25 Ideas for Summer Fun

CYNDI LAUPER GOT IT RIGHT: Girls just want to have fun. You’ll have that and more during the aerial arts classes at Mantra Mind Body. The classes incorporate traditional circus apparatus and are ideal for people who want to get in shape and hang with their friends—literally. Whether navigating the silks, dangling from the lyra or practicing poses on the static trapeze, you’ll get a great core workout while developing strength and flexibility. Best of all? The 15-minute post-workout cocoon power nap. Classes max out at eight people and cost from $35. • 62 Southfield Ave., One Stamford Landing, Stamford; 203-990-0500; mantramindbody.com
THESE DAYS, entertaining around dietary restrictions can be a challenge. Thanks to the folks at Book a Cook, you can host a gathering of your best gal pals and learn new culinary skills at the same time. The company matches clients with chefs who do in-home cooking classes—everything from a gluten-free dinner menu to chic “small bites” for a cocktail soirée. You’ll work with the chef to create a customized lesson plan. Just fill out the online inquiry form and Book a Cook does the rest, from shopping to prep to cleanup. From $450 plus groceries. • 203-451-3655; bookacook.com
HERE’S GOOD NEWS FOR WORKING WOMEN—the Old Greenwich Community Sailing program has added a ladies-only basic sailing class
to its weekend schedule. With only two people per boat, you’ll get lots of hands-on experience in the club’s fourteen-foot Hunter 140 sloops. The focus is on fundamentals; pretty soon you’ll be steering, jibing and tacking with the best of them. The only prerequisites are current Greenwich residency and the ability to swim. The $245 fee includes twelve hours of instruction spread over four days—July 9, 10, 16 and 17—from 2 to 5 p.m. • Greenwich Point Park, 203-698-0599; greenwichsailing.com
​ONE IS THE LONELIEST NUMBER, especially when it comes to noninvasive cosmetic procedures. So the next time you’re thinking about a little touch up—before a big night out or a special occasion—why not turn it into an excuse for some girl bonding? Dr. Lynne Haven schedules in-office appointments for groups, both during and after regular office hours. From fillers to injectables to peels, Dr. Haven’s got you covered. Costs vary depending on treatment options. • Greenwich Medical Building, 49 Lake Ave., 203-869-4242; lynnehavenmd.com
THE TRADITION OF KNITTING CIRCLES is almost as old as time. At Marcia’s Jean Fabric and Craft Studio in Old Greenwich, knitters get together every third Wednesday of the month to share the projects they’re working on (and maybe a bit about what’s going on in their lives). New to knitting? Marcia offers private lessons and group workshops. You’ll learn how to knit, purl and cast, how to make a hat and socks, as well as finishing techniques. There are classes for sewing and crafting, too. Two-hour knitting workshop, $65 per person, up to four people, includes materials; one-hour private lesson, $60; half-hour private, $30. • 177 Sound Beach Ave., Old Greenwich, 203-990-0688; marciajeanfabricandcraft.com


