When the Pleasant Valley Drive-In of Barkhamsted opened for the season on the second Friday in May, owner Donna McGrane was worried because it was pouring rain. “But we were packed!” she says. On the following night, “There was a crazy blinding blizzard. We sold out!”

Jeanine Basinger begins her book The Movie Musical! by recalling being a child in the small town of Brookings, South Dakota, during World War II and beholding Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers on the big screen of the downtown movie theater. The movie was Swing Time. In those days, she writes, …

Christopher Wigren doesn’t want people to merely read his new book, Connecticut Architecture: Stories of 100 Places. He hopes we will go out and see for ourselves the state’s rich variety of sites and even discover some we never knew existed. Perhaps even some that didn’t make it into the book.

When Tony Renzoni arrived at Toad’s Place, the legendary New Haven music club, he was carrying a shopping bag that included two Gene Pitney albums and a transistor radio from his youth on which he had written “Independence.”