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Welcome to Connecticut’s Farmington Valley — and to the 20th annual edition of The Valley Book, a publication that we are pleased to say has changed both very little and a quite lot since the first issue.

Having gained and retained our loyal following by being a predictably trustworthy homegrown resource produced by predictably trustworthy local people, we intend to remain just that. And we’re equally proud of the predictably high quality of our work. Fact is, more folks than ever tell us that we’re not only the easiest, most reliable way to find what they are looking for but also the most entertaining.

You see, the truth is that while the world around us has embraced the barebones brevity of tweeting, instagramming, snap chatting, and the art of pithy Facebook commenting, we prefer to communicate in appropriately punctuated full sentences — our words all spelled out and enhanced by the soft illustrations and vibrant photography that tell engaging tales about the Valley’s endlessly interesting people and places. And while an increasingly globalized world has made mega-mergers and hyper-technology essential trends, we prefer to savor the details that make these towns we call home uniquely appealing and utterly captivating.

Not that this brave new world of gizmos and gigabytes has passed us by, you understand. In addition to being everything you count on, we keep up with the times.

You can Google us online and up we come — usually first. You can tap us into view on your iPhone, where you’ll see our mobile site or connect to our digital edition where our whole book appears page-for-page on your screen. Just remember that you can still hug us in print at home, turning pages and plotting adventures from the comfort of a soft chair — a cup of tea or a glass of wine on the table beside you. And that’s especially nice, given that our little sliver of the world, this Farmington Valley we inhabit, 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 that includes 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. Indeed, despite the recent recession, businesses and shops and restaurants continue to open, attracting new residents and a steady flow of visitors, with locals in agreement that The Valley Book is the way they find what they are looking for, day in and day out.

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. And our Dining department is the go-to resource for where you want to go for your next meal out.

Lanny Nagler’s superb photography always 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.

So once more, 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 to tailors that suit…from books with real pages to dancing school stages…from ladies boutiques to plumbers for leaks…from pizza and pies to men’s shops with ties…from clams with whole bellies to fresh homemade jellies…from catering pros to guys who do tows…from 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 delightful towns.

Photos by Lanny Nagler. All artwork and content is copyrighted by Distinctive Directories.
Any use of materials on this web site without permission is strictly prohibited.