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Bigelow Tea Sponsors a Wilton Elementary School to Go Green: 50 Solar Panels Reduce School’s CO2 Emissions by 15,500 Pounds Over the Next 25 Years!

I have to share with you the most amazing morning I had this week. Bigelow was very fortunate to be able to help sponsor solar panels for a school in Wilton. Thanks to Connecticut state funding for programs like this (unfortunately the funding might end soon), Bigelow was able to donate $25,000 and receive a tax rebate from the Neighborhood Assistance Act.

The process was pretty simple: first the town of Fairfield had to get state approval for the funds. Once they got the approval, the town looked for businesses to sponsor. We quickly lined up to support such a worthy cause. We then gave out the money to non-profit organizations that wanted to “go green.”

Well thanks to that process, we now have an elementary school with 50 solar panels on its roof. Those panels will reduce the school’s CO2 emissions by 15,500 pounds over the next 25 years. It is the equivalent to planting 175 trees a year over that same time frame!

This week I was invited to the school’s ribbon cutting for the panels, and the event was so heartwarming. I walked in to the school to be greeted by 5 young boys in ties and jackets (too cute for words), they then escorted me into the main room where hundreds of little faces were staring up at me as they moved me to the front. Each one was more precious than the next. I was all smiles. Our congressman, Jim Himes, got up and spoke and did the most amazing job talking to these young kids about their role in taking care of our one world. He was brilliant in his approach-just the right level but talked about all the things they are doing in the school to help  planet earth!

It was such an outstanding event that I have since called our Governor, Jodi Rell, to share with her how fantastic the experience was. I know she is looking at a bill right now that will extend or end the funds available to continue these kinds of programs. She has much to consider with the state of Connecticut in serious financial turmoil, but I felt like she should at least hear how effective the funds have been and how they are helping our state and our world for the future.

Who knows, maybe my little ribbon cutting experience might make a big impact on her! Either way, it was a morning to remember. I am still all smiles…..

Cindi Bigelow

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It’s National Smile Month: Enjoy Your Bigelow Tea With A Great Smile!

Image Courtesy of www.mybodytips.com

A great smile includes healthy teeth and gums; Bigelow Tea has something to say about all three. May is National Smile Month, a great opportunity to brush up on your dental hygiene needs, and drink your Bigelow Tea in order to make your smile the best it can be!

Besides the appreciative smile that Bigelow Tea brings to you, the properties in green and black teas have been shown to reduce plaque and kill bacteria which helps to prevent cavities and reduce bad breath. That same green or black tea also contains important elements that fight inflammation, studies conclude, which makes for healthier gums! Of course, along with practicing good dental hygiene, eating the right foods is also important in maintaining good oral health and keeping that great smile in shape.

So as you’re enjoying your favorite Bigelow Tea, know that not only does the taste put a smile on your face, but the healthful properties found in tea can also be an important tool in preventing cavities, improving the health of your gums, and keeping that smile in tip-top shape!

Say “cheese,” flash those pearly-whites and get ready for your close up!

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Bigelow Tea Makes Father’s Day Extra Special This Year!

Father’s Day is called Father’s Day (and not Father’s Hour) for a reason. You could spend the whole day with Dad, pacing yourself with Bigelow Tea along the way – from Organic Breakfast Blend Decaffeinated first thing in the morning to Sweet Dreams Herbal Tea later at night.

The idea of designating a special day for fathers is credited to Sonora Dodd, who was raised by her father. When Sonora attended a Mother’s Day Sermon in 1909, she realized that fathers deserved gratitude, too. Therefore she organized the first Father’s Day the following year in Spokane, Wash., and promoted the idea tirelessly for years until it caught on around the country.

Yankee Stadium Cookie Tin & Tea from Bigelow Tea

If fathers merited a day of appreciation and recognition back in 1910, they are even more deserving today, since the challenges of raising children and keeping a family together are even greater now. Fathers are more involved in child rearing and shared housework, and what better way to thank them than with a relaxing gift of tea? Plus, for dads who love baseball, there’s the Yankee Stadium Cookie Tin & Tea, Dodger Stadium and Fenway Park cookie tins too!

