Community news: New Milford author, fitness coach, releases memoir, more

The following announcements and events are taking place in the New Milford area:

Sherman Artists Open Studio — this weekend

This weekend is the very first Sherman Artists First Open Studio. Fifteen local Sherman artists are participating in the Sherman Open Studio Tour on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 4 and 5, from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Painters, photographers, mixed media, jewelers, fused glass, and fabric artists will open their home studios or participate in pop-up studios. Guides are available to direct participants, plus there will be signs. For more information or to download a guide, visit carondesigns.com/sherman-artists.

There are six artists in home studios and nine in pop-up studios at the Sherman Senior Center, the Sherman Town Hall Meeting Room, the Sacred Grounds Coffee Roasters, and Hair by Susi. The Sherman Artists Open Studio Guide is a brochure containing a map, directions, contact information, an overview with images of each participant's artwork and our sponsors. The brochure is available at various Sherman locations - the Sherman Library, the Sherman Old Store, the IGA, American Pie, the White Silo Winery, and Happy Rainbows, and in New Fairfield at the Barn Gallery.

New Milford author, fitness coach, releases memoir

Local author, fitness professional, and mental health advocate Valerie J. Walsh will have a launch of her memoir, “Shattered to the Core.”

This free event will be held Jan. 22 from 6-9 p.m. at 19 Main in New Milford. A portion of the proceeds from the book sales will go NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness). There is no need for RSVP for this community event. Light refreshments will be served and a cash bar will be available.

Walsh was Shattered to the Core, a release said. Within just a few years, she experienced such extraordinary loss, pain, and trauma that it seems miraculous she was able to make it to the other side, according to the release. How did she make peace with her past and reclaim her future? In her candid memoir, she reveals what it took for her to overcome her personal hardships and inner demons to live a healthy, productive, and inspired life.

Walsh is an author, national certified fitness trainer, and the founder of the CORE Fitness Method. She is an avid runner, marathoner, and cyclist. Her mission is to help people maintain their physical and mental health through the power of exercise. She lives in New Milford with her husband and two children. For more information or to purchase a copy of the book, visit valeriejwalshauthor.com.

Kent library seeks car donors for raffle

In 2002, Bill and Mary Gawel made their beautifully restored 1932 Chevy five window coupe available to help raise funds for the library - and Kent Memorial Library’s annual car raffle was born, a release said. Since then, with the help of many dedicated volunteers, they have raffled 16 cars, all purchased, with the proceeds going directly into the operating budget to help sustain the library, the release said.

To donate classic or otherwise appropriate vehicles to the library, call Sarah Marshall at 860-927-3761 or Jim Blackketter at 860-927-1888 or email jim@blackketter.com. The Library is located at 32 North Main St.

Roxbury Country Church Fair set for Dec. 4

Bid on antiques, buy Christmas stocking stuffers, select from a collection of holiday gift baskets, pick up a festive wreath, and stock up on homemade preserves, Cabot cheese and baked goods. Also, browse through old books and enjoy lunch with some friends.

All these activities and more are possible at the Country Church Christmas Fair, a holiday fair at the Roxbury Congregational Church from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 4.

The fair will feature two silent auctions. One auction offers donated items of value including antiques, art, hard goods and home goods, while the other offers donated goods and services from local and regional businesses. A hearty lunch will be served from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. featuring homemade sandwiches, soups and lemon meringue and chocolate pecan pie. Children can make simple crafts in the Children’s Corner. Nice Twice will offer used items and bargains.

Face masks will be required for all at the fair except while outdoors or eating lunch. Proceeds from the fair go to support the ongoing mission of the congregation in Roxbury and the wider region. The church is located at 24 Church St. in Roxbury. For more information call 860-355-1978 or go to www.roxburychurch.org.

Warren Land Trust receives grant

The Warren Land Trust is the recipient of a grant from the John T. and Jane A. Wiederhold Foundation toward the acquisition of 248 acres on Cunningham Road. The John T. and Jane A. Wiederhold Foundation was created for the purpose of protecting and improving the welfare of animals of all kinds including the protection of wildlife, including endangered species, flora and fauna.

This acquisition will permanently protect significant natural resources and wildlife habitat in the sensitive and increasingly developed Lake Waramaug and East and West Aspetuck River watersheds, as well as afford significant and varied recreational opportunities. The preservation of the property also provides abundant benefits to landscape conservation and greenway connectivity by protecting and complementing existing preserved open spaces that aid wildlife migration, a release said.

Located between the Kent Land Trust’s East Kent Hamlet Preserve and the Wyantenock State Forest, the Cunningham Road preserve will connect these two parcels and other adjacent conserved land to create a protected open space bloc of contiguous tracts totaling over 1000 acres. This protected area, which includes substantial core forest, will be a valuable asset for carbon sequestration and other climate change mitigation strategies in Northwest Connecticut, the release said.

