"A River Runs Through It"
Mystic, Connecticut, resides in two towns, Groton and Stonington, separated by the Mystic River but unified by a common United States Postal Service zip code, a Fire District, and its heavily-used bridge. Although the first community of Mystic wasn't named until around 1665, the first settlers in the Mystic area arrived some years earlier, about 1654. Mystic celebrates that year as its founding, and in 2004 celebrated its 350th Anniversary. The name Mystic, as the modern spelling has it, derives from the Pequot term "missituk", describing a large river whose waters are driven into waves by tides or wind.
When the first Mystic Bridge was installed in 1819, the west side of the river near the bridge (several miles south of Old Mystic) was called Portersville (no one knows why). The east side at this point on the river became known as Mystic Bridge when the first drawbridge was built ca. 1835 and oxen opened it by pulling it to the east side. Shortly thereafter, ca. 1850, Portersville became known as Mystic River. Along the river during the 19th century, numerous shipyards sprang up between Mystic and Old Mystic, with merchant ships and whalers coming off the ways on a regular basis and Mystic sailors venturing world-wide. The Mystic Seaport Museum today occupies the site of one of these very shipyards.
As well as being the quintessential New England seaport, the village is also home to the Mystic Aquarium & Institute for Exploration, and known for its research department, concern with marine life rehabilitation, and its popular beluga whales. Another major attraction is the Mystic Seaport which is a recreation of a 19th century seafaring village.
The Mystic Pizza restaurant chain inspired the name of the 1988 film. Scenes in Mystic Pizza were shot in Mystic, Stonington, Noank, Watch Hill (RI), and at the Planetarium in Mystic Seaport.
Mystic is a wonderful combination of a bustling village and tranquil places to live. The variety of architectural and home styles has something for everyone regardless of their budget. It is within easy reach of Rhode Island beaches and is less then 3 hours from New York City, less then 2 hours from Boston and one hour from Hartford and Providence and is accessible via Interstates 395, 91 or 95.