A COUNTRY CLUB FOR CIGAR AFICIONADOS is how people describe the Davidoff Cigar Lounge in Greenwich. The elegant lounge (think French wallpaper; Belgian furnishings) features a range of Davidoff cigars, as well as other high-end selections. Enjoy a quiet smoke, a friendly drink (BYO), and a platter of wings or a burger from the diner next door; there are big-screen TVs for sports night specials and a conference/dining room for private parties. Open seven days a week. Nonmembers may visit the lounge two times per calendar year ($50 a pop), which can be put toward the annual membership fee. Call
for pricing. • 79 E. Putnam Ave., 203-717-1900; davidoff-lounge.com
​ROCK & ROLL IS ALIVE AND WELL at the Capitol Theatre in Port Chester. Over the years, the storied venue has showcased everyone from the Grateful Dead to Janis Joplin. On the schedule for this summer: legendary guitarists Jeff Beck and Buddy Guy (July 19) and Little Feat (Sept. 9). Grab a burger and a Scotch at the Rye House before the show or meet up at Garcia’s in the lobby. Better yet, book a Presidential booth, which holds up to six people and comes with its own private cocktail waitress. • 149 Westchester Ave., Port Chester, 914-937-4126; thecapitoltheatre.com
CRAFT BEVERAGES ARE HAVING THEIR MOMENT IN THE SUN. Check out the tasty offerings at Half Full Brewery during its Friday Open House. Held every other Friday April through September, the brewery has anywhere from nine to twelve beers on tap, as well as food trucks on hand (LobsterCraft, Bounty and Dough Girls, among others) to help soak up the suds. The $15 entry includes open taps for the duration of the event; food truck fare is priced separately. Also tastings and growler fills Friday, Saturday and Sunday; brewery tours on Saturdays. • 43 Homestead Ave., Stamford, 203-658-3631; halffullbrewery.com
THINK YOU MISSED your calling as an officer of the law? Sign up for the Greenwich Police Department’s semiannual Citizens Police Academy. During the seven-week course, you’ll see firsthand the inner workings of the department and its special units. Held twice a week from 6:30 to 9 p.m., the program covers a range of topics including scams/fraud, crime prevention and narcotics investigations. There’s a two-hour patrol ride-along, a firing range visit (yes, you shoot a variety of guns), and a chance to accompany the Greenwich Marine Division on the Sound. This program is popular and books up fast (there’s also a kids’ program). Apply for fall 2016 by contacting Community Impact Section, Sgt. John Thorne. • 203-618-8308, or download a brochure at greenwichct.org
HEED THE SIREN CALL OF THE SEA and spend the day fishing off the Connecticut coast. The Sportsman’s Den in Cos Cob has its own charter boat, the O’Henry, a thirty-foot Pursuit, which holds up to six passengers. You’ll cruise the Sound for four hours in search of bluefish, striped bass and bonito. They supply the gear and bait; you bring beverages and food. Owner Billy Ingarham and his crew can also recommend local fishing spots for saltwater and freshwater angling. Four-hour charters (ideal for family fishing, too) cost $550. • 33 River Road, Cos Cob; 203-869-3234; thesportsmansdencoscob.com

NOTHING SAYS ROMANCE like a cruise around Greenwich harbor. Especially if it’s aboard the Delamar Hotel’s chic little runabout, Whisper. Based on a classic early twentieth-century design, the thirty-foot Duffy-Herreshoff holds up to six people. Its twenty-horsepower electric engine can cruise eight to ten hours at four knots. With its teak interior and neat pop-up sunroof, you’ll feel like you’re sailing as you explore the area’s islands and inlets. A one-hour cruise is $250 and includes a bottle of prosecco; snacks can be arranged through the hotel. • Contact Jonathan Wilkes, 203-661-1234, [email protected]
KNOWN FOR A LIVELY BAR SCENE and tantalizing Mediterranean-Portuguese fare, Douro has a quieter side: a private dining space that seats up to eight. Tucked inside the restaurant’s wine room, the warm rustic interior features dark wood floors and gray stucco walls, which are lined with more than 500 bottles of wine. It’s a cozy spot for a small dinner party or dining a deux. Order off the menu or have Chef Rui prepare a special tasting menu of his seasonally inspired dishes, including small plates, tacos and paellas. • 363 Greenwich Ave., 203-869-7622; dourogroup.com
​SOMEONE TELLS YOU NOT TO PANIC AND…the first thing you do is panic, right? That’s part of the fun at the Panic Room in Norwalk, where you’ll be locked in one of three rooms, each with its own plotline, and presented with a set of clues to help you escape in under an hour. (Each room holds up to ten people, so you likely won’t be on your own.) See that clock on the wall? It’s ticking down. Only 20 percent of groups manage to get out before the time is up. But take heart, you can always go back and try again. One-hour sessions, $28 per person; $20 for kids; $168 for a private room. • Book online at panicroomct.com
TAP INTO YOUR CREATIVE SIDES during a sip-and-paint art class at Pinot’s Palette. During each two- or three-hour session, you’ll learn how to paint your very own masterpiece—one of the featured selections from the studio’s extensive library. Couples start on opposite sides of the same canvas, giving a whole new meaning to the idea of working together. An artist will walk you through the steps; the studio provides art supplies, easel and paint; wine, beer and specialty cocktails available to buy. You bring the snacks.  On “Wine-down Wednesdays” bottles of wine are discounted 30 percent. 25 Harbor Point Road, Stamford; 203-588-9893; pinotspalette.com/stamford

