Did you know...
- Basketball was invented in Springfield?
- The first accusation of witchcraft in America occurred in Springfield?
- Springfield is home to the first banned book?
- Noah Webster, author of the first American-English dictionary, was born in Springfield?
- The first American postcard was developed in 1873 by the Morgan Envelope Factory of Springfield?
- Milton Bradley invented the first parlor game, The Checkered Game of Life, in Springfield?
Theodor Geisel (aka "Dr. Seuss") was born and grew up in Springfield, Massachusetts. The influence of Springfield can be seen throughout his work. Drawings of Horton the Elephant meandering along streams in the Jungle of Nool, for example, mirror the watercourses in Springfield's Forest Park. And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street is filled with Springfield imagery and, importantly, was the first children's book Dr. Seuss wrote and illustrated. It was rejected more than twenty times before being published by Vanguard Press - a fact for all of us to keep in mind as we dive into the 2012 NESCBWI Conference here in "The City of Firsts!" (source: www.seussville.com)
As New England's 4th largest city, there is much going on in Springfield. So if you want to take a break, let the conference sink in, or dine with friends, Springfield offers many culturally diverse options!
- Bamboo House
- Pho Saigon Restaurant
PLACES TO GO, THINGS TO DO
The Museum Quadrangle - 21 Edwards Street, 1-800-625-7738
The Quadrangle - a campus of five museums surrounding the Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden. Admission to the Quadrangle includes admission to all museums:
- The Museum of Fine Arts, known for its Impressionist and Dutch Renaissance collections.
- The Springfield Science Museum features the United States' first planetarium.
- The world-class George Walter Vincent Smith Museum is known worldwide for housing the largest collection of Chinese cloisonne outside of China.
- The Connecticut Valley Historical Society, which tells the story of "The Great River" and its people; and
- The new Museum of Springfield History, which showcases the innovations that make Springfield "The City of Progress."
A grouping of 60 clubs, bars, and Restaurants around Stearns Square, Worthington and Main Streets. LGBT and dance clubs are integrated with hip-hop, rock, jazz and blues clubs.
Forest Park - Sumner Avenue, 413-787-6434,
Forest Park is one of the United States' largest urban parks (at 735 acres) and also one of its most historically important urban parks. Designed by Frederick Law Olmsted - the famed designer of New York City's Central Park - Forest Park is nearly as large, and similarly diverse. Amenities include the Zoo at Forest Park, which features many exotic animals; the United States' first public swimming pool (1899;) numerous playgrounds; an ice-skating rink; a formal rose garden; the 31 acres Porter Lake, which features fishing and paddle-boating; 38 tennis courts; numerous basketball and bocce courts; lawn bowling fields; Victorian promenades and water gardens; dozens of hiking and walking trails; an aquatic park; numerous sculptures; and the Carriage House of Springfielder Everett Hosmer Barney, the man who invented the ice skate and popularized the roller skate during the 19th century.
Basketball Hall of Fame - 1000 Hall of Fame Avenue, 413-781-6500
A shrine to the world's second most popular sport. Built beside the Connecticut River it features numerous restaurants.
The street featuring the house that inspired Dr. Seuss's first children's book, And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street.
Connecticut River Walk Park
The Connecticut River Walk and Bikeway includes 3.7 mile stretch along the Springfield riverfront which provides outstanding opportunities to bike, run, walk or rollerblade in view of stunning scenic vistas of the Connecticut River, the Springfield city skyline, and Memorial Bridge. The river walk passes through Springfield's Riverfront Park and offers direct access to the Basketball Hall of Fame via a pedestrian bridge.