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A Family Affair

Great things to do and places to go in Ridgefield



The D’Andraia family—AJ, Rocco, Alethea, Jen, Mia, and Tess

Photo by Claudia Pacifico Photography

Jen and Rocco D’Andraia were house hunting in 2010. “We were “looking for a tight-knit community similar to where we grew up,” says Jen. The couple, both from Yorktown Heights, New York, found what they were looking for in Ridgefield. Seven years and four children later, they have settled in and are enjoying all that the town has to offer.

Their children, ranging in ages from four to 12, keep the couple quite busy. “Having four kids is like having two. It’s just more complicated,” says Jen. A color-coded weekly calendar helps to keep things organized. The kids have many different interests but thankfully some activities overlap. Oldest daughter Mia, 12, was excited to play hockey as soon as they moved here. She started with Ice Mice at the Winter Garden in town and has continued to move up the ranks. Tess, nine, is a talented gymnast who trains at the Wilton YMCA. Son AJ, six, has been enjoying the Ninja Mania classes at the Gymnastic Spectrum in Danbury. At only four years old, Alethea, mainly tags along to the other kids’ activities but is following in her siblings footsteps by trying out skating. 

The oldest three are all involved in Ridgefield Youth Lacrosse. The girls are on a travel team and Rocco, a former goalie who played in college, coaches a learn-to-play clinic for AJ. While the kids have lacrosse practice, Jen often uses the time to hike with Carson, their lab mix that they adopted from ROAR. “People thought we were crazy to adopt a dog with four young kids, but he’s been great,” says Jen, as she tossed a ball for him to chase. 

Three of their children have gone to Creative Children’s Korner or CCK, which Jen likes because, “it has been open such a long time and has such a great curriculum.” The preschool is also housed on the same property as the First Congregational Church where they are active members. The children have all participated in the church’s children’s choir. Mia and Tess continued with their singing by taking voice lessons and performing with School of Rock

When going out to eat as a family of six, it can be hard to find a restaurant that makes everyone happy. “850 Degrees Wood Fired Restaurant is always a crowd pleaser,” says Jen. On the occasional date night without the kids, Jen and Rocco love to escape to Sarah’s Wine Bar. Or for a more casual evening, they go to karaoke night at Tiger’s Den or grab drinks with friends at The Hideaway. On nights that get busy with the kids’ activities, they often take advantage of precooked meals like the meatballs from Parma Deli or chicken cutlets from Ridgefield Prime.

As warmer weather approaches, their interests turn to outdoor activities. While they’ve helped with the community garden that’s part of the curriculum at Barlow Elementary and joined CSA’s in the past, Jen is inspired to plant their own backyard garden this year. “We’re going to stick to vegetables I know the kids will eat,” she says. They are members of Twixt Hill Beach Association, where they can swim and use the community kayaks. They also enjoy barbeques on the beach with neighbors. The kids go to Boys & Girls Club day camp where they take swim lessons.

Although she hesitates to call herself a runner, Jen loves participating in Run Like a Mother. “I did the 5K training Ridgefield Running Company and ran my first Mother’s Day race soon after having one of my children,” she says. She and Rocco also regularly run the Margarita 5K with Southwest Café and thoroughly enjoy the after party! On quiet summer days, Jen and Rocco like to grab iced coffees from Tazza and walk Main Street. Jen loves shopping at Audrey Road for herself and AR Kids for the girls. 

The D’Andraia family couldn’t be happier with their choice to settle here in town.  Rocco sums up their feelings by saying, “We love everything Ridgefield has to offer. We couldn’t think of a better place to raise our family.”

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September 2018

The Ridgefield Chamber of Commerce and the Connecticut Giant Pumpkin Growers Club will host the 6th Annual Giant Pumpkin Weigh Off on Sunday, September 23, 2018 from 10 am to 3 pm in Ballard Park,...

