What started as a pictorial of local sculpted metal street art, expanded into a walking tour of the sleepy little town where I work. What Bethel lacks in grandeur and sophistication it makes up for with its intimate and unique collection of little shops, restaurants and small scale architecture. This little enclave, with the biblical name, was the birthplace of P.T. Barnum of the famous traveling circus, and has a hippie vibe. You will find no chain stores here, but if you’re looking for a spiritual guide, a yoga or Gaelic dance studio, a coffee roaster to prepare your signature blend, independent bookstores, a music store with a collection of vinyl classics, an auto shop to restore your old ‘Vette, or great examples of modest Victorian homes, this is the place for you.

First, here’s the collection of sculptures on display on the grounds surrounding the Bethel Public Library and Town Hall. Most are familiar subjects and forms represented in metal with a 360-degree perspective.

All of these sights, and more, are within a few blocks of my workplace and create a peaceful and invigorating backdrop to my daily walk.

There is nothing I love move than an old wooden church. Bethel United Methodist recently had a face-lift and as you can see, she really shines.

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Bethel United Methodist

This is the little flower garden alongside the library.

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Library Garden

Molten Java lost a bit of its atmosphere when it moved down the road a few years ago, but I like to escape to the front porch for a few minutes on a warm day.

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Molten Java
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Molten Java porch sign

There are quite a few Victorian “painted ladies” within a few square blocks of the main street.

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Italianate
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Victorian

This stucco, columned home seems a little out of place, but I guess it represents the quirky, eclectic style of the town. The windows always look dark and I once heard loud opera music blaring from inside. Kind of creepy…

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Stucco

There are railroad crossings at many intersections and the train blasts its warning as it approaches the middle of town.

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Tracks North
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Tracks South

This is the historic old train station, which housed a bike shop for a few years, but is currently vacant.

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Old Train Station

Another grand old house which is home to Putnam House Inn and Restaurant. One of my favorites.

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Putnam House

Next to Putnam House is the old Opera House and Greenwood Tavern. There are no longer performances at the Opera House, but the Tavern has a warm atmosphere and decent pub fare. Hope you enjoyed sharing my walk through this little Connecticut town.

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Greenwood’s / Opera House

 

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