We visited family on a recent weekend and as we approached our family’s home we noticed that few others were at Edmands Park on Blake Street. We headed over there to do an afternoon explore and found wide, level trails that provided very Easy Walking. My husband grew up within walking distance of here, so he spent lots of time here as a kid. But his memories of the park are quite different from what we found on our recent visit.
He recalled a large pond where kids skated in the winter. But he also talked of lots of broken glass on the trails, and flat tires on their bikes because of the glass shards. As we walked, we saw such positive changes from how the park was in years past. Packed dirt trails now offer solid footing, and wide paths make it easy to avoid others as we continue to use care spending time around others. The pond that offered a place to ice skate is now almost completely filled in with cat tails and other water-loving plants.
A very small stream flows through the the park on its way to the nearby Charles River. We spotted lots of sprouting skunk cabbage along the banks of the stream. One trail in the park climbs a hill, and soon I heard memories of sledding adventures in days gone by.
A large culvert at the outlet of the pond used to be marshy, a difficult area to cross. In the years since we last visited, a bridge and bench have been installed and now allow for easy passage from one side of the former pond to the other.
We spent an hour or two wandering the park on a sunny weekend afternoon, and saw only a few others on the trail. Some visitors looked like students coming from the adjacent Boston College property. Nearly everyone wore masks. In our continued quest to find less crowded spaces to spend time in outdoors, this town-owned park was a real surprise. On street parking limits the number of cars that can access the park.
Marjorie Turner Hollman is a personal historian who loves the outdoors, and is the author of Easy Walks in Massachusetts, 2nd edition, More Easy Walks in Massachusetts, 2nd edition, and editor of Easy Walks and Paddles in the Ten Mile River Watershed. Just out is her latest book, Finding Easy Walks Wherever You Are.
She has been a freelance writer for numerous local, regional, and national publications for the past 20+ years, has helped numerous families to save their stories, and has recorded multiple veterans oral histories, now housed at the Library of Congress.