Topsfield

Backpack Babies at Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary

Backpack Babies is a program that encourages caregivers to explore the natural world with their babies and toddlers. Photo: Sharon Grimes

Backpack Babies is a program that encourages caregivers to explore the natural world with their babies and toddlers. Bring your backpack/frontpack or jogging stroller and explore the meadows, forests, and wetlands with your baby in this four-session series. Each class will begin indoors with a nature book and a few lap rhymes, songs, and games about the topic of the day. Then we'll go outside for a closer look at nature's gifts with our:

Family Campout: Owl Prowl

Explore the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary after hours for a night. Photo Scott Santino

Explore the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary after hours and join us for a night of camping under the stars. Have an early dinner at home and then come with your family and your tent. We will explore nature through games and hands-on activities, set up our tents near the Barn before sundown, and tell stories after the sun sets. All campouts include an evening and a morning activity or hike and a light breakfast.

When: 
Saturday, September 15 6pm - Sunday, September 16, 2018 9am

Topsfield Fair - Opening Day

Topsfield Fair opens the gates at 1pm Friday! Topsfield Fair is one of the longe

The Topsfield Fair is a perennial favorite for us.  We're not the biggest fans of the midway, although it is always worth a walkthrough and a ride or two.  We love fruits and vegetables, and are always on the lookout for the winning 'biggest pumpkin'.  Another favorite is checking out the pigs and other farm animals, as well as the interesting variety of guinea pigs and rabbits.

When: 
September 28, 2018 1-11pm
September 29-October 8, 2018 10am-10pm

Fall Colors Paddle for Families

Come see fall foliage from a different perspective on the Fall Foliage Paddle.

Mid-October is an excellent time to take in the spectacular and stunning colors provided by the Ipswich River. The riverside silver maples will be showing off their yellow-gold, while the cattails and other marsh grasses will provide beautiful greens and browns, all set against the winding blues and blacks of the river. Have your family join us for a few hours as we explore this pristine habitat via a gentle paddle in canoes. With a little luck we might encounter a beaver, otter, or muskrat as well!

When: 
Saturday, October 6, 2018 1-3pm

Kidleidoscope at Bradley Palmer

Kidleidoscope is a programs designed for preschoolers at Bradley Palmer State Park

Kids ages 3-6 are invited to join this fun, engaging activity session where they will learn about nature through stories, craft and outdoor activitiies. Topics vary by week, so come for them all! Meets at the Nature Center at 40 Asbury Street. An adult must accompany children.  For outdoor programs wear comfortable clothes and sturdy closed toe shoes, insect repellent, and sunscreen.  Bring water.  Inclement weather cancels outdoor programs.

When: 
Thursdays, September 13 & 20, 2018 10:30am-11:30pm

Teen Conservation Club: Fall Session

Teens will learn about Natural History, Ecology and Conservation at Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary.

Interesting hikes, natural history topics to explore, and real data-collection opportunities will all be based on your input and interests in this exciting club for teens. Get involved behind the scenes with Mass Audubon's science and conservation work. We meet one or two Saturdays a month during our spring and fall sessions.  We also take one full-day field trip each session to connect with local organizations and learn more about environmental issues in our communities and how you can make a real difference. Meet other local teens who are passionate about nature, science, and taking care of our world. 

Family Dusk Paddles: Discovering Wetlands

Join us as we paddle through the winding backwaters at IRWS with the family

Explore the Ipswich River at dusk. Bring your family and join us for an evening paddle in a canoe as we learn more about the river and some of its inhabitants. Being on the water is one of the best ways to explore and discover the wonders of wetlands. We will paddle through the winding backwaters lined with cattails and other marsh plants, looking for hidden wildlife. Using buckets and strainers, we'll stop and sample the rich aquatic life to learn more about what lives under the water.

When: 
Friday, August 17, 2018 6-8 pm

Family Campout: Tracks and Scat

Explore the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary after hours and join us for a night

Explore the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary after hours and join us for a night of camping under the stars. Have an early dinner at home, and then come with your family and your tent. We will explore nature through games and hands-on activities, set up our tents near the Barn before sundown, and tell stories after the sun sets. All campouts include an evening and a morning activity or hike and a light breakfast.

