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Sunday, July 3, 2011

Dance and Movie Night Gets Summer Season Started

Dance and Movie Night Gets 
Summer Season Started:
Locals Gather for 
‘Shrek Forever After’ Showing
By Mike Lauterborn
(posted to 7/2)
© 2011. All Rights Reserved.
7/1 /11

Fairfield, CT – Sand was flying, pizza was in play and the big screen was sparking to life Friday night as the Fairfield Parks and Recreation Dept. kicked off another season of Sand Jam dance sessions and outdoor movies.

“Shrek Forever After” was the feature, drawing dozens of families to Jennings Beach for the first of four summer dance/movie nights. Kids wiggled to tunes laid down by Deejay Parsons while parents mingled with each other, enjoying the clear, starlit night.

“It’s a perfect evening for free family fun,” said Ginna Paules, Program Coordinator for Fairfield’s Parks and Recreation Dept. “And what a great way to kick off the summer.”

Dancing with abandon with her husband and two children, Alcira Henao echoed Paules’ sentiments. “This is a great family fun event that we look forward to every year,” she said. “It gets our summer kicked off. My girls have a blast and love to dance.”

Fairfielder Hima Sheikh had her daughters, Zaha, 4, and Mahin, 3, with her, too. Sheikh said, “It’s a long weekend and we really wanted to enjoy our area. We spend so much time working in the city. It’s nice to relax.”

The Cumello family had set a table in the sand, topped it with food and arranged beach chairs around it. “This is our third year coming to this,” said Ashlee Cumello. “It’s good for adults and kids. The kids dance and the parents hang out.”

Sponsoring the evening and administering nerve tests up on the concrete deck of the pavilion at Jennings was a team from Pro-Health Chiropractic. “We’re scoring people on how well their bodies react and function,” said Dr. Robert Kipp, who added, “This is a great community event.”

Helping her daughter Kiley, a McKinley school student, mark her ninth birthday, Jill Kellerman said Sand Jam has a special meaning to her family as the deejay is a McKinley school parent. “All of Kiley’s friends here tonight are McKinley students. We connect to this on many levels. It’s a great night.”

In a big circle of chairs like a wagon train in defensive mode, Marlene Battista said the event was “a great way to kick off the Fourth of July weekend.” She had imagined a nice quiet evening on the beach with her friends, then realized Sand Jam, which attracts over 200 adults and children, had been scheduled. “It’s still a great time, and a precursor to the holiday – our stay-cation.”

Three more Dance and Movie Nights at Jennings Beach are scheduled for the summer, on these nights with the following film showings: Friday, July 15, Megamind; Friday, July 29, Despicable Me; and Thursday, August 11, Toy Story 3.

For more information, go to:  or call 203-256-3144.