Celebrate July 4th Weekend In CT With Fine Art, Music & Muscle Cars

July 4, 2024 0 By JohnValbyNation

CONNECTICUT — The fireworks shows have been exploding across the state for weeks already, and there are plenty more to come. But amidst all the boom and sparkle of the patriotic pyrotechnics, try to catch a few of these classically Connecticut experiences:

There are plenty of places in Connecticut where you can celebrate Independence this weekend, but the number where you can hear a full symphony orchestra accompanied by a Latin septet under the stars is exactly one.

The Hartford Symphony Orchestra and the renowned percussionist Ed Fast and his Conga Bop Latin jazz septet will be performing at the Talcott Mountain Music Festival on Friday night. The venue is the spectacular open-air Simsbury Meadows Performing Arts Center, so bring your own seating. Doors open at 6 p.m., and the music begins at 7:30, rain date is July 6. Tickets are available online here.

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Have some pizza with your patriotism at the Stars, Stripes & Slices Independence Day Celebration at the Yankee Cider Company in East Haddam. Jerry’s Pizza Truck will be serving up dozens of different pizza varieties as well as gelato, and the brewers will be pouring a dozen varieties of hard cider. Sip a hard cider ice cream float while you pitch a game of cornhole, or just zone out by the fire pit and enjoy a summer afternoon off on the grounds of, July 5 from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m., rain or shine. Tickets are available online here.

The Norwalk International Cultural Exchange will be holding its 8th Annual NICE Fest at Oyster Shell Park on Saturday, July 6. It’s a full day (11 a.m.-10 p.m.) of live performances across two stages, and over 50 international food, crafts, arts and exhibitors. In addition to big, expect it to be loud and colorful: Organizers are promising Korean drummers; Aztec dancers and drummers; Brazilian Samba and Capoeira; ; reggae and salsa bands; and an attempt at the world record for the “Most Nationalities in a Conga Line.” Admission is free. Schedule of main stage performers is online here.

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Also big: The Niantic Lions will be rolling out their 63rd Annual Niantic Outdoor Arts and Craft Show this weekend on the East Lyme Town Hall grounds. Look for juried fine arts and crafts, including paintings, photography, pottery, jewelry, woodworking and paper products, Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Your noshes are covered by a fleet of food trucks, including Capt. Scott’s Lobster Dock, Giovanni’s Pizza, Dude’s Donuts, and more. Free admission.

Classic car enthusiasts club Rad Stallions is joining forces with the United Steelworkers Union for the Heroes of Steel Car Show on Sunday, July 7. The classic rides will be part of a celebration of 80s and 90s culture to include fashion and vintage video games. There will also be yard games and face painting, for those born too late to appreciate what they missed. It’s all going down at Lyman Orchards in Middlefield from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Apple Barrel Farm Market is right there, for food and drinks. Admission is free for spectators, but you will need to pay a small fee if you want to show off your own car.

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