When: 
Saturday, August 11 6pm - Sunday, August 12, 2018 9am

Moon Walk at Bradley Palmer

Walk through the Bradley Palmer State Park with the DCR under the full moon.

Enjoy the view from Moon Hill as you learn about the moon cycle and its importance to people over the centuries. The easy walk will be enjoyed by beginners and experienced hikers alike. Bring flashlights and if you have them, binoculars. For ages 5 and up. Meet at the Parking Lot Bulletin Board, 40 Asbury Street.

When: 
Friday, June 29, 2018 8-9:30pm

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Flying Horse Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit at Pingree School

Visit the Flying Horse Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit at Pingree School in Hamilton MA
The ninth annual Flying Horse Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit will feature more than 50 works by established and emerging New England artists,  all displayed on the 100-acre campus of Pingree School from September 1 to November 4, 2018. Other artists  from afar including New York,California and and New...

Trails & Sails 2018

Explore the North Shore with over 150 Free Events in Essex National Heritage Area's Trails & Sails celebration.
Essex National Heritage Area sites will offer over 150 free family fun events over the weekends of September 21-23 and September 28-30, 2018 for the annual celebration of TRAILS & SAILS. Participants can hike, bike, paddle, stroll or sail through the region and Essex National Heritage Area will...

Marini Farm Conquer Everest Corn Maze

The 2018 Marini Farm Corn Maze in Ipswich Massachusetts is Arabian Nights themed!
The 2018 Marini Farm Corn Maze is Arabian Nights themed this year! This is not your typical corn maze; it is both educational and interactive. There are over 18 stations strategically placed throughout the maze with answers to a game sheet that you will be given before entering.We don't give you...

Sculpture at Maudslay

Artists will install their sculptures at Maudslay State Park for public viewing!
Maudslay State Park has a strong connection to the arts, and one of the highlights of the year is Sculpture at Maudslay! The annual show will be themed 'CONNECT'. This unique exhibition brings together artists from many walks of life to create site-specific sculptures in the park. 

Spriit of '76 Abbot Hall Tour

The famous painting 'The Spirit of '76' by Archibald Willard
Did you know the famous painting The Spirit of '76 painting resides at Abbot Hall in Marblehead? Take this tour of Abbot Hall as part of Trails & Sails 2018 and explore Marblehead's history in the early American Revolution. WPA Murals showing highlights of the town's history from the 1600s to...
Where: Abbot Hall

Saugus Iron Works Tours

Free Ranger guided tours at Saugus Iron Works!
U. S. National Park Rangers host free tours at the Saugus Iron Works. Learn about the production of iron on this site in the mid-1600s, an endeavor that was integral to the growth of the early colony. Hear about the archeological dig and reconstruction of the site in the 1940s to 1950s. Upon...

Crescent Farm Corn Maze

Crescent Farm corn maze in Haverhill Massachusetts
Imagine the biggest puzzle you’ve ever seen. Now imagine a day in the sunshine with your friends or family. Now add an adventure that takes teamwork and memory skills. All these things and more can be found at Crescent Farms Corn Maze. Crescent Farm Corn Maze trails cut into 9 acres of corn. Inside...

Robots and Beyond: Exploring Artificial Intelligence at MIT

Minsky Arm, created by Marvin Minsky on display at the MIT Museum!
Robots and Beyond shares the results of decades of Artificial Intelligence (AI) innovation at MIT. Explore the ideas that shaped AI and the birth of robotics, fields that are synonymous with research at MIT.
Where: MIT Museum

Boston Public Market - Boston

Boston Public Market - Boston
The Boston Public Market is an indoor, year-round marketplace featuring 35 New England artisans and food producers housed under one roof offering fresh foods, prepared meals, crafts, and specialty items. Residents and visitors alike can find seasonal, locally sourced food from Massachusetts and New...
8:00 am to 8:00 pm

