Ridgefield happenings: Chekhov Theatre Festival, 'Inside the Writer's Workshop,’ and #HandsOnHistory

The following is a list of events happening in Ridgefield over the next couple of weeks:

Fall carnival at rec center

The Ridgefield Prevention Council and the Ridgefield Boys and Girls Club are hosting a fall carnival fund-raiser in town this weekend. The carnival will be held on the front field of the recreation center on Route 35. The dates are Friday, Sept. 21, 6 p.m.; Saturday, Sept. 22, 4 to 10 p.m.; Sunday, Sept. 23, 12 to 5 p.m. Parking is available at the recreation center and the parking lot by the bridge on Route 35.

Unlimited ride armbands are available as well as individual ride tickets. Rides take multiple tickets. Food is available for purchase, and there are carnival games and prizes. It’s a community activity for all ages.

Both the RPC and the B&GC are non-profit organizations and this is the only fund-raiser the RPC holds. Proceeds go to ongoing programming at B&GC and substance abuse educational materials as well as awareness and prevention programs hosted by RPC and free to the public.

More information at coalition@ridgefieldct.org, ridgefieldpreventioncouncil.org and facebook.com/ridgefieldpreventioncouncil.

RVNA comedy show features Ed Asner

Ed Asner brings “inimitable humor to an important topic’ in A Man and His Prostate, a one-man comedy show sponsored by RVNA at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 30, at the Ridgefield Playhouse, 80 East Ridge.

The play chronicles the true story of a man (in this case, the playwright himself, Ed Weinberger) who has a prostate attack and emergency surgery while on vacation in Italy. Much of the humor comes from the main character’s need to pantomime his very personal symptoms to a doctor who didn’t speak English. The rest comes from Asner’s inimitable characterization of a curmudgeon who isn’t about to take this lying down.

In sponsoring the play, RVNA seeks to remind everyone of the importance of being their own health advocates, having regular check ups and screenings, and speaking up when something doesn’t seem right.

Visit ridgefieldplayhouse.org for tickets.

Library to host fall folk series

Ridgefield guitarist Peter Murchison, who will be joined by his son John Murchison on bass, will perform as part of the Ridgefield Folk live music series at the library on Sunday, Sept. 23, at 2 p.m.

A graduate of Ridgefield High School, Murchison remembers his high school band winning the 2002 RHS Battle of the Bands. He is now a Brooklyn-based bassist.

Ridgefield Folk is made possible thanks to the Friends of the Library. Tickets are free and can be picked up on the day of the show starting at 1 p.m. Doors open at 1:30 and the show starts at 2. For more information, visit ridgefieldlibrary.org or call 203-438-2282.

‘Helping Our Heroes’

Helping Our Heroes is a panel discussion about improving the well-being of first responders and veterans that will be held at the Ridgefield Library on Tuesday, Sept. 25, at 7 p.m. This program is aimed at police, firefighters, EMS personnel, 911 dispatchers, active military and veterans and the family, friends, and therapists who care about them.

The panel is comprised of Dr. Stacy Raymond, a clinical psychologist, who will identify critical signs of symptoms of post-traumatic stress and other stressors and discuss recommended treatments; Chief Gary MacNamara, Fairfield police chief and chair of the Officer Wellness Committee for the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association, who will share his concerns about well-being as it pertains to law enforcement and Capt. Jacques Roy, a Stamford firefighter, who will discuss how he copes with the traumatic experiences he has experienced as a firefighter.

This program is part of the Noreen L. Papa – Mothers: Live Your Life series. Register at ridgefieldlibrary.org or call 203-438-2282.

Law professor to speak on free speech at library

Nadine Strossen, professor of law at New York Law School, will give an author talk about her new book, HATE: Why We Should Resist it with Free Speech, Not Censorship,” on Wednesday, Sept. 26, at 7 p.m. at the Ridgefield Library.

This program is co-sponsored by Books on the Common, Ridgefield Historical Society, Keeler Tavern Museum and History Center, and the library. Register at ridgefieldlibrary.org or call 203-438-2282.

Build a birdhouse family program

The Discovery Center at Ridgefield and the Garden of Ideas, 653 North Salem Road, are offering a public birdhouse-building program on Saturday, Sept. 29, at 10 a.m. To help preserve or improve bird populations, people have been building and putting up nest boxes. Nest box programs have been successful in increasing the populations of many cavity-nesting birds, such as bluebirds. 

Why put up a birdhouse this time of year? While birds do not breed during the winter, birdhouses are still used as roosting boxes. Some birds gather in groups inside the boxes to stay warm. Bluebirds are famous for this. Also, many birds start much earlier in the spring than one may think, looking for somewhere to bring up their young. By having a clean box available in late winter, it gives the birds a better opportunity to find a nesting place.

Participants should bring a hammer and screwdriver. The program costs $20 per family and includes one adult and up to two additional family members (child or adult) and supplies for one backyard birdhouse. An adult must accompany children. Registration is required and can be done at ridgefielddiscovery.org/ or by calling 203-438-1063.

Cooking soup class

Soup’s On is a new class in Ridgefield Continuing Education.

This two-session class meets on Thursdays, Oct. 4 and 18, from 6:45 to 8:45 p.m. at Scott Ridge Middle School. Tuition is $49. Supplies are provided by instructor for a fee of $10 to $12 payable at each class. Registration deadline is Friday, Sept. 27. A healthy Taste of Italy (Oct. 30 and Nov. 13) is also available. Visit ridgefieldschools.org or phone Peggy Bruno at 203-431-2812 to register.

Home staging class

Home Staging is the topic of a Ridgefield Continuing Education workshop on preparing a home for sale.

