It was a crisp autumn day back in 2009 when I had decided enough was enough in downstate Connecticut and made my way to the scenic hills of northwestern Connecticut, specifically Torrington. Yes, in my twenties I gave everything up and moved to a place where most people would retire to! I’m not one for fast paced living and big flashy city lights. That’s not me at all. I’m not a flashy person, and I don’t like keeping up with the times. I like to be myself, and in Torrington, I can be who I want to be mainly because of our small town charm and easy living. Surprised to hear that from a twenty something today aren’t you? Most people in their twenties want the big city, but I’ve come to find peace in this small town where everyone is someone and everybody knows everybody.

It’s the friendly wave you get traveling through the rural part of town from a passerby that says something about the community we have all come to love. It shows what a caring community we really are, and it’s no wonder so many, including myself, have transplanted here and have made our own footprints as we work to build the next generation of Torrington. Many young people are actively involved in making positive changes around here. That’s not something you see everyday. That’s something you see only in a tight knit community, and Torrington is certainly rather tight knit. Really, haven’t you ever been to In Sheep’s Clothing downtown and seen the yarn?

In my two years here, I have seen a lot. I’ve seen the good, the bad, the ugly, but for the most part it’s a great place to live because the positives certainly outweigh the negatives. Two years ago, there wasn’t much happening downtown. It was quiet. It was dark. It wasn’t the happening place to be! Today, a whole new story thanks to so many who have made Main Street Marketplace such a success, and thanks to those awesome Torrington Downtown Partners who are helping to fill up once vacant store fronts.

Not only are we becoming a more energized community, we are also decreasing the amount of energy we use. Literally! Have you driven around Torrington at night? New lights thanks to CL&P have been installed around town, and they’re called LED lights, a dim white light that replaces the old bright yellow lights. These lights use much less energy and have a positive impact on our surrounding landscape as well. Have you noticed that you’re able to see more stars in the sky whole you’re downtown? Thank those lights! The ambient glow is slowly fading away.

With all that energy saved, we ourselves are becoming more energetic as we take a stroll on Torrington’s very own Sue Grossman Still River Greenway. The greenway, located in the north end of town, is still very much still in the works as many are working hard to expand it into the downtown area. Three miles long, this greenway has helped to promote a healthy lifestyle. In fact, I use it myself and I’m constantly impressed to see how many people take advantage of it.

Two years. It may not seem like a long time, but it’s long enough to see the many changes happening in such a great community with a big heart. There’s no place like home, and no, I don’t mean Kansas.

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