Kent Art Association artists create exhibition

Five artists affiliated with the Kent Art Association have informally gathered to create an exhibition of their work titled “Off the Wall,” opening Friday from 6 to 8 p.m. and running through Dec. 24.

Bridgewater Hilltop Center: classes for December

Body Conditioning exercise class will be in person at the center Mondays at 10:30 a.m. and Wednesdays at 11:30 a.m. This is free. Mondays Better Balance Class will be at 1 p.m. This is a free class.

Tuesdays, Computer club at 10 a.m.; Silver Needles at 1 p.m.; Wednesdays, Tai Chi at 10 a.m.; Mahjong at 1 p.m. Fridays, poker at 10 a.m., Chair Yoga at 10:30 a.m., Canasta at 1 p.m. The Municipal Agent, Dawn MacNutt, will be at the center Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to noon.

The center will be closed on Dec. 24 and 31 in observance of Christmas and New Years. Massage with Jill, Dec. 22 from 1-2 p.m. By appointment only. Enjoy a seated complimentary 10 minute light, gentle neck and shoulder massage with Jill, a licensed massage therapist.

Bingo will be Thursday, Dec. 9 at 1 p.m. It’s sponsored by Candlewood Valley Health and Rehabilitation Center. The RVNA Health will be at Bridgewater Hilltop Dec. 21 for a blood pressure clinic at 1 p.m.

Make a Christmas wreath craft on Monday, Dec. 6 at 11 a.m. This is sponsored by Candlewood Valley Health & Rehabilitation. Call to reserve a spot. At a library program, Dec. 15 at 1 p.m. Meet with Chris Fisher from the Burnham Library at the senior center. He will be available to teach about their downloadable audio books, eBooks and free movies.

There will be a Christmas luncheon Dec. 16 at 12:30 p.m. Prior to lunch there will be a holiday reading at noon by Carl Dill. There will be a sing along with music by Jim Moker and the Walking Fish Band.

Community theater group of Washington presents historic reading in Bridgewater

The reading will be at the Burnham Library in Bridgewater, Dec 18 at 1:30 p.m. Readings of short stories, interviews, essays and poetry from members of the “Vicious Circle” will explore the troubles, aspirations and expectations of what life was meant to be, merely a century ago, a release said. Community organizations are welcome to contact Dramalites President Doug Winkel at dramalites.dwinkel@mail.com, to arrange for an afternoon of humor, wit and wisdom from not so long ago, a release said. The "Vicious Circle" is of the Algonquin Hotel Round Table from the 1920's.

New Fairfield/Sherman Animal Welfare Society holding holiday boutique

The boutique is Dec. 4 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at The Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd, 2 Colonial Road, at the corner of state Route 37 in New Fairfield. Admission and parking are free. On Dec. 3, from 5 to 8 p.m., for a $5 charge, there will be a sneak peek preview for an early chance to purchase the many handcrafted items at the boutique.

On sale will be a wide selection of ornaments and jewelry, gifts for pets, teardrop wreaths, live wreaths, NFSAW 2022 pet calendars, handmade quilts and pet beds, homemade dog treats, gift baskets, tabletop Christmas trees, and other holiday decorations.

A raffle also will be held and on Dec. 4 the boutique will include a bake sale. Masks and social distancing encouraged. All proceeds from the boutique will benefit the neglected, abused and abandoned dogs and cats who are sheltered and who are found loving homes by NFSAW, a nonprofit organization created in 1977.

Gaylordsville Volunteer Fire Department holding holiday dinner

The dinner is Saturday, Dec. 4, from 5-7 p.m.,

700 Kent Road. It is take out only. The meal includes ham, scalloped potatoes, vegetables, water and dessert. Pre-orders encouraged by visiting GVFDCT.org, as prior years have been sold out. The cost is $17 per meal.

Washington Art Association, Gallery presents “That Certain Shade of Christmas”

The show is open to Dec. 24 until 3 p.m.

The annual 2021 Holiday Gift Show includes online shopping access for select pieces including jewelry in copper, silver and Italian Murano glass beads, functional and sculptural ceramics, exquisite one-of-a-kind cards, beeswax and soy candles, hand turned and carved wooden gifts and artowork.

Sherman Library hosts open studio show

Thirteen local Sherman artists are participating in the Sherman Open Studio Tour Dec. 4 and 5, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Painters, photographers, mixed media, jewelers, fused glass, and fabric artists will open their home studios or participate in pop-up studios. There will be guides and signs available. For more information, visit carondesigns.com/sherman-artists.

There are six artists in home studios and seven in pop-up studios at the Sherman Senior Center, the Sherman Town Hall Meeting Room, the Sacred Grounds Coffee Roasters, and Hair by Susi. The Sherman Artists Open Studio Guide is a brochure containing a map, directions, contact information, an overview with images of each participant's artwork and our sponsors. The brochure is available at various Sherman locations, the Sherman Library, the Sherman Old Store, American Pie, the White Silo Winery, Happy Rainbows and more.

