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For more Great Things To Do in New England, click here to read the VisitNewEngland blog!
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Find family, history, & cultural activities from Boston to Berkshires, indoors and out

Find great, fun things to do and fresh places to explore in the Bay State for every age and taste, from antique shopping to rock climbing to slithering through a water park. Check attractions' websites for updates to scheduling and other details, especially for activities affected by weather.

Every region, from the historic homes and gardens of the Berkshires to the beaches of Cape Cod offers memorable adventures for the whole family. Plan a getaway to the cultural and historic sites of Boston and spring for a luxury hotel or waterfront lodging in this “Athens of America.”

Zip Line Summer Duo 500x250 - Berkshire East Mountain Resort - Charlemont, MA
Berkshire East Mountain Resort

66 Thunder Mountain Road Charlemont, MA, 01339 Phone: 413-339-6617

Featured by USA Today as one of the Top Ten Zip Lines of the United States!

Berkshire East is New England's largest zip destination with three tours to choose from. The Base Tour is our introductory course… give zipping a try! Then move on to fabulous views of the valley on the Mountain Top Tour. Mountain Top zipping is a great family experience and summer memory.

Ready for tour number three? The Valley Jump is fun to the extreme. You will love it. Two 1/2 long mile zips, approaching 200' off the ground. This tour has been featured in the Washington Post.

Come, fly above the tree tops!
Exterior Porches Inn at MASS MoCA North Adams Massachusetts
Porches Inn at MASS MoCA

231 River Street North Adams, MA, 01247 Phone: 413-664-0400

MassMoCA and more in quaint and quirky North Adams

Visit the world renowned Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art and stay across the street at this lodging in restored Victorian row houses. You’ll enjoy the relaxed, cozy atmosphere and quirky and colorful spirit within. Architectural framings and angles vary. Individual decors give a distinct personality to every space. No two rooms are alike and the comforts are everywhere from lofts and/or spiral staircases, separate living rooms, working fireplaces, to private slate floored baths with Jacuzzi, claw foot tubs, and separate shower stalls. There’s complimentary continental breakfast, a heated outdoor pool, fitness center and lobby bar. The museum highlights the northern Berkshire’s arts and crafts scene while quaint, walkable North Adams offers great shopping, restaurants, galleries and more.
Children Waving - Island Queen - Falmouth, MA
Island Queen

75 Falmouth Heights Road Falmouth, MA, 02540 Phone: 508-548-4800

Great places start with a great journey.

As if Martha’s Vineyard wasn’t enough of a great place to travel to, getting there only adds to the fun. From May through October, climb aboard the Island Queen in Falmouth, MA on ol’ Cape Cod and settle in for a sweet 35 minute mini cruise across beautiful and historic Vineyard Sound. The sea along the Massachusetts Coast is your soothing backdrop for 35 minutes of relaxation, conversation and a refreshing touch of sun, sky and salt air that fills the lungs and lifts the spirit. Passengers only are welcome aboard along with their bicycles, kayaks, paddle boards and pets. Reservations are not accepted. Group Bookings available for 20 or more passengers.
LUMINA - Worcester Art Museum - Worcester MA
Worcester Art Museum

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

Discover a great museum in central Massachusetts

This central Massachusetts museum is considered one of the finest mid-sized museums in the country. Follow history’s path through 50 centuries of the world’s antiquities, paintings, prints, photographs, sculptures, decorative arts, arms and armor. December 2018 brings an interactive art installation that will infuse the winter season with brilliant light and color during the Museum’s Holidays at WAM programming.
Whitewater 2018 - Zoar Outdoor - Charlemont, MA
Zoar Outdoor

Route 2 (Mohawk Trail) Charlemont, MA, 01339 Phone: 800-532-7483

So many amazing activities at this adventure center for all skill levels

If you have ever wanted to try zip lining, or whitewater rafting or stand-up paddle-boarding, the place to launch your adventure is Zoar Outdoor in the Berkshires. It’s also the place for experienced folks, with whitewater rapids up to level IV and a three-hour zip lining canopy tour that reaches heights of 50 feet. Zoar also offers stand-up paddle-boarding, kayaking, canoeing, rock climbing, easy river floats and, at its center in Wilmington, Vt., snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and mountain biking. Experienced instructors and guides are ready to assist or teach people at every skill level, and the equipment they use is first-rate. Kayaks and paddleboards, for example, are stable enough for first-time users. Lodging options include Hawk Mountain Lodge, 11 cabin tents, five tent sites – and a yurt.
Friends 500x250 - CoCo Key Water Park Boston North Shore - Danvers, MA
CoCo Key Water Park Boston North Shore

50 Ferncroft Road Danvers, MA, 01923 Phone: 978-777-2500

The Largest Indoor Water Park in New England!

Make a splash with the family at the largest indoor water park in Massachusetts. A tropical indoor paradise where it’s always 84 degrees and open every day for every kid of every age. There are water slides, a lazy river, a splash pad and dip-in-the- theater arcade, private, cozy cabanas and lots more where they came from. Hold one of a kind birthday parties, group swims, or even buy out the whole park for a day. Then enjoy a night at the Doubletree Hotel Boston North Shore adjacent to the Park with luxurious bedding and jumbo pillows, flat screen television, on-demand movies and premium cable channels. Look for Coco Key Discounts and packages that include overnight accommodations, water resort access, and breakfast in the family-friendly TradeWinds Restaurant.
Photo for Great Things 500x250 - Beanstalk Adventures - Reading, MA
Beanstalk Adventure Ropes Course

50 Walkers Brook Drive Reading, MA, 01867 Phone: 781-942-9816

Exciting indoor ropes course adventure in Reading

Jordan’s BeanStalk™ Adventure Ropes Course in Reading Massachusetts, gets you moving from one activity to the next to test your agility and balance. Make your way across this one-of-a-kind sky ropes course and head up 12 or 24 feet onto zig zag beams, crisscross angled rope ladders, and spaghetti hand lines. Walk the plank at 24 feet then travel out on a 6 inch standalone beam, pivot and return. Enjoy two levels of challenging ropes course, 30 exciting activities and for young adventurers, there’s BeanSprout™, a specially designed course for children 2-7. Adventurers must be at least 48" tall or 42" if accompanied by a chaperone. Groups of 10 or more paying on the same transaction receive a 10% discount.
Sunset Yacht Rental - Discover Quincy - Quincy, MA
Discover Quincy

Quincy Chamber of Commerce - 1400 Hancock Street, Suite 1A Quincy, MA, 02169 Phone: 617-471-1700

