When you call The Goodwin your home away from home in downtown Hartford, Connecticut, you’ve got some fantastic greenspaces within easy reach whenever you’re hankering for a bit of nature-in-the-city or family-friendly outdoors fun.
Among the prime options is Great River Park, just across the Connecticut River in East Hartford. It’s open all year-round, but needless to say is especially enticing in this summer season.
Great River Park in East Hartford
Great River Park has a lot to offer, first and foremost its handsome landscaped spread along our mighty home river. Its facilities include a boat launch, picnic tables, exercise stations, and a 350-seat amphitheater that hosts concerts and other events (more on that in a minute).
You’ve also got some two miles of paved and well-lit walking paths along the river, plus a multitude of public art in the form of sculptures.
You can access two walking routes across the Connecticut River from Great River Park: the Founders Bridge Promenade and the Charter Oak Bridge. If you’re looking for some exercise and fresh air, you could actually stroll from The Goodwin to the park and back, in fact.
Summertime Concerts at Great River Park
Each summer, the Town of East Hartford presents six free all-ages concerts in Great River Park via its Thursday Sounds of Summer series. This year’s schedule runs through early August and is about halfway through. The remaining shows are Dually Noted on July 25th, Gonza Latin Band on August 1st, and Soul Sound Revue on August 8th.
The Middletown Symphonic Band’s Summer Pops also goes down in Great River Park a few times a season. On Saturday, July 20th, MSB Rocks will have you humming along to everybody from the Beatles to Lady Gaga, while the Saturday, August 24th edition, From Broadway to Hollywood, will spotlight some truly iconic melodies from the stage to the silver screen.
Riverfront Recapture & Park Events
The non-profit Riverfront Recapture has worked for more than three decades to improve public access and recreational opportunities along central Connecticut’s riverways, and manages Great River Park along with several other public greenspaces along the Connecticut linked up via riverwalks.
Hartford’s Riverside Park, Mortensen Riverfront Plaza, and Charter Oak Landing are other Riverfront Recapture public spaces well worth visiting on a getaway to The Goodwin.
Along with the Summer Pops and Sounds of Summer concerts, there are many other events held in these marvelous waterfront parks. Upcoming happenings include the Riverfront Dragon Boat & Asian Festival on Saturday, August 17th and some on-the-spot hilarity on July 16th and August 20th courtesy of Sea Tea Comedy Theater’s Pop Up Improv, both at Mortensen Riverfront Plaza.
Check Out Great River Park on Your Next Visit to The Goodwin
Our riverfront parks are some of the all-out jewels of the metro area, and Great River Park’s a wonderful example. Check out its lovely riverwalks, public art, concerts, and other attractions when you next take advantage of The Goodwin’s boutique hospitality in downtown Hartford!