With its low self-esteem and high urban blight, Hartford is the ultimate underdog city. Sad City Hartford documents the joys, sorrows and eccentricities of New England's Rising Star.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Pay Phone #37 - Grocery Store Edition

We haven't featured a pay phone in our great Pay Phone Search in quite awhile and what would the Sad City holidays be without one? Pay Phone #37 is located outside the Stop & Shop on New Park Avenue. One thing you'll notice about living in Hartford is that grocery stores, or the lack thereof in downtown, is a topic of continuous hand-wringing in our fine city.

At this point we all realize the short lived, poorly executed, Market at Hartford 21 is not going to return. Yet we still don't think that Hartford is all that lacking in grocery stores. There's hardly anywhere you can live in Hartford and not be 10 minutes away from at least a grocery store.

For all the complaining about the lack of a grocery store in downtown, we can recall living in Boston's North End and there sure isn't a grocery store around there. At least in downtown Hartford it's somewhat feasible to own a car, try dealing with no car and no grocery store. In Los Angeles everything is twenty minutes away. We'd challenge anyone to pick an address in Hartford and not find a grocer within 20 minutes. Heck, you can even use the Sad City Guide To Grocery Stores. If it's really too much trouble, there's always Peapod to deliver.

Hartford is also a pretty small city and there are more than ample grocery stores right outside the city limits. We are also surrounded by Trader Joe's, Hall's Market, Bliss Market, Shop Rite, Stop & Shop and a pair of Whole Foods. It's not really all that hard to get groceries out here.

The Stop & Shop featured in this post is a fine all purpose grocery store right in the city that we imagine didn't require a sizable investment from the city. While Stop & Shop may not have the speciality foods found at Trader Joe's or the quality of meat found at Hall's or Bliss Markets, it is more than adequate for all basic grocery needs. They also have some of the better bagels in Hartford. Stop & Shop earns bonus points with us by paying homage to Hartford history with Hartford Pay Phone #37. You can even use it to call 411 and find out where to buy groceries.

BONUS: Non-working gold pay phone found inside Theaterworks. We're pretty sure we've seen this one outside on the sidewalk before. Sent in by reader/runner/classmate Colleen V.


  1. I had high hopes for Carlos Market when I first moved here but they were just SO unfriendly.

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