Blake Walsh

25 Best Things to Do in Worcester County, MA

  • Published 2023/10/29

Nestled in the heart of Malibrssachusetts lies the vibrant and culturally rich Worcester County, a place teeming with diverse experiences and captivating charm.

This region is known for its distinct four seasons, each offering its unique allure and array of activities.

Historical landmarks that have withstood the test of time dot the landscape, providing a glimpse of the county’s rich past.

The thriving arts scene and diverse culinary landscape further add to the county’s appeal, ensuring there’s something for every taste and preference.

Every day in Worcester County is an opportunity for a new adventure, a fresh story, and the discovery of a new favorite spot.

So, prepare for an exploration of the best things to do in Worcester County, Massachusetts.

Delve into this guide and get a taste of the myriad offerings of this remarkable place.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the following individuals for their invaluable contributions to this article: Harriet Townsend, Charles Brooks, Foster Ray, Bibi Richburg, Candace Britt, Brett Harmer and Zariah Villa.

Stroll through History at the Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial

The grounds of Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial

og-emmet, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Just another day in Worcester, I found myself taking a tranquil stroll through the Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Let me tell you, the beauty of this memorial park is absolutely breathtaking.

It’s like an oasis in the city, a verdant space where you can take a break, breathe in some fresh air, and pay tribute to the heroes who fought for our country.

I am always impressed by how clean and well-maintained the park is, with plenty of space to walk around.

The memorial itself is a touchingly beautiful homage to our Vietnam Veterans.

It’s a poignant reminder of the sacrifices our servicemen made, and I often find myself deeply moved as I traverse the large blocks inscribed with the names of the fallen.

Fountain at Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial

andysartworks /

It’s a sight that never fails to stir emotions.

The park rangers are always around, eager to assist visitors, and their service adds to the overall pleasant experience.

There’s a pavilion in the Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial that you might find interesting.

I remember once when the park rangers helped us with it and made our visit even more enjoyable.

The park, with its beautiful water features and abundant greenery, is the perfect place to be at any time of the year.

Map sign of Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial

andysartworks /

Conquer Your Fear at Boundless Adventures Zipline and Aerial Park

What an incredible day I spent at Boundless Adventures Zipline and Aerial Park!

The place is a joy, full of adrenaline-pumping activities that can keep you engaged for hours.

The best part is, it’s suitable for everyone – from those who are just starting their adventure journey to the pros who wish to test their limits.

The staff? They were simply fantastic.

Very professional and ensured everyone’s safety, which was my primary concern as someone who isn’t too comfortable with heights.

However, their constant reassurance and guidance made it possible for me to conquer all the courses, even the ones I thought I could never do!

Boundless Adventures Zipline and Aerial Park is also designed in a way that allows you to gradually build up your confidence.

You start with the easier levels and then move up to the higher ones as you become more comfortable.

It’s not just an adventure park; it’s a place that challenges you and pushes your boundaries.

Unearth the Geological Marvels of Purgatory Chasm State Reservation

Trail at Purgatory Chasm State Reservation

Diane C Macdonald /

I’ve been living next door to a geological marvel for years.

Nestled in the heart of Massachusetts is the Purgatory Chasm State Reservation.

From the first day I set foot here, it seemed straight out of a fantasy novel.

The quarter-mile rift between ancient granite formations does more than just provide a space for climbing.

It’s a visual feast, a testament to the power and beauty of nature.

Honestly, there’s nothing quite like it.

You can trace the hand of glaciers that carved these magnificent rock structures thousands of years ago.

Well-marked trails invite you to explore the nooks and crannies, each with its own unique charm.

I remember the thrill of finding Lover’s Leap and the humorously named Fat Man’s Misery!

And then there’s the walk down to Little Purgatory – trust me, it’s worth every step.

Now, I’ve done my share of rock scrambles but the ones here?

They’re a whole different ball game. The variety of rocks to scrabble over, around, and through is just fantastic.

And if you’re up for some more adventure, there are some pretty cool caves to explore.

I once spent an entire afternoon here, discovering one hidden gem after another.

Let’s not forget about the view.

Climbing up to the top of these rock formations, you’re rewarded with a panorama that will take your breath away.

