Shelton Day is a long standing tradition, dating back to the 1980s. At first, it was held to attract residents to the downtown area and introduce them to the local businesses. Since then, it has grown into a large community gathering that includes food, crafts, and multiple entertainment stages.
I remember attending Shelton Day back when I was in high school. I always looked forward to seeing my friends, checking out the local bands, and eating. The streets were always filled with residents and visitors from Derby and other nearby towns.
During college and for a few years after, I was hardly ever in Shelton and ended up missing a few years festivities. I was able to attend last year and again this year.
I did not see the same sort of turnout this year as I had experienced in the past. The streets felt somewhat empty. I remember when the festival stretched from the Rt 8 exit/entrance all the way down to the Boys and Girls Club and included a stage at each end and at the Derby/Shelton bridge.
I was disappointed with the turnout of people and vendors. Maybe it was because I was younger and the streets seemed bigger, but it is definitely not the same. I am curious to know if anyone else feels the same way?
However, even in the rain, I had a great time on Howe Ave this year. I chatted with a few store owners, including Marks of Design and Nikki’s Candy Boutique, and learned of a few new businesses that will be opening up in the area.
Of course, I could not pass by Stockbridge’s without going in for some cheesecake, and some soup from Liquid Lunch was a must in the colder weather.
Overall, I am happy to report that I feel very positive about the direction the downtown area is going. I had a great time and lots of fun during the 3+ hours I was in attendance and I am already looking forward to next year.
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