Community news: Darien Nature Center to hold Spring Into Nature festival to mark Earth Day, and more

Nature Center to hold Earth Day celebrations

The Darien Nature Center will hold its Earth Day celebration — called “Spring into Nature” — on April 23 in Cherry Lawn Park at 120 Brookside Road. The event is held rain or shine.

Local environmental organizations will be stationed throughout the park, with activities and information for people of all ages to inspire sustainable living habits.

Activities will include a community art project using recycled materials; performances by the Sova Dance and Puppet Theater in Connecticut; animal encounters; a children’s StoryWalk; seed planting; and more.

Tickets are $50 per vehicle, with no walkups allowed and no refunds. Attendees have two options to attend: from 10 a.m. to noon or from 1 to 3 p.m.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit dariennaturecenter.org/events/spring-into-nature.

DAC ballet to perform ‘Sophia’

The Darien Arts Center will hold its spring ballet “Sophia Enters the Fairy Realm” in its Weatherstone Studio.

The narrated ballet tells the story of Princess Sophia as she searches for the Good Fairy to help break an evil spell.

The ballet will have two performances on two days, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. and from 5 to 6:30 p.m. on April 23 and April 24.

The performances are appropriate for dance fans of all ages. For more information or to buy tickets, which are $20 each, visit darienarts.org or call 203-655-8683.

The arts center is located at 2 Renshaw Road in Darien.

Two Olympic swimmers visit Y

Olympic swimmers Elizabeth Beisel and Craig Beardsley will hold a clinic with the Darien Y Piranha swim team from 9 to 11 a.m. April 23.

They will then participate in a public meet and greet event with the public in the lobby of the Darien Y from 11 a.m. until noon.

They are visiting the Darien Y at 2420 Post Road E. as ambassadors for Swim Across America Fairfield County, which hosts charity swims that fund cancer research and patient programs.

The nonprofit organization, which was co-founded by Darien resident Matt Vossler in 1987, is celebrating 35 years of making waves to fight cancer in 2022.

No registration is required to attend the meet and greet, which is free and open to the public.

Swim team members who are interested in the clinic should register directly with the Darien Y.

Darien YMCA program participants interested in the swim clinic should contact aquatics director Amy D’Andrea or swim team coach Jason Memont at 203- 655-8228 to register.

Center gives gift of flower ‘bombs’ to community

Nielsen’s Florist and Garden Center at 1405 Post Road in Darien is giving the town three floral installations in April in celebration of the business’s reopening after two years of shutdowns from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The installations were due to go on display April 14 at the Grove Street Plaza Fountain. They are expected to unleash the joy that is contained in flowers in “flash mobs” of natural art crafted by the team.

While “flower flashes” or “flower bombs” have appeared in other cities, they have never been created for Darien, according to the business’s design team. Subsequent installations are planned for the following two Thursdays in surprise locations along the Post Road in Darien.

For more information, visit nielseflorist.com.

Tiny Miracles Foundation to hold annual Gala

The Darien-based Tiny Miracles Foundation will host its annual fundraiser from 7 to 11 p.m. Friday, May 6, at The Loading Dock at 375 Fairfield Ave. in Stamford

The in-person event will celebrate the work that the nonprofit organization does to support families of premature babies in the community. The gala’s theme is “Miracles ... And All That Jazz.”

For more information and to buy tickets or sponsorships, visit ttmf.org.

‘Native Tree’ author to speak for Arbor Day

The Darien Library, the Darien Nature Center and the Darien Pollinator-Pathway will present local author John Ehrenreich in a discussion about his new book, “Native Trees of Connecticut: A Step-by-Step Illustrated Guide to Identifying the State’s Species.”

The in-person talk, in honor of Arbor Day, will be held at 7 p.m. April 28 in the community room of the Darien Library.

Ehrenreich will talk about how he came to write a book on trees and how it differs from other tree guides.

He has doctorate degrees in biological sciences and psychology and is a volunteer at Connecticut Audubon’s Deer Pond Farm Sanctuary in Sherman. In his professional life, he is a psychologist.

To register for this in-person event, visit darienlibrary.org/event/5609.

Lecture to address ‘Putin’s War in Ukraine’

The Darien Library will present a virtual discussion called “Putin’s War in Ukraine: What it means for America, the West, and the World” at 7 p.m. April 25.

The speaker, Constanze Stelzenmiller, is an expert on German, European and trans-Atlantic foreign and security policy and strategy. She is the inaugural holder of the Fritz Stern Chair on Germany and trans-Atlantic Relations in the Center on the United States and Europe at Brookings.

Russian President Vladimir Putin's criminal attack on Ukraine targets the West as a whole, she says, with the ultimate goal of reversing democratic transformation in Central and Eastern Europe neutralizing Western Europe and ejecting the United States from Europe.

To register for this virtual event and receive a link, visit www.darienlibrary.org/event/5684.

Author to discuss garden benefits

The Darien Library, the Barrett Bookstore, the Darien Nature Center and the Darien Pollinator Pathway are welcoming author and gardener Frédérique Lavoipierre to a virtual event at 7 p.m. April 26.

She will discuss how gardens can provide a thriving community for animals. Lavoipierre’s latest book, “Garden Allies,” tells of the insects, birds and other animals that keep gardens beautiful and thriving. Attendees will learn how to identify visitors that will enhance backyards as we enter gardening season.

To register and receive a link, visit darienlibrary.org/event/5604.

‘Sigma Force’ author to speak

The Darien Library is hosting a virtual event called “Celebrating Libraries” at 7 p.m. April 26.

Author James Rollins will be in-conversation with Jackie Cooper to celebrate libraries and discuss his book, “Kingdom of Bones,” the latest in his “Sigma Force” series of thrillers.

Rollins is the author of international thrillers that have been translated into more than 40 languages. Cooper is an author and film critic as well as the host of “Jackie K. Cooper Show,” an entertainment review television show broadcast weekly on Com South and Progressive Tel cable networks in Georgia.

To register and receive a link, visit darienlibrary.org/event/5730.