It’s one of those places that make you feel small in the best possible way.

And the best part? The Purgatory Chasm State Reservation is a quick and exciting hike, though I should mention, it can be a bit tricky in places.

But isn’t that what makes it all the more fun?

Find Inspiration at Worcester Art Museum

Exterior of the Worcester Art Museum

Kenneth C. Zirkel, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

One rainy Sunday in July, I took it upon myself to escape the gloom and immerse myself in the vibrant world of art at the Worcester Art Museum.

The moment I stepped in, I was awestruck by the vast collection of art, spanning from ancient to contemporary.

They had everything – European masterpieces, sculptures, and even a complete mosaic from Ancient Turkey.

But the highlight for me was the museum’s unexpected treasure – a Gothic house right in the middle of it all.

Its intricate architectural details and the aura of history that it radiated gave me a sense of traveling back in time.

I was also pleasantly surprised by the educational activities they had lined up for children.

Signage of Worcester Art Museum

Wangkun Jia /

I made a mental note to bring my nephews on their next visit.

After all, the museum seemed to be a perfect blend of education and entertainment.

I had no trouble parking, and the best part? It was free!

I must say, Worcester Art Museum sure knows how to take care of its visitors.

I can’t wait to explore the upper floors on my next visit, and perhaps, even join one of their art workshops.

Aerial view of Worcester Art Museum

Wangkun Jia /

Unleash Your Inner Sherlock at Live Action Escapes

I simply can’t get enough of the escape rooms at Live Action Escapes in Worcester, Massachusetts.

These aren’t your run-of-the-mill, beat-the-clock puzzles.

No, these are full-on immersive experiences that get your heart racing and your brain firing on all cylinders.

I’ve traveled extensively and tried many escape rooms, but the ones here are by far the cream of the crop.

From the moment you walk in, everyone, including the game master, welcomes you warmly.

She’s amazing, always offering hints based on how we’re doing and letting us finish some cool stuff even if we run out of time.

We managed to escape, and I can honestly say that it was one of the most exciting and satisfying achievements we’ve had as a group.

What makes Live Action Escapes stand out is the attention to detail in every room and puzzle.

Everything feels purposefully placed to create a realistic environment – no padlocks or out-of-place items here.

It’s clear that they put a lot of love and care into creating these experiences.

The place is also spotless, and they make sure to clarify what’s not part of the game, so you can focus your energy on solving the actual puzzles.

Plus, they offer unique discounts and arrangements that you won’t find elsewhere.

I can’t wait to head back for more adventures and share this hidden gem with others.

The thrill of the escape is addictive, and I’m always eager for the next challenge at Live Action Escapes.

Soak in the Beauty and Tranquility of the New England Botanic Garden at Tower Hill

A gazebo at New England Botanic Garden at Tower Hill

quiggyt4 /

One of my ultimate escapes from the daily hustle and bustle is the serene haven that is the New England Botanic Garden at Tower Hill.

Every visit to this piece of heaven on earth is a new adventure.

There’s always something to explore, some untrodden path waiting to be discovered.

It’s an absolute delight to walk around the many gardens, smell the fragrance of flowers from around the world, enjoy the lush greenery, and bask in the tranquility that is so inherent to this place.

One of the best aspects of the New England Botanic Garden at Tower Hill, for me, is the incredible variety of plants and flowers.

It’s a visual treat, a riot of colors and endless charm that never fails to amaze.

There’s also an orchard where you can spend hours exploring the diverse range of fruits and trees.

The outdoor event space is a captivating setting for special occasions, a perfect blend of nature and elegance.

If you’re interested in art, the exhibits showcasing stunning arrangements by various artists are a must-see.

The creative and innovative displays never fail to inspire.

Along with the visual treats, Tower Hill also hosts several special events.

One of my favorite things to do here is to explore the trails.

Each trail is a journey filled with exciting discoveries and wonderful views.

The garden changes with every season, so there’s always something new to see. I highly recommend a visit in spring when the garden is in full bloom.

The ticket prices are reasonable, and if you plan on visiting frequently, the annual membership is a great investment.