Variety is the spice of everyday life in this welcoming coastal city

From history to hiking, there’s tons to do in Quincy. Visit the birthplaces of two presidents at Adams National Historical Park, take in a symphony performance, learn about granite quarries or shipbuilding at user-friendly museums, dine at a clam shack or an upscale waterfront restaurant. If you want to enjoy the great outdoors, the Blue Hills Reservations boasts 7,000 acres featuring paved and unpaved hiking and biking trails as well as spectacular panoramic views. Throughout the city there are places where you can go golfing, play tennis, charter a fishing boat or just cast your line off a pier. Fancy a beach? There are several to choose from, on the ocean, ponds and river, many with playgrounds.
Seekonk Grand Track Tunnel Seekonk MA
Seekonk Grand Prix

1098 Fall River Avenue Seekonk, MA, 02771 Phone: 508-336-8307

Everybody drives

Experience the wildest Go Kart action at this state of the art facility offering competitive fun at an affordable price. Challenge family and friends on more than 60 arcade games including Guitar Hero, Ski Ball, Air Hockey and Dance Dance Revolution. The Family Track, the longest in New England, features tunnels, hairpin curves and straight-aways and new two-seater go-karts. Little guys and gals get in on the action with the new Rookie Track, with the Kiddy Track and Beginner Track just ahead. Bump and bounce your buddies in bumper cars and boats and finish the day off with a friendly game on the adventure mini golf course.
Shoreway Acres Inn for NE Inns page
ShoreWay Acres Inn

Historic Shore Street Falmouth, MA, 02541 Phone: 508-540-3000 Toll-Free: 800-352-7100

Neighborhood vibe while being close to the action a highlight of this historic inn

ShoreWay Acres Inn, an unique alternative to generic motels, prides itself on being family owned and operated, one reason families have been coming to this historic property for years, to relax in its indoor and outdoor pools, to let the kids play badminton on the lawn, dive into the “no-tech” toy chest or swing in the swings, to chow down on clambakes (or that complimentary hot breakfast) or tell stories and eat s’mores by the fire pits. Ask for rooms with a kitchen, or one opening onto an outside patio or balcony or, for more room, a studio or cottage-style accommodation. Nearby activities include a bike trail, Martha’s Vineyard ferry and a village stocked with fun stores and restaurants.
Franklin Park Zoo Lion Foilage Boston MA
Franklin Park Zoo

One Franklin Park Road Boston, MA, 02121 Phone: 617-541-5466

Meet the animal kingdom in Boston’s largest park

There is not a drop in the excitement at this magnificent Zoo no matter your age. Part of Boston’s famed Emerald Necklace, this 72 acre natural setting is Boston’s largest park and home to wildlife from around the world. Three exhibit areas including the Tropical Forest, the Kalahari Kingdom and the Giraffe Savannah offer lions, zebras, giraffes, lowland gorillas, lemurs, pygmy hippos and other fine beasts. The Aussie Aviary, open seasonally, features a free-flight, interactive bird adventure. You’ll find programs and classes for families and school groups and facilities for birthday parties and corporate events. The southwestern-themed Giddy-Up Grill and Kalahari Kitchen serves great food and snacks. Franklin Park Zoo is open year-round except Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Summer Shopping 500x250 - Destination Plymouth - Plymouth, MA
See Plymouth

Visitor Center - 134 Court Street Plymouth, MA, 02360 Phone: 508-747-7533 Toll-Free: 800-872-1620

Where will your visit begin?

We have a variety of activities on land or on the water. The Atlantic Ocean itself is our playground! Trips such as whale watches, lobster excursions and pirate adventures are popular with visitors both young and not quite as young. Our beaches and parks offer families a place to relax and enjoy the great outdoors. Enjoy great seafood, fairs, festivals, the arts, a distillery, a winery or a brewery. Ride a narrow gauge train ride through acres of cranberry bogs at Edaville USA. Experience living history at Plimoth Plantation, depicting life in Plymouth in 1627. Please call 1.800.USA.1620, or visit our website to learn more about these activities and others to prepare for your trip to Plymouth.
View from the Harbor 500x250 - Battleship Cove - Fall River, MA
Battleship Cove

5 Water Street Fall River, MA, 02721 Phone: 508-678-1100 Toll-Free: 800-533-3194

A day out you won’t forget

In 1964, the citizens of Massachusetts, including over 6000 school children, banded together to save the battleship USS Massachusetts from being scrapped, and bring her to the waterfront of historic Fall River on June 12, 1965. During her dedication, the battleship’s historic significance was further recognized as she was made the official World War II Memorial for the Commonwealth and opened as a public museum. Over the years, she has been joined by the destroyer Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr., the submarine Lionfish, PT 617 and PT 796, and the Soviet built missile corvette Hiddensee to form the largest collection of historic naval ships in the world, America’s Fleet Museum at Battleship Cove. Today, Battleship Cove stands as one of the region’s most popular attractions.
Dining with a Great View - Taj Boston Hotel - Boston, MA
The Newbury Boston

1 Newbury Street Boston, MA, 02116 Phone: 617-536-5700

Rooftop Sunday Brunch with spectacular views of the Public Garden and Boston

Enjoy traditional breakfast preparations, contemporary New England cuisine, and Indian specialties, alongside a bounty of dessert items made in-house by our talented pastry team.
Every Sunday, April-November, with seatings from 10:30am - 2pm. Reservations suggested.
Spirit of Boston Exterior Boston MA
Spirit of Boston

200 Seaport Boulevard - Commonwealth Pier Boston, MA, 02210 Phone: 617-748-1450 Toll-Free: 866-310-2469

Harbor cruise lets you see Boston from a unique – and fun – vantage point

Why not see scenic Boston from the sea? Take a Spirit of Boston cruise and check out all the sights, from the Boston Tea Party site to the Old North Church, the Bunker Hill Monument and Old Ironsides. Two-hour lunch and three-hour dinner cruises feature fresh, buffet-style offerings served in a comfortable, climate-controlled inner deck. You can even reserve a window table to savor the city – and a cocktail. The view from the huge observation deck is breathtaking, whether it’s a mid-day look at the spectacular Zakim Memorial Bridge or a sunset panorama of a sparkling cityscape. Onboard activities include games like tabletop shuffleboard and giant Jenga. There’s also a dance floor and DJ-provided music. Look for special holiday cruises and deals.
Roller Coaster Family - Edaville Family Theme Park - Carver, MA
Edaville Family Theme Park

5 Pine Street Carver, MA, 02330 Phone: 508-866-8190 Toll-Free: 877-332-8455

Plan your exciting day (and add extra time) at this fun-filled amusement park

Plan to spend extra time at Edaville Family Theme Park because with over 90 rides and attractions, from animatronic dinosaurs to arcade games and roller coasters, you’ll never see and do it all in a single day. Check out the T. Rex in the Dino Land Walking Trail or the illuminated Ferris wheel. Ride Thomas the Tank Engine in Thomas Land (check the schedule for character breakfasts and meet-and-greets) or let the little ones climb and play in the Sodor Play Zone. Trains will take you through scenic cranberry bogs – or examine model trains in the Sodor Balloon Station. Free parking, great places to eat, fun for kids of all ages: What more could you ask for?
Fife & Drum Parade - Plymouth 400 - Plymouth, MA
Plymouth 400 Inc.