IN THIS DAY AND AGE when everyone is running around at warp speed, what could be more conducive to couple time than a simple walk? There are countless places in Greenwich to enjoy a leisurely stroll or a vigorous power walk. In Cos Cob, you can meander through the park that fronts the Mianus River. In Greenwich, a marked trail in Bruce Park passes ponds, wooded areas and gardens. Watch tennis players practice their grounds strokes and croquet players decked out in regulation white. At Binney Park in Old Greenwich you can grab a seat under a thick leafy tree beside the ponds and stone bridges. Time your outing just right and you’ll likely spy a photographer snapping some wedding photos beneath the wooden gazebo. • Cos Cob Park, 22 Sound Shore Drive, Cos Cob; Bruce Park, Bruce Park Drive, Greenwich; Binney Park, between Sound Beach Avenue and Arch Street in Old Greenwich. Town of Greenwich Parks and Recreation, 203-622-7814.

THE KOREAN MARTIAL ART OF TAE KWON DO instills discipline, focus and goal-setting. It also teaches kids to do cool things like punching, sparring and—best of all—breaking boards. Greenwich moms rave about the folks at White Tiger Tae Kwon Do, where Master Ji and instructor Laura excel at teaching children the art’s finer points, while still keeping them engaged and motivated. The studio’s two-week trial program costs $99 and comes with a complimentary gi. Classes are available for kids four years and up; birthday parties are a specialty. • 181 Greenwich Ave., 203-661-6054; wttkd.com
THE SEASIDE CENTER AT GREENWICH PARK is a treasure trove for budding naturalists. There are live-animal marine touch tanks and aquariums of fish, crabs, shellfish and other creatures from Long Island Sound. The rotating schedule of activities includes seining, animal feeding, coastal scavenger hunts, and arts and crafts. Open from June 26, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Labor Day. Closed on Mondays. Admission is free, though a beach pass is required to enter the park. Custom programs are available for groups of six or more. Located in the Floren Family Environmental Center at Innis Arden Cottage, Greenwich Point Park. • Contact Seaside Center Manager Cynthia Ehlinger at 203-413-6756 for more information
KIDS OF ALL AGES will light up this summer at the sight of the Bruce Museum’s electricity-themed exhibits: Electric Paris and Electricity. Bruce Beginnings is a forty-five-minute drop-in museum exploration for children three to five years old and their caregivers. Among the illuminating themes: Bright Lights, Nocturne Nights and Sunny Days. On Sundays the museum offers family tours as well as themed art and science-based programming. Most are drop-in and free with admission. On July 24, Electric Paris Family Day features a host of “light-based” activities and a performance by a special guest. • 1 Museum Drive; 203-869-0376; brucemuseum.org
ON A LAZY SUMMER DAY, there’s nothing quite like escaping into the pages of a good book. And no place knows children’s books better than Diane’s Books. The knowledgeable and friendly staff—led by kids’ book experts, Mary, Maria, Chris and Barb—can guide your child to age-appropriate material. Tops on this summer’s reading list: Salt to the Sea and The Secret Language of Sisters for teenagers, The Voyagers, for the middle school set, and the Power of Henry’s Imagination, a picture book for tots. Stop by the store on Grigg Street to browse the stacks. • 8 Grigg Street, 203-869-1515; dianesbooks.com
YOUNG EXPLORERS CAN DISCOVER their inner beachcomber through the Friends of Greenwich Point’s Activity Backpack program. Available at the Seaside Center, each pack contains a pocket microscope, magnifying glass, binoculars, a bird call, compass and magnifying jar. Several guides are on hand to help youngsters identify birds, shells and butterflies they might see during their travels. They can report on their finds when they sign the Explorer’s Book at the end of their adventure. • Friends of Greenwich Point, 203-987-6712; friendsofgreenwichpoint.org