Cost: Free

Where:
Ballard Park
Ridgefield, CT  06877


Sponsor: Ridgefield Chamber of Commerce
Telephone: 203-438-5992
Contact Name: Jen Mulhern
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Cost: $25; $20 members

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The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
258 Main Street
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Cost: $65

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The Ridgefield Playhouse
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Ridgefield, CT  06877
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Contact Name: Ridgefield Playhouse
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Cost: 0

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Reis Park
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Sponsor: Somers Women's Club
Contact Name: Jodi Hu
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Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
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Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
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On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

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Maritime Garage Gallery
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Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
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Cost: Free and open to the public

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Gunn Memorial Library
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Cost: $125

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Ridgefield Playhouse
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Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Sponsor: Pepsi Rock Series powered by Xfinity
Telephone: 203-438-5795
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On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

Nature is on display in “A Reverence For Nature” with pieces that reflect the artists’ admiration of nature or the environment in a multitude of ways. Exhibiting artists include...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
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Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
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Cost: Free

Where:
Martin House Workspace
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Sponsor: Martin House Workspace
Telephone: 914-764-3128
Contact Name: Erin Trostle
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Cost: 425

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Ridgefield Playhouse
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80 E Ridge Rd
Ridgefield, CT  06877
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Telephone: 203-438-5795
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Cost: $12.50

Where:
The Ridgefield Playhouse
80 E Ridge Rd
Ridgefield, CT  06877
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Telephone: 203-438-5795
Contact Name: Ridgefield Playhouse
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Cost: Free

Where:
Ridgefield Library
472 Main Street
Ridgefield, CT  06877
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Sponsor: Keeler Tavern Museum and History Center
Telephone: 203-438-2282
Contact Name: Lesley Lambton
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Nature is on display in “A Reverence For Nature” with pieces that reflect the artists’ admiration of nature or the environment in a multitude of ways. Exhibiting artists include...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
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Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
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Cost: Free

Where:
Ruth Keeler Memorial Library
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Sponsor: Keeler Library
Telephone: 914-669-5161
Contact Name: Carolyn Reznick
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Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
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Greenwich, CT  06830
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Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
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with Antonio Sanchez, Linda May Han Oh & Gwilym Simcock Moffly Media Evening of Art, Wine & Jazz Series Join us in the lobby at 7:15pm for an Italian wine tasting by Pera Wines and an...

Cost: $87.50

Where:
The Ridgefield Playhouse
80 E Ridge Rd
Ridgefield, CT  06877
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Telephone: 203-438-5795
Contact Name: Ridgefield Playhouse
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Cost: Free

Where:
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Cost: donation

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Hunt Hill Farm
44 Upland Road
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Sponsor: Hunt Hill Farm
Telephone: 860.355.0300
Contact Name: John C. Maxwell III
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On Thursday, September 27, from 6:00 to 8:00 pm, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich will host its first-ever Oktoberfest celebration. Featuring German beer from Paulaner USA, Oktoberfest at the Bruce...

Cost: $30 for Bruce Museum members, $40 non-members

Where:
Bruce Museum
One Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Sponsor: Bruce Museum
Telephone: 203-869-0376
Contact Name: Scott Smith
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More information

On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
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Cost: Gala Tickets: $250 Orchestra Seating & Gala Show Only Tickets: $125 Mezzanine &

Where:
The Ridgefield Playhouse
80 E Ridge Rd
Ridgefield, CT  06877
View map »


Telephone: 203-438-5795
Contact Name: Ridgefield Playhouse
Website »

More information

On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

Nature is on display in “A Reverence For Nature” with pieces that reflect the artists’ admiration of nature or the environment in a multitude of ways. Exhibiting artists include...

Cost: Free

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
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View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Nadia Martinez
Website »

More information

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Cost: $150 - $500

Where:
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum
258 Main Street
Ridgefield, CT  06877
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Website »

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Saturday, September 29, 2018 at 8pm Pepsi Rock Series powered by Xfinity Partially underwritten by Lisa & Michael Shinall This September, Beth Hart returns to the United States for...

Cost: $65

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The Ridgefield Playhouse
80 E Ridge Rd
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Telephone: 203-438-5795
Contact Name: Ridgefield Playhouse
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Cost: free

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The Smithy
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Sponsor: The Smithy
Telephone: (860)868-9003
Contact Name: susan
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On June 23, the Bruce Museum in Greenwich opens Expressionism in Print: The Early Works of Richard Haas, 1957 - 64 in the Arcade Gallery. The exhibition will be on display through October 21, 2018....

Cost: Free for members; $10 for non-members; $8 for seniors and students with ID

Where:
Bruce Museum
1 Museum Drive
Greenwich, CT  06830
View map »


Telephone: 203-413-6735
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Website »

More information

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Cost: Free

Where:
Canfin Gallery
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View map »


Sponsor: 1953
Telephone: 914-332-4554
Contact Name: Jean-Claude Canfin
Website »

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