Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Use What Ya Got to Get Whatcha Want

This Saturday has the potential to be both historical and hysterical here in The Rose City, as events coalesce to provide us with a more than reasonable amount of much ado about quite a bit.

At Dodd Stadium, seasonal home of the Connecticut Tigers and professional baseball under the lights, we'll have a plethora of (k)nights all during the day as the Connecticut Renaissance Faire takes up its new residence in this, the opening weekend of its fall 2013 offerings.

If you've ever wanted to spend time in days of old (aside from when we debate the Reid & Hughes building in City Council Chambers), get thee post-haste on any Saturday or Sunday between this one, the 21st, and the 20th of October (as well as Columbus Day) to Dodd for a classic good time.

And Sunday, there's reduced admission for Norwich residents (and you've heard people complain about being from here? Here's a switch.).

Also this Saturday, and for some perhaps more hysterical than historical, it's the return of a man no one wants to acknowledge, precisely because he is from here, Benedict Arnold.

Okay, Arnold himself is NOT returning, so take it easy with the eggs benedict memorial breakfast preparations, but a likeness of his left leg, the one severely wounded during the Battle of Saratoga, spared the fiery end his life-size effigy met in New London last weekend, a gift from the Whaling City's Flock Theater, will be arriving by boat at Howard T. Brown Park.

After travelling up the Thames and making landfall in the park, the leg will be transported in a three foot coffin to the Leffingwell House Museum as part of their day-long focus on the man whose name is synonymous in American history with 'traitor.'

I realize you may have just furrowed your brow and grimaced at the mere mention of his name, but Major General Benedict Arnold is part of Norwich's history and a major presence in that most decisive of all our conflicts, our War of Independence. Feel free to NOT forgive if you so choose-but don't be so foolish as to think you can forget. Or should.

Before you launch a vitriol-laced brickbat at anyone for 'getting that Benedict Arnold business stirred up again,' might I suggest you spend part of your Saturday afternoon, between noon and four, at the Leffingwell House Museum as General Arnold is interviewed by a young reporter from the Norwich Packet and offers his side of what is one of the more unhappy stories of the American Revolutionary War. You may not change how you feel-but you'll know more than you did before.

Saturday evening, just to round out the day, if you haven't already stopped by, check out one of the last remaining publicly staged readings of the new musical, Benedict Arnold, commissioned by the Spirit of Broadway Theater, as it prepares for the 2014 world premiere production!!

There aren't many tickets left so if you think you'll be interested (and why would you not be?), make your reservations now because admission is limited and otherwise by Saturday, your chances could be history. Sort of like Arnold himself.
-bill kenny

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