Framingham Online News

FREE Kids Nature Activities at Cochituate State Park

July 17, 2011 (11:57 pm EST)
Filed under: General Interest by News Staff
Cochituate State Park

There's lots to do at Cochituate State Park!

FRAMINGHAM, MA - Between the towns of Framingham, Wayland and Natick, MA, Lake Cochituate offer many recreational summer activities including swimming, boating and fishing.

Many locals may not realize that just a few hundred yards east of the Framingham/Natick town line, (on Rt. 30), the beach, picnic area, boat launch, snack bar and canoe rental shop are in "Cochituate State Park", which is part of the Massachusetts State Park system and operated by the MA Dept. of Conservation and Recreation.

Throughout the months of July and August, (Tuesdays-Saturdays), the park provides fun, educational, and FREE summer activities for kids and families!

Most of the activities have a different theme each week, so frequent visitors can enjoy learning and doing different things -- and kids won't complain "I already did that last week".

Several of the activities take place at the park's Nature Center which is located to the right of the park's  entrance (off Rt. 30).

Although most of the activities are free, there is an admission/parking fee of $5.00 per car, (and a fee for canoe or kayak rental if you choose to participate in the Saturday paddle program).

The following is a weekly schedule of July/August (2011) activities.

(See info below to view or download detailed calendar of events and park info)

Most activities last approximately (1) hour.


  • Nature Center is open in afternoon. Kids can participate in group activities or check out a discovery pack and take it to a picnic table to enjoy by themselves or with family or friends.


  • 10:00 a.m.  - Craft making and Stories, (at Nature Center)
  • 2:00 p.m."Water Comes to Boston",  a historical program about Lake Cochituate (at beach)


  • 10:00 a.m. - "Kidleidoscope", pre-school nature program, (for ages 3 to 6). New theme each week, lasts about an hour, (meets at Nature Center)
  • 2:00 p.m. - Become a Massachusetts Junior Ranger!, (ages 7-11). New topic about nature each week. This is an 8-week program run by park staff.  Kids receive a workbook with activities to do at home or in the park and can earn a certificate and a "Junior Ranger" patch for completing the course -- but drop-ins are welcome!


  • 10:00 a.m. - Group Sports & Recreation
    , (equipment is available, meet at field near Nature Center).
  • 2:00 p.m. - Beach Exploration! (meet at beach)


  • 10:00 a.m. - Guided Paddle around Lake Cochituate. Bring your own canoe or kayak or rent one from Charles River Canoe and Kayak located inside the park. (Get a 20% discount on rental if you come on the guided tour).

Detailed July Activity Calendar and August Activity Calendar for Cochituate State Park can be downloaded to view or print out, (schedules are in Adobe .PDF format).


Map to Cochituate State Park Entrance (on Rt. 30)

Click for larger Google Map or to get driving direction from outside local area.

Directions to Cochituate State Park: follow Cochituate Rd., (Rt. 30) east, when you pass the intersection of Speen St. and Rt. 30, (near Home Depot) the road will become Commonwealth Rd., (at Natick town line), park entrance is on your right approximately 1/4 mile at 43 Commonwealth Rd., Natick, MA.

Additional information is available on the Cochituate State Park page of the MA Dept. of Conservation and Recreation website, or by contacting Cochituate State Park Headquarters / Business Office located at 93 Commonwealth Rd. Wayland, MA, or by phone at: (508) 653-9641.





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