- Department of Conservation & Recreation
Media Contact for Baker-Polito Administration Unveils New Interpretive Panels at the Summit of Wachusett Mountain
Troy Wall, Press Secretary
Princeton — In a continued effort to enhance the visitor experience at Wachusett Mountain State Reservation, the Baker-Polito Administration today unveiled new interpretive panels and other signage to assist the public as they explore and take in the views at the mountain’s summit. In total, the project cost approximately $100,000 and includes the installation of the new interpretive panels and view shed panels, which are specially designed with weather resistant materials, and a plaque to commemorate the former Summit Houses that used to sit atop of the mountain.
“Wachusett Mountain State Reservation remains an extremely popular destination for residents and out-of-state tourists, who traverse to the summit to observe some of Massachusetts most breathtaking views,” said Department of Conservation and Recreation Commissioner Leo Roy. “The Baker-Polito Administration continues to seek out opportunities that engage and connect visitors to the Commonwealth’s most unique natural resources, and this new signage will not only educate those who venture to the top of the mountain, but will also foster a sense of shared stewardship for the state parks system.”
The new signage includes:
- Five interpretive panels -
- The Wonders of Wachusett – Welcome and Introduction;
- A Mountain of Opportunity – What to See and Do;
- Treasured Trees – Wachusett’s Forest Communities;
- Written in Stone – Wachusett’s Changing Geology;
- Life on the Mountain – The plants and animals on the mountain;
- Remembering the Summit Houses Plaque to commemorate the three Summit Houses and provide a brief description and sketch of each; and,
- Four view shed panels located on the observation deck of the fire tower, which marks key locations to east, west, south, and north directions.
Earlier this year, as part of the DCR’s Historic Curatorship Program, the agency announced curators for the 1903 Superintendent’s House at Wachusett Mountain (also known as the Vickery House). The building originally served as a residence and office space for the reservation’s first superintendent, Guy Chase, and his family. Currently, the DCR and Cork & Windsor LLC are in the process of finalizing a lease for the use of the property, which will enable the new curators to commence rehabilitation work immediately. The curators plan to open a new café, market, and community space in the building, and expect a soft opening in early 2019. The DCR estimates the value of the preservation, reuse, and maintenance of the turn-of-the-century structure and grounds at approximately $969,000 over the term of the forty-year lease.