The Pocomtuc tribe originally inhabited the area of Westfield in the county of Hampden, which was previously known as Woronoco or ‘the winding land.’
Settlers from the Connecticut Colony started building trading houses from 1639 to 1640; Massachusetts prevailed in asserting jurisdiction and made Woronoco a part of Springfield in 1647.
The area was incorporated as an independent town in 1669, then re-incorporated as a city in 1920; it was the town in the most western part of the Massachusetts Colony until 1725.
Westfield thrived as an industrial city in the 19th century from a devoted town pursuing agriculture for about 150 years and has become well-known in the precision manufacturing industry today.
With its long tradition of innovative business that manufactured economically important products such as cigars, bricks, and whips, the place has been called the “Whip City.”
But history is not this city’s only offer—here are some of the best things to do in Westfield, Massachusetts:
Visit Pioneer Valley History Network’s Dewey House
Estimated to have been built in 1735, the Dewey House, which the Western Hampden Historical Society now owns, is an introduction to Westfield’s colonial history.
The Western Hampden Historical Society, established in 1901, has been responsible for the house's preservation.
Each year, the society holds educational historical talks in select months.
The four brothers, named Josiah, Israel, Jedediah, and Thomas, moved north from Windsor, Connecticut, in 1667 to establish a new life, and the lineage of the Dewey family kept the property until 1856.
The property housed at least 15 different families, and some of its changes were noticeable, especially when the colonial design was converted into a federal architectural style.
If you're planning your trip to Westfield, visit this place on South Maple Street during their open house.
You'll be led by a guide dressed in period attire who will explain the house's different historical furnishings, items, and constructions.
Take Your Kids to Amelia Park Children’s Museum
If you are traveling with kids, Amelia Park Children’s Museum is where you can go.
Amelia Park believes that by studying history, science, arts, and diversity, children can be empowered to change the future for the better.
Located on South Broad Street, this interactive museum will allow you and your kids to have fun while learning about the community.
The place opened its doors as Discover Westfield Children’s Museum in June of 1997 at Elm Street but moved to its current location and changed its name in 2008.
The many imaginative hands-on activities and creative exhibits at the Amelia Park Children's Museum foster children's exploration and learning.
Visit Whip City Animal Sanctuary
Westfield’s Whip City Animal Sanctuary provides a safe and loving haven for animals in need to give them a brighter future.
Co-founders Robin and Kerry Plourde established the sanctuary in 2020, and their mission is to provide long-term care and shelter for surrendered farm animals.
They provide the basic necessities for their animal residents and are passionate about pursuing the well-being of animals and providing possible veterinary needs.
Gabriel the horse and Stewie the duck are only two of many animals that receive love and care from this non-profit organization, which is kept afloat by support from the community.
Visit and fall in love with the cute residents of Whip City Animal Sanctuary.
Curl up with a Book at Westfield Athenaeum
The Westfield Athenaeum, located at Elm Street, was created as a place where citizens can access cultural, educational, informational, and recreational resources and programs.
In 1864, American Whip Company president Hiram H. Harrison provided a library and reading room for the residents, and in 1868, the library officially opened its doors to the public.
The library is constantly collecting new books, audiobooks, and DVDs to meet the growing demand for resources.
They also purchase non-print materials, online programs, and electronic information to provide everything their patrons need.
Aside from resources, the library also features a variety of Westfield’s art and cultures such as David Fichter’s The Story of Westfield Mural, paintings from local artist Ruth Kjaer, and rotating exhibits of historical artifacts.
Interactive events are also held at the Westfield Athenaeum throughout the year.
Enjoy a Drink at Raven Hollow Winery
Indulge your palate with the flavors of local and sustainable harvest and a great view at Raven Hollow Winery at Russellville Road.
Sue and Gene Kosinski’s farming careers began in the mid-seventies in Feeding Hills with the Kosinski Farms Store & Bakery.
They purchased the current land in 2005 to create a winery that offers high-quality farm-to-bottle produce.
