman and Elayne Cassara. Food with an Italian, French and Continental flair is served in several of the newly renovated dining rooms. Nearing completion is the screened deck

The views from the Sunset Grille in Norwalk are as tempting as the items on the menu.

– Courtesy of Sunset Grille

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• Minerals • Butterflies • Handcrafted Jewelry • Fossils • Shells • Games • Nature Toys
And Much More!

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• June 21, 2012 •

• SummerScapes • Hersam Acorn Newspapers •

•7•

overlooking the Saugatuck River and its spectacular waterfall for outside dining. Former owner Domenic Cocchia has returned as general manager, assuring past patrons that some of their New England favorites will be back on the menu, but perhaps with a modern twist. He recommends one of Executive Chef’s, Michael Achille’s signature dishes, Siam Style Seafood Stew, but adds, “Not many have French onion soup as good as ours.” A host of live entertainment will be offered on many nights, ranging from straight plays to cabaret-style entertainment, as well as dancing to live bands. Sunset Grille 52 Calf Pasture Beach Road Norwalk, CT 203-866-4177 Lunch and dinner Although adjacent to Calf Pasture Beach, the entrance to Sunset Grille is from Norwalk Cove Marina and one must meander to the end of the boat yard before finding this family-friendly restaurant. Sit in the dining room with its large picture windows overlooking the sound, at outdoor tables on the water’s edge, or under the awning which offers a little more shade. “Ninety percent of the food we serve is seafood,” says Manager Felipe. “Aside from the traditional clams, oysters and New England chowder, other favorites are pan seared sea scallops, grilled swordfish and Paella ala Valenciana.” Boat slips are available through Norwalk Cove Marina. Live music on Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons, weather permitting. The Restaurant at Rowayton Seafood 89 Rowayton Avenue Rowayton, CT 203-866-4488 Lunch and dinner

Delamar Hotel with the same waterfront setting is but a walk through the lobby. Reservations suggested, valet parking. So-No Seafood 100 Water Street Norwalk, CT 06859 203-854-9483 Lunch and dinner What started as a fish market in 1983 extended into a popular waterfront restaurant the following year. One can sit inside at this cozy, family-friendly restaurant or on the spacious outdoor deck overlooking Norwalk Harbor. Waiter Ed Pinede describes it as “having a vacation feel without having to leave home.” The galley special is fish and chips; other favorites are seafood platters, lobster pot-pies and homemade chowders, all made by longtime chefs Omar and Gerardo. It’s within easy walking distance of The Maritime Center and charming SoNo. Four boat slips on a first come basis.
The Sunset Grille dining room. – Courtesy of Sunset Grille

Yankee Magazine listed this one on its “Best in New England Seafood.” Starting as a fish market in 1996, a restaurant was added the following year. It’s remained the same casual, family-friendly restaurant and has a loyal following of staff and customers. Seating is on the covered porch with stunning views of The Five Mile River. Favorites are Seafood Stew, it’s always been on the menu, plus the usual fare of oysters, chowders and lobsters and innovative seasonal dishes created by Executive Chef Chris North. For more casual eating, the fish market across the way offers take-out with outdoor picnic tables. Reservations are a must for a boat slip and dinner. Valet parking is available.

L’escale Restaurant 500 Steamboat Road Greenwich, CT 06830 203-661-4600 Breakfast, lunch, dinner, Sunday brunch This upscale and sophisticated restaurant overlooks Greenwich Harbor. It’s known for its fabulous bar as well as dining on the picturesque terrace or elegant dining room, which makes this a favorite for Greenwich-ites, especially the suits and stiletto crowd. Its contemporary Provencal menu changes seasonally. Signature dishes are Dover sole with lemon caper Beurre blanc, fresh seafood from the raw bar and dry aged black Angus steaks. Private rooms are available for weddings and other events. The

Harbor Lights 82 Seaview Avenue Norwalk, CT 06855 203-866-3364 Lunch and dinner “This is a restaurant that happens to be on the water,” said owner Chris Gavrielidis. “The view comes with the restaurant, allowing us to concentrate on the menu.” Open since 2001, the glassed-in dining room terrace overlooks Norwalk Harbor. Although close to Calf Pasture beach, proper attire is required for this tasteful and beautiful restaurant. The contemporary menu has a Mediterranean flair with a signature dish of lobster Sartorini. Another favorite is lobster risotto, chock full of big pieces of lobster. Reservations needed for dinner and boat slip.