American Classic Tea Gift Set from Bigelow Tea

Bigelow Tea’s American Classic Tea Gift Set is so reasonably priced, it’s even within the budget of dad’s tiniest toddler!

Assorted Green Tea Tin from Bigelow Tea

Or how about a gift that will last Dad a good long time? The Assorted Green Tea Tin has 120 individually wrapped healthful and delicately flavored Bigelow Green Teas. This gift will provide Dad with many calm, soothing moments as he takes those well-deserved breaks from his fatherly duties — not only on Father’s Day, but throughout the coming months!

Here’s to “Dear ol’ Dad!”

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Our 2010 First Flush FesTEAval Was a Huge Success!

This year’s 4th annual First Flush FesTEAval was amazing!!!…

The weather was perfect, in the mid 80’s and sunny…We could not have asked for a better day!  Excitement filled the air as we opened the gates at 10:00am on Sunday morning, but little did we know that by 3:30 that afternoon we would be announcing that we were closed to all guests without pre-purchased tickets.  Yes, that is right!…At 3:30 The Bridge at 105.5 announced to all of its listeners that the First Flush FesTEAval was SOLD OUT!  We had reached our maximum count of 5,000 plus attendees!  What an amazing site to see!  People and cars covering every inch of the farm… with the exception of the tea fields, of course!

People danced to the music, soaked in the sun, and enjoyed over 7,000 cups of iced American Classic Tea we had prepared for them!  We thought 7,000 cups would be plenty, but much to our surprise this tea loving group wiped out our entire supply by 1:00 that afternoon.  We found ourselves scrambling to brew enough tea to satisfy their demands!  We did it though!…Thanks to the hard work of our Charleston Tea Plantation staff and event volunteers, we were able to keep the tea flowing!

This year’s First Flush offered more entertainment than year’s past.  Not only did guests get to enjoy the music of well known performers like Crowfield, Cory Chisel and headliner Robert Randolph and The Family Band, but they were also treated to sounds of local artists presented by Mark Bryan’s (Grammy award winning guitarist/songwriter for Hootie & The Blowfish) Chucktown Music Group.  This included Amber Caparas, John Wesley Satterfield, Mac Leaphart and Mark Bryan himself.  However, to no one’s surprise, it was Robert Randolph that brought the house down with his unique style of music!  Even people who weren’t familiar with the sounds of a his famous pedal steel guitar danced and grooved to the beat!

Guests also enjoyed local cuisine and shopped the wares of Charleston artists.  Needless to say, there was something for everyone, even the kids!  The Spider Jump was a huge hit again this year and children and parents loved the new additions to the kids’ area: face painting, pony rides and Beaufort the Rescue Mule!

We can’t say it enough, this year’s First Flush FesTEAval was AMAZING!!!

A big THANKS to everyone involved in making this the best First Flush FesTEAval to date!!! Our entire Plantation staff plus over 35 event volunteers were the true heart and soul of it all!  THANK YOU again for your support, and we look forward to next year!

Cara Valentine, Charleston Tea Plantation.

Photos provided by Mark Snowberger

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Bigelow Tea, 2010…Continuing to Comment!

Cooking with Bigelow Tea is one of the most interesting (and tastiest!) ways to enjoy the range of flavors and aromas associated with our teas.

All year long, we’re celebrating the 65th anniversary of Ruth Campbell Bigelow’s creation of Constant Comment. To help mark this exceptional event, we’re highlighting some of our favorite Constant Comment recipes.

Constant Comment Muffins

You’ve already seen the recipes for Constant Comment Glazed Chicken and Constant Comment Spice Cake here on the Bigelow Tea Blog.