6 Main Street Ext. - Post Office Square Plymouth, MA, 02360 Phone: 508-812-2020

Plan now to participate in activities celebrating Plymouth’s 400th anniversary

Make plans now to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower voyage and the founding of Plymouth Colony. Plymouth events will include placing items in a time capsule, a regatta of wooden ships and pleasure craft to celebrate the Mayflower’s journey, a lobster dinner on the waterfront and cultural and arts festivals. The official anniversary tour includes visits to Plimoth Plantation and Wampanoag Homesite with live demonstrations; touring the Mayflower II and Plymouth Harbor; and visiting sites from King’s Chapel Burying Ground in Boston and the Myles Standish Monument in Duxbury to Provincetown’s Pilgrim Monument and Museum and the Clay Cliffs and cultural center at Aquinnah on Martha’s Vineyard. An interactive exhibit on Wampanoag history is currently traveling across the state.
Milky Way Galaxy - Blake Planetarium - Plymouth, MA
W. Russell Blake Planetarium

117 Long Pond Road Plymouth, MA, 02360 Phone: 508-830-4470

Plymouth planetarium provides perfect evening for star-gazers

Look up! It’s the night sky in all its glory, but can you identify the constellations? Head to the W. Russell Blake Planetarium, where you can sit back and let the experts show you how to identify planets, bright stars and constellations. In this full-dome planetarium, a brand new DigitalSky projection system provides a full-screen image that covers the room’s entire ceiling in the mysteries of the universe. While enjoying breathtaking views and spectacular surround sound, you’ll learn about astronomy and perhaps how to use a star map (you can take it home). The planetarium also has regular weekly features including a Big Bird adventure for the kids and an exploration of the natural world below the skies.
Ponds at Foxhollow Exterior Lenox MA
Ponds at Foxhollow

Route 7 Lenox, MA, 01240 Phone: 413-637-1469

Endless adventure and recreation in a Berkshires vacation

The Berkshire Hills has it all. And you can have it too at this magnificent and secluded resort set on a picturesque 223 acre estate. Your home away from home can be a one or two bedroom condominium with master bathroom and Jacuzzi, a fully equipped kitchen, fireplace, living and dining areas, sleeper sofa, television, stereo, DVD player and a deck overlooking the pond. Right outside your door are gas barbecue grills, tennis, shuffleboard, bocce courts, a playground, indoor and outdoor pools, exercise room with hot tub and sauna, rowboats and canoes, trails for walking and cross country skiing. Within a short drive, enjoy Berkshire’s history, art, music, old inns and taverns, great food and shopping. Breathtaking mountain scenery included.
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

A trip to historic, authentic and tasty

One of Massachusetts’ 50 great things to do has 50 great things all its own to enjoy when you arrive at this celebrated living history destination, one of the nation’s largest. Settle in at the Old Sturbridge Inn or Reeder Family Lodges. Savor authentic New England cuisine, cozy rooms and fireplaces, and delicious sweets from Ye Old Bake Shoppe. Then step into the 18th century and watch and participate in what people did then. Costumed interpreters will guide your visit on foot, on a stagecoach or standing beside a potter’s wheel or the blacksmith’s forge, or meeting with farmers and their animals at work. The 19th century is here, too, in 40 antique homes, buildings and water-powered mills in this most scenic town. Open year-round. Seasonal hours may vary.
Panoramic View 500x250 - Cantor Art Gallery - Worcester, MA
Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Art Gallery

College of the Holy Cross - 1 College Street Worcester, MA, 01610 Phone: 508-793-3356

A gallery with a mission

As a college art gallery, the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Art Gallery’s mission is to promote the intellectual and cultural life of the College of the Holy Cross and greater community by exploring the fundamental intellectual, cultural, spiritual and aesthetic issues encountered through the visual arts. Through a series of exhibitions throughout the academic year, enhanced by receptions, guest lectures, readings, and students’ presentations, you’ll always find something of interest. Current exhibition information and hours of operation can be found on the gallery’s website.
Front Porch - Red Lion Inn - Stockbridge, MA
Red Lion Inn

30 Main Street Stockbridge, MA, 01262 Phone: 413-298-5545

Make the Red Lion Inn your headquarters for Berkshire memories

There is everything to like about a visit to Stockbridge, MA. There’s two plus centuries of America’s history. Here’s the adopted home of Norman Rockwell not far from his celebrated museum. The studios and creations of famed artists, musicians, and authors are within easy reach. The outdoors offers hiking, biking, skiing, water sports and more. In short, there is something for everyone. The Red Lion Inn has it too. Rooms with complimentary WIFI, air conditioning, cable television, and cozy plush bathrobes. There’s great food rooted in the region’s traditions. Enjoy the fitness room, the partners spa, a heated outdoor pool and hot tub, a porch with rocking chairs, a gift shop, nightly entertainment at the Lion’s Den, and a very curious lobby cat.
Stone Zoo Leopard Stoneham MA
Stone Zoo

149 Pond Street Stoneham, MA, 02180 Phone: 617-541-5466

A century’s old great place to visit

This popular century old year round attraction sits on 26 acres and is home to exotic animals from around the world. You’ll meet “Major” the Polar bear and an arctic fox, bald eagle, black bear, lynx and reindeer in Yukon Creek. There’s Boston’s only white-cheeked gibbon exhibit featuring monkeys, lynxes, snow leopards, Mexican gray wolves, river otters, and the capybara. There’s, flamingos, tamarins, sloths and Meerkat in Windows to the Wild. See jaguars, cougars, coati and falcon at the Treasures of the Sierra Madre exhibit. The Safari Grill offers kid friendly food and you’ll find gifts and souvenirs at the Peacock Place Gift Shop. Opening Thanksgiving evening is Zoolights that runs through the end of the year.
Winter at Jiminy Peak On The Trail - The Berkshires of Western MA
The Berkshires of Western MA

Come Create Your Own Winter Adventure

In the Berkshires, winter is a way of life. Located less than three hours from New York City and Boston in the beautiful mountains of Western Massachusetts, the Berkshires offer myriad in and outdoor attractions, from skiing and snowshoeing to breweries and boutiques. Enjoy leisurely strolls through first-class museums followed by gourmet cuisine and craft cocktails, then take in a play or live music, or cozy up to a fire at one of our many charming New England B&Bs. Whether a romantic getaway for two or winter respite for the entire family, a snowy Berkshire adventure is guaranteed to delight. Learn more at Berkshires.org or follow “Visit the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts” on Facebook.
worcester art museum with kids
Take Your Kids on a Stag Hunt – from the 6th Century BC