Stroll down Memory Lane at Old Sturbridge Village

Daytime view of Old Sturbridge Village

Joseph Sohm /

Just around the bend, nestled deep within the heart of Massachusetts, lies a treasure trove of history – Old Sturbridge Village.

A visit to this quaint 1830s settlement will transport you to an era long gone yet so perfectly preserved that it feels like a moment frozen in time.

I remember the day I first visited.

It was a calm Saturday morning, I arrived around 11 a.m, and spent the next four hours leisurely exploring the living history museum without the usual rush that comes with long queues.

My camera clicked away at every corner, capturing the timeless charm of the village Old Sturbridge Village.

One of the highlights of my visit was the schedule of activities provided upon entering.

The village was buzzing with hands-on historical demonstrations, from basket and chair weaving to blacksmith, silversmith, and carpentry workshops.

Carriage ride along Old Sturbridge Village

Jeff Schultes /

Not only were these attractions enjoyable, but they also provided a wealth of historic information about the buildings and the people who lived and worked in them.

But the real magic happens after the sun goes down. I had the pleasure of attending the “Phantoms by Firelight” event, a unique October weekend evening soiree that added a thrillingly spooky twist to the usual historical experience.

Imagine a wake happening in one house, remembrance jewelry being crafted from human hair in another, or the local carpenter busy making a coffin – it was history with a creepy factor!

And to top it off, the Vampyres were there, adding a dash of acrobatics and storytelling to the mix.

There’s something truly special about Old Sturbridge Village – a certain charm that keeps me coming back.

Whether it’s your first visit or your hundredth, there’s always something new to discover.

No wonder it’s my favorite place for a fun, educational day out.

The grounds of Old Sturbridge Village

Emma’sPhotos /

Go Birdwatching at Broad Meadow Brook Conservation Center and Wildlife Sanctuary

Have you ever had one of those days where you just want to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city and immerse yourself in the beauty of nature?

That’s exactly how I felt last Monday when I decided to take a trip to the Broad Meadow Brook Conservation Center and Wildlife Sanctuary.

Let me tell you, it’s one of the best decisions I’ve made in a while.

Tucked away in the heart of the city, this magnificent place is a peaceful haven where you can enjoy a quiet walk amidst tall trees and well-maintained trails.

Everything about this sanctuary speaks of the careful and diligent work of the Audobon society.

I was impressed by the clear directions and large signs that guided me through the trails.

Although it does tend to get dark quite early because of the towering trees, I find it to be a part of its charm.

I chose to support the sanctuary by making a donation at the main walking entrance, but there’s also an option to become a member of the Audobon Society.

Membership allows you free access to multiple properties within Massachusetts.

During my visit to Broad Meadow Brook Conservation Center and Wildlife Sanctuary, one of the main trails was closed due to flooding, but accurate and clear signs were posted about it, which I found very helpful.

The parking lot was spacious and well-marked, which made the visit easier.

As someone who enjoys bird-watching, the array of different bird species was a delight to behold.

But the standout experience for me was the frog pond.

I spent hours there, trying to capture the perfect photo of these seemingly camera-friendly frogs. I must have spotted about seven of them!

Observe Animals in Their Habitat at Southwick’s Zoo

A bird at Southwick's Zoo

Eric Kilby from USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

There’s no place that breathes life into my weekends quite like Southwick’s Zoo. I’ve been frequenting this lively spot for almost ten years now.

The moment you step in, you are greeted by the sight of children laughing, the unique smell of popcorn and animal feed blending together, and an atmosphere that is buzzing with excitement and an adventurous spirit.

The tranquility that permeates throughout the zoo is nothing short of therapeutic.

The cleanliness and natural setup are a testament to the hardworking staff.

No matter what age you are, there’s always something that will catch your eye.

From camel rides to wildlife shows, there’s never a dull moment in this place.

If you’re planning a visit, you can easily book your tickets online or at the entrance window.

One of the unique attractions that I’ve always loved is the deer park.

It’s unlike any other in the world.

A colorful bird at Southwick's Zoo

Eric Kilby from USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Watching the graceful creatures move around in their habitat is a sight that never grows old.

But the fun doesn’t stop there.