Now here’s a recipe to start your day on the right foot: our super easy and delicious Constant Comment Muffin recipe…guaranteed to make your house smell incredible! Serve these up alongside a cup of Constant Comment tea and your important morning time will be off to a sweet start. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

1-1/4 cups milk

4 Bigelow Constant Comment Tea Bags

2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/3 cup sugar

1-1/2 tablespoons baking powder

3⁄4 cup butter or margarine, cold (1-1/2 sticks)

Yield: Makes 12 medium muffins.

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400° F. Grease muffin cups or use muffin liners.

Combine milk and tea bags in a small saucepan. Heat over medium/low heat until bubbles form around the edge, stirring occasionally. (DO NOT BOIL.) Remove from heat and let cool (15-20 minutes); remove tea bags, squeezing out liquid. Set aside.

In large bowl, combine flour, sugar and baking powder. Cut in butter or margarine with a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the tea-infused milk just until flour is moistened. Do not over mix.

Spoon mixture into muffin cups. Bake 20 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack.

Serve with jelly or jam.


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Bigelow Tea Makes Quite the Stir in the 2010 Great Bed Races!

On April 26, Bigelow Tea joined in the Kentucky Derby celebration by taking part in the local 2010 Kentucky Derby Festival, held in Louisville, KY. The Derby Festival takes place for two weeks up to the running of the famed Kentucky Derby.  With all proceeds benefiting the community, the fun and merriment features a variety of great events –like the zany Great Bed Races! The Great Bed Race is easily our favorite, and we have entered it for 6 years now!

Why are the Great Bed Races so exciting? Well, it’s quite the sight: Bigelow Tea, along with 52 other companies constructed beds with four runners and one driver, designed to race around a 600 ft. track. Talk about your spectacle! Not only that, but racers also dress in wild and crazy pajamas, head to bed.

This year’s theme for the Great Bed Races was “Spring Fever Reliever,” and fittingly, we named our Bigelow Tea bed “Island Teatime.” The tropical bed was designed as a tiki hut, and of course, we could not pass up such an excellent opportunity to serve several flavors of our delicious freshly brewed teas.

So what were the Great Bed Race results? Well, out of 40 teams that managed to keep their beds intact throughout the race, Bigelow Tea placed 15th in the Fun Division, with a tea-fueled time of 30.9 seconds! Not bad considering the pressure of thousands of Great Bed Races enthusiasts watching and televised coverage by the local NBC affiliate WAVE 3.

We are excitingly awaiting next year’s Great Bed Races.  We can’t guarantee a Win, Place or Show, but we can guarantee a fun time for all!

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National Employee Health & Fitness Day: Put the Power Of Bigelow Tea To Work!

Bigelow Tea certainly isn’t new to advocating healthy lifestyles; it’s something we’ve been doing for 65 years.

Today, May 19th, marks National Employee Health & Fitness Day, created for companies to promote and encourage employees’ health and fitness needs. This day is designed to help workers lower their stress levels, improve physical fitness and build stamina.

Daniel Bourbonnais Jogging Trail Painting, Courtesy of fineartamerica.com

A few years ago, Bigelow Tea participated in ABC Primetime’s Corporate Weight Loss Challenge, and the words teamwork, diet, and exercise were the buzz.  In fact, a little teamwork at the office certainly goes a long way, as you can also see from the most recent competition that Cindi Bigelow has promoted among Senior Management in addition to the fact that Bigelow Tea won the Bridgeport Regional Business Council’s Healthy Business Award for mid-sized employers!

We encourage both employers and employees to use National Employee Health & Fitness Day to reflect upon their lifestyles, because making healthy choices not only improves your own quality of life, but increases productivity in the workplace!

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Bigelow Tea Is Pleased to Highlight The New Charleston Tea Plantation Website

A working tea garden is not something many of us are familiar with, so we at Bigelow Tea wanted to share our newly designed web site for the Charleston Tea Plantation. Here you will discover acres and acres of beautiful tea plants, take a tour the Tea Factory, and even browse the charming Plantation Gift Shop.

Learn about America’s only Tea Garden, which is representative of gracious, civilized living, just like the aroma and flavor of a hot cup of Bigelow Tea! No surprise that Bigelow Tea’s plantation is in South Carolina – renowned for gracious living.

