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New Haven's International Festival of Arts & Ideas takes place June 9-23, 2018.

June 1-3

Brooklyn Ag Days

Brooklyn Fairgrounds, Brooklyn • $5, children 12 & under free Free parking • Celebrate the antique and agricultural traditions of yesterday with truck and tractor pulls, livestock demonstrations and more.

June 2

Hartford Puerto Rican Parade & Festival del Coquí

Bushnell Park, Hartford • 11 a.m-8 p.m.; tickets $20-$40 in advance, $50 at the door • Hartford’s largest parade is followed by a day-long celebration of Puerto Rican culture, with food, music, dancing and artistry.

Ninety9Bottles Craft Beer Festival

Oyster Shell Park, Norwalk • 2-5 p.m.; tickets $20-$40 in advance, $50 at the door • Taste more than 75 craft beers from dozens of New England breweries. Adults only — no kids, and no pets. Proceeds benefit the Adoption Hope Foundation. Rain or shine. •

Stratford Main Street Festival

Stratford Center • 10 a.m.-5 p.m. • Food, fun, crafts and entertainment allowing residents to celebrate the town’s spirit.

Weed Beach Fest

Weed Beach, Darien • 2-8 p.m.; free admission • Live music, food vendors, a clam bake and games and activities for kids and families.

Essex Annual Shad Bake

Connecticut River Museum, Essex • 3-6:30 p.m.; admission $30 • It’s not early summer in Connecticut without a shad bake! Enjoy them with plenty of sides and for dessert, pie from Lyman Orchards. Presented by the Rotary Club of Essex and the Connecticut River Museum.

3rd annual Shakesbeer Festival

Pinkney Park, Norwalk • 6-10 p.m.; tickets $75-$150 • Shakespeare on the Sound's annual fundraiser will feature a home-brewed beer tasting and competition, as well as an auction, dancing and gourmet food trucks.

June 2-3

Sun BBQ Fest

Mohegan Sun • 888-226-7711 • Sat. 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; tickets $5 • King’s Hawaiian at Mohegan Sun hosts this tasty event featuring wing and rib challenges, food trucks, live music and a fireworks display on Saturday night.

Blues and Brews Festival

Hygienic Art Park, New London • 860-443-8001 • Noon-5 p.m.; tickets $20-$30 • In addition to the main stage at Hygienic Art Park, venues up and down Bank Street will be presenting brew specials and live bands.

Art at Ives

Westconn Campus Center, Danbury • 10 a.m.-5 p.m. each day • Art show admission only $5 / wine tasting $15 in advance, $20 at the door • Food, music and amazing artwork from talented craftspeople from all over the region. (Note: Originally scheduled to take place at Ives Concert Park, this event has been moved indoors.)

June 3

Harwinton Family Food Truck Festival

Harwinton Town Hall • 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; free admission and parking • The Lions Club of Harwinton puts on this festival, which will feature music, local vendors and carnival games and a magic show for kids.

June 7-10

Sea Music Festival

Mystic Seaport, Mystic • 860-572-0711 • 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; general admission $28.95, evening concerts $25 • Enjoy daytime and evening concerts featuring traditional and contemporary sea music, plus special performances for children and instructional workshops.

June 8-10

Laurel Festival Ball, Fun Day and Parade

East End Park, Winsted • townofwinchester.org/our-town/pages/town-happeningstownofwinchester.org • 1 p.m.; free admission • Now in its 84th year, the festival will include a royal ball on Friday and the naming of the Queen and King of the Festival at the parade on Sunday.

June 9

Strawberry Jazz Festival

First Congregational Church of Madison • 9 a.m.-3 p.m., free admission; headline concert 7:30 p.m., tickets $25-$55 • Live jazz bands, a petting zoo, games, arts and crafts vendors, lots of food and much more. Folk legend Livingston Taylor performs in the evening. Proceeds benefic the church’s outreach missions.

Southern New England TacoFest

Terryville Fairgrounds, Plymouth • Noon-6 p.m.; tickets $15-$60 (VIP tickets available) • Celebrate Mexican and South American culture with over 40 food trucks and vendors, plus live music and DJs, wrestling shows and kids activities.

Saturday in the Park

Coe Memorial Park, Torrington • artsnwct.org • 10 a.m.-4 p.m. • Enjoy the park with arts & crafts, music, entertainment and food, plus the Main Street Marketplace Express children’s train will offer rides around the park (price and times to be determined).

Pride in the Park 2018

Mathews Park, Norwalk • Noon-8 p.m.; free admission • Fairfield County’s LGBTQ Pride festival is open to all, with food, activities and local and internationally known performers.

ECPAA Jazz Festival

Yurechko Tree Farm, Griswold • 2-8 p.m.; tickets $25 • Performers at this festival from the Eastern Connecticut Performing Arts Association include Lynn & Vinny Knapp, the Wolverine Jazz Band, the Greg Abate Band, the Chris Leigh Band, the Baby Grand Latin Jazz Band and Vocaholix.

Cheshire Strawberry Festival and Craft Fair

Church Green, Cheshire • 10 a.m.-4 p.m. • Of course you’ll want the strawberry shortcake, but the 81st annual festival will have plenty of other delicious treats, as well as a community expo, raffle, arts and crafts, live entertainment and more.

June 9-10

Pirates Weekend

Milford • Ahoy mateys! The weekend kicks off with the 21-and-over Pirate’s Ball Saturday night at Fowler Pavilion, with live entertainment and a costume contest for “Best Pirate.” Sunday morning the kids can enjoy “Pancakes with Pirates” at Lisbon Landing, followed by a treasure hunt.

