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.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Big Changes Ahead For Hartford Entertainment?

This week the Capital Region Development Authority accepted three requests for proposals to manage both the XL Center and Rentschler Field.  The CRDA announced earlier this fall that companies can submit to manage or purchase the XL Center and Rentschler Field.   The two venues are the largest sporting complexes in the Hartford metro area.  The three competitors for the venues have very big ideas for what direction Hartford's should go in.  Here is a  look at each and what they may have in store for Hartford’s entertainment and sports district.

Sad City's Guide To NES Games

If you are of a certain age, the Nintendo Entertainment System was the be all and end all of entertainment. With a complete and total hammerlock on the home gaming market, it is impossible to overstate how ubiquitous the NES was in the late 80's and early 90's.

An entire generation built their hand eye coordination mashing the rectangular controls and ride the emotional roller coaster of game glitches, cheat codes, throwing controllers, occasional horribly designed games, the repeating theme songs, a thrown controller or two, and blowing into the system and onto the cartridge in a desperate a tape to get a game to work.  Many of us from the generation vividly remember getting our first NES console, conquering favorite games, and devastating defeats at the hands of that always cheating computer.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Local Business: Freed McKeen LLC

It was only a matter of time before Sad City landed us in a lawyers' office. While spending time with lawyers isn't as scintillating as portrayed on television, we gladly accepted the invite from Ryan McKeen to visit his practice recently opened with partner Meghan Freed.

Beyond a cursory curiosity as to what lawyers were like and what they actually do all day, we were intrigued by the idea of checking out the space. Located street level in The Linden at 491 Main Street, Freed McKeen isn't the office building, industrial carpeted, fluorescent lit spot one would expect from a law firm. Instead it gives off the cozy feel of a Pier One catalog.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Hartford Pic Of The Week

Finally we learn that fried chicken is that ever elusive fourth meal. What is your favorite spot for fried chicken and jo-jo's?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Sad City's Guide To Christmas Shopping

We are within two weeks of Christmas which is followed by the most miserable time of the year, commonly referred to as January and February. With only a few shopping days (we aren't sure how shopping days are calculated, nor do we care) left before Christmas, there's always Amazon.com but some insist on personally venturing into the commercial sector. That's cool, that's what we are here for.

We aren't going to get all super boring and tell you to get some gift cards to a local restaurant,  you aren't amoeba, you already know that. Nor are we going to lecture you on buying only "local only, organic only, no animals, no Republicans, no sugar, all natural" you aren't schoolchildren. What we do have is some fine Hartford area selections. Think of anything we missed? Leave it in the comments.

Without further ado, we bring you the Sad City Christmas Guide, the latest installment in the Sad City Guide series.

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Undeground Park River Video

(Originally posted May 29, 2012. After many misfires, Hakaan and Jumper finally got to get through the Park River thanks to the Hog River Revival dudes. Relive our journey on this post and check out the awesome work by the guys at the Hartford Art Walk tonight 6-8 at the Hartford Public Library on Main St. Check out more of Sad City and the Park River here.)

We've long since had a dream of riding underneath the city in the mysterious Park River.  Yes, we know that as far as dreams go, it's kind underwhelming. But a childhood built upon repeated viewings of The Goonies and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles created a fascination with the subterranean. The mystery that the cement caverns held seemed liked the most amazing adventure promised. Well, thanks to the Hog River Revival guys, our dream was made a reality. And we brought our video camera along!

The video is available after the jump.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Adventures in Urban Kayaking: The Park River

(Sad City has a long and storied history with the Park River. This post is from the first time we attempted to conquer Hartford's hidden river, originally posted back on August 4, 2010 (before Sad City became the soulless corporate behemoth it was destined to become). 

We are looking back on this Park River post to celebrate Art Walk opening this Friday December 7 at from 6-8 at the Hartford Public Library. The Art Walk will be featuring incredible images from our good friend Senator Joe McCarthy, who has spent countless hours on the Park River documenting and photographing the tunnels beneath our fine city. It's really some fine work. Be sure to stop by and check it out. Rumors has it that there may even be a photo of Jumper and Hakaan in the gallery.