Ed Kosinski, the couple’s son, researched their family name and found that it meant "living with blackbirds," which gave the winery its current name.
From the sustainably grown fresh fruits only 15 miles away, the winery is home to some of the city's most meticulously crafted and unique wines.
Apple Wine, Blueberry Explosion, Blackberry Wine, and Strawberry Rhubarb are available options on Raven Hollow Winery's menu when in season.
Go Crazy at FunZ Trampoline Park
Jump to your heart’s desire at the FunZ Trampoline Park at E. Main Street.
All ages are welcome to have fun in their 51,000-square-foot facility that offers many activities.
Whether going to the arcade, swimming in their foam pit, bouncing in their trampolines, or balancing on a slackline, you will surely have an enjoyable time.
The place was first conceptualized in June 2019 after co-owner Johnny Chen announced that he wanted to open the park in January 2020.
Although some constructions were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the plans to build the park pushed through and opened in October 2020.
There is no age limit when having fun, so make sure you drop by FunZ Trampoline Parkwhen in the city!
Have a Fun Day at Stanley Park
The 25-acre land back then was established by Frank Stanley Beveridge in 1949 as Stanley Park of Westfield, Inc., after he was gifted black squirrels from Michigan by Hubert L. Worell and Alvah Elzerman in 1948.
The land is now almost 300 acres that feature trails, picnic areas, woods, recreational activities, and gardens.
At Stanley Park, you can walk through different themed gardens such as the Rose Garden, which has more than 30 different kinds of roses; the Asian Garden, which features azaleas, alpine conifers, and rhododendrons; or the Enchanted Oak, where it is believed that the tree has stood in that land for over 200 years.
The Carillon Tower and Frank Stanley Beveridge Wildlife Sanctuary can be found in the area, together with a village from the colonial era that has a duck pond, waterwheel, and an orchard.
Make sure to walk in pairs and not to stay out too late, as dinosaur tracks can also be found in the area.
Don't worry; Carlton S. Nash had only donated it from his quarry in South Hadley, Massachusetts.
Appreciate the Beauty of Grandmothers’ Garden
Chauncey Allen Park is an 11-acre land on Smith Avenue that features the significant Grandmothers’ Garden, a flower garden designed by Thomas Desmond.
Originally owned by Chauncey Allen, the land was inherited by his son-in-law Albert Steiger, a prominent local businessman in the 1920s, who presented the park to the city with its current name in 1930.
The colonial revival style garden was said to be a living memorial of Albert Steiger’s mother, greatly known as Grandmother Steiger, who loved flowers and gardening with her friends, family, and the community.
Like any other attraction with great history, the place has had a series of development over the years, and the non-profit organization Friends of Grandmothers’ Garden is now focusing on restoring the garden’s former glory.
Feel at peace as the beauty of nature engulfs you in Grandmothers' Garden.
Improve Your Game at Batter’s Box
Batters Box is the first and the longest-running indoor training facility in the area of Westfield, which is located at Root Road.
Baseball enthusiast Coach Tim Kelleher founded the Batter’s Box in 2012 with his principle: "Work Hard. Improve. and Have Fun.”
If you are into baseball or softball, this place is a must-visit due to its famous reputation of being one of the best training facilities in the field, together with its expert instructors.
The coaches at the facility come from a diverse array of backgrounds and expertise.
Whether you need to work on your pitching, hitting, fielding, or catching skills, you can find a coach to help you improve.
They offer three options: reserving a space in one of their cages, booking a lesson, or applying for membership.
This is the perfect place to work on your skills, whether traveling or staying local!
Spend an Exciting Day at Amelia Park Arena
Located along Broad Street, Amelia Park Arena offers a variety of activities for you to enjoy while in the city.
Albert F. Ferst built the non-profit community facility in memory of his late wife, Amelia, who often assisted the less fortunate people and children living in Westfield.
Their 47,000-square-foot main arena oversees over 50,000 visitors annually.
