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Any aficionado of bow ties will enjoy dropping by Beau Ties Ltd., 69 Industrial Ave. (tel. 800/488-8437; www.beautiesltd.com), a cottage industry that began as a retirement project. This firm designs, manufactures, and sells a quite distinctive line of the old-fashioned ties -- including some rather festive holiday-themed ties -- from a utilitarian building here in Middlebury; visitors are welcome. You're in good company if you do make it: Past customers of the firm have included such bow-tied luminaries as popcorn impresario Orville Redenbacher and TV celebrities Bill Nye and Charles Osgood.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.