In 1929, Tom Pinchbeck’s great grandfather traveled to Guilford with his family and staked their new territory with a massive greenhouse. For the next 79 years, Pinchbeck’s Rose Farm nurtured 100,000 rose bushes until highly industrial competition began to cloud their traditional production methods.
Rather than closing the doors on his farm, Pinchbeck restructured the business with his friend Jim Lyman. Lyman had been seeking a meaningful job opportunity for his son and other individuals on the autism spectrum. Through Roses for Autism—and in coordination with Ability Beyond Disability—Lyman and Pinchbeck aim to facilitate independence in the business world for individuals with autism. Employees at the farm take part in each step of the process by selecting roses, cutting stems, arranging bouquets, checking inventories, processing orders, and packaging shipments to be enjoyed by hungry bees and brides across the country.
On any given day at Branford Academy of Hair & Cosmetology, you may find student hair stylists bent over mannequin heads during cosmetology courses or makeup-artists-in-training transforming models into skeletons and wood nymphs as part of their makeup artistry certification. At the school's spa, visitors can receive relaxing facials, expert haircuts, and other beauty services from students who work under the watchful eye of a certified aesthetician and instructor.
Bikram Yoga New Haven's 90-minute classes keep tendons lean and taut by taking participants through 26 poses of muscle-melting concentration and two breathing exercises, all performed in room set at 105 degrees Fahrenheit. With the thermostat cranked to a warm, humid, and detoxifying temperature, students narrow their focus to sweat out their toxins and forge new, flexible frontiers while maintaining rhythmic, deep relaxation breathing. Aside from empowering the mind, muscles, and soul, Bikram classes provide proven benefits, such as assisting in injury recovery, speeding tissue regeneration, and granting the power of wingless flight. First timers will benefit from coming with an empty stomach, plenty of water, and two towels, but yoga-mat rentals at every session mean clients don’t have to worry about forgetting theirs at home or weaving one out of packing peanuts (free for first class; additional fee for mat rental applies for following classes). Over 25 classes on the weekly schedule allow for flexibility that goes beyond bendy thigh muscles.
Twin Lakes Golf Course is set on grounds that have been walked by golfers for more than 50 years, but enjoy the modern touches of a recent revamping. New tee boxes reside atop the professionally manicured greens that carpet the 10-acre course. Its renovated clubhouse offers guests the supplies they need for gameplay, including clubs and pull carts. After a round, players can return to the clubhouse where pizza bubbles in a wood-burning oven and cool beverages flow freely from taps.
For more than a century, Ring's End has put quality home improvement products in the hands of homeowners and contractors. A Stanley FatMax level ($30.99) ensures all paintings and ouija boards are hung correctly, and a gallon of Benjamin Moore Regal Classic paint ($40.19) creates a vibrant new hue on staid interior walls. Fiberon composite decking ($2.95+/ft.) helps to craft sturdy, colorful backyard-grilling platforms and arrives backed by a 20-year limited warranty. Handymen and women can keep tools easily accessible, organized, and ready to travel with a Veto Pro Pac tool bag ($144.99), which holds more than 100 hand tools and includes six zippered pockets to hide worksite snacks from Bob Vila.