Corn MAiZE and Haunted Attractions at Connors Farm - Danvers

Corn MAiZE, Maze and Haunted Attractions at Connors Farm - Danvers, Danvers MassachusettsDanvers Massachusetts
Come to Connors Farm to find your way through this year's maze, a tribute to freind and local race car legend Bentley Warren! Enjoy many family fun activities! After completing the maze, stay and have some fun around the farm. Children enjoy apple and pumpkin picking, hayrides, and most of all,...
8:00 am to 6:00 pm

Gone Fishin' on Ipswich River

Kids will learn about pond fishing on the ipswich River at Harold Parker State Forest
Come and join us for this family fishing experience! Go to the Accessible Trail parking lot at 40 Asbury Street (left turn just inside the park gates past the old gray farm house) for a FREE drop-in program for ages 6+.  Follow the trail fishing signs for a short walk to the fishing spot.  Learn...
9:00 am to 11:00 am

Boston Hill Guided Hike

Holt Hill at Ward Reservation is marked with Solstice Stones and has panoramic
Come hike at Ward Reservation with The Trustees. This guided hike on the Ward Reservation Blue Trail will offer scenic vistas of Boston and the unusual solstice stones arrangement at the top of Holt Hill, as well as panoramic skyline views from a large clearing at Elephant Rock at Boston Hill. Your...
9:30 am to 11:30 am

MFA: Casanova’s Europe: Art, Pleasure, and Power in the 18th Century

Museum exhibits at Museum of Fine Arts Boston MA
In the dynamic world of 18th-century Europe, people, ideas, and artistic styles crossed national boundaries. Salons rich with opulent paintings and furnishings hummed with intellectual exchange, gossip, and flirtation. To a person like Giacomo Casanova—smart and confident, boastful and scheming—the...
10:00 am to 5:00 pm

PEM: Sally Mann A Thousand Crossings - Salem

Events in Salem MA at Peabody Essex Museum
Co-organized with the National Gallery of Art, this exhibition features some 115 photographs - many of which have not been exhibitied or published previously - that offer a sweeping overview of the distinguished photograhier's articstic achievement, vision and drive.    
10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Farm Friends

Farm Friends a program for preschoolers at Spencer Peirce Little Farm Newbury Massachusetts!
Children three to six and a favorite adult of their choosing are invited to share in some fun-filled farm adventures which will connect them to daily life at Spencer Peirce Little Farm.
10:00 am to 11:00 am

Public Skate and Learn to Skate at Peabody Skating Rink

Learn to Skate with the Peabody Skating Club at Peabody Skating Rink
The McVann-O'Keefe Skating Rink in Peabody is open for Public Skating weekdays from 10-11:45 am, Saturday's at 2 pm, and Sundays at 2:10 pm. Call today to ask about the Learn to Skate program at with the Peabody Skating Club. The ice is perfect. The Halloween and Christmas parties are a blast, and...
10:00 am to 11:45 am

PEM Explores Innovations Inspired by Nature - Salem

Peabody Essex Museum Wild Designs Exhibit
This summer discover how creative innovators are turning to nature for new ideas and smart solutions to human challenges.  Wild Designs, on exhibit at Peabody Essex Museum, features works by artists and other creatives who are looking to nature and living systems for new ideas and creative...
10:00 am to 5:00 pm

Arts and Crafts for Little Ones with Colleen Apostolos-Marsh

Art Classes for children with Colleen Apostolos-Marsh
Certified Montessori teacher, artist and local mother, Colleen Apostolos-Marsh will guide your young artist in an exploration of color, shape, and texture. Using a variety of media, your child will be free to express their in a beautiful space while socializing and engaging in cooperative play.
10:15 am to 11:15 am

Kidleidoscope

Kidleidoscope at Maudslay State Park is a chance for preschoolers to explore the park, enjoy a story and make a craft!
Maudslay State Park has created this program for their youngest crowd! For the young set that loves nature, the park interpreter will lead a three-part preschool aged program that includes a Story, Craft & Walk that involves outdoor exploration. A different nature topic each week so come every...
10:30 am to 11:30 am

Essex Heritage Boat Tours to Bakers Island Lighthouse - Salem

Boat and Light Station Tour Bakers Island Tour
Bakers Island Light is officially open for the season! Whether you have visited before or are new to the site, there are lots of ways to experience Bakers Island Light this summer. Read on to see what is happening this year.
10:30 am to 2:00 pm