The revamped playground always manages to bring out the inner child in me.

Food, you ask? Southwick’s Zoo has got you covered.

The Gallifords restaurant within the zoo premises serves delicious gourmet pizza and mashed potatoes that even the strictest vegetarians will appreciate.

And if you’re a bird lover, the bird sanctuary is a must-visit.

Last but not least, the petting zoo.

It’s always a joy to see the kids and even adults, interacting with the animals.

The staff members are always around, ready to answer any questions you might have about the animals, adding an educational angle to your visit.

Pet Animals at Green Hill Park

Sunny day at Green Hill Park

Monika Salvan /

Every time I need to disconnect and clear my mind, I find myself heading towards Green Hill Park.

This 480-acre park is laced with sports fields, playgrounds, and trails.

I find the petting zoo especially charming – a must-visit if you have kids tagging along.

One of the park’s gems is its golf course, which is as challenging as it is beautiful.

Then there’s the Grill on the Hill, where you can get some grub after a long day of exploring the park.

Once, I took my 6-month-old pup there and they were kind enough to serve him a nice big bowl of cold water.

A small gesture, but it made my day.

It’s quite relaxing to sit on the patio, catching up with friends while enjoying the fresh crisp evening air.

Walking along the park’s hills, you are greeted with stunning views all around.

Green Hill Park remains pristine, with no litter in sight.

The pond is a tranquil spot, perfect for those moments when you just want to sit and ponder.

I remember my visit in late September, the vibrant colors of the foliage were a sight to behold.

I can’t wait to see how beautiful the park will be this fall.

For the little ones, there’s a playground close to the petting zoo.

It’s perfect for winding down after an exciting time with the animals.

There’s even a baseball field for those interested in the sport.

Bond with Your Kids at Coes Park

One of Worcester‘s hidden gems, Coes Park, has fast become my sanctuary of peace and fun.

Nestled quietly in our bustling city, I’ve spent countless afternoons here, watching toddlers and older kids alike revel in the clean, well-maintained playground.

One aspect I particularly appreciate is the walking trail that skirts the serene pond.

I’ve had many a peaceful stroll along this path, breathing in the calming ambiance of the park.

While the playground is teeming with fun options for younger kids, I do wish they had more swings for the older ones.

The two bucket swings are great but more options would certainly spice up the play area.

Nonetheless, the view from the park is simply amazing, and the walking trail around the pond is a delight for young and old.

My son, who is seven, cannot get enough of this place.

In the summer months, the park tends to get crowded, especially in the late afternoons.

But the thrumming energy only adds to its charm.

The popular equipment is constantly in use, injecting the park with a lively spirit.

I am eagerly waiting for a quiet moment to try out the equipment myself and spend a lazy afternoon at the newly opened cafe right in the heart of the park.

Beyond the playground and the cafe, Coes Park is an absolute beauty.

I’ve found myself lost in the magnificence of the beachside and the boardwalk on several occasions, taking in the stunning views.

Of all the parks I’ve visited, Coes Park holds a special place in my heart.

It’s not just a park but a treasure trove of experiences waiting to be discovered.

Take in the Views from Bancroft Tower

Daytime view of Bancroft Tower

Jay Yuan /

One of the perks of living in a city brimming with history like Worcester, Massachusetts is having landmarks like the Bancroft Tower just a stone’s throw away from home.

This curious construction is more than just my neighborhood’s emblem; it’s a beacon of intrigue that honors George Bancroft, a statesman and historian who called Worcester home.

To reach Bancroft Tower, you’ll have to brave a somewhat steep walk, but I guarantee the payoff is worth every step.

Even though we can’t ascend to the top of the tower, the area around it offers plenty of space for a nice sit-down.

From that vantage point, you can take in the sights of Worcester or simply ponder about Bancroft’s contributions to the community.

The top of Bancroft Tower

FreakPhotography /

On weekends, when I have some time to spare, I love to drive up to the parking lot situated conveniently right in front of the tower.

The early bird definitely catches the worm in this case, as the park can get a bit crowded later in the day.

But getting there around 10 AM, I usually have the entire place to myself.

