Beverly is known for its beaching and boating, but this seaside town offers lots of winter fun, too. For instance, most North Shore locals know that Beverly’s 16-acre Lynch Park is the city’s “crown jewel,” thanks to its lovely rose garden, two beautiful beaches, performance venue, ice cream stand, and splash pad that attract visitors from across the region all spring, summer, and fall.
But what you might not know is that Lynch Park has an awesome wintertime secret. “Lynch Park has the best sledding hill around,” says Bruce Doig, parks, recreation, and community services director for the city of Beverly.
In fact, there’s such a great sledding hill for kids (and adults) that the city doesn’t plow the back one-third of the Lynch Park parking lot to accommodate the sledding area. Even better? The city offers a sled swap. Snow bunnies can bring their own sleds or take advantage of a bin that’s stocked up with sleds for people to borrow from or donate to.
Lynch Park isn’t alone in offering a winter wonderland. In fact, Beverly has almost 40 open spaces around the city, from waterfront parks, to hiking trails, to beaches, Doig said, allowing people to hike, cross-country ski, snowshoe, and enjoy the outdoors even when it’s cold outside. He points to the city’s Kelleher Pond, which is especially good for ice skating and pond hockey, since it’s manmade and shallow. “This area’s gorgeous,” Doig says, even in the winter.
Of course, there’s a lot more to do in Beverly than just spending time outside on the ice and the snow. For people who want a warmer way to pass the time, the city offers a full slate of shopping, dining, theater, comedy, and art.
People can not only create art themselves at hands-on places like Clay Dreaming Pottery Studio or the DIY craft studio Hammer & Stain, but they can also visit one of Montserrat College of Art’s many galleries, which host shows and exhibitions from both professional and student artists.
“I think that college and university art galleries are really wonderful places,” says Lynne Cooney, PhD, Montserrat’s director of exhibitions and galleries. “They’re always free, and Montserrat is a really welcoming place.”
In addition to talks and events that will be scheduled throughout the winter (check online for dates), the college will host two winter shows in its main galleries. One will run in the newly renovated Montserrat Gallery from February 5 to March 9 and feature works by the printmaker Simonette Quamina. The other will showcase the painter Karmimadeebora McMillan and run February 5 to March 16 in the Carol Schlosberg Alumni Gallery. “These are two strong Black women artists,” Cooney said, and the shows will run during Black History Month.
Black History Month will also be celebrated February 2–3 over at The Cabot during “Amplifying Voices: A Celebration of Diversity in Film,” an annual two-day event, which will feature “all brand-new films by filmmakers of color,” along with Q&As and discussions with the filmmakers and actors, says J. Casey Soward, The Cabot’s executive director.
That’s just one of many events that The Cabot is hosting this winter. “Many times in the winter months, things can be a little bit slow, and people are getting back from the holidays, but we are very, very busy with events,” Soward says, pointing to a huge slate of programming ranging from a screening of the film High Fidelity hosted by its star, John Cusack, who’ll do a Q&A afterward, to live music, comedy, children’s programming, and more.
“The Cabot is a rare gem,” Soward says. “It’s a national treasure, and it’s right here in our backyard.” And actually, the same can be said for Beverly itself, all year long.