Friday, August 20, 2010

Saturday Circus of Fun at Mark Twain House This Fall

Saturdays at The Mark Twain House & Museum will soon be a circus of family fun.

Four “Saturdays with Sam” programs, each with a BigTop theme, will bring puppets, animals, an eco-extravaganza, and the likeness of Barnum himself to the museum..

Part of a grant-funded collaboration with Bridgeport’s famed P.T. Barnum Museum, each program begins at 11:00 a.m. and runs for about an hour.

--On September 25, circus legend Joe Barney presents “Barnum’s Worlds of Wonder.” P.T . Barnum himself will amuse you with tales of his life, his museums, his Connecticut and The Greatest Show on Earth. This show is filled with magic and plenty of audience participation. Each show is capped off with a visit from General Tom Thumb and celebrates Barnum’s 200th birthday this year.

--On October 9, the Tanglewood Marionettes present ‘The Fairy Circus” featuring over twenty beautifully hand-crafted marionettes. The Fairy Circus is a showcase for turn-of-the-century-style trick puppetry. The puppets will dance, play instruments, juggle, contort, transform, and fly though the air with the greatest of ease, all to the music of favorite composers.
--On October 30, enter the wild kingdom and get up close and personal with some of our feathered, scaly and furry friends! The museum welcomes Beardsley Zoo’s “Wild Assembly.” The program introduces visitors to rare, beautiful and diverse species from across Connecticut and around the globe. There will be lots of chances to interact with the critters and enjoy education and fun, all mixed together.

-- On November 13, ArtFarm will perform its eco-friendly “Circus for a Fragile Planet.” A nutty professor is trying to teach kids how to take care of our planet but keeps getting interrupted by the Fossil Fools. It’s an hour-long show of juggling, clowning, acrobatics, stilt-dancing, unicycling and a healthy dose of up-to-date and empowering environmental education. A side-splitting, mind-opening blend of circus and science!

Admission to each performance is $5 for children, and $10 for adults – but if you buy tickets for three shows, you get the fourth free! Call 860-280-3130 for tickets.

Saturdays with Sam is made possible by a joint grant with the Barnum Museum, sponsored by the Connecticut Commission on Culture and Tourism and Hartford Steam Boiler.

The event is one in the museum’s continuing series of Mark Twain 2010 Centennial Celebration events . The Hartford Financial Group, Inc., is the Mark Twain House & Museum’s Centennial Sponsor.

The Mark Twain House & Museum has restored the author’s Hartford, Connecticut, home, where the author and his family lived from 1874 to 1891. Twain wrote his most important works during the years he lived there, including Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court.

In addition to providing tours of Twain’s restored home, a National Historic Landmark, the institution offers activities and educational programs that illuminate Twain’s literary legacy and provide information about his life and times. The house and museum at 351 Farmington Ave. are open Monday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m., and Sunday, noon-5:30 p.m.

For more information, call 860-247-0998 or visit

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Lauren Yarger with playwright Alfred Uhry at the Mark Twain House. Photo: Jacques Lamarre)

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