This class meets on Monday, Oct. 1 from 7 to 9 p.m. at East Ridge Middle School.  Cost is $31. Ridgefield seniors, age 62 and older pay $24. Advance registration required. Visit ridgefieldschools.org or phone Peggy Bruno at 203-431-2812.

Jewelry workshops

Twist Chain Necklace is a new class available through Ridgefield Continuing Education. Beginner and advanced students are welcome.

Class meets Monday, Oct. 1, from 6 to 8 p.m. or Thursday, Nov. 15, from noon to 2 p.m.  Tuition is $31. Ridgefield seniors age 62 and over pay $24. An additional materials fee is payable to the instructor at class for sterling silver and supplies. Class size limited.  Advance registration required. Materials information and picture at ridgefieldschools.org or phone Peggy Bruno at 203-431-2812.

Chekhov Theatre Fest celebrates 10 years Oct. 6

The Michael Chekhov Theatre Festival celebrates its 10th anniversary with a lineup of what organizers call groundbreaking performances at the Ridgefield Theater Barn Columbus Day weekend at 37 Halpin Lane. Performances include: Fancifool, Friday, Oct. 5, 8 p.m.; The Captives, Saturday, Oct. 6, 2 p.m.; The Intimacy Effect, Saturday, Oct. 6, 8 p.m.;

The festival celebrates the legacy of the renowned actor, director, author who became a part of Ridgefield’s heritage when he moved his dramatic art school from England in 1939 to the barn that still stands on North Salem Road. His approach to acting spread across the country and influenced actors including Marilyn Monroe, Anthony Quinn, Clint Eastwood, and Yul Brynner.

He received an Academy Award nomination for his role as Dr. Brulov in Alfred Hitchcock’s Spellbound.

Tickets available at ChekhovFestival.com, 203-966-3766 or in person at Neumann Real Estate, 395 Main Street.

Gardening classes

New fall gardening and flower arranging classes are available through Ridgefield Continuing Education.  

Landscape Garden Design will be held Mondays, Sept. 24 and Oct. 1, at East Ridge Middle School. Cost is $49.
Fall Gardening Chores will be held Monday, Oct. 15, at East Ridge Middle School. Cost is $31.  
Flowers 101 and Floral Design is Thursday, Sept. 27, from 7 to 9 p.m. at Veterans Park School, $31, plus $10-$15 flower and vase fee per project).

Classes meet from 7 to 9 p.m. Advance registration required. Visit ridgefieldschools.org or phone Peggy Bruno at 203-431-2812.

Flu season begins

RVNA is ready to go for flu season. Beginning on Monday, Sept. 17, RVNA is hosting daily drop-in hours at its Ridgefield headquarters, as well as conducting flu clinics in the area, including the ever-popular Vote and Vax at Ridgefield and Redding voting locations on Election Day, Nov. 6.  In October and November, RVNA will also offer extended hours on Wednesday afternoons (drop-ins from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday mornings (9 a.m. to noon, by appointment only).

RVNA will offer flu vaccines (both high dose and Quadrivalent) and Prevnar 13 and Pneumovax 23 pneumonia vaccines at all clinics. The Flu Mist vaccine is available to children ages 2 to 5. RVNA flu and pneumonia clinics will be staffed by professional nurses with extensive experience and what the agency says is a healthy dose of compassion. A variety of insurances are accepted, as well as checks and credit cards.

The annual flu vaccine is recommended for everybody ages six months and older by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC recommends that people get vaccinated by the end of October, and that children who need two doses of vaccine to be protected should start the vaccination process sooner. It takes approximately two weeks after vaccination for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against the flu. To learn more about the clinics, visit ridgefieldvna.org/flu-pneumonia-clinics. To make an appointment, contact RVNA at 203-438-5555 or info@ridgefieldvna.org.

#HandsOnHistory month at Keeler Tavern

#HandsOnHistory month returns at Keeler Tavern Museum and History Center’s historic Carriage Barn, located at 132 Main Street. For a third year, Keeler Tavern is showcasing its extensive collection of tools from the late 18th to early 20th centuries in a special exhibition, Threading the Needle: From Field to Fabric, Oct. 6 to 24.

Until the mid-19th Century and the rise of the industrialized textile factory, many Americans, were creating textiles at home; from cultivating raw materials to weaving fabric.

This interactive exhibition will highlight the three types of textile fibers commonly produced in Ridgefield and the region ... linen, wool and silk. Visitors will discover, and be able to try their hand at, the steps of producing these textiles, from the field to finished fabric to its use in clothing and decorations.

As part of #HandsOnHistory Month, Keeler Tavern will host free, family-friendly workshops and talks on Sundays, Oct. 7, 14 and 21, from 1 to 4 p.m.; topics to be announced.

The exhibition is open during regular museum hours, Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, from 1 to 4 p.m., Oct. 6 to 24. School and youth groups can schedule free guided tours of the exhibition, Monday through Friday, Oct. 8 to 24, by calling the museum office at 203-438-5485 or emailing education@keelertavernmuseum.org.

Admission to the special exhibition and Sunday family talks is free thanks to generous underwriting by the Ridgefield Thrift Shop, the Rotary Club of Ridgefield and Wadsworth Russell Lewis Trust Fund.

More information can be found at keelertavernmuseum.org and Facebook.com/KeelerTavernMuseum.

‘Inside the Writer's Workshop’

The Peter Parley School House on West Lane will host a free performance of “Inside the Writer’s Workshop” Sunday, Oct. 7, at 1 p.m.

The original play is sponsored by Norwalk and Ridgefield historical societies. It is not appropriate for preschoolers and students in the primary grades.

Inside the Writer's Workshop which will feature familiar characters such as Peter Parley (Samuel Goodrich) and Maurice Sendak, two of Ridgefield’s most famous authors who were born almost 200 years apart.