I bring along my camera and enjoy the quiet, clicking away pictures of the tower against the blue Massachusetts sky.

And the best part? You don’t have to worry about parking fees. It’s completely free!

Aerial view of Bancroft Tower

GoliathUAS /

Search for the Enigmatic Deed Rock

Here in my neck of the woods, people are always searching for something new to explore.

Deed Rock, is one of those hidden treasures that locals love to visit, despite the challenge it poses by being off the beaten path.

The hike towards Deed Rock is almost like a treasure hunt.

The trail isn’t clearly marked, so it takes some intrepid navigation to find it.

I remember the first time I set out to find the stone.

Following the red and blue markers on the trees, I wandered past two old house rock foundations, making my way towards a little running stream.

Right where the stream goes underground, about 50ft past the right corner, I stumbled upon the rock at last.

It was a victorious moment!

As a seasoned explorer of this area, I’ve learned a few tricks.

For one, be ready for an adventurous ride.

The roads are dirt tracks with deep potholes, so having a truck with 4-wheel drive is a must.

You’re in for a bumpy but exciting journey!

Deed Rock itself is an enigma.

It’s hidden in plain sight, and you could easily miss it if you weren’t looking closely.

Its letters, worn down from the elements, are a testament to its historical significance.

We locals enjoy the mystery and the thrill of the search almost as much as we enjoy the hike itself.

This is not just about the rock, though.

The scenic trails offer a fantastic view of the city, making the journey as enjoyable as the destination.

I’ve spent hours lost in the beauty of these trails, and every visit brings a new discovery.

Stroll through the Historic Elm Park

Daytime view of Elm Park

Jay Yuan /

There’s just something about starting a lazy Sunday off right with a calming walk through Elm Park.

One of the many gems nestled within Worcester, Massachusetts, this historic 60-acre park is a perfect blend of natural beauty, cultural heritage, and recreational facilities.

It’s the little things that make a visit to Elm Park so special.

As I meander through the reconstructed bridges, I often find myself pausing to admire the serene pond, its surface often glass-like in the early morning hours.

The park’s pathways, which are just perfect for a brisk jog or a leisurely stroll, wind around this pond, adding a touch of peaceful elegance to the urban landscape.

Elm Park is never too crowded, leaving it peaceful whether it’s day or night.

It’s a wonderful place to sit and have a quiet lunch on one of the many benches or spend a sunny afternoon with a good book.

And if you feel like getting active, the tennis and basketball courts are always ready for a friendly match.

One of my favorite things about Elm Park is the variety of art pieces scattered around.

Wooden footbridge over the waters of Elm Park

NayaDadara /

It’s like a mini outdoor museum, right in the heart of the city.

The kids love the playground, too.

It’s always clean and well-maintained, providing a safe and fun environment for them to burn off some energy.

Winter at Elm Park is nothing short of magical.

The park transforms into a winter wonderland with opportunities for skating and snowball fights aplenty.

And while I’m yet to confirm whether the park has permanent restroom facilities, they did have clean porta-potties during an event I attended.

Elm Park has nailed the balance between preserving its history and providing modern amenities, a feat that not many city parks can boast of.

It’s a beacon of tranquility amidst the hustle and bustle of the city, a place that brings together people of all ages in a celebration of nature and recreation.

Fall foliage on Elm Park grounds

Jay Yuan /

Walk Your Fido through Cascades Park

I’ve always had a fondness for finding hidden gems in my hometown, and Cascades Park is an unspoiled treasure.

It’s not just the natural beauty of the park that captivates me but also the friendly atmosphere that makes my furry friend wag his tail in joy.

Yes, the park is a haven for pet lovers like me, a place where our beloved companions can revel in the freedom of the outdoors.

The park’s main attraction, the waterfall, is truly a sight to behold. It’s a popular spot for photography enthusiasts and couples looking for a picturesque background.

I’ve spent countless afternoons capturing the waterfall’s beauty through the lens of my camera.

What really sets Cascades Park apart, though, are the trails.

Fourteen miles of winding paths lead through the beautiful scenery of the park.

I often find myself drawn to the trails, whether for a brisk morning jog or a leisurely evening stroll.

