Taking in the Classic New England Feel of Downtown Wrentham,
Town common and the original Congregational Church of Wrentham.
and photos by
created on 9/12/17.
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Wrentham reflects the classic, quintessential, quaint New England look
perhaps better than any other small town in eastern Massachusetts.
The downtown features all the earmarks traditional New England
church with tall white steeple, public schools all situated together, a
beautiful town common and a limited but appealing row of small,
specialty shops (many with colorful flags and benches out front).
Here is a place where you can catch the local conversations and some
delicious home style breakfast and lunch at the Looking Glass Cafe
diner (36 South St.),
enjoy lunch or dinner at the cozy Gavel Public House (36 South St.),
buy everything from paints to baseball cards at the family-owned
Cataldo's Hardware Store (84 South St.), or even stay overnight at the
lovely Proctor Mansion Inn with its 1861 French
luster overlooking the town common.
Proctor Mansion Inn
Gavel Public House
Looking Glass Cafe
The most striking sight in downtown Wrentham: the Original
Congregational Church of Wrentham—a Greek Revival structure built in
1834 featuring a spectacular four-stage tower (pictured at the top of
Downtown Wrentham does not pretend to be a vacation destination, and
that works to the visitor's advantage. It's simply a marvelous place to
take a walk, grab a bite to eat, catch a wonderful seasonal event like
Arts in the Park in May, a Sunday evening concert on the common in the
summer or the tree lighting ceremony on the first Sunday of December.
Gail Huff, best known as a superb reporter at WCVB-TV Channel 5 in
Boston from 1993–2012, lived in Wrentham with husband––former
Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown––and family for many years. In my Massachusetts Town Greens book,
Huff beautifully describes Wrentham and
its town common:
Scott and I
raised our children in Wrentham. During the twenty-five years that we
lived there, the town’s idyllic common served as a backdrop for so many
wonderful times. We attended the Sunday night Concerts in the Common
and it was there that our daughter Ayla sang for the first time in
public. At seven years old she sang an Elvis song with an oldies band
called The Reminisants, and years later she would shoot one of her
first music videos in the Common after becoming a finalist on Amer-
ican Idol. Scott and the girls spent many days standing out in the
Common with campaign signs during his twelve campaigns! We never missed
Wrentham Day when the Girl Scouts would be called in to volunteer.
Scott was with the Lions Club and they’d put out one of the world’s
biggest banana splits for the kids to gobble up! Santa always met the
townspeople at the Common on the Sunday after Thanksgiving. He rode in
on a fire engine and listened to
every child’s deepest Christmas wishes before being whisked away to the
North Pole. It was one of the few public
Commons that still allowed displaying of the Crèche. To the children’s
delight, haphazardly strewn Christmas lights sparkled through
many a nor’easter on Wrentham’s town common. There were also solemn
times, when sharing grief made the pain easier to bear. We cried
together in the Common after the attacks of September 11. And we
gathered for ceremonies that marked the lives
of brave soldiers who never made it back home. We waved American flags
and sang the National Anthem in a patriotic show of unity. There is
nothing common about the Wrentham Common. Gathered souls at the little
white gazebo, we’d share joy and sorrow––often wishing time could just
stand still here.
Sometimes, the simple things in life create more joy and meaning than
spending a fortune on a vacation with exceedingly high expectations.
Downtown Wrentham, in its brief appearance with one traffic light and
one block, slows down the pace in a suburban Boston world of fast-paced
ways. This is small town, Main Street USA at its best.
A stroll through downtown Wrentham.
Wrentham town common
What else is there to do in Wrentham
outside the downtown district?
Wrentham Village Premium Outlets
Monastery in Wrentham makes homemade chocolates
Cook's Valley Farm
Big Apple Farm
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