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Great Things To Do - Central Mass. Region


Central Massachusetts figures prominently in America’s past, and today it offers some of the most interesting family activities in New England. Explore Old Sturbridge Village’s 18th-century setting then stay and enjoy authentic New England cuisine, cozy rooms and fireplaces, and delicious sweets from Ye Old Bake Shoppe. The Ecotarium in Worcester, MA is one of the top science museums for kids in the country. Enjoy walking tours, special events and exhibits at the Tower Hill Botanic Gardens. Find a cozy hotel room or exert yourself on a bed, breakfast and biking vacation you won’t forget.

Atrium & Roman Mosaic - Worcester Art Museum - Worcester MA
Worcester Art Museum

55 Salisbury Street Worcester, MA, 01609 Phone: 508-799-4406

In this museum, there’s more to do than admire paintings (tho the paintings are amazing)

There is far more to do at the Worcester Art Museum than walk through the galleries, although considering the museum’s varied and extensive collections, from ancient to contemporary art, that may be your top priority. Interactive elements in the reimagined medieval galleries means you can explore the world through tales of castles, monasteries and trade routes, or contribute “alternate labels” via iPads to Old Masters. Check out a rare suit of jousting armor in the chivalric arms and armor collection or listen to a presentation on what Roman soldiers wore into battle. For children, art carts and touch carts allow them to draw and, yes, touch things. There are also tours and scavenger hunts. Check the website for updates, timed-admission information and safety protocols.
Wool Dying - Old Sturbridge Village - Sturbridge, MA
Old Sturbridge Village

1 Old Sturbridge Village Road, off Route 20 Sturbridge, MA, 01566 Phone: 508-347-3362 Toll-Free: 800-733-1830

Re-created 19th-century village is more than a museum – it’s an interactive experience

Old Sturbridge Village is so much more than a museum! Visitors feel they have traveled back two centuries, with hands-on experiences, exhibitions, animals and architecture that perfectly re-create a New England town in the 1830s. Explore the 40 historical buildings on our peropety in Sturbridge, MA, ask questions of costumed historians as they cook by a fire, make cabinets, create pottery and operate a sawmill and cider mill. Visit with heritage-breed sheep, cattle, chicken and pigs and walk through heirloom gardens. Take a horse-drawn wagon ride or take in live musical performances or talks. Walk through a covered bridge and stroll along the banks of the Quinebaug River, keeping an eye out for a great blue heron. Dine on comfort food in the charming Bullard Tavern, or enjoy lighter fare in the Ox & Yoke Cafe.
Grivet Monkey - Southwick’s Zoo - Mendon, MA
Southwick’s Zoo

2 Southwick Street Mendon, MA, 01756 Phone: 800-258-9182

Adventure Awaits at New England’s Largest Zoo, Southwick’s Zoo!

With animals to visit, rides to take, goats to pet, and deer to feed: It’s a full day of excitement at Southwick’s Zoo. With more than 850 animals, explore New England’s Largest Zoo! Visit the petting zoo with pygmy goats, walk through the 35-acre Deer Forest where you can feed fallow deer, and visit the EARTH Discovery Center where you can meet animal ambassadors and watch live presentations. Soar above the African Plains and Deer Forest in the Skyfari Sky Ride or take the Woodland Express Train through the North American Exhibit to get a closer look at elk and trumpeter swans. Work your way through the Rainforest Adventure Maze and zip through the air on the Soaring Eagle Zip Line. Your next adventure begins at Southwick’s Zoo!
Johnny Appleseed Trail - North Central Massachusetts
Johnny Appleseed Trail Through Picturesque Towns

Johnny Appleseed, born John Chapman in 1774 in Leominster, was a pioneer nurseryman who introduced apples to large parts of the Midwest. Today’s Johnny Appleseed Trail in north-central Massachusetts runs along Route 2 between the Freedom Trail and the Mohawk Trail, or from about Turner’s Falls at the western end to Lancaster at the eastern end. Spring, summer, and fall are perfect for exploring this region of farms, orchards, and beautiful small towns. Start at the Johnny Appleseed Visitor Center on Route 2 West in Lancaster. It’s full of helpful brochures and locally made crafts, books, jams and jellies, gifts and souvenirs.
Old Sturbridge Village - More than a Museum!
Fruitlands Museum
Fruitlands Is Home to four Fascinating Museums

In 1843, Bronson Alcott, father of the writer Louisa May Alcott and himself a writer, founded a utopian community called Fruitlands, near the town of Harvard. Later, from 1914 to 1945, the four Fruitlands Museums opened on the site of Alcott’s village, at 102 Prospect Hill Road in Harvard. The 210-acre landscape now includes a Shaker Museum, a Native American museum, a fine art gallery of Hudson River landscapes, changing exhibits, and trails through woodlands and meadows. A visit is inspiring, educational, and beautiful, with plenty of potential for outdoor walks on the trails. Lots of special events for adults and kids. Open daily, May through October.
Antiques Shopping in Central Massachusetts
Prowl for Fashionable Objects of the Past

Prowling shops that showcase cool old stuff of bygone times (some of it cycling into fashion again) is a fun indoor winter sport. The towns of central Massachusetts have plenty to offer style archaeologists. Sadie Green’s in Sturbridge creates and sell vintage reproduction jewelry. Metal is embossed with original dies from the 1920s and jewelry is hand assembled. Find beautiful and unusual jewelry of sea glass, hand-wrapped glass, florals and shells. Perfectly unique! In Worcester, Sweet Jane’s Designer Consignment fills your sense with just the clothing treasures that the shop name promises. The shop promises to deliver “curated designer resale [goods] for the huntress, fashionista, and style queen in all of us.” Off the Common Antiques in Grafton has many vendors selling antiques, furniture and home décor. Welcoming to dogs and strollers, too.