Here’s the monthly selection of more interesting-sounding events in Hartford. If there are any items that did not make the list, consider letting us know about them in the comment area. Most, but not all, events listed are free.
Free jazz in Bushnell Park will continue on August 6th and August 13th. If it rains, the event is moved to Asylum Hill Congregational Church.
- The chamber music series in the chapel at Trinity College continues on August 1, August 8, and August15. These will run from 6-7pm. The carillon music series follows from 7-8pm on the same dates.
- August 1, 8, 15, 22, and 29th: free concerts on the Rose Garden Lawn at Hartford’s Elizabeth Park. These run from 6:30-8pm and will be moved inside the Pond House if it rains.
Free films will be shown in Hartford’s parks at sunset.
- From noon until 1, historian Jason Scappaticci will give a free lecture at the Old State House: “Did Constitution Plaza rip the heart out of Hartford or save it?”
- An evening of stories, walking, and cocktails begins at Salute (Trumbull Street, across from Bushnell Park). The walking tour will include tales of Hartford’s history — appealing to visitors, newcomers, or residents who have managed to not learn anything about the city’s past. This runs from 6-8:15pm. Payment: cash or check at the door.
Community Garden Tour and Twilight Dinner: There is a range of ticket prices, from $25-50, depending on if you participate in the community garden program, if you are a HYPE member, if you want the “open air trolley ride” and dinner, or just the dinner, or bike ride and dinner. Regardless, the tour begins and ends at the Church of the Good Shepherd at 155 Wyllys Street. The Hartford Symphony Orchestra Quartet will be performing during dinner. The event goes from 5:30-9pm.
- Hartbeat Ensemble’s Arts in the Park will take place from 1-6pm in Bushnell Park. There will be performances by Hartford Children’s Theatre, Yazu Productions, Sankofa, Trio Band, Build A Better You, Our Piece of the Pie, and Hartbeat Ensemble’s apprenticeship group.
- If you’ve ever been to the Taste of the Caribbean and Jerk Festival, then you know that mere mention of it induces drooling. This year’s event will be the seventh. From 1-11pm, there will be food, music, and dance of the Caribbean at Riverfront Plaza.
Breakdancing Shakespeare: There will be two performances of Much Ado About Nothing at Hartford Stage– one at 6pm and the other at 8:30pm. Tickets are $5.
- Maybe it’s a bit macabre, but Cedar Hill Cemetery is a cool place to hangout. For those who like structure, there is a Hartford Landmarks and Legacy Tour beginning at 9am; $5.
Time for the second round of Other People’s Stories. People tell stories that others have told to them, no notes allowed. This begins at 7:30pm at La Paloma Sabanera. You can send submissions or questions to email@example.com.
- YPNation Tour 2012 — an event designed to connect young professionals — will be held at the Lyceum from 6-9pm. Panelists during the moderated discussion part of the evening will include Mayor Pedro Segarra, City of Hartford; TJ Clynch, Civic Mind; Julie Daly, MetroHartford Alliance/HYPE; and Thea Montanez, The Hartford. Space is limited and there is a small registration fee.
- Patricia Schultz, author of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die, will be giving a talk and book signing in the Center for Contemporary Culture at the Hartford Public Library (downtown) from 6-8pm.
The Wiz will be performed at the Charter Oak Cultural Center. Tickets are $15 adult/$10 child.
Psycho will be screened at Riverside Park at sunset, with pre-film events beginning at 7pm. This is free.
- This year will mark the 50th anniversary of Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago, and others’ independence from British rule. The annual West Indian Parade will begin at 11am on Capen Street or Nelson Street (depending on who you ask) at Main Street and finish in Bushnell Park, where there will be Soca and Reggae performances beginning at 1pm. Parades tend to start quite a bit after their announced start time, so you might want to plan accordingly by bringing snacks and a lawn chair.
- Jazz vocalist Linda Ransom and pianist Don DePalma will be performing at La Kerencya at 8pm.
- Also starting at 8pm, Nicki Mathis and the Afrikan Amerikan Jazz Quartet. This performance will be at the Royal Masala (Capitol and Main). There is a $10 cover charge.
Couldn’t wake up for the early cemetery tour last week? Tonight’s Cedar Hill Sunset Notables Tour goes from 6:30-8pm and costs $5.
The Butler-McCook House and Garden will host a free outdoor performance by the Latino Son Project from 5:30-7:30pm.
The Syllable Writing Series features a different theme each month. For August, writers will be reading pieces on “hospitality.” This begins at 7pm at La Paloma Sabanera. If you would like to be a reader, submit your work.
Creative Cocktail Hour at Real Art Ways. This is just one of those things you have to experience once before you can claim to be a resident of Hartford. It runs from 6-10pm and is $10 unless you are a member of Real Art Ways, in which case it is $5. Music and contemporary art.
August 18 and 19
Dragonboat Racing and Asian Festival: Go to it. Even if you think watching people race boats is boring, go. When the boats are painted to look like dragons, it suddenly becomes festive and entertaining. The Asian Festival begins at 10 on Riverfront Plaza both days and will feature yo-yo, martial arts, and tai chi demonstrations. There will be dancing, including Kahuna Hulu and Fire Dancers. As for the races, community teams will paddle on August 18th only, with races beginning at 8:30am and finishing around 4pm. Club teams (the actual athletes) race on August 19th, from 10-4. Bring water, sunblock, and a hat. It’s free to watch.
“Girls Just Wanna Have Fun!” free support group for girls ages 12-18 will meet in the Wallace Stevens Room at the Hartford Public Library (downtown) from 5-7pm. The purpose of this group is to “foster healthy lifestyle choices, behaviors and engage girls in interactive activities that build and encourage healthy relationships with other young adults. The event will inspire participants to pursue their dreams and foster the development of prolific and inspiring future community leaders.” No registration is required.
The Brandee Younger Jazz Quartet will perform at the North End Farmers’ Market — 80 Coventry Street — from 11am until 12:30pm.
Sea Tea Improv — Hartford’s own improv group — will bring the comedy to the Studio at Billings Forge from 7:30-9pm.
- Dahlia Show at Elizabeth Park from 1:30-4:30 in the Pond House. Free
- The Val Ramos Flamenco Ensemble will give a free performance at the Charter Oak Cultural Center. This begins at 7pm.
Catch the final performance in the weekly “Play It on the Portico” series at Center Church, 675 Main Street. From 12:15-12:45, Sankofa Kuumba, a local African dance and drumming ensemble, will give a free performance. If it rains, the event will be moved inside.
- Catie Talarski’s Radio Adventure Theater is job-themed. She describes the event:
MEMO: You are invited to a board meeting of the corporate executives of the firm of Talarski, Dankosky, McEnroe & Wolf. Please arrive promptly. Professional dress only. There will be NO donuts, although there will be black coffee. Whiskey if you’re lucky. Bottom line: profits are down. Corporate downsizing is in order. No one is safe.
- The Last Intervention will have its world premiere at at the Wadsworth Atheneum at 8pm. Cast and crew will be present and there will be a Q&A period following the film. Free.
Tea Haunt Canvas (242 Trumbull Street) will host a discussion on the “Qualities of Chromic Colors. This is described as a “night for discussion of warm color and cold color, complementary colors and their saturation and qualities in our art work and daily life.” This event runs from 6-9pm.