Also on our site you can learn about the trolley tour of the grounds at the Charleston Tea Plantation, with all its beauty and heritage. And for a taste of what it’s all about, please feel welcome to join Cindi Bigelow on a short video tour of America’s only Tea Garden, right now! (Please wait until the vehicle has come to a complete stop before leaving this page!)

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TYEBpX3efw[/youtube]

And who knows? With all information packed into this website, maybe you’ll start planning a road trip this summer to the Charleston Tea Plantation, home of the delicious American Classic Teas!


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“Tea for One”… Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant Sings About It and Lives By It!

Photos Courtesy of Dailymail.co.uk

“How come twenty four hours, baby sometimes seem to slip into days?
…A minute seems like a lifetime, baby when I feel this way

Sittin, lookin at the clock, time moves so slow

I’ve been watchin for the hands to move

Until I just can’t look no more”

~ Tea for One
(Led Zeppelin album, Presence)

Gone are the crazy days of the wild, over the top tours…Robert Plant, brilliant front man for the legendary rock band, Led Zeppelin, now favors simple and sublime pleasures of herbal tea as his back-stage libation of choice! This may come as a surprise to some, but not to us at Bigelow Tea. We know that a great cup of tea not only tastes delightful, but is also a great de-stressor loaded with anti-oxidants.

That being said, it is common knowledge that the British love their tea and this rockin’ Brit, with the long golden locks and unmistakable voice, is no exception. In fact, all the old boys of Led Zeppelin seem to concur. In their 2007 reunion concert, their backstage rider was sweet and simple: tea, coffee, and an ironing board!

Robert Plant, John Paul Jones, Jimmy Page

Sadly for their fans, it’s unlikely that Led Zeppelin will reunite again anytime soon. However, Robert Plant will be hitting the road this summer on a 12-city tour with new venture, Band of Joy. Put on the kettle!

Meanwhile, we’ll leave you with some vintage Robert Plant and Jimmy Page, in mellow blues number “Tea for One.” The lyrics were inspired by the loneliness that tour-weary Robert Plant experienced, clinging to hot mugs of tea and honey alone in his hotel room.  So it’s true – Bigelow Tea rocks!

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It’s Finally Here! Bigelow Tea Invites You To The First Flush FesTEAval At Our Charleston Tea Plantation!

The time is now! Bigelow Tea invites you to bring the entire family to Wadmalaw Island this Sunday, May 16th from 11:00AM to 6:00PM to celebrate the beginning of the 2010 tea harvest at the Charleston Tea Plantation. All tea lovers will want to be there as the Charleston Tea Plantation and The Bridge at 105.5 present the 4th Annual First Flush FesTEAval!

‘First flush’ is all about the tender, new tea leaves that are plucked in the first growing season of each year. It’s a celebration of spring, a celebration of life, and a celebration of all things tea. But you can count on this unique festival to provide even more than recognizing the first harvest at our Tea Garden (the only working Tea Garden in the country). Aside from learning first-hand how our tea is produced at the plantation factory, you can also enjoy music, food, trolley rides through the picturesque fields, and simply sitting back and relaxing in the beautiful surroundings. Bring your blanket!

This year again, the music is a fantastic lineup of recording artists. Check out Robert Randolph & the Family Band, Cory Chisel, Crowfield, and Mark Bryan (multi-platinum and Grammy award winning guitarist/songwriter for Hootie & The Blowfish). All will perform along with the Chucktown Music Group, Amber Caparas, John Wesley Satterfield, and Mac Leaphart. Add all to all of that entertainment to the games and fun just for the kids, the delectable local cuisine and complimentary iced American Classic First Flush Tea served all day long, and you know there’s something or everyone!

We look forward to seeing you Sunday at Wadmalaw Island! Don’t miss the chance to join us in celebrating the start of American Classic tea’s harvest season, and have a great day with Bigelow Tea!

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