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Ever Green

Holiday decorating: fresh air, fresh trees, and eco-friendly finds



Every year, my family, like many, spends time together around the holidays. For us, this means being in nature, supporting local farms, and doing our best to avoid excess. Luckily, here in Litchfield County we have ample opportunities for being outdoors and creating more environmentally friendly traditions that harken back to days of old when life moved a bit slower for all of us. Bringing awareness to the holiday provides for a richer enjoyment to fill the house with festive cheer.

One way to get out and about in the revitalizing winter air is to harvest your own holiday tree. Nothing compares to the aroma of fresh-cut pine, and many treasure this tradition. And, there are a number of Christmas-tree farms that are trying to do right by their local ecosystems through more thoughtful agricultural growing methods. “If you buy a locally grown tree from a responsible farm, that’s often a great choice,” notes Brian Clark Howard, environmentalist and author of the eco-guide, Green Living. “It’s definitely better than having a tree shipped from far away. You are also helping to support local farmers and local green space.” If you do go for fresh-cut, be sure to compost or mulch your tree when you are done with it.

Maple Hollow Farm in New Hartford has been family-run for 40 years and Jesse Steadman says that her family does what they can to protect the environment. One of the ways the Steadmans uphold this commitment is by avoiding the use of insecticides on their trees. “Our farm depends on the local community, and we owe our customers the peace of mind that comes with a naturally grown product,” says Steadman. “We feel an increasing responsibility to give our customers a product free of any chemical residues, no matter how small, especially when that product is brought into the home. The only unexpected thing you might find in one of our trees is a bird’s nest.” 

Tim Angevine, of Angevine Farm in Warren also feels strongly about his family’s products. “We are not just selling trees at box stores. We are sharing an experience, here, on our land. Being a family-run, fourth-generation farm is no simple feat, especially in today’s industry. Here, people get the whole family together to ‘make a memory.’” Angevine Farm, nestled into a small valley off of Route 341, is a bucolic setting. The seasonal Christmas Barn at Angevine’s offers ornaments and gifts and also houses a vintage-theater pipe organ that entertains visitors when Angevine’s father takes to the keys at holiday time to belt out holiday tunes. 

For those who feel that a more eco-conscious decision is to avoid cutting down a tree at all, many garden centers offer potted evergreen trees that can be cared for and planted in the spring. There are many varieties, though often these plants can’t spend too much time indoors; so the key is to make sure the plant is one you can sustain inside or transplant to the yard.

There are several ways to find sustainable holiday décor in Litchfield. Depending on how you celebrate the season, you can visit one of the cut-your-own tree farms that also offer fresh wreath materials; or simply forage for sprigs of fresh plants to accent your table. For decorating centerpieces, carefully harvest native species such as winterberry, mountain laurel, Eastern hemlock, Christmas fern, or evergreen wood fern. Bill Moorhead, a field botanist in Litchfield, advises “collecting the above-mentioned native species if you harvest only from your own property or another’s, with permission, and if you only gather enough for your family’s use and not quantities for sale or wide distribution.” It is always important to be mindful of clipping appropriately and on a small-scale to ensure species preservation.

 

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March 2017

Regarded as one of the key figures of 19th century literary realism, Henry James’s work is valued for his psychological and moral realism, his masterful creation of character, and his assured...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
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Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

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Cost: Free for members; $5 non-members

Where:
Litchfield History Museum
7 South Street
Litchfield, CT  06759
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Sponsor: Litchfield Historical Society
Telephone: 860-567-4501
Contact Name: Megan Olver
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The Washington Art Association & Gallery is pleased to encourage and showcase work by determined and committed visionaries in their exhibition curated by Zeb Mayer, “Do Not Pass Go: A...

Cost: Free

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
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Telephone: (860) 868-2878
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Marcey Hladik is a native of Litchfield who started painting as an adult, taking her first lessons in oil painting from her mother-in-law, Edith Hladik, an accomplished artist and teacher. Since...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
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Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

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Cost: $33.

Where:
Nancy Marine Studio Theatre - Warner Theatre
82 Main St
Torrington, CT  06790
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Telephone: (860) 489-7180
Contact Name: Warner Theatre
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The Washington Art Association & Gallery is pleased to encourage and showcase work by determined and committed visionaries in their exhibition curated by Zeb Mayer, “Do Not Pass Go: A...

Cost: Free

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Telephone: (860) 868-2878
Website »

More information

Facilitated by Cameron Bove, Monday Scholars is a weekly series that meets in the library’s Jamie Gagarin Community Room. The series combines the best of online learning with the best of...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
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Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

More information

Marcey Hladik is a native of Litchfield who started painting as an adult, taking her first lessons in oil painting from her mother-in-law, Edith Hladik, an accomplished artist and teacher. Since...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The Washington Art Association & Gallery is pleased to encourage and showcase work by determined and committed visionaries in their exhibition curated by Zeb Mayer, “Do Not Pass Go: A...

Cost: Free

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Telephone: (860) 868-2878
Website »

More information

“Pysanky” comes from the verb “to write”, as you use a stylus to write with wax on an egg shell.  You will use an open candle flame to melt wax used to decorate, or write, on the eggs. ...