Riverfront Music Revival

Veterans Memorial Park, Shelton • 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; admission $15 or $20 for a weekend pass • This inaugural event promises a wide range of music, from blues to reggae and bluegrass to indie pop, plus food, vendors and a family fun zone.

June 9-23

International Festival of Arts & Ideas

New Haven (various locations) • 888-278-4332 • For 15 days, the theaters and open spaces of New Haven will play host to an ecclectic mix of world-class dance, music, theater and cultural events — more than 170 in all, and the vast majority are free. Highlights this year include a performance by JUNO award-winning singer-songwriter Ruth B and the New England premiere of the Compagnia de’ Colombari’s new production of The Merchant of Venice.

June 9, July 21 & Aug. 18

Summer Block Parties

Downtown Watertown • 860-945-5246 • watertownctrecreation.com, 860-945-5246 • 6-9 p.m. • The theme is “A Night Out On Main Street,” with several streets closed off to allow residents to enjoy live entertainment and tasty food from local eateries.

June 15-17

Goshen Stampede

Goshen Fairgrounds, Goshen • Country band Lanco headlines the three-day festival, which also includes rodeos, demolition derbies, carnival rides and lots more.

Branford Festival on the Green

Branford Green • The 33rd annual festival will have music lineups Friday and Saturday night, plus a baking contest, craft fair and car show. On Sunday is the annual Branford Road Race, and students from the Tabor Arts Performance School wrap up the weekend.

June 16

Revolutionary War Re-enactment and Food Truck Festival

Scout Hall Youth Center, East Windsor • 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; free admission • In honor of the town’s 250th anniversary, the 5th Connecticut Regiment will re-enact “Bissell’s Ride,” in which East Windsor native Israel Bissell warned the town of Lexington, Mass., of a British attack in 1775.

June 16

Bloomfield Strawberry Festival

297 School St., Bloomfield • Noon-7 p.m. • Come enjoy a day of food and fun including basketball, face painting, a bounce house, local singers, dancing and — need we even say it? — strawberry shortcake.

Japan Summer Festival

Blue Back Square, West Hartford • 860-796-1637 • Noon-6 p.m. • Now in its fifth year, this celebration of Japanese culture will feature traditional lion dancing, drumming, singing and dancing performances, a karate demonstration, hands-on kids’ activities, a cosplay contest and more.

June 21

Make Music Day

Various cities and towns • Cities and communities around the state will take part in this worldwide celebration on the summer solstice, which encourages revelers to both listen to and participate in performing live music.

June 21-23

Mystic River Jam Festival

Mystic Shipyard, Mystic • Thu. 6:30-8:30 p.m.,Fri. 6-10 p.m., Sat. 3-10 p.m. • This two-day festival (plus a kickoff on June 21, Make Music Day) showcases music from rock to reggae, blues to country to punk.

June 21-24

Montville Annual Carnival

Montville Community Center, Montville • norwichchamber.com • Thu. & Fri. 5-10 p.m., Sat. noon-10 p.m, Sun. noon-8 p.m.; admission free, all-you-can-ride bracelets $20-$25 • Rides, games, food and fun all weekend, plus live music and fireworks Saturday night.

June 23

Basque Fest

New England Basque Club, New London • 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; tickets $30 adults, $15 children • The celebration of Basque culture will feature dance and music performances, regional foods and much more.

Derby Day

Derby Green, Derby • 10 a.m.-5 p.m. • Grab your lawn chair and come celebrate everything Derby has to offer with music, vendors, food and fun activities.

June 23-24

Greater Hartford Food Truck Fest

The Promenade Shops at Evergreen Walk, South Windsor • Sat. 11 a.m.-7 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.-6 p.m. • Food trucks from all over the state will converge for the weekend, plus live music and fun kids’ activities.

June 28-July 1

Ridgefield Volunteer Fire Department Carnival & Fireworks

East Ridge Middle School, Ridgefield • The Ridgefield Volunteer Fire Department’s annual carnival, with rides, games and family fun, and fireworks Friday night at dusk.

June 29

Red White & Blue BBQ

Owen Bell Park, Killingly • 5-10 p.m.; $10 per chicken dinner meal • Start the summer with the Danielson Elks’ chicken barbecue dinner. Enjoy the music and evening fireworks.

June 30

Rose Arts Festival/Downtown After Dark

Chelsea Parade and downtown Norwich • 860-705-7203 • 7 a.m.-6 p.m.; 6 p.m.-1 a.m.; free admission • Enjoy live performances, a pancake breakfast, road races and lots more family-friendly activities all day. Then at 6 p.m. the festivities move to downtown restaurants, bars and theaters.

CoventryFest

Coventry Lake at Patriots Park, Coventry • Enjoy games, rides, a hot dog-eating contest and evening fireworks.

June 30-July 1

Tibet Fest

Goshen Fairgrounds, Goshen • Sat. 10 a.m.-6 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; tickets $8-$25 • Billed as the largest festival of its kind on the East Coast, celebrating the music, food, art, dance and culture of Tibet.

June 30 & Aug. 25

New London Food Truck Festival

Waterfront Park, New London • 6-9 p.m.; free admission • The theme for June 30 is bacon. Grab an order and enjoy the live music at either City Pier or the Custom House pier. Free face painting and balloon animals for the kids.


This article appeared in the June 2018 issue of Connecticut Magazine. Did you like what you read? You can subscribe here.