The trail markings could use a little updating, so I usually download the trail maps on my phone before heading out.

One of my favorite hikes is the rapid, steep climb to the top of the park.

The view from the top is breathtaking, with the cascade clearly visible from the road.

The climb can be a bit challenging, but the reward at the top is worth every step.

Feast Your Eyes to the Changing Foliage of Bear’s Den

The waters of Bear's Den

Adam Belson /

Just a stone’s throw from my house, tucked away in the heart of New England, lies a place rich in history, beauty, and wilderness.

Its name? Bear’s Den.

You can’t help but feel a sense of wonder and awe as you approach the cascading waterfall cutting through the deep gorge.

It’s the perfect spot for photography, with the waterfall and the rich green foliage providing an idyllic backdrop.

Living in the area, I’ve had the pleasure of witnessing the seasonal transformations that Bear’s Den undergoes.

Believe me, there’s nothing quite like watching Mother Nature weave her magic here.

In the autumn, the leaves turn a multitude of colors, a beautiful tribute to the passage of time.

Come winter, the area transforms into a winter wonderland, the waterfall freezing over to create a stunning icy spectacle.

The caves at Bear’s Den are another point of interest.

Steeped in history, they’re said to be the place where Metacomet, an influential Native American leader, planned a campaign against the Connecticut valleys settlements in the 17th century.

And there’s more to the name than just a catchy title—the spot is reputedly named after a bear that was shot on the property.

Despite its scenic beauty and historical significance, Bear’s Den remains a hidden gem, often overlooked by tourists.

It’s a quick, easy hike to the waterfall, and it’s not unusual to find that you have the place all to yourself.

Discover Indigenous History at Fruitlands Museum

Buildings at Fruitlands Museum

quiggyt4 /

I’ve always been drawn to the serene beauty and rich history of the Fruitlands Museum.

Tucked away in the heart of farmland, this museum, established in 1914, is a treasure trove of Native American artifacts, Shaker documents, fine paintings, and much more.

Fruitlands is more than just a museum, though. It’s a whole experience.

One of the best things about living nearby is the opportunity to immerse myself in the surroundings.

The museum is situated in an old farmhouse built in the 1800s, and stepping into it is like stepping back in time.

Roaming around and exploring the little galleries is one of my favorite weekend activities.

It’s a way to understand how people lived two centuries ago.

The museum also happens to be the childhood home of Louisa May Alcott.

Native American shelter at Fruitlands Museum

Rachel Rose Boucher /

Walking through the same rooms where she once lived, you can almost feel the history seeping out of the walls.

And if you’re interested in the utopian movement of the 1840s, a visit to Fruitlands will give you plenty of insights.

But what truly sets Fruitlands apart is its breathtaking outdoor scenery.

The hiking trails are a treat for both the eyes and the soul.

There’s always a new sculpture to discover, a new vista to admire.

And let me tell you, the views from the top are something else – rolling hills, lush greenery, and skies that stretch on forever.

Just a heads up, though, if you’re planning to visit in the summer, come prepared for mosquitoes.

Interior of a native American shelter at Fruitlands Museum

Rachel Rose Boucher /

Immerse in Raw Nature in Cascading Waters

I’ve lived here all my life, and my love for nature has only intensified, thanks in large part to the beautiful Cascading Waters.

Just last weekend, I decided to take my energetic puppy for a hike through one of the trails.

Now, this isn’t a perfectly primed trail, mind you. It’s a bit rough around the edges, full of gnarly roots and towering trees, but that’s part of its charm.

As we started our early morning hike, shrouded by the dense canopy, we felt like true adventurers lost in the wild.

Indeed, we did get a little lost at one point, but the trail markers – blue stamps on the trees – guided us back on track.

My puppy seemed to enjoy every bit of it, her tail wagging more with every step we took, sniffing around, and running after unseen critters.

Amidst the dense foliage, the view of the sky was somewhat blocked, lending the trail a unique, almost mystical vibe.

It was darker than your usual park trails but in a good way.

It felt like we had stepped into some otherworldly realm where time slowed down.

Cascading Waters is not for everyone, but if you’re anything like me – a lover of raw, untamed nature – you’ll find it to be a beautiful haven right in our backyard.

