Thursday, December 4, 2014

Connecticut’s Old State House Explores the World of Celebrity Dec. 16 - Becoming Tom Thumb: The Dawn of American Celebrity - Tuesday, December 16, 2014, noon to 1 p.m.

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For Immediate Release
December 4, 2014
Contact: Chris Zaccaro
chris.zaccaro@cga.ct.gov
(860) 246-1553 ext. 116


Hartford, CT - Each week throughout the year Americans are confronted with the latest celebrity gossip, scandal or grab for headlines only to watch it fade away into something new days later. Whether it’s a U.S. President or Kim Kardashian, people are inundated with celebrity culture everywhere they go. Is this anything new or an upward trend that most Americans have come to expect and feed into?

On Tuesday, December 16, Connecticut’s Old State House will explore this trend and discuss whether we have become a celebrity-obsessed culture. Author Eric Lehman will kick off the conversation by illustrating the meteoric rise of America’s first international celebrity and Connecticut’s very own Charles Stratton – better known as General Tom Thumb. Under the skillful management of another Connecticut legend, P.T. Barnum, the comedic talents of the 25 inch tall Stratton charmed a Who’s Who of the 19th Century – from Queen Victoria to Abraham Lincoln – while playing to sold out venues for forty years.

After his talk, Lehman will join a panel of experts for a lively discussion on the world of celebrity and fame.  The conversation, which will be moderated by the Connecticut Network’s (CT-N) Diane Smith, will include Maryellen Fillo, Java Columnist for The Hartford Courant, and Dr. Eugene Leach, a retired professor from Trinity College in Hartford. The public is encouraged to attend this free event within the Old State House, bring a lunch and join the discussion as Smith will be taking questions and comments from the audience.

This installment of Conversations at Noon is co-sponsored by The Barnum Museum in Bridgeport with major funding provided by CT Humanities. This free program begins at noon and lasts for one hour. This program’s featured speaker, Eric Lehman, will have copies of his book Becoming Tom Thumb: Charles Stratton, P.T. Barnum and the Dawn of American Celebrity for sale before and after the program in the Old State House Shop. He will also be available for autographs after the program.

Located in Hartford, a short walk from the Wadsworth, Connecticut’s Old State House served as a seat of government for the Constitution State from 1796 to 1878. The Old State House Shop, located on the Main Street side of the building, provides visitors an opportunity to purchase great, quality-made Connecticut and Hartford themed gifts, products and apparel. The interactive History is All Around Us exhibition by the Connecticut Historical Society, located in the Mortensen Gallery of the lower level of the Old State House, allows visitors to explore over 300 years of Hartford and Connecticut history. For more information on admission prices, upcoming events and parking discounts nearby, become a fan of Connecticut’s Old State House on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or visit us online at http://www.ctoldstatehouse.org.

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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Rules of Engagement: Boomers vs. Millennials - At Connecticut’s Old State House & Live on CT-N December 18 at 7pm

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For Immediate Release
December 2, 2014
Contact: Chris Zaccaro
chris.zaccaro@cga.ct.gov
(860) 246-1553 ext. 116

Hartford, CT – The “generation gap” is nothing new, but when two powerful forces for civic change are poised on either side of it, what does that mean for our communities and our democracy? On Thursday, December 18 at 7 p.m. Connecticut’s Old State House invites the public to attend in person or watch live on The Connecticut Network (CT-N) as it attempts to break through generational barriers and explore the diverse rules of civic engagement used by two of America’s most talked about groups during its next Town Hall Meeting, Rules of Engagement: Boomers vs. Millennials.

Since the millennium began 15 years ago, all eyes have turned to the group that will undoubtedly lead our country into years of unprecedented change, a group commonly referred to as “Generation Me.” While Baby Boomers prepare to pass the torch to another generation of Americans, the handoff appears shaky as the country’s two largest age groups eye one another through a critical lens – not realizing that they are often using different means to reach similar ends. Can the Baby Boomers and Millennials co-exist in order to provide a smooth transition of leadership for our country?

CT-N’s Diane Smith will moderate the discussion as she and her guests, comprised of local civic leaders from both generations, attempt to find parallels and differences in life experiences, expose each generations’’ “rules of engagement” and determine how both groups can move forward together using experience, technology and a variety of old and new civic skills and strategies that effect change. The program will be broadcast live by CT-N on television and on CT-N’s website at www.CT-N.com.
 
