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Meet Your City: Our Sharing Economy

Artwork by Miguel Jose Matos

 

Call it what you want — sharing, gifting, being neighborly — increasingly Hartford residents are showing interest in no-strings-attached giving, the kind you might not be able to write off on your taxes.

There are at least seven Little Free Libraries throughout the city that facilitate the giving and taking of books without time limits, late fees, or proof of identification. On Laurel Street (a few houses north of the intersection with Hawthorne Street) there’s a food pantry that operates similarly; anyone can donate food items and anyone can pick up, day or night, without any kind of hassle. It’s becoming less rare to find knit scarves and mittens tied to trees and fences downtown with messages encouraging people to go ahead and take them. Keep Hartford Warm collects and distributes winter clothing items to those in need.

Now, residents of some Hartford neighborhoods have another way to give and receive. The Buy Nothing Project, with its new group currently open to those living in Downtown, Frog Hollow, South Green, and the Sheldon/Charter Oak neighborhoods, provides the opportunity for people to ask with no obligation to give. Jane Macy-Painter, the admin of this hyper-local group, says she learned about the Buy Nothing Project’s larger network “and realized there wasn’t one local to the city.”

On the surface it may seem like the group has a million rules, but what it comes down to is be local, be an adult, and give without expectation of anything in return — whether that means money or barter. Continue reading “Meet Your City: Our Sharing Economy”

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Meet Your City: Create, Stand, Laugh (Jan 2018)

CREATE
MakeHartford, a makerspace at 30 Arbor Street, is offering an Intro to Screenprinting class. Learn the basics of setting up the screen, creating a design on it, and then painting that design on patches, t-shirts, and cards. If you’ve never done this, it’s fun and kind of messy — dress for the occasion. There is a $20 fee, which if you know anything about prices for workshops/classes, is on the low side. Bring something (a t-shirt) to print on. Register online to take this class on January 22. If snow/ice happens, the class may be rescheduled for February 5, 2018.

STAND
In 2018 renew your commitment to social justice by showing up to Bushnell Park and the Connecticut State Capitol grounds on January 20, 2018 for the second annual Women’s March. Event organizers say: “We march to support each other and remind ourselves that we are not alone. We march to send a clear message that the Trump administration has no mandate. We march to organize and pledge to continue to work for a better future. It will also be part of a national voter registration and mobilization tour targeting swing states to register new voters, engage impacted communities, harness our collective energy to advocate for policies and candidates that reflect our values and collaborate with our partners to elect more women and progressives candidates to office.” Start brainstorming ideas for your DIY signs (or capes), or dig out the poster board from last year. Gather at Corning Fountain at 12:30 pm if you feel like marching, or go right to the Capitol at 1 pm. In the market for a pussy hat? Check out the discussion section of the event page on Facebook.

LAUGH
Kate Huffman
will be coming to Sea Tea Comedy Theater on January 4-6, 2018 to perform her solo show I’m Too Fat for This Show, providing an “opportunity for all people with obsessions, neuroticism, or negative self-talk to laugh at themselves.” Julia Pistell, the Managing Director of Sea Tea Comedy Theater, calls this “an award-winning, absolutely excellent one-woman comedy show about mental health, body image, eating disorders, and feminism.”  Tickets are $20.

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MJM

Meet Your City: Five Urban Walks

Elizabeth Park

 

If you are looking to wander without tight time limits or attachment to outcome, here are a few suggested paths.
Continue reading “Meet Your City: Five Urban Walks”

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October 2017 Events in Hartford

At a loss? Go take a walk. This is the best time of year for that kind of thing.

October 1

  • Head of the Riverfront Regatta: It costs nothing to watch rowing at Riverside Park, 8:30 am – 5 pm.
  • CT Rally for Racial Justice: This meets in front of City Hall at 2 pm. Participants will march from there to Vernon and Broad Streets.
  • Syllable: Starting at 7 pm, listen to readings from Amity Gaige, Jamil Ragland, Julie Choffel, Kathy Czepiel, and Alycia Jenkins. This is at Little River Restoratives (405 Capitol Avenue). No cover.

October 2

  • Industry Night returns to Little River Restoratives (405 Capitol Avenue), starting at 6 pm. All are welcome. There will be a DJ and all day happy hour.
  • The Hartford Jazz Orchestra performs at Arch Street Tavern, 8-9 pm. Free.

