Meriden, once the home of the International Silver Company and foremost leader in silverware manufacturing, has mellowed since its heyday. Businesses dropped off, however, and the once prosperous town developed signs of decline. Then a stranger came to town, and things began to change.
The introduction of a new college to the area sparked enthusiasm and a desire to improve downtown Meriden. Plans are in the making to replace old buildings with new shops and restaurants.
This renovation is still in the formative stages, however, and its effects are yet to be seen. Currently, most serious shopping is done at the 907,000 square foot Westfield Shoppingtown, one of the largest malls in Connecticut with 154 stores and a food court.
Hiking is the main sport in Meriden. There are numerous trails to choose from, the most popular of which leads to an old stone tower (Castle Craig) on East Peak in The Hanging Hills. It passes a sparkling lake called Cat Hole, and winds its way up into the rust-painted cliffs that peer out over the town..
Chauncey Peak is another great trail that forges through forests, passing a lake and plenty of wildlife on the way. Other scenic paths include: Mettabesett Trail along Mount Higby in Middlefield, and Sessions Woods Wildlife Management Area (great for observing wildlife) in Burlington.
Golfing is available at the Hunter Memorial Golf Course in Meriden. And, one of the best fly fishing spots in the Nutmeg State is available year-round in the Farmington River in Canton, a short drive from town. Its managed area is stocked with many species of fish including rainbow and brown trout and Atlantic salmon fry.
Meriden, a city on the comeback, is midway between Hartford and New Haven