Southbridge is a town in southern Central Massachusetts, about 60 miles from Boston. Southbridge is a close-knit community with a downtown area of friendly small businesses. The area was initially inhabited by the Nipmuck and Mohegan tribes, with the Quinebaug River dividing their territories. In 1730, it was settled by Europeans. Water power from the Quinebaug River made Southbridge a good location for sawmills and gristmills in the 18th century, and textile mills in the 19th century. After the Civil War, many immigrants of Irish and French Canadian descent came to work and live there; by the 1930s they had been joined by Poles, Greeks, Italians and others.
The principal road in Southbridge is Route 131, known as Main Street through downtown and East Main Street past the "AO Rotary" and through Sandersdale, a village on the town's east side. North-south roads include Eastford Road and Elm Street (Route 198), and Worcester Street-Mechanic Street-North Woodstock Road (Route 169). Southbridge was formed out of portions of three of its neighboring towns: Sturbridge to the west, Charlton to the north, and Dudley to the east. The other neighboring towns are Woodstock, Connecticut, and Eastford, Connecticut to the south.
- The Notre Dame Church, Main Street. Worthy of being called a cathedral. What used to be a large wooden church on Pine Street in 1870, became church built of white marble bricks, originally intended as tombstones for the Spanish-American war. It was designed by Roman artist Gonippo Raggi and architect Joseph Venne of Montreal.
- Gateway Players, 111 Main Street, ☏ . Gateway Players is an all volunteer, non-profit, educational community theater organization that brings theater performances and workshops to Southbridge and surrounding communities. Gateway Players is located in a refinished barn behind the Arts Center on 111 Main Street.
- QVCAH-The Arts Center, 111 Main Street, Southbridge, ☏ . The Quinebaug Valley Council for the Arts and Humanities is located in a stately old mansion in the heart of Southbridge. Gallery exhibits, lectures, workshops, classes, art classes, puppet shows, fashion, music and vibrant seasonal and annual events are offered to the public and the center hosts the Gateway Players Theater.
- Central Pizza, 55 Central Street, ☏ . A clean, air-conditioned, open-dining pizzeria. A full menu that includes pizza, pasta, sandwiches, and baklava. Sells wine and beer. Delivers from 11am - 2:00pm & 4:00pm, and a half hour before closing.
- Fedele's Coffee Shop and Restaurant, 13 Central Street, ☏ . A small, casual, family style diner that serves fresh, homestyle breakfast and lunch. The atmosphere is warm and friendly.
- Vienna Restaurant and Historic Inn (Open Christmas Day and Christmas Eve), 14 South Street - Rt. 131 (Exit #1 off 1-84 East, take right at end of ramp, and quick left onto Mashapaug Rd. (which turns automatically into South Street at top of Mountain), at about 3.7 miles you'll pass Harrington Hospital, at bottom of hill turn left, just before traffic light right into our driveway), ☏ . 24/7. Elegant Austrian/German restaurant attached to a historic inn.. Formal but not no attitude! Be pampered with White linen, candle light, and wood burning fireplaces. Viennese cuisine such as Wiener Schnitzel, Goulash Soup, Rabbit, sausages, tafelspitz, Chicken Paprika, Jager Schnitzel, Trout, Roasted Duckling and Rouladen as well Steaks and Seafood such as seared Sea Scallops and Grilled Salmon. Chateaubriand served table-side. Homemade desserts and tortes with mod-expensive.
- Metro Bistrot, 176 Main St, ☏ .
- Sturbridge Coffee Roasters Cafe, 210 Hamilton St (in the Flat Iron Building), ☏ . Music and poetry on various nights of the week. Best coffee around. Period.
- [dead link] Bentley Brewing Company, 12 Crane Street Southbridge. Saturday 2-6PM. Small brewery with free tastings, affordable growler fills, and a few bottles for purchase. Located in an old mill building.
- Southbridge Hotel & Conference Center, 14 Mechanic Street, ☏ . Opened in 2002, this hotel is expanded from the beautiful 100 year old American Optical Company which has been preserved as a focal point of Southbridge. Contains a state of the art Focus Fitness Center, Shades Lounge, Crystal Ballroom, and Prism Auditorium. All named after the historical optical company. A lovely hotel that blends the old with the new.
Bed & Breakfast
- The Vienna Restaurant & Historic Inn, 14 South St, ☏ . Five rooms all with private bath. Two-room suites, equipped with living rooms and dining available in your room. Restaurant featuring Austrian, German, Swiss and French cuisines. Steak & Seafood is also available every day with an inspired chef's dish. In summer months there is outdoor dining by the fire!