Stronger than dirt: New Laundromat fills the void

(Photo by Dion Ogust)

Sometimes something we’ve lived with for years closes and surprises us all by leaving a hole — as happened, a decade back, when Grand Union left town. Other times, what seemed to be an institution — like the old Library Laundromat — closes and everyone just shrugs. But a new entity can arise to take its place, like the sparkling new Woodstock Laundry that opened up on Mill Hill Road just before the recent holidays, and what was, gets forgotten.

Could any of this have anything to do with the fact that the man behind the new laundry, Vince Christafora Jr., already has a strong sense of what Woodstock wants and needs? After all, he’s already built Woodstock Hardware into a thriving entity, right up there with the other businesses his family members are involved with, from Woodstock Meats and Diane’s Kitchen to the town’s UPS Center.

“Save time, save money, and have the cleanest clothes in town,” reads the smashing new website Woodstock Laundry launched in league with its recent real-time opening on December 18. “Kick back and watch a favorite TV show. Enjoy a new and different laundry experience!”


The place lists amenities as if it were a new motel. In addition to self-service coin-operated washers to handle 18 pound, 40 pound, and 60 pound loads, as well as 30 pound and 45 pound dryers, the place is offering drop-off laundry services, with premium or all-natural product choices, and folding (plus color and whites separation). There’s free WiFi, air conditioning; vending machines with detergent/softener and beverage/snacks; and surveillance cameras. Hours are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., with last wash at 9 p.m,, seven days a week.

“My wife Diane and I have been working real hard at this since last spring,” Christafora said. “Now I find myself there one and a half to two hours a day, while Diane’s there at least two hours each day, making sure everything’s folded well, to ensuring the place stays clean and nice.”

Christafora noted that even though it’s been a good 25 years since he stopped doing his laundry at laundromats, he realized an opening, and municipal need, when the opportunity presented itself.

Nevertheless, he says he was surprised by a number of things, from how much he’s enjoyed the new business to the demographics it has exposed.

“We get folks whose home machines have broken down, and families with lots of kids who find it easier to just do all the clothes at once,” he said. “When we started doing the drop off service on January 9, we picked up people who liked the convenience. And most like the fact that we offer natural products, and are teaching people that hot water doesn’t make for cleaner clothes than cold, it’s just a matter of being green and being energy efficient.”

Moreover, the Christafora’s get a quiet thrill at making Woodstock’s clothes that much cleaner.

“We’ve also helped bring more business to Woofstock,” one of the businesses located in their new spot, where Post Express held forth for years. “It has been going good: we’ve created a truly exceptional laundry, we believe.”

Hey, so what if I now look back to the day I got myself a working laundry in my own home as a mark-point for my true adulthood, just as Vince Jr. does. And I don’t have the fondest memories of Library Laundromat (we didn’t speak about that, I have to admit)…but I’m ready to give this a try for social reasons, if nothing else. And having someone else fold my undies.

“We’re planning a grand opening next month,” Christafora added. “Check these pages for the announcement.”

Woodstock Laundry is located at 59 Mill Hill Road, just across Elwyn Lane from Cumberland Farms. Call 679-7837 (SUDS) or visit

No more excuses for Woodstock grunge, I guess…++