The Brookfields are a collection of five small towns in Central Massachusetts.
The Brookfields are a collection of 5 small towns in Central Massachusetts: Brookfield, East Brookfield, North Brookfield, West Brookfield, and Warren. East, North, and West Brookfield were originally part of Brookfield as was most of Warren when the area was known as Quaboag Plantation. Brookfield was originally settled in 1660, but most of the town was destroyed in 1675 during King Philip's war, causing it to lay abandoned for nearly 12 years afterward. The Knox Artillery Train passed through in 1776, bringing the cannons that helped end the siege of Boston. This is commemorated by a marker on Route 9. North Brookfield split off in 1812, West Brookfield in 1848, and East Brookfield in 1920. East Brookfield is the newest town in Massachusetts by date of incorporation.
The Brookfields are not well connected to any major highways, making them harder to get to than most destinations in Massachusetts. From east or west, you can use MA Route 9 to reach the area. From Boston to Worcester, Route 9 is a major highway, but west of Worcester it becomes a simple country road. From north or south you can use Route 67 and Route 148, both of which are also country roads. Coming from the east, you should take I-90 to the Sturbridge Exit and use Route 20 to get to Route 148 and head north into the Brookfields. Coming from the west, you should take I-90 to the Palmer Exit and take Route 20 east to Route 67 and head north.
The Brookfields are very spread out and rural. You will need a car to get around. Route 9 runs east-west through East Brookfield, Brookfield, and West Brookfield. From Brookfield, you can use Route 148 to get to North Brookfield. Route 67 will take you to Warren from West Brookfield. Depending upon where you are, there may be a back road that will get you to your next point of interest faster than any of these.
The Brookfields are all about subtle, natural scenery. There are a few small art galleries to see, but the primary sight to see is the rolling countryside, which provides a refreshing break from the densely populated rest of Southern New England. Driving along the main roads will provide plenty of scenery to take in, but for the best chance of taking in that classic rural New England vista, pick a back road to explore. Like the rest of New England, the Brookfields are stunning in the autumn and are one of the few places to take in a mostly undisturbed countryside without having to drive all the way to Vermont or northern New Hampshire.
- Kulina Folkart and Pied Potter Hamelin Redware, Main St, Warren, ☎ . Pottery studio
- GlassGirl Gallery, 10 East Main St, West Brookfield. Passionate glass artist showcasing her work in quaint West Brookfield village. Available for purchase.
The Brookfields are a large agricultural region with lots of orchards and small farms. You can't visit many of the farms, but most of the orchards are open to visitors, especially during autumn. There are also hiking opportunities in the state forests and other protected land of the Brookfields.
- Brookfield Orchards, 12 Lincoln Rd, North Brookfield, MA 01535, ☎ . Pick your own apples, snack bar, and country store.
- Honey Bee Orchards, 107 E Main St, West Brookfield, ☎ . Large orchard and farmstand
- King's Berry Farm, 121 N Brookfield Rd, East Brookfield, ☎ . Farm dedicated to sustainability and a diverse amount of crops that you can buy in its farm stand.
- Breezeland Orchards, 1791 Southbridge Rd, Warren, MA, ☎ . Pick your own apples and a large farmstand.
- Warren Farm & Sugarhouse, 31 Warren St, North Brookfield, ☎ . Farmstand, sugarhouse, orchard. You might be able to get a tour as well.
- Ragged Hill Orchard, 94 John Gilbert Rd, West Brookfield, ☎ . Pick your own fruit and soak in the beautiful countryside of the Brookfields.
- Hayfield Farm, 8 Mitchell Hill Rd, Brookfield, ☎ .
- Rock House Reservation, Route 9, West Brookfield, ☎ . Explore the trails on this 135 acre Trustees of Reservations site surrounding a cave that was formerly a Native American gathering place.
The Brookfields are a refreshing break from the big-box dominated shopping centers found around the cities. Here, you will find a wide variety of antique stores, quaint country stores, finely crafted iron work, and a large used bookstore.
- The Book Bear, 80 W Main St, West Brookfield, ☎ . Used bookstore carrying 90,000 titles.
- Hometown Antiques, 40 Ware St, West Brookfield, ☎ . Small antique shop.
- Tip Top Natural Foods & Country Store, 8 Central St, Brookfield, ☎ . Small country store focused on organic foods.
- The Purple Onion, 105 N Main St, West Brookfield, ☎ .
- [dead link] Post & Boot, 78 East Main Street Route 9, West Brookfield, ☎ . House and garden accents
- The Clock Barn & Noisy Beagle Antique Shoppe, 44 Spring St, North Brookfield, MA, ☎ . Mostly specializing in old clocks, but they have some other antiques.
- [dead link] Ye Country Mercantile, 12 E Main St, West Brookfield. Small, mostly antique store in the historic Olde Tavern.
- Lyon Iron, 49 Snow Rd, West Brookfield,, ☎ . Crafters of fireplace furniture, cooking utensils, and door hardware.
- 308 Lakeside, 308 East Main Street, East Brookfield, ☎ . Large waterfront bar and restaurant on the shore of Lake Lashaway.
- Salem Cross Inn, 260 W Main St Rt 9 West Brookfield, MA 01585, ☎ . Historic restaurant in the bucolic western part of the region serving traditional New England fare. The Salem Cross Inn is in large part responsible for making the Brookfields a minor travel destination. $$.
- Howard's Drive In, 121 E Main St, West Brookfield, ☎ . Popular roadside stand serving up burgers, hot dogs, and ice cream.
Nightlife is not really the point of the Brookfields. Go outside and look at the stars as you are far enough away from the light pollution of New England's cities. If you do need a drink, there are bars attached to most sit-down restaurants. 308 Lakeside in East Brookfield has a popular deck to sit on and enjoy a pitcher of beer while gazing at Lake Lashaway.
There are no chain hotels in the Brookfields and very few lodging options of any kind. There are a few family run inns and motels in the area and camping is an option. The Salem Cross Inn is the most famous landmark in the region and better known as a restaurant, but true to its name, it is also an inn.
- Copper Lantern Motor Lodge, 184 W Main St, West Brookfield, MA, ☎ . Small family owned motel.
- Brookfield Inn, 8 W Main St, Brookfield, ☎ . The Inn that George Washington almost slept in. Legend has it, while passing through town as President on a tour of New England, George Washington tried to stay at the Brookfield Inn, founded in 1768, and was turned away by the innkeeper's wife because she wasn't feeling well. It is now a quaint bed & breakfast.
|Routes through Brookfields|
|Northampton ← Amherst ←||W E||→ Worcester → Boston|
|END ←||N S||→ Brimfield → Stafford|
|END ←||N S||→ Sturbridge → Ends at|