A bear and stag hunt from the 6th century BC portrayed in a giant floor mosaic. How hard would it be to get kids involved in games and explorations of this piece of artwork, speaking to them across 26 centuries? This glorious mosaic floor, excavated from a home in Antioch that was destroyed by an earthquake in 526 AD, is a centerpiece exhibit at Worcester Art Museum in Worcester and also the topic of a Family Guide exploration. A brochure invites kids to count animals and sketch the mosaic. Can you think of a better way to get your kids loving art and history?
Blantyre
Bubbles in the Berkshires

Blantyre , a Relais & Châteaux property nestled near Lenox in the scenic Berkshires, is now hosting a year-round Champagne salon inspired by Dom Pérignon. The salon will offer select Dom Pérignon varietals in indoor and outdoor spaces. Guests can enjoy inventive drinks and fresh fare throughout the year in the Cloister, a secluded garden patio that features a clever tin-to-table menu with an upscale twist on caviar. Inside, guests can seek refuge at La Cave, a sleek underground hideaway next to Blantyre’s acclaimed wine cellar, adorned with original brick and marble stone walls. Elegant! The new Champagne Salon is open Fridays to Sundays, 3 to 11 p.m. 844-881-0104.
freedom trail guided tours
Follow that Petticoat to Learn about Boston’s Past

Freedom Trail guides are easy to spot: they look like they just stepped out of the 1700s. The guides are out every day leading fun and educational tours. For example, Massachusetts State House Tours teach about the history and architecture of the building. King's Chapel's Bells and Bones Tours visit the crypts below the Chapel and the 1816 Paul Revere bell. The Old North Church offers Behind the Scenes Tours and Bones and Burials Tours. The USS Constitution crew members offer presentations about the ship's storied past. The pleasure of a visit is amplified when you know more about the history around you.
harvard square chocolate tour
A Little Walk; a Little Chocolate; and Repeat

Off The Beaten Path Food Tours are a fun outing where you and friends can poke along at a walking pace through a historical neighborhood and taste local culinary treats, all under the care of a knowledgeable guides. One favorite, the Harvard Square Chocolate Tour, with stops at a variety of local eateries for chocolate tastings along the way. It’s about a mile of urban walking with five to six stops in about 90 minutes. A fee of $35 includes all the food and sights. Fine of all ages. Meet at Harvard Square.
wellfleet preservation hall
Not Your Average Community Center

Wellfleet Preservation Hall at 335 Main Street in Wellfleet is a wonderful resource driven by heartfelt people promoting arts, entertainment, and classes for the body and mind. It is very much a locally run operation, and equally welcoming to seasonal visitors. The Hall is a creative re-use of a former church. Special events that happen every year include the Garden Party & Birdhouse Auction, the Oysterfete, and Taste of the Town smorgasbord. Throughout the year, live music and dance parties bring every style of music. In summer, you are invited to many fitness programs, like yoga on Tuesdays and Fridays; Zumba on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Sundays; Shake Your Soul Dance on Mondays; Mah Jongg on Tuesdays; Capoeira on Saturdays. Keep in touch with The Hall – it’s a place of warmth and activity. 508-349-1800
line dancing at patriot place
Dance: You Can!

Six String Grill & Stage at 275 Patriot Place in Foxborough invites everyone to come out and dance (or stomp in rhythm) at line dancing evenings, held every Wednesday starting at 8 p.m. The action begins with free line dancing classes DJ JR & Emily of Country Road Entertainment and then you’re off! Here’s a tip – this form of dance takes little skill; you just need to feel the beat and follow directions. Great fun and good exercise! Come early for dinner and drinks. All levels welcome.
tavern night at boston tea party ships and museum
A Night at the Pub – in 1776

The Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum at 306 Congress Street in Boston offers a chance to party like John Adams and Paul Revere might have done. That is, at the monthly Tavern Nights at the museum. On the first Friday of each month, come to the museum tavern and join Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and other prominent 18th-century Bostonians as they drink, sing and strategize over the fate of Colonial America. Taste some 18th-century snacks, play games of the period, learn boisterous songs and join in a dance if you like. The Sons of Liberty and Daughters of Freedom are a jolly group. 617-807-0998.
ice skating at Worcester oval
Cool Fun on the Ice

The Worcester Common Oval at 455 Main Street in Worcester is open for public ice skating Friday evenings from 5 to 8 p.m. and weekends from noon to 5 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays (more hours on school vacation weeks). Enjoy some uncommonly cool time with family and friends! Inexpensive admission and skate rentals! Phone ahead for rink closures in case of bad skating weather. 508-929-0777.
barrow bookstore concord MA
You Might Find Some Local, and Mighty, Authors Here

Local authors? Oh yeah. The Barrow Bookstore on Main Street in Concord, MA, is sitting on a gold mine on local authors from the Transcendentalist period of the 19th century. The building is owned by Louisa May Alcott's great-nephew, and on any given day visitors may find rare and unique works by Louisa May Alcott, Henry David Thoreau, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Ralph Waldo Emerson on display. That includes a first edition set of “Little Women.” As visitors peer into the glass case holding Louisa's novels, they will find Louisa's father, Bronson Alcott, looking down on them from above, where his portrait and signed autograph sentiment hang on the wall. Authentic? Yes!
skiing at canterbury farm MA
Canterbury Hosts Skiing, Skating, Snowshoeing in Gorgeous Countryside

Do your cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and ice skating in a beautiful country location. Canterbury Farm on Fred Snow Road in Becket has 14 miles of double tracked and corduroyed trails, skating lanes, a complete ski, snowshoe and skate rental shop, and lessons. If you want to explore, the property is surrounded by 2000 acres of private and state lands, October State Forest, and three mountain lakes. Experts are available at the Ski Barn to help and guide you. Lessons and rentals also are available. 413-623-0100.
frozen fruitlands at harvard ma
Play in the Snow at Fruitlands

Fruitlands Museum at 102 Prospect Hill Road in Harvard is a bucolic property with a farmhouse, Shaker Museum, and a Native American Museum, welcomes all outdoors people of any age to enjoy it hills and trails on sleds, snowshoes, and cross-country skis during its Frozen Fruitlands time, every Saturday and Sunday from January through March. Bring winter boots, sleds, snowshoes, or cross-country skis and explore lots of hills and woodland trails. A crackling fire will be burning outside the Wayside Gallery and hot chocolate will be available inside. Take a break from the cold in Wayside Living Room with cozy seating, children’s books, and games. 978-456-3924.
sky zone in boston
Jump Now at the Trampoline Park

Which of you adults is deeply envious of the little kids who get to play in the bouncy house at carnivals and parties? Yep, we thought so. Here’s your solution. Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park at 91B Sprague Street in Boston is an indoor trampoline park with 10,000 square feet of bounce space, open to the people of all ages daily and for special events like birthday parties. In addition to open jump hours, Sky Zone offers walled 3-D dodge ball courts; extreme fitness classes for kids, teens, and adults; daily Open Jump playtime and a Saturday-night SkyJam.
amesbury snow park
Amesbury Welcomes Tubers

