We asked a few locals and a few shopkeepers why they moved here, what they think of town, and to share some of their favorite things about Madison. 

(Photo by Amy Etra)

Peter Loden, shop owner of Walker Loden:

  1. When did you open your Madison business? We originally opened in 1989 October in Guilford and moved here about 2.5 years later.
  2. Why did you choose Madison? Half of our customers were from Madison at the time. Came up and chatted with Roxanne (owner of RJ Julia’s) about Madison. She pointed out the Monroe Building. Spoke with Gunnar and the rest is history.
  3. Favorite place in town: The Sorting Hat Tree on the Green! Lower left hand corner. Harry Potter books have the Sorting Hat which determined which school each student is enrolled in. This beautiful tree reminds me of the hat and the surrounding Mystic of Madison. On a reality check – I would have to say the beach – hands down. So calming and reassuring.
  4. Favorite restaurant in town: Depending on what the flavor of the night is for me, they range from Jia Mei Asian Kitchen, to the Beach Hotel, to Café Allegre, to Red Tomato, to Bar Bouchee, to Donahue’s. Basically comfort food with oysters here and there to October Fest.
  5. Favorite shop in town (other than yours!): The Arts Cinema – Love going there. Have given several gift certificates to friends all of which are well pleased. When we’re open at night I may walk over, buy some popcorn, and bring it back to the store. All ask, where did I get the popcorn?
  6. Do you take advantage of the recreational options in town (beaches, hiking, biking, etc)? If so, what are your favorites? Evenings at the Surf Club or at the Madison Beach Hotel just walking around are VERY relaxing. The calmest of the waves coming ashore are soothing. The summer outdoor festivals at the hotel were always a must but…
  7. What do you think makes Madison special? We have a lively downtown, with a theatre, a well renowned bookstore, restaurants to choose from, the library, the post office, not to mention a multitude of shops all supported by an active and vibrant Chamber.
  8. You have a friend considering moving to town. How would you convince them they should? Bring them here to see for themselves. Small town community, active, the beach, parades, excellent school system. An ideal “Our Town” situation!