New Canaan businesses are the lifeblood not just of the “Magic Circle” downtown and other hubs of arts and commerce, but also are critical drivers and supporters of community events, human services and preserving the character of “The Next Station to Heaven.” In this section, we spotlight New Canaan businesses and profile their owners, in long-form interviews and spot features, celebrating our anchor businesses and welcoming those new to town.

Recent Articles

Aquarium Store ‘Life Aquatic’ To Move from South Avenue to Park Street

After more than seven years on South Avenue, New Canaan’s full-service aquarium store is moving one block away downtown, to the former Radio Shack space on Park Street. Life Aquatic’s owner, Randy Jahier, said he’s very excited about switching to “a much bigger location.”

“I am going to expand my offerings,” Jahier told “I am primarily saltwater now, so I am going to be going more heavily into freshwater and freshwater plants and upkeep and accessories.”

The move will take place Sept. 1 and Jahier said Life Aquatic will be open through the transition. The new location at 94 Park St. Continue Reading →

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SNEAK PEEK: ‘Chef Prasad’ Indian Restaurant To Open This Month

Chef Prasad, the Indian restaurant going in at 62 Main St. in New Canaan, likely will open for takeout and delivery in the third week of May, and offer full dining service in the days that follow, according to the business’s owner. Prasad Chirnomula said he’s “super excited” to train the kitchen and floor staff to his liking and will soft-open within two weeks. The completely renovated space—new black-and-white checkerboard floor, new ceiling, walls, furniture and decor—used to house “India,” Chirnomula’s eatery that closed in December. Owner of longtime New Canaan favorite Thali down the street before that, Chirnomula said Chef Prasad offers a different vibe from India. Continue Reading →

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‘Youth Sports Has Gotten Crazy’: Two New Canaanites Launch ‘Aspire and Persevere’ Mobile App

By the time they met as parents on the sidelines of New Canaan’s youth soccer fields about one year ago, town residents James Patten and Jill Swarni already had much in common. They each lived in town for about 15 years, their kids attended public schools here and played the same sports, and both were accomplished businesspeople with standout collegiate athletic careers. A consultant, Patten helped win three National Championship titles playing lacrosse at Hobart College, earning two All-American selections as well as NCAA Midfielder of the Year and Hobart College’s Athlete of the Year honors. He’s also coached at Colgate University and was the head assistant coach when the lacrosse staff won the Patriot League Coach of the Year Honors. An owner and operator of Elevate Fitness, Swarni played soccer at the University of New Hampshire, where she served as a student athletic trainer for various sports teams (assisting the head trainer for a semi-pro basketball team in her senior year), and earned a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology there with an emphasis on athletic training. Continue Reading →

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Beval Saddlery in New Canaan To Close

After more than 30 years, Beval Saddlery is closing its New Canaan store, officials say. According to a sign on the Pine Street business’s door, the provider of equestrian riding equipment, apparel and supplies is to continue its North Salem, N.Y. and Gladstone, N.J. stores while closing the one here. “We’re excited for this change and look forward to serving our customers in these existing locations, both centered at the heart of two strong equestrian communities,” the sign said. “In addition, our mobile store will be hitting the road to meet you at shows beginning in May.”

It wasn’t immediately clear why the store is closing—Beval’s owners were not immediately available for on-the-record comment. The business will continue to offer its products and support through its website. Continue Reading →

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After Five Years in New Canaan, Goldenberry Departs for Wilton Center

After five years on Cherry Street, gourmet and specialty gift shop Goldenberry—which through 30 years the area has carved out a niche, offering English dinnerware and treats, among other unique items—has moved to Wilton, according to its owner. As the shop neared the end of its lease, Deb Hecht said she tried to find another space here, though ultimately Goldenberry was lured to Wilton Center. The shop has cultivated a large New Canaan customer base and “Wilton town center is close enough for our customers to continue to shop with us,” Hecht told 

“We know so many of our wonderful customers for many years—so many of them are like family. Children who played at our play table eventually went off to college and have come back and become customers themselves. Truly heart-warming and special. Continue Reading →

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