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Welcome to Connecticut’s Farmington Valley — and to the 22nd annual edition of The Valley Book.

It’s hard for us to believe that this is, in fact, our 22nd Valley Book because frankly, it seems like only yesterday that we published the first. Perhaps that’s because many of our original staff are still with us, blending the continuity of style and content that our loyal following appreciates with the many improvements we implement every year in our ongoing effort to remain the predictably trustworthy, homegrown resource we have always been. Indeed, more folks than ever tell us that we’re not only the easiest, most dependable way to find what they are looking for but also the most entertaining.

Part of what makes us both refreshing and reliable is that while the world around us has embraced the digital brevity of tweeting, instagramming, snap chatting, and pithy Facebook commenting, we insist on communicating in fully punctuated sentences — all of our words spelled out and our style appropriately engaging.

Equally attractive to our readers is our penchant for enhancing those fully punctuated sentences with the soft illustrations and vibrant photography that tell visual tales about the Valley’s endlessly interesting people and places, savoring the rich details that make these towns we call home uniquely appealing and utterly captivating.

Finally, there’s our commitment to accuracy, which involves checking and double-checking everything with each new issue. It makes us a resource our audience can actually rely on — and in this somewhat topsy-turvy world, that matters.

Not that the brave new world of gizmos and gigabytes has passed us by, you understand. Quite the contrary. Google us online and up we pop — usually first. And you can tap us into view on your iPhone, where you’ll see our mobile site or connect to our digital edition of either The Valley Book or one of our three other popular directories: The West Hartford Book, The Glastonbury Book, and The Shoreline Book. Each will appear page-for-page on your screen for optimal convenience.

But when the spirit moves you, you can still actually hold your copy of The Valley Book, turning pages and plotting adventures from the comfort of a soft chair with a cup of tea or a glass of wine on the table beside you. That’s especially nice, given that this Farmington Valley we inhabit — our little sliver of the world — is a 150-square-mile stretch of land that is both picturesque and bustling with life.

While Hartford is still a major source of employment and a center of business and cultural activity, the Farmington Valley has developed a distinct identity as a mature, upscale market grounded by its own strong corporate and commercial infrastructure. Factor in quiet neighborhoods situated unobtrusively in their semi-rural setting, a relatively unhurried pace, and superb schools, and it all adds up to some of the finest residential communities in Connecticut.

The Valley’s core towns include Farmington, Avon, Canton, Simsbury, and Granby, with Burlington, New Hartford, Colebrook and Barkhamsted part of the larger watershed area — and growth is evident everywhere. Businesses and shops and restaurants continue to open, attracting new residents and a steady flow of visitors — with The Valley Book the best way for those twains to meet.

Our Farm to Table department directs today’s discerning cooks and discriminating diners to the many farms and restaurants offering locally grown fresh foods and meals that aren’t just healthier but tastier, too. Our Dining department is the go-to resource for where you want to enjoy your next meal out. Visiting and Cultural Attractions offers a snapshot of all the things there are to see and do in the Farmington Valley area. The directory sections themselves are a trove of information, providing a truly comprehensive listing of people, places, and professionals. And it’s all presented in delightfully engaging ways.

Jennifer Cardinal and Walt Jedziniak’s superb photography captures the splendor of the landscapes that surround us. Bill Dougal’s breezy drawings never fail to please. Judy Henderson’s nuggets amuse while enlightening. And Annie Lane’s crisp and airy design makes thumbing through our pages a pleasure.

And so we hope you enjoy your complimentary copy of The Valley Book. Keep it close and use it for all your needs, from gift shops and thrift shops to wining and dining. From cookies and tarts to classic fine arts. From baubles and beads to real estate leads. From pick-your-own fruits and tailors that suit to books with real pages and dancing school stages. From ladies boutiques to plumbers for leaks; pizza and pies to men’s shops with ties; and clams with whole bellies to fresh homemade jellies. From catering pros to guys who do tows and scholarly lawyers to those who paint foyers. From earrings and rings to playscapes and swings. And, well…you get the drift. Because it’s all right here in The Valley Book — your official guide to the Farmington Valley and our salute to some of Connecticut’s most charming and vibrant towns.

Photos by Jennifer Cardinal and Walt Jedziniak.
All artwork and content is copyrighted by Distinctive Directories.
Any use of materials on this web site without permission is strictly prohibited.