Great Falls Discovery Center

Great Falls Discovery Center

Connecticut River Greenway State Park

Department of Conservation and Recreation

2 Avenue A

Turners Falls, MA

(413) 863-3221

Contact: Janel Nockleby at (413) 863-3221

December 1, 2022

For Immediate Release:

December 2022 Events at the Great Falls Discovery Center

All programs are free and open to the public. An adult must accompany children. Inclement weather cancels outdoor programs. Reasonable accommodations available upon request. Wheelchair accessible. Please follow all current COVID guidelines. Visit for more guidance. For more information call 413-863-3221 or visit:; or email The Great Falls Discovery Center is located at 2 Avenue A, Turners Falls, MA 01376.

Visitor Center Hours: Open 6 Days a Week

Tuesdays, 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Wednesdays—Sundays, 10:00 a.m.—5:00 p.m.

Closed Christmas Day

Come explore the natural, cultural, and industrial history of the Connecticut River Watershed in our dynamic exhibit dioramas. Adjacent to the Canalside Rail Trail, the center also includes the Great Hall exhibit gallery, restrooms, and drinking water.

Great Hall Art Exhibit: Junior Duck Stamps

Ongoing, December 3 – January 1

See the top Massachusetts youth entries for the 2022 Junior Duck Stamp competition! This state-wide art contest by students from Kindergarten to High School heightens awareness of the importance of preserving wetland habitats and the delights of wildlife. While you’re here, visit our duck investigation station in the Great Hall. Make your own duck stamp!

Story Walk® Series


Enjoy a story, fresh air and exercise! Join us on the grounds of the center for a FREE series of self-guided StoryWalks® featuring children’s picture books. Follow the path to book pages posted along the route. Wonderful stories await!

November 12—January 1 Thanks to the Animals, by Allen Sockabasin. For young readers ages 6—8 and anyone grateful for wildlife and storytelling.

The StoryWalk® Project was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, VT and developed in collaboration with the Kellogg-Hubbard Library. Story Walk® is a registered service mark owned by Ms. Ferguson. This StoryWalk® is provided by Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation Interpretive Services.

It’s a Wonderful Night in Turners Falls … for the Birds!

Friday, December 9, 3:00—6:00 p.m., and Saturday, December 10, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Meet in the Great Hall. Craft bird feeders for our winter friends as part of It’s a Wonderful Night in Turners Falls —a town-wide RiverCulture event on December 9. Which birds show up at your feeder? What do they eat? Bird feeder making continues on Saturday, 11:00 am—2:00 pm. For all ages. Materials are free.

Nice and Easy Walk

Fridays December 9, 16, 23, & 30, 1:00 -2:00 p.m.

An easy-paced, 1 to 2-mile guided walk, along the Canalside Rail Trail or the Turners Falls National Historic District, geared for seniors, but open to all ages. Join with others seeking fresh air and exercise. A DCR Park Interpreter highlights local history and natural scenes along the way. Be prepared for the weather. Wear appropriate clothing and sturdy boots. Bring water. FREE. Inclement weather cancels. Meet at Discovery Center entrance.

Kidleidoscope Story Hour

Fridays, December 16 (ducks), 23 (deer), & 30 (raccoons), 10:30—11:30 a.m.

For ages 3-6, accompanied by an adult. Learn more about our wildlife neighbors who share our home in the Connecticut River Watershed. Program includes a story, activities, and a craft. Activities are indoors and outdoors, weather permitting.

Siblings and friends welcome. Meet in the Great Hall.

Gingerbread Houses

Saturday, December 17, 10:30 a.m. -12:00 p.m.

The Turners Falls Carnegie Library presents Gingerbread Houses! Decorate a deliciously festive house using frosting, graham crackers, and various candies. Designed for children and their caregivers. Free!

Winter Solstice Walk

Wednesday, December 21, 3:00—4:30 p.m.

Celebration the change in season. Join us for an easy walk along the Canalside Rail Trail. The walk is about 3 miles-long, on a level paved surface. For adults and children ages 8 and up. Be prepared for cold weather, dress in layers. Wear sturdy shoes and bring water. Walk begins at the front entrance of the Discovery Center. Inclement weather or icy trail conditions cancels.

School Vacation Week: Mammal Adaptations Investigation Station

Ongoing, December 23 – January 1

During Discovery Center open hours come learn about local mammals and their unique winter adaptations. Every animal has special adaptations that enable them to survive in their winter habitats. Explore through touchable artifacts (pelts, replica skulls, and replica tracks), habitat diorama scavenger hunts, and a Bingo game at the Welcome Desk.

Save the Date! First Day Hike

Sunday, January 1, 2023, 1:00-3:00 p.m.

Get the 2023 New Year started off on the right foot! Enjoy a leisurely staff-guided three-mile stroll on the Canalside Rail Trail. This family-friendly hike follows a gentle, level route. Be prepared for cold weather: dress in layers and wear comfortable winter walking boots. Dogs are welcome on leash. Meet at 1:00 p.m. in the Great Hall. Hike begins at 1:15 p.m.


--Janel Nockleby

Visitor Services Supervisor

Great Falls Discovery Center

Connecticut River Greenway State Park

2 Avenue A, Turners Falls, MA 01376 413-863-3221

Open Hours: Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Wednesdays through Sundays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Office Hours: Wednesdays through Sundays