The Amesbury Sports Park at 12 South Hunt Road in Amesbury has the steepest snow tubing hill in New England, with 6 to 10 tubing lanes open, depending on conditions. The hills are serviced by a conveyor belt lift that guests stand on and ride to the top, and a handle tow lift. Night tubing under lights is offered all season. Children must be at least 4 years old to tube. “Ride the Frozen Rapids” allows up to 10 people to board a white water raft and zip down the hill. Snowmaking ensures coverage. Open Thursday through Sunday. Phone: 978-388-5788.
tubing at Nashoba
Day and Night Tubing Keep Nashoba Humming

Nashoba Valley ski area at 179 Great Road in Littleton has a 15-lane tubing park open day and night. Take the family and enjoy one of the fastest-growing winter recreational activities in New England! Fifteen lanes are serviced by four lifts and maintained by na erienced grooming fleet, the park provides ideal tubing conditions for thrill seekers of all ages. The tubing park also consists of an on-site lodge, with snack bar and TV. Entrance to the tubing park is separate from the entrance to the ski area. Tubing park entrance is at 179 Great Road, Littleton. Phone: 978-692-3033.
passim
Icon of Folk Music Is Underground in Cambridge

Club Passim, a brick-floored subterranean music venue at 47 Palmer Street in Cambridge is one of the nation's legendary cultural icons and epicenter of great folk and acoustic music. A place where musicians like Joan Baez, Tom Rush, Jackie Washington, Peter Wolf, Taj Mahal, Patty Larkin, Goeff and Maria Muldaur, Shawn Colvin, and Suzanne Vega cut their musical teeth. For more than 50 years, Club Passim has been known as a premier national venue presenting new and established traditional, folk, and acoustic musical performers. Also, home of the annual Celtic Music Festival. 617-492-7679.
snow tubing at berkshire east in MA
Beastly Fun at Tubing Park

Berkshire East’s Beastly tubing park at 66 South River Road in Charlemont is open and ready to live up to its name. The park will be open on the weekends this season. Berkshire East has three 450-foot tubing lanes and a minimum height requirement of 42 inches. The Beastly Tubing Park is open weekends from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tickets are sold for two-hour blocks. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m., noon, and 2 p.m. in the West Lodge. 413-339-6617
ice skating at patriot place
Ice Skating at Patriot Place

Pro football and its stars – the New England Patriots – chug along strongly all winter, but that’s not the only sport that winter serves. Patriot Place in Foxborough is open to the public for ice skating every day in winter. Winter Skate at Patriot Place is an easy-to-reach ice skating rink next to all of the other sports, dining, and shopping amenities. Skating is the perfect antidote to cabin fever and a fun and affordable activity for parents with children. The 60-by-140-foot rink is designed recreational skating, with an observation deck for viewers. Onsite skate rentals, concessions and bathrooms are available, and parking is free. Phone: 508-203-2100.
young skiers at butternut MA
Clear a Path for the Young Ones

Billing itself as a “true family mountain,” Butternut, on State Road / Route 23 in Great Barrington, puts a heavy emphasis of bringing the beginners of all ages and particularly the youngest learners into the sport. From the SKIwee (for age 4 to 12) and miniRIDERS (age 7 to 12) programs through racing workshops, Butternut declares that its group and private lessons are guaranteed to improve children's confidence and skill at skiing and snowboarding. The message is that “first times” are welcome. Phone: 413-528-2000.
Storrowtown MA
Meet Villagers of 19th-Century New England

Storrowtown, at 1305 Memorial Avenue in West Springfield is a re-crated 19th-century New England village that hosts tours and events and history programs to show audiences how New Englanders lived centuries ago. Costumed docents guide tours of the village’s restored shops and houses and tell stories about the buildings and artifacts and also the people who lived here. Drop-in tours are offered June to August, Tuesdays through Saturdays. Activities like candle dipping, quill pen calligraphy and old-fashioned games add extra fun for families and kids. Storrowton hosts various events throughout the year, like Blacksmith Collective, Little House Family Day and more. 413-205-5051.
truro vineyards
Tuck in to Truro for Wine and Spirits Tastings

Truto Vineyards and South Hollow Spirits at 11 Shore Road in North Truro is a lovely, relaxing place where tours and tastings of wine and spirits are held daily from May through Thanksgiving. The main house is located behind a wide expanse of law dotted with shade trees and picnic tables. Behind the house, tastings are conducted on a flower-decked patio. Inside, a gift shop offers all manner of fun gifts and books related to Cape Cod wines and the drinking and collecting of wine. Hours: Monday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday, noon-5 p.m. Tastings are offeredon the hour and half-hour, and free tours are conducted of the wintery and distillery. 508-487-6200
copley place
High Style in Shopping

Located in the historic Back Bay, at 100 Huntington Avenue in Boston, Copley Place is a distinctive shopping destination with 75 stores including Neiman Marcus, Barneys New York, Tiffany & Co., Jimmy Choo, Intimacy, Tourneau, Salvatore Ferragamo, Porsche Design, David Yurman, and more. A lovely and sophisticated mixed-use complex, Copley Place includes two levels of shopping, restaurants, office buildings, parking spaces, The Westin Hotel and The Boston Marriott Copley Place. Especially fun during holidays.
Harvard Museum of Natural History
Astonishing Nature Lessons

There is always something interesting to see and learn at the Harvard Museum of Natural History on Oxford Street in Cambridge. Classes and lectures and videos for kids and adults on many fascinating subjects – from the source for our food to nature drawing -- are ongoing. Permanent exhibits include the Great Mammal Hall, Evolution, Arthropods: Creatures that Rule, The Glass Flowers, The Zoological Galleries, the Mineralogical and Geological Gallery. One the museum’s most notable and popular collections is the Blaschka Glass Models of Plants, also called the “glass flowers." Four thousand models, representing more than 830 plant species, were built by glass artisans Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka, Czech glass artists. 617-495-3045
fireplace feast at sale cross inn
Early American Dinner Prepared Over an Open Fire

On winter weekends, Salem Cross Inn at 260 West Main Street in West Brookfield hosts a series of 1700s-style fireplace feasts , prepared on the open hearth of their fieldstone fireplace. Relax by the fire or lend a hand as dinner is prepared in Colonial style. Stir the chowder as it bubbles in our cast iron cauldron. See your prime rib, roasted "to a turn" over a roasting Jack. Browse the extensive collection of Colonial and Federal period American antiques. The menu for the Fireplace Feast includes hearty traditional New England fare. A fish entrée is available during Lent. Tickets must be ordered online in advance. 508-867-2345
the kitchen at boston public market
Nosh and Learn

