Art Center Presents 2nd Art of the Cocktail

Now in its second year, the Guilford Art Center's Art of the Cocktail party is back-this time with a Latin theme.

The annual cocktail party is being held Thursday, Feb. 28 at the center.

"It's going to be really fun-we're really looking forward to it. It was great last year and we think it's going to be even better this year," said event organizer Maureen Belden.

The Latin flair will carry thorughout the night, but not least through some specialty drinks. George Talbot of the Stone House in Guilford and Kenny Burton of Donahue's Madison Beach Grille will formulate cocktails for the event. Both bartenders have been recognized for their success-Talbot is a three-time Best Bartender winner in the Best of New Haven's Readers' Poll and Burton was featured in's Bartender Buddha series.

Latin tapas will be available for guests and beer, wine, and seltzer will be offered in addition to the cocktails. Puerto Rican classical guitarist Yovianna Garcia will provide a musical background for the elegant evening.

Building further on the cocktail theme, the art center also reached out to community artists and invited them to donate artwork the size of a cocktail napkin to be sold at similarly downsized prices, Belden said. There will also be a silent auction.

The Guilford Art Center is excited about the timing of this event-and not only because it comes at an otherwise dreary time of year.

"The party takes place in our gallery and right now our gallery is hosting our Student Exhibition so that's another nice way for folks to see the show," said Belden. "It really gives the public a sense of what you can study here and the work you can create here."

Tickets to The Art of the Cocktail are $50 per person, with proceeds benefiting Guilford Art Center's community programs. The event will be held from 6 through 9 p.m.

Last year's first annual event drew approximately 75 guests and Belden is expecting much more than that. The gallery can hold about 200 people, so reservations are limited.

Belden said this is the perfect time of year for residents to get of out of their homes and enjoy a fun community event benefiting programs that many artistic residents in town enjoy.

"It seems like a great time of year to have something like this...If the weather holds out, we might be ready to come out of hibernation a little bit and come in the evening for a couple hours," Belden explained. "It's a good time of year, it's a simple, fun event, and even if you come at 6 [p.m.], you can still go out to dinner."

To purchase tickets, call 203-453-5947 or visit


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