Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Save the Date, Citizens!!

So you may need to sit down for this one, but for once, I've decided to do something good!

Namely, support The Food Bank of Lower Fairfield County, Inc. Save the date: on September 29th, Stamford Notes along with some of your favorite local bloggers will be hosting a happy hour fundraiser to benefit this worthy cause.

One of Stamford's newest additions to the restaurant scene, Chinese Mirch, will be hosting this great event. I hope you show up, drink up and help bring the community up. Details to follow...stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

So...Tired...Must...Tell You About...

Craig Ferguson...he is headed our way on Wednesday, July 7th at 8pm. You might remember him from back in the day as Mr. Wick from The Drew Carey Show. Of course, he went on to pretty cool other things - namely stardom as the host of The Late Late Show (so nice, they delayed it twice). Tickets range from $38 to $98, and you can get yours at the Palace Theatre website.

Monday, June 28, 2010


Are you tiny, colorful and a big fan of nectar? If so, you might be a hummingbird.

Come learn about yourself on Saturday, July 17th at "Hummingbirds: Our Feathered Gems" at Audubon Greenwich from 3:30-4:30pm.

For example, you can:

- Fly backward.
- Migrate long distances.
- Change your own heart rate and temperature to live through the cold.
- Be awesome.

The lecture is presented by by Gina Nichol, a former staff member at the Audubon. She will also provide tips on how to get your hummingbird buddies to join you in the garden. The event will cost you a mere $5 and will be hosted at Audubon Greenwich, 613 Riversville Road in Greenwich.

(photo provided by Audubon Greenwich)

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Free and Frozen

Webster Bank is doing something pretty sweet this summer. They've sent out the ice cream man sans cash register. You can enjoy some frozen goodness for zero dollars if you come out on any of the following dates at these events:

- 7/9: Monroe Farmer’s Market, 495 Monroe Turnpike, Monroe, CT (12–6pm)

- 7/17: Sidewalk Sale, 215 Elm St., New Canaan, CT (10am–4pm)

- 7/16: Sidewalk Sale, 1101 Boston Post Rd, Darien, CT (10am-4pm)

For more information, you can follow them on Twitter or check out their quirky website.

(photo from boliston,

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Things that Interest Me (and Might Vaguely Interest You)

1. If you park your car on Bedford before the Promenade, it will get towed. Also, a cop will look at you disapprovingly if he suspects that you might secretly be the disgraced owner of said car.

2. If you poke your head into Quattro Pazzi (where Sabatiello's used to be on Bedford) and ask them when they are opening, they just may say "3 weeks." Neat.

3. There is another new entry to the Stamford Mexican food landscape, and it is scheduled to open in the fall. It's called Lola's and their website will eventually be here (you won't see anything there now - but check back soon).

4. If you ask Fairway Market when they will open in Stamford, they aren't 100% sure, but they may say "before Thanksgiving." Also neat.

5. Tomorrow is the KIC IT Triathalon to benefit Kids in Crisis. It's a very cool event, and you should know that, but you should also know that it will limit your traffic options tomorrow (Sunday). You can see a map of the course here.

6. Your neighbor may be the next president of Haiti.

7. Nature is apparently turning against us. A six year old girl was attacked by two coyotes in her yard in Rye and a baby was killed by a branch that fell out of a tree at the Central Park Zoo. Bizarre and awful!

8. In lighter news, tonight is the LAST Promenade! If you haven't gone, check it out.

Friday, June 25, 2010

A Nod to the Promenade

Don't forget to come out for the Bedford Street Promenade. It's on again this Saturday. This new signature summer event brings Stamford's citizens together to hear great live music and dine out in the warm weather. See you there!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Top Local Chef

My household looks to the Bravo TV show Top Chef for a mid-week guilty pleasure. This season, the guy we're supposed to "love to hate" is local boy, Angelo Sosa.

He sheepishly tells viewers he's from a small town in Connecticut. That's true, but he's worked his way down the Metro North line. A little due diligence reveals that he is a Durham, Connecticut native, but he's set up shop in the big city with a sandwich place called Xie Xie.

In his defense, he is kicking butt. He's won challenge after challenge, and that's great. I want to like him, I do, but his winning challenges has not translated into his winning hearts and minds. For example, he's making an impression on the show with lines like "Whoever is going to go against me, there's going to be blood on the stage." How lovely.

It's too early in the season to have a favorite, but it might not be too early to have a least favorite. I say that in part because he's in DC for this competition - a place that became synonymous with the word "sniper" for all the wrong reasons in 2002 - and says "I'm literally going to be a sniper. I'm not here to %^&* around, I'm here to bring it." Awkward.

I suppose it's good that CT's out there with a culinary "go getter" to its name, but next time, I'll take mine with more focus on delicious than vicious.

