Location: Hancock-Adams Greenway, Quincy, MA (about 10 minutes south of Boston and 45 minutes northeast of Providence, RI)
Parking: There was free parking available at the Ross Garage
Handicapped Accessible: Yes
Dog Friendly: Yes
Summary: Quincy, MA, held their first (of hopefully many) President’s Day celebrations which included games for children, a band, costumed entertainers, an orchestra, a play for children and the Fire Gypsy.
What better place to spend Presidents Day than Quincy, MA, the home to two U.S. Presidents as well as former Governor of MA John Hancock (Hancock has been considered to be from Quincy after the part of Braintree he was from was annexed into Quincy)?
The first Presidents Day celebration included a tour of the crypt where the former Presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams have been laid to rest. Both presidents were originally buried in a tomb at the Hancock Cemetery across the street. But, since John Adams wanted to buried in a church, the bodies were moved to the basement of what is now called the United First Parish Church. The tomb where the bodies were originally laid to rest is still at the cemetery. The presidents and their wives bodies, or remain, are in the crypt at the church.
Some very tall costumed entertainers greeted visitors.
Souljacker ably covered some Rolling Stones and other classic rock bands.
Location: Hancock-Adams Common, 1305 Hancock St, Quincy, MA
Hours: Dusk until dawn
Handicapped Accessible: Yes
Dog Friendly: Yes
Parking: 1 and 2 hour street parking is available. There is also a parking garage located at 1250 Hancock St
Highlights: holiday lights on display at the Hancock-Adams, Quincy, MA
The newly constructed Hancock-Adams Common (it was dedicated in Sep. of this year) is home to one of the most festive holiday displays.
The Hancock-Adams Common, named after two of the more prominent residents of Quincy (technically John Hancock was born in what was then known as Braintree but it was later incorporated into what is now known as Quincy). At the north end of the display is John Adams
John Hancock is located at the south part of the display, closer to Quincy Center (or as it is now being called The New Quincy Center)
The center piece of the display is the 60 foot tree.
But the Santa, nutcracker and snowman are all a very close second.
Speaking of Santa, these two Santa Clauses took some time away from the North Pole to check out the display.
Thousands of lights illuminate the common.
The trees reflection so pretty in the gazing ball at City Hall.
The 174 year old Quincy City Hall was also dressed up for the holidays.
The Christmas light display is dog friendly. Al, a 2 year old English Bulldog posed in front of the tree for me.
Once the site of a military training base, Marina Bay in Quincy, MA, is the perfect place for a military tribute.
The clock tower, which was dedicated in 1987, stands 85 feet tall. The base of the tower, which is dedicated to the men of Quincy who died as a result of the war in Vietnam, is 16 feet by 16 feet. The tower is built of brick and granite and has a gold leaf cupola. And, yes, the clock still keeps good time.
During the course of the year, the city and other organizations hold special events during important military related holidays such as Veterans Day or other noteworthy days.
Forty eight men from Quincy died either during the Vietnam War or later due to injuries they sustained from the war. The most recent name to be added was Capt. Alan Brudno. Capt. Brudno died in 2004 after suffering from PTSD which he was afflicted with after being held as a POW for 2,675 days.
A quote from President Kennedy and the names of all of the men from Quincy who passed away during or after the war are etched on the tower.
Small shops and restaurants dot the boardwalk along the bay. The views from the boardwalk located behind the tower offers pretty views of Boston and the surrounding area.
Besides the obvious sentimental value of the monument at Marina Bay, this was also sentimental for me for a very different reason.
I have spent many days and nights at Marina Bay (and not just to partake in the nightlife the area offers). I used to work in the building directly across the street from the monument.
The Marina Bay area has changed a lot since the days I spent working there. But, that’s a topic for another blog post.
There is a surprising amount of wildlife and animal habitat in the area. Seals are often found in the bay during the winter and I vaguely remember avoiding a turkey and deer (before they began developing he area) on my way to work in the past.
I did see this little critter during my photo shoot.
I also saw Sassy, a 12 year old mixed breed dog, during my visit.
Parking: Free parking is located at the beach and in nearby lots.
Handicapped Accessible: Yes
Dog Friendly: Yes, although dogs are not supposed to be on the beach from May to September 30, although they are allowed to walk on the sidewalk along the beach year round.
Highlights: Views of the Boston skyline, pretty, long beach, great place to view sunrises and sunsets.
December isn’t usually considered beach weather. At least, it’s not in New England. But, some of the best sunrises and sunsets can happen any time of the year.
For this shoot, I chose to focus (no pun intended) on the clouds. You never know what you’ll get at the beach, especially during sunrises and sunsets. My neighborhood could be cloudless and clear. But, when I arrive at the beach, a five minute drive from my place, it could be dark and cloudy. Not only that but it could be bright and clear on one side of the beach, it could be quite the opposite on the other side (something I noticed during this visit).
While the clouds on this particular morning looked foreboding and the sun itself was not visible, the colors in the sky were incredible. Often times, less is more. Sure, the sun itself is virtually nonexistent in most of these shots but that seems to add more by letting in pink, orange and blues. The clouds seem to be layered with rays of light poking out threw each layer.
It was a typical December day with temperatures in the 30’s. But the wind made it feel at least 10 degrees colder. The steel blue water rippled with the power of the wind.
The most obvious features of the beach have got to be the jetty and, of course, the Boston skyline.
Bandit, a Japanese Chin, enjoyed his morning stroll along the beach.
Parking: about 8 parking spots. Parking is also available at the beach which is located about half a mile away on Quincy Shore Drive and is an easy walk to Moswetuset.
