They say “it takes a village to raise a child.” The same could be said about the village itself; a village has the greatest chance for success if all members of the community are active participants.

For much of its history, Ridgefield has been a farming community; however, no family farm is entirely self-sufficient. Residents depended upon each other to help each family produce or acquire necessities and to ensure the survival and success not only of individuals but the entire community.

This summer, the theme of Keeler Kids Session I, our local history summer program for kids entering grades one to three (July 10 to 14), is the village. Through hands-on activities, kids are introduced to different trades that were here in Ridgefield: the baker, the cobbler and the merchant at the general store. These trades and the tradesmen who practiced them all depended upon each other for their successes. Through the program, we aim to forge a bond with, and impart a sense of excitement about, this amazing community and the people who lived here.

And it is not just Ridgefield of the past that succeeded through the efforts of the community, but also Ridgefield of today. Keeler Kids could not be the exciting and engaging program that it is without the help of many, many volunteers from the community who generously give of their time and talents, from our counselors and CITs to guest speakers and many others.

There are additional sessions for kids entering grades four to six (July 17 to 21), and 7-plus (July 24 to 28). Information and registration can be found at keelertavernmuseum.org.