And then there's this picture. I'll let that one speak for itself.

(photo from René Ehrhardt,

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

What's so Fair about Fairway?

Fairway Market is coming to town this fall. They are setting up shop in the Harbor Point Development at the corner of Market and Canal Streets. The Fairway site describes it as "one of New York City's most lauded and beloved food emporiums for more than 75 years." Ok, so what do other people say?

Yelp reviews of the Upper West Side store tell me that the produce is top notch. The store emphasizes organic products and humanely raised meats. Reviewers ding it for being too crowded and some less than stellar customer service, but most reviews are very positive. Several entries begin "Oh Fairway, how do I love thee?" Prices are described as fair, although some produce prices are more than expected. Noteworthy products include fresh crushed peanut butter, rare cheeses, cured meats and prepared foods. This location (not sure about others) is open until 1am! Sweet.

The Harlem location gets even better Yelp reviews. One review described it as "Quite possibly the best grocery store in the world." Another review described the store providing jackets to customers so they can walk into something called the Cold Room. Apparently the Cold Room is a giant refrigerated room filled with beer, soda, meat, ice cream and other frozen food. Pun sorta intended - that's very cool! Might be a nice way to shop in summer. People also say good things about the store's olive bar, baked goods and European specialty foods.

New York Magazine doesn't have any customer reviews posted, but its own write-up is equally glowing. It begins "For many Upper West Siders, life without Fairway is inconceivable." It goes on to describe the store as "an indispensable culinary resource." Hard to get more warm and fuzzy than that!

The Citysearch reviews are a slightly less stellar, with most of the critical comments revolving around surly customer service and crowds. Still, most of those reviews say nice things about the food offerings. Reviews from Insiderpages are excellent.

You can see the opening of Fairway Paramus, NJ from last year on YouTube narrated by Dan Glickberg, a fourth generation owner. They also have a YouTube channel where you can gain more insights into what they do and who they are (wanna learn from the defending East Coast Champion Mellon Picker? You got it!). It's all pretty charming, and gives you the impression that the place is very family friendly. They keep that impression alive locally by sponsoring this year's Big Apple Circus in Stamford.

So now I officially have high hopes! Looking forward to checking out our new neighbor.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Get Down with Clowns

The Big Apple Circus clowns are coming to get your kids amped up for July's big event. Join them at Stew Leonard's in Norwalk (100 Westport Avenue) from 11-1pm on Saturday, June 26th.

There will be face painting, balloons, food, prizes and a raffle for circus tickets. Raffle winners take home a pack of four circus tickets for the July 16th 7pm show in our own backyard. For more info, call (203) 847-7214 or visit Stew Leonard's website.

(photo from rightee,

Saturday, June 19, 2010

A Big Gig

This weekend is the last one to check out The Loft Artists Association's “Big-Bigger-Biggest” exhibit. It's a show featuring pieces that are at least 36” X 48” and shows artists experimenting with proportions. You'll get a different take on a gallery experience. Check it out for free (!) on Sunday between noon and 5pm.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Alright, Alright...Alive @ 5

Ok, I suppose I should get my act together and write about Alive @ 5 since it's ginormous and all that, for our itty bitty city.

If you don't know about the event, it's the biggest summer event we got. It's at Columbus Park, takes over Columbus Park, and brings in:
- Big name bands.
- Acres of fans.
- The occasional overzealous cop.

This year, admission is $5 on all days except Aug 5th when it goes up to $10 (somebody likes the Beach Boys!).

Generally, there's a big long line to get into the fenced off Columbus Park area - so come early. If you're not yet 21, it's required, because you can attend if you arrive before 6:30, but after that you are SOL (aka, not invited). Bring photo ID (if you bring a passport, you gotta bring something else too). Early entry also for bringing any children 12 and under (whose entry price is $0).

Your 2010 lineup looks like this:

June 24
- Gin Blossoms.
- Soul Asylum
- Bedford Street Promenade Battle of Bands Winner

July 1
- Seven Mary Three
- Marcy Playground
- Bedford Street Promenade Battle of Bands Winner

July 8
- Rusted Root
- Nick Howard
- Bedford Street Promenade Battle of Bands Winner

July 15
- George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic
- Heylady
- I Anbassa

July 22
- Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
- Ten Year Vamp
- Frank Enea

July 29
- Uncle Kracker
- Saint Bernadette
- The Mercury Seed

Aug. 5
- The Beach Boys
- The Wanderers
- Sharkey & The Unknowns

Don't bring coolers, glass containers, alcohol, pets or video/audio recorders. They suggest you leave big bags at home, and if not, it just might get searched.

Phew! Ok, so come, have fun, be good and tell 'em I said so.