Just remember to respect the place, keep it clean, and wear bug spray!

Journey through Time in History at the American Antiquarian Society

Exterior of American Antiquarian Society

Harold Stiver /

Guess what? Today, I had a chance to take a walk through history at the American Antiquarian Society.

You know, it’s one thing to read about historical events in a book, but it’s something else entirely to hold that history in your hands.

I kid you not, I got to see some of President George Washington’s hair.

Talk about a unique experience!

Don’t even get me started on the sheer number of artifacts and documents housed there. It’s mind-boggling, to say the least.

I’ve been familiar with the American Antiquarian Society for about five years now, but each visit feels like the first.

From rare books to historic newspapers, the collection seems endless.

And the best part? You don’t even need to step foot in the building to benefit from this vast resource.

They have an extensive digital archive available for everyone to explore.

It’s like having a personal treasure trove of American history right at your fingertips.

Learn about Local Ecology at the Ecotarium

Interior of EcoTarium

John Phelan, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Ever had a day where you just can’t decide between taking a leisurely trek through nature, interacting with intriguing wildlife, or delving into exciting scientific exhibits?

Well, at the Ecotarium, you don’t have to choose!

As someone who regularly visits Ecotarium, I can tell you it’s a place that merges ecology and conservation in a fun, interactive way.

It’s an ideal destination if you’re looking to spend quality time with your family or friends.

The Ecotarium has three floors teeming with various science topics.

The interactive displays make learning fun and engaging.

One minute, you’re gaping at the ingenuity of a Rube Goldberg-like device; the next, you’re awestruck by the sight of a mountain lion or an owl.

City Science display in EcoTarium

EcoTarium, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

And let’s not forget the otters! Watching these little rascals swim around is pure joy.

The venue also boasts an interesting bubble station and a playground, so your little ones are guaranteed to have a blast.

However, the toddler area could use a little more attention to cleanliness.

Given the number of excitable kids that visit, it’s not surprising to find a stray toy or two.

Now, about the train ride – it’s a delightful feature but seems to be closed quite often.

It’s certainly a disappointment when you’re all set for a picturesque ride only to find out it’s not operational.

I hope they improve the reliability of this attraction in the future.

Roll in the Grass at Shore Park

Shore Park, located on the banks of Indian Lake, is one of my favorite spots to spend a day.

It’s not just a park, it’s a space that offers a wide variety of outdoor activities.

Just picture this: a beautiful sandy beach, a boathouse, and a vast open space filled with large grassy areas.

I often bring my portable grill with me and enjoy a good barbecue with my family.

There’s something so peaceful about grilling under the clear sky, the aroma wafting through the park, mingling with the scent of surrounding nature.

Interestingly, Shore Park also has a new bathhouse, which is quite spacious.

It makes the experience even more convenient and enjoyable.

The park is quite lively during the summer, filled with the laughter and chatter of children and adults alike.

It does get crowded, but I think that’s part of its charm.

The community there is vibrant and welcoming, which makes up for the noise.

During the off-season, it transforms into a haven for dog owners like myself. I love taking my dog to the park for a swim in the lake.

It’s completely different from the summer scene.

The park becomes a quiet, serene space, perfect for reflections.

Catch the Championship Regatta at Quinsigamond State Park- Regatta Point

Trail at Quinsigamond State Park- Regatta Point

John Phelan, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

It’s a Saturday morning tradition of mine to wake up early and embrace the day at Quinsigamond State Park- Regatta Point.

There’s something magical about the stillness of the lake in the morning, where the only ripples are from the rowing boats slicing through the shimmering water.

The park is not just about the lake, though. It’s a haven for outdoor enthusiasts like me.

During the summers, the park buzzes with life as families and friends gather for barbecues, picnics, or friendly games on the sports fields.

On the other hand, winters transform the landscape into a frost-tipped wonderland, perfect for tranquil strolls along the snow-covered trails.

As an avid photographer, I’m always spoilt for choice at Quinsigamond State Park- Regatta Point.

Be it the joyous moments of families having fun, the intensity of the Championship Regatta, or the solitary fishing enthusiast waiting for his catch, there’s always a frame waiting to be clicked.

