Out and about: Things to see and places to be this weekend

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Above: Yo-Yo Ma and Silk Road Ensemble perform ‘Ascending Bird.’ The musicians will perform in New Haven on Saturday night at the New Haven Green.

Although there are not enough hours in this weekend to take in everything that is being offered, it’s worth the effort to get out there and enjoy what the area (and the rest of the state) has to offer.

For those looking to explore new spaces and places throughout the state should make their way over to the Connecticut Commission and Tourism’s website to see the many organizations participating in Open House Day. These sites and attractions are typically offering free or reduced admission, as well as special events to mark the day, which this year falls on Saturday. For instance, at Weir Farm National Historic Site, there will be a unique opportunity to go behind-the-scenes at renovations to the park’s historic districts.

But don’t limit yourself, or your family, as activities stretch throughout the state.

As with every weekend, there are plenty of opportunities to listen to some great music, from the Tom Tom Club’s appearance tonight and Robin Trower’s appearance tomorrow, both at the Ridgefield Playhouse. Jazz lovers who want to help underprivileged kids learn more about this American art form may want to save Saturday night for a benefit concert in Greenwich thrown by the Backcountry Jazz nonprofit organization. Meanwhile, Chicago’s Orchard Lounge will be in Fairfield tonight.

The launch of the two-week International Festival of Arts and Ideas in New Haven is providing the area with an opportunity to see celebrated cellist Yo-Yo Ma appear with the Silk Road Ensemble, for free, at an evening concert Saturday at the New Haven Green. The festival also is bringing the opportunity to see the Connecticut debut of the Druid Theatre company.

Live theater, and comedy, continues with the Ridgefield Theater Barn’s “Seascape with Sharks and Dancer,” weekends through June 25; stand-up comic and “Cash Cab” host Ben Bailey on Saturday at Mohegan Sun casino; and “The Best of Second City,” at New Haven’s Long Wharf on Wednesday. And, later in the week, beginning next Thursday, Shakespeare on the Sound will present “Much Ado About Nothing.” It is just the start of the Shakespeare season.

For kids, and families, the Big Apple Circus begins its nearly monthlong stay at Mill River Park in Stamford this weekend; the annual Strawberry Festival gets under way Sunday in New Fairfield (the fruit also has inspired parties at Lyman Orchards and Pequot Museum and Research Center); Black Rock Day celebrates one of Bridgeport’s many neighborhoods on Sunday; and Georgetown saves a day for itself with festivities slated for Saturday. In Greenwich, youngsters will be encouraged to touch a truck at the Junior League of Greenwich’s annual event. Also  this weekend will be the Greenwich Kennel Club’s outdoor dog show in Norwalk.

As one can see, there is no lack of entertainment options. You even may want to take a few minutes of this weekend to plan out the summer, as the chance to see top-notch performers across the area does not seem to be slowing down anytime soon.

Until next week …

Christina Hennessy

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