Cost: $13.00pp

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
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Telephone: 860-567-8302
Contact Name: Litchfield Community Center
Website »

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Ever look at the sky and wonder why the stars rise in the East and set in the West? For that matter, why does the Sun rise in the East? Why not the North, or the West? And why does a...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

More information

Marcey Hladik is a native of Litchfield who started painting as an adult, taking her first lessons in oil painting from her mother-in-law, Edith Hladik, an accomplished artist and teacher. Since...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

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WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH: “THE CT WOMEN’S HALL OF FAME: CELEBRATING 300 YEARS OF CT’S REMARKABLE WOMEN”  This presentation will introduce you to the Hall, its mission and programs, and give...

Cost: FREE

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Telephone: 860-567-8302
Contact Name: Litchfield Community Center
Website »

More information

The Washington Art Association & Gallery is pleased to encourage and showcase work by determined and committed visionaries in their exhibition curated by Zeb Mayer, “Do Not Pass Go: A...

Cost: Free

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Telephone: (860) 868-2878
Website »

More information

 Chef John Ferrucci, as seen on “Celebrity Chef Show” cable channel 5 returns to teach you some professional secrets.  This course will teach cooking techniques, sanitation and menu...

Cost: $140.00 pp

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Telephone: 860-567-8302
Contact Name: Litchfield Community Center
Website »

More information

Marcey Hladik is a native of Litchfield who started painting as an adult, taking her first lessons in oil painting from her mother-in-law, Edith Hladik, an accomplished artist and teacher. Since...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The Washington Art Association & Gallery is pleased to encourage and showcase work by determined and committed visionaries in their exhibition curated by Zeb Mayer, “Do Not Pass Go: A...

Cost: Free

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Telephone: (860) 868-2878
Website »

More information

Local Organic Horticulturist, Renee Giroux, will offer a visual presentation on Organic Herb Gardening.  If you have ever used fresh herbs, you know the difference they can make.  The...

Cost: Free and open to the public.

Where:
Gunn Memorial Library
5 Wykeham Road
Washington, CT  06793
View map »


Telephone: 860-868-7586
Website »

More information

Marcey Hladik is a native of Litchfield who started painting as an adult, taking her first lessons in oil painting from her mother-in-law, Edith Hladik, an accomplished artist and teacher. Since...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The Washington Art Association & Gallery is pleased to encourage and showcase work by determined and committed visionaries in their exhibition curated by Zeb Mayer, “Do Not Pass Go: A...

Cost: Free

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Telephone: (860) 868-2878
Website »

More information

Marcey Hladik is a native of Litchfield who started painting as an adult, taking her first lessons in oil painting from her mother-in-law, Edith Hladik, an accomplished artist and teacher. Since...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

More information

Show More...
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The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Fisheries Division sponsors this terrific free program. Families and individuals age nine and up are welcome to attend this unique...

Cost: Free

Where:
White Memorial Conservation Center
80 WHITEHALL ROAD
Litchfield, CT
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Chef Daniel Rosati   MENU: Fresh Pea & Parmigiano Crostini Citrus & Oregano Rubbed Roasted Butterflied Leg of Lamb with Green Herb Sauce Greek Roasted Fingerling...

Cost: $110/Full Participation per person

Where:
The Silo
44 Upland Road
New Milford, CT  06776
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Sponsor: The Silo
Telephone: 860-355-0300
Contact Name: Kim Prange
Website »

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The music organization Crescendo in collaboration with the Norman Rockwell Museum and Berkshire Children's Chorus, present the world premiere of a multimedia work by the Berkshire-based...

Cost: $30 general; $50 premium

Where:
Saint James Place
352 Main St.
Great Barrington, NY  01230
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Sponsor: Crescendo
Telephone: 518-592-1009
Contact Name: Kathy Drake
Website »

More information

The Washington Art Association & Gallery is pleased to encourage and showcase work by determined and committed visionaries in their exhibition curated by Zeb Mayer, “Do Not Pass Go: A...

Cost: Free

Where:
Washington Art Association & Gallery
4 Bryan Memorial Plaza
Washington Depot, CT  06794
View map »


Telephone: (860) 868-2878
Website »

More information

Chef Daniel Rosati   MENU: Creamy Asparagus Soup with Asiago Cheese Crisps Silky Milk Braised Pork Tenderloin with Caramelized Shallot Sauce Tuscan Farro & Sugar Snap Pea...

Cost: $110/Full Participation per person

Where:
The Silo
44 Upland Road
New Milford, CT  06776
View map »


Sponsor: The Silo
Telephone: 860-355-0300
Contact Name: kim Prange
Website »

More information

Enjoy an evening of music with Brooklyn based vocalist, keyboardist, composer Nicole Zuraitis and the Nicole Zuraitis Quartet.  Using world travel experience as inspiration for her sound,...

Cost: $100.00 pp

Where:
Litchfield Community Center
421 Bantam Road
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Telephone: 860-567-8302
Contact Name: Litchfield Community Center
Website »

More information

Marcey Hladik is a native of Litchfield who started painting as an adult, taking her first lessons in oil painting from her mother-in-law, Edith Hladik, an accomplished artist and teacher. Since...

Cost: Free

Where:
Oliver Wolcott Library
160 South St.
Litchfield, CT  06759
View map »


Sponsor: Oliver Wolcott Library
Telephone: 860-567-8030
Contact Name: Tricia Messenger
Website »

More information

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