NPL offers summer activities; NPS partners with Maritime Aquarium; Summer at the Museum

A young guest looks closely at an African spiny mouse, one of the live animals displayed in the “Sea & Discover Zone,” a new STEM-focused learning center in The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk. (Maritime Aquarium)

NORWALK, Conn. — Some Norwalk announcements for you:

  • Norwalk Public Library lists summer events
  • Kids attend free marine science summer school
  • Free tickets to Norwalk Historical Society museum

NPL summer calendar

Norwalk Public Library’s summer event calendar has something for everybody…

Reading Challenge:

Your summertime reading could win you a goodie bag filled with books and other sundries via the Norwalk Public Library’s Summer Reading Program, according to a news release.

To enter, you read a book that falls into any of the given categories: a book by a local author, a book turning 22, a book written by two or more authors, a celebrity tell-all, a travel book, a book with “sun” in the title, a “beach read,” or a banned book.   Then you score points by responding to some of 30 unique challenges, each worth one point.   A leaderboard updated each Monday shows the competition.  Entrants with the most points at the end of the summer will win.

Seed Library:

Free seeds, planting advice, and related literature overseen by Maria Livoti are at the library’s Main Banch, located at 1 Belden Ave.


Special Free Programs:

  • Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies.” Jill Patterson, RDN will address stress management in a 3-part Zoom series Wednesdays at noon on July 13, July 27 and Aug. 10.
  • (Contributed)

    American Vistas: From the Hudson River to Uncharted Territories,” presented by ARTscapades via Zoom on Wednesday July 20 at 6:30 p.m.

  • Reader’s Choice Book Discussion.” The library’s Information Services Director Cynde Bloom Lahey leads a Zoom discussion of Helen Klein Ross’ critically-acclaimed novel What Was Mine on Thursday July 21 at 3 p.m.
  • AuthorSpeak:  Antici…pation.” V.P. Morris and Lorien Lawrence speak on writing thrillers for adult and middle grade readers in the Main Auditorium on Saturday July 23 at noon.
  • AuthorSpeak: Bill Shaffer.” Shaffer will sign purchased copies of his brand-new historical crime saga The Scandalous Hamiltons in the Main Auditorium on Friday July 29 at noon.  A light luncheon will be served.  Register by email to Cynde Bloom Lahey at [email protected],  or call her at (203) 899-2780, ext. 15133.
  • (Contributed)

    Learn How Opening Your Senses to Plants Can Heal Your Psyche and Nourish Your Soul.”  A Therapist’s Garden author Erik Keller will explain how horticultural therapy can heal physical, mental, and emotional trauma. In Studio One on the Main Floor, Saturday, July 30th at 11 a.m.  For more info, call Maria at (203) 899-2780,  ext. 15144.

  • AuthorSpeak: Roberta Seret.”  The author will discuss the factual Romanian historical background of her fictional series Transylvania Trilogy, and its connection to Russia’s Ukraine invasion.  Main Auditorium, Friday Aug. 5 at noon.  A light luncheon will be served.  Register by email to Cynde Bloom Lahey at [email protected],  or call her at (203) 899-2780, ext. 15133.
  • (Contributed)

    Concert of the Bicentenary & First Cry of Independence Of Ecuador 2022, outside at the Main Branch, 1 Belden Ave. on Saturday Aug. 13 at 3 p.m.


Marine science summer school

A free five-week summer school marine science program for 1,200 “academically eligible” Norwalk students in grades K through 8, driven by a partnership between Norwalk Public Schools and the Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk, is in effect through Friday Aug. 5 at Brookside Elementary, Kendall College & Career Academy, Marvin Elementary, Naramake Elementary, Ponus Ridge STEAM Academy, Rowayton Elementary and Tracey Magnet School.

The elementary school students’ curriculum combines educator-supervised Aquarium visits with classroom instruction by NPS teachers.  Middle school participants are dividing their time between classroom instruction and cruises aboard the Aquarium’s research vessel where they’re tasked with creating coastal-resilience maps of Norwalk Harbor and devising upgrades to the city’s ability to withstand strong storms and tidal flooding.

Relevant books are being delivered to the schools by Norwalk Public Library.

An open house for parents, where the students will show what they learned, is planned for August.

A $224,879 CT Department of Education 2022 Summer Enrichment Grant covered most of the costs, according to a news release.  The money, said to be one of the department’s largest innovation grants, enabled the program’s growth from its initial 2021 enrollment of 771 grade K through 3 students.

The Aquarium’s Vice President of Education Tom Naiman said, “Presenting our marine-science programs to 1,200 students this month is one of the most ambitious educational efforts in the Aquarium’s 34 years. We’re excited to welcome the students, who have faced so many personal and academic challenges during the past two years. We’re honored that the Norwalk Public Schools has partnered with the Aquarium on this critically important program, and we thank the state Department of Education for understanding the important need and also the unique opportunities that the Aquarium’s educational resources present to the Norwalk students.”

Norwalk Superintendent of Schools Alexandra Estrella said, “In collaboration with The Maritime Aquarium, we put a team together to reimagine summer learning for our scholars. Thanks to our partnership and the Department of Education’s support, scholars are able to apply real world problems, engage in critical and analytical thinking, and connect experiences to what they are learning in the classroom. It allows our scholars to bridge their daily learning to practice.”

The Aquarium’s website is at www.maritimeaquarium.org.

Historic attractions part of ‘CT Summer at the Museum’ program


There’s free admission for Norwalkers age 18 or less plus one accompanying adult Norwalk resident through Sunday Sept. 4 at Mill Hill Historic Park, and at the Norwalk Historical Society Museum, thanks to Connecticut’s popular “CT Summer at the Museum” initiative.   The offer is limited to five children per family, and the adult must show a Connecticut license or ID.  A $2,510 CT Humanities grant enabled the free tickets program, according to a news release.

The Park’s buildings and exhibits, located at 2 East Wall St. in Norwalk, are open for self-guided visits on Saturdays and Sundays from 1 until 4 p.m.  Attractions there include the award-winning child-friendly presentation “Norwalk’s Changing Communities: 13,000BC – 1835,” plus the c1740 Governor Fitch Law Office, the c1826 Downtown District One-Room Schoolhouse, the Colonial Herb Garden and the Mill Hill Graveyard (Norwalk’s third oldest).  There are spectacular views of the Norwalk River.


The Museum, located at 141 East Ave., is open Wednesday through Saturday from noon until 4 p.m.  It houses nine historical Norwalk exhibits showcasing such topics as 19th century photography, World War II, and the city’s first female architect.

Regular general admission tickets for either the Park exhibits or the Museum are $5 for adults, $3 for seniors age 65+, $3 for youths ages 4 – 17, and free for youths ages 0 – 3 years.   Buy them at the door or in advance at: www.NorwalkHistoricalSociety.org .

The Park and the Museum are both managed and operated by the Norwalk Historical Society, a 501(c))(3) incorporated in 1899.  You can email them at [email protected] or call (203) 846-0525.

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