For Easter, my friend Carly came home with me to Connecticut – because her home, Florida, was just too difficult to get to for the weekend. Also, she’d never been to Connecticut, so she was pretty excited about the chance to see a new state! So it was my job to come up with cool things to do in south central Connecticut that epitomized Connecticut. You see, when you grow up in Connecticut, you sort of grow up thinkingthere’s nothing to do in this state. But with a little help from a Facebook post of mine and people commenting, I was able to come up with a pretty good day that I think covered most of the bases.
Item #1: Seeing the Great Outdoors
Now, Connecticut doesn’t really have any mountains, but we do have a LOT of hills. We’ve got a state park called Sleeping Giant. Here‘s the story according to the Sleeping Giant Park Association. “The Native Americans in the area called the Giant Hobbomock, an evil spirit who became agry at the neglect of his people and stamped his foot near the current location of Middletown causing the Connecticut River to change course. Keitan, a good spirit cast a spell on Hobomock causing him to sleep forever so that he would do no further damage.” Here‘s a picture that I found so you can see the “giant”. (His head is to the left.)
Item #2: Quaint Shops
Clearly my choice had to be an ice cream shop. I’ve been going to Wentworth’s in Hamden, CT since I was a little kid. I would link to their website, but they don’t seem to have one. It’s one of those places that you open your car door and all you smell is ice cream goodness. It’s rich and creamy and there’s millions of toppings. My friends and I always said we were going to order the kitchen sink once, but somehow we all graduated and never got around to it. Maybe one day… (Ah, here’s the definition: The kitchen sink “features eight scoops of the patron’s choice, all the toppings they request and is served in a half-gallon container.”)
Item #3: Yale
I mean. It’s just gorgeous. I didn’t go to Yale, I don’t think I’ve ever gotten the official tour of Yale, but I just like to walk around. It’s epic. It looks like Hogwarts.
Item #4: New Haven Pizza
Now, a lot of people don’t know this. But New Haven is famous for its pizza. There’s a wiki page about it. That means its true. “What sets New Haven-style pizza apart from other styles is its thin crust. Brick or occasionally high temperature gas oven cooking bakes the crust to a very crispy shell (often burnt black in spots, desirably known as “the char”) but leaves the inside soft.” The three most noteworthy (according to me) are Modern Apizza, Sally’s Apizza, and Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana. We went to Modern. Carly was craving Margarita pizza, but I highly recommend trying the Clam pizza if you’re ever in the neighborhood.
Item #5: Italian Ice
Not water ice. Italian ice. Now, did this originate in CT? No. And the world seems to claim that water ice and Italian ice are the same thing. I disagree. Italian ice is creamier than water ice, and more rich and traditional. Libby’s is the place to go. Of course, we were running out of time, so we got Libby’s from a local pizza place instead of from the shop in New Haven. (Picture from here)
Item #6: The Shoreline
We went to Branford Point – because it’s close, and shows a pretty good view of what most of the Connecticut shoreline looks like. My cousin told me that there’s a pretty awesome beach in Greenwich, CT as well that you have a great view of New York City from, but unfortunately, that was just too far out of our way. Of course, by this time, my camera died, so I don’t have any pictures of my own, but I found one courtesy of rockfish325 on Panoramio by googling it. Check it out:
So if you’re ever in south central Connecticut and looking for something to do, I highly recommend checking out these things. Makes me proud to be a New Englander :)