We’re already a third of the way through summer, and if you’re staying local, there’s plenty to do in Wellesley.
It’s no secret that it’s hot this summer, and so it’s no surprise that people are looking for a bit of water to jump into. Luckily, Wellesley is home to Morses Pond, which is staffed by lifeguards and is host to many beachy activities beyond just taking a dip. Aside from swimming, there are paddle boards and kayaks that can be rented and taken around anywhere in the pond at the cost of $10 for 30 minutes. On the beach itself there are pavilions that can be rented for events ($5 for resident, $20 for non residents), and beach volleyball is available for some friendly competition. The bathhouse offers bathrooms and changing stalls, and has a vending machine as well.
Wellesley residents can either buy a $10 day pass, or go for a season pass option. Adult season passes are $125, while children (under 16) and seniors can get one for $60. There is also $250 family pass option. If you are not Wellesley resident, there are no day passes available, and season passes run quite a bit steeper—adults are $190, and children/seniors are $90.
The Brook Path & beyond
The Brook Path is a 2.4-mile route that runs through Wellesley, roughly from the High School to the Nehoiden Golf Club. It’s a perfect place to walk, run, or bike on a sunny summer day. The trees provide shade, and there are benches along the path if you need a break or just want to sit outside in nature. The path runs adjacent to Fuller Brook which, if you are persistent and curious, you can discover leads to the Charles River. Fuller Brook has a fish ladder near Hunnewell Elementary School, and during spring migration you can see lots of leaping fish making their way over the little waterfall. The Brook Path is probably the best known and most popular path in town, so if you are looking for seclusion in nature, this might not be the path for you.
Wellesley is rife with trails, perfect for walking or running. Beyond the Brook Path, there exists a system of trails, maintained and mapped by the Wellesley Trails Committee. We have some personal recommendations for which trials are best, particularly in the summer, when heat is a factor.
- The Sudbury Path (or blue arrow path) is well shaded and quite secluded, and runs for 4.6 miles. It’s never a very crowded trail, and it offers more physical challenge than the flat and level Brook Path.
- The Crosstown Trail is a very long (6.2 miles), very flat path that cuts in and out of the town. We would recommend doing small bits of it at a time if you want to preserve the feeling of walking in nature. That being said, it offers diversity in scenery, and is easy to find parking for. A good place to start, depending on where you’re coming from, is the 900 Worcester St. parking lot near Dale Street.
- The Centennial Reservation Trail, as you might guess, runs around Centennial Reservation. This is a popular spot for dog walkers, and is a scenic, hilly path. It’s on the shorter side, but has offshoots that can be explored. It is a little more exposed than the other trials in town, so remember to bring your sunscreen. The trail starts at the Centennial Reservation parking lot off Oakland Street.
Summer was made for ice cream. Or is it the other way around? Either way, Wellesley has delicious options for everyone’s favorite summer treat. Truly’s, a small, local store that usually has a line out the door on summer nights, often changes up their special flavors—dedicated Swellesley fans may recall the Swellesley Swirl flavor once offered—while keeping a unique selection of consistent items. We personally recommend the Cookie D lite soft serve option.
Also in Wellesley Square is J.P Licks. Although part of a chain, J.P. Licks does a good job keeping a local feel to the place by decorating their walls with art from local artists. As for the ice cream itself, there’s have a wide selection of what we would call “fancy” ice cream. This means it’s not just chocolate, it’s chocolate brownie. They don’t have just mint, they have mint cookies and cream. You get the picture. While they do have the more typical flavors, if you’re looking for excitement in your ice cream life, J.P. Licks can serve you well.
The Wellesley Recycling and Disposal Facility is more than a place to throw away your trash and recyclables. You can also visit two spots to search for the cast-off treasures of Wellesley residents—the give and take section and the books section. Both these parts of the dump are constantly replenished by Wellesley residents looking to de-clutter their homes. From furniture to water guns, there’s little that hasn’t appeared at the RDF at one point or another. It can be a bit hit or miss, but the searching is half the fun.
Wellesley Theater Project runs throughout the summer, putting on plays with young actors getting a taste of the theatrical world. Check out Newsies on July 28, 29, or 30. Newsies is the rousing tale of Jack Kelly, a charismatic newsboy and leader of a band of teenaged “newsies.” When titans of publishing raise distribution prices at the newsboys’ expense, Jack rallies newsies from across the city to strike against the unfair conditions and fight for what’s right. Based on the 1992 motion picture and inspired by a true story. Ticket information here.
Wellesley offers a wide range of cuisine for the local foodie as well as those who are just plain hungry, and the town has enjoyed a recent infusion of new restaurants.
Increasingly, restaurants in town are branching out with outdoor seating, including the new Tatte in Linden Square, Maugus in Wellesley Hills, and Bocado in Wellesley Square.
Live concerts behind town hall
Live music can be found in Wellesley, behind Town Hall. Summer concerts start at 7pm, and rotate different musicians and bands throughout the summer. The remaining shows for the summer are being performed by The Tom Nutile Big Band on July 27th, and The Rico Bar Band on August 10th. The events are great for people of all ages, and additional entertainment is offered for kids with lawn games spread about the field. Hot dog vendors have also been known to make appearances.
All praise the globe! Stare at it long enough, and it may stare back at you. Located within Babson College, the Babson World Globe has been around for over 60 years, having been completed in 1955. Since then it has been hidden away behind one of the campus halls. However, it has recently been moved to a more central location on campus, and can be more easily found in all its glory. The globe is meant to provide a realistic map of the world, and was initially made as a symbol of the college’s “global presence.” The globe is 25 tons, 28 feet across, and can be seen any time of day, slowly rotating on its pedestal. If you want to see one of the more striking pieces of art in Wellesley, and learn a new country or two while you’re at it, head on over to Babson.
There will truly never be a lack of places to go shopping in Wellesley. Saying that you have walked every path, swam in every body of water, and loyally attended all the Summer concerts is believable, but don’t try and tell the Swellesley Report that you’ve shopped in every store in town. Wellesley Square is a good place to start any shopping endeavor. It offers a plethora of clothing stores, along with stores such as Paper Source, Wellesley Books, and many more.
Linden Square has just as much to offer, with stores selling things ranging from makeup to toys. Magic Bean, Bluemercury, Neenas, and others offer a variety of places to explore. Take a break in the Courtyard’s outdoor seating area if you need to take a load off your feet mid-shopping spree.