The Story Behind the Dory

Learn about Lowell's Boat Shop on this guided Trails and Sails Tour
Visit Lowell’s Boat Shop on thei Trails & Sails 2018! Founded in 1793, Lowell's Boat Shop is the oldest continuously operating wooden boat shop in the United States. Now a National Historic Landmark, Lowell's continues to build wooden boats in the traditional method. Located on the banks of the...
11:00 am to 12:00 pm

Fish Flake Hill Walking Tour

Tour the Fish Flake Hill Historic District in Beverly MA as part of Trails & Sails. Photo: drying of fish on fish flakes on Water Street.
Join us for a walking tour of Fish Flake Hill Historic District!
2:00 pm to 3:30 pm

Guided Tour of Empresses of China's Forbidden City Exhibition

Tour PEM's Empresses of China's Forbidden City Exhibition as part of Trails and Sails 2018
This exhibition is the first to explore the role of empresses in shaping China’s last dynasty- the Qing dynasty - from 1644 to 1912. Nearly 200 spectacular objects from the Palace Museum tell the little-known stories of how imperial women influenced court politics, art and religion.
3:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Open Studio at Art Haven

Things to do north of Boston
Friday afternoons are a great time for families to drop-by fand enjoy Open Studio at Art Haven. Participate in a fun activity and access to the studio space to work on clay, painting, drawing or anything else you dream up. All ages are welcome with a parent.
3:30 pm to 5:00 pm

Marine Science Experience

Tour Salem State's Cat Cove Marine Lab for Trails and Sails! FREE!
Come tour the Cat Cove Marine Laboratory as part of Trails & Sails 2018! The Cat Cove Marine Laboratory is operated by Salem State University to promote the sustainable use of aquatic resources on the North Shore and elsewhere. Massachusetts’ North Shore is historically, culturally and...
5:00 pm to 6:30 pm

Friday Farm Dinners at Appleton Farms

Families enjoy dinner on at Appletons Farms with ingredients fresh from the farm!
Join Appleton Farms for a dinner on the farm! Each Friday Appleton Farms and Chive Events invites you to join us for dinner. Relax under the setting sun and enjoy a truly unique farm to table experience. From fresh vegetables and fruits, to local pasture raised meats and sustainable seafood, Chive...
5:30 pm

TitO presents Poe

Theater in the Open presents the works of Edgar Allen Poe at Oak Hill Cemetary in Newburyport Massachusetts
  Join Theater in the Open for a special encore presentation of Poe in The Ellen T. Brown Memorial Chapel at the Oak Hill Cemetery in Newburyport. Using music, macabre pageantry and shadow puppetry, Theater in the Open’s ensemble will explore the emotional tension and otherworldly atmosphere that...
6:00 pm to 7:30 pm

Haunted Hilldale Cemetery

Hilldale Cemetary is on of the North Shore's most active paranormal spots!
Join Essex County Ghost Project on a FREE guided ghost tour of Hilldale Cemetary - one of the Merrimack Valley's most active cemeteries as part of Trails & Sails 2018. Join us for a weekend of paranormal enlightenment! On Friday night there will be an equipment class to learn how to use some of...
7:00 pm to 10:00 pm

Moonlight Paddle on Lake Gardner

BYOB- bring your own boat - to this Trails & Sails moonlight paddle!
Come join the Lake Gardener Improvement Association for a twilight paddle on Lake Gardner! Flat water paddling awaits as the sun sets from behind Whittier Hill, site of a recent Greenbelt preservation effort. This is a BYOB...bring your own boat event. Bring your own kayak! Capacity: 12
7:30 pm to 9:30 pm

Country Dance with the Herland Brothers

The Herland Brothers bring the country rock music to Castle Hill on the Crane Estate in Ipswich Massachusetts!
Don your cowboy boots and grab your favorite dance partner for a fabulous night in the Castle Hill barn. Acclaimed country rock band the Herland Brothers will bring the tunes that will keep you on your feet. They've wowed audiences across New England with their high energy concerts featuring...
7:30 pm to 9:30 pm

