This Is My Hartford is a new series from the MetroHartford Alliance where we connect with local business owners, community drivers, residents, and employees to find out how the Hartford Region has shaped them throughout their career, and what they have done to shape our city and region.
By Nan Price, Content Manager, MetroHartford Alliance
Next in our series, Nicole Bengtson, Root Down Power Yoga
WHY HARTFORD? WHAT BROUGHT YOU HERE?
NICOLE BENGTSON: I had decided to open a yoga studio and was looking for a space. I was originally thinking I’d try and find a location near South Glastonbury, where I live, but I couldn’t find anything.
I feel like something was pulling me to the city. At the time, I didn’t know much about Hartford. I didn’t grow up in Connecticut, but I’ve lived in other cities in the Northeast and I consider myself a city person.
The more I looked into Hartford, the more I became inspired by what was happening in and around the city. It became clear that my yoga space needed—and deserved—to be in a diverse city location. I knew I wanted it to be accessible to everyone.
HOW HAVE YOU BECOME A PART OF HARTFORD?
NICOLE: I started by attending some networking events to meet other local business owners. What’s amazing about this community is, it embraced me right away. The community was as excited as I was to have a new business and a yoga studio located right on Main Street in Hartford.
HOW HAS HARTFORD BECOME A PART OF WHO YOU ARE?
NICOLE: Deciding to locate the studio in Hartford made me part of a more diverse and welcoming community. And when I say “community,” I mean different types of people and different types of business. I’ve made great connections. I’ve connected with local non-profits and formed collaborations to give back to the community, too.
I feel like I found what I was seeking. I’m happy I chose to be here.
WHAT DO YOU FEEL UNIQUELY MAKES HARTFORD…HARTFORD?
NICOLE: It’s the people and diversity. It’s the community that’s welcoming and encouraging of new businesses.