Highlights: great views, easy trail, secluded, not usually very busy, a lot of historical significance
Mosewtuset may seem much like all the other small parks that dot the Massachusetts shoreline. But, its significance in the historical landscape of Massachusetts and all of the colonies and commonwealths should never be minimized.
Moswetuset is not only significant because the commonwealth of Massachusetts derived its name from Moswetuset but it is also the original trading place of Chickatawbot Sacamore and Myles Standish in 1621 that spurred the trade of the early settlers and the Native Americans. Moswetuset was also the area they used as their planting grounds.
What does a funky name like Moswetuset mean, you may ask. Moswetuset has been translated into “shaped like an arrowhead” (the area does have a distinct arrowhead shape) and “site of the great house.” The area is shielded by rows of trees and growth.
The trail is an easy loop with a very minor incline.
Only underscoring how small things can be very big in their place in history, Moswetuset is only a quarter of a mile loop, if that. But, it does offer some pretty views and it is a nice place to take a short stroll or sit on one of the many rocks along the beach (Moswetuset is located next to Wollaston Beach). It was low tide when I went so I was able to get out onto the rocks and get some decent views of the water and the surrounding neighborhood of Squantum (which is technically part of Quincy) which is in the background of the photos.
Of course, what would a park or attraction in Quincy be without graffiti? There were some interesting works of graffiti at Moswetuset.
Moswetuset is a popular place for dog walkers. But, for some reason, there weren’t any dog walkers at Moswetuset when I visited. I found Buddy, though, on my way to my car as I walked along the beach.
The beach, dogs and summer-like weather. Who could ask for more? Not me. Usually, I do most of my photography and trips during the weekend. But, with unusually high temperatures for this time of the year (60’s and low 70’s) and later sunsets, I decided to head to the local beach in the hopes of photographing some cute dogs. I wasn’t disappointed. There are so many distractions at the beach, especially for our furry friends. But, they all posed so well and made my job easy.
I met Tooko, 4 years old, in the parking lot. Tooko was a barker, but a friendly barker. His bark was much worse than his bite (he really doesn’t bite). But, he sure does likes to play. We played for a while and I continued on the way to the beach.
Pedro is a 3 year old boxer. Loved his markings.
Chuckles (on the left), that is the name of the dog not the man – at least I hope it is, is am 11 year old Chihuahua. Buddy is a 7 year old Cocker Spaniel. They were a little camera shy but I still thought they were cute dogs.
Marley is an 8 year old Beagle. Her guardians also think she might have some fox hound in her. I have always been a sucker for Beagles! So, I had to get her photo.
Penny (short for Penelope) is an 8 month Corgi and Australian Sheepdog. As if on command, Penny lied down on the sand and struck a pose. Her markings were very striking. You go, Penny!
Kayser is a 4 year old German Shepherd and a Massachusetts native. The color of his coat and his sharp features caught my eye. He clocks in at 110 lbs.
Annie is a 3 year old Shepherd Husky. Her sibling is Oakley. Get it…Annie Oakley. Annie is from Tennessee. She’s the only ten I see in the photo! Love the one ear up and one ear down pose and she looked very pretty against the rising sunset.
In the annals of presidential history, Quincy, Massachusetts, holds a special place. The birthplace of two U.S. Presidents; John Adams and John Quincy Adams, Quincy, MA, has earned earned the nickname “City of Presidents.” (originally, both Adams’ were born in Braintree MA but their birthplace became Quincy after Quincy split from the town of Braintree in 1792, John Hancock was also from Braintree before the area was renamed Quincy). In fact, the high school sports teams have adopted the menacing moniker, “Presidents.”
On this frigid Presidents Day, I decided to take a visit to the Old House At Peace Field, the retirement home of John and Abigail Adams as well as John Quincy Adams, when Presidents were really Presidents. The Adams’ and their future generations would call this home until 1927.
The Stone Library located adjacent to the Adams House.
The house is much prettier during the spring and summer. Flowers of a wide spectrum of colors adorn the walkway and throughout the estate. It is closed to the public until spring time. But the front gate was open, as though they were expecting me.
Further down the road on Hancock Street, in front of City Hall, stands John Adams.
I was wondering why he was looking off into the distance (wary of the British perhaps?). Then, I noticed a statue of Abigail and little John Quincy Adams was situated across the street.
Both of the Adams’ are buried in the United First Parish Church, located directly across from City Hall and, inconveniently for the drivers of Quincy, in the middle of the busy roadway. It is also the church I almost got into a fight at as a child until the other kid said he, “didn’t fight in churches” pffft. Oh, the memories.
There are other Adams’ residences and historical places, such as his original birthplace, also in Quincy, MA, that I will cover in later posts.
We in New England are no strangers to stormy weather. But, the first stormy weather of the season always seems to catch us off guard. After all, it was only the first weekend of October. Much too early for stormy weather. But, it is hurricane season, after all. During this first storm of the season, I decided to go to my second stormy destination of the day.
By the time I arrived at Wollaston Beach, the storm had died down quite a bit. But, it was still pretty windy and wavy.
The water was rocky earlier in the day. This boat, the Cenzina, was one of three boats that were washed ashore Saturday.
Just like in life, a silver began to appear after the rocky weather.
Unfortunately, the wet weather made it hard to keep the lens dry which made some photos come out blurry. This was the best photo I could get of Maya.
To get the full effect of just how bad the weather was (and this wasn’t even during the peak time of the bad conditions) watch the video below. You may notice the light from the lighthouse in the distance at the tail end of the video.