The event will take place within Connecticut’s Old State House on the evening of Thursday, December 18. Doors will open at 6 p.m. with the televised program starting at 7 p.m. This event is free and open to the public to attend. Those unable to attend in person can watch the program live on CT-N or on any computer, tablet or mobile device at www.CT-N.com. Viewers can also follow along on Twitter, as the Old State House will be live-tweeting the event through its Twitter handle @CTOldStateHouse.

Cable subscribers can visit CT-N.com to find the Connecticut Network’s location in their channel line-up. CT-N is available full-time on AT&T U-Verse (Frontier Communications) channel 83 and on expanded basic cable statewide. As of May 2014, Cox Communications subscribers can find CT-N on channel 2. All Connecticut Network programming is closed captioned for the hearing impaired.

Located in Hartford, a short walk from the Wadsworth, Connecticut’s Old State House served as a seat of government for the Constitution State from 1796 to 1878. The interactive History is All Around Us exhibition by the Connecticut Historical Society, located in the Mortensen Gallery of the lower level of the Old State House, allows visitors to explore over 300 years of Hartford and Connecticut history. For more information on admission prices, upcoming events and parking discounts nearby, become a fan of Connecticut’s Old State House on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or visit us online at http://www.ctoldstatehouse.org.

Nominated for a 2012 Boston/New England Emmy Award, Winner of the national Sunshine Award from the Society of Professional Journalists and the Excellence in Journalism Award from the Connecticut Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, the Connecticut Network is the state’s source for complete and balanced television and webcast coverage of state government and public affairs. For more information, become a fan of CT-N on Facebook, follow the network at www.twitter.com/CTNetworkTV or visit CT-N’s website at www.ct-n.com.

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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Crafts, Art, Jewelry, Apparel & more! Old State House Holiday Shopping Fair: Dec. 9-11

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For Immediate Release
November 13, 2014
Contact: Chris Zaccaro
chris.zaccaro@cga.ct.gov
(860) 246-1553 ext. 116

View a list of 2014 Participating Vendors

Back by popular demand, the annual Old State House Holiday Shopping Fair will be taking place this December for three days and three days only. Holiday shoppers will once again be able to avoid the chaos of Black Friday and the local malls by shopping within the quiet, historic walls of Connecticut’s Old State House in downtown Hartford, December 9, 10 & 11 from 11am – 3pm.
This year’s Holiday Shopping Fair will include vendors from all corners of the Nutmeg State showcasing products that will make fantastic gifts this holiday season. Products will include handmade jewelry, holiday decorations, knitted clothing, pottery, soaps, candles, blankets, linens, artwork, crafts, baskets, accessories, photography and much more.

The Old State House Holiday Shopping Fair offers a great opportunity for shoppers to purchase from local small business owners as only Connecticut-based vendors are invited to showcase and sell their products at this three day event. While attending the fair, shoppers can also visit the Old State House Shop where affordable, quality-made Connecticut and Hartford-themed products and apparel can be purchased.
There are multiple parking options nearby for shoppers, some of which will offer parking discounts to Old State House visitors. To find directions to the Old State House, nearby parking locations and information on parking discounts, visit www.ctoldstatehouse.org/directions.
Located in Hartford, a short walk from the Wadsworth, Connecticut’s Old State House served as a seat of government for the Constitution State from 1796 to 1878. The interactive History is All Around Us exhibition by the Connecticut Historical Society, located in the Mortensen Gallery of the lower level of the Old State House, allows visitors to explore over 300 years of Hartford and Connecticut history. For more information on admission prices, upcoming events and parking discounts nearby, become a fan of Connecticut’s Old State House on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or visit us online at http://www.ctoldstatehouse.org.

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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Hartford Past, Present and Future: Placemaking, Urban Renewal and Historic Preservation - Tuesday, November 18 at Noon

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For Immediate Release
November 6, 2014
Contact: Chris Zaccaro
chris.zaccaro@cga.ct.gov
(860) 246-1553 ext. 116

As the state’s capital city continues to surge toward its own renaissance, Connecticut’s Old State House invites the public to join a conversation on how to make downtown Hartford a destination worth visiting and residing in.

On Tuesday, November 18 come explore the past, present and future of Hartford as the Old State House welcomes Frank Russo, Senior Vice President for Global Spectrum, to share his experience with the Hartford Civic Center redevelopment project of the 1970s and the XL Center’s recent renovation. Russo will discuss how the Civic Center rebounded from the famed roof collapse of 1978 and how the recent upgrades to the multi-purpose arena will link the best of Hartford’s past with its dynamic future.