Suits continued from page 1
in the family. Boys still love those long, boardstyle swim shorts that are almost pants and their dads are also wearing longer swim trunks, often in surprisingly colorful, tropically flowered patterns. The serious swimmer Speedo suits look pretty sensational on trim, slim people. Douglas Hutton of Hutton’s in Ridgefield (fine men’s wear since 1875) said he couldn’t sell tight-fitting, body revealing swimwear in his store. His customers want well-made, welldesigned swim trunks in solid colors or prints, if they’re subtle and have a country club look. The men’s story, according to Hutton, is not

flamboyant. Yes, there are those extroverts who’ll barely cover their vital parts, but they’re not his customers, who want more of a George Clooney look. Most everyone’s favorite pastime at the beach is people-watching and the fact that we’re all so willing to come out and shed the coats, sweaters, pants and boots we’ve been wearing all winter and bare our bodies, if not our souls, is quite an event. Which makes the purchase of swimwear particularly sensitive. Fortunately, the local shopkeepers around our towns are friendly, experienced and really want their customers to look good and feel even better on the beach. That makes for a cool summer, no matter what the temperature.

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OUTDOOR DECK

IS OPEN FOR SUMMER DINING!
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Can not be combined with prior purchases, clearance or deeply discounted samples. Coupon Expires July, 30 2012

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•8•

• SummerScapes • Hersam Acorn Newspapers •

• June 21, 2012 •

CONNECTICUT BOARDWALKS

Strolling by the sea
By Melissa Ezarik

Captain’s Cove Seaport.

– Bryan Haeffele photo

Sand, scenery, exercise — and always running into someone you know. Those are the big draws for Karen Pasacreta Sessler, a lifelong Milford resident, at Silver Sands State Park. The mom of three girls, ages 15, three and one, loves walking along the boardwalk from one beach to the other. That boardwalk has become “a social hub for Milford. It’s truly one of the city’s best features,” she said, adding that it “needs to be respected and treasured for everyone to enjoy.” Looking for a stroll by the sea without getting sand in the toes? One of Connecticut’s boardwalks is the perfect summer excursion. Here’s where to head. Silver Sands State Park, East Broadway (off Meadowside Road.), Milford, 203-735-4311. Free parking, but closes at sunset. There’s much for kids to enjoy along the nearly-new, three-quarter-mile boardwalk connecting this state park to Walnut Beach — from counting the distance with the 1/10thmile markers to looking out for deer, heron

and egrets. A few ramps along the way allow for easy beach access. Gaze out at Charles Island and share the legend of Captain Kidd and the treasure he buried there in 1699. While the seaside boardwalk is a bit of a hike from the parking area, the park’s original boardwalk, which cuts through the marsh, is an adventure in itself. Bradley Point Park, Captain Thomas Boulevard, West Haven. A $10 daily parking fee for non-residents ($5 after 4 p.m.). Along a 1.7-mile walkway, expect spectacular views of Long Island Sound to one side and volleyball players and kite flyers to the other. Pedestrians, bicyclists and roller-bladers can take a break or take in the scene — which includes the beach below and rocky areas ideal for exploring — from park benches along the way. Oh, and bring Fido or Rover along: the boardwalk even has a canine water fountain.

Niantic Bay Boardwalk, Main Street at Niantic River Bridge, East Lyme, nianticboardwalk.org. Free parking. This 1.1-mile boardwalk stretches from Cini Park to Hole-inthe-Wall beach and is walking distance from shops and restaurants along Niantic’s Main Street. One half, a true boardwalk, passes over dunes and offers access to a white-sand beach. The other half is a wide gravel path built on a rock foundation right on the water so that waves are lapping against those rocks. Seal spotting is also a possibility! Benches and interpretive signs offer the chance to chill out and learn something about the coastal environment and its history. Captain’s Cove Seaport, 1 Bostwick Avenue, Bridgeport, 203-335-1433, captainscoveseaport.com. Free parking. On one end of Captain Cove’s short boardwalk is the marina at Historic Black Rock Harbor and a casual indoor/outdoor restaurant featuring a giant fish tank. Besides several boats and

other vehicles for kids to climb aboard, there’s a stockade picture spot, and harbor cruise tours are available on weekends. The other side of the boardwalk is for strolling past adorable miniature shops built in Colonial and Victorian architectural styles. Adults will stop in for the handcrafts, artwork and jewelry, but don’t expect the kids to pass by the candies or ice cream shops. Saint Mary’s by the Sea, Eames Boulevard (via Gilman St.), Bridgeport, lisrc.uconn.edu/ coastalaccess (search for Bridgeport). On-street parking. Located in a Black Rock neighborhood of beautiful homes with both harbor and Long Island Sound views, this half-mile walkway is partially on street level and partially below it. Binoculars will help in checking out the birds (be on the lookout for parrots if you wander inland a bit). BYO bucket if you want to try out some clamming, or bring a fishing pole and fish right from the walkway. The camera is a good idea, too.

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SPEND A COOL SUMMER WITH US!
GROUP SKATING LESSONS CAMP JUNE 25 - AUG. 24, 2012 AGES 6 - 11 MON. - FRI. • 9:00AM - 1:20PM
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June 25 - August 24, 2012

16th Annual Summer Skating School

SUMMER TEEN GROUP LESSON CAMP AGES 12-17
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