The KITCHEN at The Boston Public Market, 100 Hanover Street in Boston is a community gathering place that promotes seasonal cooking to anyone who is interested, be they expert cooks or curious beginners. The KITCHEN hosts events, hands-on classes, workshops, demos and tastings. The emphasis is on local, seasonal ingredients combined with health and wellness programs to help guests become informed cooks and consumers. A small sampling of classes in 2020, for instance, includes Caribbean flavors, French crepes, savory pastries, gnocchi, spirits-infused truffles, and handmade pasta. Private classes, too, can be arranged. Email: kitcheninfo@thetrustees.org
newburyport farmers market
Newburyport Brims With Fresh Food in Winter

In the middle of this pretty seaside town, a fresh-from-the farm market keeps summer alive through the winter. Newburyport Winter Farmers Market at The Tannery Market in Newburyport Sundays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. EBT-SNAP not accepted. Enjoy local produce, free-range meats, savories, baked products, and crafts.
skating at the frog pond in boston MA
Ice Skating at the Frog

Get those blades to a sharpening shop! No, we’re not taking about carving a standing rib roast. This has to do with pulling out the ice skates and joining the twirling masses at the ice rink on the Frog Pond at Boston Common. From mid-November to mid-March, local people and visitors alike share the experience of and enjoyment of gliding across the ice and enjoying the winter climate in a wonderful urban park. The Frog Pond Café is open throughout the year, offering meals and snacks in a unique setting. Skating open until mid-to-late March 2012. Phone: 617-635-2120.
museum of innovation
History of Innovation

Located on the banks of the Charles River in the historic 1814 Boston Manufacturing Company textile mill, Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation at 154 Moody Street in Waltham is America’s first factory. Hands-on exhibits feature American innovation and invention from 1812 to modern day. Exhibits feature the Boston Manufacturing Company, The Orient Bicycle and Metz Automobile, the Waltham Watch Factory and more. Museum topics include textile history, watches and clocks, steam power, and marvelous machines. A favorite exhibit is Steampunk Form & Function, showing works of artists spanning all areas of the retro-futuristic movement. Open year-round, Thursdays through Sundays. Phone: 781-893-5410.
Broadside Bookshoe
Broadside Bookshop: Best in the Valley

Broadside Bookshopon Main Street in Northampton was voted Best Independent Bookstore in the Valley by a poll of local readers, so you know from ythe get-go that your love of books will be satisfied here. Located in a college town, the Bookshop says customers shall received personal service by a book-knowledgeable staff. You will find lots of fiction and literary non-fiction, and even hard-to-find journals. Come dive into a place cherished by savvy bookworms. 413-586-4235
tubing at butternut
Butternut Is Tubing Paradise

Tubing is a fun way to finish off the weekend and provides an optional activity to skiing and snowboarding. The seven-lane tubing park at Butternut Ski Area at 380 State Road (Route 23) in Great Barrington makes sliding downhill fun for everyone! The tubing center has its own ticketing building and offers 200 tubes, up to 7 chutes, a dedicated lift that makes getting back to the top easy and fun, and total snowmaking coverage. Tubing park open Fridays through Sundays and every day during holidays. New in 2016: tubing open Friday nights, 5-8 p.m. Phone: 413-528-2000.
cross country skiing
Cross-Country Skiing at the Threshold of the City

Located at the Martin Golf Course on Route 27 in Weston, the Weston Ski Track is a cross-country ski and snowshoeing center that is a really easy drive from the Boston area. Snowmaking and nighttime lighting on this two-kilometer lighted loop provide consistent snow conditions and reliable night skiing. Beginner lessons, rentals, and a warm cafe make this an ideal short hop from Boston for a day or afternoon of skiing. Phone: 781-891-6575.
mcgreevy's pub boston MA
Chuckles at McGreevy’s

Every Monday and Tuesday evening, McGreevy's , the famous pub at 911 Boylston Street in Boston, hosts a free standup comedy show. There’s a new lineup at each show. Performers of the past have included comedians who have appeared on “Saturday Night Live,” Comedy Central, HBO, and more. Sam Adams Brewery & Deep Eddy Vodka sponsor the show, making it an incredible experience every night. Hosted by Brian Higginbottom. Doors open 7:30 p.m.; show at 8 p.m.!
USS Constitution Museum Charlestown
Come Aboard Old Ironsides

Visit Old Ironsides and the USS Constitution Museum at Building 22 in the Charlestown Navy Yard in Charlestown for for a deep dive into the fascinating history of the USS Constitution. Exhibits at the museum include "Old Ironsides in War and Peace," "All Hands on Deck: A Sailor’s Life in 1812," and "Today's Crew." The museum is open year-round. Phone: 617-426-1812. The ship itself is owned by the U.S. Navy, which hosts tours Wednesdays through Sundays. Tours include the spar deck, gun deck and berth deck.
Seven Arrows Farm in Seekonk MA
An Extraordinary Garden Experience

Seven Arrows Farm at 346 Oakhill Avenue in Seekonk is not your typical farm. During three decades , the farm is the product of owners/growers Judy and Michel’s mutual passion for plants, gardening, and all things green. Here you can stroll through the gardens and the uncommon plant nursery, find a remedy or a gift at the farm’s extensive herb shop, visit with the chickens and goats, seek counsel from one of the farm’s knowledgeable staff members, or simply relax with a book from the farm’s library or in the sunny tea room. Hours: Open year-round; call for spring and summer hours. 508-399-7860.
Cape Poge Wildlife Refuge on Chappaquiddick Island, adjacent to Martha's Vineyard.
Breathtaking Views

A highlight of natural beauty on Martha’s Vineyard is Cape Poge Wildlife Refuge on Chappaquiddick Island, adjacent to Martha's Vineyard. Chappaquiddick Island’s eastern edge is a barrier beach that extends for seven miles, passing the Cape Poge Lighthouse to the Gut. The refuge offers 14 miles of beachfront and oversand vehicle and walking trails. Facilities include picnic tables, bike rack, restrooms, which are open May 30 to October 30. Tours include a natural history tour, a wildlife kayak or canoe tour, a fishing discovery tour, and Cape Poge Lighthouse tour. Open year-round, daily, with an entrance fee May 30 to October 15. Phone: 508-627-8390.
Bramhall's Country Store in Plymouth MA
Country Store Fuels Your Day in Plymouth

A visit to Bramhall's Country Store at 2 Sandwich Road in the Chiltonville section of Plymouth will immerse you just as deeply in a traditional New England experience as will the store’s next-door neighbor, Plimouth Plantation, The 1750s-period saltbox structure houses a family business founded in 1828 by the present owner’s great-great-great-great grandfather. Let’s think of our taste buds: the store serves a New England triumvirate: lobster rolls, local corn, and Ben and Jerry’s ice cream, along with local produce, smoothies, and other treats. Perfect for fueling the family on a Plymouth getaway. 508-746-1844.
World’s End in Hingham-photo by Trustees of Reservations
Out in the Woods, in Sight of Boston

