Thursday, July 24th, is a big food day - or should I say evening - in the Hartford area. First, the Sixth Annual FREE Ice Cream Social on the patio of The Mark Twain House & Museum, featuring UConn Dairy Bar ice cream. The Friends of The Mark Twain House & Museum will serve dishes of ice cream for you to trim with sundae sauces, whipped cream, and sprinkles while you listen to music by Cracked Walnuts and Horizon Blue.
Cracked Walnuts entertain with music from the Civil War era, campfire and folk songs, barbershop quartet style music, patriotic favorites, traditional jigs and reels, hits from the roaring 20's, Western Swing and even old movie and television music. Horizon Blue are an acoustic Americana (folk, country and blue grass) musical group whose performances are conversational, and inviting. The original songs they perform have a storytelling aspect and are well received by audiences of all ages. They also include songs in their performance that are well known to everyone.
Jessica Lawson, the author of the new young adult book The Actual & Truthful Adventures of Becky Thatcher, will be on hand with copies of her book for sale and signing at the ice cream social. In addition, there will be a Becky Thatcher-themed scavenger hunt and lawn games.
If you want to spend more time, take one of the discounted tours of the first floor of the Mark Twain House ($5 for adults, seniors, and children; under age 6 free), or sign up for one of the highly popular GET A CLUE Tours which step off every 15 minutes beginning at 7 p.m. Members of Sea Tea Improv perform as characters from Mark Twain's stories while you try to guess who killed that varmint Pap Finn? Could it be Becky Thatcher with the revolver in the Conservatory? The Prince (or was it the Pauper?) with the knife in the library? Reservations are required and popular times sell out. Tickets are $22 with discounts available for members and children. Please call (860) 280-3130 for more information and to reserve your spaces, or buy your tickets online here.
Also on Thursday evening, A History of Connecticut Food and Wine will be presented at the Farmington Main Library, 6 Monteith Drive, at 7:00pm. Authors Eric D. Lehman and Amy Nawrocki will discuss their comprehensive history of Connecticut food, and copies of both A History of Connecticut Wine: Vineyard in Your Backyard and A History of Connecticut Food will be available for purchase.
If you have wondered what is Connecticut food and how it differs from that of other places, this is the event for you. Which crops, livestock and seafood have shaped the complex cuisines that its people have cherished for more than four centuries? This discussion with Q&A following will delight any food lover who appreciates the story behind a meal and every budding chef who longs for the secrets of favorite local dishes. With traditional recipes, reinterpretations and fascinating new classics, there's something here for all tastes, from familiar comforts like chicken potpie and fried oysters to curious concoctions like Grape-Nuts pudding and steamed cheeseburgers.
Although there is no charge, advance registration is required for this program. Please call 860-673-6791 for details or register using this link.