Following his presentation, participate in a panel conversation that will feature Russo, Frank Hagaman, Executive Director of the Hartford Preservation Alliance, and Jackie Gorsky Mandyck, Managing Director of the iQuilt Partnership. The Connecticut Network’s (CT-N) Diane Smith will be on hand to moderate the conversation and take questions and comments from the audience. Program attendees are encouraged to share their ideas and thoughts with the panel, while also enjoying their lunch.
 
Attendees will also have the opportunity to enjoy a new display currently being featured at the Old State House entitled (Re)Using Hartford’s Historic Buildings, an impressive panel display currently on loan from the Connecticut Historical Society (CHS) as part of their (Re)Building Hartford: A City Captured by Artist Richard Welling exhibition. The Old State House exhibit, which will be available for public viewing until March 2015, is one of four satellite displays related to this CHS exhibition in Hartford. You can learn more about this exhibition and the other satellite locations at the Connecticut Historical Society’s website: www.chs.org/Hartford. 

Hartford Past, Present and Future: Placemaking, Urban Renewal and Historic Preservation is co-sponsored with the Connecticut Historical Society, with funding provided by Connecticut Humanities. This free program begins at noon and lasts for one hour. Conversations at Noon is taped in front of a live audience by the Connecticut Network.

Located in Hartford, a short walk from the Wadsworth, Connecticut’s Old State House served as a seat of government for the Constitution State from 1796 to 1878. The Old State House Shop, located on the Main Street side of the building, provides visitors an opportunity to purchase great, quality-made Connecticut and Hartford themed gifts, products and apparel. The interactive History is All Around Us exhibition by the Connecticut Historical Society, located in the Mortensen Gallery of the lower level of the Old State House, allows visitors to explore over 300 years of Hartford and Connecticut history. For more information on admission prices, upcoming events and parking discounts nearby, become a fan of Connecticut’s Old State House on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or visit us online at http://www.ctoldstatehouse.org.

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Monday, September 29, 2014

The Voting Rights Act: The Struggle Still Continues – Conversations at Connecticut’s Old State House – Tuesday, October 7 at Noon

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For Immediate Release
September 29, 2014
Contact: Chris Zaccaro
chris.zaccaro@cga.ct.gov

As Connecticut prepares to vote on a Constitutional amendment that could pave the way for dramatic changes in how we vote, Connecticut’s Old State House poses a question to the public: Are voting rights truly equal in 2014?

On Tuesday, October 7 join Dr. Stacey Close, Professor of History at Eastern Connecticut State University and author of Connecticut Explored African Americans who was named one of Connecticut’s Most Influential African Americans by the Connecticut NAACP, for a discussion on the legacy of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. During this engaging event, attendees will learn more about the struggle to get this ground-breaking legislation passed and discuss its impact on American society today.

Following his lecture, Dr. Close will be joined by Valeriano Ramos, Director of Strategic Alliances and Equity Officer at Everyday Democracy, and Dr. Kevin McMahon, Professor of Political Science at Trinity College, for a lively panel discussion on voting rights in 2014. The Connecticut Network’s (CT-N) Diane Smith will moderate the discussion and take questions and comments from the audience.

Conversations at Noon, a monthly program at Connecticut’s Old State House, begins at Noon and lasts for one hour. Each program is free for the public to attend as funding is provided by Connecticut Humanities. Registration is encouraged but not required. The electronic registration form for this event can be accessed here.

Located in Hartford, a short walk from the Wadsworth, Connecticut’s Old State House served as a seat of government for the Constitution State from 1796 to 1878. The Old State House Shop, located on the Main Street side of the building, provides visitors an opportunity to purchase great, quality-made Connecticut and Hartford themed gifts, products and apparel. The Old State House Farmers Market, the oldest of its kind in the state, is open Tuesdays and Fridays throughout the summer. For more information on admission prices, upcoming events and parking discounts nearby, become a fan of Connecticut’s Old State House on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or visit us online at http://www.ctoldstatehouse.org.

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Monday, September 15, 2014

The 175th Anniversary of The Amistad Hearings at Connecticut’s Old State House

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For Immediate Release
September 15 2014
Contact: Chris Zaccaro
(860) 522-6766 ext. 116
 
This Friday, September 19th marks the 175th Anniversary of The Amistad Hearings at Connecticut’s Old State House in downtown Hartford. To mark this significant event in our state’s history, the Old State House will begin hosting a special exhibit featuring objects relating to the Amistad trial, including the original keys to the Hartford Jail, a bust of the African prisoners’ leader, Cinque, as well as images and speeches from the famous case. The exhibit will be open for General Admission viewing through August 2015.

