Heartbeat Blog

The Heart of Bristol

 

Bristol’s heart is the engine that pumps passion into everything we do. Each week, we’ll be highlighting the heart of what makes Bristol the place to BE – the businesses, the organizations, City employees, and our Bristol citizens.

The Heart of Bristol:
Summer in the All Heart City

Nick painting Centre Square mural

Nick adding final details to the Centre Square Mural.

Centre Square Mural photo

Bristol Farmers Market photo on opening day 2021

People enjoying the Bristol Farmers Market on Opening Day.

Things To Do and See in Bristol This Summer

by Grace Gagnon

You don’t need to go on a tropical vacation to enjoy your summer when you live in Bristol, Conn. Thanks to the many restaurants and activities located in the All Heart City there’s no shortage of entertainment and things to do.

You can spend your morning swimming at Page Park Pool, then head over to Rich Farm Ice Cream for a cool treat after lunch. Or, you can peruse the Bristol Farmers Market and cook a delicious summer meal with fresh, local produce.

Below are just a handful of the many ways to be a tourist in your own backyard this summer!

Check out the complete list of all the things to do in the All Heart City this summer, by visiting the Bristol All Heart website.

The Bristol Farmers Market: Experience “Farm Fresh” and Shopping Local

One of the best things about summer is fresh, local produce. The Bristol Farmers Market at Centre Square in downtown is fully stocked with fresh fruits, vegetables, plants, and other local goods such as doughnuts, beer, and dog treats.

Gresczyk Farms at the Bristol Farmers Market

Gresczyk Farms offers plants and fresh produce at the Bristol Farmers Market.

Henry Gresczyk, owner of Gresczyk Farms in New Hartford, said his farm has been coming to the Bristol Farmers Market for 15 years. Gresczyk Farms has a wide selection of produce and plants, making it one of the more extensive stands at the market. Henry said he enjoys the variety of vendors because “They all have their little niches.”

You can visit Henry from Gresczyk Farms and all the other vendors every Saturday from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. until October 30. For a complete listing of vendors, where to park, weekly free musical entertainment, and other information about the Bristol Farmers Market, visit the Farmers Market webpage on the Bristol All Heart website.

Bristol Farmers Market photo on opening day 2021

People enjoying the Bristol Farmers Market on Opening Day.

Centre Square Mural: Transforming an Empty Space into Public Art

Nick painting Centre Square mural

Nick adding final details to the Centre Square Mural.

While you’re at the Bristol Farmers Market, you can check out the new mural in town created by Nick Stafko of Black Pearl Custom Artwork.

The mural is located behind the new City parking lot. The design embodies all that Bristol offers, like Lake Compounce, Muzzy Field, The New England Carousel Museum, and ESPN. The hope is that this mural will be enjoyed by the community when they utilize the parking lot and walking path that connects it to Main Street as they visit and patronize the downtown businesses and the weekly Farmers Market.

Nick Satfko from Black Pearl Custom Artwork said, “This mural brings life to the community.”

Centre Square Mural photo

The Bristol Blues: Show Them Your All Heart Spirit!

On a summer night at Muzzy Field, a ballgame makes for a perfect family activity. So you can grab a hot dog and cheer on the Bristol Blues during one of their home games. Check out when they are playing here.

Bristol Blues baseball player running to first base

Enjoy a summer evening at Muzzy Field cheering on the Bristol Blues!

Art & Seek Initiative: An Immersive Experience

If you’re looking for an immersive experience, Bristol’s Museum Collaborative, along with the City’s Arts and Culture Commission, is hosting a citywide game of “Art & Seek.” There are 100 colorful glass objects created by Peter Greenwood, hidden in public places. It is free to participate — anyone who finds one of the objects is welcome to keep it and post about it on the Art & Seek Facebook group, which you can join here.

This art scavenger hunt will continue until every piece of art is found.

Page Park and Rockwell Park Pools: Make a Splash!

Summer wouldn’t be complete without a dip in the pool! So bring your friends and family to the newly renovated Page Park Pool and new splash pad or the Rockwell Park pool. Both pools and the splash pad are open seven days a week from 1 pm to 7 pm.

Membership Rates – Includes Access to Three Pools (Page and Rockwell Park and the Dennis Malone Aquatic Center):

  • Adults (18 – 64): $40.00 Residents / $80.00 Non-Residents
  • Children (0 – 17): $25.00 Residents / $50.00 Non-Residents
  • Seniors/College Students (65+): $35.00 Residents / $70.00 Non-Residents

Daily Rates – for Page Park and Rockwell Park Pools:

  • Adults (18 – 64): $2.00 Resident / $8.00 Non-Resident
  • Children (0 – 17): $1.00 Resident / $4.00 Non-Resident
  • Seniors/College (65+) $1.50 Resident / $6.00 Non-Resident

More information can be found at www.BristolRec.com.

Summer Concert Series at Rockwell Park: Rockin’ Out at Rockwell

On Tuesday evenings, kick back and relax to some tunes at Rockwell Park. Rockin’ Out at Rockwell Park takes place every Tuesday night from 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. from June 22 until August 10. The concert series features various music genres, including country, R&B, pop, and funk.

It’s free to attend — just bring a blanket and chairs, some snacks, and good friends! View the band lineup here.

Outdoor Dining: Take a Break from Cooking

On a lovely summer afternoon or night, what’s better than enjoying a meal outside? Not much. Luckily, Bristol has plenty of restaurants with outdoor seating.

Here are a few to choose from:

  • The Parkside Cafe
  • Pure Foods Inc.
  • Main St. Pint & Plate
  • One Fifty Central
  • Jimmy’s On The River
  • Buster’s Drive-In
  • Latin Cravings
  • Applewood Restaurant & Bar
  • San Gennaro Brick Oven

Breakfast, pizza, or fine dining — you can find it all here in the All Heart City.

Best Places to Get Ice Cream: A Cool Treat On a Hot Day

If you saved room for dessert, ice cream is the perfect summer treat. For fresh, homemade ice cream, take a ride up to Rich Farm Ice Cream located at 409 Hill St. Or, if you are already downtown, The Ice Cream Churn also offers various flavors. But, if you’re closer to Route 6, then Dunphy’s Ice Cream makes for a quick stop. Regardless, all three spots are locally owned, so you really can’t go wrong.

How are you enjoying your time in Bristol this summer? Let us know on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram!


Grace Gagnon is a Bristol native and graduate of UConn who is currently working as a content marketer.

The Heart of Bristol

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July 6, 2021
Made in Bristol: Never Pass Up An Opportunity

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July 2, 2021
Summer in the All Heart City

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October 15, 2020
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September 11, 2020
Made in Bristol: A Career Change At Any Age Leads to Success

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February 10, 2020
Made in Bristol:
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by Grace Gagnon Vanessa Rivera, who moved to the United States from Puerto Rico 6 years ago and speaks fluent…

February 6, 2020
Made in Bristol:
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