For the last 30 years, the Old Lyme Midsummer Fest has been THE celebration of this famous town’s artistic heritage. This year’s line-up of events and activities is stellar and you won’t want to miss a minute of it! Gather your picnic supplies (some go all out with flowers, tablecloths and wineglasses!) and head to the Flo Gris lawn by the Lieutenant River on Friday night for Nick Anderson and the Shady Creek Band. Get there early for a free peek at the current exhibit, Flora and Fauna, and to get first crack at 75% off of books, gifts, and goodies (stock that gift closet) at the Flo Gris Shop’s Super Sale. Runners and walkers alike may want to return early Saturday for the Family 5k, or to snag easy parking. Saturday is an exciting day up and down Lyme Street, with openings and events at all the art venues, live music everywhere, yoga on the lawn at 10am at Town Hall and the highly anticipated Parading Paws Dog Show at the Flo Gris, with categories for Best Trick and Best Costume (registration starts at 9am). Lots of artistic opportunities are available, of course, with figure drawing, screen printing, kids crafts and more. New this year is the Bohemian Street Fair “evoking the spirit of the original bohemian artists who lived at the Florence Griswold House.” You’ll find my sister/brother-in-law there with their magical Billie Beads, along with lots of other curated hand-made crafts, products and a food court of local purveyors. Also, on my list is Patricia Spratt’s Annual Warehouse sale of fine linens for the home. This Old Lyme wholesaler opens up her warehouse but once or twice a year for up to 80% off! Check out the Lyme Street Studios Open House with nationally known artists, Deb Quinn-Munson, Judy Friday and Sandy Garvin and grab the best sandwich from The Cheese Truck parked out front after 2pm. And you’ll definitely find me in line for my favorite sweet and savory Sixpence Pies at The Lyme Art Association. Parking is a breeze at the Old Lyme Marketplace, with a shuttle bus making continuous loops up and down Lyme Street. Here’s a handy parking map. There’s so much to see and do, that I suggest having a look at the Event Schedule here, so you can plan your perfect midsummer day. See you there!