Thea Digiammerino

Leaf Peepers Give Litchfield Hills a Business Boost

The Northwest Connecticut Chamber of Commerce estimates they see 100,000 visitors during the fall season.

Peak leaf peeping is in full swing and people hoping to catch a glimpse of the gorgeous hues before they fade are flocking to the Litchfield hills.

“They are gorgeous this year,” said Helene Edwards from Vernon. “I keep taking pictures of trees like that’s a gorgeous gold and that’s a gorgeous red.”

“The numbers according to the visitors bureau are 100,000 people come every year,” said JoAnn Ryan, president and CEO of the Northwest Connecticut Chamber of Commerce.

Inns are booked. Sales are up at Sunset Meadow Vineyards, a Goshen winery.

“It’s been a great year we’ve had a lot of great color for quite a few weeks compared to other seasons that we’ve had,” said retail manager, Chris Chichester.

Even off-the-grid local attractions are getting a boost in business from tourism.

At Thorncrest Farm in Goshen they make chocolate. Each cow makes a different flavor milk to create the chocolate.

“Every cow will give you a different flavor a different texture it’ll give you a different consistency and experience for chocolate,” said Kimberly Thorn, the chocolatier. “I do think more people are out and about and traveling in from out of state to see the leaves.”

“Restaurants are booming,” Ryan said. “People are walking the streets. They’re loving what’s happening in our region.”

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