An endless amount of stories flicker across the screen at these cinemas, which offer stadium seating and digital sound. The theater plays films chosen from Hollywood’s newest releases, featuring stars just plucked from the vines where they grow in the California hills. Between whispered critiques of each preview, audience members can wash down fluffy kernels of popcorn with soda from the concession stand. The theater also opens its doors for birthday parties and large private screenings for up to 300 guests.
Jump!Zone is an inflatable indoor play center packed with moonwalks, bouncers, and giant slides for children ages 2 to 12. A giant inflatable Kraken wrapped around a 26-foot-tall ship makes a great slide and provides deep-sea adventure for landlocked kids. A 16-foot Batman stands guard over the obstacle course, while five large playsets provide loads of bounceless entertainment. Grade-schoolers looking to book the perfect destination playdate can check out the Ella's Castle playhouse, complete with rock wall, wave slide, and tire swing. For an additional few dollars, miniature humans who prefer stationary entertainment can dominate in the arcade, leaving their adult counterparts free to recite the periodic table of elements backward in peace.
Hoyts Simsbury Cinemas enthralls cinephiles and periodic moviegoers alike with the latest Hollywood fare screened in Dolby Digital surround sound. A concessions stand nourishes viewers with delectable noshes, and the theater's stadium seating comfortably harbors audience members waiting their turn to give an acceptance speech for Best Movie Viewer. In addition to its usual cinematic offerings, Hoyts Simsbury Cinemas screens biweekly sensory-friendly showings––for families with youngsters affected by autism and sensory disorders––during which theater lights remain on, the volume is turned down, and patrons may opt to dance, sing, and hop throughout the film. Private showings for mothers and babies invite parents to enjoy movies without worrying that their child's clamor is bothering other audience members. Birthday-party packages treat celebrants to a movie-themed birthday area with a snack pack and helium balloon for each child, and private presentations or VHS support groups welcome up to 50 attendees.
Cross-country skiers of all experience levels glide over 12.5 miles of machine-groomed trails that meander through Winding Trails’ 350 acres of snow-dusted wilderness. Trailblazers skim past spring-fed ponds on the double-tracked trails, zipping down gentle dips and traversing picturesque bridges, which crisscross over stocking-cap-wearing trolls. Beginners amble their way through the easy trails denoted with green signs, and more advanced skiers can tackle the blue and black trails surrounding Phantom Pond. Skate skiers can speed around the Skater's Loop, which tours the park's perimeter. Outfitted with skis, boots, and poles drawn from more than 200 sets of rental equipment, adult and child skiers caper about the frosty wonderland perfectly garbed for maximum comfort, ready to swiftly escape herds of hungry snowmen. Conditions permitting, skiers can hit the trails from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
A three-day lineup stocked with jazz legends and emerging talents blasts through more time signatures than a clock’s checkbook to usher in the 16th incarnation of the Litchfield Jazz Festival. The Springs Center stage kicks off Friday with genre luminaries The Clayton Brothers, whose silky sounds light a fire under the crowd that fellow Grammy nominees Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue stoke with brassy flares. Saturday hosts a veritable who’s-who of mind-blowing musicians with NEA Jazz Master grant winner Roy Haynes Fountain of Youth Band blasting buttery sounds after a Ray Charles tribute featuring Davell Crawford belts harmonies more memorable than “Happy Birthday” sung in Klingon. A collection of performers worthy of a Gatsbyan soiree closes out the festival on Sunday, with a hip-swinging finale from Jimmy Heath.