A round-up of openings, closings, and other news about West Hartford businesses.
By Ronni Newton
I hope all the dads had a Happy Father’s Day on Sunday! My kids were able to enjoy the day with their dad – who even spent an uncharacteristic hour relaxing in the hammock – and we all spent part of the day visiting my dad in Stamford. Although we didn’t see my father-in-law (who lives in Nantucket), we did have a nice phone conversation.
Today is the first day of summer! The summer solstice officially occurs at 6:34 p.m. EDT on June 20. Although the days won’t be getting longer until December (a guy I used to work with had a “half-empty” attitude about the first day of summer, and used to say, “It’s all downhill from here,” because the days would be getting shorter), there’s plenty of daylight to enjoy all sorts of warm-weather activities.
If you have tips about businesses opening or closing, or doing something worth sharing, please provide that information in the comments or email Ronni Newton at [email protected].
Here’s this week’s Buzz:
- Starr Yoga will open its doors at 276 Park Rd. (diagonally across the street from Quaker Diner) with a full schedule of classes on Wednesday, June 22, at 9:30 a.m. Owner Julie Starr, who has had a studio in Boston for about a year-and-a-half, is thrilled to bring Starr Yoga to her hometown of West Hartford. She said the studio will be offering yoga and barre classes, workshops, trainings, and retreats. Starr will teach the 9:30 a.m., 12:15 p.m., and 4:30 p.m. yoga classes (appropriate for all levels, she said) on Wednesday, and Jill Hebert is scheduled to teach at 6 p.m. For a complete schedule of classes, click here. Follow Starr Yoga on Facebook for updates, too.
- Also opening this week is Total Wine & More in Corbin’s Corner. According to the West Hartford Chamber of Commerce‘s newsletter, the West Hartford location is the wine, spirits, and beer superstore’s 136th location and features a climate-controlled wine room, walk-in humidor for cigars, and space for private events. Total Wine & More Regional Vice President Sandy Clemens will attend a ribbon-cutting on Thursday at 6 p.m., followed by a reception with samples of wine, beer, and spirits, live music, and a tour of the 15,000 square foot store. A portion of sales from June 23 – 26 will be donated to Playhouse on Park. RSVP for the grand opening by clicking here.
- It’s a busy week for openings, and the West Hartford Chamber of Commerce will hold another ribbon-cutting on Friday! At noon on June 24, Chamber and Town officials will officially welcome Pure Barre to Blue Back Square. Pure Barre, which opened in early May. Pure Barre offers a low-impact but intense workout using the ballet barre – a 55-minute session that tones, builds lean muscle, and burns fat. Click here for more information about the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Click here to follow Pure Barre West Hartford on Facebook.
- Also this week is West Hartford Center Days – combining sidewalk sales with other exciting events like a fashion show and the Concorso Ferrari & Friends. Details are available here.
- Gary Dahms, owner Salons by JC West Hartford, provided the following news: “Leonela Caravajo, announces the opening of Lovely Nails. Leo, formerly in Newington has brought her extraordinary team to Salons by JC where they are providing manicure, pedicure and full-body waxing services. Leo brings 18 years of experience to this elegant, state of the art location. She is located within a 3 room suite at 333 North Main St above Marshalls. She can be reached for an appointment at 347-975-2350.”
- You may have seen the signs or noticed the big blue and green Vistaprint bus near REI in Blue Back Square over the past few days. Vistaprint is learning about and assisting small businesses through its 25-week bus tour, and you have a few more days to check it out and get some free marketing and design advice from the Vistaprint staff. You can make an advance appointment (click here) or, according to the Vistaprint Facebook event: “Hop aboard the Vistaprint RV to see and feel our products, consult with our team on topics like marketing and design, receive a complimentary headshot, get great giveaways and more!” The bus will be on location in West Hartford until 2 p.m. on Friday, June 24.
- West Hartford resident Raph Thomas has founded a new business –LintCard – which he hopes is heading for Shark Tank! According to the company’s website, as a new business professional Thomas quickly realized the importance of first impressions, including looking clean and professional while on the go. “He decided he needed a product that could remove lint and pet hair, small enough to fit in his wallet, and discreet enough for use anytime, anywhere. After reverse engineering multiple lint removers and contacting over 60 different manufacturers for ideas of how to make such a product, the LintCard was born,” the website states. Thomas has tested the product on his friends and partnered with a manufacturer that can produce it to scale. He’s using college students to help get the business off the ground, but plans to shortly launch a crowd funding campaign. For more information, visit the LintCard website. There’s also a cute animated YouTube video to watch about the product.
- West Hartford Magazine and We-Ha.com are pleased to announce that the West Hartford Center Business Association has partnered with more media outlets for 2016 to spread the word about events and activities in The Center. Along with NBC Connecticut, a long-standing media partner, West Hartford Life, West Hartford Press and the Connecticut Jewish Ledger have joined the media partnership for 2016. West Hartford Magazine Publisher Tom Hickey, who has coordinated the media partnerships for the Center, said, “We are so pleased to have all our media partners involved and supporting the events and activities of small businesses in the Center … we have an exciting schedule for 2016 and look forward to working with all of them.”
- ICYMI, DORO Restaurant Group, which owns West Hartford Center restaurants Treva and Àvert (as well as Manchester’s Artisanal Burger Company, announced last week that they will open Zohara in the former Plimpton’s space on Farmington Avenue by the end of 2016. The menu will focus on cuisine from the eastern and southern Mediterranean – including Israel, Morocco, Turkey, and Greece – tweaked with the trendy American “farm to table” fresh approach. Scott Miller of DORO said the restaurant will be moderately priced, with “salutim” (small plates) intended for sharing. The restaurant will seat more than 200 on two inside levels plus a large patio. DORO and building owner LaSalle Road Partners are investing more than $1 million for build-out of the space. Click here for the complete story.
- Don’t forget to vote for Best of West Hartford! Congratulations again to the finalists – more than 275 of them selected in nearly 50 categories – that have been determined by nominations from the community. Now you can vote to choose the winners which will be honored at a gala awards show on Sept. 8. A list of all of the finalists and the link to voting can be found by clicking here. Some area businesses are doing a great job making their customers aware of the competition, so don’t forget to support your own favorites.
Remember, if you have any business news to share, remember to add it in the comments section below or email Ronni Newton at [email protected].
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