But something that always takes my breath away is the stunning sunrise and sunset.

It’s a sight to behold as the sky dances with hues of orange and purple, reflecting off the tranquil waters.

Uncover the County’s History at Worcester Historical Museum

Exterior of Worcester Historical Museum

John Phelan, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Walking through the doors of the Worcester Historical Museum is like stepping back in time, right into the heart of our beloved Worcester city.

It’s my go-to spot whenever I need a bout of nostalgia or simply a good, meaningful day out with the family.

My most recent visit to the museum was on a sunny August day.

The occasion was special; my 96-year-old Grandfather and my 94-year-old Grandmother were visiting from Florida.

Being former residents of Worcester, we knew they would appreciate a piece of home.

We managed to score them the famous black Worcester tee-shirts that list the different ways to pronounce Worcester.

It’s a simple souvenir, but one that embodies the city’s spirit and diversity.

One thing that stands out about this museum is its inclusivity.

Throughout the summer, from mid-July to the end of August, Worcester Historical Museum opens its doors to the public free of charge.

It’s a wonderful way to celebrate Worcester’s 300th Tercentennial, sparking interest and teaching us about our city’s history.

They repeat this generosity during February school vacations, providing a fantastic and educational outing for kids.

The museum has something for everyone.

For those fascinated by pop culture, learning about the real creator of the Smiley Face Emoji is an unforgettable experience.

For me, the museum is an ever-changing repository of stories about our city’s inventors, artists, sports stars, and pioneers.

Imagining the streets filled with cheering crowds for sporting legends like Marshal Taylor and Bob Cousy is a feeling you can only get here.

Enjoy a Picnic in the Serene University Park

There’s just something about University Park that sets my heart at ease.

It’s the kind of place that serves as the perfect antidote to the hustle and bustle of city life.

The calm aura of the park, punctuated by the quacks of numerous ducks and geese, always creates an enchanting atmosphere.

I often find myself strolling through this remarkable park, basking in the tranquility that it offers.

The lake, which has been left in its natural state, is a true sanctuary for wildlife.

You can easily spot fish, snails, and even turtles inhabiting the clear waters.

The sight of these creatures going about their daily lives is undoubtedly a fascinating spectacle.

Just a gentle reminder, though, that there are signs around cautioning against feeding the birds, and non-compliance could lead to a fine.

One of the best parts of University Park is the variety of activities available.

The basketball courts and playground provide the perfect space for children to expend their boundless energy.

For those seeking a more leisurely time, the park offers an ideal setting for a picnic.

Just remember to tread carefully, though – there’s goose poop around.

Look back to Life in the 1700s at Salisbury Mansion

Exterior of Salisbury Mansion

John Phelan, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

One thing that never gets old for me is the rich history that surrounds us here in Worcester, and a prime example of that is the Salisbury Mansion.

There’s something incredibly captivating about stepping into a house that has stood since 1772 and immersing yourself in the charm of a bygone era.

The mansion, now a history museum, has such a riveting story to tell.

It’s a time capsule diligently restored to reflect the 1830s, and it’s right here in our city.

The first time I crossed its threshold, I felt like I was transported back in time. The original furniture, the replicated wall and floor coverings, every little detail was just perfect.

There’s also a fun little quirk to Salisbury Mansion.

When you visit, you actually have to knock on the door to be let in, just like in the old days.

It was a bit unusual at first, but it added to the whole experience.

And if you’re lucky enough to visit during the holiday season, you’ll see the house decked out in Christmas decorations, despite the Salisburys’ historical Calvinist beliefs.

It’s a bit ironic, but it definitely adds to the charm.

Final Thoughts

I’ve had the pleasure of exploring the dynamic offerings of Worcester County, Massachusetts, throughout my life here.

The thrill of soaring through the trees at Boundless Adventures Zipline and Aerial Park, the solemnity and reverence experienced at the Massachusetts Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and the intellectual challenge posed by Live Action Escapes, all contribute to the diverse palette of experiences this place has to offer.

It’s a privilege to call this place home, and I can’t wait to continue discovering more of its treasures.

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