(photo from visualpanic,

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Not Alive @ 5

I have not written about Alive @ 5, and I know that I should write about Alive @ 5 - but writing about Alive @ 5 requires knowing a lot of band names and dates, and I am tired...and many other people have written about Alive @ I'm writing something lazy...

Each month on your calendar is [Fill in the Blank] Awareness month, and I happened to stumble upon some particularly interesting/stupid/ridiculous thing clamoring for your awareness. As a public service, please note that June is:

- Goat Trauma Awareness Month. This part of their site made me much more aware than I'd ever wanted to be.
- Antiphospholipid Antibody Syndrome Awareness Month. I feel this is too many long words for my threshold of awareness.
- Celibacy Awareness Month. Isn't it more like denial of awareness?
- Children's Awareness Month. I am proud to say that I, for one, have long been aware of children.
- Effective Communications Month. Enough said.
- Fireworks Safety Month. You'd think it would be in July.
- Turkey Lovers Month. That sounds dirty.
- National Accordion Awareness Month. In my experience, if I am in a room with an accordion and someone is playing said accordion, I am keenly aware of that accordion.
- National Bathroom Reading Month. Really?
- Potty Training Awareness Month. Hope they can read.
- Rebuild Your Life Month. Which I imagine you are planning since you have wasted so many precious moments of it on your awareness of your awareness.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Summer Mellow with Othello

How many names does a park need? Three did the trick for Roger Sherman Baldwin Park - which is where you can see outdoor summertime performances of Othello by Shakespeare on the Sound.

The venue is located in Greenwich at 100 Arch Street, and performances are July 2 to 11th (except no Mondays!) at 7:30 pm. Bring your blanket and your fancy wine holder thingies any time after 4pm. For more information, visit the group's Planning a Visit page.

Show runs to about 10:15pm - and is awesome. We went last year and had a blast!

(photo from bberburb,

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Pop Goes the Summer

It's hard to believe that July's creeping in but, dear citizens, it is!

As the weather heats up, chill out with The Stamford Symphony's Pops in the Park on Wednesday, July 14 at 6:30 pm. Join them at Columbus Park's Heineken Stage at Main Street and West Park Place.

The $5 entry fee (and $0 for kids under 12) make it an affordable summertime treat. You'll hear the works of Bach, Handel, Pachelbel, Mozart, Strauss, Sousa and Joplin. You can bring a picnic dinner or dine in the restaurants around Columbus Park. Make your way there by heading to Main Street, east of Clark, and Lower Summer Streets. For more info, call 203-325-1407 x 10 or visit the Stamford Symphony site.

(photo from Jorge Franganillo,

Saturday, June 12, 2010


I want to apologize for making my favorite citizens jump through so many hoops to post a comment. To say something on the blog, not only do you have to type a special secret word but I have to go in and press "publish" for it to show up. Why do I make you do all that you might say? Well...I don't want to...but whenever I allow free posting I get:

- Japanese spam that says something vaguely sexual each and every day
- Ads for sketchy payday loans with links to sketchy payday loan providers
- Numerous other brands of awfulness

So, I want to apologize for the inconvenience, explain it to you a little and promise that as soon as all spammers take a long walk off a short pier, free comments for all!

Promenade Today!

Don't forget - Promenade today!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Music and Mozzarella

Coalhouse Pizza is bringing live jazz to Stamford. Join them this Friday or Saturday night.

On Friday, June 11th from 7-11pm, Derek Pedersen will play the music of Tom Waits. Saturday features a student group called the American Jazz Quintet.

(photo from pedrosimoes7,

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Drambuie among the Daisies

The Bartlett Arboretum is hosting a series of new events this summer they're calling Cocktails in the Gardens. I'm a fan of cocktails nearly anywhere, but everything is lovelier among the flowers.

Each event features a Bartlett garden and a new themed event just for that space, including cocktails, hors d'oeuvres and music. Cocktail in the Gardens events are Thursdays from 6-8pm on:

- June 24. Join them in the Herb Garden for a savory cocktail with fragrant food to match.

- July 22. Cheers to the Vegetable Garden for freshly picked munchies and pick-me-up drinks.

- September 2. Take an exotic vacation in your backyard with snacks and sips in the Tropical Garden.

If garden day is a rainy day, the event bumps to Friday. It will run you $30 for members and $36 for non-members. Rsvp suggested, call 203-322-6971.

(photo from aussiegall,

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


My buddy TK and I are checking out the Bedford Street Promenade this Saturday, the first of three days this month when the street shows its summer stripes. You can join us Saturday, June 12th or check it out June 19th or 26th. The event runs from 4-11pm.

So what's so special about the Promenade?

Refreshments. With sponsors like Dos Equis, Newcastle Brown Ale and Yellow Tail Reserve, you figure drinks will be had.

