The technicians at Cheshire Cycle know bikes inside and out, not only because they repair them on a daily basis, but also because they spend hours and hours riding them. The adventuresome crew even sponsors a road-racing team that took home more than 50 top finishes in 2012 alone. They couple this insider knowledge with advanced technology to perform like-a-glove fittings and offer services that range from basic tune-ups to total overhauls. Their shop stocks reputable brands, including bikes by Scott, Jamis Bicycles, and Stolen BMX and clothing by designers such as Louis Garneau, Fox, and Pearl Izumi. Whatever bikes or equipment the staff don't have on the shelves they can order from a catalog supplier or have the elves in the backroom make from scratch.
For more than 50 years, the Wolfs have run Bloomfield Bicycle & Repair Shop, outfitting cyclists with the bikes best suited to their customers’ needs such as Schwinn mountain and Jamis street bikes. They can even pair up couples with tandem bikes and the pedal-weary with electric bikes. Besides slipping cyclists into bike shoes, gloves, and vests, they also mend and maintain all kinds of bikes, from traditional two-wheelers to electric bikes and scooters.
Greenwood Trails Camp’s owner and director Owen Langbart firmly believes that all kids—especially today’s generation of cell-phone addicts and video gamers—need the quintessential camp experience. With more than 100 wooded acres at the foothills of the Berkshires and a staff of friendly counselors that specializes in orienting first-time campers, his one-, two-, four-, and six-week camps aim to do just that. Winding paths and hiking trails lead young guests aged 7–16 to the many amenities that cover the grounds, including a larger-than-Olympic-size swimming pool, an indoor climbing wall, a water trampoline, a batting cage, and a pottery studio. These same paths lead to the cozy cabins that house up to 12 campers and two counselors with all of the comforts of home: electricity, bathrooms, showers with hot and cold running water, and an old man in a recliner who won’t let go of the remote even if he falls asleep.
Regardless of age, Greenwood Trails lets campers choose the activities in which they’d like to take part in daily, such as pottery, photography, or outdoor cooking. Participants also engage in cabin activities that encourage bonding among bunkmates, such as swimming together in the lake or joining in an untieable human knot.
As a 12-season veteran of the United States Cycling Federation who also holds a master’s degree in philosophy, Bicycle South Windsor LLC owner Peter Di Pietro takes a thoughtful approach to cycling. Discerning in the curation of gear, Di Pietro pilots a shop that carries new, used, and rental bicycles by brands such as Masi, Haro, Schwinn, and GT. He also oversees and performs same-day repairs and tune-ups that carry a service guarantee for a full calendar year—a generous timeframe that allows riders to cruise confidently over the course of the spring, summer, fall, winter, and bike-jousting season.
Baseball is alive all year-round at All Star Indoor Batting Range Baseball & Softball Academy. Started in 1991 by three baseball fans—Kevin and Brian Gilroy and Frank Rizzo—the facility gives players the chance to practice no matter how many inches of snow or packs of rabid umpires are flurrying outside. The 15,000-square-foot sports haven boasts seven tunnel cages for practicing all aspects of the game. Other elements, such as stadium benches and 7,000 square feet of artificial turf, give the academy the feel of an indoor diamond. To help players take their skills to the next level, the academy also offers private and semiprivate lessons, and maintains a pro shop stocked with essential gear.
O2living, a holistic health and wellness center, treats bodies with nontraditional methods designed to heal and improve overall quality of life. One such method is a live-food diet, which cleanses systems with meals made of raw, live foods, such as locally harvested greens and macrobiotic salads and soups.
Also popular are O2living’s juice-cleanse regimens, which chefs press daily from organic fruits and vegetables. One visit to the café, where they juices are created, had reporter Alice Gabriel of The New York Times vowing to improve her own lifestyle, calling the fare “motivational.”
In addition to diet plans, O2living offers yoga classes, organic skincare treatments, and relaxing massage. A one-year membership to O2living completely overhauls bodies with such perks as a monthly mini facial, unlimited yoga classes, four seasonal juice cleanses, and access to a living-food chef and educator.
Cycle Center of Stamford's knowledgeable staff has been equipping riders with the appropriate cycling accouterments and fine-tuning bikes to ensure safe travels for 27 years. Its trove of name-brand gear accommodates cyclists of all ages and skill types, from weekend riders to participants in the Tour de Franks––an annual race to visit every Frank in the continental United States.