How’s the weekend looking?

sailThe weather gods must like dads.

After a week of rain and  heavy downpours, Father’s Day weekend will be sunny and seasonably warm. A great time for a backyard barbecue.

Temperatures will be hovering at about 80 with just a chance of thunderstorm after 3 p.m. on Sunday.

Things to do and see

For a great roundup of things to do and where to go, check out Christina Hennessey’s ‘Out and About’ blog post on Culture Cache.

Among some of the events …

The ArtWalk in downtown Stamford is Friday and Saturday, with live music and exhibits from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. today. For more information, go here:

The 25th annual Fairfield County Irish Festival is this weekend, at the Fairfield University campus. For a full schedule, see the Irish Festival site.

The Strawberry Festival in Monroe has been going even longer. The 42nd annual event, which includes a craft and fine art show, is this weekend at the Monroe Congregational Church. For more information, go here.

If you want to look beyond southwestern Connecticut check out the much improved Connecticut tourism web site. Unlike previous years, this one is easy to navigate. There is a special section for weekend events, travel deals and anything that’s Connecticut. It’s a great source for planning your summer close to home and filing your Connecticut bucket list.

On Long Island Sound

It will be a good beach weekend, but the heavy rain has stirred up things in the water. Check out the state’s Water Quality Report to see the status of Connecticut beaches.

Water temperature in The Sound is getting a little warmer. The current temperature is in the low 60s.

Many recreational shellfish beds remain closed because of heavy rains; it’s an automatic closing when when several inches of rain fall. The concern is that some towns’ sewage plants overflow into the Sound.

When conditions improve, clamming might be something you might want to do. A good way to get started is by reading a copy of the state Department of Agriculture’s Shellfishing Along the Connecticut Coast guide. You can down load it here.

Those who prefer fish with fins will have a good weekend to cast their lines. What’s are they likely to catch? Check out the updated Connecticut fishing report.

Boaters heading out on the Sound take heed. State and area police departments will soon be stepping up their enforcement of drunken boating laws. As with motor vehicles, state and federal law prohibits operating a recreational vessel with a blood alcohol content of over 0.08 percent. Penalties for BUI range from fines to arrests to revocation of boating licenses. The town of Greenwich plans t0 participate in Operation Dry Water, a national three-day campaign against boating under the influence.

The Marine forecast for this weekend

Saturday: NW winds around 10 kt. Seas 1 to 2 ft.

Saturday night: W winds 5 to 10 kt. Seas 1 ft or less.

Sunday: SW winds 5 to 10 k t… diminishing to around 5 kt after midnight. Seas 1 ft or less. A chance of showers through the night.

Go strawberry picking

Connecticut Agriculture Commissioner Steven K. Reviczky is encouraging residents to enjoy this weekend’s sunny, warm, and dry weather by visiting a local farm to pick or purchase Connecticut Grown strawberries.

“Despite this week’s cool, rainy weather, the strawberry crop is still doing well and the weekend is shaping up to provide great picking weather,” said Reviczky. “Berry picking is an ideal all-ages activity and wonderful way for the family to enjoy Father’s Day together. Those berries can be turned into Dad’s favorite dessert or simply enjoyed as is for a delicious, highly nutritious snack. ”

Strawberry season in Connecticut typically runs throughout the month of June. This year, cool weather delayed the start of the season, which means berries will still be plentiful in pick-your-own fields over the weekend. Some fields may still be damp on Saturday from the rain, so appropriate shoes or boots are recommended, as is calling ahead for specific picking hours and conditions.

The Connecticut Department of Agriculture features lists of pick-your-own farms, farm stands, and farmers’ markets on its website, (click on “Where to find Connecticut Grown products”).

Getting around

Fortunately, most highway construction projects are suspended, but there will be work going on at I-95’s Moses Wheeler Bridge over the Housatonic River between Stratford and Milford.

On warm sunny days, I-95 from Branford to Clinton can get jammed as people head to beaches in southeastern Connecticut, Rhode Island and beyond. It’s the same late Sunday afternoon/early evening when they head home.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation has a number of apps that allow you to monitor its network of traffic cams across the state. Check them out here.


Jim Shay