New Milford, the place where many of us take for granted but deep down have a strong love and appreciation for. If you went away for college, the time has come to return to our small hometown and spend our summer with the people we have known our whole lives. For those of you who grew up here or have been blessed enough to spend even a part of your summer here, these will be all too familiar to you.
Here are 9 signs you're home for summer in New Milford, CT:
1. Sunny Day Drives
There's nothing better than driving with the windows down blasting your favorite music and seeing your friends drive past you in town or on Route 7. The tractors are out, as are the convertibles and vintage cars, and everybody is cruising along (maybe even a little too slow)
2. Boat Days
Some of us are fortunate enough to live on Candlewood Lake. Some of us live nowhere near the lake but still own a boat. Then there is the majority of us who are lucky just to know someone that lives on the lake or owns a boat. Music, drinks and food, and quality time with friends and family on the water make for an amazing summer day
3. Country Concert Season
Dig out those cowboy boots and wait for the mass text messages with the links for tickets to roll in because the tail gates and warm summer nights are calling our names
4. The Big Y
Many of us went to school out of state, so we know that many people have never even heard of a Big Y. But for us, it is so much more than a grocery store, but rather a staple of our hometown. Big Y parking lot is the place to carpool, meet up before our concerts, or just relax and watch the fireworks, which are used way more often than just on the Fourth of July
5. Village Fair Days
There's nothing quite like our small festival. Vendors, ice cream trucks, local food stands, and familiar faces surround our town green. It is a tradition that we all cherish and reminds us of our roots. Plus, how can we resist some face paint, dream catchers, and a pulled pork sandwich?
6. Cottonwood Poplars
These are the little white fluffs that fly through the air making you think you are witnessing a summer snowstorm. They stick to virtually everything including our clothes and our cars. If you did not have allergies before, you most likely will this summer (invest in some Zyrtec now)
7. Clamp's Hamburger Stand
Located on Route 202 on the way to Marble Dale is New Milford's seasonal hamburger stand. The menu consists of basic barbecue foods such as hamburgers and hotdogs, but also includes other items such as grilled cheeses, clam strips, and chicken tenders. They have some of the best fries and onion rings, and a whole list of toppings to add to your meal. Since it is open strictly from late April to Labor Day, it is difficult to not come to this stand when you need a cold drink and a good meal
8. School Is Out
This may seem like an obvious one since it is summer and college students have been home since May. But truthfully, summer does not start until all of the schools in town close for vacation. The town feels full again during summer. Bank Street Theater becomes packed even on weekday nights. Ice cream trips to Carvel, The Sweet Spot, Tasty Waves and Peachwave become daily visits. Families go out to eat and they dine outside. Every local lake is full of swimmers and boaters. Children are running around on their lawns and splashing in their pools while their parents are barbecuing on their grills. Schools fill back up with summer camps. The town green fills with shoppers, people on picnics, and children jumping on the beloved tank.
There is nothing quite like summer in New Milford, and I can't imagine being anywhere else