Weekend in Rewind – Playhouse on Park

This time of year, the low hum of football permeates the house every Sunday afternoon.

I can’t remember how it started – my husband and I both love football – but I think it was when we both started playing Fantasy Football that our “love” for the game was taken to a whole new level.

Although I love watching football, sometimes I just need to get away from that “noise”.  There are so many things to do this time of year in Connecticut that it’s almost a waste to turn into a couch potato.

So, when Tracy and Meredith from Playhouse On Park (link) in West Hartford provided me with 2 tickets to see their newest production  “Little Shop of Horrors” (through October 16, 2016), I had a perfect “out”.  AND since Mark was away, my mom was a willing volunteer to accompany me for the 2:00pm matinee performance.

Parking on Park street was a breeze and after enjoying the weather for a bit, we headed into the lobby to pick up our tickets.

Playhouse on Park

Walking into the lobby we were transported into a flower shop – which immediately set the tone for the show.  It was very cute and I almost expected a cast member to come out and assist us with our horticultural needs.

When the doors opened and we stepped into the theater, I was struck how small and intimate it was.  The stage, surrounded on three sides by several row of seating, allows each and every theater goer to be fully immersed in the show.   I have found that many times when you go to the theater, you might not get the full “theater” experience depending on where you sit. My mom and I commented that there was not a bad seat to be had, which allowed everyone to have a great view of the stage, actors, and action as it unfolded.

One might think that Playhouse on Park would produce shows, like one might expect to see at a very low budget repertory theater, but that is totally not the case.  Playhouse on Park’s mission is to provide quality entertainment at affordable costs to as broad an audience as possible while embracing and providing opportunities for professional, emerging and community artists.  I could really see the love that all those involved in the Little Shop of Horrors production put into the show.

And even if you have no idea about the basic premise of Little Shop of Horrors (like myself), attending to this show is just a good time!  It was both quirky and funny as well as filled some great musical numbers and lots of laughs.  From the set design to the performers to the musicians – they all came together to put on a really, really good show.

Some scenes from the show.

Kudos to all those involved in the production – especially Emily Kron (Audrey), Steven Mooney (Seymour), and Damian Buzzerio (Mr. Mushnik) your performances really set the tone and helped provide mom and I with an enjoyable afternoon.  It was a top notch show and I did not even mind missing any of the football games that were going on.  I was having too much fun!

And another great option about attending a show at Playhouse on Park is their Dining Partners program.  Present your ticket before OR after the show to be eligible for a discount from 17 local restaurants.  If I would have had the opportunity I would have grabbed my tickets at 12:30pm when the box office opened and taken advantage on one of the discounts offered by some West Hartford restaurants.  All you have to do is show your ticket and you can grab a bite at a discounted price.  Such a great way to spend an entire afternoon in the area.  Although my mom and I did not take advantage of it this time around, you can bet we will when we return.

Playhouse on Park

And even if you don’t have a chance to see Little Shop of Horrors during it’s run (although I highly suggest you do) – there are plenty of other opportunities to take advantage of affordable, local theater right West Hartford.

I know my mom and I have an eye on a couple of other shows that Playhouse on Park will be putting on in the coming months.

I did not have time to meet the cast (which is something Playhouse on Park does every Sunday after the 2:00pm performance) because I was delighted to be invited to Little River Restoratives to help my lovely friend (and hardworking #bosslady) Katharine Ortiz as she celebrated her one year anniversary as the Founder and Creative Director of Put a Little Bird on It.

Katharine, whom for many years worked in marketing for the “corporate world” decided a little over a year ago to take all of the knowledge and professional connections she had developed and open her own boutique marketing and social media agency.

I have watched her (and her business) grow over the past year in awe and amazement,  happy to see her success and call my friend (and sometime running buddy).

So when I received the invite, I knew there was no place I would rather be.

Cheers! Cocktail of the Evening - The Birdbath
Cheers! Cocktail of the Evening – The Birdbath

I spent a wonderful couple of hours at Little River Restoratives, spending time with old friends and meeting and making new ones all while sipping the cocktail of the evening – a Birdbath and enjoying some delicious nibbles from Mercado.  If you have not tried this Spanish inspired food truck – I suggest searching them out.Mercado's Arroz Con Pollo

Their Duck Fat Fries are a personal favorite of mine but on Sunday I ordered the Arroz con Pollo .  It was just enough of a nosh (even though I would have devoured an entire bowl) before heading home to see Mark – whom had just returned from his yearly golf trip.

When I arrived home the low hum of football could be heard, and I was able to catch up on the day’s events (and see how my Fantasy team was faring).  But you know what – I did not miss it.  I had a much more enjoyable time at Playhouse on Park and spending time with my mom.

So, if you are looking for something other than the “normal” Football Sunday Routine – I highly suggest checking out Playhouse on Park.

Playhouse on Park
244 Park Road
West Hartford, CT 0611
860.523-5900 EXT 10
Subscription info and prices on their ticket info page.

**Disclaimer:  I was invited by Playhouse on Park to see Little Shop of Horrors in exchange for a review, all opinions and my cultural experience are my own.



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