|AT A GLANCE|
|Median Home Price||$218,900|
This town 20 miles northeast of Hartford celebrated its 300th birthday this year, and you'll see postcards from its past just about everyone you look. The Tolland Green, the town center, is on the National Register of historic places, with more than 50 buildings that date back to the late 18th and early 19th century. Many of these Colonial, Greek Revival, and Victorian structures are still being used, both as residences and as the home of the Tolland Town Hall, the library, and several churches and businesses.
Tolland, once sustained by its numerous vegetable farms and apple orchards, has also preserved its rural roots by protecting 20% of its land as open space. Heron Cove Park, on the Willimantic River, is a popular spot for canoeing, kayaking, and fishing, and Crandall Park has its own beach. There are also more than a dozen conservation areas, most studded with woody trails. An active group of local artists, many of whom work through the Arts of Tolland, curate local shows, organize live performances, and bolster the fine-arts programs in the public schools.
The robust local job market (unemployment rate of 3.5%) gets a boost from the University of Connecticut in Storrs, about 20 miles nearby, as does a growing number of technology businesses. Tolland is also expanding its business park, a mixed-use complex near the town center that includes manufacturing firms and the Star Hill Family Athletic Center, with 100,000 square feet of playing fields, a pool, and a fitness center.—Donna Rosato