Continue reading “October 2017 Events in Hartford”

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Meet Your City: Ingredients

People ask me weird questions when I tell them that I live in Hartford. Particularly strange is the idea that I somehow have no access to food. Without even getting on a bus or calling up Lyft, actually, there are a few options — none of which involve bodegas, though those are on every other block if needed. The quality of produce varies; for bridging the gap on this, the value of farmers’ markets cannot be overstated.

The Farmers’ Market at the Regional Market
If you can manage to drag yourself out of bed this early, the retail sales are 6-9 am on Saturdays and Sundays. This is located at 101 Reserve Road in the South Meadows. Continue reading “Meet Your City: Ingredients”

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Meet Your City: Small Parks

Charter Oak Landing

Why should Hartford’s large parks get all the glory? We have numerous playscapes and green areas with places to sit down.

Columbus Park: On Franklin Avenue between Bolton and Victoria Streets, there are tennis courts, a baseball diamond, a space for soccer games. Playground, water playground, and a rec center, plus, the Italian flag. Continue reading “Meet Your City: Small Parks”

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Meet Your City: (Almost) Free Love

A friend recently cited expense as a reason to refrain from dating; there are many legitimate reasons for this choice — unwillingness to compromise, lack of interest in other people, enjoying one’s own company — but money is not one of them. Not when with some creativity, people can go out without having to empty their wallets.

Free — Always or Sometimes Continue reading “Meet Your City: (Almost) Free Love”

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September 2017 Events in Hartford

Peace, Love & Music Together

DISCLAIMERS

This information is accurate as of publication to the best of my knowledge. Events are sometimes cancelled or postponed. Verify with the venue if you are concerned about last minute surprises or want to know what the plan is for inclement weather.

To get an event published for next month, send details to realhartford@gmail.com by September 25th. Nothing is added after the calendar is published.

This calendar is curated — it’s not a free-for-all. If an event is not in Hartford, kinda expensive, sketchy, or unclear, it’s not going on this calendar without major convincing that it belongs here.

September 1

  • Enjoy free live music on Pratt Street, 12-1:30 pm.
  • Toivo (399 Franklin Avenue) offers Zumba classes on Fridays from 4-5 pm. This is free, but a $5 donation is welcome.
  • A one-hour Tai Chi class follows at Toivo (399 Franklin Avenue) at 5:30 pm. Suggested $5 donation.
  • The Beguiled screens at Cinestudio. They say: “Sofia Coppola’s new film brilliantly flips the 1971 film about an injured Union Army deserter (Clint Eastwood in the original) who hides out in a Southern girls school. Originally a tale of male titillation, it is turned to one exploring the ‘female gaze,’ still rare on the big screen. In non-film-school talk, this time it’s all about the female students (Elle Fanning, Oona Laurence), teachers (including Kirsten Dunst) and headmistress (a magnificent Nicole Kidman), and their barely concealed erotic fascination with the charmer in their midst.” This begins at 7:30 pm. General admission: $10. Some discounts available.
  • The Penniless Wild plays Arch Street Tavern at 10 pm. This show is 21+. $7 advance/$10 door.

September 2

  • Free First Saturday at Connecticut Historical Society (1 Elizabeth Street), 9 am – 5 pm. Free admission to the museum galleries all day.
  • Coltsville Walking Tour: Free walking tours begins at 10 am and 2 pm by the Colt monument inside the Wethersfield Avenue entrance to Colt Park. No tours are given during bad weather.
  • Full Moon Meditation: The Hartford Mindfulness Center (645 Farmington Avenue, ground floor) is hosting this free event from 3-4 pm.
  • Tee Tee Soul performs at Night Owl Pub (130 Ann Street), 8-10 pm. Free.

Continue reading “September 2017 Events in Hartford”

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Meet Your City: Wildlife Viewing

Hartford has more than pigeons and squirrels when it comes to wildlife, a fact that should not be surprising to anyone who has so much as looked at a map and seen that there are rivers and wooded areas in the city. Continue reading “Meet Your City: Wildlife Viewing”

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Rally Against White Supremacy at Capitol

With little notice, a few hundred people came together on Thursday morning to unequivocally oppose white supremacy following last week’s violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Hartford’s Mayor Luke Bronin started the rally by saying that “It’s become difficult over the last year and a half to be shocked by the man who now sits in the Oval Office. But this past week was shocking.

A number of elected politicians followed with speeches on the north side of the Connecticut State Capitol. The rally was peaceful and without incident.

Besides this rally, at least eight vigils were held in Connecticut since Heather Heyer was killed in Charlottesville while speaking out against the racism. Continue reading “Rally Against White Supremacy at Capitol”

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