The 2019 Guilford Performing Arts Festival will present 70 acts in 12 venues, most in or within walking distance of downtown Guilford. Here’s some information to help you navigate the festival.
Finding Your Way Around the Festival
Arthur Murray Dance Studio
11 Water St
316 Little Meadow Road
81 Whitfield Street
BSK Design at Greene Gallery
29 Whitfield Street
Christ Episcopal Church
11 Park Street
First Church of Christ, Scientist
17 Whitfield Street
First Congregational Church
110 Broad Street
Guilford High School
605 New England Road
84 Boston Street
Marketplace at The Guilford Food Center
77 Whitfield Street
Nathanael B Greene Community Center
32 Church Street
1795 Boston Post Rd
Unit F, 3rd Floor
Tickets and Admission
There will be no tickets (except for the Pilobolus and Coast Guard Band shows—both sold out) or admission charges, but we strongly encourage you to make generous free-will donations at every performance; in most cases, this will be the artists’ only financial compensation. We ask that you make your first stop our welcome tent next to the Big Top on the Guilford Green, where you can pick up a festival program and check in.
Once you’ve checked in at the welcome tent, you’re free to wander in and out of any festival venue at will. Most shows will run 45 minutes to an hour in length (see your program booklet for the schedule or view our online schedule), and nearly all venues are adjacent to or within a short walking distance from the Green. Several venues are as many as 2-3 miles outside downtown and will require driving. See our festival map for more information.
The Pilobolus and Coast Guard Band shows at the Guilford High School Performing Arts Center were by preregistration only, and both are sold out. While it’s possible that a small number of seats may free up due to no-shows, we think the chances of getting in without a confirmed ticket are slim. We encourage you to check out the many other shows going at those times.
Also note that the Saturday evening performance of Susan Cinoman’s Guenevere at Christ Episcopal Church and the Sunday afternoon performance of Julie Fitzpatrick’s 77 U-Turn at First Congregational Church are staged dramatic presentations. We discourage coming and going during these performances, and ushers will try to seat latecomers at a time that causes the least disruption.
Getting to Guilford
Guilford, halfway between Boston and New York City (approximately 3 hours by car from each) is easily accessible by automobile from the west, north and south via Interstates 95 and 91; by train via Metro North, Amtrak and the Shoreline East; and by bus via Connecticut Transit. You could also come from the south by boat and pick up a slip or mooring at one of our local marinas or yacht clubs!
Car: From the west, take I-95 Northbound to Exit 58 (CT-77/Church Street). Right on CT-77/Church Street, straight through stoplight at Route 1/Boston Post Road to the Guilford Green.
From the east, take I-95 Southbound to Exit 58 (CT-77/Church Street). Left on CT-77/Church Street, under highway overpass and straight through two stoplights to the Guilford Green.
From the north, take I-91 Southbound to I-95 Northbound and follow the directions from the west above.
Train: The Shore Line East railroad connects New Haven with New London, with stops at the Guilford station, about a half-mile south of the Green. Amtrak can connect to the Shore Line East at New Haven and New London. The Metro North Railroad from New York City; Westchester County, N.Y., and Fairfield County, Conn., connects with the Shore Line East at New Haven.
Bus: Connecticut Transit provides passenger bus service between New Haven and Madison, with stops at the Guilford Green, via its 201 Madison route.
Parking is in short supply in Guilford, especially around the Green. We suggest you arrive well before the event you wish to attend, find a place to park and stroll around town, grab a bite to eat and visit some of our locally owned shops and boutiques. On-street parking is available in marked spaces on all four sides of the Green, and public parking lots are located at Town Hall (31 Park Street), at the Nathanael B. Greene Community Center (32 Church Street) and behind the shops on Whitfield Street (entrance is between 15 and 23 Water Street). Parking will also be available on Friday, as well as on Sunday after 1pm, at St. George Catholic Church, 33 Whitfield Street. There is also on-street parking on most of the streets leading to and from the Green.
Some venues have their own restrooms, and there are public facilities at the Nathanael B. Greene Community Center (32 Church Street), Town Hall (31 Park Street) and the Guilford Free Library (67 Park Street). A limited number of portable toilets will be set up on the Green.
Guilford is a picturesque small town with a deep agricultural, maritime and commercial history. It’s a great place to visit for walking, hiking and boating, and the downtown offers lively cafes and markets, locally owned clothing and gift shops, an independent bookstore and excellent restaurants. It’s a town with a warm and genuine community spirit drawing from a farm-to-table ethos, waterfront adventurism, down-to-earth sensibility, a work-with-your hands ethic, urbane sophistication and intellectual curiosity—all set against a Colonial-era historical backdrop. To learn more about Guilford, and to find places to stay, shop, eat and visit, click here.