Not only does their indoor arena include an NHL-sized rink that can accommodate over a thousand people, but their outdoor arena also features a 65’x170’ inline skating rink and deck in addition to Amelia's Garden, which spans 1.3 acres.
Whether to pass the time or to take lessons, this arena will surely give you an enjoyable time.
Take a Stroll on Columbia Greenway Rail Trail
The historical Columbia Greenway Rail Trail is located at the very heart of Westfield.
The history of the Columbia Greenway Rail dates back to the 19th century when the Hampshire & Hampden Canal was planned in 1822.
Offering over two miles of paved, tree-lined pathway, this trail starts from Main Street and runs through the Great River Bridge over the Little River until the Southwick town line.
This elevated trail, which used to be the New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad, can take you south to the Southwick Rail Trail.
This connection is just under seven miles from where Massachusetts and Connecticut meet.
Enjoy a pedestrian and bicycle-friendly city as you explore the Columbia Greenway Rail Trail.
Drink and Dine at Skyline Beer Company
Skyline Beer Company started in 2002 as a shared interest in culinary experiments and home brewing between friends Lisa Pac and Daniel Osella.
The two owners and their business partners opened Skyline Hop Shop within Westfield River Brewing Co. (WRB) when they saw an opportunity.
Daniel served fresh food that paired well with WRB’s brews, while Lisa offered brewing classes and supplies.
Customers were continually coming, resulting in the owners thinking bigger and expanding to a 4,500-square-foot restaurant.
The new Skyline Beer Company includes a bakery, craft beer and wine bar, tasting room, and home-brew supply store located at Southwick Road.
House-made root beers on tap, craft whiskey, tequila, and gluten-free drinks are available on their menu, together with freshly baked flatbread pizzas and perfectly cooked burgers.
Go Hiking at Westfield River Trail
The nine-kilometer loop of Westfield River Trail is generally considered by hikers as an easy route that takes two hours to finish but is quite challenging to navigate.
As part of the eight trails within Robinson State Park, this is one of the best places to hike, considering the challenge and its 150-meter elevation gain.
It's also considered the park's starting trail.
Other popular activities aside from hiking are mountain biking and bird watching due to its abundance of wildlife and the scenic greenery along its trails.
In 1934, the Civilian Conservation Corps established Robinson State Park.
Several of the original buildings from that time remain in the park.
Up for the challenge?
Make sure to visit Westfield River Trail when you go to Westfield!
Watch Live Shows at Westfield Theatre Group
The Westfield Theatre Group has been in the industry for over 80 years as part of the Westfield Woman’s Club.
This theater group at Court Street seeks to inspire the community by providing live shows of excellent quality and educational opportunities about the industry.
See full-scale musical productions, full-length comedies, or even seasonal shows the group originally produced.
These include Robin Hood, The Littlest Angel, Christmas Carol, and Steel Magnolias.
At Westfield Theatre Group, all ages are welcome, and you can even audition if you stay in the city for a while.
Play Retro Arcade Games and Have a Pint at Tin Bridge Brewing Company
Play and drink beer at Tin Bridge Brewing Co. at E. Main Street!
This brewery hosts a bar with table seating and includes activities you can enjoy, like shuffleboard and the classic arcade games of Ms. Pac-Man and Golden Tee '99.
Two brothers, Joe and Nick Cocchi, started a brewing project in their garage, becoming the now-known brewery and taproom in October of 2017.
As part of their visitor experience, Tin Bridge Brewing Co.'s taproom is open for viewing, where people can see the process of brewing their beers.
Make sure to get a beer-to-go or some of their drafts like Irish Red Ale, Bubblez, or Imperial Peach Cobbler when in the city!
Westfield has a lot to offer whether you opt for an outdoor activity or a quiet walk.
With so many options, it might be hard to pick just one!
Visit soon and enjoy the best things to do in Westfield, Massachusetts!
The beauty of Westfield will be a worthy destination, so pack your bags and start enjoying the many activities and attractions it offers!