Top 10 Boston Parks Moments in 2021

Join us as we count Boston Parks and Recreation’s ’10 Best Times’ for 2021.

Join us as we count our ‘Top 10 Moments’ of 2021 and reflect on some of our proudest moments as a department and as a community.

# 10: Boston’s first urban forest plan began in 2021 and will end this spring.

Boston’s urban forest plan is a one-year effort made up of several phases. The first part of our work was the Urban Forest Street Tree Inventory – an assessment of the existing condition of Boston public street trees, which we just completed. The data collected during this tree inventory provides an important snapshot of the condition of trees on the streets of Boston. Now that the inventory and assessment is complete, let’s dive into the data to see what it tells us about this piece of urban forest. And we’ll be releasing a report with recommendations this spring.

# 9: Our animal care and control division continues to take care of our furry and feathered friends.
Tammy the cat

Say hello to Tammy, one of the cats at the Boston Fire Department! Tammy was a nine week old kitten who was discovered in a storm sewer and rescued by the Boston Fire Department and Animal Care and Control. These same firefighters tracked down Tammy to City of Boston Animal Care and Control when they officially adopted her!

# 8: George Wright Golf Course and William J. Devine Golf Course offer challenging golf courses in beautiful natural surroundings.
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The City owns and operates the William J. Devine Golf Course in Dorchester and the George Wright Golf Course in Hyde Park designed by Donald Ross. Both have received national accolades as must-see courses when golfing in the Boston area. These affordable courses were open and accessible to everyone! This year we have played over 40,000 rounds of golf between the two courses.

#seven: Mayor’s team of murals enhanced the style and visual landscape of our parks and Boston neighborhoods.
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Throughout the year and throughout the city, the Mayor’s mural team continues to impress. Celebrating 30th year of employing Boston high school students to create large-scale public art projects in Boston neighborhoods and city parks.

During the month of July 2021, the Mayor’s Mural Crew painted “Tout Moun Se Moun / One Love: Mattapan Tap Tap Mural,” a 50ft by 18ft mural located at the back entrance of Chase Bank on Blue Hill Avenue . In August, the team painted “Eat what you grow, reap what you sow,” a 31-by-14-foot mural on the corner of Topalian Street and Edgewater Drive, along the Neponset River.

# 6: Wild Wednesday hikes brought interpretive programming back to Boston’s parks.
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Throughout the summer, Park Rangers and Boston Parks employees led groups of enthusiastic hikers through the wilderness of the city of Boston. These short hikes were a fantastic opportunity for people to enjoy Boston Urban savages.

Interpretive programming is one of the three primary areas of responsibility for Park Rangers and we were excited to bring these scheduled programs back to the people of Boston. We hope 2022 will bring even more scheduled interpretation programs!

# 5: We have broadened our linguistic access and developed multilingual programming in our parks.
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Our Storywalk program invited families to visit our parks and encouraged reading as we displayed books in 9 languages ​​in city parks and playgrounds. Plus, we provide interpretation and translation services for all of our design and construction community meetings, so make sure your voice is heard!

# 4: Our design and build division cut the ribbon and welcomed people to newly remodeled parks throughout Boston.
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We celebrated over a dozen completed projects this year as well as a dozen projects under construction. For the future, we have several designs completed and underway.

Work on the Franklin Park action plan continued into 2021. The parks department and design team held conversations with the community to discuss activation nodes and catalytic projects. Development of the Boston Common Master Plan continued, with a view to a 2022 final report.

To see all of our ongoing city-wide design and construction projects, visit the project map here.

Here are some highlights from the past year:

# 3: We have built our team with a number of new hires, including key senior management positions.
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In addition to welcoming a new mayor and head of environment, energy and environmentally conscious open spaces, we were pleased to add more than two dozen amazing people to our team, including new recruits to managerial positions.

We’re always looking to add a number of great people to our team. If you want to join a compassionate team, visit for more information on our vacancies within the Parks Department.

Say hello if you haven’t yet:

# 2: Our operations staff have worked hard to keep our parks safe, beautiful and clean.
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With Bostonians using our parks more than ever, our operations staff adapted to the needs of the times. While maintaining and cleaning our parks, they have also answered over 8,000 311 calls. Thank you to the men and women who work hard in the cemeteries, maintenance, horticulture, trees and trades to guard our parks and our properties in good condition.

# 1: We returned safe and sound to the in-person events.
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After canceling last year’s events, we were happy to safely return to in-person events and activities at our parks.

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Jennifer R. Strohm