Connecticut town info–Bristol,CT


One of the more famous suburbs in the United States is the Connecticut town of Bristol. Indeed, when a major cable network reminds people that their world headquarters is in your city, people tend to remember, even if they couldn’t find it on a map.  So what can we tell you about Bristol?

Located in Hartford County, Bristol is a city of just over 60,000 people, southwest of Hartford.  As we alluded to before, it is the home of ESPN, one of the most successful cable networks on the air, and has been its home since its inception in the late 70s.  But along with “Home to ESPN,” Bristol has had its share of nicknames, illustrating its fascinating history.

For example, one nickname is “Mum City,” as at one time it was the leader in chrysanthemum production.  Though it no longer continues in that industry, it still commemorates it each year with the Bristol Mum Festival.  The 52nd Annual Chrystantemum Festival is set for September 20th, 2013, starting with the crowning of Miss Mum and Jr. Miss Mum, and will conclude on the 23rd with their annual parade.  The Bristol Mum Festival also includes a gala and a carnival, and marks a great way to head into the colorful autumn season.

Another nickname Bristol holds is “Bell City,” as it was once the home of an innovative industry creating spring-driven doorbells.  Now, if you want to see spring-driven craftsmanship, you can head to the American Clock and Watch Museum, commemorating Connecticut’s one-time standing as the clock capital of the U.S.  It’s a fascinating glimpse into America’s history, and well worth the visit.  Don’t ask, though, if anyone has the time; they’ve probably heard that too many times before.

Speaking of history, Bristol is also the home of nation’s oldest still-operating amusement park.  Lake Compounce has been open since 1846, which boggles the mind, at least a little bit.  When we think of the mid 1800s, we picture them finding amusement with indoor lighting, so them needing a park for amusement seems a little odd.  Anyway, Lake Compounce has over forty attractions, a water park, and three roller coasters, including “Wildcat” which still has the wooden boards from an original 1927 roller coaster, as well as “Boulder Dash,” which is the first wooden coaster to be built entirely into the side of a mountain!

On top of all this, you also have the New England Carousel Museum, the Witch’s Dungeon Classic Movie Museum, and in another “first in the nation” for Bristol, it has the tallest elevator test facility.  At thirty-eight stories, the Otis Quality Assurance Center, while not open to the public, does give the Bristol skyline a very distinct quality as you approach Lake Compounce.

As you can see, Bristol is a bit of an eclectic mix.  Not just for the sports enthusiast who wants to marvel “This is where it all happens!” it has attractions for the history buff and for the entire family.  Plus it tests elevators; what more could you want?

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Michelle Manter Giglietti

Owner~Realtor at Manter Realty Group of Keller Williams
Top Producing Realtor and recognized blogger. In her free time you can hear her screaming fore at the local golf course,or catch her at home enjoying fresh cooking and a glass of wine with her husband and favorite 6 pound Morkie named Pedro.
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