Astronomy After Hours at the MOS Observatory

Come to the Museum of Science rooftop for free stargazing and astronomy related
Tucked away on the roof of the Museum's parking garage, the Gilliland Observatory is a wonderful resource for our starry-eyed public. On clear nights, you can view stars, planets, the Moon, and other astronomical phenomena. On cloudy nights, tour the inside of the Observatory, and participate in...
8:30 pm to 10:00 pm

Saturday, September 22

Marini Farm Conquer Everest Corn Maze

The 2018 Marini Farm Corn Maze in Ipswich Massachusetts is Arabian Nights themed!
The 2018 Marini Farm Corn Maze is Arabian Nights themed this year! This is not your typical corn maze; it is both educational and interactive. There are over 18 stations strategically placed throughout the maze with answers to a game sheet that you will be given before entering.We don't give you...

Kimball Farm Corn Maze

Kimball Farm corn maze in Haverhill Massachusetts
At the Kimball Farm Corn Maze all are welcome to come and enjoy the challenge of finding your way through the winding corn field maze. Our originally desIgned CORN MAZE  for 2018 is full of Crazy angles and is sure to be a fun challenge. Have no fear, there will be clues along the way.  Be daring...

Trails & Sails 2018

Explore the North Shore with over 150 Free Events in Essex National Heritage Area's Trails & Sails celebration.
Essex National Heritage Area sites will offer over 150 free family fun events over the weekends of September 21-23 and September 28-30, 2018 for the annual celebration of TRAILS & SAILS. Participants can hike, bike, paddle, stroll or sail through the region and Essex National Heritage Area will...

Sculpture at Maudslay

Artists will install their sculptures at Maudslay State Park for public viewing!
Maudslay State Park has a strong connection to the arts, and one of the highlights of the year is Sculpture at Maudslay! The annual show will be themed 'CONNECT'. This unique exhibition brings together artists from many walks of life to create site-specific sculptures in the park. 

The Lady of Salem: Maritime Art

Tour the Ladies of Salem with Trails & Sails! Learn about the history of Salem Massachusetts through this unique public art installation!
Learn about Salem's maritime history and view "Lady of Salem" public art through a guided walking tours of the "Ladies." This festive Beautification Committee public art project features over 15 artistically decorated ship figureheads adorning downtown Salem. Tours will focus on Salem's maritime...

Flying Horse Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit at Pingree School

Visit the Flying Horse Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit at Pingree School in Hamilton MA
The ninth annual Flying Horse Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit will feature more than 50 works by established and emerging New England artists,  all displayed on the 100-acre campus of Pingree School from September 1 to November 4, 2018. Other artists  from afar including New York,California and and New...

Crescent Farm Corn Maze

Crescent Farm corn maze in Haverhill Massachusetts
Imagine the biggest puzzle you’ve ever seen. Now imagine a day in the sunshine with your friends or family. Now add an adventure that takes teamwork and memory skills. All these things and more can be found at Crescent Farms Corn Maze. Crescent Farm Corn Maze trails cut into 9 acres of corn. Inside...

Robots and Beyond: Exploring Artificial Intelligence at MIT

Minsky Arm, created by Marvin Minsky on display at the MIT Museum!
Robots and Beyond shares the results of decades of Artificial Intelligence (AI) innovation at MIT. Explore the ideas that shaped AI and the birth of robotics, fields that are synonymous with research at MIT.
Where: MIT Museum

Castle Neck River Boat Tours

Explore the the Crane Wildlife Refuge by boat with the Trustees of Reservations!
Explore the waters Crane Wildlife Refuge on the Crane Estate by boat with the Trustees of Reservations! Join us for a cruise in Essex Bay aboard our pontoon boat the Osprey! We’ll view the seldom seen backside of the Crane Wildlife Refuge, and take a turn around Choate Island to view the open...

Saugus Iron Works Tours

Free Ranger guided tours at Saugus Iron Works!
U. S. National Park Rangers host free tours at the Saugus Iron Works. Learn about the production of iron on this site in the mid-1600s, an endeavor that was integral to the growth of the early colony. Hear about the archeological dig and reconstruction of the site in the 1940s to 1950s. Upon...
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