Category: West End

Rose Weekend in Elizabeth Park

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By , June 15, 2014 5:20 pm

What had been called “Rose Weekend” was only “Rose Sunday” this year, but we decided to keep with tradition and go to Elizabeth Park on both days just to make sure we did not miss a single rose. Continue reading 'Rose Weekend in Elizabeth Park'»

Scenes from the Sidewalk: Unwanted Gifts

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By , May 29, 2014 7:32 am

Once you start noticing signs, they seem to be everywhere.

Scenes from the Sidewalk: Pink Dog Found in West End

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By , May 21, 2014 7:38 am

Photo courtesy of Johnna Kaplan

Johnna Kaplan said she found this pink dog on Oxford Street near Farmington Avenue: “I almost felt like I should move [it] somewhere safer, but then I decided [it was] too good as little bits of found art, so I just took a pic and walked away.”

Rebuttal from Elizabeth Park

As shady as Elizabeth Park gets

Brendan threw down some fighting words about Keney Park being more versatile-and-just-better than Elizabeth Park. We were basically in agreement. Aside from the full contact event of Rose Weekend and the occasional flock of a half dozen strollers, it’s awfully quiet in the West End.

Then, we saw this: Continue reading 'Rebuttal from Elizabeth Park'»

Central to Close, Tangiers to Open



Central Supermarket (550 Farmington Avenue) will be closing its doors on May 15. According to the Farmington Avenue Wire, a newsletter produced by the Farmington Avenue Alliance and Farmington Asylum Business District, the supermarket’s owner, Adam Hamideh, said the store “never found a successful niche in the West End.” The newsletter says that the owner “believes that he should have concentrated on one market segment rather than to try to serve the diverse needs of the neighborhood.”

Tangiers, currently located on Farmington Avenue in West Hartford, will be moving into this space at some point this summer. This grocery sells Middle Eastern, Greek, Bosnian, Armenian, Indian, Turkish, Glatt Kosher, and Halal foods; Tangiers has a small counter and take-out featuring falafel, stuffed grape leaves, gyros, hummus, and more.

The plan is to continue doing take out at the new location. Tangiers is considering expanding its grocery area.

Two months ago, we learned that plans were approved to raze the plaza in which Tangiers currently resides, so that a larger Walgreens could go in its place.

Kate Couture

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By , May 11, 2014 5:41 pm

Both of the Katharine Hepburn-inspired fashion shows at Connecticut Historical Society were sold out on Saturday.

The models showed off styles available at DKNY, Jones New York, Banana Republic, White House Black Market, Chico’s, and Saks Fifth Avenue, all of which have outlet stores at Clinton Crossing, a shopping center in Clinton, Connecticut which provided gift bags containing coupons, chocolates, and more for all audience members.

Kate Couture was not entirely random. CHS is currently displaying the traveling Katharine Hepburn: Dressed for Stage and Screen exhibit; this is be on view in Hartford through September 13, 2014.

The fashion show models took more than clothing style cues from Hepburn. Poses and just a little bit of attitude seemed inspired by her too.

Models included Kate Ottavio, Miss Rocky Hill 2010; Cara Cama, Miss Stamford; Natascia Simone, Miss Mountain Laurel; Lindsey Hoffman, Miss Constitution’s Outstanding Teen; Tiana Dyson, Miss Connecticut’s Outstanding Teen 2013; Taliyah McGee, Miss Shoreline Outstanding Teen; Amber Ouellette, Miss Bristol’s Outstanding Teen; Brooklynne Murdock, Miss Plainville’s Outstanding Teen; Erika Farrell, Miss Forestville’s Outstanding Teen; Dana Blasi, Miss Greater Waterbury’s Outstanding Teen; Cynthia Diaz, Miss Wolcott’s Outstanding Teen; Alexa Farrell, Miss Greater Rockville; Nicole Vasseur, Miss Greater Rockville’s Outstanding Teen; and, Amanda Schoonmaker, Communications Manager at the Connecticut Convention Center.

Ann Nyberg of WTNH-TV gave words of welcome, including a recount of just a few of Katharine Hepburn’s antics.



Continue reading 'Kate Couture'»

Weekend on the Ave

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By , April 29, 2014 8:16 am

View of Farmington Avenue from the Mark Twain House & Museum compound

It’s the sense of duty that tugs you from the bed on a Saturday morning, later than you had intended, but with this constant gray mist and a headache that won’t subside, earlier than you would prefer. The rain boots and umbrella are surprisingly where they should be; the only thing making you later is yourself.

Farmington Avenue has become trickier to navigate, quite a feat that. The sidewalk is barricaded on one side for construction. Maybe barricaded is not the right word. It takes no real skill to cross the boundary, but playing by the rules means a zigzagging walk that is more irritation than inconvenience. (On the way home, those rules will be abandoned. In the concrete, names and deep footprints are seen.)

At the Carriage House Theater, a man stands in the parking lot beside a grill. It has mostly stopped raining, but this seems overly hopeful. Continue reading 'Weekend on the Ave'»

Author of Orange is the New Black Speaks on Civil Liberties

Solitary confinement is “the most extreme form of punishment we have other than death,” Piper Kerman told the audience during the “Censorship and the Rights of Prisoners” talk on Monday.

Kerman was invited to speak at the Milton and Ethel Sorokin Symposium, a public education event of the ACLU of Connecticut, that is co-sponsored ad hosted by the UConn School of Law.

Kerman’s timing could not have been more appropriate. Right now, Connecticut has a juvenile housed in an adult facility in Niantic, where she is reportedly isolated from the population for 22-23 hours each day. That Jane Doe is in lock down without being charged for a crime has been overshadowed by the details of her needs as a transgendered youth.

Kerman, who did not spend time in solitary housing herself, did say that it is “not used for ‘the worst of the worst’” exclusively, but that isolation is “used as a disciplinary tool for low level infractions.” Continue reading 'Author of Orange is the New Black Speaks on Civil Liberties'»

How to Become a Tough Broad in Six Steps and Three Pairs of Custom Made Shoes

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By , April 19, 2014 4:01 am

Gown worn in “Adam’s Rib”

Whether or not women should “lean in” or close the “confidence gap” are debates of the moment, but this fretting should have been settled decades ago.

Do you or someone you know need help figuring out how to be a tough dame? Turn to Katharine Hepburn. She was:

  • Sent home from school for wearing pants. Went back the next day wearing pants. How did she get the confidence for this? Mom (Katharine Houghton Hepburn) telling the school, basically, you leave the parenting to me, could not have hurt.
  • Later, when the RKO studio tried to get her to stop wearing slacks, she made a point by walking out in her underwear.
  • Did her own stunts, including when she was in her later years. Grew up in a house (133 Hawthorn Street) where the family had a zip line installed. Coincidence?
  • Got busted in college for smoking in her dorm. Drove around Hartford without a license.
  • Had a reputation for being prickly and defiant. . .
  • Earned twelve Oscar nominations and won four of those times. Continue reading 'How to Become a Tough Broad in Six Steps and Three Pairs of Custom Made Shoes'»

Scenes from the Sidewalk: Park Planning

As long as we have some plan…

This is posted in the West End.

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