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.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Barber Brings Bling to Hartford

A lot of time our friends will tell us "you have to try this fancy new barber in (Downtown/West Hartford)." Our reply is always the same, thanks but we're all set in that department. For about four years MC's Barbershop on Franklin Ave has been the official barber of Sad City.

Over the last year, MC has been telling us about being entering haircutting competitions and by the look of things, MC has been bringing some impressive hardware back to Hartford. With first place finishes in regional competitions, MC recently entered a large international competition in New York and finished in second place. The competition was also filmed as part of an upcoming documentary on barber competitions which we look forward to seeing MC in. We will keep you posted on details about the film as it gets close to release.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Sad City Hartford Guide to Walmart

Guess where this photo was taken.

(Originally published November 13, 2011)

People often make a big deal about the fact that big box stores homogenize our society and make everything the same. To a certain extent, it's true. They often bring a certain level of standardization to things. But as easily as you can identify the connecting threads like logos and signage that exist from store to store, there are often very telling divides that exist when you examine a single retailer with stores in several communities. Anyone who has ever flipped through pics on Wal-Creatures or wandered into a Walmart in Mississippi knows what I am talking about.

Although they are only 11 miles apart, the Hartford and Avon Walmarts might as well be run by different companies. The inconsistencies between the two stores can create a fascinating, consumerized lens that spotlights the differences between the two communities as a whole. Community wealth, ethnography, cultural preferences and societal issues all come to life when you juxtapose the two stores. To help you better make sweeping judgements and gross oversimplifications of the complex socio-economic forces at play in our great state, we've created a handy guide to help you understand the difference between the Avon and Hartford Walmarts. We're sure you could probably do the same thing if you looked at the respective school systems of the two communities, but that level of access is much harder to come by and the contrasts are far more bleak.

So without further ado, the Sad City Hartford Guide to Understanding Class Disparities Between Hartford and Avon by Examining Their Respective Walmarts.

Friday, November 16, 2012

This Weekend: Hartford Harvest Farmer's Market

How about them tomatoes?

Saturday November 17th 10am-1pm inside the Knox Parks Greenhouse at 75 Laurel St.

Wouldn't you love to be able to do most of your Thanksgiving shopping at one place, all while supporting CT farmers and vendors? Well, Hartford's Farmers' Markets have been working hard to make that wish come true by organizing the 2nd Annual Hartford Harvest Farmers' Market!
Come to this fun and festive market where you'll find potatoes, apples, pumpkins, carrots, greens, eggs, a variety of cheeses, coffee, pies, cupcakes, gelato, beans, rice, and great craft items! A true "one stop shop" for your Thanksgiving dinner!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

What To Do? Music at J.Rene Coffee

Sad City has been drinking J.Rene Coffee exclusively for a couple years now and well, if you're serious about coffee, this is where you should be drinking it too. While J.Rene has been roasting up the best coffee in the area for awhile, Jose Rene Martinez, the esteemed owner and roasting maestro, has taken a quantum leap forward and has opened hands down the best coffee shop in the area.

 Don't believe us?  Fair enough, we aren't coffee experts, but we know it's good. If you like coffee, check out J.Rene's for yourself.

Located at 320 Park Rd in West Hartford, J.Rene's offers superb coffee in a great atmosphere. One of the popular attractions at J.Rene's is live music on Friday nights. Tonight the shop is featuring InfiniTango, a band that alone has an interesting enough look and name to make us want to check them out. Eagle-eyed Sad City readers will also note the bands promo shots were taken in Hartford City Hall.