Parks, Natural & Historic Resources & Recreation
Greenfield is located in the Connecticut River valley and has FIVE rivers running through it! The area is rich in history and natural resources from dinosaur tracks to native American sites, to farms and homes of early settlers, and geological wonders including a piece of Africa east of the River. Because of these rich resources, the recreational opportunities are also huge! From boating and swimming, to hiking, biking, rock climbing and more!
Greenfield has numbers parks on its rivers, in its hilltops and in numerous neighborhoods. Follow this link to Greenfield’s Recreation Department’s park list. The Parks offer hiking, skiing, activities for young people and more.
Greenfield Energy Park: One Park of special note is the Greenfield Energy Park with exhibits of renewable zero carbon energy, and transportation history. It also has native trees, shrubs and flowers including a butterfly garden. And, in the summer, it is a music lovers’ haven with free folk music concerts on Thursday evenings and much more.
Natural and Historic Resources and Recreation
Connecticut River Conservancy CRC (Previously known as the Connecticut River Watershed Council) has its headquarters in Greenfield. Among other things it protects the Connecticut River, has an extensive water testing/monitoring program, an annual river clean-up day, and a song competition.
Connecticut River Greenway State Park – Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation provides a full description of the 12 miles of this newest state park which runs from Northfield to Chicopee with 8 boat access points and more!
Deerfield River Watershed Association works closely with the CRWC and they have a chapter called Friends of the Green River. hhttp://www.deerfieldriver.org/GreenRiver/ They offer hikes, trainings on certifying vernal pools and more.
Great Falls Discovery Center in Turners Falls is a great resource for information on the flora, fauna, and geology of the Connecticut River Valley – with dioramas, and numerous talks and walks. The Friends of the Great Falls Discovery Center. host a coffee house in the historic Great Hall on the 2nd Friday of every month.
Greenfield Historical Commission is an official Greenfield Town committee. It’s excellent web site has listing of historic places, links for historical research and economic development opportunities and more.
Greenfield Historical Society is a non-profit organization that is located at 33 Church Street. It offers monthly lectures and access to local documents and resources.
Harvard Forest & Fisher Museum – Located in Petersham, the main exhibit displays twenty-three internationally acclaimed dioramas portraying the history, conservation and management of central New England forests.
Massachusetts Division of Conservation and Recreation has an excellent web site on state parks and activities within those parks.
Memorial Hall Museum/Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association provides access to online resources at several award-winning websites, which were developed as major resources for improving the knowledge of local history.
Museum of Natural History at Amherst College has much information about the Pioneer Valley, as well as around the world.
Pioneer Valley Institute is a unique outreach program of Greenfield Community College dedicated to our Great River Valley, its history, culture and natural wonders and its past, present and future.
Many of the organizations listed above offer recreation in addition to educational resources. The following links focus on sport and recreation!
The Appalachian Mountain Club offers hiking, rock climbing, flat water and white water paddling etc. just about every weekend and sometimes more than one! AMC also offers workshops, winter camping etc. The best way to access western Massachusetts activities is at the Berkshire Chapter Web site.
Women Outdoors is a national organization offering hiking, biking, and paddling. Western Massachusetts is the organization’s largest chapter.
Northfield Mountain Environmental & Recreation Center offers miles of cross county ski trails, hiking, educational programs for area school children, and access to the Connecticut River. FirstLight, an electric utility company, is owner of the facility. FirstLight also offers an educational river boat experience on the Quinetukkett II that travels between Northfield and Barton’s Cove, in Turners Falls, where they offer additional boat access and camping.
All About Rivers.com provides access to guides of area rivers, rafting outfitters, and basic information about boating area rivers such as the Green River, Millers River and Deerfield River.
River Facts has information about white water paddling. Just click on the state.
Also look for outfitters in the area that offer rafting, tubing and more.
Golfing – there are several golf clubs in Greenfield and the surrounding area.
Hiking & Biking
The American Trails website provides information on Massachusetts hiking and biking opportunities.
Map My Ride offers a wealth of information for bikers. Be sure you check out the local bikeways in Greenfield and Turners
There are numerous bike shops that offer information, group rides and more
If the snow is good, Greenfield has cross country skiing in several of its parks! Best places include Highland Park, area golf courses, Green River Swimming and Recreation area, and Griswold Wildlife Reserve.