When chilly weather arrives, it’s time to dust off snowboards, skies, and sleds; to ensconce oneself in scarves, mittens, and caps; and to teach the art of building a snowman to the next generation. Massachusetts has plenty of exciting indoor and outdoor activities to offer during the winter months, as well as traditional winter fun like making snow angels and snowball fights.
All-inclusive winter fun is offered though the Department of Conservation and Recreation’s (DCR) Universal Access Program: snowshoeing, kick sledding, cross-country skiing, and ice skating provide options for those with limited mobility, balance, or endurance.
Cross-country skiing is a fun, total-body workout, and a great way to appreciate Massachusetts state parks, which feature more than 70 trails. Cross-country skiing provides a low-impact workout and an opportunity to explore pristine winter forests as skiers glide peacefully through beautiful snowy meadows.
Nothing says the holidays like bundling up the kids, lacing on the skates, and taking a spin on the ice. Whether you’re just beginning or an experienced figure skater, ice skating combines elegance and beauty with fun and exercise.
There are plenty of fun places to go ice skating, including indoor rinks, outdoor rinks, and ponds. Through DCR’s Universal Access Program, ice skating is available to all. DCR has 17 rinks that offer accessible skating where seated sleds enable people with disabilities to participate in the fun. Some sleds are equipped with a stroller bar so another skater can push, and some have short hockey sticks that enable users to propel themselves across the ice.
Skiing and Snowboarding
Massachusetts boasts 12 fantastic ski areas, from smaller mountains perfect for beginners to 1,150-foot verticals for the more daring. Most of these resorts offer terrain for both skiers and snowboarders; for those new to the slopes, lessons are available.
Sledding & Tubing
Not feeling coordinated enough for downhill skiing or brave enough for snowboarding? There’s nothing better than gliding through the cool air on a sled, toboggan, or tube. Hiking uphill with one’s snow chariot is a fair price to pay for the exhilarating rush of the downhill ride. Find some choice terrain and head out for hours of enjoyment and laughter.
If you’re up for some extra adventure, snowmobiling might be right for you; it’s a sensational way to enjoy the outdoors. State forests and parks provide a variety of groomed trails to take riders into vast areas ripe for exploration.
Nothing beats cabin fever quite like a refreshing trek, and families that like to hike will love snowshoeing – all you need is a sense of exploration and good boots. Kids will have fun on the bigfoot-like shoes that keep them from sinking into the snow and getting stuck.
Massachusetts is dotted with hundreds of ponds and lakes that feature great skating when the weather is just right. Whether you’re looking for a quick game of pick-up hockey, or practicing sweet Bobby Orr moves, sailing over the glassy surface — stick in hand — will get the adrenaline pumping. All DCR rinks are available to use for hockey games and must be booked in advance; proper safety gear must be worn at all times.
This winter, insert some fun and adventure into your routine. Don’t turn a cold shoulder on all the outdoor winter fun available in Massachusetts. Instead, kindle a newfound love affair with the Bay State and experience its great outdoors regardless of the temperature… Make it a winter you’ll never forget.
What are your favorite winter activities? Do you have a great sledding or tubing spot to share? Feel free to share in the comments below or tweet us at @MassGov.
Tags: accessible, Cross-Country Skiing, DCR, Department of Conservation and Recreation, ice hockey, ice skating, Skiing, sledding, snowboarding, snowman, Snowmobiling, tubing, Universal Access Program, what to do in Massachusetts, winter, winter activities massachusetts
Road Safety Tips for Massachusetts Drivers posted on Aug 25
Whether you drive to work every day or only get behind the wheel for weekend getaways, it can never hurt to get a refresher on the rules of the road. The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) and the Highway Safety Division (HSD) of the Executive Office of Public Safety …Continue Reading Road Safety Tips for Massachusetts Drivers
Know Your Rights as a Tenant, Part 2: After You Move In posted on Aug 18
Once you’ve learned your rights as a tenant before you move in, it’s time to figure out what happens after you move in. The Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation (OCABR) and the Attorney General’s Office (AGO) share information about your rights once you have signed a lease and …Continue Reading Know Your Rights as a Tenant, Part 2: After You Move In
Know Your Rights as a Tenant, Part 1: Before You Move In posted on Aug 16
According to the United States Census Bureau (USCB), as of 2014, more than 37 percent of Massachusetts homes were occupied by renters. Searching for a rental home, signing a lease, and meeting new neighbors can be exciting, but it’s important to know your rights as a …Continue Reading Know Your Rights as a Tenant, Part 1: Before You Move In