Music. 95.9 The Fox and the winners of the Battle of the Bands contest bring the music. Those bands will be battling for the chance to open at Alive @ 5 - three winners take that prize. Your music lineup looks like this:

June 12 — Cadillac 9 vs Ten Feet Deep
June 19 — Superband vs PANA!
June 26 — Dexter Scott vs The Woulda Coulda Shouldas

You can see videos of the bands at the site linked above and read more about Cadillac 9 and Ten Feet Deep on the DSSD blog.

Ambiance. Bedford will be closed to traffic for the night and you'll get to enjoy unending sidewalk cafes.

Come join us, drink up, spend money, get our local economy in shape for summer!

(photo from Robert S. Donovan,

Monday, June 7, 2010

Jet Set Pets

The “It’s Reigning Cats & Dogs” sculptures are ready set out on their summer adventure and brighten up your block. Some are out in the world already, but others are being installed - complete with fork-lifts and a loader truck - on June 8th between 5am and 11am. When they are all set up, you'll see 40 sculptures by 34 artists all around town.

DSSD has complied a great sculpture series booklet to show you what you'll see and where you'll see it.

If you'd like to welcome them properly, you can attend the official kickoff at the Stamford Marriott on June 16th. Technically, the last day to RSVP is June 7th, so get on it! You can see the RSVP info by scrolling to the bottom of the invitation. Additional info is available by calling 203-348-5285 or visiting the DSSD website. The parade of pets is gracing our streets until August.

(photo from Werwin15,

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Pics in Space

If you can't get to DC, lucky you, DC is paying you a visit. From June 12 to August 8, 2010, you can enjoy the Smithsonian Traveling Exhibit, Earth from Space at the Stamford Nature Center.

It is a collection of 41 images of the planet as you've never seen it before. Sophisticated satellites that circle the planet took these shots depicting images ranging from the chaos of hurricanes to the calm of farmlands. You'll see the natural world and the world we created.

There is also something called "Magic Planet," a digital video globe. It allows you to see how the satellites fit into the BIG big picture.

You can also take in the exhibit - plus other educational resources - from home by visiting the companion website.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Greek economy not so good; Greek food excellent!

Stamford Talk pointed you in the right direction - check out the Greek Festival. Last day is Sunday.

Mill River Info

Like half the free (local) world, I'm eager to know what's going on with the Mill River project. Depending on your source of information, it's Utopia down the block or a giant conspiracy against cherry trees.

As you know, dear citizens, I am a rabid optimist and choose to believe that it will be fantabulous. If you want to know when you can begin preparing your mind to be blown, sign up for the Mill River newsletter. You can see the latest newsletter here and sign up for regular updates here.

PS - I went to the Nature Center Wine Flight event last night, and it was amazing! Really fun time. Great food, great wine, great cause. You can learn about restaurants you might have missed and get great deals on silent auction items. They did an incredible job, and I'm definitely planning to go back next year. If you missed it, put it on your 2011 calendar.

(photo from,

Friday, June 4, 2010

Freshwater Swirl

Want to see Swirl? You've got a bunch of chances in June:

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Summer Means Kicking Balls

Sign up for Co-Ed Kickball by visiting Big League Kickball. You can register online. Games are played on Saturday at Westover Elementary School from noon to 4pm on:

- 6/26
- 7/10
- 7/17
- 7/24
- 7/31
- 8/7
- 8/14
- 8/21

Black Bear is the sponsor and offers player specials too!

(photo from LabyrinthX,

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Be a Mill River Giver

On June 5th from 9am-1pm, join buildOn to clean up Mill River Park and Riverbank at 26 Mill River Street in Stamford.

Volunteers and students will be planting, weeding and mulching to make the park shine. Materials will be provided but if you bring tools along, they will be glad for your help. Kids over ten are welcome to come along.

And...if you're of age...your volunteer mission then moves to Black Bear to toast your hard work.

For more information, contact Maurice Muchene, Program Supervisor, by emailing or calling (203) 357-4259.

(photo from DanBrady,

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Rock 'em Sock 'em Regular Guys

How cool is this? A group called The Real Fight Club Stamford is hosting an event called The Boardroom Brawl, which it describes as "an evening of white collar boxing in the heart of Stamford."

On Friday, June 11th at the Holiday Inn (700 E Main Street) at 7:30pm, you can enjoy a three course dinner followed by businessmen wailing on each other.

A black tie event with a $100 ticket price to match (but hey, it's for charity!), this event that has officially boggled my mind will benefit:
- Hope for Haiti
- RF Youth Foundation, which gives kids in need access to professional fitness training
- USA Boxing, which helps send boxing talent to national tournaments

For ticket info contact or call 203-355-2666.

(photo from Jeff Sandquist,