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Contest - Give advice to incoming students for $20 @ Sherman Market

Aug 30 10:54 am

Well, the moving trucks are here and that means that students from all around the country are once again decending on Boston, Somerville, Cambridge and the like.  One of the challenges that students often face when coming into a new community is:  Where do I go to get what I need?

The SLF Interns created a mini guide to local businesses for incoming Freshmen this year

In many cases, it takes years for students to become acclimated in a community and to explore the local businesses that make our neighborhoods unique and awesome.  So we thought we’d try to help by offering you a prize to help them out.

Comment here with your suggestion for students on where they can buy student stuff locally.  Multiple items appreciated, but only 1 suggestion is necessary to enter.  Suggestions must be locally owned and independent businesses in or near Somerville and fill a need that students have.  Comments posted by 11:30 AM tomorrow (8/31) are eligible for a $20 Shift & Save coupon to Sherman Market where you can explore and enjoy some of the best New England food products out there.

Help incoming students buy local and get a chance for a $20 Gift Certificate to Sherman Market

Helping new residents go local  + a chance for free local food = Win.  Go!

Filed under: Blog Posts


  1. Office Furniture Liquidators on Broadway for desks, shelving, and file cabinet type furniture on the cheap.

    Artifaktori in Davis for really cool inexpensive vintage clothes - you know, for when you want to get a jump on your sweet Halloween costume.

    Comment by Samantha Coren — August 30, 2010 @ 11:32 am

  2. You’ll be needing some caffeine for those late night problem sets and early morning classes - and the best place to get it, in my opinion, is Tea Zone, on Elm St. Really high quality loose tea and tea supplies, very cheap, lovely owner. Yelp reviewers give it 5 stars:

    Comment by Betsy — August 30, 2010 @ 11:35 am

  3. Economy Hardware is a great local place to buy furniture or any other household repair knick knacks. The City Schemes outlet store, right off of Somerville Ave, is also a great place for furniture - and they aren’t opposed to haggling.

    Comment by Sean — August 30, 2010 @ 11:38 am

  4. Harvest Co-op in Central is a great place for groceries, and Cambridge Naturals in Porter Square is great for bath/beauty products, candles, vitamins, herbals, etc.

    Comment by Sonia — August 30, 2010 @ 11:56 am

  5. Who needs to buy their clothes new these days?? That’s kind of a waste of your money when Poor Little Rich Girl exists in Union Square and Seredipity Thrift on Somerville Ave just past Union. Great unique and really affordable items for every occasion- from out-on-the-town outfits to loungewear for studying at home…check it out

    Comment by Jen — August 30, 2010 @ 11:58 am

  6. The best pesto (even beats my homemade stuff) is at Capone’s in Union Square. It’s extra delicious when combined with Somerville’s Fiore di Nonno fresh mozzarella.

    Comment by Stacy — August 30, 2010 @ 12:35 pm

  7. China Fair on mass ave in Porter is a great place for cheap kitchen supplies, chinese lanterns, and other party decorations!

    Comment by Avocado — August 30, 2010 @ 1:41 pm

  8. When shopping for food to stock your studio, dorm or apartment fridge, check out the local farmers markets that will run through October to stay on top of healthy eating and supporting local farmers. Props to you for eating at home and cooking from home, but it’s inevitable that you’ll wanna go out to eat, so check out the amazing restaurants that source locally. Many of these restaurants, farmers markets and local stores advertise and/or are written up in Edible Boston- pick up your free copy and learn about the local food movement in Boston!

    Comment by Julia F. — August 30, 2010 @ 2:24 pm

  9. The Training Room ( is a great place to workout on the cheap. No memberships at all to workout there and they offer great small group classes for a low cost (cycling, bootcamp, etc). If you can swing just a bit more cash, you can get personally trained with a friend or two for a low cost for each. Check it out!

    Comment by LMLSnoopy — August 30, 2010 @ 2:31 pm

  10. If you’re looking for eco-friendly decorations or supplies for the apartment/dorm, Greenward (near Porter Square) is a good place to look. They have metal water bottles, lunch bags, bike accessories, reusable grocery bags, and plenty of unexpected finds.

