West Suffield Mountain, part of the basaltic Metacomet ridge, is the dominant terrain feature of Suffield, marching along its western edge from north to south. Much of the town is an alternation of forest and farmland, though West Suffield Mountain itself is heavily forested on its lower slopes. Superb views over the surrounding countryside can be had from the summit of the “mountain”, and there are several parks within the town as well, including Stony Brook Park, Bruce Park, and the Lewis Farm Bird Sanctuary.
The town is bordered on the east by the Connecticut River, which flows down over the Massachusetts-Connecticut border at this point. The town has typical river valley terrain for the northern part of the watershed in the state. Several state routes crisscross the township, providing access to Springfield in the north and Hartford, rather more distantly, in the south.
Suffield was once the home of many wealthy, influential people, including real estate speculators and early manufacturers. Thus, there are a large number of beautiful, well-maintained Colonial houses in the town, adding to its appearance and its feeling of Connecticut history.
There are four public schools within Suffield, which run the gamut from Spaulding Elementary School, to McAlister Intermediate School, to Suffield Middle School and Suffield High School. There is also a private school in the town – Suffield Academy – which is essentially a private high school as well.
There are also two further educational establishments in the community – Connecticut Culinary Institute and the International College of Hospitality Management. Those adults seeking training and an associate’s degree in fields relating either to cooking or hotels can obtain their training here.
Suffield is currently, to a large extent, a bedroom community and economic satellite of Springfield, Massachusetts, which is 8 miles distant, as opposed to Hartford’s 16. Retail and professional services, as well as various service providers, form the bulk of those who find employment within the town itself. The town is large enough to generate demand for local services of various kinds, and the restaurants and gift stores thrive from tourism in the summer months.
Some local manufacturing and fabrication activity still exists, including a laser cutting and welding shop, a manufacturing plant for HP Hood LLC dairy products, and a company which fabricates automotive gearshifts and other car components. There is also still a bit of farming in Suffield.
Suffield’s population is 88.67% white, with African-Americans constituting 6.95% of the residents and “other races” making up 2.03%. The median household income is a healthy $85,065 per year, while 3.6% of the population suffers from poverty and 6.2% of adults are unemployed.
62.6% of the town’s 5,372 households are centered around a married couple living together, and close to 33% of households include a child or several children under the age of 18. The median age is 40, higher than the median age of both Connecticut and the United States as a whole.
Location within State
Suffield is located at the center of Connecticut’s northern border, which is shared with Massachusetts. The town is located to the west of the Connecticut River where is passes over the state boundary, though the town’s center is set back somewhat from the waterfront (approximately two miles away). Route 75 passes through the middle of Suffield, while routes 159 and 190 also traverse its northern and eastern portions.
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