Day/Date: WEDNESDAY -1/18/23
Town visited: LEOMINSTER (city)
Had we ever been to this town before? No
Drive to town: 38 miles Time spent in town: 6 hours
What did we do in the town/area?
When we love our hairdressers, we sometimes have to make tough decisions about whether or not to follow them when they move locations or find someone else. My favorite hairdresser’s recent move to the JC Penney Salon in Leominster forced me into this dilemma. I am not ready to give up this gem of a guy and stylist, so, we decided to combine our town (well, city) visit with my need for a haircut.
We rolled into the Mall at Whitney Field, where the JC Penney Salon is located. It was great to reconnect with Andy and get a great haircut. Jenny also had fun making the most of a sale in the store’s jewelry department!
Since we were only a mile or so away from the City Hall and center, we decided to head there next. We went into City Hall to learn more about some signs we had been seeing about a “Coffee Crawl” happening in the upcoming week. All the staff at City Hall were so welcoming. We got lucky in meeting Wendy, a woman who not only gave us the coffee crawl info but who also showed us around the City Hall and gave us the feel of this friendly city of Leominster. She was proud to show off the Mayor’s Wizard of Oz collection and the “Winter Wonderland” decorations in the auditorium. She boasted of the 40+ city-sponsored events that go on throughout the year as well!
She recommended lunch and coffee at the Main Street Gift and Cafe. We are a sucker for a good sandwich and a good cup of coffee, and this place had both! The sandwiches featured locally made bread, and they served up Dean’s Beans (one of Worcester County’s best coffee roasters).
After lunch, we stopped in the library, noting an exhibit about the actress Martha Sleeper. Martha was known for her “gadget jewelry,” and in her later career began designing and manufacturing these decorative pieces. Many of them were made here in Leominster. In fact, Leominster has a long history in plastics of many kinds, (including Tupperware). At one time, the city had 60 “plastics” factories! Leominster is also home to the original plastic pink flamingo! Don Featherstone designed these flamingos in 1957, and their popularity really took off!
For our outdoor adventure, we hiked part of the Monoosnoc Trail. It was a beautiful 50-degree day in January, with some sun! We took a 2.2-mile loop hike that afforded us a lovely hilltop view of the city and surrounding areas.
After our hike, we drove to Sholan Farms and orchard. This is a beautiful orchard owned and operated by the city. There are even public hiking trails through the orchard and beyond.
We couldn’t leave without stopping at the memorial birthplace site for Johnny Appleseed, a nomadic nurseryman who was hellbent on spreading apple seeds in his journeys, specifically in Pennsylvania and Ohio in, through the late 1700s and early 1800s.
We were pleasantly surprised by all that this city had to offer. We would love to come back here to participate in one of the many city-sponsored events or to pick apples next year at the orchard!
Indigenous/ Native land info for this region: Nipmuc, Agawam