Keen for Keene

Submitted 2 years ago
Created by
Lisa Ladd

A Four-Legged Adventure

Our dog Cody gets restless and bored with the same walks.  We do too, and fortunately he likes road trips as much as we do.  Not too long ago, we decided to go to Keene, after reading about a park in the center of town that has trails to walk on along the Ashuelot River. 

Not only is it a lovely park, but it has very special significance.  As I mentioned previously, I just finished reading Congressman John Lewis’ trilogy March, about his significant role in the civil rights movement and his experiences marching in Selma, and many other venues in the South, trying to abolish segregation and give all people the right to vote.  Unbeknownst to me when we chose this destination, the park trail is named after Keene’s native son Jonathan Myrick Daniels a martyr of the Civil Rights Movement, and considered a Saint, along with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by the Episcopal church.  He shielded a young black woman and was killed with a bullet intended for her, by a white deputy.  The all-white jury acquitted the deputy of manslaughter and all charges were dropped.  This promising young seminarian’s death in 1965 ignited the Episcopal church and brought more attention to the cause, but at a terrible price. Ashuelot River Park is clearly well maintained and must get plenty of use in warmer months.  Although it was a bit icy, we walked most of the trail, which made Cody very happy.  He especially appreciated the doggy rest stop pictured below.

Once back to the car, we realized we were directly across the street from the Colony Mill Marketplace which includes the Elm City Brewery.  Clearly a popular spot, we had an excellent lunch before continuing our “walk” with Cody. 

Hopping back into the car, we made our way to Main Street.  Keene is a college town, and the number of restaurants and shops make it a nice destination that isn’t too far from the Upper Valley.  I spotted several stores that seemed popular and made a mental note to return when we didn’t have our furry friend along for the ride.  The Colonial Theater is also downtown.  I have been there for concerts, but they also show movies and it is a very nice venue. 

In addition to local stores and restaurants, Keene has many of the big box stores as well, including Target, always the store I hear people miss the most when moving to the Upper Valley from more populated areas.  If you have a full day, consider hopping across the river and finishing your day in Brattleboro, before heading north on 91.  And no matter what you do, if your furry friend is coming with, be sure to bring the leash, dog treats and water dish or it may be a very short road trip!


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