For a romantic walk in a leafy woods, visit World’s End in Hingham, a nature preserve tucked into the end of a curve of shoreline that sweeps southeast from Boston. Rolling hills and rocky shorelines offer views of the Boston skyline, while tree-lined carriage paths make delightful walking trails. The 251-acre landscape includes rocky shores, broad hillsides, and open fields bracketed by woodlands. The property is ideal for walking, picnicking, jogging, horseback riding, cross-country skiing, or simply enjoying the outdoors. It is managed by the admirable Trustees of the Reservations, and open to the public for walking year-round.
The Minuteman Bikeway in Bedford, Lexington, Arlington, and Cambridge.  MA
Burn Some Energy Along This Historic Trail

The Minuteman Bikeway, also called America's Revolutionary Rail-Trail, passes through the historic area where the American Revolution began in April 1775. Built on an inactive railroad, the Bikeway has become a treasured resource, used by residents and visitors from near and far. Connecting to the Alewife “T” Station in Cambridge, the bikeway provides an easy way for bicyclists and pedestrians -- and, in the winter, skiiers -- to travel. The bikeway passes through Bedford, Lexington, Arlington, and Cambridge. Bikeway map.
Charles Hayden Planetarium at the Boston Museum of Science
Hayden Planetarium Thrills Star Gazers at Boston Museum of Science

The Charles Hayden Planetarium at the Boston Museum of Science is a bustling place for star gazers. A featured presentation is “Undiscovered Worlds: The Search Beyond Our Sun,” an astronomy show that explores planets outside our solar system. On weekend evenings, Music Under the Done immerses visitors in unusual musical offerings, Friday evening activities may include stargazing in the Museum's Gilliland Observatory on clear nights. 617-723-2500.
Broad Meadow Brook Conservation Center and Wildlife Sanctuary in Worcester MA
Broad Meadow Offers Woods, Streams, and Marshes

Within the 400 acres of woods, fields, streams, and marsh at Broad Meadow Brook Conservation Center and Wildlife Sanctuary at 414 Massasoit Road in Worcester, visitors can hike, cross-country ski, watch birds, look for butterflies, prowl for owls, or learn to snowshoe. The center has a large 3-D model of the sanctuary and a huge map of the Blackstone River watershed. Nature gifts, children’s books, field guides, are available at the center, which also serves as a visitor site for the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor. Trails are open daily, dawn to dusk. Phone: 508-753-6087.
Patriots Place and Gillette Stadium in Foxboro MA
Gillette Stadium Celebrates the Patriots

Patriot Place , off Route 1 in Foxboro, includes Gillette Stadium, home of the champion New England Patriots football team, but there is much more to the Place than football alone. The property includes 1.3 million square feet of shopping, dining, and entertainment, along with a state-of-the-art museum dedicated to the Patriots. Major retailers include Bass Pro Shops store, with everything and outdoorsman or outdoorswoman could desire. Dining runs the gamut from basic burgers to seafood to a gourmet bistro. 508-203-2100.
Loines Observatory of the Maria Mitchell Association in Nantucket
Star Gazing From Nantucket

Loines Observatory of the Maria Mitchell Association at 59 Milk Street Extension Nantucket is open for public viewing year round, and for frequent special astronomical events. Climb a ladder to the eyepiece of a fine, old telescope and sample the sights of the distant heavens. Public hours are longer in the summer and more abbreviated in the winter, so check the calendar on the observatory’s website. Star-gazing nights are held regularly, and posted on the calendar. Remember, observing is weather dependent, so check the skies or call ahead. 508-228-9273.
plymouth grist mill plymouth ma
Visit a 1636 Working Grist Mill: Pilgrims! Gears! Cornmeal!

So many stories are packed into the reproduction on Town Brook in Plymouth of the 1636 Plimoth Grist Mill, built by the Mayflower travelers. People gather at noon on Fridays to see the 2,500-pound stones moved, positioned, and used to grind corn, a huge improvement in the lives of the English newcomers. Kids and adults love to watch the mechanics of the water wheel, gears, stones, and grain hopper. In spring, herring alewives fight the current up the adjacent fish ladder to go upstream. Buy cornmeal and learn about Pilgrim cooking and dining. Gift shop, too! You will remember this visit long after you return to the 21st century. 508-746-1622.
Rocky Neck Art Colony in Gloucester MA
Artist Colony Is Vibrant in Gloucester

Rocky Neck Art Colony in Gloucester is the oldest working art colony in the country, and has been luring artists to its picturesque shores for more than 150 years. Today the area is still home to many working artists and to galleries showing paintings in all media, as well as batik, photography, jewelry, prints, sculpture, ceramics, and fine gifts. A convenient walking tour of Rocky Neck, along East Main Street, includes information about three dozen galleries and studios on the Neck. A new book about the artists and history of the region, titled Rocky Neck Art Colony 1850-1950, by Judith Curtis, is available. 978-515-7004.
plum island near newburyport massachusetts
Plum Island Is a Peach

Plum Island is an 11-mile long barrier Island off the shore ofNewburyport, with miles of public beaches and the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, home to over 800 species of birds, plants and animals. Sandy Point State Reservation on the southern tip of Plum Island is a wonderful place to swim or explore the life of the tide pools (kids love this!). the Audubon Society's Joppa Flats Education Center is located on Plum Island Turnpike on your way to the island. Find chances to join bird watching tours and other educational programs for adults or the whole family. Join a kayaking excursion with Plum Island Kayak – entrancing!
Pilgrim Monument on the Provincetown waterfront cape cod
Pilgrim Monument and Provincetown Museum

The Pilgrim Monument, a granite obelisk dedicated in 1910, is a visual icon of the Provincetown waterfront, visible from land and sea. The Monument, on High Pole Hill road, commemorates the history of the Mayflower Pilgrims, who landed at Provincetown before moving on to Plymouth. From May through October, visitors can climb to the top for a glorious view of the sweeping curve of the coastline. The adjoining Provincetown Museum describes the arrival of the Mayflower Pilgrims, the town’s maritime history, the early days of American theater in Provincetown, and the building of the monument. There’s a re-creation of a 19th century sea captain’s parlor at home and his quarters at sea and a scale model of the first theater of the Provincetown Players. 508-487-1310.
New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park in Massachusetts
Whaling by Sail in the Tough Old Days

Commercial whaling conveys a very different scent in the 21st century than it did in the 1700s and 1800s when ships went to sea to capture animals that helped producd the cleanest light ever known. New England’s whaling industry ended by about 1900, but the stories of the unbelievable hardy men who went to sea hundreds of years ago still can shiver our timbers. New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park, operated by the U.S. Park Service, tells the dramatic story of the old whaling industry in the very streets and buildings where ships departed and sometimes returned after years of chasing the wind around the globe. Stroll the cobblestone streets and see the world’s largest whaling museum, a merchant’s home, a whalemen's chapel, and a 19th-century schooner. Phone: 508-996-4095.
tubing at ward in shrewsbury ma
Get Tubing at Ward!

