Date Of Visit: June 1, 2019
Location: 36 Merrimac St, Newburyport, MA
Hours: the boardwalk is accessible everyday from dawn to dusk
Parking: There is plenty of parking (over 100 spots roughly) that can be paid for at kiosks at the parking lot
Universally Accessible: Yes
Dog Friendly: Yes
Highlights: scenic, monuments, art, replica of historic ship
Summary: In addition to its scenic views, the boardwalk in Newburyport has a variety of memorials, markers and art for every visitor to enjoy.
Art, memorials, history and scenic views and a few surprise attractions await you at the boardwalk along Newburyport.
Originally constructed in 1977, the boardwalk had a makeover in 2002. It is now universally accessible.
Fittingly, during my visit the Nao Santa Maria, a tall ship replica of the Santa Maria, was in port.
The 200 ton ship, which was designed to replicate every feature of the original Santa Maria, set sail from Newburyport JUne 10.
There are numerous memorials, monuments and other historical markers along the boardwalk.
This memorial is dedicated to the crews of two different ships. the crew of the Heather Lynne II, a 45-foot fishing boat out of Newburyport that capsized off the coast of Cape Ann on September 5, 1996 when it struck a long cable connecting a 272-foot barge to the tugboat it was towing, Captain Jeffrey J. Hutchins, Kevin Foster and John M. Lowther lost their lives on that vessel.
There is also a plaque on the memorial dedicated to the crew of the FV Lady Luck who were lost at sea during the evening of January 31, 2007. Captain Sean P. Cone (24) and Crewman Daniel R Miller (21) were lost when the ship sank off the coast of Maine.
While the anchor, wheel and sheet of paper titled “Let A Payer Be Said”are common types of articles used for memorials, I found the lantern to be especially touching.
This monument is dedicated to the men and women of the United States Coast Guard. The monument was dedicated on August 4, 1989 to mark the 200th anniversary of the Coast Guard. The inscription, in part, states the people of Newburyport dedicate the plaque, “to the men and women of the United States Coast Guard who have courageously and faithfully served the nation for 200 years. For two centuries their labor has saved lives, buoyed our channels, ensured safe operation of ports and vessels, protected our shorelines from smugglers and defended the nation in every major war.”
Newburyport, MA, has a very close connection to the Coast Guard as you will see in the following monument just off the boardwalk.
Along the Waterfront Park next to the boardwalk is this marker which states the United States Coast Guard was born with the launching of the USRC Massachusetts on July 23, 1791.
It’s interesting to note the Coast Guard’s initial primary responsibility was to enforce tariffs and prevent smuggling. Their role has certainly expanded since then.
One of the great things about the boardwalk is there are lots of places for people to sit.
A bench and sitting area along the boardwalk is dedicated to Mayor Peter J Matthews, the 57th mayor of Newburyport who served from 1985 to 1987.
Also, chairs are set up for weary travelers or just photo opportunities.
There is also this maritime symbol along the boardwalk in case you get lost.
I tried asking this guy for directions. But, he wasn’t much help.
Markers along the boardwalk point out historic areas of interest.
Of course, there were lots of maritime vessels in the Merrimack River that runs along the boardwalk. The first boat is the Raven, the Newburyport Fire Marine 2 vessel.
The views of and from the Waterfront Park are very pretty.
There was also art, lots of art, along the boardwalk during my visit.
The following works of art were located at the Somberly’s Landing Sculpture Park along the boardwalk.
Rick Rothrock constructed “Eastern Portal”out of marble.
Wendy Klemperer constructed “Elk” out of steel
Robert Motes constructed “An Imaginary Place” out of stainless steel
Gillian Christy constructed “The Space Within, Buds” out of stainless stell with a powder coat
Dale Rogers constructed “Another Good Day” out of stainless steel, steel and stone
Leashed dogs are welcome on the boardwalk. And there were plenty of cute dogs on the boardwalk during my visit.
Mortimer is a very agile 3 year old Staffordshire mix.
Peak is a super friendly 7 year old Australian Cattle dog Pointer mix.
And, if Mortimer or Peak get thirsty walking along the boardwalk, the boardwalk has a special drinking fountain for them.