    Comment by Jessica — August 30, 2010 @ 2:32 pm

  11. Well, you’re gonna need to eat! So don’t be fooled by the name: Dave’s Fresh Pasta on Holland in Davis Square has a great selection of local veggies/fruits/cheeses/dairy products, meat/deli, a great wine selection, and phenomenal sandwiches, in addition to great pasta made right on the premises (plus a selection of homemade sauces and prepared fresh or frozen pasta dishes, to boot) — if you’re hungry, you really can not go wrong there.

    But first, get yourself to Ball Square where within a single block (ok, maybe two) you can choose between True Grounds for coffee/bakery/sandwiches, or great full breakfast options from Kelly’s Diner, Soundbites, or Ball Square Cafe — all locally owned and operated!

    Comment by Bonnie — August 30, 2010 @ 2:35 pm

  12. You’ll definitely need coffee and a place to meet friends, and you might even need something to eat, or a place to showcase your musical talent.

    So, while I hate to give away my secret hangouts, they’re too good not to share: Diesel Cafe in Davis Square ( ) and Bloc 11 Cafe in Union Square ( ).

    Bloc 11 has a regular open mic night and other entertainment, and both cafes have beautiful space, food, drinks and a great mix of customers and staff.

    Comment by Andrea — August 30, 2010 @ 2:57 pm

  13. Protect our local, sustainable overpasses: and get a library card: :)

    Comment by Cathy — August 30, 2010 @ 3:14 pm

  14. When I first moved to Davis Sq, I struggled with how to get by so far from grocery stores, but there are so many options nearby that you rarely need to make the trek to Shaw’s in Porter. As mentioned before, Dave’s Fresh Pasta is great for produce, sandwiches, pasta, as well as beer and wine. They even sell soy milk! And you can get regular milk in refillable glass bottles from a local dairy. Speaking of dairies: the Dairy Bar next to Kick-ass cupcakes (which are themselves local and kick-ass), sells local milk, cheeses, and bulk olive oil which you can refill weekly in your own container. Plus its next-door to When Pigs Fly, which- while not Somerville-based-does sell fresh-baked AMAZING breads from a Boston-based bakery. Farmer’s Bounty on Elm is an unassuming grocery which carries more produce (cheaper than Dave’s too) as well as Indian and Irish foods.

    Davis also excels in the local beer/wine/liquor store dept with Fine Wine in Ball Square offering many local brews, as well as a small, but well-curated selection of wines. They also hold weekly free tastings. And the motherlode: Downtown Wine and Spirits on Elm sells pretty much every local brew, plus wine, plus hard alcohol.

    For coffee beans, Ball Square is home to the above-mentioned True Grounds, which serves a great latte and sells locally made Terroir beans (of George Howell fame) which are my favorite beans, hand down, in terms of taste and ethical business practices.

    Between all of those options, and the farmers markets in Union Square (Awesome) and Davis (ok), I pretty much never go to the grocery store anymore…

    Comment by Carly — August 30, 2010 @ 4:50 pm

  15. Specialty foods: for experimenting with new ingredients in non-enormous amounts, the Harvest Coop is awesome in that they have a lovely selection of bulk items. And for more esoteric fun, Christina’s in Inman Square is a great place to go spice hunting (and then stop next door for some ice cream!).

    Comment by BettyG — August 30, 2010 @ 5:57 pm

  16. I second the recommendation of Greenward near Porter square. They have great ways to avoid waste. I also love the food and wine at Dave’s Fresh Pasta. It reminds me of my favorite local food shop back home.

    Comment by SamC — August 30, 2010 @ 9:54 pm

  17. The Bookcase Factory Outlet is a great place to buy locally made, high quality, solid wood furniture. And its

    Comment by Katie S — August 30, 2010 @ 11:41 pm

  18. The lines for Sunday brunch are overwhelming in Ball Square at Sound Bites, Ball Square Cafe and Kelly’s (please don’t get hurt in the Breakfast Wars crossfire). All offer great food, but stroll across the street to Yak & Yeti for a traditional American breakfast with a little Nepali flair.

    Comment by Joe G — August 31, 2010 @ 8:17 am

  19. All college students need a break from the cafeteria, and they should head to Diva Lounge on a weeknight for their 5-7pm special. They have $1 tapas and the last time I was there, we combined it with a coupon and three of us ate for a total of $21 with beverage!

    Comment by Stacey — August 31, 2010 @ 12:43 pm

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