To say the TubaSlide at Ski Ward ski area in Shrewsbury is “fun” is an understatement! Tubing is a great activity for all levels. It is affordable, easy to do, and requires no special equipment (tubes are provided). So grab a tube, hold on and have a blast. Ski Ward offers five tuba slide lanes with two lifts. Tube users must be age six or older and at least 42 inches tall. Phone: 508-842-6346.
Mitchell’s Book Corner and Nantucket Bookworks Nantucket bookstores
Book Lovers, Dig In on Nantucket

For some of us, vacation and the beach are the time and place to dig into a great (or silly, or sentimental) book. The little island of Nantucket can solve your book-buying needs year-round at at least two well-used bookstore. Mitchell’s Book Corner on Main Street is open-year round, and visitors praise its travel section, with lots and lots of titles – fiction, non-fiction, and coffee-table books -- about Nantucket history (508-228-1080). Nantucket Bookworks at 25 Broad Street gets big huzzahs from visitors who love books. It is near the ferry terminal and visitors say you will find a big selection of new books. It is welcoming to kids, and you can also shop here for board games, cards, calendars and silly gifts (508-228-4000).
Martha's Vineyard Camp Meeting Association, located in the town of Oak Bluffs on Martha’s Vineyard gingerbread cottages
Charming Neighborhood With Deep History

The Martha's Vineyard Camp Meeting Association, located in the town of Oak Bluffs on Martha’s Vineyard, is a neighborhood of hundreds of colorful, ornate gingerbread cottages that are a delight to the eye and great fun to see and photograph. The neighborhood has its roots in the religious revival camp meeting movement of the 1850s. Members of the campground – originally a tent community -- conducted popular Bible meetings where the cottages are now.
paintings of James Champney at the Deerfield Inn Deerfield MA
See Deerfield Through 19th Century Artist’s Eyes

In a place with such natural beauty as Massachusetts’s Pioneer Valley region, it is reasonable that painters have worked there to re-create the countryside on canvas. A painter from the 19th century named James Well Champney worked in Deerfield and much of his work now graces the walls of the Deerfield Inn and its bright, airy Champney’s Restaurant & Tavern. Deerfield Inn is among the several New England lodgings lucky to show original art, often by local artists. A visit to his historic town and inn, or a meal of fresh-cooked New England dishes at Champney’s puts you in the middle of a 19th-century vision of this unique place.
Lyman Greenhouses
Lyman Greenhouses Bring the Outdoors Indoors

Here’s a fast treatment for the blahs: a visit to the Lyman Estate Greenhouses on Lyman Street in Waltham. The complex consists of an 1804 grape house, 1820 camellia house, 1840 orchid house, and a 1930 sales greenhouse. Rare orchids bloom throughout the year. The horticultural staff offers assistance. The gift shop sells gardening books, sundials, sachets, , pottery, rustic twig furniture, and more. Open year-round; days vary by season. Guided tours\. 781-891-1985.
essex shipbuilding museum in Essex Massachusetts
Essex: Tiny Town Builds Plenty of Ships

A visit to the Essex Shipbuilding Museum in Essex is a wonderful way to be immersed in the shipbuilding culture of Massachusetts. The museum tells the story of a New England village that built more two-masted wooden fishing schooners than any other place in the world. Exhibits are housed in the old Essex Central School House, built in 1835. Features include antique tools, photographs, documents, and exhibits. Tours include video presentations and hands-on activities. A gift shop offers ship plans, maritime gifts. Hours: June-October, Wednesdays-Sundays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; at other months, weekends, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. 978-768-7541
Dune and Beach Walks Near Provincetown ma
Dune and Beach Walks Near Provincetown

Never dismiss the Outer Cape as a romantic destination. Provincetown, Truro, and Wellfleet all have a core group of restaurants and bars dishing up warmth and sustenance and intimacy. You will be looking for both after a vigorous walk onto the Province Lands, north of Provincetown. On a bright day, the views are glorious. Start at the Province Lands Visitor Center on Race Point Road, off Route 6. Walking routes can be adjusted for shorter and longer distances, with wonderful views of the Province Lands, Race Point Lighthouse, the Coast Guard Station, and more.
Marconi Center in Chatham
“Wireless” – What That Meant in 1903

On January 18, 1903, Guglielmo Marconi transmitted the first public two-way wireless communication between Europe and America from a wireless station in South Wellfleet. That building no longer exists, but the historic buildings of Marconi’s 1914 receiving station now house the Marconi-RCA Wireless Museum at 847 Orleans Road in North Chatham, not far from South Wellfleet. The center uses interactive display, videos and exhibit to tell the rich history of 20th century mairtime radio and the advances in science and technology opened by the early “wireless.” You think your iPhone is cool? Come meet its great-granddad. Hours vary by season. 508-945-8889
Old Deerfield in Deerfield MA
Historic Trades in Action in Deerfield

Crafts people will demonstrate dressmaking, shoemaking, medical care, basketmaking, gun smithing, cabinet making, coopering pottery making and even gravestone carving as these essential skills were done in places like Deerfield. See schedule for specific demos, offered on weekends from October 3 to December 12, 2015. Fun for the kids, too. 413-774-5581.
deCordova Sculpture Park & Museum in Lincoln MA
Sculpture In the Outdoors

deCordova Sculpture Park & Museum at 51 Sandy Pond Road in Lincoln is a significant premier destination for contemporary art and sculpture, a mere 20 miles west of Boston. The vast grounds, covered with lawns and copses of woodlands, are the backdrop to a constantly changing landscape of large-scale, outdoor, modern and contemporary sculpture. Indoor space in the museum building also has exhibit space. The park and museum offer year-round activities, like snowshoe tours, yoga outdoors, nature tours, artist conversations, and screenings. Enjoy revolutionary artistic visions and stretch your muscles outdoors. Phone: 781-259-8355
dinosaur museums in western Massachusetts
Fossils Fuel Curiosity at Dino Museums

Dinosaur history and folklore are alive and roaring in the Pioneer Valley region. A day or more of exploration awaits dino fans of all persuasions. The Nash Dinosaur Track Site and Rock Shop in South Hadley displays the largest number of dinosaur tracks in the region. Nearby, the Beneski Museum of Natural History at Amherst College in Amherst has impressive exhibits that include vertebrate and invertebrate paleontology, minerals, and other geologic specimens. Visitors to Dinosaur Hall in the the Springfield Science Museum in Springfield are riveted by the life-size replica of a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Interactive exhibits at Dinosaur Hall include actual fossils of dinosaur tracks which can be touched and a cast of a huge sauropod footprint for children to climb into. Information: 413-755-1346.

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