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Top 20 Connecticut Events

by in May 2010
Top 20 Connecticut Events
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Call ahead to confirm dates, times, and admission prices. For hundreds of fairs, festivals, exhibits, shows, and other fun activities, go to:

MAY 1: COS COB, May Gardeners’ Market. Twelve juried vendors from specialty nurseries come to Montgomery Pinetum to sell their collections of annuals, perennials, wildflowers, herbs, hanging baskets, plants, and orchids. Plants are also available for pre-order. 203-869-9242 x13;

MAY 7-8: FARMINGTON, May Market. Fifty-plus vendors of hard-to-find perennials and shrubs, antiques, and quality crafts are clustered along Hill-Stead Museum’s historic grounds, with expert horticulturalists and master gardeners on hand for consultations. This year’s special guest is nationally renowned garden designer, lecturer, and author, Gordon Hayward. 860-677-4787;

MAY 16: STAMFORD, Spring on the Farm. Meet and greet the newest additions to Heckscher Farm at Stamford Museum and Nature Center during this annual celebration of spring. Learn how to shear sheep and spin wool, or take a hayride; children can have their faces painted, and families can shop for plants and herbs to take home to their own gardens. 203-322-1646;

MAY 28-31: LAKEVILLE, Grand-Am Rolex Daytona Prototypes at Lime Rock Park. The Memorial Day opener will showcase Daytona Prototypes and GTs in a combined-class race on Monday. The rest of the weekend spotlights BMWs, Fords, Chevys, Hondas, and Porsches in the KONI Challenge, the Ford Racing Mustang Challenge series, and the Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda. 860-435-5000;

JUNE 3-6: WILLIMANTIC, Victorian Days. Step into the past and enjoy guided mill, home, and garden tours around town. Attend concerts and a Victorian tea in one of the homes, and even experience a traditional turn-of-the-century campground. 860-456-4476;

JUNE 6: SOUTH WINDSOR, Pathways and Blooms. Co-sponsored by the Down to Earth Garden Club and Wood Memorial Library, this tour will feature nine local gardens and a plant sale at one of the tour houses. Optional box lunch (additional fee, prepay required) available with tour ticket. 860-289-1783;

JUNE 11-13: MYSTIC, Sea Music Festival. Each year, thousands of people gather at Mystic Seaport to hear performers from around the globe–including the U.S., U.K., Italy, Portugal, Australia, Iceland, Poland, Netherlands, France, Canada, and Africa–as they carry on musical traditions from maritime cultures. 888-973-2767, 860-572-5315;

JUNE 12: FARMINGTON/UNIONVILLE, Friends Kitchen and Garden Tour. This fundraiser for the Farmington Library takes participants through a number of distinctive and tasteful homes and lush gardens around neighboring towns. 860-673-6791, 860-677-4444;

JULY 3-4: NIANTIC, Niantic Lions Outdoor Arts and Craft Show, Lobsterfest, and Chicken BBQ. Three events wrapped up in one weekend package at this grand annual festival. Juried fine artists and crafters offer jewelry, pottery, paintings, photography, and more on the grassy grounds of Niantic’s town hall; then fill up on lobster and chicken, hot dogs, burgers, clam fritters, and more. 860-739-2805;

JULY 10: LITCHFIELD, Open House Day. Tour the town’s finest homes, including country estates, grand places on North and South streets, and other historic buildings of architectural interest. The tour includes admission to the Litchfield History Museum and the restored Tapping Reeve House and Law School. 860-567-9423 x253;

JULY 10: PAWCATUCK (CT)/WESTERLY (RI), River Glow. More than 30 bonfires will be set afloat along the Pawcatuck River, lighting the way for celebrations featuring jugglers, a steel-drum band, belly dancing, live jazz, face painting, food vendors, duck boat races, and other fun family entertainment in both downtowns. 401-596-7761;

JULY 15-17: GUILFORD, Craft Expo 2010. One of the oldest outdoor juried shows, presented annually on the town green by the Guilford Art Center, featuring 180 traditional and contemporary crafters. All gate proceeds benefit the center, its school, and gallery programs. 203-453-5947;

JULY 17: NIANTIC, Annual East Lyme Sand Castle Contest. Don’t be fooled by this competition’s name–sand sculptures of all kinds are welcomed and encouraged at Hole in the Wall Beach during Celebrate East Lyme Day. Last year saw everything from a sand igloo to the Grinch under a Christmas tree. 860-739-5828;

Please Note: This information was accurate at the time of publication. When planning a trip, please confirm details by directly contacting any company or establishment you intend to visit.

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