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Every Town Has A Story – Central Regional Tourism District

Central Regional Tourism District serves 65 towns within Central Connecticut region that help visitors and locals explore main attractions.

Every Town Has A Story

Every Town Has A Story is a summarized story of the following cities and towns: Andover, Avon, Berlin, Bethany, Bloomfield, Bolton, Branford, Canton, Cheshire, Chester, Clinton, Cromwell, Deep River, Durham, East Granby, East Haddam, East Hampton, East Hartford, East Haven, East Windsor, Ellington, Enfield, Essex, Farmington, Glastonbury, Granby, Guilford, Haddam, Hamden, Hartford, Hebron, Killingworth, Madison, Manchester, Marlborough, Meriden, Middlefield, Middletown, Milford, New Britain, New Haven, Newington, North Branford, North Haven, Old Saybrook, Orange, Plainville, Portland, Rocky Hill, Simsbury, Somers, South Windsor, Southington, Stafford, Suffield, Tolland, Vernon, Wallingford, West Hartford, West Haven, Westbrook, Wethersfield, Windsor, Windsor Locks, Woodbridge.

Each Tourism Representative from Central Regional Tourism District has provided a summarized biography of their town to help spread history, attractions, accommodations, popular events, suggested getaways, family fun, and more!

 

Start Exploring What Central Connecticut Has To Offer!

Avon

BRIEF HISTORY OF AVON

Avon had about 160 residents who built the first meetinghouse in 1754 when the area was called Northington. It was a part of Farmington at this time. A new meetinghouse was built in 1818 in West Avon and another in 1819 in the center of Avon.  In 1828, Northington petitioned the Connecticut General Assembly to become a town which was approved on May 5, 1830, “incorporating into a distinct town, by the name of Avon.”

Avon’s business boomed with the completion in 1837 of the Farmington Canal, linking Avon to New Haven and Northampton, Mass., allowing for homegrown products to be sold beyond the valley. Avon blossomed with the coming of energetic and talented men and women from Europe in the early 20th century to work at the impressive Climax Fuse factory (later named Ensign-Bickford). They built Avon Old Farms School for Boys, farmed, and operated shops. Education advanced even within the constraints of one-room schoolhouses. New schools opened in 1949.

Avon’s past is present. The town converted the former Ensign-Bickford Company fuse factory buildings into offices and artists workshops. In Avon’s landscape are reminders of the Farmington Canal, the railroad, and Albany Turnpike (Rt. 44). The Avon Historical Society operates the restored 1865 Pine Grove Schoolhouse (listed on the National Register of Historic Places), the 1823 Schoolhouse No. 3, the 17th C. Derrin Farm, and the late 18th C. Horse Guards Barn. www.avonhistoricalsociety.org

In 1996, the town and the Gildo T. Consolini Post 3272, Veterans of Foreign Wars, dedicated the Avon Veterans Memorial on the Town Green.   Avon reached a milestone in 2005, celebrating its 175th anniversary.  Its history is preserved, maintained and collected by the Avon Historical Society and the Avon Free Public Library’s Marian Hunter History Room.  Today Avon’s population of over 7,000 households is estimated at just over 18,000.

Avon is a typical New England community full of friendly people to get to know and places th work, visit, and play.

 

Interesting Places

Farmington Canal Heritage Trail. An 80-mile trail running from New Haven to Northampton, Mass. Paved for walkers, bikers and roller bladers.  It is also part of the East Coast Greenway from Florida to Maine. Map http://fchtrail.org/pages/maps_north.asp

Pine Grove School House (1865)  This one room schoolhouse was built in 1865 and taught the “three R;s,” as well as music and history to students through the 1940’s. Today, it represents a classroom of 1900, complete with bolted desks, hand slates, and textbooks. ). Open on Sun. 2-4 pm from June through September or by appointment. Free, 860.678.7621.

Heublein Tower – This National histo4ric Landmark at Talcott Mountain State Park was the country retreat of Gilbert F. Heublein (1850-1937), co0-founder of an  international food and beverage importing firm. The Tower, built in 1914, stands atop the highest point on Talcott Mountain at approximately 1,000 feet above sea level and offers a 5,000 square-mile view from the observatory room. The park is open year-round for hiking. The Tower (accessible by foot) is open from the first weekend in May until the end of October, Thursday through Monday from 10am to 5pm. 860.242.1158; www.friendsofheubleintower.org.

Avon Old Farms School. The 860-acre boys’ boarding school was designed and built by the first woman architect, Theodate Pope Riddle, whose home, Hill-Stead Museum in Farmington is open to the public. 500 Old Farms Rd., Avon. (Hill-Stead: 35 Mountain Rd, Farmington- 860.677-4787).

Marian Hunter History Room. The Avon Free Public Library is open to genealogists, researchers, and others during regular business hours.  In addition, the Avon Historical Society has rotating exhibits outside the room on local history topics. 281 Country Club Rd. 860-673-9712

First Company Governor’s Horse Guards (1778). The oldest active continuously mounted Calvary Unit in the U.S. The public is invited on Thurs. evening 7:30-10 pm for their weekly training. 280 Arch Rd. https://www.ctfirsthorseguard.org/

Farmington Valley Arts Center. Situated in converted factory buildings,  more than 20 studios and two galleries make up FVAC, where regional artists create and sell their works: pottery, paintings, ceramics, sculpture, jewelry and more. The Fisher Gallery and the Esther B. Drezner Visitor’s Gallery are open year-round. 25 Arts Center Ln. http://artsfvac.org/ ,860.678.1867.

Countryside Park. A 17.5-acre park with two ponds, picnic area, and trails.  335 Huckleberry Rd. Map at http://www.avonct.gov/sites/avonct/files/file/file/countryside_park_trail_map.pdf

Other parks found at http://www.avonct.gov/recreation-and-parks-department/pages/parks-public-places-and-facilities

 

Lodgings:

Avon Old Farms Hotel, 279 Avon Mountain Road, Avon, 677-1651; 800.836.4000, www.avonoldfarmshotel.com

Residence Inn by Marriott, 55 Simsbury Road, Avon, 860-678-1666, 800-331-3131; www.marriott.com/dblha

 

Additional Information:

Avon has partnered with surrounding Farmington Valley communities in the past to create getaways including a Trail Through History, and a Trail of Antiques. If this is of interest, it can be created again.

The Avon Historical Society is continually hosting lectures, exhibits and events: www.avonhistoricalsociety.org.

 

Bloomfield
Cheshire
Durham
East Haddam
East Windsor
Guilford
Hartford
Hebron
Middletown
North Branford
Old Saybrook
Orange
Stafford
Suffield
Tolland
Wallingford
West Hartford
Westbrook
Wethersfield