Another new exhibit featuring items related to the famous abolitionist John Brown will be open for General Admission viewing starting September 19th as well. Brown, a Connecticut native, led a raid on the federal arsenal at Harper’s Ferry in order to start an armed insurrection to end slavery. This special exhibit will feature images of Brown and a reproduction of the fort at Harper’s Ferry.

Visitors will be able to get a special sneak peek of the new Amistad and John Brown exhibits this Thursday, September 18th at Noon with the debut of the Old State House’s new themed-tour, A Great Storm Swept Over Us: African American History at the Old State House. Through this guided tour visitors will learn the story of the famous Amistad trials of 1839, learn about slavery in our state and discover how some citizens fought to overcome the status quo.

Future tours are scheduled to take place once a month after October 2014; however groups may schedule to take the tour at a separate time by making a special reservation through Old State House Visitor Services at (860) 522-6766. To view upcoming dates for all of the Old State House’s themed-tours and other public events, visit the online calendar on the Old State House website at www.ctoldstatehouse.org.

These new exhibits are made possible through the loan of objects by The Amistad Center for Art and Culture and the Connecticut Historical Society. Connecticut’s Old State House is one of more than 130 sites on Connecticut’s Freedom Trail, which documents and designates sites that embody the struggle toward freedom and human dignity and celebrates the accomplishments of Connecticut’s African-American community.

Located in Hartford, a short walk from the Wadsworth, Connecticut’s Old State House served as a seat of government for the Constitution State from 1796 to 1878. The Old State House Shop, located on the Main Street side of the building, provides visitors an opportunity to purchase great, quality-made Connecticut and Hartford themed gifts, products and apparel. The Old State House Farmers Market, the oldest of its kind in the state, is open Tuesdays and Fridays throughout the summer. For more information on admission prices, upcoming events and parking discounts nearby, become a fan of Connecticut’s Old State House on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or visit us online at http://www.ctoldstatehouse.org.

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014

BIKE WEEK AT THE OLD STATE HOUSE (Sept. 16-20): Antique Bike Exhibit & The American Dream Machine: Bicycles Past, Present & Future (Sept. 16 at Noon)

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For Immediate Release
September 9, 2014
Contact: Chris Zaccaro
chris.zaccaro@ct.cga.ct.gov
(860) 246-1553 ext. 116

How did a Civil War veteran become the father of the American bicycle and turn Hartford into the
bicycle capital of the world? How did he predict trends in transportation and go on to build other dream machines?
 
Join Steve Goddard, author of Colonel Albert Pope and His American Dream Machines, on Tuesday, September 16 to discover how one Hartford factory became the largest employer in New England, producing everything from high wheelers to bicycles to electric cars. Following Mr. Goddard’s talk, join in a panel discussion about making Connecticut more bike-friendly and promoting bike racing among Connecticut kids with Mr. Goddard, Aidan Charles, the Founder and Executive Director of the Connecticut Cycling Advancement Program, and Kelly Kennedy, Executive Director of Bike Walk Connecticut. The Connecticut Network’s (CT-N) Diane Smith will moderate the conversation.

Following the program, enjoy Wheels for All, a wonderful, temporary exhibit that showcases six bikes dating from 1869 to 1914, on loan from the Connecticut Historical Society. The antique bikes, which include Lakin’s Improved Velocipede (1869), the Pope Manufacturing Company’s Columbia Ordinary (1881) and the Woman’s Chainless Safety bicycle from the League Cycle Company (1894), will be on display at Connecticut’s Old State House from September 16-20. General admission rates apply to this exhibit.

The American Dream Machine: Bicycles Past, Present & Future begins at Noon, attendees are encouraged to enjoy their lunches during this free event inside Connecticut’s Old State House. This program is funded by Connecticut Humanities.

Located in Hartford, a short walk from the Wadsworth, Connecticut’s Old State House served as a seat of government for the Constitution State from 1796 to 1878. The Old State House Shop, located on the Main Street side of the building, provides visitors an opportunity to purchase great, quality-made Connecticut and Hartford themed gifts, products and apparel. The Old State House Farmers Market, the oldest of its kind in the state, is open Tuesdays and Fridays throughout the summer. For more information on admission prices, upcoming events and parking discounts nearby, become a fan of Connecticut’s Old State House on Facebook, follow us on Twitter or visit us online at http://www.ctoldstatehouse.org.

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