Samples of each artist's work is in a Sherman Library Open Studio Show through Jan. 5, 2022.

KMR Arts book signing: Kali Limited Edition

The book signing is by Len Prince, Brian Wallis and Matt Tyrnauer on Dec. 4 from 1 to 4 p.m.

Kali was a pioneer of alternative photography. She coined the term Artography to describe her painterly photographs, trademarking the name around 1967. Kali's lost archive spans five decades and contains three bodies of work — Portraits and Landscapes, Polaroids, and Outer Space, a press release said.

KMR is at 2 Titus Road, Washington Depot.

Call 860-868-7588 or visit info@kmrarts.com or kmrarts.com.

Roxbury library to exhibit “Conversations With Nature”

“Conversations with Nature,” an exhibit and sale of works by seven area artists at the Minor Memorial Library, 23 South Street, Roxbury will continue during regular library hours through Jan. 29, except when the Community Room is in use for a special library program. For hours, visit minormemoriallibrary.org. The library is following CDC guidance on masks and distancing.

The exhibit displays the creativity of artists Ruth Jaffe, Elizabeth MacDonald, Didier Malaquin, Rebecca Rosow, Jim Stanton, Phil Stone, and Joan Stracks.

The artists explore nature in its many forms and dialects, offering the viewer a wide selection of perspectives. Minor Memorial Library is handicapped-accessible. Call the library at 860- 350-2181 for information and directions.

KML presents work by local artist Sergio Villaschi

Local artist Sergio Villaschi will have artwork displayed in Kent Memorial Library’s gallery through the end of December in an exhibit titled Light, Color & Texture Revisited. There will be a special opportunity to tour the exhibition with the artist from 3-5 p.m. Dec. 11.

Kent Memorial Library is at 32 North Main Street. For more information, call 860-927-3761 or visit Kentmemoriallibrary.org.

Kent: St. Andrew’s Messiah sing-in

St. Andrew’s Music in the Nave series presents its tenth annual performance of Handel’s Messiah with James Sinclair conducting the Sherman Chamber Ensemble. The event will be Dec. 10 at 8 p.m. at St. Andrew’s Parish, 1 Main St. (corner of Rtes. 7 and 341), Kent. Tickets are $20 by visiting https://bit.ly/messiah10 and the door. Students can get in for free.

Audience members may sing the choral parts and will be provided scores. George Frederic Handel’s Messiah, a work for voices and orchestra, premiered in Dublin premiere in 1742. This performance will consist of the Nativity-centered Part One and the celebrated Hallelujah Chorus. For more information, call 860-927-3486, email st.andrew.kent@snet.net, or visit standrewskentct.org/mitn.html.

New Milford: Gallery 25 displaying “Deck the Halls” show

Gallery 25 members are displaying a new show, “Deck the Halls,” with new paintings, photographs, jewelry, glass, pottery, woodworking and cards ranging from contemporary to traditional including local scenes. Visit the gallery to see all the member artists talents through Jan. 8. For more information about the Gallery 25 and this event, visit gallery25ct.com or email Gallery25newmilfordct @gmail.com.

Gunn museum in Washington: Guest lecturer to present on history of theater

On Dec. 13 at 6:30 p.m. on Zoom, the there will be a presentation on “Raising the Curtain: A History of Theater in Washington” with Sarah Griswold, former curator of the Gunn Historical Museum. This program is being co-sponsored by the Gunn Historical Museum and The Dramalites. Registration is required to receive the Zoom link for this free virtual program. Visit the museum's registration page to sign up: gunnlibrary.org/gunnmuseum/upcoming-programs/.

This lecture will explore the many ways in which Washington residents enjoyed, performed in, and learned from the performances of plays and other entertainments from the mid-19th century to the present day. Theater in Washington at times confronted social norms and traditions, and at other times celebrated them, a release said.

For more information visit gunnmuseum.org or contact the Gunn Historical Museum at 860-868-7756 or by emailing info@gunnhistoricalmuseum.org.

Kent: Filmmaker to host camp weekend in September

From Sept. 9 to 12, 2022, Director John Waters will return to Club Getaway in Kent this fall to host his 5th annual Camp John Waters. This sleepaway adult camp experience is on 300-acres.

There will be a costume contest judged by John Waters, dance parties, a John Waters Movie Marathon, Hairspray Karaoke, Bloody Mary Bingo, Campfire & S’mores, photo opportunities with John, Camper Swap Meet, Baltimore Bar Hike, and Bobbing For Hotdogs. Othere activities include Paint & Sip, swimming, trapeze, zip lining, hiking, and biking. Sales will be open Dec. 8 at 11 a.m. on campjohnwaters.com. Proof of vaccination is required to attend and a complete COVID-19 safety guide can be found at https://fun.clubgetaway.com/safeplaybook.For more information, visit clubgetaway.com.

Candlewood Valley Pediatrics in New Milford welcomes newest team member

Candlewood Valley Pediatrics would like to welcome its newest team member, Karla Sansone, PA-C.