KICK OFF SUMMER ON A CULINARY HIGH NOTE at the Greenwich Historical Society’s farm-to-table dinner at French Farm. You’ll enjoy cocktails, dinner, a conversation with the chef and the farm’s stunning landsca pe, designed by the former owner, David Weirdsma. The Historical Society has a full schedule of family-friendly events this summer, including the Captain’s Harbor Cruise on August 11. Join a small group of seafarers on the Island Beach ferry from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.; it’s the perfect way to bone up on the town’s rich maritime history. Tickets are $15 for members, $20 for nonmembers. Reservations must be made by August 8. Light refreshments will be served. • Greenwich Historical Society, 39 Strickland Road, (203) 869-6899, x10; greenwichhistory.org
NO DOUBT YOUR KIDS ARE MORE TECH SAVVY THAN YOU. Give them a chance to show off their skills by letting them take the lead on a fun geocaching adventure—right outside your door. There are more than fifty geocaches located throughout the Greenwich area, including four at the Point and ten in Mianus River Park. You’ll need a combination of clues and GPS coordinates to find them; each one contains a logbook to sign, and some are large enough to hold trinkets to trade. • For more information on how to sign up, visit geocaching.com
JUST IN TIME FOR SUMMER—Audubon Greenwich opens its new mile-long stroller-and wheelchair-accessible trail, making it even easier for the  entire family to enjoy the center’s scenic landscape. You’ll pass through meadows, an orchard and forest en route to bucolic Indian Spring Pond. Of course, you may never get that far. The trail starts out with a Nature Playscape, which includes a hill slide, musical instruments, sensory garden and water play area—guaranteed to sidetrack kids and adults alike. Join Audubon for the official ribbon-cutting ceremony on June 18 from 1 to 3 p.m. Or visit any day from dawn to dusk. • 613 Riversville Road; 203-869-5272; greenwich.audubon.org for a complete list of summer activities and current nonmember trails fees
THERE’S A REASON THE OLD GREENWICH FARMER’S MARKET is such a hit among families: Besides offering farm-fresh fare—think organic veggies and fruits, local honey, homemade pies and bread—there is live music every other week, and a small playground for youngsters who don’t yet appreciate the lure of zucchini blossoms. New this year, the once-a-month Maker’s Market featuring local artisans such as Eileen Duffy’s handcrafted place mats and table runners. So now, when you pick up the ingredients for a dinner al fresco, you can buy the perfect accessories to show them off. Musical lineup includes country singer Sarah Lou Richards on tour from her base in Nashville (June 15). Market hours, every Wednesday, 2:30 to 6 p.m. • 38 West End Ave., parking lot of the Presbyterian Church of Old Greenwich; oldgreenwichfarmersmarket.com
THINK SUMMER, THINK BEACH. The ribbon of sand at Tod’s Point is a great spot to spend a weekend afternoon. Watch crabs scuttling, seagulls whirling and kids playing in the gentle swells. There are concession stands (think hot dogs, Fudgsicles and candy bead necklaces), including the new Sue H. Baker Pavilion with an outdoor dining deck overlooking the Sound. This year’s annual Sand Blast, sponsored by the Greenwich Arts Council and Town of Greenwich, will be held on Saturday, July 30 at 1:30 p.m. There is no specific theme, so let your imaginations and sculpting skills go wild. Last year’s entries included mermaids and turtles, minions and castles. And to make the day even sweeter participants receive a gift certificate to Meli-Melo in Greenwich. • For more info call 203-862-6750; greenwichartscouncil.org



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